Friday, July 21, 2017

First Date Book Tag


First Date TAG


First saw this over at HardbackHoarder, check it out! I wanted to do it myself, so that's exactly what I am doing. If you want to do it after reading, then this is me tagging you. Have fun! This tag was written in advance, but when I wrote it, I ultimately decided to wait until Valentine's Day to publish it (so it will be interesting to revist my answers and see if I end up publishing more than one tag on this day).

1. The awkward first date – a book where something felt off. It wasn’t a bad book, but lacked that spark for you.
I am going to go with Blind Spot by Laura Ellen. I gave this book 3 stars, and you can check out a short review here on Goodreads. I read this book in a day. It was good, I enjoyed it. But there was something missing for me. The story concept was interesting and different, and I would recommend it because, again, it was a good book.


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2. The cheap first date – book that turned out less than you expected.
There were a few books that I was contemplated putting down for this question, but I decided to go with Love, Ish because I was really expecting a heart-wrenching story about a young girl who has cancer, and there were moments that were sad, but overall, it was just a let down from my expectations. You can find my review here. I gave this book 2 stars.

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3. Well-prepared first date – better than expected.
I am going to go with Strangelets by Michelle Gagnon. This was a DNF for my sister, and I decided that I would still give it a shot because it was available for me to read, and I think I was reading it for a challenge. I wasn't expecting much from it because my sister didn't like it (and at the time I felt like our reading tastes were similar, and they aren't really - there are some books that we both like but overall our tastes are different), and I ended up almost loving the book. I ended up giving it 4 stars, and if you want to see my review of the book, you can check it out here on Goodreads.


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4. Hot but dumb – pretty book, not so hot on the inside.
For me, this would be Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler. I wanted to read this book because of the cover, and I wasn't expecting a 5 star book, but this ended up being a 2 star book. I just couldn't relate at all to this book or the characters, and I'm pretty certain, I didn't really care for any of the characters or even what was actually happening in the story.


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5. Blind date – book you picked up not knowing anything about it.
I picked up Unbecoming of Mara Dyer a few times, and never really knew what it was about, which was one reason I never read it, but a friend told me it was amazing - and didn't tell me what it was about. I'm pretty certain, she lent me the book, but I could be wrong. I ended up loving this series, and I never knew what was going to happen next because I read this series "blind".


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6. Speed dating – book you read super fast.
P.S. I Like You by Kasie West. I absolutely love Kasie's books, and when my sister got this book (one of the few books we both love), I had to read it. Confession time: I "borrowed" it from her room while she wasn't home, and because I had to read it before she got home, I ended up reading it in about 3 hours in one sitting on my bed without getting up to eat or anything. It did help that I find her books addictive and I really didn't want to get up, but that's the fastest I've ever read a YA book.


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7. The rebound – a book you read too soon after a book hangover and it kind of ruined the book for you.
So, I really don't have an answer for this because whenever I get book hangovers, I just skim and reread my favorite parts of the book, until my hangover is over. And then I read another book, so I really haven't had this experience.

8. Overly enthusiastic date – a book that felt like it was trying too hard.
This was a tough question for me but I ultimately decided Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer. Some parts of the story felt like a stretch to me. I did actually enjoy this book. I gave it 3 stars. It wasn't a bad book, but it was at times, a little over the top. I read this back in 2014 so I'm trying to recall my thoughts about it, but I'm pretty certain I felt this way at times when reading it.


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9. The perfect first date – book that did everything right for you.
There are so many books I could list here, but I'm going to mention one that I have never mentioned on my blog before and that is Changeling by Philippa Gregory. I actually am having a hard time getting into the second book sadly, but I loved this book. I loved the plot and the characters, and everything about it.


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10. Humiliating first date – book you’re embarrassed to admit you liked/embarrassed to see reading in public for whatever reason.
This question is another question that I really don't have an answer for. I don't really get embarrassed by books that I read. I mean I would read the Warriors series by Erin Hunter in public, and those books are about cats. I also read MG books in public. And books that I would potentially be uncomfortable reading in public are books that I don't read.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Cover Reveal: Demon's Blood by Lissa Bilyk


Demon's Blood
Genre: YA Paranormal

Summary:

Australian teenage demon hunter Tina Storm has been banned from using her lightning vanquish. To earn it back, she has to infiltrate a coven of witches suspected of using illegal blood magic to control people’s minds. Resident witch hottie Lachlan’s sudden interest in her can’t be coincidence – can it? After all, he’s pretty popular with the other girls in the coven – especially Chelsea, who’s decided Tina is evil for stealing her boyfriend.

