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Thursday, November 19, 2015

This is Where it Ends

Oh. My. God. I just finished this novel in two sittings and I'm completely heartbroken. Nothing happens at Opportunity High School, until Tyler re-enrolls. Sylv knew he was coming back, just because he is Autumn's brother doesn't mean she's happy to see him.. Autumn barely sees him anymore, not since their mom died. Tomas can't figure out why his sister, Sylv is so afraid of him. And Claire, she can't imagine having to sit through the new semester assembly, but suddenly wishes she was there.. Tyler makes quite the arrival, he wants Opportunity to remember him. So, Ty locks the students and teachers in the auditorium and his fun begins. He has his very own shooting range. He can take out all of his anger.. Demolish his enemies... Kill everyone and anyone that gets in his way.... This is Where it Ends is told over the course of the most haunting 54 minutes. The terrors of those students and teachers are displayed so vividly that I could almost see the bodies laying in the auditorium. I could feel the fear in every single student. Tyler didn't care who he hurt, but he could not hurt his sister. But he could take away her opportunity to leave Opportunity. He could ruin the lives of everyone around him. He could tear siblings apart. And he could leave the world in the most selfish way possible. 
Thank you NetGalley for opening my eyes to this very, very real issue.
Everyone needs to buy a copy.
Not for the faint-hearted.
This is Where it Ends hits shelves January 5th!

Looking for other books by Marieke Nijkamp?
Before I Let Go

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Things They Carried

They carried the necessities: canteens, rations, lighters, candy, cigarettes, rifles, love letters, and dog tags. They carried these things with them all through the war. They carried them close, sometimes weighing heavy on their hearts. They saw their friends die right in front of them. They had close experiences with death. The dead never truly stop looking dead. They reenact the good times they had before, during, and even after the war. They played not-so-practical jokes on each other. They spent time in other cultures. They can't explain it to their children, they'll never grasp the horrors of the war. They can't explain it to their wives, or mothers, or fathers, no one will every understand except the ones who lived to tell the experience themselves. Recollections only go so far, but Tim O'Brien wrote an amazing work of fiction with many factual references. By far one of the best collections of short stories I have ever gotten my hands on. 
Tim O'Brien, you truly captured the Vietnam War in a way that many people will never be able to grasp.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Tricks & Traffick

When I first read Tricks, it ruined my life. But 6 years later, Traffick finally brought me closure to the 5 teens introduced in Tricks. Ginger, Eden, Whitney, Cody, and Seth all followed different paths to destruction. Sex, drugs, gambling. Turning tricks in Vegas seemed like a necessity for survival. But so much more comes from turning tricks. So much comes from exploiting their bodies in ways teens should never have to do. Addictions, gambling, physical and mental abuse. Those men don't love you. Those pimps don't love you either. Each teen has a story that needs to be told.
Traffick brought these 5 teens back into my life. This is their stories of their roads to recovery. Ginger gets picked up for soliciting an undercover officer and finds herself in House of Hope, a recovery program for victims of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking. But can she find love after Alex? Can she forgive her mother for causing all of her pain? Eden finds herself in a similar situation at the Walk Straight program, where she hopes to God that her little sister hasn't found home in Tears of Zion. Whitney, oh Whitney. Can she ever defeat the Lady? New paraplegic, Cody has to relearn how to walk, while wondering how Ronnie could still love him. Seth finally found his community at the YouCenter for LGBTQ youth, when he gets the call that his dad is dying. His dad who disowned him for being gay. Can any of these teens find forgiveness and happiness in their heart?

Looking for more books by Ellen Hopkins?

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Spotlight: The Greatest Zombie Movie Ever

Cover Reveal and Excerpt courtesy of Sourcefire Books!
The vampire, whose fangs were too big for his mouth, turned to the camera and hissed.
"Don't look at the camera," said Justin Hollow, the director.
"I keep poking my lip on these things," said Harold, spitting the plastic fangs out onto the ground. He hadn't been a very frightening example of the undead before, and he was even less scary with no fangs and a thick line of drool running down his chin.
"Cut!" shouted Justin, loud enough to be sure that the command was heard by his production crew of two. "C'mon, Harold. Stay in character. We're three hours behind schedule."
"I don't care. I hate this. You promised that I'd get all the girls I wanted. So where are all of the girls I want?"
Justin let out his thirty-ninth exasperated sigh of the night. "The movie has to come out first."
"It's not even a real movie."
Justin bristled. It was a full body bristle, head to toe, which he hadn't even realized was physically possible. Bobby, who handled sound recording, and Gabe, who handled everything else, both stepped back a couple of feet. Neither of them truly believed that they were about to witness a murder, but they wanted to get out of the splash zone, just in case.
Had this been one of Justin's movies, he would have very slowly lowered his camera, stared directly into Harold's eyes with a steel gaze, and then after an extremely dramatic pause asked ""
His actual response, delivered in a squeakier voice than he would have allowed from his actors, was: "Huh?"
"I said it's not a real movie." Harold started to wipe the fake blood off his mouth. It didn't come off, and probably wouldn't for several days. Justin had planned to feel guilty about this later, but now he wouldn't bother. "Nobody's ever going to see it. You probably won't even finish it."
"I finished my last three movies!" Justin insisted. "I got hundreds of hits on YouTube!"
That statement was technically accurate, though it was the lowest possible number of hits you could get and still use "hundred" in its plural form. The only comment anybody posted about his latest film had been "This twelve year-old filmmaker sort of shows promise," which really frustrated Justin since he was fifteen.
Harold shrugged. "This is a waste of time. I've got better things to do on a Friday night."
"Nobody ever said this was going to be easy," said Justin, who had indeed said that it was going to be easy when luring Harold into the role. "You can quit now, but what are you going to think about your decision ten years from now?"
"I'm going to think, wow, it sure is nice to be such a well-paid dentist."
Harold walked off the set. It wasn't an actual set, but rather a small park near Justin's home, where they were filming without a permit. Justin knew he should shout something after his ex-actor. Something vicious. Something devastating. He thought about shouting "You'll never work in this town again!" but, no, it had to be something that Harold would consider a bad thing.
"Fine!" Justin shouted. "But when we record the audio commentary track for the Blu-Ray, I'm going to talk about how you abandoned us, and how much happier everybody was with the new actor who took your role, and how we all agreed that he should have been cast in the first place, and how he had so many girlfriends that he couldn't even keep track of them, and how they all found out about each other and had a great big awesome catfight in his front yard! And I'll pronounce your name wrong!"
Harold continued walking, apparently not heartbroken.

The Greatest Zombie Movie Ever officially hits shelves March 1st!