Jul 27, 2011

2 Cover Reveals - Fever (Chemical Garden #2) by Lauren DeStafano & Perception (Clarity #2) by Kim Harrison

Fever (Chemical Garden #2) by Lauren DeStafano
February 21st, 2012 by Simon & Schuster

The second book in the Chemical Garden Trilogy reveals a world outside the mansion as captivating and bleak as the one Rhine left behind--and sets the stage for an explosive conclusion!

This cover looks like something out of Italian Vogue! There is a lot to look at here...it feels like a Louis Vuitton ad. I like it and then there is that green. I'm just not so sure about it. I do like that there is color...Wither was dark, but not sure if I'm sold on the green. Nit-picky, I know. Also, this is life outside the mansion? Where in the world did Rhine end up?

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Perception (Clarity #2) by Kim Harrison
March 1st, 2012 by Scholastic

When you can see things others can't, what do you do when someone's watching you?

Everybody knows about Clarity "Clare" Fern. She's the psychic girl in school, the one who can place her hands on something and see hidden visions from the past.

Only Clare would rather not be a celebrity. She prefers hanging back, observing. Her gift is not a game to her.

But then someone starts playing with her head . . . and heart. Messages and gifts from a secret admirer crop up everywhere Clare turns. Could they be from Gabriel, the gorgeous boy who gets Clare's pulse racing? Or from Justin, Clare's hopeful ex-boyfriend who'd do anything to win her back?

One thing is certain. Clare needs to solve this mystery, and soon. Because the messages are becoming sinister, and a girl in town has suddenly disappeared.

Really digging the red hair! This cover looks like a thriller movie poster with Amy Adams. Here is what Kim had to say on her blog:

I adore Clare’s hair in this photo. And the way the model is looking over her shoulder with the woods in the background gives that sense of danger. (Tease: this is actually a scene in the book.) And birds! This cover has forest birds instead of seagulls. And it still has those magical lights around Clare’s hair. I could go on and on. I love, love, love it.
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Waiting on Wednesday - The Veil by Cory Putman Oakes

The Veil by Cory Putman Oakes
November 1st 2011 from Octane Press

Seventeen-year-old Addison Russell is in for a shock when she discovers that she can see the invisible world of the Annorasi. Suddenly, nothing is as it appears to be—the house she lives in, the woman who raised her, even the most beautiful boy in town all turn out to be more than what they seem. And when this strange new world forces Addy to answer for a crime that was committed long ago, by parents she has never known, she has no choice but to trust Luc, the mysterious Annorasi who has been sent to protect her.

Or so he says . . .

I had the pleasure to meet Cory over the interwebs last week and was happy to chat about her upcoming book, The Veil. She now lives in Austin, TX (#fistpup), and joins our awesome literary community! Here is what Cory has to say about the cover of The Veil:

It was created by David Brady, a friend of mine who is a very talented graphic designer. He based the design on a partial chapter of the book that I sent him. I was hoping that particular section would inspire the cover because it incorporates a lot of images which are very central to the book - the Golden Gate Bridge, for example (which, as you can see, is partially hidden by the fog). The Veil takes place in and around San Francisco (especially in the town of Novato, where I grew up) and the Golden Gate makes an appearance at several key moments of the story. David definitely "nailed it" with the cover art - I'm so proud to have this be the book's "calling card."

I love a good mystery, and this one sounds very intriguing!

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You can find Cory at her website, Facebook, and Twitter.

Jul 26, 2011

Coming Soon...Banned Books Week Hop - September 24 - October 1

I am SO happy to co-host Banned Books Week Hop this year with Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer. The hop will be similar to the other wonderful hops you see around the blogosphere, but this one will  require you to giveaway a banned or challenged book or include information about Banned Books Week as part of your giveaway post. Participating in a hop is a great way to find blogs that you would be interested in and to gain new followers for your own. Now, check out the snazy logo and rules below.

The dates for the hop are September 24th to October 1st.

1. The Banned Books Week Giveaway Hop image needs to be part of your post.

2. Include the linky list with all the participating blogs at the end of your post OR link to this blog or I Am A Reader, Not A Writer

3. Your giveaway must be related to Banned Books Week. You can giveaway a book that has been banned or challenged or if you are giving away a gift card you must post some information about Banned Book Week. Frequently challenged books are listed HERE and the left sidebar will have them arranged by date. A Wiki list can also be found HERE.

4. Keep the way to enter your giveaway as simple as possible. One mandatory entry and no more than 5 optional extra entries, please. All entries must be able to be accomplished during a single visit to your blog. Entries such as tweet once a day are NOT allowed (tweeting once for an extra entry is fine).

Sample Post HERE - You must turn off word verification/CAPTCHA if you are requiring more than one comment for entries - If you are concerned about spam then enable comment moderation.

5. This must be a giveaway specifically for this hop and must run only the 8 days this hop is scheduled.

6. Keep your giveaway easy to find for the entire 8 days this hop is open. If you post often and your post does not stay near the top of your main blog page then please post a link to your giveaway at the top of your blog or sidebar. If we can't easily find your giveaway you will be deleted from the linky.

To sign up to host a banned books week giveaway just add your blog or website to the linky below. Please include your shipping information after your blog name.

Jul 25, 2011

Review - Small Town Sinners by Melissa Walker (+ Giveaway)

Small Town Sinners by Melissa Walker
July 19th, 2011 from Bloomsbury

Lacey Anne Byer is a perennial good girl and lifelong member of the House of Enlightenment, the Evangelical church in her small town. With her driver's license in hand and the chance to try out for a lead role in Hell House, her church's annual haunted house of sin, Lacey's junior year is looking promising. But when a cute new stranger comes to town, something begins to stir inside her. Ty Davis doesn't know the sweet, shy Lacey Anne Byer everyone else does. With Ty, Lacey could reinvent herself. As her feelings for Ty make Lacey test her boundaries, events surrounding Hell House make her question her religion.

