Friday, September 23, 2011

Blog Hop & Feature, and Follow Friday (8), TGIF (1) + Giveaways!

First things first, my Pretties.

We have two (2) giveaways ending soon on Pretty in Fiction, the first being our Bloodlines vs Vampire Academy Giveaway, which has been going on all month. You have four (4) more days to enter (click the banner below) if you want a chance to win either a copy of Bloodlines or Vampire Academy.
Our second giveaway, which ends today (well, technically, it's scheduled for tomorrow), is a scavenger hunt, of sorts. Sang Kromah has decided to give us a signed copy of her debut novel Concealed (click here to read the teaser!), which will be released this October 10th. In honor of the upcoming book, we have concealed four pairs of letters that spell out a word that has something to do with the new novel. By finding the letter pairs and, subsequently, the word itself somewhere on this blog, you would be taken to where we've hidden the form. HOWEVER, as a special Friday, blog-hopping treat, you guys can bypass the hunt, if you like, and be taken directly to the form by clicking on the banner below.
Now for some hop-along fun. Let's start with the newest addition to our Friday meme train:
Ginger from GReads! created this one as a means to recap the past week'x blogging activities (scroll to the bottom of this post to find our recap), and also to pose a question to her followers that would be answered in their own TGIF at GReads! post (like this one), or in the comments below it.

This week, Ginger asks:

Reading Challenges: Did you sign up for any this year?
How has your progression been?

Jesse: The only reading challenge I've signed up for this year is the Goodreads Challenge, where you challenge yourself to read a certain number of books before the New Year rolls around. Hoping to hit 100 by then. So far I'm pretty much on track. I occasionally fall behind a book or two and then I'll end up getting a few extra books in and get myself even again.

Kira: I've signed up for a few reading challenges this year. Some have already been completed, as they were short-term goals. All of them were hosted on Goodreads. A couple of my reading challenges got sidelined, though when we started up this blog. The two main ones, which I am still participating in are:
* 2011 Reading Challenge, hosted by Goodreads - Due to a few books that just seemed to drag and managed to slow my pace down considerably, I am several books behind my current goal of 100. I changed the rules a bit further, though, and decided each of these books had to be new-to-me, otherwise that total'd be a bit higher.
* A-Z Reading Challenge, hosted by the YA Book Club on Goodreads - A six (well, seven) month reading challenge where we had to choose 26 books, whose title or authors name began with a corresponding letter of the alphabet, only on book per letter. We are a little less than halfway through the challenge, and I have finished 7 books on my list, and am in the middle of two others.

Feature, and Follow Friday, hosted by Rachel of  Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read is our next Friday meme. Each week they ask a question, we answer go around other participating blogs and click Follow, and, of course, read and respond to their answers. It's a great way to get to know your fellow bloggers and gain new friends.

This week we were asked:
Do you have a favorite series that you read over and over again? Tell us a bit about it and why you keep on revisiting it?
Jesse: One of my favorite series is Dark Visions by LJ Smith. It's the story of a group of kids with psychic abilities who become psychically linked after an accident. I've reread it a few times, especially the last book (although I have the ebook which contains all three books in the series). I just can't help it. I always have to go back and read the part when Gabriel and Kaitlyn finally get together. They're so vote throughout the whole series. She is the only one Gabriel trusts and Gabriel would do practically anything for her.

I love this one quote from near the end of the book. It's between Rob, Kaitlyn's boyfriend, Gabriel.

"You love her don't you?" he said to Gabriel.

Gabriel finally seemed able to break their locked stare. He looked away at the carpet. His face was bleak. "Yes," he said.

"More than anything," Rob persisted. "You'd crawl on your belly over broken glass for her. Easy."
 - (Dark Visions, ebook pg. 447)

It's hard to not want to go back and read the cuteness that is Gabriel Wolfe over and over again. Even if he's sort of a ginormous jerk throughout the beginning of the series. Which, if I'm being honest, only makes me like him more. Sad as that may be.

Kira: This question's actually kind of a funny one for me. See, up until a few years ago I had some major hang ups about rereading books – unless it was under a very specific set of right circumstances, it wasn't going to happen. I just couldn't.

There were a few exception's to the rule, of course. Harry Potter being a major one. For some reason, I could reread those books, no problem. But I didn't really start getting into rereading books until I read the Twilight Saga. I still couldn't tell you why. The books were good, but they weren't among the best I'd ever read. Still, the book I picked up right after putting Breaking Dawn down was, indeed, Twilight.

With in those five minutes (ok, really maybe a few hours) I went from a girl who refused to reread books at all, to a girl who seemed to have no problem hopping back to the beginning of a series I'd literally just finished. Strange, huh?

I've reread a few series since then (mostly before a new release I've been anticipating, if I've read a lot in between), but as far as any of them being favorites...well, I hesitate to answer because I have a few future rereads scheduled who I'm sure might trump my currents, based on my initial love of the books – if only I could get to them.
It's a li'l late to join the rest of the party, but doesn't mean the hopping can't still be fun!

