Archive for December, 2013


December 24, 2013 • Cee • Lists

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where we list our top tens! This week’s topic is “top ten books I wouldn’t mind Santa bringing me” or in my case, “books I hope Santa will bring me.” YES. This one speaks to me. (I haven’t been doing Top Tens because I didn’t really like the topics.) I WANT ALL THE BOOKS IN THE WORLD, but these in this post are books I desperately need on my shelves. Like now. SANTA, GIVE ME ALL OF THEM PLEASEEEE. 

Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore | Vicious | Tell the Wolves I’m Home
Leviathan | The Rosie Project | Winger
Aristole and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe | The Book Thief | Ready Player One
The Mistborn Trilogy*

(*I am counting the Mistborn Trilogy as one. ;D)

What books do you want to see under your tree?

December 23, 2013 • Cee • Reviews

victoria schwab - the unarchivedThe Archived by Victoria Schwab
January 22, 2013
Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository

Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.

Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures that only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive.

Da first brought Mackenzie Bishop here four years ago, when she was twelve years old, frightened but determined to prove herself. Now Da is dead, and Mac has grown into what he once was, a ruthless Keeper, tasked with stopping often—violent Histories from waking up and getting out. Because of her job, she lies to the people she loves, and she knows fear for what it is: a useful tool for staying alive.

Being a Keeper isn’t just dangerous—it’s a constant reminder of those Mac has lost. Da’s death was hard enough, but now her little brother is gone too. Mac starts to wonder about the boundary between living and dying, sleeping and waking. In the Archive, the dead must never be disturbed. And yet, someone is deliberately altering Histories, erasing essential chapters. Unless Mac can piece together what remains, the Archive itself might crumble and fall.

In this haunting, richly imagined novel, Victoria Schwab reveals the thin lines between past and present, love and pain, trust and deceit, unbearable loss and hard-won redemption.


First sentence: “The narrows remind me of August nights in the South.”

The Archived is a book I have a hard time talking about because I’m forever in awe of everything that Victoria Schwab had created and managed to make me feel. I find The Archived to be utterly profound. I am impressed by how beautiful and suspenseful it is. It totally obliterates my feelings and thoughts because of the sheer awesomeness of the prose. Let me tell you that this book is dark, a bit creepy, and extremely mysterious. It’s slow paced, but it fits with the pensive tone of the story. The idea of everything in The Archived is an extremely inventive and frickin’ amazing. I want to applaud Victoria Schwab because of this beautifully awesome story.

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December 19, 2013 • Cee • Blog News

That’s right!



I can’t believe it’s been a year. It feels like I’ve been blogging less than that (especially since the first six months were pretty lackluster for my blog in terms of post and interacting in the book community). It’s pretty amazing I lasted this long talking about books. I was apprehensive about sharing my thoughts about books because I didn’t think I’d be able to convey my thoughts and feelings clearly, but I did and it’s awesome.

In the beginning, I hadn’t put on my blogging cap. I had recently graduated college and was utterly confused on what I wanted to do. I’m no stranger to blogging; I’ve had a personal blog for a while, but I wanted an outlet where I could talk about books. Creating a book blog made sense. For the first four months, I only did a bunch of memes (mainly Top Ten Tuesday, Waiting on Wednesday, and Stacking the Shelves) with the occasional review. I’m not proud of those times. I just wasn’t comfortable doing anything else. I hadn’t found my voice and I was feeling distant to the book community. But thank you for Armchair BEA. Discussions really help me open up. I slowly eased myself into a regular schedule and started visiting other blogs, but I feel like the turning point was August. I became more active than I had ever been the previous months. (I essentially traded tumblr for twitter and it was a good choice.) It makes me incredibly happy that I’ve met incredibly people – authors and bloggers.

I have to give a bunch of shout-outs to fellow bloggers (who I really consider my friends) for making this community frickin’ awesome.

Kelly (of Effortlessly Reading) | Christine (of Oh Chrys)
Stacie (of The Shy Book Nerd) | Arial (of In Italics)
Stormy (of Book.Blog.Bake) | Nikki (of The Paper Sea)
Claire (of Bitches With Books) | Nikki (of There Were Books Involved)

You’ve all been totally awesome to me when I feel like I don’t deserve it. Thanks for putting up with my jokes and my squealing about fonts and narwhals. And I have to thank every one of you who tweeted me or commented on my blog. You do not know how much I appreciate your comments. They brighten up my day. Every one of you make this book community more awesome! *hugs all of you*

For me, blogging will forever be an intricate part of my life. It has allowed me to be vocal about my opinions on books and to create surprisingly decent graphics.

