Lookout Wednesday

Good Wednesday to you lovelies!

wed

We’re going to start a new post every Wednesday regarding new books. This is where we tell you our new obsessions of the week. It’s spotlighting new books that have come to our attention that we want readers to be aware of before their release. They just sound so fantastic!

love books

This week we have 3 awesome authors and their fabulous books that release next year. We can’t wait to read them. They also will be chronicling their publishing adventure over at The Writer Diaries for our monthly post Pre-Pub Adventure! Jump on board the adventure with these authors and their exciting new books. We have!

   


ashes

LAIA is a Scholar living under the brutal rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire’s greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who vow to save her brother from execution.

ELIAS is the academy’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he’s ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor.

When Laia and Elias’s paths cross at the academy, they will find that their destinies are more intertwined that either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself.

Vow your blood and body to the empire.
Keep your heart for yourself. 

Follow Sabaa on Twitter,blog

Add to book to Goodreads

 


 

Glass Arrow


  • The Glass Arrow
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Teen; First Edition edition (February 10, 2015)

In a world where females are scarce and are hunted, then bought and sold at market for breeding, 15-year old Aya has learned how to hide. With a ragtag bunch of other women and girls, she has successfully avoided capture and eked out a nomadic but free existence in the mountains. But when Aya’s luck runs out and she’s caught by a group of businessmen on a hunting expedition, fighting to survive takes on a whole new meaning.

 

The Author Kristen Simmons:kristen_square_crop

Kristen Simmons writes young adult fiction – the kind that’s dark and scary but generally involves some kissing. She’s the author of ARTICLE 5 (2012), BREAKING POINT (2013), and THREE (2014), as well as THE GLASS ARROW (2015), and METALTOWN (2016). Words cannot describe how happy all this makes her.

Follow Kristen on Twitter,Facebook, Blog

Add book to Goodreads 


 

 


novice

  • The Novice
  • Print Length: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (May 5, 2015)

When blacksmith apprentice Fletcher discovers that he has the ability to summon demons from another world, he travels to Adept Military Academy. There the gifted are trained in the art of summoning. Fletcher is put through grueling training as a battlemage to fight in the Hominum Empire’s war against orcs. He must tread carefully while training alongside children of powerful nobles. The power hungry, those seeking alliances, and the fear of betrayal surround him. Fletcher finds himself caught in the middle of powerful forces, with only his demon Ignatius for help.

As the pieces on the board maneuver for supremacy, Fletcher must decide where his loyalties lie. The fate of an empire is in his hands. The Novice is the first in a trilogy about Fletcher, his demon Ignatius, and the war against the Orcs.

 teran

The Author Taran Matharu:

Taran was born in London in 1990 and found a passion for reading at a very early age. His love for stories developed into a desire to create his own during early adolescence, beginning his first book at 9 years old.

While taking time off to travel, Taran began to write ‘Summoner’ in November 2013 at the age of 22, taking part in ‘Nanowrimo 2013′. Thanks to Wattpad.com and updating daily, its popularity dramatically increased, reaching over 3 million reads in less than six months.

His SUMMONER trilogy will be published in May 2015 by Hodder Children’s (Hachette) in the UK, Australia and Commonwealth, Feiwel and Friends (Macmillan) in the US and Canada, Hachette Jeunesse in France, Heyne in Germany, Planeta in Spain, Crown in Taiwan and Record in Brazil. Book 1 will be published by EKSMO in Russia.

Follow Taran on TwitterFacebook 

Add book to Goodreads


Exciting reads, right? We can’t wait to devour these next year.
Excited-Amy-Adams-In-Cute-Dress-Reaction-Gif
What new books do you look forward to reading next year?

Love Tawney Twin

young elites

Book Friday! Marie Lu’s Young Elites and some sketches.

Tawney Twin here! And it’s my favorite day. It’s that time of week where we review books. Yay for books!

book love

Since moving to Florida, I have had some time to read many books. Which could be a good thing for me but a bad thing for my wallet. I spent the last couple of days reading, no more like devouring a fabulous book, Young Elites by Marie Lu.

 young elites      


 

Synopsis: I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.

 Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.

Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it’s Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all.

Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they’ve never seen.
Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side, and that Teren is the true enemy. But the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that shouldn’t belong in this world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.
 
It is my turn to use. My turn to hurt.


 

My review: This book had me at the first sentence “I’m going to die tomorrow morning.” Our main character Adelina is in a precarious situation when we first meet her. She survived the Blood Fever, a virus that killed thousands and has changed all children psychically and mentally. Some have scars on the outside but most have new powers that were developed from the blood fever. These children are called malfetto and they are loathed to the point that some are murdered without cause. Adelina only lost an eye from the fever until the night she kills her father. Her true, dark powers manifest which is why she’s in jail waiting for her execution. She has become a true malfetto. And that’s how the book gains my attention and the fast pace adventure begins.

This was a dark spellbinding tale of young kids trying to gain the acceptance of their kingdom while putting the rightful heir back on the throne. Marie Lu did a wonderful job on the description of her fantasy world with the rituals, attire and royal affairs. I just love world building and she did a fantastic job. Look at this map!

mapEvery fantasy needs a good map and I can visually picture Marie’s world through her descriptive words. She takes us around this world with perfect clarity not missing a beat front the different cultures and settings. Her world building is masterful and fuels the plot of the story and helps motivate the characters.

Marie Lu does a wonderful job on creating her characters and mastering the multiple points of views. Sometimes this draws me away from books because I feel that multiple points of view can become confusing. Not in this case.

We nave four point of views, one in first person and three in third person. Adelina’s story is told in first person. We can feel her emotions and know her thoughts. Reading her chapters I become more emotional and empathize with her. Sometimes I wish that she would speak her mind rather than keep secrets. The three other characters we follow are evil Teren, the handsome Raffaele and the crown prince Enzo. I love Enzo and his fire powers. He can call upon the fires to bend at his will. His emotions with Adelina are often sometimes laughable, given the situation they are in. I wish characters can just say what they feel, but then again it wouldn’t make for a good story. Teren wants to help his queen and king get rid of the malfettos once and for all. I disliked his character, which he was the bad guy so who wouldn’t? Raffaele is a beautiful boy who’s is in a slightly scandalous job and his powers are somewhat weak but efficient. But his love for Enzo and Adelina won me over right away. The reason these three third person POV work is because the reader has been informed of things that Adelina has no knowledge of. The reader is given more information and the anticipation of Adelina finding out these things just draws the reader further into the story.

Young Elites was a wonderful-I-can’t-put-this-book-down-OMG-the-feels read. Marie Lu did another fabulous job at taking us through a world of romance, war, adventure and loss. Enzo and Adelina have a fabulous chemistry and I just love when Enzo trains Adelina he doesn’t hold back. He gives it all he can to make her stronger. This book was darker that the Legend Trilogy. There were surprises I didn’t expect that caused gasps and screams of “NOOOOOOO!” Marie Lu does a wonderful job with introducing the characters, from their childhood, to their powers. Her description is pristine and each scene is fast paced and a page turner.

Should you read it? Yes. Marie Lu brings us a wonderful world with fantastic characters. You won’t be disappointed. I give it four stars.               

                                                    starstarstarstar

 And the doodles I sketched while reading this book!

 Legend Meets Young Elites June and Adelina         Adelina and Enzo from Young Elites

sketch                         sketch 2

About the Author:

marie lu


I write stuff, like the LEGEND trilogy (Legend, Prodigy, and Champion) and THE YOUNG ELITES (coming out Oct. 7, 2014). This is my little space, where I post news, tour info, random thoughts, and art. For my photography, hop over to my Photo Tumblr

Follow Marie Lu on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest


bye 2Love Tawney Twin

Winter is coming! Our top 5 anticipated books coming this winter

Winter is coming! And with that some extremely great books!

WINTER

There are many books we’re anticipating to read these next upcoming months. With them a lot of fantasy.

