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Hi, I'm Jamie. I'm a writer, reader, and huge TV junkie. I just might post about all three here on this blog. Have a look around. And if you want, drop me an email and tell me what you think. Thanks for visiting!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!


Just a quick shout out to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!




Monday, November 25, 2013

Monday Must Reads: THE DEVIL DRINKS COFFEE!


Not familiar with this little feature? It's simple, really. Monday Must Reads! is a feature I created to showcase books that I think you, well, Must Read (ha!).

I haven't read this week's selection yet, but I've read others by this author (under her other name) so I know that when I do, I'll be in for a treat! If you haven't already, you simply Must Read...

THE DEVIL DRINKS COFFEE
by Destiny Ford
pub date: May 2013

product description from goodreads.com

A cow suicide, a revolving door rescue, and the birth of a bright purple pig are starting to make Kate Saxee wonder if taking a job in her small hometown of Branson Falls, Utah, was such a great idea. As The Branson Tribune editor, Kate covers local news, which, more often than not, involves her accident-prone mom. Nothing truly newsworthy has ever happened in the quiet town until local teen Chelsea Bradford turns up dead in a Branson Falls lake.

The police rule Chelsea’s death an accident, but Kate suspects there’s more to the story—and she’s not the only one. Two of Branson’s most eligible bachelors are determined to help her solve the crime—among other things. But the small town social network is faster than Twitter, and gossip about Kate’s love-life is quickly branding her the Branson Falls hussy.

As Kate learns more about Chelsea, she discovers that plenty of people are trying to cover up the real story behind the girl’s death—including Chelsea’s parents. Now Kate has to juggle work, men, her mom’s most recent disaster involving a low-speed John Deere Combine chase on the freeway, and fend off the Mormons heaven-bent on saving her soul—all while solving Chelsea’s murder. Dealing with this is going to require a lot of coffee, chocolate frosted donuts, Neil Diamond's greatest hits, and a slew of words not on the town approved imitation swear list.

Doesn't that sound great? Ugh, I'm so behind on my TBR!




Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I'd Recommend!


I'm super excited to join in the Top Ten Tuesday weekly feature meme created by the fabulous The Broke and the Bookish! It looks to be a fun time on Tuesdays now!

This week: 


TOP TEN BOOKS
I'D RECOMMEND TO
MY FRIENDS



1. The Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer -- I know this series gets a bad wrap from a lot of people, but, writing ability aside, Ms. Meyer can tell a story. And that's why I'd recommend it.









2. The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins -- This one is truly one of my faves in the YA Dystopian genre. I've read the trilogy multiple times, and I know I'll be reading it again in the future. An easy recommendation to my group of friends.



3. Anything by Stephen King -- We all know the man is a master storyteller. There's no point in just mentioning one book. :-)









4. Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout -- I've actually recommended this to a few of my friends already because, hello, Daemon. :-)










5. Anything by Jennifer Echols -- This woman knows how to write romance, lemme tell ya. Every book has sucked me in and made me wish I could meet the characters in real life. Definitely an easy rec for me.








6. Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready -- Ah, Zachary. My friends need to meet Zachary. That is all.










7. Want by Stephanie Lawton -- This book is beautiful, truly. And its companion novel, Need, is even better. I'm happy to pimp these out whenever I can.









8. Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick -- Oh man, for an apocalyptic saga, this one is right up there. Beautiful writing, heartstopping action, this one has it all. A recommendation if ever there was one.









9. Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead -- I'm a vampire addict, so anything to do with the fanged foes I'm gonna read. And this series only got better as it went along. I'm happy to force my friends onto the VA bandwagon.








10. Fat Vampire by Adam Rex -- Oh man, this book made me laugh. Such a unique take on the vampire genre it sells itself. But I'm happy to help it along. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Monday Must Reads:


Not familiar with this little feature? It's simple, really. Monday Must Reads! is a feature I created to showcase books that I think you, well, Must Read (ha!).

This week's selection is a good one, and one I can't believe has taken me so long to read. I'm sure most of you already have, but for those of you who've put it off like me, you simply Must Read...

