Thursdays with the Crown by Jessica Day George
Castle Glower has been acting weird, so it's no surprise when two towers transport Celie and her siblings to an unknown land. When they realize that no one from home is coming to get them, the kids - along with Celie's pet griffin Rufus - set out through the forest to figure out where they are and what's happened to their beloved Castle. Instead, they discover two wizards and an entire lost people, the oldest inhabitants of Castle Glower. And it seems they may know more of the Castle's secrets than Celie. But do they know how to get her back home?
The Eye of Zoltar by Jasper Fforde
Although she's an orphan in indentured servitude, sixteen-year-old Jennifer Strange is pretty good at her job of managing the unpredictable crew at Kazam Mystical Arts Management. She already solved the Dragon Problem, avoided mass destruction by Quarkbeast, and helped save magic in the Ununited Kingdoms. Yet even Jennifer may be defeated when the long-absent Mighty Shandar makes an astonishing appearance and commands her to find the Eye of Zoltar - proclaiming that if she fails, he will eliminate the only two dragons left on earth.
How can a teenage non-magician outdo the greatest sorcerer the world has ever known? But failure is unacceptable, so Jennifer must set off for the mysterious Cadir Idris in the deadly Cambrian Empire - a destination with a fatality index of fifty percent. With the odds against them, will Jennifer and her traveling companions ever return to the Kingdom of Snodd?
The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan
Though the Greek and Roman crew members of the Argo II have made progress in their many quests, they still seem no closer to defeating the earth mother, Gaea. Her giants have risen - all of them - and they're stronger than ever. They must be stopped before the Feast of Spes, when Gaea plans to have two demigods sacrificed in Athens. She needs their blood - the blood of Olympus - in order to wake.
The demigods are having more frequent visions of a terrible battle at Camp Half-Blood. The Roman legion from Camp Jupiter, led by Octavian, is almost within striking distance. Though it is temping to take the Athena Parthenos to Athens to use as a secret weapon, the friends know that the huge statue belongs back on Long Island, where it "might" be able to stop a war between the two camps.
The Athena Parthenos will go west; the Argo II will go east. The gods, still suffering from multiple personality disorder, are useless. How can a handful of young demigods hope to persevere against Gaea's army of powerful giants? As dangerous as it is to head to Athens, they have no other option. They have sacrificed too much already. And if Gaea wakes, it is game over.
The Calling by James Frey & Nils Johnson-Shelton
Twelve thousand years ago, they came. They descended from the sky amid smoke and fire, and created humanity and gave up rules to live by. They needed gold and they built our earliest civilizations to mine it for them. When they had what they needed, they left. But before they left, they told us someday they would come back, and when they did, a game would be played. A game that would determine our future.
This is Endgame.
For ten thousand years the lines have existed in secret. The 12 original lines of humanity. Each had to have a Player prepared at all times. They have trained generation after generation after generation. In weapons, languages, history, tactics, disguise, assassination. Together the players are everything: strong, kind, ruthless, loyal, smart, stupid, ugly, lustful, mean, fickle, beautiful, calculating, lazy, exuberant, weak. They are good and evil. Like you. Like all.
This is Endgame.
When the game starts, the players will have to find three keys. The keys are somewhere on earth. The only rule of their Endgame is that there are no rules. Whoever finds the keys first wins the game. Endgame: The Calling is about the hunt for the first key. And just as it tells the story of the hung for a hidden key, written into the book is a puzzle. It invites readers to play their own Endgame and to try to solve the puzzle. Whoever does will open a case filled with gold. Alongside the puzzle will be a revolutionary mobile game built by Google's NainticLabs that will allow you to play a real-world version of Endgame where you can join one of the lines and do battle with people around you.
Will exuberance beat strength? Stupidity top kindness? Laziness thwart beauty? Will the winner be good or evil? There is only one way to find out.
People of Earth.
Endgame has begun.
The Young Elites by Marie Lu
Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina's black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family's good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But some of the fever's survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars - they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.
Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it's Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all.
Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they've never seen.
Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side and that Teren is the true enemy. However, the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that don't belong in the world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.
"Shouldn't You Be in School?" by Lemony Snicket
Is Lemony Snicket a detective or a smoke detector?
