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Reading Queue: September

The Reading QueueWell hello there!

It is already September 1st! Time is flying and I’m just beginning my second trimester! School started a few weeks ago and I’ve had very little energy leftover when I get home, so that explains why you haven’t heard from me in a while.

Although I haven’t been blogging, I have been reading and I plan on reading more! Thus, it’s time for Reading Queue (hosted by yours truly and Books A True Story)! So, let’s see how I did for August.

How I Did In August

In August, I was struggling with morning sickness, starting a new school year and a massive lack of energy! In the midst of all that, I did manage to read 6 books.

The Blossoming Universe of Violet Diamond by Brenda Woods Second Helpings by Megan McCafferty

The Blossoming Universe of Violet Diamond by Brenda Woods

Second Helpings (Jessica Darling #2) by Megan McCafferty

Infestation by Timothy J Bradley Mark of the Dragonfly

Infestation by Timothy J. Bradley

The Mark of the Dragonfly by Jaleigh Johnson

Teslas Attic by Neal Shusterman A Mad Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Waller

Tesla’s Attic (The Accerarati #1) by Neal Shusterman

A Mad, Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Waller

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My September Reading Queue

The Haunting of Gabriel Ashe by Dan Poblocki Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo Every Day After by Laura Golden

The Haunting of Gabriel Ashe by Dan Poblocki

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

Every Day After by Laura Golden

Champion by Marie Lu Sisters by Raina Telegemeier 

Champion by Marie Lu

Sisters by Raina Telgemeier

Codename by Chris Rylander The Key and the Flame by Claire Caterer

Codename Zero by Chris Rylander

The Key and the Flame by Claire M. Caterer

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What tasty books are on your Reading Queue in September? Feel free to link up with us, I love to check out what others are reading!

 

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Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I Would Never Switch Places With

Hello!

Welcome back for another edition of Top Ten Tuesday!

You know how sometimes you finish a book and you just wish you could trade places with the main character and live their charmed life for a little while?  Well, this week’s Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by the Broke and Bookish) is about the opposite of that! This list is all about those “Characters I Would Not Want to Switch Places With”. The lives of the characters on my list are not charmed, and are in fact, pretty terrifying. Are you ready?

Nick and Allie from The Skinjacker Trilogy by Neal Shusterman. I hope and pray that Everlost is is not Everlost by Neal Shustermanreal because this place freaked me out so much when I read these books. There is just so much creepiness that happens in Everlost that I think I’d rather just sink into the Earth rather than tough it out with the Afterlights.

Aria from from Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi.  Aria undergoes some major character growth while traveling through “the Deathshop” with Perry, but the dangers she encounters while there are not something I’d want to mess with. First you have these terrible ether storms, then you have the cannabalistic Croven with their sinister jinge bells, and dweller society that isn’t as safe as it first appears. No thank you!

Any person living in one of the Panem districts from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. This one is obviously easy. Why would I ever trade places with anyone from any of the districts when you have to live in constant fear of The Hunger Games?! Not only is there the fear that you might get chosen as tribute, but think about all the other people afraid for their children?! And even if you’re lucky enough to never get chosen, you still have to live in a world where killing kids is entertainment.

Anyone in a Soviet work camp from Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys. This is really a hard one to talk about because Between Shades of Gray is based on actual events. Thousands of people (men, women, and children) were forced into Soviet work camps and lost their lives during Stalin’s cleansing of the Baltic region. Sepetys’ writing is beautifully haunting and you get good understanding for the horrors these people experienced. I debated adding this one to the list, but this story and setting still stick with me months after reading it and reminds me to be thankful.

Ender Wiggins from Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. Ender’s life kind sucks. He thinks he’s in charge of his life, but the whole time someone else is pulling the strings purposefully testing him and making things difficult to bear. Not my idea of fun!

May from May B. by Caroline Starr Rose. May thinks she is going to work for this nice young married May B. by Caroline Starr Rosecouple as their housemaid only to be abandoned in a snow covered prairie homestead with winter coming in full force. May has to struggle to survive all alone and no one knows she needs help. Talk about feeling helpless!

Sam from In Too Deep by Amanda Grace. The amount of guilt Sam experiences due to the choices she makes is just overwhelming while reading this book. I’ve gotten myself into bad situations where the guilt just slowly eats away at your insides and I never want to go through that again! So, no. I will not be trading places with Sam.

Pippa from the Gemma Doyle trilogy by Libba Bray. I can’t say much about this without things becoming majorly spoilery so I won’t got any further. Just know that I wouldn’t switch places with her for anything.

Tuck Everlasting by Natalie BabbittThe Tuck family from Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt. The poor Tuck family never got a choice in the whole eternal life question; it happened to them with out them even knowing it. I even can’t imagine knowing you are forced to live eternally and you had no say in the matter.

