Waiting on Wednesday (2) – Splendor (Luxe #4) by Anna Godbersen

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

I want:

Splendor (Luxe, #4)   

Title: Splendor (Luxe #4)
Author: Anna Godbersen
Release Date: October 27, 2009

Description: It’s a new year, and Manhattan’s favorite socialites are stirring up brand-new drama: Elizabeth uncovers a dangerous secret from her past; Diana has an opportunity to follow her heart—and claim her future, Lina discovers money can buy happiness…for a time, and Penelope finds that life without Henry brings unexpected pleasures. In this dramatic conclusion to the bestselling Luxe series, old ties are broken, fresh bonds are formed, and every decision comes at a cost.

Published in: on September 30, 2009 at 2:21 pm  Comments (1)  
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The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

The Graveyard Book

I Give This Book 4 Stars!

Description:  Bod is an unusual boy who inhabits an unusual place-he’s the only living resident of a graveyard. Raised from infancy by the ghosts, werewolves, and other cemetery denizens, Bod has learned the antiquated customs of his guardians’ time as well as their timely ghostly teachings-like the ability to Fade.
Can a boy raised by ghosts face the wonders and terrors of the worlds of both the living and the dead? And then there are things like ghouls that aren’t really one thing or the other.
This chilling tale is Neil Gaiman’s first full-length novel for middle-grade readers since the internationally bestselling and universally acclaimed Coraline. Like Coraline, this book is sure to enchant and surprise young readers as well as Neil Gaiman’s legion of adult fans.

I really enjoyed this book.  The concept of a child being raised by those in the graveyard was well thought out and in the context of the story seemed perfectly normal.  I loved that everyone there helped raise the child even though he had “specific” parents and a guardian who could move about the human world.  I thought the story started out a bit gruesome for a middle school book, but it played out well.  The story spans a number of years but highlighting specific events that occur throughout the child’s life.  At first this kind of annoyed me, but I realized each part read more like a short story and each “story” played a role in the ending.  I’d would love to see a future book about Bod’s life outside the graveyard.

Published in: on September 29, 2009 at 3:20 pm  Leave a Comment  
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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? (2)

“It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?” is hosted by J. Kaye

Read Last Week:

  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  • A Circle of Souls by Preetham  Grandhi
  • Zelda’s Cut by Philippa Gregory
  • Rumors by Anna Godbersen
  • The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Currently Reading

  • Fablehaven: Rise of the Evening Star by Brandon Mull

Hope to Read This Week

  • Rough Country by John Sandford
  • Envy by Anna Godbersen
  • The Various Haunts of Men by Susan Hill
Published in: on September 28, 2009 at 11:30 am  Comments (9)  
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In My Mailbox (3)

First off, In My Box is hosted by Kristi and she was inspired by Alea of Pop Culture Junkie!

 For Review:

Rough Country  ROUGH COUNTRY BY JOHN SANDFORD

Virgil’s always been known for having a somewhat active, er, social life, but he’s probably not going to be getting too many opportunities for that during his new case. While competing in a fishing tournament in a remote area of northern Minnesota, he gets a call from Lucas Davenport to investigate a murder at a nearby resort, where a woman has been shot while kayaking. The resort is for women only, a place to relax, get fit, recover from plastic surgery, commune with nature, and while it didn’t start out to be a place mostly for those with Sapphic inclinations, that’s pretty much what it is today.
Which makes things all the more complicated for Virgil, because as he begins investigating, he finds a web of connections between the people at the resort, the victim, and some local women, notably a talented country singer. The more he digs, the more he discovers the arrows of suspicion that point in many directions, encompassing a multitude of motivations: jealousy, blackmail, greed, anger, fear. Then he finds that this is not the first murder, that there was a second, seemingly unrelated one, the year before. And that there’s about to be a third, definitely related one, any time now. And as for the fourth . . . well, Virgil better hope he can catch the killer before that happens. Because it could be his own.

From Paperback Swap:

 

Briar Rose  BRIAR ROSE BY JANE YOLEN

A powerful retelling of Sleeping Beauty that is “heartbreaking and heartwarming.”An American Library Association “100 Best Books for Teens”An American Library Association “Best Books for Young Adults”     Ever since she was a child, Rebecca has been enchanted by her grandmother Gemma’s stories about Briar Rose. But a promise Rebecca makes to her dying grandmother will lead her on a remarkable journey to uncover the truth of Gemma’s astonishing claim: I am Briar Rose. A journey that will lead her to unspeakable brutality and horror. But also to redemption and hope.