Do you smell smoke? Young apprentice Lemony Snicket is investigating a case of arson but soon finds himself enveloped in the ever-increasing mystery that haunts the town of Stain'd-by-the-Sea. Who is setting the fires? What secrets are hidden in the Department of Education? Why are so many schoolchildren in danger? Is it all the work of the notorious villain Hangfire? How could you even ask that? What kind of education have you had?
Maybe you should be in school?
City of Glass by Cassandra Clare
To save her mother's life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters - never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.
As Clary uncovers more about her family's past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he's willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City - whatever the cost?
The Hogwarts Library
A box set of three books from The Hogwarts Library. Including Quidditch Through the Ages, Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them, and The Tales of Beedle the Bard.
If you have ever asked yourself where the Golden Snitch came from, how Bludgers came into existence or why the Wingtown Wanderers have pictures of meat cleavers on their robes, you need Quidditch Through the Ages. This invaluable volume is consulted by young Quidditch fans on an almost daily basis.
A copy of Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them resides in almost every wizarding household in the country. Now Muggles too have the chance to discover where the Quintapes lives, what the Puffskein eats, and why it is best not to leave milk out for a Knarl.
The Tales of Beedle the Bard contains five richly diverse fairy tales, each with its own magical character, that will variously bring delight, laughter and the thrill of mortal peril. Essential and enjoyable reading for Muggles and wizards alike, The Tales of Beedle the Bard.
Juliet's Nurse by Lois Leveen
In Verona, a city ravaged by plague and political rivalries, a mother mourning the death of her day-old infant enters the household of the powerful Cappelletti family to become the wet-nurse to their newborn baby. As she serves her beloved Juliet over the next fourteen years, the nurse learns the Cappellettis' darkest secrets. Those secrets - and the nurse's deep personal grief - erupt across five momentous days of love and loss that destroy a daughter, and a family.
By turns sensual, tragic, and comic, Juliet's Nurse gives voice to one of literature's most memorable and distinctive characters, a woman who was both insider and outsider among Verona's wealthy ruling class. Exploring the romance and intrigue of interwoven loyalties, rivalries, jealousies, and losses only hinted at in Shakespeare's play, this is a never-before-heard tale of the deepest love in Verona - the love between a grieving woman and the precious child of her heart.
In the Shadows by Kiersten White
From the remarkable imagination of acclaimed artist Jim Di Bartolo and the exquisite pen of bestselling author Kiersten White comes a spellbinding story of love, mystery, and dark conspiracy, told in an alternating narrative of words and pictures.
Cora and Minnie are sisters living in a small, stifling town where strange and mysterious things occur. Their mother runs the local boarding house. Their father is gone. The woman up in the hill may or may not be a witch.
Thomas and Charles are brothers who've been exiled to the boarding house so Thomas can tame his ways and Charles an fight an illness that is killing him in increasing speed. Their family history is one of sorrow and guilt. They think they can escape from it. . . .but they can't.
Schizo by Nic Sheff
Miles's little brother Teddy is missing. The police believe he drowned at the beach - the very same day Miles had his first schizophrenic episode. But Miles knows better - Teddy is alive. Kidnapped. There was even a witness! Fueled by guilt, Miles sets off to rescue Teddy.
There is so much to overcome, though. The endless pills he must take. The girl steals his heart and plays with it. The black crows that follow him.
As seen through Miles's distorted perception, his world closes around him as he pushes to keep it open. What you think you know about his world is actually a blur of gray, though, and the sharp focus of reality proves startling.
Hook's Revenge by Heidi Schulz
Dear Female Offspring,
Since you are now reading this epistle, the thing I fear has most assuredly happened. I am dead.
A cold-blooded nightmare stalks my every waking minute. I am haunted by rows of razor-sharp teeth and the ticking of a fiendish timepiece.
You are my only heir. As such, you must avenge my death. I lay this charge upon you: Come to the Neverland. Hunt the beast and destroy it in my name.
I have no doubt you will fail, for you are practically an infant, and a girl besides. However, as my only progeny, you must try. With my blood in your veins, you may yet overcome these weaknesses and bring me victory.
