Thursday, June 28, 2012

Freedom to Read Giveaway Hop

Since this giveaway hop is titled "Freedom to Read," and it's the week of July 4th, I decided to give away a book that fits the theme, even though it wasn't required, and so I am giving away a historical novel set during the American Revolution, Cannons at Dawn by Kristiana Gregory. If you want to learn more about this book, you read read my review and my interview with the author. To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter form below the book cover and summary.

Dear America: Cannons at Dawn by Kristiana Gregory

Abigail Jane Stewart returns in this brand-new sequel to THE WINTER OF RED SNOW. The Revolutionary War toils on, but the Stewart family can no longer avoid getting involved. Abby's father joins the Continental Army, while Abby, her mother, and her siblings become camp followers. They face daily hardships alongside the troops and continue to spend time helping the Washingtons. Filled with romance and adventure, Abby's frontline view of the war captures the heartache and bravery of the soldiers, as well as the steep cost of freedom.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, June 22, 2012

Guest post from Dori Jones Yang, author of Son of Venice

I loved Dori Jones Yang's book Daughter of Xanadu, so I was excited to learn that there would be a sequel, Son of Venice. Today, I have a guest post from Dori about the new book. It was supposed to go up a couple of days ago - sadly, Blogger schedule posting did NOT work and my laptop I took on my trip BROKE - so I really had NO luck!! But here it is - better late than never, I suppose!

What makes for a great love story? Yes, a gorgeous, complex woman and a fascinating, attractive guy. But the real key may surprise you: obstacles.
Without obstacles, there is no love story. Sad, isn’t it? But if the two young lovers have nothing standing in their way, nothing keeping them apart, there is no story. Just ‘happily ever after’ from page one. Bo-ring.
So the story-teller must always find something to keep the lovers apart. For stories set in the present, it’s often complex. Sometimes the barriers are in her mind—such as pride and prejudice. Other times they are jealous friends—or third parties in a love triangle.
Love stories set in the past have an easier time finding obstacles. It’s always the parents and society, isn’t it? We all know that in the olden days—and until recently in Asia—parents chose the marriage partner. Young men and women were not allowed to meet and hang out and decide whom they wanted to marry.
In my books, Emmajin, the high-born daughter of the powerful Great Khan, is not supposed to fall in love with Marco Polo, a lowly merchant from a distant and backward place, Europe. In her world, marriages are arranged for royal daughters and granddaughters in order to create alliances for the Khan.
But here’s something I didn’t know till I started researching Daughter of Xanadu, which is set in the 13th century. Today’s notions of romantic love started in Europe in the Middle Ages. They called it courtly love. A man would wear a lady’s scarf into battle and swear his devotion to her, even if she was married. Love didn’t necessary lead to marriage. In fact, often it didn’t.
Does love naturally lead to marriage? In this day and age, we’re absolutely certain it does. But doesn’t marriage weaken that intensity that comes from the forbidden and distant lover? This is why most love stories end at the wedding.
Which is the best outcome for romantic love: a short time together, with intensity and passion? Or a lifetime together, with discussions about housekeeping and laundry, diapers and kitty litter?
Most of us are absolutely certain we know the right answer to that question, too. My books, I hope, challenge our dearly held beliefs.
What do you think?

For more about Daughter of Xanadu and its sequel, Son of Venice, see

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd

The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd (Published by Balzer + Bray, January 29, 2013)

London, 1894. Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father’s gruesome experiments. But when she learns her father is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations were true.
Juliet is accompanied by the doctor’s handsome young assistant and an enigmatic castaway, who both attract Juliet for very different reasons. They travel to the island only to discover the depths of her father’s madness: he has created animals that have been vivisected to resemble, speak, and behave as humans. Worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island’s inhabitants. Juliet knows she must end her father’s dangerous experiments and escape the island, even though her horror is mixed with her own scientific curiosity. As the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father’s genius—and madness—in her own blood.

This sounds like a very unique and awesome (and creepy!) concept for a YA novel. I hope it's as good as it sounds!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Mailbox Monday - 6/18/12

Mailbox Monday is being hosted by Burton Book Review for the month of June.

I haven't done Mailbox Monday in a couple of weeks because of BEA. I am still trying to unpack all my books. So these are all my non-BEA books for the past couple of weeks. I listed a few of my favorites from BEA previously, but if you want to see everything I got, I made a list on Goodreads but it's only about 95% complete.