Meanwhile, Tina has to juggle her end of year exams, her demon hunting, and her family as her relationship with Chinese shapeshifting demon Ten deepens. She’s also being hunted by an ancient vampire for the death of the vampire’s offspring. Can Tina solve the blood magic mystery, settle the vampire with a grudge, and soothe her romantic relationships without the help of her powers? How much can one teenage demon hunter take?


Check out the new cover for the prequel, Tina Storm: Demon Hunter!
Tina Storm: Demon Hunter is FREE on Smashwords!

About the Author

Indie author since 2011 and resolute defender of the Oxford comma, Lissa was born and raised in Australia, and writes stories with a distinct feminist slant for readers disillusioned with femininity in traditional commercial literature

Lissa is the author of LIES FOR A LIVING, part 1 of the CHAOS OF STARS serial, and books THE EDGE OF DARKNESS, TINA STORM: DEMON HUNTER, DEMON'S BLOOD, and THE ARCHIVE OF LOST DREAMS. Lissa is also the Episode Interactive author of NO ANGEL, GUARDIAN TRIALS, and THOSE LEFT BEHIND for Pocket Gems.


    


Cover Reveal Organized by:

My Fictional Boyfriend Tag

My Fictional Boyfriend Tag

I first saw this over at readbyzoe. She posted a booktube video about it, which you can view if you wish. I thought it looked interesting, and let's be honest, I have quite a few book boyfriends so I figured why not? You can check out my answers below. I'm solely focusing this tag on my book boyfriends. I might later do one involving my tv boyfriends (over at my adult blog) because I have quite a few of those two. A good amount of my fictional boyfriends will probably not come as a shock to you because I have probably mentioned them once or twice now.

1. Most romantic boyfriend
My most romantic boyfriend is Ash from Iron King by Julie Kagawa. I feel like it takes him a while to get up to the point where he is what I would consider romantic, but when he does - he's really romantic in my opinion.

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2. Dark and moody bad boy with a good side
My dark and moody bad boy with a good side is Marco Leone from Lovely Reckless by Kami Garcia. He's such a bad boy - street racing, fighting in school, everything, but as you get to know him, you learn all of his good side secrets. And that's why I couldn't help but love him. You can read my review here.

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3. Paranormal boyfriend
My paranormal boyfriend is Lucas because A) he's a werewolf and B) he's just so amazing. He does make some decisions throughout the series that makes me annoyed at times with him, but I'll forgive him. He is from Born at Midnight by C. C. Hunter.

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4. Boy you want to tame
The boy I want to tame is Guy from Fire and Flood by Victoria Scott. He's another bad boy but he doesn't really show as much as a soft side as Marco does, and that is why I would want to tame him.

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5. Boy you friend-zoned
The boy I friend-zoned is Ronan. I love Ronan, I do, but if I had to give up one book boyfriend, then it would be him. So that is why I am going to friend-zone him. Ronan is from Sea of Shadows by Kelley Armstrong.

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6. Your soul mate
My soul mate is Tarver from These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner. He had such a great personality, and it was hard not to fall in love with who he was. He will forever be my favorite book boyfriend. I don't think it's possible for someone to take the spot he has won in my heart.


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7. Boyfriend you want to elope with
Well, I would totally cheat and say Tarver again, because, well, I would totally elope with him, but to keep it fair, I will choose another boyfriend. The boyfriend I would want to elope with is Thomas from Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco. He was such a wonderful character that I couldn't help but love. Check out my review here.

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8. Boyfriend you'd venture anywhere with
The boyfriend I would venture anywhere with is Chase from Article 5 by Kristen Simmons. I could easily go anywhere with him, and it would be amazing, for no other reason then I think it would be fun to go to London or Scotland or Egypt with him.

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9. Boyfriend you'd want to be stranded on a desert island with
The boyfriend I would want to be stranded on a desert island with is Parker from Welcome to the Dark House by Laurie Faria Stolarz because he was really sweet and kind, and I think out of all of my boyfriends, I would be able to last with him without being too annoyed or frustrated at.

