Waiting on Wednesday #9

I only just finished reading The Summer I Turned Pretty and cannot wait for the sequel. This time around Belly is to decide whether to keep chasing after Conrad or to let him go.

Last year, all of Belly's dreams came true and the thought of missing a summer in Cousins Beach was inconceivable. But like the rise and fall of the ocean tide, things can change--just like that. Suddenly the time she's always looked forward to most is something she dreads. And when Jeremiah calls to say Conrad has disappeared, Belly must decide how she will spend this summer: chasing after the boy she loves, or finally letting him go.

It's Not Summer Without You is available April 27th through Simon & Schuster.

in My Mailbox #22

by Jennifer Ziegler

Maggie Dempsey is tired of moving all over the country. Her parents are second-generation hippies who uproot her every year or so to move to a new city. When Maggie was younger, she thought it was fun and adventurous. Now that she's a teenager, she hates it. When she moved after her freshman year, she left behind good friends, a great school, and a real feeling of belonging. When she moved her sophomore year, she left behind a boyfriend, too. Now that they've moved to Austin, she knows better. She's not going to make friends. She's not going to fit in. Anything to prevent her from liking this new place and them from liking her. Only . . . things don't go exactly as planned.

The Boyfriend List (Ruby Oliver, #1)
by E. Lockhart

Ruby Oliver is 15 and has a shrink. She knows it's unusual, but give her a break—she's had a rough 10 days. In the past 10 days she:

lost her boyfriend (#13 on the list), 
lost her best friend (Kim), 
lost all her other friends (Nora, Cricket), 
did something suspicious with a boy (#10), 
did something advanced with a boy (#15), 
had an argument with a boy (#14), 
drank her first beer (someone handed it to her), 
got caught by her mom (ag!), 
had a panic attack (scary),
lost a lacrosse game (she's the goalie), 
failed a math test (she'll make it up), 
hurt Meghan's feelings (even though they aren't really friends), 
became a social outcast (no one to sit with at lunch)
and had graffiti written about her in the girls' bathroom (who knows what was in the boys'!?!). 

But don't worry—Ruby lives to tell the tale. And make more lists.


by Kelly Osbourne 

When you're little, you think your family is just the same as everybody else's. Doesn't everyone's mum plan secret exits for when things get tough? Surely all dads embarrass their daughters at their birthday parties? But as you get older, you begin to notice that what's normal to you is completely f***ed up to the outside world, and that sometimes you just can't explain that what other people think of as weird is actually all about love. Who is Kelly Osbourne? I'm still not totally sure. But I do know who I'm not, and I want to help other people make the right decisions with the difficult choices we all face when growing up. So I've gone out and got the best advice I can find from people I love, respect and always listen to. I've included Louis Walsh's advice on making it in the music industry, tips from Neil, my sought-after make-up artist at MAC and many others. And for when things get really serious I've gone to the organisations that really can help. This book isn't just about me, it's about you. So whatever yoiu're worried about, whatever you want to change, and whatever you want to shout about, me and my friends are here to help.


Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Future
 by Michael J. Fox
Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Volume 1 
by Stephenie Meyer, Young Kim
The Van Alen Legacy (Blue Bloods, #4)
 by Melissa de la Cruz
Revelations (Blue Bloods, #3) 
by Melissa de la Cruz
Twenties Girl: A Novel 
by Sophie Kinsella 

In My Mailbox #21

In My Mailbox is only going to be a quick post this week until I figure out how to work the new Blogger Text Editor. They seem to have updated things and I'm still unsure if it's for better or worse anyhow it looks like Scheduled Posts are going to start working for the first time in my Blogger history. It will come in very handy when I put together the May Day Contest Spree.

This week I received:
  • How pretty is the cover of The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han! I absolutely love it and it also happened to be a joy to read! I'm waiting excitedly the sequel to be released in April.
  • I won The Iron King by Julie Kagawa from the Top Commenter giveaway at Oodles of Books. Thank you, Cindy - Love your blog.
  • I received The Prophecies, The Castle of Light and The Dark Secret for review from Paula Vince. They are the first 3 books in the Quenarden series. 
  • I guess you could say a book fairy sent Impossible by Nancy Werlin to me... It's a mystery.
  • I'd never heard of A Girl Like Me by Penny Matthews before but it does look like an interesting YA crime book.

Q: Are you also having trouble with Blogger?

