Book Challenges

Down Came A Blackbird part 2

Posted on January 15, 2010. Filed under: Book Challenges, To Be Read List | Tags: |

Wednesday, I posted my challenge for myself.  I also said in that post that if I “grew a ‘pair'” I’d show you my TBR mountain in photo form.  Well here it is ladies and gents.  We’ll just call this an “accountability” post.

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Perfect Chemistry review

Posted on January 14, 2010. Filed under: 10 in '10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge, 100+ Challenge, 144 Books In 2010, 2010 Once Upon A Time Challenge, 2010 YA Challenge, Book Challenges, Fiction, Reviews, Romance, Simone Elkeles, Young Adult | Tags: , |

Perfect Chemistry
Simone Elkeles
368 pages
Rating: 4.75/5

Source: Purchased off of bookcloseouts.com

Challenges: 2010 YA Challenge, 144 Books in 2010, 100+ Challenge, 10 in ’10 Chicklit Challenge, 2010 Once Upon A Time Challenge

Synopsis: from Barnes and Noble

A fresh, urban twist on the classic tale of star-crossed lovers. When Brittany Ellis walks into chemistry class on the first day of senior year, she has no clue that her carefully created “perfect” life is about to unravel before her eyes. She’s forced to be lab partners with Alex Fuentes, a gang member from the other side of town, and he is about to threaten everything she’s worked so hard for—her flawless reputation, her relationship with her boyfriend, and the secret that her home life is anything but perfect. Alex is a bad boy and he knows it. So when he makes a bet with his friends to lure Brittany into his life, he thinks nothing of it. But soon Alex realizes Brittany is a real person with real problems, and suddenly the bet he made in arrogance turns into something much more. In a passionate story about looking beneath the surface, Simone Elkeles breaks through the stereotypes and barriers that threaten to keep Brittany and Alex apart.

Review: NOTE: I just recently gave away a copy of this book so I’m going to keep this review short so I don’t give away the story for the person who won.I had heard so many AWESOME things about this book all over the book blogging community that I felt that I needed to read this book in order to determine if it lived up to all the AWESOME things that I had read about it.  Needless to say, I am pleased to report that it most definately did.  While I was reading Perfect Chemistry I almost automatically thought of it as a retelling of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet only with a happier ending.  I really loved the characters…You felt for them both.  Both of their lives are basically one big lie to keep themselves from being too vulnerable, but the scary part for both of them is that they both see right through each other.  The story itself was pretty great….once I got started reading the book I soooo did NOT want to put it down.  I really liked that the story was told from each character’s point of view so you always knew what the characters were thinking.  Overall, I most definately have found a new author to add to my list of favorite authors!

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Going To Far review

Posted on January 12, 2010. Filed under: 2010 YA Challenge, Book Challenges, Fiction, Jennifer Echols, Library, Reviews, Support Your Local Library Challenge, Young Adult | Tags: , |

Going To Far
Jennifer Echols
256 pages

Source: Public Library

Challenges: YA challenge, Support Your Local Library Challenge

Synopsis (from Barnes and Noble):

  HOW FAR WOULD YOU GO?

All Meg has ever wanted is to get away. Away from high school. Away from her backwater town. Away from her parents who seem determined to keep her imprisoned in their dead-end lives. But one crazy evening involving a dare and forbidden railroad tracks, she goes way too far…and almost doesn’t make it back.

John made a choice to stay. To enforce the rules. To serve and protect. He has nothing but contempt for what he sees as childish rebellion, and he wants to teach Meg a lesson she won’t soon forget. But Meg pushes him to the limit by questioning everything he learned at the police academy. And when he pushes back, demanding to know why she won’t be tied down, they will drive each other to the edge — and over….

Review: I checked this one out of my local library.  I waited like a good little girl until my number came up in the system and when it came up I was really excited because I had read so many great things about this book. The very unfortunate thing was that I just could not get into the book AT ALL.  This is my first EVER Did Not Finish.

