Friday, August 30, 2013

Book Spotlight: This Side of Forever


Hey y'all!

Just wanted to take a minute to let y'all know about a new book that's out this week. I haven't read the book yet but it sounds really interesting! The author is from Alabama so you know I have to show her a little love. So check out the blurb below and see if it's something you're interested in. It's only $1.99 on Amazon so even if you're on the fence it's a great price! 




Goodreads Description:

In the small town of Harden Fields, summer time seems to be the best time to set fire to old flames in this racy, heart-stopping romance.
 
 
Laney Oliver is ready to start a new life. Away from the small lonely town of Harden Fields, Alabama. Away from the pressures of her careless family. And away from the shadows of her broken heart. Laney is just beginning to heal after the love of her life shattered her perfect world, leaving her with no explanation. When the reason for her pain-stricken heart returns to Harden for the summer, she vows to stay away. But, she soon realizes that it may be easier said than done.
 
Jeremiah Cutler left Harden Fields in a rage, leaving his entire reason for existence behind. He knew that he was shattering Laney’s world, but he had to…there was no other way. Everything he did, he did for her… he just has to prove himself to her once again. Leaving Laney was a necessary fleet that he wishes he could take back, but staying away from her was never an option. Now, amidst his return, Jeremiah’s sole purpose is to win Laney’s trust back and to regain his forever at any cost.

BUY THE BOOK


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Gated Blog Tour: Tens List & Giveaway







GOODREADS DESCRIPTION:

Do the gates keep the unchosen out or the chosen in?

In Mandrodage Meadows, life seems perfect. The members of this isolated suburban community have thrived under Pioneer, the charismatic leader who saved them from their sad, damaged lives. Lyla Hamilton and her parents are original members of the flock. They moved here following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, looking to escape the evil in the world. Now seventeen, Lyla knows certain facts are not to be questioned:

Pioneer is her leader.

Will is her Intended.

The end of the world is near.

Like Noah before him, Pioneer has been told of the imminent destruction of humanity. He says his chosen must arm themselves to fight off the unchosen people, who will surely seek refuge in the compound's underground fortress--the Silo.

Lyla loves her family and friends, but given the choice, she prefers painting to target practice. And lately she'd rather think about a certain boy outside the compound than plan for married life in the Silo with Will. But with the end of days drawing near, she will have to pick up a gun, take a side, and let everyone know where she stands.




BUY THE BOOK



ABOUT THE AUTHOR




AMY CHRISTINE PARKER earned her degree in elementary education at Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida, and then proceeded to try out many different jobs, including collectible doll maker, fondue waitress, and inner-city schoolteacher. It wasn't until she became a mom and began making up bedtime stories for her children that she finally realized what she was meant to do. Now Amy writes full-time from her home near Tampa, Florida, where she lives with her husband, their two daughters, and one ridiculously fat cat. Her first novel, GATED, debuts with Random House Children's August 6, 2013. Visit her at amychristineparker.blogspot.com.



Ten Things/Events That Influenced GATED


1. The Mayan Calendar’s December 21, 2012 End of the World Prophecy: I was amazed by how many people were seriously preparing for it. That mindset-that many had, played heavily into creating the characters inside the Community in my book.

2. Extreme Underground Bunkers: There are multiple shows on at any given time about these new, expansive and luxurious underground apocalypse shelters. The Silo in my book was patterned after one built for a company called VIVOS. You can see what it looks like here: http://www.terravivos.com/secure/solution.htm

3. Gated Communities: I live in the South where there are a plethora of these. I wanted the Community in my book to live in a version of one mainly because I find the whole gate thing sort of ludicrous. It won’t keep out people intent on breaking and entering or even people who are trying to solicit business and yet some people tend to feel safer if their house is behind one. I rent a house in a gated suburban community myself and there have been multiple break ins and more than a few solicitors who’ve made it past the front gate. In fact, many times I’m the one who can’t get in right away because the gate breaks down. To me they just seem to serve as a status thing and I find that to be highly distasteful on the whole. Putting my cult in a gated suburban-like development was my way of poking fun at them and their actual lack of real safety.

