31.1.13

DNF: Confessions of An Angry Girl by Louise Rozett

Published August 28th, 2012
HarlequinTeen
272 pages (Paperback)
Rose Zarelli, self-proclaimed word geek and angry girl, has some confessions to make

1. I'm livid all the time. Why? My dad died. My mom barely talks. My brother abandoned us. I think I'm allowed to be irate, don't you?

2. I make people furious regularly. Want an example? I kissed Jamie Forta, a badass guy who might be dating a cheerleader. She is now enraged and out for blood. Mine.

3. High school might as well be Mars. My best friend has been replaced by an alien, and I see red all the time. (Mars is red and "seeing red" means being angry—get it?)

Here are some other vocab words that describe my life: Inadequate. Insufferable. Intolerable.

(Don't know what they mean? Look them up yourself.)
(Sorry. That was rude.) (From Goodreads)
Stopped reading at page 165.

I never really got into the story here.  Rose is a fourteen year old high school freshman, dealing with the lose of her dad, and her brother leaving for college.  Of course she is going to be emotional.  I was a basketcase in the 9th grade.

The story never felt realistic or like it was headed anywhere, and that is why I stopped reading.   I kept pushing through what felt like long periods of nothing exciting, hoping for anything to happen.  

I did like the random words and definitions at the start of the chapters.  I thought this was a cute and creative touch to introduce each chapter with.

From what I read, I think this book would be great for an audience closer to the main characters age of 14, who may be able to better relate to Rose.  After all, we all had that older crush at that age (admit it, you know exactly who I'm talking about...).

Much love, Samantha

30.1.13

"Waiting On" Lover At Last


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating!

This week I am excited for...
Qhuinn, son of no one, is used to being on his own. Disavowed from his bloodline, shunned by the aristocracy, he has finally found an identity as one of the most brutal fighters in the war against the Lessening Society. But his life is not complete. Even as the prospect of having a family of his own seems to be within reach, he is empty on the inside, his heart given to another....

Blay, after years of unrequited love, has moved on from his feelings for Qhuinn. And it’s about time: The male has found his perfect match in a Chosen female, and they are going to have a young—just as Qhuinn has always wanted for himself. It’s hard to see the new couple together, but building your life around a pipe dream is just a heartbreak waiting to happen. As he’s learned firsthand.

Fate seems to have taken these vampire soldiers in different directions... but as the battle over the race’s throne intensifies, and new players on the scene in Caldwell create mortal danger for the Brotherhood, Qhuinn finally learns the true definition of courage, and two hearts who are meant to be together... finally become one. (From Goodreads)
I know this isn't YA, but you all need to read the Black Dagger Brotherhood novels.  These novels are HOT.  As in OMG-so-much-testosterone-and-knives-and-leather HOT!  J.R. Ward has been building up to this book forever, and I am so excited for it.    If you start now, you can be ready for Lover at Last when it gets released on March 26th, 2013!

Much love, Samantha
PS. Vishous will forever be my favourite.

29.1.13

Top Ten Tuesday: Frustrating Characters


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful ladies over at

This week, the topic is...
Top Ten Most Frustrating Characters Ever


Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, is worse than a character that does nothing more than frustrate you.  Okay, a little exaggeration there, but the point stands.  Frustrating characters lead to a frustrated Sam, which leads to a mess.  Here are some characters that I feel need to tone it down a little.

Lena Duchannes from Beautiful Creatures
Bella Swan from Twilight
Anastasia Steele from Fifty Shades of Grey
Abby Abernathy and Travis Maddox from Beautiful Disaster
Cassia from Matched
Bird from 40 Things I Want To Tell You
Luce from Fallen
Patch and Nora from Hush, Hush

Much love, Samantha

27.1.13

Book Review: Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

May 26th, 2011
Self-Published
283 pages (eBook format)
The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn't drink or swear, and she has the appropriate percentage of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance between her and the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend America, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University's Walking One-Night Stand.Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs - and wants - to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the most-eligible college co-ed. Intrigued by Abby's resistance to his charm, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis' apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has finally met his match. (From Goodreads)
I'll be the first to admit that I did enjoy this book, although I don't think it was for the reason that was intended.  This book was one giant WTF and I kind of enjoyed every moment of it.

