Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Heart-Breaker #2: Puck

Continuing our funny man/sidekick week, I present to you, Heart-Breaker #2:

Puck from THE IRON FEY by Julie Kagawa

**SPOILER LEVEL:  Slight**

Puck (aka Robbie Goodfell, Robin Goodfellow) is Meghan's best friend at the beginning of THE IRON KING. He's also the same Puck from A MIDSUMMER'S NIGHT DREAM. He's a prankster. The court jester. He's constantly causing trouble and teasing Meghan. Puck has red hair and green eyes. Plus, he's fey, so he's obviously beautiful. Don't believe me? Just look at this image from the back cover for THE IRON KNIGHT:


Okay, back to why I love him. *takes one more peak at picture* Puck is Meghan's friend from the beginning. He knows her. It's not a lust-at-first-sight kind of thing that happens all too often in YA books. Puck has spent years around Meghan, being her friend and protecting her (though she didn't know about that bit). And you know what? Meghan likes him too. Sure, she's only seeing him as friend material (at least for now), but she likes him. She finds comfort in his presence and would do anything to protect him as well.

Not only is the sexy, sarcastic Puck able to make us laugh, but he can kick some serious butt too. He's skilled with weapons and can duke it out with the brooding bad boy, Prince Ash. Since Ash's fighting prowess is highlighted as exceptional, that means Puck's no light weight. He's a serious contender in any match. Better yet, he gets a mischievous glint in his eye and a wicked smile on his face as he does so (reference picture above).

Prince Ash fans, I'll concede that the tortured soul has my empathy too. He's a good match for Meghan and has tons of awesome qualities to his name. But, given the choice between the two, I'd pick Puck everytime. I'd want someone who can make me laugh, not just have my back in a fight. All that broodiness is a real downer when you've already got the weight of the Nevernever on your shoulders.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Heart-Breaker #1: Logan Keeley

Let's start off this week's sidekick/funny man celebration with:

Logan Keeley from SHADE by Jeri Smith-Ready

**SPOILER LEVEL:  Minimal**

Logan Keeley is Aura's boyfriend at the beginning of Shade. He's described as having a lanky build and spiky bleached hair with black streaks. He's the singer/guitar player for his family's Irish band, The Keeley Brothers. His character is so fully fleshed out, he jumped out at me from the moment he came onto the page. Instant love. 

Logan's on the brink of greatness. He has an amazing family, loves his girlfriend, and is about to break into the music industry with all his talent. Then he's an idiot and dies. *bangs head on desk* Freaking breaks my heart. 

BUT! He's still around as a ghost. And he still loves Aura. 

Given the difficulty of being with the dead, I completely understand why Logan doesn't remain the main love interest. His story is a tragedy and Aura needs to move on with living people. That said, I can't get behind Zach when Logan's still present, even if it is in ghost form. Sure, Logan's impulsive, immature, and has a little bit of a temper. BUT! He's in a difficult situation (have any of you ever tried being a ghost?). He doesn't know how to handle it. He's watching the love of his life start to get closer to another guy. 

If being dead isn't hard enough, watching everyone try to move on while you're still there (kind of) has to be torture. 

Is he immature? Yes. Does he make some terrible decisions? Absolutely. Do I love him any less? Nope. Logan's got that rare kind of energy that's infectious. When he's happy or excited, it's impossible to not join him. There are so many moments that make me fall in love with him, but I don't want to be too spoilery. Let's just say, he clearly loves Aura with all his heart.

Now, what about the competition? Zachary Moore is a great guy. He's kind and considerate. He tries to help Aura through losing Logan and is always there for her. Is he a good guy? Sure. The problem:  I can't get Logan out of my head. In this case, I do actually want Aura to get with Zach because being with a ghost isn't healthy. *helpful advice* However, it's almost painful for me to read. I need Logan to move on, so my heart can go to Zach. (Hmmm...sounds like Aura's dilemma too.)

Oh, and Dylan Keeley is pretty cool too. *smiles*

With all due respect to Team Kilt, Keeley Brothers FTW!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Confessions of a Sidekick Swooner

Lately, I've been reading a lot of YA fantasy books with romance. After being crushed several times, I've come to this conclusion:  I fall for the wrong freaking dude. 

That's right, I love the sidekick. The funny guy who may be slightly immature but can always bring a smile to the main character's face (and mine). The guy who is no less protective than the main dude, but manifests his protective nature in a different way. The guy who makes me roll my eyes when he does something stupid (which, he inevitably does) or snort while reading because he's absolutely absurd.

