Sunday, September 23, 2012

Notice:


Quite frankly, I do not enjoy reading any longer since I have to discuss what I'm reading.
  Happy trails! :D

(Also, if you'd like a Divergent, or The DUFF reading guide, or a Torn (signed) bookmark, send me an email at: sierra.thebestwayoutisthrough@gmail.com, and we'll get that sent out to ya.)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

This Week in Books (55)

Hello, fellow readers!
  Last week, I didn't do a post for this week in books, and there were book releases! I overlooked my calendar, and thought that there weren't any books releasing last week! So sorry! If you would like to know the books that released last week that I will be reading (sometime) send me an email and I'd be happy to tell you the titles/authors.
  This week, we have quite a few awesome releases! (And I didn't forget about posting!)
  Last week (or really, Friday) I finally got to my local library sale--they have two of these a year, and I always forget! I looked for over two hours, at what must have been a thousand books, and only found three! Two of them I've read (Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver and If I Stay by Gayle Foreman) and one (Get Well Soon by Julie Halpern) I haven't read yet. BUT these weren't library books--someone had donated them, and they are in PERFECT condition! Look just like MY books--no spine cracks, bent pages, stains, etc. So, they fit right in with 'my' books. I didn't even put them on my used book shelves! (I have three dedicated to books that were formerly owned. I'm weird, I know). I really don't know what makes me buy books I've read, but hey, I do it! (Do you? I wish I owned all the books I've read. Can you imagine how many bookshelves I'll need in my life if I keep reading 300+ books a year, and bought ALL of them? I will have to buy a HOUSE just to keep books in!)
  Shutting up now!
  This week brings us....


Happy reading, everyone! :)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Cover Reveal: CHOSEN AT NIGHTFALL by C.C. Hunter!

I'm trying not to read the description, cause I haven't even read the THIRD one! (this is the fifth!)



Details:
Chosen at Nightfall by C.C. Hunter (Shadow Falls, #5)
Releases: April 2013

Description:
"Kylie Galen's life hasn't been the same since her world was turned upside-down in Born at Midnight, Shadow Falls #1, and now an epic conclusion to her journey—not to mention a tough choice between two guys!—is brewing in Chosen at Nightfall:

When Kylie Galen left Shadow Falls, she thought it was the hardest decision of her life. Heartbroken and separated from everyone she loves, she has to embrace her abilities and what it means to be a chameleon. But as Kylie's journey comes to a close, she must return to the camp that started it all...and she must finally chose between the two boys who love her. The werewolf who broke her heart when he chose his pack over her, and the half-fae who ran from their intense attraction before they ever really had a chance. For Kylie, everything will finally be revealed and nothing will ever be the same."

Cover Reveal: WHISPERS AT MOONRISE by C.C. Hunter (Update!)

(This post was originally posted April 9, 2012)

I saw this yesterday, maybe some of you haven't seen it yet?


I am seriously digging this cover!

Details (though they are scarce) *updated 9/4*:

Whispers at Moonrise by C.C. Hunter (Shadow Falls, #4)
Releases October 2, 2012

"A breathtaking new installment of the bestselling Shadow Falls series for young adults by rising star C. C. Hunter!

At a camp filled with vampires, werewolves, and fairies, Kylie Galen has always struggled to figure out what she is. Now she finally knows the truth—but she's left with more questions than answers. She doesn’t have a clue what her heritage means or how to harness her newfound powers. All she knows is that she needs to sort out her feelings for Derek, the sexy half-Fae who just confessed his love, and Lucas, her werewolf boyfriend who seems more committed to his pack than to their relationship. All the while, Kylie's dealing with a group of underground rogues who want her dead and a mysterious grandfather who makes it clear he doesn’t trust the FRU . . . or Shadow Falls. Soon Kylie will have to choose: Will she stay with the new family she’s formed at Shadow Falls, or will she leave with her grandfather and embrace her destiny?"


Told you details were scarce!

Sorry! Took 393 page views on this post to notice I FORGOT to update! Yikes! My bad!

Happy Monday & reading, everyone!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

This Week in Books (54)

This post is a little late, and I'm sorry bout that. I just so happen to have a life today, and totally was too busy to post about books.
  SIKE!
  I'm just the laziest person like, ever. I legit think it's too trying to get on here, load GR (which takes forevs to load a page with more than 100 reviews/ratings, btw) (also, I just made a liar of myself. GR is loading very fast today!) and post on my blog. Plus, I keep logging into my email (for the blog) but it isn't the one registered for this blog, so it keeps telling me to make a Blogger profile and THERE ISN'T A FREAKING LOG-OUT BUTTON ON THAT DAMN PAGE! This pisses the hell outta me.
  Anyways. If y'all care, here are this week's releases. And again: No, I did not get them in the mail this past week.
  I DID, HOWEVER, GET LEIGH BARDUGO'S SHADOW AND BONE FROM MY AUTHOR-FRIEND, CHLOE KAYNE. Yeah, I've read this. I'm just one of those people who has to OWN every GREAT book she reads! :) I'm legit drooling over this book. But not to closely. Don't wanna ruin that butter-cover! :D
  And I also got out of going to my oldest sister's baby shower! (Score: Sierra 1, Family That I Hate: 0. Yeah, baby! *said in a totally annoying accent. Whichever one you chose. All accents are annoying in my book.*)


Happy reading, and happy (tomorrow) Monday-day-off, everyone! :D

Friday, August 31, 2012

Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin

Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin

Synopsis:
"Everything is in ruins.
  A devastating plague has decimated the population. And those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles to pieces around them.
  So what does Araby Worth have to live for?
  Nights in the Debauchery Club, beautiful dresses, glittery make-up . . . and tantalizing ways to forget it all.
  But in the depths of the club—in the depths of her own despair—Araby will find more than oblivion. She will find Will, the terribly handsome proprietor of the club. And Elliott, the wickedly smart aristocrat. Neither boy is what he seems. Both have secrets. Everyone does.
  And Araby may find something not just to live for, but to fight for—no matter what it costs her."