What a refreshing book! I honestly don't think I've read anything like this story. I know of a few recent YAs that have religious undertones, but this is the first (for me) where the overall theme is faith and sin. This story reminds me a lot of my own childhood. I grew up in a strict Christian home and I found myself wanting to rebel the second I turned 14.  I was just like Lacey, I wanted to find my own way and start to make decisions based on what I believed, and not necessarily what was drilled into my head since the day I was born. I must say that Lacey has a great head on her shoulders. She knows when she reaches a crossroad and takes time to weigh out the choices. Me? I dove right in and thought of the consequences later. Lacey is much smarter than I was. When Ty, a boy who questions everything and has a secret past, comes along she starts to realize that maybe not everything is black and white, so cut and dry. There may be shades of gray and decisions need to be made based on the surrounding circumstances. 

By the synopsis, you might think this book is all about Ty and Lacey and the temptations of sex. While that does come up a few times, the Hell House (a church production of sinful horrors that shows devastating consequences - read HERE for an example) setting explores a variety of "sins" that young adults face every day -pre-marital sex, alcohol, drugs, and porn. Some of these issues come close to home for Lacey and her friends, and while we aren't too surprised of which way the opinion meter goes here, Walker does balance things with the help of Ty and his ideas about faith. He doesn't exactly stand behind the church on every topic and we see Ty and Lacey have some really deep and meaningful conversations. It is during these times in the park where I love the characters most. They are vulnerable and open to each others differing thoughts and they have intelligent discussions on some pretty heavy stuff. Walker gives these characters depth and presented them as complex and bright individuals. The alone time in the dark could have easily turned into sexy time, but Walker stayed true to Lacey's character and kept her integrity in tact. It just made me love Ty even more...

We watch Lacey basically grow up in the year that we know her. She is the perfect obedient child at day one and disregards her own individual thoughts while being guided by her overprotective father. When we part with Lacey a year later, we watch her navigate her own way with the help of what she knows to be true and the welcome advice of her father.

4.5 Stars

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You can find Melissa on her website, blog, and Twitter.

I have an extra review copy up for grabs! Melissa will be at the Austin Teen Book Festival this year! I'll be there along with about 100 other TX bloggers...hope to see you there!

UPDATE! Melissa is kind enough to send a SIGNED bookplate to the winner! *cheers*

*giveaway closed*

Jul 24, 2011

In My Mailbox

IMM is a meme brought to us from The Story Siren. Basically, it's a good way to add books on to your TBR pile, get a head's up on what is coming soon, and to totally brag. Let's get real... ;)

Sass & Serendipity by Jennifer Ziegler

I had the pleasure to go to Jenny's release party for Sass yesterday at my favorite book store, Book People. The store was decked out in a prom theme and a lot of people dressed up. Tons of local authors were there (Austin has a zillion) and it was great chatting up with everyone. Because Sass has a theme of sisterhood, Jenny invited her sister to do a Q&A with her. It was totally hilarious! We got to hear stories of them growing up and they even played a little photo slide show full of pictures of them growing up. So cute! 

I also received a sweet thank you card, bookmark, and beautiful book plates from Michelle at Window Pane Memoirs. Made my day! 

Currently Reading:
Supernaturally by Kiersten White

I hope your mailboxes were full this week! 

Happy Reading!

Jul 23, 2011

Fan Favorites - Supernaturally by Kiersten White

I'm lucky to have Kiersten White, author of Paranormalcy and Supernaturally on the blog today! Sit back, and find out what her some of her favorite fan moments are!  

First, let it be said: I have freaking awesome fans. Or, as Evie would put it, they all bleeping rock.

That's one of the funnest things about being published--you get to share these characters and stories that previously only existed inside your head. And when other people respond to them and love them just like you do? It's blissfully surreal.

So, while I love every email and tweet and Facebook note, there are two things that have stuck out as being rather jaw-droppingly amazing. (Someone did recently write a song about Lish and Evie, but I've yet to hear it so I can't include it.) (Yeah, umm, SOMEONE WROTE A SONG ABOUT MY CHARACTERS. HOW COOL/WEIRD IS MY LIFE?)

First, when I had a contest pre-Paranormalcy release, one of my best friend's moms, Kim Walus (who is a professional quilter), made this:

She'd asked my friend (Natalie Whipple, my critique partner and author of the upcoming TRANSPARENT) details from the book and put so many personal touches. This quilt makes my heart happy. It's hanging in my office as a reminder that a) dreams come true and b) people are amazing.

Another thing I love is getting actual letters. In this world of instant-communication, it's rare and way more personal to receive a letter. One such came from twelve-year-old Cori, who wrote to tell me how Paranormalcy changed the way she looked at and interacted with the world. Knowing that my book had impacted her entire life was very humbling! Aside from the sheer holy cow factor of that, though, Cori included a sentence that still makes me laugh every time I think of it. She said,

"I wanted to step into your book and punch Vivian's fiery face until she cried."

You and me both, Cori. You and me both.

I think it sums up exactly what is so amazing about hearing from readers: that passionate involvement in the story that I thought only belonged to me? It's theirs now. And that is the coolest thing of all.

Thank you, Kiersten! 

You can find Kiersten on her site, blog, Twitter, and Facebook

Add Paranormalcy and Supernaturally on Goodreads. 

