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Kim Harrington

    The Dead and Buried Blog Tour: Guest Post – This or That with Donovan and Kane + Giveaway

    D&B Banner-1

    When I was first invited to be a part of this tour I screamed. Loudly. And often. Because I love Kim Harrington’s books. And I’d been dying to read her newest title, THE DEAD AND BURIED, from the moment I first learned about it. Since long before it had this wicked awesome cover. Since before it even had a cover revealed. And possibly before it even had a cover designed.

    Well I was totally thrilled to have received a copy to read just a little bit early. And I read it. And I loved it. And I even REVIEWED it.

    But I was even more stoked when I heard my stop would be a “This or That” stop with Donovan and Kane. Because their answers are so very telling. And while I have picked a favorite of the two – which did not change based on my reading their answers – I will keep who that is a secret so you can see who you find more interesting based on answers alone and not my input or sway.

    If for some reason you haven’t heard about THE DEAD AND BURIED, as always, here’s just a little bit about the book and author.

    Oh, and in case it isn’t clear just who Donovan and Kane are, they are the two swoon-worthy boys in Jade’s life who may or may not be guilty of murder.

    05

    TDAB Book Cover

    About the Book

    A haunted house, a buried mystery, and a very angry ghost make this one unforgettable thriller.

    Jade loves the house she’s just moved into with her family. She doesn’t even mind being the new girl at the high school: It’s a fresh start, and there’s that one guy with the dreamy blue eyes. . . . But then things begin happening. Strange, otherworldly things. Jade’s little brother claims to see a glimmering girl in his room. Jade’s jewelry gets moved around, as if by an invisible hand. Kids at school whisper behind her back like they know something she doesn’t.

    Soon, Jade must face an impossible fact: that her perfect house is haunted. Haunted by a ghost who’s seeking not just vengeance, but the truth. The ghost of a girl who ruled Jade’s school — until her untimely death last year. It’s up to Jade to put the pieces together before her own life is at stake. As Jade investigates the mystery, she discovers that her new friends in town have more than a few deep, dark secrets. But is one of them a murderer?

    Find it: GOODREADS, AMAZON, BARNES & NOBLE

    ***

    KimHarringtonAbout the Author

    Kim Harrington is the author of the Clarity series for teens and the Sleuth or Dare series for kids. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and son. When not writing, she’s most likely reading, watching one of her favorite TV shows, or fantasizing about her next vacation.

    Her first book, Clarity, received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly, was a 2012 ALA Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers, sold to nine countries, and was optioned for television by Warner Brothers.

    Find her: TWITTER, FACEBOOK, WEBSITE, BLOG, GOODREADS

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    Guest-Post

    This-or-that

    …with Donovan & Kane

    ***

    Books or Video Games

    Donovan – Video Games. Halo 4 is awesome.

    Kane – Video Games. Presently Madden 2013.

    Cake or Pie

    Donovan – Both are good. Birthday cake is always great.

    Kane – Boston Cream Pie. I know a great place in town. 😉

    Lifting Weights or Running

    Donovan – Is neither an option?

    Kane – Both. I have to keep in shape for lacrosse.

    Popularity or Invisibility

    Donovan – I’ve been both, kind of. They each have their pros and cons.

    Kane – Popularity. It makes life easier.

    Cars or Trucks

    Donovan – Car. I’m really not a truck guy.

    Kane – I’d take either!

    Blondes or Brunettes

    Donovan – Doesn’t matter. It’s what’s inside that’s important.

    Kane – I’ve had a bad track record with brunettes, so I’ll say blonde.

    Art or Sports

    Donovan – Art. It’s my thing.

    Kane – Sports. It’s my thing.

    Letting Go or Hanging On

    Donovan – I’m trying to get better at this. I’ll choose letting go.

    Kane – This is one we can agree on.

    Secrets or Truth

    Donovan – Truth, except when it can hurt someone.

    Kane – Secrets are nothing but trouble.

    Mean Girls or Nice Girls

    Donovan – Lots of guys think they can change a mean girl. Learn from my mistakes and go for the nice girl.

    Kane – I like girls with a little bit of an edge. So, I guess, somewhere in between.

    divider_2Oh I loved their answers! They say so much about who each of them is. Can you guess who might be just a little bit more shallow? But only just a little bit.

    And oh my gosh, I literally laughed out loud when Kane suggested a great place to go for pie in town. Seriously, Kane? Always angling, aren’t you?

    Anyway….

    This was so much fun to read knowing what I know about each of the boys. Their personalities were exactly as I’d have expected them to be from what I’d already known of them from THE DEAD AND BURIED.

    I would love to talk more about each of their answers, but I have a feeling I might let something slip. And it’s always better to discover things during the read. At least it is for me.

    And I would love to say thank you to Books Complete Me for putting together this awesome tour and to the author, Kim Harrington, for not only writing awesome books, this one most definitely included, but for sharing this guest post by her two swoon-y male characters here on the blog.

