Sunday, May 27, 2018

Scallywagathon 2018 Wrap-Up

The Scallywagathon was a readathon that was from May 20th-27th, therefore it has ended today, and was hosted by Ali from HardbackHoarder and Amanda from Read All the Books. So the Scallywagathon is a readathon where the goal is to complete 4 of the challenges. You start between 1-5, and then you follow the path to the next challenge on the map. Here is the link to the official page for the readathon where the map and challenges are: Scallywagathon. I am also including the map below and the challenges so that you can see and maybe even decide if this is something you would like to participate in next year (given that it happens again next year).


So for this readathon, I have decided to start with challenge 5. So this is what I had planned on reading for this readathon.

5) Valiant by Lesley Livingston
6) Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
A) Impossible Vastness of Us by Samantha Young
9) This Darkness Mine by Mindy McGinnis

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But because I am a mood reader, I didn't read a single one of those books. Instead, these are the books that I ended up reading for this challenge.

5) Burn for Burn by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian
8) Reignited by Colleen Houck
A) Vilonia Beebe Takes Charge by Kristin L. Gray
9) Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

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Blitz + Excerpt and Giveaway: Moonlight and Midtown by Christina Bauer


Moonlight And Midtown
Christina Bauer
(Fairy Tales of the Magicorum #1.5)
Published by: Monster House Books
Publication date: May 27th 2018
Genres: Fairy Tales, Fantasy, Young Adult
After battling werewolves and evil aunties, Bryar Rose is ready to enjoy her new life. No more crazy aunties. Her curse is toast. And Bry’s new man, Knox, is literally a dream come true. Best of all, Bry will soon attend a regular high school. Forget those sketchy tutors! To get ready, Bry is dedicating the rest of her summer to some serious back-to-school shopping with her best friend, Elle. It’s a blast, except for one thing:
Mysterious strangers are following Bry across Manhattan.
All these stalkers have oddly familiar scents and an uncanny ability to slip into the shadows whenever Bry tries to confront them. Even worse, their presence is making Knox act crazy with a capital C.
But Bry’s having none of it. Enough of her life has already been ruined by secrets. With Elle’s help, Bry plans to confront these strangers, find out what they want, and send them packing. Trouble is, the truth about their identity won’t be so easy to manage, especially when Bry finds out how these stalkers could change her future with Knox…and not for the better.
***An interim novella between WOLVES AND ROSES and SHIFTERS AND GLYPHS***


About The Series
The Fairy Tales of the Magicorum series includes WOLVES AND ROSES (Book 1), MOONLIGHT AND MIDTOWN (Novella 1.5) and SHIFTERS AND GLYPHS (Book 2, Fall 2018). Eight full novels are planned in total.

EXCERPT:
“That’s why packs have Alphas,” says Knox. “You need to set her loose, and then, let her attack me.”
Every inch of my body goes on alert. “Attack you? Why?”
“Your wolf has been through a lot. Ritual fighting is how wolves work out their place in the pack. Your wolf needs a firm hand.”
I stare at my palm. “Firm hand?”
“I’m not talking about physical power here. I’m talking magic. My power is Alpha energy, but you’ve got your own magic. Once I subdue your wolf, I think you’ll get the idea.”
My head feels woozy. “Ritual combat? Really?”
“Yes. Release your wolf and attack me. Now.”
I hug my elbows. “I’m not sure. If I’m patient, my inner wolf might just calm down on her own.”
“That’s not how wolves work, even when they aren’t of the magical variety. And a werewolf? Our animals are far more intense. I’m your Alpha, and if I let this go on for one more minute, I’m putting you at risk.”
Something in his tone sets my nerves on edge. “Meaning?”
“Your wolf will go feral. When it happens, it’s fast and intense. Your wolf will take over and you’ll disappear.”
I suck in a shaky breath. “She wouldn’t.”
My wolf’s voice sounds in my head. “We will run! I demand we shift NOW!
That manic tone to her voice is now higher than ever before. Every inch of my body trembles with the urge to shift. I reply to my wolf in my mind.
Didn’t you hear what Knox said?” Normally, my wolf can’t help but listen in on most of my conversations. “Our mate thinks you’re going feral.
Mate?” The manic tone to her voice hikes up an octave. “We have no mate. All we have is the need to run.
A chill runs up my spine. “You don’t remember our mate?
No mate! Run, now!
My blood chills. No matter what happens, my wolf always knows her mate. In fact, my usual complaint is that she won’t shut up about him.
This is really happening. My wolf is going feral.
All of a sudden, it’s like I can’t pull in enough air. “You’re right. My inner wolf is losing her mind.”
“Hey, I won’t let that happen.” Knox rests his hands on my shoulders. “Breathe, Bry.”
It takes serious concentration, but I slow my racing pulse a little. “Okay.”
“Now, you need to set your wolf loose and trust me. Can you do that, yeah?”
“I can try.”
“Good.” Knox pulls off his dress shirt over his head and tosses it aside. “Set her loose.”
Normally, the urge to shift is a constant tug of war between me and my wolf. Most times, all it takes is for me to stop fighting the urge to shift. After that, I turn furry. So that’s what I do now—I drop my guard and let my wolf take over.


