Thursday, August 29, 2013

The time it was quick and dirty -- 4

So.  Here we are again for another quick and dirty just because giveaway.  This time, instead of giving away some arcs, I thought I'd share two of the first books in two series that I absolutely love.

Up for grabs?

NEWSOUL
Ana is new. For thousands of years in Range, a million souls have been reincarnated over and over, keeping their memories and experiences from previous lifetimes. When Ana was born, another soul vanished, and no one knows why.

NOSOUL
Even Ana's own mother thinks she's a nosoul, an omen of worse things to come, and has kept her away from society. To escape her seclusion and learn whether she'll be reincarnated, Ana travels to the city of Heart, but its citizens are afraid of what her presence means. When dragons and sylph attack the city, is Ana to blame?

HEART
Sam believes Ana's new soul is good and worthwhile. When he stands up for her, their relationship blooms. But can he love someone who may live only once, and will Ana's enemies—human and creature alike—let them be together? Ana needs to uncover the mistake that gave her someone else's life, but will her quest threaten the peace of Heart and destroy the promise of reincarnation for all?

Jodi Meadows expertly weaves soul-deep romance, fantasy, and danger into an extraordinary tale of new life.


Annnnnnnnd...


Galen is the prince of the Syrena, sent to land to find a girl he's heard can communicate with fish.
Emma is on vacation at the beach. When she runs into Galen—literally, ouch!—both teens sense a connection. But it will take several encounters, including a deadly one with a shark, for Galen to be convinced of Emma's gifts. Now, if he can only convince Emma that she holds the key to his kingdom...

Told from both Emma and Galen's points of view, here is a fish-out-of-water story that sparkles with intrigue, humor, and waves of romance.







Both copies are paperback and both are signed.


 

Rules for the giveaway are under the "terms & conditions" on the Rafflecopter widget!


**Good Luck!!**

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, August 22, 2013

The time it was about city-states

I bought Defiance pretty much right when it came out, but didn't get to it right away.  When I finally found it in my TBR stack and read it, I devoured it and mentally slapped myself for not getting to it sooner.  So, of course, when Deception arcs started going out, I was dying to get my hands on one. My lovely friend, Jaime, happened to get an extra one and gave it to me. 

And gah. It didn't disappoint.  I begged asked C.J. for an interview and she was lovely enough to say yes.  But, before we get to her answers, let's check out the book!

Baalboden has been ravaged. The brutal Commander's whereabouts are unknown. And Rachel, grief stricken over her father's death, needs Logan more than ever. With their ragged group of survivors struggling to forge a future, it's up to Logan to become the leader they need—with Rachel by his side. Under constant threat from rival Carrington's army, who is after the device that controls the Cursed One, the group decides to abandon the ruins of their home and take their chances in the Wasteland.



But soon their problems intensify tenfold: someone—possibly inside their ranks—is sabotaging the survivors, picking them off one by one. The chaos and uncertainty of each day puts unbearable strain on Rachel and Logan, and it isn't long before they feel their love splintering. Even worse, as it becomes clear that the Commander will stop at nothing to destroy them, the band of survivors begins to question whether the price of freedom may be too great—and whether, hunted by their enemies and the murderous traitor in their midst, they can make it out of the Wasteland alive.

In this daring sequel to Defiance, with the world they once loved forever destroyed, Rachel and Logan must decide between a life on the run and standing their ground to fight.

Sounds good, right?


1. Where did the idea for Defiance come from?

I'd had the idea of a Leviathon-like creature who lived deep below the earth's surface in my head for years.  One day, I saw a picture of a fortress that reminded me of an old fashioned city-state. I thought, "Wouldn't it be interesting if we lived in city-states again?" and then I thought, "Why would we do that?" And the two ideas collided and became Defiance.

2. You wrote two POVs [yay!]. Who was easier to work with: Logan or Rachel?

Rachel! Logan likes math and science and is excruciatingly logical. I am none of those things. I can't tell you how many times I had to stop drafting and do an hour's worth of research just to write two little sentences from his POV because I couldn't understand his mind without significant help.

3. Tell me about the Cursed Ones. How did they develop as part of the story?

As I mentioned in question 1, they were part of the story from the very start. They're the reason for the city-states, and are a continued threat (especially as it looks like someone has found a way to weaponize them).

4. Will there be kissing in Deception?

Yes!! Much more than in Defiance.

5. Describe Deception in 5 words.

Dark
Suspenseful
Vivid
Emotional
Action-packed

Speed [ish] round:

1. What is your go-to guilty pleasure thing to eat?

Hot Tamales!

2. What are you reading right now?

I just finished Indelible by Dawn Metcalf. (Perfect for fans of Holly Black and Melissa Marr)

3. Who are your favorite swoony boys?

Book boys? Or Benedict Cumberbatch? ;D

4. Are there any authors that you fangirl over?

Oh yes! Too many to name. I have a lot of faves.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Huge thanks to C.J. for taking the time!  Make sure you check out her blog, Twitter, Tumblr and Pintrest pages.  And definitely add her books to GoodReads!

