Random Thursday

We've apparently hit the nature section or segment in That's a Fact Jack: A Collection of Utterly Useless Information [Updated] by Harry Bright and Jakob Anser, brace yourselves for more buggy (and planty) facts!

(image borrowed from Zodiac Signs)
"All scorpions glow. A scorpion's exoskeleton contains a thin transparent film called the hyaline layer, which fluoresces under black (ultraviolet) light. Even after hundreds of millions of years, the hyaline layers of fossilized scorpions still glow."

Had no idea that that happened! And yeah...had to go with a Scorpio picture because I didn't want to see pictures of scorpions! LOL!

(image borrowed from Disney Animals Wiki)
"Certain ants will climb to the top of a grass stalk and wait, becoming easy prey for roaming herbivores. Just a fluke? It is a fluke: the lancet liver fluke (Dicrocoelium dendriticum). Once inside an ant, the parasite controls its nerve centers, forces it open, and eventually finds safe harbor in the livers of sheep, cattle, goats, pigs, and, rarely humans."


(image borrowed from Etsy)
"You can in fact get cooties. Cooties are lice."

I KNEW IT!! Okay not really! ;)

(image borrowed from Healthline)
"Poison ivy is a member of the tropical cashew family, from which we get cashew and pistachio nuts."

More new information!!!

ARC Review--100 Hours by Rachel Vincent

A decadent spring break getaway on an exotic beach becomes a terrifying survival story when six Miami teens are kidnapped and ransomed.

Maddie is beyond done with her cousin Genesis’s entitled and shallow entourage. Genesis is so over Miami’s predictable social scene with its velvet ropes, petty power plays, and backstabbing boyfriends.

While Maddie craves family time for spring break, Genesis seeks novelty—like a last-minute getaway to an untouched beach in Colombia. And when Genesis wants something, it happens.

But paradise has its price. Dragged from their tents under the cover of dark, Genesis, Maddie, and their friends are kidnapped and held for ransom deep inside the jungle—with no diva left behind. It all feels so random to everyone except Genesis. She knows they were targeted for a reason. And that reason is her.

Now, as the hours count down, only one thing’s for certain: If the Miami hostages can’t set aside their personal problems, no one will make it out alive.

I received this ARC from a blogger friend in a trade. I was in no way compensated for this review. 

I was more than happy to read one of Rachel Vincent’s many new releases this year early! 100 Hours is the start of one of her newest YA series and it’s definitely a different kind of read for me. We’re back to high stakes, thrills that chill, and a kidnapping situation surrounding an even bigger mystery.

Genesis, her cousins Maddie and Ryan, her boyfriend Holden, and a few best friends are having an excellent spring break in Colombia even though her father was against it. In fact, it’s because her father was against it that she wanted to go, plus her grandmother lives there and Genesis pretty much does whatever she wants to. My first issue with this one was pretty much Genesis herself. She’s what you would refer to as a rich b*tch. She’s selfish, conceited, and a bit of hypocrite. She has no redeeming qualities to her and I found it really hard to even like her. By the end, I guess you can say I almost like her, but still find her hypocritical tendencies to be one of her biggest flaws.

Maddie is the complete opposite of her. She’s not as rich for she and her family live in an apartment while Genesis’s father owns one of the largest shipping companies ever. Maddie isn’t near the wild child tendencies like her cousin, Genesis either. I also kind of enjoyed the fact that Maddie was more vulnerable. She is a diabetic, and it’s not that I liked that, but I liked having a heroine who wasn’t perfect. I grew up with my own medical issues, so seeing something (albeit completely and utterly different than my own) like that reflected in a book is kind of heartening. Showing that even if you have vulnerabilities, you can still pretty much kick butt! The two cousins are as different as night and day, but when their little rebel spring break trip literally turns into a hostage situation things get dicey really fast and they’ll learn just how similar they really are!

