Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Fault in Our Stars Unforgettable Moments [@TheFaultMovie]

First it was Time's #1 Fiction Book of 2012 and on the Winter 2012 Kids' Next List, now a major motion picture that EW called, "The Greatest Romance Story of this decade," The Fault in Our Stars is out today, September 16th on Blu-ray and DVD.

Starring Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort, The Fault in Our Stars is based on the novel by John Green.

As part of The Fault in Our Stars Ambassador Program, I helped come up with a list of favorite moments from the film, those parts you just want to see again and again . . .

Have you seen the movie already? Or read the book? What parts can you not wait to relive? Let me know below (and use the rafflecopter) for a chance to win a Little Infinities Extended Edition Blu-ray of TFIOS.

My favorites? Well here's one each for the book and the movie:

from the book
 "You are so busy being you that you have no idea how utterly unprecedented you are." (p 123)

from the movie
I, of course, love Hazel and Gus but his speech to Monica's mother - along with why it happens -is one of my favorite bits.

The Fault in Our Stars movie summary:
Hazel and Gus are two teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them on a journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous given that Hazel's other constant companion is an oxygen tank, Gus jokes about his prosthetic leg, and they met and fell in love at a cancer support group. (IMDb)

Open to US/Can residents only
One winner will receive extended edition Blu-ray

Monday, September 15, 2014

Day 21 ~ Kass Morgan (earc) review + excerpt [@lbkids @Kassmorganbooks]

Day 21 (The Hundred #2)
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
September 16, 2014
320 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depo/or Amazon (tomorrow)

(Excerpt after the review)

No one has set foot on Earth in centuries -- until now. It's been 21 days since the hundred landed on Earth. They're the only humans to set foot on the planet in centuries...or so they thought. Facing an unknown enemy, Wells attempts to keep the group together. Clarke strikes out for Mount Weather, in search of other Colonists, while Bellamy is determined to rescue his sister, no matter the cost. And back on the ship, Glass faces an unthinkable choice between the love of her life and life itself. In this pulse-pounding sequel to Kass Morgan's The 100, secrets are revealed, beliefs are challenged, and relationships are tested. And the hundred will struggle to survive the only way they can -- together.

Day 21 is the sequel to last year's The 100 (you can find my review here), the Hundred series is what the CW show The 100 was inspired by.

If you both read The 100 and are watching the show, chances are it will be a bit confusing at first to jump back into the book Hundred's world. Things are the same enough to obviously be the same world but characters are different (merged, replaced, altered) enough that remembering which storyline fits where can take a second. Luckily, they are different enough and enough recap is given, that you'll be back in the book's world quickly.

I really love that we're pulled right back into their stories without a time lag. So much happened after the landing on Earth - good, bad, dangerous, unknown - and I'm really happy this wasn't an example of, 'and now it's two months later and they have done x, y, and z.' We are able to continue on this journey of discovery with them--discovery of both the world they now inhabit and of each other.

Readers and the characters now know that the hundred are not the only people on Earth. The questions remains: Are they safe? Can those already on the planet be trusted? Or are they an enemy? It's the answers to those questions that bring about interesting events and really tell who the characters are.

New relationships were introduced and old relationships challenged in The 100 and now we can see when all of those relationships are put even more to the test. We are once again given peeks into the characters' pasts (aboard the ship). Those glimpses bring a fuller understanding of life on the ship, how that society functioned, as well as who the characters are. We get a good idea of their character prior to landing on Earth and can see how they've stayed true to themselves . . . or how they've changed.

Though they are all criminals, there are a lot of differences in the hundred and we really see that come out in Day 21. From how they react to danger to how they treat each other, there are clearly some you would want to with you to rediscover a planet and others you'd really hope were on another mission.

One of the things I did not like so much about The 100 was its lack of surprise. There just were not a lot of startling revelations, either because they were too strongly foreshadowed or they just didn't happen. In Day 21, though, there were quite a few surprises ind unexpected turns of events and discoveries. The things that were not surprising were because they had happened on the show so they're happening in the book seemed to follow.

The ending of Day 21 holds so much potential for what is to come. Based on what the characters have uncovered, all of the promise that holds for what is (possibly) to come and everything that transpired right up until the end, I'm really hoping there will be a Book 3 and soon! I cannot wait to read it.