Now. 

Haven't had a chance to read C.J.'s books yet?  That's where I come in.  I've got a paperback copy of Defiance and a hardcover copy of Deception up for grabs. Books will be coming from The Book Depository.  The contest is international, as long as TBD ships to you for free.

Additional rules for the giveaway are on the "terms and conditions" on the Rafflecopter widget.

**Good Luck!!**
 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, August 19, 2013

The time it wasn't my review

For this week's Throne of Glass Ambassador post, it was all about our reviews of Crown of Midnight.  Well, considering my reviews are usually flailing gibberish only a couple of sentences long, I asked Jaime and Erin if they would let me post their reviews. [Technically, I asked Jaime if I could use them.] I figured it would be as close to what I would say, if I was able to articulate my feels in words...
 
So, without further ado, here are their awesome reviews:
 
Jaime: 

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
What did I think?

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I finished this book days ago and I’ve been sitting here trying to figure out what to say and I keep seeing reviews that are popping up and I get all flaily because I’m like “HOW DO YOU HAVE THE WORDS FOR THIS ALREADY!!”

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Book 2 in the Throne of Glass series is … dare I say it… even better than the first, and I loved the first. The writing has gotten tighter, more detailed and I was completely blown away. In Crown of Midnight we pick up with Celaena as the King’s Assassin and he is using her abilities and skills to his fullest advantage, sending her on quests to rid the kingdom of all those who might be in cahoots against him. (yes I said cahoots) We pick up book 2 as Celaena is on one such mission. Her return is dramatic and both Dorian and Chaol struggle to reconcile the girl they know with what she is doing.

"Is it done?"

Celaena reached a gloved hand into the sack and tossed the severed head toward him. No one spoke as it bounced, a vulgar thudding of stiff and rotting flesh on marble. It rolled to a stop at the foot of the dais, milky eyes turned towards the ornate glass chandelier overhead.

Dorian straightened, glancing away from the head. Chaol just stared at her.

"He put up a fight," Celaena said.


But she’s keeping a secret from them. One that could jeopardize everyone she cares about if it gets out. But the King is up to no good himself of course… only what exactly hasn’t quite been uncovered yet! 

So yeah… I’m being incredibly vague about all the things. That’s intentional. I don’t want to ruin anyone’s reading of this book even by accident by spilling too much detail about what is actually going on. There is so much that happens in this installment of the story that I’m afraid anything specific I might say will give too much away.

SO – let’s do this a different way – My top 5 reasons you need to read the Throne of Glass Series … NOW!

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1. Chaol - From the beginning of book 1 I have had a crush on the Captain of the Guard and this book has solidified that crush for me. I mean… GAH!!!

"Believe me, Celaena," he snarled, his eyes flashing, "I know you can look after yourself. But I worry because I care. Gods help me, I know I shouldn't, but I do. So I will always tell you to be careful, because I will always care what happens."

She blinked. "Oh," was all she managed.


But Chaol struggles with his feelings for Celaena. He’s not willing to put himself out there and jeopardize his standing, so he keeps his distance… or he tries anyway.

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"Dance with me Celaena," He said again, his voice rough.

When her eyes found his, she forgot about the cold, and the moon, and the glass palace looming above them. The secret library and the king's plans and Mort and Elena faded into nothing. She took his hand, and there was only the music and Chaol.

His fingers were warm, even through his gloves. He slid his other hand around her waist as she braced one of hers on his arm. She looked up at him when he began to move - a slow step, then another, and another, easing into the steady rhythm of the waltz.

He stared back at her, neither of them smiling - somehow beyond smiling at that moment. The waltz built, louder, faster, and Chaol steered her into it, never stumbling.

Her breathing turned uneven, but she couldn't look away from him, couldn't stop dancing. The moonlight and the garden and the golden glow of the ballroom blurred together, no miles away. "We'll never be a normal boy and girl, will we?' she managed to say.

"No," he breathed, eyes blazing, "we won't."


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2. Celaena is just as kick-ass as she was in book 1 and yet she’s still a girl at heart! That was one of the reasons I loved her so much in Throne of Glass too. She is so badass … this cold blooded killer, yet she loves clothes, shopping, and when she’s at a ball, she doesn’t want to be part of the security, she wants to dance! I mean the dichotomy of the two people she is, is just so wonderfully done and makes her so unique as a character.

3. Dorian – yes even though he’s NOT my favorite he has a big impact on this story and we learn some pretty amazing things about him… things that he struggles to make sense of and understand. Plus the evolution of his and Celaena's relationship is done amazingly well. Even though there are things somewhat unresolved between them, they truly are friends and seeing them put any differences they might have aside and hold onto that very important thing was wonderful.

4. The amazing writing – Sarah has crafted an incredible world and story in the Throne of Glass series. I can’t even do it justice by trying to explain it here. BUT Crown of Midnight is even better than Throne of Glass (I know... you're like 'how is that possible Jaime??') … I’m not even sure how to explain it other than the writing is tighter and the story is even more engrossing than the first and you get to learn so much more about the magical world and a few big secrets are revealed. The characters jump off the page at you and you can’t help but to feel all the emotions they are.

