Waiting on Wednesday Issue #2

September 28, 2016
Waiting on Wednesday, Weekly Feature, InToriLex
"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, Hosted at Breaking the Spine.  It spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Scythe, Neal Shusterman, Waiting on Wednesday, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
In a world where disease has been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed (“gleaned”) by professional reapers (“scythes”). Citra and Rowan are teenagers who have been selected to be scythe’s apprentices, and—despite wanting nothing to do with the vocation—they must learn the art of killing and come to understand the necessity of what they do.

Only one of them will be chosen as a scythe’s apprentice. And when it becomes clear that the winning apprentice’s first task will be to glean the loser, Citra and Rowan are pitted against one another in a fight for their lives.

I'm so excited for this new Dystopian series from Neal  Shusterman. I have read and loved his entire Unwind Dystology. He is an author on my must buy list. Professional Killing carried out by teenagers, who are turned against each other, sign me up.
What are you anxiously waiting to be released?


Award-winning author Neal Shusterman grew up in Brooklyn, New York, where he began writing at an early age. After spending his junior and senior years of high school at the American School of Mexico City, Neal went on to UC Irvine, where he made his mark on the UCI swim team, and wrote a successful humor column. Within a year of graduating, he had his first book deal, and was hired to write a movie script.

In the years since, Neal has made his mark as a successful novelist, screenwriter, and television writer. As a full-time writer, he claims to be his own hardest task-master, always at work creating new stories to tell. His books have received many awards from organizations such as the International Reading Association, and the American Library Association, as well as garnering a myriad of state and local awards across the country. Neal's talents range from film directing (two short films he directed won him the coveted CINE Golden Eagle Awards) to writing music and stage plays – including book and lyrical contributions to “American Twistory,” which is currently playing in Boston. He has even tried his hand at creating Games, having developed three successful "How to Host a Mystery" game for teens, as well as seven "How to Host a Murder" games.

As a screen and TV writer, Neal has written for the "Goosebumps" and “Animorphs” TV series, and wrote the Disney Channel Original Movie “Pixel Perfect”. Currently Neal is adapting his novel Everlost as a feature film for Universal Studios.

A Torch Against the Night (An Ember in the Ashes #2) by Sabaa Tahir

September 27, 2016
A Torch Against the Night, Sabaa Tahir, Book Review, InToriLexPublished By: Razorbill on August 30, 2016
Format Read: Hardback Edition (452 pages)
Genre: Young Adult/ Fantasy/ Romance
Series: Book Two of An Ember in the Ashes Series
Source: Purchased
Elias and Laia are running for their lives. After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.

Laia is determined to break into Kauf—the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison—to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars’ survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.

But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene—Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.

Bound to Marcus’s will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own—one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape…and kill them both.


I took a while to write this, because I have many mixed emotions about this book. I tampered down my expectations before reading, once I found out the first book was intended as a stand alone. The intrigue, villain and twisting plot line that I loved in An Ember in the Ashes was watered down here. Laia and Elias are on the run for most of the book, they learn more about their abilities and we learn more about Elias's past. The first third of this book reads like filler but did do a good job of reminding the reader of events from book two. Helene is forced to go after Elias while she struggles to do what's right for the Empire. Her tragedy seems like its too much to bear at times, while the all knowing Augur's are little help. 
"You are a torch against the night --if you dare to let yourself burn."
There is a brutal portrayal of genocide being carried out against the Scholars with no mercy, throughout the book. Under the leadership of  Marcus and the Commandment, the empire is imploding because of everyone's lust for power. The violence and gore described was unflinching but realistic, and highlighted Laia and Elias's desperation. the supernatural elements described in this book were confusing to keep track of because they still remain shrouded in mystery. I thought we would learn more about how magic, and jinn's work in this world, but I still have a lot of questions. I was engaged and invested in these characters lives, but felt that the way the plot progressed was not well thought out. Twists at times seemed like a cheap trick instead of a surprising turn of events.
"What point is there in being human if you don't let yourself feel anything?"
I enjoyed the progression of the story, but too little happens and the things I liked most about this world were never explained. The romance at times was a bit cheesy, but believable because the characters were all half starved and exhausted. If you loved the first book, you should continue on with the series. I will continue the series despite not loving everything about this book. The ending left so much more to be explored in book three, and I look forward to what's ahead for Laia and Elias.

