Book Review | Countdown by Michelle Rowen

Posted on Monday, September 30, 2013 4:00 AM

Format: e-ARC
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: October 1, 2013
Pages: 336

3 seconds left to live. Once the countdown starts, it cannot be stopped. 

2 pawns thrown into a brutal underground reality game. 

Kira Jordan survived her family's murder and months on plague-devastated city streets with hard-won savvy and a low-level psi ability. She figures she can handle anything. Until she wakes up in a barren room, chained next to the notorious Rogan Ellis. 

1 reason Kira will never, ever trust Rogan. Even though both their lives depend on it. 

Their every move is controlled and televised for a vicious exclusive audience. And as Kira's psi skill unexpectedly grows and Rogan's secrets prove evermore deadly, Kira's only chance of survival is to risk trusting him as much as her instincts. Even if that means running head-on into the one trap she can't escape. 


My Thoughts

When I first read the summary for this book, I was very intrigued. It sounded like it was a fast-paced, action galore kind of book. And it was. When I picked this book up, I was hooked immediately, and I couldn’t put it down. I was so caught up in this world that I just had to know what happened next.

Sixteen year old Kira Jordan is doing her best to survive after her family was murdered two years ago. She survives by picking pockets and she is excellent at it. That is until she picks the wrong one. Seventeen year old Rogan Ellis is doing time for multiple counts of murder in a juvenile detention center. He is set to move to a maximum security prison upon his eighteenth birthday. So, when he gets offered a chance to compete in a life or death game with the chance of winning and getting his named cleared, he jumps at the chance.

Unlike Rogan, Kira doesn’t know anything about the secret game called Countdown, until she wakes up chained in a room with Rogan. Kira and Rogan are placed together as a team and they quickly realize that their fate lies in the others hands.

I have to admit that I was surprised by how strong of a person Kira was. I mean, her family was brutally murdered when she was only fourteen years old, so you would think that that happening would have made her fragile, but instead it forced her to grow up and realize that she only had herself to depend on. Rogan was such an amazing character. That boy has been through so much in his seventeen years and a lot of it wasn’t even his fault but he didn’t let it change who he was inside.

Overall, Countdown was an amazing adventure that didn’t have a dull moment throughout the entire book. This book was like Saw, The Condemned and The Hunger Games all rolled into one. If you like your books with a strong MC, non-stop action and a little bit of romance on the side, then this book is for you.



Stacking the Shelves (28) & Weekly Recap

Posted on Saturday, September 28, 2013 3:30 AM
Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.  This meme allows us to show what books we got the previous week.
What happened on the blog this week:
I reviewed Sick by Tom Leveen
Here's my haul:
Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas (Traded)

The Summer I Became A Nerd by Leah Rae Miller (Traded)
What books did you get?

Gives Me The Feels

Posted on Thursday, September 26, 2013 5:00 AM

As a reader, one of the things that I love most in books is when I come across a quote that gives me ALL THE FEELS. So today, I thought that I would share some of my favorite feely quotes in hope that these will bring out the feels in you too.
**Fair warning, by the end you may be like this:
Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire
"One of these days you’re going to fall in love, son. Don’t settle for just anyone. Choose the girl that doesn’t come easy, the one you have to fight for, and then never stop fighting. Never."

Apollyon by Jennifer L. Armentrout
"To love is not weak. Love is the strongest thing there is."

Origin by Jennifer L. Armentrout
"I’ll burn the world down to save her."
Each of them had died saving someone else, and most people would never know their names or what they’d sacrificed. But we would. Their loss would leave a mark on us for a long time coming, if not for eternity.
Faefever by Karen Marie Moning

"Nobody looks good in their darkest hour. But it’s those hours that make us what we are. We stand strong, or we cower. We emerge victorious, tempered by our trails, or fracture by a permanent, damning fault line."
The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg
"My heart didn’t fail, someone failed my heart."
If I Stay by Gayle Forman
"Losing me will hurt; it will be the kind of pain that won’t feel real at first, and when it does, it will take her breath away."
Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
"Maybe you can afford to wait. Maybe for you there’s a tomorrow. Maybe for you there’s one thousand tomorrows, or three thousand, or ten, so much time you can bathe in it, roll around it, let it slide like coins through your fingers. So much time you can waste it. But for some of us there’s only today. And the truth is, you never really know"

Losing Hope by Colleen Hoover
"All those nights you held me and just let me cry…you have no idea how many times you’ve already saved me."
Clash by Nicole Williams
"I can forgive a man’s past faults, his present shortcomings, and his future failures if every minute of every day he loves me like it’s his religion."

So, did any of these give you the feels?

Waiting on Wednesday (24)

Posted on Wednesday, September 25, 2013 5:00 AM
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine.  This meme allows us to spotlight upcoming releases that we are excited for.
My pick this week is:
Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell
Expected publication date: April 1, 2014
Rule One—Nothing is right, nothing is wrong.
Rule Two—Be careful.
Rule Three—Fight using your legs whenever possible, because they’re the strongest part of your body. Your arms are the weakest.
Rule Four—Hit to kill. The first blow should be the last, if at all possible.
Rule Five—The letters are the law.

