26 June 2011

Review: Tomorrow Girls: Behind the Gates by Eva Gray (Luxury Reading Review)

Posted by Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea at 9:08 PM 0 comments

Behind the Gates (Tomorrow Girls, #1)

  Title: Tomorrow Girls: Behind the Gates                  Pages: 313 
  Author: Eva Gray                                                  Source: Luxury Reading
  Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks                          Published: May 1, 2011
  Series: Tomorrow Girls #1                                      Purchase: Amazon
  Rating: 3 out of 5

Louisa lives in a world plagued with war. Nothing is the same, and it seems nothing will ever be the same again.

In order to protect her and her friend Maddie, Louisa's parents send them to a boarding school called Country Manor School, where they have to pretend to be twin sisters. But when they arrive, things just start getting weirder and weirder. First, they have to hand over all electronics and jewelry for "safe keeping." They are told that there are no phone towers or anything to power their electronics. No phone service, television service, or internet service.

Then, they are repeatedly called the "girls of Tomorrow" and are taught outdoor surviving skills like sharp shooting, archery, making a fire, and foraging for edible plants and berries. Louisa is enjoying all these new and exciting things to do, but Maddie is not.

Maddie becomes friends with a conspiracy theorist, Evelyn and starts feeding into all the theories that Evelyn spouts off. Maddie starts believing that CMS is not quite what it seems, either.

So are they just paranoid? Or is there something else going on?

I hadn't heard much about Tomorrow Girls: Behind the Gates, but I decided to give it a shot anyway, because the premise sounded very intriguing. I'm quite glad I did.

Want to read the rest of this review? Head on over to Luxury Reading for an edited full version!

threestar

I give Tomorrow Girls: Behind the Gates a 3 out of 5.

21 June 2011

Review: Stay by Deb Caletti (Luxury Reading review)

Posted by Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea at 10:17 PM 1 comments

Stay

  Title: Stay                                                      Pages: 313 
  Author: Deb Caletti                                         Source: Luxury Reading
  Publisher: Simon Pulse                                   Published: April 5, 2011
  Series: Standalone?                                        Purchase: Amazon
  Rating: 5 out of 5

Clara's never had a true boyfriend, only flings and dates. But when she meets Christian, that changes. Without even searching, it seems she's found someone she could be with forever.

And then the unthinkable happens. Christian becomes more and more jealous and more and more obsessive. Over Clara. He accuses her of looking at other guys, of wanting to be with them. He accuses her of wanting to leave and never believes she truly loves him, only him, no matter how many times she tells him.

When Clara realizes that their relationship is too far gone - that Christian is too far gone - she leaves the city and her friends behind to stay at Bishop Rock with her father, telling no one where she's going.

There, she breathes for the first time in a while and starts picking up the pieces of her life - or at least trying. She's still scared that she may have not run far enough.

I was drawn to Stay and its premise from the first time I read the summary. I love realistic fiction and Stay leads the pack.

Want to read the rest of this review? Head on over to Luxury Reading.

fivestar

I give Stay a 5 out of 5.

13 June 2011

In My Mailbox (13)

Posted by Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea at 12:10 AM 0 comments

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren and is a weekly meme to showcase what you got over the week by buying, receiving, borrowing, stealing from a friend etc.

For Review (from Luxury Reading):

Run for Cover (Tomorrow Girls #2)
Tomorrow Girls: Run For Cover (#2) by Eva Gray

 

For Review:

Torrent (River of Time, #3)
Torrent (River of Time #3) by Lisa T. Bergren

So I received this in a box with two copies each of Waterfall and Cascade. I already had a copy each of Waterfall and Cascade, so I was pleasantly surprised! Check out the giveaway for these copies that I’m currently holding here.

 

Contests:

Abandon (Abandon Trilogy #1)
Abandon by Meg Cabot

 

Possession (Possession, #1)
Possession by Elana Johnson

 

Awaken
Awaken by Katie Kacvinsky

 

The Last Little Blue Envelope (Little Blue Envelope, #2)
The Last Little Blue Envelope by Maureen Johnson

I received the above four novels from a contest at Simply Ali and you were supposed to pick five novels you were looking forward to reading that had not come out yet. I picked the above four and Supernaturally, which she preodered for me. I was beyond ecstatic when I got the email saying I won. Uh, five books that I can’t wait to read? Duh I’m excited! Thank you so much Ali!

