Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: The Agency series by Y.S. Lee

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted over at Should Be Reading. Anyone can play, and the rules are simple:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Geez, it feels like it's been FOREVER since I've done a Teaser Tuesday. Anyway, since my current read is on my Kindle and getting TTs from Kindle books is INCONVENIENT and I am LAZY and it is already LATE IN THE DAY, I'll just grab a teaser from each of the last two books I read--they're both from the Agency series by Y.S. Lee.

This series is awesome, you guys! Basically, it's about this girl in Victorian-era England who works for an Agency (shocker) made up of women who are spies.

Woman. Spies.

It's kind of like a Victorian-era Gallagher Girls deal. And very cool. I highly recommend them if you like mystery-spy books and/or historical fiction, and also a hot guy.

     Ignoring his extended hand, she vaulted into the carriage unassisted. James sprang in after her. There was no need to thump the roof tonight; he was still closing the door as the carriage sprang into motion. He fell into his seat with an amused grunt. At least the girl wasn't dull. 
     -A Spy in the House (book 1), Page 124

     It was a long way from telling the truth, but it might satisfy him for the moment, even if doing so made her feel wretched. Spying was all very well. She loved disguise and acting and all the covert skills in which she'd been trained. Yet she hated this sort of duplicity, lying to someone whom she-- 
     -The Body at the Tower (book 2), Page 153
What are you reading this week? Leave me your Teaser links!!


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Review: The Assassin's Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke

From the second I read the Assassin's Curse synopsis, I thought it sounded awesome. I was sad to find I didn't looove it as much as I'd hoped, but I did think it was worth a read!!

The Assassin's Curse by Cassandra Rose Clark
Releases October 2, 2012
Source of my copy: NetGalley

Ananna of the Tanarau abandons ship when her parents try to marry her off to an allying pirate clan. But that only prompts the scorned clan to send an assassin after her. And when Ananna faces him down one night, armed with magic she doesn’t really know how to use, she accidentally activates a curse binding them together.
To break the curse, Ananna and the assassin must complete three impossible tasks—all while grappling with evil wizards, floating islands, haughty manticores, runaway nobility, strange magic, and the growing romantic tension between them.
Awesome things about Assassin's Curse:

Girl pirate? Check.

Kick-butt assassin? Check.

Mysterious curse that forces the assassin to protect the pirate girl he's supposed to be killing? Check. Check. Check.

All in all, it should have added up to an awesome, five-star story, but there were just some things that fell flat for me. I expected Ananna to be...I don't know...more...awesome? I couldn't find any way to connect to her character. I didn't feel as interested in her story or her mind as I could have been. There was also the problem of strange grammar and inner dialogue. Ananna being a pirate, she has some serious grammatical issues that, even though I understood were intentional, bugged me as I read.

Then there's Naji, the assassin. He wasn't as awesome as expected, either. He was supposed to be this amazingly deadly and skilled assassin, but, as I saw another reviewer mention (I'm sorry, I can't remember who), he seemed weak, and it seemed more like Ananna was protecting him than the other way around. He didn't do anything spectacular, or anything that made me particuarly enjoy his character. He was not what I was expecting, and another disappointment.

Then there was the romance--or the lack of it. I know every book doesn't need romance, or a lot of romance, but I was expecting more. I don't know if it was the synopsis or something else, but something made me expect Naji and Ananna's relationship to blossom more than it does. Besides a few hints and some events at the very end of the book, they barely even seem to scrape the stage of friendship.

That's not to say this book isn't worth reading, however. I was interested enough in the plot to continue reading, and I am curious to see what happens next to Ananna and Naji. That said, I really don't consider this book one of my favorites.

Assassin's Curse gets <*><*><*>


I'm alive! With Internet!!

Hey guys!! I know my presence around the net has been minimal lately, because, as I said before, I just moved and had NO INTERNET. This was very saddening for me, because it meant I couldn't post much or talk to you guys nearly as much as I like to. I was able to get to some wifi hotspots in town a couple times, but not enough to post regularly.

My intention for today was to go to one of those places and announce a mini-hiatus until I got internet back up, and only post sporadically until then. But the good news is, we found a fix for our internet problems, and I'm now back online!! Which means I should be able to pick back up on my posting! (I'm a bit behind on reviews, too, so if I can get past a slight case of writer's block and get those out, there should be a lot coming soon!)

And since I don't anticipate any more issues (fingers crossed) hopefully that means there'll be less of these boring posts telling you what's wrong with my internet and explaining why I'm NOT EVER AROUND and more fun bookish news, reviews, and discussions.

Thanks for sticking around you guys!! Looking forward to hanging with you again :)


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Just a head's up...