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    Be sure to visit all the stops on the tour to learn more about the author, the book, the characters, the gemstones, the fantasy cast and the playlist.

    onTOUR

    January 1st – January 18th

    Tour Schedule

    Jan. 1 – Mandy @ YA Books Central – Intro & Review

    Jan. 2 – Gabrielle @ Mod Podge Bookshelf – Author Interview

    Jan. 3 – Giselle @ Xpresso Reads – Review

    Jan. 4 – Savannah@ Books with Bite – Author’s Top 5 Ghost Books/Stories

    Jan. 7 – Jen @ Hypable – Review

    Jan. 8 – Christin @ Portrait of a Book – Fantasy Casting

    Jan. 9 – Rachel @ Fiktshun – This or That with Donovan & Kane

    Jan. 10 – Amber @ Page Turners Blog – Review

    Jan. 11 – Yara @ Once Upon a Twilight – Scenarios & Gemstones

    Jan. 14 – Heidi @ YA Bibliophile – Review

    Jan. 15 – Andrea @ ReadingLark – Mini Review & Author Interview

    Jan. 16 – Julie @ Bloggers[heart]Books – Review

    Jan. 17 – Katie @ Mundie Moms – Playlist

    Jan. 18 – Damaris @ Good Choice Reading – Interview

    04

    giveaway

    The tour host has included an awesome giveaway as part of this tour for a galley of THE DEAD AND BURIED to THREE (3) WINNERS – U.S. Only. To enter, just follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter.

    Note: It is the same entry form on all the blogs.

    If you haven’t already, enter in the Rafflecopter below…

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    Review: The Dead and Buried

    The Dead and Buried

    THE DEAD AND BURIED by Kim Harrington was released in the U.S. on January 1, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Point, an imprint of Scholastic, the print edition is 304 pages.

    ***

    Goodreads description:

    A haunted house, a buried mystery, and a very angry ghost make this one unforgettable thriller.

    Jade loves the house she’s just moved into with her family. She doesn’t even mind being the new girl at the high school: It’s a fresh start, and there’s that one guy with the dreamy blue eyes. . . . But then things begin happening. Strange, otherworldly things. Jade’s little brother claims to see a glimmering girl in his room. Jade’s jewelry gets moved around, as if by an invisible hand. Kids at school whisper behind her back like they know something she doesn’t.

    Soon, Jade must face an impossible fact: that her perfect house is haunted. Haunted by a ghost who’s seeking not just vengeance, but the truth. The ghost of a girl who ruled Jade’s school — until her untimely death last year. It’s up to Jade to put the pieces together before her own life is at stake. As Jade investigates the mystery, she discovers that her new friends in town have more than a few deep, dark secrets. But is one of them a murderer?

    ***

    Kim Harrington delivers yet another exciting, suspenseful and fun to read mystery in THE DEAD AND BURIED. With plenty of suspects to keep readers guessing, a vengeful ghost to give them chills and a touch of romance to make them smile, this story of murder, mean girls and a haunted house will keep the pages turning.

    For years Jade Kelley wanted to leave the small, isolated town and the old, drafty home she grew up in. Her wish was finally coming true and she was excited. Even though it meant starting her senior year of high school somewhere new and that she’d only be there for a year before heading off to college.

    But the new house her father and stepmother bought was perfect. She couldn’t have been happier.

    Until the kids at school started whispering behind her back. Until she started to notice that the things in her room weren’t always where she left them. Until her little brother Colby mentioned seeing a girl in his room that no one else could see. Until she started to feel an unexplainable chill in the air.

    And until she discovered the reason why her family could afford such a beautiful home in such a nice neighborhood.

    Author Kim Harrington did a fantastic job in creating this mystery. She managed to cast suspicion on a number of characters. She revealed enough to allow readers to start putting the pieces of the puzzle together. She made the main character’s sleuthing efforts believable. And she even included a love story which added angst and heartache to this suspense-filled tale.

    Jade is a likable and clever, loyal and protective heroine. She is someone who forms her own opinions and doesn’t allow others to make up her mind for her. She is independent and isn’t afraid to be exactly who she is. But she’s not so different as to be unrelatable. She’s still shy around the kids at her new school, nervous and angry and hurt by her father, and frightened by what’s going on in her picture perfect home.

    With a few twists and turns, a couple of spine-tingling moments, a mystery that will leave room for doubt as to whodunit and a cast of characters that are fun to get to know, THE DEAD AND BURIED is an incredibly entertaining, at times chilling, tension-filled and captivating read.

    Reviewer gives this book…

    5

    On a personal note…

    I am a huge fan of mystery stories. And I’m an even bigger fan of Kim Harrington’s writing. Put the two together and I’m in love.

    I was a little nervous about meeting a new character, as I loved the author’s CLARITY series and the characters in that series. But Jade was such a likable and relatable character for me. She had a maturity to her which seemed appropriate for someone who lost her mother at a young age and took on such a protective role of her younger brother, Colby.

    More than that, though, I loved that she chose her own path, didn’t ditch her less than popular friend just because she could have and didn’t instantly label someone as guilty because someone told her they were.

    I loved that she fought hard against the love triangle that seemed insistent on forming even though she didn’t want it to. And I loved that she was inquisitive and not just because she had to be.

    My favorite parts, however – aside from all things Donovan, of course – were the peeks into Kayla Sloane’s diary. With each peek another part to the puzzle was revealed. Sometimes it was a small part, but it gave the most insight into just what may have happened.

    And while I adored Jade, I can’t say the same for Kayla. Now that girl was seriously messed up. She was power-hungry, malicious and downright evil at times. She may not have deserved what happened to her, but what she did to Jade and Colby made me think that maybe she did.

    I was totally caught up in the mystery even though I knew exactly who did it from the moment I first “met” the character who did it. Not that it was in any way easy or obvious. But this is the third mystery I’ve read by this author. The fact that it took three books for me to be this quick on the uptake is a testament to the author’s skill at crafting her mysteries.

    And it was so much fun to be proven right, to follow along as Jade tried to figure things out. All the while being bullied by a certain angry ghost, being pursued by a boy she wasn’t really interested in and being put on an emotional roller coaster by a boy she was.