That's my guy. :D

Yeah, sure, the brooding bad boy is cool too and I've fallen for my fair share of them, but pit against a funny, immature friend...chances are my loyalties are towards the sarcastic sidekick. 

So, this week is for the funny man. The one who wins my heart but never the heroine's. I'll be posting about three awesome dudes who don't have the girl (yet) that I root for anyway. Make sure to check out the posts and vote for your favorite guy. 

Who are your favorite romantic leads? Do you go for the bad boy or does the funny man steal your heart too?

Friday, August 26, 2011

Recap: August 22-26

This week is Harry Potter celebration week!


For twelve long years, the dread fortress of Azkaban held an infamous prisoner named Sirius Black. Convicted of killing thirteen people with a single curse, he was said to be the heir apparent to the Dark Lord, Voldemort. 

Now he has escaped, leaving only two clues as to where he might be headed: Harry Potter's defeat of You-Know-Who was Black's downfall as well; and the Azkaban guards heard Black muttering in his sleep, "He's at Hogwarts . . . he's at Hogwarts." 

Harry Potter isn't safe, not even within the walls of his magical school, surrounded by his friends. Because on top of it all, there may well be a traitor in their midst.

Review: HP POA adds depth to the mystery and broke my heart with Harry's troubles. 

I highly recommend HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN by J.K. Rowling to anyone who hasn't read it (& those who have).


Fourteen-year-old Harry Potter joins the Weasleys at the Quidditch World Cup, then enters his fourth year at Hogwarts Academy where he is mysteriously entered in an unusual contest that challenges his wizarding skills, friendships and character, amid signs that an old enemy is growing stronger.

Review: HP GOF is the complete turning point in the series. The dark ending is only a hint of all the danger left to come.

I highly recommend HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE by J.K. Rowling to everyone.


Harry Potter is due to start his fifth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. His best friends Ron and Hermoine have been very secretive all summer and he is desperate to get back to school and find out what has been going on. However, what Harry discovers is far more devastating than he could ever have expected... 

Suspense, secrets and thrilling action from the pen of J.K. Rowling ensure an electrifying adventure that is impossible to put down.

Review: Arguably the darkest book in the series, HP OotP changes pace from the earlier books.

I highly recommend HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX by J.K. Rowling to those poor souls who haven't read it yet.


The war against Voldemort is not going well; even Muggle governments are noticing. Ron scans the obituary pages of the Daily Prophet, looking for familiar names. Dumbledore is absent from Hogwarts for long stretches of time, and the Order of the Phoenix has already suffered losses. 

And yet . . . 

As in all wars, life goes on. Sixth-year students learn to Apparate — and lose a few eyebrows in the process. The Weasley twins expand their business. Teenagers flirt and fight and fall in love. Classes are never straightforward, though Harry receives some extraordinary help from the mysterious Half-Blood Prince. 

So it's the home front that takes center stage in the multilayered sixth installment of the story of Harry Potter. Here are Hogwarts, Harry will search for the full and complex story of the boy who became Lord Voldemort — and thereby find what may be his only vulnerability.

Review: HP HBP has some of my favorite story lines of the entire series: Tom Riddle's memories, Harry/Ginny, Horcruxes, etc.

I highly recommend HARRY POTTER AND HALF-BLOOD PRINCE by J.K. Rowling to anyone breathing.


Begun a decade ago and encompassing six shelf-bending novels, the seventh and concluding volume of the international literary phenomenon that is the Harry Potter saga comes to a bombshell-packed -- and oh so satisfying -- conclusion in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, arguably the most wildly anticipated release in modern publishing history.

As the novel begins, Harry, Ron and Hermione are on the run from Lord Voldemort, whose minions of Death Eaters have not only taken control of the Minister of Magic but have begun to systematically -- and forcibly -- change the entire culture of the magic community: Muggle-born wizards, for example, are being rounded up and questioned, and all "blood traitors" are being imprisoned. But as Voldemort and his followers ruthlessly pursue the fugitive with the lightning bolt scar on his forehead, Potter finally uncovers the jaw-dropping truth of his existence....

Review: Epic end to a masterful series.

I highly recommend HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS by J.K. Rowling to any sentient being.

*Summaries provided by GoodReads.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Don't Judge Me

We've all heard the old adage, Don't judge a book by its cover. I'd love to say I adhere to it one hundred percent. I really, really do.

But I don't.

I want to. I want to say, The cover is not a reflection of the author's work, so I won't even pay attention. 