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We love fantasy! The epic world building, languages and fantastic characters are what draws us to these books. So this winter with all the great books releasing here’s a list of the few books we can’t wait to read! I mean we’re literally sitting counting the days down until these books come out. Countdown 5…4…3…2…1 go!

 

     

1. RED QUEEN by Victoria Aveyard
Expected Publication Date:  February 10, 2015
Publisher: HarperTeen

Synopsis: Graceling meets The Selection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard’s sweeping tale of seventeen-year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous intrigue of the king’s palace. Will her power save her or condemn her?

Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with common, Red blood serve the Silver- blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.

To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard—a growing Red rebellion—even as her heart tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays, the only certainty is betrayal.

Sounds awesome right? We love the premise and the world Victoria created sounds fantastic. Follow Victoria’s pre-publishing adventure on The Writer Diaries. This is our highly anticipated book we can’t wait to read. Squeeeeee!

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2. The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows
Expected Publication Date:  March 10, 2015
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Synopsis: Adventure, intrigue, and romance combine in a new fantasy duology from Incarnate series author Jodi Meadows.

When Princess Wilhelmina was a child, the Indigo Kingdom invaded her homeland. Ten years later, Wil and the other noble children who escaped are ready to fight back and reclaim Wil’s throne. To do so, Wil and her best friend, Melanie, infiltrate the Indigo Kingdom palace with hopes of gathering information that will help them succeed.

But Wil has a secret—one that could change everything. Although magic has been illegal for a century, she knows her ability could help her save her kingdom. But magic creates wraith, and the deadly stuff is moving closer and destroying the land. And if the vigilante Black Knife catches her using magic, she may disappear like all the others. . . .

So this one doesn’t come out until spring but we’re adding it to the list because it sounds amazing! Plus, Jodi will have novellas come out in-between the two books. Magic, secrets and the pursue to regain a kingdom? We’re on board! 

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3. Invaded by Melissa Landers
Expected Publication Date:  February 3, 2015
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

SynopsisThings look up when Cara is appointed as human representative to a panel preparing for a human colony on L’eihr. A society melding their two cultures is a place where Cara and Aelyx could one day make a life together. But with L’eihr leaders balking at granting even the most basic freedoms, Cara begins to wonder if she could ever be happy on this planet, even with Aelyx by her side. 

Meanwhile, on Earth, Aelyx, finds himself thrown into a full-scale PR campaign to improve human-L’eihr relations. Humans don’t know that their very survival depends on this alliance: only Aelyx’s people have the technology to fix the deadly contamination in the global water supply that human governments are hiding. Yet despite their upper hand, the leaders of his world suddenly seem desperate to get humans on their side, and hardly bat an eye at extremists’ multiple attempts on Aelyx’s life. The Way clearly needs humans’ help but with what? And what will they ask for in return?

Who doesn’t like aliens? This sequel sounds just as great as the first one and we’re glad that Cara and Aelyx’s story isn’t over.

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 sarah   ignite

4. Ignite by Sara B Larson
Expected Publication Date: January 6, 2015
Publisher: HarperTeenPublisher:
 Scholastic Press

Synopsis: Murder, kidnapping, and forbidden romance abound in this thrilling sequel to Sara B. Larson’s acclaimed YA debut, DEFY.

Alexa continues to harbor a secret love for the newly crowned King Damian, yet she remains by his side as his guard and ever committed to helping him rebuild Antion and reclaim the hope of Antion’s people. However, when a new threat to Damian and his kingdom emerges, and blame is cast on the once friendly nation of Blevon, Alexa knows things are not what they seem. Once again the fate of her country hangs in the balance. Will Alexa be able to protect her king and uncover the true enemy — before it’s too late?

Alexa was a courageous character that we’re glad is returning in this second book. Plus her love for Damian brings on the emotions! Damian…swoon worthy!

