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  • Books, New, Simon

    New Books

    22.11.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on New Books

    The Voyage of the Unquiet Ice, by Andrew McHagan (384 pages) – This is book two of the Ship Kings series. I haven’t read the first one, sorry! You should though. BECAUSE. In this volume, Dow Amber has at last a ship, but he does he – an outsider! – belong with the Ship Kings? Also he has to travel to the frozen north to save the empire from rebellion and treachery.

    First line: ‘In the beginning – at least as Ship Kings scholars would tell the tale – there was only inhabitated land in all the world, and that was Great Island.

    The Girl with Borrowed Wings, by Rinsai Rossetti (290 pages) – Frenenqer Paje feels trapped by the desert she lives in, and the rules set by her father. She meets a boy who happened to be a shapechanger – a ‘Free’ – who has no obligations and not attachments. He shows her the freedom she wants and is that a little romance? Why yes, the blurb seems to hint at it.

    First line: ‘I am unlike most other people because I began, not in the body of my mother, but in the brain of my father.

    Oblivion, by Anthony Horowitz (667 pages) – This is book five (and the last book!) in the Power of Five series. It has a lot of pages! Just over 666, which would sort of seem appropriate as it’s about earth getting (almost) destroyed by the powers of darkness. There’s an app you can download that makes the cover ‘come alive’ when you hold your cellular telephone in front of it. I am trying it! Well hey that’s pretty cool

    First lines: ‘It was the week before my sixteenth birthday when the boy fell out of the door and eveything changed. Is that a good start? Miss Keyland, who taught me at the village school, used to say that you have to reach out and grab the reader with the first sentence.

    The Paladin Prophecy, by Mark Frost (549 pages) – This is the first in a series. Will West has always been encouraged by his parents to NOT do his best but to stay in the middle of his class. When he mistakenly reveals that he’s some kind of genius he is recruited by a secret organisation with super technology, and he begins to notices that men in dark hats and cars are following him and his family everywhere. Also there is a centuries-old war between secret societies that he’s now a part of, alarmingly. 

    First line: ‘“The Importance of an Orderly Mind” – Will West began each day with that thought even before he opened his eyes. When he did open them, the same words greeted him on a banner across his bedroom wall: “#1: THE IMPORTANCE OF AN ORDERLY MIND.”

    Deadwater Lane, by Stephen Barker (290 pages) – When Christopher (Christo) was younger he was in a car accident that killed an elderly man and left him with a slight brain injury that has reduced his memory. He also got blamed, and as part of his community service he must help a lonely old man. His best friend has betrayed him with his girlfriend and so Christo seeks revenge (inspired by The Count of Monte Cristo). The best revenge is classical, usually.

    First lines: ‘When I think back carefully I can see now that Ferdy was smiling. The dash threw up an eerie blue light and I remember a cold twinkle in his eyes as the grin began to spread across his face; teeth picked out ultra-white amongst purple shadows.

    The Crimson Crown : A Seven Realms Novel, by Cinda Williams Chima (598 pages) – This is the last book in the series. Which is just as well because 1. you can read them all now and  be satisfied with a conclusion, and 2. we are literally running out of room on the shelves to accomodate them. They are big books! So, 3. imagine relaxing on a beach (or wherever) while on holiday reading them. Don’t get sand in them though.

    First lines: ‘It was the largest gathering of the Spirit clans Raisa had ever seen. They came from all over the Fells – from Demonai Camp to the west, from Hunter’s Camp to the east, and from the rugged northern reaches and the river valleys near the West Wall.’

    Dustlands : Rebel Heart, by Moira Young (424 pages) – This is book two in the Dustlands trilogy, and is, according to the cover, better than The Hunger Games. Truly a claim to test (by reading them all). Anyway, here’s the synopsis from Amazon: ‘Saba has rescued her kidnapped brother and defeated the fanatical Tonton. But the price to be paid for her violent victory is terible. Jack has disappeared – and can no longer be trusted. A new and formidable enemy is on the rise in the dustlands. No one is safe. And Saba must confront the terrible secret hidden in the darkest depths of her soul.’

    First lines: ‘It’s late afternoon. Since morning, the trail’s been following a line of light towers. That is, the iron remains of what used to be light towers, way back in the Wrecker days, time out of mind.