Here’s to another year of The Novel Hermit! I hope to get to know everybody (and this book community) better! *cheers*giveawayfestivo

In honor of my first book blogoversary (and my appreciation to fellow bloggers and readers), I am giving away a book of your choice ($20) from my favorite author list!

Diana PeterfreundRainbow Rowell | Daniel Handler | Rachel Hawkins
Melina Marchetta | Kasie WestMarissa Meyer | Victoria Schwab
Susan Ee | Brandon Sanderson | Sarah J. Maas | Sarah Rees Brennan

You can decide to get one hardcover book OR two paperbacks as long as it’s $20. It can be a pre-order (if you want and are willing to wait until the publishing date).

The rules:

  • This contest is opened internationally (as long as The Book Depository delivers to you).
  • The giveaway will run from December 19 to December 31, 2013.
  • You must be 13 years (with your parent’s permission) or older.
  • You will be disqualified if you pick up entries you haven’t done.
  • If the winner does not respond to my e-mail within 48 hours, I will have to choose another winner.
  • I am not responsible for any items lost in the mail.
  • IMPORTANT NOTE: Since my discussion post about annoying comments, I’m quite strict on comments. If I see a comment that’s a couple of words and doesn’t say anything substantial, that entry will be disqualified. I’d like you to be considerate of my feelings on those annoying comments.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

For Arial & Christine —
the ribbon is from “Beragarmont Ornaments” | “The Novel Hermit” – Amatic SC | “1 Year” – Su | “blogoversary” – Callie Hands

December 16, 2013 • Cee • Reviews

susan ee-angelfallAngelfall (Penryn & the End of Days #1) by Susan Ee
August 28, 2012
Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository

It’s been six weeks since angels of the apocalypse descended to demolish the modern world. Street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night. When warrior angels fly away with a helpless little girl, her seventeen-year-old sister Penryn will do anything to get her back.

Anything, including making a deal with an enemy angel.

Raffe is a warrior who lies broken and wingless on the street. After eons of fighting his own battles, he finds himself being rescued from a desperate situation by a half-starved teenage girl.

Traveling through a dark and twisted Northern California, they have only each other to rely on for survival. Together, they journey toward the angels’ stronghold in San Francisco where she’ll risk everything to rescue her sister and he’ll put himself at the mercy of his greatest enemies for the chance to be made whole again.


First sentence: “Ironically, since the attacks, the sunsets have been glorious.”


This is an incredibly top book!

What Angelfall did with me was swipe its leg, making me fall on my face before it blasted me out of this world by the sheer awesomeness of the story and the characters. Seriously. It’s that good. Who would’ve thought I’d enjoy angels? I’m just in awe that Susan Ee convinced me that angels can be awesome.

This book was very much post-apocalyptic with a huge dose of sci-fi (that’s almost like an alien invasion) in it by the end. Instead of the typical alien invasion, we have an angel invasion. It’s beautiful, really. What happens in Angelfall is absolutely horrifying in the best way possible! This book is dark. Gruesome shit happens. You will cringe. (At least, for me, I did.) Prepare yourself for those scenes. It’s horrible, but Susan Ee writes in a way that is simply great.

Read more »

December 13, 2013 • Cee • Reviews

mindee arnett-proxyProxy (Avalon #0.5) by Mindee Arnett
December 3, 2013
Balzer & Bray
Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Proxy is an action-packed introduction to a world like nothing readers have seen before, and it sets a spark to the powder keg that will explode in Mindee Arnett’s sci-fi thriller Avalon.

If you need something stolen from any star system in the Confederation, you need look no further than the Shades. Jeth Seagrave and his band of teenage mercenaries have been making a name for themselves for being able to steal anything—and for disappearing before anyone is the wiser. Their latest job, a jewel heist on Grakkus, should be no different. But when Jeth’s boss replaces a key member of his crew just before takeoff, and Jeth discovers a betrayal within his own ranks, he begins to suspect that not everyone is going to be coming back from his job alive.