_______________
My thoughts:
I feel the need to state that I am not a huge fan of dystopia. I've read ten or so dystopian novels, and truly enjoyed maybe three.
  That being said, Masque of the Red Death is now considered one of the three.
  I also must say that I'm unclear as to if this is considered dystopian. The people deal with a plague, and it's set in a earlier time (though the year is never mentioned. Women wear corsets, though, but guys wear pants and have tattoos...?) but it wasn't written in a historical-way.
  Alright, let's stop with this rambling.
  Masque was a very, very interesting novel. I've heard of, but never read the original text by Poe. But that doesn't mean I don't enjoy his work--he's one of my faves. I was completely ecstatic to start a YA novel that was a Poe retelling, because I've read retellings before (maybe even of Poe...IDFK I can't remember that shit), but this was my favorite retelling to date.
  Araby Worth lives in a society where a deadly plague...plagues the people (really, I couldn't come up with a better sentence?). The non-infected peepos wear masks (or masques, whatevs) that I picture as as gas mask, because those are so cool and creepy looking and unless you think of a half-mask there's nothing else to picture, as I can't recall a description.
  Araby herself is a bit...odd. She lost her twin brother a few years ago, so she's kinda 'numb' and does drugs and stuff so she can stop 'dealing' with the world. (Sorry. I'm belittling again. Oh wait, I don't use that word until the next paragraph...Continue reading, if you please...) She's also sworn (to god, herself, the nation? I'm unclear) that she will not allow herself to experience anything her brother didn't. (*Sigh* that was a rather boring tidbit of the story.)
  Anyways, not to belittle the story, but people are dropping like flies, and every damn page there is one or more dead people oozing puss and other nasty crap. Really. Like, dying in the streets and being hauled away in carts. Carts. God that's upsetting.
  Then there are two guys (of course, right? Love triangle. Pshttt. What upstanding YA novel doesn't have one?) one who is slightly psycho and one who is off-the-charts awesome (until like, the last few chapters) but I shall not distinguish between the two.
  Alright, summary-like thing done.
  I really liked...some of the characters (damn. I was gunna name my fave boy, but then I realized you'd figure out the good/psycho ones, so never mind). I also liked (to a point) Araby, but I hate her name. I have no idea how to pronounce it. I pretty much called her 'Arb' (rhyming with Barb) in my head when I wasn't mentally scanning over her name to not think of pronouncing it.
  Loved the story line. The idea of plagues running rampant was almost as cool as zombies running rampant, so I really enjoyed the novel.
  I must say (haha, I sound so lame saying that!) that I really got into the novel (like, entranced. Slamming my fists down on my armchair, exclaiming in outrage entranced)  during the last four or five chapters. I was seriously in awe and a little angry at the audacity and the courage the author displayed in those last chapters.
  Loved (most of) the characters, the writing was very good, and I'm dying here (though not of a plague, so don't start screaming in the streets or anything) for a sequel.
  (Without saying, "I must say" again, I have to point out that the cover is so bad. It doesn't look too bad on the interweb here, but in real life it's a mess. The girl's arm has a hue/saturation red-burn, her head is gone and looks F'ed, and the overall color is just...blah. The font is the only semi-acceptable thing about it. I hope the next cover isn't this boring.) 3/5 stars

Sunday, August 26, 2012

This Week in Books (53)

Hello fellow nerds!
  Unfortunately for me, school starts tomorrow. DRATS! I have a bunch of lame-o classes, and I'm not taking a normal English class! I know, some of you are going "Lucky!" and others, like me, maybe, are going "Da fuck? WHAT?!"
  I selected to take American Literature this year. Last year I did British Literature, and I figured, 'wellll that was so fun, why not?'
  But the fates had other plans.
  My English (brit lit) teacher recommended me for (da da da...) Creative Writing!
  Now, I dunno how this happened. This class is being instigated for this year only (or it's the first year of it, and if it rocks then it will be added to the curriculum). I'm sitting here, unable to get any info on it, and I gotta say. I'm a little freaked!
  Do I have to write every DAMN DAY? AH! I dunno if I can take that!
  I'm taking, also, two science classes (I'm a nerd, I know). One is my required Chemistry and the other is my elected elective (haha) Computer Science. At least I have the same tech teacher as last year. She knew what she was doing (too bad I'm a Photoshop guru and I had to take a GIMP-using class. Lameeee!).

  But, it would appear that the fates, while being total bitches, have given me (and you) some of the best gifts publishing has to offer.
The following books release between today (August 26) and next Sunday (September 2).
 
 


(Note: I totally did not intend all those blue covers to be side-by-side.)




    DO YOU SEE WHAT I MEAN? ENSHADOWED IS FINALLY COMING OUT, SPARK IS COMING OUT, AND I THINK I WILL DIE IF I DON'T GET DEFIANCE LIKE, NOW FORETOLD CONTAINS A RICHELLE MEAD ROSE & DIMITRI STORY, SO I NEED TO GET THAT REAL QUICK-LIKE!!!
Yelling is over, pinkie swear.
  So, good luck if y'all are returning to school this week, and don't feel too panicked. The publishing gods, after all, have given us some BEAUTIFUL titles to wind down with.
  Now leave me alone. I've waited two weeks to start Sarah Maas's Throne of Glass, and I'm fully prepared to hole up in my reading nook for the rest of the day.
  Happy Sunday and reading, everyone! :D

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Title/Cover/Description/Release Reveal: THE ESSENCE by Kimberly Derting

I still had this book listed as 'Untitled' so, if you haven't seen any of the info, here it is!


I like it! The last one featured a black cover, so I think the red fits!

