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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

My Life in February: Olympics, Olympics, Olympics... and Marissa Meyer

Oh, hi... I wasn't around much this past month and I apologize for that. My productivity when it came to reading, blogging, and school took a massive nosedive in February because I was busy being OBSESSED with the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

I LIVE for the Olympics, guys. I'll admit it's a bit odd because I could care less about sports at any other time of the year, but I am ALL about the Olympics. I get so into it.  When an athlete I'm rooting for does well, I feel so thrilled for them. When I see an athlete crash or stumble or screw up, I feel so terribly for them. In the course of the Olympics, I go through a complete range of emotions. I cheer and feel absolutely ecstatic and I cry and feel completely gutted. Yes, I am basically an emotional wreck for the entire two weeks that the events are running. But it's one of my favourite things and it makes me feel so alive. I just think it's so incredible that these athletes have devoted their entire lives to excelling at one discipline and they have only a few shots to make their Olympic dream happen.

The only crap thing about the Olympics this year was that it was held in a country that has a poor human rights record and that really isn't in keeping with the spirit of the Olympics. Ultimately though, I watched to support the athletes. And besides, hasn't the Olympics always been a little bit gay?

So now the Olympics are over and I'm suffering major withdrawal. It was good while it lasted though and I have a ton of great memories to remember! Until 2016!

Thankfully, to lessen the blow of the ending of the Olympics, I had the pleasure of going to see Marissa Meyer speak and had a whole lot of fun waiting in line and talking books with Zahida of Musings of a YA Reader and Shelly of Readiculous Reads:
Cress, me, Shelly
with Marissa
As you can see, I wore red shoes for Cinder, a red hoodie for Scarlet, and a red hair accessory for Cress. Marissa was so great and I loved hearing her story of how she came to write the Lunar Chronicles. What a great evening!

Best Book Read in February:
I didn't get through Cress nearly as fast as I would've liked because of my aforementioned obsession with the Olympics, but I loved it all the same. Marissa Meyer is just SUCH an amazing storyteller and she always manages to blow me away. It's killing me that we have to wait an entire year before Winter is released!

Previously, my January 2014 Recap.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Waiting On Wednesday: Hachette Spring 2014 Catalog

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill of Breaking The Spine in which upcoming, eagerly anticipated releases are highlighted on the blog.

This week, I've chosen to feature a few picks from the Hachette Spring 2014 Catalog:

Dreams of Gods & Monsters by Laini Taylor
Date: April 8, 2014
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By way of a staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. The future rests on her, if there can even be a future for the chimaera in war-ravaged Eretz.
Common enemy, common cause.
When Jael's brutal seraph army trespasses into the human world, the unthinkable becomes essential, and Karou and Akiva must ally their enemy armies against the threat. It is a twisted version of their long-ago dream, and they begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people.
And, perhaps, for themselves. Toward a new way of living, and maybe even love.
But there are bigger threats than Jael in the offing. A vicious queen is hunting Akiva, and, in the skies of Eretz ... something is happening. Massive stains are spreading like bruises from horizon to horizon; the great winged stormhunters are gathering as if summoned, ceaselessly circling, and a deep sense of wrong pervades the world.
What power can bruise the sky?
From the streets of Rome to the caves of the Kirin and beyond, humans, chimaera and seraphim will fight, strive, love, and die in an epic theater that transcends good and evil, right and wrong, friend and enemy.
At the very barriers of space and time, what do gods and monsters dream of? And does anything else matter?

It feels like I have been waiting for this finale forever! After the stunning ending in Days of Blood & Starlight, I really couldn't be more excited to see where the story will go next. Dreams of Gods & Monsters can't get here fast enough!!

Don't Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Date: April 15, 2014
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Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend.
Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it's one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took "mean girl" to a whole new level, and it's clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She's getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she's falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash.
But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn't just buried deep inside of Sam's memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

I've read my fair share of amnesia-centred mystery stories, but I can't say I ever get bored of them. Somehow they always manage to intrigue me! I've never read anything by Jennifer L. Armentrout, but her popularity among readers definitely interests me, so maybe Don't Look Back will be my first read of hers!

The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith
Date: April 15, 2014
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Lucy and Owen meet somewhere between the tenth and eleventh floors of a New York City apartment building, on an elevator rendered useless by a citywide blackout. After they're rescued, they spend a single night together, wandering the darkened streets and marveling at the rare appearance of stars above Manhattan. But once the power is restored, so is reality. Lucy soon moves to Edinburgh with her parents, while Owen heads out west with his father.

Lucy and Owen's relationship plays out across the globe as they stay in touch through postcards, occasional e-mails, and -- finally -- a reunion in the city where they first met.

I was quite charmed by Jennifer E. Smith's previous novel This Is What Happy Looks Like - even if it was perhaps not hugely memorable - so I'm thinking The Geography of You and Me will be similarly charming. And her covers are the cutest!

The Fever by Megan Abbott
Date: June 17, 2014
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The Nash family is close-knit. Tom is a popular teacher, father of two teens: Eli, a hocky star and girl magnet, and his sister Deenie, a diligent student. Their seeming stability, however, is thrown into chaos when Deenie's best friend is struck by a terrifying, unexplained seizure in class. Rumors of a hazardous outbreak spread through the family, school and community. 

As hysteria and contagion swell, a series of tightly held secrets emerges, threatening to unravel friendships, families and the town's fragile idea of security. 

Immediately I was drawn to this creepily enigmatic cover. And then I read the blurb - also intriguing. If The Fever is as good as the cover and premise promises, then this will be quite a good read indeed!

How about you? Are you waiting on any of these Hachette Spring 2014 reads? Are there any upcoming books from the Hachette Spring 2014 Catalog that I didn't include here that you feel I should add to my list?

Monday, February 3, 2014

January Recap

Another month come and gone... and thankfully a much happier month for me than the previous. After dealing with some losses in December, January was like a breath of fresh air. I attended the wedding of friends, had a reunion with the Edmonton Book Bloggers, welcomed my bf's nephew into the world, celebrated my three year anniversary with my boyfriend, and was reunited with my ferrets. Oh, and I read 12 books! That is a really impressive monthly book count for me! Life is good.

I also binge watched Breaking Bad this month:
Now I am not yet done with all 5 seasons, but I think it is safe to say that Breaking Bad is definitely a new favourite of mine. It is most excellent. The acting is superb and the story is just absorbing. It's a show that makes me think, and I love that. I can't wait to see where it goes from here!

Blog Posts in January:

A Very Belated December 2013 Recap
A Very Belated 2013 End of Year Book Survey
Top Five Worlds I'd NEVER Want To Live In / Top Five Characters I'd NEVER Want To Trade Places With
Waiting On Wednesday: HarperCollins Spring 2014 Catalog
Review: Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles #2) by Marissa Meyer - 5 Stars

Best Book Read in January:
I FINALLY found the time to read Scarlet, the sequel to Cinder, one of my favourite reads of last year. Marissa Meyer is a MASTER of compelling storylines and loveable characters. And Cress is officially out! Which means I should be able to read it very soon and meet Cress, herself (as well as reunite with my favourites Thorne and Iko!!). Can't wait!