Books + Cupcakes = Good Times

2:23 PM Posted by Ella Preuss



There we go! See how yummy the bread is!

This was my first attempt at a Red Velvet Cupcake, and I gotta say, they turned out pretty good! The cupcake anyway... cause the frosting (Cream Cheese) was a nightmare. I couldn't get it right, but I'll keep trying! I liked this video tutorial from Joy of Baking, so I'll try to do what she does next time.

You can also see my latest read: The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. (I always try to read a book before watching its film.) It's good so far, nothing major has happened, but I like the pace and the writing.

Oh, and Happy St. Patrick's Day!
xo, Ella

Lauren celebrated the release of Pandemonium with a big party!

2:30 PM Posted by Ella Preuss

I was visiting the Paper Lantern Lit blog (to learn more about PLL, go here), and I found these pics from the joint release party for Pandemonium and The Butterfly Clues, by Kate Ellison. Check out Lauren's gorgeous dress!

Paper Lantern Lit Book Release Party
A toast!
Paper Lantern Lit Book Release Party
Looks like Lauren won a raffle!
Paper Lantern Lit Book Release Party
The PLL staff. From left to right: Beth, Rhoda, Lexa & Lauren
Paper Lantern Lit Book Release Party
Kate Ellison and a friend
It looks like they had a lot of fun! Have you got your copy of Pandemonium yet? I'm still waiting for mine, Amazon's international shipping takes forever!
xo, Ella

Review: New Girl, by Paige Harbison

10:14 AM Posted by Ella Preuss

Release Date: January 31st, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Age Group: Young Adult
Overall: 3,5 out of 5 Stars
Categories: Drama, Romance, Retelling
Goodreads Page
Read in March 2012 
A contemporary young-adult retelling inspired by the classic 1938 romantic suspense bestseller Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.

They call me 'New Girl'...

Ever since I arrived at exclusive, prestigious Manderly Academy, that’s who I am. New girl. Unknown. But not unnoticed—because of her.

Becca Normandy—that’s the name on everyone’s lips. The girl whose picture I see everywhere. The girl I can’t compare to. I mean, her going missing is the only reason a spot opened up for me at the academy. And everyone stares at me like it’s my fault.

Except for Max Holloway—the boy whose name shouldn’t be spoken. At least, not by me. Everyone thinks of him as Becca’s boyfriend…but she’s gone, and here I am, replacing her. I wish it were that easy. Sometimes, when I think of Max, I can imagine how Becca’s life was so much better than mine could ever be.

And maybe she’s still out there, waiting to take it back.
My Opinion:

It took me a while to get into this story. Normally I don't go for contemporary, but I'd read that this had a supernatural twist, so I decided to give it a go.

The first half of the book narrates the New Girl's life in Manderley, the boarding school her parents send her to. That's the school she wanted to go as a little girl, not now that she's a senior and has all of her friends in Florida. But she goes anyway, because she doesn't want to disappoint her parents. 

I loved that the book had two POVs: Becca's and the New Girl (BTW, we don't learn her name until the final chapter, if I remember correctly. When I read her name, I was like, what, this is your name?, and started looking for it in past chapters. Very well played, Ms. Harbison!). Becca's chapters would be in the 3rd person and NG's in the 1st. With Becca's we got to learn more about the why behind her disappearance. 

I only wish the first part of the book would have been faster-paced (yes, I like inventing terms, if they don't already exist). That's the part where you have to engage your reader. I felt like I was constantly reading a new girl's whines about how much she missed her family and home, and why everyone at school compared her to Becca. Becca's chapters, however, were completely engaging. She was a very cool character to read. 

The boys from this book were appealing, and their story with Becca really showed us who they were. I started feeling sorry for them, for how Becca had treated them. Max and Johnny were good characters. Max definitely captured my heart along with NG's!

This school fed on gossip and rumours, and the NG got to be the centre of attention from the start. I liked how her character evolved towards the end, and how the mystery around Becca was finally solved. 

So, my only critique would be: the book should have been more engaging in the beginning, like it is in the end. We can forget about the NG's whines, because they show her character, and she does change in the end. The end of the book definitely makes up for the slow parts.  

I'm giving it 3,5 stars based on my personal enjoyment.  

Free ARCs of The Earthquake Machine by Mary Lowry at FridayReads

7:35 PM Posted by Ella Preuss

I'll be reviewing this book later in the month, and I thought you'd like to know about this chance. 
The Earthquake Machine has been highly praised, and Lowry's yet-to-be released novel The Gods of Fire –based on her experiences as a forest firefighter– which has been optioned for film by Bill Mechanic (former CEO of 20th Century Fox) and is in pre-production.

To request an ARC (ecopy or hard copy) email Trixie T. at:

Are you on Figment? Then you can read the first four chapters of PANDEMONIUM for free!

12:41 PM Posted by Ella Preuss

You read right, Lauren has uploaded the first four chapters of PANDEMONIUM to her Figment account, so if you still haven't had the chance to buy a copy of the book, you can head over to Figment and start reading it now.