Warning: Some spoilers ahead.  Read with caution.
If you wish to avoid them, I've made some the key words in my opinion bold.

So, we start with some insta-infatuation.  Abby goes to an underground fighting ring, gets blood splattered on her, and Travis falls for her.  That's cool I guess.  Maybe I'l try this system out...

But just you wait, things are about to get crazy.  Turns out womanizer and heartbreaker Travis is actually insanely possessive!  Like abusive-possessive.  The guy is bat-shit crazy and that is why I enjoyed the book.  I couldn't figure out what he would do next, and kept waiting for Abby to move on.  But guess what, she doesn't!  This is seriously the most self-destructive relationship ever.

I mean, he got her nickname tattooed on him after two weeks of dating?!  That is sort of a deal breaker in my books (and I think tattoos are hot), yet Abby barely reacts.  I just could not figure these two out.

Then there is the whole gambling sub-plot.  Interestingly enough, that was the point I truly gave up on Travis, but still couldn't stop reading!

If you are looking for a book about a strong, meaningful relationship, Beautiful Disaster is not for you.  However, if you want to an entertaining read about one hell of a crazy couple, this is for you.  I still can't believe how much I enjoyed it...

Much love, Samantha
PS. It's about to get crazier!  Jamie McGuire has written Walking Disaster, which is basically the same book from Travis' POV.  Maybe it will clear up some of the insanity that was this book?  We'll find out April 2nd, 2013.

24.1.13

Book Review: Shades of Earth by Beth Revis

Published January 15th, 2013
Razorbill
369 pages (Hardcover)
Amy and Elder have finally left the oppressive walls of the spaceship Godspeed behind. They're ready to start life afresh--to build a home--on Centauri-Earth, the planet that Amy has traveled 25 trillion miles across the universe to experience.

But this new Earth isn't the paradise Amy had been hoping for. There are giant pterodactyl-like birds, purple flowers with mind-numbing toxins, and mysterious, unexplained ruins that hold more secrets than their stone walls first let on. The biggest secret of all? Godspeed's former passengers aren't alone on this planet. And if they're going to stay, they'll have to fight.

Amy and Elder must race to discover who--or what--else is out there if they are to have any hope of saving their struggling colony and building a future together. They will have to look inward to the very core of what makes them human on this, their most harrowing journey yet. Because if the colony collapses? Then everything they have sacrificed--friends, family, life on Earth--will have been for nothing.

FUELED BY LIES.
RULED BY CHAOS.
ALMOST HOME. (From Goodreads)
I WANT MORE!  I'm 100% in denial that this series is over.  Shades of Earth is a great conclusion to Beth Revis' trilogy.

If you haven't started this trilogy  yet, you have no idea what you're missing.  This series mixes science fiction with murder and mystery, with a dash of pure awesomeness, leaving a delicious treat.  I've been hooked since I started Across the Universe.

My only issue with this book was that the ending felt a bit rushed.  A lot was jammed into the last quarter of the book.  I know there were a lot of loose ends to tie up, but I think it should have been drawn out a bit more (or maybe I'm in denial that it's over?).

What I want now is more.  Perhaps another saga with new characters set further in the future?  Or maybe same characters in a few years?  Maybe?  Please?

Much love, Samantha

23.1.13

"Waiting On" The Rules For Disappearing


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating!

This week I am excited for...
She’s been six different people in six different places: Madeline in Ohio, Isabelle in Missouri, Olivia in Kentucky . . . But now that she’s been transplanted to rural Louisiana, she has decided that this fake identity will be her last.

Witness Protection has taken nearly everything from her. But for now, they’ve given her a new name, Megan Rose Jones, and a horrible hair color. For the past eight months, Meg has begged her father to answer one question: What on earth did he do – or see – that landed them in this god-awful mess? Meg has just about had it with all the Suits’ rules — and her dad’s silence. If he won’t help, it’s time she got some answers for herself.

But Meg isn’t counting on Ethan Landry, an adorable Louisiana farm boy who’s too smart for his own good. He knows Meg is hiding something big. And it just might get both of them killed. As they embark on a perilous journey to free her family once and for all, Meg discovers that there’s only one rule that really matters — survival. (From Goodreads)
I mentioned this title in my list of 2013 debuts I'm excited for, and I've thought about it several times since.  The concept just feels so different from everything else right now.  