But I don't.

Because the truth is, a cover has the power to pull me in or push me away. Let's take an example, shall we?

Beautiful, beautiful cover. I came across this while searching for something else on Amazon. I read the description. Meh. I wasn't really interested in fallen angels, but, oh man, the cover had me coming back a few days later. Maybe if I just read the prologue, I'll be into it. *read prologue through Amazon* Meh. I pretty much hate prologues anyway and this one didn't grab me. Again, I let it be. A week later I walked into a bookstore to buy something else. Holy crap this cover is even more beautiful in person! I rushed over to it willing to give it another chance. I read the first few pages of the first chapter. I wasn't hooked, but it was interesting. And I had to own this cover.

So I bought it.

That's right ladies and gentleman, the awesomeness of the cover led me back to the book again and again until I bought it. And you know what? I liked the book. A lot.

But, if it had a crappy cover, would I have given it as many chances? I'd like to say yes, but I'm not really sure.

Let's take another example:

Holy goodness this cover creeps me out. After reading the book, it's completely fitting, but absolutely creepy. I'm not always a fan of creepy.

Anyway, several twitter followers recommended this book to me. Highly recommended. One look at this cover and I thought, Really? You want me to read that? I set it aside in my mind for a few days. Then I looked at the recommendations again. *sigh* I read the description. Interesting. But the cover was still creepy. I put it on my library holds, still not sure if I'd read it. *book arrives* Cover is still. Freaking. Creepy. I put it at the bottom of my library TBR pile, thinking I'd get to it if I got to it.

Finally, finally, I read it. OMG it is amazing! One of the best books I've read. EVER! But, you know what? If I hadn't received so many awesome recommendations about this book, I never would've picked it up off the shelf. And the cover isn't even a bad cover. It's just not my choice.

So, book covers can definitely sway me. They aren't the be-all and end-all, but they carry some weight. And I know I'm not alone in this.

How important are book covers for you? Have you ever picked up a book or boycotted one solely on the cover?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Forbidden Discussion

Holy crap. After finishing FORBIDDEN by Tabitha Suzuma that's about all I could say. It is a fantastic book that my mind continues to drift to almost a week (and several books) later.

FORBIDDEN is not for everyone. I'll give you the three reasons you should be wary of reading.

1) It's about incest. Yup. You heard right. The love between a brother and sister. If the idea of reading about this completely turns you off, then you know right now it's not for you. But, if you are the slightest bit curious about how Tabitha Suzuma approached this topic, I urge you to pick it up.

2) It's a book for mature readers. Yes it's YA and I'm not going to put an age limit on it because I think age is irrelevant, but the subject matter requires a mature audience. I'm not saying anyone can't read it, but I'm not sure an immature reader would be able to get through it.

3) There's explicit sexual content. If you like the closed door variety, this isn't for you. That being said, it's not trashy or pornographic. It's realistic. It matches the tone of the story and (in my mind) it adds to the story as well.

Okay, now that I've scared you all off, I'll tell you why you should read it:  it's beautiful. Heartbreakingly, devastatingly, tragically beautiful. And I'm not just talking the relationship. The whole story made me ache after reading. It's about so much more than a brother and sister in love. It's about all kinds of love.

Besides beautiful, the best descriptor I have is that the story is raw. Everything's raw. The emotions, the characters, the writing. There is an emotional vulnerability present from the first words to the last.

I'm not usually the type of person to explore the greater themes of a novel and contemplate the reasons an author may have chosen to write about a certain topic. However, I definitely did with this one. I'm not sure what the author was thinking when she wrote this, but here are the themes and ideas more pertinent to me while reading.

FAMILY: How far would you go to protect them? To love them? To put yourself aside and make choices in their best interest?

LOVE: What is love and its boundaries? How can love be wrong? Who's to say what kind of love is right or wrong?

CHOICES: The characters have difficult choices to make throughout the story and these choices ultimately define them as people and define the outcome.

SOCIETY: Why do other's opinions have so much impact? What right do outsiders have to condemn individuals and their actions if they aren't hurting anyone?

If you're looking for a book that's going to make you think and feel and ponder long after you close it, you should try this one.

I'd really like to have a discussion about FORBIDDEN, whether it's in the comments or on twitter, so give me a shout out either way (whether or not you've read it).

Friday, August 19, 2011

Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles

Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles is the final book in the Perfect Chemistry series and I've been dying to read it since devouring the earlier two books a few months ago.

