Friday, February 28, 2014

Author Interview: Kimberly Castillo, author of The Convenience of Lies

Today we're featuring The Convenience of Lies by author Kimberly Castillo. Kimberly has some excellent writing advice for indie authors in our interview down below so make sure you check it out!

It doesn’t matter if it’s right or wrong. All that matters is if you can. If you can do something, what difference does it make?”

Based on a true story, The Convenience of Lies is a novel that keeps readers up past midnight with its story of friendship, mystery, crime, sex, and betrayal. Set in a suburban town, this story is told through the eyes of a high school junior, Mackenzie, who describes her crush on a “bad boy,” Ramon, and her relationship with her best friend, Kira. During the course of the story, Mackenzie does her best to attract the affections of Ramon while her friendship with Kira evolves. Eventually, the different characters’ property starts getting vandalized and a mystery develops as Mackenzie and Kira try to get to the bottom of who is behind the vandalism.

What inspired you to become a writer?

Reading. Nothing inspires me to write more than reading.

Do you ever experience writer’s block?

Not really. I may have one day or one section of a story that’s not really working for me as I’m trying to write it. But usually if I just step away from that part for a day or so I’ll have enough time to process what I want to accomplish in that part of the story so that I can sit back down and continue writing. Often times I have to put off writing a story until I have a break from school where I can really focus on writing. And so, the idea for what I want to write will have been swimming around in my mind long enough that it’s dying to come out once I get the chance to write.

Do you work with an outline, or just write?

Yes, I usually work with an outline. I start general and then become more specific. First I will come up with the general plot line, then what each chapter will be about, and then the storyline for each chapter.

If you had to go back and do it all over, is there any aspect of your novel or getting it published that you would change?

If I could go back and do it all over again, I would not have wasted almost a year with pursuing traditional publishing.

How do you market your work? What avenues have you found to work best for your genre?

I market my work largely through talking with teachers and through the blogosphere. English teachers have direct access to a large number of readers in their classrooms and are more than excited to recommend a book to their students… especially if the author is local and can come into the classroom to speak with the students. The blogosphere is another outlet for reaching a large number of readers who I may not have access to otherwise. While time consuming, setting up a book blog tour is not terribly hard. It just requires contacting as many bloggers as you can and being flexible to their needs.

For more about The Convenience of Lies check out these sites!


Thursday, February 27, 2014

Review: Fire and Flood by Victoria Scott

Title: Fire and Flood
Author: Victoria Scott
Publisher: Scholastic
Publish Date: February 25th, 2014
Rating:

A modern day thrill ride, where a teen girl and her animal companion must participate in a breathtaking race to save her brother's life—and her own.

Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can't determine what's wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She's lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she's helpless to change anything.

Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It's an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother's illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there's no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.

The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can't trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?

Holy Pandora! Fire and Flood by Victoria Scott takes it's readers on the adventure of a lifetime. And gives them cute, fuzzy, and deceivingly ferocious pets to travel with!

Let's talk about the main character, Tella. She's compassionate, funny (so, so funny), and strong. It's so refreshing to see a strong female character that doesn't feel the need to rebel against everything anyone tells her and get herself into idiotic and preventable situations in the process. Tella is a sixteen year old girl, determined to save her brother, but she knows how to work as a team. Which is exactly what she'll need to do if she expects to win the Brimstone Bleed. Tella's not a wimp though, she can give orders as good as she follows them.

I loved the team work in Fire and Flood. I feel like team work is something missing in a lot of the YA books I've read recently. Especially the ones boasting strong heroines. You can be a strong female and know when you need to listen and accept that other people might know things you don't. Like what to do when you're stuck in the middle of a desert with no water or food!

Lucky Tella has Guy to help her out on occasion. Oh, Guy! He's the strong silent type, but even though Tella compares him to a serial killer when she first meets him, the boy's got a heart of gold. He's a sweetie and comes with a super awesome lion who breathes fire. So yeah, try to find a guy better than Guy. I dare you.

So, I'm sort of in love with the Pandora's in Fire and Flood. Reading that the Contenders receive animal companions called Pandoras to help them during the race might leave you thinking of cheesy superpowered lions and tigers, and to an extent the Pandoras are like that. They each have their own talents that can help their Contender to survive the race, but they certainly don't come off as cheesy when you're reading. In fact, I'd like to see Fire and Flood merchandise in stores as soon as possible because I want some sort of M-4 plush to cuddle with. Or maybe AK-7 (love him). And, well, of course I'd love a Madox of my own!