 

Dark Mirror (Dark Passage, #1)
Dark Mirror by M.J. Putney

I actually won this quite a while ago from Small Review, but there must have been something that went wrong when it got mailed or something! But the lovely owner of Small Review contacted the publisher (where the book was being shipped from) and got it all worked out for me. Thank you Small Review!

 

Bought:

Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1)
Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

This was only $5.99 at Borders in their bargain books section! I didn’t even know they had a bargain books section, let alone that YA would be in it! I am now a new fan of Borders (they have pretty normal prices for books!)

 

The Strange Power, The Possessed, The Passion (Dark Visions, #1-3)
Dark Visions Volume 1 (The Strange Power, The Possessed, and The Passion) by L.J Smith

This was only $3.99, also in the bargain section of Borders!

 

Stargazer (Evernight #2)
Stargazer (Evernight #2) by Claudia Gray

I do not have Evernight, but this was only $2.99 at Borders, I figured what the heck? I’ve been thinking about getting Evernight for a while anyway, this will give me an incentive lol.

 

Fallen (Fallen, #1)
Fallen by Lauren Kate

I’ve been eyeing this one for quite a while and decided to get it while I was book shopping. This is the only one I bought regular priced, but for $9.99 it wasn’t a bad price. I seriously thought Borders was this expensive bookstore like Barnes and Noble! I normally tried to find books online or Walmart or my local bookstore, but now I have another to shop at when I’m in the area :)

 

That’s all I got this week, what did you get in your mailbox?

09 June 2011

Giveaway: Waterfall and Cascade by Lisa T. Bergren

Posted by Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea at 12:16 PM 0 comments

Waterfall (River of Time, #1)

 

 

 

Most American teens want an Italian vacation, but the Betarrini sisters have spent every summer of their lives there with their archaeologist parents.

Stuck on yet another hot, dusty dig, they are bored out of their minds... until they place their hands atop handprints in an ancient tomb and find themselves catapulted into the Fourteenth Century and in the middle of a fierce battle between knights bent on killing one another.

Cascade (River of Time, #2)

 

 

 

Gabi knows she’s left her heart in the fourteenth century and she persuades Lia to help her to return, even though they know doing so will risk their very lives.

When they arrive, weeks have passed and all of Siena longs to celebrate the heroines who turned the tide in the battle against Florence—while the Florentines will go to great lengths to see them dead.

But Marcello patiently awaits, and Gabi must decide if she’s willing to leave her family behind for good in order to give her heart to him forever.

 

I have two copies of Waterfall and two copies of Cascade to giveaway so there will be four winners!

You will have two optional extra entries: Following via GFC and tweeting the contest!

 

Rules/Information:

1. Must be 13 years or older or have parent permission.
2. Must fill out form below, comments will not be counted for an entry, but are still welcome.
3. Extra entries: Following via GFC and tweeting the contest.
4. Giveaway ends on June 24th.
5. Giveaway is only open to the USA. I’m sorry, but I just cannot afford to send a package anywhere else. I can barely afford to send them in the USA :).
6. I will contact the winners by email. You have two days (48 hours) to contact me back before I will pick another winner.
7. One entry per person, duplicate entries will be deleted. You will not be disqualified if you accidentally duplicate the form (I know I can never remember what giveaways I enter!). The only way you can be disqualified is if you repeatedly send the form in. Only then will all of your entries be deleted (please don’t spam me!).
8. Winner will be chosen via random.org

 

Please fill out this FORM to enter!

 

 

Disclaimer: Copies of Waterfall and Cascade were provided by the publisher, free for giveaway purposes. I am not being paid for my review, or to give them away.

05 June 2011

In My Mailbox (12) and May RAK

Posted by Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea at 12:37 AM 2 comments

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren and is a weekly meme to showcase what you got over the week by buying, receiving, borrowing, stealing from a friend etc.

For Review:

Cascade (River of Time, #2)
Cascade by Lisa T. Bregren

Excited about this one. The first sounds good and I’m currently reading it (only on page 21).

 

Contest:

Spells (Wings, #2)
Spells (Wings #2) by Aprilynne Pike

I won this from Cath at My Book Chatter. I also won some swag. There was an adorable bracelet, a button, some canddyyyyyy, and bookmarks! So thank you :).

 

 

That’s it for IMM! Now for May RAK I got..


Firespell by Chloe Neill

 

I received this from Emily at What Book Is That? Thank you so much Emily, I’m sure I’ll enjoy this!

