Thursday, July 30, 2015

Tweens & Tots Thursday: Heroes of Hurricane Katrina (10 True Tales) by Allan Zullo

Release Date: July 28, 2015
Publisher & ARC: Scholastic
ISBN: 978054831239
Ages: 8+

Ten true stories of real-life heroes during Hurricane Katrina!
When Hurricane Katrina's flood waters rose, trapping the Bullard family inside their home, 13-year-old Phillip Bullard swam underwater to a submerged window, cleared the debris, and led each family member underwater to the roof. Then he swam to retrieve an abandoned boat and put them in it. He used broomsticks and other debris for paddles and took his family to higher ground.
Terrence Gray of Gulfport, Mississippi, commandeered a rowboat that was floating nearby and dragged it from house to house to save 20 injured, disabled, and elderly people in a terribly flooded neighborhood.
Nurses and doctors at Charity Hospital fought desperately to keep their patients alive for days, despite hunger, pain, heat, little drinkable water and no electricity, waiting desperately for helicopters to evacuate their patients.
These and other real-life heroes risked their lives to save others during Hurricane Katrina. You will never forget their courageous true stories.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Out of this World Wednesday: The Raven's Child by Thomas E. Sniegoski

Release Date: July 28, 2015
Publisher & ARC: Scholastic
ISBN: 9780425279076
Ages: 12+

Thomas E. Sniegoski has entranced audiences with his exploration of the Batman universe, thrilled fans with his Buffy the Vampire Slayercomics, and uncovered the paranormal with his Hellboy spin-off series, B.R.P.D. Now, he introduces readers to a mesmerizing dark world filled with monsters, where humanity’s only hope lies in the bravery of one woman…

When the Throng came, the human race never stood a chance. The monsters were simply too strong, too numerous. It only took a few months for them to take over and leave the few poor souls who survived cowering in terror for years to come.

But even the monsters fear something: the dark goddess known as the Raven’s Child. Legend says that she alone is destined to destroy the Throng and free those under their cruel power.

And whoever wields her name and image could become the bane of the Throng and an inspiration to humankind—even if she were only a young woman, like Carissa Devin, who has vowed to reclaim the world for the human race, no matter what the cost.

Terror Tuesday: Website Promotion

Since I like movies, especially horror movies, I thought I would do a last minute Terror Tuesday and promote a website: Oh the Horror. While I'm normally pretty competitive when it comes to writing, (I did earn my high school's English award and Communication award...of course that was fifteen years ago), I have to bow down to one of the writers who just has to be my husband, Brett Gallman.

Since we started dating back in 2000, one of our commonalities has always been horror movies (but it was really Blink 182 and wrasslin' that brought us together). From a love of Freddy, Jason, and Michael to a strange love of The Visitor (still not sure I can totally explain that one) and Motel Hell, being a fan of horror movies is just something we do; it's a part of what makes us the couple we are. 

When the end of July comes barrelling at us and school (both high school teachers) is close to restarting, many people will begin to talk about the one word that doesn't make us sweat: Halloween. So while I want you to check out the reviews on the website right now (and we're talking an extensive A-Z list), make sure you return in October when the website really comes to life. 

So what kind of reviews will you find? Anything from 1958's I Bury the Living to the recent release of The Vatican Tapes.  The site has thousands of movie reviews in every horror subgenre. With Features like Hall of Fame (promoting treasures like 1987's The Lost Boys) and Unsung Heroes (with 1980's Tremors), you can spend hours reading about the movies you grew up with and the ones you wished you never saw. And whether you agree or disagree, respectfully, taking a ride down Elm Street is always fun, and so is remembering your favorite horror moments. 

When you're sitting around with nothing to do, twiddling your thumbs and counting down the days until October 1st (hey, September is not too early to start), head over to Oh the Horror  and just browse around. But beware, some of what you see or read may frighten you. But isn't that what we all want?

Monday, July 27, 2015

Monday Mentions: My Brother's Secret by Dan Smith

Release Date: July 28, 2015
Publisher & ARC: Scholastic
ISBN: 9780545771559
Ages: 9-12

Germany, 1941. 12-year-old Karl Engel is looking forward to joining the Hitler Youth, like all boys his age.

But when his father is killed, his rebellious older brother Stefan shows him things that leave his faith in the F├╝hrer shaken. Who is the real enemy? What is the meaning of the flower sewn inside his brother’s jacket? Karl soon finds out, as he becomes involved in a dangerous rebellion.

Friday, July 24, 2015

New Ships and Teaser Trailer for Illuminae

For fans of Marie Lu and James Dashner comes the first book in an epic new series,

The Illuminae Files_01
By Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Amie Kaufman, the award-winning co-author of the Starbound series, and Jay Kristoff, the award-winning author of the Lotus War series, have joined together to create an innovative and enthralling sci-fi thriller, ILLUMINAE (Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers | On sale October 20, 2015). A heart-stopping, high-octane story about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes. The first book in a trilogy, ILLUMINAE is a game changer.

ILLUMINAE (Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers | On sale October 20, 2015 | $18.99)


This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.
This afternoon, her planet was invaded.
The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto one of the evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

*(New Feature)* Tweens & Tots Thursday: Max the Brave Trailer

Max the Brave is a fearless kitten who chases mice.There is just one problem…He doesn’t know what a mouse looks like!