Details:
The Essence by Kimberly Derting (The Pledge, #2)
Releases: January 1, 2013

Description:
"Poor child. Poor, wretched child. You have no idea what you’re up against. No idea how to stop me, do you?

Though it has been months since Charlaina—Charlie—defeated the tyrant Sabara and took control of the Ludanian crown, Sabara has not disappeared. The old queen’s Essence has fused itself to Charlie’s psyche and is viciously fighting to overpower Charlie.

Balancing her new duties as Queen and battling both Sabara’s voice and a growing resistance to her rule push Charlie to the brink of exhaustion. She wants to be the same old Charlie she has ever been but now she is Your Majesty.

As Charlie journeys to an annual summit to meet with the leaders of nearby Queendoms—an event where her ability to understand all languages is the utmost asset—she is faced with the ultimate betrayal. And the only person she can turn to for help is the evil soul residing within."


Happy reading!

This Week in Books (52)

It. Is. A. Girl!
  My oldest sister is having a girl!
  So, not only do I have an adorable nephew (who starts kindergarten on Tuesday) but I will soon have a (sure to be awesome) niece!
  I am legit the best aunt ever.
  I bought The Hunger Games (movie) yesterday, did you? I'm about to set everything aside and watch this awesomeness all day. On repeat. I am that nerdy.

  Anyways, not in the mood to be online, so I'll get to it...

  This week, three books come onto our wonderful world of reading....


Happy reading! :D

Friday, August 17, 2012

Cover Reveal: Stolen Nights by Rebecca Maizel

I do so believe this cover has been changed...
I'm certain the release date has been changed, oh five bazillion times! Grr!


I like it. Maybe not as much as the first one, but hey, I think the original cover for this was better but I only vaguely remember it. (I thought I posted it...my posts say I didn't. Weird. Unless this is some weird conspiracy and the publishers hacked my account and deleted it. Ohhhh...the plot thickens! Kidding! LOL)

Details:
Stolen Nights by Rebecca Maizel (Vampire Queen, #2)
Releases: January 29, 2013 (Very likely to change. It's changed like, 10 times this year)

Description:
"Lenah Beaudonte should be dead. But having sacrificed herself to save another, she finds herself awakening with strange powers that are neither vampire nor human—and a new enemy on her trail. In her vampire life, Lenah had thought that being human was all she ever wanted; but the human heart suffers pain, heartbreak and loss.

With her new powers growing and the dark force of the Nex after her soul, Lenah faces a choice: between the mortal love of gorgeous Justin, whose passion fed her human soul, and taking a different path to become the mistress of her own destiny, wherever that may lead..."

Temptation by Karen Ann Hopkins Giveaway; Winner!

The contest for one signed copy of Karen Ann Hopkins' Temptation just ended, and the winner has been chosen.
  The winner is...entry number 5: Erin D.!
  Erin, I just sent out your notification email, so please reply back within 48-hours before I have to choose a new winner.

Thanks to all who entered, and thanks again to Karen for allowing me to host the interview and giveaway!

Happy reading, everyone, and congrats, Erin!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Cover Reveal: The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler!

I just marked this 'as to read' two days ago, and just noticed that since then, they've put up a cover!


This. Is. Just. Lovely.
  Seriously loving this cover! I would buy this book JUST for the cover...and then frame it on my wall because it's so CUTE!

Details:
The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler
Releases: May 21, 2013

Description TBA. (Though I'm sure since it's Sarah Ockler it's bound to be awesome!)

Happy reading!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

This Week in Books (51)

Good morning, fellow nerds!
  I'm seriously loving the fact that summer is going so freaking quickly. (Wait. Did you get that? Do I need to make a sarcasm sign? hahah).
  My week's been...if not great then not bad. I'm desperately wanting this week though, because on Wednesday my older sister, Tori, finds out the sex of her baby! It's either gunna be little Dexter or little Peyton. I want a little niece, but I want a nephew that I can call "Dex" cause that's just awesome epitomized.
  I do have to slave over a hot stove tomorrow to make my younger sister's boyfriend's birthday cake (was that confusing? sorry!). But only because A) I'm getting paid to do it and B) he likes my cakes better than his mama's. Aww! What a complement! But hey, I'm use to it. I am, after all, the best baker in the WORLD! Kidding. I wish. But I think Duff Goldman has that in the bag. What the hell happened to Ace of Cakes?! That was my favorite Food Network show! Damn it, Cake Boss. Dammit! You took all the viewers. *Curses*

Anyways, four books release this week. Please. Stop congratulating me on the books I got in the mail. I DID NOT GET THESE IN THE MAIL. THEY RELEASE THIS WEEK. Jesus. I need to put it in the header, do I?

 
Happy reading, everyone! And don't forget to enter to win a signed copy of Karen Ann Hopkins' Temptation!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Cover/Description/Release Reveal: OATH BOUND by Rachel Vincent!

For all my adult-reading readers (urm...does that make sense?)...
  This is the first time I've seen this cover since I read the last in the series a few weeks ago (it was June 19, actually). So here it is:


I gotta tell you. This is one of my favorite series. I'm glad that I love all the covers, too!

Details, if you please...
Oath Bound by Rachel Vincent (Unbound, #3)
Releases: February 19, 2013 (you're killing me here)

Synopsis:
"The Tower Syndicate will fall...
  The secret daughter of the head of an infamous Skilled crime family, Sera Brandt has hidden her past, her potential and especially her powers. But when a tragedy strikes her other family, Sera needs justice. And the only way to get it is to reveal her heritage– including a rare Skill– and take the reins of the Tower Syndicate from her cunning and malicious aunt.
  If he can figure out how...
  Kristopher Daniels might have the answer. He's fought the syndicate to protect his sisters, but he'd never realized just how close to the new heir he needed to get....
  And if they can survive.   Neither is used to trusting. But there's something between them that can't be ignored. And so Sera is on the run with a man she can't figure out, a target on her back and the new knowledge of just how powerful she really is...."


