Thursday, February 27, 2014

{Double Cover Reveal} Cassie Mae Edition

Thursday, February 27, 2014 with No comments

Thank you all for joining me in this double cover reveal for Cassie Mae's How To series! Today, the covers for book two and book three in the series are being revealed, but first, let's take a re-visit at the cover for book one, How To Date A Nerd:

And now....













On to the reveal:

by Cassie Mae
Expected Publication: May 6, 2014 by Swoon Reads
Sierra Livingston’s got it bad for her sister’s best friend, Levi Mason—the boy who carries his drumsticks in his pocket, marches with the school’s band, and taps his feet to whatever beat runs through his head. Sierra racks her brain for ways to impress the sexy drummer, but the short skirts and bursting cleavage don’t seem to cut it.

When Sierra gets paired with Levi’s sister, Brea, for a mentorship program, they strike a deal. In exchange for Sierra keeping her mouth shut about Brea ditching the program, Brea lets Sierra dig for more info on Levi to help get the guy of her dreams.

But when Sierra discovers Levi no longer plays the drums, his family has moved into a trailer, and he’s traded in his Range Rover for a baby blue moped, Sierra’s not sure if she can go through with violating his privacy. She’ll have to find the courage to ask him straight out—if he’s willing to let her in—and explore other ways to seduce the school’s band geek.

by Cassie Mae
Expected Publication: TBD by Swoon Reads
It’s Brea Mason’s sixteenth birthday, and she has three wishes: 1. Be magically eighteen like the rest of her friends; 2. Grow a money tree for her family whose financial problems are well known about town; 3. Overcome her test anxiety before she flunks out of every class.

But one day later, she's still sixteen, her family's money worries abound, and she's no closer to passing than she was the day before! Then a very sexy transfer student—with gobs of cash—shows up. Brea figures she has a better chance of burping up glitter than attracting the new guy, but he seems extremely interested in her. Just when Brea thinks things are looking up, her report card arrives marked with four giant F’s.

Enter resident bookworm and Brea's loyal friend, Adam Silver. If he can't help Brea pass, no one can. Even with Adam's help, Brea can't handle the mounting pressure, and finds an escape with the new student who knows little about her problems. But spending oodles of time with her boyfriend strains the friendship with Adam she relies so heavily on.

Faced with losing the only real comfort and support she has ever had, Brea starts to wonder if she can hook a bookworm before it's too late.

Cassie Mae is a nerd to the core from Utah, who likes to write about other nerds who find love. Her angel children and perfect husband fan her and feed her grapes while she clacks away on the keyboard. Then she wakes up from that dream world and manages to get a few words on the computer while the house explodes around her. When she’s not writing, she’s spending time with the youth in her community as a volleyball and basketball coach, or searching the house desperately for chocolate.

Cassie Mae is an bestselling author of the teen contemporary romance novel REASONS I FELL FOR THE FUNNY FAT FRIEND, which she self-published. In addition to publishing with Swoon Romance, she is published by Random House Flirt.
Author Links

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Monday, February 24, 2014

A Meme By The Broke and the Bookish

Today's Top 10 Tuesday featurette is a rewind, which means that everyone is free to choose any topic they'd like that they may have previously missed. I chose to do an old topic that was originally done on May  22, 2012: my top 10 favorite websites and/or blogs that aren't about books. Personally, I LOVE checking out lists about people's favorite sites, because chances are that I'll find a hidden gem to add to my bookmarks. Here are some of my personal favorites:

This is one of the best sites out there for music discovery - you can find anything from soon-to-be chart-toppers to obscure indie mash-ups. I actually discovered Sweater Weather by The Neighbourhood on here long before it ever hit the radio.

Definitely one of the best platforms available for PC Gamers, Steam is actually a relatively new addiction for me. I'm a huge fan of their sales (there are a lot), and I absolutely love earning achievements and collecting badges for the games that I play.

This is one of my favorite language-learning blogs - Khatzumoto always has some great tips for language learners that can be applied to any language you're studying, and any time that I read his articles, I always get pumped up.

