Monday, March 17, 2014

Countdown: April 2014 (3)

With Spring being right around the corner, we're so close to being able to say goodbye to this cold weather and hello to fresh blooms, and sunny skies, right? At least that's what I keep telling myself, knowing full well, that we're likely to see more rain than sun next month, but I'm trying to stay optimistic. And with all these amazing new releases that will hit the shelves next month, it's getting easier each and every time I add one to my countdown list. Are there any titles that you're extra excited about? Here are a few of the ones I'm looking forward to in April.
Countdown Pick #1:  Dangerous by Shannon Hale (04/01/2014)

Maisie Danger Brown just wanted to get away from home for a bit, see something new. She never intended to fall in love. And she never imagined stumbling into a frightening plot that kills her friends and just might kill her, too. A plot that is already changing life on Earth as we know it. There's no going back. She is the only thing standing between danger and annihilation.

From NY Times bestselling author Shannon Hale comes a novel that asks, How far would you go to save the ones you love? And how far would you go to save everyone else?

When Shannon Hale came out with Austenland, she won me over.  As a huge Austen fan, any author who puts their own spin on my favorite author's writing is OK by me.  So while this book doesn't sound anything like her previous works that I enjoyed, I have no doubt that her writing will continue to entertain me and I'm eager to see how this future release plays out.
Countdown Pick #2:  Stolen Songbird (Untitled, #1) by Danielle L. Jensen (04/01/2014)

For those who have loved Seraphina and Graceling comes another truly fabulous fantasy...

Trolls are said to love gold. They are said to live underground and hate humans. They are said to be evil. When Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and sold to the trolls, she finds out that there is truth in the rumours, but there is also so much more to trolls than she could have imagined.

Cécile has only one thing on her mind after she is brought to Trollus, the city she hadn't even known existed under Forsaken Mountain: escape. But the trolls are inhumanly strong. And fast. She will have to bide her time, wait for the perfect opportunity.

But something strange happens while she's waiting - she begins to fall in love with the handsome, thoughtful troll prince that she has been bonded and married to. She begins to make friends. And she begins to see that she may be the only hope for the half-bloods - part troll/part human creatures who are slaves to the full-blooded trolls. There is a rebellion brewing. And her prince, Tristan, the future king, is its secret leader.

As Cécile becomes involved in the intricate political games of Trollus, she becomes more than a farmer's daughter from Goshawk's Hollow. She becomes a princess, the hope of a people, and a witch.

Fantasy will always be one of my favorite genres, and if this book's description is to be believed, with Kristin Cashore wrapping up her Seven Realms series, I'm excited about the possibility of another series stepping up and filling it's place.
Countdown Pick #3:  Dark Days by Kate Ormand (04/2014)

16-year-old Sia only has 15 days to live.

A New World has been created, a place that is highly selective of its citizens and welcomes only the most extraordinary people. Its creators believe they're putting the world to rights and moving towards a perfect future. They've divided society into sectors, with a metal wall surrounding each one. There’s no way in, no way out. A clock tower ticks down the days until a cyborg army penetrates the sector walls, and when they do, nothing will remain of the sector and its citizens but blood, fire and ash.

Sia and her family are far too ordinary to be chosen, so they're left in their sector to die at the hands of machines. Sia accepts her fate, knowing she can’t escape it. Then she meets Mace, a dangerous and attractive boy, who refuses to give up life without a fight...

DARK DAYS is a YA dystopian action-romance novel with jarring violence and high suspense, and could be described as having the gore and action of THE TERMINATOR, and the thrilling romance of MATCHED.

I'm not too sure about the gore they describe in this one but the romance and action are always a welcome sight.  So I guess only giving it a chance will determine whether or not this book and I are a good match.
Countdown Pick #4:  Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell (04/01/2014)

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’s 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.

I cannot wait to see what types of revelations are in store for Kit and her wild life of crime.  I don't think readers will find anything close to resembling the sounds of this future release, and I'm looking forward to a nice change of pace and maybe some anxiety inducing scenes filled with suspense.
Countdown Pick #5:  Gilded Ashes by Rosamund Hodge (04/01/2014)

A romantic and fantastical reimagining of the classic Cinderella tale, Gilded Ashes is a novella by Rosamund Hodge set in the same world as the author's debut novel, Sundered.

Orphan Maia doesn't see the point of love when it only brings pain: Her dying mother made a bargain with the evil, all-powerful ruler of their world that anyone who hurt her beloved daughter would be punished; her new stepmother went mad with grief when Maia's father died; and her stepsisters are desperate for their mother's approval, yet she always spurns them. And though her family has turned her into a despised servant, Maia must always pretend to be happy, or else they'll all be struck dead by the curse.

Anax, heir to the Duke of Sardis, doesn't believe in love either—not since he discovered that his childhood sweetheart was only using him for his noble title. What's the point of pretending to fall in love with a girl just so she'll pretend to fall in love with him back? But when his father invites all the suitable girls in the kingdom to a masked ball, Anax must finally give in and select a wife.

As fate would have it, the preparations for the masquerade bring him Maia, who was asked by her eldest stepsister to deliver letters to Anax. Despite a prickly first encounter, he is charmed and intrigued by this mysterious girl who doesn't believe in love. Anax can't help wishing to see her again—and when he does, he can't help falling in love with her. Against her will, Maia starts to fall in love with him too. But how can she be with him when every moment his life is in danger from her mother's deadly bargain?

What girl doesn't love the story of Cinderella?  I've seen the movie, read a few stories that gave the age old tale a new spin and even saw the Broadway rendition last year.  So I think next month when this title comes out will be perfect timing for my next Cinderella fix!

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