In case you didn't realize:






Happy reading, everyone! :)

Giveaway and Interview: Temptation by Karen Ann Hopkins!

Temptation by Karen Ann Hopkins (Like Karen and her book on Facebook! Click the links to be directed.)
Released: June 26, 2012 by Harlequin Teen

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
"Your heart misleads you.
  That's what my friends and family say.
  But I love Noah.
  And he loves me.
  We met and fell in love in the sleepy farming community of Meadowview, while we rode our horses together through the grassy fields and in those moments in each other's arms.
It should be
ROSE & NOAH
forever, easy.
But it won't be.
Because he's Amish.
And I'm not."

_________________
Today I have an interview with Temptation author Karen Ann Hopkins! Let's get started!

Interview Questions:

About the Author:
Me: Tell us a little about yourself.
Karen: I’m a single mom with five kids, living on a farm in the middle of an Amish settlement in northern Kentucky.  For over ten years I’ve been a horse-back riding instructor and equestrian drill team coach.  Writing takes up most of my time nowadays, but when I’m not typing, I’m either in the arena or hustling my kids to and from their many activities.

Me: How did you get interested in writing?
Karen: Like many people, I’d thought about writing a novel, but I wasn’t actually inspired to do so until I moved into an Amish community in 2008.   My interactions with the young people of the community stirred the beginnings of Rose and Noah’s story in my mind.  I spent two years gathering experiential knowledge of the secretive culture before I took the leap and began writing TEMPTATION.

Me: What’s your writing process like?
Karen: Once I began TEMPTATION and its sequel, BELONGING, I wrote in a focused frenzy, unable to do much else during the few months spent on each novel.  I write from a stream of consciousness, doing no reviewing or revising until the work is finished.  After the last page is typed, I return to the first, and begin the arduous job of refining.

Me: Is there any particular kind of music that you like listening to when writing, or that helps inspire you?
Karen: Since the Amish listen to no music at all, I needed complete silence to write Noah’s POV.  During Rose’s chapters however, I’d either listen to or imagine the most current and upbeat pop music on the radio.  I can imagine Rose liking Rihanna, Katy Perry and Carly Rae Jepsen.  I personally enjoy a wide range of music, but find myself turning the volume up when Linkin Park, Maroon Five, Adelle, Mumford and Sons or Train come on.

About her book, Temptation:
Me: What inspired you to write this novel and why did you choose to write it?
Karen: I was inspired to write TEMPTATION from the observations I made between the Amish teens and the non-Amish ones that rode at my farm.  On many levels, the Amish teens are everyone else, and the connections that some of the kids were forming rose the question of the difficulty such a relationship would present.  Rose and Noah’s story is fictional, but I’ve witnessed several Amish young people leave their culture to be with an outsider.  In each case, they were shunned by their families.
The Amish world isn’t as cozy and quaint as most people believe.  They have problems like everyone else and the young people struggle with their identity and lifestyle on a daily basis.  Their story needed to be told.

Me: Why did you decide to write about a forbidden romance?
Karen: No matter what the genre, a good romance at the heart of it improves the reading experience.  Any future books I write will have a core romance pushing the story forward.

Me: What was the hardest thing to write about in this book?
Karen: Some of the aspects of the Amish culture are hard for outsiders to stomach.  The fact that the women have little rights within their society tops the list of why some readers will be turned off, but I wanted the story to be accurate, so I portrayed the Amish in my story as close to the real thing as possible, knowing it would ruffle some feathers.

Me: What was the easiest?
Karen: The romantic scenes between Rose and Noah were easy to write.  Young love is universal and capturing the essence of their attraction was fun.

Me: What was one of your favorite scenes to write about in the book?
Karen: My favorite and most dreaded scene in TEMPTATION is one and the same.  When Noah’s buggy is struck by the semi-truck on the country road, the description flowed into me unconsciously.  Being a lover of horses, it was a difficult scene to write, but also a powerful one to read, especially since many of my neighbors have been involved in tragic buggy/car wrecks.

Me: Your characters; tell us what inspired them.
Karen: Rose is a typical teenager, too young to be wise, yet having a strong sense of self-confidence.  Her attitude and intense emotions towards Noah are a direct result of losing her mother to cancer a year and a half earlier.  Noah is motivated by the love of his lifestyle and community.  He genuinely enjoys being Amish and feels that it’s the only life for him.  Noah respects his father immensely and goes to him for guidance throughout the story.

Me: What do you hope that the readers of your novel take from it? What should they learn?

Karen: I hope that readers will learn about the Amish, while enjoying an exciting romance story.  Whether a person is intrigued with the Amish lifestyle or hates the idea of living without technology, modern conveniences and with a complete lack of freedom, there is no denying that the culture sparks the imagination.

Random questions:
Me: Can you tell us anything about upcoming titles you're writing/have written?
Karen: BELONGING, the sequel to TEMPTATION, will be on the shelves in May, 2013.  I’m also working on a young adult fantasy set in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and an adult Amish mystery.

Me: What book are you currently reading?
Karen: George R. R. Martin’s A Dance With Dragons.

Me: What is your favorite book?
Karen: It’s a three-way tie between Tolkien’s The Hobbit, Black Beauty by Anna Sewell, and Maia by Richard Adams.

Me: What author do you look up to most?
Karen: I’ve always admired Tolkien for creating the alternate universe of Middle Earth.

Me: Can you share some advice for aspiring authors?
Karen: The three P’s: Passion, Persistence and Patience. 

_____________
Thanks for joining me today, Karen!
   Along with this interview, I promised a giveaway, right?
  Here it is folks! Enter to win a signed copy of Karen's book, Temptation!
  All residents of the U.S. qualify, and all you need to enter is a name (we all have one, right?) and an email! You can earn extra entries in the specified fields, but remember, those aren't required to enter!