I'm not proud to say that I watch a lot of television, but it's true. Most of my TV viewing, however, isn't actually live - I tend to DVR or stream shows so that I can watch them when I actually have the time to do so. This is where trakt comes in. I watch so many shows that I tend to get confused as to where I left off on a series, and tract allows me to mark off episodes as I watch them, that way I always know what episode I'm on. This site is a life saver!

This is one of my favorite sites of all time! I always find out the latest and greatest in science & science-fiction news here, and I can spend hours perusing through their posts.

A sister-site to io9, lifehacker is all about making your life easier through the use of their "life hacks." There are so many great ideas here on organization, time-management, etc. that I'm always learning something new.

I am an Asian Drama addict, and this site is usually where I get my fix. Unfortunately, they don't have much of a Japanese Drama selection, but their Korean Drama selection is one of the best I've found! They also have a good number of Chinese & Spanish dramas, and are well-worth the premium fee for commercial-free and in-app viewing.

This is a good site to turn to when you're feeling down - there are a lot of motivational blog posts to be found here, and the site is updated on a regular basis.
I haven't been on this site much lately, but it's still a fave. I always find this to be hit or miss, but many of their articles are pretty entertaining and relate-able,  so I try to check it out every now and then. Plus, one of the founders is Zooey Deschanel!

I absolutely love Kickstarter! I like the idea that a product can come into existence because of the support from its fans, and I like that many of the project creators offer their backers one-of-a-kind rewards that you can't get anywhere else. It's an amazing platform & a fun site to browse!

If you'd like to check out the original post for this topic, which includes a link-up (so you can check out other book bloggers' favorite websites), you can do so HERE. I myself had a lot of fun perusing the links!

Please feel free to let me know your favorite sites/blogs in the comments below - I would love to check them out!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Today is the day! The cover of Gena Showalter's THE QUEEN OF ZOMBIE HEARTS is here! I'm so excited to be able to share this with you as it joins an already stunning set! Ready to see it? Not quite yet - let's take a look a the first two covers in the series:

First there was ALICE IN ZOMBIELAND...


Now, get ready to EAT YOUR HEARTS OUT!!!









The Queen of Zombie Hearts 
by Gena Showalter
Expected Publication: September 30, 2014
I have a plan.

We'll either destroy them for good, or they'll destroy us.

Either way, only one of us is walking away.

In the stunning conclusion to the wildly popular White Rabbit Chronicles, Alice "Ali" Bell thinks the worst is behind her. She's ready to take the next step with boyfriend Cole Holland, the leader of the zombie slayers…until Anima Industries, the agency controlling the zombies, launches a sneak attack, killing four of her friends. It's then she realizes that humans can be more dangerous than monsters…and the worst has only begun.

As the surviving slayers prepare for war, Ali discovers she, too, can control the zombies…and she isn't the girl she thought she was. She's connected to the woman responsible for killing—and turning—Cole's mother. How can their relationship endure? As secrets come to light, and more slayers are taken or killed, Ali will fight harder than ever to bring down Anima—even sacrificing her own life for those she loves.

Pre-Order Your Copy Now:

Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of the wildly popular White Rabbit Chronicles, the Angels of the Dark, the Lords of the Underworld, and the Otherworld Assassins series.  In addition to being a National Reader's Choice and RITA nominee, her romance novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan and Seventeen magazine, and have been translated in multiple languages.  She lives in Oklahoma with her family and menagerie of dogs, and truly believes love conquers all.

1 complete set of The White Rabbit Chronicles 
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Wednesday, February 05, 2014

What I'm Listening To

Wednesday, February 05, 2014 with 2 comments

Melyssa @ The Nectar Collective has started a year-long project called The Creative Collective, which is a creative social project featuring fun posts that are designed to get our creative juices flowing, all while introducing us to some great blogs! If you're interested in checking it out, you can do so HERE

Today's prompt is all about the music, and is one that I did not want to miss out on. Music is a HUGE part of my life, even more-so than books. In fact, other than because of work, one of the main reasons I don't read as much as I'd like to is because I'm either too busy listening to music, or searching for new artists to fall in love with. I like to think of it this way: it's not exactly the books themselves that I love, but the stories that they contain. It doesn't matter what the medium is (whether a book, movie, song, etc.), a good story is a good story, and I just happen to feel that music is one of the best ways to experience one. 