Fire and Flood has all of Scott's signature humor, but it's also got a semi-serious plot that sweeps you up within the first few chapters. The characters might be funny, but the situations they find themselves in are dire enough to have you worried about their safety. The Brimstone Bleed is a true adventure and Fire and Flood is just the first leg of the journey!

For more about Fire and Flood check out these sites!


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Blog Tour Guest Post: Meet the Characters of Emblazed by Connie Smith

Today Connie Smith, author of The Division Chronicles, is stopping by as part of the Emblazed blog tour to introduce ten of the characters of the series. Check out the dossiers and the excerpt below to learn more!

After all the preparations, Nicholai’s warriors stand on the threshold of warfare, the demons entering the realm in battalions and the world unknowingly depending on the army’s success to continue intact. But the battle is only the beginning of deadly struggles, and the soldiers will soon realize how little they know, how many things are at stake, and how much they have to lose.

Love, hate, hope, despair, anguish, joy… The journey is a gauntlet of emotion and combat, threatening their resolve as much as their lives.

Will their training and ties be enough, or will the complications and the forthcoming evil forever cripple the world’s last hope of survival?

Meet the Characters of Emblazed:

AJ is the primary character in The Division Chronicles, though she’s hardly the only one of importance. Within this story, major characters include angels, alphas for seventeen different species, and pack members. I honestly tried to assemble a collection of figures that would catch the reader’s attention, and the array of qualities among them is a very broad range. It wouldn’t be fair to outline every detail of every character, but it wouldn’t hurt matters to introduce you to a few, right? I’ll try to keep serious spoilers out of the list. The endgame here is to snag you as a reader – not quell your curiosities before you give the books a shot! Okay? Okay. Here are ten of them, complete with possible theme songs:

AJ:
Essence: Werewolf
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 16
Interest: Loooooooooves art
Random Fact: Macaroni and Cheese is her favorite food
Theme Song: “Don’t Dog Me” by Raging Slab

Julius:
Essence: Not Applicable
Position: Gatherer/Trainer
Age: Oooooooooold
Interest: Bothering AJ
Random Fact: Though not an artist, he still likes art
Theme Song: “Sharp Dressed Man” by ZZ Top

Clint:
Essence: Necromancer
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 19
Interest: He’ll let you know when he has them again
Random Fact: Doesn’t actually hate everyone as much as he lets on
Theme Song: “Don’t Fear the Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult

Isaac:
Essence: Dragon
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 19
Interest: Music – We’ll let his other interest slide, since he can’t help it :)
Random Fact: Fond of piercings and tattoos
Theme Song: “All American Nightmare” by Hinder

Ray-Ray:
Essence: Werewolf
Pack Position: Random Member/AJ’s roommate
Age: 17
Interest: Wheel of Fortune
Random Fact: Has an unhealthy obsession with cereal
Theme Song: “I Lost on Jeopardy” by Weird Al Yankovic

Travis:
Essence: Incubus
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 16
Interest: Females
Random Fact: Actually has a pick of the girls at the facility – wanna guess who???
Theme Song: “Girl Happy” by Elvis Presley

Johnny:
Essence: Kapre
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 18
Interest: Music
Random Fact: Has a soft spot for a certain girl in the army
Theme Song: “Miracle” by Shinedown

McKenna:
Essence: Wood Nymph
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 18
Interest: Helping people
Random Fact: Always looks for the best in people
Theme Song: “Count on Me” by Default

Lexia:
Essence: Fairy
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 17
Interest: Mischief and sparkles
Random Fact: Has purple and blue streaks in her hair
Theme Song: “Ever After” by Carrie Underwood

Diego:
Essence: Thunderbird
Pack Position: Alpha
Age: 18
Interest: Photography
Random Fact: His confidence, for the most part, is not feigned
Theme Song: “Rock You Like a Hurricane” by the Scorpions

For these ten, and many others, try the trilogy! Essenced (book one) is scheduled to be free through this blog tour (February 24th be available for only $2.99 as of February 24th-28th), and Emblazed (book two) should. Also, be sure to check out my Twitter account for giveaways! I’m planning on offering one each day of the tour! Thanks so much for reading!


