Sunday, March 31, 2013

Mini-Interview & Giveaway: Kaleb Nation, author of Harken

Today I'm excited to help announce the paperback release of Harken by Kaleb Nation! Hurry and pre-order your copy today because the first 2,000 copies will be signed by the author! to celebrate the release we've got a mini-interview with Kaleb and a giveaway!

Michael Asher is almost an ordinary California teenager, except for his unexplainable ability to see a glimpse of a person’s thoughts through their eyes. After surviving an assassination attempt, he discovers that he is at the center of a worldwide conspiracy higher than any earthly power. A clandestine organization with authority over world leaders, celebrities, and the wealthy desperately wants him dead. Tumbling into a web of international secrets, Michael is forced to search for the identity of the puppet master and dig up the truth that humanity is not being told.

When did you know that you wanted to be an author?

It took a long time for me to realize that I liked writing. When I was 9 years old, my mom suddenly dropped a spiral notebook on my desk and told me I had to write one page a week. I hated it! But she was unrelenting, so I wrote my first science-fiction story about a submarine that went under the North Pole. Slowly I started to realize that when writing, I could make up anything I wanted and when it was written down, it was far more real than in my head. After I finished that first story, I couldn't stop, and I knew I wanted to be an author.

Do you feel like being a published author makes a difference when it comes to your writing process?

Yes, it certainly does. There is a lot more expectation after you've been published. You have readers who are waiting for something new from you and deadlines that scream "write faster, Nation!" I learned how to plot my books out before writing so that I don't spend so much time trapped in writer's block. I spent 6 years writing my first novel -- if I spent 6 years writing every book, I'd still only have that one book!

If you could go back in time to when you first started writing Harken, is there any advice you'd give yourself or any tips that you know now that you didn't know then?

Let your characters be who they want to be. Don't try to push your characters into certain molds that you think people will like to read. Suggest interesting traits for them and then let them take over with their own voices. If they're real to you, they'll be real on the page.

Kaleb's Announcement Video:


Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author:

KALEB NATION is an author and online personality. His blogs and videos have received over 50 million hits online, and he has been featured on NPR, Entertainment Weekly, The Huffington Post, and more. While writing Harken, Kaleb documented his progress through video blogs at . A black belt in taekwondo, Kaleb lives in California with his chinchilla, Chilla. Harken is his first novel for teens.
Youtube.com/KalebNation

Kaleb regularly posts on Twitter (@KalebNation) and blogs at KalebNation.com.


For more about Harken check out these sites!


Saturday, March 30, 2013

Shuffle Saturday (26): Soco Amaretto Lime

Every Saturday I'll be posting a random song off of my iPod. Everyone can feel free to join in, just leave a link to your Shuffle Saturday post in the comments! This week's song is:

Soco Amaretto Lime by Brand New

I love Brand New. Every single one of their songs. All of them. But I always have to listen to this one when it's on even though it's slow. It's just so pretty!

What are you listening to?

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Host Movie: Good, Bad or Indifferent?

The Host, the movie I have been waiting since 2009 to watch, was finally released tonight. I was so excited to see it. I ordered tickets in advance and went to the theater early, expecting at least one theater full of people waiting to see it. You know what I found when I got there?

No one.

There was no one there. Not a single person.

Eventually, when the movie began to play, there were a total of twenty people there, including me. That doesn't say much for the movie, but I was pretty happy that we basically had the theater to ourselves.

They didn't hype The Host the way they did Twilight or The Hunger Games, and it really showed. I loved the non-hype the movie had, but I feel bad that it had such a lousy turnout at the premiere.

As for the movie itself, it was a very faithful adaptation. Which was awesome for anyone who loved the book. But... It was lacking emotion. I said the same thing about The Hunger Games, but in that it was only Katniss's missing inner monologue that left that movie emotionless. In The Host there was emotion from Wanda and Melanie and Jared and Ian, but it felt rushed to me. Everything happened so fast and some of the romance was almost felt like insta-love, which anyone who's read the book knows is not the case. And the interaction between Melanie and Wanda felt a little flat at times.

The death of characters who didn't die in the book was sort of unnecessary, I thought. It left me all emotional for their book selves, but the lack of introduction in the movie made me sort of indifferent to their fates. It made a point to the audience, but it could have been any nameless characters. Actually, it sort of was since we didn't find out who they were until after they were killed. The same goes for another loved character who does die in the book. He dies, but there's no emotion because you never even learned his name!

I get that they had to cram a 600 page book into two hours, and I'm willing to forgive a lot, but non-readers won't feel any connection to these characters. They'll probably barely feel the connection to the main characters. I can't quite tell, because I've read the book. Many times. And I know the story, and all if the backstories. I know how the aliens got to earth and how they run the world now and who the humans are and why they live the way they do, so I have no idea if it was portrayed well in the movie.

