Thursday, January 13, 2011

100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge 2011!

100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge 2011!

This is a new year with new possibilities, and I’m ready to do something new. This would be my first book challenge ever as a reader and a blogger, and I am determined to beat this challenge! So basically, if you title of the challenge wasn’t clear for you, I am going to spend the next year reading as many books as I can, and hope that before December 31 I have read at least 100 books. This is the perfect opportunity I have been looking for, I always say I am going to write down every single book I read, but I always forget to. And the blog doesn’t count since I sometimes forget to type up a review, especially if the book isn’t any good, so maybe this challenge is just the thing to motivate me into keeping track. I will of course be putting reviews for the books I read for the challenge, they will all be under the “100 Books Challenge” tag where you can go a see how I’m progressing. So keep sticking around, and see if I can crack this challenge!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Three Black Swans by Caroline B. Cooney


When Missy hears an expert discussing newborn babies on the radio, it makes her wonder about her family. She and her cousin Claire are best friends who finish each other’s sentences and practically read each other’s minds. It’s an eerie connection—so eerie that Missy has questions she wants to put to her parents. But she’s afraid to ask. Still, Missy can’t let go of those nagging questions. So she decides to use a school project about scientific hoax to try to uncover the answers, and she enlists Claire to help. As part of the project, they perform a dramatic scene that is captured on video at school. After the video is posted on YouTube, Missy and Claire realize that they’ve opened up Pandora’s box. Not only are their identities called into question, but so is the future of everyone involved.

Number of Pages: 276


A couple of posts back I wrote how I always wanted a twin, but then that book I read sort of scared me into not wanting one, well, after reading THIS book I change my mind . . . again. I want an identical twin!

Missy gets this seed of a theory into her mind about her and her cousin, Claire. She disregards it for a bit until she overhears an expert on identical twins talk on the radio. That watered her theory, and out came a plot to discover the truth! But what exactly does she want to find out? To see if her cousin really is her twin? To see how her parents react? To find out what is that feeling of a hole in her heart? All of the above. When she manipulates a science assignment into creating a hoax to see if people can believe if Claire and her can be long lost twins, everyone falls for it, hard. Of course being the 21-century, news of this hoax doesn’t stay contained for long. And when word spreads out, mayhem erupts. Is it true? Can they be twins? How is that even possible?

The last Caroline B. Cooney book I read was in 5th grade I believe. I didn’t really remember how good her book was so I wasn’t expecting much in Three Black Swans. Boy, was I wrong. I was always interested in things like this, long lost twins reunited. I mean, how would they react? Would they automatically like each other? Would they stay in contact? How would it even be possible to find one another? This book answered those questions. And Cooney didn’t just create this possible scenario. There were lots of facts on identical twins that I knew this was how things would work out. How would they react? Like they were blind, but know they can see. Would they automatically like each other? No, they would automatically love each other, although maybe they would feel some hesitations and scared feelings for the future. Would they stay in contact? If they could, nothing could pull them apart. And the circumstances in which they find each other are always incredible. Maybe this isn’t how all long lost identical twins or triplets feel, but this is what I got from the book and it sounded legit.

The characters were very believable. They were all people that I can totally picture meeting on the street somewhere. Well, maybe Missy was portrayed as a little bit too giddy, but other than that it was exactly how I pictured it. There was also Genevieve, who isn’t mentioned in the jacketflap summary, but is important, very important actually for the outcome of the book. The title was something that very much interested me. It was explained several times throughout the novel. I thought it completely original, and perfect for this story. I also really loved how Cooney created this specific scenario in how all the sisters found each other. It was a mystery in and of itself and the way it was portrayed kept me on the edge of my seat until the very end. Which obviously means that I considered Three Black Swans an excellent book giving it form 1-10? An 8!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Years . . . Better Late than Never!

HAPPY NEW YEARS!!! Wooohooo! Yes I am aware that it's a bit late, but like I said better late than never. I was a little busy spending time with the family during the first days of 2011, not to mention school started again -.- actually i should be going to sleep right now being as it is 12 o'clock (school night) but I couldn't put this off any more or they would already be out by the time I got to it!

I have made a list. Of what you might be thinking? Well, obviously its going to be about books coming out in the new year. Duh. I have been making this list for quite some time. I found some of these myself, but actually I was kept posted on what books are coming out mostly through one of my friends, Adriana, who always finds the newest books so . . . THANKS DRI DRI!

