Yep I've got yet another countdown for you guys. Sorry but with the crazy weekend I had, no more reading was accomplished and I didn't have time to post any of the reviews I've got in the works. So hopefully soon I'll be able to crank out some of those reviews, but in the meantime there is of course no shortage of great titles still to come in 2012.
What are your favorites or most highly anticipated future releases that you're counting down the days until they hit the shelves? Has anyone seen anything out there that you haven't seen me post about that you think I might be interested in? I'm always open to new recommendations, especially since more times than not, those end up being my favorite finds! Let me know if anything comes to mind and I'll be sure to add it to my list to check out in the future.
Countdown Pick #1: Paradise by Jill S. Alexander (07/05/2011)
Paisley Tillery is the drummer for a country rock band. If they can make it to the stage at the Texapalooza music fest, then Paisley will be closer to her dream of a career in music and a ticket out of her small Texas town.
Drumming and music are what Paisley has always wanted. Until the band gets a new lead singer, the boy from Paradise, Texas. With Paradise in her life, what Paisley wants, and what she needs, complicate her dreams coming true.
I love this kind of book. I always get inspired by a book where the main character is someone with a rare talent and they're fighting to not let it go to waste, but using it to their advantage and sometimes their ticket out of their current way of life and on to something bigger and more exciting! Paisley sounds like just that type of character. With dreams and goals bigger than the small town she lives in can accommodate, but rather than sit by and just accept the cards she was dealt, she's branching out and hoping to make something more out of herself and her life. What this new lead singer in her band will bring to the table is anyone's guess, but I'm thinking he's going to throw a wrench into her perfectly laid out plans and hopefully it will be for the better and not to her detriment.
Countdown Pick #2: Sacred by Elana K. Arnold (11/13/2012)
Growing up on Catalina Island, off the California coast, Scarlett Wenderoth has led a fairly isolated life. After her brother dies, her isolation deepens as she withdraws into herself, shutting out her friends and boyfriend. Her parents, shattered by their own sorrow, fail to notice Scarlett's pain and sudden alarming thinness. Scarlett finds pleasure only on her horse, escaping to the heart of the island on long, solitary rides. One day, as she races around a bend, Scarlett is startled by a boy who raises his hand in warning and says one word: "Stop."
The boy—intense, beautiful—is Will Cohen, a newcomer to the island. For reasons he can't or won't explain, he's drawn to Scarlett and feels compelled to keep her safe. To keep her from wasting away. His meddling irritates Scarlett, though she can't deny her attraction to him. As their relationship blossoms into love, Scarlett's body slowly awakens at Will's touch. But just when her grief begins to ebb, she makes a startling discovery about Will, a discovery he's been grappling with himself. A discovery that threatens to force them apart. And if it does, Scarlett fears she will unravel all over again.
How sad and heart wrenching does this one sound? Whenever I come across a book where a child passes away I can't even being to imagine putting myself in the parents' shoes or any of the other family members. But my heart aches at even hearing mention of something like that happening. So the idea that this character is left to herself and must grieve alone and in her own way is just plain sad, and all a reader can do is wish they could help in some way. But it looks like this character meets someone who tries to do just that. What his secret could be or how the revelation could tear them apart I can only guess at, but it's sure to be a big one.
Countdown Pick #3: The Blessed (The Blessed, #1) by Tonya Hurley (09/25/2012)
Brooklyn teens Lucy, Cecelia and Agnes find themselves in the emergency room at Perpetual Help Hospital at the lowest point in their lives. Lucy, the superficial party girl; Cecelia, a drop out rock chick; and Agnes, a hopeless romantic. All rebels running from their lives and themselves, plagued by broken hearts and broken dreams. Enter Sebastian. Mysterious, compelling, seductive. He seems to bring each of them what they long for...
But in the battle for his heart, will they lose their souls?
Interesting? Yes! Does it leave me questioning just about everything? Yes again! I'm not sure what to expect or think of this one, but I like the sound and idea of it and that's all I need to know. I'm unfamiliar with any other work by Hurley, but from what I hear from other readers and bloggers, her work is well liked for certain. Apparently her writing is fast paced and quite addicting, and those are elements that equal a winner if you asking me, right? So is this Sebastian evil and are these girls in over their heads? I'll be at the book store the day this title hits the shelves so I can find out the answers to those questions and many more.
Countdown Pick #4: The Dark Light by Sara Walsh (08/28/2012)
Mysterious lights have flickered above Crownsville for as long as Mia can remember. And as far as she’s concerned, that’s about the only interesting thing to happen in her small town.
That is, until Sol arrives. Mia’s not one to fall for just any guy, but she can’t get intense Sol—or the brilliant tattoo on his back—out of her mind.
Then Mia’s brother goes missing, and Mia’s convinced that Sol knows more than he’s sharing. But getting closer to Sol means reevaluating everything she once believed to be true. Because Sol’s not who Mia thought he was—and neither is she.
Hello handsome strangers! I'm one of those readers who loves a good forbidden romance and even the whole unrequited love bit that can often be found in literature. And while our main character knows there is more to this stranger than meets the eye, and that he could in fact be very bad news, she's still going to go for it with him. She might claim to be hoping to find out more about her brother that has gone missing, but normally with books like these, the character is usually just telling themselves that to justify their actions, and that's when the really good stuff starts to happen. Hopefully this one is what it sounds like....a really good and addicting read!
Countdown Pick #5: The Demon Catchers of Milan by Kat Beyer (08/28/2012)
Mia's ordinary life is disrupted in the most horrifying way possible when she is possessed by a hungry and powerful demon--and only saved by the arrival of relatives from Italy, the country her grandfather fled many decades ago. Now her cousins Emilio and Giuliano say the only way to keep her safe is for her to come back with them to Milan, to live, to learn Italian, to fall in and out of love, and to master the family trade: fighting all demons with the lore of bell, book, and candle. Milan is not what Mia expected, but it will change her forever, in this stunningly well-written novel about an American girl who, fleeing an ancient evil, finds her only salvation in her ancestral home.
I both love and hate the idea of this book. Demon possession has scared me ever since my idiot self decided it would be a good idea to watch the movie, The Exorcist, and losing the battle of not being terrified. I know some people find the idea hokey but I'm not one of them. Scary movies tend to stay with me, and the idea behind both the movie and now this book, I'm sure will lead to nightmares. But I can't help the fact that despite all of this I still want to read on and find out how Mia will fare against these terrible odds. Stay tuned and I'll let you know if I win or lose the battle of bad dreams.