On that note, I thought that for this particular prompt, I would share some of the songs that I've had on repeat a lot lately. This playlist could go on forever, but I tried my best to shorten it to some of my top favorites of the moment (FYI, my top favorites pretty much change on a bi-weekly basis, so a few weeks from now my list will look nothing like this.) Here you go:

Also, I almost wasn't going to share this one, since it isn't even on Spotify, but I felt that I'd be cheating you guys by not putting this in. I'm not a regular listener of the Jonas Brothers, but I came across this song randomly on YouTube (it was one of those sidebar recommended videos), and holy crap, who knew they were this good?! Even if you aren't into their teen pop songs, you should give this a listen - it's a really beautiful song, and according to Wikipedia, Nick Jonas wrote and produced it himself. Dude's got talent, and I gotta give credit where credit is due...

I am always looking for new music, so if any of you dear readers has a recommendation for some songs that you feel are so good, they should be heard by everyone you know, please let me know in the comments! I listen to anything and everything, as long as I think it sounds good, and I guarantee that there is a 100% chance I'll check out any song you send my way, if I haven't heard it already! :)

Recommended Sites for Fellow Music Junkies
The Hype Machine / The Mashup Radio / NoiseTrade / Tiny Mix Tapes

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

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When Ardis discovers a man bleeding to death on the battlefield, she knows she has to walk away.

1913. In her work as a mercenary for Austria-Hungary, Ardis has killed many men without hesitation. One more man shouldn’t matter, even if he manages to be a charming bastard while he stands dying in the snow. 

But when he raises the dead to fight for him, she realizes she must save his life.

If a necromancer like Wendel dies, he will return as a monster—or so the rumors say. Ardis decides to play it safe and rescues him. What she doesn’t expect is Wendel falling to one knee and swearing fealty. Ardis never asked for the undying loyalty of a necromancer, but it’s too late now.

Ardis and Wendel forge an uneasy alliance underscored with sexual tension. Together, they confront rebels, assassins, and a conspiracy involving a military secret: robotically-enhanced soldiers for a world on the brink of war. But as Ardis starts to fall for Wendel, she realizes the scars from his past run more deeply than she ever imagined. Can Ardis stop Wendel before his thirst for revenge destroys him and everyone else around him?

This novel was (sorta) my first introduction to the idea of Dieselpunk - I say this because I watch The Legend of Korra, which is also technically Dieselpunk, but I had never actually heard the word until I came across this book. If you're also new to this term, you may notice that it brings to mind the Steampunk genre, which is actually something completely different. One of the most obvious differences between Dieselpunk and Steampunk is that while Steampunk is based on the Victorian era, Dieselpunk is based on the era between World War I and World War II, though both also feature modern and/or postmodern technologies mixed-in with the technologies of those eras.

Anywho, Shadows of Asphodel is a Dieselpunk story about a blonde Chinese-American mercenary, Ardis, who happens upon a ruggedly-handsome necromancer, Wendel,  and reluctantly saves his life. The two end up travelling together, and learn a few big secrets about each other along the way. They also have a lot of run-ins with assassins, take part in some cool sword-fights, and meet an awesome Archmage by the name of Konstantine, whom I feel should have gotten a lot more "air-time" due to how love-able he is (here's hoping he gets his own side-story - or at least a novella, perhaps? pretty, pretty please?).

I feel I should also mention that this book definitely falls into the "New Adult" category, since the main characters are in their twenties, and there's a healthy sprinkling of steamy scenes throughout the novel (they were tastefully done, yes, but they were also pretty hot). And don't expect to get into this novel without feeling ALL OF THE FEELS. And mostly for Wendel. Let me tell you, necromancers do not have it easy - apparently, people who can raise the dead are completely despised by society. Who knew?