Thomas and The Gladers in The Maze Runner series. A life of hardship and fear forced on you by a government stuck in a desperate situation. Nope. I would have never made it out of the tunnel in the second book because those orbs are so terrifying, not to mention “the cranks”. I can’t even…

All of the books mentioned above were great reads, I just have no desire to trade places with the characters! haha So, what characters would you never trade places with?

 

 

 

 

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Top Ten Tuesday: Creepiest Covers

Hello and Happy Halloween week!

To celebrate Halloween this week’s Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by The Broke and Bookish) theme is focused on the creepiest YA book covers.

We do need to acknowledge that creepy is in the eye of the beholder. My personal creepy tolerance is pretty darn low and I get freaked out easily. Thus, I tend to stay away from horror and scary stuff in general. I think it’s because I have a great imagination and once I picture a creepy image in my mind its like the snowball effect and the image gets scarier and scarier and scarier. So yeah, I shy away from scary.

So, what YA book covers haunt my dreams? I’ll show you but you may need to hold my hand!

Unwind by Neal Shusterman1. Unwind by Neal Shusterman

This reminds me of one of the images shown during the X Files theme song.

Unsouled by Neal Shusterman2. Unsouled by Neal Shusterman

Seriously. What the heck.

Starters by Lissa Price3. Starters by Lissa Price

I’m sure this wouldn’t freak me out as much if it wasn’t colored this way. But it is and it does.

Bad Girls Don't Die by Kate Alender4.  Bad Girls Don’t Die by Kate Alender

Anyone else think of that awful horrible horrifying scene in The Sixth Sense?

Dust and Decay by Jonathan Mayberry5. Dust & Decay by Jonathan Mayberry

This screaming demon lady makes me want to curl up into a ball and weep.

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness.6. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

What if that’s MY house?!

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz7. All of the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark books by Alvin Schwartz

All of my childhood nightmares were in these covers and the interior illustrations.

Silent Night 3 by R.L. Stine8. Silent Night 3 by R.L. Stine

They have DEAD eyes! (Okay so this one is a mix of creepy and hilarious!)

Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick9. Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick

No more please. PLEASE! This one was in my book fair one year and I actually turned it over because it kept staring at me.

I Know What You Did Last Summer by Lois Duncan10. I Know What You Did Last Summer by Lois Duncan

This cover has major creep factor, which is why I’d rather watch the cheesy movie than read the book!

Okay, so if these covers scared you I apologize but welcome to my world! Are there any covers that just creep you out beyond belief?  Feel free to share in the comments section below! :)

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October New Releases

Hi there!

Well it seems that October totally snuck up on me! I forgot to schedule this New Releases post for last week, but that’s okay, everything’s shiny. Better late than never right?

hehe

hehe

As you may know, October is a VERY big month as Veronica Roth’s final installment in the Divergent series will release *squeeeeeeeeee!*

So, let’s just get right to all the new books!

Allegiant by Veronica RothAllegiant (Divergent #3) by Veronica Roth (October 22)

AHHHHHHHH!!!

The House of Hades by Rick RiordanThe House of Hades (Heros of Olympus #4) by Rick Riordan (October 8)

My students have been asking me about this since August.

Unsouled by Neal ShustermanUnsouled (Unwinded Dystology #3) by Neal Shusterman (October 15)

Eye of Minds by James DashnerThe Eye of Minds (The Mortality Doctrine #1) by James Dashner (October 8)

Just One Year by Gayle FormanJust One Year by Gayle Forman (October 10)

Time After Time by Tamara Ireland StoneTime After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone (October 8)

The Kingdom of Little Wounds by Susann CokelThe Kingdom of Little Wounds by Susann Cokal (October 8)

Across a Star Swept Sea by Diana PeterfreundAcross a Star Swept Sea (For Darkness Shows the Stars #2) by Diana Peterfreund (October 15)

The Twistrose Key by Tone AlmhjellThe Twistrose Key by Tone Almhjell (October 22)

The Princess in the Opal Mask by Jenny LundquistThe Princess in the Opal Mask by Jenny Lundquist (October 22)

So there you have it! In addition to candy corn and falling leaves October brings a bunch of brand new books to enjoy! Are there any October new releases you’re particularly excited about?

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Distrubing & Creepy, Yet Fun: Everlost by Neal Shusterman

Hi there and welcome back!

I recently listened to the audiobook of Everlost by Neal Shusterman.

Nick and Allie don’t survive the car accident but their souls don’t exactly get where they’re supposed to get either. Instead, they’re caught halfway between life and death, in aEverlost by Neal Shusterman sort of limbo known as Everlost: a shadow of the living world, filled with all the things and places that no longer exist. It’s a magical, yet dangerous place where bands of lost children run wild and anyone who stands in the same place too long sinks to the center of the Earth.

When they find Mary, the self-proclaimed queen of lost kids, Nick feels like he he’s found a home, but Allie isn’t satisfied spending eternity between worlds. Against all warnings, Allie begins learning the “Criminal Art” of haunting, and ventures into dangerous territory, where a monster called the McGill threatens all the souls of Everlost.