    Zom-B, by Darren Shan (217 pages) – B. Smith has a racist dad, nightmares about killer babies, and a lot of other things to deal with. He finds it easier to agree with his father, rather than argue, especially since his dad is abusive as well as a bigot. However, when there’s a zombie apocalypse, and B’s school is attacked, B must ally himself with anyone he can if he wants to survive. Serious real-world issues + addition of supernatural gore, and the first in a series (of three I think).

    First line: ‘It was the darkest, most wretched hour of the night when the dead came back to life and spread like a plgue of monstrous locusts through the village of Pallaskenry.

    Cuttlefish, by Dave Freer (299 pages) – This is alternative-history fiction! And I leave it to the catalogue to explain. ‘In an alternate 1976 dominated by coal power and the British Empire, Clara Calland and her mother, an important scientist, embark on a treacherous journey toward freedom in Westralia aboard a smugglers’ submarine, the Cuttlefish, pursued by Menshevik spies and Imperial soldiers.’

    First lines: ‘It was after midnight, and London’s lights shimmered on the waters that had once been her streets. Something dark moved down there, in the murky depths.’

    Poison Tree, by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (219 pages) – Might copy & paste this one as well, since its blurb is pretty oblique and difficult to summarise: ‘Alysia has quickly moved to a position of responsibility in SingleEarth, working among shapeshifters and witches who fight against vampires, but she is hiding secret alliances that could put her fellow mediators at risk.’

    First lines: ‘There was blood on her hands, congealing slowly. The body in her arms was cold, its once-vibrant cheer forever vanished from the world.

    Starstruck, by Lauren Conrad (293 pages) – The latest Fame Game novel, about a bunch of people in Hollywood who star in a reality show about a bunch of people in Hollywood, written by someone who was in a (slightly-scripted, apparently?) reality show about a bunch of people in Hollywood. So somewhat authentic. In this book Madison does time, Kate has a hit single, and Carmen is overshadowed by her mother.

    First line: ‘Madison Parker stood in the echoing marble foyer of the Beverly Hills Courthouse, her back pressed against the wall and he purse clutched tightly in her freshly manicured fingers.

    Shadows, by Ilsa J. Bick (518 pages) – Book two of the Ashes trilogy. An apocalyptic thriller full of horror and gore and a love triangle, according to (the somewhat mixed) reviews on Amazon.com. If that sounds like your cup of tea, read the first book, er, first.

    First line: ‘FUBAR: that was Jed’s name for it. Once a Marine, always a Marine. He didn’t know what to call the kids. Some said zombies, but that wasn’t right.

    Yesterday, by C. K. Kelly Martin (355 pages) – This is about sixteen-year-old Freya Kallas, who lives in a future (2063) where climate change has left the world a bit of a dystopic nightmare. It is also about a Freya Kallas who lives in Toronto in 1985 and whose memory is a bit fuzzy. If that makes sense? To explain further might spoil things! Noooo

    First line: ‘When I’ve wailed for so long and so hard that my throat is in shreds and my fingernails ripped and fingertips bloody from clawing at the door, I collapse in front of it curled up like a dead cat I saw on an otherwise spotless sidewalk as a child once.

    Black Spring, by Alison Croggan (286 pages) – This story is inpired by Wuthering Heights, which is, if you’ve not read it, a gothic classic. However, this has – judging from the cover’s synopsis  –  witchcraft thrown in to make it even more gothic. Gothicky? You know.

    First line (I wanted to add the excellent second line but it’s too long): ‘After the last long winter, I needed to get as far away from the city as I possibly could.


  • Books, Horror, Library Serf, Lists

    Books for Halloween

    30.10.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on Books for Halloween

    Halloween is not so spooky in New Zealand, largely on account of the bright, perky evenings and the fact that pumpkin’s not really in season. Here are some book suggestions to fill the void:

    The teen blog slightly random-ish list of quality fiction about horror and ghosts.

    Some zombie books that are a little bit gruesome.

    A list of good Halloween reads from The Horn Book (if the picture books don’t interest you so much, look further down for an excellent selection).

    An updated list of recommendations from allhallowsread.com.

    Or you can read up about Halloween at history.com.


  • Books, New, Simon

    New Books!

    17.10.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on New Books!

    I am typing this in Wadestown library! Sort of like New Books on Tour. Haha. Haaa.

