Posts Categorized: Blog Tours

Blog Tour: Concentr8 by William Sutcliffe

January 26, 2016 Blog Tours 1

Blog Tour: Concentr8 by William Sutcliffe

Blog Tour: Concentr8 by William SutcliffeConcentr8 by William Sutcliffe
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens on January 19th 2016
Pages: 256
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
In a future London, Concentr8 is a prescription drug intended to help kids with ADD. Soon every troubled teen is on it. It makes sense, doesn't it? Keep the undesirable elements in line. Keep people like us safe from people like them. What's good for society is good for everyone. Troy, Femi, Lee, Karen and Blaze have been taking Concentr8 as long as they can remember. They're not exactly a gang, but Blaze is their leader, and Troy has always been his quiet, watchful sidekick - the only one Blaze really trusts. They're not looking for trouble, but one hot summer day, when riots break out across the city, they find it. What makes five kids pick a man seemingly at random - a nobody, he works in the housing department, doesn't even have a good phone - hold a knife to his side, take him to a warehouse and chain him to a radiator? They've got a hostage, but don't really know what they want, or why they've done it. And across the course of five tense days, with a journalist, a floppy-haired mayor, a police negotiator, and the sinister face of the pharmaceutical industry, they - and we - begin to understand why ...This is a book about what how we label children. It's about how kids get lost and failed by the system. It's about how politicians manipulate them. Gripping and controversial reading for fans of Malorie Blackman and Patrick Ness.

Hi all! Concentr8 is a book that deals with underage crimes, as well as many other issues including mental health! I felt like it would be most fitting to focus more on books that also feature underage crimes of some form taking place. Here is what author William Sutcliffe came up with:

Top 10 novels featuring underage felons and/or criminal behaviour:

  1. A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess
  2. The Cement Garden – Ian McEwan
  3. Holes – Louis Sachar
  4. Brighton Rock – Graham Greene
  5. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
  6. The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins
  7. Weightless – Sarah Bannan
  8. Rumble Fish – S.E Hinton
  9. The Book Thief – Markus Zusak
  10. In Darkness – Nick Lake

ABOUT WILLIAM SUTCLIFFE:

William Sutcliffe c. Maggie O'Farrell

William Sutcliffe is the author of the young adult novel The Wall, which was published in 2013 to much critical acclaim, including being short-listed for the 2014 Carnegie Medal and long-listed for the 2013 Guardian Fiction Prize. He also wrote five adult novels, including the international bestseller, Are You Experienced, and a middle-grade novel, Circus of Thieves and the Raffle of Doom. William currently lives in Edinburgh.

Tour Schedule:

Week 1:

1/18: Who R U Blog – Guest Post

1/19: Reading Is Better With Cupcakes – Pocket Letter

1/20: A Book & A Latte – How I Write

1/21: Kelly Vision – Review

1/22: The Cover Contessa – Q&A

 

Week 2:

1/25: The Petite Book Blogger – Review

1/26: Go Read A Book – Top 10

1/27: Resch Reads & Reviews – Review

1/28: Emily Reads Everything – Q&A

1/29: Avid Reader – Review

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Divider

Blog Tour: Heart in a Box Review

January 22, 2016 Blog Tours, Reviews, Young Adult 4 ★★★★

Blog Tour: Heart in a Box Review

Blog Tour: Heart in a Box ReviewHeart in a Box by Catherine Stine
Published by Inkspell Publishing on December 20th 2015
Pages: 270
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Each heartbeat leads Joss closer a shocking truth that will change everything.
Joss Olstad wins the fight to switch from her private school to a public high to “find her pieces” she lost when the Indian artist father she never knew died. There, Joss struggles with a slutty friend, who flirts with her new love; Indian Culture Club girls who press her on her past, as well as her stoner mother’s lies back at home. Armed only with her handmade heart boxes that hold private messages, Joss’s search for identity leads her to a scary industrial section of Queens, and a shocking family secret that changes everything.

I was pleasantly surprised by this fast paced and adorable coming-of-age story. I think the key to writing a convincing tale about a high school girl just trying to figure out her place in this world is to make the reader really believe in the character. I personally felt as if Catherine Stine did a fantastic job at properly conveying this. Joss was a great protagonist, I found myself really cheering for her throughout Heart in a Box. My favorite character was definitely Will, the love interest in the book. I’ll talk a lot more about him a little later on in the post. If you’re looking for a well written high school story, check out this one. I’m sure you’ll like what you find!

This book really captures the mess that is growing up. More than that, Joss struggles with her identity which is something that anyone who made it through high school (or even middle school for that matter) can relate to. As I said, I really enjoyed this character. I felt like her personality just got better and more developed with every single page. Additionally, I felt like Joss’s mother was a very important and memorable character. Like her daughter, she is also extremely headstrong and stubborn. Anyway, I found myself completely intrigued by this dynamic.

Will was a super swoony love interest. Seriously guys, Will was a fantastic character all around. He and Joss were two characters that simply worked together. That may not make a whole lot of sense, but basically, they felt like a realistic high school couple to me which can be tough to find in YA at times. I loved how supportive he was of Joss, I just loved everything about this honestly! Should you read this? Definitely. This is definitely your kind of book if you want a realistic look at a teenager that also explores identity, family, and of course, love.

