Have You Seen This…(#1) {FOUND}

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You may have noticed that Brittany (The Book Addicts Guide) and I have recently started a new monthly page feature called Have You Seen This… It is a place where bloggers, readers and collectors can link up with hard to find books and ARCs(already released books) and let people know what you are looking for. You can find out everything you need to know for it HERE.

The Gist of it:

  • Both Brittany and I have set up pages on our blogs for this feature and that will be where each person will list which books they’re looking for. You can find a full list of all of the details and rules on this feature page!
  • In short, if you’re looking for a specific edition of a book, you either create a blog post or list on a page which book and edition you’re looking for, then fill out the linky on the feature’s page. Each linky will be live for a month. If you don’t find your book in that month, you WILL have to relink up each month.
  • The books you’re adding here should be the hard to find ones! Books you won’t find on any given book exchange/swap (think old ARCs, international editions, CDs/audiobooks, etc). If it’s a hardcover/paperback copy that you can actually buy from Amazon or B&N, the chances are better that someone owns that one and you may want to try more tradition swaps (like YA Book Exchange) to see if any are listed there. While we don’t mind “traditional” editions being listed here, please try to make somewhere like YA Book Exchange your first stop! The reason for this is that we will only being changing this linky out from month to month and it will be less traditional from regular swap websites. Trades will not be monitored and we will not be removing links once a trade has been made because we’re assuming these trades will be a BIT more difficult! (see below)
  • Each person is responsible for their own trade so Brittany and I will NOT be moderators of any trade being made. You will need to share some sort of contact information for someone to contact you if they have your book. It is up to both parties involved in the exchange to come up with the terms of the exchange.
  • These are just the basic essentials but you can find the full details and “rules” on the Have You Seen This… official page! (Please also note that this is NOT the place to ask for unreleased ARCs. There are places to do that but that is not the purpose of Have You Seen This!)

The reason this came about is that both of use have a series that we love and we are on the hunt for hard to find ARCs ourselves. Brittany has collected versions of both the Lunar Chronicles (Marissa Meyer) and The Grisha trilogy (Leigh Bardugo) and she is on the hunt for one book. What am I looking for? You guessed it, a Stephanie Perkins book.

You all know I’m obsessed with Anna and the French Kiss. I have like 10 different versions of Anna, 5 versions of Lola and the Boy Next Door, and 5 versions of Isla and the Happily Ever After. Actually I was recently gifted the ARC for Isla and the Happily Ever After thanks to Gail at Ticket to Anywhere who previously gave me her Anna ARC for reading Harry Potter book one. What does this mean? It means I NEED a Lola and the Boy Next Door ARC to finish my collection.

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So this is me, asking and hoping, that one of you will have a copy and give mercy on my Anna loving soul. If by chance you do have a copy of the Lola and the Boy Next Door ARC and are willing to part with it, contact me so we can work something out. And I can make you forever my favorite.

Help me finish my collection…for now anyway. 😉

 

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*NOTE: LOLA HAS BEEN FOUND!

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Review: My True Love Gave to Me – Various Authors

Review: My True Love Gave to Me – Various AuthorsMy True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories by Stephanie Perkins, Holly Black, Ally Carter, Matt de la Pena, Gayle Forman, Jenny Han, David Levithan, Kelly Link, Myra McEntire, Rainbow Rowell, Laini Taylor, Kiersten White
Published: October 14th 2014
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
four-stars

If you love holiday stories, holiday movies, made-for-TV-holiday specials, holiday episodes of your favorite sitcoms and, especially, if you love holiday anthologies, you’re going to fall in love with My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Stories by twelve bestselling young adult writers, edited by international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins. Whether you enjoy celebrating Christmas or Hanukkah, Winter Solstice or New Year's there's something here for everyone. So curl up by the fireplace and get cozy. You have twelve reasons this season to stay indoors and fall in love.

Review

Rating an anthology is hard. That was my first thought when I finished reading all the stories. I mean I really loved some, hated a couple and thought a few were just okay. All together it was a great gathering of different holiday stories, but some hit the mark more than others. So in the long run I thought it would be best for me to rate each individually and then average those stars together at the end. Each review is brief as to not give anything away, but more my initial thoughts on the story.

Midnights by Rainbow Rowell – 5 stars
Loved this one! It had such a great Rainbow Rowell vibe to it. It was truthful and had heart and made me feel like I felt reading Fangirl. It had the perfect amount of holiday Magic and was the perfect start to the anthology.