...that my family is in the midst of moving. Because of this (and a few other things going on in my life), my blogging time is minimal, especially when I'm tired at the end of the day and the temptation of tumblr and twitter and other people's blogs take over my attention. So I'm not on here as much as I'd like.

Anyway, I'm still around, as you know, just not as much. I'm working on fixing this, though, and once we get settled in the new house (and get internet set up, of course!) I should be on more :)

And until then, I'll probably be more active on tumblr and twitter, so feel free to talk to me there, or shoot me a message on Goodreads! I'd love to hear from you!

Oh, and don't forget to vote Zachary in the YA Crush Tourney tomorrow! He sooo deserves it! Go #TeamKilt!!!


Monday, July 23, 2012

Archer in the Crush Tourney--recap and Hex Hall winner

So, you all know about the YA Sisterhood's Crush Tournament, and if you've been hanging around this blog lately you know I was lucky enough to be the advocate of Archer Cross from Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins. Unfortunately, Archer didn't win his match, but I'm so proud of all of Team Archer!!

Archer was the underdog from the beginning--he went up against Dimitri from the Vampire Academy series, and we all know how fantastic he is, and how big his fanbase is. But Team Archer didn't back down--we got plenty of votes!

Archer reaching 1000 votes--but we weren't done then!
I'm not sure exactly how  many votes Archer had in the end (if anyone knows or has a close guess, let me know!) but I know it was an impressive amount!! But the thing I found most impressive was how steady Team Archer held. Dimitri picked up the lead fast, but he didn't keep smashing us down. For the majority of the day Archer held steady at 28% of the votes, never dropping below that. And then, right in the last few hours, we bumped him up to 30%. And I think that's awesome.

So, I'd like to say thank you to each and every one of you who voted and spread the word about Archer. You all were awesome, tweeting and getting your family and friends to vote. I'd love to mention each and every one of you personally, but there's just so many of you!

That said, @tnmedicgirl, @heyitswinnie,_@jill_kaplan, @YA_Books4Girls, you guys were especially awesome with the tweeting!! You guys rock!! Thanks also to @jsmithready, @keeley_logan and @NonReluctant for the shoutouts :D

And of course, a thank-you has to go out to Rachel Hawkins, because without her, there wouldn't be an Archer, and to the YA Sisterhood, because without them there wouldn't be a Tourney! Also, congratulations to Dimitri, Stacey, his advocate, and Richelle Mead, his author :)

And now, as promised, it's time to pick the winner for a Kindle copy of Hex Hall! Thank you so much to everyone who entered. I'd love to give each of you a copy, but unfortunately, I cannot :)

And the winner is...

Jen K!

I've sent the winner an email, so please respond within 48 hours, or I'll have to pick another winner.

Thanks again, everyone, for helping Archer and making Week of Archer and our part of the Tournament so much fun!!


Friday, July 20, 2012

Week of Archer: BONUS ROUND

Here's a Week of Archer bonus! An awesome Archer fanart from Anonymous Reader!

Week of Archer is technically over, but if you want to continue submitting, I'll add them to the post here! Send your submissions to mag.geekchic@yahoo.com. Don't forget that doing so will earn you bonus entries to win Hex Hall.

Also, don't forget to VOTE ARCHER!!!


Vote For Archer-YA Crush Tourney

So, I'm SURE by now you guys know ALL ABOUT the fact that ARCHER CROSS is in the YA SISTERHOOD'S CRUSH TOURNEY and I am his ADVOCATE and I am SUPER EXCITED about this!

Anyway, Archer's match is now LIVE on the YA Sisterhood's blog, so I'm able to go ahead and post everything I said over there, here. So you can read it here or there, but you can only VOTE there!!


Hey there! I'm Mag from Geek Chic, and I'm super duper excited to get to tell you all about the AMAZING Archer Cross! He lives inside an awesome series called Hex Hall, by Rachel Hawkins. What makes him so awesome, you ask?

Let's take a look!!


Archer Cross is that guy you hate and love at the same time. He's arrogant, sarcastic, obnoxious...and irresistible. He always has a smart remark or witty comeback ready, which can be both hilarious and infuriating. He's the kind of guy that leaves you sputtering in his wake, struggling to come up with something clever to say back.
"You know," someone said off to my left, "I usually find a blocking spell to be a lot more effective than yelling 'Bad dog,' but maybe that's just me."

But Archer has a sweet side, as well, especially when it comes to Sophie, who seems to be one of the only things he cares about.

