Friday, June 26, 2009

The Demon's Lexicon ~ Sarah Rees Brennan

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Pub. Date: June 2009
Age Range: Young Adult


Nick and his brother, Alan, have spent their lives on the run from magic. Their father was murdered, and their mother was driven mad by magicians and the demons who give them power. The magicians are hunting the Ryves family for a charm that Nick's mother stole -- a charm that keeps her alive -- and they want it badly enough to kill again.
Danger draws even closer when a brother and sister come to the Ryves family for help. The boy wears a demon's mark, a sign of death that almost nothing can erase...and when Alan also gets marked by a demon, Nick is desperate to save him. The only way to do that is to kill one of the magicians they have been hiding from for so long.
Ensnared in a deadly game of cat and mouse, Nick starts to suspect that his brother is telling him lie after lie about their past. As the magicians' Circle closes in on their family, Nick uncovers the secret that could destroy them all.

Ok, let me say the Winchester brothers can definitely take Nick & Alan to the next level. Am I the only one who connected the dots? C'mon, admit it... you did. If not... Ah! Light bulb moment. LOL.

Sarah Rees Brennan's The Demon's Lexicon is definitely movie worthy. Listening Hollywood? Spielberg? Howard? Lucas? Bruckheimer? Just sayin'...

Brennan's Ryves brothers are unequivocal, well written & intriguing! Brennan could of just written half the literary pyrotechnics & The Demon's Lexicon would still be electrifying!

Brennan's debut is the just the tip of many great works of fiction to come from this amazing scribe.

Nick is a determined character w/ an acerbic wit that distinguishes him from the standard male leads in today's young adult fiction. Vision's of Potter dance in my head. Nick could be distant kin to the incomparable Potter boy. I don't know, there is just something that sits on my shoulder & pokes me w/ this slight comparison.

The Demon's Lexicon is set in contemporary London rich w/ action, raw w/ emotion & a dark, fast-paced read. Infact, you may find yourself sneaking off to read The Demon's Lexicon because you just have to know why...

Nah... you'll have to read it to find out. Nope! No spoilers from me.

Nick's raw personality is engaging & Alan... well... WOW!!!

Mae is a secondary character tossed in as the "it girl" you know, the one that catches the Ryves' brothers eyes... Well, there is more to Mae than being the prize to the boy w/ the most toys. She is a strong willed character w/ spunk & a fierce devotion to her brother Jamie. Jamie is an interesting character & I am restless to learn more about him in the second installment.

Mae & Jamie are not just filler Brennan tossed in to move the plot along, they are magnetic players that shine on their own.

Brennan's The Demon's Lexicon doesn't just toss everything @ you & leaves you shaking you head in disbelief, it builds to a crescendo. Well, not to spoil any of the pulse pounding deliciousness... the pinnacle is shattering! 'Nuff said!

Brennan does an excellent job unraveling secrets. Brennan's twists & turns propels the plot to spine tingling heights! Kudos to Brennan for making The Demon's Lexicon read like a 3D film.

Please, pass the popcorn & diet vanilla Pepsi!

Nick is an arrogant teenage boy who comes across unlikable, but you just smirk @ his 'tude & find yourself loving & hating him. So, Nick tends to be an enthralling character you love to hate!

Alan is alluring & that's all you're getting from me!

Brennan pens a world of body inhabiting demons, nefarious magicians & tosses in whimsy to make The Demon's Lexicon so darn entertaining!

Nick & Alan's mom's intermittent presence made me want mom around more, but Brennan did a marvelous job creating her. Nick's strife & turmoil pulsated so intensely I kept holding my breath! Just thinking about it now has my skin prickling.

The Demon's Lexicon's ending is mind-blowing!

So, grab a copy of The Demon's Lexicon!

Check out Sarah:

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sweet Love ~ Sarah Strohmeyer

Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
Pub. Date: June 2009


Betty Mueller believed she did right by secretly ending her daughter Julie's relationship with Michael Slayton, a wild, older neighborhood heartthrob. Twenty years later, Betty has come to realize her mistake. Workaholic Julie is now the single mom of a teenager—and Michael, the one man who could make her happy, has been out of her life for the past two decades.Determined to make amends, Betty schemes to reunite the couple in a dessert class. And with the love of her mother and daughter, her own determination, and lots of chocolate, Julie's chance for romance is all the higher...