Kit takes her role as London’s notorious “Perfect Killer” seriously. The letters and cash that come to her via a secret mailbox are not a game; choosing who to kill is not an impulse decision. Every letter she receives begins with “Dear Killer,” and every time Kit murders, she leaves a letter with the dead body. Her moral nihilism and thus her murders are a way of life—the only way of life she has ever known.

But when a letter appears in the mailbox that will have the power to topple Kit’s convictions as perfectly as she commits her murders, she must make a decision: follow the only rules she has ever known, or challenge Rule One, and go from there.

Katherine Ewell’s Dear Killer is a sinister psychological thriller that explores the thin line between good and evil, and the messiness of that inevitable moment when life contradicts everything you believe.
What book are you waiting on?

Top Ten Tuesday (19) Best Sequels Ever

Posted on Tuesday, September 24, 2013 5:00 AM
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.
This week's topic is: Best Sequels Ever
Here's my list:
Prodigy by Marie Lu
Insurgent by Veronica Roth
One Grave At A Time by Jeaniene Frost
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Origin by Jennifer L Armentrout
Crown of Midnight by Sarah J Maas
Dare You To by Katie McGarry
Apollyon by Jennifer L Armentrout
The Elite by Kiera Cass
What are some of your favorite sequels?

Book Review | Sick by Tom Leveen

Posted on Monday, September 23, 2013 1:00 AM

Format: e-ARC

Source: Netgalley

Publisher: Amulet Books
Publication Date: October 1, 2013
Pages: 288

Goodreads | Amazon

Breakfast Club meets The Walking Dead as a group of unlikely allies tries to survive a deadly outbreak.

Brian and his friends are not part of the cool crowd. They’re the misfits and the troublemakers—the ones who jump their high school’s fence to skip class regularly. So when a deadly virus breaks out, they’re the only ones with a chance of surviving.

The virus turns Brian’s classmates and teachers into bloodthirsty attackers who don’t die easily. The whole school goes on lockdown, but Brian and his best friend, Chad, are safe (and stuck) in the theater department—far from Brian’s sister, Kenzie, and his ex-girlfriend with a panic attack problem, Laura. Brian and Chad, along with some of the theater kids Brian had never given the time of day before, decide to find the girls and bring them to the safety of the theater. But it won’t be easy, and it will test everything they thought they knew about themselves and their classmates.

I am a HUGE fan of The Walking Dead, so when I saw that this book was recommended for fans of that show, I immediately added it to my wishlist and requested it on Netgalley because there was no way that I could wait until it’s release date to read it. While this book is as amazing as The Walking Dead, it’s still a really good book that is very engrossing.
This book centers on Brian and his group of friends as they try to survive an outbreak of zombies at their school. But the thing about their school is that it’s fenced in with a gate that stays locked 99 percent of the time so it will be very hard for them to get off of school grounds without being eaten by the other students.
This book isn’t like the ordinary zombie books that I have read in the sense that it doesn’t start out with the outbreak having already occurred. In this book, we get to witness everything that happens while leading up to the epidemic. Also, the zombies are a little bit different in this book. Yes, they still attack and eat you and they are really hard to kill since they don’t feel any pain but there is a few differences in them. What kind of differences? You’ll have to read the book to find out ;)

Sick has amazingly strong characters, I was actually surprised how brave they were considering that they were all still in high school. Brian was just awesome, all he could think about was getting to his sister and making sure that she was ok. Chad really astonished me, at the beginning I thought that he was just going to be a troublemaker. But, as it turns out, he was the bravest of them all. That’s really all that I can say without giving anything away.

Overall, Sick is a great addition to the horror genre. It was gripping and very fast-paced. If you like zombie books and don’t mind blood and gore, then you should definitely give this book a chance.


Stacking the Shelves (27)

Posted on Saturday, September 21, 2013 12:30 AM
Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews that allows us to show what goodies that we got during the week.
Here's my haul:
Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick (Traded)
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (Kindle Edition)

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black (Kindle Edition)
For Review:

Countdown by Michelle Rowen (Netgalley)
What did you get this week?

Book Review | Apollyon by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Posted on Friday, September 20, 2013 7:00 AM

Series: Covenant # 4

Format: ARC

Source: Traded

Publisher: Spencer Hill Press

Publication Date: April 4, 2013

Pages: 344


Fate isn’t something to mess with… and now, neither is Alex.

Alex has always feared two things: losing herself in the Awakening and being placed on the Elixir. But love has always been stronger than Fate, and Aiden St. Delphi is willing to make war on the gods—and Alex herself—to bring her back.

The gods have killed thousands and could destroy entire cities in their quest to stop Seth from taking Alex’s power and becoming the all-powerful God Killer. But breaking Alex’s connection to Seth isn’t the only problem. There are a few pesky little loopholes in the whole “an Apollyon can’t be killed” theory, and the only person who might know how to stop the destruction has been dead for centuries.

Finding their way past the barriers that guard the Underworld, searching for one soul among countless millions, and then somehow returning will be hard enough. Alex might be able to keep Seth from becoming the God Killer… or she might become the God Killer herself.