    I absolutely loved this story and its characters, especially Jade, Colby, Robot Girl and the Cute Boy and with the possible exceptions of the Fruity-Smelling Girl and Perfect Boy. And no, I don’t plan on revealing who they are. And yes, I love the nicknames.

    This was such a fun read that had it all – a mystery, mean girls, swoon-worthy boys, and a haunted house. And you can bet that I did get a chill or two. Especially when that one thing happened with Colby. And then it happened again.

    Favorite passage…

    I have a few passages that I love, but as they are all slightly spoiler-y and would definitely take away from the surprise factor, I won’t include them here. There’s also this one quote about secrets that resonates.

    But I thought I’d include one that made me smile instead. And no, I won’t reveal just who Jade’s speaking to or just what her answer is.

    There were only a few inches between us now and I felt each one. He leaned in and whispered in my ear, “So it’s okay if I do this?”

    He kissed my earlobe, then his lips trailed down my neck, then back up to my cheek. He stopped at my lips, and I realized he was waiting for a response.

     

    Source: This review is based on a printed ARC I received from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

     

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    Book Watch: Releasing This Week #105

    Below are the YA books releasing this week that I am spotlighting for my “Book Watch: Releasing This Week” post.

    These are books for the week of January 1-January 7th that I have pre-ordered.

    05

    Altered

    ALTERED by Jennifer Rush will be released in the U.S. on January 1, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, the print edition is 336 pags.

    ALTERED is the first book in a new series of the same name by author Jennifer Rush.

    ***

    As soon as I saw this cover around the blogosphere I ran to Amazon to pre-order my copy and I’m so excited it’s downloading this week. It may seem shallow but I had instant cover love for ALTERED and bought it just because of its cover.

    Then I read the description. And it sounded even more amazing. Chilling. But amazing.

    I can’t wait to find out just how the Branch is genetically altering the boys they’re treating and to see just what secrets the Branch has been keeping from them. As this is the first book in a series, I’m sure that not every secret will be revealed.

    But I am super excited to see just how Sam and Anna escape and to find out just how they are connected. I really hope they don’t get caught, but I have the feeling that this book may end on just that cliffhanger.

    I am so excited to be able to read it and find out. I’m hopeful of sneaking it in later this week.

    Splintered

    SPLINTERED by A. G. Howard will be released in the U.S. on January 1, 2013 in hardcover and paperback formats and on January 15, 2013 in eBook format. It is currently available to pre-order in all formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Amulet Books, the print edition is 384 pages.

    ***

    I am so thrilled that SPLINTERED is releasing this week and that everyone will have the chance to read it. Because it’s seriously awesome and I want to talk to everyone about it.

    I’d seen photos of the print edition, which is stunning, so I’ll be picking up a copy at my local bookstore this week, but my Kindle copy won’t be downloading until the 15th. *Sobs.*

    As I’ve already read it and rambled about it on The Annex, and I spotlighted it for my Book Watch post a few weeks back, I won’t go on and on and on here. Though I really could.

    Because the world is amazing. It’s dark. It’s twisted. It’s familiar. The main character is interesting and likable. The story is captivating. And the two boys in Alyssa’s life are nearly impossible to choose between. Jeb is a hero and Morpheus is more the antihero. But… well… I’ll leave that for you to decide.

    Whichever “team” you choose, or if you just opt for Team Alyssa, taking the journey into A.G. Howard’s version of Wonderland is a magical and enchanting escape. I will say no more. But if you want a peek at some of Alyssa’s adventures, click the cover above to read the description on Goodreads.

    I can’t wait until I have that beautiful printed edition in hand on Tuesday.

    The Dead and Buried

    THE DEAD AND BURIED by Kim Harrington will be released in the U.S. on January 1, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Point, the print edition is 304 pages.

    ***

    I am reading THE DEAD AND BURIED right now and it’s awesome. I can’t wait until the eBook downloads so I can have it in my collection, but I’m just so happy I got the chance to read it a little bit early.

    The description calls it a thriller and I agree that it totally is. I love Jade and well… okay, I better not talk about things that are not revealed in the description. So I will just say that there is a captivating mystery, a ghost that is most definitely angry and Jade’s friends do have their share of dark secrets.

    I can’t wait to finish writing this post so that I can go back to reading – and finishing – this book. But I am so happy it’s releasing in a couple of days to that it can live in my eBook collection forever.

    The Essence

    THE ESSENCE by Kimberly Derting will be released in the U.S. on January 1, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Margaret K. McElderry Books, the print edition is 352 pages.

    THE ESSENCE is the second book in Kimberly Derting’s The Pledge series. The third book in the series, currently untitled, is due out in 2014.

    ***

    I am madly in love with both covers in this series. It’s what drew me to them in the first place, though I would have bought both because the author is Kimberly Derting. And while I haven’t yet had the chance to read THE PLEDGE, I have THE ESSENCE pre-ordered and will be reading both books for my TBR challenge this year. Because I want to be all caught up before book three is out in 2014.

    I almost read the description, but after the quote which mentions “[d]anger, dread, mystery, and romance” in this sequel, the words “[a]t the luminous conclusion” stopped me in my tracks. Because I don’t want to be spoiled since I will be reading both books soon.

    I want to meet Charlaina and find out exactly what happens without knowing in advance what has. I want to learn what happens between Charlie and Max and find out whether Charlie is really the key to her country’s freedom. I don’t want to discover how it all concludes until I read it.

    But I am excited that this next book is releasing this week and I hope to read both books in March.

    Falling for You

    FALLING FOR YOU by Lisa Schroeder will be released in the U.S. on January 1, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Simon Pulse, the print edition is 368 pages.

