Hello and Welcome!

Red House Books is going through a bit of a update!

I've always had a pretty clear vision of what I wanted this space to be but I've been detoured from my path by...lots and lost of other people's opinions and ways of doing things...

I'm committed to this little chunk of the interweb but I've also branched out into other places so! Now it's time to think of Red House Books as more of a hub of all things me! And Me is a hell of a lot of book love!

Stay tuned!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Book Review: The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden #1)
Julie Kagawa
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication: April 2012 from Harlequin Teen
Pages: 485
Format: e-galley
Acquisition: received for review via NetGalley

Synopsis:
To survive in a ruined world, she must embrace the darkness…
Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a walled-in city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten. Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them—the vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself dies and becomes one of the monsters.
Forced to flee her city, Allie must pass for human as she joins a ragged group of pilgrims seeking a legend—a place that might have a cure for the disease that killed off most of civilization and created the rabids, the bloodthirsty creatures who threaten human and vampire alike. And soon Allie will have to decide what and who is worth dying for…again.
Enter Julie Kagawa's dark and twisted world as an unforgettable journey begins.
(from Goodreads)

My Thoughts
Julie Kagawa is a magician. Really.

Now, I'm a fan of vampires, I really really am. But over the last couple of years, I've been burned pretty bad. A lot of the same old thing, a lot of Twilight copy cats, a lot of stories that try really hard to be different but always fall short for me -- with some exceptions, this has been my experience with young adult vampire books.

So, was I disappointed with The Immortal Rules? OMG no! I loved this book!

Julie's vampires aren't like others and at the same time, they retain the essence of what a true vampire should be - in my opinion. They are killers, they are monsters but some of them remember what being human was. They live in a world where they are at the top of the food chain, but staying there takes a lot of work.

What makes The Immortal Rules a unique read is the way Julie pairs these vampires with a very human dystopian world. Vampires are arrogant and quick to violence and it makes sense that the human world they now have to live in falls to decay. Before reading The Immortal Rules I never would have thought to combine vampires and dystopia but, really - they work together so well!

Allie as a character was someone I fell for pretty fast. She's strong and self reliant and a fabulous companion through this terrifying world Julie has created. She's also loyal to a fault - which I have a feeling might get her in even more trouble in book 2.

Will I continue the series?
YES without a doubt. A lot of doors have been closed on Allie's past but she still has some unfinished business to attend to. I'm also looking forward to seeing her more comfortable in her vampire skin. And what happens to the humans Allie has met!? What happens to the vampires!?

A fantastic start to an awesome series.

Rating
5 / 5 Stars

Bk 1 Paperback, Bk 2 Hardcover
The Blood of Eden Series
#1 The Immortal Rules
#2 The Eternity Cure (April 2013)


Monday, March 25, 2013

NetGalley Challenge: March Review Link-Up + Giveaway

Sorry for the delay! Blogger ate my last post and the month got away from me!


Time to link up those March NetGalley reviews!

This is for those participating in my NetGalley Challenge - if you would like to join in, check out the sign up post.

Instructions:

1. Be sure you are signed up for the challenge
*If your blog isn't listed on the challenge sign up post your review(s) may be deleted and you will not be eligible for the monthly prize.

2. Link up 1 review of a NetGalley book you posted in March
*Use the 'Name' field in the linky for the book title and author.
*If your review did not post in March it may be deleted.
*All NetGalley books are fair game but I do ask if the review, or your blog, is NC-17 please make a note of such with the link.
UPDATE *If your review does not clearly state that you obtained and are reviewing the book via NetGalley your link may be deleted.

3. Visit other reviews!
*Discover some new to you blogs, read some reviews and leave some comment love!

4. Earn extra links / contest entries
*For every review you visit and comment on, you can post another one of your reviews in the linky.
*You can post up to 5 of your own reviews -- and therefor gain up to 5 entries in this month's contest.
(1 review for 'free' and 4 others IF you visited and commented on 4 other reviews)
*Please be honest and please leave actual thoughtful comments (the same type you yourself would like to receive)

You can post your March reviews until
April 22nd

On April 23rd I will use Random.org to pick a review winner!

This month's prize is
A $20 Amazon Gift Card (for US participants)
OR
$20 worth of books from The Book Depository (for international folks)


To get us started, I've linked up a couple of my recent NetGalley reviews. If you're one of the first to visit, be sure to leave your link and check back later for others.