The Replacement 
by Brenna Yovanoff

Mackie Doyle is not one of us. Though he lives in the small town of Gentry, he comes from a world of tunnels and black murky water, a world of living dead girls ruled by a little tattooed princess. He is a Replacement, left in the crib of a human baby sixteen years ago. Now, because of fatal allergies to iron, blood, and consecrated ground, Mackie is fighting to survive in the human world.

Mackie would give anything to live among us, to practice on his bass or spend time with his crush, Tate. But when Tate's baby sister goes missing, Mackie is drawn irrevocably into the underworld of Gentry, known as Mayhem. He must face the dark creatures of the Slag Heaps and find his rightful place, in our world, or theirs.

Such a fun, exciting, different read. I highly recommend it!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE Trailer!

I didn't have any posts scheduled for today, so I thought I'd share the trailer for THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE, which hits theaters in a week! Yay!!


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday: ETERNAL ECHOES by Angela Corbett!


The lovely Jill (a fellow Alabamian!) over at Breaking the Spine created the Waiting on Wednesday meme for us bloggers to showcase books we're waiting on. 

The first book in this series was great, so I know the second installment will be, too. My WoW this week is...


ETERNAL ECHOES
by Angela Corbett
pub date: Nov 19, 2013

product description from goodreads.com

She thought she stopped the evil.

She thought she was safe.

Everything she thought was wrong.

Almost four months have passed since Evie Starling learned she was a Tracker and helped defeat a Daevos Clan that was taking others like her—but that wasn’t the end of the abductions. As an unknown evil emerges, Evie vows to help solve the mystery of the missing Trackers, regardless of the risk.

With new powers she doesn’t understand and can’t control, she turns to Alex and Emil, her two soul mates, for help. But her feelings for them both are tearing her apart. She knows she has to decide between them; however, her memories are only making that choice more difficult.

As the world around her is thrown into chaos, Evie is confronted with what could be a destiny-altering truth. Will she accept her history, her memories, and her role in this life, or choose to ignore the echoes of her past?

Sounds good, huh? Only one more week!


Be sure to visit Angela online:



Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Cover Redesigns!


I'm super excited to join in the Top Ten Tuesday weekly feature meme created by the fabulous The Broke and the Bookish! It looks to be a fun time on Tuesdays now!

This week: 


TOP TEN COVERS
I WISH I COULD REDESIGN


1. PANDEMONIUM by Lauren Oliver -- This cover is beautiful, don't get me wrong, but it's missing the uniqueness of the DELIRIUM cover that I just loved. This one just doesn't seem to fit IMO, though I do actually like it. Weird, huh? 








2. BEFORE I FALL by Lauren Oliver -- I promise I don't have a vendetta against Ms. Oliver, really. But this cover just...I don't know, it just doesn't work for me. It seems so generic and odd for the story inside.









3. HALF-BLOOD by Jennifer L. Armentrout -- Okay, I have to start by saying that I love, love, love Jennifer L. Armentrout. Seriously. Her talent is amazing. Truly. But this cover--and subsequently, all the covers in this series--just doesn't do it for me. It's a beautiful photo, but the font and placement just doesn't work. And the image doesn't really convey the true nature of the story, either. Another one that would do well with a remake.





4. THE BOYS NEXT DOOR by Jennifer Echols -- Anyone that knows me knows how much I adore Jennifer Echols. Seriously. And not just her writing, but the author as well. And this book (as well as its sequel) is one of my faves by her. But this cover is just all wrong on so many levels. If I could, I'd toss all of it and start fresh--maybe with some real models instead of cartoons? 






5. WITHER by Lauren DeStefano -- This is another cover that I love in pieces, but that just doesn't work as is. I don't really know how to explain it, but everything from the vintage feel to the weird graphic lines and circles--it doesn't say anything to me. Another I'd completely redo if given the chance. 







6. ACROSS THE UNIVERSE by Beth Revis -- Okay, so I've yet to jump on this trilogy bandwagon, so I can't say as to the story inside, but this cover doesn't wow me in any way. I mean, I get that there's obviously a romance and the setting is space, but the tagline asks what it takes to survive on a spaceship fueled by lies--and I just don't get that from the images here.






7. THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater -- Is it just me, or does this cover remind you of the cheesy romance novels from the eighties? Oh, just me? Nevermind, then.