The book alternates between Genesis and Maddie’s points of view. I found it so weird in some ways since these two basically have nothing in common but blood. Genesis is selfish and uncaring, Maddie sometimes feels too much. Yet when the going gets tough these two look out for one another. Though ironically, they are separated for nearly half the book. I think I preferred Maddie’s chapters the most, because as I said, Genesis was rather unlikeable, but maybe we’re supposed to not like her. I don’t know. I just know that I basically felt no sympathy for her when she got a few eye-opening surprises thrown her way. And she wasn’t even really emotionally upset about them. And the fact that she ignores that she basically did the same thing, but not as “badly” as those around her really grated on my nerves, if you couldn’t already tell! Hopefully you can make some sense about my ramblings and vagueities as I’m really trying to avoid spoilers, though in the long run, this is pretty minor!

The title itself pretty much describes the length of the book. From the start we basically watch things happen and see them get even more dangerous as the hours tick down. I was actually surprised when I heard that this one was going to be a series, not sure on what kind of length yet though. But based on how this one ended there should definitely be at least one more! I mean there kind of has to what with that ending!

Though you could call this one a thriller of sorts, there is still some sprinklings of romance. i.e. a few kisses here and there! I was particularly fond of the relationship budding between Maddie and her newfound (though not really new) fellow! Lol! Yeah, I’m being vague in a few ways here about a lot of things because I don’t want to give anything away!

100 Hours was a fast paced read that kept me guessing the entire way! I loved watching these two entirely different people try to save themselves and their friends from a group of hostile terrorists! It was thrilling and exciting and you could even say explosive! It definitely had its interesting times! And the fact that we have a whopper of a cliffhanger at the end doesn’t leave me screaming at the universe at all*!


Overall Rating 3.75/5 stars

100 Hours releases March 28, 2017


Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly blog post by Jill over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights releases we're eagerly awaiting.

The legions are about to be unleashed, and no human, rogue dragon or former dragon slayer can stand against the coming horde. Book 4 of 5 in The Talon Saga from New York Times bestselling author Julie Kagawa.

Dragon hatchling Ember Hill was never prepared to find love at all--dragons do not suffer human emotions--let alone the love of a human and a former dragonslayer, at that. With ex-soldier Garret dying at her feet after sacrificing his freedom and his life to expose the deepest of betrayals, Ember knows only that nothing she was taught by dragon organization Talon is true. About humans, about rogue dragons, about herself and what she's capable of doing and feeling.

In the face of great loss, Ember vows to stand with rogue dragon Riley against the dragon-slaying Order of St. George and her own twin brother Dante--the heir apparent to all of Talon, and the boy who will soon unleash the greatest threat and terror dragonkind has ever known.

Talon is poised to take over the world, and the abominations they have created will soon take to the skies, darkening the world with the promise of blood and death to those who refuse to yield.

Must not read description. Must avert eyes. MUST read Soldier already!!!

TITLE: Legion
AUTHOR: Julie Kagawa
GENRE: Modern Fantasy YA
RELEASE DATE: April 25, 2017 

In a world where everyone is the same, one girl is the unthinkable: unique. A high-stakes fast-paced series launch from New York Times bestselling author Rachel Vincent.

We have brown hair. Brown eyes. Fair skin.
We are healthy and strong and smart.
But only one of us has ever had a secret.

Dahlia 16 sees her face in every crowd. She's nothing special—just one of five thousand girls created from a single genome to work for the greater good of the city.

Meeting Trigger 17 changes everything. He thinks she’s interesting. Beautiful. Unique. Which means he must be flawed. When Dahlia can't stop thinking about him—when she can't resist looking for him, even though that means breaking the rules—she realizes she's flawed, too. But if she’s flawed, then so are all her identicals. And any genome found to be flawed will be recalled.


Getting caught with Trigger would seal not only Dahlia's fate, but that of all five thousand girls who share her face. But what if Trigger is right? What if Dahlia is different?

Suddenly the girl who always follows the rules is breaking them, one by one by one. . . .

Sooo many Rachel Vincent books coming out this year! I LOVE IT!