The Broken Lands by Kate Milford

A crossroads can be a place of great power. So begins this deliciously spine-tingling prequel to Kate Milford’s The Boneshaker, set in the colorful world of nineteenth-century Coney Island and New York City. Few crossroads compare to the one being formed by the Brooklyn Bridge and the East River, and as the bridge’s construction progresses, forces of unimaginable evil seek to bend that power to their advantage. Only two orphans with unusual skills stand in their way. Can the teenagers Sam, a card sharp, and Jin, a fireworks expert, stop them before it’s too late? Here is a richly textured, slow-burning thriller about friendship, courage, and the age-old fight between good and evil.

Seeking Eden by Ann Turnbull

Seeking Eden is the final chapter of Ann Turnbull’s long-awaited Quaker trilogy. Will and Susanna Heywood (No Shame, No Fear and Forged in the Fire), now in their thirties, move, with their four children, to Pennsylvania, where freedom of religious thought is everyone’s right. This is the story of their eldest child, Josiah, who finds work with George Bainbrigg in the dock area of Philadelphia and falls in love with his daughter, Kate. When they travel to Barbados on business and stay with Friends who are harassed by local laws, Josiah is shocked to learn that Quakers have slaves and that his boss deals in the slave trade. Once they return home, Josiah and Kate try to help two slaves who are in love, Antony and Patience, to attain their freedom – knowing the risks involved may result in lives that are even more unbearable.

Willful Impropriety: 13 Tales of Society, Scandal, and Romance edited by Ekaterina Sedia

A beguiling collection of original short romances for teen readers set in the Victorian era.
The Victorian era is significant for the rise of the middle classes and marked changes in social relationships, both in the home and in wider society, with the proliferation of domestic help and the development of increasingly rigid gender roles.
These are romances that chafe against the restrictions of the period, with heroes and heroines who defy social convention, igniting firestorms of gossip. The aristocrats, impostors, social climbers, domestic workers and undercover agents of these stories exist in an authentically lush world, depicted here with telling attention to detail.
While most of the stories are strongly realistic, some incorporate elements of fantasy.

The Case of the Good-Looking Corpse by Caroline Lawrence

My name is P.K. Pinkerton and I am a Private Eye operating out of Virginia City.
At the moment I am in Jail in the shadow of a hangman's noose. It is all because I tried to solve the biggest mystery here in Nevada Territory and protect a girl who witnessed a terrible crime.
If I write an account of what happened, then maybe I can convince the jury not to hang me by the neck until I am dead.

Because it is My Blood by Gabrielle Zevin

Since her release from Liberty Children's Facility, Anya Balanchine is determined to follow the straight and narrow. Unfortunately, her criminal record is making it hard for her to do that. No high school wants her with a gun possession charge on her rap sheet. Plus, all the people in her life have moved on: Natty has skipped two grades at Holy Trinity, Scarlet and Gable seem closer than ever, and even Win is in a new relationship.But when old friends return demanding that certain debts be paid, Anya is thrown right back into the criminal world that she had been determined to escape. It’s a journey that will take her across the ocean and straight into the heart of the birthplace of chocolate where her resolve--and her heart--will be tested as never before.

Promised by Caragh O'Brien

After defying the ruthless Enclave, surviving the wasteland, and upending the rigid matriarchy of Sylum, Gaia Stone now faces her biggest challenge ever. She must lead the people of Sylum back to the Enclave and persuade the Protectorat to grant them refuge from the wasteland. In Gaia’s absence, the Enclave has grown more cruel, more desperate to experiment on mothers from outside the wall, and now the stakes of cooperating or rebelling have never been higher. Is Gaia ready, as a leader, to sacrifice what—or whom—she loves most?

The Seven Tales of Trinket by Shelley Moore Thomas

Guided by a tattered map, accompanied by Thomas the Pig Boy, and inspired by the storyteller’s blood that thrums through her veins, eleven-year-old Trinket searches for the seven stories she needs to become a bard like her father, who disappeared years before. She befriends a fortune-telling gypsy girl; returns a child stolen by the selkies to his true mother; confronts a banshee and receives a message from a ghost; helps a village girl outwit—and out-dance—the Faerie Queen; travels beyond the grave to battle a dastardly undead Highwayman; and meets a hound so loyal he fights a wolf to the death to protect the baby prince left in his charge. All fine material for six tales, but it is the seventh tale, in which Trinket learns her father’s true fate, that changes her life forever.