Excerpt from Emblazed:

AJ sensed him there, standing wordlessly some feet in the distance, just like she always recognized his presence when he lingered near. She absorbed the comfort and happiness he brought her – not that she’d admit that out loud – before sighing and speaking. “It’s called making a bed, Julius. It’s pretty commonplace.” 
He didn’t push away from the doorframe, instead leaning further against it while he continued to observe her. “Sweetheart, nothing’s commonplace when you do it.” 
Hearing the grin and affection in his voice, she smiled, peeking at him over her shoulder. “Is that a compliment or an insult?” 
He gazed upward to stare at the ceiling with a thoughtful expression, then returned his attention to her, his shrug carefree. “Both.” 
She smirked. “Sweet talker.” 
“Odd ball.” He finally moved from the threshold, unhurriedly advancing toward her. “You know, most people make their beds in the morning. Not ten o’clock at night.” 
She snorted. “Yeah. I’m gonna make my bed as soon as I roll out of it at six AM.

I wouldn’t be making it now if I didn’t have to wrestle the sheet back on four times a night.” Finally setting her pillow in its position, she turned to him with an unashamed grin.

He chuckled, his adoration plain, and brushed a lock of hair from her face.

“You’re one of a kind, you know that?” 
“Compliment or insult?” she teased again. 
“Compliment.” He smiled, cupping her cheek. “Definitely a compliment.”

“Sweet talker,” she repeated, standing on her tiptoes to press a kiss to his lips.

Wrapping her arms around his neck, his circling her waist, she dove into the moment, reveling in the wonderful sensations only Julius incited. Safety. Warmth. Passion. So many more she couldn’t quite put a name to, the combination too heady and consuming to adequately decipher. It was simply a Julius effect, and its wonder had no equal in her life. Gradually breaking away, she knowingly lifted an eyebrow. “You didn’t come here just to make fun of me over my bed-making habits.” 
“Maybe I came up here just to kiss you.” 
“If that were the case, dear Julius, you wouldn’t have waited until I kissed you.” 
Narrowing his eyes, he barely restrained his smirk at her forwardness and how well she’d grown to understand him in their time together. “You have a point.” 
He stepped back from her embrace, grasping her hand in his. “Come on. We have a mission.” 
“A mission?” Her brow furrowed, though she made no move to retrieve her palm from his, following him in confusion as he neared the hallway. “At ten o’clock at night?” 
“I believe we already covered the time in this conversation, AJ.” He made a clucking noise with his tongue, shaking his head in mock disappointment. “You really need to keep up with matters a bit more.” 
She glared at the back of his head, lips thinning despite her vexing boyfriend’s inability to see her from his location. Realizing the futility of her frustrated efforts, she clenched the fingers he clutched, smiling in accomplishment at his grunt of discomfort. 
“Yeah, we covered it, but in household chore way. Not in a mission way. What could we possibly have to do this late at night?” 
He sent her an amused glance – one she deemed condescending, particularly after the physical hint of her annoyance – while tugging her through the doorway. “You do realize it isn’t ten o’clock everywhere, right?” 
“Of course I realize that! I’m not a moron!”
“I never said you were…” 
She growled, steeling her feet against the floor and prying her hand from his.

“You didn’t have to. Your little grin said it all for you.” 
His stare revealed sincere bewilderment – maybe a speck of frustration as well – and his arm dropped to his side. “So let me get this straight. You’re angry at me… because I smiled at you?” 
Her eyes widened in fury, one finger raising to point at his chest while her left fist braced against her hip. “Don’t try to turn this around like I’m crazy!” 
He scrunched his forehead, gaze traveling up and down her form while he held his hands out, as if silently offering his evidence. 
She groaned, unhappy, turning away from him to rein in her irritation. For several seconds, she simply scanned her room, livid exhale after livid exhale falling from her lips, but the attempts did little to calm her turmoil, Julius actually flinching when her focus again landed on him. “It’s the grin you used. It’s the same one that was on your face when you drove into New Mexico, and I was surprised the facility was stationed here. Like I’m the dumbest person in the world and your number one source of entertainment.” 
Instantly, his expression softened. “You can’t possibly think that I think that way?” 
She just glared at him. 
“Look, I’m not gonna lie.” He approached her, smiling tenderly. “You do amuse me, but not because I think you’re stupid. You’re… animated. And quirky. But not stupid. And I get it’s late, and no matter what time zone we’re entering, it’s ten o’clock here and we’re handing over sleeping hours, but Nicholai insists we need to go now.” 
She kept pinched eyes on him, but her posture loosened a bit. 
He laughed, reaching for her hand once more. “See? Animated. I can pretty much watch the wheels in your head turn.” 
“Does that make you my mental stalker, too?” 
Processing the playful edge of her words, he kissed her knuckles and led her into the hall. “Trust me, sweetheart. I have no desire to wander through your mind. I can’t imagine all the weird things I’d encounter.” 
She tilted her head to the side, smiling. “Compliment or insult?” 
Smirking over his shoulder, he caught her eyes with his. “Insult.”

