100 Follower Giveaway!

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Ah! I actually reached 100 followers! When I first started Finding Bliss in Books I expected no one to follow me, so the fact that I now have over 100 followers is just amazing and unexpected. I want to give a huge thanks to all of my followers and everyone who reads my blog. Seriously, thank you so much. You're all awesome - and I can't express my gratitude that people actually read my ramblings reviews, so once again, thank you.

Now, to express my gratitude further, I'm going to give away three 2012 and 2013 releases to three lucky readers. Those readers can choose from the twenty-one books shown below. The books will be shipped to you via The Book Depository, and if one (or all) of the three books you choose are not yet released, they will be pre-ordered for you. Also, if one of the books you choose is the sequel to a book you have not yet read, you may choose the first book instead, or as well. Good luck!




 

  


 

  

  

Giveaway Guidelines:

- Fill out the Rafflecopter form below (if you get points for something you do not do, you will be disqualified).
- You must be 13 years or older to enter the giveaway.
- This giveaway is international.
- When the winner is chosen and announced, I will send him/her an email telling them they've won. If that email is not responded to in 48 hours, another winner will be chosen.


Waiting on Wednesday (August 29)

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine, where we post upcoming releases we're highly anticipating. My pre-publication selection for this week's Waiting on Wednesday is Live Through This by Mindi Scott
 Live Through This
Mindi Scott
Series: None
Release Date: October 2nd, 2012
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Number of Pages: 304

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Sometimes hiding the truth requires more than a lie . . .

From the outside, Coley Sterling’s life seems pretty normal . . . whatever that means. It’s not perfect—her best friend is seriously mad at her and her dance team captains keep giving her a hard time—but Coley’s adorable, sweet crush Reece helps distract her from the annoying drama. Plus, she has a great family to fall back on—with a stepdad and mom who would stop at nothing to keep her and her siblings happy and safe.

But Coley has a lot of secrets. She won’t admit—not even to herself—that her almost-perfect life is her own carefully-crafted façade. That for years she’s been burying the shame and guilt over a relationship that crossed the line. Now, Coley and Reece are getting closer, and as Coley has the chance at her first real boyfriend, a decade’s worth of lies are on the verge of unraveling.

Mindi Scott offers an absorbing, layered glimpse into the life of an everygirl living a nightmare that no one would suspect in this unforgettable powerhouse of a novel.
Normally contemporaries aren't really my thing, but so far this year I've read my fair share of great contemporaries and I figured I might as well continue giving them a shot, and maybe it would one day grow to be a genre I enjoy immensely. But, putting aside how contemporaries aren't normally my thing, and books that have to with held secrets normally include lots and lots of angst (something I'm not much too fond of), Live Through This just sounds too intense and thrilling - two things I love books to be - that I can't not anticipate this. Hopefully it doesn't follow the footsteps of other books in the YA genre and ditch a could-be intense and thrilling plot for a boring and sappy romance, because this book has great potential. Let's just hope that potential is actually met. ETA: *gasp* I didn't mention the cover at all! Well, let's remedy that, shall we? The cover is freaking gorgeous. I want to eat it. 

What are you waiting on?

Leave a link in the comments!

Review: The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa

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The Lost Prince
Julie Kagawa
Series: The Call of the Forgotten, #1
Release Date: October 23rd, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Number of Pages: 379
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 5 of 5 stars

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Don’t look at Them. Never let Them know you can see Them.

That is Ethan Chase’s unbreakable rule. Until the fey he avoids at all costs—including his reputation—begin to disappear, and Ethan is attacked. Now he must change the rules to protect his family. To save a girl he never thought he’s dare to fall for.

Ethan thought he had protected himself from his older sister’s world—the land of Faery. His previous time in the Iron Realm left him with nothing but fear and disgust for the world Meghan Chase has made her home, a land of myths and talking cats, of magic and seductive enemies. But when destiny comes for Ethan, there is no escape from a danger long, long forgotten.

