Wednesday, December 25, 2013

These Broken Stars

Amie Kaufman

It's a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.

Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.

Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever?

Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it. (from Goodreads)

My Thoughts

Holy smokes! I just read the last page and all I know is - I want more!

Tarver and Lilac - he’s a young soldier/hero and she is the daughter to one of the wealthiest men in the universe. Could they be any different? And yet, when they become survivors on a desolate planet, they must overcome their differences if they are to survive.

I could not put this book down. I loved these two teenagers, struggling to stay alive and falling in love. This is categorized as YA/teenager but I still found the story to be quite captivating. What a great read!

My thanks to Disney Hyperion, via Netgalley, for allowing me to read this in exchange for an unbiased review.
Publish date: December 10, 2013

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Tuscan Rose
Belinda Alexandra

FLORENCE, 1914. A mysterious stranger known as The Wolf leaves an infant with the sisters of Santo Spirito. A tiny silver key hidden in her wrappings is the one clue to the child’s identity. . . . FIFTEEN YEARS LATER, young Rosa must leave the nuns, her only family, and become governess to the daughter of an aristocrat and his strange, frightening wife. Their house is elegant but cursed, and Rosa—blessed with gifts beyond her considerable musical talents—is torn between her desire to know the truth and her fear of its repercussions. All the while, the hand of Fascism curls around beautiful Italy, and no citizen is safe. Rosa faces unimaginable hardship: her only weapons her intelligence, intuition, and determination . . . and her extraordinary capacity for love. (from Netgalley)
My Thoughts
Rosa was a young teenager when she left the sheltered life of the convent to become a governess for a wealthy Italian family. Strange and mystical things happen while she is with them. In trying to help another staff member, Rosa is accused of being an enemy of the state. I don’t want to say any more, but it is at this point that Rosa’s life takes a dramatic turn that impacts her forever.
This story started off strong for me, but then went into a bit of a lull to the point where I wasn’t sure I would want to finish. I can only say, I’m sure glad I decided to continue reading. I think it was because I liked Rosa and I wanted to see how her story ended. Even though she is young, Rosa is determined to survive. The suspense really picked up in the second half of the story and it became a real page turner. This is my first book to read by Ms. Alexandra and I really would like to read more.
Many thanks to Gallery, Threshold, Pocket Books, via Netgalley, for allowing me to read this in exchange for an unbiased review.

Publish date: November 19, 2013

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Morning Glory

Sarah Jio

Fleeing an East Coast life marred by tragedy, Ada Santorini takes up residence on houseboat number seven on Boat Street. She discovers a trunk left behind by Penny Wentworth, a young newlywed who lived on the boat half a century earlier. Ada longs to know her predecessor’s fate, but little suspects what Penny’ mysterious past and her own clouded future are destined to converge. (from Edelweiss)

My Thoughts:

In this story we spend time with Ada and Penny. After a tragic accident, Ada decides to quit her job, leave New York City and move to Seattle. She rents a houseboat that once belong to Penny. Penny mysteriously disappeared fifty years ago. Neighbors who where around at the time Penny went missing have a “pact” not to discuss the events that occurred the night she went missing. As Ada works to discover what happened to Penny, her life moves forward. As we read about Penny’s life fifty years ago, her life is slowly falling apart.

I loved this story. Sarah Jio’s writing is so vivid. My heart was sad for both Penny and Ada as we learn what events has brought sorrow to their lives. I liked both ladies and really wanted to see both of them end up happy.

This book started out slowly - in a good way. The more I read, the more the suspense built. By the end, I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. Whew - what a great read!

Many thanks to Scribner, via Edelweiss, fow allowing me to read this inexchange for an unbiased review.