From GoodReads:

Luis Fuentes has always been sheltered from the gang violence that nearly destroyed his brothers' lives. But that didn't stop him from taking risks--whether he's scaling a mountain in the Rockies or dreaming of a future as an astronaut, Luis can't stop looking for the next thrill.

Nikki Cruz lives her life by three rules--boys lie to get their way, don't trust a boy who says "I love you," and never date a boy from the south side of Fairfield. Her parents may be from Mexico, but as a doctor's daughter, she has more in common with her north-side neighbors than the Latino Blood at her school. Then she meets Luis at Alex's wedding, and suddenly, she's tempted to break all her rules.

Getting Nikki to take a chance on a southsider is Luis's biggest challenge, until he finds himself targeted by Chuy Soto, the new head of the Latino Blood. When Chuy reveals a disturbing secret about Luis's family, the youngest Fuentes finds himself questioning everything he's ever believed to be true. Will his feelings for Nikki be enough to stop Luis from entering a dark and violent world and permanently living on the edge?

I love this series and Chain Reaction did not disappoint. The series seems to follow a basic template for each book:  bad boy meets good girl, bad boy acts cocky while good girl plays hard to get, steamy romance ensues, bad boy gets the crap beat out of him...and I won't spoil the rest. Chain Reaction follows this basic template, but with a bit of a twist. Luis Fuentes isn't a bad boy like his brothers Carlos and Alex. And Nikki isn't your typical good girl either.

I immediately felt connected to both Luis and Nikki after reading the first chapters from their perspectives. The structure of the novel is a bit different than the others, allowing for greater gaps in time between events. I really liked this approach because it made the romance more believable given the characters and circumstances. Simone Elkeles has a talent for capturing her characters with authenticity. As a Chicagoan who has worked with teen gang members, I think she captures this group particularly well.

Best aspects of Chain Reaction:

1) Simone Elkeles writes the steamiest scenes in YA and Chain Reaction outdoes her previous novels.

2) There's a huge twist in this one I was not expecting. Kept me on my toes as a reader and shocked the heck out of me.

3) We actually get to see Panty Discus in action! (it's not dirty, I promise!)

4) I love the way she integrates the stories and relationships from the previous novels without overshadowing the main characters in the current one. We get to see Alex and Carlos continue to maneuver their way through life without taking away from Luis.

Things that bothered me (and I had to be real nitpicky to think of anything):

1) There was a question/story brought up about Mrs. Fuentes that I wish had been fully answered.

2) Luis makes some stupid decisions. Considering how intelligent he is, it was frustrating to read sometimes.

3) Getting Luis associated with the gang seemed a little too easy. It wasn't unbelievable, but it seemed a little easy in my opinion.

Overall rating:  Go buy it now! 

100th Recommendation Celebration

Aaaah! I'm recommending my 100th book today, so I thought we should celebrate. :D Today, I'll be announcing the winner of my 300 Follower Giveaway, letting you all have a chance to enter my 100th recommendation giveaway, AND posting my very first book review.


Recap: August 15-19

Series week continues with more MORGANVILLE VAMPIRES.

MIDNIGHT ALLEY by Rachel Caine

Claire Danvers's college town may be run by vampires but a truce between the living and the dead made things relatively safe. For a while. Now people are turning up dead, a psycho is stalking her, and an ancient bloodsucker has proposed private mentoring. To what end, Claire will find out. And it's giving night school a whole new meaning.

Review:  The storyline keeps this series hot!

I recommend MIDNIGHT ALLEY by Rachel Caine to fans of vampires, urban fantasy, and long series. 

FEAST OF FOOLS by Rachel Caine

In the town of Morganville, vampires and humans live in relative peace. Student Claire Danvers has never been convinced, though—especially with the arrival of Mr. Bishop, an ancient, old-school vampire who cares nothing about harmony. What he wants from the town’s living and its dead is unthinkably sinister. It’s only at a formal ball, attended by vampires and their human dates, that Claire realizes the elaborately evil trap he’s set for Morganville.

Review:  Rachel Caine keeps the series fresh with new characters and colossal problems plaguing Morganville.

I recommend FEAST OF FOOLS by Rachel Caine to fans of vampires, urban fantasy, and long series.

LORD OF MISRULE by Rachel Caine

In the college town of Morganville, vampires and humans coexist in (relatively) bloodless harmony. Then comes Bishop, the master vampire who threatens to abolish all order, revive the forces of the evil dead, and let chaos rule. But Bishop isn’t the only threat.

