Monday, December 28, 2015

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For The First Half of 2016

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish blog

This was very hard to narrow down to just ten! But because I have a post going up January 1st listing all the books I want to read in 2016, I thought I would try hard to keep it at just ten for this post! :)

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For The First Half of 2016

(Listed by order of release date.)

January 26th

January 26th

February 11th

February 16th

February 23rd

March 1st

March 8th

April 19th

May 1st

May 31st

What books are you looking forward to the first half of 2016? :)

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas 2015!

Merry Christmas!!!!!!! :)

I hope everyone has a wonderful, fun, and happy Christmas while remembering the reason why we celebrate it! :)

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

End of Year Book Survey 2015!

Every year Jamie from The Perpetual Page-Turner hosts the End of Year Survey! I love the survey she made, and look forward to filling it out every year! And here's the link to the post if you want to participate yourself!  :)

Number Of Books You Read: At the time of writing this post, 50 books, 85 Graphic Novels, and 85 Picture Books!
Number of Re-Reads: I would guess that two of the books, about half the GN's, and about a third of the Picture Books were rereads!
Genre You Read The Most From: I think that would be Contemporary, with Fantasy a near second to it!

1. Best Book You Read In 2015?
There is no way I'm able to just list one book! I'm going to list my favorites by genre! :)

Best Middle Grade Historical: I Don't How the Story Ends by J.B. Cheaney,

Best Middle Grade Mystery: The Magician's Secret by Carolyn Keene,

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn't?
I'm having trouble thinking of an answer for this question...

3. Most Surprising (In A Good Way Or Bad Way) Book You Read?
I think that would be Rebel Mechanics! It  looked good, but I wasn't expecting how much I would love it! It surprised me how much I loved it! But you know, I think Finding Audrey, too. Because that was another book that I went into hoping  to like it, but having no idea how much I would love it! Both of these books surprised me in a good way! :)

4. Book You "Pushed" The Most People To Read (And They Did)?
 I recommended a lot of books (Basically all the books I listed as best of the year.) to people this year, but the one I think I actually got the most people to actually read? Probably Rebel Mechanics! :)
5. Best Series You Started in 2015? Best Sequel of 2015? Best Series Ender of 2015?
 Best series I began? I began a few good series this year, but if I have to list just one book... Ah, this is hard! I have to list at least two: You're Invited (The RSVP books!) and Geek Girl! :)

Best sequel I read? Definitely Neverseen! It's always a lot of fun to read about Sophie and her friends! :)

Best series ender? I'm not 100% sure that this was the last book, but if it was, How to Outfox Your Friends When You Don't Have a Clue was wonderful! Very fun series of books! :)

6. Favorite New Author You Discovered in 2015?
 I don't think I'm able to just list one author, but I did a TTT listing ten of my favorite new-to-me authors in 2015! And if I had to list just one of them? Hmm... No! I'm not able to. All the authors on that list were just too fabulous to just list one of them! :)
7. Best Book From A Genre You Don't Typically Read/Was Out Of Your Comfort Zone?
 Rebel Mechanics! I don't read many books like that, but I'm glad I read that book! Wonderful! :)
8. Most Action-Packed/Thrilling/Unputdownable Book Of The Year?
 Neverseen! Every time I had to stop reading to do something else, I tried to get done as fast as possible to get back to that book! :)
9. Book You Read In 2015 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
 Um, probably the two that made me laugh the most, which were Finding Audrey and Geek Girl! :)
10. Favorite Cover Of A Book You Read In 2015?
 Again, not able to just list one book! Here are my top three:

Geek Girl

Rebel Mechanics

How to Outfox Your Friends When You Don't Have a Clue

11. Most Memorable Character Of 2015?
I'm going to answer this question a little differently than normal. The most memorable group of characters in 2015 were, to me, everyone from Neverseen. Sophie, Keefe, Fitz, Biana, and Dex are very memorable! :)
12. Most Beautifully Written Book Read In 2015?
 I don't know what book to list!
13. Most Thought-Provoking/Life-Changing Book Of 2015?
 Again, I don't know what book to list!
14. Book You Can't Believe You Waited UNTIL 2015 To Read?
 A Posse of Princesses! That was a wonderful, fun, and entertaining book! :)
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From a Book You Read In 2015?
I'm very bad at writing down quotes I like, so I don't have an answer this year... Maybe that's something I should work at being better at next year.

