Friday, March 11, 2016

Book Blitz + Giveaway: The Changelings



The Changelings
Elle Casey
(War of the Fae #1)
Publication date: February 5th 2012
Genres: Urban Fantasy, YoungAdult
NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR, ELLE CASEY, brings readers Book 1 in the YA Urban Fantasy WAR OF THE FAE Series.
Jayne Sparks, a potty-mouthed, rebellious seventeen-year-old and her best friend, shy and bookish Tony Green, have a pretty typical high school existence, until several seemingly unrelated incidents converge, causing a cascade of events that change their lives forever. Jayne and Tony, together with a group of runaway teens, are hijacked andsent into a forest, where nothing and no one are as they seem. Who will emerge triumphant? And what will they be when they do?
Content Warning: Mild violence and significant foul language within. Meant for older Young Adult readers (age 15+).
Grab your copy today for FREE!
EXCERPT:
I couldn’t take much more of the high school nonsense. I felt like I wasn’t supposed to be there. Where would I be if I weren’t there? … I don’t know. All I did know was I was in the middle of all that crap, going to class, taking tests – but I was on autopilot, going through the motions, waiting for life to start happening.
Sitting in World History and bored out of my mind, I was looking at a girl one row over who was the polar opposite of me. She was staring attentively at the teacher, her pen poised above an already nearly full page of notes, eager to write down every nugget of educational wisdom he was throwing our way. She loved high school, and she had big plans for moving on to college next year. She had cheer practice after school and a boyfriend named Mike who played wide receiver on the football team. Ugh.
I owned a pen. I probably had some paper somewhere in my backpack too. That day, however, I was using my pen to draw symbols all over my right hand – temporary tattoos. I write and eat with my left hand but do just about everything else with my right.My own body was confused with what it was supposed to do.
I was in the minority in that school. It seemed like just about everyone else knew exactly what they were doing now and what they were going to be doing until the day they died. Me? I didn’t have a clue. All I knew was this wasn’t it.


Author Bio:
Elle Casey, a former attorney and teacher, is a NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY bestselling American author who lives in Southern France with her husband, three kids, and a number of furry friends. She has written books in several genres and publishes an average of one full-length novel per month.

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Sunday, March 6, 2016

Cover Reveal: 12 Hours in Paradise


12 Hours in Paradise
Kathryn Berla
Published by: Limitless Publishing
Publication date: April 19th 2016
Genres: Romance, Young Adult
Twelve hours, thirty-six questions, and a chance to fall in love…
It’s the last day of Dorothy Patmont’s family vacation. Soon, she must head back to Reno, where all that waits for her is the cold and the snow. To top it all off, her brother, Chester, acted like a little jerk and ate one too many cookies from the sample jar in the cookie store. But his antics have an unexpected benefit—attracting the attention of an intriguing boy who could change her life forever.
Treats can be sweet, but love is sweeter still…
Arash Atkinson, fluent in four languages and an adventurous soul, is in Waikiki for a high school band competition. When he meets Dorothy, he realizes their time together is limited. “Come out and play,” he texts her. A night of romantic adventure ensues, and Arash discovers an app that claims it can make people fall in love after answering thirty-six questions in each other’s presence.
With each question asked, their stories and feelings continue to unfold. But with every hour that passes they’re more at risk of being found out—Dorothy, by her parents;Arash by his school chaperone. And then Arash gets the dreaded phone call—he has been discovered missing from his room, and must return immediately. Can they finish the questions before facing their consequences?
When time is running out, true love cannot wait. What Arash and Dorothy have is beyond special, something that comes along once in a lifetime, and begins with Twelve Hours In Paradise…but can it survive the trials of the real world?
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12HoursFront


Author Bio:
Kathryn Berla graduated from the University of California at Berkeley as an English major. She has lived in many different countries in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. She currently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.




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Saturday, March 5, 2016

February Favorites + March 2016 TBR

February Favorites

This month I read 8 books. Three of them ended up being 5 stars but one of them was a real stand out that has now landed on my favorites shelf. 
Underwater
My favorite book I read this month was Underwater by Marisa Reichardt. This is a new favorite of mine and I have been recommending it to everybody. Reichardt was able to honestly portray depression in this book and at times it felt like she had gone into my head and put my own feelings on the page. If you are looking for a strong contemporary depicting depression that can   control a persons life but that we have the power to take our lives back I highly recommend this one. You can read my review here.

