Best of 2013 Giveaway Hop-International

bestof2013

December 18 marks my one year anniversary of book blogging. I’d say I jumped in on an amazing year of books with some of my favorites releasing. I had to join this giveaway hop to share with you, my readers, some of my favorites along with the chance to win one. This is an international giveaway and you can request and earlier book in the series if you would like to. I’ve selected all of my 5 star reviews for books that released in 2013. Click on the title to read my review.

  World After (Penryn & the End of Days, #2)These Broken StarsThe Bone SeasonScarlet by Marissa Meyer
World After by Susan Ee, These Broken Stars by Meagan Spooner and Amie Kaufman, The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon, Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

 In the Shadow of BlackbirdsCrown of MidnightNot a Drop to DrinkThe Burning Sky
In the Shadow of Catbirds by Cat Winters, Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas, Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis, The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas

 The Dream ThievesSiege and Storm
The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater and Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

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Showcase Sunday #25

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits and Tea where you show what books you’ve purchased, gotten from the library, received from giveaway, as gifts or for review.

Purchased:
All of these were purchased at the Austin Teen Book Festival-you can see pics and small recap here. I have read and reviewed each of these. You can read my review by clicking on the title.
Not a Drop to DrinkThe buring SkyThe Dream Thieves

Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis, The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas, The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

Won (thank you Derek Silver)

I have been trying everything in my power to get my hands on an arc of Rebel Spring, I sent in an email request (no response), requested on Edelweiss (a few times–all declined) and I’ve entered a lot of giveaways. Finally, finally I won a copy. I was overjoyed! I plan on reading it next month. Derek, being awesome, threw in a couple of other books as well.
Rebel SpringThe Way We FallCountdown
Rebel Spring
by Morgan Rhodes, The Way We Fall by Megan Crewe and Countdown by Michelle Rowen aka Morgan Rhodes

What did you get last week? I’m thinking I won’t be getting very much in the upcoming weeks because I have so many books I need to read I’ve stopped requesting.

Be sure to check out my GIVEAWAY (INT)- Winner chooses a book from Book Depository

Showcase Sunday #21

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits and Tea where you show what books you’ve purchased, gotten from the library, received from giveaway, as gifts or for review.

For Review (via NetGalley):
Tandem by Anna Jarzab, The Waking Dark by Robin Wasserman

 

From Harper (via Shelf Awareness Pro):
The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas

 

Won:
Thank you Katrina at Bookish Things and More
City of Bones (movie tie-in) by Cassandra Clare, City of Bones Official Illustrated Movie Companion and The Shadowhunter’s Guide

Purchased:
Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas<

I got to meet Sarah J. Maas and have her sign my books. Check out my international giveaway of the signed book and signed original art created by My Friends Are Fiction


See my Crown of Midnight review

Review of The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas

The Burning SkyThe Burning Sky (The Elemental Trilogy)
By: Sherry Thomas
Release Date: Balzer + Bray
Publisher: September 17th 2013
Pre-Order:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble

An electronic copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.

My Rating:
star

Summary (via Goodreads):
It all began with a ruined elixir and an accidental bolt of lightning…

Iolanthe Seabourne is the greatest elemental mage of her generation—or so she’s being told. The one prophesied for years to be the savior of The Realm. It is her duty and destiny to face and defeat the Bane, the greatest mage tyrant the world has ever known. A suicide task for anyone let alone a sixteen-year-old girl with no training, facing a prophecy that foretells a fiery clash to the death.

Prince Titus of Elberon has sworn to protect Iolanthe at all costs but he’s also a powerful mage committed to obliterating the Bane to revenge the death of his family—even if he must sacrifice both Iolanthe and himself to achieve his goal.

But Titus makes the terrifying mistake of falling in love with the girl who should have been only a means to an end. Now, with the servants of the Bane closing in, he must choose between his mission and her life.

The Story:
Sherry Thomas has created a truly unique fantasy novel comprised of elements I absolutely adored: a girl not exactly sure of her own magical capabilities, an epic quest, unexpected love, and an all-boys school. Thomas did a beautiful job pulling all of this together into a cohesive and fast paced book.

The world, called The Realm, was described beautifully and naturally. The reader learned more about The Realm’s inner workings and inhabitats slowly as the book progressed. I felt that Thomas created an original world that still was tangible and realistic.

There were so many wonderfully creative and imaginative aspects of this book but my favorite has to be The Crucible, a book of illusion that allows one to travel within its depths into a world based on fairy tales. It operates as does reality but is like a dream; only the mind and imagination journey within. This allowed for our characters to experience a wealth of adventures that wouldn’t have made sense otherwise.

The Characters:
Thomas’ characters were done exeedingly well. I loved Iolanthe (though for the life of me I have no idea how her name would be pronounced) because of her strength, loyalty and adaptability to adverse situations. She was not a heroine in need of being saved nor did she let fate push her around. I loved her cleverness and the interactions with Titus.

Titus was a character that had a lot of inner turmoil and struggled with his fate and what, if anything he could do to change what was destined. He was instantly likeable though he was in no way a perfect person. The relationship that builds between him and Iolanthe grew slowly and realistically.

I felt incredibly connected to Thomas’ cast of characters, primary and secondary alike.

Final Thoughts:
The Burning Sky was the first book I’ve read by Sherry Thomas but won’t be my last. I adored her writing style, character interactions and world buiding.

 

 

Waiting on Wednesday #6


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases we are highly anticipating. This week’s pre-publication “can’t-wait to-read” selection is: The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas

The Burning Sky (The Elemental Trilogy, #1)Summary (via Goodreads):
It all began with a ruined elixir and an accidental bolt of lightning…

Iolanthe Seabourne is the greatest elemental mage of her generation—or so she’s being told. The one prophesied for years to be the savior of The Realm. It is her duty and destiny to face and defeat the Bane, the greatest mage tyrant the world has ever known. A suicide task for anyone let alone a sixteen-year-old girl with no training, facing a prophecy that foretells a fiery clash to the death.

Prince Titus of Elberon has sworn to protect Iolanthe at all costs but he’s also a powerful mage committed to obliterating the Bane to revenge the death of his family—even if he must sacrifice both Iolanthe and himself to achieve his goal.

But Titus makes the terrifying mistake of falling in love with the girl who should have been only a means to an end. Now, with the servants of the Bane closing in, he must choose between his mission and her life

Why am I waiting on The Burning Sky?
I love fantasy so this is an easy one for me. Also, I love books where someone falls in love with the person they are supposed to be using.

I found the cover to the right on Edelweiss. It is the first time I’ve seen that cover design. Sherry Thomas and Goodreads have the cover next to the summary (above). Anyone know which is official? I love both of them.