YA book reviews, reading and recommending since 2009

Archive for March 24, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday (35)

Today’s edition will be special. I will be showcasing some newly released covers together with some that have been out for a while already (…do you consider the Mockingjay cover old news?).

Guardian of the Gate by Michelle Zink
Release date: August 1st 2010 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

The ultimate battle between sisters is nearing, and its outcome could have catastrophic consequences. As sixteen year-old Lia Milthorpe searches for a way to end the prophecy, her twin sister Alice hones the skills she’ll need to defeat Lia. Alice will stop at nothing to reclaim her sister’s role in the prophecy, and that’s not the only thing she wants: There’s also Lia’s boyfriend James.

Lia and Alice always knew the Prophecy would turn those closest to them against them. But they didn’t know what betrayal could lead them to do. In the end, only one sister will be left standing.

Soo excited! Michelle Zink’s series is definitely an addictive one.

Torment (Fallen, #2) by Lauren Kate
Release date: September 28th 2010 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers

Sequel to Fallen. No official synopsis found.

Even though I’m not too in love with Fallen, I adore the cover! Gorgeous! It takes my breath away.

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
Release date: August 24th 2010 by Scholastic Press


Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she’s made it out of the bloody arena alive, she’s still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. Who do they think should pay for the unrest? Katniss. And what’s worse, President Snow has made it clear that no one else is safe either. Not Katniss’s family, not her friends, not the people of District 12. Powerful and haunting, this thrilling final installment of Suzanne Collins’s groundbreaking The Hunger Games trilogy promises to be one of the most talked about books of the year.

Um, I don’t think I have to explain why I want this book SO BADLY right? 😛

The Scorch Trials (Maze Runner, #2) by James Dashner
Release date: October 2010

The sequel to The Maze Runner. Scheduled for release in October 2010. No synopsis yet.

Oh my, I cannot wait for this sequel! The Maze Runner was amazing, I hope this one will be just as good. From the cover, I’m guessing the sequel will take place in a desert or some ancient lost city?

That’s all. I’ll be posting more next Wednesday! What are your thoughts on the covers?


The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard

The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard
Publisher: Viking Children’s Books
Publication Date: January 7th 2010
Buy it from: Book Depository (free shipping worldwide!)
Silver star (3.95/5 stars)
Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Colt has been sneaking out at night to meet Julia, a girl from an upper-class neighborhood unlike his own. They’ve never told anyone else about their relationship: not their family or friends, and especially not Julia’s boyfriend.When Julia dies suddenly, Colt tries to cope with her death while pretending that he never even knew her. He discovers a journal she left behind. But he is not prepared for the truths he discovers about their intense relationship, nor to pay the price for the secrets he’s kept.

Review: The one thing I love the most about The Secret Year is that it is told in a guy’s POV. I have a strange liking for books told in guy’s POV. No joke. Beautiful Creatures, Flash Burnout, Going Bovine, etc! Needless to say, I was very excited to read this book.

Colt’s voice drew me in from the very first line; his anguish and emotions were very realistic. Hubbard has written a thought-provoking, heartbreaking and hopeful novel. How do you get over someone who was never really yours to begin with? That was the question that stayed in my mind the whole time I was reading this book.

I admit I was expecting Colt to discover something unexpected, something that would alter this life, but it did not come. But please don’t let what I just said deter you from reading this book. I still enjoyed the book, Hubbard did a great job writing from a guy’s POV. Colt’s dilemmas feel real to the reader, and I must say it was so easy for me to get lost in the characters.

The part that irked me the most was that Julia just did not seem convincing enough. The ‘love’ Colt and Julia shared was not strong enough to convince me. I found myself disliking Julia because she was only using Colt. Julia disgusted me. I do understand that sometimes it’s hard to breakup with your boyfriend but still I’m appalled by Julia.

Another tiny thing that irked me was that the book was too short! I need more characterization. It was like Hubbard was in a hurry to get to the end. I wished the characters were given a chance to develop more. While some people had problems with the ending, I found it a good closure. If it had been a traditional “happy” ending, it would have ruined the book for me.

This is a book I will hand over to anyone who is grieving and wants a book that they can relate to. You don’t have to actually have a secret affair to be able to relate to Colt. But I must emphasis, The Secret Year is much more than just a grief story; it is about embracing the past, accepting reality, moving on and letting go. You will enjoy this book if you liked Hold Still by Nina LaCour, Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher and Love You Hate You Miss You by Elizabeth Scott.