16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2015?
 Longest: Neverseen, 688 pages
Shortest: Merida: Legend of the Emeralds, 96 pages
17. Book That Shocked You The Most?
 Without writing any spoilers about it, Neverseen had a lot of twists to it! :)
18. OTP OF THE YEAR (You Will Go Down With This Ship)?
 I won't name the guy, in case that would spoil some people, but Verity and the guy who I want her with from Rebel Mechanics! :)
19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year?
Audrey and her relationship with her family in Finding Audrey! And the friendship between the princesses in A Posse of Princesses was fun! :)
20. Favorite Book You Read In 2015 From An Author You've Read Previously?
 I'm not going to include any series books in this answer. But my favorite stand-alone book? A tie between The Fill-In Boyfriend and The (Almost) Perfect Guide to Imperfect Boys! :)
21. Best Book You Read In 2015 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure?
 Hmm, I don't know what to answer with.
22. Newest Fictional Crush From A Book You Read In 2015?
 The guy from Rebel Mechanics that I mentioned in a previous question! :)
23. Best 2015 Debut You Read?
 Breaking the Ice, Princess Juniper of the Hourglass, and Geek Girl were all amazing! :)
24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?
 Neverseen! But there are a lot of impressive worlds in a lot of books this year! :)
25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
 Finding Audrey and Geek Girl both had me smiling and laughing throughout them! (To the point I think the people around me thought I was insane!)
26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry In 2015?
 No spoilers, but there was a scene in Neverseen towards the end of the book that had me tearing up.
27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?
 In YA, I think Geek Girl and Rebel Mechanics didn't get enough attention. In Middle Grade, I Don't Know How The Story Ends and The (Almost) Perfect Guide to Imperfect Boys.
28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?
Don't know how to answer!
29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2015?
Probably A School for Unusual Girls! :)
30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (Doesn't Necessarily Mean You Didn't Like It)?
I don't know if I got mad at a book...

1. New Favorite Book Blog You Discovered In 2015?
 This is going to sound sad, but I don't know if I discovered any new blogs this year... Need to try more next year! :)
2. Favorite Review That You Wrote In 2015?
 I don't know if I have a favorite this year, but I'm happy with all of them. :)
3. Best Discussion/Non-Review Post You Had On Your Blog?
Getting to interview three awesome authors, Lauren Magaziner, Jen Malone, and Gail Nall (And her giving away three books on my blog, which is the first giveaway on my blog ever.) was fun! And posting about the Nancy Drew games was fun! All of the posts I did about books releasing in 2016 (Here, Here, and Here) I enjoyed writing. I had a lot of fun writing the Do You Want To Read A Middle Grade Book? post! Putting together the post about what I wanted to read in 2015 was fun! Another post that was fun to put together was about a few Picture Books my Mom and I liked this year! Apparently there were a lot of posts I had fun putting together in 2015! :)

4. Best Event That You Participated In (Author Signings, Festivals, Virtual Events, Meme, Etc.)?
I had fun participating in multiple author Twitter chats in 2015! And Top Ten Tuesday is always fun! :)

5. Best Moment Of Bookish/Blogging Life In 2015?
 There were a lot of good moments this year! The fact of just reading amazing books! But a moment that stood out to me? Being told by an author that they had found out about a few new books they added to their TBR list from my blog! :)
6. Most Challenging Thing About Blogging Or Your Reading Life This Year?
Blogging life? I think keeping up with posts was hard sometimes this year. Just trying to put aside time to write them out was hard sometimes this year.
7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (Whether It Be By Comments Or Views)?
 By views? My Interview and Giveaway With Author Gail Nall post had the most views, but Books in 2016: YA post wasn't far behind!. :)
8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
 I'm pretty happy with the amount of views and comments my posts got this year! :)
9. Best Bookish Discovery (Book Related Sites, Book Stores, Etc.)?
Hmm, I don't know.

10.  Did You Complete Any Reading Challenges Or Goals That You Had Set For Yourself At The Beginning Of This Year?
I had set goals of 12 books, 12 Graphic Novels, and 12 Picture Books, and I managed to reach those goals! :)

1. One Book You Didn't Get To In 2015 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority In 2016?
 There are a few books from this year that I want to try and read in 2016! :)
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2016?
 *laughs* There is no way I'm able to just list one book! I plan on doing another post about this, though. :)
3. 2016 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?
 Again, way too many to just list one book!
4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating In 2016?
 There are a good amount I'm looking forward to, but of the ones that have titles? Fridays With the Wizards by Jessica Day George! Love those books! And! You're Invited Too by Jen Malone and Gail Nall! :)
5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2016?
 My reading? Just keep reading amazing books! And my blog? Just keep having fun with it! And try to interview more authors. :)
6. A 2016 Release You've Already Read & Recommend To Everyone?
I haven't read any 2016 releases yet. :)

That was fun! And thank you to Jamie for making this and letting everyone participate in it! :)

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Christmas Picture Books!

