Sunday, July 20, 2014

Reading Updates for Week of July 20th-26th

Hi there guys! I wanted to add another weekly kind of post to my new blogging schedule. Last week I started my series New Book News to start about some books that I'm excited for, and now I want to start another weekly spot where I talk about my current reading process. I'm not sure exactly how much reading I can commit to getting done per week, but this way I can keep you guys updated.


City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6)

Book 1: City of Heavenly Fire (Mortal Instruments #6) by Cassandra Clare

Status: Pg 216/725

What I think so far:

So far this one has been great. I don't want to talk hardly at all about the plot though, since this is the last book in the series and I for sure don't want to spoil it for anyone who hasn't read the Mortal Instruments. I'm only about 30% done, but it has supplied enough action, romance, and suspense to keep me reading!

Book 2: To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #1)Status: Around 50% done with Audio book

What I think so far:

When going into this book, I expected a lot because I loved Jenny Han's other books (The Summer I Turned Pretty Trilogy). Though it has moved a little slow, I feel like Han really wanted us to fall in love with the characters before she got into the meat of the story. This is a contemporary novel, and I can already feel the romance starting! Who doesn't love a nice love story? Be sure to be on the lookout for my review for this one!


And there's my quick update on what I'm reading. What is on your currently reading shelf? For more updates you can find me on goodreads with the button on the right hand side or click HERE
Monday, July 14, 2014

New Book News



Here comes the first weekly New Book News for YA Books Beyond the Cover! In this series I just want to spend a few minutes highlighting some books that are coming out soon and why I'm excited for them.

First up for NBN this week:

1. More Than This by Patrick Ness

More Than This

Synopsis:

Seth drowns, desperate and alone. But then he wakes. Naked, thirsty, starving. But alive. And where is he? The street seems familiar, but everything is abandoned, overgrown, covered in dust. He remembers dying, his skull bashed against the rocks. Has he woken up in his own personal hell? Is there more to this life, or perhaps this afterlife? From the acclaimed author of the Chaos Walking trilogy and A Monster Calls comes one of the most provocative teen novels of our time.

Why I'm Excited:

After reading the summary for this, I immediately knew it would be a book that I would devour. Also, look at this little blurb from Author John Green: "Books are often described as ‘mind-blowing,’ but this is one of the few books in which, while reading it, I have exclaimed aloud, ‘Oh. My. God.’ on multiple occasions. I won’t tell you anything else about it. Just read it." — John Green That little quote by itself is enough to make me want to pick this one up. I also love how the summary doesn't give too much away. It's just enough to get you interested. I haven't read anything else by Patrick Ness, but somehow I'm getting my hands on a copy of this one.

Release Date: 7/22/14



2. OCD Love Story by Corey Ann Haydu

OCD Love Story


Synopsis:

In this “raw and well-crafted (Kirkus Reviews)” romance, Bea learns that some things just can’t be controlled.
When Bea meets Beck, she knows instantly that he’s her kind of crazy. Sweet, strong, kinda-messed-up Beck understands her like no one else can. He makes her feel almost normal. He makes her feel like she could fall in love again.
But despite her feelings for Beck, Bea can’t stop thinking about someone else: a guy who is gorgeous and magnetic…and has no idea Bea even exists. But Bea spends a lot of time watching him. She has a journal full of notes. Some might even say she’s obsessed.
Bea tells herself she’s got it all under control. But this isn’t a choice, it’s a compulsion. The truth is, she’s breaking down…and she might end up breaking her own heart.

Why I'm Excited:

I'm also on the look out for a good contemp read, and with so many coming out that seem the same, this one sounds like it has a darker vibe. Don't get me wrong, I like fluffy books just like anyone else, but every now and again it's nice to mix things up. The characters in this novel have flaws and like anyone else they have to learn to work their way through them. This read looks real, romantic, and most of all human.