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ag howard ensnared

5. Ensnared by A.G. Howard
Expected Publication Date: January 13, 2015
Publisher: HarperTeenPublisher:
 Amulet Books

Synopsis: After surviving a disastrous battle at prom, Alyssa has embraced her madness and gained perspective. She’s determined to rescue her two worlds and the people and netherlings she loves. Even if it means challenging Queen Red to a final battle of wills and wiles . . . and even if the only way to Wonderland, now that the rabbit hole is closed, is through the looking-glass world—a parallel dimension filled with mutated and violent netherling outcasts.
In the final installment of the wildly popular Splintered trilogy, Alyssa and her dad journey into the heart of magic and mayhem in search of her mom and to set right all that’s gone wrong. Together with Jeb and Morpheus, they must salvage Wonderland from the decay and destruction that has ensnared it. But if they succeed and come out alive, can everyone truly have their happily ever after?
This series has us crawling with need to know what happens with Alyssa and our fabulous-we-just-can’t-help-but-love-and-want-to-pet-his-wings Morpheus. And the covers! They’re gorgeous. They would make good posters on our library wall….hmmmm must get posters.
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Those are our top 5 books we greatly anticipate next year. Pre-Orders are done so now we must wait! The Torture! 
wait
What books are you anticipating this winter?
Love 
The Twins

Monday Funday with Victoria Aveyard

Hi Loves!

Tawney Twin here ready to bring you a fun filled Monday.

Today for Monday Funday we have the upcoming author of the highly anticipated book Red Queen answering five fun questions. Welcome Victoria Aveyard!!!

clapping

I’ve been fanning over Victoria since I first heard about her book on the twitter grapevine. It sounds amazing and you can follower her Pre Publishing Adventures over on The Writer Diaries once a month before her book comes out.

Let’s get to know Victoria a little bit before we play!

Red Queen

VictoriaAfter growing up in small town Massachusetts, Victoria attended the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. She graduated with a BFA in Screenwriting, which is exactly the degree being sought after in a recession.

She tries her best to combine her love of history, explosions, and butt-kicking heroines in her writing. Her hobbies include the impossible task of predicting what happens next in A Song of Ice and Fire, road trips, and burning through Netflix. Her book RED QUEEN will be published Winter 2015 from HarperTeen at HarperCollins. She’s repped by Suzie Townsend at New Leaf Literary & Media, Inc.

Now to the Questions! Are you ready?

bringiton

Tawney:  1. Red Queen is all about a hierarchy divided by blood. In the world you created where would you fall? Silver? Red?….

Victoria: I’ve been told by multiple people that I’m kind of cold and heartless, so I would probably fit in best with the Silvers. But just playing the odds game, and mirroring my own background of being very average, I’d most likely be Red. 

Tawney: I find that hard to believe! You’re so nice on twitter and when we correspond!

 

Tawney: 2. If you had your own Ocean’s 11, what authors, writers, actors…would be part of your group?

cleaopatra cate-blanchett-elizabeth-gif-i8

Victoria: My Ocean’s Eleven….fair warning, it’s going to be historical figures. Okay, my list is Richard the Lionheart, Saladin (those two would make for a great I-hate-you-but-respect-you-dynamic), Genghis Khan, Alexander the Great, Cleopatra, Hannibal Barca, Elizabeth I, Boudica, Napoleon, George Washington, and my girl Pocahontas. Plus me in the corner, trying not to freak out. 

 Tawney: Wonderful members! History is full of so many great people.

 

Tawney: 3. You love football. If you could own a team, what team would you own and what changes would you implement?

 VictoriaOh man. I’m not nearly educated enough for this question, but I would obviously own the Patriots and turn over all control to my dad, who knows more about football than I could ever hope to learn. The only changes I would be comfortable making on my own would be adding a hundred more minutemen to fire off muskets after touchdowns. And maybe re-enact skirmishes during halftime and time-outs?

Tawney: I totally would watch re-enact skirmishes and love the idea of minutemen firing off muskets for touchdowns! You have my vote! Go forth and by the team.