Other 5 Star ratings: 
Persuasion (The Heirs of Watson Island, #2)Ice Like Fire (Snow Like Ashes, #2)

You can check out my full February reading wrap up here!

March TBR

Image result for march
Spring is coming and I am ready to get outside and start reading under the nice warm sun. I have made a rather ambitious TBR pile this month. I am pretty sure I say that every month though. I am hoping to get to at least 10 of these books this month! 

The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2)Salt to the SeaShallow GravesThe Mystery of Hollow PlacesThe Love That Split the WorldFaefever (Fever, #3)Rebel Spring (Falling Kingdoms, #2)Bookishly Ever AfterRiders (Riders, #1)A Darker Shade of Magic (Shades of Magic, #1)I Crawl Through ItBlood and Salt (Blood and Salt, #1)See How They Run (Embassy Row, #2)The Heart of Betrayal (The Remnant Chronicles, #2)

What was your favorite book you read last month?
What are you planning on reading this month?
Tell me in the comments below! 


Cover Reveal: Dark & Twisted Games



Dark and Twisted Games
Heidi Acosta
(Hearts of Faeylon #1)
Published by: CHBB
Publication date: April 1st 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Young Adult

Nothing ever happens in the small town of Copake Falls, and no one knows that better than sixteen-year-old Eden Day. Her life is a mundane carousal, rotating between caring for her alien obsessed aunt and dealing with her freak status at school. Until two brothers move into town and turn her life completely upside down.
Golden boy, Cardelian Foster is the talk of the town, and it seems his sights set on Eden. However, she finds herself drawn to the dark and elusive Jaxson instead. Caught between her fear of what he might be and her attraction to him, Eden makes it her mission to find out exactly who or what Jaxson Foster is.
Eden begins to dig for the truth, but the deeper she looks, the more her life seems to be in danger. Everyone around her thinks she’s going crazy, and Eden begins to agree until she finds herself pulled into Faeylon—a world that nightmares are made of. Caught in the center of a dark game, Eden realizes there can only be one winner, and she is the prize.
Dark&Twisted Games paperpack book cover


Author Bio:
Heidi Acosta was born on Long Island, New York. Moving around a lot when she was younger, she has lived in New York, Arizona, New York (again), Washington, Georgia, and Florida, in that order. Each place offered her something special, but she will always consider New York her home.
Heidi started writing as soon as she could spell. When she was three, Heidi's mother gave her a copy of Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House in the Big Woods; thus beginning her lifelong love affair with literature.
Writing soon also became a form of therapy for Heidi, when she realized that no matter what was happening in her life, she could find emotional escape while writing. Some of her earliest stories featured her as a princess who explored new worlds with her horse Buttercup. If it sounds romantic, it wasn't, there was no prince charming in those fairy lands (boys where yucky).
Heidi now resides in Florida with her husband, very active daughter, one hyper Chihuahua, two sweet cats, and one very fat moody cat.
Barbie Girl is the first Novel of Heidi's new, four-book, Baby Doll Series: Barbie Girl, Barbie World, Doll Face, and Southern Sugar.

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Review: Underwater

Underwater
Title: Underwater 
Author: Marisa Reichardt 
Pages: 288
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary 
Publication Date: January 12th 2016 

Synopsis via Goodreads: 
“Forgiving you will allow me to forgive myself.”

Morgan didn’t mean to do anything wrong that day. Actually, she meant to do something right. But her kind act inadvertently played a role in a deadly tragedy. In order to move on, Morgan must learn to forgive—first someone who did something that might be unforgivable, and then herself.

But Morgan can’t move on. She can’t even move beyond the front door of the apartment she shares with her mother and little brother. Morgan feels like she’s underwater, unable to surface. Unable to see her friends. Unable to go to school. 

When it seems Morgan can’t hold her breath any longer, a new boy moves in next door. Evan reminds her of the salty ocean air and the rush she used to get from swimming. He might be just what she needs to help her reconnect with the world outside. 

Underwater is a powerful, hopeful debut novel about redemption, recovery, and finding the strength it takes to face your past and move on.

Review:
I have been trying to plan this review out in my head for 2 weeks now and I just can't seem to put my feelings into words. I knew I had to write a review though because I really want to help get this book into more peoples hands. This book turned out to be everything I hoped it would be and more.

