A judge – me??

Yes!! I was lucky to be chosen as one of the First Round judges for the Second Annual NerdsHeart YA Tournament.  Ok I’ve never done this before but thought this is another great way to get more involved and to read read read!  So check it out !  There are still a couple of days to nominate  a book for inclusion – check it out!

Looking forward to this new adventure!


Go Ask Alice by Anonymous

This book has first released in 1971 – that’s almost 40 years ago – and it’s still one of the most sensational and yet controversial books.  Go Ask Alice is a diary depicting the life of a fifteen year old who comes from a stable and loving home and is served a drink laced with LSD at a party one night.  This one drink proves to be the beginning of an addiction that takes her on an incredible adventure to places no teenager should ever venture to.

This was a book that never made it on any reading list when I was in high school, but I’m told that it has been added in recent years but not to all school boards.  I’ll admit it was a whole new world for me and it was scary!!!  A world I wish never existed – yet I know it exists all around us.

Although it was tough to read as a parent, I would definitely recommend it to high school students as well as their parents.  This is a book that can open everyone’s eyes to some very scary and relevant issues of today’s teens.  I just have to add one more thought – I know there are numerour TV shows that deal with this issue as well – but it’s just not the same as reading a book and living the moments with the author.

Favourite quotes: Yes I may have overdone it this time – but these four quotes touched me in one way or another and I really wanted to capture them.

“…If only parents would listen!  If only they would let us talk instead of forever and eternally and continuously harping and preaching and nagging and correcting and yacking, yacking, yacking!  But they won’t listen! They simply won’t or can’t or don’t want to listen, and we kids keep winding up back in the same old frustrating, lost, lonely corner with no one to relate to either verbally or physically.”    p. 51

“I used to think I was the only one who felt things, but I really am only one infinitely small part of an aching humanity.  It’s a good thing most people bleed on the inside or this would be a gory, blood-smeared earth.”    p. 134

“Is the school actually like a minor galaxy, with a little world for each minority group and one for the poor kids and one for the rich kids and one for the dopers, or maybe even one for the privileged dopers and one for the dopers who come from not so wealthy backgrounds?  All of us being completely unaware of the other worlds until a person tries to step from one sphere to the other.”    p. 160

“Why is life so difficult?  Why can’t we just be ourselves and have everyone accept us the way we are?  Why can’t I just be me as I am now and not have to concentrate and fume and get upset about my past and my future.”      p. 208

Anonymous.  (2006).  Go Ask Alice.  New York, NY:  Simon Pulse.

New Poll Question

I think the way I’ll tackle polls is to post them when I can think of a relevant question – but I will leave them open for at least a week and post the results along with my thoughts on them.  Sound fair?

So my poll of the week – as you may have noticed I can easily be drawn into a single book or a series – but there are days when I think I wish for one or the other.  I know – not making a lot of sense am I?  Let’s see…  what I’d like to know from you – is:  When you choose a book to read do you have a preference for a book that is a standalone story OR do you prefer a book that is part of a trilogy – so you know the story will end by book three OR do you prefer one that is part of a series?  I hope that makes more sense…

Looking forward to your thoughts on this one 🙂

Hourglass by Claudia Gray

Oh my!  Oh my! Oh MY!!!!!  AH…..  Cliffhanger extreme!  That was fantastic!  And yes – is there anyway to move up the publication date for Afterlife?  I’m on the edge of my seat just waiting to find out what will happen to Lucas, Bianca and Blathazar!  The third book was just as great as the first and the second.  I often worry that I’ll get bored with the later books in a series – but just no way with this one.  I think Claudia Gray put it the best in her Youtube presentation – she likes to throw in the twists just when you think the reader is settling into the book – and oh!! has she ever done a fantastic job at this!

So – I’ve been ranting and raving here – sorry I can’t help it!  In the third installment of the Evernight series, Lucas and Bianca run away from the Black Cross and try to make it on their own.  Just as any young couple they need money, jobs and a place to stay.  They muddle through these and strengthen their relationship at the same time.  However….  Bianca is starting to learn what her choices really are and learns that in the end, she doesn’t have the choice she thought she always had.  I can’t say anything more without giving everything away!

A highly recommended book for ages 14 years and up.

To read my thoughts on the first two books in the Evernight series please visit:

Stargazer  Second book in the series
Evernight  First book in the series

Favourite quote:

“Give me my Romeo; and, when, he shall die, make him and cut him out in little stars.  And he will make the face of heaven so fine that all the world will be in love with night, and pay no worship to the garish sun.”   p. 307

Gray, Claudia. (2010). Hourglass.  New York, NY:  HarperTeen.

