Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Blog Tour: THIS IS THE STORY OF YOU by Beth Kephart - Giveaway

By Beth Kephart
Published by Chronicle Books
Published by April 12, 2016

On Haven, a six-mile long, half-mile-wide stretch of barrier island, Mira Banul and her Year-Rounder friends have proudly risen to every challenge. But then a superstorm defies all predictions and devastates the island, upending all logic and stranding Mira’s mother and brother on the mainland. Nothing will ever be the same. A stranger appears in the wreck of Mira’s home. A friend obsessed with vanishing disappears. As the mysteries deepen, Mira must find the strength to carry on—to somehow hold her memories in place while learning to trust a radically reinvented future. Gripping and poetic, This Is the Story of You is about the beauty of nature and the power of family, about finding hope in the wake of tragedy and recovery in the face of overwhelming loss.

"A masterful exploration of nature's power to shake human foundations, literal and figurative."—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"This beautifully written book works on many levels and is rich in its characterization, emotion, language, and hint of mystery." —School Library Journal, starred review

"We fall in love with Kephart more and more every year."—Bookpage

“An exploration of the unrelenting power of nature and a reminder of the one thing in the world that is irreplaceable: family.”—Booklist 

Beth Kephart is the award-winning author of nineteen books, including Going Over, Handling the Truth: On the Writing of Memoir, and Small Damages. A National Book Award finalist, Kephart is also a winner of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fiction grant, a National Endowment for the Arts grant, a Leeway grant, a Pew Fellowships in the Arts grant, and the Speakeasy Poetry Prize. Kephart teaches workshops at many institutions, to all ages and creative nonfiction workshops at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a popular keynote speaker and frequent contributor to the Chicago Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, and many national journals. She blogs daily at beth-kephart.blogspot.com


Tuesday 5/31/2016 Actin' Up with Books

Wednesday 6/1/2016 Cracking the Cover

Thursday 6/2/2016 Stuck In YA Books

Friday 6/3/2016 Eli to the nth

Saturday 6/4/2016 Middle Grade Mafioso

Sunday 6/5/2016 Read Now Sleep Later

Monday 6/6/2016 The Reading Date

Tuesday 6/7/2016 Emilie's Book World


Must be 16 year old or older to enter
US/Canada Addresses Only
Prize will be distributed by the publisher
Invalid entries will be disqualified

Monday, May 30, 2016

ANYTHING YOU WANT by Geoff Herbach - Excerpt and Giveaway

Anything You Want
by Geoff Herbach
Release Date: May 3, 2016
Published by Sourcebooks Fire


Expect a bundle of joy—er, trouble—in this hilarious, heartwarming story from the award-winning author of Stupid Fast

Taco’s mom always said, “Today is the best day of your life, and tomorrow will be even better.” That was hard to believe the day she died of cancer and when Taco’s dad had to move up north for work, but he sure did believe it when Maggie Corrigan agreed to go with him to junior prom. Taco loves Maggie—even more than the tacos that earned him his nickname. And she loves him right back.

Except, all that love? It gets Maggie pregnant. Everyone else may be freaking out, but Taco can’t wait to have a real family again. He just has to figure out what it means to be dad and how to pass calculus. And then there’s getting Maggie’s parents to like him. Because it’s would be so much easier for them to be together if he didn’t have to climb the side of the Corrigan’s house to see her...

Purchase Links:
Barnes&Noble-  http://ow.ly/4nkqH2
BooksAMillion- http://ow.ly/4nkrdo 
Indiebound- http://ow.ly/4nkrrI

About the Author:

Geoff Herbach’s books have been listed in the year’s best by YALSA, the American Booksellers Association, and many state library associations. They’ve won the Cybil and the Minnesota Book Award. Geoff grew up a very nerdy jock in Southern Wisconsin and now teaches creative writing at Minnesota State University, Mankato.

Find Geoff Online:

