Sunday, December 9, 2012


I've started making the time to read more "me" books. The books that I've purchased or received and am reading without any pressure to review. But, I'm a bit of a spazz when it comes to not writing up a review, so I'm going to post several mini-reviews from time to time. They're not actually "reviews", but more a summary of my thoughts/feelings.

The Name of the Star (Shades of London, #1)Series: Shades of London #1
Genre: Paranormal YA
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication Date: 9/29/11
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 372
Source: Bought

The day Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London marks a memorable occasion. For Rory, it's the start of a new life at a London boarding school. But for many, this will be remembered as the day a series of brutal murders broke out across the city, gruesome crimes mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago.

Soon “Rippermania” takes hold of modern-day London, and the police are left with few leads and no witnesses. Except one. Rory spotted the man police believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn't notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities.
I'll admit that I bought The Name of the Star because I am a big fan of Maureen Johnson's online presence. Her sometimes odd, but always funny, tweets always make me giggle. Because of that, I was sure that I would love this book.
I did not. I didn't even like it that much, to be honest. I have a lot of reasons why I didn't click with The Name of the Star. For starters, the writing. It was very abrupt. Rorie (the mc) would have a conversation with her new schoolmates, say something that cued an awkward silence, then would say "And that was the end of that conversation." or something similar. Over and over again. Rorie also spent an inordinate amount of time noting how much she liked Cheez Whiz and sausages. Sigh... I don't like sausages and I don't want to hear you observe, every morning, how much you like sausages.Unless they're the fun kind! (Yes, I had to go there.) And another thing (oh boy, am I on a roll), Rorie is from Louisiana, and guess what... she's quirky! Bet you didn't see that coming, did ya? She repeatedly reminds the reader where she's from, and that her Uncle Bick and Cousin Diane are oddballs. Here's the deal: I lived in Louisiana, and being from Louisiana does not automatically mean you are slightly touched in the head. Am I overly prickly about that? Maybe, but it freaking annoyed me, so there's that.

All of these random, trivial observations and conversations pretty much made up the first two hundred pages of The Name of the Star. I'm not even sure why I kept reading, other than the fact that I had to know, out of morbid curiosity and the fact I paid a lot of money for this book, what was going on with the Ripper-style killings. When the story turns to the mystery, instead of the sausages (thank god), it became much more interesting. I really liked the ghost police aspect. I found it to be clever and surprising. I never became all that interested in the identity of the killer, though the tension in the big showdown was good. The ending was just okay. When I finished, I simply closed my book and thought "Well, that happened." I'm fairly positive I won't continue with the series.

Favorite Quote:

  "I decided to deflect her attitude by giving a long, Southern answer. I come from people who know how to draw things out. Annoy a Southerner, and we will drain away the moments of your life with out slow, detailed replies until you are nothing but a husk of your former self and that much closer to death."   (pg.24)

You can purchase The Name of the Star at:
Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Book Depository

Fracture (Fracture, #1)Series: Fracture #1
Genre: Paranormal YA
Publisher: Walker Children's
Publication Date: 1/17/12
Format: ARC
Pages: 272
Source: Received in a trade.

Eleven minutes passed before Delaney Maxwell was pulled from the icy waters of a Maine lake by her best friend Decker Phillips. By then her heart had stopped beating. Her brain had stopped working. She was dead. And yet she somehow defied medical precedent to come back seemingly fine. Everyone wants Delaney to be all right, but she knows she's far from normal. Pulled by strange sensations she can't control or explain, Delaney finds herself drawn to the dying. Is her altered brain now predicting death, or causing it?

Then Delaney meets Troy Varga, who recently emerged from a coma with similar abilities. At first she's reassured to find someone who understands the strangeness of her new existence, but Delaney soon discovers that Troy's motives aren't quite what she thought. Is their gift a miracle, a freak of nature-or something much more frightening?

For fans of best-sellers like Before I Fall and If I Stay, this is a fascinating and heart-rending story about love and friendship and the fine line between life and death.
Somebody please explain to me why I had Fractured for almost a year before I read. Please. Tell me. I had heard nothing but good things about this story, and yet I put it off.

The plot was fascinating. Delaney Maxwell was dead for eleven minutes. When she wakes from a coma, she should be left in a vegetative state, but she doesn't seem to be brain damaged in the least. But soon she realizes she is drawn to death. But is she drawn to death or is death after her because she lived. I really didn't know what to expect with Fractured. I thought it would be a simple story of a girl who struggles to find normal after a brush with death. And it is, but there is also a mystery that ends with one of the most tense scenes I've ever read.

What really blew me away about Fractured, though, was Megan Miranda's simple, beautiful portrayal of the emotions Delaney and those around her go through. Delaney's sadness, desperation, and confusion made me hurt. To add to my emotions, I have a daughter named Delaney. To read about someone's child who "died" and she shares the name with my daughter, made me a wreck.  Decker, who I have to say was a badass hottie that I loved, almost stole the show. His actions, feelings, and courage to always help Delaney made me fall in love with him. I'm so happy that he's getting a book!

Fractured was brilliant. I stayed up until 2:00 am finishing it and have zero regrets. Megan Miranda is an author to watch.