Eve and Adam by Michael Grant and Katherine Applegate

Sixteen-year-old Evening Spiker lives an affluent life in San Francisco with her mother, EmmaRose, a successful geneticist and owner of Spiker Biotech. Sure, Evening misses her father who died mysteriously, but she’s never really questioned it. Much like how she’s never stopped to think how off it is that she’s never been sick. That is, until she’s struck by a car and is exposed to extensive injuries. Injuries that seem to be healing faster than physically possible.
While recuperating in Spiker Biotech’s lush facilities, she meets Solo Plissken, a very attractive, if off-putting boy her age who spent his life at Spiker Biotech. Like Evening, he’s never questioned anything... until now. Solo drops hints to Evening that something isn’t right, and Emma-Rose may be behind it. Evening puts this out of her mind and begins her summer internship project: To simulate the creation of the perfect boy. With the help of Solo, Evening uncovers secrets so big they could change the world completely.

A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young

We all want to be remembered. Charlotte's destiny is to be forgotten.
Charlotte's best friend thinks Charlotte might be psychic. Her boyfriend thinks she's cheating on him. But Charlotte knows what's really wrong: She is one of the Forgotten, a kind of angel on earth who feels the Need—a powerful, uncontrollable draw to help someone, usually a stranger.
But Charlotte never wanted this responsibility. What she wants is to help her best friend, whose life is spiraling out of control. She wants to lie in her boyfriend's arms forever. But as the Need grows stronger, it begins to take a dangerous toll on Charlotte. And who she was, is, and will become—her mark on this earth, her very existence—is in jeopardy of disappearing completely.
Charlotte will be forced to choose: Should she embrace her fate as a Forgotten, a fate that promises to rip her from the lives of those she loves forever? Or is she willing to fight against her destiny—no matter how dark the consequences?

A Want So Wicked by Suzanne Young

Elise is a normal seventeen-year-old girl until the day she wakes up in a desert park, with no idea who she is.
After that episode, her life takes a bizarre turn. She’s experiencing unexpected flashes of insight into people’s lives—people she’s never met before. Strangers frighten her with warnings about the approaching Shadows. And although Elise has never had a boyfriend, she suddenly finds herself torn between two handsome but very different young men: Abe, the charming bad boy whose effect on her both seduces and frightens her, and the mysterious Harlin, who’s new to town but with whom Elise feels an urgent, elemental connection—almost as if they are soul mates.
Now Elise begins to question everything about her life. Why do these guys both want her so desperately? What are the Shadows? Why does the name Charlotte inspire a terrifying familiarity? And who is Elise, really?

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima

Times are hard in the mountain city of Fellsmarch. Reformed thief Han Alister will do almost anything to eke out a living for himself, his mother, and his sister Mari. Ironically, the only thing of value he has is something he can’t sell. For as long as Han can remember, he’s worn thick silver cuffs engraved with runes. They’re clearly magicked—as he grows, they grow, and he’s never been able to get them off.

While out hunting one day, Han and his Clan friend, Dancer catch three young wizards setting fire to the sacred mountain of Hanalea. After a confrontation, Han takes an amulet from Micah Bayar, son of the High Wizard, to ensure the boy won't use it against them. Han soon learns that the amulet has an evil history—it once belonged to the Demon King, the wizard who nearly destroyed the world a millennium ago. With a magical piece that powerful at stake, Han knows that the Bayars will stop at nothing to get it back.
Meanwhile, Raisa ana’Marianna, Princess Heir of the Fells, has her own battles to fight. She’s just returned to court after three years of relative freedom with her father’s family at Demonai camp – riding, hunting, and working the famous Clan markets. Although Raisa will become eligible for marriage after her sixteenth name-day, she isn't looking forward to trading in her common sense and new skills for etiquette tutors and stuffy parties.
Raisa wants to be more than an ornament in a glittering cage. She aspires to be like Hanalea—the legendary warrior queen who killed the Demon King and saved the world. But it seems like her mother has other plans for her--plans that include a suitor who goes against everything the Queendom stands for.
The Seven Realms will tremble when the lives of Han and Raisa collide in this stunning new page-turner from bestselling author Cinda Williams Chima.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Clear Your Shelf Giveaway Hop - enter to win Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini

I received two review copies of this book last year when it was published, and I really do not need to have two copies of this book taking up space, so I am giving one of these copies away to a lucky winner!