The part of the story that really hit me the most was the premise and how the author was able to portray it. Morgan is a teenager who has experienced a terrible tragedy. She is now afraid to live in this world because she does not have control over the things that happen as a result she is terrified to leave her apartment where she can control what happens. Even if you cannot connect to Morgan's specific experience I can almost guarantee you can connect to how she is feeling. I personally have suffered with depression for a long time and about halfway through this book I started crying because at points I felt like Marisa Reichardt took what I have been feeling and thinking in my head and put it on paper. I was able to connect with this book on so many levels and as a result I believe it really helped me to be able to see someone feeling what I have been feeling. Reichardt was able to depict depression in such an honest way and I am so thankful when authors do that.

I absolutely loved the characters in this book. They added so much life and personality to the story. Morgan was fantastic and I connected with her on so many levels. This book also focuses on family a lot. I really enjoyed reading about the dynamics between Morgan, her mom, and her little brother. Then there is Evan. Evan was a phenomenal addition to the story he was understanding and honest but was also funny and helped bring out the best in Morgan. Evan definitely helps Morgan come out of her shell but in the end it is Morgan who saves herself and I thought that was important to see. This book made me cry and ache but with these colorful characters it was also able to make me smile and laugh too.

I liked how Reichardt incorporated the incident that led to Morgan's PTSD. Morgan goes through a horrible tragedy but you are not told upfront what happened. Small parts of the story are revealed over time and that added a sense of mystery and page turning to the book.

I read Underwater at a time in my life when I needed to and it helped me so much. This is a contemporary book that I will be recommending for years to come. I really hope others out there will pick up this book have a good cry and be smiling by the end with a renewed sense of hope and knowing that you are not alone. 

Book Blitz + Giveaway: Nora & Kettle



Nora & Kettle 

Lauren Nicolle Taylor

Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: February 29th 2016
Genres: Historical, Young Adult

What if Peter Pan was a homeless kid just trying to survive, and Wendy flew away for a really good reason?
Seventeen-year-old Kettle has had his share of adversity. As an orphaned Japanese American struggling to make a life in the aftermath of an event in history not often referred to—the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II and the removal of children from orphanages for having “one drop of Japanese blood in them”—things are finally looking up. He has his hideout in an abandoned subway tunnel, a job, and his gang of Lost Boys.
Desperate to run away, the world outside her oppressive brownstone calls to na├»ve, eighteen-year-old Nora—the privileged daughter of a controlling and violent civil rights lawyer who is building a compensation case for the interned Japanese Americans. But she is trapped, enduring abuse to protect her younger sister Frankie and wishing on the stars every night for things to change.
For months, they’ve lived side by side, their paths crossing yet never meeting. But when Nora is nearly killed and her sister taken away, their worlds collide as Kettle, grief stricken at the loss of a friend, angrily pulls Nora from her window.
In her honeyed eyes, Kettle sees sadness and suffering. In his, Nora sees the chance to take to the window and fly away.
Set in 1953, NORA AND KETTLE explores the collision of two teenagers facing extraordinary hardship. Their meeting is inevitable, devastating, and ultimately healing. Their stories, a collection of events, are each on their own harmless. But together, one after the other, they change the world.
EXCERPT:
I snort, push my sleeves up, and lean back on my forearms. She watches me, her eyes on my bare skin, and I wonder what she’s thinking. “Dances. Really? What’s to miss?” My experience with dances was one forced event in the camps where we watched the grownups awkwardly shift in lines to scratchy music. It didn’t look very enjoyable.
She releases the button she’s been playing with and smirks. “Says someone who’s clearly never been to one.”
“How do you know that?” I say, raising an eyebrow and touching my chest, mock offended.
She laughs. It’s starlight in a jar. I blink slowly. “Oh, I can tell just by looking at you, the way you move. You,” she says, pointing at me accusingly. “Can’t dance.”

The candlelight twinkles like it’s chuckling at me. “I can dance,” I say, not sure why I’m lying to defend myself. I’ve never danced in my life.
She stands up and beckons me with her finger, and I think there’s something wrong withmy heart. It’s hurting… but the pain feels good.
She looks like a pirate’s cabin boy, shirt billowing around her small waist, ill-fitting pants rolled over at her hips to stop them from falling down. She points her bare foot at me. “Prove it!”

