Sunday, October 30, 2011

A Request For Help

This story broke my heart.  I was literally in tears. Ask my husband.  I decided to re-post this on Starcrossed so that as many people can hear about it as possible.  Please help if you can.



COPIED DIRECTLY FROM BOOK LOVER'S PARADISE



A struggling mother reached out to us via I Love Books; this was what she wrote.


I have a 12 year old son that has a disability that loves to read and lost almost all of his books due to hurricane Irene. I have tried everywhere to get him some more, done dumpster driving, recycling but due to my cancer and recent surgery I am not able to do this for him now. Any resources would be great. I have signes up for every possible help and hove gotten none as of yet.  ~ Nora 


We will be donating books to her son, Christopher and sending them out the second week of November. Some of the books that he loves: 
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
Goosebumps by R.L. Stine
Middle Grade/ Science Fiction
If you would like to help, please contact us via email ljldml@gmail.com and we will fill you in on the details.


So many people were hit hard by Hurricane Irene, and it's sad to hear that a boy who loves to read has lost all his books. Thanks to all who lend a helping hand.


Christopher with his two brothers.  Christopher is in the middle.

Thank you for any help you can provide.

In My Mailbox


In My Mailbox was created by The Story Siren and inspired by Alea of Pop Culture Junkie.


WON:
Redwall by Brian Jacques
School of Fear by Gitty Daneshvari (signed)


FOR REVIEW:
Fading Into Magic (Fading Into Magic, #1)
Fading Into Magic by Vone Savan (signed)


GIFTED:
Kill the Messenger
Kill The Messenger by Tami Hoag (from Diane, Jess' fiance's mom)


BORROWED:
A Child Called "It" (Dave Pelzer, #1)
A Child Called "It" by Dave Pelzer (from Diane, Jess' fiance's mom)


WEEKLY RE-CAP

Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Friday

Saturday


Saturday, October 29, 2011

Review - The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer


THE UNBECOMING OF MARA DYER by MICHELLE HODKIN
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer
Learn more about The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer at michellehodkin.com

SUMMARY:
Mara Dyer doesn't think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
It can.
She believes there must be more to the accident she can't remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.
There is.
She doesn't believe that after everything she's been through, she can fall in love.
She's wrong.


REVIEWS:
I won this book in a giveaway.

This was one of those book that caught my attention as soon as I saw it being reviewed on another blog.  It was the cover that initially caught my interest at first.  It's a very beautiful, haunting cover that draws you in and makes you wonder what the couple's story is.  Also, I should mention that the new paper that Simon & Schuster uses for the jacket feels so awesome.  If you've felt the cover of Wildefire by Karsten Knight, then you know what I'm talking about.  Same kind of paper.  Feels like heaven on your fingertips.

The book itself was absolutely amazing.  I couldn't get enough of it and I finished it quicker than I normally do when I read a book.  It was haunting and drew you in like crazy.  There were twists and turns and you never really knew what was going on.  But in a good way that makes you want to read more and figure out what the heck is happening to Mara, and then later, what the deal is with Noah.

Mara Dyer's story is creepy and, if these things were to happen to me, I would probably go insane.  I highly recommend this book to anyone that is a fan of dark YA.

I'm forcing my husband to read it after he finishes his current book, and you should too.

MEMORABLE QUOTES:

RATING:
5 MOONS.
ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT!
This book was received for free from Simon &Schuster's Pulse It.

*This review contains spoilers*

What I liked most about this book was the fact that even though it was written for teenagers, the vocabulary was not dumbed down. It was excellently written and it had  a plot line that was not the same as most teen books. Yes there was the average drama of high school romance but it had a twist with it.
 
I was not expecting it to turn out the way it did. For every mystery/thriller book I have read the characteristics' Mara displayed were often  ones that when the curtain was revealed, it was her doing the killing or hurting people under the guise of her mind giving her freaky powers.
 
I am still very curious as to how she got those power's though. I know even in the book both her and the other character Noah have those unique abilities and neither know why.  There are no hints, they just are there. Keeping the reader on the edge of their seat as they hurriedly turn page after page in an attempt to unravel this mystery.
 
It had an awesome ending. One I applaud the writer for because that was like a soccer punch to the face, you did not see it coming but man it left an impact.
 