If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments or via email :)



Saturday, March 23, 2013

On My Reader (28) - March 23, 2013

On My Reader posts are were I highlight recent ebooks I've added to my digital collection :)


Hello everyone!

I've been away on business this past week and didn't have time to schedule anything.

While I'm still a bit sick from all the travel, I did remember today was Saturday (huzzah!) and I have a lovely e-book to share.

Also! Be on the look out for some NetGalley Challenge link-up posts (that Blogger seems to have previously eaten!) and some news about past and future contests.

Hope you are all having a fabulous weekend so far!

For Review from NetGalley

The Stuff of Dreams (ST:TNG) by James Swallow
March 29, 2013 from Pocket Books
This will be my first Star Trek novelization and as a die hard Next Gen fan I gather I'll either love it or hate it - very much looking forward to finding out!

So, what have you added to your e-readers this week?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Book Roundup (15) - March 17, 2013

Merriam-Webster defines 'roundup' as a gathering in of scattered persons or things (source)

Replace 'persons or things' with 'BOOKS!' and you'll have what happens in my house every week as I try to keep control of my hoard :)

This is about a months worth. I've been pretty good about not buying too many this year - although with so many recent releases on my wishlist I can see that changing rather quickly!

Links are to Goodreads :)

Link your book haul posts in the comments if you like - I LOVE seeing everyones new beauties!


Bought:
If you haven't read (or heard of) this Scholastic Middle Grade series you need to fix that right now! 
Written in the same style of the fabulous 39 Clues series, each book is written by a different author.
And guys? It's about TIME TRAVEL! Nuf' said ;)

For Review:
March 5, 2013 from William Morrow
There are A LOT of mixed reviews about this one out there! 
It was pitched to me as a New Adult title - one of the first coming out from William Morrow. 
Vampires and romance...with more adult themes? Looking forward to trying it out!

For Review:
June 11, 2013 from William Morrow
Another new New Adult title. Early reviewers have said they thought this was an adult book but it read more like a YA novel so I'm thinking New Adult is a good fit. And - it's Dystopian! Woo hoo!

For Review:
June 11, 2013 from Henry Holt
I really enjoyed April's last suspense teen book, The Night She Disappeared so I'm really looking forward to this thriller.

For Review:
August 6, 2013 from Roaring Brook Press
A choose your own adventure, contemporary teen coming of age novel. Bet you've never read one of those before! 

For Review:
June 4, 2013 from Feiwel and Friends
An illustrated chapter book - wish there were more like this when I was a kid! I loved Ellen's The Humming Room and I don't think I'll be disappointed with this one :)

For Review:
An unofficial guide to the Hunger Games. I love Smart Pop's approach to series 'review' style books and the Hunger Games is a series I have a bit of a love / hate relationship with so this one should be interesting. 

Bought:
The last Drake Chronicles book! I don't know if I'm ready to say goodbye to the Drake boys just yet!


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Book Review: The Iron Legends by Julie Kagawa

The Iron Legends 
(The Iron Fey #1.5, 3.5, 4.5)
Julie Kagawa
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication: August 2012 from Harlequin Teen
Pages: 304
Format: paperback
Acquisition: bought

Synopsis:
Enter the world of the internationally bestselling Iron Fey series. Dangerous faeries. Heartbreaking romance. Thrilling action and limitless adventure. The world of the fey has never been so powerful. This collection includes three novellas set in the world of the Iron Fey plus the Guide to the Iron Fey with exclusive information about Julie Kagawa's unforgettable world of Faery.
(from Goodreads)

My Thoughts
I love short stories and I LOVE when they get all bound up in a nice package :)

I've read a few of these Iron Fey gems but a few others were new to me - especially the last one.

There is a lot to this book so I thought it best to break it up into parts.

Winter's Passage (#1.5)
Very much Ash and Meghan being...well...themselves. I'm not a huge fan of Meghan so this story was a little annoying - although, I can totally see what she sees in Ash ;)

Summer's Crossing (#3.5)
This one's all about Puck and I love him to pieces! Meghan annoyed me some more (I have such a love hate relationship with her!), Ash was very Ash-like - all hot and whatnot but I would still pick Puck over him any day!
All first person Puck which is both awesome and heartbreaking.

Iron's Prophecy (#4.5)
This is the new one - sort of a bridge story between the first set of books and the next set which feature Meghan's brother. A pretty weird turn of events and I'm curious to see how the new series starts without giving readers the details revealed in this story.