I was so excited to hear that Neal Shusterman was going to be holding a reading and signing in Orlando earlier this fall! Young adult authors rarely visit Orlando so I went even though I’d never read any of his books. I left the event super excited to read his books!  My media center’s copy of Unwind was checked out (actually it still hasn’t been returned, but that’s a whole other story…) so I couldn’t read that one.  Some of my students recommended I picked up Everlost.

The premise of Everlost is incredibly intriguing. Two teens die in a car crash and end up in this purgatory-like world where they have to fend for themselves and solve the mysteries of Everlost. Shusterman is obviously a very creative storyteller and the world he has surrounded Nick and Allie in is disturbing and creepy, yet also fun which makes me think of Everlost is like a more sinister version of Peter Pan’s Neverland.

I did feel a little bored at times,  as there wasn’t much character development until pretty much the very end of the novel. In fact, I was pretty set on not reading the rest of the trilogy, until the ending. Now, I feel like I might possibly continue the books. Not necessarily because I wasn’t super connected to any characters, although  I like both Nick and Ally and was glad to see some change in them. I even liked the McGill, but what made me want to find out what happens in the end is Mary. I’m not a fan of Mary at all, which is actually how I think I was supposed to feel, but I do want to know if and or how she is defeated!

This was an interesting read, and my students (especially my boys) really like it a lot. The audiobook narrator was pretty good, but I wasn’t a fan of all of his voices all the time. I admit that I didn’t LOVE this book, but it was entertaining and I think that middle school readers who are looking for a different sort of story that’s kind of a mix between fantasy, sci-fi, and supernatural fiction will enjoy Everlost!

Author: Neal Shusterman

Publisher: Brilliance Audio (January 20, 2009)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 8 hours and 1 minute

Narrator(s): Nick Podehl

Series: First in the Skinjacker series

YA/MG: MG

Buy the Book: Everlost (The Skinjacker Trilogy)

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Top Ten Tuesday: My Current To-Be-Read Stack

Hi there!

Happy Tuesday and Merry Christmas! I am currently in the Jacksonville area celebrating the holiday with my in-laws and my parents! I hope you are enjoying the holiday season with friends and family as well!

Since it’s Tuesday I’m participating, as usual, in the Broke and Bookish’s weekly Top Ten Tuesday. This week the official theme is a freebie so I decided to share a little about the books that have made it on my current To-Be-Read list!To Be Read

1. Princess Academy: Palace of Stone by Shannon Hale

2. Real Live Boyfriends by E. Lockhart

3. Everlost by Neal Shusterman (audiobook)

4. Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen

5. Firelight by Sophie Jordan

6. Dead City by James Ponti

7. Blue Bloods by Melissa de la Cruz

8. A Whole Lot of Lucky by Danette Haworth

9. The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson

10. Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink

Now, don’t get me wrong, I have tons of other books I haven’t yet read sitting on my shelves (TONS!).  These are just the books that have recently been calling out to me!

I plan on getting some of these at least started during the two weeks I have off for the Winter Break. I’ve been craving some serious reading time! Have you read any of these? Any that should be made a priority? What titles are in your current to-be-read stack?

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Top Ten Tuesday: Middle Grade Fiction Recommendations for Boys

Hi there!

Happy Election Day!

For those of you who don’t know, Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful people at The Broke and Bookish.  This week’s theme is open to whatever us book bloggers want to make our lists about.

I was talking with some sixth grade boys at school recently about books they’ve enjoyed, so I thought I’d focus this week’s list around some of the titles these boys recommended (other than The Wimpy Kid Series).  So, this week’s list is Top Ten Middle Grade Recommendations for Boys. Now, don’t get my wrong girls can read these books too…of course…but these are some of the titles my boys said they love!

Framed by Gordon Korman1. The Framed series by Gordon Korman

Dangerous Days of Daniel X by James Patterson2. The Daniel X series by James Patterson

Storm Runners by Roland Smith3. The Storm Runners series by Roland Smith

Eggs by Jerry Spinelli4. Eggs by Jerry Spinelli

Hide and Seek by Katy Grant5. Hide and Seek by Katy Grant

90 Miles to Havana by Enrique Flores-Galbis6. 90 Miles to Havana by Enrique Flores-Galbis

Woods Runner by Gary Paulsen7. Woods Runner by Gary Paulsen

Storm Breaker by Anthony Horowitz8. The Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz

Alcatraz vs the Evil Librarians by Brandon Sanderson9. Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians by Brandon Sanderson

Everlost by Neal Shusterman10. The SkinJacker trilogy by Neal Shusterman

According to my boys, these are top-notch reads so if you’re looking for something to interest the middle school aged guy in your life, look no further! Do you have any other suggestions for middle grades books?