4. The horse my daughter rode in her lessons: My daughter loves horses and horseback riding. When I wrote the book she was riding a horse named Pockets. I absolutely love that horse. It’s gentle and kind and has the most adorable lower lip that droops open all the time. That lower lip became one of the distinguishing characteristics of my main character, Lyla’s, horse, Indy, in the book.

5. The Final Transcripts of Jonestown: I read over these at least a dozen times. Jim Jones’ decision to force the group into taking poison because he was about to be exposed-his paranoia in those final moments-all heavily influenced the final chapters of the book.

6. Cult Leaders like David Koresh, Charles Manson, Marshal Applewhite, and Wayne Bent: I watched hours and hours of videos featuring these men. Pioneer, the leader of the Community in my book is a hybrid of all of them. I wanted him to share the seemingly nurturing aspects of David Koresh, the edge of danger and charisma of Manson, and the seriously creepy vibe of Wayne Bent.

7. Amish Furniture Catalogs: I borrowed the idea of the Community earning a living from furniture crafting from them.

8. The Waco Seige: I used it as inspiration for the raid on the Community.

9. Christina’s World (the painting) by Andrew Wyeth: In one of the original drafts of the book I included this painting as part of Lyla’s lesson time with Pioneer.Although it didn’t make the final cut I felt that the picture really captured a sense of deep longing--of what Lyla yearns for: home and safety—even if that safety’s merely a perceived one, but because of her doubts about the Community it’s as if she’s always on the outside looking in. It helped me understand her as a character better.

10. 9/11: This date played heavily into the construction of this story although it’s only mentioned in one sentence in the second chapter. I really feel that for groups like the one in my book, big tragedies like it cement their conviction that the world is in it’s final death throes. In recent history, there is no other single event that’s effected us quite so deeply and so I knew that by using it it would be easier for the reader to understand why Lyla’s family decided to join the Community.

acpGIVEAWAY
One Winner will get:GATED T-Shirt | Owl Bracelet | Owl Ring | Bookmark 
One Winners will get:Signed Audio Book + Bookmark 
5 Winners will get:
ARCs of GATED
 
10 Winners will get:
Signed bookmarks (open internationally)
Must be 13+ To Enter – Shipping in the US Only, except for the 10 Bookmarks which will ship International. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Descendant Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway








Title: Descendant (Starling #2)
Author: Lesley Livingston
Pub. Date: August 27, 2013
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 336




Goodreads Description:

The last thing Mason Starling remembers is the train crossing a bridge. An explosion . . . a blinding light . . . then darkness. Now she is alone, stranded in Asgard—the realm of Norse legend—and the only way for her to get home is to find the Spear of Odin, a powerful relic left behind by vanished gods.


The Fennrys Wolf knows all about Asgard. He was once trapped there. And he’ll do whatever it takes to find the girl who’s stolen his heart and bring her back—even if it means a treacherous descent into the Underworld. But time is running out, and Fenn knows something Mason doesn’t: If she takes up the Spear, she’ll set in motion a terrible prophecy. And she won’t just return to her world . . . she’ll destroy it.

In this pulse-pounding sequel to Starling, Lesley Livingston delivers another electrifying blend of nonstop action and undeniable romance that will leave readers breathless.

About Lesley:

Lesley Livingston is a writer and actress living in Toronto. She has a master's degree in English from the University of Toronto, where she specialized in Arthurian Literature and Shakespeare. She frequently performs with the Tempest Theatre Group, of which she is a co-founder. She is also the author of WONDROUS STRANGE and DARKLIGHT.

You can visit Lesley online at
www.lesleylivingston.com



The thing I love about books by Lesley Livingston is that they are so easy to read. It's not that she dumbs down the book in any way (quite the contrary, really) but it's the fact that her writing flows so well. It's easy to sit down and think you've only read a few pages but in reality you've read a 100. This is how reading DESCENDANT was for me.