Violent black cyclone clouds hover, promising a storm of devastating proportions as student Claire Danvers and her friends prepare to defend Morganville against elements both natural and unnatural.

Review:  Rachel Caine really keeps up the suspense in LORD OF MISRULE.

I recommend LORD OF MISRULE by Rachel Caine to fans of series books, urban fantasy, and vampires.

CARPE CORPUS by Rachel Caine

In the small college town of Morganville, vampires and humans lived in (relative) peace-until all the rules got rewritten when the evil vampire Bishop arrived, looking for the lost book of vampire secrets. He's kept a death grip on the town ever since. Now an underground resistance is brewing, and in order to contain it, Bishop must go to even greater lengths. He vows to obliterate the town and all its inhabitants-the living and the undead. Claire Danvers and her friends are the only ones who stand in his way. But even if they defeat Bishop, will the vampires ever be content to go back to the old rules, after having such a taste of power?

Review:  Action, mystery and romance are combined in this high stakes novel.

I recommend CARPE CORPUS by Rachel Caine to fans of series, urban fantasy, and romance.

THE IRON KING by Julie Kagawa

Meghan Chase has a secret destiny; one she could never have imagined. 
Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan's life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school or at home. 
When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she's known is about to change. 
But she could never have guessed the truth - that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she'll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil no faery creature dare face; and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

Review:  Awesome twist on faerie stories. Loved the idea of iron fey.

I highly recommend THE IRON KING by Julie Kagawa to fans of fantasy. Bonus points for faeries and romance.

*Summaries provided by GoodReads.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Recap: August 9-12

This week starts out the series celebration month. We completed the FAERIEWALKER novels, then dove into the MORGANVILLE VAMPIRES series.

SHADOWSPELL by Jenna Black

On top of spending most of her time in a bunkerlike safe house and having her dates hijacked by a formidable Fae bodyguard, Faeriewalker Dana Hathaway is in for some more bad news: the Erlking and his pack of murderous minions known as the Wild Hunt have descended upon Avalon. With his homicidal appetite and immortal powers, the Erlking has long been the nightmare of the Fae realm. A fragile treaty with the Faerie Queen, sealed with a mysterious spell, is the one thing that keeps him from hunting unchecked in Avalon, the only place on Earth where humans and Fae live together. Which means Dana’s in trouble, since it’s common knowledge that the Faerie Queen wants her – and her rare Faeriewalker powers – dead. The smoldering, sexy Erlking’s got his sights set on Dana, but does he only seek to kill her, or does he have something much darker in mind?

Review:  Jenna Black really upped the ante with dramatic plot twists and seemingly impossible situations.

I recommend SHADOWSPELL by Jenna Black to fans of urban fantasy and dark themes. Bonus points for romance and/or faeries. 

SIRENSONG by Jenna Black

When Dana is invited to Faerie to be officially presented at the Seelie Court, it’s no easy decision. After all, everyone knows Titania, the Seelie Queen, wants her dead. But Titania claims not to be the one behind the death threats; and her son, Prince Henry, makes the decision a whole lot easier when he suggests Dana might be arrested for (supposedly) conspiring with her aunt Grace to usurp the Seelie throne. So she and her father better do as they're told . . .

The journey through Faerie is long—and treacherous. Dana thought it would be a good idea to have friends along, but her sort-of-boyfriend, Ethan, and her bodyguard’s son, Keane, just can’t seem to get along, and Kimber’s crush on Keane isn’t making things any easier. When a violent attack separates Dana from their caravan, the sexy Erlking saves her just in the nick of time . . . and makes it clear that he hasn’t given up on making her his own.

Arriving at Titania’s beautiful palace should be a relief. But Dana is soon implicated in an assassination attempt against Titania’s granddaughter, and is suddenly a fugitive, forced to leave her father behind as she and her friends flee for their lives. Will she be able to prove her innocence before the forces of the Seelie Court—or, worse, the Erlking—catch up with her? And will she save her father before he pays the ultimate price in her stead?

Review:  A wonderful end to a great series. It left me feeling very complete.

I recommend SIRENSONG by Jenna Black to fans of urban fantasy. Quick, entertaining read. Bonus points for faeries and romance.

GLASS HOUSES by Rachel Caine

From the author of the popular Weather Warden series comes the debut of an exciting new series set in Morganville, Texas, where you would be well advised to avoid being out after dark. 

College freshman Claire Danvers has had enough of her nightmarish dorm situation. When Claire heads off-campus, the imposing old house where she finds a room may not be much better. Her new roommates don't show many signs of life, but they'll have Claire's back when the town's deepest secrets come crawling out, hungry for fresh blood.