    ***

    I have yet to read a book by Lisa Schroeder but I own two of her titles. And on January 1st I’ll own three. But I really, really want to read this one. Which sounds like it will be a total tear-jerker.

    My heart is already breaking a little bit for Rae, who just wants to find someone nice to counter her not-at-all nice stepfather. And instead she gets an overly jealous and possessive boyfriend who ends up making her fearful.

    I am hopeful she’ll have the strength to fight when her life is on the line. And I hope the tragedy that lands her in the hospital is not one brought about by her stepfather or Nathan. But I have a feeling it is.

    I definitely plan on reading this book this year. And hopefully I can squeeze it in later this winter. Because it sounds amazing.

    Teeth cover

    TEETH by Hannah Moskowitz will be released in the U.S. on January 1, 2013 in hardcover, paperback and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in all formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Simon Pulse, the print edition is 288 pages.

    ***

    I am so intrigued by this book. I have no idea what TEETH is about but I just had to pre-order it to find out. The description mentions it’s a “gritty, romantic modern fairy tale” but I’m super curious as to just what tale it is.

    I have not listened to any chatter around the blogosphere because I don’t want to know. I love the idea of reading a story completely unaware of just what it’s about. I have no idea if Teeth is a boy or a girl. If Teeth is human. Or just what “terrible” and “violent” secrets Teeth has.

    The cover has me even more intrigued. Is it rope? Is it snakeskin? I don’t know. But I cannot wait to find out. And no, I don’t want to know until I read it. So I’m going to have to keep my head buried in the sand, avoid all Tweets from the author and squint my eyes if I see a review pop up.

    So I better read this soon. Because going in blind is half the fun.

    Other Books of Note

    Love Is All You Need

    LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED by Deb Caletti

    Pub. Date: January 1, 2013

    Publisher: Simon Pulse

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Prophecy

    PROPHECY (The Dragon King Chronicles #1) by Ellen Oh

    Pub. Date: January 2, 2013

    Publisher: HarperTeen

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Empty

    EMPTY by K.M. WALTON

    Pub. Date: January 1, 2013

    Publisher: Simon Pulse

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Victoria Rebels

    VICTORIA REBELS by Carolyn Meyer

    Pub. Date: January 1, 2013

    Publisher: Simon & Schuster

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Ali's Pretty Little Lies

    ALI’S PRETTY LITTLE LIES (Pretty Little Liars) by Sara Shepard

    Pub. Date: January 2, 2013

    Publisher: HarperTeen

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    02

    There are so many amazing books releasing this week. It is the PERFECT start to the New Year! I am totally stoked to finally be able to read ALTERED. I think I’m the ONLY person who doesn’t have an early copy. As I have a giftcard for Barnes & Noble I may even buy a print copy just so I can see that cover in print. Because it’s wicked cool.

    And SPLINTERED. Ahhh, that book is gorgeous. I want to read the finished version before I post my review in case there are any differences from the ARC. So I’m thinking I’ll be standing in line at the Barnes & Noble on New Year’s Day waiting for it to open so I can grab my copy. Okay… well… maybe I won’t be awake that early. But if they don’t open until 11:00 a.m. I am so there.

    I don’t think I’m going to be able to wait very long to check out TEETH either. Because I’m so curious about that book. Whoever wrote up that description knows exactly how to tease a book. I am most definitely teased.

    But I’m also super excited about all the rest of the releases I have pre-ordered and I may end up taking a peek at a few of the books I’ve listed as “of note,” especially EMPTY. Because I love, love, love that cover and title.

    For now, though, I’m headed back in to THE DEAD AND BURIED, which may just be my final read of 2012. Unless I end up devouring SPELLCASTER later tonight and tomorrow. That, of course, remains to be determined.

    Anyway…

    I hope there are a few titles that you’ve been pining for releasing this week to help start off your New Year with a smile. And if there are any titles I should be ashamed for not knowing about, let me know in the comments.

    Happy Reading, Happy Book Buying and almost Happy New Year!

    As always, I would love to hear what you’re hoping to add to your collection this week!

    And if you have any great suggestions of “must read” books to buy that are releasing this week, please let me know!

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    My Reading Pile #92

    I was so excited that the review book I was waiting for arrived this week. And I got another book I’d requested plus a surprise ARC. So I’m totally happy with my mailman. Even though he is way overburdened with parcels already. Poor dude.

    I have not yet received my goodies for the EPIC Newbie event but I’m sure they’ll show up early next week. And I can’t wait. Because I am almost done with my ANGELFIRE Read-Along and I can’t wait to read another series back-to-back-to-back.

    My Reading Pile 92

    [Credit for mailbox sharing goes to The Story Siren]

    I am on the tour for THE DEAD AND BURIED in January and so I was totally thrilled to get the printed ARC from Scholastic this week. As it will be releasing early next year I definitely plan on devouring this book immediately. Plus it looks ahhh-mazing so I can’t wait to read it.

    I also got the most awesome package from HarperTeen this week with the book I just had to break my request ban with and that was SPELLCASTER by Claudia Gray. And there was just a little something extra in the envelope – Patrick Carman’s PULSE, which has the most gorgeous cover.

    While I won’t be reading either of my two new HarperTeen books this week, there is an awesome book from that publisher that I will be reading this week, along with the other book I received in the mail. And so….

    Here are the books I have in my reading pile this week.
    (December 16 – December 22, 2012)

    The Dead and Buried

    First up on the pile is THE DEAD AND BURIED by Kim Harrington. I received the ARC this week from Scholastic for the book tour I’m on in early January. And while my stop isn’t a review stop, I’ve been pining for this book for ages and ages, so of course I have to read it now.