I LOVE Sarah's Bubbles series. I am a Bubbles head & proud of it (yes, I am a yahoo carrying member). I am also going to say, my heart belongs to the Bubbles series & nothing Sarah writes will be as good as Ms. Yablonsky's hilarious series! For real! I mean, hello Bubbles Unbound scooped up the Agatha Award for best first novel in 2001.

That said & out of the way, I will say Sarah has whipped up a savory morsel in Sweet Love. This is Sarah's best stand alone to date.

Sweet Love is delectable. Sarah Strohmeyer has created a beautifully written novel that dares you to care & get invested in Julie's life. Julie is a single mom doing her best to do the right thing. When I think of Julie, the word mosaic comes to mind.

Sweet Love
is a heart-rending novel rich w/ emotion. Michael is a brilliant gem. He simply steals the show. Julie's mom, Betty, reminds us just how precious our mom's are. Strohmeyer hits a home run delving into the heart of mother/daughter dynamics. Strohmeyer shimmers as she tenderly & realistically gives us a peek into the lives of Julie & Betty. *Tissues*.

Sweet Love
is a quick read that packs an ardent wallop. Strohmeyer's writing is so riveting, you can't help but empathize w/ Strohmeyer's delghtful cast of characters.

Strohmeyer's Sweet Love is as frothy as a chocolate soufflé. Sheer bliss.

Sweet Love
is a bit slow to simmer but as soon as Michael appears the book bubbles over w/ yummy goodness.

Strohmeyer tosses in a plot twist @ the end that took me by surprise. Kudos to Sarah for penning such a charming novel that invites you into the hearts & souls of the sweetest characters to come along in a long time.

The cover is heavenly, huh? Magnolia bakery anyone...

Monday, June 22, 2009

Swoon ~ Nina Malkin

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Pub. Date: May 2009
Age Range: Young Adult


Torn from her native New York City and dumped in the land of cookie-cutter preps, Candice is resigned to accept her posh, dull fate. Nothing ever happens in Swoon, Connecticut...until Dice's perfect, privileged cousin Penelope nearly dies in a fall from an old tree, and her spirit intertwines with that of a ghost. His name? Sinclair Youngblood Powers. His mission? Revenge. And while Pen is oblivious to the possession, Dice is all too aware of Sin. She's intensely drawn to him -- but not at all crazy about the havoc he's wreaking. Determined to exorcise the demon, Dice accidentally sets Sin loose, gives him flesh, makes him formidable. Now she must destroy an even more potent -- and irresistible -- adversary, before the whole town succumbs to Sin's will. Only trouble is, she's in love with him.
What do you do when the boy of your dreams is too bad to be true?

Got Edge? Yes! Got Steamy? Yes!

Nina's Malkin's Swoon is a rich, sinister novel that is not to be missed. Definitely not your cookie cutter YA paranormal novel. Malkin carves a stone & inserts gritty goodness into the young adult paranormal genre. Dare I say, sinfully scrumptious! Yes, I dare say, Malkin's Swoon is sinfully scrumptious w/ a twist of naughty!

Candice (Dice) is an engaging character that makes you sit up, take notice & give a darn about her & her fevered emotions. Dice is not flat, flavorless or insipid like some "popular" paranormal characters (thank you, Ms. Malkin). Dice is effervescently sketched, savvy & abundantly layered. Kudos to Malkin for introducing a heroine we all can root for.

Malkin is a story connoisseurs high end goods. She knows how to create well developed characters & an atmosphere that is hauntingly decadent. Malkin has skills & Swoon displays them.

Dice's feelings for Sin may be really distorted but you do sympathize -- some may even identify with -- her rationale. Thanks to Malkin's superb writing you empathize w/ Dice's fervent emotions instead of thinking Dice is a demented head case.

Swoon packs a wallop & remains w/ you long after you close the book. Malkin has delivered a provocative tale.

A definite addition to your reading list this summer & one to keep handy for rainy days.

Psst! Sex & drugs are an everyday occurrence to young adults & Swoon does allude to those issues, so keep it in mind when recommending this book to adolescents.

Hurry & pick up a copy of Swoon & enjoy the entrancing world of Nina Malkin.

Check out Nina @

Friday, June 19, 2009

How to Buy a Love of Reading ~ Tanya Egan Gibson

Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
Pub. Date: May 2009

Courtesy of Tanya Egan Gibson & Dutton/Penguin:

To Carley Wells, words are the enemy. Her tutor’s innumerable SAT flashcards. Her personal trainer’s “fifty-seven pounds overweight” assessment. And the endless reading assignments from her English teacher, Mr. Nagel. When Nagel reports to her parents that she has answered “What is your favorite book” with “Never met one I liked,” they decide to fix what he calls her “intellectual impoverishment.” They will commission a book to be written just for her—one she’ll have to love—that will impress her teacher and the whole town of Fox Glen with their family’s devotion to the arts. They will be patrons— the Medicis of Long Island. They will buy their daughter The Love Of Reading.