PUBLISHER: Delacorte Press
GENRE: Dystopian YA
RELEASE DATE: May 9, 2017 


Review--As Old as Time by Liz Braswell

What if Belle's mother cursed the Beast?

Belle is a lot of things: smart, resourceful, restless. She longs to escape her poor provincial town for good. She wants to explore the world, despite her father's reluctance to leave their little cottage in case Belle's mother returns—a mother she barely remembers. Belle also happens to be the captive of a terrifying, angry beast. And that is her primary concern.

But Belle touches the Beast's enchanted rose, intriguing images flood her mind—images of the mother she believed she would never see again. Stranger still, she sees that her mother is none other than the beautiful Enchantress who cursed the Beast, his castle, and all its inhabitants. Shocked and confused, Belle and the Beast must work together to unravel a dark mystery about their families that is twenty-one years in the making.

Oh. My. Word. It’s been known that I am a 100% certified Disney nut! So when, a few years back, Liz Braswell started the Twisted Tale series, I was most intrigued and excited. Alas, I was left disappointed with the first tale, confused and befuddled with the second, but I found myself willing to give the third (and ironically, final) book, As Old as Time, a try. I mean, it’s Beauty and the Beast after all! There’s the proposed notion that asks the reader, “What if Belle’s mother cursed the Beast?” and that is the story you will encounter with this book!

The first “part” of the story alternates between us seeing Belle willingly take her father’s place as the Beast’s prisoner and then in the past when we see Maurice meeting, Rosalind, the woman who would become Belle’s mother and a “charmante”. The gist of “charmante” is basically a magical type person, ranging from fairies to psychics to other faelike creatures and of course, an enchantress. It was quite interesting in some ways to see these flashbacks. Familiar faces pop up as well ones that may surprise you in some ways. And then the moment comes when Belle enters the West Wing and reaches out to touch the rose, but instead of the Beast sending her into a terrified tizzy, she touches the rose! And after seeing a whirl of visions of a familiar face, the story changes entirely.

It’s from that moment on we don’t know what to expect. Aside from the flashbacks of Maurice and Rosalind, which promptly end in the second part of the story. The Beast is beside himself now for there is no way for him to break his curse. Which was a little puzzling in some ways, for I always thought of the rose as a timer in a way, that he basically needs to end his curse before the last petal falls, but apparently the curse is tied to the rose in a way because suddenly now he’s not so sure the curse can be broken.

But Belle, the daring and brave young woman that she is, thinks that there might be a way to break the curse if they could learn more about the enchantress who put the curse on him. Who she knows immediately upon seeing those visions, is her mother. And so an adventure sets forth between Belle and the Beast and it was quite entertaining!

Perhaps I took more enjoyment out of this novel more than the others because Beauty and the Beast has always been one of my most favorite Disney movies of all time (now to include the live action version too!). There was so much familiarity with this one! The characters are all still the same, yet there’s still a bit of a twist here and there that are thrown in to make the story its own. I actually quite enjoyed how Liz answered some of the smaller mystery/questions we’ve always had about this movie! Like the portrait I mentioned in my Teaser post earlier today! It AGED with the Beast so he’d know what he’d look like if he was in human form? We get to know who Mr. Potts was! We get teased about what the Beast’s name is! It was awesome!

There were things I did miss that were from the movie, like the ballroom scene, but since that takes place after Belle “almost” touches the rose, obviously it gets cut. But I have to admit, I really really enjoyed seeing what happened in this story! It held me captivated pretty much from the first few pages! It was deeply addicting and had a pretty strong storyline.  I liked how true to the movie the book stayed though in the other aspects. Like the other familiar characters from the town, such as the bookshop keeper, Gaston, even LeFou! It was nostalgic and magical!

Did I forget to mention the mystery? I likely did in my Disney addled fangirl mind going off here! We have a bit of a mystery that happens over time. The “charmantes” have been disappearing over time, it was something that happened way back in the past while Belle was just being born and all that! And the way this took precedence in the now time was pretty well thought out! I guess because I had too much time between reading spurts that I didn’t quite catch onto the nefarious evildoer as quickly as I should have! But it was definitely quite the twist and surprise!

