Ads 468x60px

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Interview with Alexandra Adornetto!

I recently got the opportunity to interview Alexandra Adornetto, the author of Halo, which hits book stores today! I really enjoyed reading Halo; my review is posted here!
ALEXANDRA ADORNETTO was fourteen when she published her first book,The Shadow Thief, in Australia. The daughter of two English teachers, she admits to being a compulsive book buyer who has run out of shelf space, and now stacks her reading “in wobbly piles on my bedroom floor.” Alex lives in Melbourne, Australia; Halo marks her U.S. debut.
---------------------------------

Where did you get your inspiration for Halo?

I get inspiration from all over the place. With Halo the idea was born some time ago when I was studying religion in high-school. There were only 5 kids in the class and everybody hated it, except me! I thought it was fascinating, especially the idea of the power of faith. So that, combined with my longstanding interest in the paranormal is what inspired Halo.


What was your favorite part to write about in Halo?

I enjoyed writing about Beth and Xavier’s relationship and letting it unfold. It was interesting to combine their deep connection with Gabriel’s disapproval and Molly’s jealousy. The best part was when they made the transition from occasional flirting and accidental touches to accepting their feelings for one another. I enjoyed the action scene in the graveyard as well!


If you could spend the day as any one of your characters, who would you like to be and why?

Bethany, so I could live out the real-life romance with Xavier! It’s gotta be better than sitting at a computer writing about it!


What is your writing process like?

I do chapter breakdowns so I know vaguely what’s going to happen in each one. I’m not a big planner; I’m usually too impatient to start writing. All I need to know is the basic outline of what’s going to happen and the story tends to write itself. I always do two edits (one big one and one touch-up) before sending a manuscript off to my publishers. They usually have a few edits as well, so the book goes through a fair bit before it hits shelves.



Halo’s cover is just breathtaking! Was this the original cover, or were there other versions during the publication process?

It definitely took us a while to get the cover right. We played with a lot of different ideas, like having an iconic cover (just a single feather) or a photograph of a girl with wings. But once we saw that design, we all fell in love with it. Xavier was originally a little bit different, but I wrote to the designer and explained how he should look and he absolutely nailed it!



What books are in your “To Read” pile right now?

Angelology by Danielle Trussoni

Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

Dead until Dark by Charlaine Harris


When will Hades hit bookstores?

Early 2011. I will post the final release date on my Facebook page as soon as it’s finalized.


Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?

It’s a tough industry, but don’t be put off. I believe if you want something badly enough and you’re willing to work at it, then you’ll succeed. The important thing is to take all criticism on board and incorporate suggestions into your work so that when you pitch it to publishers, it’s the best it can be.


And one just for fun: What is your favorite word and why?

Huckleberry. It’s has pretty sound and fun to say.


Thank you for taking the time out to answer my questions, Alexandra!

I definitely recommend checking out Halo!


---------------------------------


Alexandra will be touring the US this fall! Check here to see if she stops near you!

And if you're interested, check out the first two chapters of Halo on Macmaillan's website!


Alexandra's bio courtesy of Macmillian

Trailer Tuesday (4)



I checked the summary for The Familiars on GoodReads and it sounds like a fun read for younger readers!

The Familiars by Adam Epstein & Andrew Jacobson (Sept. 2010)

After three young wizard apprentices are kidnapped by the evil queen of a distant land, it is up to their familiars, their magical animal companions -- a street smart alley cat, a precocious blue jay, and a bumbling tree frog -- to save them.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

In My Mailbox 5

Here's the vlog for In My Mailbox This week!
It's also my birthday today--so don't forget to enter my 200 Follower + Birthday contest HERE!




As I mentioned in the vlog, I'm giving away 3 copies of Dust--enter HERE if you're interested!


In My Mailbox
is a weekly meme inspired by The Story Siren--check here for more details!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Crusade by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

Crusade by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

Release Date: September 7th 2010
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 480


The world has been all but taken over by vampires, which are known as the Cursed Ones. At the beginning when the Cursed Ones made their presence known, they seemed civilized and like ordinary humans with only one difference--they drank blood. But they promised they only drank blood from animals or from blood bags taken from local butcher shops. And with such a charismatic spokesperson, Solomon, for the Cursed Ones, they quickly became the a novelty in society. People clamored to meet them, interact with them, and young girls began to romanticize them, portraying them as harmless cute guys with fangs.

Then war broke out and people learned they had been deceived; the Cursed Ones had to drink fresh blood from humans or they would die. War broke out but soon it became clear the Cursed Ones were winning so human leaders began to forge uneasy truces with the vampires. Both sides claimed they wanted to keep the peace, but it soon becomes clear that despite the claims of human leaders, the Cursed Ones are really the ones in charge.

More and more nations signed treaties with the Cursed Ones and many began to live in fear of the Cursed Ones, who can drain a human dry in mere seconds and who possess strength, speed, and powerful charm which can lure humans to their demise.

Not everyone has succumbed to the Cursed Ones, however. Spain is one of the few countries who have not signed agreements with the Cursed Ones and are actually training hunters to destroy the Cursed Ones. Like the vampires of legend, they can be killed by a stake the the heart, they are irritated by garlic, crosses and holy water burn them and they cannot last in the sunlight. Students from all over the world are welcome at the school in Salamanca, Spain, and Jenn was once such student. She fled her home in America and came to Salamanca to train. After completing the grueling courses, she graduated along with several other hunters and now they are sent on missions as a group.