I can't say I didn't like the movie and I know I'm giving that impression, but it really isn't the case. I was excited to see it and I'm still excited to see it again. The Host is my favorite book, it's my favorite story, has some of my favorite characters. And I loved seeing them on the big screen. I loved even more that they didn't deviate from the story (aside from the character death I mentioned before) at all. It was almost word for word the book, just rushed. That's something you rarely see in a movie adaptation. The characters don't always say your favorite line, they usually never do. But all of my favorite lines were in this movie! All of them! That alone was enough for me to say I loved this movie. It also had a really slow, bleak sort of atmosphere to it. Everything happened slowly and there was almost no added action
for the sake of action. But there was still that rushed feeling that leaves me with mixed feelings.

I have to say I've never felt so uncertain about how I felt about a movie. Especially a movie I enjoyed as much as The Host, but I've been waiting over three years for this movie, so I can't trust my own opinion. That's why I'm asking, what do you think? What did you think was good? What did you think was bad? Have you read the book, or did you go in blind?

What do you think?

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Review: Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Title: Clockwork Princess
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Publish Date: March 13th, 2013
Rating:

Danger and betrayal, secrets and enchantment in the breathtaking conclusion to the Infernal Devices trilogy.

Tessa Gray should be happy - aren't all brides happy?

Yet as she prepares for her wedding, a net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute.

A new demon appears, one linked by blood and secrecy to Mortmain, the man who plans to use his army of pitiless automatons, the Infernal Devices, to destroy the Shadowhunters. Mortmain needs only one last item to complete his plan. He needs Tessa. And Jem and Will, the boys who lay equal claim to Tessa's heart, will do anything to save her.

This is probably the hardest review I have ever tried to write. Not because I didn't love the book or don't have anything to say (because I do. Tons), but because it's too hard to form words through all the tears. There are very few books that make me cry. In all of the books I've ever read I think, maybe, three series have left me sobbing for the characters within their pages. The Infernal Devices, especially Clockwork Princess, left me all blurry eyed and snotty. And it's all Will Herondale's fault, I tell you!

That's not entirely true though. I cried for Will, but I also cried for Jem and for Tessa (though mostly because of Will's feelings for both of them). I cried for Henry and Charlotte and Jessamine and Gabriel. And I cheered for Sophie and for Gideon and laughed at Cecily.

Cecily was one of my favorite character's in CP2. She is very much like her brother in that she always has a snarky remark at the ready. But she's a sweet, wise girl who I adored reading about. Also Gabriel, though I wasn't a huge fan of his in the other two books, he sort of changed my whole view of the Lightwood's in this book. He is a young, naive boy who has been told what to do, what to believe, his whole life and now that he knows everything he was ever taught was wrong, he has no idea where to go from there. I really loved his character and character development as well.

Now, I have to admit before I get into the whole Will/Tessa/Jem debacle, that I am and always have been very Team Will in orientation. But Jem has always had a solid place in my heart. I just don't prefer him with Tessa in a romantic sense. As I was reading CP and CP2, in both books, I just couldn't get passed the fact that, to me, Tessa and Jem seem to have no chemistry between them. They share many romantic meetings and conversations, but the feeling just wasn't behind the words. It all seemed a little hollow to me. You can say I love you over and over and over again, but if the emotion isn't there, behind the words, than I just can't feel it. But that's something that's easily overlooked when compared to the feelings of love coming from the Will/Tessa and Will/Jem parts of the love triangle. And, I admit, as ton apart as the ending left me, I was very pleased with the outcome.

In so many love triangles the girl chooses the guy she wants and kicks the other guy to the curb with little to no remorse as she selfishly gets what she wants and everyone else be damned. It's something even some of the best heroines have done in other books. But for once the heroine had to feel the pain of her choices. While I didn't feel the love between Tessa and Jem as much as I was told about the love between them, it was still quite obvious that she was heartbroken about her options pertaining to the two boys. And I couldn't help but think "Good. That's what you get for messing with people's hearts." It wasn't like Tessa did anything wrong, but you don't get to make rash decisions concerning others feelings and then just walk away so lightly when you're done with them. Not if you are an honorable person, not if you care about them in the slightest. That decision, whatever it is, will haunt you and them for a long time, if not forever. And I was glad that Tessa's decisions weren't taken lightly.

If you're a fan of the series and have been patiently waiting for this finale ever since cracking open Clockwork Angel, this is the book you've been waiting for. If, by some chance, you haven't read this series yet, please do. And please make sure to have tissues next to you while reading. You don't want to get tear stains all over the book!

For more about Clockwork Princess check out these sites!


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Review: Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt

Title: Going Vintage
Author: Lindsey Leavitt
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Publish Date: March 26th, 2013
Rating:

When Mallory discovers that her boyfriend, Jeremy, is cheating on her with an online girlfriend, she swears off boys. She also swears off modern technology. Inspired by a list of goals her grandmother made in 1962, Mallory decides to "go vintage" and return to a simpler time (when boyfriends couldn't cheat on you online). She sets out to complete grandma's list: run for pep club secretary, host a dinner party, sew a homecoming dress, find a steady, do something dangerous. But the list is trickier than it looks. And obviously finding a steady is out . . . no matter how good Oliver (Jeremy's cousin) smells. But with the help of her sister, she'll get it done. Somehow.

Lindsey Leavitt perfectly pairs heartfelt family moments, laugh-out-loud humor, and a little bit of romance in this delightful contemporary novel.

Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt is a story almost everyone living in this age of technology can relate to. It tells the story of Mallory, a girl who just found out her boyfriend has been having a secret relationship with a girl over an Internet game. But when she dumps him for being a virtual cheater she's the one who is publicly bashed on the Internet, causing her to swear off technology. It's a look at what it really means to disconnect from society. Is going vintage Mallory's way of disconnecting, or was she, even with her cell phone, email, and social networks, already disconnected from society?

One of my favorite things about Going Vintage is the emphasis on family that you don't usually see in YA novels. A YA heroine's family is usually absentee, annoyingly infringing to the point of avoidance, or mentioned a few times in passing but never really introduced. Not the case for Mallory's family. Her little sister Ginnie is her best friend and her partner in her sixties shenanigans. Her parents, as much as she wants to avoid them at times, are still always present and their relationship plays a big role in the novel. Then there's Mallory's grandmother, the whole inspiration for her going vintage in the first place. The family bonds forged and fights had are right at the center of this novel and it's actually a lot of fun to read about.

The romance in Going Vintage is one of those slow growing, ever changing kinds. It starts out as merely a friendship between Mallory and her ex's cousin, Oliver, but it's no surprise when things start to get more serious for these two. It's not an "Oh my God, he's so hot" or "She's so beautiful I can't take my eyes off of her" type romance. It's more like a meeting of two kindred souls who could become more to each other in the future. It was sweet and beautiful and refreshing to read.

I really love the way every chapter starts with one of Mallory's lists. They were entertaining to read and usually very telling of what was coming up in a chapter. They left me wanting to come up with a list or two of my own.

Going Vintage is a lighthearted, yet still poignant novel that takes a look at the ways technology has changed our society, and the ways it hasn't. Lovers of contemporary will fall in love with Mallory's quirky style and Leavitt's quirky sense of humor.

Check out Going Vintage on these sites!


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Shuffle Saturday (25): Change

Every Saturday I'll be posting a random song off of my iPod. Everyone can feel free to join in, just leave a link to your Shuffle Saturday post in the comments! This week's song is:

Change by Churchill

I haven't listened to this one a whole lot. I got it when it was free on iTunes and when it came up on shuffle today I thought it was pretty catchy. I really like the video for this one. It's simple but really fun to watch with the way the clips change!

What are you listening to?

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Guest Post: 5 Books I'd Want On A Desert Island by Kelley Lynn

Today we have a guest post by Kelley Lynn, author of Fraction of Stone. Fraction of Stone is out today so make sure you check it out! Here's a synopsis:

Wind tunnels, torrential rains and earthquakes tear apart Casden. The cause of the world’s imbalance is unknown, but the mounting occurrences suggest there’s little time before life ceases to exist.

Rydan Gale and Akara Nazreth are the only humans with the ability to wield magic. The tattoo on their necks and the discovery of an ancient book, dictate they are the key to the world’s survival.

But the greatest obstacle for saving mankind isn’t the bizarre creatures, extreme betrayals and magic-fearing men hunting them.

It’s that Akara doesn’t believe the world is worth saving.

5 Books I'd Want On A Desert Island by Kelley Lynn:

Many thanks to the ladies at Pretty in Fiction for having me visit their blog today! I’m usually over at my blog so it’s nice to get out and make new friends! (I guess that’s assuming I don’t scare everyone away…)

Speaking of scaring everyone away, today we’re going to assume we’re stuck on a deserted island. This isn’t Survivor TV style. Nope. This is just you and five books. Plus all the creepy crawlies and fierce animals that will gnaw on you when you go to bed. Fun, fun, fun.

So which five books would you choose? That’s tough. Who knows how long you’ll be on this island.
I’ll go first since this is my post and that is only fair…

I’d have a book like this one, because, I kinda hope to get off the island alive.



I think I would want a bible, because, let’s face it, I don’t mind the outdoors, but the chances of my survival, even with book one, are slim. So I’m sure I’m going to want to make sure I get through the pearly gates when a lion gets me.

Now this is where it gets tricky because I don’t really do ‘favorites’. For anything. So I don’t have favorite books. But, since this is my nightmare scenario I’m going to cheat a little bit. I’d have the complete Harry Potter Series. I know, I know, that’s more than one book but I’d have the box set so they would have all been together. And even though they’re amazing, quick reads, I don’t think I could get sick of reading them.



And I’d do the same with the Wheel of Time Series, which is now, finally, finished. (I guess I’m going to have a suitcase filled with just books that gets stranded with me…)




And lastly, I would have my Thermodynamics book from college. Not because it would help get me off the island, or give me clues in how to survive. But because I know it’s the one thing that would put me to sleep, no matter what weird things are going bump in the night.




So how about you? What books would you want with you on a deserted island?

About the Author:

Eventually the day came when the voices in Kelley Lynn’s head were more insistent then her engineering professor’s. So instead of turning to her Thermodynamics book, Kelley brought up a blank page on her computer screen and wrote. Somewhere along the way she became a Young Adult author.
Kelley was born and raised a Midwestern girl. She’s not afraid to sweat and fills her free time with softball, soccer and volleyball. (Though you probably don’t want her on your volleyball team.) She occasionally makes guest appearances as a female vocalist for area bands. Music plays a large role in her writing process as well as the characters and plot lines within her stories.

