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The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick
Publication date: January 6th, 2014
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Page count: 336 pages

Timeless, beautiful, and haunting, spirals connect the four episodes of "The Ghosts of Heaven," the mesmerizing new novel from Printz Award winner Marcus Sedgwick. They are there in prehistory, when a girl picks up a charred stick and makes the first written signs; there tens of centuries later, hiding in the treacherous waters of Golden Beck that take Anna, who people call a witch; there in the halls of a Long Island hospital at the beginning of the 20th century, where a mad poet watches the oceans and knows the horrors it hides; and there in the far future, as an astronaut faces his destiny on the first spaceship sent from earth to colonize another world. Each of the characters in these mysterious linked stories embarks on a journey of discovery and survival; carried forward through the spiral of time, none will return to the same place.

 

Why we can't wait: Okay, it's no secret that we're huge fans of Marcus Sedgwick at Books Inc. His books are phenomenal and original, and Ghosts of Heaven doesn't look like it'll be any different. Spirals that connect ghosts of heaven? Characters from all eras in time? Yeah. This is going to be amazing. Plus, LOOK at that gorgeous cover!!
Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

 

Monkey Wars by Richard Kurti
Publication date: January 6th, 2014
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Page count: 416 pages

"Striking" is how Anthony Horowitz, author of the Alex Rider series, describes "Monkey Wars."
A dark fable in the vein of "Animal Farm" and "Watership Down, " this action-packed page-turner is told entirely from warring monkeys' points of view and shines a light on the politics of power, the rise of tyrants, and the personal dilemmas that must be faced when your life is on the line.
When rhesus monkeys are brutally massacred on the dusty streets of Kolkata by a troop of power-hungry langur monkeys, Mico, a privileged langur, becomes entangled in the secrets that lie at the heart of his troop's leadership and is shocked at what he discovers. He feels compelled to help the few surviving rhesus, especially Papina, a young female he befriends, even though doing so goes against everything he's been taught. As more blood is spilled, Mico realizes that choosing between right and wrong won't be easy.
"* Includes a Note from the Author as well as information about specific monkey species.

 

Why we can't wait:
I'm just saying, warring monkey tribes? How does this NOT sound like an awesome book? Also some monkey romance? Okay that might be kind of weird, but right now I'm totally digging it. Either way, the politics of monkey tribes is definitely something I want to know about.
Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

 
 

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Not many new releases this week, but the release of Cassie Clare's Bane Chronicles has us all freaking out!!! What are you the most excited for?


 

 

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Talon by Julie Kagawa
Publication Date: October 28th, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Page Count: 464 pages

In Julie Kagawa's groundbreaking modern fantasy series, dragons walk among us in human form. Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser. Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George. Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon's newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey--and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember's bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him--and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons. In Julie Kagawa's groundbreaking modern fantasy series, dragons walk among us in human form. Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser. Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught.

What we think: Okay, I've only just started Talon, but I'm LOVING it. The idea of dragonkind living amongst humans is a great concept. It's almost like Seraphina set in our world rather than an ancient and more fantastical one. As always, Julie's writing is phenomenal and I can't stop reading! I'll keep you updated, but I promise this is one you WANT to pick up!
Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

 

Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee
Publication Date: March 17th, 2015
Publisher: Putnam Publishing Group
Page Count: 384 pages
Genre: Historical fiction

Missouri, 1849: Samantha dreams of moving back to New York to be a professional musician--not an easy thing if you're a girl, and harder still if you're Chinese. But a tragic accident dashes any hopes of fulfilling her dream, and instead, leaves her fearing for her life. With the help of a runaway slave named Annamae, Samantha flees town for the unknown frontier. But life on the Oregon Trail is unsafe for two girls, so they disguise themselves as Sammy and Andy, two boys headed for the California gold rush. Sammy and Andy forge a powerful bond as they each search for a link to their past, and struggle to avoid any unwanted attention. But when they cross paths with a band of cowboys, the light-hearted troupe turn out to be unexpected allies. With the law closing in on them and new setbacks coming each day, the girls quickly learn that there are not many places to hide on the open trail. This beautifully written debut is an exciting adventure and heart-wrenching survival tale. But above all else, it's a story about perseverance and trust that will restore your faith in the power of friendship.