Reviews in Series
An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes #1)


Sabaa Tahir grew up in California’s Mojave Desert at her family’s 18-room motel. There, she spent her time devouring fantasy novels, raiding her brother’s comic book stash and playing guitar badly. She began writing An Ember in the Ashes while working nights as a newspaper editor. She likes thunderous indie rock, garish socks and all things nerd. Sabaa currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family.


Book Scoop September 16- September 23, 2016

September 23, 2016
Book Scoop, Weekly Feature, InToriLex, Book News, Links to Click
Book Industry News and Links to Sift Through When Your Face Isn't buried in a Book 
Happy Fall


One of the Most challenged/Banned books of 2015 
Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out
 A groundbreaking work of LGBT literature takes an honest look at the life, love, and struggles of transgender teens.

Author and photographer Susan Kuklin met and interviewed six transgender or gender-neutral young adults and used her considerable skills to represent them thoughtfully and respectfully before, during, and after their personal acknowledgment of gender preference. Portraits, family photographs, and candid images grace the pages, augmenting the emotional and physical journey each youth has taken. Each honest discussion and disclosure, whether joyful or heartbreaking, is completely different from the other because of family dynamics, living situations, gender, and the transition these teens make in recognition of their true selves.


Giovanni's Room
 Baldwin's haunting and controversial second novel is his most sustained treatment of sexuality, and a classic of gay literature. In a 1950s Paris swarming with expatriates and characterized by dangerous liaisons and hidden violence, an American finds himself unable to repress his impulses, despite his determination to live the conventional life he envisions for himself. After meeting and proposing to a young woman, he falls into a lengthy affair with an Italian bartender and is confounded and tortured by his sexual identity as he oscillates between the two.

Examining the mystery of love and passion in an intensely imagined narrative, Baldwin creates a moving and complex story of death and desire that is revelatory in its insight.

Did I miss Anything in The Book World This Week?


Waiting on Wednesday Issue #1

September 21, 2016
Waiting on Wednesday, Weekly Feature, InToriLex

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, Hosted at Breaking the Spine.  It spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

The Sun is Also A Star, Nicola Yoon, InToriLex
The Sun Is Also a Star
Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?
I've been anxiously awaiting this new release, because of how much praise and acclaim that this Author's first book Everything, Everything has received. I aim to support diverse authors and stories and this YA contemporary fits the bill. Have you read Everything, Everything, how did you like it?

What are you anxiously waiting to be released?


Nicola Yoon grew up in Jamaica (the island) and Brooklyn (part of Long Island). She currently resides in Los Angeles, CA with her husband and daughter, both of whom she loves beyond all reason. Everything, Everything is her first novel.


Top Ten AudioBooks You Should Listen To

September 20, 2016
Top Ten Tuesday, Book Blog Meme, Weekly Feature, InToriLex
The Broke and the Bookish
Top Ten Audio Books You Should Listen to! Below are books that have been recommended to me over and over again as in audio format. Let me know if you've read/ listened to any of these, or have any suggestions!! 

1. World World Z: An Oral History of the Zombie World by Max Brooks
World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War
It began with rumors from China about another pandemic. Then the cases started to multiply and what had looked like the stirrings of a criminal underclass, even the beginnings of a revolution, soon revealed itself to be much, much worse. Faced with a future of mindless, man-eating horror, humanity was forced to accept the logic of world government and face events that tested our sanity and our sense of reality. 
A Full Cast Production, the books format lends itself well to audio books because it features a series of reports and first hand accounts. Everyone who has listened to it has told me it was amazing.

2. Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1) by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit. 
 I've read and loved the book, but so many in the bookish community have also listened to the full cast audiobook. This book features dialogues through chats, reports and the mind of the computer, so I'm sure the full cast audio is amazing.
3. Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy: The Primary Phase by Douglas Adams
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: The Primary Phase (Hitchhiker's Guide: Radio Play, #1)
The most useful advice ever given, 'Don't panic', can be found within the Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The day aliens decide to demolish the Earth to make way for a hyperspace bypass is the day when Arthur Dent realises the futility of such advice. The story begins when Arthur, not really your average man-in-the-street, finds that his planet is suddenly destroyed around him, and the great hitch-hike begins... Starring Peter Jones as The Book, Simon Jones as Arthur Dent and Geoffrey McGivern as Ford Prefect, this is the first Douglas Adams' legendary radio series. 
Every Sci-fi fan I know has read these books and found them highly entertaining in funny. Sadly I'm not one of them, I think the Radio Play version would be a great way for me to squeeze this in on my TBR.
4. The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle #1) Patrick Rothfuss
The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #1)
My name is Kvothe
I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep.
 I've started this book and got pretty far in it, but then put it down for too long and was confused when I picked it up. This is a very large book, that features songs and dialogues that leap off the pages, so I'm sure the audiobook version will be great and keep me from carrying around another book brick.

