Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Best of 2008

This year I think I read more books within the year then I ever have before, and I loved every minute of it! As the year comes to a close though I have to highlight my top fifteen that were published in 2008. I've read over 200 books this year so obviously there are many to chose from and so many more that I did not get a chance to read. Note that these are in no particular order and these choices are just my opinion.

1. Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers
2. Paper Towns by John Green
3. Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
4. Undone by Brooke Taylor
5. House of Dance by Beth Kephart
6. Ten Cents a Dance by Christine Fletcher
7. Alive and Well in Prague, New York by Daphne Grab
8. Bewitching Season by Marissa Doyle
9. I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone by Stephanie Kuehnert
10. Trouble by Gary D. Schmidt
11. Little Friendly Advice by Siobhan Vivian
12. The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart
13. Audrey, Wait by Robin Benway
14. The Fortunes of Indigo Skye by Deb Caletti
15. Violet in Private by Melissa Walker

And I just have to mention one of my other favorite books of the year that won't be published until Spring 2009, but I can't help share it with you all and hopefully get a little pre-publication buzz going, SOUL ENCHILADA by David Macinnis Gill.

Best of luck in the New Year and lookout for a great contest and a hopefully fun filled post tomorrow!!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Girl Week = Reviewer X = AWESOME!!!

Hey guys quickly head on over to Reviewer X for the last little bit of fun. Steph is hosting an amazing girls week where there are tons of great guest blogs and of course...giveaways!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Top 8 by Katie Finn

Madison MacDonald had life all figured out. She has three great best friends, she’s dating one of the hottest guy’s in school, she’s got the lead in the school play, and she’s going to the Galapagos for Spring Break (while she’s not that excited, but hey it’s not the worst thing that could happen). Then the worst does happen, her Friendverse profile is hacked. Not only are her (and many other people’s) worst secrets plastered all over the Internet, but also some very unflattering pictures. Now she no longer has a boyfriend, half of her school hates her, and she’s in some very deep trouble. Thankfully she has some of the best friends a girl can have believe that she was hacked and are all determined to help her figure out who’s behind this nasty prank, and clear Madison’s name once and for all.

To be honest I was very surprised with this book. There was a good storyline, that wasn’t too predictable, the characters were cute, and it was a very cute love story. I also liked how Katie Finn addressed how much emphasis teenagers put on social networking websites by teenagers. In this case, Madison feels her whole life is ruined when her profile is hacked. This is because people rely so much on these websites, and this book shows just how much trouble these sites are.

I liked how some of the story was told through comments on Madison’s profile page; it gave an insight as to what other characters were thinking. While there were times when the book got a little slow and predictable, it quickly picked up again. This would be a great read for reluctant teen readers, as it mixes the type of way the story is told and it’s current with today’s world. I am definitely looking forward to reading more from Katie Finn and was quite impressed with her debut novel.

Monday, December 15, 2008

And A Simple Question? Week of December 14-21

Sorry for the delay, but I've been having major internet problems!!

The winner of The Other Side of the Island by Allegra Goodman is....

Chelsie of Bookluver Reviews!

Congratulations Chelsie. Please send me your address so I can send the book to you.

On to this week's question....

What book (released 2008) depicts the instant stardom of a girl who just wanted to break up with her boyfriend?

Either comment or send me an email at: andanotherbookread AT gmail DOT com. 

Prize this week: ARC of Triple Shot Betty's in Love by Jody Gehrman 

Rules are same as always, besides that you have to get an additional 3 entries for getting the right answer.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Confessions of a Triple Shot Betty by Jody Gehrman

Geena has the perfect summer planned out. Her, her cousin Hero, and her best friend Amber are going to have some quality girl time working at the Triple Shot Betty coffee drive-thru shack. Things never work out as planned though. Hero and Amber don’t get along, actually that’s an understatement, they hate each other! Geena feels that her summer’s ruined now and is torn between her favorite cousin and her best friend.

As the summer progresses, the girls’ relationship starts to improve slightly. The Betty girls though are faced with a whole new problem, hot guys! Geena is desperately trying to deny the fact that she likes her arch rival (and competition for class valedictorian) Ben, Hero is hopelessly in love with the Italian working on her dad’s vineyard, and then Amber, well she’s just trying to find somebody. The girls run into no end of problems, but it ends up being one heck of a summer.

With a title this cute, I knew before I even cracked the cover that this book was going to be great! I was certainly not disappointed. The story itself was super cute, the writing was superb, and it just left the reader wanting more.