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10. Most kickbutt boyfriend
The most kickbutt boyfriend of mine would have to be Riden from Daughter of the Pirate King, because well he's a pirate and can kick some major butt. He was another fictional boyfriend of mine that I just couldn't help but love. Read my review here.


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Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Blitz + Excerpt, Teasers, and Giveaway: I Stop Somewhere by T.E. Carter


I Stop Somewhere
by T.E. Carter
Genre: YA Contemporary Fiction
Release Date: February 27th 2018
Feiwel & Friends (Macmillan)

Summary from Goodreads:

THE LOVELY BONES meets ALL THE RAGE in a searing, heartbreaking contemporary story of a lost teenager, and the town she leaves behind.

Ellie Frias disappeared long before she vanished.

Tormented throughout middle school, Ellie begins her freshman year with a new look: she doesn’t need to be popular; she just needs to blend in with the wallpaper.

But then the unthinkable happens and Ellie is trapped after a brutal assault. She wasn't the first victim and now she watches it happen again and again. She tries to hold on to her happier memories in order to get past the cold days, waiting for someone to find her.

The problem is, no one searches for a girl they never noticed in the first place.

TE Carter’s stirring and visceral debut not only discusses and dismantles rape culture but also makes you slow down and think about what it is to be human.




Pre-Order your copy HERE!


Excerpt:
It was three days into school and my locker was stuck. I figured I had the combination wrong and tried again, but it wouldn’t open. The late August day was too warm and sweat was spilling down my new shirt. The school didn’t want to spring for air conditioning, so we finished the day with our clothes stuck to us.
“Having trouble?” He leaned against my locker with all the confidence in the world. I’d seen him a few times. We weren’t in classes together, but he’d smiled at me every day because his math class was across the hall from mine. On the first day, he’d winked at me. On the second day, he’d commented on my shirt. It was self-deprecating – a shirt that mocked my introversion by claiming reading the shirt was enough social interaction for a day. We’d run into each other in the hall between classes and he’d laughed at it. And said I was too cute to be antisocial.
And now he stood at my locker, smiling at me while I tried to get it open.
“My locker’s stuck,” I told him. It was obvious since I was pulling on it, but I told him anyway.
“You’re new here.” A statement, not a question.
“Sort of. I mean, I’ve lived here forever. But here, yeah. I went to St. Elizabeth’s.”
He pushed me to the side. “Cool. I’m Caleb.” Punching the bottom right of the metal door, he simultaneously spun the dial into place. It opened on the first try. “Sometimes you gotta rough ‘em up a bit. They’re tricky like that.”
“Ellie. I mean, you didn’t ask, but I’m Ellie.”
He leaned back against the locker beside mine while I found my books. Three days and I already had a bag full of homework.
“Nice to officially meet you, Ellie. Elusive girl from the hallway.”
“I’m not elusive. That’s where my class is,” I said.
He laughed as if I was the most hilarious person he’d ever met. “Yeah. So, Miss Not Elusive, what’re you doing now?”
He wasn’t exactly attractive. There was something wrong about the way he moved, the way he smiled. Everything about Caleb was off somehow. He was tall, but he walked like he’d woken that morning into his tallness and now he couldn’t figure out how to get his body to work the same way.
There was also the way he smiled. It was cute, but it had this way about it. Like he’d learned about smiling from a textbook. The idea of smiling came through, but it seemed like he just followed the directions rather than actually smiled.
“I… um, nothing really. I have to read.”
We had a test Monday on summer reading, which I’d put off all summer to work on reinvention.
“What’re you reading?” He took my bag from me and rummaged through it. “Great Expectations? They’re still teaching this crap, huh?”
“Aren’t you, like, a junior?”
“Yeah. How’d you guess?”
I hadn’t had to guess. It had been three days, but everyone knew Caleb and his older brother, Noah; you didn’t need friends to know who they were. They walked through the school like the only people who’d ever mattered. It was probably true. 

About the Author

TE Carter was born in New England and has lived in New England for pretty much her entire life. Throughout her career, she’s done a lot of things, although her passion has always been writing. When she’s not writing, she can generally be found reading classic literature, obsessing over Game of Thrones (she’s one hundred percent Team Lannister), playing Xbox, organizing her comic collection, or binge watching baking competitions. She continues to live in New England with her husband and their two cats.

