Archive for December, 2008

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Books I Read in Dec. 2008

December 31, 2008

Here’s what I read this past month in chronological order:

By the way, reviews for all of these will come shortly.

1. Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers: Violent, sad, and good (at the end, especially).

2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K Rowling: Really amazing. I am so late… but better late then never.

3. Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom: Inspiring, sad, beautiful.

4. Girl vs. Bear: Stories from the 80s by Lisa Kerr: I really enjoyed this! 

5. Skeleton Creek by Patrick Carman: Scary and interesting.

6. In Your Room by Jordanna Fraiberg: Less than I expected, but still good.


 

Needless to say, it was a very productive month. Thank you, Winter Break, without I wouldn’t have read three of these.
NFL New England Patriots from Fanzz
 

What did YOU read? Leave it in the comments 🙂 Happy New Year, btw!

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A Blogger Chat: Yay or Nay?

December 30, 2008

Hello everyone!

I got the following idea because of The Page Flipper‘s Author Chats (which are awesome and you should check out). I have been thinking about holding a book blogger chat. It would involve basically any book blogger (or author, if they’d like to join us) in the YA world who would like to chat about whatever they’d like: books, music, TV, movies. It could be a cool way for us to ditch the robotized reviews to have a real-time talk and make friends with each other (or rather, make better friends).

It would be held on a chat site like chatzy or chatmaker at 8 pm eastern time one day between Jan. 5 and 11.

What I would like is if you could give me feedback on this, commenting which day from January 5 to the 11 is the best day for you to chat. 

I really hope you guys like this idea. Leave all your thoughts in the comments!

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Interview with Susane Colasanti!

December 27, 2008

Susane Colasanti is the awesome author of When It Happens and Take Me There. I have read When It Happens and have Take Me There on my shelf. I really loved how true Susane’s characters were in When It Happens, especially the main girl character, Sara. She was nice enough to answer these interview questions for me. I hope you enjoy and remember to leave a comment at the end to let Susane and me know what you thought!

Links: 

Website:  http://www.susanecolasanti.com/
Blog:  http://windowlight.livejournal.com/
MySpace:  http://www.myspace.com/susanecolasanti
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/people/Susane-Colasanti/678479550

 

Questions in bold, answers in normal text. Drumroll, please…

 

1.  Are you working on something now? Can you tell us anything about it?

 

I just finished polishing my third book, Waiting for You, which will be released on July 9.  It’s about a girl who’s dealing with depression and a boy who wants to help her.  Now I’m writing my fourth book, Something Like Fate.

 

2.  Were you like Sara from When It Happens while growing up?

Yes, Sara and I have a lot in common.  She is the character closest to my heart for this reason.  I’ve always been a dreamer, hoping that one day I would be living a better life than the one I had as a teen.  That hope helped me get through some hard times.  I never stopped believing that things would improve, and they did.  Sara has the same passionate hope for her future.  Also, we both have koala bears named Chez and we’re both organization freaks.

 

3.  Would you ever think of writing a sequel to When It Happens?

This is probably the most frequent question readers ask me (tied with whether When It Happens will be made into a movie).  I’d love to write a sequel and find out what happens to Sara and Tobey in college.  But it wouldn’t be for a while, since my next few books have already been planned out.  I’m also a bit hesitant because I wouldn’t want to disappoint my readers with a sequel that didn’t meet their expectations.  That’s a challenge I’m not yet ready to take on.

 

4.  What are your favorite YA books? Authors?

It’s righteous that there are so many incredible young-adult authors out there today!  When I was a teen, this was not the case.  The selection of teen books was quite lacking back in the day.  I’m so relieved that teens now have many quality choices to keep them reading.

 

My favorite YA authors are Laurie Halse Anderson and Blake Nelson.  I really admire their unique styles and ability to capture intense emotions without overcrowding the page.  They also tend to focus on dialogue, which I find to be the most interesting part of a story.  Some of my fave books by other authors are The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton (dude, I reread that book and watched the movie so many times), The Late Great Me by Sandra Scoppettone, Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume, and Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli.

 

5.  What do you like best about being an author?

Connecting with teens.  As a high school science teacher, I got to work with teens every day.  But as an author, I can reach out to more teens and hopefully improve their lives in some way.  Even if someone likes reading one of my books to escape for a while, I’ve maybe made their day a little brighter and that makes me happy.  Ideally, I want readers to feel better about their problems by relating to my characters and how they deal with common problems.  In this way, I hope my readers feel less alone.

 

6.  What inspired you to write When It Happens?

My senior year of high school sparked the idea for the story’s main plot.  Tobey was inspired by someone real.  Some of the events in the book are based on things that actually happened to me in high school.  In this way, When It Happens reflects a time in my life that none of my other books have.

 

I’ve always been obsessed with the concept of soul mates.  I know that soul mates are real because I’ve had more than one in my life.  I wanted When It Happens to capture the energy of that connection in a way that hopefully inspires readers to never give up searching for that kind of passion in their own lives.  Also, I wanted to write a sweet love story that’s fun to read.

 

7.  What kind of music do you listen to?

My main musical taste would be classified as old-school.  Musicians like the Cure, R.E.M., Paul Simon, and James Taylor have always rocked my world.  Some stuff from this century is good, too.  I adore John Mayer (he’s always incorporated in my books) and am a proud guitar-pick-carrying member of the John Mayer Fan Club.  I also love Coldplay, Death Cab and Maroon 5.  Although I tend to play my favorite CDs over and over, I’m always open to hearing new music.  When lyrics speak to me and sound like my life, I’m there.