All three main characters were unique in their own way and I felt like I got to know three different girls, instead of one person with a few differences. I especially loved Geena, who stood up for herself no matter what. She was a great narrator, and she had some hilarious things to say. Her sense of humor was by far one of the best character sense of humor’s I’ve ever come across! Hero and Amber were also really funny. I could really imagine them as real people and felt like they were easy to relate to even though we have completely different personalities.

I also really liked the style that the book was written in. It was told in journal entries by Geena, which I thought was really neat. Some books I’ve read try to do this, but just aren’t that successful, but Jody Gehrman was really able to pull it off. The character’s personas really came through and the whole book came completely alive.

In short I completely loved this book and am anxious for more. Jody Gehrman created an unforgettable, absolutely hilarious, and fun filled novel that any girl is sure to absolutely devour. I highly recommend this book to any and all who are looking for a book that will just brighten your day.

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Other Side of the Island by Allegra Goodman

It’s the eighteenth year of Enclosure and everything on the islands in the Tranquil Sea have become regulated. Earth Mother and her Corporation, who have a vision for a world with only happiness, control everything from jobs to the weather to children’s names and expect everyone to conform to this view of normality, no matter what the consequence. On Island 365 lives a girl named Honor and her family who don’t really fit into this conforming society.

While Honor desperately tries to fit in, her parents try even harder to not fit in. They break curfew, don’t pray to Mother Earth, and biggest of all have a second child. When Honor meets Helix she soon finds out some dark secrets, those that don’t conform soon disappear…forever.

Filled with fear that her parents might be taken, Honor tries to change even more, thinking that if she fits in, no attention will be brought to her parents. Will all her efforts be in vain? Will her and Helix uncover more secrets about the island?

From the very first paragraph I was drawn into the story and knew that it would be great. As the story progressed I was certainly not disappointed. Having only read a few post-apocalyptic or dystopian society books, I was a little unsure as to what to expect, but was pleasantly surprised with the ability of the book to hold my attention. I felt like most of the characters, especially Honor, were well developed and real. Something that really stood out to me was Honor’s ability to stay real, and very human like, in a setting composed of conforming events and questions. In this case it was easy to connect with Honor, because the author made the reader have some of the same questions as she did. The author also did a great job creating suspense within the novel. There were many times where I was not able to pull myself away from the book at all. The questions that the book brings up keeps you enthralled and wanting more. Overall I was very much impressed with the book and am very much hoping that there will be a sequel.

Fans of The City of Ember, The Uglies, and The Giver, I think will really enjoy this book.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

And A Simple Question?

As promised here is my weekly trivia feature! Before I reveal this weeks question, I would like to announce the winner of Paper Towns by John Green....drumroll please.....

Congratulation to number 11 was none other than Shelly Burns. Shelly please get back to me within three days or else I will have to choose a new winner.

Now I have to admit this week's question is not a trivia question, but another opinionated one.

What book(s) are you giving away for the holidays?

Books are great things to give away as presents, as they aren't to expensive and they last forever.

Here's a quick run through of the rules:

1. All entrants must live in the United States.
2. All entries must be received by 12 PM E.S.T. Saturday night
3. Two extra entries for linking/posting about the contest
Three extra entries for already being a follower
Two extra entries for becoming a follower

This week's prize is a great book that I read not to long ago, The Other Side of the Island by Allegra Freedman (hardcover). It's a great book for all ages and a great story.

Enjoy the week and check back tomorrow for a new review!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Paper Towns by John Green

Margo Roth Speigleman is one popular girl. On the outside she appears to have it all, the looks, the friends, the personality but in all honesty her inside is a mystery to the world. Margo is especially a mystery to Quentin, or Q, who’s been her neighbor ever since they were little kids.

When they were young they used to do everything together. Some may have even considered them to be best friends. Now though they are about to graduate high school and they barely even acknowledge each other’s presence. One night though Margo appears in his window dressed as though she was ready to go rob a bank.

She’s on a mission to pay back all the people who have wronged her and she is determined to complete her list before the next morning. Using Q as her mode of transportation, she gives him the night of his life. Then she disappears and is now an even bigger mystery to him. Leaving him few clues and a lustrous heart Q is determined to find Margo, and maybe even himself.

John Green has done it again, except maybe even better then the last two times. Both his other books have always been near and dear to me, but this one was particularly special. It was compiled of all the classic Green elements of, nerdy guy wanting amazing girl, girl being a little out there, guy finding himself on the way to getting the girl, but it also had this extra wow factor included that easily made it his best book yet.