Impossible though it is for Carley to imagine loving books, she is in love with a young bibliophile who cares about them more than anything. Anything, that is, but a good bottle of scotch. Hunter Cay, Carley’s best friend and Fox Glen’s resident golden boy, is becoming a stranger to her lately as he drowns himself in F. Scott Fitzgerald, booze, and Vicodin.

When the Wellses move writer Bree McEnroy—author of a failed meta-novel about Odysseus’ failed journey home through the Internet—into their mansion to write Carley’s book, Carley’s sole interest in the project is to distract Hunter from drinking and give them something to share. But as Hunter’s behavior becomes erratic and dangerous, she finds herself increasingly drawn into the fictional world Bree has created, and begins to understand for the first time the power of stories—those we read, those we want to believe in, and most of all, those we tell ourselves about ourselves. Stories powerful enough to destroy a person. Or save her.

Tanya Egan Gibson's intriguing debut How to Buy a Love of Reading is w/o a doubt an engrossing novel.

Gibson's cast of characters are engaging, delightful & interesting. Gibson's writing is truly beautiful.

Juggling all the characters points of view while keeping How to Buy a Love of Reading flowing smoothly instead of tumbling into murky verbiage is where Gibson shines.

Gibson's players are painted w/ rich, robust colors mesmerizing you right from the start. The characters simply soar from the page performing just for you.

Gibson hit the nail on the head showcasing the wealthy lifestyles of Long Islanders. It is rather sad how the rich try to out "money" their own but it is an ongoing occurrence. Gibson's unique take on what money can & can not buy is forceful. Can money really buy a love of reading? As a reader, I'd love to have an unending flow of money (listening book universe) to buy books, bookcases, book gadgets & airfare to attend all of those ultra fabulous book events. Granted, money can buy me all the books on the planet but a hunger for it money just can't buy. My fervor for reading stems from the core of who I am; infact, it shapes who I am in a lot of ways.

Gibson does a sensational job incorporating a lot of modern concepts into How to Buy a Love of Reading. Gibson highlights the obsession many individuals have w/ reality television by skillfully showcasing Carly's obsession w/ the unimaginative genre.

Gibson integrates How to Buy A Love of Reading w/ hot social topics as the novel prudently deals w/unrequited love, weight, body image, self-esteem, alcoholism & drug abuse.

Despite the fact that Gibson's vastly well written & intricate characters are financially affluent, emotionally & spiritually they are impoverished beings. Kudos to Gibson for unmasking the crux of the moneyed & spotlighting the creatures they sincerely are.

Gibson's players may start out as shallow well-heeled hoi polloi but Gibson's eloquent writing unveils a depth to the characters that is delightfully surprising!

Bottom line, literature is something that inspires you, extends your awareness, enhances your life & gives you choices beyond compare!

How to Buy a Love of Reading does start off rather measured but takes off & doesn't let go.
Gibson has you so engaged you find yourself lost in the lives of Carley, Bree & Hunter. So, if you are having trouble @ the beginning, whatever you do... don't give up!

I still find it hard to believe this is Tanya Egan Gibson's debut novel. Where's Ashton? Tanya, am I being punk'd?

Hurry, grab a copy of How to Buy a Love of Reading!

Check out Tanya's awesome website @

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Elite ~ Jennifer Banash

Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
Pub. Date: June 2008
Age Range: Young Adult


From the top, you can see everything . . . except yourself.When Casey McCloy steps into the elegant Bramford building, she's overwhelmed. Fresh from the Midwest, she's moved to New York's Upper East Side to live with her grandmother and attend the prestigious Meadowlark Academy. Here all that matters is who you know. The girl to know is Madison Macallister: popular, pretty, platinum blond. She's not just Casey's new classmate and neighbor; she's an icon. So Casey aims to get in with Madison and her gorgeous gal-pals from the start. As the reigning queen of coolness, Madison is capable of destroying reputations with one well timed whisper. Better to be on her good side.But after a city-haute makeover from her new frenemy Madison, Casey is wearing the right clothes, saying the right things, and meeting the right people-including Drew, the boy-about-town who Madison thinks belongs to her and her alone.

