Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Kami Garcia Signing @ Bethesda Barnes & Noble

 I was all set to spend the weekend reading through my giant TBR Book Pile of Shame when Kat told me about a conversation on Twitter between It's A Hardcover Life and Reading Teen about a signing with Kami Garcia in Bethesda, Maryland.

I was so excited ! Reading Beautiful Creatures is what got me back into reading YA and what eventually led to starting this blog.

Day Tripping

Bethesda store front - Picture of Georgetown Cupcake, Washington DC
This photo of Georgetown Cupcake is courtesy of TripAdvisor
We left Richmond Saturday morning and had plans to meet up with Markella from Hardcover Life before the signing. The drive to Maryland was about 2 hours, but it felt like nothing.  The weather was dreary and rainy. but that wasn't going to stop us.

Even in the rain this area of Bethesda, known as Bethesda Row ,was so cute ! There were rows of shops and amazing restaurants. My personal favorite being Georgetown Cupcakes from the TLC show DC Cupcakes.

via Bethesda 365
We all met up at Quatermaine, a tiny but trendy cafe that had the best latte and hot chocolate I have ever had. They used real steamed milk and fresh roasted coffee.

The Signing

The signing took place in the Art & Architecture  section of the B&N. When we arrived we were greeted by the B&N community relations manger who made sure we had the books and plenty of swag. There were about 25 seats filled with posters, glow sticks and bookmarks; all swag sent over from Warner Bros.

The three of us arrived and hour early and took seats in the 2nd row. Also a little early was Amanda  from Literati Literature Lovers , an open genre blog started by a group book lovers. I like their modge podge of genres and reviews !

Kami Garica

Kami was not what I expected at all. For some reason I expected her to be a soft-spoken YA writer. Instead she was very blunt and passionate about her journey to publication and about the YA genre. I didn't know BC was originally a story she and Stohl wrote for fun to entertain the teens in their life. I liked how they didn't set out to be famous and  wrote just for their small audience.

As a reader I found myself nodding along to what Kami said about switching up the status quo of YA and how teens (and adult) can handle complex storytelling.

Kami was also full of great advice for writers, she doesn't sugar coat how important it is in fantasy to have a strong grasp of your world and how writing isn't all magic and fairydust.

I really enjoyed hearing her speak (I bet she's been making the circuit a lot lately) and she is one of my favorite authors now.


I've never been to a chained store event and I was afraid they were going to be strict and controlling. Over all it was a nice relaxed event and it made me appreciate Beautiful Creatures for how it stood out in the world of paranoraml YA, even with its faults.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Top Ten Authors That I'd Put On My Auto-Buy List

I am definitely one of those people who will buy for the author and not for the book. Here are some authors I put on my auto buy list.


I imagine this is a popular answer, but with every new book I enjoy his writing more. His most recent novels have been about such diverse experiences and  I'm always curious to see what he will do next.


The Raven Boys was my favorite book of 2011. Maggie has an excellent way with words, so I will always turn to her for good writing.


Another excellent writer. I liked the imagery and writing in Delirium.


The Night Circus was an amazing novel and I just have to know what else in in Morgenstern's head.

5. Morgan Matson
Amy and Roger was such an endearing and creative first novel. Matson made it clear she is an excellent story teller and I can't wait to see what she does next.

6. Kami Garcia

After hearing her speak last weekend, it became really clear that she has a great grasp of novel writing and supernatural elements, I can't wait to see what she does solo.

7. A.S King

King has an amazing voice and such a unique writing style. I really like her views on YA writing.

8. David Levithan

 I know when I pick up his books I'll get a great story, wonderful voice and because most of his solo novels are short, they don't take long to read.

9. Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone is such a complex and magical story, I can't wait to see what else she can do !

10. Sarah Dessen

I've read about half of Dessen's 10 books and I still haven't gotten bored. She is classic YA to me and always on my autobuy list.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

IMM/ Stacking The Shelves/Haul Post

So it's been a while since I've done one of these post, but I got some really great deals and I just have to share them !

Fountain Bookstore (Richmond, VA) is having a Supernatural Sunday Spectacular  Event on March 24th with Kim Harrison, Jeaniene Frost, Vicki Pettersson, Pamela Palmer, all adult Urban Fantasy Authors. Now while this isn't my usual genre I'm really fascinated by it. Since I really enjoy Fountain's events I've decided to do some pre-reading in preparation

Just my luck 2nd & Charles was having a buy 5 get 5 free Mass Market Paperback sale. Kat and I stopped by on our way back in town from a signing, we found a lot of the author's books for 3-4$ each.

Kami Garcia had a signing at Barnes and Noble this Saturday in Bethesda, MD. Beautiful Redemption is the only book in the series I don't have.  I've only read the first two books. More on the event later !

The Taste of Night
Every Which Way But Dead
The Scent of Shadows
A Knight in Shining Armor
A Blood Seduction
No Rest for the Wicked
Dead Witch Walking
The Dream Hunter
The Good, the Bad, and the Undead
Born of Night

The Taste of Night (Signs of the Zodiac, #2) by Vicki Pettereson

The Scent of Shadows (Signs of the Zodiac, #1) by Vicki Petterson

No Rest for the Wicked (Immortals After Dark, #3) by Kresley Cole (enjoyed her YA novel)

A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux (suggested in Sort of Beautiful's Top Ten Tuesday)

The Good, the Bad, and the Undead (The Hollows, #2) by Kim Harrison

Every Which Way But Dead (The Hollows, #3) by Kim Harrison

The Dream Hunter (Dream-Hunter, #1; Dark-Hunter, #11) by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Dead Witch Walking (The Hollows, #1) Kim Harrison

Born of Night (The League, #1) by Sherrilyn Kenyon

A Blood Seduction (Vamp City, #1) Pamela Palmer

Beautiful Redemption by Kami Garcia

What did you get this week ? Leave links !