How do you defy destiny?
Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is--no easy task on an island as small and sheltered as Nantucket. And it's getting harder. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she's haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood . . . and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, she has no way of knowing they're destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history.
As Helen unlocks the secrets of her ancestry, she realizes that some myths are more than just legend. But even demigod powers might not be enough to defy the forces that are both drawing her and Lucas together--and trying to tear them apart.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, June 11, 2012

Cover reveal: The Cadet of Tildor by Alex Lidell

I love young adult fantasy, but there isn't enough of it! So when I heard about Alex Lidell's upcoming debut novel, The Cadet of Tildor, which will be published on January 10, 2013, I was like "Yay! More YA fantasy!" I am very excited to be participating in the cover reveal, and there are also two great contests you can enter, depending on who you are. The first one is for a swag bag and anyone can enter, and the second is for educators. You can find the Rafflecopter forms below the cover and blurb.

So, here it is: the cover and blurb!

There is a new king on the throne of Tildor. Currents of political unrest are sweeping through the country as two warring crime families seek power, hoping to exploit the young Crown's inexperience. At the Academy of Tildor, the training ground for the elite soldiers in the royal army, Cadet Renee de Winter is struggling to keep up with her male classmates. When her mentor, a commander recalled from active duty to teach at the Academy, is kidnapped for illegal gladiator games, Renee and her best friend Alec suddenly find themselves thrust into aworld rife with crime, sorting through a maze of political machinations, and struggling to resolve the difference between what they want, what is legal, and what is right.

Giveaway #1 (anyone can enter): Swag Pack ~ Includes dog tags, a TCoT bag, and usb port (photo and description included in kit) :
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway #2: Teachers (Educators) Only ~ win TCoT vocabulary cards for the classroom. (photo and more information in attached kits)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Back from BEA 2012

Unfortunately, I did not get many pictures because the camera on my phone was extremely uncooperative while I was there. But I had a great time this year (other than my feet still hurting!). I got to meet and spend time with so many awesome bloggers and authors. I went to two publishers' parties, and also got lots of great books. There are too many to list, but I wanted to share a few that I am particularly excited about. I will post a link to the full list (which I am still working on) with Mailbox Monday for those who are interested.

Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

In a land where magic has been forgotten but peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest is simmering. Three kingdoms grapple for power—brutally transforming their subjects’ lives in the process. Amidst betrayals, bargains, and battles, four young people find their fates forever intertwined:
Cleo: A princess raised in luxury must embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of a magic long thought extinct.
Jonas: Enraged at injustice, a rebel lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country impoverished—and finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.
Lucia: A girl adopted at birth into a royal family discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.
Magnus: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, a firstborn son begins to realize that the heart can be more lethal than the sword...
The only outcome that’s certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

The Diviners by Libba Bray

Evie O'Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City--and she is pos-i-toot-ly thrilled. New York is the city of speakeasies, shopping, and movie palaces! Soon enough, Evie is running with glamorous Ziegfield girls and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is Evie has to live with her Uncle Will, curator of The Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult--also known as "The Museum of the Creepy Crawlies."
When a rash of occult-based murders comes to light, Evie and her uncle are right in the thick of the investigation. And through it all, Evie has a secret: a mysterious power that could help catch the killer--if he doesn't catch her first.

Breathe by Sarah Crossan

Inhale. Exhale. Breathe. Breathe. Breathe . . .
The world is dead.
The survivors live under the protection of Breathe, the corporation that found a way to manufacture oxygen-rich air.
has been stealing for a long time. She’s a little jittery, but not terrified. All she knows is that she’s never been caught before. If she’s careful, it’ll be easy. If she’s careful.
should be worried about Alina and a bit afraid for himself, too, but even though this is dangerous, it’s also the most interesting thing to happen to him in ages. It isn’t every day that the girl of your dreams asks you to rescue her.
wants to tell him that none of this is fair; they’d planned a trip together, the two of them, and she’d hoped he’d discover her out here, not another girl.
And as they walk into the Outlands with two days’ worth of oxygen in their tanks, everything they believe will be shattered. Will they be able to make it back? Will they want to?