Contest is open to U.S. only, and open until Friday August 17, 2012


Good luck, and happy reading! :D

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Showtime by Chloe Kayne ARC Giveaway: Winners!

The random number generator has spoken up about our two winners of Chloe Kayne's Showtime.
  Drum roll please...
  And they are numbers...4 and...28: Jennifer K. and Autumn G.!
  I'll be emailing both of you ladies shortly, so keep your eyes open! You both will have 48-hours to reply back before I chose new winners.

Thanks to everyone who participated, and thanks to Chloe Kayne for allowing me to run the contest!

Happy reading, and congrats!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Cover Reveal: CONFESSIONS OF A MURDER SUSPECT by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro

I just got Nevermore, the final Maximum Ride adventure, and lookie what I found!


LOVE IT! I was totally fangirling when I saw the cover. I'm so, so sad that Maximum Ride is ending! I can't wait for this new series!!
  Also, there is an excerpt of this title in the back of Nevermore, if y'all are interested! (It may also be on James Patterson's site, but idk.)

Details:
Confessions of a Murder Suspect by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
Releases: September 24, 2012

Synopsis:
"James Patterson returns to the genre that made him famous with a thrilling teen detective series about the mysterious and magnificently wealthy Angel family . . . and the dark secrets they're keeping from one another.
On the night Malcolm and Maud Angel are murdered, Tandy Angel knows just three things: 1) She was the last person to see her parents alive. 2) The police have no suspects besides Tandy and her three siblings. 3) She can't trust anyone--maybe not even herself. Having grown up under Malcolm and Maud's intense perfectionist demands, no child comes away undamaged. Tandy decides that she will have to clear the family name, but digging deeper into her powerful parents' affairs is a dangerous-and revealing-game. Who knows what the Angels are truly capable of?

Sunday, August 5, 2012

This Week in Books (50)

Not much going on this week, so we'll get to the releases!





Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Giveaway & Interview: Showtime by Chloe Kayne

Showtime by Chloe Kayne
Releases: September 1, 2012
Where I got my copy: Author, for review
Click here for my review

Synopsis:
"The grandeur of the traveling circus is at its peak in the early 1920s when sixteen-year-old Laila Vilonia is searching for an escape from her bleak future. Behind the gates of the legendary Marvelle Circus, she is thrust into a mysterious world she never knew existed—a paradise populated with outcasts. It’s in this glamorous new home that Laila sparks a controversial romance with notorious sideshow performer, "The Disappearing Man," and learns just how dangerous her new life can be.

Touring the picturesque eastern coast of America, Laila’s immersed in friendship, vaudeville, festivals, sequins, and serial killers. But behind the curtain, a sadistic plan is brewing that will crack the very foundation upon which she’s become so dependent."


________________

Today, I have a giveaway and an interview with YA author of Showtime, Chloe Kayne!
  Let's get started!


About Chloe:
Me: Tell us a little about yourself.
Chloe: I’m 23 years old, vegan, just graduated college, and have a pole dance studio in Minneapolis.
Me: How did you get interested in writing?
Chloe: I used to write stories and plays all the time as a kid, but I never stuck with anything long enough to finish it. So I’ve always liked writing and telling stories, but more recently, it was my friend Alex telling me he was writing a book that got the idea in my head.
Me: What is your writing process like?
Chloe: I usually get ideas bits and pieces at a time. So I write out as much as I can as notes or even entire scenes. I try to write a synopsis before I get too far so that I can work from an outline. But the outline is only a rough guide; I don’t stick to it too much. It’s just nice to have something to aim for and keep me on track.
Me: Is there anything that inspires you to write (music, a TV show, movie, etc.)?
Chloe: Music, big time. (One of the bigger plot threads of Showtime was inspired by Lady Gaga’s “Bloody Mary”) I always brainstorm while I’m running and listening to music, so music inspires almost everything I write.

About her book, SHOWTIME:
Me: What inspired you to write about a traveling circus?
Chloe: A couple years ago, I started training in aerial arts (silks, trapeze, Spanish web, lyra, etc.). I loved it so much; it’s all I wanted to talk about—except no one wanted to listen. Around the same time, I saw an episode of the TV show Oddities where they were talking about procuring items from the 1930’s Coney Island Sideshow. I thought it would be interesting to hear what the performers’ lives must have been like, plus I could talk about aerials to my heart’s content!

Me: Since the circus is still in full swing here in 2012, what made you set it in 1918?
Chloe: 1918 was smack in middle of the golden age of circus. Circus (and, to a lesser extent, vaudeville) was the main form of entertainment in America before silent films became popular. I knew right away I wanted to write about a circus in that prime era when entire towns would shut down so residents could enjoy “Circus Day,” and crewmen would construct whole villages and arenas overnight. (That kind of efficiency was unheard of in those days. Even the U.S. Military—in preparation for WWI—studied with Ringling’s canvas men on the streamlined system of setting up and tearing down, and how to load everything into just a few hundred train cars.)
Me: What was the hardest thing about Showtime to write?
Chloe: Because it is a traveling circus and I write random scenes and piece them together, at the end of my first draft, I had my work cut out to string the scenes together and make sure that they all corresponded with the location (I made up a route book of their stands), the weather/season, and even the day (which corresponded with the 1918 calendar).
Me: How about the easiest?
Chloe: Seth is both my favorite character and he was the easiest (and most fun) to write.
Me: What was one of your favorite scenes to write about in the book?
Chloe: Halloween!
Me: Laila’s background is less than perfect. And for that matter, so is just about everyone else’s! What made you write your characters this way?
Chloe: I didn’t do it consciously, and I’m not quite sure why it happened unconsciously. I think I considered Marvelle to be a refuge for a lot of the characters, so their backstories just dropped into place.
Me: Are there any characteristics with your cast of characters that you yourself share?
Chloe: Jodelle and I value loyalty above all, Laila and I share questionable taste in guys, and I love animals as much as James and Florence.
Me: The aerialist acts in Showtime that Laila performs are very, very detailed. I feel like I’m sitting ring-side at an actual circus! How did you learn about this, and make it believable?
Chloe: Thank you! Since I do aerials, the details were taken from that.
Me: What do you hope that the readers of your novel take from it? Is there anything they should learn?
Chloe: That with every step you take forward, you’re pushed a couple steps back (like the tightrope, get it? Haha). But as long as you keep walking, you’re still advancing.