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The James Patterson Challenge

Posted on January 6, 2010. Filed under: Book Challenges | Tags: |

Here are the rules (I borrowed the information from the hosts blog):

1. The challenge is to read at least 10 James Patterson books in a year. You do not need to make a list of what you will read now or, if you want, you can. However, nothing is written in stone and the books you list can be changed at any time. Overlapping books with other challenges is allowed.

2. As long as it’s written by James Patterson, you can use the book in this challenge. Even if you are part of my Women’s Murder Club challenge, you can overlap books and count them as part of this challenge.

3. All books need to be read between August 15, 2009 and August 15, 2010. Books read prior to August 15th don’t count for this challenge.

4. If you want to participate, just post about it on your blog with a link back to here.

3. Audio and Ebooks are acceptable.

4. Please use Mr. Linky below to sign up. Use the link to your post about this challenge, not your main blog address. Links that don’t go directly to your challenge post will be deleted.

5. Once you complete the challenge, please post the link to your wrap-up blog post with Mr. Linky (I will put up a Mr. Linky for completed lists.)

6. There will also be a Mr. Linky for reviews, although posting your reviews are not a requirement.

7. You can take the button above and post it on your blog.

0 / 10 books. 0% done!

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Musical Chairs Review

Posted on January 5, 2010. Filed under: 100+ Challenge, Book Challenges, Jen Knox, Memoirs, Non Fiction, Reviews | Tags: , |

Musical Chairs
Jen Knox

Source: Sent to me by the author

Challenges: 100+ Challenge

Synopsis:

Musical Chairs explores one family’s history of mental health diagnoses and searches to define the cusp between a ’90s working-class childhood and the trouble of adapting to a comfortable life in the suburbs. In order to understand her restlessness, Jennifer reflects on years of strip-dancing, alcoholism, and estrangement. Inspired by the least likely source, the family she left behind, Jennifer struggles towards reconciliation. This story is about identity, class, family ties, and the elusive nature of mental illness.

Review:  I got this book from the author awhile ago (sorry Jen!) and it FINALLY made it’s way to the top of my TBR list.  This review is going to be short and sweet folks! Honesty, I enjoyed the book a LOT  even though there were some things in it that touched close to home for me personally.  I LOVED that Jen wasn’t afraid to put it all out there on the line for the reader (that would be me ;).  Overall, Musical Chairs gets 2 thumbs way up from me!

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A Personal Stand Review

Posted on January 5, 2010. Filed under: 100+ Challenge, 144 Books In 2010, Book Challenges, Library, Reviews, Support Your Local Library Challenge, Trace Adkins | Tags: |

A Personal Stand Observations and Opinions from a Freethinking Roughneck
Trace Adkins
244 pages

Source: Public Library

Challenges: 2010 Support your Local Library, 144 Books in 2010, 100+ Challenge 

Synopsis:

Country music superstar Trace Adkins isnt exactly known for holding back whats on his mind. And if the millions of albums hes sold are any indication, when Trace talks, people listen. Now, in A Personal Stand, Trace Adkins delivers his maverick manifesto on politics, personal responsibility, fame, parenting, being true to yourself, hard work, and the way things ought to be.

Review:  I am a big Trace Adkins fan.  I picked this book up at my local library.  Normally I am not big into politics but after reading what Trace has to say about things I think that maybe I need to be a little more aware.   Of course these are just Trace’s observations about the state of our country.  From our war on Terror (“The war on terror is like herpes.  People can live with it, but it’ll flare up from time to time,”) to 9/11 (Trace was the first country music star to visit Ground Zero and he even wrote a song 9/11 called Welcome to Hell…it’s written in the first person the Devil to one of the 9/11 hijackers).  Overall, I liked the book.  I didn’t love it but it was still a good read.