It took me a little bit to get back into the world. That's the thing about not being able to read an entire series back to back, you forget things that happened in the first book....or maybe that's just me? After I got my bearings and got myself caught back up I was able to really dig into the book. 

I loved the story. Livingston does a great job of gripping readers from beginning to end. I loved the mythology in DESCENDANT. I'll admit I was a little proud of myself for knowing some of the Egyptian gods mentioned: Annubis, Ra, Isis, ect. (thanks Rick Riordan and The Kane Chronicles!). Still, there was a lot I learned in this book about Norse mythology. I always find it fun learning more about different mythologies!

One thing I really liked about this story was the inclusion of some of the characters we met in the Wondrous Strange series, Maddox in particular. I am one of those people that love seeing glimpses of the original series in the spin-off. 

I still absolutely love Fenn! I love that he's tough and rugged but so sweet and kind hearted when it comes to Mason. Fenn proves that men can be both! Well, at least in books. Mason continues to prove to be a strong heroine. She's brave and smart and I really hope that her and Fenn get their happy ending!

DESCENDANT is full of action and suspense. Livingston loves to keep readers on their toes! Also, just a little heads up, the ending is a KILLER! The wait for book three is going to be almost unbearable!


BUY THE BOOK:



Giveaway Details:
2 signed sets of STARLING & DESCENDANT Us/Canada Only

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Don't Forget to Check Out the Rest of the Tour!!

Tour Schedule:
8/19/2013- The Happy Booker- Guest Post
8/20/2013- Bewitched Bookworms- Interview
8/21/2013- IceyBooks- Review
8/22/2013- Tater's Tall Tails- Guest Post
8/23/2013- [B.O.O.K.L.I.F.E.]- Review
8/26/2013- Fiktshun- Character Interview Fennrys
8/27/2013- Wholly Books- Review
8/28/2013- Book Jems- Review
8/29/2013- Two Chicks on Books- Guest Post
8/30/2013- About to Read- Interview
Sunday, August 25, 2013

I Need Your Help Book Quote Lovers!!

Hey guys!!


So from the title I'm sure you gather that I need your help!! I am looking for quotes to use for my wedding! I have some that I have found but I am looking for others that I may not have found or known to look for. I've used Goodreads to search for quotes but I would love to hear what your favorite love quotes are. I am particularly interested in YA quotes, obviously!

Oh, and if anyone knows any songs that would be great for weddings I am interested in suggestions. I'm not a music person so I'm struggling it that department.

Any help you can give is greatly appreciated!! I will be posting pictures of my wedding afterwards so you can see all of my bookish designs/decorations!!

Thanks so much!!


Also, side note that has absolutely nothing to do with this post, I saw City of Bones last night and I loved it! I'll be doing a movie review soon! Anyone else seen it??


Thursday, August 22, 2013

That Awkward Thursday (19) When you're in a Blogging Slump



That Awkward Thursday is a feature hosted by Wholly Books where it's not only okay but encouraged to share your awkward moments! 

That awkward moment you realize you are in a blogging slump...


I started to title this post That Awkward Moment You Realize You are in a Blogging Funk but was afraid that some people would glance at it and think I said a different word that started with a FU and ended with a K. And wouldn't that have been awkward?!

Anyways, if any of you regularly read my blog then you may have noticed my lack of posting for the last month. I still most a few times a week but lately it's been around 3 times a week when in the past it's been at least 5. 

Why you may ask? Well, it all started on my little trip to Europe. I was gone for a week and didn't get much reading or blogging done while there. Then when I got back I was overwhelmed with planning stuff for my sister's bridal shower (she's getting married in October) and planning for my wedding (August 31). Since then I have stayed busy with wedding stuff and just haven't had the time to read and post. I've been working double time trying to get all of the posts/tour dates I had previously commited to doing done. Somehow I have managed because let's me honest no one likes letting someone down. Then whenever I did have time to read or blog I was so exhausted from all of the other non-book related stuff going on that I just didn't feel like doing it. Instead, I indulged in mindless T.V. 