Twitter: @geoffherbach

Excerpt from Anything You Want:
When did this start? Duh, dingus. Last spring.
Last spring, I decided I was completely emotionally ready for her, so I asked Maggie Corrigan to prom and she said, “Boom,” and poked her finger into the middle of my chest.
I said, “Boom? That’s good, right? That’s a yes?” Maggie Corrigan is intense. She’s wild and crazy and intense and I had to be prepared.
We stood in the hall at school, leaned up against her locker as a bunch of freshmen, a total wad of screaming monkeys, ran by on their way to gym.
Maggie shouted, “Yeah, for sure, Taco! Boom!” She poked me again.
“What?” I shouted back, because I couldn’t hear over the freshmen.
“I totally want to go to prom with you!” she shouted.
“Really?” I shouted back
Then she grabbed my face and she pulled my ears so my head came down to her face and she French kissed me right there in front of all those freshmen. She, like, kissed my ass off. My shoes and pants almost exploded from my body, because she kissed me so hard.
She’s spontaneous like that. I knew that then, but not like I know now. And, you know what, dingus? Doesn’t matter, because I love her. I think I’ve loved Maggie Corrigan since before time. In a past life, I was probably the court clown and she was probably the Crazy Queen of Holland, and I’m pretty sure we were doing it behind the king’s back. If we weren’t doing it, we were probably going on long naked walks in the forest where we stroked unicorns and lay upon the dewy moss to gaze upon the sky.
All the freshmen monkeys in the hall shouted stuff like, “Get a room,” and “More tongue,” etc. Freshmen are pretty funny. I’ve always liked them.
That day will go down in history, for sure. I really needed Maggie Corrigan’s intensity, energy and love right about then.
The year before Maggie kissed my ass off, Mom died. Six months after Mom died, Dad took a job driving truck at a mine up north, because we needed more money to float the boat. Two months after Dad left for the mine, Darius, my older brother, got a drunk driving ticket, which he said he didn’t deserve, because he only had like two beers after work—it’s just that his blood doesn’t register alcohol like normal peoples’ blood, because it’s a mix of O+ and A -, which is rare, so the cops didn’t know what they were doing when they gave him the breathalyzer. Okay, dingus, that didn’t exactly make sense to me, but that’s good old Darius! Anyway, he lost his Pepsi product delivery route and went to work at Captain Stabby’s, this fish sandwich place, for about half the money. Dude smelled like fish 24/7.
So things were crap and I began to lose the pep in my cucumber. I was seriously beginning to think my mom was wrong about everything, and maybe life really is terrible, like Darius always says. But then I spent a few weeks following Maggie Corrigan around school and saw how she laughed until she fell on the floor, screamed when she got mad at her friends, cried when she was sad about the basketball team losing, and smiled so hard it looked like her face might break when I told her I liked her handwriting. After that I thought, “That’s what Mom was talking about! Life is beautiful!” and so I summoned my good feelings and my optimism, and I asked Maggie to prom. A week later, we were boyfriend and girlfriend and going at it in the hall between every class period.
Literally. Going at it!
Dr. Evans, our principal, had to bring us into the office to ask us to stop all the public displays of affection, (she called them “PDAs”) because our exhibits of love made some people uncomfortable—like those going through hard break-ups or maybe the divorce of their parents.
Maggie and I tried, but we couldn’t stop going at it. Sometimes, to hide from people who might feel sad, we climbed into the costume loft behind the auditorium. Sometimes we took our clothes off, mostly so we could try on costumes, but also because it was pretty great to get naked. Maggie would hang out up there in her underwear, pretending she had to find the perfect costume on the rack–but really she just liked being naked with me.
Right on. I liked it, too. See why I love Maggie?

2 Finished Copies of Anything You Want 
(Runs May 1-May 31; U.S. & Canada only):

Friday, May 27, 2016

Giveaway: THE POSITIVITY KIT by Lisa Currie

Instant Happiness on Every Page
by Lisa Currie

Back after the success of the heartbreaking and interactive Me, You, Us and The Scribble Diary, Lisa’s signature art and prompts are brimming over THE POSITIVITY KIT, reminding us the world is – even on the greyest days – a beautiful place. The PERFECT travel, vacation, beach companion, or rainy summer day guidethe book and its prompts include:
·         Something you never congratulated yourself on, but should have
·         Compile the perfect playlist
·         Draw yourself a tattoo (on paper, darn it!)
·         A smell that reminds you of someone you love
·         More shining, comforting, and true reminders that things are     (likely) ok

See a sneak peek of some of the prompts you will find in THE POSITIVITY KIT

Thanks to the fantastic people at TarcherPerigee/Penguin Random House, I'm hosting a giveaway for a copy of THE POSITIVITY KIT by Lisa Currie to giveaway to one lucky blog reader!

Giveaway Details

Must be 16 year old or older to enter
US/Canada Addresses Only
Prize will be distributed by the publisher
Invalid entries will be disqualified

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Blog Tour: GENA/FINN by Hannah Moskowitz and Kat Helgeson - Guest Post and Giveaway

Today I'm hosting authors Hannah Moskowitz and Kat Helgeson for their blog tour for Gena/Finn! In a fun video they share book recommendations from their characters. Some of my favorite books are included! Watch the video and then enter for a chance to win a copy of Gena/Finn.