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5. The FEELS – Holy mother of all things, I think Sarah was trying to make me feel EVERYTHING with this one. I found myself laughing, smiling, swooning, crying, throwing things, sighing in happiness, and gasping in shock. Everything that I want and need in a book.

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So there you have it… there are a million more reasons you should be reading this series but these are my top five. I know I’m not alone when I tell you that this is a must read when it arrives this summer. This was the one book I wasn’t leaving BEA without… I couldn’t put it down once I started and I know you’ll feel the same once you get reading. Sarah Maas has an incredible series on her hands, and I’m so excited to see where the next book in the series takes us. In the meantime I’ll be over here reading and rereading the first two … join me please!!

Dear Sarah Maas ...

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Thank you to Bloomsbury for having enough copies at BEA and being so kind as to hand one to me.

Erin:

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

5 gazillion stars for this - it was so good I can't even put words together about it right now. 

So, I have done my best not to completely fangirl as well as give anything away here.  Continue reading with the idea that I had to completely hold myself back and if you have not started this series yet...what the heck are you waiting for...seriously - go do it now.

I've been waiting what feels like forever for this book and boy did Sarah Maas come through. This was the one book I had to leave BEA with and thank the lord I got my hands on a copy. If it would have any influence whatsoever, I would offer up cookies or my first born child for the next book - just putting that out there.

Crown of Midnight picks up with Celaena acting as the King's Champion. A lot happens in this book and there is also a lot revealed. I'm not going to go into any of it because I don't want to give it away but if you enjoyed Throne of Glass, you will really like book two. I felt like the pacing was well done and it was the perfect mix of action, mystery, swoon and snarky banter.

Celaena is still one of my favorite characters...ever. She is still arrogant, tough, smart and sarcastic and I love this about her. She also now has people that care about her and that she cares about. Celaena knows she is playing a dangerous game that could end badly (for her, Chaol, and/or Princess Nehemia) but she is willing to take chances and do what she feels is necessary to stand up to the King. There was also a point in the book where it was clear she is good at what she does and seeing it through Chaol's eyes made it even more impactful.

"She was a whirlwind of steel and blood. As he watched her cut through the men like they were stalks of wheat in a field, he understood how she had gotten so close to touching Endovier's wall that day. And at last - after all these months - he saw the lethal predator he'd expected to find in the mines. There was nothing human in her eyes, nothing remotely merciful. It froze his heart."

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The love triangle still slightly exists but not in a way that overpowers the rest of the story and not in the way you would normally assume when you hear love triangle. It is key to the progression of the story and allows us to see just how much Chaol and Celaena are fighting their attraction to each other. It also shows us how their interactions are impacting Dorian and his feelings for both Celaena and Chaol.

Chaol - I love him. It is as simple as that. He truly cares for Celaena and he forces her to see things that she normally wouldn't and that is probably what I loved the most about their friendship/relationship. 
 
"Believe me, Celaena, " he snarled, his eyes flashing, "I know you can look after yourself. But I worry because I care. Gods help me, I know I shouldn't, but I do. So I will always tell you to be careful, because I will always care what happens."

She blinked. "Oh," was all she managed.



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I mean...that alone is enough to make me love him. Add in the 50 other items I tagged in my book and you would probably agree with me.

I loved seeing the evolution of Celaena's relationship with Dorian. We know from ToG that Celaena has put a stop to any potential relationship with him but Dorian is still trying to get beyond that. Eventually they come to rely on each other for support during some very difficult times where both of them are questioning who they are and their purpose. Celaena's relationship with Princess Nehemia is just as strong as it was in ToG and she is her first real girl friend. When something happens that really tests Celaena, my heart was truly breaking.

Can I just say - there are so many swoony moments and parts I loved that I thought I was going to run out of sticky tabs to mark them in my book. Once you read this, you will completely agree with me and see why Chaol will be on my favorites list forever.

So there you have it. I don't think I gave away any secrets here. If you enjoy fantasy and a great story that just happens to include some of my favorite characters EVER, I highly recommend you check this out. Maas does a wonderful job of creating characters you can care about as well as a great story that just sucks you in and keeps you turning the pages until you get to the very end. I was unable to put this down and can't wait until book three comes out...that's soon, right??

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

See? What else could I possibly have to say about Crown of Midnight that Jaime and Erin didn't already say? 

Huge thanks, undying love and devotion and all of the signed books to both of them for letting me post their fantastic reviews.  Definitely go check out their blog: Fic Fare

Now.  Have you read Crown of Midnight? What was your favorite part?

Thursday, August 15, 2013

The time it was bookish mail -- 5

Here we are again for another episode of Look What I Got in the Mail! Onward, yes?


We all know of my undying love for Sarah J Maas, yes? Well, once upon a time, she went on tour with Susan Dennard, Erin Bowman and Kat Zhang as part of the YA Authors Give Back tour.  Unfortunately, they weren't coming anywhere near me.  However, Jaime & Erin were going to one of the stops and awesomely let me send them some stuff.