My name is Ethan Chase. And I may not live to see my eighteenth birthday.

This review contains spoilers for the Iron Fey series. You've been warned.


It's no secret that I absolutely love Julie Kagawa's Iron Fey series, and it remains as one of my favorite YA series of all time. However, despite my love for her Iron Fey series, I went into Kagawa's The Lost Prince with slight trepidation for two reasons: reason one being that spin-offs rarely work out well for me, and, at its worst, only end up tarnishing my views of the original series, and reason two being that it's gotten reviews from fans of the Iron Fey series who have been underwhelmed with this addition. It's instances like this that make me wonder if I had a different copy of a book than everyone else, because while most people who've read this so far were disappointed in it when comparing it to the Iron Fey, I absolutely loved this book, and in fact had all my expectations surpassed.

The Lost Prince takes place about thirteen years after the events of The Iron Knight, and revolves around seventeen-year-old Ethan Chase. Ever since Ethan was stolen from his home in order for his older sister, Meghan, now the Iron Queen, to travel to the Nevernever to rescue him, Ethan has been keeping a close eye on his surroundings, as he is permanently able to see the Fey disguised as humans, a gift he does not want. Having to constantly move schools, he is yet again the new student, with the reputation as the rebel who burnt down his old school, and rumors follow him around the school. However, as he's at the new school, he quickly befriends Todd, a phouka, and Kenzie, a teenage girl. But soon Todd is kidnapped by a new species of fey known as The Forgotten, and, in an escape from The Forgotten, Ethan and Kenzie travel to the Nevernever, and attempt to save Todd.

End of Summer ARC Giveaway!

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Raise your hand if you've ever been personally victimized by Regina George you think this summer went by way too quickly.
 If you're not currently raising your hand you're a liar. Or a summer hater. Honestly, I'm not too sure which is worse. (I kid. Maybe.)
You can put your hand down. Now, if you're like me, and you're wondering where the hell your summer went, and then you look back on it and realize most of it comprised of a: reading, or b: sitting on your computer all day (which to me sounds pretty productive), and you're also dreading going back to school, work, or whichever, I'm here to make your end of summer a lot better. How may I make your end of summer a lot better, you ask? Well, if you haven't already guessed by this post's title, I am giving away four ARCs to one (1) lucky reader, and, in doing so, hopefully make their end of summer better than it would have been beforehand. (Also, sorry for the overuse of 'end of summer' thus far.) And what are those four ARCs? Well... *drumroll*

                         






Hopefully one, or all, of the books you have a chance to win are books that you've been looking forward to reading! If you haven't heard of one of the books shown above, below are the links to each book's Goodreads page, where you can read each book's synopsis. 

Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff (Read my review here.)

Giveaway Guidelines:

- Fill out the Rafflecopter form below (if you get points for something you do not do, you will be disqualified).
- You must be 13 years or older to enter the giveaway.
- This giveaway is international.
- When the winner is chosen and announced, I will send him/her an email telling them they've won. If that email is not responded to in 48 hours, another winner will be chosen.

Review: Through to You by Emily Hainsworth

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Through to You
Emily Hainsworth
Series: None
Release Date: October 2nd, 2012
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Number of Pages: 272
Source: Edelweiss
Rating: 2.5 of 5 stars

Add to Goodreads
Camden Pike has been grief-stricken since his girlfriend, Viv, died. Viv was the last good thing in his life: helping him rebuild his identity after a career-ending football injury, picking up the pieces when his home life shattered, and healing his pain long after the meds wore off. And now, he’d give anything for one more glimpse of her. But when Cam makes a visit to the site of Viv’s deadly car accident, he sees some kind of apparition. And it isn’t Viv.