Random Questions:

Me: Can you tell us anything about upcoming titles you're writing/have written?
Chloe: I’m working on Spotlight, the sequel to Showtime, as well as an unrelated book called Into the Shadows. I’m really excited about Shadows because it’s written from the POV of the villain. I was wondering if a villain could hold a story, and it turns out; they can as long as you have who would essentially be the “protagonist” thwarting their plans. There won’t be much sympathy for the main character, though, so I might be the only person to enjoy this book. Oh well.
Me: What book(s) are you currently reading?
Chloe: Wake by Amanda Hocking, Fallen by Lauren Kate, Prince of Thieves by Chuck Hogan, and Garden of Lies by Eileen Goudge. Plus like three or four nonfiction circus and sideshow books, because that stuff’s just interesting!
Me: What is your all-time favorite book?
Chloe: I have a few. J Shadow & Bone by Leigh Bardugo. Insurgent by Veronica Roth. Dark Places and Sharp Objects, both by Gillian Flynn. And the Harry Potter books (especially Azkaban and HBP).
Me: What authors do you look up to the most?
Chloe: Gillian Flynn, Chuck Hogan, JK Rowling, and Veronica Roth. And I love Eileen Goudge’s style of writing.
Me: If Showtime were to be made into a movie, who would you cast as Laila? As Dex?
Chloe: I would choose actors who are unknown, but for visual’s sake—I think Katie McGrath looks similar to Laila and Logan Lerman kind of looks like Dex. (And then I would make them dye their hair even blacker because a pet peeve of mine is black-haired characters with “off black” or dark brown hair in movies. GARH! I’m-talking-to-you-Snow-White-and-the-Huntsman. Harry Potter’s not even getting away from this one unscathed…)
Me: If you could spend one day with any one person, living or dead, who would it be and why?
Chloe: Trent Reznor, preferably while he’s recording an album. Because I can’t comprehend how musicians take what’s in their head and make it real. I can type so much faster than I can think, so it’s kind of easy to get the words just how I picture them. But with music, I feel like if you heard a tune in your head; by the time you nailed it just right on the guitar or piano or whatever, you’d have forgotten how you originally intended it to sound.
(I think I just answered my own question…I don’t play any instruments, but those who do might feel the same way as I do about typing!)
Me: Can you share some advice for aspiring authors?
Chloe: The tidbit that helped me the most was when I read somewhere that you don’t have to start at the beginning when you’re tackling a new project. Just write whatever part you can see most clearly at the time and work to string other scenes around it.
If you need to rework the scenes later because they don’t work with the storyline once you’ve found it, that’s fine. I’ve found that every scene counts, whether it makes it into the book or not.
Oh, and I see a lot of people getting hung up on how many words per day they write (or don’t write). Quality over quantity, remember!

Thanks, Chloe, for joining us today! Showtime releases September 1, 2012.
Scroll down for your chance to win one of two ARC copies!
Contest closes August 8, 2012 (winners will be chosen/contacted August 8)



Thanks again to Chloe for joining us!
Good luck, and happy reading, everyone!

Showtime by Chloe Kayne

Showtime by Chloe Kayne
Releases: September 1, 2012
Where I got my copy: Author, for review

Synopsis:
"The grandeur of the traveling circus is at its peak in the early 1920s when sixteen-year-old Laila Vilonia is searching for an escape from her bleak future. Behind the gates of the legendary Marvelle Circus, she is thrust into a mysterious world she never knew existed—a paradise populated with outcasts. It’s in this glamorous new home that Laila sparks a controversial romance with notorious sideshow performer, "The Disappearing Man," and learns just how dangerous her new life can be.

Touring the picturesque eastern coast of America, Laila’s immersed in friendship, vaudeville, festivals, sequins, and serial killers. But behind the curtain, a sadistic plan is brewing that will crack the very foundation upon which she’s become so dependent."


_________________
My thoughts:
We've all felt it. That itch to get away. In Chloe Kayne's Showtime, main character Laila actually has the courage to do so. But not in any small sense, mind you. Oh, no. This girl joins a traveling circus as part of her quest to get away from a horrible family life.
  Set in the pre-depression year of 1918, Kayne introduces us to a world shrouded in talent, mystery, and the undulating, relentlessness of circus performers.
  But under all the glam and glitz, lies a cache of secrets, lies, and murder. (And that's all I have to say about that. Sorry. I watched Forrest Gump last night with my ma...)
  Anyways, now to my favorite part of reviewing...Character profiles!
   Laila Vilonia was a very likable character. She gives readers a fresh new voice to read about, and c'mon. Her background is enough to make even me feel sorry for her. Now, some people frown upon pity. But I find that my own pity towards a character makes me think of them as more tangible and real. Laila gave me a sense of...not pity really, but a bit of shame towards her past. I wanted to see her grow and succeed in a life away from home (does this make sense? Dude, I dunno. But I'm trying to make sense here!).
  Her new band of friends included a cast that is as easily relatable and likable as Laila herself. Kayne throws in enough drama and tears that makes these friendships seem to be stronger than the short amount of time that they've known one another.
  Oh, and don't let me forget the always mysterious "Disappearing Man"! As if that title isn't enough to clue you in, the love interest in Showtime, Dex, is one hella hard character to like. I say this with absolute fondness, btw. Dex is hard to like because of a few things a) we never really learn too much about him, b) Laila seems to be iffy about her own feelings towards him c) he is considered dangerous by everyone else in the book, and d) I'm totally Team James.
  Team James, you ask? Sierra, is there another love triangle? NO, dear reader, there is not! Thank the lord on that, but I just legit loved James more because he cuddled with tiger cubs (aw!!), wasn't gay, and is cast as a total hottie. Also, there is probably no chance of him ever being in a love triangle with Laila and Dex. But still.
  Loved the story, loved the characters, and just to make this a little more interesting for ya, I'm including my FAVE little quote (said by my favorite man, James, on page 105 of my uncorrected proof):
  "You're here because you had no other choice," ... "You don't join the circus to fulfill your own dreams."
  Simply enchanting, is it not?
  Can't wait for more from this author!
   (4/5 stars)

