Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (March 27)

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill at Breaking the Spine. This weekly meme shares the upcoming books that I'm most excited about.

Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. But as they begin their senior year in France, Isla and Josh are quickly forced to confront the heartbreaking reality that happily-ever-afters aren’t always forever.

Their romantic journey is skillfully intertwined with those of beloved couples Anna and √Čtienne and Lola and Cricket, whose paths are destined to collide in a sweeping finale certain to please fans old and new.

Published by Dutton
Release Date: September 17, 2013

Monday, March 25, 2013

Author Guest Post: Jenny E. Miller and Giveaway

Jenny Miller grew up in Seattle, writing sappy (illustrated!) novels for her obliging parents. She studied creative writing at the University of Washington and holds a Masters in Teaching from Seattle University. She still lives in the Emerald City with her husband, two kids, and a dog who thinks he’s a cat. ASYLUM is her first novel.
You can find her at and her food and humor blog

The Decision to Self-Publish
Like every author, I've had my fair share of rejections. It doesn't matter who rejects you or how the letter is written; it still feels like a punch to the gut. You've put in so much time and effort, not only toward your book, but also into each and every query letter you've written. You make it personal. You make it intriguing. You make your book sound so enthralling that no one would ever put it down. You send out each carefully written letter. Then you wait and wait to hear back. And then it's sorry, this just isn't for us. Try someone else. 
I received (what would come to be) my final rejection email at the gym. I was going round and round on the elliptical machine, half-watching the Today show, when an email popped up. It read like all the rest. Sorry, Ms. Miller. Your book sounds great, but not for us. Not at this time. I burst into tears and nearly fell off the machine. I was in a fragile emotional state already (my grandmother had just passed), and this letter was the final blow. I was devastated.
It took me about a month to pick myself up. It was a month spent wallowing, immersing myself in motherhood (those damn cupcakes were perfect), not touching my book and doing anything to distract myself from the 237 pages that might never find a publisher. I was beat down, and tired of putting my fate into someone else's hands. That's when my husband brought up self-publishing again, for the zillionth time. But this time, I didn't brush it off immediately. I thought about it. And that afternoon, instead of folding laundry (over-perfectly), I started shopping for editors.
In the course of two months my book has been edited, polished and formatted. A cover has been designed, and all the channels have been aligned for it to be put up for sale. Compare that with the average of two years a book spends with a publisher before its put on the market. Two years! And in a month on the shelf if it doesn’t sell well, it could be yanked right off.

The downside of self-publishing? I had to pay the editor and cover designer out of pocket. I have to do all the marketing and advertising myself. But with a good launch, the power of social networking, and a 70% kickback from Amazon, I’ll make that money back and (hopefully!) more.

No one gets into writing to be a millionaire. We’re lucky if we can even cover our bills on writing alone. To have your work out there—being able to be read by anyone and everyone—is the ultimate goal. My fate is finally in my hands, and as a writer, that’s the best thing I can ask for. 

About Asylum: 

June Foster’s summer is limping along. Her life on a 1950′s farm in eastern Washington is boring–full of milking cows, picking apricots and tending to the chicken coops. Her only friends are her record player and her books. But when gorgeous, turquoise-eyed Frank falls into her world, her life becomes anything but ordinary.

June falls for Frank hard and fast–he’s beautiful, impossibly strong, and capable of things ordinary humans are not. But she’s wary about his father Jonas, a creepy man with an agenda. She should be. Suddenly June is deathly ill, falling in and out of consciousness. When she recovers, June and Frank discover Jonas’s deadly plans for her–and June takes revenge.

Convicted of murder, declared insane and sentenced to life at Washington Pines Sanitarium, June is stuck. Jonas’s plans are reaching her beyond the grave, and she suspects that there’s a lot more going on in the sanitarium than group therapy and electric shocks. Something evil has followed her here, or maybe it was waiting for her all along. If Frank doesn’t break her out soon, she’ll lose her mind–and her life.