About the author:

Catherine Stine

Catherine Stine writes YA and romance. Her novels span the range from futuristic to supernatural to contemporary. Her YA sci-fi thrillers Fireseed One and Ruby’s Fire are Amazon bestsellers and indie award winners. Her YA, Dorianna won Best Horror Book in the Kindle Hub Awards. She also writes romance as Kitsy Clare. Her Art of Love series includes Model Position and Private Internship. She suspects her love of dark fantasy came from her father reading Edgar Allen Poe to her as a child, and her love of contemporary fiction comes from being a jubilant realist. Visit her at catherinestine.com and subscribe to her newsletter for news of releases, workshops and appearances.

Catherine’s website: http://catherinestine.com/wp/
Subscribe to Catherine’s newsletter: http://catherinestine.us6.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=1fe566b1e53f7d3e95b7443e4&id=93554d599e
Blog: http://catherinestine.blogspot.com/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/kitsy84557/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1018139.Catherine_Stine
Catherine’s Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Catherine-Stine/e/B001H9TXJC/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1439242205&sr=8-2-ent
Catherine on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorcatherinestine?ref=hl
Twitter: https://twitter.com/crossoverwriter

Giveaway Information: Provided by the Author

The prize pack includes:
A $40 gift card, 2 hand-painted heart-boxes with secret treasure inside, a signed paperback of Dorianna by Catherine Stine, a signed paperback of Heart in a Box by Catherine Stine, a great YA ebook pack of novels: Tiger Lily by Wende Dikec, When Sorrows Come by Katie M John, and Time Runs Away with Her by Christine Potter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

HIAB promo Jan

four-stars

Divider

Blog Tour: Not Okay, Cupid Review

January 20, 2016 Blog Tours, Giveaways, Reviews, Young Adult 3 ★★★

Blog Tour: Not Okay, Cupid Review

Blog Tour: Not Okay, Cupid ReviewNot Okay Cupid by Heidi R. Kling
on January 11th 2016
Pages: 234
Also by this author: Paint My Body Red
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
three-stars
Her wicked revenge, or his wicked heart...
Hazel McCallister loves her life. Perfect grades. Perfect best friend. Perfect boyfriend. Until her perfect boyfriend cheats on her with her perfect best friend. Now Hazel’s in free fall—until her best friend’s brother, Felix, gives her the perfect idea. Reclaim her power by taking revenge on her cheating ex.
Felix James loves his life. Casual relationships. Loads of surfing. He’s as drama-free as they come. But he can’t stand by when his sister steals her best friend’s boyfriend, and the dude insists it was Hazel’s fault. So Felix vows to help turn Hazel into a girl her ex can’t resist—so then she can break his heart.
With an alliance in place, Hazel’s revenge is all but assured. But with each piece of payback, she feels a stronger attraction to Felix, even though revenge will turn her into a girl Felix could never be with. And soon Hazel has to make an impossible choice: revenge...or Felix, the boy who’s stolen her heart.
WARNING! This book contains betrayal, revenge, and that most tempting vice of all, the bad boy you know you can't have.

So far, I’ve found Entangled Crush’s books to be light and fluffy contemporary reads that are loaded with high school drama. Some of that drama works for me, but some of it just feels like overkill. In the case of Not Okay, Cupid, I thought it was sweet at times but the drama did bother me at certain times. However, the awesome banter between Felix and Hazel kept me going. I’m always a sucker for the brother’s best friend and also the best friend’s older brother trope, and this was no exception. There’s just something about these types of relationships that feels more real due to the longtime history that exists between the two of them. So to summarize, some aspects of the book really worked for me while others fell a little short. I recommend this to anyone that wants something short and sweet, filled with plenty of drama within the pages!

Truthfully, I think it was the characters that were my favorite part of the book. Specifically, Hazel and Felix and the witty love-hate friendship to relationship that built. I’m not always a huge fan of fake relationships, but I felt like in this case, it allowed for the pair to get to know each other in a completely new way. While I did enjoy both Hazel and Felix, I wasn’t a fan of the supporting characters, Hazel’s boyfriend and her best friend (also Felix’s sister) who had an affair together. I felt like her best friend’s character wasn’t fully explored, she never was genuinely sorry for what she did and that bothered me a lot. I wanted more depth to the character.

As I already said, definitely pick this one up if you’re looking for a lighter read. Yes, there’s a lot of drama, some of which I think the book would have worked better without, but it was still a quick fluffy read which I needed. While you’re at it, check out some of the other Entangled Crush titles, because the majority of them are very cute!

About the Author:

heidi-r-kling

After earning her BA in Literature & Creative Writing Literature from UC Santa Cruz and finding her voice in YA, Heidi went on to earn her MFA in Writing for Children from The New School. She has directed and written children’s theatre on both coasts and lives with her husband and two children in Palo Alto, CA.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2936539.Heidi_R_Kling

Website: http://heidirkling.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HeidiRKling

Tumblr: http://heidirkling.tumblr.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/heidi.r.kling

Copy of NOC1

Read below for an excerpt from the book:

I watched in horror as Kimmy’s lips grazed Jay’s ear. He leaned back and laughed. What the heck was going on?

“Oh God!” Hazel said, grabbing my hand. “Look at her hand.”

Kimmy’s hand was riding high up Jay’s shorts. High, high. Like top of thigh high. The kind of move that usually let me know a girl was ready to get down to business.

“Dude,” I said, because what else could I say?

Hazel swallowed. “Did you know about this?”