 

Tawney: 4: Your stranded on a deserted tropical island, what 3 things would you want with you? (You already have food, fire and water, all the essentials you need as a Survivor.)

Victoria: Is a boat included? If so, my three are a fantasy loaded, undying e-reader, an undying computer with internet access, games, and writing programs, and a non-volleyball friend. 

 

Tawney: 5. Quick! The world is being invaded my zombies. In this moment what would you do? (I would find Daryl from Walking Dead and stick with him. Oh and stick with Michonne too. I’d find a sword or two. Guns run out of bullets, swords never stop chopping zombie heads off.)

daryl michone

Victoria: Right now? I’m in Los Angeles, so I’m pretty much dead already. This city would be a nightmare to escape. But for question’s sake – get in my car, gas up ASAP, hightail it to the mountains and work my way north until I’m above the frost line. Then get as far east as I can, or maybe stop at Yellowstone. If the world’s ending, I want to go out with the buffalo. I have a deep appreciation for buffalo.

buffalo head in car de seniorark

Tawney: You and the buffalo can bond! That would be peaceful and I don’t think  zombies twill be that that far out. You might have a great idea there!

 

 

Thank you for stopping by Victoria!

Order Victoria’s RED QUEEN on Amazon, BN, Books A Million

bye-bye

Love Tawney Twin

Book Friday: Lauren Oliver’s Rooms

Todays Halloween theme book review is about ghosts!

ghost

Ghosts come in all forms. Slimy fun ghosts or insidious ghosts called poltergeists that like to wreck havoc on families.

polgergeist   ghost 2

I love Lauren Oliver’s Delirium trilogy and stand alone book Before I fall, so I thought I would give this new book a try. This is Lauren’s first adult novel and I love when authors stray from one genre and insert themselves into another. Did Lauren live up to the expectations of her YA novels?

 

rooms       lauren oliver

  • Book: Rooms
  • Author: Lauren Oliver
  • Print Length: 325 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0062223194
  • Publisher: Ecco (September 23, 2014)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers

Wealthy Richard Walker has just died, leaving behind his country house full of rooms packed with the detritus of a lifetime. His estranged family—bitter ex-wife Caroline, troubled teenage son Trenton, and unforgiving daughter Minna—have arrived for their inheritance.

But the Walkers are not alone. Prim Alice and the cynical Sandra, long dead former residents bound to the house, linger within its claustrophobic walls. Jostling for space, memory, and supremacy, they observe the family, trading barbs and reminiscences about their past lives. Though their voices cannot be heard, Alice and Sandra speak through the house itself—in the hiss of the radiator, a creak in the stairs, the dimming of a light bulb.

The living and dead are each haunted by painful truths that will soon surface with explosive force. When a new ghost appears, and Trenton begins to communicate with her, the spirit and human worlds collide—with cataclysmic results.

busters

Lauren’s book is about two ghosts, Alice and Sandra, who observe the Walker family when they return to the house they grew up in after their father, Richard Walker’s death. These ghosts have lived in the house for so long that they’ve become the creaking stairs, the groaning settlement of the house. The Walkers come to the house bringing their tragic secrets and demons with them. There’s Caroline Walker, the alcoholic wife. Her children Minna and Trenton walker. Minna is somewhat a man eater, pouncing on any man that comes in her path. Trenton is a damaged boy with scars both on the outside and inside. Then their is the granddaughter Amy, Minna’s daughter, who seems to be the sane one out of all of them.

Alice and Sandra’s point of view are told in first person. The Walker family POV are told in third person. There’s a lot of switching POV and sometimes it does become confusing. Lauren does make sure that we know who we’re reading about for each chapter with the title. But with so many characters it does become distracting on figuring out who I’m reading about.

When the Walker family arrives secrets begin to unravel and truths slowly come forth for both the living and the dead. The ghosts take us to the past on what happened in each room of the house, given the title. The family takes us through their lives as well.