The Lady & the Fox by Kelly Link – 2 stars
I’m still not sure exactly what this story was about. When I was done I thought I was stupid for not understanding what I just read. I was really confused. Basically this story wasn’t for me.

Angels in the Snow by Matt de La Peña – 4.5 stars
This story was one that I wanted a whole book of. I loved first that it was from a guy’s point of view and second that the characters were so different yet similar in some ways. They had amazing chemistry and formed a fast bond. Seriously would not have been opposed to a longer story.

Polaris is Where You’ll Find Me by Jenny Han – 4 stars
This story had the magical whimsy you expect from holiday stories and the awesome real ness of a Jenny Han book. I loved the fantasy aspect that is so often attached to Christmas but done in a way that you don’t really think of it as not being real. It was simply an adorable addiction to this book.

It’s a Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins – 5 stars
I was scared reading a Perkins story that did not involve an Anna, Lola or Isla in it. I mean really scared. But guys…this was pure Stephanie Perkins! The writing, the characters, the setting. It was EVERYTHING that is perfect about Stephanie and everything I love about her. I’m now convinced girl would write the phone book and I would read it 9000 times! One of my faves in the book.

Your Temporary Santa by David Levithan – 3 stars
I wasn’t crazy about this one. I thought it was okay and I really liked the characters, but I felt like it was too short to get anything done it in. It felt really muddled where it tried to get all the things in to a few short pages. I wasn’t really sure what it was trying to say. I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t love it either.

Krampusluaf by Holly Black – 3 stars
This story was plain weird. It was a mix of contemporary and fantasy and I don’t think I liked the blending of the two. I mean I really enjoyed the contemporary part (why it got 3 stars). That part really worked for me. But then it just got strange and I was really confused on what to think. I think stiking to one or the other would have been a better choice for me. It just wasn’t my kind of story.

What the Hell Have You Done, Sophie Roth? by Gayle Forman – 5 stars
Gayle Forman at her finest. I just loved this. I loved how it dealt with stereotypes and assumptions. I loved how two people that were different found a random connection and went with it. I love that it all happened in one night. Like I said, Gayle Forman at her finest.

Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus by Myra McEntire – 4 stars
I liked this one. I had a little more religion in it than some of the others which was fine because it wasn’t preachy. I liked that it was from the town “bad boy” POV. And I loved what he learned just by someone taking a chance on him. It was a cute story that was silly at times, but all in all really enjoyable and well written.

Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White – 5 stars
My fave in the whole anthology. I loved EVERYTHING about this story. The characters, the plot, the setting. It is seriously everything it is so true about Christmas that we all sometimes forget. Sometimes you just need to make people smile. Sometimes you just need to give up on something to see something better. Sometimes you just need to believe in that holiday magic. Another one I wished was longer.

Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter – 3.5 stars
This was cute. Not 100% memorable as I had to read other reviews to jog my memory as to what it was about, but it was definitely cute. I’m not sure it was long enough for it to make the best of an impact, but I know I didn’t hate it and I felt bad for the main character and thought the boy in it was adorable.

The Girl Who Woke the Dreamer by Laini Taylor – 2 stars
I struggled with this one. Like really, really struggled. It was so not my kind of story at all and I was sad it was the last one. The only reason I finished it was because it was the last one. I was just not interested and it was plain weird for my taste. Not the best ender in my opinion, but some may like it if they are into more fantasy than I am.

In totally I enjoyed this anthology and never struggled reading it until the end. It was fun and a great way to ease into the holiday season which is quickly approaching. I would definitely recommend picking it up just for some of the stories I loved. And even for the ones I didn’t. Just because those ones weren’t for me doesn’t mean they may not be for you.

 

 

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Pub Date #2

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Today is my turn to contribute to the fabulous feature, the brain child of Brittany at The Book Addict’s Guide, where myself, Brittany, Estelle at Rather Be Reading and Maggie at Just a Couple More Pages are paring books and beer. Pretty perfect for a bunch of beer and book lovers if you ask me.