My one and only complaint about this book was the ending. While it was good in fact, I couldn’t help but wish for an epilogue! I mean there’s a bit that’s left unsaid and unaccounted for and I really wanted to see it played out and its outcome! I mean I guess in a way it’s the you choose your own ending kind of thing? Maybe? I’m not sure, but I basically want to know what the outcome would’ve been! It’s maddening not to know! I won’t get into details obviously, but yeah, it’s one where you want to shout at the book and demand that it gives you the epilogue which clearly must have fallen out of the book binding somehow! Lol!

If you were like me at all from the start of this Twisted Tale series and struggled with the first two books, I strongly urge you to at least give this one a try! It’s Beauty and the Beast, the most favored Disney movie among all bibliophiles (for the most part I suspect! LOL!). This book has all the magic that we loved from the movie, plus more! The answers to other questions that were left unsaid in the animated movie, though the new live action one did answer a few of those as well in their own way. But this book takes the animated classic in an entirely different direction! It’s as beautiful and romantic as the classic, and it has even more adventure and action than we would’ve expected! This is the Disney inspired novel we’ve all been waiting for!

Overall Rating 4.5/5 stars—yeah I had to take a half point off because that ending!! I guess with a standalone, because this is in its own way a standalone, I expect an ending that feels more complete and hopefully happy. While this one is very good, it still leaves you wondering at the next outcome! It’s possibly going to be driving me crazy these next few days I’m sure! LOL!


Teaser & Top Ten Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by Purple Princess of The Purple Booker

Here are the rules:

1. Grab your current read
2. Open to a page
3. Pick out 2 lines that are SPOILER FREE
4. Name the title, author, etc.

I am enjoying this book SO much more than I thought I would! After struggling through the Aladdin book and DNFing the Sleeping Beauty one I was almost afraid to read this one but decided to take a chance and wow!! It's everything I could've hoped for! 

The teasers I'm about to share are good ones! In my opinion, at least! LOL! The first one is just one of the few moments where something that always puzzled me is answered! And of course what would a book involving Belle be without a bookish teaser?!

"He reached out a delicate claw and pulled all the strips of canvas back into place. The Prince was revealed yet again: tall and handsome and arrogantly looking into the viewer's eyes, challenging them to keep looking.

'The Enchantress put a spell on it so it would age with me--and show me how I would look if I was still human. If I hadn't failed her test. I'm...always reminded of who I could have been.'" p 190

"You had a magic mirror that let you see life outside your tiny world. Your castle. I had books. Reading them is like traveling to other places. Being other people. Living other lives. It made life far less...sad and lonely for me." p 223 

TITLE: As Old as Time
AUTHOR: Liz Braswell 
PUBLISHER: Disney Press
GENRE: Fairy Tale Retellings
RELEASE DATE: September 6, 2016 

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

This week's topic is: Read In One Sitting Theme: Top Ten Books I Read in One Day!

*in no particular order
**this is going to take some extra thinking! A lot of my one day reads came from pre-Goodreads days! But THANKS to Goodreads I was able to find books to fill all the other slots!
***also going to bypass novellas and graphic novels for those are easily read in a day for me! Unless I started midday!

 10. WHAT'S A GHOUL TO DO? by Victoria Laurie--I read a lot of this series in one day each! The latter books took longer because of that pesky job! ;)
9. DEMON IN MY VIEW by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes--not only did I read it multiple times, but it was definitely a 1-dayer!
8. LOST IN A BOOK by Jennifer Donnelly--I was surprised that this one took just one day!

7. THE BEAST WITHIN by Serena Valentino
6. OF TRITON by Anna Banks--started doing searches on my blog for one day reads and this one popped up!
5. FLIGHT by Alyssa Rose Ivy--pretty much ALL of her books have been one day reads for me! Unless I started it midday then sadly I had to wait until the next day to finish it!

