Saturday, August 29, 2015

Sunday Book Soundtrack: Somebody Up There Hates You by Hollis Seamon


Sunday Book Soundtrack is a weekly feature at Ruby's Books, where I share some of my bookish soundtracks. Since I discovered my passion for reading years ago, I've discovered that more and more of the songs I loved remind me of certain books. So I thought I'd share my playlists with you. If you want to listen to the songs, I'll post a link to a Youtube videos for each and every title. No copyright infringement intended! I'll try to find the official videos for each song. There's no set number for each playlist, sometimes I might have 10, sometimes 5, sometimes if I'm one of my moods I'll have 15. If you want to read more about this feature, click the "show more" button below. 

This week's book soundtrack is Somebody Up There Hates You by Hollis Seamon. (read my review here)

  1. Song For Someone - U2 - I think this song fits Richard and Sylvie perfectly. The entire story actually could be represented by this song.
  2. Lou Reed - Walk On The Wild Side 
  3. Birdy - Skinny Love
  4. Elton John - Your Song

Liked this list? Want more? Click here for previous Sunday Book Soundtrack posts.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Release Blitz: Breakout by Ann Aguirre

BREAKOUT - RWB -banner

We are absolutely thrilled to bring you the Release Week Blitz for Ann Aguirre's BREAKOUT! BREAKOUT is an Adult Romantic Science Fiction novel set in the Jax Universe and is a part of Ann Aguirre’s Dred Chronicles, published through Ace. Grab your copy of BREAKOUT today!

BREAKOUT - cover Amazon ** Barnes and Noble ** BAM ** Indiebound ** Vroman’s ** Book Depository ** iBooks

BREAKOUT Synopsis:  

All hell is breaking loose in the edge-of-your-seat follow-up to Havoc and Perdition from New York Times bestselling author Ann Aguirre…

The prison ship Perdition has become a post-battle charnel house with only a handful of Dred’s soldiers still standing and now being hunted by Silence’s trained tongueless assassins. Forging an uneasy alliance with mercenary commander Vost—who is their only chance at escape—the Dread Queen will do whatever it takes to end her life sentence on Perdition and keep the survivors alive long enough to cobble together a transport capable of getting them off station.

If Dred and her crew can win the deadly game of cat and mouse, the payoff is not only life but freedom—a prize sweeter than their wildest dreams. Yet the sadistic Silence would rather destroy Perdition than let a single soul slip from her grasp…  

Praise for the Dred Chronicles: "There's so much action, so much adventure, and more than that, it's great writing."—USA Today

"Sirantha Jax fans may be intrigued to see what befell Jael after his ill-considered actions there, and new lead Dred is a strong linchpin for a promising new series."—Publishers Weekly

"Spectacularly and spell-bindingly perfect with high octane action that keeps you on the edge of your seat and a romance that is surprisingly sweet and tender in a harsh and unforgiving setting...This is honestly one of the best SF romance series I have read." —Book Pushers  

And don’t miss the previous books in the Dred Chronicles!


Author Photo  
About Ann Aguirre:

Ann Aguirre is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author and RITA winner with a degree in English Literature; before she began writing full time, she was a clown, a clerk, a voice actress, and a savior of stray kittens, not necessarily in that order. She grew up in a yellow house across from a cornfield, but now she lives in sunny Mexico with her husband, children, and various pets. Ann likes books, emo music, action movies, and she writes all kinds of genre fiction for adults and teens, published with Harlequin, Macmillan, and Penguin, among others.      
Website **Facebook**Twitter**Tumblr ** Goodreads ** Newsletter SignUp  

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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Early Book Review: A Whole New World by Liz Braswell
Author: Liz Braswell
Series: Twisted Tales #1
Publisher: Disney Press
Release Date: September 1st 2015
My Rating: 3 cups
Source: Netgalley
Blurb (from Goodreads):

Welcome to a new YA series that reimagines classic Disney stories in surprising new ways. Each book asks the question: What if one key moment from a familiar Disney film was changed? This dark and daring version of Aladdin twists the original story with the question: What if Jafar was the first one to summon the Genie?

When Jafar steals the Genie’s lamp, he uses his first two wishes to become sultan and the most powerful sorcerer in the world. Agrabah lives in fear, waiting for his third and final wish.To stop the power-mad ruler, Aladdin and the deposed Princess Jasmine must unite the people of Agrabah in rebellion. But soon their fight for freedom threatens to tear the kingdom apart in a costly civil war.

What happens next? A Street Rat becomes a leader. A princess becomes a revolutionary. And readers will never look at the story of Aladdin in the same way again.

*Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from Disney Press and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

When I first heard of this book, the 5 year old in my did crazy happy dances. What could be better than a Disney movie retelling where the bad guy wins? So I was ecstatic to read this book.

The idea of the book is great. Although not one of my favorite Disney movies, I always loved Genie (Robin Williams, may he rest in peace, was amazing in this role). And although he was twisted and mean, Iago was my favorite pet sidekick, along with Abu. Though Iago was funnier in my eyes.

Because the book was focused on what if Jafar had gotten the lamp, we don't get to see much of Iago or the Genie. We get to see how life for the Street Rats was, how they go from being just the poorest of the poor to being the bravest of the brave. We see a darker Agrabah and I really enjoyed that. Usually the fairytales we get to read/see nowadays are lighter than this book, so it was a good change to see a darker story. There were some details that I didn't see coming, mostly relating to some characters and how they reacted to magic. I also liked some of the stories that were new to the story, like a little bit of Genie's backstory, or the beginning of the book, with Aladdin as a kid. I also liked the little moments that tied the book to the movie.

There were a few things that I was hoping would be different. For instance, there's an insta-love element that I feel could have been avoided. In the movie it was acceptable, because there is  a limited time frame that filmmakers have to put together a good story. But in a book setting, I feel like the love story of Jasmine and Aladdin could have been built a little bit more. I also would've wanted to see a little bit of growth in the characters. There were new characters used in this book, some of which were great and did feel a little changed by the end of the book. But the well-known characters could have had a little bit more growth in them by the end of the story.

A Whole New World was an interesting take on the story of the magic lamp and Aladdin. I've sometimes wanted to know how the story would look like if the bad guy won, so it was good to see a story like this. I'm curious what stories will be retold in the future.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Early Book Review: Get Real by Tellulah Darling

Author: Tellulah Darling
Series: Get Real #1
Publisher: Te Da Media
Release Date: September 26th
My Rating: 4.5 cups
Source: Netgalley
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Get Real is a New Adult romantic comedy with sass, sex, and swoon, set in the world of “Cadabras"–humans with magical powers.

Francesca Bellafiore is a good Jewish girl, living up to family expectations that she use her magic to heal others. Underneath, she’s a wannabe badass with her heart set on becoming a detective and solving magical crimes. But nice girls don't disappoint their moms.

Party boy Rafael Muñoz does everything possible to publicly disappoint his high profile father. Privately, it's a different story. His carefully crafted bad boy reputation masks the fact he’s a master illusionist, forced into solo covert ops. The role is wearing thin and Rafael longs to be part of a team.

When Francesca meets Rafael at a friend's party, she's taken by the sexy stranger. Until he speaks. Beautiful plumage doesn't compensate for spectacular ego. Rafael finds Francesca's sweetness a turn-on. For about five minutes. Judgmental golden girls are more trouble than they're worth. Then a terrified girl with reality warping powers, locked and loaded on their destruction, whisks the pair to Manhattan. Francesca and Rafael are caught in a web of magic, minions, secrets, and enough sexual tension to power NYC. Desperate to prove themselves, their only chance to save the city and survive is to team up, trust each other–and maybe even fall in love.

Provided they don't kill each other first.

*Disclaimer: I received an eARC from Te Da Media and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

It's no secret that I love Tellulah Darling's books. So it should not surprise anyone that I adored Get Real.

Francesca was such a funny heroine. I loved her sense of duty. I was so sad for her because she was willing to give up her dreams to keep her family traditions alive, but in a way I also understood her and her reasons. I loved her relationship with her friends. I can't wait to read more about her in the next books and see how other characters perceive her.

Rafael....Oh my. He was cute. It was interesting to see things from his perspective too. It also helped me like him a lot, because I feel like I wouldn't have been too fond of him had the story been told only from Francesca's POV. This way I got to understand his reasons and I really felt bad for him.

What was interesting about this book was how the subject of sexual orientation was approached. It didn't give me the impression that it was something out of the norm and it wasn't taboo or something that needs to be kept a secret. Which was great and I really want to read more books like this. It was also refreshing to see how certain relationships are mended in a way, how sometimes we have the wrong idea about a person really close to us and how we can judge them harshly for something they didn't do. Lots of cold truths in there and I really enjoyed that.

At times the story moved a little too fast, but while a bit confusing, it also helped experiencing a little of what Rafael and Francesca were experiencing. I loved the phrases in other languages. It made the characters feel real in a way. It helped that I knew what the phrases meant, I know, but for me it made it real that these characters have a multicultural background.

I did not expect that ending. I really, really want to know what happens next.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Shelf Love: Best Bookish Gifts

Hey guys! This month's topic was best bookish gifts. Hmmm.... This is kind of a difficult topic, because all bookish gifts that I've gotten so far are good. The best one has to be the Harry Potter series. I know, kind of cliche, right?

A photo posted by Ruby (@rubys.books) on

A photo posted by Ruby (@rubys.books) on

I got the first 6 books from my aunt and uncle every Christmas and they're the best of the best bookish gifts ever. This is probably why I associate Harry Potter with winter and with Christmas and why each year I feel the need to reread it around that time. The last book I got it myself as a HS graduation gift.

What about you? What are the best bookish gifts you ever got?  

*Disclaimer: Photos taken from my Instagram account

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wednesday Chatter #11: Would You Still Like Your Favorites?

Wednesday Chatter is a weekly feature at Ruby's Books where we'll be talking about anything and everything related to books and reading. Click here if you want to see what we talked about in the previous weeks

WARNING: Some bad words might be used in the following post. Don't say I didn't warn you!

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I was thinking recently about my reading reading habit and how I love to reread. In the blog post I linked you to I said that one of the reasons I love rereading is because I know the book won't let me down and that I know I'll love the book, since I read it the first time. I stand by what I said, because I have been rereading a lot recently and I did enjoy reading those books. This however is about the books I don't think I'll ever reread, despite having loved them.

There are tons of books that I loved, both books that I've reviewed and that I haven't reviewed. Some I've reread tons of times, like Vampire Academy or Harry Potter or any Sophie Kinsella book. Some, however, I have not. Take Divergent, for example. I loved the first book. I was mildly disappointed with the second. Won't be reading the third one because I don't feel the need to finish the story. And to be honest with you, I don't know if I'll like the book as much as I did the first time.

Another good example is The Two Towers from Tolkien's Lord Of The Rings trilogy. The first time I read it, back in high school, I think I read it in three, four days. Now however, I've been stuck at Frodo and Sam's journey for weeks. It is possible this is because I am so used to reading fast paced books, that that second part of the book is too slow for me right now. 

So my question for you is this: would you like your favorite books if you were to reread them? Or have you found yourself rereading a loved book that you didn't enjoy as much on a second read?
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