Are You My Mother?” meets “I Want My Hat Back” in the hilarious new picture book, Max the Brave (Sept. 8), by author and illustrator Ed Vere. Follow fearless Max as he encounters every other creature except the one he’s searching for…mouse. Check out the trailer!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

*(New Feature)* Out of this World Wednesday: The Ultimate Book of Randomly Awesome Facts by Penelope Arlon

Release Date: July 28, 2015
Publisher & ARC: Scholastic
ISBN: 97805458266266
Ages: 8+

Hundreds of lists--thousands of facts!

There's a new online sensibility, and kids are encountering it every day. It's the "flipped" world of facts--facts presented as instant, cool, unexpected. And in this world of BuzzFeed and YouTube, a big focus of the new factual sensibility is lists.

WHAT YOU REALLY NEED TO KNOW is a book of best-ever lists, with a completely different look and feel to reflect today's digital world. The lists cover topics from science and technology to history and pop culture, and every one of them has a hook. The information appears random, like it's from an Internet search. But in-depth research and expert writing mean that the book is filled with the most important, most engaging, most up-to-the-minute facts. This is reference reinvented, with supermodern lists, and a supermodern visual presentation to match.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

*(New Feature)* Terror Tuesday: MTV's Scream Series

I can pretty much say that (of the people I know at least) I am one of the biggest Scream fans, so when I heard about MTV's new TV series, I was both intrigued and anxious. Anytime a horror series can be a part of television, I'm there (i.e. Hannibal), but I wasn't sure how MTV would present the show. The 2015 MTV Movie Awards premiered the trailer, and I was pretty impressed. 

With Bella Thorne in the lead role (recently starring in The Duff), I was hopeful that MTV, producer Wes Craven, and writers Jill Blotevogel, Dan Dworkin and Dan Beattie would bring it!

Monday, July 20, 2015

*(New Feature)* Monday Mentions: The Survival Guide to Bullying by Aija Mayrock

Release Date: June 30, 2015
Publisher & ARC: Scholastic
ISBN: 9780545860536
Ages: 10+

"One day I realized that I had to create a little, yet powerful survival guide that any kid could use as a life-saving device when they were being bullied in the gym, the cafeteria, the locker room, the hallways - anywhere. A guide that could help any kid dry their tears and put a half smile on their face. A guide that could convince a kid to come out of the bathroom stall that they have locked themselves in and see the flickering light at the end of the tunnel. A guide that could be a road map, a flashlight, or a friend." - The Survival Guide to Bullying.
Aija Mayrock, a 19-year-old girl, offers a fresh perspective on bullying. In her book, "The Survival Guide to Bullying" - written by a kid for a kid, Aija offers support, guidance, and direction to her reader.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

What We Knew by Barbara Stewart

Release Date: July 14, 2015
Publisher & ARC: St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN: 9781250051394
Ages: 14+

I love horror. My husband runs a horror movie review website (, and we go all out for Halloween. The adrenaline rush of fear is like no other. As I was finishing this book the other day, I kept hearing scratching noises in the attic. Not something you want to hear when reading a supernatural book. Turns out it was just a black beetle, but everything in this book is not so obvious, and that's why you have to read it!

Tracy and her best friend Lisa love to walk home late at night, but they also know which part of town to avoid. In this case, they don't go near the woods because of local legend Banana Man who is known as a pervert. Of course, they only believed that story when they were kids. As teenagers, Banana Man really hasn't crossed their minds until their boyfriends decide to take a late-night trip into the woods and see a mysterious shack. Could it be a homeless man, or could it be the infamous Banana Man?

Sunday, July 12, 2015

About a Girl by Sarah McCarry

Release Date: July 14, 2015
Publisher & ARC: ST. Martin's Griffin
ISBN: 9781250068620
Ages: 14+

Rounding out her Metamorphoses cycle, Sarah McCarry completes the trilogy with Aurora's teenage daughter Tally. On the verge of turning eighteen, Tally is finally starting to be comfortable with who she is and who she wants to be. Set on being a scientist, specifically studying dark energy, Tally's only other decision to make is will she take the next step with Shane and possibly jeopardize their friendship.

After deciding to take the next step one night with Shane, Shane misses Tally's birthday for the first time in ten years. After she visits her mysterious neighbor Mr. M., she sees a photo of her mother (who left her as a newborn with her best friend) with a musician named Jack. Deciding to throw caution to the wind, Tally decides to go on her own quest in search of a mother and father she never knew.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Weightless by Sarah Bannan

Release Date: June 30, 2015
Publisher & ARC: St. Martins
ISBN: 9781250078988
Ages: 14+

As technology becomes more prominent, more accessible, and more intrusive, our lives are broadcast 24/7. Our latest vacation, latest tragedy, or latest triumph, appear on news feeds, and within mere hours, everything we don't want posted shows up, and there's not much we can do about it. No group of people know this better than teenagers--cruel and relentless bullies or bystanders.

Carolyn Lessing just moved from hip New Jersey to small-town Adamsville, Alabama. She's gorgeous, intelligent, and sweet--just the right person to be bullied. Immediately upon arrival, our protagonists (first person plural) zone in on Carolyn's presence and observe everything about her, good and bad. Not only does she have the girls' attention, but she also has Shane Duggan's, star quarterback. Technically still with another girl, Shane quickly bounces to Carolyn's side, which doesn't help Carolyn's case for being sweet and innocent.