For more about Emblazed check out these sites!


Get book one, Essenced, for free HERE!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Teaser Tuesday (69): ARV-3 by Cameo Renae

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

This week's teaser is from ARV-3 by Cameo Renae. I've been dying to read a good zombie story for the longest time and this one fit the bill! While I've gotten to a bit of a lull in reading, ARV-3 is pretty action packed with some really creepy zombie-like creatures. Actually, the only reason I found my attention slipping was because it reminds me a lot of The Weepers by Susanne Winnacker (my review). If you enjoyed The Weepers I suggest running to get a copy of ARV-3 immediately.

His face lit up, and the largest smile grew on his face as he dusted off one particular  book.

"What is it, Charlie?" I asked.

"Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling," he breathed with a wide grin.

{ARV-3, Chapter 8}

Well, I'd shoot you if you were bitten," he said with a raised eyebrow.

"Don't you dare," I huffed.

"Why not?" he asked shrugging his shoulders.

"Because I've seen you miss a few shots at close range. I'd like a clean shot. One shot. And, I'd like to die with all my limbs intact.

{ARV-3, Chapter 8} 

Synopsis of ARV-3:

The beginning of the end. The Apocalypse.

A nuclear fallout wiped out every living thing on the planet, except for a few thousand of us who took shelter in underground bunkers across the globe. Now, after thirteen long years, we were finally able to return to the topside to begin to rebuild.

We thought we were alone. We were never more wrong.

Before the fallout, scientists had worked on creating an anti-radiation vaccine (ARV). The first two attempts failed, but despite the incomplete tests and results, the government approved and distributed the third serum to the masses in an effort to aid those who had no shelter.

It worked, keeping those who remained on the topside alive, but it also altered and mutated them. This new and infectious threat had completely outnumbered us. Now, we not only had to rebuild our planet. We would have to fight for it.

My name is Abigail Park. I’m seventeen, and this is my story.

For more about ARV-3 check out these sites!


Monday, February 24, 2014

Review: Tin Star by Cecil Castellucci

Title: Tin Star
Author: Cecil Castellucci
Publisher: Macmillian Children's Publishing Group/Roaring Brook Press
Publish Date: February 25th, 2014
Rating:

On their way to start a new life, Tula and her family travel on the Prairie Rose, a colony ship headed to a planet in the outer reaches of the galaxy. All is going well until the ship makes a stop at a remote space station, the Yertina Feray, and the colonist's leader, Brother Blue, beats Tula within an inch of her life. An alien, Heckleck, saves her and teaches her the ways of life on the space station.

When three humans crash land onto the station, Tula's desire for escape becomes irresistible, and her desire for companionship becomes unavoidable. But just as Tula begins to concoct a plan to get off the space station and kill Brother Blue, everything goes awry, and suddenly romance is the farthest thing from her mind.

Tin Star by Cecil Castellucci is an addictive sci-fi novel I couldn't put down once I started it. It was full of action and intrigue and just a touch of romance, but the thing that made it so addictive was the fact that, for most of the book, I had no idea what was going on. I knew enough to understand things in the moment, but nothing about where the book was going to end up. Would Tula get her revenge on the man who left her for dead? Would she be betrayed by the people she saw as friends? Would she fall in love or move on to a new home? Nothing was what I thought it was, and, for me, that's what set Tin Star apart.

Tula, the main character, is extremely naive for the entire course of the novel. She's a smart girl and she understands most aliens motivations, but she has no idea what's going on when it comes to humans. Or emotions, for that matter. She did what she needed to to survive, but it left her cold and detached. Fortunately, that didn't make her a less appealing main character, it just made me wish she'd wise up or, at least, show her true feelings to someone!

Romantically, I really had no idea what was going on and I'm pretty sure Tula didn't either. Everyone romantically linked to Tula seemed... manipulative and untrustworthy in some way or another. They all wanted something from her and would go to any means to get it. I had such a deep mistrust for some of these characters I felt like I was waiting for some huge twist to come and show how they were all manipulating Tula, but it never came. Though I do still have my doubts about them. I believe for someone so cold, Tula trusts much too easily and it's only proven to cause her trouble so far.

