Monday, July 30, 2012

Teaser Tuesday (July 31)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
 Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

"She crosses her arms and raises her eyebrows as if challenging me. “Then I guess you know where you can go.”'

Johannes, S.R. (2012-05-20). Unspeakable (Short Story to Untraceable) (The Nature of Grace Series) (Kindle Locations 173-174). Coleman and Stott. Kindle Edition. 

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Short Story Sunday: Unspeakable

Hello y'all! This is just a little post to let you know what's going on in Alli's World...AND of course discuss some good writing. First, I want to tell you that the hubs, some of my family members and myself spent a couple of days together on Tybee Island, Georgia (and did the tourist thing in Savannah as well) earlier this week. Which was completely lovely and just what we all needed. The only unfortunate thing is that I didn't get to read as much as I thought I would while we were there, just not enough time to do it all! 

Second, my work schedule changed and I'm on night shift now. I'm still trying to adjust to that and it has really put a damper on my reading for the time being. (If I'm trying to read so late at night it tends to just make me more sleepy and that is certainly not what I need!) So, please just hang in here with me and the next 16 weeks of night shift will fly by and then we will be back to our regularly scheduled Alli's World. Heck, who knows, I might adjust so well I might want to stay on nights, we'll just have to see. 

So this past week I haven't really read much in my current read, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, not because it's not good of course but see above, for the whole night shift makes me narcoleptic thing exploitation. Plus once I get all done with it I really want to share with you guys some things we saw in Sav that you can also read about in the book. It's going be great, trust me. Until then I'll just give you one glimpse at the beautiful "Hostess City" of the South. This is the fabulous fountain at Forsyth Park, complete with the Live Oaks dripping with Spanish Moss.

BUT until I finish Midnight and get my "photo tour" ready to go live on the blog, I've actually been reading some short stories this week I downloaded on my Kindle app for my phone. The first two, I'm not even going to mention cause they were just that bad. Finally today though, I read some quality stuff! YaY!! I downloaded it a week or two ago and finally got around to reading it and it left me wanting MORE!!!
Click the pic for more info!
(Amazon-which I do NOT get paid for, 
just so you know, I just do this cause
I love books!)

I've been hearing about S.R. Johannes' The Nature of Grace series and my interest was piqued. THEN, I saw Unspeakable a short story to the first book Untraceable was a free download on Amazon I simply had to give it a try. Ohmygosh y'all! Just based off the little bit in the short story, I reallllllly want to continue reading. The characters are witty and mysterious. (What ARE they doing in the woods!?) And it ends on a cliffhanger that has me hooked. I told the hubs I think he might enjoy this one (and hopefully the whole series) because it has this whole out in nature aspect to it. (Bless hubs heart, he gets roped into reading most of what I read...but a family that reads together, stays together, right??) Basically, even though I'm like 20 books down in my to-read stack I really want to move this one to the top! PLUS the next book in the series Uncontrollable is due out late summer 2012 and I saw the third book is scheduled for a Christmas 2012 release date!

By the way, S.R. Johannes is a GEORGIA author! YaY for local authors! This makes me super happy! Here's a link to her site so you find out more info about the author and the books!

Anybody out there reading anything good? Got any good summer fun times, you'd like to share? Leave me a comment. I HEART comments!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Teaser Tuesday (July24)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
 Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

"You mustn't be taken in by moonlight and magnolias. There's more to Savannah than that."

~Midnight in the Garden
of Good and Evil~
By: John Berendt

Monday, July 23, 2012

Mega Monday: Onyx

Mini Mani Monday:

I'm wearing
Sinful Colors in Winterberry on largest section
Art Deco in Silver Glitter to separated the two main colors
Rimmel in Wild Orchid on on tips
Seche Vite Top Coat (this is the BEST stuff ever)

Amazon book description can be found here.

My thoughts...

***Possible Spoilers to follow. Continue at your own risk.***

I really like the Lux series by Jennifer L. Armentrout. What is unfortunate is that I was sick while trying to read Onyx. I still enjoyed it but my constant coughing and consistent headache made it difficult to read than a couple pages at a time, which really messed with my concentration. BUT even with all that going on, I STILL totally enjoyed this installment. This is book two in the series, the first is Obsidian (see this post for more info). Onyx continues with the characters and exploring the repercussions of actions established in book one. Onyx also introduces some new characters to the mix and of course creates inta-drama that forces the hand of some of our beloved characters! Our herione Katy is trying, not always successfully, to come more into her own.The relationship between her and Daemon is changing. There are some heart wrenching parts and some parts that are just hawt. There is excitement and action. It ends on a super excellent cliff hanger that will have readers begging for the next installment, Opal (which is set to release in December 2012. YaY!!!)