“Me? No way. Hell no. I’ve been looking for her all day, too. Look, Baze, don’t overreact. We don’t know anything. Who knows. He might have…lost a match and she’s…comforting him. Or his turtle died and they’re planning a eulogy together?” I was grasping and we both knew it, but I couldn’t stand to see that pained look on her face. “I once heard the best eulogy for a frog. It was amazing. It was all about the life cycle from tadpole to amphibian to…”

“Shut up, Felix.”

“Shutting up.”

Hazel brushed past me and barreled toward them. It was no turtle eulogy, and I knew it. I mean, I didn’t know I knew it, but I knew the look of two people who were digging on each other, and those two were certainly all about the other one. God, poor Hazel.

Oh no. There she goes.

I had to follow her. I had to help.

“Excuse me,” I said to a group of three ladies in my way. Two of them grinned at me, one glared. The glaring one was a girl I’d forgotten to call back. I ducked, sheepishly, with a little apologetic wave, and came out on the other side.

I’d never even heard Hazel raise her voice, never mind cry. Never mind cry in public. But I didn’t need to use my astute Sherlock skills to see Hazel was on the verge of doing all three. She stopped close to Jay and Kimmy, like she was verifying what she was seeing was real.

One more intimate touch from Kimmy on Jay and that was it. Hazel moved in for the kill.

Copy of NOC11

The Giveaway:

a #Heartbreak tank top that looks like this and was inspired by Not Okay, Cupid (as the series name for this book is High School Heartbreakers): https://shirtmeuptees.com/product/smu-02-hash?shirt_style=womenstank&customtext=heartbreak

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Tour Schedule:

January 11th
The Phantom Paragrapher – Review
The Book Beacon – Top Ten Post
January 12th
Cassandra M’s Place – Promo Post
[Not] Write in the Head – Promo Post
January 13th
Addicted to Books – Review
RoloPoloBookBlog – Review
January 14th
The Procrastinator’s Corner – Review
The Shadow Realm – Promo Post
January 15th
Book Briefs – Review
YaReads – Review
January 16th
The Rest Is Still Unwritten – Review
Roxy’s Reviews – Guest Post
January 17th
The Rest Is Still Unwritten – Guest Post
January 18th
Beanie’s Book Blog – Review
January 19th
Crossroad Review – Promo Post
January 20th
Just One More Chapter – Promo Post

Go Read a Book – Review
Book Briefs – Review
January 21st
Jody’s Book Reviews – Promo Post
January 22nd
OriginiquEquanimity – Review
Media Geeks Unite – Promo Post
January 23rd
YaReads – Interview
January 24th
Adventures in Writing – Review

Copy of NOC4
three-stars

Divider

Blog Tour: The Heir and the Spare Review

January 17, 2016 Blog Tours, Reviews, Young Adult 1

The Heir and the Spare
by Emily Albright
Publisher: Merit Press
Release Date: January 18th 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Chick Lit, British Literature, New Adult
Rate: 3/5
Synopsis:
Family can be complicated. Especially when skeletons from the past pop up unexpectedly. For American Evie Gray, finding out her deceased mother had a secret identity, and not one of the caped crusader variety, was quite the surprise. Evie’s mom had a secret life before she was even born, one that involved tiaras.
In this modern day fairytale, Evie is on a path to figure out who her mom really was, while discovering for herself what the future will hold. Charged with her late mother’s letters, Evie embarks on a quest into her past. The first item on the list is to attend Oxford, her mom’s alma mater. There, Evie stumbles upon a real life prince charming, Edmund Stuart the second Prince of England, who is all too happy to be the counterpart to her damsel in distress.
Evie can’t resist her growing attraction to Edmund as they spend more time together trying to unravel the clues her mother left behind. But, when doubts arise as to whether or not Edmund could ever be with an untitled American, what really ends up unraveling is Evie’s heart. When Evie uncovers all the facts about her mom’s former life, she realizes her mom’s past can open doors she never dreamed possible, doors that can help her be with Edmund. But, with everything now unveiled, Evie starts to crack under the pressure of new family responsibilities and the realization that her perfect prince may want her for all the wrong reasons.

To be honest, I was expecting a little more of a fairytale element to this book. Instead, Evie is actually a pretty normal girl who is just trying to live her life in her first year at Oxford, a school she attended after being led there courtesy of letters her deceased mother wrote her. But yes, she does get involved with the Prince, who she initially doesn’t recognize. I found it weird that he was attending university, but I also understand that the author wanted to paint Edmund as a character who desperately craved normalcy and found it from Evie. As a whole, I’d say this was a fun and fluffy read that was fast paced and easy to read in just one sitting. I never felt bored or like the story dragged on at any point, it went my pace the whole time. I’d recommend this book if you’re looking for a book that has a Princess Diaries feel to it. It’s a sweet romance that I definitely enjoyed!

The characters were very much well rounded and layered. I loved Evie’s voice and felt like she was headstrong but also had some of her slightly awkward moments from time to time. What really made the book for me was Edmund and the gang, which consists of fascinating supporting characters that Evie meets early on during her stay at the university. They all had distinctive personalities and I loved reading about them and following their journey alongside our main character Evie.