By Hannah Moskowitz and Kat Helgeson
Published by Chronicle Books; May 17, 2016

Gena and Finn would have never met but for their mutual love for the popular show Up Below. Regardless of their differences—Gena is a recent high school graduate whose social life largely takes place online, while Finn is in her early twenties, job hunting and contemplating marriage with her longtime boyfriend—the two girls realize that the bond between them transcends fanfiction. When disaster strikes and Gena's world turns upside down, only Finn can save her, and that, too, comes with a price. Told through emails, text messages, journal entries, and blog posts, Gena/Finn is a story of friendship and love in the digital age.

YA Book Recommendations from Gena and Finn

"This one definitely kicks up some emotional landmines; it’ll also make you legit lol, hard."—Barnes & Noble blog

"If Hannah Moskowitz writes it-or in this case, co-writes it-I will read it."—Leila Roy, Bookshelves of Doom, a Kirkus Reviews Blog

“Vividly portrays the minute-to-minute nature of modern communication.” —Publishers Weekly

“It's very satisfying to see this moment in fandom and Internet-originating relationships so capably represented.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Allows readers to close the cover pondering all the different ways humans can love.”—School Library Journal
“This portrayal of the fan world is spot-on… focused firmly on the real, messy relationships that can form in the digital age.”—Booklist


Must be 16 year old or older to enter
US/Canada Addresses Only
Prize will be distributed by the publisher
Invalid entries will be disqualified

Hannah Moskowitz is the acclaimed author of numerous middle grade and young adult novels, including A History of Glitter and Blood. She lives in New York City.

Kat Helgeson writes young adult novels and lives in Chicago with her husband and a healthy preoccupation with fictional characters.

Hanna and Kat first met online in a fan fiction forum for the TV show Supernatural, and IRL at a fan con.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Review: DELICATE by C.K. Kelly Martin

by C. K. Kelly Martin
Publication Date: May 2016 (US)
Published by Dancing Cats Books
Pages: 230
Source: Publisher
Purchase Amazon | B&N | !ndigo

from Goodreads

Ivy’s longtime boyfriend proposes a breakup minutes before their final exam of high school, and the sunshine couple of Suttonville High are no more. Lucan’s summer begins equally mortifyingly. Amidst turmoil with his mother’s agonizingly youthful boyfriend, Lucan also begins to suspect, to his horror, that his best friend is hitting his girlfriend.

When Ivy and Lucan, second cousins immersed in a lingering family feud, meet at their grandmother’s seventy-fifth birthday bash as Lucan has a violent allergic reaction, their blemished reintroduction into each other’s lives provides a welcome perspective to the complexities of understanding, growth, and friendship. In a passionate rebuttal against archetypes of teenage apathy, Delicate is a realistic narrative of the depths of human caring.

My Thoughts

Books that focus mainly on the dynamics of relationships are some of my favorites and C.K. Kelly Martin has a knack for writing these books. That is probably why DELICATE has been on my reading wishlist since June of 2015. DELICATE definitely focuses on the complexities of relationships - the good, the bad, and the ugly. There are so many to examine:

  • Ivy's relationship with her parents 
  • Lucan's relationship with his mother and her new, young boyfriend 
  • Ivy's relationship with Jeremy - Is it really over? Can Ivy let go when Jeremy can't seem to?
  • Lucan's friendship with his best friend Des
  • Ivy's friendship with her best friend Betina
  • Ivy's parents' relationship with Lucan's mother - There's some history there, some bad blood that they can't seem to get beyond and Ivy is just now finding it out.
  • Ivy's friendship with Jeremy - Can they be friends after everything they've gone through?
  • And Ivy's relationship with Lucan - What is going on between them? Is it romantic? How does their family connection fit in to all of it? Can they or should they be more than friends?

I loved reading about all of them and how in some way they are all connected. Each relationship affects another. Nothing is ever simple. Relationships rarely are. 

As a side note, I thought that Lucan's peanut allergy would play a major role in the story as a whole, but it doesn't. If anything, it shows that there is so much more to Lucan than just his allergy. 

Memorable Quotes:

"Life is a lot of things, not just the person you're sleeping with."

"I went home and wrote tortured poetry in my head without ever putting a word down on paper."

"It's hard when people turn out to be someone other than who you expected them to be."

"He was the real thing. We'd been the real thing. And it was over."

I've come to really enjoy C.K. Kelly Martin's books. I seek them out and have yet to be disappointed. Thank goodness. DELICATE is a fantastic addition to contemporary YA. It's a book that could be referred to as "under the radar", but readers definitely need to take notice. 

Disclaimer:  I received this e-ARC from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.  I was not compensated in any way other than the e-ARC provided. Quotes were taken from the Advanced Reading Copy and may differ from the final published version. Thoughts and opinions are my own.