You can find Kelley hanging out at her blog, titled in her name, as well as the group blog she shares with her fellow critique partners, Falling for Fiction. Kelley is a member of the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators.

For more about Fraction of Stone check out these sites!


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Author Interview & Excerpt: Jessica Miller, author of The Wanderers

Today we have an interview with Jessica Miller, author of The Wanderers. Jessica was also kind enough to share an excerpt from her novel, so make sure you check that out after the interview!

What do you do when you learn your family is the one who's holding all the secrets. Secrets that could get you killed...

Ella is looking forward to starting college in the fall with her best friend Josie. She’s looking for a place where she can get away from her overbearing parents and two older annoying brothers. Unfortunately Ella realizes that sometimes the past comes back to haunt you.

Ella soon learns that the man who terrorizes her dreams is in fact real and coming after her.

When one of her classmates is murdered, Ella slowly recognizes this is not some strange coincidence. Ella fears that the boy she’s falling in love with is the one who stalks her dreams and no longer knows who she can trust.

When she finally learns the truth of her families deepest secret, Ella has to face her demons by taking out one of the people she thought she could trust…before they kill her.

Tell us about yourself.

I grew up in the suburbs of Pennsylvania. I loved English when I was a kid but hated reading and writing, which is funny because now I love it. If I could I would live at the beach where it is warm and sunny all the time. I hate the cold weather. I tend to live in my own little bubble so I'm constantly being pulled back to reality with a little help from my friends. This usally happens after I yell at them for bursting my bubble. I have random thoughts all the time which I know makes my friends sometimes question my sanity. I just let them know I survived this long so I think I'm doing okay.
I love music. Music is a big influence when I write. When I used to go to the gym (insert laugh) I would listen to music and certain scenes would play out in my head when I got stuck on what I wanted to do. I enjoying writitng to no end. I am most content when I'm creating new stories and ideas.

What's your favorite book of all time and why?

This is a hard one because I like so many books to call one my favorite, but if I have to choose I would say The Twilight Saga. I pick this series because it's what got me into reading and helped me learn to love books. I Have to thank my friend Erica for that one because she insisted I had to read the second book before I saw the second movie and I was like ehh, don't really read anything except cosmo, but through her persisting, I gave in. I also told her even though I saw the movie I still had to read the first book in the series before I read the second. After a month of sitting on my night stand, I finally picked it up and read the first one in two weeks, the second, three days, and then went out and bought the next two thus begining my love for books. So I would have to say thank you to my friend Erica and Stephenie Meyer for her beautiful vision and world she created. Even though I chose this one. I still have to say it's a tie between Twilight and The Vampire Academy series. Love, love, love The Vampire Academy series and can't wait for the movie! Although I'm not all that happy who the picked to play Rose and I'm getting off topic. Next question.

Have you ever faked reading a book? If so why?

NO. I tend to be very honest. Almost too honest which gets me in Trouble.

How did you come up with the idea for The Wanderers?

I was always making up stories in my head, playing out scenes, and creating ideas when i was bored. And i was bored a lot. I hated High school so most of my time I spent in la-la land dreaming of something better. After meeting my magic writing fairy Rose, she convinced me to put all my ideas down and in writing. So I thought about it and then after reading so many books and finding out what I didn't like I decided to do something different. So I started writing down characters, plot ideas, and before I knew it The Wanderers was created.

What is your favorite line from The Wanderers and why do you love it?

This one is hard. Would I sound horribly conceited if I said the whole book?

If I had to pick it would be something Tristan said. He's one of my favorite characters and I had a lot of fun writing him. If I could find someone like him in real life I would do the opposite of Ella and run right for him and be like, "Hey there. How you doin?" But sadly have yet to find him, sigh. But to give you one of the many reasons I love him, here is one of Tristan's quirky lines.
Ouch Ella, you're cold. You know, if you ever need someone to warm up that ice in your veins, I'm your guy.

Excerpt From The Wanderers:

