Bestsellers in St. Louis


Top-Selling Titles in St. Louis

The following were the bestselling books at independent bookstores in and around St. Louis, Mo. During the week ended Sunday, May 22:

Adult

1. Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok
2. The Heart and the Fist by Eric Greitens
3. I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive by Steve Earle
4. Stan Musial: An American Life by George Vecsey
5. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
6. Tattoos on the Heart by Gregory Boyle
7. Area 51: An Uncensored History of America's Top Secret Military Base by Annie Jacobsen
8. Make, Take, Murder by Joanna Slan
9. Groping Toward Democracy by Priscilla White-Dowden

Kids

1. Throne of Fire: Kane Chronicles by Rick Riordan
2. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
3. Divergent by Veronica Roth
4. Pinkalicious Tickled Pink by Victoria Kann
5. The Emerald Atlas by John Stephens
6. Sugar and Spice by Lauren Conrad
7. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
8. The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
9. Peek-A Who? by Nina Laden
10. Dragonbreath by Ursula Vernon

Reporting bookstores, all of which are members of the St. Louis Independent Bookstore Alliance: Left Bank Books, Main Street Books, Pudd'nhead Books, Subterranean Books, Sue's News.

Splash Into Summer Giveaway Hop!


Splash Into Summer Giveaway Hop!

The Splash Into Summer Giveaway Hop is hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer & Page Turners. It will take place from May 25th to 31st.

For my contribution to the fun, I will be giving away a $10.00 (USD) gift card to Amazon.com! To enter, you must be a GFC follower of this blog.

**For an extra entry, click on the Blog Lovin' button. It's for my writing blog, which is
here!.**

bloglovin

Contest ends May 31, 2011 at midnight eastern time. Winner will be announced June 1 and will have 48 hours to respond.

You must be 13 or older to win!

Contest over, winner chosen soon!

Bestsellers in St. Louis


Top-Selling Titles in St. Louis

The following were the bestselling books at independent bookstores in and around St. Louis, Mo. During the week ended Sunday, May 15:

Adult
1. Stan Musial: An American Life by George Vecsey
2. Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok
3. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
4. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
5. In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson
6. Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks
7. Bossypants by Tina Fey
8. A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
9. I'll Never Get Out of This Town Alive by Steve Earle
10. Make, Take, Murder by Joanna Slan

Kids
1. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
2. Moon Over Manifest by Claire Vanderpool
3. The Name of This Book Is Secret by Pseudonymous Bosch
4. The Kane Chronicles: The Throne of Fire by Rick Riordan
5. Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
6. You Are My Little Cupcake by Amy Sklansky
7. Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen
8. The Rainbow Fairies by Daisy Meadows
9. Gollywhopper Games by Jody Feldman
10. Divergent by Veronica Roth

Reporting bookstores, all of which are members of the St. Louis Independent Bookstore Alliance: Left Bank Books, Main Street Books, Pudd'nhead Books, Subterranean Books, Sue's News.

Book Review: Prism


Book Review: Prism by Faye and Aliza Kellerman

First sentence: "I always half-believed Fridays could make me fly."

From the back: "Kaida Hutchenson, Zeke Anderson, and Joy Tallon: three teens with nothing in common thrown together by an explosive accident that turns their class trip into a desert nightmare. And the next morning... a return to their ordinary lives with everything just as it was before.

Or is it?

Increasingly unnerved by the distorted world around her, Kaida must band together with Zeke and Joy in hopes of making it back to the reality she remembers... and surviving the one she's fallen into."

My take: I found this book to be painfully slow getting started, and I almost stopped reading it, but around page 85 or so, I found myself liking it more and more. I don't think a sequel is planned, but there sure could be. I was left with some unanswered questions that only another book could answer. Kaida, Zeke and Joy all end up in a parallel universe where everything appears to be the same as the world they left behind. The first time they discover something isn't quite right is when they watch someone get hit by a car and no ambulance comes, people are strangely indifferent and uninvolved. 911 doesn't work. A white van comes and picks the body up, much like a garbage truck picks up our garbage. In this alternate reality there are no hospitals, no medical people, no medicine. You get sick and you either get better or you die... naturally. If you don't mind slow starts, and can stick with this book through the first pages, I think you'll find quite an entertaining read.

If you've reviewed the book, leave a comment here and I'll post a link to your review!

Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 272 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins; 1 edition (June 23, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0061687219
ASIN: B0036DE5CC

My Rating: B




Book Review: Living Hell


Book Review: Living Hell by Catherine Jinks

First sentence: "You have to understand what it was like."

From the back: "The smell was the first thing we noticed. It was a terrible smell that made us all cough: a smell with another stench overlaying it.

Then we saw Firmus standing by the door. He pointed. "Something is trying to get in," he rasped.

What happens when a single moment changes everything? For seventeen-year-old Cheney, life on earth exists only in history books. He and more than one thousand other people have known life only aboard the spacecraft Plexus: self-contained, systematic, and serene. But that was before the radiation wave.

Now Plexus has suddenly turned on them, becoming a terrifying and unrecognizable force. As the crew dwindles under attack, Cheeny and his friends need to fight back before the ship that's nurtured them for so long becomes responsible for their destruction."

My take: Meh. I wanted to like this. I thought it sounded like a great Dystopian-type novel. What I got instead was something more like Star Trek. I'm not big into that kind of stuff. The story idea would have made a great book. I barely made it to the end. It wasn't the worst book I've ever read, but I didn't like it as much as I thought I would. I couldn't identify with the characters at all. The main character was bland and I can't even tell you how far in I was before I figured out who his parents were. Fans of Sci-Fi, Star Trek-type novels might be mildly entertained, but I sure wasn't.

If you've reviewed the book, leave a comment here and I'll post a link to your review!

Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 264 pages
Publisher: Graphia; Reprint edition (April 4, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0547549989
ISBN-13: 978-0547549989

My rating: D





Bestsellers in St. Louis


Top-Selling Titles in St. Louis

The following were the bestselling books at independent bookstores in and around St. Louis, Mo. During the week ended Sunday, May 8:

Adult

1. The Heart and the Fist: The Education of a Humanitarian, the Making of a Navy SEAL by Eric Greitens
2. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
3. Bossypants by Tina Fey
4. Iron Butterfly: Memoir of a Martial Arts Master: The True Story of a Mermaid's Daughter by Choon-Ok Jade Harmon
5. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
6. A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
7. Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks
8. Two Kisses for Maddie by Matt Logelin
9. Tangled Webs by James Stewart
10. Mom: A Celebration of Mothers from StoryCorps by Dave Isay

Kids

1. You Are My Little Cupcake by Amy Sklansky
2. Throne of Fire: The Kane Chronicles: Book 2 by Rick Riordan
3. My Daddy and Me by Amy Sklansky
4. The Book Thief by Marcus Zusack
5. The Secret History of Mermaids and Creatures of the Deep by Ari Professor Berk
6. Oh The Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss
7. Mayflower and the Pilgrims' New World by Nathaniel Philbrick
8. Dormia: Book 2 Jake Halpern
9. Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride
10. Happy Birthday to You! by Dr. Seuss


Reporting bookstores, all of which are members of the St. Louis Independent Bookstore Alliance: Left Bank Books, Main Street Books, Pudd'nhead Books, Subterranean Books, Sue's News.

Enter to Win!


Enter For a Chance to Win 1 of 100 Advance Readers' Editions of The Leftovers

Enter HERE!

October 14th, The Sudden Departure: Millions of people were plucked from the Earth and millions left behind. For the residents of Mapleton the question is, "How can I rebuild my life in the wake of such a devastating event?" They were looking for a purpose--a feeling that their existence bore some relationship to reality.

Through the prism of a single family, The Leftovers delivers a colorful cast of characters struggling to hold onto a belief in their own futures in the face of their greatest fears.

Read the first 30 pages here: St. Martin's Press.

Which Platform?



Writing content for a blog post is not the hard part. The hard part is when you decide you want to change the theme. First you have to find a Word Press theme you like. You find one you almost love. If it only had this, or it only did that. Or if this column was over here instead of over there. Or… you know. The possibilities are endless!

I think I’ve finally found a theme I can live with for awhile. Though I am a bit fickle. :) And what I like today, I may not like tomorrow.

Which platform is easier, Blogger or Word Press? Honestly, I think Blogger is easier to use and some features are built-in that WP doesn’t even have. One thing I really miss about Blogger is that it automatically posted my signature image at the bottom of each post. With WP so far, I’ve not been able to figure out how to do that. But I’m still looking. Until then, each time I post something, I manually have to insert the image at the bottom. I can live with that, but it’s not as easy as Blogger was — you know, fix it and forget it. Sort of like cooking with the crock-pot.

