Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Series in Review: Kitty Norville by Carrie Vaughn

Series are a tricky thing. I have series that I love as a whole, but an individual book within the series did not impress me.  So I am not always sure that reviewing the individual books is fair to the author's vision. However, I do not want to postpone all of my reviews of the books within a series until the end. With those thoughts in mind I decided to start Series In Review. In these postings, I will be looking at more than one book in the series or if possible the entire series at one time.
**This review may contain spoilers for some of the books in the series**

Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal
Books Reviewed from this Series: Kitty and The Midnight Hour and Kitty Goes to Washington
Author Info: Goodreads | Website
Rating: 4 stars
Borrowed these books from my friend.

In A Nutshell:
My friend has been raving about this series--and after reading the first two books I am totally on her side.  Carrie Vaughn has created a wonderful world full of interesting characters who keep a vice grip on my attention. 

Quite by accident Kitty Norville started a late night radio show that gives voice to the creatures that go bump in the night.  Vampires, werewolves, and people who want to be vampires or werewolves call in to tell their story.  Kitty can handle their calls with humor, wit, and honesty--an honesty built on experience.  Kitty is a werewolf who has been trying to live a "normal" life and build her career while dealing with the aspects of being a werewolf.

In Kitty, Carrie Vaughn has created a character who is an interesting mixture of vulnerability and strength.  She is new to being a werewolf and still learning how to do it, particularly the pack part of it.  She is intelligent.  The more she learns about herself, about being a werewolf, about the world she is now a part of--the stronger she becomes as a person and the more interesting she becomes as a character.  She has an honest, open style that allows her to tell it like it is--on her show, when she is talking about the urges that the Wolf awakes in her, even when she talks about the process of shifting into a werewolf.  After reading these two books, I will never look at my dog's actions the same way again.

In these books, Carrie Vaughn kept me on the edge of my seat until the last second.  Each book had a scene where my jaw literally dropped (and where I honestly wanted to text my friend and say WTF!).  Carrie Vaughn does not pull her punches.  She will take away characters that we love, she will force Kitty into uncomfortable situations, she will keep us up until the wee hours of the morning turning the pages.

But it is late now--I am going to dial in my radio.  Maybe I will find The Midnight Hour broadcast to tune into?

After reading these two books, I cannot wait to start the next book in the series:

I also did not realize when I started this series, that this is the same Carrie Vaughn who wrote another book I have been wanting to read for a while:

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A Tribute to the Tributes

Before clicking on this image--be aware that it contains major spoilers!

As I was preparing this post--the one where I wanted to talk about the tributes for the Hunger Games, I started looking online.  Then I found this graphic--and I could not think of a better way to commemorate the tributes.  So I am sharing it with you!

I found it here.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

TBR Intervention (11)

I am calling this week a TBR success--and I am very proud of that. :)

Last Week

I finished this one. I am not 100% sure how I feel about it--so I am waiting until I can put my feelings into words before I write the review.

I have started this one but I am not done with it yet. It will be my first success of next week!

I was so excited to get reacquainted with Kinsley that I devoured this book in what felt like a second. I have the next one on reserve at the library!

This Week
I already told you about Triangles: A Novel but I am also committed to reading:

I am participating in a blog tour for this one in March--I am so excited to finish it and write my review.

Summary (from back cover):
Thirty-five year old fiction writer, Richard Rossi would do just about anything to get his manuscript published.  However, months of rejection and unanswered prayers have strained his capacity to hope.  Alone in New York City, he teeters on the brink of alcoholism, as his hope erodes into desperation.  His prayers are finally answered when a simple misdirected piece of mail spawns a chance encounter with an extraordinary man, Seth Volos, Publisher.  And while their unholy alliance thrusts Richard to the top of every Best Seller list in America, the horrifying outcome of the book's legions of fans is anything but a happy ending.