Jul 22, 2011

Review - A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young

A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young
June 21st, 2011 from Blazer & Bray

We all want to be remembered. Charlotte's destiny is to be Forgotten...

Charlotte’s best friend thinks Charlotte might be psychic. Her boyfriend thinks she’s cheating on him. But Charlotte knows what’s really wrong: She is one of the Forgotten, a kind of angel on earth, who feels the Need—a powerful, uncontrollable draw to help someone, usually a stranger.

But Charlotte never wanted this responsibility. What she wants is to help her best friend, whose life is spiraling out of control. She wants to lie in her boyfriend's arms forever. But as the Need grows stronger, it begins to take a dangerous toll on Charlotte. And who she was, is, and will become--her mark on this earth, her very existence--is in jeopardy of disappearing completely.

Charlotte will be forced to choose: Should she embrace her fate as a Forgotten, a fate that promises to rip her from the lives of those she loves forever? Or is she willing to fight against her destiny--no matter how dark the consequences.

Charlotte Cassidy has no beginning - she doesn't remember being dropped off at a hospital at age 6 - and soon enough, she finds out that her life will come to an unusual end. Charlotte suffers unusually painful episodes that literally compel her to speak to perfect strangers about things that no one knows. In a sense, she is helping them with something from their past. Her episodes have been happening more often and they are harder to keep from her motorcycle riding boyfriend, Harlin. (With a name like Harlin, you know he is smokin' hot!) Her BFF Sarah knows a little bit about her situation and thinks Charlotte is psychic (she's not), but Sarah is too wrapped up in her train wreck of a life to think too hard and long about it. Eventually, Charlotte realizes that she is part of something much bigger than she ever imagined and she will will have to accept her fate and loose everything or rewrite the ending to her story and stay on Earth long before her time is up.

This gut-wrencher was an easy, breezy book to read. The language was simple and had an authentic teen voice. We aren't bombarded with medical terms as to why Charlotte is suffering from these episodes. We simply accept them as they are and continue to be wrapped up in the story. Charlotte, Harlin, and Sarah all have typical teenage issues and each character brings something special to the table. Harlin is the boyfriend every girl dreams of. He is devoted, selfless, and only wants the best for Charlotte. He knows she is keeping a secret(s), but he is understanding and patient with Charlotte all the same. I was frustrated with Charlotte for keeping the most important aspect of her life from Harlin, but in the end....I understood. Charlotte is afraid of losing Harlin. Who would love a girl who shone bright gold and drops anything and everything at the drop of a hat to seek out a stranger in need? Her best friend Sarah is nothing like Harlin. Sarah is that girl with an a-hole father who is never happy with his daughter. Sarah can't live up to his expectations and she gets herself into all sorts of trouble. Again, frustrating but very characteristic of a girl who feels helpless. Charlotte loves Sarah regardless of her faults and self destruction, and finds herself longing to be near her loved ones as she struggles with her decision. A decision she has to make all on her own regardless of the human and supernatural opinions being thrown at her.

A Need So Beautiful is a heart wrenching story that will keep you guessing until the very last second. Long after the book ends, you will be asking yourself the same questions Charlotte did. Who are the most important people in your life? Would you rewrite the ending to your own story? I really felt for Charlotte as she struggled with her identify and how she fit into the world. Isn't that something everyone goes through at least 2 or 3 times in their life? We may not all have a glorious destiny like Charlotte, but we can learn a lesson from her. She wants the same things we all want; love, acceptance, and most of all....to be remembered. Grab your tissues, kids. This is one bright and beautiful ride.

5 stars

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Need more? A Want So Wicked comes out in 2012!
You can find Suzanne Young HERE

Jul 20, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday - Sequel Edition

Welp, I couldn't pick just one so, I didn't! Here are some awesome sequels I am waiting on. Pics will take you to the Goodreads pages.

A Million Suns (Across the Universe #2) by Beth Revis
January 10th, 2012 from Razorbill

It’s been three months since Elder unplugged Amy, tearing her from her family and the life she always knew. Now, Eldest is dead and Orion awaits judgment for his murder as a frozen. Elder is finally free to enact his vision for the ship’s population—no more Phydus, no more lies.
But when Elder learns harrowing news about the ship, he and Amy are sent on a race to discover the truth behind life on Godspeed. They must work together to unlock a puzzle that was set in motion hundreds of years earlier, all the while dealing with the romance that’s growing between them and the chaos that threatens to tear them apart.
Beth Revis wows us again with a brilliantly crafted mystery filled with action, suspense, romance, and deep philosophical questions. And this time it all boils down to one mind-bending conclusion: They have to get off this ship.

Hallowed (Unearthly #2) by Cynthia Hand
January 24th, 2012 by HarperCollins

For months part-angel Clara Gardner trained to face the raging forest fire from her visions and rescue the alluring and mysterious Christian Prescott from the blaze. But nothing could prepare her for the fateful decisions she would be forced to make that day, or the startling revelation that her purpose—the task she was put on earth to accomplish—is not as straightforward as she thought. Now, torn between her increasingly complicated feelings for Christian and her love for her boyfriend, Tucker, Clara struggles to make sense of what she was supposed to do the day of the fire. And, as she is drawn further into the world of part angels and the growing conflict between White Wings and Black Wings, Clara learns of the terrifying new reality that she must face: Someone close to her will die in a matter of months. With her future uncertain, the only thing Clara knows for sure is that the fire was just the beginning.

Black Heart (Curse Workers #3) by Holly Black
April 5th, 2012 from Margaret K. McElderry

No synopsis yet. 