And farm boys!  Oh, how I love farm boys.  To quote the fabulous Brooks & Dunn "You can take the girl out of the honky tonk, but you can't take the honky tonk out of the girl."

Alas, May 14th, 2013 seems ages away.  Here's to a quick wait! *cheers*

So, what are YOU waiting on?

Much love, Samantha

22.1.13

Top Ten Tuesday: Book Settings


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful ladies over at

This week, the topic is...
Top Ten Settings I'd Like To See More Of


An awesome setting can take you away from the real world and to some far away place.  A setting can make or break a book.  Here are some places that I would like to see more books take me to!


A dance studio (AKA my happy place)
Alaska
Iceland
Siberia (oh, VA...)
Holland
St. Petersburg
My city (that would be fun!)
Saskatchewan (why are there no books set in the prairies?)
Underwater
Other planets (with or without aliens)

So, any recommendations for me?  :-D

Much love, Samantha

19.1.13

That Time I Met Cassie Clare...

Way back in November 2012, I took a bus and a train and went to visit a dear friend of mine, Keen, in Toronto.  We had planned this to line up with a signing by Cassandra Clare.  I'm a huge fan of hers, to the point that I force feed The Mortal Instruments books to virtually everyone, Keen being no exception to the rule.

This was also our first book signing!  Ever!

Meet Keen, who is re-reading the scene where we meet Magnus.

From Keen's place, we hopped on the subway and made it to the bookstore by 1:15 for a 2 PM signing.  In retrospect, we should have left A LOT earlier.  There was a ton of people (it's like Toronto is a big city or something?).  They gave everyone in line a number, putting us into groups of 20.  Keen and I were in group 30.  They stopped giving out numbers after group 35.

I documented our adventure using the note app on my iPod.  And now I present our wild day to all of you.

1:30 PM: We finally found the end of the line.  We're in front of the cookbooks.  Not good.
2:30 PM: We still haven't moved, and can hear yelling upstairs.  No clue what is going on right now.
3:30 PM: Still haven't moved and the cookbooks are getting the best of us.  Where can we find grilled cheese around here?


4:44 PM: We have left the line.  A nice Chapters lady told us just to come back later, but that there was a chance our group may not even get our books signed.  The mall was "cray-cray" and we were craving carbs and water.  Entering survival mode.
5:17 PM: Finally found a food court!  Time to refuel with a Canadian classic: the Poutine!
5:32 PM: Food done.  Now, to find somewhere to crash for a while.
6:03 PM: Returned to Chapters to find about 200 people still in line ahead of us.
6:30 PM: Someone brought an adorable puppy into Chapters and Keen is in love with the thing.  We are crashed out in front of audiobooks now and have some Ke$ha stuck in our heads?  At least we have music while we wait.
7:08 PM: The line is moving...
7:15 PM: We can see her now...


7:33 PM: So close now...


7:38 PM: Six hours later, we have made it.  Books are signed and we are tired, but it was all worth it.



Cassie Clare is an awesome person and just as funny in person.  I wish we could have heard some of the Q&A, but such is life.  If you get the chance to got to one of her signings, jump on it.  Just make sure you bring water and an energy bar.  You may need it.

Much love, Samantha

18.1.13

Book Review: The Girl Of Fire And Thorns by Rae Carson

Published September 1st, 2011
Greenwillow Books
448 pages (Paperback)
Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness.

Elisa has always felt powerless, useless. Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king--a king who needs her to be the chosen one, not a failure of a princess. And he's not the only one who seeks her. Savage enemies, seething with dark magic, are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could save his people. And he looks at her in a way no man has ever looked at her before. Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn't die young.
Most of the chosen do. (From Goodreads)
Talk about a roller coaster of a book.  just when I thought I was going to DNF it, this book sent me reeling and didn't let up until the very end!

Fantasy generally isn't my genre.  I have a hard time getting into it, and this book is no exception.  It took a long time for me to understand the world.  The world develops slowly, and what we learn morphs throughout.  This is why I almost gave up on the book.  It was taking simply too long for the story to really get going.  If you can get through the first half of the book though, it does pick up the pace and become more enjoyable.  My paperback copy also included a map, which I love with these sort of novels.  It makes the story feel more grounded and real, in my opinion.

