Monday, November 15, 2010

Countdown: Recommendations Edition

I read reviews all the time for books that sound great but I've never read anything by the particular author before. So I add them to my TBR pile but tend to prioritize them at the bottom. Well I'm going to try to change that, with these countdown picks coming out in 2011 I'm determined to check them out.

Countdown Pick #1: Will Work for Prom Dress by Aimee Ferris (2/8/2011)

Quigley Johnson has, reluctantly, given up the rest of her last year of high school to take part in her best friend Ann's Betterment Plan, which will turn them into the best-dressed, most sought-after, most admired girls at their senior formal. Because - hey - who doesn't want the perfect prom, complete with a dream dress and a devastatingly handsome date? 

But the prom costs money - lots of money - and even though the girls could easily have Ann's mom design their dresses (she's only Victoria Parisi, one of the most famous designers in the world), Ann insists that they pay their own way.  And that's how Quigley gets stuck making artistic topping masterpieces on frozen pizzas canvases, before becoming a live model for Ms. Parisi's fashion design class, where she meets Zander.

He's cute, and cool, and funny, with a killer design sensibility (even if he can't sketch).  But is he too good to be true? And what about David, the hot, talented artist at school, who's also kind of a jerk, but won't leave Quigley alone? And Ann - she started the Betterment Plan to improve Quigley and herself, but it seems like it's ripping their friendship to shreds.

This road to the prom dream may just end in disaster.

Every review and rating I read for her previous work, Girl Overboard (S.A.S.S.) had nothing but four or five stars and positive things to say. So when I heard about this release I couldn't resist adding this to my countdown. Who doesn't love a good romantic comedy? With two boys showing interest in our main character Quigley, how's she supposed to choose who the better guy is and who she wants to go to prom with? Sign me up! It sounds like Ferris is setting us up for the perfect combination of romance, fashion, dancing, flirting and fun all around. From only seeing the small description on Goodreads I'm think this is going to have wit and a heroine with spunk that is willing to go to great lengths and put up with unconventional jobs if it means a great date for the prom and a great dress to where when that dates picks her up!

Countdown Pick #2: The Romeo and Juliet Code by Phoebe Stone (1/1/2011)

Phoebe Stone, author of the sleeper hit DEEP DOWN POPULAR, is back with a middle-grade code-breaking mystery full of romance and excitement. Think CHASING VERMEER meets THE SECRET GARDEN!

Felicity's glamorous parents have a secret. When they leave her with distant relatives in Maine, Felicity hopes they won't leave her long. Her new Uncle Gideon hides things. Her Aunt Miami is star-crossed. And Derek, a kid her age, refuses to leave his room.

But Felicity needs Derek's help. Gideon is getting coded letters from Felicity's parents, and she's sure they're in trouble. Can Felicity crack the code, heal the family and save her parents, all while surviving her first crush? It's a tall order, but - like THE SECRET GARDEN'S Mary Lennox before her - Felicity's up for the challenge.

With so many of my fellow bloggers raving about her previous novel, Deep Down Popular, I had to check this author out. When I got wind of this future release I was a gonner. It's sounds like it has plenty of potential to be such a sweet romance with mystery and a side of intrigue thrown into the mix. How could I pass this one up? I'm sure I'll be rooting for Felicity while she tries to solve the mystery involving her parents and the cryptic letters they're sending her temporary guardian (and uncle). Hopefully she's turn out to be a cuter version of Nancy Drew and let's not forget that she's also going to be doing her best to survive her first crush!

Countdown Pick #3: Drought by Pam Bachorz (1/11/2011)

Ruby Prosser dreams of escaping the Congregation and the early-nineteenth century lifestyle that’s been practiced since the community was first enslaved.

She plots to escape the vicious Darwin West, his cruel Overseers, and the daily struggle to gather the life-prolonging Water that keeps the Congregants alive and gives Darwin his wealth and power. But if Ruby leaves, the Congregation will die without the secret ingredient that makes the Water special: her blood.

So she stays. 

But when Ruby meets Ford, the new Overseer who seems barely older than herself, her desire for freedom is too strong. He’s sympathetic, irresistible, forbidden—and her only access to the modern world. Escape with Ford would be so simple, but can Ruby risk the terrible price, dooming the only world she’s ever known?

Dystopian novels have recently became a favorite of mine after hearing a lot of positive feedback about Bachorz's previous work, Candor, I check into this one. With strict rules, a government like body of individuals controlling everyone's lives and survival being at the forefront of everyone's mind, I can't imagine not being swept up in Bachorz's world. The cover and description for this one had me hooked and wishing it was January already. With the main character Ruby, as the key reason her people are surviving this post apocalyptic world, her chances of a future of freedom are very slim. Her blood more specifically is the key to everyone's survival but if she has the chance to run, will she take it? She'd be free but what about every other person depending on for their survival? Can she leave them all behind knowing what will happen to them once they don't have her blood anymore? I'm thinking this is sure to be a tense read to get through filled with suspense, maybe some romance, and a lot of action, YES!

Countdown Pick #4: Flying Blind (The Dragon Diaries, #2) by Deborah Cooke (6/7/2011)

The next generation of shape-shifting dragons from the popular author of the Dragonfire novels. 

Zoë Sorensson is perfectly normal, except she's been told she's destined for great things. Zoë's the one female dragon shapeshifter of her kind. But Zoë is at the bottom of the class when it comes to being Pyr and her powers are AWOL, so she's sent to a Pyr boot camp.

Zoë quickly realizes that she has to master her powers yesterday, because the Pyr are in danger and boot camp is a trap. The Mages want to eliminate all shifters and the Pyr are next in line-unless Zoë and her friends can work together and save their own kind.

While this looks to be her YA debut, I've heard great things about her adult series. Cooke won my vote when she chose to write about dragons and shifters and all things magical! There are not enough stories involving dragons on the shelves today if you ask me (which no one did but oh well) and I'm looking forward to the new addition. So add this to your list because it's got the makings to be truly great and you don't want to be in the dark when everyone's talking about it, come June. With shape shifting beings with major powers to learn and control at the top of this society suddenly becoming threatened by the mages, it's up to our main character (naturally) to save the day. Hopefully she'll have some help and be able to master her powers in time, but either way I'm not expecting a boring and uneventful tale. This will be the series opener and I'm curious to see if Cooke has the chops to make this dragon tale exciting and addicting enough to keep readers coming back for future installments.

Stay tuned for another edition of countdown in the days to come! Got any that I should add to my list? I'm always looking for more recommendations and suggestions to keep my ever growing TBR list never ending!

1 comment:

  1. I just finished Candor and LOVED it! I can't wait to read more from this author. Thanks for spreading the good word about her. This next book is at the top of my list.



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