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Posts by Emma Carbone

"Legend": A Review of the Book You Should Be Reading After The Hunger Games

June and Day are part of the same nation: The Republic of America. They’re in the same city: Los Angeles, California. Their lives could not be more different.

Born into an elite family, June lives in a wealthy sector with her brother, Metias, and every luxury the Republic has to offer. A prodigy who passed her Trial with more than flying colors, June is training to join the Republic military and take her rightful position among the country’s leaders in their continuing war against the Patriots.

Day is not elite or wealthy, and he’s 

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"Drink, Slay, Love": A Review

Pearl is like a lot of 16-year-old girls. She likes to steal cars and drive too fast with her handsome, dangerous boyfriend Jadrien. She wears a lot of black. She is extremely flammable in direct sunlight.

Okay. Maybe Pearl isn’t exactly an average teenage girl. But she is an average vampire. Completely ordinary and almost completely evil, Pearl is the perfect predator at the top of the food chain in her Connecticut town. And she is fine with that.

With the vampire king of New England coming soon for the annual fealty ceremony that marks the start of a 

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All These Things I've Done: A Review

Anya Balanchine lives in a world where chocolate is illegal, water is scarce and New York City is a ghost of what it once was. Central Park is no longer a park. The Metropolitan Museum is a night club.

Anya’s life has been touched by tragedy, if not hardship, as the daughter of an infamous (and dead) crime boss. With her parents gone, it falls to Anya to take care of her siblings and protect them from the family business.

But when the family business is illegal chocolate, it’s hard to stay on the sidelines–especially when the new boy at 

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"Raised by Wolves": A Review

When Brynn was four years old, her life changed forever when a rogue werewolf killed her parents. Rescued by the Stone River Pack and Marked by the pack’s alpha, Callum, Brynn’s safety is a matter of pack law.

The only problem is Brynn is human. Even as a member of the pack, living with a bunch of werewolves is dangerous. Weres can smell fear. They are faster. They are stronger. Most of them are older and more experienced. One lapse in control could leave a human very dead.

Even if that human is a 15-year-old girl named Brynn who knows almost 

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"So Much Closer": A Review

Sometimes Brooke just knows things, partly thanks to her excellent memory. But sometimes she just knows for reasons that have nothing to do with that.

That’s the way it is with Scott Abrams. Brooke is certain that they are meant to be together. The only problem is Scott doesn’t know it yet. He doesn’t really even know Brooke. And moving away to New York City the summer before senior year doesn’t really help either.

It’s risky and kind of crazy, but Brooke knows that this is her chance. She can follow him, and she can tell him 

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"Strings Attached": A Review

Kit Corrigan has a lot of hopes and dreams when she gets to New York City in the autumn of 1950. What she doesn’t have is a steady job, a room of her own, or any surety that she has what it takes to make it. Back in Providence, Rhode Island, Kit left behind her family. She hasn’t heard from her boyfriend Billy, or her brother, since they enlisted.

It seemed like such a good idea to drop out of high school and move to New York and make her way in the theater. But maybe she wasn’t ready. Maybe she can’t do it all on her own.

Help, however, comes from 

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Enchanted Ivy: A Review

Lily Carter’s future is at Princeton University. Her grandfather went to Princeton. Going to Princeton would allow Lily to move away from home without feeling guilt about not taking care of her mother. It’s the perfect school. Most importantly, Lily desperately wants to follow in Grandpa’s footsteps to make him and her mother proud.

Turns out her chance at Princeton might come sooner than she thinks when Lily accompanies her grandfather and mother to Princeton Reunions weekend where, thanks to Grandpa’s connections, Lily has a chance to take 

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A Tale of Two Castles: A Review

Elodie comes to the town of Two Castles with one goal: to become a mansioner. Her greatest hope, her only actual plan upon arriving in town, is to apprentice herself to a mansioner that she might become an accomplished performer in her own right.

When Elodie’s hope is dashed she is forced to look for another plan or starve in Two Castles with none of her family at home even knowing about her plight.

Help comes in the unusual form of a dragon named Meenore.

Mysteries (and cats) abound in Two Castles, which makes the town an ideal place for a 

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"The Piper's Son": A Review

Thomas Finch Mackee is many things to many people: musician, friend, and most recently, complete jerk.

Five years ago, his world seemed certain. He was friends with the girls from school. He wanted to be something more to Tara Finke. He would follow his charming father anywhere, as most people would — Dom has always been a pied piper. That was before London.

That was before his family had to bury another empty coffin, this time for Tom’s uncle, lost in the London bombing.

After London, everything is uncertain. Tom’s 

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The Last Little Blue Envelope: A Review

When Ginny Blackstone received 13 little blue envelopes last summer, she recognized them for what they were: a wild adventure laid out by her Aunt Peg — Ginny’s wildly interesting relative who could never do anything the simple, mundane way.