Enter to win an e-book copy below: 

Fairy Tale Givaway Hop (March 26 - April 2)

This hop is in conjunction with the 3rd annual Fairy Tale Fortnight.  It's hosted by: I Am A Reader, Not A WriterThe Book Rat & A Backwards Story.

The rules: This giveaway is open internationally. Prizes are shipped via The Book Depository, so please make sure that they ship to your country. You must be 13 years or older to enter. 

The Prize: Your choice of a fairytale related book under 15 USD on TBD!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (March 20)

Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton

I can’t weep. I can’t fear. I’ve grown talented at pretending.

Elizabeth Caldwell doesn’t feel emotions . . . she sees them. Longing, Shame, and Courage materialize around her classmates. Fury and Resentment appear in her dysfunctional home. They’ve all given up on Elizabeth because she doesn’t succumb to their touch. All, that is, save one—Fear. He’s intrigued by her, as desperate to understand the accident that changed Elizabeth’s life as she is herself.

Elizabeth and Fear both sense that the key to her past is hidden in the dream paintings she hides in the family barn. But a shadowy menace has begun to stalk her, and try as she might, Elizabeth can barely avoid the brutality of her life long enough to uncover the truth about herself. When it matters most, will she be able to rely on Fear to save her? 

Published by Flux
Release Date: July 8, 2013

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Teaser Tuesday (March 19)

What is teaser tuesday?
It's a meme hosted by Should Be Reading and here are the rules: Grab your current read...
Open to a random page
Share two teaser sentences from somewhere on the page
Don't include spoilers.

"'Do your thing, pig.'
  The pig didn't move. It looked up at her." 

-Poison, Page 41, by Bridget Zinn

It's been a while since I've absolutely loved a YA book, but this one is definitely in the running!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

TV on Thursday: Revenge

Why I love it: So many reasons! This is a TV show that really doesn't have much substance...but what it lacks in that it makes up for in crazy twists and turns! My reaction after last weeks episode: "WHAT JUST HAPPENED?!" The main character Emily (aka Amanda) is out for might have assumed that based on the title. She wants to destroy the people who helped frame her father for a terrorist attack, and it's impossible to stop watching. It also provides an interesting ethical dilemma. We know that the people Emily is going after are bad people, but she resorts to some pretty awful things herself. So it's hard not to root for her, but it feels wrong at the same time. 

Who's who? It seems like everyone in this show has been in a past teen show that I watched. Emily is played by Emily VanCamp of Everwood, her partner in crime Nolan is played by Gabriel Mann (Josie and the Pussycats). Nick Wechsler, of Roswell, played Emily's childhood best friend...I could go on and on! 

Where we're at: We're well into the second season, and things seem to be returning to the path that season one was rolling on. The beginning of the second season is less about revenge against individuals (what made season one so great), and added in some bigger elements that not all fans have appreciated. I don't mind, now that things are flowing and the twists have started to make sense.

My ultimate question: Ok, so it's been a year and a half and no one has seen Emily smirking every time someone goes down? I'd be just a tad bit suspicious. Nolan should probably let her know that it's not appropriate to smile when someone's life is being destroyed unless she wants to be caught...

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Teaser Tuesday (March 12)

What is teaser tuesday?
It's a meme hosted by Should Be Reading and here are the rules: Grab your current read...
Open to a random page
Share two teaser sentences from somewhere on the page
Don't include spoilers.

"Lady Waynwood turned away from him. 'Best take us to your father, Alayne. The sooner we are done with this, the better.'"
-A Feast for Crows, Page 481, by George R. R. Martin

Seriously, I should not start these books when I have a bajillion that I need to be reading and reviewing. They're long, but I draw them out because the 6th book won't be out for a couple more years. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

Review: Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans

Three levels. Two loves. One choice. Debut novelist, Lenore Appelhans has written a thrilling otherworldly young adult novel about a place that exists between our world (Level 1) and what comes after life (Level 2).