Despite completing her training and surviving, Jenn does not feel confident of her abilities. She often doubts herself yet her teacher, Father Juan, believes she is destined for something great, and does not allow her to leave. She feels a strong bond with her hunting partner, Antonio, who also believes that the only thing Jenn lacks is confidence in her own abilities.

Suddenly called back home because of a death in the family, Jenn returns to San Fransisco and must confront her family. How will her father, who had always supported vampires and humans existing together take it, now that Jenn is a hunter? What will her younger sister say, who Jenn had left behind when she went to study in Spain? Matters worsen by a tenfold when Jenn is betrayed by someone who was supposed to protect her. A crippling blow in her already low confidence, her insecurities grow hugely. Will she find the strength to continue, or is this the end of her run as a hunter?

There were definitely points in Crusade where I couldn't put it down! I was hooked and had to see what happened next! I really liked how the focus shifted between the different characters in the book so that not only does the story continue, but you get to learn about each character's personality, their past, and their thought patterns. The switching viewpoints were well done; it was never too confusing, but was really helpful in getting a peek into each character's brain.

Crusade takes its time setting the back story and setting up before the plot starts moving along. I didn't really mind that since the whole environment was set up well; you really get a sense of defeat and fear that many people feel, now that their countries have called a truce between humans and the Cursed Ones. I really liked how the authors set up the currents state of affairs (there was good attention to detail); it seems like an accurate prediction to how many would respond if Cursed Ones really did exist and chose to expose themselves. The whole society responding to the Cursed Ones--how society adjusts and views them--really reminded me of Shade by Jerri Smith-Ready. In Shade, Jerri also did an excellent job of showing how society had to deal with a huge change: the fact that people born before the Shift can see and interact with ghosts.

The only criticism I have for this book concerns the ending. I don't quite see it and I don't quite agree with it entirely. It sets up nicely for a sequel, but the character doesn't quite fit the role as the others envision her to, but there will probably be a sequel, so that remains to be seen. I don't want to spoil anything so that's all I'll say. Can't wait to read more in this series!

**Don't forget, I'm currently hosting a giveaway & giving away 5 copies of this novel, along with 4 other novels! Enter here if you're interested! Ends 9/1

Overall: 4.25 out of 5
Plot: 4 stars
Characters: 4 stars
Writing: 4.5 stars
Cover: 3.75 stars (It's rather simple, but it works.)

Friday, August 27, 2010

Book Blogger Hop! (2)

Happy Friday, everyone!! Book Blogger Hop is a weekly event hosted by Jennifer at Crazy-for-Books! There are tons of other bloggers who participate, so check it out!


Book Blogger Hop


The question for this Friday:

Do you use a rating system for your reviews, and if so, what is it and why?

I just started using a rating system again! A few weeks after I first started writing reviews, I used a rating system based on the old gymnastics scoring system, the "perfect ten" system. (I'm an ex-gymnast so I thought it'd be fun and different than all the 5 star ratings). However, I felt that a number was not sufficient at conveying my thoughts about a book. After all, the plot might be excellent but the writing could leave a lot to be desired. So I took the rating system away and just recently started using a new rating system: I now give a rating (out of 5 stars) for the book overall, the plot, the writing, the characters and the cover (I know you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but I like giving credit where it's due; a lot of effort is put into most covers and the end result can be brilliant!). You can still get a general idea of my overall view on the book via the rating system, but I also break it down further so you see where that overall number comes from!


This week...

Giveaways I'm hosting:
Enter my birthday + 200 Followers contest for a chance to win various books!



Enter for a chance to win one of three copies of the new zombie novel, Dust!


Reviews this week:

I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore



If you stop by, please leave a comment so I can return the favor!
Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

New Award!


The lovely Maddie over at Confessions of a Teen Bookaholic & the wonderful Morgan from The Paperback Princess just gave me the One Lovely Blog Award! Thank you so much! I'm really grateful!

-----------------------------------------

Here are the rules:

1. Accept the award, then post it on your blog with the name of the person who has granted the award and his or her blog link.

2. Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered.

3. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know that they have been chosen for this award.


-----------------------------------------

So here are the great blogs I've recently discovered that I'm nominating (in no particular order):
  1. Laina Has too Much Spare Time
  2. The Book Cellar
  3. Confessions of a Bookaholic
  4. Mindful Musings
  5. /- LA FEMME READERS -/
  6. It's Time to Read!
  7. Flippin' Fabulous- A Reader's Record
  8. YA Bliss
  9. YA Addict
  10. Young Adult Books Reviewed
  11. Page Turners
  12. Crazy-for-Books.com
  13. Cleverly Inked
  14. Dreaming In Books
  15. Black and Blue Ink

Read-A-Thon!

Come join the fun on Twitter & at Book Crazy!


follow the hash tag #ReadAThon
I'll be participating as much as I can! Follow me @BookVault01

Here's my entry for Challenge #1 for the ReadAThon at YA Addict




Dust Giveaway!

Brainnnns!

Zombie outbreak? Not quite! But I am giving away 3 copies of the upcoming release, Dust by Joan Frances Turner, which features a teenager girl and her own zombie story!



Here's a quick blurb:

Nine years ago, Jessie had a family. Now, she has a gang.

