Top Ten Tuesday: 2014 Releases I’m Dying to Read!

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Each week they will post a new Top Ten list that one of their bloggers over at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join.

The topic for this week is: Top Ten 2014 Releases I’m Dying to Read! 

For this week’s list I’ve tried to list books that aren’t in the series I’ve talked about on the blog before – because otherwise my list would just be a repeat of sequels I can’t wait to read (and yes – I’m still oh-so excited for Cress, Dreams of Gods and Monsters, Secret, The One, Silver Shadows and The Forever Song).

Here are some books that I can’t wait to be released that I’ve not talked about before.

Debut Authors:

Tape by Steven Camden – Two people, twenty years apart, connected by a story on a tape. One recorded it, one is listening to it and this novel is their story. I think it sounds interesting and lets face it – cassette tapes are so very cool…. I might be biased because I have one in my car and no CD player but it appeals to me regardless. The author is a spoken word poet and you can find him talking about tape: here  (January 30th, 2014)

The Break Up Artist by Phillip Siegel – Becca isn’t a matchmaker. In fact she’s the opposite. For a fee she’ll do whatever it takes to break up a couple – and she does it all anonymously. I have a bit of a soft spot for matchmaking stories and the idea of someone trying to break couples up on purpose really appeals to me. It’s one of those stories that you know is going to get pretty dirty for the break up artist in question. (April 29, 2014)

Wish You Were Italian by Kristen Rae – I adore contemporary novels set in Italy and this one sounds adorable. The Italian sun, gorgeous ruins and some romantic drama to cap it all off.  (May 6th, 2014)

Sekret by Lindsay Smith – Psychic spies, the KGB and powerful mind erasers working for the CIA: need I say more? This book looks dramatic and suspenseful! (April 1st, 2014)

The Fire Wish by Amber Lought – I adore genies and djinn and jinni. Whatever you want to call them I have loved them since I was 7 and watched Disney’s Aladdin for the first time and recently wrote my own novel about them (although my story is only really fit for the recycling bin). I’m always glad to see new stories about the wish granters and Amber Lought’s debut looks delightful. Unwilling brides, Eastern princes and not one but two magic lamps? This book is definitely on my wish list. (July 22nd, 2014)

Tape The Break-Up Artist Wish You Were Italian Sekret (Sekret, #1)

Authors I love with New Series / Standalones

The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E Smith – I love this author as she writes lovely and fun contemporary novels which aren’t just fluff. There’s substance and more to them than you might expect. Two strangers being stuck in an elevator is one of those concepts that I love to read and I’m sure this novel will live up to my expectations! (April 15th, 2014)

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han – Books about letters are another one of those things that I really enjoy reading about. Having a box of letters written to exes but never intending for them to read them but having them sent out? Sounds like some great contemporary drama to be had! (April 22nd, 2014)

Panic by Lauren Oliver – Panic is a game played among graduating seniors with prize money that could set you up perfectly for college. Only catch it the game is illegal and it’s not unheard of that people get seriously hurt or even die. How great is this idea? I may not have finished Lauren Oliver’s Delirium series but Panic sounds like my kind of story. (March 4th, 2014)

Sea of Shadows by Kelley Armstrong – I’m an autobuyer of anything Kelley Armstrong writes and I’m interested in this upcoming series. Sisters tasked with keeping the souls of the damned quiet. It sounds a little more high fantasy than her other books and I’m looking forward to reading this one. (April 8th, 2014)

After the End by Amy Plum – I was a huge fan of the Reverants series and because of that, I’m interested to see what Amy Plum’s next series will deliver. Post World War III and its set in Alaska, my favourite of the US states! After the End looks like a great new dystopian novel! (May 6th, 2014)

The Geography of You and Me To All the Boys I've Loved Before Panic Sea of Shadows (Age of Legends, #1) After the End (After the End, #1)

These are all books I’m very excited for. I was growing a little sad the other day when I realized just how close we are to the end of the year but with this many books to look forward to, 2014 is looking bright. Which books are you excited for? Any I should add to my to-read list? Feel free to leave me a comment – I love reading them! 🙂

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Book Review: Until I Die by Amy Plum

Title: Until I Die (Reverants #2)
Author: Amy Plum
Genre: paranormal romance; urban fantasy; zombies
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date:  May 2012
Pages: 357 pages
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
Kate and Vincent have overcome the odds and at last they are together in Paris, the city of lights and love.

As their romance deepens there’s one question they can’t ignore: How are they supposed to be together if Vincent can’t resist sacrificing himself to save others? Although Vincent promises that he’ll do whatever it takes to lead a normal life with Kate, will that mean letting innocent people die? When a new and surprising enemy reveals itself, Kate realizes that even more may be at stake—and that Vincent’s immortality is in jeopardy.