 Now, there is a serious back story.  Once upon a time on Twitter, Sarah tweeted this article to Susan about the mantis shrimp and how it was her new favorite animal.  After reading it, I jumped into the conversation [seriously, sometimes it's soooo hard not to jump in] and said that I liked any animal that had "murder sticks".  Sarah came back and said that she liked anything that is referred to as an "undersea nightmare". 

And that leads us to an even later conversation on Twitter about me telling Sarah that at some point, I was going to ask her to sign my book as an undersea nightmare.

Which brings us to what could be the greatest inscription ever.  Not only did Sarah sign the book as my undersea nightmare, but Susan and Sarah both drew pictures of a mantis shrimp.


I don't have an amazing story for Erin Bowman, I wish I did.  But, like I said above, Jaime & Erin were awesome to take my copy of Taken to get signed. Even Erin knows they're awesome, she mentions it in the inscription!  I can't wait to meet Erin for myself one day.


I borrowed Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea from Michelle. I instantly fell in love with River and asked April for him before I got to page 50 the story and how lyrical April's writing is. I was flailing all about it to Colleen, who told me that she had just gone to an author's dinner with April.  Not only that, but she had an extra arc... and it was signed.


I read the Goddess trilogy in a day.  I loved the story [and Henry] and Kate [and Henry] and definitely wanted to include Aimee's books to the collection.  Luckily, Aimee was just about to go on tour, so I called an indie bookstore that she would be appearing at and ordered all three books.

Unfortunately, when I got the books, I didn't get the entire trilogy.  I got The Goddess Test [book 1], The Goddess Inheritance [book 3] and The Goddess Legacy [a book of novellas set in the Goddess world].  I called the store I ordered them from and they weren't open to fixing the situation.  Thankfully, I was able to find Goddess Interrupted at a different store that held a tour stop. Now I just have to meet Aimee to get it personalized.

 

Have we all determined by now that I'm the most spoiled brat in the bunch? Wheeeeeeeee!!


What books have you gotten recently?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The time it was an A-Z survey

When I was killing time at work today by trolling Twitter, I saw a couple of blogs tweet their posts for a book blogger A-Z survey.  Not one to normally post things like this, I thought this one was a lot of fun and decided to participate!

Thanks to Jamie at Perpetual Page Turner for the idea and the graphic!!


Author you've read the most books from:

Probably Dean Koontz.  I've been reading his books since I was 14 and I've read everything he's published under that name.  I don't even know how many that is.  A lot.

Best sequel ever:

Can I have a few? I can't choose between The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, Crown of Midnight by Sarah J Maas, Unbreakable by Elizabeth Norris, and Time After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone.  All of these books were [in my opinion] better than the first books.

Currently reading:

The Waking Dark by Robin Wasserman, NOS4A2 by Joe Hill, and Deception by C.J. Redwine.  I'm also about 7 pages into The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon, but I don't know if that counts.

Drink of choice while reading:

I try not to drink anything while reading.  I've had many, many, many, accidents of spilling my drink.  Thankfully, never actually on the books.  I do have a mild addiction to peppermint tea with way too much milk and sugar.

E-reader or physical book?

Physical book.  I love the idea of e-readers when I'm traveling so I don't have to pack eleventy billion books, but I will always prefer to hold the book when reading.

Fictional character you probably would have actually dated in high school:

Bennett Cooper from Time Between Us. I was [and still am] really into music and travel, so I would have loved to hang out with a boy who was all about those two things.  Also? Time travel FTMFW!

Glad you gave this book a chance:

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas.  I don't normally care for high fantasy, but it came highly recommended by LeAnna from MGRB.  When I finally started reading it, I became obsessed with it.  Now I am a huge fangirl for Sarah and her words.

Hidden gem book:

Degrees of Wrong by Anna Scarlett.  This has become one of my favorite go-to books when in a slump.  If you love snarky, smart girls and swoony boys with smoldering looks who have delicious banter, check it out. 

Important moment in your reading life:

Finding GoodReads.  I can attribute this to Bri.  She kept hassling encouraging me to start an account.  Once I did, I didn't really review or anything, I was only using it as a way to keep track of what I read for the year.  Slowly but surely, I started using it more and more.  Annnnd, now I'm on the website all the time.

Just finished:

The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Kinds of books you won't read:

Ummm...I would like to think I'll try anything if it sounds interesting to me, but I'm sure that's not true.  Are westerns a genre? Because I'm fairly certain I would not read a western...

Longest book you've read:

The Stand by Stephen King at 1153 pages.

Major book hangover because of:

Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas. I'm pretty sure she doesn't even feel bad about it.

Number of bookcases you own:

I have 5 in my apartment, but not all of my books are out.  The majority of my books are in storage because I don't have enough room.  Apparently, the Hubs thinks things like a bed and a couch are important. 

One book you have read multiple times:

Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen.  It is my favorite and I read it at least once a year.