First sentence: “The thrill of the job never got old.”

I wanted to love Proxy (a novella prequel to Avalon) because it’s part of a series that has things I love — space, heists/thefts, and found families (not so much of the last one in this novella) — but I feel a bit let down. Proxy introduces a few key characters who are on a jewel heist for their crime-lord employer and then a betrayal happens.

I wanted to be totally in love with the characters. Unfortunately, we (as in the characters and I) are still in the stage of getting to know each other. I still don’t understand the characters nor do I get the dynamics among the crew. I didn’t really care for Jeth’s relationship with his sister. And that is rather horrible. Something was lacking in Proxy, and I think it’s missing chemistry between the characters and the found family aspect. I wanted to feel the love the crew have for each other, but I just felt like they were co-workers doing on a job. That’s it.

The only character I really liked was Danforth, which we won’t see him in Avalon because of everything that happened in this novella. I found him to be the most interesting character. He’s unlike the other characters in the sense that he is a bit older, is suffering from an addiction, and is extremely desperate to break free from Hammer’s control. This is the type of person Jeth could be if Jeth is pushed too far. (Maybe it’s a foreshadowing of what’s to come? Maybe.)

(btw, did anybody else imagine Hammer Dafoe (the Shades’s boss) as Willem Dafoe just because of their names? Because I did. Ha.)

I do like the world-building in this. We get to see how things work and the gadgets in their world in its basic form. I’m pumped to read more because I could never imagine this type of world (even though my novel is a bit similar to Proxy).

I think I had a lot of expectations for this story because it’s been touted as the YA Firefly. A lot of pressure to live up to, right? Proxy disappointed me, but I’m still excited to read Avalon. I need to rein in on my expectations for Avalon in case it doesn’t live up to them. I’d hate to be disappointed.gradeB

December 12, 2013 • Cee • Holy Mother Cover


Inspired by Pure Imagination Blog and Stacked.

Let’s be honest, nobody follows the age-old cliché that tells us not to judge a book by its covers. If you say you do, I am side-eying you. Book covers are the first thing that attracts any of us readers to a book. Before you pick up a book, the cover can essentially make or break a book. If I don’t like a cover design, I won’t pick it up. Lucky for us, publishing companies publish different cover designs, especially when a paperback book comes out. Sometimes we like it, sometimes we don’t. Let’s discuss these cover changes, shall we?

Today, we look at the cover of Unspoken (The Lynburn Legacy #1) by Sarah Rees Brennan!

I adoooorrreeee the hardcover design of Unspoken. I love silhouettes a lot. I don’t know why exactly, but I think it’s because silhouettes give that kind of gothic creepiness I like. I love the way the silhouettes of the branches frame the top of the cover and the gates with the silhouettes of the heads in it. The rose red color background with the light yellow (gold?) font color is incredibly gorgeous together. The cover design evokes that romanticism and mysteriousness that’s in the story, and it instantly enhances the story even more. It’s absolutely perfect.

That paperback cover, holy boobs! That was my reaction when I first saw this cover. (It still is.)  The model (who I’m assuming is acting as Kami Glass) has a very ample chest. It distracts me when it really shouldn’t, which I am 95% sure that Sarah Rees Brennan approved of it for that exact reaction. Props to you, Sarah! ;D I’m trying to recall if there were any references to Kami’s bust and I vaguely remember she didn’t have any? (I could just be lying through my teeth.)

Anyways, back to that paperback cover, I do like it. It utilizes shadows and dark colors that certainly evoke that gothic atmosphere. I especially love the font and the font color. It’s so gorgeous. I love that the title pops out (pink against dark anything does that). I do appreciate that the book designer and Sarah Rees Brennan kept the gothicness for the paperback. It adds the right feel to the story.

I like both of them, but I do prefer the hardcover design because c’mon, silhouettes are frickin’ lovely. I’m pretty sure if the hardcover didn’t have that silhouette cover design, I wouldn’t have liked Unspoken as much as I do. That cover just fits with Kami and that entire world.

What cover design do you prefer? Do you like silhouettes? What books have you seen that uses silhouettes gorgeously? What was your first thought when you saw the paperback cover of Unspoken? Also, if anybody knows the font of the title on the paperback cover, tell me. I need to know.