Saturday, November 1, 2008

Amaze Me, Faze Me, Daze Me: Boo!

Amaze Me, Faze Me, Daze Me was inspired by boredom inspired by history (which isn't inspired by anything) studying inspired by the then upcoming (now failed) midterm exams. They're these series of posts in which I talk about upcoming '09 YA releases because it pleases me to lust after books.

To see all of these posts, click here. Thematically speaking, we have so far: The Historicals.

And that's that for the orientation.

Last time I left off with Carrie Ryan. Which is precisely where we'll begin, for it is Halloween -- bet you can guess the theme this time?

Exciting! Books! Out! In! '09!
The Fantastical Fright, Take 1
(I have not read any of these - yet. So, this is not endorsement - yet. But you can bet the ones sitting on my pile are making me very confused when picking what to read next!)

So, back to Carrie-land... Here we have the zombies:

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
In Mary's world, there are simple truths.
The Sisterhood always knows best.
The Guardians will protect and serve.
The Unconsecrated will never relent.
And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village. The fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth.

But slowly, Mary's truths are failing her. She's learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets, and the Guardians and their power. And, when the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness.

Now she must choose between her village and her future, between the one she loves and the one who loves her. And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside a world surrounded by so much death?

Steph: It's a funny story actually, when my mom first saw this book sitting on one of my random piles around the house she yelped and said, "THAT'S SO YOU!" ... Yeah, um, no... But the model is gorgeous and so is the cover and so is the premise and I'll tell you what, I'm reading the book now and ... *zips* there'll be a review eventually.

And when I think "Carrie Ryan", I think ... (Because they're critique partners, not because I'm a weirdo who makes random associations.)

Our killer unicorns in residence:

Rampant by Diana Peterfruend
Forget everything you ever knew about unicorns…
The sparkly, innocent creatures of lore are a myth. Real unicorns are venomous, man-eating monsters with huge fangs and razor-sharp horns. And they can only be killed by virgin descendants of Alexander the Great.

Fortunately, unicorns have been extinct for a hundred and fifty years.

Or not.

Astrid Llewelyn has always scoffed at her eccentric mother’s stories about killer unicorns. But when one of the monsters attacks her boyfriend in the woods – thereby ruining any chance of him taking her to prom – Astrid learns that unicorns are real and dangerous, and she has a family legacy to uphold. Her mother packs her off to Rome to train as a unicorn hunter at the ancient cloisters the hunters have used for centuries.

However, at the cloisters, all is not what is seems. Outside, the unicorns wait to attack. And within, Astrid faces other, unexpected threats: from crumbling, bone-covered walls that vibrate with a terrible power to the hidden agendas of her fellow hunters to – perhaps most dangerously of all – her growing attraction to a handsome art student… an attraction that could jeopardize everything.

Steph: Wow, Harper did a really great job with this cover. I was into this book for a while now (killer unicorns?! gimme, NOW) but when Diana posted the cover ... Ah, well, it became a sorta-fetish. The only iffy bit I have, after talking to my friend Amee about it, is this "virgin descendants" thing. I'm beginning to realize all for obliterating the superiority - whether in virtue or in power, the latter being the case here - virgins supposedly have over non-virgins. But meh, whatever, I'll step off my high horse right about now because it looks minimal. :)

OH, andandand, very random, but doesn't the girl sorta remind anyone of Princess Diana in this picture? (It's a stretch but they do kinda look similar!)

Zombies, unicorns, ... DEMONS...

The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan
Description: Sixteen year old Nick lives in London - but not for long. His family is on the run from magicians because his mother has stolen a powerful charm from them. With his father dead and his mother insane, Nick's only comfort is his older brother, who protects him. But when his older brother gets marked with a demon sign that means death, it means they must kill a magician to erase the sign. What ensues is a deadly cat and mouse game with the magicians, in which using both swords and the dark arts Nick uncovers the lies his world is based on - and discovers the terrible secret hidden in his family's past. (This is an unofficial description taken from the '09 Debs site.)

Steph: Well, if nothing else, the fact Mr. Cover looks like Tom Welling does me in. However, I'm a bit of a magician lunatic (because of the movie The Prestige, which I bet is so not similar to this book in terms of how magicians are portrayed, but still, I love magicians) so this interested me from the get-go. That and the fact it's set in the UK. Oh, and did I mention Ms Brennan is Irish? (...or she just lives there. I'm not quite sure if it's her nationality, but she's at least Brit from what I can tell.) The bigger question is: IS THE ACCENT AS AWESOME AS THE PREMISE? *aham*

Oh, and Sarah Rees Brennan also did this totally awesome post on female characters recently. If anyone's interested, click here.