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I had a harder time with this month’s theme for Pub Date, Back to School. When I first read it I immeditaley thought an apple beer would be perfect. I personally have had a few that I love and thought, ‘awesome, I’ll get one of those and BAM, done’. It didn’t really work that way. I went to three, yes THREE, different liquor stores only to not be able to find an apple beer. And then I started to think about it. Really back to school is more than apple. It is wanting to hold on to summer for as long as you can. Here in Boston schools mostly go back after Labor Day weekend. Kids from elementary school to high school to college try to hold on to that last bit of summer before being forced back into  the real world. So on the Friday before Labor Day weekend I give you my “Back to School” Book and Beer pairing.

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The Beer
I decided to go with my new favorite beer of the summer, Hell or High Watermelon put out by 21st Amendment Brewery in San Fransisco. I found this beer around the 4th of July weekend at a local bar. Having had a watermelon beer before at Hingham Beer Works and not having been a fan I was skeptical of it. But I tried a taste of it and I fell in love. Like most beers the draft version had a more watermelon taste and I would say is more enjoyable than the can, but I still really liked the can. Hell or High Watermelon is a wheat ale so if you don’t like that you post likely won’t enjoy this beer. But I didn’t find it too over powering. And the alcohol content is under 5% so that also isn’t too bad. Honestly the saddest part about Hell or High Watermelon; it is only available from April to Setpember. I already can’t find more in the stores. Sigh. Other summer beers I love: Shocktop Lemon Shandy and Leinenkugel Summer Shandy

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The Book(s)
Duh. Nothing says back to school to me more than Anna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, and Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins that all basically start right when school is about to start up again and where school plays a huge part in the story. There was no way in Hell (or High Watermelon) that I would not have used these three for my pairing. You know I love them, I have told you a million time, and if you still haven’t read them we can no longer be friends. Okay, okay, we can be friends, but things may be strained. Basically…GO READ THEM. 🙂

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And there you have my Pub Date. I will be hosting this lovely feature every few weeks and would love for you to stop by and share a pint with me…or at least tell me what you are currently enjoying. Make sure you follow along with Brittany, Estelle and Maggie too. You never know when you will find your new favorite beer.

*banner by Estelle’s sister
**Drink Responsibly!

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Isla is Coming…actually Isla is HERE!

bannerIt’s here! Finally after years of waiting Isla is here and I’m sure most, if not all of you, now have your hands on the pretty. I was lucky enough to get to read it early, but I’m having fun reading it again with all of you.

Anyway, today is my day on the #IslaIsComing blog tour. It’s been a lot of fun to host this with Jamie, Judith, Lindsey, and Meg, and to see all of the fun you all have had participating whether it was in the blog tour or the readalong. We are in the home stretch and I can’t believe it is all almost over. But it isn’t over yet. Today I get to do the thing that I love to do besides reading. I get to “shop”. More accurately, play stylist to my three favorite book ladies, Anna, Lola and Isla.

When I reviewed Anna on my blog for the first time I was inspired to dress her in what I thought she would wear. I pulled all the things I new about her and created an outfit that I find to be so totally Anna. Well when I was thinking about what I wanted to do for my stop on the tour I decided why stop at Anna, why not dress all three girls. And if I was dressing all three, might as well give Anna something new to wear.

Without further ado, the looks:

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We all know that Anna likes comfort. She wears sneaker (not white!), graphic tees, and carries a notebook. She is her own kind of quirky and has a blonde stripe in her dark hair to prove it. What better look for Anna than an ironic shirt that says “Striped Shirt” instead of actually being a striped shirt. And she would totally rock the mint green Converse. And she can’t go anywhere without those Thin Mints.

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Oh our little Lola and her costume-like style. I admit, I don’t feel like I “know” Lola like I know Anna. Her style definitely isn’t anything I would ever attempt, but I like that she is her own person. When I started to search for this look I immediately knew I needed a wig and something that would pass as wearable. I can actually picture Lola in this look which makes me happy with the result. Plus the dress is kind of adorable. I chose the pie earrings for her dad’s pie business and Lola loves her rain boots.

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Isla is someone we are all getting to know just know. For those of you that have read the book already you will understand why I chose what I did. Isla is a girly girl and loves a heel. I don’t want to give away too much about why these item were selected, but this look may be my favorite of the bunch.

So there you have it, my stop on the #IslaIsComing tour. I had a lot of fun doing this and checking out everyone elses stops. If you are interested check out the list below and see who is the next stop.