For a bit of creativity: 

Per my usual, I couldn't just leave the story alone once I was done reading. I wanted to have a part with me. I got to thinking about Katy wearing her obsidian necklace Daemon gave her. And I decided I had to have one! After several hours in two different craft stores and a very helpful hubby this is what we came up with based on the description in Obsidian. (p.s. SPOILER ALERT: Katy's still wearing it in Onyx.)

Me wearing my "obsidian necklace"
squinty eyed and all!

*By the way..thanks hubby for being my official photog for this post! 
Isn't he the best? 
And wish hit a happy birthday, it was yesterday!

p.p.s. Sorry about my vanity in this post. I mean two pics featuring me! Geez!

*I was sent a review ARC by the publisher*

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Trailer Thursday: Pretty Amy

Brand new, just out today! The book trailer for Pretty Amy by Lisa Burstein. Now, I haven't had the chance to read this book yet but it is totally on my to-read list! I follow the author on Twitter and she seems to be really cool. And this book trailer is making me wish I could run out and get this book, like right now! For your enjoyment:

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

WWW Wednesday (July 18)

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

My answers:

• What are you currently reading?

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt. This is my prep work for our upcoming trip to Savannah, Georgia! It's a re-read for me but I remember really enjoying it the first time and I'm excited to read it again and then hopefully get to see some of the sights!

• What did you recently finish reading?

Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout. I feel like I'm her own personal cheerleader here on the blog but I have REALLY liked everything I've read by her and she was super cool when I got to meet her on tour. I'm thinking as long as she keeps pumping them out, I'll keep reading!

• What do you think you’ll read next?

The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp. I'm interested in this book because it being turned into a movie that happens to begin filming soon in my hometown area of Athens, Georgia. I really have high hopes for this book. I WANT to love it and hopefully at some point during filming I'll be able to see of the cast and crew around town!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

What A Great Bookish Day!

Yesterday morning a co-worker asked me about a book because I "always have great book recommendations." This kinda set my day for a great bookish day! I finished the book I was reading and the audio book I was listening to in my car, Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout and The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater, respectively. Both of which were very good and look for reviews and what not coming soon to a blog near you (aka this one)! 

And once I got home I found my first Advanced Reading Copy in the mail!!! Which, by the way, when I had emailed the publisher about it I got a polite email back saying they didn't have anymore copies. I can't wait to read and review this book. (Its The Third Covenant Novel.) And I kinda feel like I'm really part of the book blog "club" now! 
Needless to say, I was super excited to see it! And now you can see it too!!!

Look at that! ARC of Deity
by Jennifer L. Armentrout
and some book swag!
THANKS Spencer Hill Press!!
You guys ROCK!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Mani Monday: Shadow and Bone

So a while ago, I wrote about how much I LOVED Shadow and Bone. You know, "one of the best books of 2012." The book that gave me a "book hangover" for days and made it impossible to read anything else! I still haven't gotten this book out of my head. And in honor of the book club I was attending where this book was to be the topic of conversation, I painted my nails with a Shadow and Bone inspired motif. This actually doubly cool because I was looking around on author Leigh Bardugo's website and discovered she used to be a make up artist. She even had special Shadow and Bone nail polish she was giving out at some of her events like Comic Con (which I would have loved to be at!). Since I didn't get the official polish, I had to make do with my own supplies. Here's what I came up with:

I love the cover. After you've read the book
you can see all the symbolism there.

Close up on the nails.
Matte gray with 
black with glitter on 
ring finger accent.

Here's the polish I used to create the mani.

Wet 'n Wild: Black Creme
Spoiled: Shuffle the Deck
NYC: Steele
Hard Candy: Matte-ly in Love
(top coat to matte the gray)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Jennifer L. Armentrout: Behind the Scenes and Cursed

This week on of my fav authors is having a big week! 
Last week her Obsidian book trailer was posted. 

Today the behind the scenes special from the filming of Obsidian dropped. I really enjoyed this clip. (Almost as much as the actual trailer!)

For your viewing pleasure:

Annnnd....the book trailer for another one of her upcoming books 
came out earlier this week!
Seems like it will be an excellent read as well!

Here is the book trailer for Cursed:

I'm almost finished with my ARC copy of Onyx. Y'all it's good stuff!! If you haven't read Jennifer L. Armentrout's work....WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?!?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A New Attitude!

