Hello, hello! I'm Kayla, a twenty-year-old girl with a penchant for Young Adult novels. Bookishly Spellbound is my little corner of the web where you'll find my thoughts on the books I am reading and the occasional fangirling over other stuff I enjoy.

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

The Distance Between Us
by Kasie West
Release Date: July 2, 2013 by Harper Teen
Pre-order It: Amazon | Book Depository

Add it on Goodreads

Seventeen-year-old Caymen Meyers studies the rich like her own personal science experiment, and after years of observation she’s pretty sure they’re only good for one thing—spending money on useless stuff, like the porcelain dolls in her mother’s shop.

So when Xander Spence walks into the store to pick up a doll for his grandmother, it only takes one glance for Caymen to figure out he’s oozing rich. Despite his charming ways and that he’s one of the first people who actually gets her, she’s smart enough to know his interest won’t last. Because if there’s one thing she’s learned from her mother’s warnings, it’s that the rich have a short attention span. But Xander keeps coming around, despite her best efforts to scare him off. And much to her dismay, she’s beginning to enjoy his company.

She knows her mom can’t find out—she wouldn’t approve. She’d much rather Caymen hang out with the local rocker who hasn’t been raised by money. But just when Xander’s attention and loyalty are about to convince Caymen that being rich isn’t a character flaw, she finds out that money is a much bigger part of their relationship than she’d ever realized. And that Xander’s not the only one she should’ve been worried about.

I haven’t read Kasie West’s debut Pivot Point yet – I hope to soon – but I’ve been seeing nothing but rave reviews for it. When I read the synopsis for The Distance Between Us I immediately knew this was a book I’d be dying to get my hands on. It sounds like it’s going to be really cute and I love the cover.

What are you waiting on this week?

Posted by on March 06, 2013 In: Waiting on Wednesday Comments: 3

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and is a meme that features a new top ten list each week.

Top Ten Series I’d Like to Start But Haven’t Yet

01. Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead: I hear about this series constantly and it’s usually to say how good it is. So naturally, I’ve been curious about this one for a long while. Unfortunately I had only ever read the first book in Richelle’s Vampire Academy series back in 2009 and though I enjoyed it, I never continued with the series. So I recently took it upon myself to reread Vampire Academy so I could continue with the series and finally see what the craze is about. And if Bloodlines is even HALF as awesome as Vampire Academy then I so cannot wait!

02. Covenant series by Jennifer L. Armentrout: This one is kinda cheating since I’ve already read the first book, but I never kept up with the series and I thought since it’s coming to a close soon, there’s no better time than now to reread the first book and continue the series. Plus I remember vaguely being reminded of Vampire Academy the first time I read it and since I’m so in love with that series right now it’ll be nice to dive into something similar once I’m finished. Another pro is that I’m addicted to Jennifer’s writing and am obsessed with her Lux series so I can’t even believe I even waited this long to continue the Covenant series.

03. Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer: I only hear good stuff about Cinder, and Scarlet now that it’s out, so I’m eager to start this series! I did start Cinder back when it first came out but ditched it for a book I wanted to read more. But from what little I did read, I could tell it was super unique and it captured my interest quickly.

04. Delirium series by Lauren Oliver: Another cheat-y one since I have already read Delirium. I had mixed feelings about the first installment. Sometimes I liked it and sometimes I was extremely underwhelmed. I wasn’t much of a fan of the Lena/Alex relationship, I felt it lacked chemistry. The cliff-hanger ending made me give it more stars than I probably should’ve for a book I felt just okay about. It could’ve been my mood though, maybe it just wasn’t the book for me at the time. I have heard it gets better in the second book and that a new love interest comes into the picture so I’d love to reread Delirium with fresh eyes and continue the series so maybe I can form a different opinion of such a well-loved story.

05. The Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare: The Mortal Instruments is a favorite series of mine so when I started hearing people say that this series is even better (is that even possible?!) I knew I had to read it. I’d like to finish The Mortal Instruments first though since I’ve only read the first two. My friend Steph did say that it could be read without having read TMI though, so who knows, I might pick it up before then.

06. Soul Screamers series by Rachel Vincent: This series is one I’ve had on my shelf for a long time but I’ve been hearing about it more so now and then so that has made me curious. Plus, there is nothing I love more than discovering a good series that has a ton of already released books for me to devour.

07. Dust Lands series by Moira Young: I’ve had Blood Red Road sitting on my bookshelf for SO LONG but hearing people talk about how it’s strangely written has prevented me from starting it. However, I have heard enough people raving about how great it is to rival that.

08. Caster Chronicles series by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl: I started Beautiful Creatures not long after it came out but it didn’t hold my attention so back it went in my TBR pile. After seeing the movie and somewhat enjoying it, I’m curious to get a more in depth look at some of the events that happened.

09. Anna series by Kendare Blake: This is one of those books I just had to have but got shelved two seconds after I got it. I’m a glutton for scaring the crap out of myself with horror movies so why not do it with books too?! Plus, I like the Supernatural-esque resemblance, which is one of my all time favorite shows.