 

Talon by Julie Kagawa
Publication Date: October 28th, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Page Count: 464 pages
Genre: Fantasy & Magic

In Julie Kagawa's groundbreaking modern fantasy series, dragons walk among us in human form. Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser. Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George. Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon's newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey--and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember's bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him--and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons. In Julie Kagawa's groundbreaking modern fantasy series, dragons walk among us in human form. Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser. Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught.

 

Publication date: December 9th, 2014

What it's about:
Love, vengeance, and greed spark a deadly quest for magic in the third book of the Falling Kingdoms series
Prince Magnus has just witnessed torture, death, and miracles during the bloody confrontation that decimated the rebel forces. Now he must choose between family and justice as his father, the cruel King Gaius, sets out to conquer all of Mytica. All Gaius needs now are the Kindred--the four elemental crystals that give godlike powers to their owner. But the King of Blood is not the only one hunting for this ancient, storied magic. . . .
THE KRAESHIANS join the hunt. Ashur and Amara, the royal siblings from the wealthy kingdom across the Silver Sea, charm and manipulate their way to the Kindred, proving to be more ruthless than perhaps even the King of Blood himself. THE REBELS forge ahead. Princess Cleo and vengeful Jonas lead them, slaying with sweetness, skill, and a secret that can control Lucia's overpowering magic--all so they can use the Kindred to win back their fallen kingdoms. THE WATCHERS follow Melenia out of the Sanctuary. They ally in the flesh with King Gaius, who vows to use Lucia's powers to unveil the Kindred.The only certainty in these dark times is that whoever finds the magic first will control the fate of Mytica...but fate can be fickle when magic is involved.

Why we can't wait: If you know me at all, you know I'm obsessed with Morgan Rhodes' Falling Kingdoms series. Like. OBSESSED. This series has been one of my favorites since it first came out and I'm dying to get my hands on Gathering Darkness. Mystery, magic, violence, rivalries, revenge, and romance make up this phenomenal story. I'm freaking out guys. Seriously, FREAKING OUT. Can it be December already!?
Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

 

Publication date: December 9th, 2014

What it's about:
At the dawn of time, there were 13 Houses in the Zodiac Galaxy. Now only 12 remain....
Rhoma Grace is a 16-year-old student from House Cancer with an unusual way of reading the stars. While her classmates use measurements to make accurate astrological predictions, Rho can't solve for 'x' to save her life--so instead, she looks up at the night sky and makes up stories.
When a violent blast strikes the moons of Cancer, sending its ocean planet off-kilter and killing thousands of citizens--including its beloved Guardian--Rho is more surprised than anyone when she is named the House's new leader. But, a true Cancrian who loves her home fiercely and will protect her people no matter what, Rho accepts.
Then, when more Houses fall victim to freak weather catastrophes, Rho starts seeing a pattern in the stars. She suspects Ophiuchus--the exiled 13th Guardian of Zodiac legend--has returned to exact his revenge across the Galaxy. Now Rho--along with Hysan Dax, a young envoy from House Libra, and Mathias, her guide and a member of her Royal Guard--must travel through the Zodiac to warn the other Guardians.
But who will believe anything this young novice says? Whom can Rho trust in a universe defined by differences? And how can she convince twelve worlds to unite as one Zodiac?
Embark on a dazzling journey with "ZODIAC," the first novel in an epic sci-fi-meets-high-fantasy series set in a galaxy inspired by the astrological signs.

Why we can't wait:
I love science fiction. There isn't enough of it it the YA world. I want more. I think I've found it. An exiled guardian of the 13th Zodiac sign?! 12 worlds all revolving around their specific sign?! A group of inexperienced teens working together to save the UNIVERSE!? Yeah I'm totally hooked. For some reason this also reminds of Guardians of the Galaxy which is the best movie ever. 
Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

Isla attends a boarding school in Paris, her best friend is autistic, and she’s been in love with a boy named Josh since Freshman year. She’s an introvert, a lover of comics, and an A+ student. Everything about Isla is pure emotional perfection. I constantly found myself identifying with her trials of love and her struggles with holding on to the various pieces of her life. Perkins’ way with words is both poetic and lyrical, sparking a joy and sadness that can only come from beautifully written stories.