So, I've been fumbling around with this blog since April. I didn't really know what I wanted my blog to be. I really didn't want to be just book blogger but I didn't like the idea of a totally random blog either. Frankly, I really didn't think I had the right to seriously call myself a "book blogger." I mean, I don't know what I'm doing, for one. Secondly, book bloggers are serious, kind of a big deal in my eyes. They read all the time, they chat with authors on Twitter, they go to all these super cool bookish events, they have giveaways, read ARCs before anyone else, host author interviews on their blogs, put on blog events, etc. I haven't done all these things but I've done some and even a few before I became a "blogger." And I'm becoming (work in progress) more comfortable in the blogosphere.  I still don't think I'm worthy of a title such as "book blogger" but I like to think that I am (albeit, slowly) coming into my own. 

Books are such a huge part of my world, I knew there was no way I could blog without talking about them. I also LOVE going places and doing crafty projects. I've talked about on here before how I have been inspired by books for manicures, recipes, etc. So, officially this is going to be my mission statement. This is a blog where you will be able to find bookish things, like reviews, cover reveals, recommendations, book trailers, info on book to movie/tv adaptations. But in Alli's World there is often so much more you can take from the story than just the words on the page, so you'll also likely find: Book Crafts, Book Inspired Manis, Date Ideas, Recipes, Vacations, and anything else I can come up with that relates to a read. I'm thinking of it as a way to bring a different aspect to the written words I adore. 

Don't get me wrong. I totally live in the real world, but I don't think I ever really grew up and if I have a chance to live in dreams and fantasy worlds a little bit longer, well, I just don't see anything wrong with that! Truthfully, there's not going to be much change in the blog, I just wanted to have a clear direction in my head of what I wanted from my blog.

With that in mind, I hope you enjoy your visit to Alli's World and you come back often. I hope you find some good reads, some good eats, some fun projects, some inspiration, some out side the pages book related awesomeness. Maybe I should have just realized a long time ago that I wanted to live in a storybook!

Update/Recap: Once Upon a Read-a-Thon 2012

My first attempt at the Once Upon a Read-a-Thon really was awful! Some how life threw me some curves that made reading impossible! I'm so sadden by lack of progress made during these three days! I only finished Kiss of Death by Rachel Caine (which mind you I only had like 100 pages left in when the Read-a-Thon began!) And I've read 186 pages in Jennifer L. Armentrout's Onyx. (I REALLY want to read it too! Grrrrr, life gets in the way sometimes!) So maybe, just maybe, that would be enough to equal like one small book? I'm almost too embarrassed to even make this post! Oh well. Can't win them all! I'll try again next time and I know my result will HAVE to be better! 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Cover Reveal: Clockwork Princess

I know many bloggers do "cover reveals" but this would be my first time doing one, so I hope I'm doing it right. I'm just so flipping excited about this one I can't not share. In one of my previous posts, I wrote about Cassandra Clare's Infernal Devices series and how much I was really digging them. Well the cover for the newest in the series, Clockwork Princess, was revealed earlier toady. And y'all. It's sooooo pretty!! I just had to share with you!

as originally seen here:

Release Date:
March 19, 2013

For a refresher 
here is a pic of the 
first 2 books in The 
Infernal Devices

Monday, July 9, 2012

Mani Monday in Morganville

Today is a MEGA post. I'm just finishing up reading Kiss of Death by Rachel Caine, book 8 in The Morganville Vampires series. (Approps title, lately I've been feeling like I've been kissed by death! Hmmm, a lil too ironic, don't you think? Bonus points for an Alanis Morissette reference! Score!!) I really enjoy the Morganville series, they are easy, fun, YA reads. 

The first book in the series is Glass Houses. I read it about a year ago so I won't even try to review it but obvs I liked cause I've kept reading! Basically, there are four main characters, Claire a 16 year old college student, Eve resident Goth chic, Shane the cute, cocky slacker, and Michael the gorgeous, sensitive musician. They all end up living together in some kind of catch all Frat house of sorts in a town of vampires. Each installment of the series focuses on the four dealing with some major (vamp) related problem.
Here's a summery of Glass Houses (from goodreads ):

College freshman Claire Danvers has had enough of her nightmarish dorm situation. When Claire heads off-campus, the imposing old house where she finds a room may not be much better. Her new roommates don't show many signs of life, but they'll have Claire's back when the town's deepest secrets come crawling out, hungry for fresh blood.

