Tuesday, November 25, 2014

kick ass giveaway!

Win a FREE copy of The Art of the English Murder: From Jack the Ripper and Sherlock Holmes to Agatha Christie and Alfred Hitchcock !
Contest Rules:
1. Follow this blog :)
2. E-mail your name and this book title to: jenileerose@yahoo.com to enter!
3. Contest ends 12/1 at midnight!

Monday, November 24, 2014

if you're a sarah dessen fan.

Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel by Sara Farizan is a novel just as powerful as the title it carries. Leila is an Iranian-American high school junior just trying to make it through high school (and all its dating rituals), get good grades, and please her very traditional Middle Eastern parents. It's tough enough being one of the very few brown students at Armstead Academy, let alone being the only openly gay one, so she's been keeping that little detail to herself for years. Until a beautiful new student enrolls in the Academy, and Leila begins to think Saskia may be worth the risk. Seeking help from unlikely characters, Leila realizes that she is not the only student at Armstead Academy with a secret, but will this give her the courage to come out to her closest friends and family?

If you're a Sarah Dessen fan (which I whole-heartedly am!) I absolutely recommend this book, plus she recommends it.  It's a touchy subject, but I do think it will be good for your teen (no matter what their sexual orientation) to read Leila's story. At this age so many teenagers are struggling with personal identity, many finding it terrifying to be themselves. This is a novel about embracing who you are, even if it's different from the status quo.

And always remember kids, it's okay to be different but it's never okay to be an asshole :)

Friday, November 21, 2014

holidays and homicide.

This is the time of year when we are supposed to share what we are thankful for. Well, today I am thankful for Susan Ericksen and her lovely reading voice which made J. D. Robb's futuristic cop thriller, Festival in Death extra amazing, even in audio form.

Set during the Christmas season of the year 2060, Lieutenant Eve Dallas is looking for the person responsible for the murder of personal trainer, Trey Ziegler. The suspect list is growing as long as Santa's seeing as Trey and his abs left behind many a woman scorned, making him a not particularly likable dead guy. I personally enjoyed how this installment of the In Death series was not as dark as others. It's a nice holiday read as Eve and Roarke have their annual holiday bash.  Festive and fun, if you don't mind some murder with your figgy pudding. While not as violent as past novels, the plot has some clever twists and turns that shock the characters as well as the reader.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

heavy snow, light reading.

It is officially the third consecutive day that the Buffalo area has been snowed in. I'm not complaining, I've just been drinking a lot and reading. Wilhelm Staehle has definitely made it more fun with his quirky postcard books that are set to be released December 3rd, just in the time for the holidays, which are coming fast judging by the 2343242 feet of snow in my backyard. Both postcard books will make the perfect stocking stuffer, grab bag or secret Santa gifts, especially for that creepy co-worker or goofy family member you always have a hard time buying for.

Stars and Swipes: 30 Postcards of Awkward Americana is definitely for the All-American man or woman in your life who has a good sense of humor. Staehle highlights less popular and more awkward moments in history, my favorite kind. I even learned a few things, like Lewis and Clark were a originally a trio. Lewis, Clark and Dwayne. Because you know there is always that one guy complaining the whole time you're trying to get a job done.


Hugs and Misses: 30 Postcards of Awkward Romance has some of the worst pick up lines I've ever heard. I absolutely loved it. Staehle has created silly silhouettes and one-liners of romances gone wrong. As someone with a tardy history who also thinks of awkward moments as a high, I appreciated all of the failed or inappropriate attempts at love.


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

beautiful graphics, great themes.

The Hockey Saint is the second installment in the Forever Friends trilogy by Howard Shapiro, following the extremely popular, The Stereotypical Freaks. Graphic novels are all my middle grade boys want to read at this point, so Shapiro has been a real lifesaver. This sports-oriented graphic novel revolves around world renowned Canadian hockey player Jeramiah Jacobson and his huge fan, an ordinary college kid named Tom Leonard who is still grieving the loss of his parents. The two meet by chance, become friends, and Tom learns that celebrities really don't have it all. The fame and spotlight is slowly eating away at Jeramiah, and although Tom has a lot of his own stuff to deal with, he realizes that by putting forth the effort to save others, you can also save yourself.

Shapiro has a huge win here. A graphic novel carrying themes such as depression, helping others, the meaning of true friendship, and addiction. The Hockey Saint carries with it a moral compass and takeaway values for an age group that desperately needs both.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

dark and funny, just like your teenager.

It always excites me when the first book of a trilogy comes out. I just love trilogies, there's always something to look forward to. I especially love a good YA novel trilogy, like Edward Carey's Heap House: The Iremonger Trilogy: Book One, because it's amazing, completely odd and will keep my kiddos reading!

When it comes to anything YA, the stranger the better, and Carey totally has that covered with his main character, Clod Iremonger. For generations, the Iremonger family have been responsible for “the Heaps,” a tremendous sea of trash and discarded items outside an alternate-universe London. Clod is an outcast of the family because of his strange ability to hear objects talk. For example, his uncle lost his safety pin, and Clod was the only one able to find it again because he could hear it. Anyways, both Clod and a feisty orphan named Lucy Pennant alternate narrating as they begin to uncover dark secrets of the Iremonger family.

Monday, November 17, 2014

the art of the english murder.

I have gotten pretty into the new TV series, Forever that revolves around an English Medical Examiner who has been alive since the early 1800's because when he dies,  he doesn't actually die. He turns up, stark naked, in the Hudson River. Anyways, he used to be a doctor a hundred or so years ago and now he helps solve murders because being alive for so long makes you seriously smart. A Jack the Ripper type episode aired a few weeks ago....which leads me to my next review...

The English (and Americans, okay everybody really) have always had a fascination with crime. The more dark and twisted, the better. The Art of the English Murder: From Jack the Ripper and Sherlock Holmes to Agatha Christie and Alfred Hitchcock by Lucy Worsley retells the stories of famous murders, trials, and horrid creatures who have turned into legends for their crimes. Worsley is quite the storyteller and historian, covering the letter of the law before police forces were created in England, and so on. This book includes both fact and fiction, murder in real life and in literature, and murder based on literature so vividly, you'll forget which is which.