Enter to win a copy of DELICATE on Goodreads!
Ends 6/3/2016

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

THE DARKEST LIE by Pintip Dunn - Early Review Tour and Giveaway

by Pintip Dunn
Publication Date: June 28, 2016
Published by Kensington Publishing
Pages: 256
Source: JenniferHalliganPR/Publisher
Add to Goodreads


“The mother I knew would never do those things.
But maybe I never knew her after all.”

Clothes, jokes, coded messages…Cecilia Brooks and her mom shared everything. At least, CeCe thought they did. Six months ago, her mom killed herself after accusations of having sex with a student, and CeCe’s been the subject of whispers and taunts ever since. Now, at the start of her high school senior year, between dealing with her grieving, distracted father, and the social nightmare that has become her life, CeCe just wants to fly under the radar. Instead, she’s volunteering at the school’s crisis hotline—the same place her mother worked.

As she counsels troubled strangers, CeCe’s lingering suspicions about her mom’s death surface. With the help of Sam, a new student and newspaper intern, she starts to piece together fragmented clues that point to a twisted secret at the heart of her community. Soon, finding the truth isn’t just a matter of restoring her mother’s reputation, it’s about saving lives—including CeCe’s own…

My Thoughts

Even before I knew what THE DARKEST LIE was about I wanted to read it because of the gorgeous cover. The shades of blue of blue and the girl looking out over the lake captured my attention and I had to know what she was thinking about and what she went through. 

THE DARKEST LIE combines the thrills of a mystery with the realities of young adult contemporary which make for a heart-pounding, heart-stopping, and sometimes, heartbreaking read. I read it almost straight through because from the get-go, this book had a hold of me, making me reading it furiously until the very end. When a book takes control of me like that, nothing else matters.

I love that THE DARKEST LIE has the Veronica Mars vibe to it. It's serious and smart, with wit and romance and danger. It takes a look at the many relationships changed, broken, and destroyed because of the scandal. The mystery surrounding CeCe's mother's death was multi-layered with the truth blurred in with gossip leaving the town in an uproar and devastation all around, and we get to know how CeCe dealt with the aftermath of all of it.

Favorite Quotes

"My mother was chaos and passion, devastation and joy. Dad used to say you could reach deep into her eyes and pull out a song." (page 2) - CeCe thinking of her mother how she remembered her and not how she is currently presented to her in the casket at her funeral

"I'm not going to kiss you," he says in a strained voice." After the night you've had, I don't want you to mistake a kiss for anything that other that what it is. But I want you to know, just because I don't kiss you doesn't mean I'm not thinking about it. Doesn't mean I'm not going to dream about it. Doesn't mean I won't want to do it, next time we're togother." - Sam to CeCe after an emotional day and devastating discovery. This is one of my favorite scenes in the book. I fell in love with Sam's character when he first appeared on this scene and this made me love him even more.

"Walking around this school is like wading into a pit of alligators. I never know which body part they're going to chew up and spit out." (page 146) - CeCe describing her high school (or any high school for that matter). Nailed it.

Immediately after finished THE DARKEST LIE, I wished that I had someone to discuss it with. This is exactly the type of book that I would want to read with my book club. I'm sure that when other people finish reading THE DARKEST LIE, they will feel the same way.  They will recommended it to their friends. This book has too interesting to keep it to themselves. It's an overall fantastic read. It's one that I will definitely keep on my shelf for future rereading. 

I loved it!

Disclaimer:  I received this ARC from the publisher as part of an early review tour in exchange for my honest review.  I was not compensated in any way other than the ARC provided. Thoughts and opinions are my own.

Pintip Dunn graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B. in English Literature and Language. She received her J.D. at Yale Law School, where she was an editor of the YALE LAW JOURNAL. She also published an article in the YALE LAW JOURNAL, entitled, “How Judges Overrule: Speech Act Theory and the Doctrine of Stare Decisis,”

Pintip is represented by literary agent Beth Miller of Writers House. She is a 2012 RWA Golden Heart® finalist and a 2014 double-finalist. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, Washington Romance Writers, YARWA, and The Golden Network.

She lives with her husband and children in Maryland. You can learn more about Pintip and her books at www.pintipdunn.com.

Author Links: 

May 2nd - Reader Girls
May 3rd - Alice Reeds
May 4th - Miss Riki
May 5th - YA Book Madness
May 9th - The Bookdragon
May 12th - The Cursed Empire
May 17th - With Love for Books
May 19th - Bookish Escapes
May 20th - Reading Transforms
May 23rd - Lilians Book Stuff

Tour Wide Giveaway (International)
$25 gift card to Amazon OR Book Depository (International)


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