In Die for Me, Amy Plum created a captivating paranormal mythology with immortal revenants and a lush Paris setting. Until I Die is poised to thrill readers with more heart-pounding suspense, spellbinding romance, and a cliff-hanger ending that will leave them desperate for the third and final novel in the series.

My Review:

After reading and enjoying Die For Me so much, I was excited to read Until I Die. Picking up right where the first instalment left off Kate is busy navigating exactly what being the girlfriend of a Reverant means. Determined to find a way to help Vincent resist the call that puts himself in mortal danger, Kate uses her grandfather’s library and other slightly more risky resources to find answers to her questions. Vincent – in an effort to keep Kate in his life – uses his own methods to fight his destiny. With Vincent’s secret draining his strength and the Numas regrouping, the Reverants need assistance. With reinforcements being brought into Paris and the Numas still a threat despite Kate (with Vincent’s help) taking out their leader.

I love this series. When I read a book I normally take notes. About the characters, the plot, names (because I’m hopeless and forget how to spell half of them) and all sorts of other things. But for Until I Die I didn’t take a single note. I was that absorbed in the story.

The Reverants (both the good and the bad) are an interesting type of supernatural creature I’ve not seen before. They’re slightly dangerous, fascinating and I enjoy finding out more about them and their history as Kate gets herself more involved in their world.

At the core of this book is the love story of Kate and Vincent. They’re sweet and unlike in many young adult paranormal novels, I really feel like they deserve each other. Kate’s intelligent and despite trying to all she can to help Vincent, she has her own life and interests. She’s still there for her sister and trying to be a good granddaughter – even when things get tricky. Jules’ flirtatious banter with Kate is brilliant and cheeky but harmless. I love that there is no love triangle centred around the leads.

The supporting characters are what make this a five-star read for me. From Georgia to Jules, Violette to Arthur – they’re all fantastic in their own way. Their personalities and own stories add to the overall plot in a way that enriches the world in which the Reverants series is set.

Paris, fantastic characters and a plot that kept me interested right up until the last page – Until I Die was a pleasure to read. The last book in the series, If I Should Die, is released in May 2013 and I for one can not wait to find out how everything goes for the Reverants.

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository 

 

Book Review: Die For Me by Amy Plum

Title: Die For Me (Reverants #1)
Author: Amy Plum
Genre: paranormal romance; urban fantasy; zombies
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: 10 May 2011
Pages: 341 pages
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
In the City of Lights, two star-crossed lovers battle a fate that is destined to tear them apart again and again for eternity.

When Kate Mercier’s parents die in a tragic car accident, she leaves her life–and memories–behind to live with her grandparents in Paris. For Kate, the only way to survive her pain is escaping into the world of books and Parisian art. Until she meets Vincent.

Mysterious, charming, and devastatingly handsome, Vincent threatens to melt the ice around Kate’s guarded heart with just his smile. As she begins to fall in love with Vincent, Kate discovers that he’s a revenant–an undead being whose fate forces him to sacrifice himself over and over again to save the lives of others. Vincent and those like him are bound in a centuries-old war against a group of evil revenants who exist only to murder and betray. Kate soon realizes that if she follows her heart, she may never be safe again.

My Review:

Kate Mercer is devastated after her parents are killed in a car accident. Her sister (and now technically her guardian) decides that the best thing for the two of them is to relocate from New York to their grandparents’ house in Paris. Still reeling from the tragedy to strike her family, Kate becomes a shadow of her former self. Then she meets Vincent – strange and mysterious yet chivalrous Vincent. Feeling like she should hold her heart back from the odd gorgeous boy but not being able to resist his charm, Kate falls for Vincent only to find out she might not be able to handle his special kind of supernatural abilities.

I love books that are set in a far off distant land and the city is well and truly a part of the story. I recently read a book apparently set in Italy and it could have been set anywhere. But in Die For Me, Paris is almost a character itself. One of those books where after I read about the places Kate goes and the vibe of the city and it makes me want to go to Europe.

I loved the pace of this novel. I know, it might sound a little weird for the pace to be the first thing that comes to mind for me but some first in the series books can be a bit of an info dump – too much too soon with too many details that I keep feeling the need to flick back and re-read those sections all the time. But I really liked learning about Vincent and the others along with Kate and their specific supernaturalness. The secondary characters are brilliant – I thought the way they got to tell their stories and the way they interact with each other was fantastic to read. I loved seeing Kate evolve as a character but seeing the others flourish around her (like Georgia and Jules) was amazing.

Fun characters, interesting and fantastic zombies (and coming from a zombie hater that’s something) and not too much of that teen angst that some YA novels seem to be bursting to the brim with. It’s probably not surprising to hear that as soon as I finished Die For Me (at 1am) I instantly jumped online to buy a copy of the second book in the series, Until I Die.

 

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository 

Read for the 2013 TBR Pile Challenge