28 October 2016

Top 10 Anticipated YA Reads of 2017

So, if you haven't figured it out by now, I'll let you in on a little secret...I'm kind of addicted to YA novels. I know! Shocking!!! Anyway, in the spirit of it being towards the end of the year, I figured I would share with you the YA novels that I'm most eager for from 2017. I won't lie: it was difficult keeping this list down to ten. But, alas, I did it (well, I may have cheated a litte).

Title: Cold Summer
Author: Gwen Cole
Publication Date: May 2, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

Today, he’s a high school dropout with no future.
Tomorrow, he’s a soldier in World War II.

Kale Jackson has spent years trying to control his time-traveling ability but hasn’t had much luck. One day he lives in 1945, fighting in the war as a sharpshooter and helplessly watching soldiers—friends—die. Then the next day, he’s back in the present, where WWII has bled into his modern life in the form of PTSD, straining his relationship with his father and the few friends he has left. Every day it becomes harder to hide his battle wounds, both physical and mental, from the past.

When the ex-girl-next-door, Harper, moves back to town, thoughts of what could be if only he had a normal life begin to haunt him. Harper reminds him of the person he was before the PTSD, which helps anchor him to the present. With practice, maybe Kale could remain in the present permanently and never step foot on a battlefield again. Maybe he can have the normal life he craves.

But then Harper finds Kale’s name in a historical article—and he’s listed as a casualty of the war. Kale knows now that he must learn to control his time-traveling ability to save himself and his chance at a life with Harper. Otherwise, he’ll be killed in a time where he doesn’t belong by a bullet that was never meant for him.
Why I'm Excited
Some of my most favorite books are time-traveler romances. From Gabaldon's Outlander series to Lisa T. Bergren's River or Time series; I love me a good time-travel romance. This also has elements of star-crossed love that will make even the most unromantic cynic yearn.

Title: Roar (Stealing Storms #1)
Author: Cora Carmack
Publication Date: June 13, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

In a land ruled and shaped by violent magical storms, power lies with those who control them.

Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora’s been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.

To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks—storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.

Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.

She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.

Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.

Why I'm Excited
Royalty, magical storms, and a strong female character. What's not to love?

Title: Cold Summer
Author: Veronica Roth
Publication Date: Jan. 17, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not — their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?

Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power — something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.

Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuve, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive — no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive — or to destroy one another.

Why I'm Excited
Some special powers and romance wrapped up in a big science fiction, young adult bow. And, I'll read anything by Veronica Roth.

Title: Caraval (Untitled #1)
Author: Stephanie Garber
Publication Date: Jan. 31, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

Before you enter the world of Caraval, you must remember that it’s all a game . . .

Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their ruthless father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the legendary, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

Then, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation to Caraval finally arrives. So, Tella enlists a mysterious sailor’s help to whisk Scarlett away to this year’s show. But as soon as the trio arrives, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nonetheless soon becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with her sister, with Legend, and with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

Why I'm Excited
The whole idea of a place like Caraval is incredibly intriguing! And a young girl who has a chance to escape her unfortunate circumstances to find her place--just the kind of story I enjoy! The mystery surrounding Caraval is enticing! I can't wait for this one!

Title: Brave New Girl
Author: Rachel Vincent
Publication Date: May 9, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

We have brown hair. Brown eyes. Fair skin.
We are healthy and strong and smart.
But only one of us has ever had a secret.

Dahlia 16 sees her face in every crowd. She's nothing special—just one of five thousand girls created from a single genome to work for the greater good of the city.
Meeting Trigger 17 changes everything. He thinks she’s interesting. Beautiful. Unique. Which means he must be flawed. When Dahlia can't stop thinking about him—when she can't resist looking for him, even though that means breaking the rules—she realizes she's flawed, too. But if she’s flawed, then so are all her identicals. And any genome found to be flawed will be recalled.
Getting caught with Trigger would seal not only Dahlia's fate, but that of all five thousand girls who share her face. But what if Trigger is right? What if Dahlia is different?
Suddenly the girl who always follows the rules is breaking them, one by one by one. . . .

Why I'm Excited
Dahlia is special. I'm not quite sure what makes her so special, yet, but I'm excited to read and find out! I always enjoy stories with a sci-fi premise. And it, of course, has my favorite; a love story!

Title: After the Fall
Author: Kate Hart
Publication Date: Jan. 24, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

A YA debut about a teen girl who wrestles with rumors, reputation, and her relationships with two brothers.