Contest: Take Your Pick of My Bookshelf

I now have two huge piles of books sitting in my room. My reading stack which I am slowly but surely working my way through AND the pile of books I will eventually trade or pass on to friends. This contest is a culmination of the latter, basically I need to tidy up a bit and in doing so I'm offering up to you guys a choice of 3 books listed below.

UPDATE: 200 Followers was reached on April 8th so there will now be 2 winners!

  1. Forever in Blue: The Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares
  2. The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards
  3. Medina Hill by Trilby Kent (Hardcover)
  4. Boom! by Mark Haddon
  5. Joe Speedboat by Tommy Wieringa
  6. Out of the Woods by Lyn Gardner (Hardcover)
  7. The Dragon Whisperer by Lucinda Hare (Hardcover)
  8. Hollywood Ending by Kathy Charles
  9. Kiss the Girls (Alex Cross, Book 2) by James Patterson
  10. The Third Secret: A Novel of Suspense by Steve Berry
  11. With A Sword In My Hand by Jean-Claude van Rijckeghem, Pat Van Beirs
  12. Start Talking by Mary Jo Rapini, Janine Sherman
  13. Sideways: A Novel by Rex Pickett
  14. Things Hoped For by Andrew Clements (Hardcover)
  15. Teenagers: A Natural History by David Bainbridge
  16. Only Milo by Barry Smith
  17. The First Cut: A Novel by Dianne Emley
  18. Stand by Debbie Williamson
  19. The Cleaner by Paul Cleave
  20. The Austere Academy (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #5) by Lemony Snicket
  21. Princess for Hire by Lindsey Leavitt
  22. Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey (ARC)
  23. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver (ARC)

For every milestone I reach (200, 250, 300 Followers and so on), I will add another winner to this contest.

Entrant Details
+ Open Australia Wide (or anywhere else if you're willing to pay shipping)
+ Contest ends April 19th
+ Must be a follower to enter
+ Must link this contest SOMEWHERE to enter (Twitter, Blog, Random website)
+ Comment on this post to enter or send an email to hollyy.heart.attack(AT)hotmail.com

In your comment below, please include your email address, the country you're from, evidence of where you've linked this contest(screenshot or direct link) and your 3 chosen books.

Review: Princess for Hire

Princess for Hire by Lindsey Leavitt
16th March 2010 | Disney-Hyperion

The rating on the back of the book is a really good guide to who will gain the most enjoyment from reading Princess for Hire.

I was initially worried this book would be a little juvenile for me when I read the 11+ recommendation and while I did feel this throughout the book, it did not stop me from enjoying the plot and hoping the best for the protagonist but I do like my books to feature a little bit more serious issues.

We are immediately introduced to Desi, a regular teenager who discovers she has magic potential. We are taken along with Desi as she launched into the role of a Substitute Princess where she is transported into the body of Royal Princesses when they need a break from their hectic lives unbeknownst to their closest friends and family.

While Desi fumbles along working out the best way to act as a Sub, she shares with us many exotic and exciting places which add depth to the story and is likely to instill the want of travel in many girls.

One of Desi's roles was to fill in for a fourteen-year old Western Amazonian girl at an important stage of her life - turning into a woman. Desi did fulfill the role as best she could by performing the dance ritual without any guidance from the original Princess but while doing this she was expected to be practically naked as the Amazonian's live their every day life. The author has set out that this young teenager went along with this without too much worry. It didn't seem too realistic to me, I would think even a fully grown adult would be embarrassed in this situation and be forced to run and hide amongst the forest in a situation like this.

While working as a Sub, Desi gains many important life lessons that help improve her real life drastically. One of those life lessons involves Hayden, a boy she has had a crush on for many years but who has paid little or no attention to her. When placed in a very similar situation as a sub for Elsa she realises her own mistakes and tries to rectify them for both the Princess and herself. She almost immediately finds herself a new crush and all is well in whoville.

Most of the book revolves around the 3 roles Desi fills as a Level One Substitute Princess, we only look back at her real life a few minor times and I would've liked to see more conflict or serious issues, she could have even shared her secret role with her best friend, Kylee for a bit more excitement in the story.

As I said at the start of the review, I do think this is suited to girls around the age of 11 who enjoy reading fun stories with a touch of magic.

Check out www.princessforhire.com to read the first few chapters.