Author Bio:
Christina Bauer knows how to tell stories about kick-ass women. In her best selling Angelbound series, the heroine is a part-demon girl who loves to fight in Purgatory’s Arena and falls in love with a part-angel prince. This young adult best seller has driven more than 500,000 ebook downloads and 9,000 reviews on Goodreads and retailers. The first three books in the series are now available as audiobooks on Audible and iTunes.
Bauer has also told the story of the Women’s March on Washington by leading PR efforts for the Massachusetts Chapter. Her pre-event press release—the only one sent out on a major wire service—resulted in more than 19,000 global impressions and redistribution by over 350 different media entities including the Associated Press.
Christina graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School with BA’s in English along with Television, Radio, and Film Production. She lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby.



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Saturday, May 26, 2018

Review: Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

24909347Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Kady, Ezra, Hanna, and Nik narrowly escaped with their lives from the attacks on Heimdall station and now find themselves crammed with 2,000 refugees on the container ship, Mao. With the jump station destroyed and their resources scarce, the only option is to return to Kerenza—but who knows what they'll find seven months after the invasion? 

Meanwhile, Kady's cousin, Asha, survived the initial BeiTech assault and has joined Kerenza's ragtag underground resistance. When Rhys—an old flame from Asha's past—reappears on Kerenza, the two find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict. 

With time running out, a final battle will be waged on land and in space, heroes will fall, and hearts will be broken.






Pages: 615
Format: Hardback
Published By: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Illustrator: Marie Lu
Genre: YA - Sci-Fi
Series: Illuminae Files

Rating:
✮✮✮

Review:
Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff was another amazing continuation of the Illuminae Files, taking place right after the events of Gemina, but with an addition of new perspectives. I loved it almost as much as the first two, my biggest problem with the book is there were quite a few moments where the viewpoints throughout the novel were from previous characters from the series, and I felt that I didn't get to really know the characters in this book as much. It was still a great book, and hooked me from the beginning, and didn't take any time at all for me to finish. Obsidio takes place on Kerenza, which is Kady, Ezra, and Asha's home planet, and the planet that our previous characters are heading. Overall, I feel that there isn't as much going on as with the previous novels, there is mainly only one thing happening: BeiTech and the resistance.

So I really liked Asha, but she wasn't as hands-on kick-butt as our previous heroines, although she was willing to do everything in her power to protect a little girl in her care. She's still a very strong female character. I was also a huge fan of Rhys, and I felt that if we had seen more of him than I would have liked him more than Ezra because he has a strong moral compass and isn't afraid to challenge what he thinks is wrong. The big problem I had with this book in regards to our romance is that I just didn't feel the chemistry as much with these characters as I did with our previous couples, but I still liked Asha and Rhys as a couple.

And once more, my favorite part about this series was the way it was told through documents: emails/IMs, files, reports, interviews, and art. I just loved the uniqueness in that regard.

I would highly recommend this series if you haven't yet had the chance to pick it up yet. Yes, it's a rather long series, but because of the way it's written, it's a fairly quick read (in my opinon), and didn't take long to get through.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Review: Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

29236299Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Moving to a space station at the edge of the galaxy was always going to be the death of Hanna’s social life. Nobody said it might actually get her killed.

The sci-fi saga that began with the breakout bestseller Illuminae continues on board the Jump Station Heimdall, where two new characters will confront the next wave of the BeiTech assault.

Hanna is the station captain’s pampered daughter; Nik the reluctant member of a notorious crime family. But while the pair are struggling with the realities of life aboard the galaxy’s most boring space station, little do they know that Kady Grant and the Hypatia are headed right toward Heimdall, carrying news of the Kerenza invasion.