I'm not going to say much about the characters, because I really don't want to get too spoiler-y here.  Elisa is a nice change from your typical YA protagonist.  Her struggles with food become an interesting theme within the book, and she develops and grows so much.  It was nice to see her grow into her role.

Be warned, Rae Carson is not afraid to kill characters.  NO ONE IS FAIR GAME!  The second half of this book begins to become a bit of a bloodbath.  It's not gory, but no one is safe.  I was quite attached to one character in particular, who gets their throat slit.  Not cool.

I honestly have no idea where the next book, The Crown of Embers, will go, but I will be checking it out in the near future.  So, if you feel up for some fantasy and adventure, pick up The Girl of Fire and Thorns!

Much love, Samantha

16.1.13

Waiting On Sever


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating!

This week I am excited for...

With the clock ticking until the virus takes its toll, Rhine is desperate for answers. After enduring Vaughn’s worst, Rhine finds an unlikely ally in his brother, an eccentric inventor named Reed. She takes refuge in his dilapidated house, though the people she left behind refuse to stay in the past. While Gabriel haunts Rhine’s memories, Cecily is determined to be at Rhine’s side, even if Linden’s feelings are still caught between them.

Meanwhile, Rowan’s growing involvement in an underground resistance compels Rhine to reach him before he does something that cannot be undone. But what she discovers along the way has alarming implications for her future—and about the past her parents never had the chance to explain.
In this breathtaking conclusion to Lauren DeStefano’s Chemical Garden trilogy, everything Rhine knows to be true will be irrevocably shattered. (From Goodreads)
I didn't really love either of the previous two books in this trilogy, but I have desire to finish this series.  It's probably because I have strong feelings about who Rhine should end up with (GABRIEL!).  This is also one of those few cases where I was wishing for a cover re-vamp.  I have high hopes for Sever though, which is to be released February 12th, 2013.

So, what are YOU waiting on?

Much love, Samantha

15.1.13

Top Ten Tuesday: 2013 Debuts


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful ladies over at

This week, the topic is...
Top Ten 2013 Debuts I'm Looking Forward To


I love finding new authours.  Last year I discovered some new favourites in Jennifer L. Armentrout, Julie Kagawa, Veronica Rossi and Wendy Higgins.  New authours are one of my favourite things.  I enjoy spreading the love, and making those around me discover new authours too!  Today, that would be you guys.  So, I present to you a list of ten books that I have heard of recently and cannot wait to devour myself!


Titles all link to their Goodreads page!

The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepard
Let The Sky Fall by Shannon Messenger
Pivot Point by Kasie West
Prophecy by Ellen Oh
Nobody But Us by Kristen Halbrook
Unremembered by Jessica Brody
The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elsten
Ink by Amanda Sun
Altered by Jennifer Rush
City of a Thousand Dolls by Miriam Forster

Any books I should add to the list?  Or have you read any of these already and have thoughts?

Much love, Samantha

14.1.13

Book Review: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Published April 3rd, 2012
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
484 pages (Paperback Ed.)
Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?
Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart? (From Goodreads)
When I first heard about this book, I was sold with these two words: "assassin nuns".  I mean, that idea has epic written all over it.  Ultimately, I would not call Grave Mercy epic, but it did prove to be a great read.

The story starts quite slow, as they are establishing the convent and how Ismae got involved.  I started to get worried that our main character was going to be 14 years old for the whole thing.  Quickly though, we flash ahead three years to the present day, and Ismae's first kill.  If that's not a scrapbook worthy moment, I don't know what is.  The plot slowly starts to pick up from there, but really didn't get going until about half way through.  From that point on, I had a hard time putting the book down.

The characters were well written, while being not overly complicated.  They foster a lot of secrets, that are revealed throughout the book.  Not going to lie, I may have had some serious "insta-love" for Duval.  His dedication and perseverance to what he believes in were extremely attractive, but I am glad Ismae does not experience the same "insta-love" I do.  Their relationship develops throughout the book, which makes a much, much better story.