Finding images to use is another “fun” thing. Thankfully, I’m fairly graphic-literate. I know my way around the old versions of PSP like the back of my hand. Lucky for me, I have both PSP7 and Corel Paintshop Pro Photo X2 installed on my computer and if I can’t figure out how to do something in the new version, I do it in the old.

And tell me, which platform do you like better? Word Press or Blogger or something else?




Book Review: Blood Red Road



Book Review: Blood Red Road by Moira Young

First sentence: "The day's hot."

From the back: "Saba has spent her whole life in Silverlake, a dried-up wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms. That's fine by her, as long as her beloved twin brother, Lugh, is around. But when a monster sandstorm arrives bearing four cloaked horsemen, Saba's world is shattered. Lugh is captured, and Saba embarks on a quest to get him back.

Suddenly thrown into the lawless, ugly reality of the world outside, Saba is lost without Lugh to guide her. So perhaps the most surprising thing of all is what Saba learns about herself: She's a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent. Teamed up with a handsome daredevil named Jack and a gang of girl revolutionaries called the Free Hawks, Saba stages a showdown that will change the course of her own civilization."

My take: This was an ARC of a book due out June 7, 2011. I didn't know what to expect. But since I like post-apocalyptic type reads, I figured I would give this one a try. To me, it seemed more like it took place in the old, lawless wild west than in the future. But that's just how it felt to me while I was reading it. I think it might have been the voice. Which is hard to explain, and some might find difficult to get used to. For instance: "I ain't never heard of such things, I says. I dunno what yer talkin about. How d'you know about these... Tonton?" The whole book is written like that, in character voice. I didn't mind it at all. I think it worked quite well for this book. That being said... I could not put this book down. I loved it. I devoured it and look forward to more in The Dustland series. This is a wonderful debut novel by a very talented author. I hope you'll all pick up a copy and read it for yourself!

If you've reviewed the book, leave a comment here and I'll post a link to your review!

Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 464 pages
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry (June 7, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1442429984
ISBN-13: 978-1442429987

My rating: A





Bestsellers in St. Louis



Top-Selling Titles at St. Louis Indies Last Week

The following were the bestselling books at independent bookstores in and around St. Louis, Mo. During the week ended Sunday, May 1:

Adult

1. Bossypants by Tina Fey
2. The Heart and the Fist by Eric Greitens
3. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
4. The Help by Katherine Stockett
5. A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
6. The Bird Sisters by Rebecca Rassmussen
7. Heaven Is For Real by Todd Burpo
8. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
9. Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson
10. Swim Back to Me by Ann Packer

Kids

1. You Are My Little Cupcake by Amy Sklansky
2. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
3. Emerald Atlas by John Stephens
4. Oh the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss
5. Who Is Coming? by Patricia McKissack
6. My Daddy and Me by Amy Sklansky
7. Of Thee I Sing by Barack Obama
8. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
9. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
10. Ana's Story by Jenna Bush

Reporting bookstores, all members of the St. Louis Independent Bookstore Alliance: Left Bank Books, Main Street Books, Pudd'nhead Books, Subterranean Books and Sue's News.

Book Review: If I Stay


Book Review: If I Stay by Gayle Forman

First sentence: "Everyone thinks it was because of the snow."

From the back: "Mia had everything: a loving family, a gorgeous, adoring boyfriend, and a bright future full of music and full of choices. Then, in an instant, almost all of that is taken from her. Caught between life and death, between a happy past and an unknowable future, Mia spends one critical day contemplating the only decision she has left -- the most important decision she'll ever make."

My take: On the cover of this book it says: "Will appeal to fans of Stephenie Meyer's Twilight." Don't get me wrong... I loved Twilight. The Twilight Saga is the reason I started getting into books again... But in no way, shape or form is this book anything at all like Twilight. The only thing I can see that makes the two alike is that the main character is a teenage female. That's it. I liked this book, I liked it a lot. It made me cry. When a book brings out my emotions, it's good writing. Mia is a complex individual. I felt like the book was the accident and Mia's back story. Her reflecting on her life before the accident and deciding whether or not she wants to stay here without the family she lost. It's a very good, engaging story. I liked it a lot, but I didn't love it. But that's not a bad thing. I still recommend you read it!

If you've reviewed the book, leave a comment here and I'll post a link to your review!

Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 272 pages
Publisher: Speak; Reprint edition (April 6, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 014241543X
ASIN: B004VD3PE0

My rating: B





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