Per wikipedia (which I know isn't always correct but seemed to have the most comprehensive list of the Morganville books) here are the Morganville books in reading order:
  1. Glass Houses
  2. The Dead Girls' Dance
  3. Midnight Alley
  4. Feast of Fools
  5. Lord of Misrule
  6. Carpe Corpus
  7. Fade Out
  8. Kiss of Death
  9. Ghost Town
  10. Bite Club
  11. Last Breath
  12. Black Dawn
  13. Bitter Blood (scheduled November, 2012)
As of September 2011, an extra 3 books were contracted to the Morganville series bringing the total up to 15 books. The books will be released in hardback.

(Just 4 more to read and I'll be caught up with the books that are already out! YAY!)

I checked this copy of Kiss of Death out from the library and it looks "much loved" but I loved the cover with all the pink-the hair the words. (I love pink!) And there were several mentions of pink throughout the book, not always complementary to my color but that's ok. I got to thinking, it's been a while since I've done girlie girl nails so I decided to let the Kiss of Death cover inspire me. (Oh, yeah, there's a kick butt librarian in this book too! YaY! Goooo librarians! I know I love mine!)

Summary of Kiss of Death (from goodreads):

Vampire musician Michael Glass has attracted the attention of a big- time producer who wants to cut a demo and play some gigs-which means Michael will have to enter the human world. For this, he's been assigned escorts that include both a dangerous immortal as well as Michael's all-too-human friends. And with that mix of personalities, this is going to be a road trip from hell...

I loved this quote from Kiss of Death:
"Eve," Michael said, "horror movies are not documentaries."

Annnnd, I just wanted to mention I got to meet the author, Rachel Caine when she appeared at Dragon*Con last year. She was super sweet and even posed for a pic with me! Here we are me in all my Steampunk glory and Morganville mastermind, Rachel Caine.

Not too shabby for a Monday, you got 2 books and manicure. (Better late than never, right??) Have a MARVELOUS week!

OOOOO, I almost forgot today is the first day of Once Upon Readathon! I've gotten a slow start today with too many non-reading things to deal with today but tomorrow is gonna be my intense reading day!! Wish me luck!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

"I've been waiting for you a long time, Alina," he said.
 "You and I are going to change the world."


Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.
Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.
Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.

My Thoughts

Ok, I flipping loved this book. It was EPIC. Epic, I say. I read it in less than 24 hours over the Fourth holiday, which is REALLY fast for me. But it was SOOOO good I hated to put it down. For any reason. This book. Wow. Very nearly life changing. Literally. 

"...And there's nothing wrong with being a lizard either. 
Unless you were born to be a hawk."

So I first heard of this when a book club I wanted to attend featured Shadow and Bone. I honestly did not think I was going to like it. I read the first couple of pages online and just wasn't convinced this was a book for me. But I really thought I'd like to go to the book club and didn't want not reading the book to be the reason I wasn't going. I made up my mind I was going to read it. Anyhow, like I said the first couple of pages didn't really do a lot for me, possibly because I am not a fan of the "fantasy" genre. While I adore fiction, I am my mother's child when it comes to wanting to be able to see what I read to play out like a movie in my head. I just have a real hard time getting a mental picture of what's going on in a fantasy novel.

"It isn't something separate from you," Baghra snapped.
 "It isn't an animal that shies away from you or chooses 
whether or not to come when you call it. Do you ask your 
heart to beat or your lungs to breathe? Your power
 serves you because that is its purpose, 
because it cannot help but serve you."

 Once I got into reading this book, it didn't matter what genre it was, fantasy, young adult, etc. While the descriptions of the goings on were good, it was the characters that swept me away. I could identify with the female lead, Alina, who never quite fit in but wanted to desperately. I love Mal and his good natured best friendliness and the Darkling with his sexy, dark, mysteriousness. The story has a Cinderella quality to it, plucking an obscure girl from the crowd and whisking her away to the palace. It has a dark under current of things not being quite what they seem. It's magical. It's both heartbreaking and hopeful. 

This is by far one one of my top books of 2012. Really, it's unfair to anything else I'm trying to read next because this good was just so darn GOOD. Would I recommend this book? YES! It is a MUST-READ NOW kind of book!

Here's the book trailer for Shadow and Bone:

(the book is as epic as this clip
would lead you to believe)

"The stag had been showing me my strength--
not just the price of mercy but the power it bestowed."

*quotes from the book in black highlight*

Friday, July 6, 2012

Obsidian Book Trailer

And so it seems I am still obsessed with Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout. After you see this, I'm sure you will understand that yes, in fact, my obsession is warranted. I'm super excited to see this because I actually got to meet the author and the models, Pepe and Sztella, when that were on tour in the Atlanta area (see this post for further info). I've been (impatiently) waiting to see this book trailer since I don't know, feels like forever! 