The apparition’s name is Nina, and she’s not a ghost. She’s a girl from a parallel world, and in this world, Viv is still alive. Cam can’t believe his wildest dreams have come true. All he can focus on is getting his girlfriend back, no matter the cost. But things are different in this other world: Viv and Cam have both made very different choices, things between them have changed in unexpected ways, and Viv isn’t the same girl he remembers. Nina is keeping some dangerous secrets, too, and the window between the worlds is shrinking every day. As Cam comes to terms with who this Viv has become and the part Nina played in his parallel story, he’s forced to choose—stay with Viv or let her go—before the window closes between them once and for all.

(Warning: Possible spoilers, but really nothing you won't find in the synopsis)


On my one and only status update for this book, a brief discussion was held on how there are so many books in the YA genre recently that have an immense amount of potential, but, unfortunately, that potential is never met. And while unmet potential sadly is very common in YA, I went in to this book with very high expectations, sure that I would absolutely love it, only to be disappointed in the long run. Considering how much I was looking forward to this book, it pains me to say that Through to You has yet another case of unmet potential.

In Through to You, Hainsworth has come up with an original and intriguing concept of a high schooler named Camden Pike whose girlfriend recently died in a car crash due to his fault, and one day, he finds a transparent girl calling his name. This girl is eventually revealed to be Nina Larson, and she comes from a different dimension than Camden, and accidentally stumbled through a portal and into his dimension. Nina's dimension, as Camden finds out, is one where everything is opposite than his, and his girlfriend is alive. Anxious to see his girlfriend again, Camden travels to Nina's dimension, only to find out things are not as they seem.

Through to You is an extremely slow moving book, and in fact, the actual plot only kicks in barely before the fifty percent mark. That being said, most of the first half of Through to You is comprised of Camden being incredibly moody, Camden blaming himself for the death of his girlfriend, and Camden's incredibly boring and melodramatic inner-monologue. And all of this remains true even in the second half of the novel, but at least then we had some sort of plot going on, however poorly executed that plot may have been.

Review: The Dead Girls Detective Agency

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The Dead Girls Detective Agency
Suzy Cox
Series: Unknown, but probably
Release Date: September 18th, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Number of Pages: 384
Source: Edelweiss
Rating: 2 of 5 stars

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When Charlotte comes to after being pushed onto the subway tracks, she is informed by a group of teenage girls that she is dead…they all are. Meet the Dead Girls Detective Agency. With the support of these dynamic girls—including fashionable Lorna, who can’t wait to find out if the devil actually wears Prada, and nerdy Nancy, who insists on staying in limbo to help out other girls—Charlotte follows leads and tracks down clues to solve her own murder. With plenty of juicy mysteries and some pretty cute guys, readers are sure to fall in love with this fun and suspenseful page-turner! 
I don’t have much to say about The Dead Girls Detective Agency, and the hardest reviews to write are for the books I don’t have much to say for.

The Dead Girls Detective Agency is about a girl named Charlotte, who, one day, is murdered, being pushed onto a train track. As a teenager who was murdered, Charlotte is immediately brought into The Dead Girls Detective Agency. Her purpose in The Dead Girls Detective Agency is to find her killer, and, in doing so, go to heaven.

I picked up this book because I was looking for a cute, quick and funny read, and this book seemed like it would be exactly that. In hindsight, I should have picked up a different book (Social Suicide, perhaps?), because, while it was a very quick read, I didn’t find it to be very cute or funny. In fact, more often than not, I found it to be depressing rather than cute. And about the humor in The Dead Girls Detective Agency… it just didn’t work. The jokes in this book feel (and are) forced, and their turnout is at best receiving a slight giggle from me, or a miniscule smirk, but that’s it. Most of the jokes in this book were just trying too hard, and just weren’t funny like I had hoped.

Review: Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff

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Stormdancer
Jay Kristoff
Series: The Lotus War, #1
Release Date: September 18th, 2012
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books 
Number of Pages: 336
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

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A DYING LAND 

The Shima Imperium verges on the brink of environmental collapse; an island nation once rich in tradition and myth, now decimated by clockwork industrialization and the machine-worshipers of the Lotus Guild. The skies are red as blood, the land is choked with toxic pollution, and the great spirit animals that once roamed its wilds have departed forever.