I couldn’t connect with the characters. Alice and Sandra constantly judge the Walkers, yet their life wasn’t exactly great either. They never learned form their mistakes and their constant bickering annoyed me. New characters are introduced and some of the Walkers stories are left behind. The big secret mystery takes place in the middle of the book which made the beginning more of a long set up.

The concept of was great. The twist at the end fit the story perfectly. But because I couldn’t connect with the characters I really didn’t care. I was taken aback by the cursing and the sexual incidents throughout the book. Maybe I’m use to her YA books but it seemed she tried too hard with the adult theme. Again, I loved the premises of the story, where she took the characters and their secrets. I loved the ghosts spying on the family. But when a reader can’t connect with the characters than the book suffers.

I give it  2 1/2 stars.

star star 1/2

It’s a fast read and you may like it more than me. Give it a try.

bye sweetie

Love

Tawney Twin

Monday Funday: Pumpkin Spice Mania

Soooooo….If you follow my sister Tawney on twitter or Instagram, you know she’s obsessed with pumpkin spice. This is her favorite time of year!

pumpkin

 

She goes all out searching for anything remotely good that’s has pumpkin in it.  Just Picture a child opening her gifts on Christmas morning. That wild eyed and excited child is Tawney’s reaction to every pumpkin find that she conquers. Granted, she does find some very delicious treats but then she finds some just awful-never-should-have-been-made treats. The kind that leaves a bitter taste in your mouth and has you drinking mouth wash just to get rid of it. There was a lot of those incidents I wish I could forget….(pumpkin smoothie)

Today’s Funday is a list and pictures of her great pumpkin findings….so far. I figured maybe you might have suggestions for her. I can’t stop her from this addiction. Believe me I’ve tried. I even thought about calling a priest to preform an exorcism or a hypnotist to make her gag every time she thought of anything pumpkin related…

addiction

It’s come to a point where I’m afraid Tawney will turn into a pumpkin head and rule all of pumpkin land. Haha

pumpkinhead

 

If you are a pumpkin connoisseur than let this post help you find your pumpkin treats!

The countdown of pumpkin treats Tawney has found!

1.   Startbuck’s Pumpkin Scone   Tawney Pumpkin

(Um… The scone never had a chance!)

2.  Pumpkin Oatmeal from Trader Joe’s Tawney Pumpkin 2

(This stuff helps you poop.)

3. Pumpkin Spice Cinnamon Rolls Tawney Pumpkin 3

(You won’t want to share these. They’re too good to share!) ;)

4. Iced Pumpkin Spice coffee (She made this) Tawney Pumpkin 4

5. Chocolate Chip, Pumpkin Spice Chip cookies. Tawney Pumpkin 5                 (I expect this when i visit!)

6. Pumpkin Spice Candy Corn. Tawney Pumpkin 6 (She said this was too sweet and surgery. Is that possible?)

7. Pumpkin Pie Almonds and Pumpkin Yogurt Pretzels.   Tawney Pumpkin 7 (Her favorite is the almonds.)

8. Eggo Pumpkin Spice Waffles     eggo

(This looks suspicious.)

and she’s tried cupcakes and muffins. No pictures available due to her ravishing them.

So, That’s a lot of pumpkin treats right? I think this addiction needs an intervention. Just ask Tawney if she likes pumpkin products and her answer is always the same:

like it

Do you like pumpkin spice and what have you had that hasn’t made this list? Please, help me tame the pumpkin beast!

 

Love

Kristen Twin

 

Book Friday: Review of Josephine Angelini’s Trial by Fire

October is just around the corner and that means Halloween is almost here. It’s the perfect time for witch books! Bring on the witches.

hocus-pocus

Witches are one of our favorite Halloween characters, beside vampires and werewolves. Movies, books…doesn’t matter. They’ve always interested us because there are so many ways witches can be perceived.

Good

witch

Bad

wicked

Or a little of both

coven

So it’s time to get into the witch craze and start reading! I picked up Josephine Angelini’s Trial by Fire to start off my Halloween reading. What first drew me to the book was the cover. It was eerie looking with a girl walking to a big citadel, fire blocking her path. Was this going to be a good witch book? Bad? Or a little of both?