Floreat Etona! Jas. Hook
You've just been privileged to read a letter from Captain Hook - yes, that Captain Hook - to his thirteen-year-old daughter, Jocelyn. The girl accepts his charge, of course; but being a pirate is far more difficult than she'd ever imagined. As if attempting to defeat the Neverland's fearsome crocodile isn't enough to deal with, she must try to captain a crew of woefully untrained pirates, outwit cannibals wild for English cuisine, and rescue her best friend from a certain pack of lost children (not to mention that irritating Peter Pan who keeps barging in uninvited).
As the world's foremost expert on Captain Hook, I am more than familiar with Jocelyn's story. I don't care for children, in general, but if you'll back up a bit and try not to breathe on me, I might be persuaded to tell you the whole tale.
Six Feet Over It by Jennifer Longo
Leigh sells graves for the family-owned cemetery because her father is too lazy to look farther than the dinner table for employees. Working the literal graveyard shift, she meets two kinds of customers:
Pre-Need: They know what's up. They bought their graves long ago, before they needed them.
At Need: They are in shock, mourning a loved one's unexpected death. Leigh avoids sponging their agony by focusing on things like guessing the headstone choice (mostly granite).
Sarcastic and smart, Leigh should be able to stand up to her family - and quit. But her world's been turned upside down by the sudden loss of her best friend and the appearance of Dario, the slightly-too-old-for-her grave digger. When she's so surrounded by death, how can Leigh move on and get a life?
Goodhouse by Peyton Marshall
At the end of the twenty-first century - in a transformed America - the sons of convicted felons are tested for a set of genetic markers. Boys who test positive become compulsory wards of the state - removed from their homes and raised on "Goodhouse" campuses, where they learn to reform their darkest thoughts and impulses. Goodhouse is a savage place - part prison, part boarding school - and now a radical religious group, the Holy Redeemer's Church of Purity, is intent on destroying each campus and purifying every child with fire.
We see all this through the eyes of James, a transfer student who watched as the radicals set fire to his old Goodhouse and killed nearly everyone he'd ever known. In addition to adjusting to a new campus with new rules, James now has to contend with Bethany, a brilliant, medically fragile girl who wants to save him, and with her father, the school's sinister director of medical studies. Soon, however, James realizes that the biggest threat might already be there, inside the fortified walls of Goodhouse itself.
The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters
Olivia Mead is a headstrong, independent girl - a suffragist - in an age that prefers its girls to be docile. It's 1900 Oregon, and Olivia's father, concerned that she's headed for trouble, convinces a stage mesmerist to try to hypnotize the rebellion out of her. But the hypnotist, a intriguing young man named Henri Reverie, gives her a terrible gift instead: she's able to see people' true natures, manifesting as visions of darkness and goodness, while also unable to speak her true thoughts out loud. These supernatural challenges only make Olivia more determined to speak her mind, and so she's drawn into a dangerous relationship with the hypnotist and his mysterious motives, all while secretly fighting for the rights of women.
Empire of Shadows by Miriam Forster
Cast out of her family three years ago, Mara turned to the only place that would take her - a school where students train to protect others. But Mara is stunned when guarding a noble girl in the Empire's capital turns out to be more dangerous than she could've imagined. More shocking still, she finds the boy she thought she had lost forever outside the gates of her new home.
Mara knew her life in the dizzying Imperial city would hold dangers. How could she have known that her heart, as well as her life, would be at stake?
Undertow by Michael Buckley
Sixteen-year-old Lyric Walker's life is forever changed when she witnesses the arrival of 30,000 Alpha, a five-nation race of ocean-dwelling warriors, on her beach in Coney Island. The world's initial wonder and awe over the Alpha quickly turns ugly and paranoid and violent, and Lyric's small town transforms into a military zone with humans on one side and Alpha on the other. When Lyric is recruited to help the crown prince, a boy named Fathom, assimilate, she begins to fall for him. But their love is a dangerous one, and there are forces on both sides working to keep them apart. Only, what if the Alpha are not actually the enemy? What if they are in fact humanity's only hope of survival? Because the real enemy is coming. And it's more terrifying than anything the world has ever seen.
Seeker by Arwen Elys Dayton
The night Quin Kincaid takes her Oath, she will become what she has trained to be her entire life. She will become a Seeker. This is her legacy, and it is an honor.
As a Seeker, Quin will fight beside her two closest companions, Shinobu and John, to protect the weak and the wronged. Together they will stand for light in a shadowy world. And she'll be with the boy she loves - who's also her best friend.