2. SOUL CROSSED by Lisa Gail Green

1. BLED & BREAKFAST by Michelle Rowen

Discussion Post Challenge: Fact or Fiction?

It's been awhile since I did one of these! I was on a role earlier this month! What happened?! I ran out of good ideas apparently! LOL! So I hit the list Feed Your Fiction Addiction has up and selected:

Fact or Fiction? 

I saw this post that basically asks what I read, fiction or nonfiction, or both even! And my answer is strictly fiction! I've always read to escape! Escape reality and all the harshness and sometimes boringness that it contains. So reading a nonfiction book kind of defeats the purpose of doing that. Which in a twisted way is why I never read contemporary books anymore! They're too "real". Like this event could really happen to someone, even if it seems a little "much" or too dramatic. I mean I did read contemporary YA in my teens, mostly because there wasn't always a paranormal or fantasy to read.

Although ironically, I have picked up two autobiographies of sort, from signings I attended in the past two years! One is the making of the Princess Bride as told by Cary Elwes! I mean, I HAD to meet him! And if I had to buy the book to do that, than damn straight am I buying it! And since I ADORE that movie I might even read it some day! LOL!

The second autobiography I bought was Felicia Day's! She came to Anderson's one Saturday last year and since I LOOOOOOVE Supernatural with a passion I decided I would attend that one too! And since her character was just awesome and the title of her book was so fun and unique, I figure maybe one day I will read that too!

So yeah, my eyes are looking in the wrong direction! There were two cameras going off and I was all befuddled for a bit because FELICIA DAY!! And I thought maybe I was supposed to look at both cameras. Well turns out I looked at the other camera when mine went off! LOL! Oh well! 

Basically I don't normally ever read nonfiction books, but I have decided at some point I might be making an exception for these two. Come to think of it...I do have the making of Beauty and the Beast and the evolution of Tinkerbell that I want to read too...guess I'm more willing to break my rule of escapism than I thought!

ARC Review--Vigilante by Kady Cross

A brutally honest, uncompromising story about a teen girl who decides to take matters into her own hands.

It's senior year, and Hadley and her best friend, Magda, should be starting the year together. Instead, Magda is dead and Hadley is alone. Raped at a party the year before and humiliated, Magda was driven to take her own life and Hadley is forced to see her friend's attackers in the classroom every day. Devastated, enraged and needing an outlet for her grief, Hadley decides to get a little justice of her own.

Donning a pink ski mask and fueled by anger, Hadley goes after each of the guys one by one, planning to strip them of their dignity and social status the way they did to Magda. As the legend of the pink-masked Vigilante begins to take on a life of its own, Hadley's revenge takes a turn for the dangerous. Could her need for vengeance lead her down a path she can't turn back from?

