Monday, March 26, 2012

Countdown: 2012 Releases (12)

I cannot believe that March has come and gone so quickly, can you? I feel like it was just yesterday that I was breathing a sigh of relief that the holidays had just wrapped up and we could all take a step back and enjoy ourselves and the wonderful time we had to spend with our families and friends during the season. But while I was waiting for us to get hit hard with snow or a freak winter storm, I didn't even realize that the Winter season was coming to a close. I can't say that I'm sad we missed out on the snow...I hate driving in it and having to worry about whether or not I'll be able to make it to work on time, etc...but I am disappointed I didn't make it to the slopes this year. Hopefully my skis will get more work next season, and in the meantime I'm just glad I have so many great reads to look forward to this this year!

Countdown Pick #1: Starling (Starling, #1) by Lesley Livingston (08/15/2012)

"Love is just the beginning... of the end."

Mason Starling is a champion fencer for Gosforth Academy, but she’s never had to fight for her life. Until now. When a ferocious storm rips through Manhattan and unleashes terrifying creatures onto Gosforth’s campus, Mason barely escapes alive. Without help from the mysterious stranger who appeared in the midst of the storm, she might not have made it at all. But now, in the aftermath, Mason’s life begins to spin dramatically, mystically out of control, and the only one who seems able to help her is the stranger who can remember nothing but his name: Fennrys Wolf.

As Mason and Fenn uncover more about Fenn’s past and the strange events that surround them, they realize that Mason’s family — and its dark allegiance to the ancient Norse gods — is at the center of everything. A predetermined fate seems to be closing in on Mason, but is it possible to change one’s destiny?

Readers who fell in love with Lesley Livingston’s Wondrous Strange trilogy and those who love Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series will be captivated by the sweeping romance and pulse-pounding action of Starling.

Norse gods and romance...I'm a big fan of both! I hate to admit this but I never got the chance to read Livingston's previous Wondrous Strange trilogy but I have read Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices series. If this description is anything to go by, since I'm a huge fan of Clare's than this series should be right up my alley. Are you guys a fan of Livingston's writing? I've been told countless times that I was missing out by not having picked up her books before and I'm hoping to correct that flaw in the future. Looks like August will be my first step to seeing what she's all about as an author.

Countdown Pick #2: Never Let You Go by Emma Carlson Berne (2012)

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. . .

You always want what you can’t have.

Megan never meant to hurt her best friend Anna. She made a mistake, and she’s spent all year trying to regain Anna’s trust. So when Anna invites her to spend the summer on her uncle’s farm, Megan is excited…and relieved. The past is finally behind them.

On the farm, Anna quickly falls for Jordan, a rugged summer-hand. Megan and Jordan have their own spark, but Megan’s betrayed Anna once before and she’s not about to do it again.

Still, the more time that Megan and Jordan spend together, the harder it is to deny their chemistry. But Anna doesn’t like to be ignored—and she doesn’t forgive and forget. What started out as the perfect summer is about to take a very dark turn….

Wow! Even the cover is scaring me to no end. I'm not sue why this book caught my attention, but now that it has it doesn't seem to be letting me go. So the only thing I can do is pick myself up a copy when it hits the shelves and hope that it doesn't keep me awake a night. This girl Anna sounds like bad news times ten. I'm definitely not wanting to be in Megan's shoes, that's for sure. Have you guys read Berne's previous book? Any insight into what kind of author she is? The plot's got me intrigued, so I'll cross my fingers I can handle the stress.

Countdown Pick #3: Dark Star by Bethany Frenette (10/23/2012)

Audrey Whitticomb has nothing to fear. Her mother is the superhero Morning Star, the most deadly crime-fighter in the Twin Cities, so it’s hard for Audrey not to feel safe. That is, until she’s lured into the sweet night air by something human and not human—something with talons and teeth, and a wide, scarlet smile.

Now Audrey knows the truth: her mom doesn’t fight crime at night. She fights Harrowers—livid, merciless beings who were trapped Beneath eons ago. Yet some have managed to escape. And they want Audrey dead, just because of who she is: one of the Kin.

