The Super Spies and the Pied Piper

17996909

by Lisa Orchard

Book Blurb

Sarah Cole and her sister Lacey are at it once again when they learn their missing parents’ cell phone has been traced to Alden, Michigan. When the FBI declines to continue the investigation, Sarah takes matters into her own hands. She calls upon the Super Spies and they delve into the situation.Suddenly, the teens find themselves immersed in small town intrigue and mystery involving a menacing stranger, who Sarah dubs “The Stalker.”

But when Sarah learns he’s connected to her parents’ disappearance, she’s determined to find out what that connection is. The Super Spies embark on a journey that leads them into a web of corporate corruption at its highest level that leaves innocent victims in its wake.

Can they find the proof they need to stop the greedy corporation before it’s too late?

My Review

Owl rating

As with the previous two books in this series, THE SUPER SPIES AND THE PIED PIPER was quite the adventure.  I love fairy tales, mythology, and all types of folklore and such so from the title alone, I was intrigued to read more.

The girls are so witty and smart, not to mention they’re pretty much on their own.  I can’t even imagine my parents disappearing and it being up to my siblings and/or friends and I to find them.  Whew, what a task!  I thought the setup of everything was great, especially as someone who has read the previous books, it was nice to start off with a familiar setting.

However I didn’t connect to the girls as much as I usually do, especially not as much as I did with the last one.  I love the plot, and the mystery kept me guessing but for some reason I didn’t feel as much for the characters.  Hence the three owl rating since voice and characterization is what keeps me going.

That being said, I still love the series.  I’ve said this before but as someone who grew up reading Nancy Drew, it’s nice to have a group of friends out there solving town mysteries. I think these series would work great with a younger YA or upper MG audience.  I think friendship in YA isn’t shown as much as I’d like, at least friendship without feuds over a guy or a friend who “disappears” once the romantic interest comes into the story, and The Super Spies series keeps friendship a central theme.

Buy Links

Astraea Press | Barnes & Noble | Amazon

Many thanks to the author, Lisa Orchard, for sending me a copy to read and review.  This is a 100% honest review!

Whimsically Yours,

PnC

Blog Tour: ALL OF YOU by Christina Lee

Hello Readers!

Today I’m excited to be a part of the ALL OF YOU blog tour hosted by The SubClub Books!! My review is below, enjoy!

all of you leeBook Title: ALL OF YOU
Author: Christina Lee
Genre: New Adult/Romance
Publishing Company: Penguin
Expected Publication Date: September 17, 2013
Book Blurb

Nursing student Avery Michaels wants nothing to do with dating—she’s perfectly happy single. Privy to too many of her mother’s bad decisions and even worse taste in boyfriends, all Avery can handle is a string of uncomplicated hookups whenever the mood strikes.When she meets smoking hot tattoo artist Bennett, she wants him—for just one night. But he won’t accept a no-strings-attached arrangement. He lives by a straight-laced code of values based on his own troubled upbringing.Bennett sees something special in Avery and he wants more from her. Way more.

As Avery wrestles with her emotions for Bennett, danger and tragedy force them to open up to each other. And Avery must face the terrifying realization that she wants more from him, too.

So she needs to make a choice—let Bennett go or finally let him in.

Add ALL OF YOU to Goodreads

Buy Links
AmazonBarnes and Noble | Kobo

Excerpt*

We pushed our way to the middle of the writhing bodies and I started swaying my hips in time to the music. I raised my arms in the air and got lost in the slow and sexy song.

A minute later, I felt warm breath stroke my neck and a strong hand brace my stomach. I knew it was him without turning around. Those same long fingers had been splayed against my body all week long. I closed my eyes and savored his skin touching mine.

“I like when you wear your hair down.” He twined his fingers through the ends of my curls and it sent a shiver ricocheting through my body.

“You haven’t come up,” he breathed against my ear.

“I figured it was time to be a big girl and sleep in my own bed,” I said.

“Understood.” He held on to my waist and swayed along with me. His fingers trailed beneath the hem of my shirt and a couple of inches upward. I fought to keep my breaths under control.