With every book that I read by JLA, I become more amazed by how talented she is.  She is one of my favorite authors because I know that whenever I pick up a book with her name on it that I will undoubtedly adore it.  And as I said in the A-Z Survey, I will always be an unapologetic fangirl of hers.

Apollyon starts off with Alex being locked in a cell due to the fact that she is connected to Seth and because of that connection, he has her believing that they are meant to be together and that she wants every single thing that he does.  The strong, independent Alex that we fell in love with in the previous books is suppressed because of the bond to Seth.

Aiden is the one who has her locked up and he is doing everything in his power to bring back the girl that he fell in love with.  But in order for that to happen, it’s up to Alex to break the connection to ‘her’ Seth.

One thing I love about this series is the characters.  We don’t see a lot of strong, fierce and independent female characters in the YA genre but this series definitely has that in Alex.  And Aiden is amazing.  He is such a caring and passionate guy and if there is a chance for Alex to break the bond with Seth, Aiden is the one person who can help her do it.

Once again, Jennifer L. Armentrout has created an action packed and incredible book.  If you have yet to pick up one of her books, then you really need to drop what you are doing and read one of her books ASAP!

 Favorite Quote:

Aiden stared up at me, blinking.  “To love is not weak.  Love is the strongest thing there is.”


Waiting on Wednesday (23)

Posted on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 1:00 AM
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that allows us to spotlight upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.
Here's my pick this week:
How to Love by Katie Cotugno
Expected Publication Date: October 1, 2013
From Goodreads:
Before: Reena Montero has loved Sawyer LeGrande for as long as she can remember: as natural as breathing, as endless as time. But he’s never seemed to notice that Reena even exists…until one day, impossibly, he does. Reena and Sawyer fall in messy, complicated love. But then Sawyer disappears from their humid Florida town without a word, leaving a devastated—and pregnant—Reena behind.

After: Almost three years have passed, and there’s a new love in Reena’s life: her daughter, Hannah. Reena’s gotten used to being without Sawyer, and she’s finally getting the hang of this strange, unexpected life. But just as swiftly and suddenly as he disappeared, Sawyer turns up again. Reena doesn’t want anything to do with him, though she’d be lying if she said Sawyer’s being back wasn’t stirring something in her. After everything that’s happened, can Reena really let herself love Sawyer LeGrande again?

In this breathtaking debut, Katie Cotugno weaves together the story of one couple falling in love—twice.
What book are you waiting on?

Top Ten Tuesday (18) Books On My Fall TBR Pile

Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 12:30 AM
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish
This weeks topic is: Books on my fall TBR pile
Here's my list:
What's on your list?

Book Review | Team Human by Justine Larbalestier & Sarah Rees Brennan

Posted on Monday, September 16, 2013 12:30 AM

Format: ARC

Source: Traded

Publisher: HarperTeen

Publication Date: July 2012

Pages: 344


Readers who love vampire romances will be thrilled to devour Team Human by Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan. Team Human celebrates and parodies the Twilight books, as well as other classics in the paranormal romance genre.

Mel is horrified when Francis Duvarney, arrogant, gorgeous, and undead, starts at her high school. Mel’s best friend, Cathy, immediately falls for the vampire. Cathy is determined to be with him forever, even if having him turn her could inadvertently make her a zombie.

And Mel is equally determined to prove to her BFF that Francis is no good, braving the city’s vampire district and kissing a cute boy raised by vampires as she searches evidence in this touching and comic novel.

I have had this book sitting on my shelf just waiting to be read for a long time, but for some reason I never picked it up.  Finally, I decided that it was time to take the plunge and read it and I’m so glad that I gave it a chance.

 Mel (which is NOT short for Melanie) lives in a town where it’s normal to see vampires roaming around at night.  Vampires and Humans usually keep to themselves and don’t cause problems with one another.  But when a ‘17’ year old vampire starts school with Mel and her friends it’s up to Mel to keep her best friend Cathy away from him.  However, Mel quickly learns that it won’t be that easy.

It seems Mel is taking on more than she can handle.  She is trying to stop her best friend, Cathy, from becoming a vampire and at the same time she is helping her other friend Anna find out what exactly happened to her dad.

Mel was such a great character.  I absolutely loved her sense of humor and the fact that she would do anything for her friends, regardless of the consequences.  I also really liked Kit, for a guy that was raised by vampires; he actually had a lot of human in him.  Although, I really liked Mel and Kit, I didn’t really connect with any of the other characters in this book.  I felt sorry for Anna with everything she was going through but other than that none of the secondary characters really stood out for me.

Overall, Team Human is a fun and entertaining read that also has a little mystery thrown in.  If you’re looking for a quick, funny vampire book, then this is the one for you.

Favorite Quotes:

I hate chivalry.  Now how was I supposed to slap him in the face?

Instead, I found myself saying something totally unexpected.

Something horrible.



The busy coffee shop was suddenly a lot less busy.  Everyone turned to stare.  Literally everyone.  Even the fat baby in the stroller stopped sucking on its own fists, and stared.

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