    Blink Once, by Cylin Busby (290 pages) – West wakes up in a hospital bed, strapped down. He is paralyzed. The girl in the neighbouring bed, Olivia, is the only one who can communicate to him. But why? Why is she in hospital? How is she connected to all his nightmares? What is going on here, guys.  Publishers Weekly says that readers rush to the end to answer these questions, and ‘they won’t be disappointed by what they discover’, which is frankly very appealing.

    First lines: ‘Someone is crying. A girl. Not a pretty kind of crying, like actresses do, tears delicately streaming down a beautiful face. This is sobbing, sniffling, gasping for air.

    The Demon Catchers of Milan, by Kat Beyer (278 pages) – Mia’s distant family from Italy have come to visit. Just in the nick of time! As she has been possessed by a powerful demon, and they are actually all demon hunters. Once her cousins have exorcised her, she heads back to Italy with them to learn Italian, get more involved with the family business (i.e. killing demons) and fall in love with Italians. Not her cousins though! I don’t know.

    First line: ‘I used to be the kind of girl who would check under the bed and in the closet every night before going to sleep.

    Embers & Echoes, by Karsten Knight (461 pages) – This is the follow-up to Wildefire, about a bunch of gods who have reincarnated as teens. Ashline Wilde is the reincarnation of Pele, a Polynesian volcano goddess, and when her sister is taken by some evil gods she must join up with Wes, a reincarnated Aztec god, who has his own vendetta to hash out. ‘More X-Men than Clash of the Titans,’ says the Library School Journal, which is really quite a compliment.

    First line: ‘Ashline Wilde lay battered on the side of the Pacific Coast Highway and watched her boyfriend emerge from the fiery car wreck, back from the dead.

    Unfed, by Kirsty McKay (307 pages) – This follows on from Undead, about a zombie apocalypse during Bobby’s school trip. She survived it! Unfortunately, he best pal is missing and it’s up to her to find him in the zombie-infected wastelands AND and find an antidote before it’s all over for the human race. ‘Hysterically funny,’ says The Times.

    First line: ‘When you’re staring into the jaws of death at the age of fifteen, there’s not a whole lot of life to flash before your eyes.

    So Close To You, by Rachel Carter (313 pages) – Lydia’s great-grandfather disappeared, along with others, it is rumoured, because of some weird army experiment called the Montauk Project which occurred at the spooky abandoned military base near her home. When a portal opens up and takes her back to 1945, six days before her great-grandad disappears, she becomes part of the experiment. The first in a planned trilogy.

    First line: ‘The bonfire in the clearing spits out flames and smoke. Red, yellow, orange sparks fly up into the night sky.

    Tiger Lily, by Jodi Lynn Anderson (292 pages) – Before Peter Pan met Wendy there was Tiger Lily, who faced all kinds of hurdles to be with Peter (and not this guy her family and tribe wanted her to marry). And then of course Wendy comes along to Neverland on an English boat and things get messy. A clever retelling of the Peter Pan story, as narrated by Tinkerbell. ‘Perplexing’ to those familiar only with the Disney version, which of course doesn’t include any Teen Blog readers.

    First line: ‘She stands on the cliffs, near the old crumbling stone house. There’s nothing left in the house but an upturned table, a ladle, and a clay bowl.

    What’s Left of Me : The Hybrid Chronicles, by Kat Zhang (343 pages) – Eva and Addie were born in the same body, but are two distinct souls, or hybrids. However in this alternate reality, hybrids are against the law, so they must keep their dual existence a secret from the government and their family. Reviews say this is very well written, with a great ending, so go on reserve it why don’t you.

    First lines: ‘Addie and I were born into the same body, our souls’ ghostly fingers entwined before we gasped our very first breath.

    Don’t Turn Around, by Michelle Gagnon (310 pages) – Noa, a rebellious teen orphan, has woken on an operating table with no memory. She joins with Peter, a computer hacker from a wealthy background, to take down a large and evil corporation. ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo for teens’, a reviewer writes, if that’s a good thing?

    First line: ‘When Noa Torson woke up, the first thing she noticed was that her feet were cold. Odd, since she always wore socks to bed.

    Shadow and Bone, by Leigh Bardugo (358 pages) – Gonna let the catalogue describe this one – ‘Orphaned by the Border Wars, Alina Starkov is taken from obscurity and her only friend, Mal, to become the protegé of the mysterious Darkling, who trains her to join the magical elite in the belief that she is the Sun Summoner, who can destroy the monsters of the Fold.’