Preferred place to read:

Anywhere? Usually, I'm in a recliner in my living room.

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you've read:

"I solemnly swear that I am up to no good." JK Rowling/Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Although, it doesn't inspire me as much as it's like my life motto. 

Reading regret:

That there aren't more hours in the day for me to read? I don't know... I try not to have regrets at all, but especially with books.  Life is too short for shitty books.

Series you started and need to finish [all of the books are out]:

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan.  I love zombies and this series is really loved by a lot of people, I just can't bring myself to read the other two books.

Three of your all-time favorite books:

Besides the handful I always talk about? To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, The Stand by Stephen King and Strangers by Dean Koontz.

Unapologetic fangirl for:

In no specific order: Michelle Hodkin, Elizabeth Norris, Sarah J. Maas, Susan Dennard, Myra McEntire and Tamara Ireland Stone.  I love all 6 of these ladies with a sickness and will do whatever it takes to see them if/when they get within 500 miles of me.  Sometimes further.

Very excited for this release, more than all the others:

The Retribution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin.  It is number one on my "I-would-cut-a-bitch-to-have-it-now" list of books.  Seriously.  I would do horrible, unspeakable things for this book.

Worst bookish habit:

I treat my books like they are my children, so I am really careful with them.  The worst habit I have is if I loan books out, I expect them to come back looking exactly how I sent them out.  I check all aspects of the book upon it's return home and have a mental list of people who can't borrow.

X marks the spot: start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book:

Cress by Marissa Meyer

Your latest book purchase:

Finally bought The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd.

ZZZ-snatcher [the last book that kept you up way late]:

All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill.  It took me a couple of days to actually pick it up and start reading, but once I did, I just couldn't put it down.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

And now it's your turn! Did you fill this survey out? Leave me your link in the comments so I can go look at it.  Or, pick your favorite letter and answer that one!!


Monday, August 12, 2013

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The Time We Took Over the Blog

Happy Birthday, Stacee!!

We all wanted to wish Stacee Happy Birthday, but wasn’t sure what exactly we could do. She has done so many things for us, that we knew it had to to be awesome.



Christina, Kassiah, and Michelle thought of the idea to take over Stacee’s blog. We weren’t sure if we could even pull this off, since we didn’t have access, but we had people who knew people. We put on our capes and set off for the internet, where everything is just 140 characters away.



Here’s to Stacee, who is a fucktastic friend who will always pimp out books and feed them to you like the drug that they are. We hope you have a wonderful day filled with cupcakes, books, and time lords.





Dear loveliest, sweetest, kindest KP,

Above being my kindred spirit and the most badass chick I know, you're also one of the best people I've ever had the great fortune of stumbling upon. Without our daily chats, I'm sure I'd be too much of a bitch for any other to handle because you either talk me off ledges with your guiding wisdom or make me laugh when you join in on my snarky fuckery. Thanks for your virtual hand-holding while I ranted my ass off, for your generous dedication to the book-blogging community, but above all else, for your unwavering friendship.



So, happiest of happy birthdays, KP! May your day and whole year be filled with cupcakes, super swoony boys, and fantastic books that we can flail about together. I long for the day you have to wear me like a backpack because I won't let you put me down. And then of course you'll think I'm some crazy creeper and try to get rid of me to which I will prance around you saying...



ILYMaHOOR,
Prancy PA


Dearest Stacee, I don't remember how we met, but I will always be so, so grateful for you. Who else would have their husband pretend to be me?!? :) Whether we're arguing over √Čtienneevery swoony boy to flailing over all of the things, I always know we'll be best friends forever ♥ Thank you for being so awesome. I hope you have the happiest birthday ever, and I can't wait until we're neighbors.

Love, Kassiah



Stacee,

I knew that I was going to love you since you agreed to steal chairs with me at MGSD. We instantly had this connection that meant to be written in books.



Thank you for being a great friend who always supported me in everything I did. Thank you for always being open and to listening to me when I needed a shoulder. I appreciate who you are as a person, not only as a great individual, but in your continued awesomeness as a good person. It has been a blessing to have you in my life, not only for the Hello Kitty things, but just as a person who gets me completely.



You deserve nothing but the best today, so I hope you get a shit load of books and cupcakes, sprinkled with all the hot pink sparkles in the world.

Happy Birthday fellow Snarky!


Happy birthday to my YA book fanatic, Disney and beignet connoisseur, comic-con loving, carna asada fry eating, swoony boy stealing, fellow Whovian and David Tennant obsessive and all around kick ass friend Stacee. There's no one I would rather go on Tower of Terror with - any day of the week!!

xoxo,
Colleen





HAPPY BIRTHDAY STACEE!!!!!

I hope your day is filled with swoony boys and all the fun that comes with them. I love you to the moon and back. XOXO

Risbee





Message...

Hey Stacee, I just want to wish you a very Happy Birthday today! Thanks for always being so willing to help, whether it's with spreading the love across the twitterverse or sharing your fantastic "research" contacts. ;)

If I could throw you a party, it would look like this...