Author website:  http://www.claudiagray.com/

New Gallagher Girls book – June 15, 2010

Woohoo!  I was just browsing my To Be Read page and thought I’d check on the status of Ally Carter’s fourth book in the Gallagher Girls series – and guess what ?  There it was!  The cover and the title:  Only the Good Spy Young.

If you’re as curious as I was about the story – here is the Author’s Story behind the story


June 15 – only three months away!

This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen

As you probably already know – I love Sarah Dessen’s books.  She has this way of capturing the teen’s perspective and taking the raw teenage emotions and creating something truly wonderful!  In This Lullaby Remy lives with her Mom and brother Chris and is in the midst of planning her mother’s fifth wedding.  She’s also getting ready to enjoy her typical summer, have a summer boyfriend that meets her own set of standards for the summer months before she heads off to Stanford in the Fall.  However, her plans are thrown off kilter when Dexter runs into her in her future stepfather’s car dealership and tells her that they’re meant to be together.  The summer has Remy experiencing and questioning love in so many ways.

I did love this book, but I have to admit that this one kind of threw me a bit.  I’m not a big fan of swearing – and holy cow! there was a fair share of swearing in this book.  Maybe if I read the book rather than listened to it I may not have noticed it as much as I did.  Yes – some teens do tend to talk like this – but I didn’t get the impression that Remy really needed to talk like this.

A truly wonderful story and one that I would recommend with a note of caution regarding some of the language.  I wonder whether this book could provide teens from a broken family a perspective on love that they may have lost along the way?  I don’t know but as an optimist by nature – I would hope it could.  I would definitely recommend this book – but as with other Sarah’s books I would recommend it to the older teen – 16 years and over.

Favourite quote:

“…She left these scribblings all around the house, folded into corners, on the backs of shelves, acting as markers in books.  I’d found one about seals, which later turned out to be a major plot point in Memories of Truro, sticking out of a box of tampons under my sink.  I guess you never knew when inspiration would strike.”    p. 263

“…The love we have for each other is bigger than these smaller differences.  And that’s the key.  It’s like a big pie chart, and love in a relationship has to be the biggest piece.  Love can make up for a lot….”    p.264

Dessen, Sarah.  (2009).  This Lullaby [sound recording CD].   Princed Frederick, MD : Recorded Books.

Author website:  http://www.sarahdessen.com/

Stargazer by Claudia Gray

Stargazer was the second installment of the Evernight series, and it had just as many twists and turns as Evernight – Wonderful!  Kept my attention the whole book and kept me up into the wee hours of the morning…  Hmmm…  now I’m stuck – how do I write my own little synopsis without giving away too much about Evernight?  I don’t think I can – so I’ll copy the bit from the back of the book – Oh…  but rereading it – well it kind of gives away a bit too doesn’t it?

So let’s try this….  um….  nah…  Just READ it!!!!  Let’s just say that the story continues to revolve around Bianca, Lucas, Balthazar and shy Raquel.  Relationships mature and evolve among these individuals and the twists and turns just keep you hopping. As with Evernight – just when I thought I knew where the plot was going – whoosh – that idea was thrown out the window and the turn that I just took was unexpected.  If you think you knew everything about vampires and ghosts – think again!!!

As I noted in my Evernight post, my daughter has already beaten me and read Evernight, Stargazer and Hourglass – she hasn’t divulged any information yet – but I can see how it’s getting tough on her.  When she sees me reading – her question are “Where are you?  What’s happening?” and I know better than to tell her – because her facial expression will tell me too much!  So – I’m almost caught up and then we can talk about it 🙂

So who would I recommend this series to – can you guess?  Yup – I would say 12 years and up.  And this really is a great series for parents and teens to read – so far it’s been a lot of fun for the two of us – so why not try it yourself?  For the teens – it’s a great story that will keep your attention – and for the adults?  I’d say the same goes.  If you’re a Mom or Dad and have read this book or series along with your teen – let me know how it went.  As soon as I read Hourglass – I’ll share my experiences talking about the books with my daughter with you all 🙂  Until then – GO Read IT!!!

Favourite quote:

“Romeo and Juliet don’t know each other very well. … They defy their parents for each other, risk their lives for each other, and finally die for each other, even though they’ve only met a handful of times.  It’s a huge love story built on infatuation.  Maybe Shakespeare should have let them know each other longer.”      p. 153

Gray, Claudia. (2009).  Stargazer.  New York, NY: Harper Teen.

Author website:  http://www.claudiagray.com/