Tin Star was entertaining and mysterious enough to keep me reading late into the night and, when it was over, I was left craving more. With it's space station setting and eclectic mix of aliens, it's definitely my kind of sci-fi book. I love galactic political intrigue! Tin Star reminded me of a mix between Across the Universe and the video game Mass Effect. If you're a big fan of sci-fi I definitely recommend Tin Star!

For more about Tin Star check out these sites!


Saturday, February 22, 2014

Black History Month Giveaway from LEE & LOW Books!

Lee and Low Books is holding a giveaway for Black History Month and I thought I'd share it. They're giving away a copy of Dear Mrs. Parks: A Dialogue With Today’s Youth, signed by Rosa Parks, over on their facebook page. Here's what the books is about!

On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks changed the course of history when she was arrested for refusing to give up her seat to a white passenger on a Montgomery, Alabama, bus. One of the best-known icons of the civil rights movement, Parks receives up to 1,000 letters a month from children worldwide. Here she answers those letters, sharing her legacy of courage, wisdom, and moral fortitude with this and future generations.

Hurry over and enter to win a copy of Dear Mrs. Parks: A Dialogue With Today’s Youth, signed by Rosa Parks, HERE! Contest end Feb. 26th.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Spotlight: The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski

Today we're spotlighting The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski. I seriously can't wait for this one guys! It sounds so amazing and...well, that cover! Check out the trailer below and make sure you add it to your To Read list if you think it sounds interesting!

As a general's daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions. One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction. Arin's eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him, with unexpected consequences. It's not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin. But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.

Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner's Curse is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart.

Trailer:


For more about The Winner's Curse check out these sites!


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Guest Post: The Greatest Superpower by James McGovern

Today we have a guest post from James McGovern, author of Martin King and the Space Angels! James is talking about how superpowers play a huge role in his book and how he chose which powers were right for his characters. Check out the synopsis for Martin King and the Space Angels:

Martin King is in love with Darcy Williams, but he is afraid to tell her his true feelings.

One evening, he is walking home with Darcy and his cousin Tommy when an alien approaches them. His name is Falcon, and he is a member of a race called the Axis Lords. Falcon explains that an evil force called XO5 is looking for an object of great value on Earth. He gives the teenagers special powers and tells them that they must find the object before XO5.

The teenagers soon find themselves involved in a massive, universal conspiracy. Somehow, Martin is at the centre of it all. But who really is the mysterious XO5 – and what does he want with Martin?

Martin King and the Space Angels is the first book in the Martin King trilogy.

The Greatest Superpower by James McGovern:

What is the greatest superpower? The ability to fly, perhaps? Or possibly the ability to read minds? To my mind, the greatest power exists in the mind—that is, the power of writing.

It would certainly be nice to teleport, or move objects with one’s mind, or travel in time.

However, only writing can give a person ultimate freedom. When we write, and write well, we are—quite literally—becoming the god of our own world.

As the god of my book, Martin King and the Space Angels, I initially faced a very important creative decision. The premise of the Martin King series is that three teenagers get superpowers of their own. But what superpowers? I could have made them all writers, but that may have bored teenage readers.

At first, I decided that Martin would be able to fly, Tommy would have superhuman strength, and Darcy would be able to transform into any animal. When I began to write, I started to regret my choices. Darcy’s ability was actually limiting the plot—I was creating situations to give her a chance to use her power, rather than letting Darcy’s power move the plot along. It was the same with Tommy’s power.

So I changed their powers. Martin kept his power of flight, but Darcy lost her animal-morphing capability and learned how to create and control fire instead. I took away Tommy’s great strength and gave him the power of omnilinguism (the ability to speak and understand every language). After that, the book was much better.

I would advise any writer of ‘teen superpower’ fiction to think carefully about the story before deciding on the powers. That way, you can choose the superpowers that are best-suited to your characters and that will be the most interesting for the reader.

And remember—if you are a writer you have the greatest superpower of them all!

James McGovern is an author and poet. Martin King and the Space Angels, the first book in the Martin King series, is available on Amazon.

For more about Martin King and the Space Angels check out these sites!



Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Teaser Tuesday (68): Evensong by LJ Smith

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

This week's teaser comes from Paradise Lost: Evensong by LJ Smith. Have you guys heard of this yet? After LJ was essentially fired from writing the Vampire Diaries series she turned to Kindle Worlds and began finishing the story she started so many years ago in the form of fanfiction. LJ describes it better and includes links to her two latest installments HERE in case you're interested. I know a lot of people prefer the TV show to the books, but I love me some Damon and Bonnie and that can only be found in the LJ books, so I might have spazzed a little when i found out she was continuing their story. For anyone who's a fan of the books, and Bamon in particular, I suggest you look into these!

And something inside him was crouching in astonishment, muttering, Oh, yes, grab the crazy guy and yell at him. Brilliant survival policy. Where did you learn that, then? Suicide school?

{Evensong, 31%}

Someone was hurting Bonnie, he'd realized, perhaps even killing her. That meant someone was going to be exceedingly sorry exceedingly soon.

{Evensong, 29%}

Synopsis of Evensong:

This fanfic is based on The Vampire Diaries book series—also by L. J. Smith—and takes place after the volume Midnight.

Damon is back and enjoying his vampire existence to its fullest. Elena, Bonnie and their friends are in their third week at Dalcrest College, ordinary students aware of an extraordinary world that verges on their own campus.
Stefan is scarcely aware that he is living in a fragile paradise with Elena as his devoted girl . . . until one night it all shatters. He wakes from a dream to find Elena limp and white in his arms and rushes her to the hospital for a massive transfusion.

Elena survives, but Stefan decides that the only way she will ever truly be safe is without him. To make his exit complete, Stefan removes himself from the memories of Elena, her friends, and all of Fell’s Church.

Can first love ever really be forgotten? Will Damon finally have Elena by his side as his Princess of Darkness? The epic story begins in Evensong: Paradise Lost.

For more about Paradise Lost: Evensong check out these sites!


Monday, February 17, 2014

Cover Reveal: Dead Girl Walking by Ruth Silver

Today we're sharing a cover reveal for Dead Girl Walking by Ruth Silver! Dead Girl Walking is the first book in the Royal Reaper series. Check out the cover and excerpt below:

In 1346, Princess Ophelia Dacre sneaks out of the castle to visit her boyfriend in secret. A perfect night cut short when she’s brutally murdered.

Ophelia is given the rare chance to become a grim reaper. She must become Leila Bele, cut ties with her old life, and follow the rules of the reapers. Her greatest adventure begins with death.


I'm so in  love with the colors of this cover! The purples are gorgeous and the models dress just blends in with everything around her. I'm also really loving the font for the title!

Excerpt from Dead Girl Walking:

"The scroll chose you. For whatever reason, she's your reap." 
"Well, that sucks." Leila chewed her bottom lip. "If I don't do it?" 
Edon hesitated before he said, "Her soul will rot inside her body. Do you have any idea what that’s like? She'll be a living corpse, a shell of a person. She won't feel anything including love. We as reapers, the undead, feel more than she ever will alive." 
Leila swallowed the lump in her throat. "How do you know that?" 
"Because I've seen what it does to a person," Edon said. "That little girl deserves better."

About the Author:

Ruth Silver attended Northern Illinois University and graduated with a Bachelor's in Communication in the spring of 2005. While in college, she spent much of her free time writing with friends she met online and penning her first novel, Deuces are Wild, which she self-published in 2004. Her favorite class was Creative Writing senior year where she often handed in assignments longer than the professor required because she loved to write and always wanted to finish her stories. Her love of writing led her on an adventure in 2007 to Melbourne, Australia. Silver enjoys reading, photography, traveling and most of all writing. She loves dystopian and fantasy young adult stories. Her debut novel published by Lazy Day Publishing and Patchwork Press, ABERRANT, was released April 2013. The second novel in the series, MOIRAI, continues the saga. ISAURA, is the final installment in the ABERRANT trilogy. Ruth has been actively writing since she was a teenager. Her current writing projects include a YA science-fiction fantasy series, ORENDA, and a YA paranormal series, DEAD GIRL WALKING. Both novels are due for release in 2014. She currently resides in Plainfield, Illinois.

For more about Dead Girl Walking add it on Goodreads!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Shuffle Saturday (56): Hold Me + Sneak Peek from Silver Shadows!

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:

Hold Me by Jamie Grace

How cute is this song? I love Jamie Grace's voice, plus it's great for Valentine's Day!

What are you listening to?

Valentine's Bonus!

Richelle Mead posted a short sneak peek from Silver Shadows (Book 5 of the Bloodlines series) on Twitter yesterday. And now I'm hyperventilating people!!!