 

8.  Why do you write in alternate narrations?

As a teen reader, every young-adult book I remember reading (except for one) was only told from the girl’s perspective.  I was always dying to know what the boy character was thinking, what he talked about with his friends, and how he really felt about the main girl character.  So I promised myself that if I ever wrote a book, I would show the boy’s perspective as well so my readers could understand a more complete truth about him.  In Take Me There, I thought adding a second girl’s perspective would enrich the story.

 

However, my third and fourth books are only told in one perspective.  For those stories, revealing the main boy character’s point of view would have been giving away too much.

 

9.  What’s a typical day for you like?

Writing in the afternoon usually works best for me unless I’m on deadline, in which case I work all day.  When I’m working on a new book, I write five pages a day, five days a week.  If I’m revising, I tend to work in the afternoon until my brain is fried. 

 

In the morning, I like to take care of online stuff, like email, my blog, and checking in at Facebook and MySpace.  Some mornings I go to the gym and get busy on the elliptical.  My gym has personal monitors on the machines, so I like to go at 11:00 to watch The View.  The best part of my mornings is not having to get up at a ridiculously early hour anymore.  Yay for daylight! 

 

10. List your current Top Five Obsessions.

The Office (mostly John Krasinski), full-spectrum light bulbs, Death Cab’s Transatlanticism, Gelly Roll pens, Bliss body butter

 

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Yes, I know, she’s super cool. Now, what did you think? Are you excited for Susane’s new book Waiting for You

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Fly On The Wall by E. Lockhart

December 26, 2008

Title: Fly on the Wall

Author: E. Lockhart

Edition: Harcover

Number of Pages:182.

Grade: C+

Contains: Coming-of-age, Drama, Romance, Relationships.

 

Anaylis of Book (1-10 on each aspect):
Writing: 7
Plot: 9
Characters: 8
Wow: 7

 

Summary: This book deals with a girl named Gretchen Yee who is very much antisocial. She only has one true friend, Katya, until she starts “being busy.” Gretchen is the ordinary girl at Manhattan High School for the Arts, a school where everybody strives to be different. On a usual day Gretchen is flustered-maybe about her ex Shane who is not “the new guy” anymore but the popular one or that her dad is divorcing her mom because he found a new girlfriend- and wonders why guys are the way they are. As silly as it may sound, she says she wishes she could be a fly on the boys’ locker room. Little does she know… the next day she wakes up and she’s a fly! She uses her new-found body to spy on the males in her class and home, including her crush Titus. She sees that guys do have problems and even feelings. If and when she turns back into a human, will she see things differently?  

Review: I enjoyed this book, sure, but it was definitely not E. Lockhart’s best. It was whatever, truthfully. I thought the characters were different than the typical ones used in YA books. They were cool, and I could relate to Grethen. I especially liked Titus. One thing that I kinda don’t understand is what happens with Carlo/Xavier/Gunther. What’s the point in having them in the book? I do kind of want to be a fly… because who doesn’t want to know what the boys in our lives do. The ending was rather predictable but still happy and cute. It was quick and easy, so I recommend it for a nice summer read.

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Merry Christmas to all!

December 25, 2008

Hi guys!

I hope you spend lots of quality time with your family and that you receive lots of presents for being good boys and girls this year.

Can you believe it’s almost 2009? Can’t wait to see me writing mon/date/08 on my schoolwork for 3 more weeks until I get used to 09.

Be safe and readdd all you can! 

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. 

Click on the link for a playlist from imeem.com:

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New Year’s Resolution

December 24, 2008

I was tagged by Liv to share three of my New Year Resolutions.

Here goes:

1. Read more. Like 2-3 or more books a week.

2. Go out more and in turn make better friends. Enjoy life. Be a high-schooler.

3. Figure out what career I want to follow. I want to do something with books or forensics or both. Decide, decide, decide.   

I tag:

Carol from Bookluver-Carol Reviews.

Dominique from The Book Vault.

Em from Em’s Bookshelf.

Merry Christmas, Happy holidays, and Happy New Year!

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Waiting on Wednesday (2)

December 24, 2008

 

 

 

breakingthespine.blogspot.com

I’m not the first to wait on this one, but this book deserves another Waiting on Wednesday holler.

Book: Envy by Anna Godbersen

Summary (from Harper Collins): Two months after Elizabeth Holland’s dramatic homecoming, Manhattan eagerly awaits her return to the pinnacle of society. When Elizabeth refuses to rejoin her sister Diana’s side, however, those watching New York’s favorite family begin to suspect that all is not as it seems behind the stately doors of No. 17 Gramercy Park South.

Farther uptown, Henry and Penelope Schoonmaker are the city’s most celebrated couple. But despite the glittering diamond ring on Penelope’s finger, the newlyweds share little more than scorn for each other. And while the newspapers call Penelope’s social-climbing best friend, Carolina Broad, an heiress, her fortune—and her fame—are anything but secure, especially now that one of society’s darlings is slipping tales to the eager press.

In this next thrilling installment of Anna Godbersen’s bestselling Luxe series, Manhattan’s most envied residents appear to have everything they desire: Wealth. Beauty. Happiness. But sometimes the most practiced smiles hide the most scandalous secrets. . . .

Why Do I Want It?: Because The Luxe series is super awesome and I love the story, the characters, the writing… everything that this series has offered. This new installment makes me do my happy dance.

When It Arrives: Jan 27, 2009. Mark your CALENDARS.