There would also be cupcakes!
Have a great day!

Jen ~ Jenuine Cupcakes

Stacee,

Happy birthday! Here's wishing you a year full of delicious (highly coveted) ARCs!

~Celeste


Hi, Stacee!

I hope you have a wonderful birthday! May your day (and year) be just as awesome as you!

~Amy


Hey, Stacee!

I hope you have the grandest birthday of them all! May your year be filled with all the best book boyfriends a girl could hope for!

~Ana


Stacee! Erin and I wanted to wish you the happiest of happy days! We're so lucky to have found you this past year, and you spoil us so. You've made this journey, reading and writing about books, an amazing one and we hope that your next 365 days are filled with as much happiness as possible. Happy Birthday Pretty!!

xox
jaime & erin



Happy Birthday, Staceeeeeeee!

So glad I finally got to meet you this year. Hope you have a fantastic day! I got you a tasty present...






Stacee! It's your birthday! Through no fault of your own you were born today. Woohoo!...well not TODAY today. You know what I mean.

I just wanted to say that I really love and appreciate your ability to Fangirl. Like holy shit fangirl. It's my favourite thing about you. You don't hold back, you don't think, "maybe flying to Chicago is a bit much." You just do it. I admire that. A lot.

So here's to many more years of enjoying fangirling together!! I will learn from your masterly ways!



Yours in nerd solidarity,
Caitlin





Tanner is still yours.

Happy Birthday!
Talia Vance



Happy Birthday, Stacee! We love you so much!

Missed out on the fun? It's never too late to leave Stacee some birthday wishes in the comments!


Saturday, August 10, 2013

The time it was steampunk themed

I read Innocent Darkness when it was a book club choice and I really enjoyed it. When Charmed Vengence was released on NetGalley, I eagerly requested it. Once I was approved, I devoured it and loved it even more than the first one.

So, when I saw Suzanne was going to be signing at Mysterious Galaxy, it a pretty sure thing. 

I got down to the store just after 1pm, got a chai tea from Starbucks and headed over to bug my favorite employee, Rob. We talked about Tim Burton and books while he set up the event area. 

Suzanne got to the store around 1:30 and started setting up a tray of cupcakes. All of a sudden, there was a loud scream...and the entire tray of cupcakes had fallen into the shelf of books. And of course, I had to point out to Rob that I had NOTHING to do with it. 

 
Suzanne started at 2:20. She started talking about her costumes and how she was once mistaken for an Amish person when in costume getting gas and wearing a corset. Then went into the synopsis for Charmed Vengeance.  
 
She asked if anyone wanted to call out a number for her to read.  I said 19, her daughter said 59 and she read a portion of the scene on each page.

 
From there, it was an open Q&A session. There was only one other person at the start of the Q&A [more showed up later] so, her and I just went back and forth asking the questions.  Thanks in advance to Gretchen McNeil for your awesome SCBWI guerilla panel questions.
 
What is your writing process like?

Vomits out books, messy dirty drafts. Book 1 had an outline, but it was a different story. It wasn't steampunk. Charlotte wasn't in the story. Book 2 was entirely pantsed. People had opinions of where it should go, some of them came from twitter. Or taxi cab conversations with other YA author friends. 

I don't usually go back, I work on getting all of the words on the page and then make it pretty. When you only have an hour a day to write and a deadline looming, the word count is important.

Did you devise playlists while writing? 

It's a combination of writing while listening. I use the playlists to switch mindsets between drafting and editing. 

Best and worst thing that's happened since being published?

Best: signing arcs at BEA. Felt so honored and humbled to see hundreds of people in line. But then you go to a bookstore for a signing and it's closed. 

What's going to happen in book 3?

There will be some great things happening. We finally get to meet Elyse and she gets to start doing things. 

 
What about Kevin?

He grows up and realizes that maybe drinking isn't the best lifestyle choice. He gets a bit of a happily ever after. We do see more of James and the Dark King in book 3. 

What is one thing you wish someone would have told you about publishing?

That it took so long. It was 27 months from the time book 1 sold to the time it was published. I felt like I was pregnant for 2 years.

Did you already know the group of authors that you're good friends with?

I started writing at RWA before YA was really accepted and was part of the 2012 Apocalypsies, so I've done a lot of things with the same authors who have become friends.

Current guilty pleasure?

I'm a mom, so if I buy candy, everyone else eats it. But I love sour patch kids. A lot of them lost their lives while writing book 2.


Weirdest thing googled while doing research?

Victorian torture scenes from book 1 were based on real things. 

What do you do in your free time?

Between a day job, being a mom and cleaning the house, I've found that people want food too. 

What is your favorite genre?

I read a lot of YA and steampunk. I have a huge TBR pile. [There was a lot more to this answer, but I was taking photos.]

What 3 things would you take to a desert island?

I would take him, *points to husband*. His response? "And then you'd survive."  Her daughter answered, "And a computer."

What's next?