Thursday, February 13, 2014

Huge Valentine's Sale from Kelly Oram!

Happy Valentines everyone! Today Kelly Oram is having a huge sale on all of her books to celebrate the love of love! Check out her books below and make sure you grab one for just $0.99 to snuggle up with this Valentines Day.

Being Jamie Baker series:

An accident that should end in tragedy instead gives seventeen-year-old Jamie Baker a slew of uncontrollable superhuman abilities. To keep her secret safe Jamie socially exiles herself, earning the title of Rocklin High's resident ice queen. But during a supercharged encounter with star quarterback Ryan Miller she literally kisses anonymity goodbye. Now the annoyingly irresistible Ryan will stop at nothing to melt the heart of the ice queen and find out what makes her so special. Unfortunately, Ryan is not the only person on to her secret. Will Jamie learn to contain her unstable powers before being discovered by the media or turned into a government lab rat? More importantly, can she throw Ryan Miller off her trail before falling in love with him?

Being Jamie Baker:

AmazonB&N • GoodreadsMy Review

More Than Jamie Baker:

AmazonB&NGoodreads

V is for Virgin:

When Val Jensen gets dumped for her decision to stay a virgin until marriage, the nasty breakup goes viral on YouTube, making her the latest internet sensation.

After days of ridicule from her peers, Val starts a school-wide campaign to rally support for her cause. She meant to make a statement, but she never dreamed the entire nation would get caught up in the controversy.

As if becoming nationally recognized as “Virgin Val” isn’t enough, Val’s already hectic life starts to spin wildly out of control when bad boy Kyle Hamilton, lead singer for the hit rock band Tralse, decides to take her abstinence as a personal challenge.

How can a girl stay true to herself when this year’s Sexiest Man Alive is doing everything in his power to win her over?


The Avery Shaw Experiment:

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.

AmazonB&N • Goodreads

Serial Hottie:

Hockey-obsessed tomboy Eleanor Westley has never been the object of a guy's affection before. So when the hottest boy she's ever seen moves in across the street and starts treating her like she's the center of his universe, naturally she's going to be a little skeptical. But everything starts to make sense when girls who look just like Ellie start dying all around the city. Obviously the new guy is the killer, and of course he only likes her because he wants to slice her into tiny pieces. Right? The more Ellie gets to know Seth the more she's convinced he's a psychopathic killer. Problem is, he's the sweetest psychopathic killer she's ever met. Not to mention he's brutally hot. No matter how hard she tries, she can't help but fall for him. Will Ellie find true love, or will her summer of firsts turn out to be a summer of lasts?

AmazonB&N • Goodreads

Chameleon (Supernaturals series):

For small-town rebel Dani Webber magic and monsters are no more real than the Easter Bunny… until the day she accidentally stops time. Dani quickly discovers that not only do supernaturals exist, but she herself is one of them. This is great news for her life-long best friend Russ, who can finally come clean about his own supernatural status and his undying love for her. Before the two can start to enjoy the long overdue relationship, Dani is taken by a powerful council of supernaturals who believe she is the Chosen One destined to save them from extinction.

As if being kidnapped and expected to save the world isn’t bad enough, an ancient prophecy warns of the Chosen One’s dark nature: “Only the truest love will keep her an agent for good.” The council believes they know who this “true love” is and, unfortunately, that person isn’t Russ. The mysterious, powerful and devastatingly handsome Seer is the last person Dani wants in her life, but when she starts having visions of a horrific future, she has no one else to turn to for help.

Soon Dani finds herself torn between two very different boys with two very different opinions of whom she can trust. With the visions getting worse and time running out, Dani is forced to put aside her feelings and work with both the Seer and Russ before an ancient evil is unleashed upon the earth.

AmazonB&N • Goodreads

Don't forget to go vote for your favorite Kelly Oram leading man over in the Battle of the Book Boyfriends (learn why I'm voting for Ryan Miller HERE) and enter to win some great prizes HERE!



Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Battle of the Book Boyfriends & Giveaway: Ryan Miller from Being Jamie Baker


Kelly Oram, author of The Avery Shaw Experiment, V is for Virgin, Being Jamie Baker and more, has decided to host a Battle of the Book Boyfriends featuring all of her leading men this Valentines. Yeah, you read it right. An author is picking favorites! Well, actually, she's having you pick favorites and at the end she'll write a special scene from the winner's point of view! She's also giving away tons of cool prizes so make sure to vote for your favorite enter the giveaway!

