Monday, February 20, 2012

Top Ten Books I’d Quickly Save if my House was Going to be Abducted by Aliens

TopTenTuesdayTop Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. As lovers of books and of lists, they post a list each week. Check it out for other lists, and to link up your own list there.

This week’s topic is:

Top Ten Books I’d Quickly Save if my House was Going to be Abducted by Aliens (or any other natural calamity were to occur)

We actually had a wildfire within 100 yards of our house two years ago, when I thought about saving things, particularly books, I knew that I’d be able to replace them.   So, for the sake of argument here, I’m going to pretend that I won’t be able to get online and reorder them as soon as the dust settles.  Here are my picks:

Sentimental picks

SorceryCecelia_mech.indd *Sorcery and Cecelia by Caroline Stevermer and Patricia Wrede.  Hey, I named my first born child out of this book, and I absolutely love it, so for sentimental and entertainment reasons it’s coming.

*Scrapbooks-I know I’m cheating a little, because I have more than one, but all of those pictures, and all of that creative effort, I’m bringing them!

“I’m going to need a good laugh/ pick me up after the alien invasion” picks

My Unfair Godmother * My Unfair Godmother by Janette Rallison

*Revenge of the Cheerleaders by Janette Rallison

-Janette Rallison is by far my favorite writer for romantic comedies.  Her characters are fun and witty, and always make me laugh out-loud and smile.

*The Season by Sarah MacLean

“I can’t imagine never reading this book again” picks

DieforMe *Forgotten by Cat Patrick

*Die for Me by Amy Plum






“I might be able to glean some survival tips from these” picks

The Host *The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

*Divergent by Veronica Roth

*The Host by Stephenie Meyer-aliens, see the relevance here?

Review of Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

ScarletUS.indd Basic Info

Released: February 14, 2012

Pages: 292 (hardcover)

Interest: Debut Author, Robin Hood

Rating: **** 4 stars

Summary (from

Many readers know the tale of Robin Hood, but they will be swept away by this new version full of action, secrets, and romance.
Posing as one of Robin Hood’s thieves to avoid the wrath of the evil Thief Taker Lord Gisbourne, Scarlet has kept her identity secret from all of Nottinghamshire. Only the Hood and his band know the truth: the agile thief posing as a whip of a boy is actually a fearless young woman with a secret past. Helping the people of Nottingham outwit the corrupt Sheriff of Nottingham could cost Scarlet her life as Gisbourne closes in.
It’s only her fierce loyalty to Robin—whose quick smiles and sharp temper have the rare power to unsettle her—that keeps Scarlet going and makes this fight worth dying for.


I was pretty intrigued when I heard about Scarlet, pretty much all I knew was that it was the story of Robin Hood where Will Scarlet is actually a girl.  Since I didn’t know much about Will Scarlet, it was easy to make that switch in my head.

Scarlet was a quick and exciting read.  There was plenty of adventure and a dose of mystery.  I think I could guess Scarlet’s background before Robin and the rest did.  You probably will too, the other characters were a little dense about it :).  The setting is well developed, and the characters a younger, more hot-headed generation.  The one thing I wondered about was: where is Prince John?  I’m so used to seeing him as the villain.  In this case we had the Sheriff of Nottingham and Gisbourne the thief taker, who were both superb villains.  Maybe Prince John will enter the storyline in later books…

There is a touch of romance, and a big helping of jealousy involved in the story.  If you’re looking for adventure, the romance won’t be enough to distract you, if you’re reading for romance it will just whet your appetite.  The characters actually know each other, or are working on it, as opposed to simply groping each other.  No instant romance here, just the conversation and development that could lead to a more lasting romance later. 

Scarlet did not have a big cliffhanger, but it did leave enough loose ends for the weaving of the next story.  I’m betting on this becoming a series, but it could also settle here if it needed to.

I would highly recommend this book to fans of Robin Hood, or others looking for an adventure with a pinch of romance.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Review of Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood

bornwickedBasic Info

Released: February 7, 2012

Pages: 326 (hardcover)

Interest: witches, and debut author

Rating: *** 3 stars

Summary (from

Everybody knows Cate Cahill and her sisters are eccentric. Too pretty, too reclusive, and far too educated for their own good. But the truth is even worse: they're witches. And if their secret is discovered by the priests of the Brotherhood, it would mean an asylum, a prison ship, or an early grave.


Enter a world like turn of the century New England society. I think it's supposed to be set closer to the 1990s, but the cultural aspects and lack of technology put it back a century. New England used to be run by witches, then their temples were burned, the witches were rooted out and likewise burned, and the Brotherhood came into power. Everything is limited, everyone is watched, and the Brotherhood pretty much tells girls how wicked they are for being female. They also preach against education, independence, and lesbianism, and since their other teachings are so far fetched it felt like I was supposed to encourage homosexuality now and was bad and evil like the Brotherhood if I didn't.
So, we have a domineering Brotherhood going on witch hunts, and three sisters who happen to be witches. The Cahill girls lost their mother and since then Cate has been trying her hardest to keep her promise to protect her sisters. There's a suspicious new governess, a nosy neighbor, the boy next door ready to marry Cate, and of course the gardener that Cate just can't stop thinking about.

Jessica Spotswood built an interesting world, I liked the premise, and there were some good twists and turns.  There’s also a lot more to learn about this series.

If you took out the girl on girl kissing, I would have liked it more. For me at least, I'd want it from the library, but not to own.