     "I've spent basically my whole life pretending to be someone I'm not, faking some feelings, hiding others." Reaching down, he clasped my hand and lifted it so that our joined hands were trapped between our chests. "This thing with us is the only real thing I've had in a long time. You're the only real thing. And I'm done pretending I don't want you."
     And when he'd pulled me closer and murmured, "Mercer, I love--" I had covered his mouth with my hand.
     "Don't say that. Not now. Say it sometime when there is absolutely no chance of death on the horizon, okay?"
     He mumbled something beneath my palm, and I rolled my eyes as I pulled it away from his mouth. He dropped a kiss on the tip of my nose. "All I was going to say was that I love this tent you made for me. But I guess I can tell you again later. When you get back."


Archer is tall and lean, with curly dark brown hair and dark brown eyes. He's the guy every girl's got a crush on, and it's easy to see why.
(picture created by Mimi)

Still not sure?
     "What, you don't do tall, dark, and handsome?" -Sophie Mercer


Archer's a warlock, which means he has some pretty cool magical powers.
     Then, out of the corner of my eye, I caught a flash of blue light on my left. Suddenly, the werewolf seemed to smack into an invisible wall just inches in front of me. Giving a pitiful bark, he slumped to the ground.
He can also kick butt in hand-to-hand combat, and he's got some skills with a sword! How awesome is that??

     Then viselike fingers clenched my throat, the stake was wrenched from my hand, and a sharp stabbing pain shot up my right thigh as I landed on the ground with a thump that knocked the breath out of me.
    And if that wasn't bad enough, once I landed, something hard and heavy--his knee, I thought--hit me right in the sternum. You know, just in case there was one last breath left in my lungs. The point of the stake scraped the sensitive skin just under my chin. I looked up, wheezing, into Archer's face.
     There was a burst of movement out of the corner of my eye, and suddenly, he wasn't beside me anymore, but in the thick of them, sword flashing. He caught one of the ghouls under the chin with the point of his blade, but there was no blood. The thing stopped moving, but it didn't fall. Instead, it swept a hand at Archer like he was an annoying mosquito. But Archer ducked and swung again, piercing the side of the second ghoul.
But I think the skill you're probably most interested in would be...kissing. And trust me, Archer has got some skills there!
     For a few charged seconds we froze, glaring at each other, breathing hard. I saw his eyes darken just a little, like Jenna's had the day she'd seen my blood. But this was a different kind of hunger; one I felt too.
     I didn't let myself think. I just leaned forward and pressed my lips to his.
     He took a split second to respond, but then he made a sound almost like a growl from low in his throat, and his arms were suddenly around me, holding me so tightly I could hardly breathe. Not like I cared. All I cared about was Archer, his mouth on mine, and his body pressed against me.

Special Attributes/Best Qualities:

As I said, he's a warlock, he's sarcastic, and he's super hot...But what are Archer's best qualities, really? Well, if you've read Hex Hall, you know that Archer was hiding a PRETTY BIG and PRETTY BAD secret. But I think something that shows what a truly good guy Archer is is how much he cares about Sophie, and how much he risks and sacrifices for her. His feelings for Sophie, and the ways he shows them-- I'd say that's one of Archer's best qualities.
Anything else?

Summing up Archer in minimal words: Snarky. Hot. Sweet-when you dig deep enough. Smart. Hilarious. Awesome.


So you guys should go vote for Archer! You know...if you want! (But I'll love ya forever if you do! And you can get entries to win Hex Hall.)

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Week of Archer: Day 7 (and recap) *updated*

I've had so much fun with you guys this past week! Thank you all so much for your fantastic submissions and thoughts about Archer! I love seeing that so many people love him as much as I do :)

And now...the time has come! Archer's match goes up in just a few hours, at midnight 7/20/12! UPDATE: It's up! It's up! Go vote HERE! We're going up against a TOUGH opponent, so we will need EVERY VOTE we can get. That means you need to vote, and you need to get your friends to vote, and your family, and, if you want, random strangers on the street to vote.

But there's more to encourage you to vote than just Archer moving on to the next round--although, that would be absolutely AMAZING--you can also get lots of entries to win a Kindle copy of Hex Hall by spreading the word about Archer and his match. Once midnight hits, you can also get entries by voting for Archer. (This entry uses THE HONOR SYSTEM, folks. Please please please only click it if you've really voted for Archer at the YA Sisterhood's blog, okay?)

You can also get entries for tweeting about Archer/the giveaway, following Rachel Hawkins on Twitter, leaving a comment on the Day 1 post (link below), making a blog post about Archer, talking about him on Facebook, changing your avatar to a Team Archer button (found under the Buttons tab on the top of my blog), and more! You can earn up to 87 entries if you do all of that. The giveaway ends a little while after voting closes.