Release Date: 7/22/14

3. One Past Midnight by Jessica Shirvington 

One Past MidnightSynopsis:

Sabine isn’t like anyone else. For as long as she can remember, she’s had two lives. Every twenty-four hours she ‘Shifts’, living each day twice. In one life, Sabine has everything: popular friends, expensive clothes, perfect grades, and the guy everyone wants. In the other, Sabine’s family struggles with finances, and she and her friends are considered rebels. But then she meets Ethan. He’s gorgeous, challenging, and he makes her feel like no one ever has before.
All Sabine really wants is the chance to live one life. When it seems like this might finally be possible, Sabine begins a series of dangerous experiments to achieve her goal. But is she willing to risk everything—including the one person who might actually believe her?

Why I'm Excited:

I haven't read very much fantasy/paranormal in awhile, this this one just seems like the kind of book to get me back into the mood for reading them. A hot guy, a cool idea, and an epic story? What's more to want. If you ever wondered what it would be like to live two lives, this ones for you.

Release Date: 7/22/14


Wrap-Up

So that's it for my first New Book News! I'm not sure if anyone else calls their weekly new release list this, so feel free to tell me if the name is already taken. What books are you excited for this week? What do you think of my picks? Let me know in the comments. 
Monday, July 7, 2014

Life Updates, Why I Took a Break, and Coming Back

I realize in the past two years that this blog hasn't been on the top on my priority list and that fact is just sad. Of course high school is busy, but this blog brings me so much joy, and I shouldn't have let life get in the way of doing something that I love. Well, with high school behind me, I'm happy to start updating the blog again.

I'm happy to report I'll be headed off to University in the coming fall as an English major at Oregon State University. I may even begin doing a series where I talk about my different required readings at college and maybe even a classics series! I just feel like there are so many classics out there that I should have already read and haven't.

Though I haven't read much lately, I've started a few books and even started listening to an audiobook, so hopefully I can begin sharing with you guys about what I'm reading and what I think.

I know this isn't the first time I've claimed I'm "coming back", but hopefully I can prove to myself and you guys that this time is different. :)
Sunday, March 16, 2014

Review of The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

Title: The Distance Between Us
Author: Kasie West
Release Date: July 2nd, 2013
Publisher: Harper Teen
Format: Ebook
Source: Library
Pages In This Edition: 320
Rating: 4/5 Stars


On the Cover:
The Distance Between Us

Beyond the Cover:

Summary from Goodreads:
"Seventeen-year-old Caymen Meyers studies the rich like her own personal science experiment, and after years of observation she’s pretty sure they’re only good for one thing—spending money on useless stuff, like the porcelain dolls in her mother’s shop.

So when Xander Spence walks into the store to pick up a doll for his grandmother, it only takes one glance for Caymen to figure out he’s oozing rich. Despite his charming ways and that he’s one of the first people who actually gets her, she’s smart enough to know his interest won’t last. Because if there’s one thing she’s learned from her mother’s warnings, it’s that the rich have a short attention span. But Xander keeps coming around, despite her best efforts to scare him off. And much to her dismay, she's beginning to enjoy his company.

She knows her mom can’t find out—she wouldn’t approve. She’d much rather Caymen hang out with the local rocker who hasn’t been raised by money. But just when Xander’s attention and loyalty are about to convince Caymen that being rich isn’t a character flaw, she finds out that money is a much bigger part of their relationship than she’d ever realized. And that Xander’s not the only one she should’ve been worried about."

Review:

I was browsing my library ebook selection when I stumbled across this cute cover and thought that this book would be the perfect distraction from everyday stress. I was right. This book is super cute and I loved pretty much the whole thing. Don't get me wrong, this book isn't life changing or anything, but it is a great story with characters you can't help but care at least a little about.

The only slight character issue I had was how Caymen sometimes was just a little too oblivious to things going on around her. There were times in this that I just wanted to shake her and be like "no please don't think that about him!". I personally didn't mind all that much because I could tell her actions were just driving the plot, but if you want a really realistic story then this one may not be for you. This book is more like a romantic comedy in book form, complete with dry sarcasm (which I happen to love). 