Hmmm... Another series about a Midwestern beauty moving to NYC. Another series featuring more rich, beautiful, bratty teens.

Excuse me, haven't we done this before? Yes! Unfortunately, many times over! Excessively!

Enter Jennifer Banash. JB has skills. Ms. Banash extinguishes the competition w/ her Manolo's then struts down to Bergdorf's to pick up a pair of
Corset Bootie 's (Dior), a Stella McCartney Piercing Tote & a Kooba Blake Leather Shoulder Bag (love)! Banash is clearly a rock star & the others pale in comparison screeching karaoke.

Like movie theater popcorn w/ extra butta, a foot massage, a sundae w/ caramel, marshmallow & cherries ;P; a shopping spree @ Christian Louboutin, Victoria Secret & Sephora. Jennifer Banash has a sure fire hit w/ her fabulous Elite series.

Banash's characters are authentic, unique & interesting. Every player has a tale to tell & it is not just filler... it's substance. Banash was brilliant crafting the chapters in alternating points of view. It brings all the characters front & center. No kibbles & bits for the secondary characters...

Banash illuminates every cast member w/ a glow of their own. The Elite isn't just about "poor" Casey & snotty Madison doesn't overshadow the novel w/ her grandstanding & diva tantrums...

Jennifer deftly displays every character's voice & allows them to be genuine characters not high society caricatures! Applause!

Sophie & Phoebe aren't Madison's accessories they are three dimensional young adults w/ intriguing lives w/ secrets to confront, endure & disclose.

Now, I'm not going to leave out the tidbit that the begining of The Elite was a bit slow going but once Banash sets the members up...away we go!

Some may grouse @ the designer brands dripping off the pages, but it is a way of life in the world of big bucks! Eventually, Banash eases up on the labels & gives us the true grit.

Drama, check! Scandal, of course! Fashionista's, come hither... The Elite is a must to toss into your tote!

Kudos to Banash, she didn't wave a La Perla garment & make Casey uber pop. Nah, just wouldn't be believable. Double kudos to Banash for the way she piloted Drew ~ spot on!

Jennifer's characters are extremely well developed. Madison is one of the nastiest something ~ somethings, but Banash writes w/ such emotion, you can't help but feel empathy for the bratty prima donna!

Madison tells it like it is & remains true to form. Casey seems to lose herself once stepping foot in NYC. She is too easily manipulated & I wondered @ times if she left her smarts back home.

Grrr.... I hate when a intelligent female loses sight of herself for a guy or a clique. Weak! Casey needs to toughen up if she's going to make it in the big A. Casey has the backbone to make it... she is just finding her way in Gotham city.

Banash has a hit on her hands & a mean pair of stilettos on her feet!

Check out Jennifer @ or on MySpace.

Hurry, grab a copy of The Elite @


Barnes and Noble

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Wings ~ Aprilynne Pike

Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Pub. Date: May 2009
Age Range: 12 and up


Laurel was mesmerized, staring at the pale things with wide eyes. They were terrifyingly beautiful—too beautiful for words.
Laurel turned to the mirror again, her eyes on the hovering petals that floated beside her head. They looked almost like wings.
In this extraordinary tale of magic and intrigue, romance and danger, everything you thought you knew about faeries will be changed forever.

Let me start this review off by saying, I don't give a hoot if Stephanie Meyer endorses this book or not. This is Aprilynne's creation & not Ms. Meyer's! That said, let's get to it.

Fairies. Hmmm... Is this going to be a theme authors & publisher's are going to inundate us with until the next trend takes flight? Spare me. While I'm venting let me say, I'm not impressed with the copycat plots & the lack of original themes lining up bookstore shelves across the globe.

Enter Aprilynne Pike & her debut novel Wings. So, is the buzz fluttering around this bestselling novel authentic or hype? I must say, you need to read Wings yourself before you rush to make judgements based on the blurb by Meyer. Lovers of Meyer's will flitter to Wings based on her backing, however, haters will dig in their heels & deny themselves the opportunity to experience Pike's young adult fiction, Wings.

Pike's inimitable insight into the universe of faeries is momentous. Pike unearths a provocative symmetry between fantasy & reality. Wings is an enchanting contemporary fairy tale w/ the precise synthesis of excitement, humor, romance, friendship & peril.

Wings does start slow & there are some lengthy moments but Pike builds momentum as the story unfolds. Pike's writing is velvety & flows serenely.

Written in the third person, Wings showcases all the thrilling occurrences in a wider lens. Kudos to Pike for not falling into the first person point of view.