Out of Sight Out Of Time (Gallagher Girls #5) by Ally Carter
March 20th, 2012 from Hyperion Books for Children

The last thing Cammie Morgan remembers is leaving the Gallagher Academy to protect her friends and family. But when Cammie wakes up in an alpine convent and discovers months have passed, her memory is a black hole. The only traces left of Cammie’s summer vacation are the bruises on her body and dirt under her nails. All she wants is to go home. But even the Gallagher Academy now holds more questions than answers as Cammie and her friends face their most difficult challenge yet. With only their training and a few clues to guide them, the girls go in search of answers on the other side of the world. But the Circle is hot on their trail and will stop at nothing to prevent Cammie from remembering what she did last summer.

So, there you have it! Some awesome sequels coming our way in 2012! 

Happy Reading!

Jul 17, 2011

In My Mailbox

IMM is a meme brought to us from The Story Siren. Basically, it's a good way to add books on to your TBR pile, get a head's up on what is coming soon, and to totally brag. Let's get real... ;)

Invincible Summer by Hannah Moskowitz (thx, Total Bookaholic!)
All These Things I've Done by Gabrielle Zevein (thx, Armchair BEA!)

Taking Off by Jenny Moss (at signing) 

Currently Reading:
A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young

Not a bad week! The Jenny Moss signing here in Austin was fun! I ran into a lot of great local authors - Austin rules! I just finished Every You, Every Me and Solstice. Reviews up soon! 

Happy Reading!

Jul 12, 2011

Bad Taste In Boys - Interview with Carrie Harris

I am SO happy to have the hilarial Carrie Harris at the blog today! I'm telling you, if you don't follow her on Twitter you are missing out. Take a sec and read my quickie review for Bad Taste In Boys HERE then pop on back over. 

Your road to publication was a long one. How many manuscripts did it take until you found the right one - Bad Taste In Boys?
Hello, UNDERSTATEMENT! Yeah, my road was crazy long. I’d been writing for fifteen years when I sold BTIB, although I didn’t even attempt a novel until about five years ago. Then I heard about NaNoWriMo and figured I might as well give it a try. I started out with a fantasy satire that somehow turned into a political satire halfway through; I still don’t know how that happened, but at least it convinced me that I could write that many words. Then I wrote a really horribly depressing book about exorcism, and finally, I said to myself, “Sparkly merpire princess?” (Because that’s what I call myself in my head.) “Maybe you should write something you’d enjoy reading instead of trying to be all profound. Because let’s face it. You are NOT PROFOUND.”

I wrote my first YA and got an agent. My second YA was Bad Taste in Boys.

Describe BTIB in three words.
Campy zombie mayhem! 

*totally agree with that description!

Kate is a pretty great heroine, what were some qualities that you insisted on her having?
It always cracks me up how people are all “THE ZOMBIES ARE ATTACKING!” in the movies, and nobody stops and goes, “Really?! Are you SURE they’re zombies? Did you take a representative sample into the lab for analysis?” Because I sure as heck would say something like that! So I wanted her to be extremely logical, and I think sometimes that works in her favor and sometimes it doesn’t.

Otherwise, I just wanted her to be a total nerd, because I’m on a quest to prove that we nerdy types can in fact be cool. Or at least cool-ISH.

Are zombies the new vampire?
I don’t think they are simply because it’s hard to make rotting bodies SEX-AY, and I think that’s a big part of the vampire craze. It’s hard to make lurching and rotting hot. I don’t think sparkles would even help, although now I’m tempted to try that because I think it would be heckloads of funny.

How much did your publisher pay Angelina Jolie to appear on this awesome book cover?
Actually, she did it for free. Zombies secretly run the United Nations, and she IS a Goodwill Ambassador, after all.

Actually, I’m kidding. I still look at that cover and ask how in the heck my designer heard “zombie football players” and thought, “Hmmm…when I think of undead guys in shoulder pads and helmets, it immediately brings to mind images of sugar lips.” Don’t get me wrong—I think it’s brilliant! But I also think it’s hilariously twisted.

My daughter just turned 15, what was your favorite at fifteen book?
I owned and loved everything by Stephen King. Back then, I was a huge bookworm, and I was really into anything with monsters in it. I literally read my copy of IT until it disintegrated in my hands. It’s crazy to realize that my hobby at fifteen directly affected my career at much-older-than-fifteen! 

How will you celebrate your big release day?
I’m actually in the process of planning a huge, super sekrit launch event, and I’m beyond excited about it! Otherwise, I’m really hoping that I can hire some people to dress up as zombies and hide in the woods while my friends and I chase them down with squirt guns and swords made out of PVC, because I’ve always wanted to do that.

I have to admit that I’m only half kidding. I really WOULD like to do that. 

So you are part of this fun little group of debut authors, tell me a little about what Class of 2k11 has done for you and your book.
Gosh, where do I start? The 2k classes are supposed to be marketing groups, but it’s so much more than that. Yes, my book has gotten out in front of hundreds of librarians, teachers, and bloggers who might not otherwise have heard of it, and that’s invaluable. But it’s just as valuable to have a go-to support group at my fingertips. We share advice, opportunities, potato smacks, and zombie jokes. Without my fellow Class of 2k11ers, I would probably be in a corner drooling right now.

Okay, so I’m still in a corner drooling, but it’s HAPPY drooling.

If Kate was to make an appearance in another 2k11 title, which would it be and why?
Kate gets around. Now that she knows about zombies, she’s been infiltrating other books to make sure they haven’t been infected. You can find her buried under a pile of leaves at the bottom of the hill Felton likes to climb in STUPID FAST, in the ballroom at Buckingham Palace in THE FAERIE RING (she recommends the cream puffs), and she even managed to miniaturize herself and sneak into the pages of the Steinbeck book featured in THE PULL OF GRAVITY. She attempted to hide in THE SWEETEST THING, but the cakes looked so good that she couldn’t resist climbing out of the oven to eat them.