Next up in the book is the Guide To The Iron Fey -- very much a don’t read this section unless you're read ALL of books 1-4. It includes:

*The Original Survival Guide to the Nevernever -- written as if you were a foreign traveler preparing for a journey.

*Character Biographies and Useful Information -- pretty much what it says it is. I can see this section being useful while reading The Lost Prince.

*Glossary -- another useful section. I love the terms and elements Julie has chosen for this series!

*Realms of the Nevernever (and Beyond) -- A reminder of the complex words in which the Fey operate.

*The Iron Quotes -- A quiz (with answers). I don't think I got a single one right but it was still fun to play.

*Q and A with Julie Kagawa -- Love this! It always feels like a treat having a little bit of inside knowledge into why an author writes what they do.

Will I continue the series?
The next book is The Lost Prince which is both a book 5 for the Iron Fey series and a book 1 in the new Call of the Forgotten series. The focus is on Meghan's brother Ethan but after reading Iron Prophecy I can imagine that Meghan and Ash will be big players in the story as well.

Long story short? Yes - I do plan on continuing!

Rating
5 / 5 Stars

#1.0 The Iron King
#1.5 Winter's Passage
#2.0 The Iron Daughter
#3.0 The Iron Queen
#3.5 Summer's Crossing
#4.0 The Iron Knight
#4.5 Iron's Prophecy

The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten Series
#1.0 The Lost Prince
#2.0 The Iron Traitor (September 2013)


Saturday, March 9, 2013

On My Reader (27) - March 9, 2013

On My Reader posts are were I highlight recent ebooks I've added to my digital collection :)

Only a couple this week :) I've been pretty good about keeping my happy trigger fingers away from NetGalley! 

Bought:
Guys! This one almost got passed me!
It's a full length fantasy New Adult title - only $3.99!
I'm such a fan of Kelly's so I'm really excited for this one.


For Review from the author:
I'm gong to read this one this weekend - thanks Jenny!

What have you added to your readers this week?

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Book Review: The Future We Left Behind by Mike A. Lancaster

The Future We Left Behind (Point 4 #2)
Mike A. Lancaster
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication: November 2012 from Egmont USA
Pages: 384
Format: ARC
Acquisition: BEA 2012

Synopsis:
Thousands of years in the future the divide between humanity and technology has become nearly unrecognizable. Each thought, each action is logged, coded, backed up. Data is as easily exchanged through the fiber-optic-like cables that extend from fingertips as it might be through ordinary conversation. It's a brave new world: A world that the Straker Tapes say is a result of many human "upgrades." But no one is sure whether the Straker Tapes are a work of fiction or an eerie peek into an unimaginable past.
Nearly sixteen-year-old Peter Vincent has been raised to believe that everything that the backward Strakerites cling to is insane--an utter waste of time and potential. Since his father is David Vincent, genius inventor of the artificial bees that saved the world's crops and prevented massive famine, how could Peter believe anything else?
But when Peter meets Alpha, a Strakerite his own age, suddenly the theories about society-upgrades don't sound quite so crazy, especially when she shows him evidence that another upgrade is imminent. And worse, there may be a conspiracy by the leaders of the establishment to cover it up. A conspiracy spearheaded by Peter's own father.
(from Goodreads)

My Thoughts
OMG I have so much love for this book!

The Future We Left Behind is one of the best science fiction books and quite possibility the best YA sci-fi I have ever read.

A very pleasant surprise as more often then not diary entry style writing doesn't appeal to me. In the case of The Future We Left Behind, knowing future (and past) events in no way detract from the suspense of the story. In fact, knowing what was to come, and what had already happened added to the thrill of the story.

Human .4 was phenomenal read for me and I had high hopes for book 2. Not only was I not disappointed, I was utterly blow away by the power of this book. Science fiction at it's best!

Peter was a fantastic character. He isn't bold and he in no way thinks of himself as a hero. Even though he lives in a wholly foreign world he was very easy to relate to. I love the way he interacts with Alpha and I love how they work together.

Does Peter live in a world humanity could find itself in one day? Knowing the how of it all...I would hope not but Lancaster does such a fantastic job telling this story I find it hard to completely rule out the possibility.

I would (and do!) recommend this series to any science fiction fan.

Will I continue the series?
As far as I can tell, there isn't another book in the series set to release. BUT if there were? Yes oh yes I would read it!

Rating
5 / 5 Stars

The Point 4 Series
#1 Human .4 (UK title: 0.4)
#2 The Future We Left Behind (UK title: 1.4)