    I loved the author’s CLARITY series and I can’t wait to read this story about “a haunted house, a buried mystery, and a very angry ghost.” I am so excited to finally be meeting Jade this week and this boy with the “dreamy blue eyes.”

    But I’m even more excited to meet this this ghost who’s seeking answers and vengeance.

    I love the way this author crafts her mystery stories. I am always hugely successful at guessing whodunit… well, I was until I read CLARITY and was totally clueless. So I can’t wait to be kept in the dark without the first clue while I read THE DEAD AND BURIED. Because I love a good mystery and I just know this author will keep me on my toes.

    ***

    Shadows in the Silence

    Next up on the pile is SHADOWS IN THE SILENCE by Courtney Allison Moulton. I received an ARC from a trade awhile back and as I’ve managed to get way too far ahead on the read-along, I can’t possibly stop now. Even with a stack of review books screaming at me.

    Because I forgot just how torturous that ending was in WotW. And now that I have SHADOWS IN THE SILENCE I can’t make myself wait for one more second to see how things end.

    Even though I hate to say goodbye to series. Even though this one will be especially hard for me to let go of. But I must know what happens with Ellie and Will. I must find out whether Cadan makes it to the end.

    I’m terrified of just what might happen to Ellie in this book, but I’m equally upset about what might become of Will.

    And while this is listed as the second book on the pile this week, I will be reading it first…. I’ve actually started it and there’s no way I’ll be able to set it aside until it’s done.

    ***

    Wishful Thinking reads:

    The urge has not gone away. I really, really, really want to re-read SILVER by Talia Vance. After having read GOLD just a couple of weeks ago, I’m more desperate than ever to re-read SILVER and see if the warning signs were there. And no, I won’t say what those warning signs are.

    But I’d also love, love, love to be able add FORETOLD by Jana Oliver to the pile this week. I actually started reading the beginning, just out of curiosity, and I practically sobbed when I had to set it down so I could read the books I needed to be reading.

    ***

    Those left behind:

    I have not yet finished reading INDIGO AWAKENING but I did start reading it. And I hope to finish it early this week before I am slated to pick up THE  DEAD AND BURIED.

    I did end up absolutely devouring WINGS OF THE WICKED. And it was even better on the re-read than it was on the first read. So, as you might imagine, I’m dying to finish that series before I embark upon a new one.

    I did read, for Monday’s tour stop, the first episode in A.R. Kahler’s THE IMMORTAL CIRCUS. And while I will refrain from saying too much for fear of revealing my entire short review a couple of days early, I will just say that I’m DYING for the next episode.

    I did manage to finally finish my review for BITING COLD by Chloe Neill this week. And while this particular blog was review-free, not all my blogs were. So that, to me, is a win.

    Now I just need to finish SHADOWS IN THE SILENCE and write my review before nerves get the best of me. And I think that I can make it happen really, really soon. But that all depends upon just how much the ending to the series kills me. And I have a feeling it’s definitely going to kill me. So we shall see.

    Anyway, I hope to get back to OPAL and CARRIER OF THE MARK this week, but with so much going on these days, it may have to be just after the holiday season.

    ***

    NetGalley Pile Adds:

    I checked out NetGalley this week and noticed from Penguin Australia that NAMELESS by Lili St. Crow was being offered. Of course I hadn’t seen the publisher name before I clicked the request button. But yes, it is reserved for Australian bloggers. So if that’s you, this looks like a MUST request!

    GOING VINTAGE by Lindsay Leavitt is now available and it looks super cute! Though I didn’t request it for myself.

    And neither did I request Heather Anastasiu’s sequel, OVERRIDE, which is also now available for request. So those who have read GLITCH, I think it’s a must check out!

    Karen Mahoney’s THE STONE DEMON is another title that looks super cool – I’m fighting the urge to request it right now – as does CRIMSON FROST by Jennifer Estep. And for those in the UK, Maureen Johnson’s THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH is available.

    Rachel Hawkins’ next book, SCHOOL SPIRITS, is available for those who have pre-approval status from Disney before the “no bloggers” rule.

    And just a few other titles that look awesome are Alyxandra Harvey’s BLOOD PROPHECY, Maureen Johnson’s THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH, Rebecca Lim’s EXILE (a Disney title),

    I may have gone a little request crazy, but I didn’t request all the books I named above, so that has to be a good thing. But I’m not sure just how often I’ll be doing a search through NetGalley. I think not every week going forward or I could potentially grow my TBR pile in ways I really don’t want to.

    I have been having the hardest time trying to blog this week because I haven’t wanted to tear myself away from the books I’ve been reading. I’m also still plugging away at my NaNoWriMo WIP which is now close to 93,000 words.

    And I seem to be continuing to run into that small problem where I fall asleep really, really early. And even though I’ve been waking up and blogging through the night, I never seem to find enough time to do what I need to do.

    But I’m trying to find that balance. Especially with all these year-end posts coming up and the extraordinary number of tours I managed to book myself on in January. As always, I’m ever hopeful.

    Of course I’d love to know what you’ll be reading this week. Or if you got something for your book collection that’s to die for. Feel free to leave a link to your post so that I can check it out!

    ***

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    If so, what’s in your pile this week?

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    Review: Perception

    Perception by Kim Harrington will be released in the U.S. on March 1, 2012 in hardcover format. It is currently available to pre-order online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

    Published by Point, an imprint of Scholastic, the print edition is 288 pages.

    Perception is the sequel to Clarity by author Kim Harrington.