Man, this is too fun. I could do this all day, but my classmates might rebel. Remember that potato smack thing I brought up earlier? I wasn’t kidding about that.

Any tour stops for the Lonestar State?
Not yet, but I’m only now starting to plan my in person events. I’m crossing my fingers, toes, and other crossables, because I’d really love to come visit!

Some of uber fans decided to celebrate Carrie's release by zombifying ourselves our rock sugar lips. Here are mine! My husband and I had a fun time trying to get just the right shot. So this week....my Twitter avie will be the pic below... Thx, Cari for organizing everything!

You can find the hilarious Carrie Harris on her blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

Check out the entire Class of 2K11!
Watch the official trailer below - hilarious!

Review - Bad Taste In Boys by Carrie Harris July 12

Bad Taste In Boys by Carrie Harris
July 12th, 2011 from Delacorte Press

Kate Grable is horrified to find out that the football coach has given the team steroids. Worse yet, the steroids are having an unexpected effect, turning hot gridiron hunks into mindless flesh-eating zombies. No one is safe--not her cute crush Aaron, not her dorky brother, Jonah . . . not even Kate!

She's got to find an antidote--before her entire high school ends up eating each other. So Kate, her best girlfriend, Rocky, and Aaron stage a frantic battle to save their town. . . and stay hormonally human.

If you can't tell from the book synopsis, this book is full of fun! In only 200 pages, we follow snarky Kate as she battles her way through probably the worst year of high school ever. We aren't talking about mean girls or awkward advances from the nerd next store. We're talking...zombies! Flesh eating, soul seeking zombies.  Kate is one smart cookie and she figures out that the football coach is pushing steroids onto his team. These aren't ordinary roids, these have a pretty nasty side effect that turns the front line into flesh eaters. She gets some help along the way, but mostly...it's all up to Kate to save the team and the town.

If I had to describe this book in one word I would use "campy." If you need a book recommendation to stop your bore reading streak this summer...this is the one for you. Not silly, but definitely goofy and wacky.

4 Stars

Add to Goodreads

Jul 11, 2011

Cover Reveal - Pandemonium (Delirium #2) by Lauren Oliver

Pandemonium (Delirium #2) by Lauren Oliver
March 6th, 2012 by Harper Teen

Pandemonium continues Lena’s gripping story. After escaping from Portland, Maine, Lena makes it to the Wilds and becomes part of an Invalid community, where she transforms herself into a warrior for the resistance. A future without Alex is unimaginable, but Lena pushes forward and fights, both for him and for a world in which love is no longer considered a disease. Swept up in a volatile mix of revolutionaries and counterinsurgents, Lena struggles to survive—and wonders if she may be falling in love again.

Full of danger, forbidden romance, and exquisite writing, Lauren Oliver’s sequel to Delirium races forward at a breathtaking pace and is sure to appeal to fans who crave the high-stakes action of The Hunger Games and the bittersweet love story of Romeo & Juliet.

WOWZERS! I think this cover art is really different from Delirium #1, but I still love it. The fall colors and tones just do it for me. Such a contrast from that aqua blue from Delirium #1.

Looks like we need to buy Delirium #2 so they match....thx Sandy for the reference to the version below. Somehow, that went right over my head.

Whatchya'll think? Who has to buy Delirium again? Lol!

Add to Goodreads

ALA Giveaway - Winners

Congratulations goes to....

Carina - ARC of Stick by Andrew Smith

Rachel B. - Clockwork Prince sampler & tee

Erin L. - swag pack

You have all been emailed and I have your addresses. Thank you all for entering!

Texas Gothic - Interview With Rosemary Clement Moore

I just read that you worked at Chuck E. Cheese's. Please, oh please, fill us in!
My first job was, indeed, working for Chuck E. Cheese. I was, in fact, Chuck E. Cheese. My job was to dress up as a giant rat, go out to the game floor and walk through the pizza rooms and make kids happy. Which doesn't sound like a terrible job until you factor in the giant rat head that always smelled like sweaty feet, Texas in the summertime, screaming kids and noisy video games, and the fact that the animatronic lion ("The King") who sang Elvis songs was broken and never played anything but "Viva Las Vegas." Over. And Over. And Over.

And that was BEFORE some smart aleck kid figured out that Chuck E. was a girl and copped a feel.

You and I are Texas pals and your latest book, TEXAS GOTHIC, is set in the Lonestar state. Did you always have this story set in Texas or did it evolve over time?
Oh, this book was set in Texas from its inception. In fact, the state's particular history is integral to the plot, which came about on a family vacation to the San Antonio area when I was in high school. My dad and I brainstormed out the details of the historical part of the mystery way back then. Some of the modern parts changed in the intervening time, but I actually started writing the first version of this in biology class.

It even had the same title: Texas Gothic. That's one of the few things that didn't change, actually. (It's a much better book than the unfinished first version, written on college ruled notebook paper and splashed with frog guts here and there.)

Amy and Phin come from a long line of witches and find themselves dealing with ghosts. Did you keep the lights on when you wrote the spooky parts?
The fact that I write in the middle of the night didn't help! There were times when the house was quiet and dark, and I'd be imagining some spooky part, and really psyching myself into Amy's state of mind while she's encountering these things--imagining the mysterious noises and the spectral apparitions, and the pounding of her heart and what that FEELS like--and yeah, I'd have to go and turn on some of the lights.