I admit that I haven’t read any of the other books in the Anna series. I started with Isla and the Happily Ever After after being told that I didn’t need to read the books in order and I just happened to have a copy of Isla sitting on my shelf. But now, I know I have to read about Anna and Lola as well. Perkins captures the angst and intensity of first love in a way I could fully believe and relate to - when you fall head over heels for someone only to lose them and feel like you’re suffocating. I obsessed over this book for days after reading it, reliving the most intoxicating moments over and over again.
Reviewed by Anna at Books Inc. Palo Alto

 

 

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Seeker by Arwen Elys Dayton
Publication Date: February 10th, 2015
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Page Count: 448 pages

For readers of" A Game of Thrones" and "The Hunger Games" comes an epic new series.
The night Quin Kincaid takes her Oath, she will become what she has trained to be her entire life. She will become a Seeker. This is her legacy, and it is an honor.
As a Seeker, Quin will fight beside her two closest companions, Shinobu and John, to protect the weak and the wronged. Together they will stand for light in a shadowy world.
And she'll be with the boy she loves--who's also her best friend.
But the night Quin takes her Oath, everything changes.
Being a Seeker is not what she thought. Her family is not what she thought. Even the boy she loves is not who she thought.
And now it's too late to walk away.

What we think: I'm only about 50 pages in, but OH MY! Set in our own world with a magical twist, Seeker is a must-read for fans of Graceling and Shadow and Bone. Quin is a tough chick and I love her attitude. John is a bit of a mystery, but I'm excited to see how his character develops. Seeker is also told from multiple POVs which is something I ALWAYS love! If you're a fan of fantasy, adventure, and a bit of mystery, DEFINITELY add this one to your TBR! -- Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

Cute and romantic, LaCour writes a story in which two young women find each other through incredible twists of fate and grow closer through their love of movies. As a huge film lover and an advocate for diverse books, I LOVED this novel. While this is a novel that involves a young lesbian romance, it was always about these girls falling in love with each other as people. A lot of LGBT YA is about coming out and, while those books are important, it was refreshing to read a good old love story. I also really enjoyed the behind the scenes insights to movie making that is make up a lot of the book. The passion for set design that Emi, the protagonist, has is very infectious and inspiring.This is quite the lovely read! -- Karen from Books Inc. Terminal 2

Publication date: November 4th, 2014

What it's about: A sweeping, epic saga of romance and hardship, set against the dramatic backdrop of ancient Mesopotamia--perfect for fans of Cleopatra's Moon or the adult bestseller The Red Tent.

In the unforgiving Mesopotamian desert where Jayden's tribe lives, betrothal celebrations abound, and tonight it is Jayden's turn to be honored. But while this union with Horeb, the son of her tribe's leader, will bring a life of riches and restore her family's position within the tribe, it will come at the price of Jayden's heart.

Then a shadowy boy from the Southern Lands appears. Handsome and mysterious, Kadesh fills Jayden's heart with a passion she never knew possible. But with Horeb's increasingly violent threats haunting Jayden's every move, she knows she must find a way to escape--or die trying.

With a forbidden romance blossoming in her heart and her family's survival on the line, Jayden must finish the deadly journey to save the ones she loves--and find true love for herself.

Why we can't wait: Forbidden romance? Mesopotamia? Plus look at that gorgeous cover!! I don't even care that a love triangle seems to be involved, because seriously it'll probably be freakin fantastic. Our love for Cleopatra's Moon is also something that's piqued my interest!! Yes, I want this and I want it now! -- Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

 

Publication date: November 4th, 2014

What it's about: It had to end sometime, but Mara had no idea it would end like this. Experience the mind-blowing conclusion to the "New York Times "bestselling Mara Dyer trilogy.
Mara Dyer wants to believe there's more to the lies she's been told.
There is.
She doesn't stop to think about where her quest for the truth might lead.
She should.
She never had to imagine how far she would go for vengeance.
She will now.
Loyalties are betrayed, guilt and innocence tangle, and fate and chance collide in this shocking conclusion to Mara Dyer's story.
Retribution has arrived.

Why we can't wait: I mean, it's the final installment in the Mara Dyer trilogy, of COURSE we're excited!!! Aren't you?! What's going to happen?! Who IS Mara Dyer?! Hopefully all our questions will be answered. I may end up curled up in a ball crying for a week, but hey, it'll be totally worth it, right? -- Anna from Books Inc. Palo Alto

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