Book Blogger Hop, hosted by Crazy For Books, is a hop designed so that we might be able to get to know our fellow bloggers.How? By answering a weekly question and checking out other's answers, too, of course!
Book Blogger Hop
This week we were asked:
As a blog reader, what information (besides the book review) do you like to see in other bloggers’ reviews of books? (For example – Author bio, social media links, book synopsis from Amazon/Goodreads or one written by the blogger, page count, ISBN number, link to purchase, etc.)
Jesse: I would usually rather read the reviewers synopsis of the book. I usually only put in a Goodreads synopsis if I can't get my own synopsis right. Sometimes I find myself adding in spoilers without meaning to and things like that. But I also like to have a link to the Goodreads synopsis, just in case I want to go check the book out there. Plus it provides an easy was to add the book to my To Read list!

Kira: What I like to see is, for the most part, what I try to write into my reviews. When able, I prefer the synopsis to be personalized for that review. I don't care if it's just re-wording a synopsis already written, but a generic cut-and-paste doesn't do too much for me. If you read the book, tell me what it's about. I know that can be hard sometimes, so I don't complain too much, but that is my preference. Feel free to link the synopsis, though. Links are good. a pre-made synopsis linked to yours can give the reader a sort of double opinion, and that can work in your favor.

I'm going to simplify this answer, and say that linking pretty much anything and everything relevant to the author and/or the book can be a good thing. I especially liked the idea of being able to access a sort of preview to the book from the review. It wasn't something I'd seen very often, so I make sure to include at least a sample chapter in each of my reviews, if I can . You can usually find something on authors and publishers, and even booksellerd sites for the book, and I like thinking that if people are intrigued by the review and want to give the book view a peek, then they put to use the sample I provide for them and that, in turn, helps them decide if they really want to read the book.

I don't really care too much about page numbers and those sorts of thing. They have their uses, but just because I'm reading the book in one format, doesn't mean someone else will, and who's to say the page counts are even close (especially if one party is reading an eBook version). I do, however, like to see an approximate publishing date, especially for newer releases, and links to the publisher (which I've seen not everyone provides).

I think that pretty much covers it. I can't think of anything else at the moment.
Some Things You May Have Missed This Week on Pretty in Fiction
* Review: Tankborn, by Karen Sandler
* Breaking Dawn, Part 1 Trailer!
* YA Creepers #1: Waking Up to a Stranger in My Room
* Concealed Giveaway (It's a scavenger hunt!)
* Bloodline vs Vampire Academy - 3 - The Books (and a Giveaway!)
* My Book Boyfriend (1) CONNIE!


  1. I generally don't re-read as much anymore. I just have so many books that I haven't read, that I want to read!

    My Follow Friday

  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog, following back! ^_^

  3. I haven't tried any LJ Smith yet (I'm such a bad YA fan!), but I reread the Twilight series a few times in college.

  4. I haven't read LJ Smith's Night Visions but I love all her stuff, so I probably need to!

    Thanks for stopping by. Following you now!

    My Follow Friday


  5. New Follower- Wow what an awesome background! Love it!

    Check out my responses at Gimme The Scoop Reviews

  6. OK, so I've been catching up up 90s books that I missed and have read The Vampire Diaries and The Secret Circle series recently. I think Dark Visions is the only LJ Smith series that is still on my TBR (no, wait, also Night World). Hope I get around to them soon!

    I'm a new follower, BTW! Happy Friday and have a fab weekend.

  7. @TG

    Oh, in that case you MUST read Night World! I know that everyone has been waiting for the last book in the series to come out for something like 15 years, but even so it's still an amazing series. Definitely LJ's best. Dark Visions is my second favorite of her's.

  8. Twilight has this weird pull on people. I can't explain it, but it's a series I have reread also. Frequently. LOL

    New follower! Feel free to check out my blog if you'd like:


  9. Hi & Happy Friday!

    I haven't read the L.J Smith series but will have to look it up, it sounds great :)

    Thank-you for stopping by my blog earlier

    Have a nice weekend..

  10. Kira: If I changed the rules to the Goodreads challenge (for me), my number would be so low! I love to reread so they have to count. Good for you for making that challenge to yourself, even if it got sidelined. It can't be easy.

    Jesse: Good job on being on track with your Goodreads challenge. I'm in the same boat! Yay! :)

  11. I'm not big on rereading either. It's easier to justify picking up a new book where I dont' know the ending. However, there are a few series I'll pick up again and again! Thanks for hopping by... following back now!

  12. I love JL Smith's books. HP is great too. I liked the books more than the movies.

    Thanks for following. I followed back :)

  13. I am a Twilight fanatic & have read Breaking Dawn at least 4x..

    I only read the first 2 HP books. I want to def read all of them.

    Great giveaways btw. I am having my first giveaway on my blog please stop by and say hi & check it out :)

    Books And Beyond:FOLLOW FRIDAY

  14. thanks for stopping by my blog-I am very happy to be able to return the follow and I look forward to reading your posts

  15. Hopping through. Thanks for mentioning your VA giveaway. So cool. I just entered.
    My Hop

  16. Hi
    I've watched the Vampire Diaries but haven't read them.

    Shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

  17. Harry Potter is seriously the perfect series to reread. The books are so long and detailed that it almost feels like you're reading them again for the first time. I can NEVER get bored of those books.

    New Follower!
    My Follow Friday
    Kristan @ Lost Amongst the Shelves

  18. New Follower. Found you from the blog hop and wanted to stop by and say Hi!

  19. Interesting answer. Definitely gave me insignt into what I should include in my reviews from now on!


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