Shit!
I cough and stand nervously. I don’t know what to do with my hands, so I put them behind my back. She giggles. Touches me. Runs her fingers lightly down my arms until she finds my hands. She grasps my wrists and I gulp as she places one on the small dipbetween her hips and her ribs, extending the other out like the bow of a boat. Her hand in mine.
I follow her small steps and we wind in circles, avoiding the clumps of debris, painting patterns in the dust.
I stare at my socks and her narrow bare feet, listening to the swish of them across the dirt. “You know, this is pretty weird without music,” I mutter, looking up for a momentand suddenly losing my balance.
She exhales and brings us back to equilibrium. She starts humming softly. It’s a song I’ve heard before, but I pretend it’s the first time. Her voice is sweet, cracked and croaky, but in tune as she gazes at the ground and leads us up and down the back of the tunnel.
This moment is killing me. I don’t want it, but I do. Because I know it won’t be enough and it’s all I’ll get.
The end of the song is coming. It rises and rises and then softly peters out. We look at each other, understanding that something is changing between us, and we have to decide whether to let it. Please, let it.
She sings the last few bars. “And if you sing this melody, you’ll be pretending just like me. The world is mine. It can be yours, my friend. So why don’t you pretend?”
Her voice is like the dust of a comet’s tail. Full of a thousand things I don’t understand but want to.
She stops and starts to step away. She’s so fragile. Not on the outside. On the outside, her body is strong, tougher than it should have to be. It’s inside that’s very breakable. I’m scared to touch her, but I don’t want to avoid touching her because of what she’s been through. That seems worse.
So I do it, because I want to and I don’t think she doesn’t want me to. Her breath catches as I pull her closer. I just want to press my cheek to hers, feel her skin against mine. There is no music, just the rhythm of two barely functioning hearts trying to reach each other through miles of scar tissue.
She presses her ear to my chest and listens, then she pulls back to meet my eyes, her expression a mixture of confusion and comfort. She breathes out, her lips not wanting to close but not wanting to speak. She settles on a nervous smile and puts her arms around my neck. I inhale and look up at the ceiling, counting the stars I know are up there somewhere, and then rest my cheek in her hair.
I don’t know how she is here. I don’t know when she’ll disappear.
We sway back and forth, and it feels like we might break. That we will break if we step apart from each other.
I can’t let her go.
I think I love dancing.


Author Bio:

Lauren Nicolle Taylor lives in the lush Adelaide Hills. The daughter of a Malaysian nuclear physicist and an Australian scientist, she was expected to follow a science career path, attending Adelaide University and completing a Health Science degree withHonours in obstetrics and gynaecology.
She then worked in health research for a short time before having her first child. Due to their extensive health issues, Lauren spent her twenties as a full-time mother/carer to her three children. When her family life settled down, she turned to writing.

She is a 2014 Kindle Book Awards Semi-finalist and a USA Best Book Awards Finalist.

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Cover Reveal + Giveaway: Life in the Lucky Zone



Life in the Lucky Zone 
Patricia B. Tighe
(The Zone, #2)
Published by: Swoon Romance
Publication date: April 5th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult

Seventeen-year-old Lindsey Taylor has been living a charmed life—always the lead in school plays,possessor of a healthy entourage and a hot boyfriend. But halfway through her junior year, the unthinkable happens. Her boyfriend dumps her. She screws up her audition for the spring play. And to top it all off, her theater teacher wants her to run lines with Trey Berger, a gamer guy who irritates her practically every time he opens his mouth. Lindsey needs to find some better luck and quick.
Trey Berger can barely tolerate Lindsey Taylor. It’s bad enough that their best friends are dating and he has to see Lindsey at group hangouts. Now they have to rehearse together. Berger would rather do just about anything else, even chill with his grandmother, whose dementia has forced her to move in with his family.
But as the semester continues, Berger discovers there’s more to Lindsey than the drama queen persona she puts on for everyone else’s benefit. And the person behind the mask might be someone he cares about. A lot. So what exactly is he going to do about it?
And while Lindsey desperately tries to change her luck and heal from the breakup, she slowly realizes Berger has become her best friend. This video-game-playing boy makes her laugh. And holds her when she cries. Could he possibly become something more?
Sequel to:
23298700


Author Bio:

The mother of two grown sons, Patricia B. Tighe lives in West Texas with her husband and two dogs. Her love of the written word caused her to get a journalism degree from Texas A&M University in 1980 and an MA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University in 2008. When not writing or reading, she can be found walking thedogs or yelling at the TV during an NFL game. She's also a fan of British TV shows. Downton Abbey, anyone?
www.patriciabtighe.com


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