The romance between Edmund and Evie was pretty great. My only complaint is that the drama was a bit too much at times. At times, I was afraid that the two wouldn’t even end up together because of all the drama that kept getting in the way of them just being together. However, I really did like how the book ended. So though it wasn’t my favorite book, I definitely enjoyed it as a whole. I recommend it if you’re looking for a fast paced novel that has a beautiful setting!

 photo addtogoodreadssmall_zpsa2a6cf28.png photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg
Follow the The Heir and the Spare by Emily Albright Blog Tour and don’t miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.
Emily Albright’s debut novel, THE HEIR AND THE SPARE, is releasing January 18, 2016 from Merit Press.

She’s a writer, a major bookworm, a lover of romantic movies, a wife, a mother, an owner of one adorable (yet slightly insane) cockapoo, and uses way too many :).

US ONLY

Divider

Blog Tour: Every Big & Little Wish Review + Giveaway

January 12, 2016 Blog Tours, Reviews, Young Adult 3 ★★★½

Blog Tour: Every Big & Little Wish Review + Giveaway

Blog Tour: Every Big & Little Wish Review + GiveawayEvery Big & Little Wish by E.C. Moore
Published by Booktrope Publishing on October 20th 2015
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
three-half-stars
E.C. Moore’s young adult novel, Every Big and Little Wish, opens in late spring 1970. Sixteen-year-old Jacy Wilbert’s Mom got promoted, so her parents sold their Victorian home in California and moved to a townhouse in Oregon.
Torn away from the only home she's ever known, forced to leave her beloved German shepherd behind, Jacy feels misplaced. Exacerbating an already terrible situation, her dad runs off with the bombshell real estate agent who sold them their townhouse. And, just when it seems things can’t get any worse, her mom loses the stupid job they left California for in the first place and begins to drown her sorrows with pink wine, night after night. Jacy’s caught in the middle, struggling to maintain a relationship with her AWOL dad while tolerating his annoying, much-younger girlfriend.
Missing old friends back in California, and feeling like an outsider, Jacy needs to build a new social life in a new school. Not the sort of girl to wait around for what she wants to come her way, she sets her sights on Neil Wilder, the best-looking boy around.
Everything changes when Jacy Wilbert knocks on the wrong door.

So this was an interesting book that actually takes place in 1970. I was expecting a light cute little coming of age story about the good old 70’s, but that isn’t Every Big & Little Wish at all. This isn’t a bad thing at all, it was just a surprising twist of events for me as a reader. This is one of my absolute favorite decades and it’s one that we don’t get to see a lot of in YA books. I feel like the author did a decent job at sticking with the customs and even the current events that were going on back then. If you’re looking for a story that is fast paced and very intense, I recommend you give this one a try.

Was this my favorite book ever? No, it wasn’t but it was still something that I enjoyed reading. Truthfully, it was much darker than I expected, but I guess that the decade was darker in general considering the Vietnam War was still going on and hardcore drugs were extremely possible at the time. I loved how the book worked in hippies, but it completely shocked me when Jacy’s love interest, Neil, had a nine-year-old little brother who somehow got a hold of LSD.

What I liked the most about the book was how I was always aware of the time period, with some of these books, they still have a modern sort of feel to it, but this one didn’t. My favorite part about flashing back to the 70’s was easily the music. Jacy was my girl, I approved of all her music except for her dislike of my main guy Bob Dylan. All in all, she was such a fascinating character and I was able to relate to her which was a bit of a surprise. Neil was a character who brought a ton of drama to the table. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing though, I found myself totally glued to what curveball he was going to through Jacy about his family and himself. It kept me engaged to say the least!

Considering that I have so many positive things to say about this book, you may wonder why I didn’t rate it higher. For one, I felt as if some of the drama wasn’t really needed in terms of relating to the overall story. I also think that this isn’t a story for everyone, especially if you don’t have an interest in reading about this decade. The terms can get to be a little much if you’re used to reading more modern stories. That isn’t a crack on the author’s writing, I thought she handled it well, just saying that it might be overwhelming if you’re not used to hearing it or you feel like it’s outdated. I recommend this book if you’re looking for a coming-of-age story that is different from the others that you’ve probably read at one point or other.

AUTHOR BIO:

EC

When Elizabeth’s not writing feverishly, you will find her out walking or sightseeing. She’s crazy about coffee, books, cooking, good wine, cairn terriers, miniature ponies, historical houses, tapas, and witty people.

She resides in a fifties bungalow in Southern California, with her creative-director, hubba-hubba husband, a yappy blonde dog, and one feisty Chihuahua.

Author links:
http://www.ecmooreauthor.com/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8776496.E_C_Moore
https://www.facebook.com/e.c.mooreauthor?fref=ts
https://twitter.com/ecmooreauthor

a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBT250.png

three-half-stars

Divider

Blog Tour: Chasing Crazy Review + Giveaway

January 11, 2016 Blog Tours, Reviews 1 ★★★★

Blog Tour: Chasing Crazy Review + Giveaway

Blog Tour: Chasing Crazy Review + GiveawayChasing Crazy by Kelly Siskind
Published by Forever Yours on January 12th 2016
Pages: 340
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
"Chasing Crazy is an entertaining and compelling story about owning who you are. With an endearingly awkward female protagonist, a swoon-worthy male love interest, and Siskind's superb storytelling, this is one of the best New Adult contemporary romances I've read to date." ~ USA Today Bestselling author, K.A. Tucker
Dear Mom & Dad, I dropped out of school. I’m going backpacking. Sorry. Love you both.
At nineteen, Nina has endured two lifetime’s worth of humiliation. Tired of waiting for it to get better, she decides to get going—across the globe to New Zealand. There she soon faces what she most fears: a super sexy guy ready to be Nina’s next mistake.
Once Sam’s life was all about having fun. That was before the accident. Now his friends have bailed and his world is broken. But when a gorgeous girl on his flight looks at him with passion instead of pity, Sam feels his old self coming back to life.
Now traveling together, Nina and Sam know this isn’t just a fling. They’re falling fast, hard, and deep. More than anything, Sam wants Nina to forget her fears. But to help her do that he must reveal his own painful secret—and risk Nina never seeing him the same way again.