If you like this, you might like this:
+ Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
+ Heist Society by Ally Carter
+ Forget-Her-Nots by Amy Brecount White

Q: Did this review influence you to add this book to your wishlist (or remove it altogether)?

May Day Contest Spree

In the past couple of days, I swear I've sent off in excess of 1000 emails. It is all worth it though as I'm putting together an amazing little event.


I have to thank Princess Bookie's blog for sparking the idea in me. I love all the contests she holds but I happened to miss out her contest madness last year. Basically, I'm aiming to hold one contest every day in May and so far it is looking pretty good, I'm about half way there.

Some of the prizes on offer...
A $65 Gift Voucher to Buyster Furniture Store
A Field Guide for Heartbreakers
Della Says: OMG! WTF?
The Snowball Effect
Something Like Fate.
The Unwritten Law

If you'd like to contribute a Young Adult book or some awesome swag, I'm happy to fill a space in the month of May for you.

So all I'm saying is ... GET EXCITED :]
There will be plenty of International contests aswell as a few limited to Australia and US Only.

If anyone has some spare time, I'm looking for some graphics to be made for the event.

Cover Crush #1


It's a nice enough cover, but it seems to put the book in a younger age bracket than I expected it to fall into. I felt A Field Guide for Heartbreakers was a step up from some of the fluffy YA books out there and with a few changes could even fit into the Adult category. Whatever category it fits into, I enjoyed it thoroughly and was glad that it introduced me to quite a few new words.

I'd recommend this to anyone wanting to be a YA writer, as the two girls go abroad to a writing workshop and much of the story talks about writing techniques. Don't be put aside by that comment though, as I am not an aspiring writer and really enjoyed the fresh take on YA, I'd describe it as a more mature version of Twenty Boy Summer with quite a few lush guys to drool over, there is also plenty of conflict between best friends, mothers-and-daughter's, roommates and boyfriends.

Contest: Dreaming of Amelia

Contest Closed. Winner is Spav. Announced April 15th.

Today GGMH spotlights, Dreaming of Amelia by Jaclyn Moriarty and is hosting a giveaway to win a copy of this YA novel.

Amelia and Riley have transferred to Ashbury for their final year of school, and everyone is completely obsessed with them. Glamorous, talented and totally devoted to one another, the two of them drift through school in their own world. But there's more to the couple than meets the eye - they have secrets. And some of them are dangerous to share. As Riley starts to lose his grip on Amelia, the repercussions affect everyone around them. It is a spellbinding story about ghosts, secrets, madness, passion, locked doors, femme fatales, and that terrifying moment in the final year of high school when you realise that the future's coming to get you.

Giveaway Details:
  • Open to EVERYONE!
  • Contest ends April 15th
Edit: The winner will not be selected at random. The user with the most entries will win. So keep ReTweeting to twitter. Hint: An easy way to gain entries is to ask a lot of questions on Formspring.

In My Mailbox #20

In My Mailbox explores the books I received during the week. If you would to have your own "In My Mailbox" post, you can find more information at The Story Siren.

A Match Made in High School by Kristin Walker
4th February 2010 | Razorbill

When the principal announces that every senior must participate in a mandatory year-long Marriage Education program, Fiona Sheehan believes that her life can't get any worse. Then she marries her 'husband' : jerky jock Todd, whose cheerleader girlfriend, Amanda, has had it in for Fiona since day one of second grade. Even worse? Amanda is paired with Fiona's long-term crush, Gabe. At least Fiona is doing better than her best friend, Marcie, who is paired up with the very quiet, very mysterious Johnny Mercer.

Pranks, fights, misunderstandings, and reconciliations ensue in an almost Shakespearean comedy of errors about mistaken first impressions, convoluted coupling, and hidden crushes.

My Excitement Rating:

Thirteen Pearls (Girlfriend Fiction, #18) by Melaina Faranda
1st April 2010 | Allen & Unwin

Edie Sparks has grand plans. She's building a boat to sail solo around the world, but she needs cash, and fast. So when her uncle offers her good money to work on his island pearl farm for six weeks she jumps at the chance. All she has to do is baby-sit her little cousin and help with the cooking and cleaning - how hard could it be?
But soon Edie is wrangling a monster-brat, struggling to find exciting new ways to cook fish, arguing with her uncle and being wooed by two handsome boys. The work is hard and thankless and an isolated island off the coast of Far North Queensland turns out to be not as idyllic as it sound - especially when she has no control over the powerful forces of nature.