So I'm not sure if this is a blogging slump or a I just don't have time deal. Either way, after the wedding I'll be gone for a week (I'm going to Puerto Rico!) and then I hope to be back at full force. I have a lot of things I want to do so I am hopeful!

Also, I'm running low on "awkward" topics for this feature and would love to have some suggestions!! 




Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday (38)



Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the  Broke and the Bookish!


Top Ten Things That Make Your Life As A Reader/Book Blogger Easier

1. Audiobooks- Oh man, have these helped me! After listening to my first audiobook I was completely hooked and in love! Now, I listened to audiobooks all the time when I'm in my car!

2. Audible- This one goes along with the first one but Audible is a great site for audiobook lovers because audiobooks can be pricey! Audible allows users to pay a set amount a month to earn credits to purchase audiobooks rather than having to pay full price.

3. Kindles- While I LOVE print books and prefer print there are times where ebooks/ereaders are superior. For example, when traveling or reading on the beach ereaders are much more functional! 

4. Rafflecopter- I LOVE Rafflecopter! It makes hosting giveaways so much easier and a lot less hassle! Rafflecopter does almost all of the work!!

5. Twitter- While twitter may be a hinderance to actual reading, it's great for socializing, promoting your blog, and finding out things going on in the bookish world!


Okay, I'm sure there are other things but that's all I could come up with! What are some things that made your life as a reader/blogger easier!!
Sunday, August 18, 2013

Authors are Rockstars: Victoria Schwab Interview & Giveaway



Hey y'all!!

I'm super excited to let you know that my Author Rockstar is Victoria Schwab!! I read The Archived right around the new year and I made the bold statement that it was one of my favorite for the upcoming year and now in August I stand by that statement. Here's a little teaser from my review:

"Every once and a while you read a book that is unique and original and completely catches you off guard, The Archived was one of those books for me."  To see my full review, please click here.



Also, Victoria's first adult book is coming out soon (Sept. 24)and I am so excited for it!
 It's called Vicious! Here's a little more about it!



Goodreads Description:

A masterful, twisted tale of ambition, jealousy, betrayal, and
superpowers, set in a near-future world.

Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong.

Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will.

Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?