Review:  Interesting take on vampire society with quirky characters, frightening villains, and just the right amount of sexiness.

I recommend GLASS HOUSES by Rachel Caine to anyone looking for a sexy, urban fantasy series. Especially if you like vampires. 


Claire has her share of challenges. Like being a genius in a school that favors beauty over brains; homicidal girls in her dorm, and finding out that her college town is overrun with the living dead. On the up side, she has a new boyfriend with a vampire-hunting dad. But when a local fraternity throws the Dead Girls' Dance, hell is really going to break loose.

Review: Exhilarating from start to finish. Action packed read.

I recommend THE DEAD GIRLS' DANCE by Rachel Caine fans of urban fantasy, particularly vampire stories.

*Summaries provided by GoodReads

Monday, August 8, 2011

August Posting--Update

In a previous post, I mentioned the need for a posting change in August. I had to take an unexpected hiatus the last week and a half, but I'm back and I've made a decision on posting.

This month, I'll be highlighting a different series each week. Posting will continue on each weekday, starting with a shorter series this week so I can get in six recommendations for the second series. Not each series is yet complete, nor have I read every book in each series (though I have read each book I'm recommending).

Also, I'm continuing with my 300 Follower Giveaway. Check out this post to enter. There's an extra special giveaway happening this month, but you'll have to follow the twitter to catch it. You'll have a full 24 hours to enter, but I'm not posting about it on the blog.


Time to announce this week's special series! Ready?

The FAERIEWALKER series by Jenna Black! I reviewed GLIMMERGLASS (book 1) two weeks ago & I'll talk about the rest of the series this week. Refresh yourself about GLIMMERGLASS here.

Recap: July 25-29

Here are this week's recommendations:

Glimmerglass by Jenna Black

It’s all she’s ever wanted to be, but it couldn’t be further from her grasp… 

Dana Hathaway doesn’t know it yet, but she’s in big trouble.  When her alcoholic mom shows up at her voice recital drunk, again, Dana decides she’s had enough and runs away to find her mysterious father in Avalon: the only place on Earth where the regular, everyday world and the captivating, magical world of Faerie intersect. But from the moment Dana sets foot in Avalon, everything goes wrong, for it turns out she isn't just an ordinary teenage girl—she's a Faeriewalker, a rare individual who can travel between both worlds, and the only person who can bring magic into the human world and technology into Faerie.  

 Soon, Dana finds herself tangled up in a cutthroat game of Fae politics. Someone's trying to kill her, and everyone seems to want something from her, from her newfound friends and family to Ethan, the hot Fae guy Dana figures she’ll never have a chance with… until she does.  Caught between two worlds, Dana isn’t sure where she’ll ever fit in and who can be trusted, not to mention if her world will ever be normal again…

Review:  Great blend of modern culture and faeries. Readers will connect with Dana and yearn to explore more about faeries with her. 

I recommend GLIMMERGLASS by Jenna Black to fans of urban fantasy. Bonus points if you like faeries and/or romance.

The Titan's Curse by Rick Riordan

When the goddess Artemis goes missing, she is believed to have been kidnapped. And now it's up to Percy and his friends to find out what happened. Who is powerful enough to kidnap a goddess? They must find Artemis before the winter solstice, when her influence on the Olympian Council could swing an important vote on the war with the titans. Not only that, but first Percy will have to solve the mystery of a rare monster that Artemis was hunting when she disappeared -- a monster rumored to be so powerful it could destroy Olympus forever.

Review:  My favorite book in the series. Great adventure + great characters = awesomeness.

I highly recommend THE TITAN'S CURSE by Rick Riordan to fans of adventure. Bonus points if you like Greek mythology and/or MG.

Shine by Lauren Myracle

When her best guy friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover who in her small town did it. Richly atmospheric, this daring mystery mines the secrets of a tightly knit Southern community and examines the strength of will it takes to go against everyone you know in the name of justice. 

Against a backdrop of poverty, clannishness, drugs, and intolerance, Myracle has crafted a harrowing coming-of-age tale couched in a deeply intelligent mystery. Smart, fearless, and compassionate, this is an unforgettable work from a beloved author.

Review:  Introspective & insightful with strong forward motion. Wonderful book if you can handle difficult topics. 

I highly recommend SHINE by Lauren Myracle to anyone who can handle difficult topics. So many great elements to this story.

*Summaries provided by GoodReads