Nine years ago, Jessie was a vegetarian. Now, she eats very fresh meat.

Nine years ago, Jessie was in a car crash and died. Nine years ago, Jessie was human.

Now, she’s not.

After she was buried, Jessie awoke and tore through the earth to arise, reborn, as a zombie. Jessie’s gang is the Fly-by-Nights. She loves the ancient, skeletal Florian and his memories of time gone by. She’s in love with Joe, a maggot-infested corpse. They fight, hunt, dance together as one—something humans can never understand. There are dark places humans have learned to avoid, lest they run into the zombie gangs.

But now, Jessie and the Fly-by-Nights have seen new creatures in the woods—things not human and not zombie. A strange new illness has flamed up out of nowhere, causing the undeads to become more alive and the living to exist on the brink of death. As bits and pieces of the truth fall around Jessie, like the flesh off her bones, she’ll have to choose between looking away or staring down the madness—and hanging onto everything she has come to know as life…

Check out the book trailers:







Reminds you of those old Public Service Announcements, doesn't it?

Interested in winning a copy of Dust? Just comment on this post with your:
  • Name
  • Email
  • Answer this question: What would you do to defend yourself in case of a zombie outbreak? Run for the hills? Grab a shotgun? Be creative! Give a tip against zombies or your #1 zombie survival rule!
  • extra entries (if you so desire)
Extra entries:
  • +5 if you are or become a follower of The Book Vault
  • +5 if you follow/start following me on Twitter (@BookVault01)
  • +5 if you add The Book Vault to your blogroll
  • +3 if you post or tweet about this giveaway elsewhere--just include the link!

Don't forget to check out the official website for Dust!

Giveaway open to US residents only, no PO Boxes please. Sorry!
Please enter by 9/15/10, midnight EST.
Good luck!

Summary courtesy of GoodReads. Thank you to Penguin for donating the prizes!

Waiting on Wednesday (5)


Ripple by Mandy Hubbard
(Penguin/2011)

Eighteen year old Lexi Wentworth is cursed. For as long as she can remember, she’s spent every night swimming. If she doesn’t, she’ll regret it—simply walking will be agony, as if she’s stepping on shattered glass. Her body craves the water, demands the water, until she can’t say no.

But it's not the swimming that troubles Lexi. It’s the singing that goes with it.When she turned sixteen, her siren song killed the only boy she's ever loved. Now, she avoids the popular shores of the Pacific in favor of a long forgotten lake up in the mountains, where she can swim and sing in peace, far from the population of her oceanside home.

Until, that is, Troy Mills discovers her lake. He’s new to Lincoln City High, and he doesn’t know about Lexi’s reputation as an ice queen—a reputation she’s carefully cultivated to keep everyone around her safe. He pushes her, talks to her, forces her to dream of what life could be like if she weren’t a siren.

Lexi can’t stop herself from warming to him, from falling for him. Soon, he’s demanding answers, following her to the lake, unknowingly risking his life. How can she keep him safe when the one thing she wants most--to hold him close-- will endanger his life?

AHHHHHHH! I saw this on Twitter I think last week and it looks AMAZING! Cannot wait!! So many books with mythological creatures are coming out--very exciting since I've always loved reading myths!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Trailer Tuesday (3)

The book trailer for the highly anticipated novel, Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare!

Monday, August 23, 2010

200 Followers & Birthday Giveaway Update!

I have over 230 followers! *squee* Thank you!!! So as promised, I just added another prize to my 200 Followers & Birthday Giveaway! Check it out!

& If I hit 250 followers, I will add another prize!
Thanks to everyone who has entered!

There's still time to enter the giveaway if you haven't already! Ends 9/1

Sunday, August 22, 2010

In My Mailbox 4

Sorry there's no vlog this week--I tried making one but my computer + webcam was not cooperating and after 3 tries, I gave up :(
But here's what I got this week:


For review:
  • Cloaked by Alex Finn (I definitely did a happy dance when I got this book--I liked Beastly & I'm looking forward to the movie! Thank you, HarperCollins!)
  • The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball by Risa Green (this looks like a cute one!)
  • Looking for Fame: Lady Gaga (more of a biography, but I enjoy Lady Gaga's music so I thought this might be an interesting read!)
What did you all get in your mailboxes this week?


& I'd like to say a quick thanks to everyone who stopped by my blog for the Blogger Book Hop! I had a great time visiting all of your blogs and reading what you had to say! If you haven't participated in the Hop before, I definitely recommend it--it's a great way to connect w/ other fantastic bloggers out there!!

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme inspired by The Story Siren--check here for more details!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

I am Number Four


I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore

Release Date: August 3, 2010
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 488



Nine of us came here. We look like you. We talk like you. We live among you. But we are not you. We can do things you dream of doing. We have powers you dream of having. We are stronger and faster than anything you have ever seen. We are the superheroes you worship in movies and comic books—but we are real.

Our plan was to grow, and train, and become strong, and become one, and fight them. But they found us and started hunting us first. Now all of us are running. Spending our lives in shadows, in places where no one would look, blending in. we have lived among you without you knowing.

But they know.

They caught Number One in Malaysia.
Number Two in England.
And Number Three in Kenya.
They killed them all.

I am Number Four.

I am next.


John Smith is Number Four, though he has gone by many names already. Constantly on the move to avoid being killed, John runs with his guardian, Henri, from town to town, never staying long. And now with Numbers 1-3 dead, John knows he's next...