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How To Tame A Modern Rogue Review

Posted on January 3, 2010. Filed under: 100+ Challenge, 144 Books In 2010, 2010 Contemporary Romance Challenge, 2010 Romance Challenge, Book Challenges, Diana Holquist, Fiction, Library, Reviews, Romance, Romance Reading Challenge 2010, Support Your Local Library Challenge, Uncategorized | Tags: , |

How To Tame A Modern Rogue
Diana Holquist
320 pages

Source: Public Library
Challenges: Romance Reading Challenge 2010, Support Your Local Library Challenge, 2010 Romance Challenge, 144 Books in 2010, 2010 Contemporary Romance Challenge, 100+ Challenge

Synopsis: 

Commitment-phobic Sam Carson has only dated model-gorgeous women. But one stolen kiss from a plain-Jane schoolteacher and he’s hell-bent on stripping away her floral dresses and teaching her the art of being bad. If only her good-girl ways didn’t make him want to be a better man…

Ally Giordano is at the end of her rope. Her beloved grandmother actually believes that she’s living in her favorite romance novel in Regency England and Ally doesn’t have the heart to set her straight. But now Granny Donny’s last wish is for a retreat to the country and Ally can’t refuse her…until she demands that Sam accompany them. And though his smiles turn her knees into jelly, Ally knows better than to trust a playboy…and she definitely knows better than to try to change one. Or does she?

Review:  Overall, I really liked this book.  It’s a little smut in a pretty package.  Loved Granny Donny…In all her Regency era mindset.  Ally was kind of a hard ass though…But still likeable.  I guess you get to be a bit of a hard ass when life dumps on you pretty bad. Sam has a heart of gold under all those bad boy tendencies too.  I’ve never read this author before but I do like her writing style a lot.  I’ll be reading more of her books for sure!

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100+ Challenge

Posted on January 1, 2010. Filed under: 100+ Challenge, Book Challenges | Tags: |


1. The goal is to read 100 or more books. Anyone can join. You don’t need a blog to participate.

–Non-Bloggers: Post your list of books in the comment section of the wrap-up post. To learn how to sign up without having a blog, click here.

2. Audio, Re-reads, eBooks, YA, Manga, Graphic Novels, Library books, Novellas, Young Reader, Nonfiction – as long as the book has an ISBN or equivalent or can be purchased as such, the book counts.

What doesn’t count: Individual short stories or individual books in the Bible.

3. No need to list your books in advance. You may select books as you go. Even if you list them now, you can change the list if needed.

4. Crossovers from other reading challenges count.

5. Challenge begins January 1st thru December, 2010. Books started before the 1st do not count.

6. When you sign up under Mr. Linky, put the direct link to your post where your books will be listed. Include the URL to this post so that other viewers can find this fun challenge. If you’d prefer to put your list in the sidebar of your blog, please leave your viewers the link to the sign up page. Again, so viewers can join the challenge too.

1. King of the Wind
2. How To Tame A Modern Rogue
3. A Personal Stand
4. Musical Chairs
5. Perfect Chemistry
6. The Secret Year

6 / 150 books. 4% done!

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King of the Wind Review

Posted on January 1, 2010. Filed under: 100+ Challenge, 144 Books In 2010, 2010 YA Challenge, Animals, Book Challenges, Fiction, Library, Marguerite Henry, Reviews, Support Your Local Library Challenge, Young Adult | Tags: , |

King of the Wind
Marguerite Henry
176 pages

Source: Public Library
Challenges: Support Your Local Library Challenge, 2010 YA Challenge, 144 Books in 2010, 100+ Challenge

Synopsis: 

He was named “Sham” for the sun, this golden-red stallion born in the Sultan of Morocco’s stone stables. Upon his heel was a small white spot, the symbol of speed. But on his chest was the symbol of misfortune. Although he was swift as the desert winds, Sham’s pedigree would be scorned all his life by cruel masters and owners.

This is the classic story of Sham and his friend, the stable boy Agba. their adventures take them from the sands of the Sahara. to the royal courts of France, and finally to the green pastures and stately homes of England. For Sham was the renowned Godolphin Arabian, whose blood flows through the veins of almost every superior thoroughbred. Sham’s speed — like his story — has become legendary.

Review: I’ve always been a big fan of animal stories.  I am also a HUGE fan of horses…They’re just so beautiful to look at!  Marguerite Henry has been one of my all time favorite YA authors since I was young…Well since I got my first library card anyway.  I picked up this book while pursusing the MG shelves at my local library and I came home and devoured this book in one sitting.  This book is fiction but it is based on ACTUAL events that took place.  There are MANY famous racehorses that can trace their ancestory back to “Sham.”  The characters are endearing, Sham the bay colt that nobody took a liking to for a VERY long time and Agba a mute boy who is put in charge of Sham.  The story itself is a roller coaster for both Sham and Agba but in the end everything works out for the best.  Overall, I will most definately be reading more of Ms. Henry’s books in the future!