“I know this is going to sound crazy,” he whispered. “But I kind of missed you.”

He pulled me flush against him and I sucked in a breath. I felt the hard wall of his chest, the strong and steady thud of his heart at my back. I laced my fingers around his neck and leaned into him.

His fingers blazed a trail along my rib cage and stopped just above my navel. I rocked my hips back and forth in time with the song and he let out a slow groan.

“Jesus, Avery,” he said. Suddenly he pushed away from me. “I need some air.”

He stormed off the dance floor, leaving me speechless and way too aroused.

 *This is one of my favorite scenes!

Giveaway Code: A Rafflecopter Giveaway

About Christina Lee

christina lee phototMother, wife, reader, dreamer. Christina lives near Cleveland with her two favorite guys. She’s addicted to lip gloss and salted caramel everything.

New Adult/Young Adult author. NA Contemporary Romance, ALL OF YOU, releases September with Penguin. BEFORE YOU BREAK in 2014. Repped by Sara Megibow.

Also the creator of Tags-n-Stones (dot com) jewelry.

Connect with the author!

Facebook | Twitter | Website

My Review

Owl rating:

I LOVED this book.  Not only was it moving, steamy, and sweet but it was different.  I really appreciated how the “tables were flipped” with the girl rather than the guy being the more experienced one.  However I never felt it crossed into the realm of slut shaming.  Avery, the main character has a lot of past issues and as a result she has developed some very tough skin especially in relation to relationships.  She is not at all interested in long term dating however Bennett (who also happens to be a tattoo artist) has had a past that has made him want to wait for the woman he loves.

It’s a wonderful pairing and the chemistry and tension rocket off the pages from the first time the two are introduced.  I mean I love bad boys.  Let’s just be honest about that however it’s nice to have something different and Bennett is just that.  He’s kind, he’s protective but not overly so, and he’s respectful.  He’s also interesting.  Too often when you have “perfect” guys they turn out very one dimensional however from the first couple chapters you can tell there’s more to his sexy self than it seems.

Not to mention there’s also a great supporting cast of characters that add even more dimensions to this already rich novel.  I’m so thankful for the chance to read an advance copy of this book and be a part of the tour.  As someone in the NA age range myself, I can promise that I’m going to be reading a lot more NA.  I’m looking forward to seeing the genre blossom.

*This is a 100% honest review, I received a copy of the book from the publisher via NetGalley to read & review*

Thank you to The SubClub Books for the opportunity to participate in the tour! 

Whimsically Yours,

PnC

Ash by Malinda Lo

Ash

by Malinda Lo

Book Blurb

Cinderella retold

In the wake of her father’s death, Ash is left at the mercy of her cruel stepmother. Consumed with grief, her only joy comes by the light of the dying hearth fire, rereading the fairy tales her mother once told her. In her dreams, someday the fairies will steal her away, as they are said to do. When she meets the dark and dangerous fairy Sidhean, she believes that her wish may be granted.

The day that Ash meets Kaisa, the King’s Huntress, her heart begins to change. Instead of chasing fairies, Ash learns to hunt with Kaisa. Though their friendship is as delicate as a new bloom, it reawakens Ash’s capacity for love-and her desire to live. But Sidhean has already claimed Ash for his own, and she must make a choice between fairy tale dreams and true love.

Entrancing, empowering, and romantic, Ash is about the connection between life and love, and solitude and death, where transformation can come from even the deepest grief

My Review

Owl rating

Ash was just the fairy tale I needed.  I want to say I wish it would’ve existed when I was little then again I’m not so sure I would’ve realized it was what I needed then.  I grew up reading fairy tales and when those got old retellings.  Then I moved from fairy tale retellings to faeries, as in the ones found in Holly Black’s ‘Modern Faerie Tale’ booksa much darker being.  

Ash reminded me of a mix between Tithe (Holly Black), some Once Upon a Time series novel, and a Donna Jo Napoli book (the queen of retellings).  The prose was rich, full of depth, and gorgeous.  The story was beautifully stung together like that of a fairy tale you might tell a child a night except it held a tad bit more darkness than you would find in Disney yet not as much as in Brothers Grimm (close sometimes).

