Tag Archive | young adult

But Then I Came Back: Author Interview + Giveaway

BUT THEN I CAME BACK

About the Book:

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Title: BUT THEN I CAME BACK

Author: Estelle Laure

Pub. Date: April 4, 2017

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers

Pages: 512

Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Find it: AmazonBarnes & NobleiBooksGoodreads

 

Eden Jones, a 17-year-old girl, feels lost after surviving a near fatal accident. Unable to connect with her family and friends, Eden forms an unlikely relationship with Joe, a boy who comes to the hospital to visit Jasmine, a friend who may soon be gone forever. Eden is the only person who can get through to Jasmine, but is she brave enough to face a world that’s bigger and more magical than she ever would have allowed?

 

Author Interview:

What gave you the idea for But Then I Came Back?

Well, I was working on a whole other book about love and romanticism and one of my best friends committed suicide. I continued trying to write the other book, but I was plagued by questions of life and death and why it is we persist in living when it’s so hard sometimes. I was constantly pondering my own passion for life and arguing both sides with myself. The other book just wasn’t coming together and I was destroyed so I wasn’t producing the way I wanted to be. I finally gave in and poured all my grief and confusion into this book. Yeah, you’re welcome.

What is Eden’s greatest strength and weakness?

I think her greatest strength is her openness to wisdom. She likes books and information and thinking about existential concepts. That makes her interesting to me and strong as a person because she can take things in and grow. Her weakness has to do with ignorance. She hasn’t lived much of a life. She hasn’t traveled or experienced much diversity or economic strife. She’s been mollycoddled by adoring parents. Except for a single experience of rejection, until her accident she’s been unchallenged which makes her unable to understand things in a real way which is why the whole thing is such a shock.

When did you decide that you wanted to be a writer?

When I was six I used to write stories while we drove around in a VW bus. Over time I was around people who I thought were better and more creative than me and I dropped it, only picking it up again after I had my son. I don’t know what clicked, but I have written in some form or another every day since and I’m totally serious when I say if I never published again in my life I would write every day anyway.

What is your favorite book so far that you have read this year?

Like 2017? I really loved UNDERWATER by Marisa Reichart. Totally devastating and beautiful. I also read Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance and think pretty much anyone living in America should read it.

Can you tell us a little more about Joe from But Then I Came Back?

Joe is quiet, thoughtful, great with his hands. He doesn’t get sucked into normal guy games. He doesn’t like sports or video games and is used to hard work. He likes flowers and plants and cars. He is loyal, so loyal that the thought of falling in love while his friend is struggling between life and death feels like a betrayal. He takes things seriously but can be playful. He comes from a mixed background. He has seen strife and doesn’t trust the system. He doesn’t know if he believes in God. He can’t figure out how the world could be so cruel. He’s thin and cut from hard work and when he has kids he will make sure they’re cut and thin from hard work, too. He’s not going to be following any YouTubers any time soon.

Do any of the characters from But Then I Came Back have characteristics from people you know in real life?

Sure. Things always leak in there, but if I try to make them exactly like a real person it becomes limiting because I feel I need to protect them or do them justice and I always fail. Gigi is probably the most based on a real person. George was my grandmother’s best friend was from Martinique, a woman who read cards and talked to ghosts. Her apartment was full of owls and she seemed more in the spirit world than on earth. She was extremely feisty and I was totally fascinated as a little kid. When my father read this book he wrote back and said, “It was nice to see George again…I mean Gigi.”

 

Estelle

About Estelle:

Estelle Laure is a Vonnegut worshipper who believes in love and magic and the power of facing hard truths. She has a BA in Theater Arts from New Mexico State University and an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and thinks everyone should have to wait tables or work in a kitchen at least once in their lives. She lives in Taos, New Mexico with her children.

Website | Twitter |Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram

 

Giveaway Details:

3 winners will receive a hardcover of BUT THEN I CAME BACK, US Only.