When an elite BeiTech strike team invades the station, Hanna and Nik are thrown together to defend their home. But alien predators are picking off the station residents one by one, and a malfunction in the station’s wormhole means the space-time continuum might be ripped in two before dinner. Soon Hanna and Nik aren’t just fighting for their own survival; the fate of everyone on the Hypatia—and possibly the known universe—is in their hands.

But relax. They’ve totally got this. They hope.

Pages: 659
Format: Hardback
Published By: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Illustrator: Marie Lu
Genre: YA - Sci-Fi
Series: Illuminae Files

Rating:
✮✮✮

Review:
Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff is the continuation of Illuminae, taking place right after but from different perspectives, and as was the case with the first novel - it was one of the best novels I've read and I loved it as equally as Illuminae. I was already hooked from the first novel, but it took me even less time to get through Gemina. It was a blend of action, intrigue, and the perfect dose of romance between Hannah and Nik. This story takes place on the Heimdall station that Kady and Ezra are currently heading for, and as before a lot goes on in this novel: BeiTech causing more problems, a space-time continuum concern, and aliens feasting on the people on the station.

What I love most about this series is how kick-butt our female heroines are. Hanna wasn't afraid to do anything if it meant protecting her friends and doing what must be done. She's also really good with hand-to-hand combat and she has a great personality. Nik is a hardened criminal who has a sweet side to him, and he's also really great (personally I love Ezra more). And I just love the flirting, and the slow building of the relationship between Nik and Hanna. Anothe great thing about this book is that you get another female hacker, Nik's cousin, Ella. And all of our characters from book one make an appearance in this novel, including our friendly murderous AI, AIDAN.

One of my favorite things about this novel was obviously how the story was told through documents: emails/IMs, files, reports, interviews, and art. I just love how unique this series is in that regard.

I would highly recommend this novel if you haven't yet had the chance to pick it up. Yes, it's a rather long novel, but because of the way it was written, it's such a quick read (at least it was for me), and didn't take me long to get through.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Tour + Excerpt, Trailer, and Teasers: Phoenix Cycle: Best Shall Rise by Bob Collopy


35148208The Phoenix Cycle: The Best Shall Rise
Genre: YA/Adult Dystopian
Release Date: July 21st 2017
The Department of Smoke

The Best Shall Rise

New San Francisco is the last city standing on a world ravaged by storms of ash and debris. The city survived by putting the ideals of the American dream on steroids and inspiring its people to persevere, though they have become ruthless in the process. Its citizens are ruled by the General, who has made sure that his people understand that gentleness and pity have become weaknesses that nature no longer tolerates.

Now Steve and Leslie must choose whether they will apply for the General’s once in a lifetime opportunity to “Rise from the Ashes” and join the Inner Circle that rules the city. If they don’t, they will be damned to spend the rest of their lives in the ghettos of Edingburg, a place where virtual reality has become a government-subsidized addiction.

For Steve, the choice is easy. His loyalties lie with the IRA, a revolutionary army led by a voice only known as “Mom.” They are trying to overthrow the General and free the people of New San Francisco from the cruelties of the City Guard. Steve’s mission is to broadcast a recording of a speech that a famous philosopher died to tell. Many thousands have and will perish to get this message out, but is anyone willing to listen?


Trailer



About the Author
Bob Collopy was raised on southern values. A world of rigidity and blind faith. He was then moved to Sedona. A near cultlike world, grown from 1960's flower children. He was then moved to Scottsdale. A world of extreme wealth and vice. He then went to college and joined a fraternity so notorious it was on national and world news multiple times. 
Due to these shifts, Bob always found himself the the semilucid observer; constantly confused and adjusting to new and opposing sets of norms few cultures would ever call normal or even acceptable. 
The city Bob has created is a blending of these intense and opposing cultures and the people trying to survive and conquer them.



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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Reread, Rewrite, or Burn Tag

So I'm trying to get back into the swing of doing tags since it's been awhile since I last did one. And now that school is out of the way, I can finally do more than just reviews and tour posts on my page. Although, I am potentially going to do fewer and fewer tours and blitzes than I have done in the past, just so my blog features more than that.

Anyway, unto this Tag: Reread, Rewrite, or Burn Tag. Essentially you have three books that you have to decide whether you are going to reread, rewrite, or burn the book. Since I am doing this on a blog rather than a vlog, I'm going to randomize and choose through my Goodreads read list. And since I am using Goodreads, there will be older and newer books.

I am going to do 10 because otherwise, I think it would take forever for me to complete. I am also doing one for my adult blog, which you can check out here. This will have 15.