03 June 2011

Review: Forgotten by Cat Patrick

Posted by Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea at 1:37 AM 5 comments

Forgotten

  Title: Forgotten                                                       Pages: 304
  Author: Cat Patrick                                                 Source: Publisher
  Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers     Published: June 7, 2011
  Series: Standalone                                                 Purchase: Amazon
  Rating: 5 out of 5

Every night at exactly 4:33 AM, 16 year-old London Lane's memory gets wiped clean as she sleeps. And each morning, she wakes up to find a note to herself from herself telling her what happened the previous day. The day she can't remember at all.

Instead of remembering the past, London remembers the future. She remembers backwards.

None of this helps when she has to worry about school. It also doesn't help when London has to worry about a boyfriend, whose name she can't remember, who doesn't seem to be in her memories of what's to come. Nevermind the fact that her mother has been keeping secrets about a father that hasn't been in her life since she was six.

And when London starts having visions from what appears to be her future, she realizes she just may have to remember the past, before she can no longer remember her future.

Forgotten is described as psychological drama, romance, and mystery all in one. Just from that line, I was hooked.

Forgotten is incredibly confusing at first in the way that untangling a giant mess of ropes is. But after you finally untangle that last stubborn knot, you feel absolutely exhilarated.

The fact that London remembers backwards - meaning she 'remembers' her future and can't remember her past - was really confusing for me at first. I didn't mind the confusion at all, though, as it was this giant mystery that I couldn't wait to solve. Every loose end got tied up into, instead of a knot, a pretty bow.

Another part that confused me was how she remembered her classmates, where her classes were, where her locker was, etc. if she couldn't remember her past, but then I understood. She remembers the small stuff like that because she can see her future with her classmates, she can see in a few days when she walks to math class, and the time in a month where she opens her locker. That being said, she can also forget these small things when she no longer has a future with that person or object.

The characters were phenomenal and mainly consisted of London, her boyfriend Luke, her best friend Jamie, and her mother.

London was a strong character for the situation she was in. I expected her to be much more insecure and scared. She was actually very strong already, but also grew as the novel went on. I fell in love with her character and was hoping for a pleasant outcome for her.

Luke was a wonderful male lead. He was all the things almost any woman would look for in a man and more. He's sexy, sweet, loving, supportive. I could go on and on. Who wouldn't want to curl up next to a guy like that?

All the rest of the characters, major or minor, added to the story in some way. Some characters might be borderline filler, but I honestly didn't notice any character that was blatantly a filler character, other than teachers. I believe Cat Patrick did an absolutely brilliant job writing the characters so realistically and well.

The plot was fantastic. It was perfectly paced, with so many unseen twists and turns. I can't think of many twists I saw coming and I can't think of one part of Forgotten where the writing started to slow. Each and every page had me in its grasp and didn't let go until the very end.

The plot of Forgotten was unique and I applaud Patrick for finding a topic to write about that wasn't just another clich├ęd, over-written plot. Many have compared this novel to the Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler movie, 50 First Dates, and while the premise might sound a bit like it, I can assure you that it isn't once you dive in.

Now obviously the writing was awesome, too. I love Patrick's ability to be so descriptive, yet not so much in the way I don't care for, where every little detail is laid out for you. This usually might take years of practice to hone this ability, yet Patrick has the natural talent for it.

Overall, I absolutely loved Forgotten, if you couldn't tell. I whole-heartedly recommend this to anyone and especially people that love psychological dramas, mysteries, and romance novels.

fivestar

I give Forgotten a 5 out of 5.

01 June 2011

New Layout

Posted by Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea at 11:02 PM 0 comments

I'm currently trying to switch over to a new layout, so if you visit and notice things look weird, that's why. Please bear with me.


Alrighty, everyone! I have successfully switched the layout. The layout template is from Delicious Design Studio and is the Lilac Stitch free template.

Please let me know if you prefer this layout or the old one, I'm not really sure which I like. This one seems a bit more complicated and I'm not sure if it's too unprofessional? (Edit: I don't claim to be professional in anyway!) Also, if you find anything wrong with the layout, please let me know.


As a final note, does anybody know how to get the "Pages" up back on top instead of on the sidebar? I prefer them up top, but I tried dragging them there with the WYSIWYG thing, but they don't go up there? I think I need to change something in the HTML, but I really don't know what.

Thank you everyone! I hope you like the new layout! I was getting kinda tired of the old one.
 

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