Seventeen-year-old Raychel is sleeping with two boys: her overachieving best friend Matt…and his slacker brother, Andrew. Raychel sneaks into Matt’s bed after nightmares, but nothing ever happens. He doesn’t even seem to realize she’s a girl, except when he decides she needs rescuing. But Raychel doesn't want to be his girl anyway. She just needs his support as she deals with the classmate who assaulted her, the constant threat of her family’s eviction, and the dream of college slipping quickly out of reach. Matt tries to help, but he doesn’t really get it… and he’d never understand why she’s fallen into a secret relationship with his brother. The friendships are a precarious balance, and when tragedy strikes, everything falls apart. Raychel has to decide which pieces she can pick up – and which ones are worth putting back together.

Why I'm Excited
This one sounds like a real emotional-packed journey. I'm interested to learn what happened to Raychel to make her so damaged, and I'm curious as to where she'll land at the end of this story.

Title: Maybe in Paris
Author: Rebecca Christiansen
Publication Date: Jun. 6, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

Keira Braidwood lands in Paris with her autistic brother, Levi, and high hopes. Levi has just survived a suicide attempt and months in the psych ward—he’s ready for a dose of the wider world. Unlike their helicopter mom and the doctors who hover over Levi, Keira doesn’t think Levi’s certifiable. He’s just . . . quirky. Always has been.

Those quirks quickly begin to spoil the trip. Keira wants to traipse all over Europe; Levi barely wants to leave their grubby hotel room. She wants to dine on the world’s cuisine; he only wants fast food. Levi is one giant temper tantrum, and Keira’s ready to pull out her own hair.

She finally finds the adventure she craves in Gable, a hot Scottish bass player, but while Keira flirts in the Paris Catacombs, Levi’s mental health breaks. He disappears from their hotel room and Keira realizes, too late, that her brother is sicker than she was willing to believe. To bring him home safe, Keira must tear down the wall that Levi’s sickness and her own guilt have built between them.

Why I'm Excited
Ummmm, a "Scottish bass player"?! Yeah. Also, I love stories that revolve around familial bonds. And this brother and sister tale, just sings of heartache and possible growth.

Title: The Last Thing You Said
Author: Sara Biren
Publication Date: April 4, 2017
Find: Amazon | Goodreads

Last summer, Lucy’s and Ben’s lives changed in an instant. One moment, they were shyly flirting on a lake raft, finally about to admit their feelings to each other after years of yearning. In the next, Trixie—Lucy’s best friend and Ben’s sister—was gone, her heart giving out during a routine swim. And just like that, the idyllic world they knew turned upside down, and the would-be couple drifted apart, swallowed up by their grief. Now it’s a year later in their small lake town, and as the anniversary of Trixie’s death looms, Lucy and Ben’s undeniable connection pulls them back together. They can’t change what happened the day they lost Trixie, but the summer might finally bring them closer to healing—and to each other.

Why I'm Excited
I'm not usually one for anything suspenseful but this sounds SO good! There's sure to be some heartache and angst.

Title: Untitled (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3)
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Publication Date: May 2, 2017
Find: Goodreads

Looming war threatens all Feyre holds dear in the third volume of the #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin's maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit-and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords-and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.

Why I'm Excited
This should really go without saying. I mean, if you read the other three books in this series, then you wouldn't need me to tell you why I'm excited. But, if you haven't read this series, I'll give you a hint: Rhysand.

Title: Reunited (Reawakened #3)
Author: Colleen Houck
Publication Date: Aug. 8, 2017
Find: Goodreads

After surviving her otherworldly adventure, Lily wakes up on her nana’s farm having forgotten everything. Her sun prince, her travels to Egypt, and her journey to the Afterlife are all distant memories.

But Lily is not the girl she once was. Her body is now part human, part lion, and part fairy. And if that isn’t bad enough, she must now harness this power of three and become Wasret: a goddess destined to defeat the evil god Seth once and for all.

With the help of her old friend Dr. Hassan, Lily departs on her final voyage through the cosmos and across the plains of Egypt. On the journey, she will transform into the being she is destined to become.

Reunited is the heart-pounding conclusion to the Reawakened series.

It is time for Lily to find her sunset.

Why I'm Excited
If you've never read anything by Colleen Houck, then I can say you are truly missing out. She is a GENIUS! And I've read her Tiger Saga more times than I can count. I'm loving the Reawakened Series and can't wait for the end! Also, there'll be a novella for the series coming out in February.

Please let me know, in the comments, of the books YOU are eager for in 2017!