1. Intertwined by Gena Showalter, Freedom Writers Diary by Erin Gruwell and the Freedom Writers, and Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
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This one was rather easy. I would definitely reread Evolution of Mara Dyer because I loved everything about that trilogy, I would rewrite Intertwined because although I did enjoy the book, there were a few things that I didn't love about it, and I would burn Freedom Writers Diary (which isn't a bad book, and I think everyone should try to read it - it just wasn't a favorite nonfiction book that I have read).

2. Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa, Boys Next Door by Jennifer Echols, and Swan Kingdom by Zoe Marriott
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This was another easy one. Immortal Rules would be a definite reread because it's amazing, and one of the few vampire books that I love. Boys Next Door would be the rewrite because looking back, I don't think I would have enjoyed this one as much and I know I would have more issues with it. And the burn would be Swan Kingdom because it wasn't a really memorable read and I didn't enjoy it that much.

3. Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi, In the Shadow of the Lamp by Susanne Dunlap, and Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
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This one was not so easy, at least for burn and rewrite. The reread was easy because there's only one book on this list that I really enjoyed and that is Under the Never Sky. The problem is In the Shadow of the Lamp wasn't memorable and I don't really know what I liked and did not like about this book but I really didn't like Forest of Hands and Teeth, but I know why and I know that I could fix it if I chose to rewrite it. So I think I would rewrite In the Shadow of the Lamp, and burn Forest of Hands and Teeth because I just feel like I could love In the Shadow of the Lamp more because of what it is about.

4. Host by Stephanie Meyer, Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis, and Scarlet Moon by Debbie Viguie
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So this was another more difficult one, but for a little different reason. I loved Madness So Discreet, so that would be a definite reread. The hard part is which one to burn and which one to rewrite because I really enjoyed both the Host and Scarlet Moon. In the end, I think I would go with Scarlet Moon as a rewrite because I prefer fairytale retellings, and therefore I would have to burn the Host.

5. Deadly Little Secret by Laurie Faria Stolarz, Never Eighteen by Megan Bostic, and Masquerade by Melissa de la Cruz
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This was easy, thank goodness. I would reread Deadly Little Secret because out of the three, it was my favorite. I would rewrite Masquerade because there was potential for the book, and I would hands down burn Never Eighteen because I could barely stand this book, and I only finished it because it was a quick read.

6. Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls by Julie Schumacher, Possessions by Nancy Holder, and Lucky in Love by Kasie West

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This was once more, rather easy to do. I loved Lucky in Love by Kasie West and would definitely reread. I absolutely hated Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls, and don't know why I didn't just DNF the book, but anyway, I would burn it. Therefore I would rewrite Possessions because it's last and it does have potential to be an amazing book.

7. Salt & Stone by Victoria Scott, Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness, and Dark Visions by L.J. Smith
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This was too easy. I would reread Salt & Stone over and over and over. I would burn Knife of Never Letting Go because it wasn't a favorite of mine, and even though I gave it 3 stars, I'm fairly certain if I were to reread it now, I would give it 2 stars. That leaves Dark Visions to be rewritten, which works because I feel that it has a lot of potential.

8. Escape from Asylum by Madeleine Roux, Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol, and Wither by Lauren DeStefano
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This was another difficult one. So first off, I would burn Anya's Ghost because I really didn't care for the character of the plot, but it was a quick read because it was a comic which is why I didn't DNF it. That leaves rereading and rewriting, and I'm so conflicted, but in the end, I'm going to go with Escape from Asylum for rewriting because there were a few slow scenes that I didn't care for, and I'm going to reread Wither because I just loved the concept of the trilogy.

9. Darker Still by Leanna Renee Hieber, Hanging by a Thread by Sophie Littlefield, and Supernaturally by Kiersten White
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This is rough. I enjoyed all of these, and although I didn't equally rate them, I don't really want to burn any of them. So this is what I would do, I would reread Darker Still because it was an interesting and amazing book. I would rewrite Hanging by a Thread because it had so much potential, and I am going to burn Supernaturally because I'm fine with having read it once in my life.

And finally onto the last one...

10. Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles, Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin, and Betrayal by Gregg Olsen
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This is another tough one. So, although I really enjoyed Perfect Chemistry, it's not really in the running, so I'm going to burn it. This is much harder than my choice back at #8 was. I think I'm going to go with Betrayal as my reread because I love everything about this book and series, and I'm going to rewrite Masque of the Red Death in a way that will make the second book have to also be rewritten so that I like that one much better.