Annnnndddd......HERE IT IS:

Intrigued aren't ya? Wanna know MORE? Here's links to buy Obsidian:

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Review: The Near Witch By Victoria Schwab

"Believing and knowing are different things," says Dreska, returning to the table.
"Knowing and proving are different things," says Magda. 
Excerpt from The Near Witch.

The Near Witch by Victoria Schawab was recommended to me by fellow blogger magnet4books (this is a link to her review of the book). 

A basic summary of the book: main character Lexi lives in Near, a small town (I can relate) where there are never any strangers. One day a stranger is spotted and then kids start going missing. Lexi is intrigued by the stranger but also worried about her younger sister Wren who could become the next abducted child.

What I liked about The Near Witch: the storytelling, the descriptiveness of the landscape, and the mystery. The mystery of the missing children well kept me guessing until very close to the end. In fact, in the last 50 pages or so I was really stressed out to see how the story was going to end. (I like a good book that stresses me a little!)

The one thing I didn't totally love but didn't hate either: main character's "love story." To me, it just seemed a bit rushed and unbelievable. I liked the idea in theory but it just didn't connect for me somehow. I mean it isn't awful and doesn't ruin the story AT ALL but I just felt it moved too quickly for this reader. 

Overall I give this book a 4 out of 5 and I would defiantly recommend it to older teen readers and adults who fancy a little supernatural twist. 

Lastly, I'll leave with a short passage from The Near Witch that I really liked and it isn't too spoilery. (And I'll just say, I liked the gems left by Lexi's father throughout the book.)

"My father used to say that change is like a garden. 
It doesn't come up overnight, unless you are a witch. Things have to be planted and tended, and most of all, the ground has to be right. He said the people of Near had the wrong dirt, and that's why they resisted change so much, the way roots resist hard earth. He said if you could just break through, there was good soil there, down deep."

~The Near Witch~

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Mani Monday (on a Tuesday): Independence Day Edition

And I'm proud to be an American,
where at least I know I'm free.
And I won't forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me.
~Lee Greenwood

I love having my nails "themed" to whatever is going on. Since Wednesday is July 4th, Independence Day, I decided to do my nails in a patriotic design. I did a image search online saw lots of cool designs and finally just decided to try out a few of my own.

These are the colors I had to work with.

Here are some of the designs I was toying with. 
(These color wheel things are awesome! You can get them at the beauty supply store and they are pretty cheap!)

My patriotic heart beats red, white, and blue.
~Author Unknown

These are the colors I finally picked to use.

Then join hand in hand, brave Americans all!
By uniting we stand, by dividing we fall.
~John Dickinson

And here's my final manicure, kind of flag inspired if you will.

I painted my thumb and index finger with the dark blue and then a coat or two of silver glitter for the stars and then I painted my other three fingers with red and then used the white to make stripes. 

Hope you like it!

Happy 4th of July!

Monday, July 2, 2012

INDIEpendence Day

INDIEpendence Day is about celebrating indie authors both self-published and small-press. This celebration is hosted by The Indelibles, a group of 25 indie authors. This is what they say about the event, "By highlighting and bringing greater awareness to quality indie books, people find great books to read, indie authors get support, and we continue to change hearts and minds about the gems that can be found among self-published and small-press novels."

More on INDIE-pendence Day

I choose to highlight Atlanta-based author Amanda DeWees. Per her website she received her PhD from the University of Georgia in English literature and her dissertation topic was vampire literature. (I didn't even know that was possible! How cool is that?!)  I found out about Ms. DeWees' book from my good friend Sara, who knows I am a huge bibliophile. Not too long ago Sara says to me, "So my friend wrote a book..." And then I was all like, "You know an author and didn't tell me?!" I immediately added it to my "to be read" list, I just haven't had the opportunity to read it yet. But I' really looking forward to it. I've looked on Amazon and Goodreads and DeWees' book Sea of Secrets has gotten really great reviews. It's been described as mostly as gothic mystery and also as a historical romance. From the description, it sounds like it will be a good read that I'm looking forward to and I hope you are as well!

Find Sea of Secrets on Amazon

Here's the cover of Sea of Secrets by Amanda DeWees from Amazon, where you can get the book in print or on your Kindle. Check her website for all the ways Secrets is available!

I love supporting local authors and knowing that she's a friend of a friend, makes me feel so... special! playing around on her site, I found Ms. DeWees has a Young Adult writing in progress that I'm super excited about. I can't wait to see what this author has to offer!

Here's a list of all the other bloggers participating in the INDIEpendence Day event. Be sure to click around and find out about other great books by indie authors! And thanks again to the The Indelibles for hosting this event!