Friday, July 18, 2014

A new design!

I feel like I just barely switched my design around, and yet here I am doing it again! I loved my old design, but it was just that: old. I was getting bored with it, and it was kind of young and unprofessional—not that I have anything wrong with either of those every so often—and I want to (hopefully) take this blog in a new direction!

I personally am very proud of my lovely little tagline. I even considered just doing away with Debz Bookshelf in favor of And She Blogged Happily Ever After… but then I realized it would be really long.

So, what do you think? Please leave honest feedback. Love it? Hate it? I'm open to any constructive criticism you have to offer!

And yes, this does mean I'm going to start doing designs again soon!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Hello, world! I just got back from a week of church camp, and while it was fun (with a super cute theme!) I am exhausted. On top of that, my sister accidentally broke my laptop screen while I was gone (how many times is that, now?)

I will hopefully be popping in occasionally over the next little while, but I make no promises. Once I am back for sure, prepare for an overabundance of posts!

Monday, July 7, 2014

{Blog Tour} Book Review + Giveaway: Wild by Alex Mallory

wild  
Wild
 
 
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: July 8th, 2014
Genre: Contemporary YA Retelling
Source: eARC for Blog Tour
Find it: Amazon  | Goodreads

The forest is full of secrets, and no one understands that better than Cade. Foraging, hunting, surviving— that’s all he knows. Alone for years, Cade believes he’s the sole survivor. At least, until he catches a glimpse of a beautiful stranger…

Dara expected to find natural wonders when she set off for a spring break camping trip. Instead, she discovers a primitive boy— he’s stealthy and handsome and he might be following her. Intrigued, Dara seeks him out and sets a catastrophe in motion.

Thrust back into society, Cade struggles with the realization that the life he knew was a lie. But he’s not the only one. Trying to explain life in a normal town leaves Dara questioning it.

As the media swarm and the police close in, Dara and Cade risk everything to get closer. But will the truth about Cade’s past tear them apart?

Growing up, Disney's Tarzan was one of my favorite movies. Possibly because by nature, I'm very proper and reserved, and it let me discover my wild side; maybe because Jane was actually a highly intelligent and strong female lead character; or maybe Tantor was just too darn cute! For whatever reason, the mystery behind this man has always fascinated me, and Alex Mallory's Wild gives readers a fresh new look into Tarzan's tale.

The world Mallory introduces us to is a bizarre combination of the beauty and simplicity of nature, and the terror of the thought of what may lie in the unknown. Cade has grown up hiding deep in the woods, with the warning from his parents that there's nothing left beyond, that humans are contaminated. And so he hides, and takes care of himself, until he sees others.

I know that sounds sort of dystopian/apocalyptic, but through Cade's eyes, it is. Cade's perspective was so interesting. He was very intelligent and intense, yet so naive about all the things we take for granted. There was so much depth to his character that something so impossible to imagine as an uncivilized person in a hyper-civilized world still seemed believable.

Dara, though, I struggled with as a character. She was so smart, and so compassionate towards Cade, but something just didn't click with her. I think some of that may be the love-triangle she created for herself between Cade and her long-time boyfriend, Jake. I understood her struggle, but I felt bad for both of the boys while she was choosing. Still, I admired her as a character and the depth she had.

I loved Mallory's writing style, and it was evident that she had put so much research and effort into this novel. The result, Wild, is an intense and fiercely creative reimagining of Edgar Rice Burroughs' classic story that will not soon be forgotten.

GIVEAWAY TIME!

DETAILS:

A Wild Prize Pack Featuring: a signed, finished copy of WILD, a copy of Edgar Rice Burroughs' TARZAN OF THE APES, a DVD (region 1) of Greystoke: Legend of Tarzan of the Apes, bookmarks, and a stuffed plush flu microbe. (US Only)

SPECIFICS:

- US only
- Must be 13 or older to enter
- Giveaway starts July 1st to July 9th
- All entries are double-checked and false entries will be disqualified
- Winner will be notified via email and needs to answer in 48 hours letting us know if he/she accepts the prize and send us his/her full name and address.
- Your personal information won't be used or be seen unless you're the winner of the giveaway. We won't sell it nor use it in a bad way.
- Tour Hosts are not responsible for any lost or stolen items

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Alex Mallory is a pen name for YA author Saundra Mitchell. She’s a big fan of reading, history, camping and competitive M&M sorting.

She once crossed a dilapidated train trestle in the middle of the night, 200 feet above the Wabash River, in a futile attempt to prove her love to someone who had no idea she existed.

1) She lived to tell about it. 2) It didn’t work. 3) She doesn’t recommend it.

Find her here:

Website | Goodreads | Twitter

Thank you to the amazing team at FFBC for planning this tour! Follow the tour below!

FFBC FOLLOW TOUR

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Book Review: The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski

  
The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1)
 
 
Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux
Release Date: 4 March 2014
Genre: YA Fantasy
Source: ARC for Review
Find it: Amazon | Goodreads

Winning what you want may cost you everything you love

As a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions.

One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction. Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences. It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin.

But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.

Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart.

I feel like this quote from John Green's TFiOS perfectly describes my feelings towards this book: "I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once." I was just dipping my toes in, and then very slowly was pulled in until I closed the book and realized how in love I was with this book.

First off, I must talk about the world building in this story. The depth of this world is inconceivable. There was so much richness to it that it literally felt like I was walking through Valoria. It was very evident that Rutkoski was inspired by a variety of cultures (especially Roman) and she did her research, while leaving herself plenty of room for creating a highly impressive world of her own.

Kestrel was an awesome main character. She is so strong and independent, but still comes across as likeable. She challenges the expectations placed on her, with courage and confidence. In a lot of ways she seemed like she could've been an old friend with her nature.

Arin was both the complete equivalent and opposite of Kestrel. He's dark and mysterious, but inside there's so much. I almost with this book had been entirely from his perspective. The way it was written, we got to see quite a bit from him, but I think there's so much more to see from him.

The writing was spectacular. Beyond the outstanding world building, Rutkoski managed to convey emotions in such a beautiful way through her words. I could feel what Kestrel and Arin felt, and their dialogue brought the story to life with even more depth.

There are rumors that there's a trilogy in the works, and I must say I will certainly be an avid fan!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Write On Review-a-Thon {5}

Write On Review-a-Thon

 

The Write On review-a-thon is a monthly event created and hosted by Brianna at The Book Vixen. It’s 2 days dedicated to getting reviews done, whether you have one review to write or 30+. This edition of the review-a-thon takes place all day Friday, June 27th and Saturday, June 28th. Let’s get those reviews done!

I missed the last review-a-thon because life got in the way, but here I am now, ready to review my heart out! My goal is to review eight books from the dozens I have on my list of books-that-haven't-been-reviewed-for-months. I'm feeling highly motivated right now, so hopefully I can get through these quickly!

Anybody else review-a-thoning this weekend?

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