I could really feel not only the characters emotions, but also the author’s in every sentence. Many times I found myself laughing along, feeling upset, or just plain frustrated with the events in the story and started wondering if this was a real life experience. There was such truth and purpose to each word that the book seemed alive in many aspects. The characters had real personalities and it was easy to imagine them as real people and these characters dealt with mostly real life situations that I could easily picture myself in. I loved how everything felt so real and alive that most of the time it was excruciatingly hard to come back to reality.

For me the plot line was very original and compelling. It was also really easy to relate to. I know in this case that everyone can find someone in the story that they know. Whether it be yourself or a really good friend, you’re sure to find someone similar enough for the story to really hit home. I know in my case I was really able to see where the very complex and interesting Margo was coming from. She reminded me a lot of a close friend and helped me see where she might be coming from. It was very evident that the author put a lot of time and effort into developing his characters, which I know as a reader is the mark of a truly great author.

This book is one of the deepest and quickest reads you’ll find. You’ll never want it to end and you’ll find great meaning in it. Paper Towns is truly an unforgettable book that is easily the best of the best. With no doubt I am sure it is the best book of 2008 and one my of my new personal favorites.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Living Dead Girl by Elizabeth Scott

On an elementary school field trip to the aquarium, a ten-year-old girl gets abducted. She gets named “Alice,” by her kidnapper Ray, and leaves behind the sweet innocent girl from 623 Daisy Lane, becoming a shell of a girl who has been both mentally and physically abused to no end, essentially making her a living dead girl.

All Alice wants is to escape from the pain she faces everyday and the only possible way she thinks she can escape is through death. Then an even more horrible thing happens – Ray asks her to find a replacement for her. Now it’s her task to find another innocent girl for Ray to prey on. Could this be her release, or will Ray dispose of her just like the last Alice?

While this book is completely different then anything else Elizabeth Scott has written, it is just as remarkable. The book leaves a lasting impression on your mind as you read. Trying to imagine everything that Alice has to go through in the book is mind-boggling and it truly makes you realize how horrible people can be and how grateful people should be that they don’t have to endure the same evils as Alice did. Scott’s brilliant writing style shone through this dark novel, making it come alive in the reader’s mind. The emotion that seeps through these pages is absolutely incredible. You’ll want to scream out loud at the horrors that you encounter and cry out in frustration at the events that unfold. This is truly a haunting and unforgettable novel that everyone needs to read. It gives a one of a kind view into a world not much is known of, and one in which we all hope never to visit.

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Return of a Long Lost Blogger!!!

Okay so about a month ago I posted telling everyone that I finally had a handle on my schoolwork and all that jazz right! Well I lied because the week after was the last week of the trimester and then exams, so the only reading I was able to do was out of my textbooks! Then we had a brief break, but not much was accomplished as I had family come into town. Finally I got a week off for Thanksgiving and I’m caught up on many outstanding reviews (although I still do have a few books in the review pile) and have gotten the chance to read some fabulous, fabulous books. So now I have a stash of fifteen or so reviews that will keep all you readers hopefully much entertained for the next couple weeks while I’m at school and won’t have as much time as I did at home to read!

The weekly contest/game that I mentioned in my last post will go on as I have a stack of books about 3 feet high (no joke!) to give away. So next Sunday look for a fun trivia question to answer in order to win a fabulous prize! Any authors and/or publicists looking to donate prizes just let me know as it would be very much appreciated.

O and the winner of the 4th City of Ember book, Diamond of Darkhold, is Shelly Burns! Shoot me a quick email with your address and I’ll pop the book in the mail.

Author Visits. Well as school work started to pile up I kind of forgot that Fridays were supposed to be author visits, as I was keener on the end of the week, and I apologize to all of you that enjoyed the feature. More so though, I want to apologize to all the authors who I scheduled something with and then forgot (especially a certain author, whose book was just fabulous. Courtney look for an email in your inbox from me!). I promise that the feature will be up and running hopefully in the next couple of weeks. Any authors looking to do a guest blog or interview, please shoot me an email ( as I would love, love, love to have you. Also if any authors/publicist want a review done, I would be more then happy too.

And to kick off my re-entering of the of the blogosphere I have a little contest. Just comment here and tell me your favorite book of 2008 (so far). Link to my contest? Get an extra 2 entries. Already a follower +3, become a follower +2. The prize you may ask? An ARC of Paper Towns by John Green. Fabulous, fabulous book that I’m sure all will love. All comments need to be in by Saturday December 6 at 12 PM E.S.T. This contest is only open to the U.S.

Have a great week everybody and look out for some new reviews tomorrow!


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