The relationship between Kaisa and Ash seemed very real to me, their love was beautiful.  When I was preparing to read this book, I researched the author and read some past posts on her blog.  Interestingly she originally had Ash falling in love with the prince.  I’m so glad she had the courage to listen to her characters and didn’t.  The whole point of a retelling is that it can be reimagined, in whatever way, whatever world you chose.  It’s nice when authors really let themselves take advantage of this freedom.

I absolutely adored Ash.  I’ve recommended this book to a few people and none of them have said anything about it being a “lesbian Cinderella”.  I think publishers need to trust readers more, sure there are people who are going to care, but honestly, if your writing is good I’m not going to miss out on reading an amazing book because the main character has a different sexual orientation than I do.  If that was the case, I’d never read any “bestsellers”.  The story is what’s most important, I’ve said this again and again…if your story sucks, good luck.

Whimsically Yours,

PnC

PODs by Michelle Pickett

Hello Readers 🙂 It’s finally here…my day for the blog tour of PODs!!!  As such I’d like to present you with my review of this amazing book!

podsby Michelle Pickett

Book Blurb

Seventeen-year-old Eva is a chosen one. Chosen to live, while others meet a swift and painful death from an incurable virus so lethal, a person is dead within days of symptoms emerging. In the POD system, a series of underground habitats built by the government, she waits with the other chosen for the deadly virus to claim those above. Separated from family and friends, it’s in the PODs she meets David. And while true love might not conquer all, it’s a balm for the broken soul.

After a year, scientists believe the population has died, and without living hosts, so has the virus. That’s the theory, anyway. But when the PODs are opened, survivors find the surface holds a vicious secret. The virus mutated, infecting those left top-side and creating… monsters.

Eva and David hide from the infected in the abandoned PODs. Together they try to build a life–a new beginning. But the infected follow and are relentless in their attacks. Leaving Eva and David to fight for survival, and pray for a cure.

My Review

Owl rating

PODs is one of those unique books that can take you to a dark and sad place you might not want to go.  I mean that in the most “well-wishing” ways because PODs truly pulled at my heartstrings.  As someone who has four younger siblings the idea of getting chosen to live and having to leave my entire family behind is one of those things you just don’t speak of because it’s too hard to think about.  And although I’ve never had to follow a path like the one Eva did, I do attend college miles away from home so the feeling of leaving my family behind is definitely one I’ve experience before.  It’s for that reason that even if PODs contained meh writing, I still would’ve liked it…thanks Michelle Pickett knows exactly how to capture every moment.  Everything was so vivid there were times I felt myself in Eva’s shoes and had to put the book down to breath because I was overcome with tears.

I read this book in about 3-4 hours.  Which, with all the romance, tension, horror, and sadness in the book, was quite the emotional ride…one minute I was in tears and the next I was falling in love, it was absolutely crazy!

However there was one part of the book I didn’t like, in fact it just seemed a little to convenient to me.  I mean I know it needed to happen in order to push a long the second half of the storyline but, ugh, once you read it you’ll see.  I just don’t believe the government would’ve done that, it made no logical sense at all.  That being said, I got over it…the book is truly amazingly well-written, characters well developed and like I said, some of the scenes just seem so real.

So kudos to the author, Michelle Pickett and the Spencer Hill Press Team…SHP is really doing it big, I’ve yet to be disappointed by one of the books I’ve received from them 🙂

**This is a 100% honest review, the ARC was received from the publisher**

Whimsically Yours,

PnC

New Books!!!

me and pods

(pure joy)

I love new books!!!  

New books bring new excitement and adventure(s).

For instance, today I went by my college mailroom and came back with my ARC of PODs.

I’ll be participating in Spencer Hill Press’ blog tour of PODs.  You can look forward to my review of the book on June 5th.

Yikes!  I guess I’d better get to reading 🙂  Check out ‘My Bookshelf’ for more to-reads!

And if you want me to review your book, read my review policy first.

Whimsically Yours,

PnC