Okay, so what is the most classic fiend of them all? Ah...

Stargazer by Claudia Gray
Stargazer returns to Bianca's story a few months later. Both she and Lucas will stop at nothing to see each other again—even if it means living a life of secrets and lies. But even as Bianca finds herself torn between two worlds, she soon discovers they aren't the only ones keeping secrets. Will powerful forces within Evernight Academy keep her from deciding her own fate, or claim her forever? (This is an unofficial description taken from Claudia's site.)

Steph: I really loved the second portion of Evernight (even if the twist seemed a bit weakly plotted, the second half was made of awesome). This is the followup, second in the planned 4-book series, and I personally can't wait to get on it!

Re: cover, I like this better than I liked Evernight's. They're in the same vein, but I think the pale blue conveys the sophisticated and muted society that Evernight is. And also, I like emo covers. What can I say?

And my personal favorite of all the vampire books...

Lord of Misrule by Rachel Caine
In the college town of Morganville, vampires and humans coexist in (relatively) bloodless harmony. Then comes Bishop, the master vampire who threatens to abolish all order, revive the forces of the evil dead, and let chaos rule. But Bishop isn’t the only threat.

Violent black cyclone clouds hover, promising a storm of devastating proportions as student Claire Danvers and her friends prepare to defend Morganville against elements both natural and unnatural.

Steph: Honestly, if you're a vampire fan and you've never been transported to Morganville, you're missing out. I adore these books - lovelovelove. They're well written, have great characters, and the plot keeps twisting without getting overwrought. Like I said - give the first, Glass Houses, a chance, like, NOW.

This is the fifth (so far, a total of six are planned). I CANNOT WAIT TO READ IT.


Ohh god, it was difficult choosing only five books. I don't want to do a mega list at any time because it seems a little overbearing to me - these are supposed to be bite-sized overviews of what shall cometh. :)

So, expect much more fantasy coming in my lists. Particularly with fairies (or faeries...).

Hope everyone enjoyed! It's already November 1st where I am, but I know you USians are still in the 31st, sooo! Happy Halloween, people!


Alea said...

Yay! These posts are made of awesome! The Forest of Hands and Teeth definitely sounds interesting! Killer unicorns, that's crazy! That guy totally looks like the Smallville dude. I heart the Evernight covers! I'll definitely have to try out your favorite vampire series sometime!

And thanks for doing these :D

Amee said...

Even though these books don't really interest me (although I'm going to read at least the first two Morganvilles since I have them), I still enjoyed the post. Keep them coming! ;)

Ruth King said...

Killer unicorns? That's 57 different kinds of awesome right there.

Did I mention that I love these posts? A lot? I agree with Amee, keep them coming!

Steph said...

Re: Killer Unicorns - I KNOW! I first saw that when I visited Diana's site way back when and it won't exit my mind. It's a hell of a strong hook.

Oh, and thanks everyone! Glad there are people who enjoy the product of my book stalking!


Khy said...

Me want all of those. Well, except for the last one since I've not read the Morganville series. Me especially want zombie book. Zombies are made of awesome.

Nurin said...

I want all of those.
Very very much.
Especially Lord of Misrule, The Forest of Hands and Teeth and Devil's Lexicon.

'09 come quicker!

Diana Peterfreund said...

Steph, I think you (and Amee) will be pleasantly surprised to see the way the story question about virginity takes form in the book.

Anonymous said...

KILLER UNICORNS?! Oh my gosh, that sounds so good!

Heh, I also reallyreally want to read the Demon's Lexicon-I love the author's blog!

Anonymous said...

Hey Steph!

Just to let you know, Rachel was signed for 2 more Morganville books next year and 2 for 2010.

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Hey! For some reason, this embedded comment form makes most people click twice before the comment is processed and published. It's not you - it's just that it's a new Blogger feature with kinks and all that. (But I adore it and don't wanna get rid of it!) I removed Captcha to make the process easier. You don't have to rewrite the comments twice; just click on SUBMIT twice and it should work. If not, email me. Thanks! -Steph