Chasing Crazy is a beautiful story about finding love, acceptance, and finding yourself along the way. It’s safe to say that I really enjoyed reading this one. I recommend it for anyone looking for a NA read that highlights the two main characters on an exciting adventure traveling across the world together. Yes, I’ve read New Adult books that have similar summaries where the MC is traveling by herself in order to get away and discover who she really is, then she meets an incredible guy on her journey who changes her life forever. What I liked about this one was how endearing and likable the characters were. I wanted the best for both Sam and Nina because both of them had such heartbreaking (well mostly Sam) stories that made me instantly want a HEA for them.

Nina was probably my favorite character. She was painfully awkward at times because she always found herself tripping over something or flashing the hot guy. Basically, the girl could always embarrass herself regardless of where she is. I related to that instantly, and found her a fun character and I really enjoyed her voice. This book had dual POV’s and I found myself extremely grateful for that. If we didn’t have it, we wouldn’t be able to know so much about Sam early on. You have to read the book to know exactly what I mean, but I’ll leave it at the guy has been through a ton of terrible things, and while he does share some of that early on, some of his thoughts are left secret. So I’m glad that we had the full insight to what he was thinking when Nina didn’t have a clue at times. As far as the supporting characters go, I absolutely loved Leigh and felt like she was a fabulous best friend to Nina. My favorite part of the friendship is that the two didn’t get along initially, but once Nina understood why she was acting that way towards her, the two struck up an unlikely friendship that really helped Nina through some confusing times with Sam. So in short, the characters are what really made the book unique to me.

As I said, I recommend Chasing Crazy to anyone who is looking for a NA book that may have some similar plots to others, but is different in the respect that all the characters have something fresh and memorable to offer. This was a fast paced story that I truly believed in, and I definitely think that you should give it a shot.

Giveaway

Kelly Siskind is giving away a $20 Amazon giftcard – and the exact necklace that Sam gave Nina in CHASING CRAZY. Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About Kelly Siskind

A small-town girl at heart, Kelly moved from the city to open a cheese shop with her husband in Northern Ontario. When she’s not neck deep in cheese or out hiking, you can find her, notepad in hand, scribbling down one of the many plot bunnies bouncing around in her head.

She laughs at her own jokes and has been known to eat her feelings—Gummy Bears heal all. She’s also an incurable romantic, devouring romance novels into the wee hours of the morning.

She is represented by Stacey Donaghy of the Donaghy Literary Group.

2015 Golden Heart® Finalist

Connect with Kelly Siskind

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

four-stars

Divider

Blog Tour: Half in Love with Death Review + Playlist + Favorite Quotes

December 19, 2015 Blog Tours, Reviews, Young Adult 0 ★★★

Blog Tour: Half in Love with Death Review + Playlist + Favorite Quotes

Blog Tour: Half in Love with Death Review + Playlist + Favorite QuotesHalf in Love with Death by Emily Ross
Published by Merit Press on December 16th 2015
Pages: 224
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
three-stars
It's the era of peace and love in the 1960s, but nothing is peaceful in Caroline's life. Since her beautiful older sister disappeared, fifteen-year-old Caroline might as well have disappeared too. She's invisible to her parents, who can't stop blaming each other. The police keep following up on leads even Caroline knows are foolish. The only one who seems to care about her is Tony, her sister's older boyfriend, who soothes Caroline's desperate heart every time he turns his magical blue eyes on her.
Tony is convinced that the answer to Jess's disappearance is in California, the land of endless summer, among the street culture of runaways and flower children. Come with me, Tony says to Caroline, and we'll find her together. Tony is so loving, and all he cares about is bringing Jess home. And so Caroline follows, and closes a door behind her that may never open again, in a heartfelt thriller that never lets up.

My Review:

Wow, this book was pretty intense! Going into it, I was definitely expecting that to be the case considering I knew that it was based on “The Pied Piper of Tuscan.” Having that knowledge going in, I knew from the beginning who the killer was going to be and I doubt it really is that much of a secret honestly. I think the intense part of the story really comes from the main character Caroline and whether or not she is able to see for herself the truth about the people around her. I wanted to yell at Caroline many times throughout the novel because she was seriously naive and way too trusting. However, I also think that’s realistic because often times, we tend to only see the good in people even if it’s obvious to everyone else that the person is completely dangerous. While not my favorite book, this was still a quality coming of age story that was a quick read that I enjoyed.

I was hoping that the 60’s would be a bigger part of the story! I love the decade and that was one of the key reasons I was drawn to this book. Yes, there were a few moments where 60’s music was listened to by Caroline, but for the most part, it was easy to forget what decade it was taking place in. The language in general felt more modern to me than I was expecting. Maybe that’s a picky thing that other people will hardly notice, but it just bothered me some.