    First line: ‘The servants called the malenchki, little ghosts, because the haunted the Duke’s house like giggling phantoms, darting in and out of rooms, hiding in cupboards to eavesdrop, sneaking into the kitchen to steal the last of the summer peaches.

    The Broken Lands, by Kate Milford (455 pages) – This is the prequel to steampunky The Boneshaker, and is set in New York, 1877. Two teenaged orphans – Sam and a pyromaniac girl named Jim – must battle ancient dark forces from turning the city into Hell.

    First line: ‘A crossroads can be a place of gerat power; this should not come as any surprise. It is a place of choosing, of testing, of transition, and there is power in all of those things.


  • Books, Grimm, Horror, Top 10, zombies

    Top 10: Zombies

    15.10.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on Top 10: Zombies

    Can you take a zombie seriously? Sometimes yes, sometimes no (it depends largely on whether there is supposed to be kissing).

    Seriously:

    This is Not a Test, Courtney Summers – this book is a horror story: imagine being trapped inside your school building with five other students, with moaning masses of the undead outside, lying in wait, when you know it’s only a matter of time before the water supply runs dry, you eat your last food, and face the prospect of either starving to death or running the zombie gauntlet outside, to who knows where. What makes it worse is how the horror plays out in the way that you and your schoolmates cope. And then, when you think you’ve barricaded the school building enough, someone gets in.

    The Forest of Hands and Teeth, Carrie Ryan – to quote an earlier post: “Mary lives in a fenced village in the middle of the forest of hands and teeth; fenced, because the forest of hands and teeth is peopled with zombies (the Unconsecrated) with an undying drive to bite. When the village’s fortifications are compromised Mary must flee in the ensuing chaos, down the paths that run through the forest, following mysterious symbols that might lead her to the sea she dreams of.”

    Rot & Ruin, Jonathan Maberry – the School Library Journal likes this series, perhaps even better than The Forest of Hands and Teeth: they say it “appears to be a retelling of Carrie Ryan’s The Forest of Hands and Teeth but with a male protagonist. But Maberry’s vision of a zombie-infested future has more action, more violence, and more emotional depth” (School Library Journal). It must be good then! Instead of a forest, here there’s the Rot and Ruin where – Benny (the male protagonist) learns – the zombies actually aren’t even the scariest prospect. 

    The Enemy, Charlie Higson – the latest in the series (The Sacrifice) has recently arrived. When a sickness sweeps through London, affecting everyone over the age of 14, leaving them either (mercifully) dead or the walking undead, those under 14 find themselves in a fight to survive. Some, sensibly, hole up in supermarkets (the lucky ones in Waitrose, which is quite posh), while they must attempt to make their way to the relative safety of Buckingham Palace. But if they get to Buckingham Palace, what will they find? A zombie queen? Or something more problematic? We should’t be too flip: this one’s grim and doesn’t pull any punches.

    Not quite as seriously:

    Dearly Departed, Lia Habel – this series is called “Gone with the Respiration” (a salute to Gone With the Wind), so I think it’s safe to say it’s a bit fun. “Love conquers all, so they say. But can Cupid’s arrow pierce the hearts of the living and the dead – or rather, the undead? Can a proper young Victorian lady find true love in the arms of a dashing zombie?” (Goodreads.com). This brings a whole new meaning to the expression “undying love”.

    You Are So Undead to Me, Stacey Jay – the first in the series about Megan Berry, Zombie Settler. Homecoming (and people’s lives) are in peril when someone starts using black magic to turn the average, bumbling undead of an Arkansas town into souped-up zombies. Can Megan save the day? Can she what! (I’m picking).

    I Kissed a Zombie and I Liked It, Adam Selzer – take that Katy Perry. Ali meets the mysterious Doug – a strong, silent, Goth-type of singer – and falls madly in love with him before, doh, someone points out he’s actually a zombie. Naturally Doug’s mysteriousness is not all that attractive any more, but when Ali tries to dump him she learns it’s not so easy to get rid of a zombie. She also learns, along the way, that vampires don’t like their music being critiqued.

    Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Seth Grahame-Smith – I think you have to give credit to someone who basically invents a new genre in the 21st century. This was the first Classic Novel Horror Mashup, and there’s a bunch of others, including Romeo and Juliet, Sense and Sensibility, and P & P & Z even has it’s own sequels and prequels. Excellent.