My Excitement Rating:

Beautiful Malice by Rebecca Hames (Sample)
1st September 2010 | Bantam Dell

So. Were you glad, deep down? Were you glad to be rid of her? Your perfect sister? Were you secretly glad when she was killed?

Following a terrible tragedy that leaves her once-perfect family shattered, Katherine Patterson moves to a new city, starts at a new school, and looks forward to a new life of quiet anonymity. But when Katherine meets the gregarious and beautiful Alice Parrie her resolution to live a solitary life becomes difficult. Katherine is unable resist the flattering attention that Alice pays her and is so charmed by Alice’s contagious enthusiasm that the two girls soon become firm friends. Alice’s joie de vivre is transformative; it helps Katherine forget her painful past and slowly, tentatively, Katherine allows herself to start enjoying life again.

But being friends with Alice is complicated – and as Katherine gets to know her better she discovers that although Alice can be charming and generous she can also be selfish and egocentric. Sometimes, even, Alice is cruel. And when Katherine starts to wonder if Alice is really the kind of person she wants as a friend, she discovers something else about Alice - she doesn’t like being cast off.

My Excitement Rating:

Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey
1st April 2010 | Little Brown

This is an intriguing YA urban fantasy in the tradition of Holly Black and Wicked Lovely.

Set in New Zealand, Ellie's main concerns at her boarding school are hanging out with her best friend Kevin, her crush on the mysterious Mark, and her paper deadline. That is, until a mysterious older woman seems to set her sights on Kevin, who is Maori, and has more than just romantic plans for him. In an effort to save him, Ellie is thrown into the world of Maori lore, and eventually finds herself in an all-out war with mist dwelling Maori fairy people called the patupaiarehe who need human lives to gain immortality.

The strong, fresh voice of the narrator will pull readers in, along with all the deliciously scary details: the serial killer who removes victim's eyes; the mysterious crazy bum who forces a Bible on Ellie telling her she needs it; handsome, mysterious Mark who steals the Bible from her and then casts a forgetting charm on her. All of this culminates in a unique, incredible adventure steeped with mythology, Maori fairies, monsters, betrayal, and an epic battle.

My Excitement Rating:

7th January 2010 | Sphere

Jones’s tale follows the fortunes of Emily Hudson, a penniless young American woman who finds the constraints of 19th-century society difficult to bear.

Her cousin William offers to support her on a trip to London to pursue her dream of becoming an artist. However, once settled, he becomes very controlling which leads to Emily fleeing to Rome; there she finds the happiness that has eluded her before.

The Hidden Heart is literary and romantic by turns, making it a fine read for fans of well-written historical fiction.

My Excitement Rating:

Q: Do you prefer to keep your books on hand or swap/sell them once you're done reading them?

In My Mailbox #19

In My Mailbox explores the books I received during the week. If you would to have your own "In My Mailbox" post, you can find more information at The Story Siren.

Echo by Francesca Lia Block

Jealous of her perfect mother and ignored by her artist father, Echo seeks attention and healing from a variety of people living in beautiful Los Angeles.

Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta

Josephine Alibrandi is seventeen, illegitimate and in her final year at a wealthy Catholic school. This is the year her father comes back into her life, she falls in love, discovers family secrets and sets herself free.

Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

Intertwined by Gena Showalter

Most sixteen-year-olds have friends. Aden Stone has four human souls living inside him: one can time travel, one can raise the dead, one can tell the future, and one can possess another human, and then he meets a girl who quiets the voices.

Where the Streets Had a Name by Randa Abdel-Fattah

Thirteen-year-old Hayaat is on a mission. She believes a handful of soil from her grandmother's ancestral home in Jerusalem will save her beloved Sitti Zeynab's life. The only problem is the impenetrable wall that divides the West Bank, as well as the checkpoints, the curfews, and Hayaat's best friend Samy, who is always a troublemaker. But luck is on their side. Hayaat and Samy have a curfew-free day to travel to Jerusalem. However, while their journey is only a few kilometres long, it may take a lifetime to complete.

A debut coming-of-age novel about a motherless teenage boy who discovers a terrifying secret in his small Georgia town, and finds that sometimes the most gruesome monsters are those inside ourselves.

Q: Are you hoping to become a published author or do you blog just for fun?

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