AN IMPOSSIBLE QUEST
The hunters of Shima's imperial court are charged by their Shōgun to capture a thunder tiger – a legendary creature, half-eagle, half-tiger. But any fool knows the beasts have been extinct for more than a century, and the price of failing the Shōgun is death.

A HIDDEN GIFT 
Yukiko is a child of the Fox clan, possessed of a talent that if discovered, would see her executed by the Lotus Guild. Accompanying her father on the Shōgun’s hunt, she finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in Shima’s last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled thunder tiger for company. Even though she can hear his thoughts, even though she saved his life, all she knows for certain is he’d rather see her dead than help her.

But together, the pair will form an indomitable friendship, and rise to challenge the might of an empire.
“Dying is easy. Anyone can throw themselves onto the pyre and rest a happy martyr. Enduring the suffering that comes with sacrifice is the real test.”
If you're a regular user of Goodreads, and you read young adult, odds are you've heard of the book that's been having people all over the book blogging - and young adult reading - community raving, and waiting in agony of its release. That book, of course, being Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff. I'm not going to lie: despite the glowing five star reviews from friends of mine, and the fact that pretty much all of Goodreads is highly anticipating this book, I never really was. I don't know why, but the synopsis just did nothing for me, and I had a feeling that, despite all of the rave reviews, I just wouldn't like this book. However, when I saw it on NetGalley, I decided that I might as well request it, and if I'm accepted, I'll give it a shot, and if I'm not, no worries. Let me just take the time right now to say that I am very happy I took the chance and requested this book on NetGalley.

In a dying and polluted land, Kitsune Yukiko (otherwise known as just Yukiko), and her father, Masaru, are given a command from the Shōgun of Shima, Yoritomo, to look for an ancient beast known as the arashitora. All throughout Shima, arashitoras are thought to be extinct, and the quest to go and find one is seemingly impossible, but, following the orders of the Shōgun, Yukiko and her father embark on this quest. Unbeknownst to the public, Yukiko retains a special ability to communicate with animals via telepathy. However, as Yukiko and her father's way of transportation breaks down, the quest has suddenly gone awry, and Yukiko is left alone, befriending an arashitora named Buruu. The longer Yukiko is left in this barren world with Buruu, the more she finds out about secrets withheld from her for her whole life: secrets that can change said life forever.

Review: Defiance by C.J. Redwine

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Defiance
C.J. Redwine
Series: Courier's Daughter Trilogy, #1
Release Date: August 28th, 2012
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Number of Pages: 416
Source: Edelweiss
Rating: 1 of 5 stars 

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Within the walls of Baalboden, beneath the shadow of the city’s brutal leader, Rachel Adams has a secret. While other girls sew dresses, host dinner parties, and obey their male Protectors, Rachel knows how to survive in the wilderness and deftly wield a sword. When her father, Jared, fails to return from a courier mission and is declared dead, the Commander assigns Rachel a new Protector, her father’s apprentice, Logan—the same boy Rachel declared her love for two years ago, and the same boy who handed her heart right back to her. Left with nothing but fierce belief in her father’s survival, Rachel decides to escape and find him herself. But treason against the Commander carries a heavy price, and what awaits her in the Wasteland could destroy her.

At nineteen, Logan McEntire is many things. Orphan. Outcast. Inventor. As apprentice to the city’s top courier, Logan is focused on learning his trade so he can escape the tyranny of Baalboden. But his plan never included being responsible for his mentor’s impulsive daughter. Logan is determined to protect her, but when his escape plan goes wrong and Rachel pays the price, he realizes he has more at stake than disappointing Jared.