Published in: on September 27, 2009 at 4:43 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Rumors (Luxe #2) by Anna Godbersen

Rumors (Luxe, #2)

I Give This Book 4 Stars

Description: After bidding good-bye to New York’s brightest star, Elizabeth Holland, rumors continue to fly about her untimely demise.
All eyes are on those closest to the dearly departed: her mischievous sister, Diana, now the family’s only hope for redemption; New York’s most notorious cad, Henry Schoonmaker, the flame Elizabeth never extinguished; the seductive Penelope Hayes, poised to claim all that her best friend left behind—including Henry; even Elizabeth’s scheming former maid, Lina Broud, who discovers that while money matters and breeding counts, gossip is the new currency.
As old friends become rivals, Manhattan’s most dazzling socialites find their futures threatened by whispers from the past. In this delicious sequel to The Luxe, nothing is more dangerous than a scandal . . . or more precious than a secret.

I’m still drawn to the covers of these books.  The dresses featured are gorgeous!   I rated this 4 stars but I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as the first.  This seems to be common for me.  The second in the series tends to be my least favorite.  Still, there’s plenty of gossip, scandal, and surprises in this one.   I hoping Penelope redeems herself at some point in the series because she’s currently winning for biggest b****.   I was shocked at the ending.   I have Envy in store for next week.  I’ve read in a couple places in its the best in the series so far. 

Published in: on September 26, 2009 at 1:42 pm  Comments (2)  
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Zelda’s Cut by Philippa Gregory

Zelda's Cut

I give this book 2.5 Stars!

Description: Isobel Latimer, a writer known for her moral tales, is trapped by the confines of her puritan image. Not a sarcastic word can pass her lips in public. Not a single dress can show off the faintest traces of her figure. With a literary reputation to uphold and massive, increasing debts to keep secret, Isobel is about to crack-everyone wants a cut of her talent, her time or her money, but only she knows there’s nothing left to give. At wit’s end, Isobel and her agent, Troy, conspire to create a new Isobel, only this one is a taboo-breaking, uninhibited bombshell of an author named Zelda. An alter ego, Zelda can do everything Isobel cannot: Zelda can speak the unspeakable, explode social norms and unleash her desires. As a new, champagne-fuelled celebrity, she embraces freedom with fervor. Troy revels in the stir she has created, but Isobel senses menace behind her beautiful, new mask, and longs for the stability of her former life. But when she returns, Isobel realizes she has been gone too long: the familiar is now strange. An account of suppressed desires come to fruition, this novel of shifting identity will leave the reader questioning the nature of his own.

I knew before starting this wasn’t your typical Philippa Gregory that we have come to love.  But, I needed a Z title for my alphabet challenge and lets face it, there’s not a lot to choose from. This book was a little bizarre and little racy. You have the author/housewife and her alter ego having an affair with her agent while they are both dressed in the alter ego’s clothes. Add that to the disabled husband who suddenly improves while hanging out with the pool man.   Plus, you have the constant discussions of money.  It seems like everybody needs some (and by some I really mean large quantaties).  What you get in the end is a twist of events that leave you slightly disturbed and thinking WTF? I couldn’t stop reading it though.  You can see the end coming but you can’t stop yourself from watching everybody fall in the process.

Published in: on September 25, 2009 at 2:54 pm  Comments (1)  
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A Circle of Souls by Preetham Grandhi

A Circle of Souls

I Give This Book 4 Stars!

Description: The sleepy town of Newbury, Connecticut, is shocked when a little girl is found brutally murdered. With the murderer on the loose, the police desperately look for any clues to lead to his identy. Meanwhile, a psychiatrist in a nearby hospital is also in a desperate search to find the cause of seven-year-old Naya Hastings s devastating nightmares. Afraid that she might hurt herself in the midst of a torturous episode, Naya s parents have turned to the bright young doctor as their only hope. When these two situations converge, they set off an alarming chain of events. In this stunning psychological thriller, innocence gives way to evil, and trust lies forgotten in a web of deceit, fear, and murder.

I liked this book overall and felt it was a good and fast read. I especially enjoyed the psychological/paranormal aspects of the story.  It’s something that is so rarely done in this genre. It made me really connect with Naya and I liked Dr. Gram. I was happy to see he took her dreams seriously, and even more so with the detective Leia Bines does as well.  There are times the story felt very simple to me, maybe I’ve read to many mysteries. I was hoping for more of a twist in the ending, but I knew who the killer was about half way through the book (I did doubt it for a bit though.)  Still very pleased I read it.   I could see Dr. Gram and Detective Bines being used in a series.

* I would like to thank the author Preetham Grandhi for the chance to review this book!

Published in: on September 24, 2009 at 2:13 pm  Comments (2)  
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