I have several projects, but I write fairy tales. Pretty much everything I write is based on that, some are magical and some aren't. [Her daughter kept interjecting different things, different characters and Suzanne told her that those books weren't written yet.]

 
Describe the series in 5 words. 

Who put fairies in my steampunk?

I always get questions about the fairies. People don't realize that in the Victorian era there were many prominent people thought they could talk to fairies. 

If you could write any famous novel, what would it be?
 
If there was an answer to this, I didn't hear it.  Somehow this got into a discussion about a cupcake cannon and how her husband is going to make her one.

Around 2:50, Suzanne said she would be happy to sign books.  When I got to her, I thanked her for coming and started taking all of the swag that was on the table.  We briefly chatted about the fact that authors pay for their own swag, but didn't get to say much more than that. A couple came rushing in to the store, came right up to the table and started talking to Suzanne about how they weren't sure they were going to make it.

  

As I was gathering up my stuff to leave, I ended up talking with Suzanne's husband. [John? I'm so sorry that I'm horrible with names!!]  He had heard Rob and I talking about NOS4A2, but didn't catch the book title.  I may have fangirled over it a bit and told him the store probably had signed copies, that he should definitely get one.

After quickly saying bye to Rob, I headed home.  It might have been a small gathering of people to see Suzanne, but it definitely made for an interesting conversation.  I'm not sure I would have wanted it any other way!

Friday, August 9, 2013

The time it was an extra scene

For today's Throne of Glass Ambassador post, I'm sharing a portion of an extra scene that Sarah wrote! Make sure you follow along to the blogs of the other Ambassadors to get the full scene and check out the Throne of Glass Facebook page, where everything will eventually be posted.

Without further ado...

The Assassin and the Captain: Part 2

Read the previous parts from this scene here: Part 1
Chaol’s eyes flicked from her face to the head in the saddle bag, then back to her, the frown deepening. “You’re three days late.”
            She shrugged, and didn’t wait for his permission to begin walking up the sloped path to the castle itself.  No, she didn’t need any sort of permission anymore—not as King’s Champion. But Chaol stiffened nonetheless.
            She chuckled under her breath. “You try going to the foothills of the Ararat Mountains in the dead of winter and see if you make it anywhere on time. I almost lost my fingers and toes to the cold.” She wriggled the former in his face. “You don’t even want to know how I managed to keep warm.”
            Nothing. Not even a hint of a smile.
            She sighed and looked skyward. “Will it be a whipping, or the rack, or shall I just be forced to attend the Queen’s Court for an afternoon?”
            He didn’t react to that, either, but merely fell into step beside her. “I’m not the one you have to explain yourself to.”
            She gave him a sidelong glance. “Were you worried I wouldn’t come back?” When he didn’t respond, she said, “How long before you sent out your dogs to hunt me down?”
            He looked at her this time, his golden-brown eyes fierce. “A week. I’d have given you a week before I sent out my men to make inquiries. But you were lucky—news of Sir Carlin’s death reached us fairly soon after you…took care of him.”
            Killed him. Slit his throat and cut off his head. Dumped his body in the Ararat River. She watched him silently, daring him to say it, but he had already looked away.
            They were halfway up the long path before he quietly said, “Were you hurt at all?”
            She snorted. “Killing men in their beds doesn’t involve much risk.”
            His eyes narrowed.
            And though she knew she shouldn’t, she added, “Or involve much honor. That’s what you’re thinking, right?”
            A muscle feathered in his jaw. “I know what your position entails.”
            But she still wondered if he’d somehow forgotten until now—as if the Yulemas ball and the duel with Cain had made him think she was someone else, someone harmless. A wolf with no fangs.
            More silence, the castle growing ever-nearer. “I suppose His Majesty knows I’m here?”
            “He wants to meet with you immediately. And bring your…proof.”
            She made a face. “I knew he wanted the heads, but… He wants to see them in the meeting? Who will be there?”
            “What concern is it to you?”
            She shrugged again. Every detail of that meeting was a concern, especially Chaol with his too-keen eyes and ability to sniff out even the whitest of lies from her.
            “I just want to know how candid I can be.”
            “In front of the king? Do you want to wind up back in the mines?”
            She gave him a sweet smile. “And here I was, thinking he and I had become such good friends.”
            A flash of teeth. “Don’t you even think of—”
            “A month without me and you’ve returned to taking me seriously? We’re back to that already?”
            She hadn’t realized just how deep that question ran until he had stopped walking.  
Continue reading this scene tomorrow at 12:00pm on Paranormal Indulgence!


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Huge thanks to Sarah for taking the time to write these extra scenes!!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The time it was Bennett's music

Do I even need to go into how much I adore Tamara Ireland Stone? If you follow me on Twitter, you've probably seen me fangirling all over her and flailing about Time After Time. So, of course when Tamara emailed me and asked if I wanted to take part in a musical blog hop that featured playlists for Anna and Bennett, my answer was...