27 October 2016

The Breakup Support Group: Cover Reveal

Title: The Breakup Support Group
Author: Cheyanne Young
Publication Date: Nov. 22, 2016
Find: Amazon | Goodreads
Other Books by Author: Understudy | Somewhere Only We Know | City of Legends (City of Legends #1)

After four years of first love bliss, Isla Rush just got dumped.

Any hope she has of winning her ex-boyfriend back is shattered when the town rezones her neighborhood, forcing her to spend senior year at a wealthy high school in the next town over.

With a broken heart consuming her soul, Isla can’t focus on anything, except maybe Emory Underwood—a ridiculously hot guy who dates a new girl almost every day. She can’t help but crush on him, even though it’s wrong.

When memories of her ex make her cry in second period, the school counselor sends Isla to a club that meets during lunch. The Break-Up Support Group is a collection of broken-hearted misfits who are all helping each other heal.

Just when Isla’s heart is finally on the mend, Emory shows up, forced to atone for all the broken hearts he’s caused over the years. While hiding her massive crush, she helps him understand the seriousness of breaking a heart.

In turn, Emory offers to help Isla get back on the dating scene by agreeing to be her fake date for the homecoming dance. Isla gladly accepts the ruse, because if anyone can make her into a desirable girlfriend, Emory can! There’s just one small problem.

Isla’s little crush on Emory might be exactly full blown. And a homecoming fake date with him could push her over the edge to possibly uttering the “L Word!”

Isla can’t afford another heartbreak so soon after the last one. She will have to resist his charms, refuse to look into those dreamy eyes, and above all else, not make the mistake of letting him kiss her.

If only she hadn’t let her guard down at the end of the night, under the light of her porch in a toe-curling kiss moment of weakness. And now, after months of Break-Up Support Group therapy, and with a heart fully on the mend, Isla has just handed it over to a guy who knows full well just how to break it.

About the Author

Cheyanne Young is a native Texan with a fear of cold weather and a coffee addiction that probably needs an intervention. She loves books, sarcasm, and collecting nail polish. After nearly a decade of working in engineering, Cheyanne now writes books for young adults and is the author of the City of Legends Trilogy. She doesn’t miss a cubicle one bit.

Cheyanne lives near the beach with her daughter and husband, one spoiled rotten puppy, and a cat that is most likely plotting to take over the world.

Be the first to know when Cheyanne has a new book out & get access to exclusive giveaways. Sign up for her newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bO3qgb

Connect with Cheyanne online!

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26 October 2016

The Carnival Keepers: Book Blitz & Giveaway

Title: The Carnival Keepers
Author: Amber Gulley
Publication Date: Oct. 10, 2016
Find: Amazon | Kobo | Indigo | Goodreads

It's 1879, and James, a time-wasting escapist, is trying to win a bet. His challenges include purchasing a lighthouse, hosting a séance, and spending the night with his father's prize-winning stallion in a notoriously haunted attic. But the Carnival is in town for the All Hallows' Eve celebrations, and the London fog has other ideas for James. Something vicious is waiting to pounce and lead him unwittingly towards a destiny he could never have imagined.

“Shut up!” he heard someone shouting from Mr. Scraps’s courtyard.
“Robby!” He wanted to cry, he was so happy to hear his friend again. But his eyes refused to make tears, and so he grinned madly instead when he saw the cat.
“Arry!” cried Robby, as he looked up from the bird he was ripping into. His eyes glowed with an unnatural golden light that Arry assumed was due to the strange way his own eyes were seeing things now.
Casually, Robby tossed aside the limp little carcass he had been nibbling on and bounded up between the table and chairs. Arry noticed a row of very unhappy looking nightingales sitting on the back fence of the courtyard, but at that moment, it didn’t seem important enough to mention.
“Oh, Robby!” Arry crouched down and scratched the purring tabby behind an ear. “I was so worried. I thought you might be dead.”
“Not a chance,” replied Robby, leaning his head into the scratch. “And besides, I told you you’d be lost without me, didn’t I?”
“Yes, you did.” Arry laughed and then stood up to have a proper look at the courtyard. As he gazed in wonder at the softly glowing wisteria coiled through the overhead lattices, he realized he could still hear the angels singing. “Can you hear that?” he asked Robby, who had wandered back to continue feasting on the dead bird.
“Hear what?” he replied absently.
“The singing.” It was growing louder, and, although still beautiful, some of its notes were beginning to sound dark and sinister. “Robby?”
Robby hissed.
Arry had already seen so many strange and wonderful things, he wasn’t entirely surprised by what he saw next. The nightingales no longer sat on the back fence, and he only just caught a glimpse as the last one shivered and shuddered, lifted up its spindly little bird leg, and placed a heavy paw upon the ground. A rumble like thunder rolled ominously through the courtyard, scattering the fireflies, as six enormous lions bared their fangs and scowled at Robby, licking their chops as they began to advance.