 

Rafflecopter Code: 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Tour Schedule: 

Week One:

3/27/2017- Literary Dust– Interview

3/28/2017- The Best Books Ever – Review

3/29/2017- Novel Novice– Guest Post

3/30/2017- Portrait of a Book– Review

3/31/2017- Literary Meanderings– Excerpt

Week Two:

4/3/2017- YA Book Madness– Review

4/4/2017- Don’t Judge, Read– Review

4/5/2017- Tales of the Ravenous Reader– Interview

4/6/2017- Just Commonly– Review

4/7/2017- Wandering Bark Books– Excerpt

 

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Review: The Dead List

Title: The Dead List

Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Date of Publication: April 25th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

It’s Ella’s senior year of high school and she and her best friend Linds plan to make it the best year ever. At Brock Cochran’s end of summer pool party, the girls vow to have as much fun as possible before they head off to different colleges next fall. But when Ella is mysteriously attacked on her way home from the party, everything changes. Ella’s carefree senior year plans disintegrate as she finds herself at the center of an attempted murder investigation.

Ella tries to move on, but her attacker isn’t done yet. He shows himself in the form of horrifying signs and symbols: a clown mask strewn on her bed, a dead bird in her backpack, a shadow moving past her window in the night. And as the weeks pass, it turns out that Ella isn’t the only one being tormented.

With the help of an old flame, Jensen Carver, and her friends and family, Ella tries to attain some sense of normalcy, but she can’t seem to shake the feeling that there’s a dark pattern hidden in the killer’s every move. Suddenly, even those in her innermost circle seem suspicious. In her seemingly safe West Virginia town, Ella starts to wonder who she can trust.

My Review:

I actually read this when it was free on Wattpad a couple of years ago, and I loved it! I won an early copy of this book, so I thought I would go ahead and give my review properly.

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This book was pure awesome, and it reminded me of the awesome slasher movies of the nineties that we don’t seem to have today. There was plenty of creepy factors, but then there were loads of heartfelt moments, especially when it came to Penn. I loved my little Penn!

Ella was an awesome MC, and Jensen was the perfect swoony love interest. My favorite kind of romance is one that has a past together, and these two had grown up together until something pulled them apart.

The killer wears a creepy mask, and that is my favorite type of fictional murder because you can’t see what type of emotion is expressed on the face beneath the mask. I am pretty good at guessing who is the killer in books, and I did guess it here, but it didn’t take away from this being one of my favorite YA horror books that I have read.

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Help Me Reveal My Book Cover

So, I am having my first book cover reveal through Lola’s Book Tours and was hoping you guys would consider helping me and sign up to help reveal it! I don’t really know what I am doing in general, but I do need help spreading the word!

If you choose to help me, you can sign up here… https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdgTOB9LuAVjKoM9o9uAY-Lh-aqq2tvGe8XOW4JgHliENbuxA/viewform

And if you have anything you would like me to share, I don’t mind helping!

Just thought I would throw in some Bollywood dancing, because it is awesome!

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Thanks for the support!

Review: Unwind

Title: Unwind

Author: Neil Shusterman

Date of Publication: November 6th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

Connor, Risa, and Lev are running for their lives.

The Second Civil War was fought over reproductive rights. The chilling resolution: Life is inviolable from the moment of conception until age thirteen. Between the ages of thirteen and eighteen, however, parents can have their child “unwound,” whereby all of the child’s organs are transplanted into different donors, so life doesn’t technically end. Connor is too difficult for his parents to control. Risa, a ward of the state, is not enough to be kept alive. And Lev is a tithe, a child conceived and raised to be unwound. Together, they may have a chance to escape and to survive.

My Review:

Right off the bat this book is action packed! Connor discovers his parents are going to have him unwound, and he runs away. There are three main perspectives in this book which are Connor, Risa, and Lev, but there are others woven in that connects very well to the plot.

This book is one of the creepiest dystopian books I have ever read. Maybe it is because of the fact that they harvest organs from children just makes it a hundred times worse.