But the night Quin takes her Oath, everything changes. Being a Seeker is not what she thought. Her family is not what she thought. Even the boy she loves is not who she thought. And now it's too late to walk away.
The Haunting of Sunshine Girl by Paige McKenzie
Based on the wildly popular YouTube channel, The Haunting of Sunshine Girl has been described as "Gilmore Girls meets Paranormal Activity for the new media age." YA fans new and old will learn the secrets behind Sunshine - the adorkable girl living in a haunted house - a story that is much bigger, and runs much deeper, than even the most devoted viewer can imagine. . . .
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Theodore Finch is fascinated by death. Every day he thinks of ways he might die, but every day he also searches - and manages to find - something to keep him here, and alive, and awake.
Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her small Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister's death.
When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school - six stories above the ground - it's unclear who saves whom. And when the unlikely pair teams up on a class project to discover the "natural wonders" of their state, they go, as Finch says, where the road takes them: the grand, the small, the bizarre, the beautiful, the ugly, the surprising - just like life.
Soon it's only when Violet that Finch can be himself - a bold, funny, live-out-loud guy, who's not such a freak after all. And it's only with Finch that Violet forgets to count away the days and starts living them. But as Violet's world grows, Finch's begins to shrink.
I Was Here by Gayle Forman
When her best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything - so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg's college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there's a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. About Ben McAllister, the boy with a guitar and a sneer, who broke Meg's heart. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can't open - until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend's death gets thrown into question.
The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma
The Walls Around Us is a ghostly story of suspense told in two voices - one still living and one long dead. On the outside, there's Violet, an eighteen-year-old dancer days away from the life of her dreams when something threatens to expose the shocking truth of her achievement. On the inside, within the walls of a girls' juvenile detention center, there's Amber, locked up for so long she can't imagine freedom. Tying these two worlds together is Orianna, who holds the key to unlocking all the girls' darkest mysteries.
We hear Amber's story and Violet's, and through them Orianna's, first from one angle, then from another, until gradually we begin to get the whole picture - which is not necessarily the one that either Amber or Violet wants us to see.
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
Laila is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire's greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution.
Elias is the academy's finest soldier - and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he's ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor.
When Laia and Elias's paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself.
Dove Arising by Karen Bao
Phaet Theta has lived her whole life in a colony on the Moon. She's barely spoken since her father died in an accident nine years ago. She cultivates the plants in Greenhouse 22, lets her best friend talk for her, and stays off the government's radar.
Then her mother is arrested.
The only way to save her younger siblings from the degrading Shelter is by enlisting in the Militia, the faceless army that polices the Lunar bases and protects them from attacks by desperate Earth-dwellers. Training is brutal, but it's where Phaet forms an uneasy but meaningful alliance with the preternaturally accomplished Wes, a fellow outsider.
Rank high, save her siblings, free her mom: that's the plan. Until Phaet's logically ordered world begins to crumble. . . .
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Graceling meets The Selection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard's sweeping tale of seventeen-year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous intrigue of the king's palace. Will her power save her or condemn her?
Mare Barrow's world is divided by blood - those with common, Red blood serve the Silver-blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.
To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard - a growing Red rebellion - even as her hearts tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays, the only certainty is betrayal.
This Week, On The Reading Hedgehog............
September 29, 2014 - Monday
September Book Haul
September Book Haul
September 30, 2014 - Tuesday
October 1, 2014 - Wednesday
October 2, 2014 - Thursday
Books to Movies: The Maze Runner
Books to Movies: The Maze Runner
October 3, 2014 - Friday
October 4, 2014 - Saturday
Next Week, On The Reading Hedgehog..........
October 6, 2014 - Monday
Review: Love by the Morning Star - Laura L. Sullivan
October 7, 2014 - Tuesday
Top Ten Tuesday #60: Top 10 Books For Readers Who Like Character Driven Stories
Teaser Tuesday #21
October 8, 2014 - Wednesday
Waiting on Wednesday #62 + WWW Wednesday #32
October 9, 2014 - Thursday
Review: All the Light We Cannot See - Anthony Doerr
October 10, 2014 - Friday
Author Visit: Lauren Oliver
October 11, 2014 - Saturday
2014 Series Challenge Update #5