    


GIVEAWAY:


Monday, July 17, 2017

Blitz + Note, Excerpt, Teaser, and Giveaway: Caging at Deadwater manor by Sandie Will


The Caging at Deadwater Manor
by Sandie Will
Genre: YA/NA Psychological Thriller/Suspense
Release Date: March 31st 2017

Summary:

Time is running out for Jeannie, a young girl taken against her will by staff at Deadwater Manor - a psychiatric hospital with an unscrupulous past. Inspired by true events, this is a captivating story where Jeannie shares her heart-wrenching experience while undergoing treatments that will make you cringe.


On a cold, January evening, fourteen-year-old Jeannie Kynde is told that her beloved mother drowned in the murky waters along Florida's Gulf Coast. Her distraught father turns on Jeannie, no longer the caring father she once knew.
Four years later, Jeannie is finally old enough to escape her father's clutches, but he has different plans. He imprisons her at Deadwater Manor, a psychiatric hospital with an unscrupulous past.
Will she be locked away forever? Or can she fight against the nightmare that has now become her world?  


Buy Links:
Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XRJMJBB
Universal ebook link (international): books2read.com/u/me0vgZ

Note from the Author:
Hi everyone! I am a thriller/suspense Indie author. I write primarily in the YA/NA genre. My debut, The Caging at Deadwater Manor, was just released on March 31 and was written for mature young adults (16+) and older. This book has been professionally edited and the cover was done by a professional artist. I strive to provide high-quality books that stay with you - so I hope you'll find it an enjoyable read. The story evolved from experiences my dad had during short periods of his career at psychiatric hospitals. He shared patient routines, treatments, hospital layouts and stories, but the book primarily evolved from a discovery he made in the atticsomething that unnerved me enough to bring this book to life. Though the story is fiction, I've intertwined much of the information shared by my dad and research I performed while writing this book.