While I have no clue how historically accurate any of the world is, I feel like having of an explanation of Brittany, or perhaps a map, would have been a benefit.  Eventually, I had to ask my history major roommate where Brittany was, and she had to google it.  I did enjoy the historical nature though, and was able to kind of picture myself in the 1400s.  Again, who knows how historically accurate my vision was, but it worked for me.

I really enjoyed Grave Mercy, which played out in my head like a movie.  The next in the series, Dark Triumph, is about Sybella, another of the assassins, and is due for release April 2nd, 2013.  While I'm upset that there is the potential for less Duval, I am excited for the story to continue!

Much love, Samantha

12.1.13

Coffeeshop Soundtrack (1)

Between walking to my hospital placement, taking the bus, waiting around between classes,  working out, and those awkward moments here and there, I listen to a lot of music.  Since I also read a lot of books, they start to overlap.  These are my thoughts...

Vampire Academy reminds me of If You Only Knew by Shinedown


If you only knew
I still hold onto the letters
You returned
You help me live and learn

It's 4:03 and I can't sleep
Without you next to me I
Toss and turn like the sea
If I drown tonight, bring me
Back to life
Breathe your breath in me
The only thing that I still believe
In is you, believe in is you
I still believe in you
Oh, if you only knew



Much love, Samantha

10.1.13

Book Review: Through The Ever Night by Veronica Rossi

Published January 8th, 2013
HarperCollins
352 pages (Hardcover)
It's been months since Aria last saw Perry. Months since Perry was named Blood Lord of the Tides, and Aria was charged with an impossible mission. Now, finally, they are about to be reunited. But their reunion is far from perfect. The Tides don't take kindly to Aria, a former Dweller. And with the worsening Aether storms threatening the tribe's precarious existence, Aria begins to fear that leaving Perry behind might be the only way to save them both.

Threatened by false friends, hidden enemies, and powerful temptations, Aria and Perry wonder, Can their love survive through the ever night?
In this second book in her spellbinding Under the Never Sky trilogy, Veronica Rossi combines fantasy and dystopian elements to create a captivating love story as perilous as it is unforgettable. (From Goodreads)
This isn't so much a review, as it is a DECLARATION OF LOVE!

Let me tell you a story.  I woke up on this books release day, got dressed, made coffee, and bought an eBook copy (I plan to cut the hardcover in the near future).  I put it on my outdated eReader, and none of the text showed up.  I ended up reading the entire book on my laptop.

I laughed.  I cried.  I cried and laughed some more.  I swooned (no leather this time and I'm not even mad).  I died a little inside and questioned my existence and wound up eating my dinner in a complete haze.

Veronica Rossi, all I can say is thank you for yet another amazing book.  The wait for Into The Still Blue will be pure torture.

Much love, Samantha

9.1.13

Waiting On Dance of Shadows


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating!

This week I am excited for...
Dancing with someone is an act of trust. Elegant and intimate; you're close enough to kiss, close enough to feel your partner's heartbeat. But for Vanessa, dance is deadly – and she must be very careful who she trusts . . .

Vanessa Adler attends an elite ballet school – the same one her older sister, Margaret, attended before she disappeared. Vanessa feels she can never live up to her sister's shining reputation. But Vanessa, with her glorious red hair and fair skin, has a kind of power when she dances – she loses herself in the music, breathes different air, and the world around her turns to flames . . . 
Soon she attracts the attention of three men: gorgeous Zep, mysterious Justin, and the great, enigmatic choreographer Josef Zhalkovsky. When Josef asks Vanessa to dance the lead in the Firebird, she has little idea of the danger that lies ahead – and the burning forces about to be unleashed . . . (From Goodreads)

A book about ballet!  If I had any actual talent, I would have loved to be a ballerina.  I'll have to settle for reading about it.  Look at the cover!  And ballerinas!  And danger!  And boy drama!  Eeek!

Dance of Shadows is out February 12th, 2013!  Get excited!  And sorry for all the exclamation marks.

