Saturday, January 10, 2009

Fun contest! Exciting prizes!

I was lucky enough to win a big box of books from Presenting Lenore, courtesy of Penguin, and my NINE YA books showed up as a late Christmas present. So much fun! I've just started reading them, and I have a review and giveaway for the first (with a bonus!).


Death by Bikini by Linda Gerber: This is the first Aphra Connelly mystery. I picked it up when I received Death by Latte (the second) from Penguin. The third, Death by Denim, comes out in May. I've always loved mysteries, but I was racking my brain to remember YA mysteries I read back in the Dark Ages when I was a teen. I can remember graduating to the edgier Nancy Drew Case Files, but I was drawing a blank on anything else. I'm not sure they even HAD YA mystery back then, because junior high is about when I started reading my mom's Dick Francis and Sue Grafton books. Those were great, but I would have enjoyed a series like this, mysteries featuring a teenaged sleuth. Aphra is a strong, smart character who makes typical mistakes for a teenager. She's different from your usual teenaged protagonist in that she's not all about boys and the mall. In fact, since she lives at the island resort run by her father, there are neither boys nor malls to be had. So when dreamy Seth and his family visit the resort, Aphra is delighted. But why is her father so intent that she stay away from Seth? And who is the mysterious guy who checks in after Seth's family? After a rock star guest's girlfriend turns up on the beach, strangled with her own bikini, Aphra doesn't know who to trust. The action was fast-paced, with lots of suspense and scary moments (although sometimes a bit on the implausible side), and Aphra is funny and smart. A side plot about her mother (who left when Aphra was 12) adds some emotional depth. A fun mystery just for teens.


Death by Latte by Linda Gerber: Aphra goes to Seattle in search of her mother and finds herself embroiled in another mystery when she witnesses the poisoning of her mother's associate. Seth turns up to demand Aphra return the ring he'd given her, she has a hunky new neighbor, and her mother doesn't seem that happy to see her. Aphra needs to untangle these strange events and get out of Seattle alive. A good follow-up to Death by Bikini. After I finished Bikini, I wondered if the island resort was going to be another Cabot Cove, so I was glad Gerber moved Aphra out of there to give a new dimension to the series. Who to trust is a continuing problem for Aphra, but not in a predictable way. Aphra's relationship with her mother is complex and evolving. If the action isn't always remotely plausible, it's okay because the characters make up for it!

Want to win this pair of books? Leave a comment here telling why you'd like to win them. Three bonus entries for linking to this contest on your blog. The contest ends Wednesday, January 28 at noon EST. Good luck!

37 comments:

sharonanne said...

I love mysteries and I've been meaning to read this series. I'll put a link of my sidebar.

Nutz4reading said...

Well I guess I will be one of the first ones to comment on the books. I love mysteries myself and don't think I have ever read any YA mysteries either. Both the books sound very interesting and I will be looking for them at either my local library or bookstore (which ever I visit first).

You have shown me another author that I would probably have never noticed on my own.

Thanks for running the contest!!!

Colleen said...

I'd love to be entered to win these books. As a teen, I got hooked on Agatha Christie mysteries (I still reread them regularly) and would have loved to find a YA mystery series. I do remember some great individual mystery stories though, especially Pomeroy's Postscript. I'll have to add these to my TBR shelf regardless...

Colleen
Foreign Circus Library

wordlily said...

I love mysteries, and I rediscovered YA books just within the last year. I'd love to win these!

Wordlily AT gmail.com

GreenBeanTeenQueen said...

I had a teen at my library tell me I need to read this series, so I've been meaning to read it ever since. I've heard such great things about them
-Sarah
greenbeanteenqueen (at) gmail (dot) com

Anne said...

I love YA books - sometimes they seem so much better than "adult" books!

Please enter me!

Thanks!

nbmars AT yahoo DOT com

bermudaonion said...

I'm a mystery lover and these sound great. Please enter me. milou2ster(at)gmail.com

Cheryl said...

I love a good mystery. Also these books sound like some fun light hearted reads. I could use that right now.

Thanks

clbstitch at yahoo dot com

Anita Yancey said...

I would like to read them because they sound like fun reads. Also because mysteries are my very favorite books. Please enter me.
ayancey(at)dishmail(dot)net

Kaye said...

I love mysteries,I'd like to read these and then pass them on to my teenaged granddaughter. I think she would like them a lot.
florida982002[at]yahoo dot com

Becca said...