    A mixed bag:

    Zombie Blondes, Brian James – Hannah is the new girl in a town where the many houses for sale and the, well, deathly quiet suggest something’s wrong. Hannah seems oblivious on her first day of school, when she meets the popular crowd: a group of cheerleaders who all look remarkably the same, and who Hannah really wants to be like.

    Zombies Versus Unicorns – more to the point, can you take a unicorn seriously? One or two writers have had a crack at it in this oddly fab collection of short stories.


  • Books, New, Simon

    New Books

    08.10.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on New Books

    The Crown of Embers, by Rae Carson (410 pages) – This is the sequel to The Girl of Fire and Thorns. Elisa has led her people to victory, but now she must harness the power of the Godstone. This can only be done by following the clues found in ancient scripture, hidden catacombs and similary dangerous places. A nice thick fantasy book for this apparently eternal winter, I reckon.

    First line: ‘My entourage of guards struggles to keep pace as I fly down the corridors of my palace. Servants in starched frocks and shined shoes line the way, bowing like dominoes as I pass.

    Small Damages, by Beth Kephart (293 pages) – Kenzie is eighteen and pregnant to her boyfriend, the ambitious Kevin who is headed for Yale. Kenzie is sent to Spain to stay so that she’s closer to her baby’s adoptive parents. She has to cope with the culture shock, a stubborn old cook, and the young and mysterious Esteban with his Hyberian charm and gentle way with horses.

    First line: ‘The streets of Seville are the size of sidewalks, and there are alleys leaking off from the streets.

    Something Strange and Deadly, by Susan Dennard (388 pages) – Victoria-era Philadelphia has a zombie problem, and Eleanor Fitt’s brother has gone missing in New York. He was able to send a cryptic letter via zombie, and for Eleanor to find him she will need the help of the Spirit-Hunters, who defend the city from the weird. This is the first book in a planned trilogy.

    First line: ‘“Dead!” a woman screamed. “It’s the Dead!” My heart shot into my throat, and shocked cries rippled through the station.

    Pushing the Limits, by Katie McGarry (403 pages) – Echo and Noah are both teens whose lives are marred by tragedy and secrets, and both are struggling to regain some semblance of normalcy. They are drawn together, and fall in love. If you like  a “suspenseful plot, dramatic conflicts, and tragic characters” you will like this, a review says.

    First line: ‘“My father is a control freak, I hate my stepmother, my brother is dead and my mother has … well … issues. How do you think I’m doing?”

    Enshadowed : A Nevermore Book, by Kelly Creagh (429 pages) – Book two in a series about a dreamworld inhabited by Edgar Allan Poe’s stories that have come to life. Varen is trapped there, and Isobel is the only person who can save him. Will she save him before he becomes her greatest and most lethal enemy? I don’t knoooooow

    First line: ‘“Edgar?” Speaking softly, Dr. Moran leaned over his patient. His eyes traced the wan and pallid countenance of the famous poet, Edgar Poe.

    Unspoken : The Lynburn Legacy, by Sarah Rees Brennan (373 pages) – This blurb is incredibly complex and difficult, so just read this summary written by Grimm back in July. It is the first in a series, but according to Goodreads there are a couple of short stories in ebook form that are prequels to this book. Get them from her site, maybe.

    First line: ‘Every town in England has a story. One day I am going to find out Sorry-in-the-Vale’s.

    Dead Embers : A Valkyrie Novel, by T. G. Ayer (380 pages) – This is book 2 in a series. (Here’s book 1!) Bryn is a Valkyrie (the Norse angels of death who carry heroes to Valhalla (imagine one of the sets from LoTR but with vikings)). She is in training still! Loki (Norse god of mischief) has somehow stuck her boyfriend in Hel (Hel is the Norse underworld! Boo) and Ragnorok (the Norse apocalypse!) is on its way. So yeah, not much to look forward to.

    First line: ‘Cold burrowed into my knees, digging icy claws deep into bone. Despite the pain, I didn’t move.’

    Between You and Me, by Marisa Calin (243 pages) – Phyre is sixteen and wants to be an actress. She falls in love with the student teacher  of drama class, Mia, which leaves her best friend (who loves Phyre) feeling blue. This book is written as a screenplay, with the best friend never described further than just  the role of “you” in the script. Phyre is “me”, if that makes sense?

    First line: ‘FADE IN

    ‘MY BEDROOM. SEPTEMBER. EVENING.