Much love, Samantha

8.1.13

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Goals


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful ladies over at

This week, the topic is...
Top Ten Bookish Goals For 2013

Have I ever mentioned I hate making goals for myself?  It brings back repressed childhood memories, believe it or not.
  1. Read 52 new books.  This goal should be easy.  Last year I read 100 new books + some re-reads.  However, I spent most of my summer unemployed.  This year, I don't intend to repeat that, and I need to pick my grades up a little.  A book a week is a reasonable pace for me right now.
  2. Finish A Tale of Two Cities.  This book has been 42% complete for a long time now.
  3. Finish another classic book.  Although it may be something easier to read than A Tale of Two Cities.
  4. Buy a new bookcase.  The one at my parent's house is literally overflowing, and I have several towers forming at school.
  5. Use the library.  I actually don't live far from my library, but I never seem to actually go.  This should be changed.
  6. Read The Fault in Our Stars.  No explanation needed.  Plus my roommate just bought it.
  7. Read a textbook.  Ha, no.
  8. Read more from this "new adult" craze.  I have opinions, but I feel like I should delve deeper into this "genre" before getting too rant-y.
  9. Stop forcing myself to read stuff I cannot stand.  I'm bad for thinking that a series will get better.  They often don't.  A DNF is okay every once and a while.
Okay, nine is all I can come up with.  What are your bookish goals for 2013?

Much love, Samantha

7.1.13

Coffee Talk: Is A Capella Actually A Thing?

If you haven't watched Pitch Perfect yet, I suggest that you get on that.  This movie is pure awesome and incredibly fun to watch.  While watching it though, four things kept going through my head...

Number one, their dorm rooms are so much nicer than mine was.  Their rooms are bright and spacious and nice.  Mine was small, dark and cold.  My walls were cinder blocks and wood paneling.  I will admit, my dorm looked like a castle/fort.  We used to joke that we lived at Hogwarts.  Sadly, our rooms still sucked, which made me wish I could redo it with the rooms from this movie...  And they never go to class.  That would be nice.

Number two, this cast was great.  Anna Kendricks (Beca) was great.  Skyler Astin (Jesse) can seriously sing, and is quite attractive.  Guys, can you say Zachary Levi doppelganger !?!  Rebel Wilson (Fat Amy) is hilarious.  There wasn't a single character I did not enjoy.  Credit to the casting directors for this film.

Number three is my only complaint.  There is a significant lack of character development and back story.  Obviously you can't expect a ton in a movie under 2 hours long, but I would have liked more.  Basically all we see is a tiny bit of development in Beca and Aubrey, and virtually no back story on anyone.  I think that may have elevated the story a bit.  Luckily, the music and comedy held it's own.


Number four is a question.  Is A Capella actually a thing?  It definitely isn't at my school.  I can't sing to save my life, but I just want to know.  A Capella competitions probably exist, but seriously?  I just want to know how much this is exaggerated.






Pitch Perfect is a new favourite of mine (I watched it three times in the first 24 hours I had it...).  Given my dislike for Glee, I really didn't expect to enjoy it as much as I did.  If you're looking for a fun, lighthearted comedy, check it out!

Much love, Samantha

5.1.13

Book Review: Hourglass by Myra McEntire

Published June 14th, 2011
Egmont USA
390 pages (Hardcover)
One hour to rewrite the past . . . 

For seventeen-year-old Emerson Cole, life is about seeing what isn't there: swooning Southern Belles; soldiers long forgotten; a haunting jazz trio that vanishes in an instant. Plagued by phantoms since her parents' death, she just wants the apparitions to stop so she can be normal. She's tried everything, but the visions keep coming back.

So when her well-meaning brother brings in a consultant from a secretive organization called the Hourglass, Emerson's willing to try one last cure. But meeting Michael Weaver may not only change her future, it may also change her past.

Who is this dark, mysterious, sympathetic guy, barely older than Emerson herself, who seems to believe every crazy word she says? Why does an electric charge seem to run through the room whenever he's around? And why is he so insistent that he needs her help to prevent a death that never should have happened? (From Goodreads)
What took me so long to read this?!?!  Hourglass has an interesting take on time travel, a plot that managed to confuse and fascinate me, and some interesting characters.

I love time travel.  I think it's really interesting, but I am glad it's not scientifically possible (yet *shifty eyes*). No one needs to be travelling through time and messing with the past.  That's exactly what happens in Hourglass.  There was some serious meddling going down.