“What can I get you?” the bartender asked. 
“I'll have a...” Josie was ordering her drink when I started to get the strangest sensation of being watched. I looked over to my right to discover a strange young man staring at me. He had a cocky smile on his face, like he was the type of guy girls never said no to. I turned away letting him know I was not interested. I knew he didn't take the hint when I could still feel his eyes on me. I moved closer to Josie starting to feel uncomfortable under his piercing gaze. I refused to let him intimidate me so I unhooked my hair from behind my ear letting it fall to create a dark brown veil to hide my reddened cheeks. 
“And what can I get you?” the bartender asked me next grabbing my attention. 
“I'll have a beer,” I replied. 
“The beers are over there,” the bartender said pointing behind us. 
“And I'm sure pledge Johnson would love to walk over there and get one for you,” said the strange young man who seemed to forget how impolite it is to stare. 
“No, it's okay. I can get it,” I said wanting to get away from him. 
The bartender stood there as if waiting for a command. The creep with the staring problem nodded to him and he was off. As if that was an invitation to come talk to me he made his way over. “It's his job,” he said leaning against the bar and looking me up and down like he was trying to envision me naked. I crossed my arms over my chest feeling a little violated as his dark blue eyes studied me. He smiled satisfied as he ran a hand through his messy black hair. Not sure what he was attempting to accomplish because it looked like he just threw some gel in it giving it that messy, ‘this is what I meant to do’ look. 
I shuffled my feet nervously waiting for the bartender to come back with my drink. I was trying to be nice and didn't know how much longer I could keep my composure with the way this guy was staring at me. When the bartender came back with my beer I said thank you and turned to walk away, but the creepy guy jumped in front of me blocking my path. When he stood straight, he was about a foot taller than me. He was wearing a green polo shirt and jeans that hung a little baggy on his slim body. 
I pushed my shoulders back preparing for whatever he was going to throw at me. He was in for a sore surprise if he thought he could woo me with his charm the way I was sure he had every other girl. He smiled cockily at me and extended his hand. “I'm Tristan,” he said. 
“Ella.” I shook his hand and he didn't seem to want to let it go. “Can I have my hand back?” I asked annoyed. 
He smiled and pulled my hand to his lips. “Stella piu bella.” 
“I don't speak Italian,” I said narrowing my eyes at him. 
“Enjoy the party Ella,” he winked and walked away.

For more about The Wanderers check out these sites!


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Bloglovin: In Case Google Screws Us All Over

Hey guys!

Just wanted to let everyone know I am officially on Bloglovin now! (You know, just in case GFC goes up in smoke.) I've heard all sorts of rumors recently, so just to be safe I'll be following everyone over at Bloglovin. If you want to be a doll and follow us too, that would be super! Here's the link:


Cover Reveal & Giveaway: The Avery Shaw Experiment by Kelly Oram

Today we're excited to help reveal the cover of The Avery Shaw Experiment by Kelly Oram! It's a contemporary about a girl with a broken heart and a boy she never expected to fix it. Check out the synopsis:

When Avery Shaw’s heart is shattered by her life-long best friend, she chooses to deal with it the only way she knows how—scientifically.

The state science fair is coming up and Avery decides to use her broken heart as the topic of her experiment. She’s going to find the cure. By forcing herself to experience the seven stages of grief through a series of social tests, she believes she will be able to get over Aiden Kennedy and make herself ready to love again. But she can’t do this experiment alone, and her partner (ex partner!) is the one who broke her heart.

Avery finds the solution to her troubles in the form of Aiden’s older brother Grayson. The gorgeous womanizer is about to be kicked off the school basketball team for failing physics. He’s in need of a good tutor and some serious extra credit. But when Avery recruits the lovable Grayson to be her “objective outside observer,” she gets a whole lot more than she bargained for, because Grayson has a theory of his own: Avery doesn’t need to grieve. She needs to live. And if there’s one thing Grayson Kennedy is good at, it’s living life to the fullest.


What do you think of the cover?

Teaser One - Avery
Grayson finally noticed Aiden and I on the couch. “What are you two dorks doing?”

“Learning about steroids,” I said cheerfully. “You should probably know that using them can cause acne, testicular atrophy, decreased sperm count, prostate enlargement and gynecomastia.”

Grayson looked rightfully appalled. “Gyneco-what-ia?”

“Enlarged breasts in men,” Aiden translated. “So you should lay off the juice before you have to start borrowing Avery’s bras.”

I gasped at the mention of my underwear and whacked Aiden’s shoulder hard.

Behind me, Grayson laughed. I knew he was about to deliver a comeback, but I refused to look at him. Seconds later his breath was warm on my neck. He whispered just low enough that his mother couldn’t hear what he said. “I like my bras colorful and lacey, Aves. Not sure your collection would do it for me.”

Total mortification. Grayson may be as close as family to me, but he was still one of the hottest, most popular guys in our whole school. Him discussing my bras in that low sexy voice that could stop a girl’s heart on the spot made my lungs constrict. Plus, he was right of course. My bras were all of the plain white cotton variety.
Teaser Two - Grayson
I started to leave the room but she stopped me at the door. “Grayson?” Her tone tugged at something inside me. “You really want to take me with you tonight?”

She sounded so small and unsure of herself. It was how she always sounded at school and around strangers, but never when she was at home with us. I think my brother had really broken her. I was seriously going to have to beat him sometime.

“You don’t have to if you don’t want to. I know I really freaked out on you earlier, but I promise I’ll be fine. Aiden’s right.” She swallowed back a lump in her throat. “I’ll manage without him somehow.”

“Aiden’s a tool. You can learn how to manage tomorrow. Tonight’s New Years Eve and for once in your life you’re going to spend it without Aiden or The Discovery Channel.

I knew I was making progress when she cracked a smile and asked, “What about Whootylicious in 7 B?”

I thought of the luscious booty I’d originally planned on seeing tonight and sighed. “That will be an unfortunate loss, but, like you, I will just have to deal.”

I winked and then decided I’d give her ten minutes before I came back and physically dragged her out of bed.

Other books by Kelly Oram




About Kelly Oram...