Here's what Kelly has to say about her boy's battling it out: “All of my books have strong romance plots and (I hope) some really swoon worthy boys, so I am going to have all my leading boys battle it out for the title of King of the Book Boyfriends. I’ll let the readers vote for their favorite, and then whichever boy wins, I will write a special scene or short story from that character’s POV.”

That brings me to the purpose of this post: To convince you to vote for Ryan Miller from Being Jamie Baker! There's plenty to love about this guy, as you can see by my ranting down below, but I've got some swoony/funny/too cute quotes to prove why Ryan deserves the spot at the top of the pyramid! Here's a synopsis of Being Jamie Baker for those of you who haven't read it yet.

An accident that should end in tragedy instead gives seventeen-year-old Jamie Baker a slew of uncontrollable superhuman abilities. To keep her secret safe Jamie socially exiles herself, earning the title of Rocklin High's resident ice queen. But during a supercharged encounter with star quarterback Ryan Miller she literally kisses anonymity goodbye. Now the annoyingly irresistible Ryan will stop at nothing to melt the heart of the ice queen and find out what makes her so special. Unfortunately, Ryan is not the only person on to her secret. Will Jamie learn to contain her unstable powers before being discovered by the media or turned into a government lab rat? More importantly, can she throw Ryan Miller off her trail before falling in love with him?

Without further ado, allow me to introduce Ryan Miller from Being Jamie Baker!

Ryan might not have literal superpowers like his girlfriend Jamie, but as far as I'm concerned he's a super boyfriend. Sure, he's a normal, human boy. A golden boy, loved by everyone he knows. But, as far as book boyfriends go, he's... well. He's sort of superhuman. Ryan has such a sincerity about him. From the moment he meets Jamie he's completely honest with her, even when he probably shouldn't be.
Of all the things in the world, I never for one second expected him to tell me the truth. I was honestly amazed. No,  I was impressed. This guy was on a whole different playing field than like 99.99 percent of all humans cursed with Y chromosomes.
Ryan's got it all going for him. He's swoon worthy—of course, and pretty cute with his blonde hair and blue eyes. He's got a sense of humor that's flirty and makes him undeniably adorable.
I just won the heart of the of the world's only superhero. I'm the man!
Plus, he loves his family!
Well, my stepdad is away on business quite a bit, but he's an all right guy, and I actually spend a lot of time with my mom when he's away so she won't get lonely." Ryan shrugged and I couldn't believe it, but there was a hint of redness in his cheeks, so he quickly added, "She makes me.
He's so friendly and rarely ever loses his temper.
It's just not worth it to be so stressed and angry about everything. Life's generally not so bad–most people just choose to see the negative.
Although he can take matters into his own hands when he needs too. That's what I loved most about him. Sometimes in books where the heroine has superhuman strength or speed or something, her love interest can feel emasculated, but not Ryan.
That was quite a punch you threw." I laughed, trying not to blush. 
Yeah, I was quite impressed myself." 
"I'm no surprised–you're always impressed with yourself.
He loves seeing Jamie use her powers. He tells her over and over again how incredibly awesome they are. He never let's the fact that Jamie can bench press a Ford stand in the way of his feelings for her.

Ryan had spent the last three weeks trying to convince me that I needed to work on my super-strength. He said that for a superhero I was "super-wimpy.

Ryan Miller might not have superpowers, but I do believe he's Jamie's personal superhero. He encourages her, supports her, let's her cry on his shoulder whenever she needs it. He stands up for her when others put her down. And, most of all, he just believes in her.

You didn't care what anybody thought. You have no idea how much I wish I could be more like you.

If you're looking for a swoony book boyfriend to cuddle up to this Valentine's Day, give Ryan a chance. He's so dependable, you know he'd never let you down! Plus, the boy references to Jurassic Park. I don't know about you, but that makes him a keeper in my book ;)

I now knew how Timmy felt in Jurassic Park when the T-Rex's fence turned back on with him still on it.

So go! Go vote for Ryan because he's a sweet, funny, confident–alright, maybe a little egotistical but he makes it look cute, gorgeous guy who likes Jurassic Park! What more could you want?


Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


For more about Being Jamie Baker check out these sites!


P.S. Kelly's is also having a Valentine’s Day sale Friday Feb. 14th – Sunday Feb. 16th. All of her ebooks will be just $.99 each all weekend long, so make sure you go get them! I'll be posting about it again once the sale is up, so just check back this weekend for more info.

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