I am very glad that I chose to read the book and it is on my to buy list now, as well as one I shall be recommending to one of every age.

MEMORABLE QUOTES:

RATING:
FIVE MOONS.
ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT!

On My Wishlist


On My Wishlist is a weekly meme hosted by Book Chick City.  Every week we'll introduce you to books that currently reside on our wishlists.  You can find our complete lists here.

Please tell us what you think about the books we've posted and if you have read them.
HEREAFTER by TARA HUDSON
Hereafter (Hereafter, #1)
Can there truly be love after death?
Drifting in the dark waters of a mysterious river, the only thing Amelia knows for sure is that she's dead. With no recollection of her past life—or her actual death—she's trapped alone in a nightmarish existence. All of this changes when she tries to rescue a boy, Joshua, from drowning in her river. As a ghost, she can do nothing but will him to live. Yet in an unforgettable moment of connection, she helps him survive.
Amelia and Joshua grow ever closer as they begin to uncover the strange circumstances of her death and the secrets of the dark river that held her captive for so long. But even while they struggle to keep their bond hidden from the living world, a frightening spirit named Eli is doing everything in his power to destroy their newfound happiness and drag Amelia back into the ghost world . . . forever.
Thrilling and evocative, with moments of pure pleasure, Hereafter is a sensation you won't want to miss.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Review - Destined

DESTINED by ALLISON KRAFT
Destined
Learn more about Destined at allisonkraft.com
This book was provided for free by the author for review.

SUMMARY:
While flying across the Atlantic on the centennial anniversary of the Titanic's tragic maiden voyage, Apolline Greer, last in a long line of vampire hunters, finds herself suddenly transported from her airliner cabin to an eerily familiar ocean liner cabin—as well as the entirely unfamiliar body of her ancestor, Noelle Greer. Upon learning that she is, in fact, on board the very ship she’s been fascinated with all her life, she knows there's only one thing to do: get off as soon as possible.

But whether by destiny, freak coincidence or a really vivid dream, Apolline finds that her trip back in time comes with three very good reasons to stay on board: Alexander Walker, a handsome and charming fellow vampire hunter; Cristof, the vampire that has tormented her family for generations and very likely killed her own mother; and Sasha, the vampire Noelle was sent to kill.

Time, however, is not on Apolline's side. The Titanic is on a collision course with destiny, and she only has four days to complete her quest. What seemed like more than enough time at the start quickly becomes too short as she finds that hunting vampires on a luxury ocean liner is much more difficult than she expected. Sasha and Cristof become more elusive as each day passes, while her feelings for Alexander become increasingly complicated. As that fateful night approaches, will she regret her decision to stay and witness history first-hand?

REVIEW:
I wasn't sure what to expect when I first accepted Kraft's review request.  All I knew was that it had vampires, the Titanic, and time travel.  Three things that, individually, are amazing, hold my interest, and make for good reads.  I accepted the request immediately.

This book surpassed every  expectation I had for it.  I love it so much.  The emotion the story draws out of you is insane.  I became teary-eyed on numerous occasions.  Often times when we think of the Titanic, we forget that these were real living and breathing people that died horrifically.  Destined really does it justice and makes your heart ache.  Allison Kraft is an amazingly talented writer.

I told a lot of people at work about this book and usually when I explained it to them, I got goosebumps.  It's that good.  I usually referred to as "reading the movie".  You know how you get choked up and cry during the James Cameron film?  Yeah, you're reading it.

Now I want to go watch the movie and cry.  

MEMORABLE QUOTES:


RATING:
5 MOONS.
ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT!



Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Interview - Allison Kraft

We are very happy to have Allison Kraft, author of Destined, here with us today!
Allison Kraft lives in west central Florida with her family and four cats. She taught herself how to read at the age of three (with a little help from PBS) and has been a devourer of books ever since. In college, she discovered that, as much as she loved to read about vampires, witches, ghosts and time travel, writing about them was even more fun! Her first novel, Destined, is a time travel romance set on the Titanic, another long-time obsession of hers.