Kelly Oram wrote her first novel at age fifteen–a fan fiction about her favorite music group, The Backstreet Boys, for which family and friends still tease her. She's obsessed with reading, talks way too much, and loves to eat frosting by the spoonful. She lives outside of Phoenix, Arizona with her husband and four children.



Win all four books by Kelly Oram in ebook format. This giveaway is open international, as long as you have a way to open the file.

Must be 13 or older to enter.

Enter via Rafflecopter below.

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Teaser Tuesday (44): Decked With Holly by Marni Bates

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.

This week's teaser is from Decked With Holly by Marni Bates. I know, I'm a few months late on the Christmas read, but seriously you guys! This book! I just needed a fun non-review book to get me out of a reading slump, a book I didn't feel I needed to pick apart while reading, and this was exactly what I needed! Light, adorable, and romantic! Definitely put this on your lists for next Christmas or, you know, whenever!

Maybe if we had met under different circumstances you would count," she said thoughtfully. "If you hadn't pepper sprayed me and then acted like a crotchety old man, for example. But now you're not Dominic Wyatt, you're Nick. It's hard for me to get all excited about having it signed by a celebrity when it's you.

{Decked With Holly, pg. 119}

Synopsis of Decked With Holly:
Smartly blending of-the-moment pop culture references and timeless themes, Bates follows her YA debut, "Awkward", with a hilarious, over-the-top adventure about a teen girl who becomes the fake girlfriend of a cute rock star.

Taking a Christmas cruise with her two cousins from hell isn't Holly's idea of a good time. And when seasickness forces her into an open suite, she's pepper-sprayed by a gorgeous guy called Nick. But when Holly makes her exit, she's greeted by a horde of screaming teenage fans. Because Nick happens to be Dominic Wyatt, drummer for one of the hottest bands in America. Suddenly rumours are swirling and Holly's face is plastered all over the Internet. The band can't risk a scandal destroying their family-friendly image, so Dominic convinces Holly to be his fake girlfriend - just for two weeks. How bad could it be to be "fauxmantically" involved with a cute rock star? She's about to find out...

For more about Decked With Holly check out these sites!


Monday, March 18, 2013

Who's Excited For The Host? Watch Clips From The Movie!

With The Host so close to release, who else is excited? I know I am! I've watched all of the official trailers and featurettes and behind the scene videos on Open Road Films The Host YouTube page. I even watched the entire Google Hangout interview with Stephenie Meyer and the cast from the film! Here are a few other exclusive clips from the movie I've managed to track down in case any of you want to watch them!





What do you guys think of the clips? Did you watch any of them or do you want to watch them for the first time in the theater on March 29th?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

FREE for Kindle: The Hidden Messages by Madeline Hibbert

Just wanted to let everyone know The Hidden Messages by Madeline Hibbert is FREE today for Kindle. The Hidden Messages is a paranormal murder mystery and is the first book in a new series! Check out the synopsis:

Harley Ray Rider is a fifteen year old girl living in San Francisco, California. For the most part her life's been pretty ordinary; expect for the numerous near encounters she's had with death. After a third incident lands her once more in the "In-between" she once again sees her (deceased) best friend and learns surprising news. She'll get the choice to return, but with that also comes the price of a duty only she'll be able to do with new found "gifts." Harley jumps at the chance to come back. Quickly however, she discovers how highly unprepared she is for the task that is up to her. Running away from home and hitting the streets of Los Angeles she'll go all the way to catch the bad guy. But what happens when the bad guy catches her?

The Hidden Messages is a paranormal murder mystery that will have you reading late into the night until your eyes are heavy and the last page is turned. It is the first book in the suspenseful Harley Ray Rider Series.


Add it on Goodreads!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Shuffle Saturday (24): No Rain

Every Saturday I'll be posting a random song off of my iPod. Everyone can feel free to join in, just leave a link to your Shuffle Saturday post in the comments! This week's song is:

No Rain by Blind Melon

Oh man. That little girl in the bee costume dancing. I was really little when this came out, but I still remember the video! Such a great song that I completely forgot about until about a year ago. It's funny that I actually remembered bee girl, but not the song itself!

What are you listening to?

Friday, March 15, 2013

Spotlight: Everville: The First Pillar by Roy Huff

Today we're spotlighting Everville: The First Pillar by Roy Huff.  This one is definitely for lovers of epic fantasy! Check out the synopsis:

Owen Sage is the emblematic college freshman at Easton Falls University. He studies hard, plays hard, and is incredibly charming. With all the worries about his first year in college, he was not prepared for what would happen next. His way of life was flipped upside down when he was drawn into a different world, a world unbeknownst to him. He mysteriously crossed into another dimension, into the beautiful land of Everville. His tragic excitement was abruptly halted when he discovered that there was a darkness forged against both the natural world, which he knew well, and the new land which he discovered, Everville. He must devise a plan to save both worlds while joining forces with the race of Fron and The Keepers, whom both harbor hidden secrets he must learn in order to gain power over the evil that dwells in The Other In Between.



With a race against time to save both worlds, his short time at Easton Falls did not quite prepare him for the evil, dark forces he must fight in order to conquer The Other In Between.