I don't want to give anything away, but fans of science fiction and those interested in UFO's, alien encounters, alien abductions and other things of the like--this book is for you! The plot sounds like one of those alien theories; aliens live among us and many unexplained events in our history were actually their doing. I am not a big believer of those theories, however, I still enjoyed reading I am Number Four. The plot isn't original, but I think I enjoyed the book because it was a story the author spins based on those theories, instead of just descriptions of an alien theory.

I am Number Four's plot may be about extraordinary beings, but I found a lot of the plot rather ordinary. It seemed like formula stuff; John joins a new school, gets picked on by the star jock (who's ex girlfriend was a cheerleader), but manages to get the jock to stop bullying him and manages to get the girl. It wasn't really special and some of the characters seemed flat. I was rather disappointed that readers don't really get to know Sarah that well; John just comes along, falls for her, and neither John nor the readers get to know Sarah better, which might be the reason the chemistry didn't feel very strong between the two of them.

The author did manage to build up a bit of emotion though. You feel for the Loriens who lost their planet, despite how hard they fought, and it tugs a heartstring or two when you realize those who were old enough to remember Lorien (the Nine's guardians) have lost everything they've known and must survive on a foreign planet.

Overall, I think I enjoyed I am Number Four, mostly because (as I mentioned above) it's a story based on UFO theories instead of just being a UFO theory printed in some pamphlet next to a grainy photo. Not the most well written book and some of the supporting characters were lackluster, but I would still like to know what happens next when the sequel comes out!

However, I must say that I am actually very excited for the movie! It stars Alex Pettyfer! Alex was in 2 other movies based on books I loved (Alex Rider & Beastly--which I am really really excited for!) and I can't wait to see him portray John in I am Number Four!

Overall: 3.5 out of 5
Plot: 3.5 stars
Characters: 3 stars
Writing: 3 stars
Cover: 4 stars (I like how the finished version looks overall)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Book Blogger Hop! (1)

It's my first book blogger hop! A lot of fellow bloggers told me about the Hop and I decided to join the fun! Book Blogger Hop is a weekly event hosted by Jennifer at Crazy-for-Books! There are tons of other bloggers who participate, so check it out!

Book Blogger Hop


The question for this Friday:

How many blogs do you follow?
A LOT! When I come across a blog that looks interesting, I tend to check it out (read some reviews, take a look at memes, check out the guest posts/interviews, etc) and then follow them!

But lately, I've been having trouble w/ google account & following, sometimes it says I'm following a blog but then it turns out I'm not so I have to try again :(

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Confessions of the Sullivan Sisters by Natalie Standiford

Confessions of the Sullivan Sisters by Natalie Standiford

Release Date: September 1, 2010
Publisher: Scholastic
Pages: 320

The Sullivan family is a rich and powerful family--mostly thanks to Almighty Lou--from Baltimore, Maryland. Almighty is the old-fashioned grandmother of the Sullivan children, and she a huge influence over society. It is Almighty's money (and she has a lot of it!) that supports the Sullivans but on Christmas Day, that threatens to change.

Almighty calls her family together after Christmas dinner and announces that she does not have very long to live--and that the Sullivans have been taken out of her will. Someone has offended her and she will not reinstate the family back into her will unless they write letters of confession, and apologize to her. They have until December 31st to give her their letters, which she will read before considering whether or not to put them back into her will on New Years.

Since the girls of the family have gotten on Almighty's bad side most, the family decide it must have been one of them who offended Almighty. So Norrie, Jane and Sassy set off to write their letters and hope to save their family.

Was it Norrie, whose unexpected brush with love that offended Almighty so gravely? Or might it have been Jane and her rebellious nature had that gone to far this time? Perhaps it was Sassy, who has her own life-or-death story? Will Almighty accept their explanations and apologies?

The Confessions of the Sullivan Sisters is divided into three parts--one for each sister. You get to hear each girl's full confession before moving onto the next. This format really worked for this book and I really enjoyed how it was written! The stories weren't too long or too short and you definitely get a sense of what each sister is like in their respective letters! The Sullivan family may have been big and the sisters may have had their own views and beliefs, but they still care deeply for each other, a fact which is evident in all of their stories.

The overall plot is unique and provides for a fun story. Almighty's response to the apology was true to her style, but I had thought the ending would be a bit longer. Nevertheless, a very fun, well-written and enjoyable novel with dynamic characters--I definitely recommend checking Natalie Standiford's new novel when it hits bookstores in September!

Overall: 4.75 out of 5
Plot: 4 stars
Characters: 4 stars
Writing: 5 stars
Cover: 4.75 stars

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Confessions of a Bookaholic!

The lovely Miss Jessica over at Confessions of a Bookaholic has just hit 900 followers! And I know this is really late, but she's also hosting a HUGE giveaway w/ more prize packs than you can shake a stick at! Go enter! And hurry--they end tomorrow!

The Contemps!

21 Fabulous authors have launched The Contempts!

Celebrate realistic YA with The Contemps!

The authors will be doing plenty of posts and are currently hosting a challenge where you can win a copy of all 21 of their books if you promise to read at least 18 of those releases!
Go check it out!