As Rachel and Logan battle their way through the Wasteland, stalked by a monster that can’t be killed and an army of assassins out for blood, they discover romance, heartbreak, and a truth that will incite a war decades in the making.

Honestly, I am shocked by the large number of glowing reviews Defiance has gotten thus far. Once again, it looks like I'm the black sheep, here to reign my terror on fangirls and fanboys all over Goodreads, and give my honest opinion on what I thought of the overrated mess known as Defiance.

Defiance is the epitome of a trainwreck. Unfortunately, while some trainwrecks are hard to take your eyes away from, taking my eyes away from this book was the one thing I wanted most.

In the city of Baalboden, Jared Adams is declared dead by the ruthless Commander, and Jared's daughter, Rachel, friend, Oliver, and apprentice, Logan, are gathered to the hearing of his will. In Jared's will, he left Logan to be Rachel's Protector, acting as a bodyguard for Rachel and never letting her out of his sight. However, Rachel and Logan don't believe that Jared is actually dead, and escape the walls of Baalboden to look for him.

I really don't know where to start in this review. I might as well say that the plot itself was decent for the most part, when it wasn't taken over by sappy, melodramatic drivel. (I told you this wasn't going to be a happy review!) But honestly, it's hard for me to enjoy a fantasy novel to begin with, and if the world building in that fantasy novel is not up to par to what I think it should be, then I most certainly won't enjoy the book very much. And in Defiance's case, the world-building is almost nonexistent. In fact, the world building is so poor, we're never actually given a time period in which this book takes place. And, if I were to take a guess as to which time period Defiance takes place - you know what, actually, I wouldn't be able to take a guess. The actions and misogyny in Defiance clearly hint towards an early time period, but the dialogue between characters, and even the character's names, certainly do not. I mean, Logan? Rachel?

Cover Reveals!

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Nobody
Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Release Date: January 22nd, 2013
Publisher: EgmontUSA

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There are people in this world who are Nobody. No one sees them. No one notices them. They live their lives under the radar, forgotten as soon as you turn away.

That’s why they make the perfect assassins.

The Institute finds these people when they’re young and takes them away for training. But an untrained Nobody is a threat to their organization. And threats must be eliminated.

Sixteen-year-old Claire has been invisible her whole life, missed by the Institute’s monitoring. But now they’ve ID’ed her and send seventeen-year-old Nix to remove her. Yet the moment he lays eyes on her, he can’t make the hit. It’s as if Claire and Nix are the only people in the world for each other. And they are—because no one else ever notices them.

The Book of Broken Hearts
Sarah Ockler
Release Date: May 21st, 2013
Publisher: Simon Pulse

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No synopsis available.







What do you think of these cover reveals? 


Waiting on Wednesday (August 15)

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine, where we post upcoming releases we're highly anticipating. My pre-publication selection for this week's Waiting on Wednesday is Lucid byAdirenne Stoltz.

Lucid
Adrienna Stoltz
Series: None
Release Date: October 2nd, 2012
Publisher: Razorbill
Number of Pages: 342

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What if you could dream your way into a different life? What if you could choose to live that life forever?

Sloane and Maggie have never met. Sloane is a straight-A student with a big and loving family. Maggie lives a glamorously independent life as an up-and-coming actress in New York. The two girls couldn't be more different--except for one thing. They share a secret that they can't tell a soul. At night, they dream that they're each other.

The deeper they're pulled into the promise of their own lives, the more their worlds begin to blur dangerously together. Before long, Sloane and Maggie can no longer tell which life is real and which is just a dream. They realize that eventually they will have to choose one life to wake up to, or risk spiraling into insanity. But that means giving up one world, one love, and one self, forever.
Why am I anticipating this book? Well, for starters, have you seen the cover? Yeah. That's reason enough to want to read this book. But then, along with the gorgeous cover, we're given an incredibly intriguing and awesome synopsis? Hell yes! October can't come soon enough, because I must get my hands on this book. I can only hope it shows up on NetGalley, because it was on Edelweiss and I requested this book the day it was uploaded, and, of course, I get a response months later saying they were out of e-copies to give bloggers. Go figure. 