Can't wait until tomorrow (its release) to get started on Day 21? Get started with the excerpt below:

Excerpt & Author Bio:

Chapter 1 - Wells
by Kass Morgan
Author of The 100 and its sequel Day 21

No one wanted to stand near the grave. Although four of their own were already buried in the makeshift cemetery, the rest of the hundred were still disturbed by the idea of lowering a body into the ground.

No one wanted to stand with their backs to the trees either. Since the attack, a creaking branch had become enough to make the anxious survivors jump. And so, the nearly one hundred people who'd gathered to say good-bye to Asher stood in a tightly packed semicircle, their eyes darting between the corpse on the ground and the shadows in the forest.

The comforting crackle of the fire was conspicuously absent. They'd run out of firewood last night, and no one had been willing to venture out for more. Wells would've gone himself, but he'd been busy digging the grave. No one had volunteered for that job either, except for a tall, quiet Arcadian boy named Eric.

"Are we sure he's really dead?" Molly whispered, edging back from the deep hole, as if worried it might swallow her up as well. She was only thirteen but looked younger. At least, she'd used to. Wells remembered helping her after the crash, when tears and ash had streaked her round cheeks. Now the girl's face was thin, almost gaunt, and there was a cut on her forehead that didn't look like it'd been properly cleaned.

Wells's eyes flashed involuntarily to Asher's neck, to the ragged wound where the arrow had pierced his throat. It'd been two days since Asher died, two days since the mysterious figures materialized on the ridge, upending everything the Colonists had ever been told, everything they thought they knew.

They had been sent to Earth as living test subjects, the first people to set foot on the planet in three hundred years. But they were mistaken.

Some people had never left.

It had all happened so quickly. Wells hadn't realized anything was wrong until Asher fell to the ground, gagging as he swiped desperately at the arrow lodged in his throat. That's when Wells spun around -- and saw them. Silhouetted against the setting sun, the strangers looked more like demons than humans. Wells had blinked, half expecting the figures to vanish. There was no way they were real.

But hallucinations didn't shoot arrows.

After his calls for help went unheeded, Wells had carried Asher to the infirmary tent, where they stored the medical supplies they'd salvaged from the fire. But it was no use. By the time Wells began frantically digging for bandages, Asher was already gone.

How could there be people on Earth? It was impossible. No one had survived the Cataclysm. That was incontrovertible, as deeply ingrained in Wells's mind as the fact that water froze at 0 degrees Celsius, or that planets revolved around the sun. And yet, he'd seen them with his own eyes. People who certainly hadn't come down on the dropship from the Colony. Earthborns.

"He's dead," Wells said to Molly as he rose wearily to his feet before realizing that most of the group was staring at him. A few weeks ago, their expressions would've been full of distrust, if not outright contempt. No one believed that the Chancellor's son had actually been Confined. It'd been all too easy for Graham to convince them that Wells had been sent to spy for his father. But now, they were looking at him expectantly.

In the chaos after the fire, Wells had organized teams to sort through the remaining supplies and start building permanent structures. His interest in Earth architecture, once a source of annoyance to his pragmatic father, had enabled Wells to design the three wooden cabins that now stood in the center of the clearing.

Wells glanced up at the darkening sky. He'd give anything to have the Chancellor see the cabins eventually. Not to prove a point -- after seeing his father shot on the launch deck, Wells's resentment had drained faster than the color from the Chancellor's cheeks. Now he only wished his father would someday get to call Earth home. The rest of the Colony was supposed to join them once conditions on Earth were deemed safe, but twenty-one days had passed without so much as a glimmer from the sky.

As Wells lowered his eyes back to the ground, his thoughts returned to the task at hand: saying farewell to the boy they were about to send to a much darker resting place.

A girl next to him shivered. "Can we move this along?" she said. "I don't want to stand out here all night."

"Watch your tone," another girl named Kendall snapped, her delicate lips drawn into a frown. At first, Wells had assumed she was a fellow Phoenician, but he'd eventually realized that her haughty stare and clipped cadence were just an impression of the girls Wells had grown up with. It was a fairly common practice among young Waldenites and Arcadians, although he'd never met anyone who did it quite as well as Kendall.