Excerpt from Everville: The First Pillar:

“The answer you seek lies in learning to combine the power of reason with the passion of emotion. If you let reason alone control your choices, you lose the power of intuition. If you let emotion control your choices, you will be a slave to every minor tragedy." -Cleophas

About the Author:

Roy Huff, MS, MAEd., is the author of the best selling epic young adult, teen fantasy book Everville: The First Pillar, the first installment of the Everville series. He holds five degrees in four separate fields including liberal arts, history, secondary science education, and geoscience. Roy Huff has backgrounds in art, history, education, business, real-estate, economics, geoscience, and satellite meteorology. He was born on the East Coast but has spent more than half of his life in Hawaii.

For more about Everville: The First Pillar check out these sites!


Cover Reveal: Stripped by Brooklyn Skye

Today we're helping to reveal the cover of Stripped by Brooklyn Skye! Stripped is a New Adult Contemporary that sounds amazing! Check out the synopsis:

I like you.” His voice is low and soft, which I don’t deserve. I look away, down the rutted parking lot.

“Don’t…waste those words on me.”

He touches my cheek. “You just need someone to show you.”

“No.” I ease back again. “I don’t. So please, Torrin, stop trying to swoop in and save me. I don’t need saving.”

College freshman Quinn Montgomery will do anything to avoid the mistake her sister made—killing herself over a boy. But when she is forced into nude modeling at a local college to support her family after a bankruptcy, she begins to crack, just enough to let Torrin, the university’s top varsity oarsman, see that the real Quinn is not as feisty and unapproachable as she wants everyone to think.

But letting someone in comes at a steep cost and, it turns out, Torrin is connected to Quinn’s family in more ways than she could ever imagine.


About the Author:


Brooklyn Skye is an author, editorial intern, and just your average awkward girl (especially on the phone!). Her new adult debut, STRIPPED, releases May 2013!

Click HERE to sign up to participate in the blog tour for Stripped.

***GIVEAWAY***

Enter below to win a signed hardcopy of STRIPPED (if U.S. winner) or an e-copy with Authorgraph (if international winner)
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Spotlight: A Whisper in the Jungle by Robert Mwangi

Today we're spotlighting A Whisper in the Jungle by Robert Mwangi. It's a story that travels from deep in the jungles of Africa to New York City! Check out the synopsis:

Deep in the African jungle where even the bravest are afraid to venture, lies a truth that will propel James through his improbable American journey, if he can come out alive. James a village boy in Africa receives a scholarship to go and study in America and he becomes the envy of the whole village. His girlfriend Janny is however skeptical of what a long distance relationship can do to love. But when Janny vanishes from the village, James and his dog Simba plunge into the belligerent forest at the risk of his life and his American dream. Love transcends all. 'A Whisper in the Jungle' www.robert-mwangi.com is a suspense story full of love, humor and adventure, where the answer to love's dilemma lies with a perfect kiss at the top of the Empire Building in New York City.

About the Author:

This young adult novel was inspired by some personal experiences and features a real native tribe under the hills of Mt. Kenya.

As kids in Africa, we were always curious about the Western world across the Oceans. The only problem was that our teachers emphasized on us reading African novels and learning about our culture. But many a times, I stole myself under a tree and enjoyed an Enild Blyton book or a John Grisham novel.

Change is the only inevitable thing in life. My book represents change and blurs the margins between worlds Oceans apart.

For more about A Whisper in the Jungle check out these sites!

Amazon B&NGoodreads

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Spotlight: The Perfect Guy by Ann Herrick

Today we have an excerpt from The Perfect Guy by Ann Herrick! It's about a girl who believes her new stepbrother is her perfect guy. Is she right or is she wrong? Check out the synopsis and excerpt below:

Can Rebecca turn her new stepbrother into her new love?

When Rebecca's mother marries Pres's father, Rebecca is sure that living in the same house with the guy of her dreams will have its perks and it will be just a matter of time before Pres sees her as more than a kid sister. Even though her best friend, Celeste, warns her to face reality, Rebecca doesn't listen. She thinks Pres is the perfect guy for her. But Celeste's brother, Josh, has been friends with Pres for years, and Celeste thinks she knows what she's talking about.

Rebecca's not so sure about her relationship with her new stepfather. She knows he can't replace her real dad, but she thinks she can break through his cool surface by helping him with the school play.

But things don't go as planned, and as friendships start to change, Rebecca faces surprising truths about herself and her friends. Will she find happiness in her new family and find The Perfect Guy?