Waiting on Wednesday (4)


Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton
(HarperCollins/February 15, 2011)

When seventeen-year-old Ellie starts seeing reapers - monstrous creatures who devour humans and send their souls to Hell - she finds herself on the front lines of a supernatural war between archangels and the Fallen and faced with the possible destruction of her soul.

A mysterious boy named Will reveals she is the reincarnation of an ancient warrior, the only one capable of wielding swords of angelfire to fight the reapers, and he is an immortal sworn to protect her in battle. Now that Ellie's powers have been awakened, a powerful reaper called Bastian has come forward to challenge her. He has employed a fierce assassin to eliminate her - an assassin who has already killed her once.

While balancing her dwindling social life and reaper-hunting duties, she and Will discover Bastian is searching for a dormant creature believed to be a true soul reaper. Bastian plans to use this weapon to ignite the End of Days and to destroy Ellie's soul, ending her rebirth cycle forever. Now, she must face an army of Bastian's most frightening reapers, prevent the soul reaper from consuming her soul, and uncover the secrets of her past lives - including truths that may be too frightening to remember.

Soooo excited for this one!! Can't wait to read--doesn't it sound intriguing?? And yet another gorgeous cover!! Ahhhh!!!


What upcoming releases are you waiting for?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Trailer Tuesday (2)

Here's the book trailer for Infinity: Chronicles of Nick by Sherrylin Keyon, which I reviewed a few weeks ago!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Ask me a question...

Since most of my weekly memes are book-related, I decided to do one that's not! I wanted to start a new weekly post just for fun and hopefully this one will help you get to know me a bit better beyond the books that I like!

So every week, I'll try to answer 1 user submitted question. If you're interested in something, even if it's just simple like "What's your favorite color?" (blue!), just submit it and I'll pick one or two to answer each week!

For this week, author Linda Gerber posed the question "Do you believe in fate/destiny? Why or why not?" on her blog.

I believe in fate/destiny to a certain extent. I think our actions and decisions can change the course of the future in an instant and even subtle changes can have great effects on our futures. I think fate tries to influence your decision from time to time, but in the end, it's still you that has to make that final decision.

For instance, my decision to do varsity fencing instead of varsity winter track in my first few years of high school has had many effects on me, even years later. True, I got my first sports-related injury and was in physical therapy for a few months, but I also met amazing people that have become my closest friends today. But two big factors that made me chose fencing over winter track was that I liked running spring track better...and it was drizzling on the first day of winter track practice. I didn't mind a bit of drizzling, but did I want to try something new, or did I want to run in the rain? Yes, fate had a hand in it, but it was my decision that sealed the deal. I think your decisions and fate work hand-in-hand sometimes to change the course of your future.


Feel free to comment with your own answer to the question--do you believe in fate/destiny? I'm interested in what everyone else has to say!

Want to ask me a question? Just send it to me here! Thank you!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

In My Mailbox 3





In My Mailbox
is a weekly meme inspired by The Story Siren--check here for more details!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Birthday & 200 Followers contest!

I first started reviewing after writing my first review for a school project. I had always loved books so after the project, I started reviewing for fun! After a while, I started The Book Vault so I could keep all my reviews organized. I've enjoyed all the years connecting with other readers, book bloggers, and authors! I'm very grateful to have met so many wonderful people, gone to BEA and TAC, and to have read so many wonderful books! I am extremely grateful for all of you--all of my readers who have supported me from day one! I've had a blast and hope to continue blogging with all of you!

To celebrate having almost 200 followers & my upcoming birthday (Aug. 29th), I'm going to host a giveaway!

Here's what I'm giving away:

5 copies of Losing Faith by Denise Jaden

A terrible secret. A terrible fate.

When Brie's sister, Faith, dies suddenly, Brie's world falls apart. As she goes through the bizarre and devastating process of mourning the sister she never understood and barely even liked, everything in her life seems to spiral farther and farther off course. Her parents are a mess, her friends don't know how to treat her, and her perfect boyfriend suddenly seems anything but.

As Brie settles into her new normal, she encounters more questions than closure: Certain facts about the way Faith died just don't line up. Brie soon uncovers a dark and twisted secret about Faith's final night...a secret that puts her own life in danger.

~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~


5 copies of Crusade by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

The ultimate battle. The ultimate love.

For the past two years, Jenn has lived and trained at Spain's Sacred Heart Academy Against the Cursed Ones. She is among the few who have pledged to defend humanity or die trying. But the vampires are gaining power, and the battle has only just begun.

Forced to return home after death takes a member of her family, Jenn discovers that San Francisco is now a vampire strong-hold. As a lone hunter apart from her team, Jenn is isolated—and at risk. She craves the company of her fighting partner, Antonio: his protection, his reassurance, his touch. But a relationship with Antonio comes with its own dangers, and the more they share of themselves, the more Jenn stands to lose.

Then Jenn is betrayed by one who was once bound to protect her, causing her to doubt all she had held as true. To survive, Jenn must find the courage to trust herself—and her heart.