To survive, Audrey will need to sharpen the powers she has always had. When she gets close to someone, dark corners of the person’s memories become her own, and she sometimes even glimpses the future. If Audrey could only get close to Patrick Tigue, a powerful Harrower masquerading as human, she could use her Knowing to discover the Harrowers’ next move. But Leon, her mother’s bossy, infuriatingly attractive sidekick, has other ideas. Lately, he won’t let Audrey out of his sight.

When an unthinkable betrayal puts Minneapolis in terrible danger, Audrey discovers a wild, untamed power within herself. It may be the key to saving her herself, her family, and her city. Or it may be the force that destroys everything—and everyone—she loves.

How cool would it be if one of your parents was a superhero? Come on, everyone's thought about that possibility and the awesomeness that would surround you if that were the case. We were all young kids once and I will attest to the fact that personally I would have thought that was the coolest. I think at some point I really did think my dad had super powers when I was little, and to this day I swear my mom has superpowers in the kitchen. No one can bake like she does, it's just uncanny! But while I digress...this book just sounds like nothing but fun, and I can't wait to curl up with this one and get started! My birthday is only a few days before it's release and I'm thinking that would be a wonderful present to myself, don't you?

Countdown Pick #4: Ten by Gretchen McNeil (09/18/2012)

And their doom comes swiftly.

It was supposed to be the weekend of their lives – an exclusive house party on Henry Island. Best friends Meg and Minnie each have their reasons for being there (which involve T.J., the school's most eligible bachelor) and look forward to three glorious days of boys, booze and fun-filled luxury.

But what they expect is definitely not what they get, and what starts out as fun turns dark and twisted after the discovery of a DVD with a sinister message: Vengeance is mine.

Suddenly people are dying, and with a storm raging, the teens are cut off the from the outside world. No electricity, no phones, no Internet, and a ferry that isn't scheduled to return for two days. As the deaths become more violent and the teens turn on each other, can Meg find the killer before more people die? Or is the killer closer to her than she could ever imagine?

Anyone who has ever been a fan of the who-dunnit type movies and stories, this sounds like a winner don't you think? I myself hate scary movies but at the same time seem to find myself watching them over and over again and I honestly have no idea why. While I'm not a fan of being scared or grossed out from the gore, I will admit to enjoying a mystery. Despite how easy and simple it might be to figuring out who the killer is in stories like these, I still enjoy the challenge. So I'm going to take my chances with this one and hope that McNeil takes pity on her readers and doesn't leave me with nightmares and no desire to ever go away for a weekend with my friends.

Countdown Pick #5: Anything But Ordinary by Lara Avery (09/11/2012)

An inspiring, bittersweet love story about making every day count.

Bryce remembers it like it was yesterday. The scent of chlorine. The blinding crack and flash of pain. Blood in the water.

When she wakes up in the hospital, all Bryce can think of is her disastrous Olympic diving trial. But everything is different now. Bryce still feels seventeen, so how can her little sister be seventeen, too? Life went on without her while Bryce lay in a coma for five years. Her best friend and boyfriend have just graduated from college. Her parents barely speak. And everything she once dreamed of doing—winning a gold medal, traveling the world, falling in love—seems beyond her reach.

But Bryce has changed too, in seemingly impossible ways. She knows things she shouldn’t. Things that happened while she was asleep. Things that haven’t even happened yet. During one luminous summer, as she comes to understand that her dreams have changed forever, Bryce learns to see life for what it truly is: extraordinary.

I feel as though I'm already invested in this story and it doesn't even come out until September. But I can't quite explain why. For whatever reason I really want to see and experience this journey through Bryce's eyes so to speak. However she ended up in the coma and for whatever reason she now knows things she shouldn't, I want to see how it plays out. I can't imagine what it would be like to go from being bound for the Olympics possibly, to wake up one morning and have to start from scratch but I without a doubt will be cheering her character one all the way!

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