Mystery and YA? That sounds like it would be right up my alley, besides I love the cover of Death by Bikini so I would love to read these. Thanks
rebecca.bradeen(at)verizon(dot)net

Melissa said...

I love mysteries and have heard great things about this series. Thanks for the giveaway!

Penelope said...

Ooh, these sound good! I'm just getting into mysteries, and these books sound like the perfect thing for me! Thanks for the opportunity!

Thao said...

I never read YA mystery before and these sound pretty interesting. Please enter me. Thanks for the giveaway<3

Bingo said...

DEATH BY LATTE is one I have been interested in. I teach YA and often find some of their books fun reads. Please enter me. I shall let people on my blog know about your contest. Do come join me for a chance at an autographed copy of CREEPERS at http://bookinwithbingo.blogspot.com

Diana Dang said...

I have been trying to get the first volume for awhile but is unable to. I really want to read it without going out of order since I got the second one myself. (But I would love both because I can give my second copy of Death by Latte for a future contest).

I have linked it to my blog also!

Katie said...

I've heard a lot about these books. I've read reviews them and interviews with the author but never the books. I want to see if everything I've heard is true. Plus, I love a good mystery!
bball11kt(at)sbcglobal(dot)net

Sheri S. said...

I love mysteries and this series looks like so much fun! Plus I love the book covers!! Thanks for the giveaway :)

Wrighty - said...

Congrats on winning the box of books! How fun! I've seen these books a couple of places and they sound good. When I was a kid my mystery books were Encyclopedia Brown and Trixie Beldin with some Judy Blume mixed in there for excitement. Then I skipped to my mom's books too. Please include me and thanks for your contest. I've added it to my blog too.

www.wrightysreads.blogspot.com
5wrights1@verizon.net

Genevieve said...

I love mysteries. I haven't read a good mystery in a long time. I didn't know that these books were mysteries, they sound really good! I put a link in my sidebar.

http://caprubia.blogspot.com/

Megan said...

I've looked at Death By Latte several times and actually didn't realize it was part of a series. They look like fun reads.

I'd love to be entered! :) Thank you!

cecilia said...

I'm with everyone - I love mysteries! These titles sound fun!

tetewa said...

Nothing like a good mystery, count me in! tWarner419@aol.com

Tisa said...

Please count me in! ~:) I have a goal this year to read 100+ books and would love to read a few mysteries - always looking for new authors/books to read. Thanks!

katie said...

I'd love to be entered to win these books. I love reading mysteries but I haven't really found any good YA mysteries. Maybe I will win them but if not I will just get them at the book store.

pepsivanilla said...

I haven't read a mystery, even a bad one, in what seems like years. I've heard that these books are awesome and have been meaning to read them!

Posted about your contest here:
http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=18902716&blogID=465516793

Yan said...

I'd love to enter! I've actually heard a lot about these books but I haven't had a lot of time to get get them!~

Stephanie said...

Wow, a mix of YA and mystery? Sounds fantastic! There definitely needs to be more cross-genre books out there. I'd like to read these books because I've read Bad Kitty by Michele Jaffe, a hilarious YA detective novel, and loved it. Hoping to find more like it.

I've posted about your contest (and have a review of Bad Kitty) up on my blog. Thanks for this opportunity to read some great books!

Reeva said...

hey this is cool . I havent read a good mystery since my last poirot novel. Both sound like great reads.

Thanks for such a generous giveaway! I hope I'm chosen as the lucky winner!!!

AmandaSue said...

I'd like to read this because I like mystery books and the titles are just so fun and intersting! Thanks for entering me!
unforgetable_dreamer_always AT hotmail DOT com

darbyscloset said...

This would be a new author for me and I love to read series, so if there are any other books in the series I'd have to get those too...dang, how I hate to have to buy books ;-*
I also love mysteries! So my post gives you 3 reasons why I'd like to read these books!
Thanks for the giveaway!
Darby
darbyscloset at yahoo dot co

robin_titan said...

gosh, I've been wanting to read these books for the longest time!
thanks for the opportunity! :D

Erika Lynn said...

I have been wanting to read them and they haven't made there way to my little local library yet!

Erika Lynn said...

I also posted a link on my blog
http://kissmybook.blogspot.com/2009/01/simple-pleasures.html

Deniz Bevan said...

Oooh I'd love to win! I've bought less than 10 books since I started my book-buying ban last June (cos I've got so many and really need to read all the ones in my house first before I get new ones) and I really miss getting YA whenever I need a fix :-)

darbyscloset said...

Was a winner announced for these two great books?
Thanks
Darby
darbyscloset at yahoo dot com

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