So, you can CLICK HERE to enter! (I just want to make this really, really clear: I WILL be checking entries. If you claim to do something but don't leave proof, I'll assume you didn't do it. If you didn't do it, your entries for that thing will be deleted. All entries submitted for voting for Archer before the poll opens will be deleted.)

Now, if you want to check out the other posts from Week of Archer, here they are!!

-Day 1
-Day 2
-Day 3
-Day 4
-Day 5
-Day 6

Thank you so much, you guys for an awesome week, and don't forget to VOTE ARCHER!!


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Week of Archer: DAY 6

Yipee! Welcome to Day 6 of Week of Archer, celebrating the awesome Archer Cross from Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins. Our goal is to spread the word about Archer and his match in the Crush Tourney (July 20th!) and HAVE FUN!!

Are you enjoying all the awesome Archer stuff this week? It's not too late to add to it! Submit anything related to Archer or reminding you of Archer to mag.geekchic@yahoo.com! I'd love to see it!


     "I can tell you what the Eye wanted with Sophie," Archer spoke up. He was grinning, but his voice was tight with pain. "We heard she was particularly skilled at Chutes and Ladders, and since the Eye holds a Chutes and Ladders tournament every summer--"

-Spell Bound

(submitted by Mimi)

(submitted by Mimi)

(submitted by Mimi)

Happy Week of Archer!! Don't forget to enter the giveaway and WIN Hex Hall! When Archer's match goes up July 20th at midnight, you can start using the "Vote for Archer" entry option as soon as you've voted for him!! (note: it's the honor system for voting, but I WILL delete any entries from people claiming to have voted for Archer before the voting begins. That's just common sense ;D)

Thanks, guys, and have fun!!


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Week of Archer: DAY 5

Hurray! Welcome to Day 5 of Week of Archer, celebrating the awesome Archer Cross from Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins. Our goal is to spread the word about Archer and his match in the Crush Tourney (July 20th!) and HAVE FUN!!

Are you enjoying all the awesome Archer stuff this week? It's not too late to add to it! Submit anything related to Archer or reminding you of Archer to mag.geekchic@yahoo.com! I'd love to see it!

(Submitted by Mimi)

"Another song that reminds me of Archer," submitted by Anon: I'm Just A Kid by Simple Plan.

(Submitted by Mimi)

(Submitted by Mimi)

A while back Rachel Hawkins did interviews with the Hex Hall characters. 
They're hilarious and a great way to get to knowthe characters--without 
spoilers, if you haven't read the books! Check out Archer's HERE.

(Submitted by Rachel G)

Some favorite Archer quotes (submitted by Rachel G):
He looked at me incredulously. "Uh, no. Thank God. I like my face where it is and not eaten off." 
-Hex Hall, Page  192

Happy week of Archer, and don't forget to enter the giveaway!!


Monday, July 16, 2012

Week of Archer: DAY 4

Woohoo! Welcome to Day 4 of Week of Archer, celebrating the awesome Archer Cross from Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins. Our goal is to spread the word about Archer and his match in the Crush Tourney (July 20th!) and HAVE FUN!!

Are you enjoying all the awesome Archer stuff this week? It's not too late to add to it! Submit anything related to Archer or reminding you of Archer to mag.geekchic@yahoo.com! I'd love to see it!

"What I imagined Archer would look like." 

-Submitted by Rachel G.

Submitted by

     "Mercer that day in the cellar..." He searched my face, and I could sense him struggling for what he wanted to say. Then finally, "I didn't kiss you back because I had to. I kissed you because I wanted to." His eyes dropped to my lips, and it was like the whole world had shrunk to just me and him and the shaft of light between us. "I still want to."

-Demonglass, Page 281

Submitted by Mimi

An awesome fanmade Hex Hall video! (submitted by Anon)

Thanks for all your submissions, guys, and keep them coming!!

Also, don't forget to enter a GIVEAWAY to win a Kindle copy of Hex Hall! It's open internationally and you can earn up to 82 entries by spreading the word about Archer and the Tourney, so check it out!!

Happy Week of Archer, guys!!


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Review: SHADE by Jeri Smith-Ready

The SHADE series by Jeri Smith-Ready is one of my absolute favorites of ALL TIME, and I'd recommend it to anyone. And Jeri herself is one of my favorite authors, and one of the coolest, awesomest, most fantastical people I "know" (know being in quotes because I've only ever talked to her online ;D).