Tour Schedule

Anna and the French Kiss
7/31 – Paper Riot (Anna Readalong Kick-Off)
8/01 – Novel Sounds
8/04 – The Book Addict’s Guide
8/05 – Alexa Loves Books
8/06 – A Bookish Sinister Kid

Lola and the Boy Next Door
8/07 – Cuddlebuggery (Lola Readalong Kick-Off)
8/07 – GReads!
8/09 – Book Revels
8/12 – Rather Be Reading
8/13 – Finding Bliss in Books

Isla and the Happily Ever After
8/14 – The Perpetual Page-Turner (Isla Readalong Kick-Off)
8/15 – AndiABCs
8/18 – Writer of Wrongs
8/19 – Anna Reads
8/20 – Good Books and Good Wine

Anna REVIEW
Lola REVIEW
Isla REVIEW

*banner by the fabulous Meg

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Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After – Stephanie Perkins

Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After – Stephanie PerkinsIsla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
Series: Anna and the French Kiss #3
Published by Dutton Juvenile
Published: August 14th 2014
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
five-stars

From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. But as they begin their senior year in France, Isla and Josh are quickly forced to confront the heartbreaking reality that happily-ever-afters aren’t always forever.

Their romantic journey is skillfully intertwined with those of beloved couples Anna and Étienne and Lola and Cricket, whose paths are destined to collide in a sweeping finale certain to please fans old and new.

In 2010 a very good friend of mine said one thing to me that essentially changed my life. She said, ‘read Anna and the French Kiss’. Having only dabbled in reading in the past and slightly getting more into it I agreed and nothing has been the same. I have read that one book 8 times, its companion Lola and the Boy Next Door twice and most recently Isla and the Happily Ever After.

Isla was a book that I have been anticipating for years, half scared it would let down, half scared it would be amazing and leave me wanting more. Well, I can tell you I was right to be scared…I WANT MORE! Holy swoon-worthy fantastic batman. From start to finish it was everything I have come to expect, love and crave from the hands of Stephanie Perkins.

Isla and the Happily Ever After is the story of Isla Martin, a shy girl you catch a glimpse of in Anna and the French Kiss, and Josh Wasserstein, Etienne St. Clair’s best friend, also in Anna and the French Kiss. Isla has had a crush on Josh for 3 solid years, always on the outside looking in at him and his friends. But things are different in their senior year. Josh’s friends have all graduated and he is alone and accessible like never before. In a twist of fate Josh and Isla cross paths in an unexpected location that changes things for both of them in ways they never could have imagined. What once seemed impossible might not be that way. However, nothing is ever easy. Especially if the worse things you feel about yourself start to threaten the things you always thought you wanted. And for Josh and Isla those things might just be each other.

It’s funny because in Anna and the French Kiss you don’t really even think twice about Isla. If you haven’t read the book as many times as I have you may not even notice her. And Josh, he was a great secondary character and sidekick to St. Clair, but not someone you really thought about. But I was super excited when I learned these were our two leads in Isla and the Happily Ever After. There was something that fascinated me about what I did know about them and it piqued my curiosity. Isla was your every day, uncertain, shy teenage girl that had a crush on a guy she thought was out of reach. And Josh was the guy that seemed to not care about anything when he really cared about everything. He was sad and lonely and needed something to make him say it was okay to feel. There was a connection there that is hard to explain other than saying these two were filled with magic. And as the book progressed they changed as people and grew in ways they never would have. Magic I tell you, magic.

Another thing that Perkins does well is the secondary characters. Isla had some great people in her life that taught her things that made her grow as a person separate from her connection with Josh. Kurt was a fascinating addition that was able to be Isla’s voice of reason. He told her things she didn’t want to hear about herself but needed to hear. And then you have her sister Hattie. She was perfect with her pouting and mean façade but really she was a representation that change is scary and people act all sorts of ways when they are scared. These two characters added not only to Isla but to the story as a whole. Perfection

Honestly reviewing this book is hard for me. It’s bittersweet because of this trilogy, all of these characters, mean something to me. It sounds weird but reading Isla and the Happily Ever After was the end of an era. It was like graduating and leaving everything behind. I almost felt like Josh did, all alone after losing my friends. But in true Perkins fashion she went out with a bang that made my heart sore, my cheeks hurt from smiling and my heartaches with longing. She gave me two new fantastic characters to love and brought in pieces of ones that I loved from the past. So with that, I thank you, Ms. Perkins, for giving me these books and these characters and for doing something even more important, making me a reader.

Read these books if you haven’t. Read them again if you have.
Anna and the French Kiss REVIEW
Lola and the Boy Next Door REVIEW

 

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