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The 10 in ’10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge!

Posted on December 30, 2009. Filed under: Book Challenges | Tags: |

(Information borrowed from Chick Lit Teen’s blog):

Co-hosted by teen book blogger Jessica (www.chicklitteens.com) and YA author Kay Cassidy (www.kaycassidy.com), the 10 in ’10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge is your chance to read some fabulous teen chick lit books with other chick lit fans. The challenge runs from January 1, 2010 through December 31, 2010. Here’s how to participate:

1) Grab the official 10 in ’10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge logo above and put it on your site with a link back to this page to let people know you’re playing.

2) Choose 10 teen chick lit books to read in 2010. Or select the ones you know you want to read and leave the rest of your list open to see what comes your way in 2010. (We’ll be talking about the great teen chick lit books we’ve read each month, so you may find some new ones that catch your eye!)

3) Click on the Mr. Linky button below to share your list if you’ve posted it on your blog. If you don’t have a blog, simply comment below with your choice of books and let us know you’re in like Flynn.

4) Each month, Jessica and Kay will alternate hosting the official check-in post where you can share the books you’ve read for the challenge. And be sure to let us know what you thought of them!

Oh, and did we mention PRIZES???

We know you’ve got a ton of books in your TBR pile. To make it even more fun to read the teen chick lit ones, we’ll be doing fun, impromptu giveaways throughout the year for participating challengers who check in with their progress!

And, of course, we need to have an awesome grand prize you can drool over, right? For challengers who read 10+ teen chick lit books during 2010 and let us know on our monthly check-in posts, we’ll be putting them in a drawing for a fabulous prize basket filled with great chick lit books, cool swag, and even some DVDs! Watch the monthly check-in posts for super secret peeks at the grand prize package.

And even more cool chick lit stuff…

We love all things chick lit, so we want this to be more than just a reading challenge. We want it to be a challenge where readers can come to talk about the chick lit books they’re reading and loving and get to know some terrific chick lit authors too. So…

In addition to the monthly check-ins, we’ll also be featuring exclusive chats throughout the year with some of your favorite chick lit authors! Stay tuned to the monthly check-ins for more details about how to get involved in the chats and to see who’s coming on board.

And now it’s your turn!

Are you ready to join the fun? Excellent! Then grab the logo, share your 10 in ’10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge reading list, and gear up for a fabulous 2010!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How do I know if a book is “chick lit”?

A: If you think it is, it is! There’s no standard definition for chick lit, and we definitely don’t want to be the chick lit police. So we’re leaving it up to each challenger to decide if a book qualifies for the challenge. If you’re looking for examples to guide you, books like Meg Cabot’s The Princess Diaries series, Jen Calonita’s Secrets of My Hollywood Life series, and Tera Lynn Childs’ Oh. My. Gods. series are all great examples of teen chick lit. 

Q: What if I don’t have a book blog?

A: No worries at all. Simply share your progress in the comments on the monthly check-in posts on Jessica and Kay’s blogs. Better yet, share your thoughts in places like Goodreads, Shelfari, Amazon, and BarnesandNoble.com too. Let your voice be heard!

Q: What’s the deal with the chats? Are these real-time chats or interviews on the blog?

A: Real-time chats. Our guest authors will be joining us on Chatzy at a scheduled time to chat about all things chick lit (including their books). It’s a fun, informal chat that will be open to all. We’ll be sharing the schedules in the monthly check-in posts, so keep your eye on them for more details coming soon.

Q: I LOVE teen chick lit. Can I read more than 10?

A: Absolutely! 10 is the minimum number of books needed to be eligible for the grand prize drawing, but you can read as many teen chick lit books as your heart desires and check in with them all. The more, the merrier!

Happy reading!


Jessica and Kay

My List:

1. Perfect Chemistry – Simone Elkeles

1 / 40 books. 3% done!

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