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Cover/Description Reveal: THE INDIGO SPELL by Richelle Mead (Update!)

(This post was originally posed June 28, 2012)


The cover, I hear, was revealed on June 26. I haven't been on my computer in a few days, so maybe, like me, some of you haven't seen this yet!
  Keep in mind that this is not final--the tats have to be added, and tweaks are always made before the finalization.
  IMAGE UPDATED JULY 29, 2012

Details (though they are sparse!):
The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead (Bloodlines, #2)
Releases: February 12, 2013 

Description TBA (updated July 29):

"In the aftermath of a forbidden moment that rocked Sydney to her core, she finds herself struggling to draw the line between her Alchemist teachings and what her heart is urging her to do. Then she meets alluring, rebellious Marcus Finch--a former Alchemist who escaped against all odds, and is now on the run. Marcus wants to teach Sydney the secrets he claims the Alchemists are hiding from her. But as he pushes her to rebel against the people who raised her, Sydney finds that breaking free is harder than she thought. There is an old and mysterious magic rooted deeply within her. And as she searches for an evil magic user targeting powerful young witches, she realizes that her only hope is to embrace her magical blood--or else she might be next."

This Week in Books (49)

Hello, hello!
  This past week has been quite fantabulous for me. I got five books in the mail (with another package still en-route) and I had a dream about the sex of my oldest sister's baby--a girl! Making me the fifth person that we know of who has dreamt of the baby being a little girl. Though mine is wishful thinking. I have to help raise the little...er...thing...because my sister has to return to work almost immediately after the birth of little Dexter or Peyton--and btw, she got the name Dexter from Sarah Dessen's This Lullaby--her favorite book--and the name Peyton from her favorite show, One Tree Hill. (Everyone but me and my oldest brother, Nick, hate the name Dexter. Then again, I love it because I love the Dexter series by Jeff Lindsay, but Nick loves it because he loves the show (he's never read the books, and I've never seen the show). My mom keeps going, "What do we call him? Dex? That's so...ugly! What about Deckie?"
  BUT I also had a dream that I was like, a marine or some shit and saving kids. Then this I gave this little girl (who was like, Brennan and Booth's baby from Bones--but  it was that girl who played in the Drake & Josh movie with that adorable smile) a CD. We were all in a cafeteria, and I couldn't save this little boy who was like, crying all to hell, and this other dude (not a little kid) was like, glaring at me. And I'm all, "Got sumthin' to say, homes?" Then it turns out, I wasn't saving these kids, but taking them to BATTLE. I know, right?
  So, maybe my dreams mean nothing.
  There was that one dream, though, with Trent Ford...YOWZA. (I just Googled him, and why didn't someone tell me he was in Vampire Diaries?! I know him from that Sarah Dessen book-to-movie, How to Deal, but daymnn. Diaries has Ian Somerhalder and Trent Ford (for however briefly)?! Jesus. The beefcake in this show is astounding. Why have I never watched it?)

  Enough about me. 
  Here is what's releasing this week.



Happy reading, everyone!
  And be sure to tune in later this week for an interview & giveaway with YA author Chloe Kayne! :D

Friday, July 27, 2012

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa (Blood of Eden, #1)

Synopsis:
"In a future world, vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity."Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten.

Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of "them." The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked--and given the ultimate choice. Die...or become one of the monsters.

Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad.

Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend--a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike.

But it isn't easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what--and who--is worth dying for."


____________________
My thoughts:
What a heart pounding novel.
  I swear, at times it felt as though I was right there in the story; my heart beating madly, my palms sweating...
  Okay, getting a little personal there and starting to sound gross. Sorry.
  Allison lives on the "Fringe" of society--A society run by BLOOD THIRSTY VAMPIRES and RABIDS, that is.
  She's joined...(yes I switch from exclaiming to sedate that quickly. Whiplash, meet your brain. Well...my brain. Since if you're reading this, it should read like "Whiplash, meet my brain. Brain, whiplash." ALRIGHT ALREADY. Sorry. I swear I have like, a condition that makes me ramble).
  ANYWAYS. She's (that's Allison. Not me or you) joined by a few other, Stick, Rat and Lucas. I personally liked none of them, but mainly because if the world were to end, and be like, overrun by vampires, I would be a "Shit, dawg, it's every man for himself!" and watching my own ass and forget about others.
  Thank god Allison is a lot more selfless than I. Allison. I've never encountered a more hard yet cool character in months. She's witty (her repertoire of remarks is hella funny), smart  and so much more concerned for others that there is legit no other word other than 'noble' to describe her.
  Okay, now some personalization. Because it makes the world go 'round!
  I freaking LOVED this book! Why? THE RABIDS!!! Which are basically zombie-vamps. Can you think of a more terrifying combo than a vamp/zombie races? No? Well, hell, neither can I! In my mind (and it's a fine, fine place there), I like to picture the Rabids like the Descendants from the video game Uncharted: Drake's Fortune (Google it). Scary, crawling on hands and feet creepy things that are white as all that's holy and invoke such a sense of fear (in the video game and this book) that it's completely ludicrous.
  Kanin, Allie's "vamp sire" (I love any chance to say the word 'sire', because NONE of my friends know what it means and it makes me feel genius. Which I totally am. Psshtt.) was one of my favorite characters. I know, I know. I'm supposed to hate all the husks with pointy teeth, but he was such a cool vampire! He was like...Spike from Buffy. Evil, but hey, he's so charming you gotta love him. (I mean, he did save Allie. She woulda like, died without him. Oh wait...she died anyways. My bad.)
  But, unlike Kanin who is more of a father figure to Allie, Zeke is the boy who makes Allie's dead heart pitter patter. (I totally made that up. I can't recall a time when her heart beats again by some miracle. Thank god. That's like, impossible!) I loved then hated, then felt bad for him and now I love him again. I know. We have a messed up relationship.
  Did I mention he's HUMAN?! Ah, who could forget that?!
  Any who, I don't think I can say much more without spoiling something (how could I possibly? It's a huge monstrosity of a novel), so I shall stop speaking now.
  Loved the story, the characters. And in that Kagawa fashion, the writing and descriptions were absolutely beautifully put. Well done. 4/5 stars.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Cover//Title/Description/Release Reveal: SHADOWS IN THE SILENCE by Courtney Allison Moulton!!