As soon as I emailed my answer in shouty caps, Tamara emailed again with the dates and the songs.  I knew I wanted a Bennett date [because he's mine, I have proof], so I looked for that first.  Somehow, I went with 8/8 and then freaked out when I saw the song choices.  I immediately emailed Tamara back with my first song choice in shouty caps. And since I tend to act first, think later, I read her entire email that said I was supposed to pick two songs, just in case.  So, I wrote back with my second choice song [which I also really loved].

Alas, I got the first song I wanted and have been waiting so eagerly to share all of this with you guys.  Settle in, get comfy.  This could get lengthy. 

First up, the book:
Calling Anna and Bennett’s romance long distance is an understatement: she’s from 1995 Chicago and he’s a time traveler from 2012 San Francisco. The two of them never should have met, but they did. They fell in love, even though they knew they shouldn't. And they found a way to stay together, against all odds.

It’s not a perfect arrangement, though, with Bennett unable to stay in the past for more than brief visits, skipping out on big chunks of his present in order to be with Anna in hers. They each are confident that they’ll find a way to make things work...until Bennett witnesses a single event he never should have seen (and certainly never expected to). Will the decisions he makes from that point on cement a future he doesn't want?

Told from Bennett’s point of view, Time After Time will satisfy readers looking for a fresh, exciting, and beautifully-written love story, both those who are eager to find out what’s next for Time Between Us's Anna and Bennett and those discovering their story for the first time

Without further ado, my song....


And of course, there's a backstory.

You may have seen me talk about my Pretty Prancy PA, aka: Christina.  Our love affair started on Twitter.  Introduced by Kassiah and bonded by flails over swoony boys and kick ass girls [mostly the boys], we started texting when Christina was reading Unbecoming of Mara Dyer. That turned into daily texting... which led to picture conversations, where she would send me lovely things like this:


And just like that, we had a song.  See, my Pretty Prancy PA, she lives in Mississippi.  I live in California.  We've never met, but she's my kindred spirit, my HBIC, my sounding board and my all around I-can't-live-without-you-person. We talk every day and I can't wait for the day when I show up on her doorstep [unannounced, of course] and get to carry her around like a backpack because I just can't put her down.

So, in a way, I feel for Bennett and can relate to some of the words of this song:

(Ho!)
(Hey!)
(Ho!)
(Hey!)

(Ho!) I've been trying to do it right
(Hey!) I've been living a lonely life
(Ho!) I've been sleeping here instead
(Hey!) I've been sleeping in my bed,
(Ho!) I've been sleeping in my bed
(Hey!)

(Ho!)

(Ho!) So show me family
(Hey!) All the blood that I would bleed
(Ho!) I don't know where I belong
(Hey!) I don't know where I went wrong
(Ho!) But I can write a song
(Hey!)

1, 2, 3
I belong with you, you belong with me, you're my sweetheart
I belong with you, you belong with me, you're my sweet
(Ho!)

(Hey!)
(Ho!)
(Hey!)

(Ho!) I don't think you're right for him
(Hey!) Look at what it might have been if you
(Ho!) Took a bus to China Town
(Hey!) I'd be standing on Canal
(Ho!) And Bowery
(Hey!)
(Ho!) And she'd be standing next to me
(Hey!)

1, 2, 3
I belong with you, you belong with me, you're my sweetheart
I belong with you, you belong with me, you're my sweetheart

Love – we need it now
Let's hope for some
So, we're bleeding out

I belong with you, you belong with me, you're my sweetheart
I belong with you, you belong with me, you're my sweet
(Ho!)

(Hey!)
(Ho!)
(The last one)
(Hey!)

This song is perfect for Time After Time and Bennett specifically, because it sings of the basis all of Bennett's struggles. The first verse just screams Time After Time. [Trust me, I've already read it.] I could go on and on about the song and try to speculate, but I already know what happens.

And you guys? This book is perfection.  It's absolutely everything I would have wanted for a continuation of Anna and Bennett's story. 

I will say only one thing about it: do not skip to the end and read it first.  If you know anything about me, I love spoilers [and how I adore River Song, I'll never know, but that's another thing all together].  I often read the last paragraph/page/chapter first.  If there's conflict in the story that I'm not too thrilled with, I'll skip to the end.  If there's an argument, I'll skip.  So far, there's only been 3 stories that I feel have been slightly ruined from this practice. 


Time After Time is one them.  This story is so amazing, it needs to unfold the way Tamara wrote it.  Trust me.  Because I've already read it [and I'm clearly a bragging bragger who brags!]

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Huge thanks, hugs and undying love to Tamara for not filing a restraining order inviting me to participate in this amazing hop.  Be sure to check out her website, blog and Twitter!  And don't forget to add both books to your GoodReads TBR shelf!

Want to check out more of the playlists? Click here for Anna's and here for Bennett's. Click here for Tamara's thoughts on today's song.

Now.

Want to be a bragging bragger who brags with me? Tamara and Hyperion have so graciously offered up an e-arc of Time After Time.  Two people will win and receive the link to download the book.

Rules are on the "terms & conditions" of the Rafflecopter widget.

**Good Luck!!**
 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
 

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