I have not read anything as one-of-a-kind as Pike's Wings; I am extremely interested in finding out where Pike is leading Laurel on this fun journey. Nope, no spoilers from moi!

Wings delves into an alluring land of mythology in which Pike navigates skillfully. Pike's unusual progression made me suspend disbelief. I may have a vivid imagination, but am a bit jaded.

Pike's take on mythology is fun & believable. Heck, Pike can teach mythology if all else fails & she will no doubt captivate her audience. I don't think Pike has to close her laptop or put the cap on her pen.

Unfortunately, Pike's characters aren't as powerful as they could be. I understand this is the first of four books & I do see Pike finding her footing & writing them w/ the vibrancy & angst I know she is capable of. Pike has it, so she needs to show off her dramatic chops by holding nothing back in the rest of the series.

Laurel needs to come in to her own & become more dimensional. I really want to see more depth to Laurel ~ beauty only goes so far. David is charming & I want Pike to delve deeper into what David is all about. Tamani. Tamani is magnetic. He is simply electrifying, like fireworks lighting up the night sky. Does that make me fall into Team Tamani? Not quite. Team David's got it going on, but... Let's see where Pike is taking her story. No spoilers coming from this review.

Wings is an enthralling paranormal fantasy that is written for young adults but younger teens can read this beguiling tale.

Pike is a welcome new voice & if Wings is any indication she will be doing blurbs for up & coming YA talent in no time.

Psst! Isn't the cover riveting?!

Check out Aprilylynne's website @

Monday, June 8, 2009

Secrets of My Hollywood Life ~ Jen Calonita

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Pub. Date: May 2007
Age Range: Young Adult
Secrets of My Hollywood Life Series


What if... Your picture was taped inside teenage boys' lockers across America, your closets were bursting with never-worn designer clothing, and the tabloids constantly asked whether you were losing your "good girl" status?It's a glamorous life, but sixteen-year-old Kaitlin Burke, costar of one of the hottest shows on TV, is exhausted from the pressures of fame. Then she hits on an outrageously daring solution, one that has to remain top secret or it will jeopardize everything she's ever worked for.

Jen Calonita is my new bff... Shhh! She just doesn't know it! I mean, we are both from Long Island. We think Kaitlin & Liz are awesome.

Secrets of My Hollywood Life is a cute, breezy read that is all about fun! Fun! It is really refreshing to just curl up w/ a kicky read that is just darn enjoyable! No vamps or zombies running around ~ Yay! Jen is like a glass of lemonade when the sun is blaring on your skin... revitalizing!

Jen writes as if she was born w/ a Bic™ attached to her hand. I was just pulled in to Kaitlin's world which is more than Hollywood fluff. Love it! Liz is the friend we all want in our world. Liz is a delightful character that needs her own chronicles. *Hint*.

Calonita's characters are authentic & not over the top "Hollyweird"( Jen must of been lurking about w/ notebook in hand to get the delicious goods on life as a teen & in Hollywood!).

The Los Angeles school district should make Jen's series a reading must in their school curriculum.

Hmmm, I wonder how long it'll be before Disney or Nick come banging on Calonita's door. Anyone willing to place bets it won't be too long?

Believe it not, I found myself relating to *gulp* Kaitlin's bratty co-star, Sky Mackenzie! Yup, I did. I loved Kaitlin but Sky was wicked fun! My diva side does rear its adorable head @ times.

I loved to hate Sky; Jen really made me feel all of Kaitlin's emotions. For me, that is what reputable writing is all about! Calonita made me want what Kaitlin wanted. Jen's writing was so vivacious, I was living Kaitlin's life. I was having a blast living the glam life! Jen gives you a yummy glimpse inside the inner celeb circles ~ guilty pleasure @ its best.

Applause to Calonita for writing a story that is charming, entertaining, interesting & spirited.

If you're looking for a beach read that is breezy & fun Secrets of My Hollywood Life is the book to tote along to the shore, pool, to camp or wherever you happen to be this summer!

Love chick-lit? Secrets of My Hollywood Life has a spunky chick-lit vibe.

Oh, one more thing! I absolutely adore Jen's covers!!! I love them!!!

Check out Jen @

Friday, June 5, 2009

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments Series #1) ~ Cassandra Clare

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Pub. Date: February 2008
Age Range: Young Adult
Mortal Instruments Series, #1


When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder — much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing — not even a smear of blood — to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?
This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know. . . .