So, Ben is a pretty darn ka-ute cowboy! Did he come to you easily or was he challenging to write?
Amy and Ben are at cross purposes from the beginning, and even though SHE doesn't know why he's acting like such a jerk, I had to give glimpses of the likable guy he is so that WE know he must have some good reason for being upset with her and the chaos she's bringing into his life. (And I had to make sure it WAS a good reason!) I had to make him smart and kind of funny and rather chivalrous. Making him very handsome probably helped, too, but not as showing his true charm between arguments.

I had to make sure that even though he and Amy fight, they always fight fair. Despite the fact they don't get along (at first), they're both good people in an antagonistic situation. Will they work things out? Or will they fight all the way through?

I don't know about you, but the cover art to TXG is so sultry and sexy. How did you score such an awesome cover?
I was blessed by the book cover fairies on this one. I simply love everything about it. The spooky fog, the lights in her eye, the red hair... though I did have to go back in the second draft and give Amy redder hair. It was originally more blond, though the Goodnights do run toward red. 

This is your 5th paranormal, how is TXG different that than the others?
I think Texas Gothic combines my favorite elements of all my books to date. It has the sassy humor of the Maggie Quinn: Girl vs. Evil series, the strong regional flavor of Highway to Hell (also a Texas set book), plus the spooky factor and romantic sensibility of The Splendor Falls.

As for what's different--this is the first time my heroine has had a sister, and that dynamic was really fun to play with. Also, Amy Goodnight isn't discovering the paranormal aspects of her world; she's grown up surrounded by spells and psychics and a mad scientist sister who was infamous in their school for blowing up the chemistry lab while trying to enchant the football team's jerseys for invulnerability.

Plus, the romance was terrific fun. Lots of friction and chemistry in this one. 

If one of your characters could make a cameo appearance in another story - which character and which story?
The world of The Splendor Falls is actually the same fictional universe as Texas Gothic. If I keep writing about Goodnights, there's a good chance they may someday meet Sylvie and Rhys from that book!

What's next for you?
I am writing a spin off of Texas Gothic, where one of the minor characters from that book takes center stage. I'm not saying a lot about it yet, but I can tell you it involves a psychic consultant for the FBI, a kidnapping, a magic-dabbling crime syndicate, a car chase, a museum heist and some serious arcane shenanigans.

And also probably some kissing. Because I like writing that part.

Any Texas tour stops this year?
So far I've got Arlington (Barnes and Noble at the Parks Mall) on July 16th at 1 pm, Barnes and Noble in Hurst (near Fort Worth) on August 6th at 2 pm, and Murder by the Book in Houstonon August 20th at 4:30pm. There may be more, and I'll announce them on my blog at readrosemary.blogspot.com and on Twitter at @rclementmoore. 

Thank you so much!
Thank you, Jen

Texas Gothic will be released July 12th, 2011 - get it!

Rosemary's Goodreads page where you can find and add all of her books.
You can find Rosemary at her website, blog, and Twitter.

Jul 10, 2011

In My Mailbox

IMM is a meme brought to us from The Story Siren. Basically, it's a good way to add books on to your TBR pile, get a head's up on what is coming soon, and to totally brag. Let's get real... ;)

For Review:
Spartacus and the Circus of Shadows by Molly E. Johnson (thx, Rain Town Press)

For giveaways:
Major Angel Burn swag, cinch bags and tattoos! (thx, Candlewick - wow!)

Heist Society by Ally Carter 
Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter 

All from a great signing at Blue Willow Bookshop before ALA! Ally recognized me from the Austin Teen Book Festival the year before. She is so stinkin' cute and very funny in person! Also, we are both Okies! 

 TX Bloggers w/ author Joy Preble

Jul 9, 2011

2 Cover Reveals - A Million Suns (Across the Universe #2) by Beth Revis & The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2) by Richelle Mead

A Million Suns (Across the Universe #2) by Beth Revis
January 10th, from Razorbill

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BONUS: Paperback version of Across the Universe:

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The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2) by Richelle Mead
May 2012 from Razorbill

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Wow, there is a whole lot of beauty right here! I loved loved loved AthU and can't wait for number 2!

Freedom Giveaway Blog Hop - Winners

Congratulations goes to...

ARC of Dear Bully - Alex W.

Ebook of The Last Archangel - Cassandra H.

Ebook of Bridger - Hannah @ The Irish Banana Review

Emails have been sent to you. Please respond within 72hrs. Thank you all for entering!

Jul 7, 2011

Review - Luminous by Dawn Metcalf

Luminous by Dawn Metcalf
July 7th, 2011 from Dutton Children's Books

As reality slips and time stands still, Consuela finds herself thrust into the world of the Flow. Removed from all she loves into this shifting world overlapping our own, Consuela quickly discovers she has the power to step out of her earthly skin and cloak herself in new ones-skins made from the world around her, crafted from water, fire, air. She is joined by other teens with extraordinary abilities, bound together to safeguard a world they can affect, but where they no longer belong.

When murder threatens to undo the Flow, the Watcher charges Consuela and elusive, attractive V to stop the killer. But the psychopath who threatens her new world may also hold the only key to Consuela's way home.

This book was all over the place for me. I was confused, interested, intrigued, captivated, and hopeful for Consuela - Bones - and the others in the Flow. I felt like I was riding a roller coaster while reading. I love the premise and think it is absolutely original, but at the very beginning of Luminous, I was confused. I wasn't really sure what was happening to Consuela and how she was able to make a skin out of water. Was this real? Was this her perception? Did she really go down the drain? Don't get me wrong, very cool idea! I just wish Consuela was a little more dumb-founded and surprised at her ability. The concept of Consuela putting her fingers through the back of her skull and pulling her skin over her head came too easy/naturally for her. If it were me, I would be screaming and freaking out asking for my Mother....just me. By page 15, she states, "This is who I am....The rest is just skin."