    ‘Close-up. Heart-shaped pink sunglasses.’


  • Books, Grimm, Horror, New

    Looking forward to:

    19.09.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on Looking forward to:

    More stuff! Including more zombies.

    Zom-B, Darren Shan (September/October). This is the start of a new series by the horror master. I have read that there’s rather a lot of blood and stuff, so if you’ve got a cast-iron stomach you might love this. “Zom-B is a radical new series about a zombie apocalypse, told in the first person by one of its victims. The series combines classic Shan action with a fiendishly twisting plot and hard-hitting and thought-provoking moral questions dealing with racism, abuse of power and more. This is challenging material, which will captivate existing Shan fans and bring in many new ones. As Darren says, “It’s a big, sprawling, vicious tale…a grisly piece of escapism, and a barbed look at the world in which we live. Each book in the series is short, fast-paced and bloody. A high body-count is guaranteed!” (goodreads.com)

    Flesh & Bone, Jonathan Maberry (September/October). The third in a trilogy (maybe?) that started with Rot & Ruin. “In the Rot & Ruin… everything wants to kill you” (goodreads.com). Everything means escaped zoo and circus animals, and a new breed of zombie, who are faster and smarter. How is it possible then for Chong and his friends to survive? Tom better have trained them well. Plus we do like the rather disturbing cover.

    Iron Legends, Julie Kagawa (September/October). If you’ve been reading Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey series, then you might like to read these three novellas in one volume (called ‘Winter’s Passage’, ‘Summer’s Crossing’ and ‘Iron’s Prophecy’).


  • Books, Grimm, New

    Looking forward to:

    14.09.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on Looking forward to:

    The horror of birds, zombies, and negotiating the criminal underworld in a bleak, futuristic New York.

    Because it is my blood, Gabrielle Zevin (October) – The sequel to All These Things I’ve Done. “Since her release from Liberty Children’s Facility, Anya Balanchine is determined to follow the straight and narrow. Unfortunately, her criminal record is making it hard for her to do that. No high school wants her with a gun possession charge on her rap sheet. Plus, all the people in her life have moved on: Natty has skipped two grades at Holy Trinity, Scarlet and Gable seem closer than ever, and even Win is in a new relationship.But when old friends return demanding that certain debts be paid, Anya is thrown right back into the criminal world that she had been determined to escape. It’s a journey that will take her across the ocean and straight into the heart of the birthplace of chocolate where her resolve – and her heart – will be tested as never before.” (goodreads.com)

    Adaptation, Malinda Lo (October) – Birds! Birds are flying into planes and cars, causing horrific crashes and devastation on a vast scale. The US government fears terrorism, grounding all flights and enforcing curfews. Reese and her friend are making their way back from Arizona to San Francisco when all this happens. Their car flips (bird strike) and Reese wakes up in a military hospital and what seems to be a whole new world. When she finally makes it to San Francisco she gets the sense that something’s really off (and that’s not just the sense that someone or something is following her). Can Reese find out what’s going on?

    Alice in Zombieland, Gena Showalter (October also) – the first in the White Rabbit Chronicles series. Alice is in a car crash that claims the lives of her whole family (it wasn’t birds). This is tragic, but to make matters truly worse she wakes up in a world populated by zombies: the monsters her father was warning her about. Now she must become a zombie-slayer in order to survive, and also learn how to trust (and get along with) bad boy Cole.


  • Books, Grimm, New, zombies

    Waiting on Wednesday on Friday

    13.07.12 | Permalink | Comments Off on Waiting on Wednesday on Friday

    Stephanie’s been ordering up a storm: here’s a couple of new interesting titles you might like to reserve. Zombies and vampires, oh my! (More next Wednesday.)

    Team Human, Justine Larbalastier and Sarah Rees Brennan. This is a spoof, obviously, but reviewers say it’s an affectionate spoof, from the authors of Liar, and The Demon’s Lexicon:

    “Just because Mel lives in New Whitby, a city founded by vampires, doesn’t mean she knows any of the blood-drinking undead personally. They stay in their part of town; she says in hers. Until the day a vampire shows up at her high school. Worse yet, her best friend, Cathy, seems to be falling in love with him. It’s up to Mel to save Cathy from a mistake she might regret for all eternity.