I thought it would be fun to list on the blog today a few of my favorite Christmas Picture Books, plus two new books that my Mom and I read this year for the first time! And two new books (At least new to us!) that we want to read this year! :)

My Mom and I read Picture Books together all the time, and some of our all-time favorites just happen to be Christmas based! Here are seven favorites, two new favorites, and two that we want to read! :)

(I'm not including the version of A Night Before Christmas we read every Christmas Eve on here, but that is also a favorite!) :)

The seven favorites! :)

The two new favorites! :)

The two we want to read this year! :)

What are your favorite Christmas Picture Books? Have you read any of these? :)

Monday, December 21, 2015

Review: How to Outfox Your Friends When You Don't Have a Clue

Review: How to Outfox Your Friends When You Don't Have a Clue by Jess Keating

What would middle school be like if you lived in a zoo? Just ask Ana Wright, star of the hilarious, award-nominated My Life is A Zoo series that combines first crushes, friendship fails...and pack dynamics.
Surprise! Ana's long distance BFF is finally coming back to visit. But with her purple hair and new attitude, Liv is barely the girl Ana remembers. This new Liv probably thinks a birthday party at the zoo is lame. Maybe if Ana has a super-secret sleepover instead, she'd never have to introduce Liv to Ashley, former enemy and now Ana's best-ish friend. What could go wrong?

-summary and cover via Goodreads

Plot: All of the funny and embarrassing things Ana goes through are fun to read about! (And again, I love reading the fun animal facts! :)

Characters: Ana is very easy to relate to, and I love getting to read about her! Getting to read about her friends Ashley (Honestly, Ashley is now one of my favorite characters in the books!), Kevin, Bella; her brother Daz, her parents; and her Grandpa and Sugar is fun, too! :)

The cover: This is my favorite cover in this series of books! That little fox is darling! :)

Overall: All three of the Zoo books have been fun to read, and would I gladly read another book about Ana and her friends! Highly recommend these books if you're looking for a fun Middle Grade book! And if you want a book with an easy to relate to main character, too! :)

I bought this book.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Top Ten Best Books I Read in 2015

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish blog

These are definitely not the only good books I read this year. In fact, I think this was a pretty spectacular year of reading! But I thought I would try hard to actually just list ten (And when that failed, thirteen.) books this week. Especially because I'm going to post the end of year survey, and I know that I'm going to list a lot (And when I write a lot, I mean a lot.) more books then! (I'm not going to list Graphic Novels or Picture Books in this post either, because then the list would be waaay too long!) :)

These are all books that I LOVED this year, and would highly recommend to everyone! :)

Top Ten Thirteen Best Books I Read in 2015

What were your favorite books you read in 2015? :)

Interview and Giveaway With Middle Grade and YA Author Gail Nall!

Today on the blog I'm very happy to present an interview (And giveaway!) with the wonderful Middle Grade and YA author, Gail Nall! She's the author of the MG books, Breaking the Ice (The PB release is tomorrow!), the Fall 2016 release Out of Tune, and written with Jen Malone, You're Invited, and You're Invited, Too (Releasing in February!). And the YA book, Exit Stage Left! :)

I'm excited for you all to get to read this interview! And make sure to read all the way through to the bottom of the post, because there is an absolutely AWESOME giveaway from Ms. Nall, that I'm very excited to get to host! :)

The bold font is the questions I asked, the regular font is Gail Nall's answers, and the bold italic font is the comments I made about her answers!

1. You're Invited was so much fun! I'm looking forward to the sequel a lot! What can you tell us about You're invited, Too (Releasing in February!)?