Towards the end, the book gets crazy intense! I honestly had no idea what was going to happen. I really liked how Emily Ross chose to end the book though. I felt like it was a good way to wrap everything up. So all in all, I liked this book, but didn’t totally love it. I think it’s a good portrayal of a girl growing up and figuring out her way through life. That sounds like such a typical plot, but I promise it’s more unique and well written than it sounds! I recommend this book to readers who like intense thrilling books that keep you glued to the page.

Playlist:

I cheated a little on this because I actually interviewed Emily Ross for YA Reads Debut Author Bash and I asked her to name some 60’s songs that summed up the book. While all of these songs were mentioned by the author, all the descriptions are my own thoughts on the song and how they connect to the book.

As Tears Goes By – The Rolling Stones

While Emily Ross mentions the Marianne Faithfull version, I’m a sucker for the original track by the Stones. This song is also featured in the book in a pretty important scene for Caroline, so I feel like it’s very fitting, either version that you choose to listen to really!

Pied Piper – Crispian St. Peters

I’d actually never heard this song before! But I think it’s ridiculously appropriate for this specific case.

I’m Looking Through You – The Beatles

You know that no music list for something that takes place in the 60’s would be complete without a song by this classic band. I absolutely adore this song, though it’s not the most popular song from them. It’s just very fitting when discussing the character of Caroline and her confusing feelings about what’s true and what isn’t.

Favorite Quotes:

“People never look too close. And not just little kids. Everyone wants to believe in magic.”

“I want to believe in magic too, but not the silly little trick kind. I want to do real magic.”

“I believe you can do anything if you learn the right tricks.”

“And when our eyes met, his loneliness became a part of me. It was love.”

“I’ve been half in love with easeful Death.”

Follow the Half In Love With Death by Emily Ross Blog Tour and don’t miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

Emily Ross’s YA mystery/thriller HALF IN LOVE WITH DEATH is forthcoming from Merit Press(12/2015). She received a 2014 MCC Artist Fellowship finalist award for fiction, and is a graduate of Grub Street’s Novel Incubator program. When not writing she works as a web developer and is the mother of two millennials. Find out more at http://www.emilyrosswrites.com/ or https://twitter.com/emilyross816.

US ONLY

 

three-stars

Divider

Blog Tour: The Secrets We Kept Review

December 14, 2015 Blog Tours, Reviews, Young Adult 1 ★★★★

Blog Tour: The Secrets We Kept Review

Blog Tour: The Secrets We Kept ReviewThe Secrets We Kept by Lily Velez
Published by Blue Typewriter Press on November 8th 2015
Source: Publisher
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
One year. That's how long it's been since childhood sweethearts Sully Graham and Cadence Gilbertson broke up, since one adoption and one out-of-state move turned their worlds upside down.
Suddenly, Cadence is back in New York City, but something's different about her. The light in her eyes, the music in her laughter, the warmth in her smile—all of those things have entirely vanished. In their place stand the makings of a girl Sully can't even begin to recognize, much less understand.
Still, despite the collective history of heartbreak between them, he’s convinced he can win her trust again, and he’s committed to proving the invincibility of their love no matter what it takes.
But Cadence is quietly harboring secrets of her own. Dark secrets. Ugly secrets. Secrets that could break a person. And though broken herself and unbearably lonely, she's determined to protect Sully from her terrible, biting truths. Even if it means locking him out of her life forever.
The only problem is it seems her heart hasn’t quite received the memo. One glimpse of him is all it takes for her to trip into familiar (and, she’ll admit, addictive) feelings that threaten to all but consume her. Now her biggest fear is that her secrets will begin to slowly unravel one by one...long before Sully’s resolve ever does.
The Secrets We Kept is a moving story about first love, friendship, and forgiveness, and the enduring bonds that forever connect us and give us our strength.

Are you looking for a heartbreaking YA book that touches on themes like depression, first love, family, acceptance, and healing? Okay, maybe you aren’t specifically searching out for a book that covers every single one of those themes, but if just one of them appeals to you, then I suggest that you check this book out. Though it’s Lily Velez’s debut novel, she weaves together this complex story in a beautiful and natural way that makes it seem as if she’s been producing YA books for years. She truly gets inside the minds of these characters and makes you feel as if you’re right alongside them as they navigate the streets of New York City. This all might seem really cheesy to say, but I think that this was a delightful read as a whole and the characters were all extremely relatable and lovable.

I had some doubts about Cadence at times just because Sully is literally THE perfect character and she continually pushes him away. As the book progresses, we do learn more about what has made Cadence feel like she and Sully can never be together again. As the summary says, (and the title implies) there is this huge secret that Cadence is keeping from Sully that’s completely changed her. It might be me because I had actually just read a book very similar to this one, but I did see the secret coming. What I didn’t anticipate was the reaction to the secret which I’m not going to spoil for obvious reasons. The flashbacks to the romance that the couple had when they were kids was absolutely adorable and completely melted my heart. Couples having a history is one of my favorite tropes (if you even call it that) out there, and this one worked well for me.

Is this a perfect book? No, there were still some slight issues for me, but those minor things never got in the way of the overall story for me. I was still 100% invested in Cadence and Sully having a happily ever after. Still not sold on this book? Another one of my favorite things about the book was the supporting characters Spencer and Haley. Spencer is Sully’s brother, while Haley is a boy that they meet when he comes to stay with Spencer’s foster family after his parents die in a car accident. I loved the friendship that was built between Haley and Cadence. I also found Spencer to be both endearing and amusing. Yes, this book is about kids who navigate through both the foster care system, and the world itself, and the story is just as sad and beautiful as I was hoping it would be. Seriously, check this one out!