    “On top of trying to help Cathy (whether she wants it or not), Mel is investigating a mysterious disappearance for another friend and discovering the attractions of a certain vampire wannabe. Combine all this with a cranky vampire cop, a number of unlikely romantic entanglements, and the occasional zombie, and soon Mel is hip-deep in an adventure that is equal parts hilarious and touching.” (goodreads.com)

    This Is Not a Test, Courtney Summers. Brace yourself: Courtney Summers, queen of gritty stories, does the zombie apocalypse (that is a blood spatter top left of the book cover):

    “It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self.

    “To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live.

    “But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside.

    “When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?” (goodreads.com)


  • New, Simon

    New Books

    17.12.11 | Permalink | Comments Off on New Books

    Here are some new books! We provide so many ideas for things to read it is just ridiculous. Ridonkulous.

    Belle’s Song, by K. M. Grant (298 pages) – Belle’s father can not walk thanks to an accident that she was responsible for. It is the 14th century so it is kind of important that he be mobile! So she heads to Canterbury with Chaucer (YES THAT CHAUCER) and handsome squire, Walter, in the hope that the pilgrimage has a miraculous outcome. However Belle is being blackmailed and Chaucer is up to his neck in politics and politics back then could be torturous, if you know what I mean. Hard times!

    First lines: ‘Tragedy and opportunity, conspiracies and compulsions. And love. Unexpected love.

    Wherever You Go, by Heather Davis (309 pages) – Holly’s boyfriend Rob died in an accident, and she has to spend most of her time caring for her sister and her grandfather, who has Alzheimer’s. Her late boyfriend’s best friend, Jason, steps in to help, and her grandfather says he is communicating with Rob’s ghost (who is in fact narrating the story from beyond the grave), meaning Holly has some tough and unexpected decisions to make.

    First lines: ‘You’ve been by her side for six months, but she hasn’t noticed you.

    Legend, by Marie Lu (295 pages) – The USA is now at war with itself; the Republic on one side, and the Colonies on the other. In this dystopian future some kids – one rich, the other not at all! – join together to fight against the injustice that authority has become. Nonstop action, a little romance, the ‘characters are likeable, the plot moves at a good pace, and the adventure is solid’, writes the Library Journal. The first in a series, and written about by us previously here (+ book trailer).

    First lines: ‘My mother thinks I’m dead. Obviously I’m not dead, but it’s safer for her to think so.

    Clockwork Prince : The Infernal Devices Book 2, by Cassandra Clare (502 pages) – Because this is the second book in the second series and I haven’t read any of it, here is the synopsis from the catalogue. Okay! ‘As the Council attempts to strip Charlotte of her power, sixteen-year-old orphaned shapechanger, Tessa Gray works with the London Shadowhunters to find the Magister and destroy his clockwork army, learning the secret of her own identity while investigating his past.’

    First lines: ‘The fog was thick, muffling sound and sight. Where it parted, Will Herondale could see the street rising ahead of him, slick and wet and black with rain, and he could hear the voices of the dead.’

    Dearly Departed, by Lia Habel (451 pages) – Nora Dearly encounters a ‘crack unit’ of teen zombies. They are the good guys! The bad guys are monsters hoping to boost their evil, foetid ranks. Nora begins to fall for one of the good zombies, Bram, who is ‘surprisingly attractive.’ Not sure if the good guys are decomposing or if they’re somehow frozen in a freshly dead state? Is that still gross? The cover depicts them as a little pale but I can’t see any bones or exposed muscle. Still you have to consider these things. Though not too closely!

    First lines: ‘I was buried alive. When the elevator groaned to a stop in the middle of the rocky shaft, I knew that I was buried alive.’

    Wildefire, by Karsten Knight (392 pages) – Ashline Wilde is having it harsh at her school – her boyfriend cheated on her and her runaway sister, Eve, has returned to cause trouble. So Ashline starts at a new, private school in California, hoping for a fresh beginning. Buuuuut, Ashline discovers that a group of gods and goddesses have all been summoned to this one particular place. And she is one of them! Soon a war between the gods threatens sunny Blackwood Academy. Don’t know about you but that sounds like just another day for me.

    First line: ‘Ashline Wilde was a human mood ring.

    That’s about it for now! Check back later in the week for some more.


  • Adrienne, Events, zombies

    Register Now

    15.08.11 | Permalink | Comments Off on Register Now

    Keep those registrations coming…

    Get your team together for the Zombies vs Gleeks Teen Trivia Night coming up on September 2nd. Don’t miss out on a spot for your team.


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