Wells turned his head from side to side, searching for Graham, the only other Phoenician aside from Wells and Clarke. He didn't generally like letting Graham take control of the group, but the other boy had been friends with Asher and was better equipped than Wells to speak at his funeral. However, his was one of the few faces missing from the crowd -- aside from Clarke's. She'd set off right after the fire with Bellamy to search for his sister, leaving nothing but the memory of the five toxic words she'd hurled at Wells before she left: You destroy everything you touch.

© 2014 by Alloy Entertainment

Author Bio

Kass Morgan, New York Times bestselling author of The 100 and its sequel Day 21, received a bachelor's degree from Brown University and a master's from Oxford University. She currently works as an editor and lives in Brooklyn, New York. For more information please visit http://alloyentertainment.com/ and follow the author on Twitter

thank you to Anna at FSB Associates for the egalley, through NetGalley, for review and excerpt to post

TFIOS Exclusive Intro [@TheFaultMovie]

It's Monday morning, usually one of the least fun parts of the week . . .

But what  this Monday morning how about the John Green and Josh Boone intro to The Fault In Our Stars Extended Version to introduce you to the week?

Hope you enjoy - and don't forget TFIOS is out on Blu-ray tomorrow (when I'll have another fun TFIOS post you really don't want to miss!).

video provided by Fox and ThinkJam as part of my participation as a TFIOS Ambassador

Friday, September 12, 2014

Blood of My Blood ~ Barry Lyga (earc) review [@barrylyga @lbkids]

Blood of My Blood (Jasper Dent #3)
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
September 9, 2014
480 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depo/or Amazon

Synopses and my reviews for I Hunt Killers (#1) and Game (#2) - if you want to remain spoiler-free check out those posts, not this one!

Jazz Dent has been shot and left to die in New York City. His girlfriend Connie is in the clutches of Jazz's serial killer father, Billy. And his best friend Howie is bleeding to death on the floor of Jazz's own home in tiny Lobo's Nod. Somehow, these three must rise above the horrors their lives have become and find a way to come together in pursuit of Billy. But then Jazz crosses a line he's never crossed before, and soon the entire country is wondering: "Like father, like son?" Who is the true monster?

The chase is on, and beyond Billy there lurks something much, much worse. Prepare to meet...the Crow King.

What could be worse than having your father, perhaps the most notorious serial killer or the police after you? Having both your father, the serial killer and law enforcement trying to get you. Such is the situation Jasper "Jazz" Dent, son of the infamous Billy Dent, faces in Blood of My Blood

When Game, the second book in the trilogy ended, Jazz, his best friend Howie and girlfriend Connie were all in danger, perhaps mortal danger. Can they save themselves and each other?

Blood of My Blood has (at least if you ask me) a creepier cover than the previous two books and it is a great reflection of the story inside. Both of the other books had blood, murder and some squicky descriptions of both, the trilogy's conclusion pushes things even further. It is definitely an older YA novel.

Yet some of what you may not want to read, those bits that really push things, are also some of what make the book so good. It seems to all be coming together for Jazz - what being raised by a serial killer means for who he is and who Howie and Connie think he's capable of being.

Now with his dad, Billy, back in the picture, not only are they, Connie, especially, in physical danger, Jazz will have to truly confront what being Billy Dent's son means for him.

Not to mention the Crow King.

The more things come together, the clearer it is that none of them can end this on their own.  As unconventional (and unsupported) as their relationships have been, they have always been there for each other. Is that still possible or have things - and Jazz - finally gone too far.

Blood of My Blood is a terrific conclusion to the Jasper Dent trilogy. More of Jasper's past  - things hinted at in the other books - is revealed and a new light shed on some earlier events, as well. The characters, from Jazz and Howie and Connie to G William and Hughes and beyond, really shine. The action and the course the story follows really have them at some of their best.

To keep this spoiler-free, I will just say that how everything came together and was concluded was brilliant. It is not all something you see coming, fits the characters and the series very well and does both justice. Blood of My Blood is a great way to end a series and one you should absolutely read (after reading I Hunt Killers and Game, of course).

Digital copy received for review from publisher through NetGalley - thank you.

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