8. LAMENT by Maggie Stiefvater -- Someone call my high school computer teacher. Tell him I've found our missing final exam.










9. BAD TASTE IN BOYS by Carrie Harris -- Um, you got a little something on your lip, there, missy. 










10. UNRAVEL ME by Tahereh Mafi -- This cover is beautiful. Truly. But I don't get the "unravel" part, so it doesn't feel like it works with the title to me. But gorgeous nonetheless. 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

It's been a while...so here's a review!

Yes, it has. Been a while since I've blogged, I mean. That gnarly little thing we call life gets in the way of all our fun sometimes, and things have to be put off and put off until we can come back around to them. My blog, unfortunately, has been one of those things. But fret no more, for I intend to get things moving again. And I'm gonna start with a review of a book coming December 3rd from a superbly talented author that you need to get to know if you haven't already. 


SHELF LIFE
by Stephanie Lawton
pub date: December 3, 2013
IJP Press

product description from goodreads.com

It’s impossible to focus on college biology when your family believes doomsday is imminent and the government is out to get you.

All Pete Wilson’s ever wanted is to become a veterinarian, but those dreams are going up in flames. Commuting to an urban college and helping his parents with their apocalyptic prepper crap is more than he can handle.

Worse, Pete’s asshole neighbor is stirring up trouble, his family’s stockpile has been destroyed and farm animals are turning up dead.

Lindsey Linger is the tomboy sister of his best friend. Now a sexy spitfire, she and Pete are liable to set the barn ablaze as their romance finally heats up. But she’s hiding a terrible secret, and rural life isn’t all bonfires and hayloft romps. That becomes clear one icy winter night when the survival of everyone Pete loves hangs in the balance.

Can Pete be the hero they need, or will this be the end of the world as he knows it?


My Review:

Oh, what can I say about SHELF LIFE. Just as Lawton's other works, this novel is written with such expert precision and talent, woven together with just the right amount of pacing to keep you flipping pages (or frantically tapping that little arrow on your e-reader) til the very end. 

Let's start with the meat of SHELF LIFE (and all Lawton's novels): the characters. Pete Wilson is the MC here (a male, yay!), and he's a damn good one. Flaws, both internal and external ones, plague poor Pete from the very beginning, and it's truly a pleasure watching him strive to overcome each and every one over the course of this story. He's born into pragmatism in some respects, having parents who are religious when it comes to preparedness, but even with that sort of rigid, stoic upbringing, Pete isn't afraid to dream, to look beyond his life toward possibility and change. That alone is enough to love this guy, but Lawton takes Pete even further by making him a good, honest boy who truly does want to make everyone in his life happy. That's not something you see much of in today's NA/YA males, so it's refreshing. (note: SHELF LIFE is definitely more New Adult)

Pete's love interest and counterpart, Lindsey, is, in my mind, the polar opposite. But not because she chooses to be. Where Pete is optimistic about having a future of his own, outside the realm of his parents' sometimes Mad World, Lindsey seems to have given up on any sort of "pipe dream" life beyond the walls of the one she's currently living. It's sad, really, to see her so broken and defeated, but it's inspiring to watch Pete fight to make her see the possibility her life holds. And the relationship these two share? Let's just say it's a roller coaster if ever there was one.

Second to Lawton's outstanding characters is the overall plot of SHELF LIFE. As told in the description, Pete's family is known as the Doomsday Preppers by pretty much everyone in town. This is such a unique take on what I see as social outcasting. Much like gays and blacks and various religious sects are shunned and treated as "less than" just because they're different, Pete's family is looked upon that way by those around them. Even by one of Pete's college classmates, who although polite and in no way derogatory, shows disdain for their eccentric way of life. Even while reading this novel, I couldn't help but imagine how I myself would react if the Wilsons were real and lived next door. I'd like to think I would be accepting just as I am in real life, but you never know. That's one of the many, many things I love about SHELF LIFE, how it burrows in and makes you think. Ah, such a great book!


* * * * *

I happily give Lawton's latest novel 5 stars, and urge you all to pick it up and devour it when it comes out December 3rd!

And be sure to visit Stephanie Lawton all over social media:


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