The envelopes led Ginny to England and on an adventure across Europe. Along the way, Ginny learned a lot about her aunt, and even more about herself  — until the last little blue envelope was stolen and her adventure was cut short. Even without that final piece, without that bit of closure, Ginny knows 

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Reader's Den: "Incarceron" Discussion Wrap-up

Thank you for joining this month’s Reader’s Den featuring Incarceron by Catherine Fisher. Although the month is over, feel free to return to this post to continue to discuss and comment on the novel.

If you enjoyed Incarceron you might also enjoy the titles below:

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins   ... Read More ›

Reader's Den: "Incarceron" Discussion Questions

I hope all of you enjoyed Incarceron by Catherine Fisher this month as much as I did.

Feel free to share your favorite moments, characters, or whatever below.

Here are some discussion questions to sink your teeth into:

What did you think of the ending? Did you anticipate the prison's location or was it a total surprise? Finn, Keiro, Claudia and even Attia are not always morally upright. How did you feel about reading about a ... Read More ›

Reader's Den: "Incarceron" Reviews, News, and Clues?

Incarceron was originally published in Great Britain in 2007 before coming to US readers three years later in 2010. The Times also selected Incarceron as its book of the year. In 2007 Incarceron was also selected as a finalist in the YA Science Fiction and Fantasy category of the Cybils—a book award given each year by book bloggers.

If you haven't seen it already, be sure to

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May at The Reader's Den: "Incarceron"

Greetings and welcome to the May installment of The Reader's Den.

This month we'll be reading Incarceron (2010) by Catherine Fisher.

Incarceron is a prison like no other.

It is a closed system; nothing enters the prison. And nothing ever leaves. Incarceron was built to be self-sufficient. Nothing goes to waste. Food is recycled, materials made over and over. Prisoners, 

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After the Kiss: A (poetic) Review

Camille isn't impressed with her new town. It's nothing like her old town (or the one before that, or the one before that). It's tedious making new friends during senior year only to move on like she always does, like they all will with college around the corner. Still, she'll put on a show and pretend it all matters while she marks time until her escape like she always does.

Until she meets Alec at a party. He isn't the boy she left behind. But he's here. He's smart. He's a poet. That's pretty close to perfect.

Camille doesn't want to get involved or 

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"Guardian of the Dead": A Review

Ellie leads a typical life for a 17 year old. She goes to class, hangs out with her best friend Kevin, and wonders about Mark, her mysterious (and good looking) classmate. She has a black belt in tae kwon do, and after a night of ill-advised drinking with Kevin, has also volunteered her time to staging fight scenes for a play at the local university. Even if the play is being directed by Kevin’s oldest friend Iris, who is annoyingly perfect and makes Ellie feel like an ugly, ungainly giant.

After that, things start to get less typical.

The news keeps 

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Poetrees: A Review

Are you a fan of poetree? A lover of all things green and leafy? Ever want to know more about a Baobab or an oak? Or tree roots and seeds? Look no further than Poetrees (2010) written and illustrated by Douglas Florian.

Poetrees is filled with quick, witty poems to entertain, inform, and amuse. Combined with original illustrations done with what looks like water colors and maybe some pastels. The book is clever and a lot of fun right down to its 

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"Rot & Ruin": A Review

Benny Imura needs a job. He’s 15 years old and his rations are going to be cut in half if he doesn’t start contributing to society. Benny isn’t picky. Any job will do as long as it requires minimal effort and doesn’t involve working with his annoying, boring, and completely irritating older brother Tom.

But being a locksmith apprentice is boring and involves carrying heavy tools all day. Fence testers have to walk the fence all day rattling it for loose spots that zombies might exploit. It also means possibly getting shot by the twitchy gun 

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Vixen: A Review

Gloria Carmody thought she had everything she could want: the big diamond, the handsome fiance, the promise of a secure, respectable life among Chicago’s high society. But as her wedding looms ever nearer all Gloria can think of is a notorious speakeasy and the piano player who intrigues her more than her fiance ever has. Or will.

Lorraine Dyer doesn’t understand the sudden change in her best friend, but if Gloria wants to release her inner flapper, why not? After all Lorraine is known for innovating the flapper style among their circle of friends. 

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Old Tales, New Twists: A Fantasy eBook List

Do you have an eReader? Is part of the appeal that it looks like you're living in the future? Have you found yourself wishing for more fantastical books to match your futuristic reading device? 

Look no further.

The premises might sound familiar but these books all take traditional story elements and turn them upside down. And you can get them on your ereader for free right here.

Fly on the Wall by E. Lockhart For Gretchen Yee, life as an artificial red head is anything but glamorous, especially when she feels too ordinary to fit in at her artsy 

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