I've already reviewed the third book in her SHADE trilogy, SHINE, but I've decided I'll go back and review SHADE and SHIFT as well :D

Love ties them together. Death can't tear them apart.
Best. Birthday. Ever. At least, it was supposed to be. With Logan's band playing a critical gig and Aura's plans for an intimate after-party, Aura knows it will be the most memorable night of her boyfriend's life. She never thought it would be his last.
Logan's sudden death leaves Aura devastated. He's gone.
Well, sort of.
Like everyone born after the Shift, Aura can see and hear ghosts. Aura's always found her ability annoying--but not with Logan's violet-hued spirit still hanging around. Because Dead Logan is almost as real as ever. Almost.
It doesn't help that Aura's new friend Zachary is so understanding--and so very alive. His support means more to Aura than she cares to admit.
As Aura's relationships with the dead and the living grow ever complicated, so do her feelings for Logan and Zachary. Each holds a piece of Aura's heart...and clues to the secret of the Shift.
I may have mentioned this before in other reviews, but I absolutely LOVE books with worlds that are our world--yet not. 

See, on one hand, you have books like Mortal Instruments and Hex Hall, where there's magic and other supernatural aspects, but they're hidden from "normal" people, and the world, on the outside, looks the same. And then you have fantasy books like Under the Never Sky or Hunger Games where everything is different. Then there's books like this--like SHADE, or like White Cat by Holly Black, where there's something that makes our world different, but it's matter-of-fact to the book's world. In this world, everyone born after a certain point in time--the Shift--can see ghosts. 

Aura's one of those people, which is both a curse--because, hello, the last thing a teenage girl needs is to be pestered by ghosts who refuse to move on--and a blessing--especially when her boyfriend, Logan dies...and hangs around as a ghost.

Intellectually, Aura knows that Logan's dead--that he isn't coming back. But when he's there with her, it can get hard to remember that he can't still be her boyfriend... Death doesn't kill love, after all. 

But then there's Zachary, the new guy at school and Aura's science partner. He's smart, sweet, and Scottish. And, of course, he's alive. 

SHADE is full of mystery, romance, and heartbreak, as well as humor and hilarity, and is that brilliant type of story that keeps you reading and reading, and thinking back on the story long after you finish :)

SHADE obviously, totally gets <*><*><*><*><*>


Week of Archer: DAY 3

Yay! It's Day 3 of Week of Archer, celebrating the awesome Archer Cross from Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins. Our goal is to spread the word about Archer and his match in the Crush Tourney (July 20th!) and HAVE FUN!!

What did you guys think of all the awesome Archer stuff from yesterday? Pretty cool, huh? Keep it coming, guys! Submit anything related to Archer or reminding you of Archer to mag.geekchic@yahoo.com! 

Archer fancast: Kevin Zegers

Submitted by Anon!

Submitted by Mimi

Submitted by Mimi
"But...look. I've spent basically my whole life pretending to be someone I'm not, faking some feelings, hiding others." Reaching down, he clasped my hand and lifted it so that our joined hands were trapped between our chests. "This thing with us is the only real thing I've had in a long time. You're the only real thing." He raised our hands and kissed my knuckles. "And I'm done pretending I don't want you."
-Demonglass, Page 283

Submitted by Mimi

I used to do this feature here on the blog called Novels 'n' Notes, where I'd take a song that reminded me of a book and post it here, with the reasons why.

I created one for Archer and Sophie with the song Enchanted by Taylor Swift. If you'd like to see what I wrote about it, check out the post HERE. Otherwise, just enjoy the song and think about Sophie and Archer :)

That's all for today, but don't forget to ENTER THE GIVEAWAY to win Hex Hall! I've added a new entry option, AND you can get entries every day for tweeting, so even if you've entered already, check it out!



Geek Chic This Week (7/15/12)

Geek Chic This Week is a feature here at Geek Chic to talk about the books I received this week, whether bought, borrowed, or fallen from the sky! It's inspired by the Story Siren's In My Mailbox.

First things first, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my awesome friend Marissa! (:D)  (I know, lots of birthdays lately!)

And then, books. I'm still working hard at not having too many books, since I'm moving soon and have to stop getting library books (which is hard because my brother got a job at the library (lucky!) and I'm down there all the time now (even more than usual ;D)). I'm down to 20, though, and only three of those are library books, so that's good :)


-The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg. SO, SO, SO, SO GOOD! I stayed up waaay too late reading this one, but I couldn't put it down. ("One more chapter. Or two. Or three. Or seven.") Seriously, check this one out, it ROCKS! And I'm in love with Patrick, Resident Lost Soul ;)


-What I Didn't Say by Keary Taylor. It looks fabulous, and I couldn't resist.


-The Burning Star by Jessie Lane. It sounds cool, and I really like that cover!!

So what's in your mailbox this week?