I absolutely adored The Archived! One of my favorite things (and there were many) about it was the unique world you created. Where did your inspiration come from?
 --First of all, thank you!! I’m so glad you enjoyed it. As for the world, it came out of two distinct places—the Coronado and the Archive—and the girl who lived in both.
The Coronado came easy: I already knew I wanted to write a story set in a crumbling hotel-turned-apartment building. I thought it would be a rich setting with a lot of strange/spooky potential.
But the Archive came out of a darker thought: to me, the scariest part of death is the idea that you spend your whole life living, amassing memory and experience and knowledge, and then in a beat, it’s all gone. I found the idea of a place where your life was kept safe—shelved—comforting. And then I thought, it wouldn’t be shelved in a book, it would be shelved in a body. And bodies are far more likely than books to wake up.
The Archived is one of those novels that is full of twists and turns and you never know what to expect. It definitely had a mystery novel feel to it.  Are you a fan of mystery novels?
--I am a fan of WRITING mysteries, just as I’m a fan of WRITING scary things (I scare so easily it’s not even funny…except to my friends, who find it hilarious). I like to be the one who knows the twists and turns, who plants them. I’m usually the person who figures out the mystery in a book/movie pretty early, so I push myself as a writer to keep the reader guessing. I like the challenge. And I like the idea that you might guess one or two of the book’s reveals, but you probably won’t guess them ALL.
Vicious is the next book you have coming out and it's your first adult novel. (I'm so excited for it btw!) Tell us something about the book that we won't get from the description.  
--It is!!! I am so. freaking. excited. I spent more than two years writing VICIOUS, and it finally hits shelves next month!!!
Let’s see…VICIOUS is a book about supervillains. It all came about because I wanted to tell a story where the labels of “hero” and “villain” were arbitrary, or at least, didn’t really apply. One of the main characters is erroneously labeled a “hero” by society, and the other is automatically labeled a “villain” for opposing him. I wanted to see what happens when you take away the worth of those terms, and who you root for.
I know you love to travel, where's your favorite place you've gone?
 --My bones belong to Edinburgh.
What’s the coolest experience you’ve had as a writer?
 --I am not one of those writers who actually enjoys the reclusive aspect. Yes, I need it in order to actually write the books, but my favorite part is the part where I get to put on real pants and go out and see/talk to/hug readers and geek out over other books. Because of that, BEA is one of my favorite events of the year. I’ve been twice, and the difference between the two years (the first time, I only had one book out, THE NEAR WITCH, and the second time I was there to promote my third, VICIOUS) was so humbling. Being recognized every few feet by friends, authors, readers, going from a name that one that people recognized when they saw my badge…it left me breathless and immensely grateful. I would stand in line for a book (I don’t care if I can go through back doors to get it, I’d rather support the author and meet people) and talking to bloggers, getting spontaneous squee-filled hugs, feeling the excitement that pervades, it’s just amazing. My favorite moment of BEA was hopping in line with my editor to say hi to an author friend, and having a blogger overhear us talking, turn slightly, see who I was, KNOW who I was, and promptly freak out. It was amazing, and I think I smiled the whole rest of the day.
Do you believe in magic? Any mythical creatures, faeries, vampires, mermaids, ect?
 --Yes. That is to say, I believe in the potential for magic, even if I’m not entirely convinced on the specific manifestations. I certainly believe there’s more to this world than meets the eye, and I’m a willing believer of anything that cannot be disproven.
I believe all good writers have something that they want readers to take away from their novels. What do you want readers to take away from yours?
 --Questions. Not about the characters, but about their decisions. About life. I know that sounds sweeping and vague, but I simply want readers to walk away wondering not only why a character did something, but what they would have done in the character’s place, because that kind of questioning changes us.
Now, on to the this or that portion of the interview. If at any time you don’t have a preference you can choose neither. 
This or that: Am I supposed to answer this one, or is it just the title? If I’m supposed to answer, always that.
Coke or Pepsi : Up until this summer, I would have said diet coke. But I gave up soda while abroad, and haven’t looked back.
Chocolate or Vanilla: Chocolate. Always chocolate.
Early Bird or Night Owl: Unfortunately both. I gave up sleep ages ago.
Harry Potter or Twilight: Harry Potter. Hands down. Any day. Every day.
Answer to previous or The Hunger Games: Still Harry Potter.
Vampires or Werewolves: Vampires.
Zombies or Unicorns: Unicorns.
Facebook or Twitter: Twitter.
MAC or PC: Mac.
Ebook or print: Print. Print. Print. The smell of the paper. The weight of the book.


For my stop on The Authors are Rockstars Tour, I have not one but TWO giveaways! The first is hosted by Victoria Schwab and it's for a signed hardcover of The Archived and a tote. This giveaway is  U. S. only. 

BUT...for my international peeps I am hosting a giveaway as well! For my giveaway, you can win a book of your choice by Victoria Schwab or V. E. Schwab as long as it's available from The Book Depository and they ship to you. It can be a pre-order for Vicious or The Unbound as well!!

Giveaway Details:

-Winner will be selected via Rafflecopter and emailed.
-Winner has 48 hours to respond before I will choose another winner. 
-Giveaway host is NOT responsible for any lost or damaged prizes.


Author Hosted Giveaway: U.S. Only


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wholly Books hosted giveaway: International



a Rafflecopter giveaway


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