As Consuela accepts her new skeletal status, we are introduced to an array of really interesting characters with even more interesting names. V, Wish, Yad, and others live in The Flow (a place where spirits reside in order to help/save the living) and each is vastly different. I enjoyed learning about them and their special abilities and what they were drawn to. Each character had a bit of foggy mystery to them and I was glad to see that they weren't to fleshed out (no pub intended). Every few chapters or so, we get a glimpse of the killer as he murders members of The Flow. Some of these scenes give us a taste about who the killer is and what he is capable of. Sometimes, the scenes left me a tab bit puzzled as I tried to jump back into Consuela's story line. Regardless, the cast of characters and the whodunit question kept me in the book. The ending is a little predictable, but I was okay with that. The underlying Dorothy theme - you could do it all along - greats us in the end and I personally welcomed it. 

Even though I had a few issues, I can see where a young adult would absolutely love this story. The cover alone will get a girl (and hopefully boy) to pick it up, and the originality of the story line will get teens to buy/checkout. I know my teenager would love this book and she will be a little more forgiving about the confusing opening scenes. 

If you would like to read an interview I hosted with Dawn in which she talks more about Luminous, you can find it HERE

3.5 Stars

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You can find Dawn at her website and Twitter
Dawn is hosting a huge Luminous Summer Grand Prize Giveaway. Find out all of the details HERE.
Thank you, Teen Book Scene.

Jul 6, 2011

Cover Reveal - The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler

The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler
November 21st, 2011 from Razorbill

It's 1996, and less than half of all American high school students have ever used the Internet.

Emma just got her first computer and an America Online CD-ROM.

Josh is her best friend. They power up and log on--and discover themselves on Facebook, fifteen years in the future.

Everybody wonders what their Destiny will be. Josh and Emma are about to find out.

Ohhhh, Matrixy! It kinda hurts my eyes a little bit, but I admit, I can't wait to read this one.

Waiting on Wednesday - Pretty Crooked by Elisa Ludwig (+ Interview)

Pretty Crooked by Elisa Ludwig
March 13th, 2011 from Katherine Tegen/Harper Collins

Things couldn't be better for 15-year-old Willa Fox: Her mom has just moved them to beautiful Paradise Valley, playground for the rich and powerful. Already Willa's been welcomed into the inner circle of her school's most exclusive clique and she's attracted the attentions of the superfine Aidan Murphy. But when Willa finds out that her new best friends are actually bullies, she decides she has to take a stand—even if it means taking the law into her own hands.

This cover reveal came over Twitter yesterday and it totally caught my eye! Without reading the synopsis above, it almost looks like some teenage fashionista that has a serious case of sticky fingers. I would have been okay with that, but the real story sounds so much more interesting! I wonder if it will have a Mean Girl streak. I love the blurb from Melissa de la Cruz and I am so in love with purple right now. 

I was able to ask the author, Elisa Ludwig, a few questions about her cover reveal and debut. Welcome, Elisa! 

You are (were?) a freelance writer in Philadelphia and write about food for The Philadelphia Inquirer among others. So, why isn't PRETTY CROOKED about a cupcakery or something?
Good question! Yes, I am still a freelance writer with a special interest in all things food-related. (I have worked as a restaurant reviewer, cookbook writer/editor and now I write features with recipes on a regular basis. I'm also contributing to a new blog called Pots and Pens in which writers and others in the publishing world explore their relationship to food.) All along I have always written fiction, though. With all its action scenes, the updated Robin Hood story of PRETTY CROOKED was really fun to write, and it was truly a departure from anything I'd ever done before. There are a few foodie scenes in there, with some truffles and duck breast scattered in and among the banditry. I would love to someday write a YA novel specifically about food—I'm especially eager to read THE SWEETEST THING by Christina Mandelski—but I haven't found the right story yet... Working on it!

PRETTY CROOKED will be released in March of 2012 and got a nice blurb by the brilliant Melissa de la Cruz. You must be pretty excited about that!
It's an understatement to say I'm thrilled with the blurb. She's a wonderful writer and I feel very lucky that she generously donated her time to a new kid on the block!

Can you tell us a little about the process of the cover art? Artist? Designer?
The overall goal was to make an eye-catching and glitzy jacket without a "shopaholic" look, which was something of a challenge, but I think the final product achieves exactly that. The designers (Amy Ryan, Joel Tippie and Torborg Davern) played around with some different cover ideas in a variety of styles, such as standalone type with a closeup of a girl's face, or an iconic image like a stack of money. Once the idea evolved, they set up a photo shoot with Howard Huang (prior to which there was a model casting and a styling day, which all sounds very glamorous to a writer who sits around in jeans and clogs). The shoot took about 4-5 hours with different outfits and poses. The pattern and fonts were the last things added to the mix.

What was the most nerve racking part of the cover art process?
Getting the cover in and of itself wasn't nerve-racking at all but releasing it to the world definitely gave me a goosebumpy feeling. It's out there now–which means this is all real!

How long have you been waiting to share the cover for PRETTY CROOKED?
I got a comp of it in late winter/early spring and fell in love with it, but I couldn't officially share the cover until we got the updated design with the blurb, which was a more recent addition. The earlier version was included in HarperCollins' catalog and somehow it got on Goodreads (are there Goodreads elves out there?) so it wasn't as dramatic a reveal as some other authors have. But still so very exciting to me!