~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~

5 copies of The Haunted by Jessica Verday
After a summer spent reclaiming her sanity and trying to forget the boy she fell in love with by the bridge where her best friend drowned - the boy who must not exist, cannot exist, because she knows that he is dead - Abbey returns to Sleepy Hollow, determined to leave the ghosts of her past behind. She throws herself into schoolwork, perfume-making and her friendship with Ben, her cute and funny lab partner, who just might be able to help her get over Caspian once and for all. But Abbey is never going to truly be able to move on from Caspian and Caspian has no choice but to return to her side: for Caspian is a Shade and Abbey is his destiny. The two are tied not only to each other, but also to the town of Sleepy Hollow and the famous legend that binds their fates - a legend whose true ending and dark truths they are only just beginning to guess...
book trailer for The Haunted:


~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~


1 copy of What's Your St@tus by Katie Finn
Madison MacDonald thinks things are finally working out!

Followers: 300

Status Updates:

mad_mac Nate and I have been together for two months, and it’s wonderful! Life is good!

mad_mac Well, except for the fact that I still might be failing history.

mad_mac And I no longer have a BFF.

mad_mac But aside from those things!

mad_mac Okay. So, um, apparently I’ve just been put in charge of the school’s priceless heirloom.

mad_mac And the assistant headmaster has a vendetta against me.

mad_mac And it seems I’m being blackmailed.

mad_mac Gathering together a crew. I’m going to try and pull off a heist. Without getting caught. Or expelled. Or arrested.

mad_mac Also, I think I may have just accidentally wrecked my relationship. . . .

Madison MacDonald is trying not to panic.

~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~

225+ Followers--Added 8/23:

1 ARC of Mostly Good Girls by Leila Sales
Read my review of it here!

The higher you aim, the farther you fall….

It’s Violet’s junior year at the Westfield School. She thought she’d be focusing on getting straight As, editing the lit mag, and making Scott Walsh fall in love with her. Instead, she’s just trying to hold it together in the face of cutthroat academics, Scott Walsh’s new girlfriend, and the sense that things are going irreversibly wrong with her best friend, Katie.
When Katie starts making choices that Violet can’t even begin to fathom, Violet has no idea how to set things right between them. Westfield girls are trained for success—but how can Violet keep her junior year from being one huge epic fail?



I'll add more prizes if I reach 225, 250, etc followers!


To enter, please fill out the form HERE

Rules:
  • open to US residents/addresses only (sorry!)
  • open to people 13 years & older (if you're younger & want to enter, please have your parent email me at bookvault(at)yahoo.com giving you permission)

Extra entries:

  • +5 if you are or become a follower
  • +5 if you are or become a follower on Twitter
  • +5 if you add The Book Vault to your blog roll
  • +2 if you tweet about it (please include the link)
  • +2 if you post/blog about this giveaway elsewhere (please include a link)

I would love some feedback about The Book Vault so I can make improvements. If you are interested, please fill out the survey HERE.
1-2 winners (depending on how many completed surveys I receive) from the completed surveys will be selected first. They will have first pick from the prizes. The rest of the winners will be chosen at random from the regular pool and their prizes will also be selected at random.
Thank you all in advance!

Please enter by September 1st, midnight EST
Good luck to all & thanks for entering!

Thank you very much to Simon & Schuster and Scholastic for generously donating the prizes! All book summaries are courtesy of GoodReads!

Duff & Linger winners!

Thank you to everyone who entered my Duff ARC & Linger giveaways!
Without further ado, I present the winners, chosen via random number generator:

Winner for (1) ARC of Duff is Renkellym (Lauren M)!

Winner for (1) copy of Linger is Janet Wooldridge!

Congrats!
Please email me at bookvault(at)yahoo.com with your name & mailing address so I can get your prize out to you!

If you didn't win, don't worry! I'm currently hosting my Birthday & 200 Follower Contest and I'll be giving away 16 books! Enter HERE if you're interested!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday (3)


Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann
(Simon Pulse/February 8, 2011)

The small town of Cryer's Cross is rocked by tragedy when an unassuming freshman disappears without a trace. Kendall Fletcher wasn’t that friendly with the missing girl, but the angst wreaks havoc on her OCD-addled brain.

When a second student goes missing - someone close to Kendall's heart - the community is in an uproar. Caught in a downward spiral of fear and anxiety, Kendall¹s not sure she can hold it together. When she starts hearing the voices of the missing, calling out to her and pleading for help, she fears she’s losing her grip on reality. But when she finds messages scratched in a desk at school - messages that could only be from the missing student who used to sit there - Kendall decides that crazy or not, she’d never forgive herself if she didn’t act on her suspicions.

Something's not right in Cryer’s Cross - and Kendall’s about to find out just how far the townspeople will go to keep their secrets buried.

Ahh! A new book by Lisa McMann! Something new to look forward to from her now that the Wake trilogy is over!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Trailer Tuesday (1)

There are some pretty awesome book trailers out there these days so I figured I'd try to share some of them with you!

I recently reviewed (and loved!) Halo by Alexandra Adornetto and the lovely people at Macmillan told me about the new book trailer for it!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Yay!

Just got back from the dentist & they said I'm still a little swollen on one side from the wisdom teeth removal earlier this week, but that I'm healing nicely :)

Also, another point of "yay" is The Book Vault has almost 200 followers! Yay! Thank you all--it means a lot to me and I'm glad to be connected to so many other fellow book lovers! And thank you to everyone who reads & comments; it's great getting feedback and I've enjoyed getting to know some of you better!

And lastly, it's almost my birthday!

I think this all calls for a giveaway or two! I'm organizing everything now, but hopefully I'll have a few giveaways up by the end of this week to celebrate so many followers & my birthday that's around the corner--do you think I can get 200 readers by Thursday so I can call it a "200 Follower giveaway?" :)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

In My Mailbox 2

It was a bit of a quiet week for me; I got 1 book for review this week & borrowed 1 from the library to read.