My audiobook focus for this week is: 

This is a re-read for me, but I am finding Lena to be a less charming character this time around.

Summary (from
Ninety-five days, and then I’ll be safe.

I wonder whether the procedure will hurt.

I want to get it over with.

It’s hard to be patient.

It’s hard not to be afraid while I’m still uncured, though so far the deliria hasn’t touched me yet.

Still, I worry.

They say that in the old days, love drove people to madness.

The deadliest of all deadly things: It kills you both when you have it and when you don’t.

After I finish these books--I have so many options it is going to be hard to pick the next book.  Maybe you can help me.  Which book should I read next?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Follow Friday (15)

Q: Activity!!! Take a picture or describe where you love to read the most...

Since I just woke up--my bed is not made.  I am not going to post that picture on the internet for the world to see (*gasp*).  But when I am at home, I get most of my reading done in bed.

But I read on my way to and from work.  I commute about 45 minutes each way which gives me a lot of uninterrupted reading time. 

I also love audiobooks because then I can "read" while I am walking.  The university I work at has quite a few buildings that are pretty far from the building I work in--so when I have to walk to another building I usually have my iPod with me. 

Do you like audiobooks?  Can you read on your way to work or school?

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Book Addict Dares You To Read: Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

I love having the opportunity to challenge people to read books that I personally found compelling or interesting or just all out fun.  But I want to know what you think?  Have you read the book?  Did it stick with you?  If so, why?  If not, why? _________________________________________________

Here is my review of the series. 

Here are my 10 reasons you should read this series:
10) Excellent writing from her attention to detail to her excellent character development to her elaborately detailed world.
9) Memorable characters who I care about, who I identify with, who I want to follow through to the end of their journey.
8) Games that are emotional, action packed, page turners that I could not stop reading even though the tears were clouding my vision.
7) This series was my introduction to dystopian literature--and now I am a huge fan of the genre even though my heart is broken while reading dystopian books many times over.
6) A love triangle where my heart ached because I loved all three of the people in the triangle--I did not know who she would or should choose. 
5) The descriptions of Cinna's clothing designs!  He had such creativity, style, and finesse.  I wanted to be wearing the designs--except for the fact that I would have had to be part of the games to do so--eek!
4) The critical look at politics, oppression, and opulence.  I read current events stories very differently after reading this series.  It affected the way think about terms like "progress" and "governance."  And what amazes me the most is that it had this effect without ever coming off as preaching to me.
3) Buttercup.  Okay maybe it is because I am a cat person--but the scenes with Buttercup always left me with a little bit of a smile on my face.
2) Katniss Everdeen is one of the most kick-ass female protagonist I have seen in a long time--my only wish is that she could see herself the way that Peeta and Gale can see her with all of her great qualities in the forefront. 
1) My most anticipated movie of the year is coming out on March 23!

If you have read The Hunger Games Trilogy--what are your top 10 reasons people should read them?
If you have not read The Hunger Games Trilogy--do you want to?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Book Addict Reviews: Glass by Ellen Hopkins

Genre: Young Adult, Social Situations, Parents, Emotions & Feelings
Order Online:
Author Info: Website | Goodreads
Rating: 4 stars
Borrowed this book from the library. 

In A Nutshell:
After reading Crank, I was hopeful that Kristina would get the help that she needed.  While I loved Ellen Hopkins poetry and style, I did struggle with some aspects of the story.  But I am hopeful that in the final installment many of my concerns will be addressed.

I always struggle with my emotions after reading Ellen Hopkins' books.  Her use of poetry to tell her story is unique and full of emotion.  Her writing is powerful and full of impact.  All of these things I love.  But the topics she covers in her stories are tough.  They are gritty.  They take a long hard look at the parts of society that tend to be ignored or glossed over.  All of these things make me very glad I read her books, but not really sure I will re-read them very often.