'I pause to look around the hive - all the podlike chambers are lit up as the drones shoot up on memories ... I've wanted to get out of here before, but now the tight quarters start to choke me. There has to be more to death than this.'

Felicia Ward is dead. Trapped in a stark white afterlife limbo, she spends endless days replaying memories, of her family, friends, boyfriend ... and of the guy who broke her heart. The guy who has just broken into Level 2 to find her.

Felicia learns that a rebellion is brewing, and it seems she is the key. Suspended between heaven and earth, she must make a choice. Between two worlds, two lives and two loves. (From Goodreads)

Best Bits: Lenore is a YA book blogger! She was one of the first book bloggers that I followed (and was envious at her ability to write engaging reviews), so seeing her published was awesome. Similarly, I was drawn into her novel. The book takes place in a limbo of sorts, and there is rebellion brewing. So, while the concept of being (almost) dead isn't new, this was a new take on it. Another portion that I really enjoyed were the portions of the book that contained Felicia's memories. It made her an appealing character, getting to understand the choices that she made before her death. She wasn't perfect, in fact she made a couple that I disagreed with, but it just served to make her a more interesting person. 

Nit Picks: I feel like this book is a bit like Lost, every time a question is answered it creates three more questions. We're definitely not omniscient readers, and that's a good thing, but I do think that people need to know that they may leave the book a bit confused. I had to have some process time after finishing to fully understand what had just happened, and what that meant for book 2. I also wasn't a fan of Julian, and his relationship with Felicia was tiptoeing the insta-love line. Of course, in the sequel we might get memories that paint a completely different picture. 

Level 2
By Lenore Appelhans 
Published by Simon & Schuster
281 Pages
Rating: B

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Stacking the Shelves (March 9)

Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga at Tynga's Reviews! It's a way to highlight the books that everyone got throughout the week.

For Review: 

Spies and Prejudice by Talia Vance

Fields’ Rule #1: Don’t fall for the enemy.

Berry Fields is not looking for a boyfriend. She’s busy trailing cheaters and liars in her job as a private investigator, collecting evidence of the affairs she’s sure all men commit. And thanks to a pepper spray incident during an eighth grade game of spin the bottle, the guys at her school are not exactly lining up to date her, either. 

So when arrogant—and gorgeous—Tanner Halston rolls into town and calls her “nothing amazing,” it’s no loss for Berry. She’ll forget him in no time. She’s more concerned with the questions surfacing about her mother’s death. 

But why does Tanner seem to pop up everywhere in her investigation, always getting in her way? Is he trying to stop her from discovering the truth, or protecting her from an unknown threat? And why can’t Berry remember to hate him when he looks into her eyes? 

With a playful nod to Jane Austen, Spies and Prejudice will captivate readers as love and espionage collide.

Published by EgmontUSA
Release Date: June 11, 2013

The Rose Throne by Mette Ivie Harrison

Ailsbet loves nothing more than music; tall and red-haired, she's impatient with the artifice and ceremony of her father's court. Marissa adores the world of her island home and feels she has much to offer when she finally inherits the throne from her wise, good-tempered father. The trouble is that neither princess has the power--or the magic--to rule alone, and if the kingdoms can be united, which princess will end up ruling the joint land? For both, the only goal would seem to be a strategic marriage to a man who can bring his own brand of power to the throne. But will either girl be able to marry for love? And can either of these two princesses, rivals though they have never met, afford to let the other live?

Published by Egmont USA
Release Date: May 14, 2013


A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire 5) by George R. R. Martin

The synopsis contains MAJOR spoilers, so I will not be posting it (I wouldn't do that to you). 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Non-book Post

I just wanted to post to point out the my blog updates have been a bit sparse as of late. That's because I'm hosting a seminar on Thursday and have been preparing like crazy. So, as of Friday my posts will be back to their regular frequency (who knows, there may even be a TV on Thursday as well). Happy reading, everyone :)

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