    ***

    Goodreads description:

    When you can see things others can’t, what do you do when someone’s watching you?

    Everybody knows about Clarity “Clare” Fern. She’s the psychic girl in school, the one who can place her hands on something and see hidden visions from the past.

    Only Clare would rather not be a celebrity. She prefers hanging back, observing. Her gift is not a game to her.

    But then someone starts playing with her head . . . and heart. Messages and gifts from a secret admirer crop up everywhere Clare turns. Could they be from Gabriel, the gorgeous boy who gets Clare’s pulse racing? Or from Justin, Clare’s hopeful ex-boyfriend who’d do anything to win her back?

    One thing is certain. Clare needs to solve this mystery, and soon. Because the messages are becoming sinister, and a girl in town has suddenly disappeared.

    ***

    Things have finally started to quiet down for Clarity Fern after the events that took place over the summer landed her in the spotlight. While she was happy not to be called the town “freak” anymore, by almost everyone, she preferred not to be the center of attention.

    But not everything has returned to normal. Brooke and Kendra, two of the Barbie Brigade that used to torment her, now treat her like she’s their new best friend. Her brother Perry is no longer the outgoing, social, flirty and fun older brother he used to be. And it seems she has a secret admirer.

    When notes and flowers begin to show up at school and at home, Clare is flattered. Since she hasn’t been able to choose between Justin, her ex, and Gabriel, a very tempting possibility, she assumes it’s one of them.

    But she starts to grow concerned when it feels as if she’s being watched and followed. Even though she thinks she’s probably imagining things, she isn’t so quick to disregard what she’s feeling, because as a psychic her intuition is almost never wrong.

    Someone is behind all of it. She just has to find out who. And if that wasn’t enough of a mystery for her to solve, it appears that a girl has gone missing. Someone she may be able to help find using her abilities.

    Things don’t seem to stay quiet in Eastport for long. And Clare just can’t stay out of danger. At least she can count on Tiffany to be her same cruel, tormenting, back-stabbing and completely normal self.

    ***

    Perception is an immensely entertaining story, a captivating mystery and a thoroughly enjoyable one-sit-read. This incredibly fast-paced sequel, with characters that are exciting and either lovable, detestable or somewhere in between, is utterly engaging and has such an easy flow.

    The story returns readers to Eastport and picks up shortly after the events in Clarity ended. Clarity “Clare” Fern has started her Junior year in high school and is attempting to once again fade into the background. But not everyone is willing to let that happen.

    With a secret admirer who may be more stalker than admirer and a missing girl who may have simply just run away or could already be dead, Clare has two pretty big mysteries to solve. All the while still trying to decide whether to forgive Justin or to take a chance on Gabriel.

    As the mystery deepens and the danger to Clare becomes more real, she’ll have to rely on more than just her psychic abilities to find answers and she’ll have to put her trust in someone. She just hopes it’s the right someone.

    Author Kim Harrington has followed up her debut novel with a sequel that is just as charming, just as exciting and just as suspenseful. Her main character, Clare Fern is every bit as strong as she was, perhaps even stronger because of all she’s been through, and if possible, even more likable.

    She is smart, kind and compassionate. And it is her interest in solving the mystery and her willingness to help, even when helping could put her at risk, that make her such an endearing character.

    While some of the other characters from the first book aren’t as prominent in this second book in the series, new characters are added to the mix that are just as engaging, intriguing or suspicion-inducing, giving readers more characters to question, doubt and mistrust, and giving this series room to grow.

    As the story progresses, the pace escalates and the tension continues to build, all leading up to a dramatic finish in which all is revealed.

    Perception is an absolutely delightful story and a must read for those looking for a quick and fun mystery with a paranormal twist, an abundance of enticing characters and an ending that won’t leave off at the edge of a cliff.

    Reviewer gives this book…

    On a personal note:

    I absolutely love this sequel. I loved Clarity and I love Perception just as much. It was such an adorable, fun and super quick read. Just as I knew it would be. I really hope there is a third book planned in this series because I already miss Clare, Gabriel, Perry, Starla and even Justin.

    For the record, I do not miss Tiffany.

    Clare Fern is an easy to love heroine – one of my favorites. She’s sweet, clever, caring and understanding. But she’s not a total pushover. And she has this awesome ability – retrocognitive psychometry – which she wants to use to help others rather than as some party trick or way to make money.

    I loved getting back into the world, seeing my favorite characters again, meeting new ones and being challenged to solve the mysteries. While I had that “aha” moment and was able to figure out whodunit right away, I was still captivated by the story and it was totally fun to see Clare try to puzzle things out.

    Once again the author did an amazing job making almost all the characters seem suspicious. And while one stood out to me, I could just as easily have been wrong, like I was when I read Clarity. And before I end up letting something slip, I’ll stop talking about the mystery.

    But for the same reason, it’s also impossible to talk about the characters without giving something away. Any of them. Old or new. There were a few new and interesting characters in this series, but I can’t say whether I liked them or not without spoiling the mystery. And I can’t say whether or not I was happy to see certain old characters again, because that would be spoiler-y, too.

    Though, I suppose I can say that there were characters I loved, characters I wanted to love, characters who gave me the heebie-jeebies, characters I really hoped weren’t guilty and characters I really hoped were.

    And I can’t not talk about the love triangle. I absolutely love the love triangle in this book. While it wasn’t the main focus of the story, it was always there in the background. Neither boy was an obvious choice. And Clare’s decision wasn’t a guaranteed one. Which made me very, very nervous.

    While I had my favorite, I had no idea if he would be Clare’s pick or even if she’d choose either boy. This was one mystery that kept me in the dark for the entire book. And I mean the entire book. No early answers to that question.

