TGIF (34)

There once was an awesome blogger named Ginger and she decided to create a super fun feature where fellow bloggers would answer fabulous questions via blog posts every Friday. TGIF was born and we all have Miss Ginger at GReads! to thank for that! This week’s 

Recommend It:

Which book from the last 10 you’ve read would you recommend to a friend?

I have been a reading failure lately! I don’t know what it is about this new year but I am certainly having a very hard time getting back into the grove of things! It’s been a while since I’ve read some of these titles but the last 10 that I have read are:

Loving Emily by Anne Pfeffer

Unbreakable Love by Angela Carling

Summer On Fire by Kevin Craig

Something, Maybe by Elizabeth Scott

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

Never Eighteen by Megan Bostic

Love Story by Jennifer Echols

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Wolves, Boys, and Other Things That Might Kill Me by Kristen Chandler

What Happened To Goodbye by Sarah Dessen

Out of these ten, I would recommend almost all of them to at least someone out there! Loving Emily was flat-out awesome. If you loved Freefall by Mindi Scott then this one is PERFECT for you! As for Unbreakable Love, it was a cute love story. It wasn’t exactly my favorite take on angels but it was still good! Summer On Fire was another okay one for me. It was a good book but I think it is more for the younger, teenage boy (which is TOTALLY okay with me since I think there needs to be more books for teenage boys out there!). Something, Maybe was my first Elizabeth Scott book, and I am now a fan. Like Sarah Dessen, she has very cute, easy to read books (this is my very non-subtle way of saying, “If you are a SD fan, read this book!”) The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is a completely mind-blowing story. I have not even reviewed it because it is just so “wow” that I cannot even find the words to describe it!I think there is something so creepy and haunting about it, but if I (a HUGE baby) can handle it, I have no problem recommending it to everyone else! Never Eighteen is a great book if you are in the mood for a quick, tear-jerker! I think this book is a good mix of Deadline by Chris Crutcher and maybe Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (I don’t know why it reminded me of the latter but it was awesome so that’s all you need to know!). Love Story will keep those Jennifer Echols hard-core fans (such as myself) happy! I loved that this book had older characters! It may not be my ALL-TIME favorite by her but it was still well-worth the read! Lola and the Boy Next Door is a must read. I don’t care if you are 16 or 80. Male or female. THAT BOOK IS MADE OF AWESOME! Wolves, Boys, and Other Things That Might Kill Me…ehhh, I didn’t love this one like at all but it does have a super-freaking-awesome title. What Happened To Goodbye. Sarah Dessen, a goddess in my book, wrote it. Need I say more?

So I couldn’t pick just one book to recommend to you guys but I hope that the little snippets I offered on each book will help you decide if you want to read them! And if you have read any of the above titles, what did you think about them???

This week on Kate’s Tales of Books and Bands (1/13-1/20):

TGIF (33) The top books on my TBR list for 2012!

Life As Kate (14) Madness, like always!

In My Mailbox (29) HOLY HUGE STACK OF BOOKISH GOODIES, BATMAN!

Tune In Tuesday (43) Featuring the super adorable He Is We!

Dark Days Blog Tour + Book Teasers! Check out the QUESTION OF THE DAY in the comments section and e-mail the authors for a chance to win a KINDLE FIRE!!!

The Best of Twenty-Ten

Wow! I can’t believe this year is coming to an end. So many exciting, terrible, magnificent, and strange things have happened this year. Influenced by my friends Caroline and Mrs. Andersen (It is still strange to call a former teacher by her first name. It is Sarah by the way), I compiled a list of all of my favorites of the past year. Enjoy!:

1. Best vacation: Spring Break with my best friend, Kati. We went all the way to California. It exceeded all of my expectations on what I thought would be the perfect spring break.

Kati and I posing on a beach in Cali!!

2. Best concert: This is a tie between Warped Tour and The Travelin Show. Both of which featured some amazing bands (We The Kings, The Summer Set, Artist Vs. Poet, etc.) The Travelin Show even featured the man I will one day marry. Ok I am joking but hey, a girl can dream can’t she? (Just look at his dimples; they get me every time!)

Artist vs. Poet threw that monster can at me! I was so excited.

Ohh goodness! He doesn’t realize it yet, but this guy is going to be my husband one day. Just look at those dimples!

3. Best CD: This was an easy decision since Taylor Swift’s third CD, Speak Now, is still on constant replay. It is full of awesomeness.

4. Best new activity: Joining book club has been awesome. It has only added more fuel to the fire. I just can’t seem to stop reading…ever! Ohh, and making this blog has also been pretty fantastic; I am addicted!

5. Best birthday present: My new bedroom of course! Here are the pictures that I promised a few weeks ago:

6. Best movies: There really has been some great movies this past year. The ones that stuck with me the most were Eclipse, Harry Potter, Due Date, Life As We Know It, and The Other Guys.

7. Best books: I can’t choose just a few! Here are all of my favorite 2010 books. (Note: Not all were released this year, just read by me in 2010)

Beautiful Creatures By Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Beautiful Darkness By Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

 

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

City if Ashes by Cassandra Clare

 City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

Fallen by Lauren Kate

Forget You by Jennifer Echols

Going Too Far by Jennifer Echols

Freefall by Mindi Scott

Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

Leaving Paradise by Simone Elkeles

Return to Paradise by Simone Elkeles

Nevermore by Kelly Creagh

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles

Ruined (How to Ruin 1-3) by Simone Elkeles

The Ghost and the Goth by Stacey Kade

Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

Wake by Lisa McMann

8. Best shinning moment: Hmm… this is a tough one. There was graduation, honors night, or placing at states for BPA (Business Professionals of America, it’s really cool, you should be jealous!). Ohh, what the heck, I guess they all win.

9. Best friend: Of course this award goes to Kati. Even though we are going to separate schools now and both have extremely busy schedules, we still find time to be there for each other. I don’t know what I’d do without her!

10. Best family: Well mine of course! They are loud, annoying, and extremely obnoxious but I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Freefall by Mindi Scott

Title: Freefall

Author: Mindi Scott

Publisher: Simon Pulse

Pages: 315 paperback

My Rating: 5/5 stars

*If every debut author could write a novel this well, then my already huge TBR list would triple in size! I still cannot get over how amazing this book was*

How do you come back from the point of no return?

Seth McCoy was the last person to see his best friend Isaac alive, and the first to find him dead. It was just another night, just another party, just another time where Isaac drank too much and passed out on the lawn. Only this time, Isaac didn’t wake up.

Convinced that his own actions led to his friend’s death, Seth is torn between turning his life around . . . or losing himself completely.

Then he meets Rosetta: so beautiful and so different from everything and everyone he’s ever known. But Rosetta has secrets of her own, and Seth will soon realize he isn’t the only one who needs saving . . . (Summary, courtesy of Mindiscott.com)

This was a fantastic book! There really is not one thing about it that I disliked. The characters were all phenomenal (even the ones you only saw a little bit of), the plot was incredible (it is not an issue we all have to deal with, nevertheless, it was great!), and the book was genuinely well written.  The main character, Seth, is dealing with a lot. He can’t stop drinking, playing in his band just isn’t the same, and his grades are slipping badly in school. Seth is having an issue with everything because he really doesn’t know how to deal with the death of his best friend, Isaac. Since Seth was with him the night before he died, he truly blames himself for Isaac’s death. He is constantly thinking “what if I did this,” or “what if I did that.” Everyone else seems to be getting over Isaac’s death far too quickly and this only makes matters worse for him. Things slowly start to change for Seth when he joins Interpersonal Communications (IC) class. There, Seth meets the beautiful Rosetta. At first he thinks they couldn’t be more different but he soon learns they are both struggling with a great loss. Focusing on someone else seems to bring Seth out of his little cocoon of despair. As Seth slowly pulls away from his old life of drugs and alcohol he realizes that he really isn’t the one to blame for Isaac’s death. Mindi Scott’s inspiring debut novel only makes me more excited for what other great pieces of work she can come up with!

What is next?

  At this time of the year, days are supposed to be spent Christmas shopping, baking cookies, and watching an endless amount of Christmas movies. Now all of this sounds great but I am doing quite the opposite. The Torrey Family Curse kicked in last week when one of our pumps broke. I was in the middle of doing a load of laundry when I soon found myself standing in a huge puddle of water. This would be no huge issue for a girl whose father happens to be a plumber, but when that plumber is my own dad, it is a completely different story. This issue with the plumbing happened last Tuesday. We did not have running water in the basement until Sunday. That is nearly five days of all 8 of us sharing two bathrooms. In other words…pure torture. This problem wouldn’t be too terrible if you didn’t take into account everything else going wrong. It started when Zack (the second youngest of my family) had a fever that lasted 3 days. Then Zeke (the little baby) started throwing up non-stop. Then Zack got rid of the fever but picked up the nasty flu bug. So as you can guess, that flu bug spread to everyone else within 24 hours. I thought I was going to luck out seeing as I was already sick with a nasty cough, and I tend to not get the flu. I survived a whole day of work but the second I got home I got sick. What a mess! This did not make planning for Christmas an easy task. We had to make Christmas cookies (making sure that whomever didn’t have the flu at the time was touching them), get the Christmas tree and decorate it (yes; we still go out and cut down a real live tree every year. I wouldn’t have it any other way), and then there is the Christmas decorations. It literally looks like our 20 tubs of Christmas stuff got the flu bug too and threw up everywhere. It is a gross analogy, but still you can get the pictures. A word of advice: Any breakable, messy, or priceless decorations should NOT be put in a house of six kids! We spend more time cleaning up and putting the decorations back in place than anything else! To say the least, it has been a crazy few days in the Torrey household. Now everyone is hopefully returning back to normal (well as normal as you can get in my house) schedules tomorrow; no more sick days for us! While being sick had made me feel pretty miserable for a while I was still able to accomplish a lot. I posted some more book reviews as well crossing a few books off of my to-read list. I finished Love Sick by Jake Coburn (see previous post for review) and Wake by Lisa McMann (review: coming soon!). Now that’s not too shabby! I am now making my way through Freefall by Mindi Scott. I am only about 100 pages in, but gosh, what an amazing book so far! I can already tell it’s going to be a favorite. A piece of great news: An author actually commented on my blog today! How awesome is that. Ashley Perez is a 2011 Debut Author, and it just so happens I am reading her book titled What Can’t Wait for the Debut Author Challenge. She just dropped by to say thanks for choosing her book. Maybe this means things are looking up for the blog ?! Well, I sure hope so =]