While the plot was gripping, I felt that this was mostly a character-driven novel. There were so many dimensions to Ardis and Wendel that I felt they honestly could have been real people. I even tried to drag-out reading this for as long as possible, since I didn't want to leave the world that Ms. Kincy had created. That said, there are still some questions I have that I'd like to see answered later on in the series, such as whatever happened to Wendel's siblings? or how did the meeting between Margareta and The Grandmaster go? I also hope that more details on the war are given in the later books, since the war wasn't described as much as I'd have liked. At any rate, I look forward to seeing what the author has in store for us in book two! This one gets 4 out of 5 stars.

Karen Kincy (Redmond, Washington) can be found lurking in her writing cave, though sunshine will lure her outside. When not writing, she stays busy gardening, tinkering with aquariums, or running just one more mile. Karen has a BA in Linguistics and Literature from The Evergreen  State College.

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Saturday, February 01, 2014

Top 10 Sweetest Moments In YA Fiction

Saturday, February 01, 2014 with No comments

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In honor of Valentine's Day, which is coming up soon, I've decided to compile a list of some of my favorite "sweet" scenes in YA fiction. Please keep in mind that the following quotes & moments were chosen based on my own personal opinion and reading experiences (if I didn't read it, you won't see it here), and please feel free to add to this list in the comments - I'm always looking for a good reading rec!


     I cried, sitting by her bed, and I told her the story of us. "It's about the feed," I said. "It's about this meg normal guy, who doesn't think about anything until one wacky day, when he meets a dissident with a heart of gold." I said, "Set against the backdrop of America in its final days, it's the high-spirited story of their love together, it's laugh-out-loud funny, really heartwarming, and a visual feast." I picked up her hand and held it to my lips. I whispered to her fingers. "Together, the two crazy kids grow, have madcap escapades, and learn an important lesson about love. They learn to resist the feed. Rated PG-13. For language," I whispered, "and mild sexual situations."
     I sat in her room, by her side, and she stared at the ceiling. I held her hand. On a screen, her heart was barely beating.
     I could see my face, crying, in her blank eye.

Feed by M.T. Anderson


     My little sister looks up at me.
     Mom was right. Her eyes are the same as they've always been. Brown eyes fringed with long lashes and steeped with the memory of sweetness and light, laughter and joy—trapped in this mangled, corpse-like face.
     "It's alright baby girl," I whisper into her hair as I hug her. "I'm here. I came for you."
     Her face crumples and her eyes shine. "You came for me."
     I stroke her hair. It's as silky as ever.

World After by Susan Ee


     And that's when I saw him.
    Poe was standing on the border of the clearing, acting most peculiarly. He took a few steps toward the cabin, then paused, shook his head, and marched back out. He repeated the move a few times before stomping off for good.
     I stood at the window, confused as hell. Why in the world....and then it hit me, way, way harder than the water had when I'd fallen off the boat.
     Poe liked me.

Rites of Spring (Break) by Diana Peterfreund


     "Hang on a moment!" said Ron sharply. "We've forgotten someone!"
     "Who?" asked Hermione.
     "The house-elves, they'll all be down in the kitchen, won't they?"
     "You mean we ought to get them fighting?" asked Harry.
     "No," said Ron seriously, "I mean we should tell them to get out. We don't want any more Dobbies, do we? We can't order them to die for us —”
     There was a clatter as the basilisk fangs cascaded out of Hermione's arms. Running at Ron, she flung them around his neck and kissed him full on the mouth. Ron threw away the fangs and broomstick he was holding and responded with such enthusiasm that he lifted Hermione off her feet.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling


     "Shhhh," she said. "I'm sleeping."
     Just like that. From a hundred miles an hour to asleep in a nanosecond. I wanted so badly to lie down next to her on the couch, to wrap my arms around her and sleep. Not fuck, like in those movies. Not even have sex. Just sleep together, in the most innocent sense of the phrase. But I lacked the courage and she had a boyfriend and I was gawky and she was gorgeous and I was hopelessly boring and she was endlessly fascinating. So I walked back to my room and collapsed on the bottom bunk, thinking that if people were rain, I was drizzle and she was a hurricane.

Looking For Alaska by John Green