For review:
Black Dust Mambo
by Adrian Phoenix


From the library:
Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief
by Rick Riordan

I know I'm really late on reading this one, but since a lot of the kids that I see at the library have read this (and told me about it during the summer reading program) I figured it's time I finally read it too. I hardly managed to get our copy when it came back in; it's been going out a lot since the Percy Jackson movie came out!

What'd you all get in your mailboxes this week?


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme inspired by The Story Siren--check here for more details!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Mostly Good Girls by Leila Sales

Mostly Good Girls by Leila Sales

Release Date: October 5, 2010
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 288

Violet Tunis is a junior at Westfield Prep, a private all-girls school in Boston. She and her best friend Katie are your typical HS students; trying to manage their academic, social and family lives. But unlike Kate, extracurricular and grades do not come so easily to Violet--she actually has to work for them. Nevertheless, Violet is a good student and the editor-in-chief of The Wisdom, the school's literary magazine.

Differences or no, Violet and Katie have been friends forever; they share similar interests, both have a good sense of humor, and both lust for the same guy; Scott Walsh, the cutie from Harper-Woodbane, the nearby all-boys school. The two cause their fair share of shenanigans and seem to share matching wits. The two have their own adventures together, trying to get the typical "teenage girl experience" which is no easy feat in some aspects, since their interaction with boys is rather limited.

But as junior year progresses, Katie starts to change, she starts ditching the extracurricular activities she used to love, gets a boyfriend who isn't as nice or hot as Scott Walsh (in Violet's opinion at least), and hardly cares about her school work any more. Violet doesn't understand why Katie would ditch everything she has: stellar grades, effortless skill at extracurricular activities, including crew, and a good reputation--everything Violet has to work so hard to get. As the two start drifting further apart--both as friends and their opinions--Violet may learn more about what her best friend and her viewpoints. Violet will have to learn to open her eyes since she's been in private school her own life, but their transformations may just help both of them learn more about themselves and how to stand up for what they believe in.

Although the premise of the book is a bit cliche, I think Violet's voice made it stand out. She's funny, quirky and believable. Despite the fact I attend public school and not private school like Violet does, Violet is still a character many teenage girls can relate to; many of us work for good grades, worry about college, and pine for cute boys. I really liked how there were short little chapters with fun titles--some were funny, some simple and to-the-point, but Violet's voice can be heard clearly through all of them. I loved the vignette-style of this book; that along with Violet's voice really made this book very enjoyable for me.

Overall, I have to say I had a fun time reading Mostly Good Girls and going on Violet's journey with her. Violet's got a wry sense of humor that provided plenty of laughs and readers really get to see Violet and Katie grow as they learn more about themselves and what they care for. Mostly Good Girls is not too heavy, but not too light-hearted either. It's a good debut from Leila Sales that most readers will enjoy!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Almost to Die For by Tate Hallaway

Almost to Die For by Tate Hallaway

Release Date: August 3, 2010
Publisher: NAL Trade
Pages: 256

Anastasija Parker is not your typical teen--she's a witch. She's always known that, but on her 16th birthday--the day her True Witch initiation is supposed to take place--she's about to find out a whole lot more about her supernatural self.

But for now, Ana is more worried about her initiation. Unlike her best friend Bea, she doesn't think she possesses any powers as a witch. She can't conjure spells or summon her magic like Bea does, which is a problem, seeing that she needs to preform magic for her initiation. Ana is less than confident for her Initiation, despite Bea and her mother's beliefs that she has powers that just haven't shown themselves yet. Sadly, her day does not get any better; the school's resident dumb jock Thompson has to get in her daily taunting.

Heading home from school slightly dejected and extremely nervous, Ana is in for a surprise when her father that she has never known shows up on her doorstep, demanding her not to go to her initiation. Before Ana can react, her mother quite literally throws him out of the house. And why this unceremonious departure? Because, Ana learns, her father is a vampire. It also happens that vampires are the moral enemies, so what's Ana to do?

The only stroke of luck Ana seems to have at her initiation is her interaction with Nik, a hot guy and a fellow witch. Nik seems to reciprocate her affections, which is a boost for Ana's confidence, since she's always seen herself as a bit of a plain jane, and a failure as a witch. But just when things start to get warm between Nik and Ana, Elias shows up. He's vampire who's sworn to protect her and soon checks on her constantly. Despite his protectiveness, he is also a gentleman and Ana can't help but like him too. It seems that Ana will not only have to chose between her two bloodlines, but also between these two cute guys as well.

Before she knows it, the witches and vampires are fighting to claim her as their own. Is Ana a Witch or the princess of the vampires? Each side is intent on having her be solely vampire or solely witch, but what will Ana chose? Can she even chose, and turn her back on one of her parents and half her blood?

In the the description for Almost to Die For, the novel is described as "Twilight-meets-The Princess Diaries," however, I found the later is more true than the former; the girl-finds-out-she's-a-princess-and-her-life-changes idea does show up in this book, but while Ana has to adjust to the fact that she's royalty, the book does not focus solely on her trying to become a monarch. Almost to Die For does also share some similarities with Twilight; mostly the fact that two boys are vying for her attention, and both of those boys are part of two races that are sworn enemies, but not much more than that. I feel that the biggest issue Ana struggles with is her choice between her two heritages--which one should she follow?