Excerpt from The Perfect Guy by Ann Herrick:

“…Josh isn’t really your brother," Celeste said seriously, "much as I’d sometimes like to donate him to you." 
"Pres isn’t my brother either." 
"He’ll be your stepbrother," Celeste reminded me. "You’ll be living in the same house with him." 
"And that," I said with a triumphant smile, "will give me the chance I need to get close to him." 
"It'll also give you time to drive each other crazy, just like Josh and me," Celeste said. 
"Hey, you and Josh get along great," I said. But Celeste’s implication got me thinking. 
What if Pres and I didn’t get along? What if we wound up bickering constantly like some brothers and sisters I could name? That would never happen—would it? 
"Sometimes Josh and I are at each other’s throats," Celeste said. "And," she added, grinning, "the reason we usually do get along so well is that I’m just so accommodating." 
She laughed, because she was anything but. 
"All right, all right." I wasn’t going to spoil the afternoon by arguing. Instead I changed the subject.  
"So. Who will be the next guy in your life?" 
"Next guy?" 
"Celeste. It’s been two weeks since you broke up with Riley. That’s a record for you to be single. I figured you’d have somebody scoped out by now."
"I don’t know." Celeste rolled onto her back. "I just can’t seem to get excited about anyone. There aren’t many decent guys left." 
"There must be one or two," I teased. "What about a senior? That way we could go to the graduation ball together." 
"What?" Celeste sat up. "You lost me there." 
"Graduation is only three months away," I reminded her. "By then Pres and I will be a couple and so of course we’ll go to the graduation party. If you hook a senior, we can both go to the party. Simple, right?" 
"Simpleminded if you ask me," Celeste replied. "First of all, I think you greatly overestimate my ability to attract guys, especially when you’re talking seniors. Second, I haven’t seen any signs that you and Pres will be a couple by then, if ever." 
"If I’m an optimist," I said, "then you're a pessimist. You have to think positively if you expect to make things happen." 
"You have to be realistic too," Celeste said. "Thinking positively and daydreaming about what you’d like to happen will only set you up for a letdown when things don’t turn out the way you hope." 
"All right," I said patiently. I was used to Celeste’s "constructive" criticism. "Let’s just agree to disagree about our outlooks on life. Meanwhile, why don’t you look for some gorgeous senior, just in case everything works out the way I know it will." 
Celeste sighed. "I’ll think about it." 
"Right now we’d better finish packing up all this stuff, or I’ll never be ready to move by tomorrow." 
With Celeste’s help I was able to finish packing with just enough time to finish my hair and makeup before the rehearsal dinner. Since it was just Mom, Pres’s father, my grandmother, Pres, and me, we were going to dinner at the Oceanview Inn, then to the Rose Room in the Town Hall. I took care to look especially nice, getting my hair just right, even using a touch of the lavender eye shadow I’d bought to match my bridesmaid’s dress. I thought it made my eyes look even greener.
When I was all ready, I sat at my dresser and checked my hair once more in the mirror. My gaze fell to the small, leather-framed picture of my father that I hadn’t yet packed. I had not only his wide-set green eyes, but also his thick, copper-colored hair. I often wished I’d inherited his high cheekbones instead of Mom’s apple cheeks, but all in all I couldn’t complain. 
I had only a few memories of Dad, but they were surprisingly clear, considering that I’d been only six years old when he’d died. I remember sitting on his lap in the oversized recliner; giggling while he halfheartedly lectured me for some forgotten misdeed; running down the long, narrow aisle in his sporting-goods store and being gathered into his arms and swung up in the air. 
I also remember the day I rushed out of school to find Mom waiting for me, even though I was old enough to walk home by myself. Her eyes were red. I knew she’d been crying. Daddy had been taken to the hospital—he’d had a heart attack. There were endless days of waiting before, finally, the really bad news. 
He’d always be Daddy in my heart, though I was about to have a new father. Stepfather, that is. It would certainly take getting used to, having a dad after all these years. Especially since Mr. Nelsen—I mean Bill—was the head of the English Department at my high school. I’d have to wait until my junior year to have him for a teacher, since he taught upper-level classes, but in less than twenty-four hours I’d have him for a parent. He seemed nice enough, despite his reputation at school for being strict, so I didn’t anticipate any problems. 
Getting used to living with Pres would be another matter. Seeing him first thing in the morning, at meals, evenings, weekends—always. I’d have to monitor my heart rate. 
"Rebecca!" Mom called up the stairs. "Are you ready? Bill just pulled into the driveway." 
"Be right down, Mom." I smoothed my hair and splashed on a few drops of lilac cologne. I took a deep breath and slowly descended the stairs.
Pres stood in the front hallway. I smiled my brightest smile, preparing myself for the evening ahead, for the opportunity to achieve one of my major goals. At dinner I would get up the nerve to actually get into a deep, meaningful conversation with Pres.

About the Author:

Ann Herrick is the award-winning author of several books and short stories for kids and teens. Included in the awards her books have won are the ALA Recommended Book for Reluctant Readers, IRA/CBC Children’s Choice and EPIC Best YA Novel Finalist.

Ann grew up in Connecticut, where she graduated from The Morgan School and Quinnipiac University. She now lives in Oregon with her husband, who was her high-school sweetheart. Their wonderful daughter is grown, married and gainfully employed, and has given Ann her only grand-dog, Puff, a bloodhound-rottweiller-beagle mix and six grand-kitties. While she misses the East Coast, especially houses built before 1900, she enjoys the green valleys, fresh air and low humidity in the Willamette Valley of Oregon. Ann loves cats, walking, the Oregon Ducks and working in her back yard. In addition to stories and books for children and young adults, Ann also writes copy for humorous and conventional greeting cards. She loves to hear from her readers and can be contacted through her web site: http://annherrickauthor.com.

For more about The Perfect Guy check out these sites!


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