5. The Passage (The Passage #1) by Justin Cronin
The Passage
First, the unthinkable: a security breach at a secret U.S. government facility unleashes the monstrous product of a chilling military experiment. Then, the unspeakable: a night of chaos and carnage gives way to sunrise on a nation, and ultimately a world, forever altered. All that remains for the stunned survivors is the long fight ahead and a future ruled by fearof darkness, of death, of a fate far worse.
 I've heard so many mixed reviews about the book, but only great things about the narrator of this audiobook being able to bring you along and keep your interest. This is a very popular series which a high page count, that I'll try to get through by listening.

6. The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells
The Island of Doctor Moreau
In the 1950’s, a British scientist is lost at sea. Once rescued, he finds himself on a mysterious island populated with strange, half-human, half animal creatures who are ruled over by a mysterious scientist and his assistant. This new full cast audio adaptation of H. G. Wells’ classic tale of the consequences of science without morality vividly re-creates the claustrophobic feel of the novel while bringing the setting forward to the fear and anxiety of the Atomic Age.
This is a classic sc-fi title that I've heard great things about, although it has unfortunately lived on my TBR for way too long. The audiobook is full cast, and it seems like a great way to get through a classic.

7. American Gods (American Gods #1) by Neil Gaiman 
American Gods
First published in 2001, American Gods became an instant classic—an intellectual and artistic benchmark from the multiple-award-winning master of innovative fiction, Neil Gaiman. Now discover the mystery and magic of American Gods in this tenth anniversary edition. Newly updated and expanded with the author’s preferred text, this commemorative volume is a true celebration of a modern masterpiece by the one, the only, Neil Gaiman.
I've tries to read American Gods a while ago but  was confused and put off by the writing style. But I've heard the full cast 10th Anniversary audio book is well done and a full cast productions

8. Hyperion (Hyperion Cantos #1) by Dan Simmons
On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of Time Tombs, where huge brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all. On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth on a final voyage to Hyperion seeking the answers to the unsolved riddles of their lives. Each carries a desperate hope—and a terrible secret. And one may hold the fate of humanity in his hands. 
 While I'm unsure whether this is a Full Cast Production I know that the audio book features different narrators. This is classic sci-fi, that has managed to live on my TBR for far too long.
9. His Dark Materials (#1-3) by Phillip Pullman
His Dark Materials Trilogy
A breathtaking epic, the award-winning His Dark Materials trilogy spans a multitude of worlds. The opening instalment Northern Lights is set in a parallel world like, yet very unlike, our own. Twelve-year-old Lyra, whose daemon Pantalaimon is part of her very self, is growing up in an ancient, ritual-haunted Oxford. She becomes involved in a quest to find her father and rescue her friend Roger from evil kidnappers, aided by armoured bears, Gyptians and a witch-queen. The second instalment, The Subtle Knife, introduces us to Will Parry - a young boy with a dangerous mission to fulfil. When he and Lyra cross paths, they decide to help each other, but the world of Cittágazze is a strange and unsettling place, where deadly soul-eating Spectres roam... The concluding instalment, The Amber Spyglass, brings the saga to a thrilling close. Lyra and Will are aided by friends old and new as they continue their perilous journey. As childhood slips away, they face further dangers - including a terrifying voyage to the world of the dead. Mixing science, theology and magic to fantastic and exciting effect, Pullman's gripping trilogy was an international bestseller, and these thrilling full-cast dramatisations bring Philip Pullman's masterpiece to vivid life.
I've tried to read the Golden Compass, but don't think I was in the right mood for it. This full cast audio book series has been recommended to me many times. This would be a perfect time to give it a listen because it's being adapted to a BBC TV Series.

10. The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings #1) by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1)
Frodo Baggins knew the Ringwraiths were searching for him—and the Ring of Power he bore that would enable Sauron to destroy all that was good in Middle-earth. Now it was up to Frodo and his faithful servant Sam to carry the Ring to where it could be destroyed—in the very center of Sauron's dark kingdom.
 I have watched and thoroughly enjoyed the Lord of the Rings Movie Trilogy. But I'm intimidated by the books because they feature alot of songs and linguistic styles that I'm very unfamiliar with. The audio book is a full cast production and the only way I think I'll be able to get through this first book.

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