About the Author

Amber Gulley moved from Australia, where she was a qualified massage therapist, to the south of Spain, where she could, amongst other loves, write books and spend as much time in the ocean as possible.

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook


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25 October 2016

Curse of the Boggin: Nerd Blast & Giveaway

Title: The Library Book 1: Curse of the Boggin
Author: D. J. MacHale
Publication Date: Sept. 6, 2016
Find: Amazon | Goodreads
Other Books by Author: The Merchant of Death (Pendragon #1) | The Light (Morpheus Road #1)

Enter the Library, where no one knows how the stories end . . . and finding out will be terrifying.

There’s a place beyond this world, beyond the land of the living, where ghosts go to write their unfinished stories—stories that ended too soon. It’s a place for unexplained phenomena: mysteries that have never been solved, spirits that have never been laid to rest. And there’s only one way in or out.

It’s called the Library, and you can get there with a special key. But beware! Don’t start a story you can’t finish. Because in this library, the stories you can’t finish just might finish you.

Marcus O’Mara is a 13 year old guy at a crossroads. He constantly finds himself in trouble at school, with his friends, and with his adoptive parents. Marcus doesn’t believe things can get any worse for him…until they get worse.

Much worse.

He begins seeing strange and impossible visions; gets thrown into paranormal danger and is haunted by a mysterious ghost with a singular goal: to give him a key.

It’s a key that opens the door to a mysterious library. When that door opens, the incredible adventure for Marcus and his friends begins as they learn the truth about Marcus’ past and uncover the strange world of unfinished stories that are found on the shelves of the Library.

About the Author

D.J. MacHale is a writer, director, executive producer and creator of several popular television series and movies. As an author, his ten-volume book series: Pendragon: Journal of an Adventure Through Time and Space became a New York Times #1 bestseller.

He was raised in Greenwich, CT where he had several jobs including collecting eggs at a poultry farm; engraving trophies and washing dishes in a steakhouse…in between playing football and running track. D.J. graduated from New York University where he received a BFA in film production.

His film-making career began in New York where he worked as a freelance writer/director making corporate videos and television commercials.

D.J. broke into the entertainment business by writing several ABC Afterschool Specials. As co-creator of the popular Nickelodeon series: Are You Afraid of the Dark?, he produced all 91 episodes. D.J. also wrote and directed the movie Tower of Terror for ABC’s Wonderful World of Disney. The Showtime series Chris Cross was co-created, written and produced by D.J. It received the CableAce award for Best Youth Series.

D.J. created and produced the Discovery Kids/NBC television series Flight 29 Down. He wrote every episode and directed several. His work on Flight 29 Down earned him the Writers Guild of America award for Outstanding Children’s Script and a Directors Guild of America award nomination.

Other notable television writing credits include the ABC Afterschool Special titled Seasonal Differences; the pilot for the long-running PBS/CBS series Ghostwriter; and the HBO series Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective for which he received a CableAce nomination for writing.

In print, D.J. also authored the supernatural Morpheus Road trilogy; a whimsical picture book The Monster Princess; and The SYLO Chronicles, a thrilling sci-fi trilogy. He also wrote Voyagers: Project Alpha, the first of a six book science fiction adventure.

D.J.’s newest book series is The Library, a spooky middle-grade anthology about a mysterious library filled with unfinished supernatural tales, and the daring young people who must complete them.

D.J. lives in Southern California with his wife Evangeline and daughter Keaton. They are avid backpackers, scuba divers and skiers. Rounding out the household is a spoiled golden retriever named Casey and an equally spoiled tuxedo cat named Jinx.

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook


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24 October 2016

October #owlcrate Unboxing

I'm just a little nervous. I'm not entirely comfortable getting out from behind my laptop to show you all what I look like. But, in the spirit of making my blog more personal, here it is! Also, I'm pretty darn excited to share with you all Owlcrate's amazingness. So, let me know what you think!

P.S. Please forgive my annoying over-usage of certain "amazing" and "awesome" adjectives.

If you would like to get your own Owlcrate, check out Owlcrate.com. Items from October's Owlcrate box come from My Heart My Tribe, The Unemployed Philosopher's Guild, The Geeky Cauldron, Whosits & Whatsits, and Sarah Porter Books.