Wow! Utterly astonishing! I know you've heard it all before but Cassandra Clare's Young Adult debut City of Bones is scrumptious!

City of Bones
is an epic fantasy expedition that seduced me from the beginning & made me turn into something resembling Jello (the red one)! Yes, I was shivering from my Neiman Marcus Target slippers to my corkscrew curls.

City of Bones was a fast-paced read that was jam-packed w/ action so dynamic I was flushed from excitement. Whew!

City of Bones
is not your usual young adult tale littered w/ fluff or recycled plots resembling some overdone vampire theme. Over that. City of Bones is a vivacious saga resplendent in dialogue. Cassandra Clare penned an enthralling safari & her Mortal Instruments series exhibits
Clare is one exceptionally talented scribe.

Clare's rendering of Clary as an unparalleled, three-dimensional, empowering heroine is simply a breath of fresh air (am I the only one who thinks Clary Fray is an uber chic rear kickin' fantasy version of Cassandra Clare).

City of Bones
is plush in ambiance. Clare simply excels in this gripping young adult fantasy.

City of Bones
is as opulent as the highest budget Hollywood production; infact, the book just seems to come to life. It was an electrifying read.

Clare held nothing back when she created this mesmerizing legend. City of Bones delves in dealing w/ family secrets & coming-of-age themes w/ a deft hand. City of Bones melds humor, romance & magic into exquisite subplots that seem immeasurable.

One word to describe Clare's arresting tale? Spellbinding!

Clary's puzzling feelings for Jace are written w/ compassion & understanding. Kudos to Clare for handling all the perplexing emotions Clary experiences poignantly.

Clare pulls you into her vibrant world of Shadowhunters, demons, faeries, humans, vampires & werewolves! Whew! Genius!

I did have a few things figured out way before they were unveiled in the story, but that's because I have a vivid imagination.

City of Bones
was like watching a movie ~ so darn theatrical ~ it was breathtaking!

What I love especially about City of Bones is the third person narration! Aahh, Clare showcases more than one character’s experiences! Love that!

City of Bones
is truly a jaw-dropping experience.

Just in case you've missed the boat, grab a copy of City of Bones & be prepared for a thrill ride like no other.

Check out Cassandra @

Monday, June 1, 2009

Cracked Up to Be ~ Courtney Summers

Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pub. Date: December 2008
Age Range: Young Adult


Perfect Parker Fadley isn’t so perfect anymore. She’s quit the cheerleading squad, she’s dumped her perfect boyfriend, and she’s failing school. Her parents are on a constant suicide watch and her counselors think she’s playing games…but what they don’t know, the real reason for this whole mess, isn’t something she can say out loud. It isn’t even something she can say to herself. A horrible thing has happened and it just might be her fault. If she can just remove herself from everybody--be totally alone--then everything will be okay...The problem is, nobody will let her.

I find it hard to believe Cracked Up to Be is Courtney Summers' debut. The writing is breathtakingly unforgettable.

Cracked Up to Be is definitely not a light~hearted read. I was stunned speechless.

Summers stretched her literary muscles & crafted not any "teen angst fluff", but a lyrically spellbinding tome!

I'm not going to summarize the plot for fear it will ruin your reading pleasure. In fact, I don't want to discuss much of Cracked Up to Be for fear of tipping off too much.

Courtney Summers is an author that has a natural gift for telling a story; she doesn't need bells & whistles to get her point across. As I was burning through the pages, I kept wondering, "where on earth has Courtney Summers been?"

Courtney's riveting prose will hypnotize you from the first page.

The players lining Cracked Up to Be are mesmerizing, but Parker is resplendent w/ every hue shimmering like stained glass.

Parker's narration is nourishingly illustrative, which Summers generates deftly. Parker seems to "have it all" but things aren't always what they seem. Parker has a fierce longing for approval & a hunger for love which isn't over the top or wishy washy.

Kudos to Ms. Summers for hitting a home run w/ Cracked Up to Be.

Cracked Up to Be is a profound story w/ rich layers you unearth while turning the pages!

I thought I had it all figured out, but I didn't. I'm usually spot on but Summers got me good!

Summers vividly showcases that it isn't all that it's "cracked up to be" being a youth in today's society. Summers' somber view makes you sit up & take notice. Cracked Up to Be is an alarming introspection into the barbarity of high school life.

Cracked Up to Be is definitely a novel to remember long after you close it.

Check out Courtney @

Grab a copy of Cracked Up to Be. Definitely a novel to remember look after you close it.