If you want a quick light read I would definitely say to give this one a try. I haven't read anything else by Kasie West but after this I feel like I need to try her other books. Have you read anything by Kasie West?
Saturday, March 8, 2014

Follow on BlogLovin!

Hey guys, I'm now on Bloglovin! Feel free to follow me. :)
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Saturday, February 8, 2014

January Wrap-Up

I only set one solid reading goal for this year: read thirty books. I know compared to some people that's a very small goal, but with all the senior year stuff I've been dealing with, I'll be happy if I can make it. Anyway, here's a list of the books I managed to read this month, and a link to the one review I did.

1. Manicpixiedreamgirl by Tom Leveen


Manicpixiedreamgirl by Tom Leveen

This one was okay, but I'm actually interested in reading Tom Leeven's other book Party; I've heard a lot of good things about it, but just haven't gotten the chance to read it. Manicpixiedreamgirl isn't bad, it's just very predictable. So if you're looking for a quick and somewhat entertaining novel you should pick it up.


2. Hidden (A Child's Story of the Holocaust) by by 

Check out my review HERE

Hidden: A Child's Story of the Holocaust

Hidden is a graphic novel that definitely deals with subject matter that often isn't used in a graphic novel. If you want to know more please check out my review. :)

3. Skinny by Ibi Kaslik


Skinny

I often find myself, for whatever reason, attracted to books about eating disorders. I think it's just so hard for me to relate to taking such dangerous and extreme measures and not realizing how deadly they can be. People with these disorders often become sucked into their mental illness and find it almost impossible to get out. Skinny is beautifully written and though the "plot" sometimes was a little slow, this book isn't really about the plot. It's about people and their relationships and how anorexia can destroy everything.

Question: What did you read last month? What are you planning to read this month? Feel free to link your post or tell me in the comments. :)
Monday, January 27, 2014

Review of Hidden by Loïc Dauvillier, Marc Lizano (Illustrations), Greg Salsedo (Ink), Alexis Siegel (Translator)

Title: Hidden
Author: Loïc Dauvillier, Marc Lizano (Illustrations), Greg Salsedo (Ink), Alexis Siegel (Translator)
Release Date: April 1st, 2014
Publisher: Firs tSecond 
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Pages In This Edition: 80
Rating: 4/5 Stars

On the Cover:

Hidden: A Child's Story of the Holocaust

Beyond the Cover:

Synopsis:
"In this gentle, poetic young graphic novel, Dounia, a grandmother, tells her granddaughter the story even her son has never heard: how, as a young Jewish girl in Paris, she was hidden away from the Nazis by a series of neighbors and friends who risked their lives to keep her alive when her parents had been taken to concentration camps."

Review:

This quick graphic novel is definitely something that shouldn't be read lightly. I've always found myself drawn to readings of stories from the Holocaust for some reason, and I was curious as to how this story could be told in graphic novel form, especially from the eyes of a child. The book was very brief but it did a good job at telling a sad story with little hope from the perspective of an old person looking back but also from the eyes of a child.

The illustrative style had a big impact as well. I enjoyed the art and found myself studying pages for longer than needed to see the small details of the artwork on each page. There was also a little french that I was happy to see that I could understand (I've taken just a little bit of french.)

Overall there isn't much to say about this graphic novel other than it did a good job of telling a story in a beautiful way, which should be the main goal of any graphic novel.

Question: Who else is interested in Holocaust lit? Does anyone have some amazing books to suggest that deal with this tough subject matter?

About Me

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Hi my name is Alexis and I'm so excited to be heading to Oregon State University in the fall. I will be majoring in English and hope to become an editor or technical writer in my future.

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With Beyond the Cover, I want to help people interested in YA with a resource to refer to. This blog will be composed of reviews as well as other book related subjects.



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