Black City by Elizabeth Richards

A dark and tender post-apocalyptic love story set in the aftermath of a bloody war. In a city where humans and Darklings are now separated by a high wall and tensions between the two races still simmer after a terrible war, sixteen-year-olds Ash Fisher, a half-blood Darkling, and Natalie Buchanan, a human and the daughter of the Emissary, meet and do the unthinkable--they fall in love. Bonded by a mysterious connection that causes Ash's long-dormant heart to beat, Ash and Natalie first deny and then struggle to fight their forbidden feelings for each other, knowing if they're caught, they'll be executed--but their feelings are too strong. When Ash and Natalie then find themselves at the center of a deadly conspiracy that threatens to pull the humans and Darklings back into war, they must make hard choices that could result in both their deaths.

Origin by Jessica Khoury

Pia has grown up in a secret laboratory hidden deep in the Amazon rain forest. She was raised by a team of scientists who have created her to be the start of a new immortal race. But on the night of her seventeenth birthday, Pia discovers a hole in the electric fence that surrounds her sterile home—and sneaks outside the compound for the first time in her life.
Free in the jungle, Pia meets Eio, a boy from a nearby village. Together, they embark on a race against time to discover the truth about Pia’s origin—a truth with deadly consequences that will change their lives forever.
Origin is a beautifully told, shocking new way to look at an age-old desire: to live forever, no matter the cost. This is a supremely compelling debut novel that blends the awakening romance of Matched with the mystery and jungle conspiracy of Lost.

What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang

Fifteen-year-old Eva cannot speak, cannot move, and should not, according to the laws of her world, even exist. She is a recessive soul, the one fated to fade away. Except she didn’t. Now Eva can only watch as Addie, her sister soul, lives her life for them both—until two other hybrids approach Addie with a shocking proposal: They can help Eva move again. But is the risk too great? When the teens are caught, they are sent to a remote facility from which no one ever returns.

The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron

When Katharine Tulman's inheritance is called into question by the rumor that her eccentric uncle is squandering away the family fortune, she is sent to his estate to have him committed to an asylum. But instead of a lunatic, Katharine discovers a genius inventor with his own set of rules, who employs a village of nine hundred people rescued from the workhouses of London.
Katharine is now torn between protecting her own inheritance and preserving the peculiar community she grows to care for deeply. And her choices are made even more complicated by a handsome apprentice, a secretive student, and fears for her own sanity.
As the mysteries of the estate begin to unravel, it is clear that not only is her uncle's world at stake, but also the state of England as Katharine knows it. With twists and turns at every corner, this heart-racing adventure will captivate readers with its intrigue, thrills, and romance.

The Twisted Tragedy of Miss Natalie Stewart by Leanna Renee Hieber

For Natalie Stewart, a normal life has never seemed so far away. Her only solace, Lord Jonathan Denbury, is wanted for murder. To clear his name, Denbury must return to England and assume the role of his demon doppelganger.
But Natalie begins to doubt his true motives, especially as a new gentleman begins whispering in her ear. Natalie and Denbury may be able to visit each other in their dreams, but they can’t escape the darkening shadows.
Amid spontaneous explosions, friends turned enemies and dangerous secrets revealed, there’s still a demon who has Natalie’s scent, and someone is trying to resurrect the ultimate evil.

Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans

Since her untimely death the day before her eighteenth birthday, Felicia Ward has been trapped in Level 2, a stark white afterlife located between our world and the next. Along with her fellow prisoners, Felicia passes the endless hours downloading memories and mourning what she’s lost—family, friends, and the boy she loved, Neil.
Then a girl in a neighboring chamber disappears, and nobody but Felicia seems to recall she existed in the first place. Something is obviously very wrong. When Julian—a dangerously charming guy Felicia knew in life—comes to offer Felicia a way out, she learns the truth: a rebellion is brewing to overthrow the Morati, the guardians of Level 2.
Felicia is reluctant to trust Julian, but then he promises what she wants the most—to be with Neil again—if only she’ll join the rebels. Suspended between Heaven and Earth, Felicia finds herself in the center of an age-old struggle between good and evil. As memories from her life come back to haunt her, and as the Morati hunt her down, Felicia will discover it’s not just her own redemption at stake… but the salvation of all mankind.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

2012 Debut author Giveaway Hop

For this contest, I will be giving away my extra copy of Wentworth Hall by Abby Grahame, which is a young adult historical novel set in Edwardian England in 1912. To learn more about this book you can read my review.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blog Design by Imagination Designs all images from the Drowsy Town kit by Irene Alexeeva