I'm not a huge fan of Emerson.  On one hand, she could easily kick my ass with her awesome martial art skills.  On the other hand, I just did not find her likable.  I'm not suggesting that she was a poorly written character, but simply that she didn't possess the qualities I look for in strong protagonists.  Beyond flipping Michael once, correct me if I'm wrong, I can't recall her ever actually using her badass-ness in any way.

Speaking of Michael, there may have been some insta-lust there.  I knew from the second he was introduced that I would be a fan of his.  I don't know how to explain why, but I do like his character.

At times I got a little annoyed, because it felt like the story was being dragged on.  Time travel is complicated, but I got a little confused when Michael would be explaining something, then drop the topic and suggest Emerson come back to it later.  Seriously, spit it out.

Overall, if you haven't done so yet, give Hourglass a read.  With a different take on time travel, I enjoyed the story, and plan to read Timepiece soon!

Much love, Samantha

3.1.13

December Favourites

It's a little late, but these are a few of my favourite things for the month of December!

Favourite Read: Opal by Jennifer L. Armentrout
(Honourable Mentions go to Pushing The Limits and Daughter of Smoke & Bone)

Favourite Song: They Don't Know About Us by One Direction

Favourite Failed Recipe: Snickers Caramel Apple Salad.  I may have screwed up the apple-to-whipped cream ratio.  How I managed to mess this up continues to confuse me.

Favourite Christmas Moment: The ongoing battle that is playing cards with my family.  We all get a little competitive.

Favourite Caffienated Beverage: Grande Nonfat Caramel Brulle Latte with whip from Starbucks.

Favourite Gift I Gave: An assortment of Bath and Body Works treats for my mom, who works amazingly hard and deserves to pamper herself.

Favourite Gift I Recieved: Hockey tickets (even if we lost the game...) and books.


Favourite Memory of 2012: No clue.  It was such a roller coaster year, and I'm excited for 2013!

Much love, Samantha

2.1.13

Waiting On Shades of Earth


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating!

This week I am excited for...
Amy and Elder have finally left the oppressive walls of the spaceship, Godspeed behind. They're ready to start life afresh--to build a home--on Centauri-Earth, the planet that Amy has traveled 25 trillion miles across the universe to experience.

But this new Earth isn't the paradise Amy had been hoping for. There are giant pterodactyl-like birds, purple flowers with mind-numbing toxins, and mysterious, unexplained ruins that hold more secrets than their stone walls first let on. The biggest secret of all? Godspeed's former passengers aren't alone on this planet. And if they're going to stay, they'll have to fight.

Amy and Elder must race to discover who--or what--else is out there if they are to have any hope of saving their struggling colony and building a future together. They will have to look inward to the very core of what makes them human on this, their most harrowing journey yet. Because if the colony collapses? Then everything they have sacrificed--friends, family, life on Earth--will have been for nothing.

FUELED BY LIES.
RULED BY CHAOS.
ALMOST HOME. (From Goodreads)

I'm so exciting for the conclusion to Beth Revis' trilogy.  I really like the mixture of science fiction and mystery, and can't wait to see what Elder and Amy get themselves into next.  If you haven't read Across The Universe (review) and A Million Suns (review) yet, I recommend checking them out.

Shades of Earth is out January 15th, 2013.

Much love, Samantha

1.1.13

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Resolve To Read


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful ladies over at

This week, the topic is...
Top Ten Books I Resolve To Read in 2013

This is an interesting topic, only because I have no idea how to answer it.  I generally just read whatever I feel like in the moment, with little to no planning, unless I have to review something in particular.

The Fault In Our Stars- John Green
I have yet to read this.  Don't hate me.
A Tale of Two Cities- Charles Dickens
I have been slowly working on this for almost a year now.  It needs to be finished.
My Life Next Door- Huntley Fitzpatrick
I need to track this down and devour it!
Wanderlove- Kirsten Hubbard
See above.
Something by Maria V. Snyder
Anything, really.  I've never read any of her books.
Something by Neil Gaimen
See above.
Tilt- Ellen Hopkins
This is more of a "resolve to finish".  I started it, then school happened.
Graceling by Kristen Cashmore
Potentially badass heroine means instant appeal to me.
Heist Society- Ally Carter
People seem to like it?
Sloppy Firsts- Megan McCafferty
Must read this series!

Okay that's my list of random books I could think of!  What's on yours?

Much love, Samantha