    As with the first book, the mysteries were solved and everything was wrapped up pretty nicely in the end. I am just keeping fingers and toes crossed that there will be many more books to come in this series. I would be totally happy to devour them all.

    ***

    I had a couple of passages I loved, but only one favorite:

    Gabriel studied me for a moment. “You don’t realize it, do you?”

    I blinked, twice. “Realize what?”

    “What makes you different makes you beautiful.”

    My breath caught in my throat.

    Book trailer for the Clarity novels:

    This review is based on an ARC I received from the publisher, Scholastic, in exchange for my honest opinion.

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    My Reading Pile #48

    I actually didn’t expect a single book in the mail this week. While I did trade with someone when I really shouldn’t have, I was not expecting those books this week. But two books that were completely unexpected did show up, so I’m totally thrilled.

    It also gives me the chance to share a few books I received last week that I mentioned on the Annex, but forgot to post here.

    As I am sharing what I received in my mailbox this week, I’m giving credit to Kristi at The Story Siren who came up with the idea of sharing what’s in her mailbox each week.

    At the top of the pile is Perception by Kim Harrington. I received an ARC for review from the publisher, Scholastic, and it arrived just a couple of days ago. Barely. It seems UPS destroyed its original packaging, stepped on and beat up the internal envelope – which fortunately had an address on it – repackaged it and sent it out from a completely different location. While the book is slightly worse for the wear, it is still readable and I plan on reading it this week.

    The other four books in the pile are all signed books from an event that Mindy of Magical Urban Fantasy Reads and Jaime of Two Chicks On Books attended. Mindy asked me if I’d like a signed copy of Cinder since she knew how much I loved the book. Then she asked me if I’d like a copy of Shatter Me. Heck yes! And when Jaime tweeted from the event asking if I wanted a couple more signed books, I just about passed out. Of course I did!

    Well, within a few days these four amazing books showed up, all signed to me thanks to those two amazing bloggers.

    I also received the most amazing and stunningly beautiful package from author Mary Lindsey. She had stopped by the blog last year as part of her tour for Shattered Souls and offered to send me a signed bookmark.

    When she mentioned to me she was also sending me a signed book, I was ecstatic. Because I love this book. Lenzi is one of my favorite heroines. She is totally sarcastic and the number of times she made me LOL was seriously embarrassing. So, getting a personally signed copy of the book, plus all this gorgeous swag, is a dream come true.

    I may even share some of the swag…. Maybe…

    Anyway, on to the pile…

    Here are the books I have in my reading pile this week.

    (February 12 -February 18, 2012)

    ***

    First up is Perception by Kim Harrington. I requested a copy for review from the publisher, Scholastic, and it arrived in this week’s mailbox. As release date is right around the corner, and because I just can’t wait, Perception is on top of the pile this week.

    I am seriously excited to find out who Clare’s secret admirer is. I suspect it might not be either Gabriel or Justin. I suspect it might be something a bit more malevolent, from someone a bit less of an admirer. Especially since the description hints at a missing girl.

    But I just don’t know. I was totally tripped up by the mystery in the first book, Clarity, so I am hopeful that I’ll remain in the dark about this mystery, too.

    I’m so glad to have gotten the opportunity to read Perception early and I can’t wait to do so this week.

    Next up on the pile is Pure by Jennifer L. Armentrout. I received an ARC on loan from Patricia of Two Chicks On Books and I’ve been dying to read it ever since it arrived.

    Everyone has been telling me how amazing this sequel is. And I just know it is even more amazing than they’ve admitted. I loved Daimon and I loved Half-Blood. I loved both books even before I got my hands on them. I just knew they would be “me” books and they were.

    I am dying to find out where things are headed for Alex… and Aiden. I still don’t trust Seth, but I can’t wait to learn more about him in this sequel. Perhaps I might have a different opinion of him when I’m done. We’ll see….

    From the description, this sequel sounds even more action-packed and awesome. Daimons attacking students at the Covenants does not sound good. But what sounds even worse is the “mysterious threat” that might end up killing Alex. I’m nervous already. And I really can’t wait to start reading Pure.

    Wishful Thinking reads:

    I have been forcing myself to stay away from Until I Die. It has not been easy. While I have quite a few wishful thinking reads, it is definitely at the top of my list, and the book I have been wishing I could be reading this week.

    I miss Vincent and Kate and Jules. I miss the Revenants. I want to see what’s going to happen to them in this next book in the series. I want to learn more about their history. And I hope that things don’t end too badly for them. Especially if I do read it early and have that much longer of a wait until the next book in the series.

    Those left behind:

    I am still seriously behind on reviews. But as far as last week’s reads, I am reading My Soul to Take right now and will be done, easily, before I start on my reading pile for the week on Sunday. So, nothing was technically left behind from last week except for the reviews.

    I have one other book to catch up on from the week before and have four reviews to complete, but as far as reads go, I’m not doing too bad.

    NetGalley Pile Adds:

    I requested Of Poseidon from NetGalley, though I haven’t heard back. I had an ARC but I gave it away to a blogger friend before I had a chance to read it, so I’m hoping to get approved. Definitely keeping fingers and toes crossed for this one.

    I have still not been approved for Endure. I really don’t think I can endure the wait until its release, but I guess I’ll have to. I can’t wait to get back into the Need series. I may just have to re-read it to tide me over until Endure’s release. It would definitely be worth it.