What are you waiting on?

Link me up in the comments!

Review: Speechless by Hannah Harrington

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Speechless
Hannah Harrington
Series: None 
Release Date: August 28th, 2012
Publisher: HarlequinTeen
Number of Pages: 288
Rating: 4 of 5 stars 

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Everyone knows that Chelsea Knot can't keep a secret

Until now. Because the last secret she shared turned her into a social outcast—and nearly got someone killed.

Now Chelsea has taken a vow of silence—to learn to keep her mouth shut, and to stop hurting anyone else. And if she thinks keeping secrets is hard, not speaking up when she's ignored, ridiculed and even attacked is worse.

But there's strength in silence, and in the new friends who are, shockingly, coming her way—people she never noticed before; a boy she might even fall for. If only her new friends can forgive what she's done. If only she can forgive herself.

"Hate is... it's too easy," he says. "Now, love. Love takes courage."


The main reason I checked out Speechless was because of its cover: a cover without a pretty girl in a pretty dress on the it, a cover without a pretty girl about to kiss an equally as pretty boy on the it. It's different, and I love it. However, based on the vague synopsis, I came to the conclusion that this book most likely wasn't for me, and decided to pass on it. It wasn't until I saw glowing four and five star reviews for this book from trusted friends of mine that I decided to request this on NetGalley and see if I would end up liking it. And let me just take a moment to say, that I'm so happy I took the chance and requested this on NetGalley.

Normally, this would be the part in my review where I'd write my own little synopsis explaining what the book is about. But, I'm not going to do this for Speechless. I want you, dear reader, to read the vague synopsis. And if you do read the provided synopsis and don't know much about what will happen in Speechless afterwards, good. I want you to go into this book knowing barely anything about it. I want this book to have the same surprise for you as it did for me. And hopefully, you end up enjoying it as much as I enjoyed it.

And I more than enjoyed this book. I loved this book to bits. I loved the characters, and the depth each and every one of them was provided with (for the most part, but more on that later in the review). I loved the funny moments and one-liners this book had. I loved the emotional punch this book gave me, many, many times. But what I especially loved is how Harrington made me dislike the central character in the beginning, and then have me absolutely love her in the end.

Showcase Sunday (6)

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Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicki at Book, Biscuits, and Tea, where we showcase what books we've gotten throughout the course of the week, whether it be from a book store, bought for your eReader, received from the library, or from the publishers for review.

For Review: 


  

Crewel by Gennifer Albin (via NetGalley)

Bought:


   


This was such a great week for review copies and bought books! I've been looking forward to reading Crewel and Eve and Adam ever since my friend Giselle gave them both glowing reviews, and I just recently found out about The Shadow Society and thought it sounded awesome. That being said, you can imagine my excitement when I saw those books on NetGalley, and you can probably imagine the look on my face when I realized I was autoapprove for MacMillan on NetGalley, and all of those books are published by MacMillan. Eeek! And as for the books I bought this week, I can't wait to read them, either! Especially Ultraviolet and The Fault in Our Stars. I'm excited to read Ultraviolet because it's gotten rave reviews from so many friends of mine (and apparently it has a shocker ending, which I love), and I'm excited to read The Fault in Our Stars for the exact same reason (minus the shocker ending, though). And yes, I'll be sure to have a box of tissues at hand. And I bought Still Waters solely because it's been touted as a YA The Shining, which is one of my favorite books. It hasn't gotten the best reviews, but still, a YA version of The Shining sounds like some ringing endorsement. (Off-topic: Am I the only one who thinks the girl on the cover looks like Rose from Titanic? And, it says on the cover, "He'll never let her go." Is this some sort of Titanic fanfiction? Did I miss a memo or something?)

What books did you get this week? 

Link me up in the comments!