AUTHOR BIO:
Lily

Lily Velez has been writing stories since she was six years old. Not much has changed since then. She still prefers the written word and her overactive imagination over the ‘real world’ (though to be fair, her stories no longer feature talking dinosaurs). A graduate of Rollins College and a Florida native, when she’s not reading or writing, she spends most of her days wrangling up her pit bulls Noah and Luna, planning exciting travel adventures, and nursing her addiction to cheese. All this when she isn’t participating in the extreme sport known as napping. You can learn more about Lily and her books at www.lilyvelezbooks.com.

Lily’s debut young adult novel, The Secrets We Kept, released on November 8, 2015.

Giveaway:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBT250.png
four-stars

Divider

Blog Tour: Mystique Review + Giveaway

December 9, 2015 Blog Tours, Reviews, Young Adult 0 ★★★★

Blog Tour: Mystique Review + Giveaway

Blog Tour: Mystique Review + GiveawayMystique by Shari Arnold
Published by Createspace on November 17th 2015
Pages: 332
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Only Bauer Grant can pull off gorgeous while dead. But staying dead is another thing entirely. When he wakes up at his own funeral, the town of Mystique calls it a miracle, until it happens again. Something is bringing the residents of Mystique back to life, but what? Presley Caine finds herself caught up in the mystery when Bauer asks her to visit him. Presley can’t figure out why the most popular guy in school is so drawn to her. And when Bauer is kidnapped soon after, she looks to Bauer’s brooding best friend Sam, whose dad works for the powerful Mystique military base, for answers. In her quest to discover the truth, Presley’s relationship with Sam deepens, her feelings for Bauer are tested, and it becomes clear that her own mysterious past is somehow connected to these strange events. But is she strong enough to handle the truth when it is finally revealed?

Let me just start off by saying that I’ve never been a huge fan of paranormal books. I do enjoy a good thriller and a good story, which was something that Mystique mastered down to a science. I was surprised by how mesmerizing this book is due it’s unique way and also the gorgeous writing that just flowed completely naturally and draws you in from the first page. While I do think you’re more likely to really love this book if you’re a fan of the genre, it’s safe to say that pretty much the large majority of YA fans will still be able to find something to like about this one.

I felt like the characters were extremely well written and I was truly compelled to learn more about each one of them. Particularly, I felt connected to Presley and definitely felt bad for her because of all the complicated situations she has to deal with throughout the novel. I loved her and Sam together, I was always anxious for more scenes with them together because they are adorable.

I think the best part about this book is Shari Arnold’s writing. The way she tells the story makes the readers feel as if Mystique is really a town and you can’t help but want to know more and more about the history of it and of the people that live there. This is one that you aren’t going to want to put down, it’s certainly an ideal read if you’re looking for a true nail biter that will have you on the edge of your seat. I highly recommend this one if you love a story that feels real and has characters that you can truly connect with and root for!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR.

4575223

Shari Arnold grew up in California and Utah but now resides in Connecticut, with her husband and two kids, where she finds it difficult to trust a beach without waves. She writes Young Adult fiction because it’s her favorite. And occasionally she takes photographs.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

four-stars

Divider

Book Blitz: Before You Go Review

December 8, 2015 Blog Tours, Reviews 0 ★★★★

Book Blitz: Before You Go ReviewBefore You Go (Impossible Love, #1) by Clare James
Published by Createspace on April 5th 2013
Pages: 270
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
four-flames
Paralyzed by the past and terrified of the future, Tabitha Kelly is broken.
After a public sex scandal at her college, Tabby moves to a new city with a new school, convinced she can start over. But she soon realizes the changes are not enough. Tabby must take action to help her heal and move on from the past. And though it sounds crazy, she believes a one-night stand is the best way to take back what’s hers. If she can choose where, when, and most importantly, who … maybe she can regain control.First, she needs a willing participant.
She finds more than that when she meets Noah Adler.
Unfortunately, she can’t go through with it. And when she tries to forget about the plan—and the guy—it becomes impossible.
Noah quickly weaves his way into her new life and her heart. But as he comes dangerously close to discovering her secret, Tabby’s at risk of losing it all.

Add subheding

So I’m really excited that I was able to participate in this sale blitz for this great series. I’m going to be sharing my thoughts on the first book, “Before You Go.” This was a New Adult book that I absolutely couldn’t put down! What I loved the most about the book was definitely the characters, specifically the male LI, who is my new favorite book boyfriend. If you missed out on this when it was first released, I suggest checking it out now and the rest of the series while it’s on sale.

The number one reason why you should read the novel is Noah. He’s not the typical NA bad boy who is covered in tattoos and is into underground fighting or something like that. Not like there’s anything wrong with those things, but there’s also something to be said about book boyfriends who are totally sweet charming guys who are also a bit nerdy as well. He isn’t perfect either, he has some flaws (very few but they are still there) like that he gets jealous of guys talking to Tabby. However, I still feel like he’s never really possessive over her, he is always respectful of Tabby and never pushes her to open up to him until she’s ready. Truthfully, I didn’t love Tabby as much as Noah because I personally wasn’t able to connect with her. But I also felt like her story was emotional and I wanted to give her a hug and become her best friend all at once. One thing I would have liked to see more of would have been a resolution with Noah’s ex Jenna and Tabby.