10. A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R. R. Martin: Game of Thrones is one of my absolute favorite shows that I just can’t get enough of, so why not dive into the original story? I’ve read the first chapter twice now and have put it down both times right after for something I was more excited to read. I’m not sure if its because of its too close similarity to the show I’ve watched and re-watched countless times that’s turning me off of it or if it’s the daunting length of the book, but I know that I DO want to read it someday and I will force myself if I have to because I know it’s going to be great and I’ll thank myself once I get to the stuff I haven’t seen in the later books.

What series made it onto your list?

Posted by on March 03, 2013 In: Top Ten Tuesday Comments: 2
Forever Mine by Elizabeth Reyes

Forever Mine (The Moreno Brothers #1)
by Elizabeth Reyes
Release Date: September 6, 2010
Publisher: Self-published
Pages: 361
Source: For review, courtesy of author
Rating: ★★☆☆☆ 
Buy It: Amazon

Seventeen-year old Sarah’s life is turned upside down when her single mom is sent to jail. She’s forced to move, leaving behind everything she’s ever known, including her best friend Sydney. Lost and bitter in a new school, her one goal is to save money and move back home. Then she meets Angel Moreno.

Enigmatic but gorgeous, Angel is almost too good to be true. Except for one thing, his archaic belief that guys and girls can never be “just friends”. The problem? Sarah’s best friend Sydney is not a girl.

With their unexpected romance intensifying to places neither ever experienced, how long can Sarah keep Angel in the dark? And how will he react when the truth finally comes out?

Review: I was very honored when I received Forever Mine for review from Elizabeth Reyes. I’m always up for a good contemporary novel. As much as I wanted to love this book and give it a 5 star review, I couldn’t. While it was an okay enough read, I did have some issues with it. There are books that I can just sit there and read and not put down until I’m done, but unfortunately this wasn’t one of those.

I don’t think I’ve ever read a book that was solely focused on a romance without a big plot so it was a bit arduous to read at times. I need a good plot to keep me entertained. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge sucker for romance – I mean, who isn’t – but Sarah and Angel’s relationship just didn’t grab me. They were cute together, but there was no friendship before love. It seemed like they just jumped right into a relationship and I felt it was more so about lust than love. It didn’t feel realistic. To me, the great thing about a love story is the building of the relationship, where you read about them falling in love. All the cute little moments leading up to the romance and then the sex, not just jumping right into the sack together. As a reader I felt cheated out of the beginning stage where the romance blooms.

I could definitely see the appeal to Angel but he could also be quite pig-headed and possessive which were two things that drove me absolutely crazy about him. It irked me that he felt he could control Sarah’s relationship with her best friend Sydney. When Angel finally forgave her for lying to him about her best friend being a guy, I really didn’t enjoy how he basically made her talk to Sydney less. She shouldn’t have to give up her friend, someone she’s know her whole life and is practically her family. Even if Sydney is a guy, a friend is a friend no matter what gender and I don’t think it was right of Angel to try and take that away from her.

All in all, I did enjoy Forever Mine at times and would recommend it to anyone looking for a good beach read. This book does contain a lot more sexual content than your average YA novel, so if that’s something you’re uncomfortable with I wouldn’t recommend it to you. There is going to be a sequel, Always Been Mine, but I think Forever Mine wrapped up pretty well and could easily be a standalone novel. I’m sure other people will enjoy reading the sequels, but this is where the story ends for me.

Posted by on March 03, 2013 In: 2013, Book Reviews Comments: Add?
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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood

Star Cursed (The Cahill Witch Chronicles #2)
by Jessica Spotswood
Release Date: June 18, 2013 by Putnam Juvenile
Pre-order It: Amazon | Book Depository

Add it on Goodreads

With the Brotherhood persecuting witches like never before, a divided Sisterhood desperately needs Cate to come into her Prophesied powers. And after Cate’s friend Sachi is arrested for using magic, a war-thirsty Sister offers to help her find answers—if Cate is willing to endanger everyone she loves.

Cate doesn’t want to be a weapon, and she doesn’t want to involve her friends and Finn in the Sisterhood’s schemes. But when Maura and Tess join the Sisterhood, Maura makes it clear that she’ll do whatever it takes to lead the witches to victory. Even if it means sacrifices. Even if it means overthrowing Cate. Even if it means all-out war.

In the highly anticipated sequel to Born Wicked, the Cahill Witch Chronicles continue Cate, Maura and Tess’s quest to find love, protect family, and explore their magic against all odds in an alternate history of New England.

I love me some witchy books! I enjoyed Born Wicked IMMENSELY (I’ll post my review soon) and that ending was INSANE so I’ve obviously been dying for this one for a while. June cannot come fast enough!

What are you waiting on this week?