 

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trial by fire    Plot: This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan.

But after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear.

Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem—one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian . . . Lily’s other self in this alternate universe.

What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. In this confusing world, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can’t hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected.

 

 

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Lilly Proctor has a condition that make her allergic to everything. Everything you could think of. With an embarrassing event at a party, Lilly wishes she could disappear. A familiar voice from nowhere grants her wish and she’s suddenly transported to another Salem. This alternate Salem is vastly different, ruled by witches. GO GIRLS! But their’s a problem. Lilly’s alternate self is the biggest, baddest witch of them all.

The first chapter left me a little weary with the whole ailments and the fight between Lilly and her best friend turned boyfriend Tristan. It was a set up that had to be written for us to immerse ourselves into Lilly’s own world. I wasn’t sure where the story was going and I wasn’t sure if I would like the turn out. But once Lilly was taken to the alternate Salem by her doppelgänger Lillian, things get exciting.

Lilly is thrust into a world with new people, different rules and witches. She meets the handsome Rowan and an alternate Tristan. Her sister’s alternate is in this world as well and her relationship with Lillian is complicated. In this world things are different with a sickness spreading, outlaws living in the outskirts of town and willstones. This concept captured my attention right away. Every person in Salem has a stone, magic or not. These stones are like extra data storage, like an iPhone or computer. They store information, places and power. A witch’s willstone is very powerful and she can tap into her magic and share it with others, who she has claimed as her mechanics. These lucky few are at her will, using the magic for strength and power to help the witch. A willstone is also like an extra heart, beating and pulsating. Anyone who touches it, the wielder feels it. It’s intimate. And it can be brutal. I love the willstone. I even loved it so much I searched my jewelry drawer, yes I have a drawer, to see if I had a cool stone that could even match those in the book. This is the closest I could come and made the necklace.

It’s small but sparkles! I think my willstone would sparkle.

Willstone comes in many sizes, small, large. Doesn’t matter but there’s usually only one willstone per person. But Lilly has three! A little one golden in color, a medium size rose colored one, and a large one that’ platinum with smokey colors.

The writing was wonderful. The characters had their flaws. Rowan didn’t trust Lilly because of what Lillian did to him. And boy did she do a number on him! Lilly doesn’t know how to react around Tristan because of what her Tristan did to her in her own world. It’s the relationship between Rowan and Lilly that I earned to see grow. It grew slowly, which I loved. It wasn’t love at first sight, which I don’t believe in. First time I saw my husband I loathed him. He made fun of me. HAHA. Rowan couldn’t trust Lilly and he hated her at fires. Love does grow between Rowan and Lilly, soon they begin to trust each other. Rowan teaches her the ways of his world, how to harness her power, and claim others. It’s a tough path for Lilly but the adventure is fast pace and I couldn’t put this book down until I finished it.

A wonderful unique story about witches that left me contemplating one thing….

labrytn

When will the sequel come out? It ended in a cliffhanger. GAH!

I loved this book and highly recommend it for this Halloween where witches rule.

 

Love

Tawney Twin

 

A little about the author:

Josephine Josie was born in a tiny town in Massachusetts called Ashland. When she meets people from Massachusetts and tells them ‘what part’ she hails from, she usually gets one of two answers. The first is: “Isn’t that in Oregon?” And the second is: “I drove by it once on Rt. 9, I think.”

Her next stop was about as different from Ashland as it gets without leaving the country. As soon as Josie was legal, she packed a bag and moved to New York City to attend NYU. Somehow, she managed to squeeze in a little higher learning between bartending shifts and graduated with a BFA.

Massively in debt with college loans, she then moved to Los Angeles for reasons that are still a little blurry. Something about the weather was mentioned, and a vague idea to write poetry and find herself. She found that she is a terrible poet, but she never gave up on the writing bit.

Josie still lives in Los Angeles with her husband and now writes YA fiction.

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