Excerpt:
I smile as I think of her, until my concentration is interrupted by footsteps coming down the hallway. I quickly look over to see if it’s my aunt.
It isn’t.
Instead, a male attendant greets me. His name badge identifies him as Drake.
“You’re Jean Kynde?” he inquires.
I nod.      
“Follow me, then.”
I follow him down the hallway to the wooden door I saw earlier and enter. This room is much larger than the reception area with pink walls and white accents. To the left is a glass office; a semi-circle nurses’ station. A couple rows of tables with metal chairs are scattered about, and a steel water fountain is stationed at the other side of the room.
Drake pulls out a chair for me and assures me he’ll be right back. As I wait for my aunt, I try to imagine how it would feel to be locked up with a guard on every corner.
I wonder if my aunt feels like a prisoner. Why in the world did she agree to come here?
My attention is soon drawn to a commotion outside the same door I entered. I listen, but all I can hear is some mumbling, perhaps arguing.
Eventually, another man comes through the door. He appears to be older, with gray hair and eyebrows and sagging skin on his neck. As he approaches, I can see the script writing on his lab coat.
Doctor Garrett Wiggins; this is Dad’s friend. Okay, so I’m in the right spot.
“Jeannie, correct?”
“Uh, yes. I’m here to see my aunt. Have you talked to my dad?”
“Yes, he’s been telling me about some issues.”
“Yeah, well, I guess my aunt had a nervous breakdown.”
“Aunt?”
“Yes, Lesley Odell. You have her chart there, right?”
He looks at me for a few seconds and then looks away, unable to find words. He pauses. I’m not sure what is going on, but I don’t like the uneasiness I’m feeling right now. I’m getting that gut feeling that something is wrong.
Did she die?
He pulls his chair closer to me like a true friend would. In a caring voice, he says softly, “Your aunt is not here.”
I stare at him blankly for a second and then ask, “What? What do you mean? She’s gone already or—or worse?” The reality of the situation starts to take hold as racing thoughts of never seeing her again start scaring me.
He touches my arm for a second and says, “Jeannie, listen to me carefully.” I try to focus more on his mouth, since my difficulty in hearing is worsened by the tall ceiling in the room. “Your aunt was never here.”
The racing thoughts stop. I look at him dead seriously, trying to figure out what the hell he’s telling me.
Is she dead or not?
I look toward the table for a minute, not sure what he’s going to tell me next.
She’s dead? She’s alive? She’s somewhere else? She’s a fucking FBI agent? What’s going on?
“What do you mean? Where is she?” I finally manage.
“I don’t really know. There’s no record of her here. What I want to concentrate on is you, now. How do you feel about this?”
 I frown and mumble, “Confused.”
He nods and says sincerely, “It’s understandable especially with the recent loss of your mom.” At least, I think that’s what he said.
I watch him, trying to figure out why we’re having this conversation. I don’t know how my dad knows this doctor, but his fake sincerity is not calming me. I glance over to the wooden door, and there are now two guards standing in front of them, one of which I recognize as Drake. Another door on the opposite side of the room opens, and two more guards move in.
This definitely doesn’t feel right.
“Hey, they’re just here for your protection,” the doctor says. I lean back in my chair, as he moves forward and whispers, “No worries.” His breath puffs across my hair, leaving me with a gift of strong cigarette stench. I try to lean back more but feel pinned. This guy does not know his boundaries. He starts stroking my arm in what seems like an attempt to comfort me, but it only makes me panic more. I can feel my palms moistening with every word.
“Is it okay if we talk for a while? I’d like to get to know you a little more, Jeannie. I’ve always heard your dad’s side of things, but the opportunity to hear your side is what’s important now. Why don’t we have you go relax in another room, and then you can come into my office a little later?”
I try hard not to show the panic that’s now taking over, hiding what I can of my heaving chest. It feels difficult to breathe with the short, shallow breaths that are now uncontrollable.
I’m going to have a panic attack.
I’m so screwed.
I look over to the guards, begging them not to force me behind the walls that will separate me from the rest of the world. I frantically search for a way to get myself out of what I know is inevitable, but it’s useless with all the guards.
I’m going to become the prisoner. I’m going to become the next rumor throughout the school.
It’s all part of a calculated plot my dad would be proud of. This is his victory—a victory that includes my never leaving Deadwater or having a life, even if he won’t be a part of it. As long as he knows where I am, he’ll be happy. I close my eyes in disgust, concerned about what I’m about to endure. I hate the unknown, but this is way beyond what any eighteen-year-old should have to experience.
“Jeannie, you still with me?” the doctor asks.
I look up at the cohort who is now starting to tug at my forearm.
“I think we need to get you comfortable.”
I frown between the doctor and the guards. They both come forward to “help” me. Gasping for air, I throw my chair backwards to try the only path of escape I can think of, but they’re too fast and catch the chair before I hit the ground.
“No! I am not going anywhere with you! I’m not a minor and my dad can’t institutionalize me without my consent. Let me out of here!”
“Well, Miss Kynde, you just signed all the consents. There’s nothing illegal here.”
What starts as a rational protest spirals out of control quickly. Panic sets in. I’m crying, screaming, and clawing at them. I try to kick their groins, but they predict that move and easily pin my legs to the chair.
I start breathing heavier now. Panic takes over, and I’m quickly losing control.
“Get the syringe!” orders Doctor Wiggins, pointing to the table next to the water fountain.
Drake holds out one of my arms and lunges backward for the syringe with his other arm, knocking the table over.
Oh, God! Get me out of here!
Drake is grasping for the syringe on the floor, so I take the opportunity to bite his forearm, causing him to bleed and withdraw his clutch. This does nothing but make things worse for me, though. Drake leaps toward me, pinning the back of my head against his stomach muscles. My free arm flails back and forth, as I try to reach something to use to hit him.
It’s no use.
Frantically, the doctor kicks the syringe toward Drake, and I watch in horror when the needle roughly enters my vein.

About the Author

Sandie Will is a young adult novelist who lives in Tampa Bay, Florida and works as a manager and geologist by day. She has written two novels and is currently working on her third. Her first novel, The Caging at Deadwater Manor, is a young adult psychological thriller that will be released on March 31, 2017. Her second is a time travel and her third will be another psychological thriller. She has been married to her husband, Charlie, for 30 years and they have two sons. Their home has been blessed by many laughs, hugs and one-too-many beer pong parties with college friends.