Posted by on February 20, 2013 In: Waiting on Wednesday Comments: Add?
The Boyf by Colleen Hoover

by Colleen Hoover
Release Date: December 19, 2012
Publisher: Self-published
Pages: 486
Source: Purchased
Rating: ★★★★★ 
Buy It: Amazon | Book Depository

Sometimes discovering the truth can leave you more hopeless than believing the lies…

That’s what seventeen-year-old Sky realizes after she meets Dean Holder. A guy with a reputation that rivals her own and an uncanny ability to invoke feelings in her she’s never had before. He terrifies her and captivates her all in the span of just one encounter, and something about the way he makes her feel sparks buried memories from a past that she wishes could just stay buried.

Sky struggles to keep him at a distance knowing he’s nothing but trouble, but Holder insists on learning everything about her. After finally caving to his unwavering pursuit, Sky soon finds that Holder isn’t at all who he’s been claiming to be. When the secrets he’s been keeping are finally revealed, every single facet of Sky’s life will change forever.

Review: This is without a doubt one of the hardest reviews I have ever had to write, even after taking some much needed time to sort out my feelings. It is extremely difficult to put into words how deeply moving and beautiful this book is without spoiling things that are meant to be slowly revealed to the reader. It was an intense ride but there are just not enough good things I can say about Hopeless. Ms. Hoover’s prose has a strong, graceful quality. She’s created these authentically flawed characters with tragic pasts and makes you fall in love with them. Hopeless is a poignant, heart-wrenching tale of love, loss and learning to feel that stands out from a slew of novels in the New Adult genre. It is a novel that I will cherish for a long time to come.

After being adopted when she was five and years of living a sheltered life filled with homeschooling and no technology, seventeen-year-old Sky is starting her senior year at a real high school. Her best friend and next-door neighbor, Six, is the only connection Sky has ever had to the real world. For years, her and Sky have been sneaking boys in and out of their bedrooms, having random hook-ups and creating a bad reputation for them both. But Sky has never felt anything while with these boys, instead she becomes detached and just goes through the motions. Thinking she has a normal, somewhat happy life, Sky’s world soon turns upside down the moment she meets Holder who shows her what it’s like to finally feel.

My heart went out to these characters. They’re both too young to have gone through what they have, too young to be so cynical and it truly breaks your heart. You form an emotional bond with these two and that in turn causes you to feel what they feel throughout the novel. You ache when they do, you’re elated when they are. As you read, you grow up with them. There’s so much character development from the beginning to the end of the novel. Sky is so utterly realistic, making for a strong literary heroine. She’s confident, sarcastic and quite humorous. Her voice is so genuine. I must mention that I LOVE her determination to show that petty things such as high school mean girls sticking crude post-its on her locker don’t faze her. She actually rewrites the notes to something more creative and puts them back up. If that’s not thick-skinned, I don’t know what is!

Of course, every heroine needs their hero. Ms. Hoover has managed to write quite possibly the most perfect boy in both the Young Adult and New Adult genres combined! Holder is the most selfless, sweet boy I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading about. He’s charming, mysterious, affectionate. He can be a little moody and has a bit of a temper at times, which is understandable considering his past. Other than that, I swear he has like zero flaws. I can only hope that there is a real life Holder in the world and that he will one day come to sweep me off my feet! I’m assuming some readers will have issues with his seemingly obsessive nature towards Sky, but I am hoping you will give him a chance. You will see that there is a logical explanation to his extreme interest in her. His unconditional love for Sky will make you melt. The chemistry they have is EXPLOSIVE. Every time they are together, it lights up the pages. And of course, I must mention the best (non) first kiss in the history of first kisses! HOLY BATMAN. Never has a first kiss been so deliciously sexy. Their love scenes are so achingly beautiful; Hoover writes them with such a careful hand and manages to deliver sweet and loving as opposed to salacious. Another enjoyable aspect of their relationship was the banter, there was never a dull moment when the two were together. I had a grin from ear to ear while reading most of their interactions. There is just something so special about Sky and Holder’s relationship that I will always remember.

I feel it necessary to warn that Hopeless touches on such a gruesome topic that might not sit well with some readers. Unfortunately, things like this do happen in real life so I give credit to Hoover for shedding light on such an abhorrent subject. The synopsis and my summarized version of the novel don’t give much insight into what Hopeless is actually about. There are so many complex twists and turns in the plot that will have you crying crazypants, but don’t worry, everything is well-thought out and resolved by the end of the novel.

Thinking back, there were some small unresolved issues relating to Holder but they’re so insignificant that it’s not that big of a deal. But I’ve thankfully just found out that Hopeless will be rewritten in his point of view. You can bet I’ll be reading that the moment it is released! You can never have enough Holder. Boy is perfection.

Truthfully, Hopeless is not a book I can do justice with my words, you simply need to experience it for yourself. I wasn’t expecting a novel to evoke such intense emotions from me. It tugged at my heartstrings, made me cry, smile, laugh. I rated it 5 stars but honestly, if my rating system wasn’t limited to that I would without a doubt give it more – this book deserves all the stars! I hope to see more of the same from Colleen Hoover.

Posted by on February 19, 2013 In: 2013, Book Reviews Comments: 1
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