Favorite Quote:

  He was holding his breath beside me, and I remembered the Decker who sobbed over my bed, fingernails missing, face hollow. "I thought you were dead."
  I was.
  "And I lost it. I slept at the hospital. Actually, I didn't sleep at all. I couldn't eat. I just waited. And I made all kinds of bargains with God. Anyone but you. Anyone at all." His voice dropped to a whisper. "Everyone but you."  (ARC, 212)

You can purchase Fracture at:
Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Book Depository



  1. Both sound interesting. Thanks for sharing. Maureen is funny. :)

  2. I suffer from the "I must finish to see what happens...even if I'm not enjoying this book disease" I'm getting better about setting the books aside but usually I still skim - just to know the ending at least.

    Yes! We must read for fun!!! Even if you feel compelled to write up a few thoughts afterwards.

  3. Pretty sure both of these books are on my shelf unread. Thinking one of them is gonna stay that way.

    I've started a new philosophy for 2013 on StuckInBooks. Gonna read what I want when I want. Worked on my calendar last night and filled it for January & February with books I've been putting off so I could do tours. I'll do a few tours but my calendar gets filled by me first.

    So, I'm going to add Fractured to the schedule NOW.

    Thanks girl.


  4. Lol, I'm currently reading The Name of The Star, thanks for heads up!

    -Novel Reveries

  5. Great reviews! I loved BOTH of these books. And, yeah, why'd it take you so long to read Fracture, huh? :P Megan Miranda is definitely an author to watch...I can't wait to dig into my copy of Hysteria!

  6. I've been wanting to read both of these for a long time too! I actually had Fracture in my hands from the library but never got a chance. I was a bit back and forth on read The Name of the Star because it does seem to have a lot of love it or hate it reviews. I really liked 13 Little Blue Envelopes and was curious to try something paranormal from her. I still might give it a try sometime. Fracture sounds fascinating! I am wondering if it is kind of Final Destination like. I just love me book time! But I end up feeling a urge to review as well but some I skip still. It's nice to read and not have to review!

  7. I was feeling a little left out last year when The Name of the Star Came out and I couldn't make the time to read it. I guess I can put it off for awhile longer without feeling badly. Thanks for your reviews.

  8. Oh I really need to make more time for me books too Andrea, I have both of these books on my shelf and can't wait to get started with Fracture after your enthusiastic review! Great mini-reviews Andrea! :)

  9. Great reviews, Fractured is on my list, but I am going to skip Name of the Star :(

  10. Ugh, thank goodness I went with my gut and didn't get the name of the star. I have seen rave reviews about it, but something about the blurb and such just screamed " I"m shit!"

    Speaking of shit.. I was christmas shopping yesterday, and I walked by old navy, and on the ground next to a bush, there was what looked like a Dildo shaped dog turd. NO lie! I seriously thought it might even be a black dildo. I wanted to take a picture but I had aubs with me. She would have had a million questions.

    As for Fracture, I have it. I really need to get to it huh. <3

  11. You provide me what I was looking for. Good work.

  12. I'm so glad you love Fractured! I have had it since her release and signing and STILL haven't read it!
    I suggest maybe trying one of Maureens other books. I know I have read some and liked them. I haven't read this one though and don't have any plan to.
    I have SO been wanting/needing to read some of those books on my shelves...

    Btw, got the book from Victoria Stauss that I won! (That was here, right? I'm not just remembering wrong? Lol.) Can't wait to read it!

  13. I like the idea behind your mini-reviews. Even though you're not obligated to review a book you read for yourself, it's kind of ingrained in you to want to talk about it. Although, I have seen some bloggers who do regular reviews the length of your mini-reviews and even though it's more of a, "to each their own,", I kind of feel gipped when they review a book in one paragraph.

    And it stinks about The Name of the Star... that happened to me with Eve by Lauren Carey. I wanted to like the series so much, and I even bought the second book, Once, when it came out so I could just go straight from book 1 to 2, but the first book didn't do very much for me. It wasn't bad, it was just boring. There were a few aspects that I liked, but it just fell short for me. I've moved the 2nd book, Once, to the back of my bookshelf - needless to say, it's not high on my TBR list. :/

    But Fractured! I know that feeling so well. I do it with a lot of books. I buy them the day they release and they sit on my bookshelf for months. I tell myself that it's because I don't want them to end - but I also think it's because I don't want to discover they might not be good. Especially when it's a 2nd or 3rd book in a series - I get really nervous and upset about how it will compare to the 1st.

    Anyways, thanks for sharing!

  14. I enjoyed Name of the Star, but I don't think I ever wrote a review for it. I think I just didn't know what to say about it. I am laughing about the Cheeze Wiz and sausage comment. She really did talk about them way too much. I really liked the whole concept of the story even with the annoyances from some of the characters.

    Fractured was great!! I was so wrapped up in the story. It was so interesting. And OMG I loved Decker!! He was just awesome!! Great mini reviews chick!!

  15. Thanks for the great honest reviews. I haven't heard of either of these.

  16. OMG, I LOVED Fractured! So emotional but in a different way. I was so happy when I found out there would be a book 2. Can't wait to read it!

  17. I need to read Fracture, it sounds like something I would enjoy!

  18. I will have to read Fractured soon! Not so much on the other book! Great reviews!


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