Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Paper Valentine - Brenna Yovanoff - Blog Tour Review

The city of Ludlow is gripped by the hottest July on record. The asphalt is melting, the birds are dying, petty crime is on the rise, and someone in Hannah Wagnor’s peaceful suburban community is killing girls. 
For Hannah, the summer is a complicated one. Her best friend Lillian died six months ago, and Hannah just wants her life to go back to normal. But how can things be normal when Lillian’s ghost is haunting her bedroom, pushing her to investigate the mysterious string of murders? Hannah’s just trying to understand why her friend self-destructed, and where she fits now that Lillian isn’t there to save her a place among the social elite. And she must stop thinking about Finny Boone, the big, enigmatic delinquent whose main hobbies seem to include petty larceny and surprising acts of kindness.  
With the entire city in a panic, Hannah soon finds herself drawn into a world of ghost girls and horrifying secrets. She realizes that only by confronting the Valentine Killer will she be able move on with her life—and it’s up to her to put together the pieces before he strikes again. 
Paper Valentine is a hauntingly poetic tale of love and death by the New York Times bestselling author of The Replacement and The Space Between.
Synopsis taken from goodreads. 

Title: Paper Valentine
Genre: Young Adult, mystery, romance.
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: January 8, 2013
Format: Finished copy
Source: Received from publicist. Many thanks goes to Penguin/Razorbill for sending me a copy of this book for review. I received this book free of charge in exchange for an honest review. This review is part of the Razorbill blog tour.
My Rating: 4/5

It has been a sweltering hot summer, which makes for long days, and even longer nights. When a girl is murdered, it makes them seem all the more oppressive. Hannah knows what it is like to lose someone you love, seeing as her best friend died earlier in the year. She is still suffering the aftermath of losing Lillian. What she doesn't expect is how involved she is going to get with the girls who are being murdered. She might not be able to help them before death, but she is going to find out who is killing them before someone else ends up dead. 
The atmosphere surrounding this book showcases the oppressive heat, and the depth of Hannah's despair. Lillian's death is still affecting her, and she is gathering the pieces, trying to make sense of things. It really doesn't help that Lillian is still around, even after death. This read is a poignant one as you see how Hannah is suffering from Lillian's slow downward spiral. She fluctuates between wondering if she could have stopped Lillian, and being angry that Lillian could not realize that she did not need to be perfect. Yovanoff entwines these feelings well with the unstable and volatile feelings of a town on edge after yet another girl is found murdered. 
The budding romance between Finny, a misunderstood loner, and Hannah is also aptly appealing. The tension is there as they are getting to know each other, but when Finny is taken in for questioning, Hannah realizes she doesn't know him as well as she thinks she does. Can she trust her judgement; is he really a good guy, or is he the killer everyone fears?
The romance marries well with the mystery in Paper Valentine and gives the reader a well-rounded read. I have been a fan of Yovanoff's writing from the start. I absolutely loved The Replacement and The Space Between. Paper Valentine may have started off slow, but it picked up speed and kept me engrossed until the final showdown. This is one of those books that will keep you reading until all hours of the night as you will not want to put it down once you get into the meat of the story. 
All in all, memorable characters, and a diverse plot make this an atmospheric and lyrical read. The budding romance is perfect in comparison to the darker edges of the novel, and it balances well with all of the entwined threads. Yovanoff throws a lot of different emotions at the reader, yet they blend well to make this a near perfect read. Even though this is a slow starter, you will be burning up the pages to find out what happens next.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB from Should Be Reading, and anyone can play along! 
  • grab your current read 
  • flip to a random page
  • select two teaser sentences from somewhere on that page 
  • try not to include spoilers! 
  • please let us know the author and book so we can add them to our TBR pile!
This week I have a double feature. First up is the one from a YA book by Robin McKinley, titled Pegasus. This book is just full of win so far! Anyway! Teaser time! 

" She thought it looked at her with surprise and... and... What made her think it was looking at her with anything? Maybe it was just interested to see a girl for a change: the first daughter of a sovereign since her grandmother.
Pg. 55

This next teaser is from a book that just hit bookshelves today. It is from The Blood Gospel by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell. James Rollins is one of my favourite authors so I'm looking forward to reading this one! 

"It's just my dig," she said, preparing to believe her lie. "It's been years of planning, and there was earthquake damage." 
pg. 67

Both of these sound fantastic. Can't wait to dive back into them both! 

Enjoy! What are you reading this week? 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

I'm back!

I'm around, and have been a very lax blogger of late. My apologies everyone. =/ Life has been hectic, and I have had some devastating challenges crop up. My resolution for this new year though is to get back into blogging. I have a ton of book reviews that I need to post, and will start posting those shortly. I'm not one to share what is going on in my personal life, so I won't go into details. However, I am looking forward to new beginnings, and blogging once again. Hopefully I'll get back into a rhythm shortly, and will be back to posting every day. 

Much love, and hope you all had a Happy New Year, and hope that 2013 is a great year for you! 

Me? You'll find me reading. ;)