Glass continues the story of Kristina, who we met in Crank.  She has promised herself and her new son that she is done with the monster.  She will get her GED and continue the life she had before her trip to visit her father, or at least as much of that life as possible now.

But the call of the monster is too strong--and Kristina cannot resist it.  Slowly she gets in over her head and ends up losing everything; her family, her home, her freedom.

The entire time I was reading this book, I wished that someone had gotten Kristina professional help; particularly during the time when she had been dedicated to being a good mother.  It felt like her love for Hunter would have been enough enticement to encourage her to change her life.  Addiction is not something that a person can generally give up through willpower alone--and I feel like that is even more true for someone so young.  It almost felt too late by the time that Kristina's mother took a stand--and the stand of kicking her out without another option seemed a little counterproductive to me.  Why not offer to send her to rehab?  I agree that she probably would have said no--but then I would be upset with her.  Right now, I am angry with her mother!

I was hoping the Kristina/Bree break would be explore more in this book--particularly the hints that the split within Kristina started before she went to her fathers.  What prompted it?  Why can she not bring the two parts of herself together into one--and have a clearly defined sense of self. 

I have the final book in this series on reserve--I am hoping that the final installment will address my concerns:

I have also ordered the supplemental book that I was looking forward to:

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

YA Trivia Game Wrap-up

On my best blogging buddies has invited me to join in her Valentine's Week special:

What a great way to celebrate Valentine's Days!  I hope you all enjoyed the trivia questions.

Without further ado--the lucky winner is: Jane.

And now for the answers to this weeks questions:

Which Sarah Dessen couple works for Wish Catering?
a) Annabel and Owen
b) Macy and Wes
c) Remy and Dexter
d) Ruby and Nate

This question comes from:

The other characters are all from other Sarah Dessen novels that I have read.

What famous YA couple had the following conversation:
(Person A) “Don't touch any of my weapons without my permission."
(Person B) "Well, there goes my plan for selling them all on eBay,"
(Person A) "Selling them on what?"
(Person B) "A mythical place of great magical power.”

a) Jace and Clary
b) Magnus and Alec
c) Will and Tessa
d) Jem and Jessie

This question comes from:

The first two couples are from the Mortal Instrument series and the second two sets of characters are from Infernal Devices series.

In Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr, who is Aislinn most likely to pick as her Valentine?

a) Keenan
b) Seth
c) Donia
d) Beira

This question comes from (okay this one may be a little obvious):

All of the character names come from Wicked Lovely.

Which of the following YA characters are not partnered correctly?
a) Brittany Ellis/Alex Fuentas
b) McLean Sweet/Dave Wade
c) Ronald Weasley/Hermione Granger
d) Lizzie Bennet/Charles Bingley

The correct answer for this question comes from:

The incorrect answers are from Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles, What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen, and Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling.

Michael/Eva and Claire/Shane are two famous YA couples, where do they live?

a) Morganville, Texas
b) Vampire Academy
c) Transylvania
d) A Wrinkle In Time

This question came from the following series:

In Just Listen by Sarah Dessen, what is the name of Owen's radio show that Annabel listens to?
a) Tunes for Lovers
b) Anger Management
c) The Midnight Hour
d) The Rush Hour

This question comes from (again I think it may be obvious):

When I first heard the name of Owen's show I literally laughed-out-loud so it stuck out to me. I always remember it. The only other one that comes from a book (that I am aware of) is The Midnight Hour from Kitty and the Midnight Hour by Carrie Vaughn.

In what series do Yelena and Valek fall in love?
a) Castor Chronicles by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
b) Wings by Aprilynne Pike
c) Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder
d) Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

This question comes from (I like these obvious ones!):

I do not have many keeper books--but this series has been a keeper for me. Until I loan it out to everyone I know!

Remember, it did not matter whether the answer was right or wrong but I do want to know what you thought of the questions. How did you do on them?

Jen and I are planning to do another trivia game in March to celebrate The Hunger Games movie release. So please come back an play again.