I received this ARC from the publisher, via Netgalley, in exchange for a voluntary and honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Kady Cross has been a favorite author of mine for ages! I’ve read many of her books under her many pseudonyms and enjoyed every one of them! Vigilante is a YA thriller of sorts, but instead of a heroine trying to solve a murder, we have a teenage girl trying to find justice for her friend who was raped and then killed herself because of it all. Vigilante deals with a very sensitive topic, but I felt like Kady wrote it very well indeed.
Hadley and Magda were best friends, then one night at a party, Magda was raped by four boys after she was drugged. When charges were pressed every single one of them got off scot free.  And soon it became too much for Magda and she committed suicide. She had had it rough ever since the incident and Hadley feels the tremendous guilt over her death. And having to see the four boys every day at school living it up, she starts to get very vengeful and dark thoughts.
By happenstance, Hadley is able to exact revenge over one of the boys and outing him as a rapist. And slowly a plan starts to form. Soon she decides she wants to humiliate and shame all four of these boys and get the justice that Magda deserves.
I have to say, I quite liked Hadley’s plan. Maybe I have a touch of a dark side or whatever you want to call it, but I find revenge stories to be quite enjoyable! The Count of Monte Cristo, anyone? And in a way, Hadley takes on a bit of Edmund’s role. She doesn’t want to kill these guys, she wants them to suffer.
The book explores a very sensitive topic; rape. I felt like Kady handles it very well and realistically. I personally have not nor do I know anyone who has experience such a horrific thing, so I can’t really say how much realism it has, but I felt like she did a very good job with discussing it.
Hadley ends up making new friends in her quest for justice and I have to say I enjoyed that too. I was afraid she might be all Batman like and want to take on everyone herself. While in some ways that is still true, her newfound friends help her through stuff more than she could ever hope for.
And then of course there’s Gabriel, who was Magda’s older brother and who Hadley had been crushing on for a while. I found their budding romance to be sweet and helped to bring some light into the otherwise dark topic.
Hadley’s life really spins out of control as the boys she’s after are aware that someone is out to get them. Some things that happen are quite sickening. And it makes me even more happier to be out of high school. But then a few other little things actually took me by surprise.
Needless to say that this book was both dark but coupled with those little moments that were light-hearted and surprising. It was quite the read! The ending was pretty shocking too. Some things really made my stomach turn sour in this one, the things that these boys got away with, how they were basically boys with powerful parents who could own the town was nauseating. But never once did I feel like quitting, mostly because I was riding on Hadley’s need for revenge and wanted to see these boys shamed.
Vigilante didn’t disappoint either. It was engaging and enticing as I had to see how things would turn out for Hadley. And I must say I was quite surprised by the final ending, but happy as well. Just hoping those unspoken things turn out for the better and are not ones that will haunt Hadley later on.
This book reads very much as a standalone. Things are completely resolved and are left in a way that we get a satisfying conclusion and yet feel like these characters will still go on to live their lives.
I’m not sure I’ve ever read a book that was so emotional before. And it’s not quite your typical emotions either. I think that’s what appealed to me about this story, and of course Kady Cross’s name on the cover. I feel like this was a very empowering book, as the girls in it, are coming together and fighting for one another. It almost makes me wonder what town they live in, as to avoid it due to all the sexual harassment that goes on and is left unpunished, but I digress! This was a very powerful read and it pretty much cements my belief that I will read just about any of Kady’s books too!

Overall Rating 5/5 stars

Vigilante releases March 28, 2017 

It's Monday! What are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. It's a fun meme where we gather to share what we've read last week and our reading plans for this week.

Last Week I Read:

Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay (3.5 stars)
Hunted by Meagan Spooner (4.5 stars)

Movie Review:

Currently Reading:

As Old as Time by Liz Braswell

What I Plan to Read this Week:

100 Hours by Rachel Vincent (ARC)

Other Posts of Interest:


Stacking the Shelves

This weekly meme is hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

Stacking The Shelves is all about the books we are adding to our shelves each week, sharing with you our excitement for our newest titles and maybe have you discover a new book in the process!

For being an ordinary week of life, this was an amazing week of bookmail!!! I received two subscription boxes, two prizes I won recently and some most excellent review books that have totally put my review schedule into whack! LOL!

Here's what I bought:

 Hunted by Meagan Spooner--already read and reviewed!
As Old as Time by Liz Braswell--reading it now and really liking it so far!
End of Oz by Danielle Paige 

March Lit Cube*
March Owlcrate*

*Pictures of insides to come next month!

Contest Wins that arrived:

 Last month I won Bambi Unbridled's Blogversary prize which was a whole ton of swag, makeup and all sorts of amazing goodies! Plus some books too! 


 And possibly the coolest prize I've ever won was an ARC of The Crown's Fate by Evelyn Skye PLUS Nikolai's egg! I can't wait to finally start this series!!


And then for review from the publishers via Netgalley I received:

Legion by Julie Kagawa (ARC)
A Grave Calling by Wendy Roberts (ARC)

THANK YOU Harlequin Teen, Carina Press, and Netgalley!!

And that my friends concludes my amazing week! What all did you get?