    ***

    This week has been another tough one trying to balance real life and blogging life. Work has been killer, so I’m starting to lose my lead again with my 2012 reads. But I’m also distracted from my reading with some design work I’m having done for the various blogs. Hopefully that will all be done soon and I can get back to the books with gusto.

    I am unbelievably grateful that next weekend is a holiday weekend. I’m hopeful I’ll be able to do some catching up then. Especially on those tardy reviews. But what about you?

    ***

    Do you create a reading pile?

    If so, what’s in your pile this week?

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    Review: Clarity

    Clarity is author Kim Harrington’s debut young adult novel. It was released in the U.S. on March 1, 2011 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is available online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble in both formats.

    Published by Point (Scholastic) the print edition is 256 pages.

    Clarity is one of the books that can be chosen for the 2011 Debut Author Challenge hosted by Kristi at TheStorySiren.com and is one of my original twelve picks.

    Goodreads description:

    When you can see things others can’t, where do you look for the truth?

    This paranormal murder mystery will have teens reading on the edge of their seats.

    Clarity “Clare” Fern sees things. Things no one else can see. Things like stolen kisses and long-buried secrets. All she has to do is touch a certain object, and the visions come to her. It’s a gift.

    And a curse.

    When a teenage girl is found murdered, Clare’s ex-boyfriend wants her to help solve the case–but Clare is still furious at the cheating jerk. Then Clare’s brother–who has supernatural gifts of his own–becomes the prime suspect, and Clare can no longer look away. Teaming up with Gabriel, the smoldering son of the new detective, Clare must venture into the depths of fear, revenge, and lust in order to track the killer. But will her sight fail her just when she needs it most?

    ***

    It’s doubtful the summer could get much worse for Clarity Fern. Her boyfriend Justin, the boy she loved and the only friend she had aside from her brother and his friend Nate, betrayed her by cheating on her with the skanky Tiffany. One drunken moment and everything they had together was shattered.

    Now she would have to spend the summer alone, fending off the teasing and taunts by herself. No one wanted to befriend the town freak. It’s not that everyone didn’t believe she had psychic abilities, it’s just that those who did, didn’t want anything to do with her. Justin was the only one who did.

    And though she came from a family of psychics, her brother Perry did not have the same problems she did. Because of his looks, girls were willing to overlook almost anything. And it’s not like she’s ugly. She’s seen the way guys look at her. But having retrocognitive psychometry, or visions from touch, would creep anyone out. Just one touch could bring on a vision. It’s how she found out about Justin and Tiffany.

    But summer is the busy season for the family business and she is required to put in her time, although she’d much rather spend her days at the beach than giving psychic readings to a bunch of tourists. With a new psychic in town with a prime boardwalk location, her mom is more desperate than ever to get clients so they can make it through the slow season.

    She didn’t think it was possible, but things do get even worse. When the body of a teenage girl is found at the local motel, not only is Clare asked to assist in the investigation, but she will have to work alongside her ex. The only bright spot is Gabriel, the super sexy son of the new detective.

    With a killer on the loose, the family business in jeopardy and someone she loves a suspect in the crime, Clare finally has a reason to be thankful for her abilities, she only hopes they give her the answers she needs in time.

    ***

    Clarity is a story that is easy to fall in love with. It is a delightful, fast-paced and captivating mystery with a plot that will keep you guessing until all is revealed at the end. And one with just the perfect number of suspects to make this a real puzzle.

    Clarity “Clare” Fern is a strong, likable and believable main character. She is fiercely protective of those she cares about and is not afraid to stand up to people who try to put her down. She stays strong and true to her character, even after being betrayed by her boyfriend, and even when it means she’ll be alone.

    This is an absolutely fantastic debut novel by author Kim Harrington. Her writing feels effortless – the story just flows on the page from beginning to end. It is a mystery you will be able to just breeze through while trying to figure out whodunit and in the process fall in love with all the characters.

    This looks to be an exciting new series and is a must read for fans of mysteries, puzzles and well-written stories with a touch of the paranormal. There is a bit of a love triangle for fans who like them, and not enough of one to be a distraction for those who don’t.

    Reviewer gives this book [rating=5]

    On a personal note:

    This was such a fun and light read. That is if you can call a murder mystery light or fun. I just sailed through this story and loved every second of it.

    I did not realize this was as much of a mystery story as it was when I started reading or I would have immediately tried to guess whodunit. And I usually consider myself pretty good at figuring out who the killer is, but I found myself flipping back and forth between who and why so many times I made myself crazy.

    And I will admit it. I was not exactly right with my guess. Close, but no cigar for me!

    Author Kim Harrington was just so good at distributing suspicion evenly among all the characters. And like Clare, once all was explained all the pieces fit together and I had my “aha” and “duh” moments. This is one of maybe three mysteries I’ve read where I wasn’t right – and I’ve read a ton of Agatha Christie and Mary Higgins Clark books.

    I love Clare. She is loyal to her family but not unrealistically so. She is strong and determined and not ashamed of who she is and what she does. Her mom is a great character – the perfect hippy psychic – though definitely one I would not have wanted to be my mom. She is nosy and selfish and seems to have little disregard for what her children want. And to have named her son Periwinkle is just cruel!

    And I thought the love triangle in this was perfect. It was subtle and felt very real and unforced.

    There was a great setup for the next book with a number of questions to be answered about Clare and her family and a psychic vision about the future we’ll have to wait and see if it comes true. (Though I totally wish I didn’t have to wait.)

    Favorite quote: “I’m tired of trying to hate you.” (I can not give attribution to the quote without spoilers, so I’ll just leave it here to tease.)

    ***

    Perception the second book in the series will be released in March 2012.

    Book trailer for Clarity:

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