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Audiobook Review : Such Wicked Intent

  • Release Date : 08/21/12
  • Publisher : Simon & Schuster
  • Length : 8 Hours and 15 minutes
  • Narrator : Luke Daniels

Picking up from where This Dark Endeavor ends Such Wicked Intent continues  the dark and mysterious tale of a young Victor Frankenstein. After the undeniably permanent death of his twin brother Konrad, a message from beyond prompts Victor to enter the world of the spirits to bring his brother back.

Jealously, contempt and ambition  once again come into play as Victor and company  find themselves  racing against time to bring Konrad back to the world of the living, but something far darker lurks into the background.

Unlike the first novel, Such Wicked Intent isn't  formulaic and is driven by a completely original plot involving ancient cultures, mysticism and supernatural oddities. This plot is so original  that it almost seems to be too original .Once again I haven't read Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and while this novel is an adaptation I find myself wondering why ? Why does it have to be an adaptation ? Why is it an adaptation ? Oppel's story of brotherly love and dark magic seems to work well on it's own.

What really sets this story apart is that the the story telling feels more like a YA adaptation of a Gothic novel than just a YA historical. Oppel flawless blends the historical aspects and paranormal parts so it doesn't feel like you are reading about the 19th century but one that is simply apart of the time period. 1800's.

At the end of the day I'm really curious how this becomes the story becomes Frankenstein (although I think we are getting close) ,with all the crazy twist and  turns few crazy  I'm not sure I fully understood how this story reached the ending it had. I'm assuming there is one other book left in the series and I can't wait to check it out.

As for the audiobook, Luke Daniels really  ramps of his performance. It is more like he is performing on stage than reading a book

Such Wicked Intent  is an enjoyable, modern interpretation of Frankenstein that changes the status quo of YA storylines and plays by its own rules.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Audio Book Review: Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

Release Date:May 4th 2010
Pages: 344 Pages
Audiobook: 10 hours and 8 minutes
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Genre: Contemporary

Synopsis: Amy Curry thinks her life sucks. Her mom decides to move from California to Connecticut to start anew--just in time for Amy's senior year. Her dad recently died in a car accident. So Amy embarks on a road trip to escape from it all, driving cross-country from the home she's always known toward her new life. Joining Amy on the road trip is Roger, the son of Amy's mother's old friend. Amy hasn’t seen him in years, and she is less than thrilled to be driving across the country with a guy she barely knows. So she's surprised to find that she is developing a crush on him. At the same time, she’s coming to terms with her father’s death and how to put her own life back together after the accident. Told in traditional narrative as well as scraps from the road--diner napkins, motel receipts, postcards--this is the story of one girl's journey to find herself

I’ve been having a stare down with this novel for nearly a year, deciding if I would like it or not. So, when I had an extra Audible point to spare, I went ahead and got the audiobook and it did not disappoint.

Amy Curry’s life is changing. Her father was killed in a car crash while she was at the wheel, Her mother is moving the family from California to Connecticut and Charlie, her twin brother, is in rehab in North Carolina. The only thing Amy can do to deal is to hide. So, when her mother asks college sophomore Roger Sullivan---a boy Amy hasn’t seen in years-- to drive the her and the family car from California to Connecticut she isn’t prepared. And when Roger asks to take one detour they end up on a road trip that is less about the destination and more about the journey. In a trip filled with receipts, mottos, endless road and a little bit of Elvis,Amy learns to grieve and say goodbye.

Author Morgan Matson does a wonderful job of infusing regional elements the world of the book. As Amy and Roger travel across the country, she picks up on the different cultures of the United States. I loved how at each stop Amy and Roger would experience the different foods in that part of the country like Derby pie and sweet tea in the South, In and Out burger in California and Chickfila on the East Coast. I really want to go to the Mid-West one day and try a NuWay burger and custard. Is it as good as the book makes it sound ?

Suzy Jackson does a wonderful job narrating the audiobook, her narration of Amy really fits the character. There are a lot of male character in the novel and Jackson did an excellent job of creating an assortment of male voices. However, the novel is told in e-mails, playlist, receipts, notes as well as prose, and that doesn’t always work on the audio. As much as I liked the audio, I would recommend this book more in it’s print format.

The legs of Amy and Roger’s trip are characterized and headed with music from Roger’s playlist If I had read this book I think it would have been fun to listen to the playlists while reading. I’m not much of a music person, so I didn’t recognize a lot of the artist. I did know a few like Jose Gonzales or The Weepies from the TV show Bones (random, I know)

I think fans of Sarah Dessen will connect with Matson as she uses a lot of the similar elements; parents in academia, polar opposite siblings, traumatic character backgrounds that peek at the edges of the story.  But, where Dessen’s stories are contained in one environment, Matson takes her story on a journey.

Matson mixes quirky fun with bittersweet sadness to create a complex and entertaining story. Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour is a fun heartwarming road trip novel that let’s you sit back and enjoy the ride.

Side note : According to the Matson's FAQ, it looks like Amy and Roger make an appearance in Matson's 2012 novel Second Chance Summer !


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...