I tried to get the date for these and put them in order of when they come out. Yes, this took forever to do, but what'eeerrr. So here they are, hope some of these interests you!

  • Cloaked by Alex Flinn - February 8, 2011
  • Mermaid by Carolyn Turgeon - March 3, 2011
  • Where She Went by Gayle Forman - April 5, 2011
  • The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Claire: Book 4 City of Fallen Angels - April 5, 2011
  • Between the Sea and the Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore - June 7, 2011
  • Passion by Lauren Kate - June 14, 2011
  • Lost Voices by Sarah Porter - July 4, 2011
  • The Night World Series: Strange Fate by L.J. Smith - July 26, 2011
  • Bloodlines by Richelle Mead - August 23, 2011
  • Hades by Alexandra Ardonetto - August 30, 2011
  • The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Claire: Book 5 City of Lost Souls - (date unknown)
  • The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Claire: Book 6 City of Heavenly Fire - (date unknown)
  • The Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Claire - (date unknown)
  • Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore - (date unknown)

Now it is said that after 2011, the world will end in 2012. I don't believe that at all, but if I have only one year left, then I am going to read as much as I can!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Twin's Daughter by Lauren Baratz-Logsted

Does not a child recognize her own mother?
Lucy Sexton is stunned when a disheveled women appears at the door one day . . . a woman who bears an uncanny resemblance to her own beautiful mother. The two women are identical twins, separated at birth and raised in dramatically different circumstances: one as a member of high society, the other in a workhouse. Lucy’s mother quickly resolves to give her sister the kind of life she has never known, and the transformation in Aunt Helen is remarkable. As time goes by, Lucy herself transforms into a young woman, falling in love with a childhood friend she was once sure she hated. But in what should be a happy household, something is very, very wrong. And as Aunt Helen and Lucy’s mother become more and more indistinguishable, Lucy begins to suspect that her aunt’s new familiar face may mask a chilling agenda.
Number of pages: 390

Oh my God!! I have so much to talk about with this book. Hmm . . . where to start . . .where to start . . . ok! Well first I’ll give a quick recap of the story, though how I am to do this without giving any spoilers away is going to be hard, but I promise to do my best.
The entire story is through the eyes of a Miss Lucy Sexton. Starting out as a young, rich girl in the Victorian era (my favorite era). She is just sitting in her drawing room when out of the blue her mother knocks on the door in beggar’s rags! Oh, but of course that can’t be her mother. It turns out to be her mother’s identical twin. And identical they are. "Does not a child recognize her own mother?" I guess Lucy can’t. As the years go by and Aunt Helen and Lucy’s mother become impossible to differentiate between, and Lucy starts to feel unease at the sudden changes in both twins. Of course, aside from them three, the rest of the characters were a lot of fun to read about. My favorite had to be Kit. Kit is the talked about childhood friend that falls in love with Lucy. Sounds cliché, right? Not the way it’s written here. I really liked how the romance was played out. It didn’t take away from the story and the mystery. Kit is honestly the best. I love him.
There were some creepy parts that made the story sooo interesting. Lucy Sexton is one of the best narrators I ever read. She was the funniest, most sarcastic, opinionated, and outspoken girl in the 1900s. With the sharpest wit ever. Like I said, it is really hard to say what it's about without giving anything away. There were alway times when the little hairs on my arms stood up, and times when I was cheering them on. The Twin's Daughter fully engages the reader.
I've actually always wanted a twin. I don't know why, I just thought it would be fun, but after reading this it kind of scared me a bit! I was so excited about this book that, although I tried to keep some self-control, I completely spilled everything about the book to my friend. If she ever reads it, she will already know what is going to happen.
The jacketflap summary sort of tries to make you believe you know what's going to happen, but this story is anything but predictable. Never, I repeat, never assume anything at anytime when reading this book. You know what they say: don’t assume, it makes an ass out of u and me. You've been warned. So to wrap up this review from 1-10? I am delighted to give The Twin's Daughter a 9!!!
Note: I loved the cover on this book. At first I didn’t see anything unique about it, but if you look closely you see the shape the twins make is a dagger. It's a cool optical illusion. I have to say it came out so good. It basically portrays everything this story is about from the two innocent looking girls to the secret dagger and hidden danger within.