What else do you want us to know about PRETTY CROOKED that didn't fit in the synopsis?
PRETTY CROOKED is a lighthearted, easy, fun read in a lot of ways, but it tackles some more serious issues such as bullying, classism and racism. It's also setting up a deeper mystery that unfolds in book 2, PRETTY SLY, which I am working on now.

You are apart of the Apocalypsies and The Nightshade, how have the groups helped you and your debut?
The Apocalypsies have been absolutely wonderful. As a debut author I am just starting to feel my way around this whole experience. Being able to share it with such a friendly, supportive group of likeminded people has made the journey *so* much easier. And it's really exciting to learn more about everyone's books and help share their good news. The Nightstand is a new blog (a subset of the Apocalypsies, focusing on thriller and paranormal authors), so it's still evolving—I haven't gotten to post yet—but it's another great way to develop relationships with fantastic writers as we collectively try to get the word out about our work. It's really all about power in numbers!

When do you expect ARCs to make their way around? *hint*
Should be very soon, as I know for a fact that they do exist! You'll be getting one, for sure! 

Ohhhhh! #fistpump

Any big release plans?
I haven't finalized anything yet, but I will definitely be throwing a party in my hometown of Philly (maybe stripes-optional, in keeping with the criminal theme?) and hopefully banding together with my East Coast Apocalypsie peeps for some events in other towns. I'm really looking forward to getting to visit schools and libraries and meeting with readers!

Thank you!

Hope you guys put this on your TBR pile!

Add to Goodreads
You can find Elisa on Facebook, Twitter, and her site (coming soon).

Jul 4, 2011

Blogiversary - 7 Day Giveaway - Winners

Wow, what can I say? I appreciate all of the Blogiversary messages, tweets, and help with spreading the word. If I could give more, I would! I was happy to celebrate my Blogiversary with you all! So, without further ado...the WINNERS!

Day 1 -
YA Banned Books Bracelet winner - Amy at Lady Reader's Bookstuff

Day 2 -
Angel Burn winner - Linda D.
Blink & Caution winner - Samantha M.
The Piper's Son winner - Amy @ Bookgoonie

Day 3 - 
The Girl In the Steel Corset winner - Amy @ Artsy Bookish Gal 
Inside Out winner - Debbie P.

Day 4 - 
signed Die For Me - Miss Lauren @ Ravishing Reads 
signed Hereafter - Casey @ The Bookish Type 
ARC of Imaginary Girls - LisaILJ

Day 5 - 
signed Cascade - SarahChristine 
signed A Blue So Dark - Casey @ The Bookish Type
ebook of Tikmia - Becca W.

Day 6 -
Swag -
Ambur @ Burning.x.Impossibly.x.Bright
Kristen Page 19 
Mia @ Gripped into Books 
Kate @ Read After Your Bedtime Book Reviews
Nocturnal Ravings

Signed bookplate set - Alyssa

Variety of signed bookplates -Linda @ By the Book 
Samantha@ Papercuts 
Ashley @ Books Are Diamonds

Day 7 -
SIGNED Dreaming Anastasia by Joy Preble - A.J.
SIGNED Haunted by Joy Preble - Loreal L.
SIGNED Through Her Eyes by Jennifer Archer - Nicole Z.
SIGNED Can I See Your I.D.? by Chris Barton - Elisquared
SIGNED ARC Born at Midnight by CC Hunter - Michelle @ Lit Chat
3 SIGNED In the Arms of Stone Angels by Jordan Dane - Kristin Rae, Lydia, and Vidisha
SIGNED Illegal by Bettina Restrepo - Jolene
Ebook of Solstice by PJ Hoover - Harpreet
SIGNED ARC of Sass and Serendipity by Jennifer Ziegler - Meredith M.
SIGNED Taking Off by Jenny Moss - Heatherzilla
SIGNED Firelight by Sophie Jordan - Marjie
SIGNED The Sweetheart of Prosper County by Jill. S. Alexander - Christy N.
SIGNED ARC Paradise by Jill. S. Alexander - Ashley G.
SIGNED Hummingbirds by Jeanette Larson - Amy S.
SIGNED ARC The Mephisto Covenant by Trinity Faegan - Lieder
SIGNED Flawless by Lara Chapman - Mickey
SIGNED Blessed by Cynthia Leitich-Smith - Nocturnal Ravings
SIGNED Tantalize by Cynthia Leitich-Smith - Brooke D.
SIGNED The Sweetest Thing by Christna Mandelski - Melannie
SIGNED Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore - Memrie
SIGNED Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves - Susanna P.
My Soul To Steal by Rachel Vincent - Joanna W.
SIGNED Bite Club by Rachel Caine - Becca
SIGNED Saving Maddie by Varian Johnson - Jessica S. 
SIGNED Tempest Rising by Tracy Deebs - Aydrea
SIGNED Truth With a Captial T by Bethany Hegedus - Britta
SIGNED Brains For Lunch by K.A. Holt - Jenn H.
SIGNED Mike Stellar by K.A. Holt - Michelle B.
ARC of Odd Girl In by Jo Whittemore - Ashley B. 
Border Crossing by Jessica Lee Anderson - Jessica M.
SIGNED Calli by Jessica Lee Anderson - Brianna V.
SIGNED The Survivors by Amanda Havard - Rabiah
SIGNED Windows On the World by Andrea White - Linda D.

So, there you have it, ALL of the winners for my 2 year Blogiversary. Everyone should have gotten an email yesterday.  If you see your name above and did not receive an email, please let me know. PLEASE CHECK YOUR SPAM FOLDER. Please be patient as I forward your addresses to publishers and pack up things for you from home. Thanks again for entering and following!