Jen and I had so much fun writing new adventures and mishaps for the RSVP girls! The second book picks up right where the first left off, with the girls agreeing to plan a wedding. Of course, in true RSVP-style, not everything goes as planned. There's a bridezilla who puts all other bridezillas to shame, and then add in the fact that Sadie's mom doesn't know this bride used to be her client. Lauren goes a little too crazy having fun (there's a great golf cart scene!), there's a new (French!) boy for Becca, and Vi's life gets a whole lot harder when her dad starts his new job as the school janitor. Bubby is back (of course!). And then something even bigger threatens the wedding the girls have so carefully planned.

Yay!  This sounds like a lot of fun! I'm so looking forward to getting to read about these characters again! And getting to read about them planning a wedding with a bridezilla! :)

2. You write both Middle Grade (Breaking the Ice, the fall 2016 book Out of Tune, and the You're Invited books written with Jen Malone) and YA (Exit Stage Left). Did you always want to write both?

Originally, I'd only thought about writing middle grade. I love the weird awkwardness of that age group and I adore writing fun, over-the-top contemporary books that capitalize on how crazy and confusing it is to be twelve or thirteen. But then I started reading more and more YA, and I had the opportunity to write EXIT STAGE LEFT, and I fell in love with YA too. I now have a nice long list of YA ideas! I can't imagine not writing both now.

3. In the You're Invited books, the girls are party planners. What would be the theme of your dream party?

Cruise-themed! Mostly because then it could happen on a cruise ship and there is nothing bad about that. I mean, fruity drinks with tiny umbrellas, exotic islands, dancing on the lido deck, midnight chocolate buffets -- sigh! :)

I absolutely love this party theme! :)

4. If you're able to talk about it, what are you working on now?

I'm one of those writers with multiple projects in various stages. I just finished the first round of edits for OUT OF TUNE, a middle grade I have coming out next fall about a girl who wants to be a country music singer but whose parents sell their house in Nashville and move the whole family into an RV to travel the country. I have the draft of a new YA finished, and I'm working on some new MG ideas now. I also have a couple of secret projects cooking that I can't really talk about. (heeheehee!)

 I think Out of Tune sounds awesome! :)
5. Middle Grade books (And the authors who write them!) are awesome! What are a few of your favorite Middle Grade books?
I love (love, love, love!) the other books in the Aladdin M!X line, including AT YOUR SERVICE by Jen Malone and 25 ROSES by Stephanie Faris. Basically, you can't go wrong with any book from M!X! The books that meant the most to me as a kid were the LITTLE HOUSE books by Laura Ingalls Wilder, ANNE OF GREEN GABLES by L.M. Montgomery, the ALL OF A KIND FAMILY books by Sydney Taylor, and THE BABY-SITTERS CLUB books by Ann M. Martin. I'll forever love HARRY POTTER, of course. This year, I've really enjoyed Erin Entrada Kelly's BLACKBIRD FLY, Dan Gemeinhart's THE HONEST TRUTH, and Laurie McKay's VILLAIN KEEPER. And next year my good friend Abby Cooper's debut book, STICKS AND STONES, will be out -- and I love this book soooo much! It's about a girl who has a mysterious condition in which the names people call her -- and the names she calls herself -- show up on her arms and legs. It's such a unique idea and is told in this hilarious, amazing voice. Definitely put it on your to-be-read!

I love the Aladdin M!X line! Both At Your Service and 25 Roses are wonderful! And The Baby-Sitter Club books?! Love them! Sticks and Stones has already been on my TBR list, but hearing you talk about it makes me look forward to it even more! :)

Here are a few links:

Photo by Whitney Powell, 2013.
Gail Nall lives in Louisville, Kentucky with her family and more cats than necessary. She once drove a Zamboni, has camped in the snow in June, and almost got trampled in Paris. Gail is the author of the middle grade novel, BREAKING THE ICE (Aladdin/S&S, 2015) and the co-author of YOU'RE INVITED (Aladdin/S&S, 2015). She is also the author of the young adult novel, EXIT STAGE LEFT (Epic Reads Impulse/HarperCollins, 2015). You can find her online at and on Twitter as @gailecn.

Here's the giveaway!
The author has generously offered up three books for one lucky winner!
A paperback copy of Breaking the Ice, a copy of You're Invited, and an ARC of You're Invited Too! (This is an awesome giveaway, I'm excited for whoever wins!)

Giveaway runs between December 14th through January 3rd.
Enter using the rafflecopter below.
There will be one winner!
Afterward I will contact the winner to get the information for the author, the winner will have 48 hours to reply.
If the winner does not reply within 48 hours, I will draw a new winner.
US only

No cheating!

Good luck! :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway