Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.


Sunday, September 6, 2009

In Your Mailbox/Mailbox Monday 9-7-2009

Mailbox Monday is hosted at The Printed Page or In Your Mailbox at The Story Siren. Please stop by those posts and take a look at what packages everybody else got this week!

Happy Labor Day everyone! I was gone for most of last week, so I will be detailing all of my books here instead of individually for this mailbox. So here we go! I hope you find something that interests you!

Marked by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast

I received this one from Paperback Swap and am excited to start this series!

Enter the dark magical world of the House of Night, a world very much like our own, except here vampyres have always existed. Sixteen-year-old Zoey Redbird has just been Marked as a fledgling vampyre and joins the House of Night, a school where she will train to become an adult vampyre. That is, if she makes it through the Change - and not all of those who are Marked do. It sucks to begin a new life, especially away from her friends, and on top of that, Zoey is no average fledgling. She has been chosen as special by the Vampyre Goddess Nyx. Zoey discovers she has amazing powers, but along with her powers come bloodlust and an unfortunate ability to imprint her human ex-boyfriend. To add to her stress, she is not the only fledgling at the House of Night with special powers: When she discovers that the leader of the Dark Daughters, the school's most elite group, is misusing her Goddess-given gifts, Zoey must look deep within herself for the courage to embrace her destiny-with a little help from her new vampyre friends. (back cover)

The Transformation Study Bible edited by Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe

I received this from Tracy at TBB Media.

One of the most anticipated and comprehensive Study Bibles of the year, The Transformation Study Bible has been a lifetime in the making by a man who is the former pastor of The Moody Church in Chicago, an internationally known Bible teacher, and someone who has given his life to a deep examination of the Word of God.

For over thirty years, millions have come to rely on the timeless wisdom of Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe's "Be" Commentary series. Dr. Wiersbe's commentary and insights on Scripture have helped readers understand and apply God's Word with the goal of life transformation.

We may be the messengers but God transforms lives through His Word and The Transformation Study Bible promises to be an essential resource for growing motivated disciples. Not only will readers understand God's Word with a greater sense of clarity, but they will be given the means to apply what they learn with a new sense of purpose.

Now available for the first time, The Transformation Study Bible offers the full text of the highly readable New Living Translation with accompanying notes and commentary from the 50 books in Dr. Wiersbe's "Be" series.

Rely on Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe to guide you through Scripture and lead you in real-life transformation. Uncover the profound truths of God's Word. Apply what you learn with a new sense of purpose.

This is a must-own Bible for everyday use by all Christians who want to get more out of their study of Scripture. (Amazon)

A Separate Country by Robert Hicks

I received this from Miriam at Hachette Books.

Set in New Orleans in the years after the Civil War, A Separate Country is based on the incredible life of John Bell Hood, arguably one of the most controversial generals of the Confederate Army--and one of its most tragic figures. Robert E. Lee promoted him to major general after the Battle of Antietam. But the Civil War would mark him forever. At Gettysburg, he lost the use of his left arm. At the Battle of Chickamauga, his right leg was amputated. Starting fresh after the war, he married Anna Marie Hennen and fathered 11 children with her, including three sets of twins. But fate had other plans. Crippled by his war wounds and defeat, ravaged by financial misfortune, Hood had one last foe to battle: Yellow Fever. A Separate Country is the heartrending story of a decent and good man who struggled with his inability to admit his failures-and the story of those who taught him to love, and to be loved, and transformed him. (Amazon)

The Third Man Factor: The Secret to Survival in Extreme Environments by John Geiger

I received this from Catherine at Weinstein Books.

The Third Man Factor is an extraordinary account of how people at the very edge of death experience the sense of an unseen presence beside them who encourages them to make one final effort to survive. This incorporeal being offered them a feeling of hope, protection, and guidance, and left the person convinced he or she was not alone. There is a name for this phenomenon: It's called the Third Man Factor.

If only a handful of people had ever encountered the Third Man, it might be dismissed as an unusual delusion shared by a few overstressed minds. But over the years, the experience has occurred again and again, to 9/11 survivors, mountaineers, divers, polar explorers, prisoners of war, sailors, shipwreck survivors, aviators, and astronauts. All have escaped traumatic events only to tell strikingly similar stories of having sensed the close presence of a helper or guardian. The force has been explained as everything from hallucination to divine intervention. Recent neurological research suggests something else.

Bestselling and award-winning author John Geiger has completed six years of physiological, psychological, and historical research on The Third Man. He blends his analysis with compelling human stories such as Ron diFrancesco, the last survivor out of the World Trade Center on 9/11; Ernest Shackleton, the legendary explorer whose account of the Third Man inspired T.S. Eliot to write of it in The Wasteland; Jerry Linenger, a NASA astronaut who experienced The Third Man while aboard the Mir space station-and many more.

Fascinating for any reader, The Third Man Factor at last explains this secret to survival, a Third Man who-in the words of famed climber Reinhold Messner-"leads you out of the impossible." (Amazon)

The Evolution of Shadows: A Novel by Jason Quinn Malott

I received this from Caitlin at Unbridled Books.

In July of 1995, the news photographer Gray Banick disappeared into the Bosnian war zone and doing so took away pieces of the hearts of three people who loved him: Emil Todorovi , his interpreter and friend; Jack MacKenzie, his mentor who taught Gray to hold his camera steady between himself and the worst that war presents; and Lian Zhao who didn t have the strength to love him as he wanted her to. Now, almost five years later, they have gathered in Sarajevo to find out what happened to Gray, the man who had taught them all what love is. Each driven character in this novel believes fully that there is a love strong enough to sustain them, even in the extreme of circumstances of war. But each time they have uncovered a glimpse of such a thing, they have failed tragically love itself. Or, to see it another way, this is a novel about how love fails us every time or almost every time. (Amazon)

Saint John of the Five Boroughs by Edward Falco

I received this from Caitlin at Unbridled Books also.

When 22-year-old Avery Walker, a senior at Penn State, meets Grant Danko, a 37-year-old performance artist from Brooklyn whose stage name is Saint John of the Five Boroughs, her life changes radically as she leaves college to live with Grant in Brooklyn and pursue a life as an artist. Out of concern for Avery, her mother, Kate, and her aunt, Lindsey, and Lindsey s husband, Hank, all travel to Brooklyn, where they all face a crisis and they are all forced to make life-altering choices. Grant Danko is a bad guy with a curiously attractive personality and a coterie of bright, artistic friends. He uses his good looks and his accomplishments (and the accomplishments of those friends) to get as many women as possible into bed. He s at times screwed up on drugs, winds up murdering someone as a result of taking a job working for his gangster uncle. He s inclined toward sex as an act of violence, has violent sex at least bordering on rape with his best friend and with Avery, a college student fifteen years younger than he. He mocks religion in his performance personae, and at the point where we first meet him, he s locked off from any kind of relationship with a higher power. Grant is about as lost as a man can get. So, when he finally chooses to risk death rather than to murder yet again, something extraordinary has happened. He s at the beginning of redemption and change, almost a kind of grace. Saint John of the Five Boroughs is beautifully turned, a stunning and layered novel about the effects of violence, both personal and cultural, on its characters lives. It s about the way violence twists character but it s also about the possibility of changing paths for the better. This novel explores why we make the choices we make both the choices that are so bad for us in their ultimate consequences, and the choices that save us. (Amazon)

The Private Papers of Eastern Jewel: A Novel by Maureen Lindley

I received this from Bloomsbury USA through Shelf Awareness.

Peking, 1914. When the eight-year-old princess Eastern Jewel is caught spying on her father's liaison with a servant girl, she is banished from the palace, sent to live with a powerful family in Japan. Renamed Yoshiko Kawashima, she quickly falls in love with her adoptive country, where she earns a scandalous reputation, taking fencing lessons, smoking opium, and entertaining numerous lovers. Sent to Mongolia to become an obedient wife, Yoshiko mounts a daring escape and eventually finds her way back to Peking high society--this time with orders from the Japanese secret service.

Based on the true story of a rebellious woman who earned a controversial place in history, The Private Papers of Eastern Jewel is a vibrant reimagining of a thrilling life--a historical epic of palace intrigue, sexual manipulation, and international espionage. (back cover)

My Fishing Journal by Louis Gary Lamit

I received this from the author through Bostick Communications.

Some of my fondest memories are of fishing with my dad. Together, we fished from bridges and boats, along docks and canals, from the shores of lakes and streams, and even standing on thick ice. We spent many days in the warm sun on small row boats pulling in sunfish, bluegills, and perch by the hundreds. In the warm buggy summers we fished in the late evening and early morning for catfish along local canals. Until I started writing this journal I never realized just how much of my life I have spent fishing. Recently my son and I started fishing with my granddaughter. And so, the tradition of family and fishing is passed to the next generation. For my family and hopefully for yours, fishing is an excellent excuse to get out into nature and spend time with those you love. Looking back I wish I would have written down information about these trips. This journal is for those who want to document their fishing trips and also save it for later in life to better recall these special times. (Amazon)

Fairy Hunters, Ink by Sheila A. Dane

I received this from the author through Bostick Communications.

"Fairy Hunters, Ink." is about a small group of intrepid fairy hunters who go about finding fairies.And they are most unusual fairies. There are Button Fairies, Fire Fairies, Picnic Fairies and fairies of all kinds of things. The book is about fairies but it is also about the relationships between the characters themselves. It has been described by one reader as a combination of "Winnie the Pooh" and "Alice in Wonderland". The characters who thread their way through the book are Ashley, a most curious little girl about 5 years old; Big Rabbit, a stuffed rabbit (but not really stuffed) who is full of knowledge about carrots and many other things; Turtle, whom Ashley and Big Rabbit meet along the way as they chase a particularly mischievous Willow fairy and the narrator, Laura, whose age is never quite clear and who is always getting into trouble along with Ashley. They meet a lot of fairies and a few Gremlins along the way and they learn something about themselves as well. The book is full of word play and rhymes, silliness and seriousness. It can be read to a five year old or by a an eight year old or by an adult. (Amazon)

Messages to Myself: Overcoming a Distorted Self-Image by Helen B. McIntosh

I received this for a First Wild Card Tour in October.

What you think and believe about yourself directly affects your behaviours, your choices, and your mental health.

If you have been wounded by the opinions and words of others, you may have internalized the sadness and anger those hurtful messages caused--even if you were hurt years ago. They could be the source of low self-esteem, poor concentration, difficulty making decisions, and hopelessness--even feelings of insignificance and isolation. Ignoring these feelings will not make them go away.

Dr. Helen McIntosh, a licensed counselor has experienced the emotional anguish and devastation that past hurts can cause, and she suffered the painful consequences for many years. In her book, Messages to Myself, she shares with you methods that you can start using immediately to change the messages you give yourself every day.

Through her one-of-a-kind Truth Chart, which is included in Messages to Myself, you will begin to identify lies you have believed about yourself and proactively counteract those lies with truth.

You don't have to live with a poor self-image. You can see yourself as God sees you and live in peace and joy with eager anticipation for your future. (back cover)

The Naughty List by Suzanne Young

I received this from Gillian at PGI Razorbill.

As if being a purrfect cheerleader isn’t enough responsibility! Tessa Crimson’s the sweet and spunky leader of the SOS (Society of Smitten Kittens), a cheer squad–turned–spy society dedicated to bringing dastardly boyfriends to justice, one cheater at a time. Boyfriend-busting wouldn’t be so bad . . . except that so far, every suspect on the Naughty List has been proven 100% guilty!

When Tessa’s own boyfriend shows up on the List, she turns her sleuthing skills on him. Is Aiden just as naughty as all the rest, or will Tessa’s sneaky ways end in catastrophe?

The Naughty List. Is your boyfriend on it?

The Good Girl's Guide to Getting Kidnapped by Yxta Maya Murray

I received this one from Gillian at PGI Razorbill also!

Kiki and Mish are best friends, but what Kiki doesn’t know is that Michelle Pena was born a gang princess. “Princess P” grew up destined to inherit leadership of the Snakes: a future filled with crime and fear.

Michelle, on the other hand, is a nationally ranked athlete and academic superstar. This is her new life, and she’s finally put her past—and her childhood love for Silver—to rest.

Then Silver helps kidnap both girls, and Michelle has to figure out how to free them both—and reconnect with a future that might now be beyond her reach. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition. (Amazon)

A is for Admission: The Insider's Guide to Getting into the Ivy League and other Top Colleges by Michele A Hernandez, EdD

I received this from Brianne at Hachette Books.

Plenty of college admission guides promise to help students crack the Ivy League, but few of these have detailed knowledge to back up their advice. Michele Hernandez, on the other hand, is the ultimate insider. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Dartmouth College, she also worked as Dartmouth's assistant director of admissions for four years. In A Is for Admissions, Hernandez describes the step-by-step process Ivy League schools use to evaluate an application. Along the way she settles some ancient debates, including the comparative importance of SATs versus high-school grades, public versus private high schools, and extracurricular activities versus part-time employment. She evaluates every possible factor affecting chances for admission, including special categories of students such as recruited athletes, minority applicants, and legacies. Most dramatically, Hernandez reveals the precise mathematical formula used by admissions officers to rank applicants. Using her guidelines, readers can calculate their own AI (Academic Index) and--should their scores come up short--learn ways to compensate in other areas.

Refreshingly, Hernandez helps would-be Ivy Leaguers keep their goals in perspective. She strongly advises against "grade grubbing" or "working for the grade." If you think attending a top college is the key to success, Hernandez cautions that the Ivies may not be for you. "If your goal is to make money, but you don't enjoy studying or reading, don't waste your time by trying to get into an Ivy League or highly selective college.... The beauty of an Ivy League/highly selective education lies in the intellectual atmosphere.... It does not lie in the prestige of having a diploma from Princeton or Dartmouth on your wall." Levelheaded and clearly written, A Is for Admission is the perfect guide for the student (or parent) who has his eyes set on the stars. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. (Amazon.com Review)

My Grammar and I...Or Should That Be Me?: How to Speak and Write it Right by Caroline Taggart and J.A. Wines

I received this from Caitlin at FSB Associates.

Sharpen your language skills and navigate your way around grammatical minefields with this entertaining and practical guide. For anyone who has ever been stumped by dangling modifiers and split infinitives, or for those who have no idea what these things even are, My Grammar and I...Or Should That Be Me? offers practical and humorous guidance on how to avoid falling into language pitfalls. Here are all the right tools to help you gain confidence as a speaker and writer, highlighting the most common language errors, such as wrongly used prepositions, misplaced modifiers, and confusing participles.

This refreshing refresher course covers:
• Spelling and Confusables-There are times when the spelling rule "i before e except after c" does not apply
• Parts of Speech-Is it "its" or "it's"? "Whose" or "who's"?
• Sentence Structure-Let us ponder the subject, or object, of "I" and "me"
• Punctuation-So where does a comma go?
• Elements of Style-There is more to grammar than knowing the difference between a subordinate object and a nonrestrictive apostrophe

And, for those grammar know-it-alls, there are entertaining "Smart Aleck" trivia, anecdotes, witticisms, and more. Clever and informative, this is the ideal gift for all English-language sticklers. (Amazon)

i before e (except after c): old-school ways to remember stuff by Judy Parkinson

I received this from Caitlin at FSB Associates.

Here is an amusing collection of ingenious mnemonics devised to help us learn and understand hundreds of important fact as children and can continue to resonate with us as adults.

Featuring all the mnemonics you’ll ever need to know, this fun little book will bring back all the simple, easy-to-remember rhymes from your childhood—once learned, fix the information in the brain forever—such as learning to count by reciting “One, Two, buckle my shoe, Three, Four, knock at the door.” Packed with clever verses, engaging acronyms, curious—and sometimes hilarious—sayings that can be used to solve a problem or cap an argument.

Take a trip back to the classroom, and rediscover the assortment of practical memory aids covering a range of different subjects, including spelling, time, mathematics, history, general trivia, and much more. The information is organized in short snippets by category such as:
* Geographically Speaking: Remember North East South West by reciting Never Eat Slimy Worms or Naughty Elephants Squirt Water.
* Time and the Calendar: “Thirty days hath September, April, June, and November; All the rest have 31 excepting February alone; And that has 28 days clear; With 29 in each leap year”
* Think of a Number: Know the Roman numerals by remembering “I Value Xylophones Like Cows Dig Milk”
* World History: “In fourteen hundred, ninety-two, Columbus sailed the ocean blue, And found this land, land of the Free, beloved by you, beloved by me”

The clever verses, engaging acronyms, curious sayings are endless. Guaranteed to amuse and inform, here is a perfect gift for any language lover—complete with a To/From gift plate. (Amazon)

I Used to Know That: stuff you forgot from school by Caroline Taggart

I received this from Caitlin at FSB Associates also!

This small but mighty collection will trigger your memory with fun facts you learned in school—from adverbs to the Pythagorean Theorem. Witty, engaging, entertaining—a book you’ll pick up again and again.

Author Caroline Taggart discovered two things while researching this book and talking with other people: One, everybody had been to school. And two, they had all forgotten entirely different things. Contained in this handy little book are the facts that you learned in school, but may not remember completely or accurately. Covering a variety of subjects, this book features all the most important theories, equations, phrases, and rules we were all taught years ago.

* History: The first president to occupy the White House was John Adams in 1800
* Religion: The seven deadly sins and the names of the twelve apostles
* Literature: In which Shakespearean play “The quality of mercy” speech appears
* Science: The periodic table of elements devised by a Russian chemist in 1889 includes the symbol for lead (Pb), silver (Ag), tin (Sn), and gold (Au)
* Nature: How photosynthesis works

The information—presented in easy-to-retain, bite-sized chunks—is accurate and up-to- date. It will touch a chord with anyone old enough to have forgotten half of what they learned at school. Here is a perfect gift for every perennial student. (Amazon)

Mom Needs Chocolate: Hugs, Humor and Hope for Surviving Motherhood by Debora M. Coty

I received this for a First Wild Card Tour in October.

Your spirit yearns to soar, but your feet—and faith—are stuck in the diaper-by-diaper mud of everyday responsibilities. How can you de-muck when you’re chronically exhausted and relentlessly robbed of abundant life by the joy-sucking dully-funks? Mom Needs Chocolate will help you get back in touch with rejuvenating joy and empowering faith! In mom-to-mom, smile-provoking style, humorist Debora M. Coty paints her offbeat picture of reality with a tangy twist, and offers outrageous coping tips, off-the-wall insights, sisterly hugs and warmencouragement.With witty frankness and wild abandon, she tackles the highs and lows (and mediums) of marriage, the horror of embarrassing children, the defeat (and re-defeat) of depression, aging grossfully (er, gracefully), and a veritable grocery list of othermud-between-your-toes issues. You will glimpse the all-too-familiar in these hilarious and heartwarming stories, and remember how to hear God’s still, small voice above blathering kids, howling pets and snarling traffic! (back cover)

What books found a new home with you this week?


Park Avenue Princess said...

Definitely an awesome List Kristi! I read "The Naughty List" in one sitting!

Happy reading!

x0x0 Amy (Park-Avenue Princess)

bermudaonion said...

Wow, your list was unending! The author of Saint John of the Five Boroughs is a professor at my son's school. Happy reading!

Zia said...

Wow that's one heck of a list going there. I loved Marked and I see a few others I would probably enjoy as well.

Jacqueline C. said...

Nice haul! Enjoy your books :)

the story siren said...

WOW! WOW! what a ton of books! and what a variety! so nice! hope you enjoy them all! happy reading!

Anna said...

What a week! My friend bought me Marked a while back. Happy reading! My mailbox post is here.

Diary of an Eccentric

Betty said...

What a great list of book reviews. I've picked a few to add to my TBR list after I finish Three Kisses by Heath Daniels. It's a fictional international espionage book integrating current events into a fast moving adventure. Thanks for the great book reviews!

Betty said...

I came back to visit this site and noticed that my last comment's link did not work. Heres's a link that will work for some more information about the book Three Kisses. Enjoy!


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