Anyway, this was a fun read that was pretty much impossible to put down. Tabby’s story was heartbreaking and made me want to hurt the guys who hurt her. You know it says a lot about how invested you were in a book when you get that feeling about a fictional character. I recommend reading this book, it has it all: drama, steamy romance, depressing moments, funny moments, dance, and everything in between.

NWY_BlitzBadge

Join us in celebrating a special weeklong sales event and the exciting completion of Clare James’s Impossible Love series with the re-release of Not Without You, Book #3, now with added bonus content for fans of the series to discover and enjoy!

Just in time for the holidays, all three books in Clare James’s Impossible Love series will be featured at the following prices: Before You Go – FREE, More – $0.99, and Not Without You – $0.99! This special sales event will only last through December 12th, 2015, so make sure you get in on this wonderful limited time offer!

Rafflecopter for Release Day Blitz Giveaway:
Clare is offering up some wonderful prizes during the Impossible Love Sales Blitz event. Two lucky winners will receive a $10 Gift Card for Amazon just in time for the holiday season, and two other lucky winners will win an eBook set Clare’s Elite PR series (set contains Caught, book #1, and Played, book #2)! To enter, simply fill out the Rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Though I’m only featuring a review about the first book in the series, be sure to read more about the other two books here:

Book Blitz: Before You Go ReviewMore (Impossible Love, #2) by Clare James
Published by Amazon on June 20th 2013
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
One summer. One chance to forget the past. One opportunity to make things right.
There’s no denying the heat between Jules Taylor and Foster Sutton. They are two wild souls with a fire burning inside. Together, they create a hot and dangerous mix of emotion and lust.
But after a terrible accident leaves one friend dead, Foster is bound by a secret that keeps him from getting closer to Jules. And he’s left with only one thing to offer her – friendship.
For Jules, her relationship with Foster is getting old. He falls down and she picks him up, but they never move forward. Their occasional hook-ups are no longer enough, and Jules vows that this is her summer to forget Foster and find love. If it were only that easy.
It seems fate is pushing Jules and Foster together at every turn. And it’s only a matter of time before they give up and give in.
MORE is the highly anticipated companion story to BEFORE YOU GO. It can also be read as a stand-alone book.

Book Blitz: Before You Go ReviewNot Without You (Impossible Love, #3) by Clare James
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads

Falling in love was the easy part … Noah and Tabby’s love story wasn’t typical … or particularly romantic. After all, he picked her up at a bar – or maybe she picked him up. Either way, he saw her naked before he even knew her name.
Tabby came to him broken, but determined. And Noah knew how to fix her. It was a meeting of the bodies. A retraining of the mind. A connection that soon infected the heart.
But after two years, Noah’s old tricks aren’t working, and Tabby is shutting down again. This time, he refuses to play games. He wants all of her, or nothing at all.
Not Without You returns to the eclectic neighborhood where Noah and Tabby met, and where they are now discovering that life doesn’t get easier after you leave campus. What began as a sweet story of love and redemption, turns into something dark, intense … and, at times, disturbing. And if they’re not careful, it will destroy them both.
*Not recommended for readers under 18
The Impossible Love Series Before You Go – [Noah and Tabby] -FREE More - [Foster and Jules] –Available Now Not Without You [Noah and Tabby w/special appearance by Finn Daley] – Pre-Order Now
Public Lives Spin-off Series Talk to Me [Finn and Casey, part 1] – FREE Just Listen [Finn and Casey, part 2] – Available Now Teach Me [Jackson] – 2015


Praise for the Impossible Love Series:
“A touching tale of love and human redemption. Readers of Tammara Webber and Colleen Hoover will enjoy this book.” – A Love Affair with Books

“I absolutely loved this book. The emotion that flows through the pages just takes your breath away.” – Sassy Book Lovers

“Wow! Compelling, thought provoking, sexy and passionate would just scratch the surface of the depth of emotion that Before You Go will evoke in you.” -Romance Addiction

“I really enjoyed this book. AND let me tell ya the sexual tension between the two characters was HOT and I wanted to scream, JUST DO IT ALREADY!!” -The Book Trollop

“I love how sweet Noah is with a tiny mix of Alpha male in there. I read the book in one sitting. Definitely would recommend the book.” -Loverly’s Book Blog

“Perfect, perfect, perfect! Foster and Jules are a hot mess that broke my heart one minute and had me laughing the next. The chemistry and desire they have for each other ignites and is INSANE! And just in case you doubt me, read the book and tell me it’s not after the bath scene…” -Jelena’s Book Blog

“Man-oh-man did I LOVE More. It was sweet, hot and funny as hell. I literally devoured this book in one sitting.” -The Book Café

“Clare James is an awesome author and if you love New Adult you should definitely check her books out.” -Janhvi, The Readdicts

About Clare James:

ClareJames_HeadShot

Clare James writes contemporary romance and new adult novels with spunky heroines and sexier-than-sin heroes. Her books have made several best-selling lists including the tender love stories in the Impossible Love series; the steamy romantic comedy Dirty Little Lies; and the touching family drama Wednesday. She’s also the author of a new series with Entangled’s Brazen line about the women of Elite PR and their very naughty clients. The first two books in the series are out now!
A former dancer, Clare still loves to get her groove on – mostly to work off her beloved cupcakes and red wine. She lives in Minneapolis with her husband and young son, and is always on social media chatting with readers.

Connect with Clare: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 

 

four-stars

Divider