HOLY. CRACKERS. A whammy of a reveal!



I am legit loving my day! First, I get two books in my mailbox (not this one, sorry! I got Tessa Gratton's The Blood Keeper, and Susan Dennard's Something Strange and Deadly, btw), then my dad buys me this totally awesome (and much needed) tool kit for my jewelry making, and THEN I get take-out (as a surprise from Mom) from my all time fave Chinese restaurant.
  Now THIS?! Mother of GOD my day has been great! (Too bad it's pouring down rain. But I'm also having a great hair day, so that's always a plus!)
  This cover? GORGEOUS.

  The reason this is a 'title' reveal, as well, is this was formerly titled 'Hymn to the Fallen'  (I added this title in my tagging, incase someone Google's the title and doesn't yet know about the switch) and when I saw this on my GR homepage, I'm like 'WHOA BABY' (in Michelle fashion, via Full House, of course).

  Anyways, devil is in the details and whatnot:
  Shadows in the Silence by Courtney Allison Moulton (Angelfire, #3 --the last one!!)
  Releases: January 29, 2013 (dammit!)

  Description that's sure to get your engine revving:

  "Your strength in heart and hand will fall. . . .
Ellie knows that the darkest moments are still to come, and she has everything to fight for:

She must fight for Will.
The demonic have resorted to their cruelest weapons to put Will in mortal danger, and Ellie makes an unlikely alliance to save him and to stop Lilith and Sammael, who seek to drown the world in blood and tear a hole into Heaven.

She must fight for humanity.
As the armies of Hell rise and gather for the looming End of Days, Ellie and her band of allies travel to the world’s darkest and most ancient regions in her quest to come into her full glory as the archangel Gabriel.

And Ellie must save herself.
Her humanity withers beneath the weight of her cold archangel power, but Ellie must hold tight to who she is and who she loves as she prepares for the ultimate battle for Heaven and Earth.

In this final installment in the Angelfire trilogy, Courtney Allison Moulton brings her dark world of epic battles and blistering romance to a blazing bright conclusion..."

Happy reading, waiting, and salivating over this release!! :D

Sunday, July 22, 2012

This Week in Books (48)

Hi, guys!
Again, this week there is only one title releasing. But unlike most weeks, when people comment saying "you got some awesome titles" inferring that I actually HAVE these books, when this is all about what releases, not what books I get, I actually DID get this book! Or, I will. Wednesday of this past week it was shipped out, but I have yet to get it.
  I'm also waiting on my Ambuzzador kit through Random Buzzers. I was supposed to get it a few weeks ago, but alas, it never came! My mail-man is a suspected dyslexic, because he keeps giving my house all the wrong mail. And I know for a fact that if a box of books was delivered to someone's house, with a publisher's return-address, they're gunna open that box!
  Now, I have to contact my local post office (which is closed today, and employs very snarky bald dudes with tattoos who try making jokes to me but don't realize I really don't laugh much--this is true. The guy who waited on me Thursday when I had to ship five books out was like "I can only take two of these" *awkward pause on my end. Then he said, "I'm kidding!" Then he asked if I had anything illegal in the envelopes, and I just stared at him until he said, "Say no!" and laughed. I didn't. He actually looked like that dude from that weird show, Melissa and Joey on ABC-Family, now that I think about it...) and if they don't happen to have my box of books hostage, I have to send my sister's address as an alternate-address, so that hopefully my books come to me!
 
  Okay, sorry. I intended this post not to be ramble-ful, but hey, I got carried away.
  This week brings us:


Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard from HarperTeen (July 24)

Synopsis:
"The year is 1876, and there’s something strange and deadly loose in Philadelphia…

Eleanor Fitt has a lot to worry about. Her brother has gone missing, her family has fallen on hard times, and her mother is determined to marry her off to any rich young man who walks by. But this is nothing compared to what she’s just read in the newspaper—

The Dead are rising in Philadelphia.

And then, in a frightening attack, a zombie delivers a letter to Eleanor…from her brother.

Whoever is controlling the Dead army has taken her brother as well. If Eleanor is going to find him, she’ll have to venture into the lab of the notorious Spirit-Hunters, who protect the city from supernatural forces. But as Eleanor spends more time with the Spirit-Hunters, including their maddeningly stubborn yet handsome inventor, Daniel, the situation becomes dire. And now, not only is her reputation on the line, but her very life may hang in the balance."

Happy reading, everyone! :)
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