To learn more about Allison, visit her official website at allisonkraft.com
DestinedWhile flying across the Atlantic on the centennial anniversary of the Titanic's tragic maiden voyage, Apolline Greer, last in a long line of vampire hunters, finds herself suddenly transported from her airliner cabin to an eerily familiar ocean liner cabin—as well as the entirely unfamiliar body of her ancestor, Noelle Greer. Upon learning that she is, in fact, on board the very ship she’s been fascinated with all her life, she knows there's only one thing to do: get off as soon as possible.

But whether by destiny, freak coincidence or a really vivid dream, Apolline finds that her trip back in time comes with three very good reasons to stay on board: Alexander Walker, a handsome and charming fellow vampire hunter; Cristof, the vampire that has tormented her family for generations and very likely killed her own mother; and Sasha, the vampire Noelle was sent to kill.

Time, however, is not on Apolline's side. The Titanic is on a collision course with destiny, and she only has four days to complete her quest. What seemed like more than enough time at the start quickly becomes too short as she finds that hunting vampires on a luxury ocean liner is much more difficult than she expected. Sasha and Cristof become more elusive as each day passes, while her feelings for Alexander become increasingly complicated. As that fateful night approaches, will she regret her decision to stay and witness history first-hand?
THIS OR THAT

CANDY CORN OR CANDY APPLES?
Candy apples, but without nuts. I love me some ooey, gooey caramel.

WITCHES OR GHOSTS?
I used to be fascinated by Wicca, but I absolutely love ghosts and ghost stories. If I ever actually saw one, though, I’d probably have a heart attack. I’m such a wimp!

DRESSING UP OR STAYING IN?
Staying in. With the lights off. I love Halloween, but we don’t get the cute little kids where I live. We get the teenagers who think they can show up at your door in regular clothes and demand free candy.

SOOKIE STACKHOUSE OR BELLA SWAN?
No question: Sookie!

COSTUMES:  HANDMADE OR STORE-BOUGHT?
Usually store bought, but one year I made my own “Titanic victim” costume, complete with handmade life vest. I still have it somewhere, though my attempt at making myself look dead and frozen was an epic failure.

ZOMBIES OR VAMPIRES?
Vampires. I’m too easy grossed-out, and while I watch The Walking Dead, it can be a bit gory for my taste.

HAUNTED HOUSES OR GRAVEYARDS?
Both? I have a minor obsession with wandering through old graveyards, but I’m also fascinated by haunted houses.

MICHAEL MYERS OR JASON VOORHEESE?
Believe it or not, I haven’t seen either of these franchises. I was terrified of scary movies when I was younger and avoided them like the plague. Now I like them, but I still had to sleep with my lights on for a week after watching The Ring. *shudder*

BLACK OR ORANGE?
Black.

BLACK CATS OR BLACK BATS?
I’m a crazy cat lady, so definitely black cats!

TRICK OR TREAT?
Treat. I’m a chocoholic.

ARE THERE ANY LAST WORDS YOU WOULD LIKE TO LEAVE WITH OUR READERS?
I feel like I should come up with something witty or profound here, but my mind is blanking on me. So I’ll just say thank you for reading, and I promise I don’t ramble like this in my novels. *g*
We would like to thank Allison Kraft for all of her help and cooperation.  Allison is an amazing author and and an equally impressive human being.  We cannot wait to read her future works and hopefully interact with her further down the road!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Review - The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW by WASHINGTON IRVING
Learn more about The Legend of Sleepy Hollow at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Legend_of_Sleepy_Hollow
This book was free from GoodReads.

SUMMARY:
A brief summary of the legend of sleepy hollow is possible being that the characters are very straightforward. The legend of sleepy hollow is a short story written by Washington Irving in the eary 1800's. It was actually based on a German folktale. It tells the story set in the small glen called Sleepy Hollow in Tarry Town New York. It tells the story of Ichabod Crane and Abraham "Brom Bones" Van Brunt. They both are competing for the hand of Katrina Van Tassel. One autumn night when Ichabod Crane leaves the house of the Van Tassels after a party he is pursued by the headless horseman and subsequently disappears leaving "Brom Bones" to marry Katrina. -Summary was taken from here.

REVIEW:
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is one of those classics that I have been wanting to read for quite sometime.  Years ago, when the movie version, starring Johnny Depp, was released, I absolutely loved it and fell in love with the story and characters.  Well, this is one of those cases of wrongfully watching the movie before reading the book.  They were so utterly and completely different.