At first, I found it rather hard to get into Almost to Die For--it sounded like another vampire and supernatural book and Ana complained too much for my liking in the beginning. Eventually, the plot picked up and it wasn't half bad. Although it seems a bit cliche at times and does not have the most original of plots (overall, it does sound like a mesh between Twilight and the Princess Diaries series) supernatural fans will find Almost to Die For enjoyable. The writing is not bad and the quirks and twists as the novel progresses will keep supernatural fans interested. I'm glad that Ana grew more as a character; it was nice to see her confidence increase and to see her take more control over her own life.

Waiting on Wednesday (2)


Pegasus by Robin McKinley
(Putnam Juvenile/November 2, 2010)

Because of a thousand-year-old alliance between humans and pegasi, Princess Sylviianel is ceremonially bound to Ebon, her own pegasus, on her twelfth birthday. The two species coexist peacefully, despite the language barriers separating them. Humans and pegasi both rely on specially-trained Speaker magicians as the only means of real communication.

But it’s different for Sylvi and Ebon. They can understand each other. They quickly grow close—so close that their bond becomes a threat to the status quo—and possibly to the future safety of their two nations.

I am simply dying to read this book! It sounds amazing and I've always loved mythology so I'm interested in seeing this new world Robin has created! Can't wait to read this book!


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Tell Me a Secret book trailer!

I recently read, reviewed and loved Tell Me a Secret by Holly Cupala, and there's a new trailer for her novel! Check it out!



Nice, isn't it? I like the animation for this one!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Wisdom Teeth & giveaways

So I ended today with 4 less teeth than I began...bye bye wisdom teeth! The surgery went pretty well, but recovery hasn't been brilliant unfortunately. I threw up quite a few times because of the meds, so I have to go in and get checked later this week.

I'm still reading & reviewing, but it might be a bit slow this week. So I'd like to give you guys a bit more time to enter the 2 giveaways I have running right now. They'll both end on 8/8/10
thanks for understanding & thanks for all your comments lately; they made my day!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

In My Mailbox (1)



What'd you all get to read this week?

P.S. I finally started using my GoodReads account again and I'm glad I did! It's great hearing what everyone else has to say about books I've read as well as finding more books to add to my TBR list! (though I must admit my TBR list is already too long! haha)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme inspired by The Story Siren--check here for more details!

Halo by Alexandra Adornetto

Halo by Alexandra Adornetto

Release Date: August 31, 2010
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Pages: 496

The small town of Venus Cove has always been a peaceful place, but lately, there have been darker happenings. A girl died in a local fire and small troubles and misdeeds have sprung up around town. In response to the growing darkness around Venus Cove, three angels have been sent down from Heaven to renew the town's faith and to bring goodness back.

Ivy is a healer, Gabriel a warrior, and Bethany a young angel who is still trying to figure out what her gift is. Bethany is the youngest of the three angels sent to Venus Cove, and also the most human--something Ivy and Gabriel often worry about. Bethany is an angel, but is also prone to human mistakes, and begins to get far more involved and emotionally invested than other angels would consider safe.

Ivy, Gabriel and Bethany try to blend in, working subtly to help set things right. Bethany wants to experience what being a teenager is like, but even she catches the Ivy and Gabriel by surprise when she starts to fall for the handsome Xavier Woods. How can an angel fall for a mortal boy? The other angels had expected Bethany to know better and to have more control, but Bethany has never experienced anything like falling in love before and craves Xavier's company.

Soon Bethany's amorous feelings for Xavier will the be the least of the angel's worries when a newer, more powerful dark force arrives to wreck havoc on Venus Cove. Will it undo everything the trio has worked so hard for? And what will they do when a dark, handsome, seductive stranger arrives in town and sets his sights on Bethany?

Halo is not an action-heavy novel. It not a book that focuses entirely on plot but rather, focuses on the journey the characters go on. Although it slow at times, it was nice seeing how Bethany tried to fit in. She was rather clueless at times and I wish she was stronger, but she did grow a bit as the novel progressed.

If you're into books that have a set and clear plot and are filled with action, you might find Halo a bit slow. In my opinion, Ms. Adornetto was not focusing just on the end product, but also on the journey. In a way, Halo reminded me of the film Children of Men in the way that both gave more attention to the journey the character experience, rather than just what happens at the end. Both have key occurrences that move the plot along, but the focus is on how characters reach the end, not just the end.

Despite featuring angels and their battles against dark forces, I did not find Halo very preachy. It was not over the top and was not trying to force religion down your throat, which was nice and allows you to just enjoy the book.

I thought Halo was very well-written and was very impressed to learn that the author is only seventeen years old! Halo is an interesting story and provided an intriguing take on angels and their differences (in both expectations and existence) from humans as well as the structure of Heaven . I definitely enjoyed Halo and am really glad I was able to snag a copy at BEA this year! It lived up to my expectations and I am eagerly awaiting the next novel in the trilogy, Hades!

Series I Like

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis Divergent by Veronica Roth Firelight by Sophie Jordon Halo by Alexandra Adornetto Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Thanks to i'm loving books!

Disclaimer

I receive review copies of books from publicists, authors and publishers for an honest review. I do not receive monetary or other compensations for posting reviews.