In all honesty, I didn't really like the book.  It's really short and there was really no mention of the horseman until about twenty -seven pages in (36 pgs total).  It just wasn't for me.

I'll stick to Johnny Depp as Ichabod Crane, thanks.

MEMORABLE QUOTES:


RATING:
2 MOONS.
JUST NOT FOR ME.



Monday, October 24, 2011

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop - 4 Winners!

The Spooktacular Giveaway Hop is hosted by
THE PRIZES
There will be three winners for this giveaway.
(Winner #1 will get their choice of the books, #2 will get second pick, #3 will get third pick, and #4 will get the remaining book.)

BOOK #1
Dracula by Bram Stoker.

BOOK #2
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving.

BOOK #3
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Other Tales of Terror
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

BOOK #4
Frankenstein
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.

TO ENTER
This giveaway is open to everyone.
But please make sure The Book Depository ships to your country before entering.

To enter, please fill out the form below.
And don't forget to read the rules and information at the bottom of the form!

MANDATORY ENTRY:
  • Name and Email
  • Scariest Book You've Read


OPTIONAL EXTRA ENTRIES:
  • GFC Follower - put your GFC name in the space provided, otherwise this extra entry WILL NOT count.
  • Tweet about the giveaway.
  • Put our button on your site.




Check out the other awesome stops in the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop!



Sunday, October 23, 2011

In My Mailbox


In My Mailbox was created by The Story Siren and inspired by Alea of Pop Culture Junkie.


FOR REVIEW:
Blood of Anteros by Georgia Cates
Evanescence by Alexandra Pelaez


GIFTED:
Pirates of Savannah: The Hunt for Shamus's Booty

Pirates of Savannah: The Hunt for Shamus's Booty by Ruby N. Hilliard and Tarrin P. Lupo (Christina @ Alaskan Book Cafe)


WON:
Tempest by Julie Cross
Sins of The Angels by Linda Poitevin
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin (wanted this soo bad!)

BOUGHT:
Kiss Me Deadly (Bewitch the Dark, #2) (Harlequin Nocturne, #24)
Kiss Me Deadly by Michele Hauf (free Kindle eBook)


WEEKLY RE-CAP
A weekly recap is something we have yet to do here on Starcrossed.  But I noticed a couple of blogs were doing it in their IMM.  And we post (or try to post) our IMM weekly, so why not?  It'll be a nice way to see what we have accomplished in the past week!  So this is our first weekly re-cap!

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday


Review - Left To Die

LEFT TO DIE by LISA JACKSON
Learn more about Left To Die  at lisajackson.com
This book was borrowed from a friend.

SUMMARY:
NOTHING'S MORE TERRIFYING...
One by one, the victims are carefully captured, toyed with, then subjected to a slow and agonizing death. Piece by piece, his exquisite plan takes shape. The police can't yet see the beauty in his work--but soon, very soon, they will...
THAN BEING LEFT ALONE...
In the lonely woods around Grizzly Falls, Montana, four bodies have been discovered. Detectives Selena Alvarez and Regan Pescoli have been hoping for a career-making case, but this is a nightmare. Even with the FBI involved, Selena and Regan have nothing to go on but a killer's cryptic notes, and the unsettling knowledge that there is much worse to come...
TO DIE...
When Jillian Rivers opens her eyes, she's trapped in a mangled car. Then a stranger, claiming to be a trail guide named Zane MacGregor, pries her free. Though she's grateful, something about him sets Jillian on edge. And if she knew what lay out there in the woods of Montana, she'd be truly terrified. Because someone is waiting...watching...poised to strike and make Jillian the next victim...


REVIEW:
I was a little leary about this book at first.  I wasn't sure if I was going to like it.  I do have to say that it starts off with a bang.  There's no question to it.  It lures you in and makes you want to find out who is doing all these horrible things.

There are numerous twists and turns and right when you think you have everything figured out, Lisa Jackson throws you for a loop and switches everything up until you're left clueless and wondering once again.

This book is so suspenseful and carefully planned out that you can't help but to continue.

It's a crazy ride I really want to get into the second book just so that I can figure out what happens after that insane cliff hanger that you're left with in the end.

MEMORABLE QUOTES:

RATING:
4 MOONS.
REALLY GOOD!