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I actually loved all the characters. I wanted to hate Lev at first, but his thoughts were just so good and interesting. Then the fact that he was born to pretty much sacrifice himself and being brainwashed from an early age had me feel bad for the little guy.

I had never heard of this series before for some reason, so I was pleasantly surprised by how good and scary this world was.

 

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Have you read this series?

Review: The Traitor’s Kiss

Title: The Traitor’s Kiss

Author: Erin Beaty

Date of Publication: May 9th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

An obstinate girl who will not be married.
A soldier desperate to prove himself.
A kingdom on the brink of war.

With a sharp tongue and an unruly temper, Sage Fowler is not what they’d call a lady―which is perfectly fine with her. Deemed unfit for marriage, Sage is apprenticed to a matchmaker and tasked with wrangling other young ladies to be married off for political alliances. She spies on the girls―and on the soldiers escorting them.

As the girls’ military escort senses a political uprising, Sage is recruited by a handsome soldier to infiltrate the enemy ranks. The more she discovers as a spy, the less certain she becomes about whom to trust―and Sage becomes caught in a dangerous balancing act that will determine the fate of her kingdom.

My Review:

This was definitely one of my most anticipated reads this year, and now I just feel lost! The cover while stunning, what was inside did not hold a candle up to it.

The beginning started off awesome. The whole matchmaker business in the beginning reminded me of Mulan, where she just makes a disaster of things, so that got me all kinds of thrilled.

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Sage then goes to apologize to the matchmaker and is offered to become her assistant, which she takes. Things then get all kinds of good. Then we flip to Quinn’s POV, and I started to get bored. There was a lot of military strategy stuff going on that I did not care about.

Ash, who works with the military, enters the picture to get some info on things and then runs into Sage, where he is requested to get more info. So, I was seriously bored.

Things pick up halfway, and I had already figured out what was going on, but it was still entertaining. The romance was sweet, but it still felt underdeveloped, because I didn’t see any real conversations going on. I will see I did like Sage’s training scene!

Overall it was still an okay read that lands in the mediocre range for me, but I still would read the next book!

 

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Review: The Great Pursuit

Title: The Great Pursuit

Author: Wendy Higgins

Date of Publication: March 7th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

Lochlanach has traded the great beast for something far more terrible, a Lashed enemy veiled in beauty, deception, and a vengeance passed down through generations: Rozaria Rocato. And she’s offering the hunter Paxton Seabolt power and acceptance he could never receive in his homeland. Pax must decide how far he’s willing to go under her tutelage, knowing she is the opponent of Princess Aerity Lochson.

In a land where traditionalists dread change, the Lochlan throne must contend with mysterious foes and traitors, while attempting to keep revolt at bay. As dire circumstances strike the royal family, matters of the castle are left in Aerity’s hands. It’s time to put aside her fears and grasp the reign, taking actions that have the potential to save or destroy her people.

One hunt has ended, but the pursuit for love and justice continue. In this sequel to The Great Hunt from New York Times bestselling author Wendy Higgins, political intrigue and romance intensify in another thrilling fantasy. Princess Aerity embraces a quest for identity and passion before making the ultimate sacrifice for her kingdom.

My Review:

This series is definitely not my favorite Wendy Higgin’s series, but it is still fun nonetheless. Different concept, but it still has a Princess Bride type feel, which was pretty cool.

I liked this one more than the first book. I felt there was more going on and more action with an interesting plot. The romance felt better in this instead of forced. I am still slightly annoyed with the ocean and sea slang, so I ignored most of that.

Also, I hated Rozaria in this, and the creepiness of her with Paxton. Lief was a douche, but he was also a douche in book one. Harrison is one of my favorite males in the book! Absolutely adored the ending! This was a super fun duology!

 

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Have you read any of Wendy Higgins books?

 

 

Garden of Thorns: Review + Giveaway

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Garden of Thorns by Amber Mitchell

Genre: YA Fantasy/Action/Adventure

Published by Entangled Teen

Published March 6th, 2017

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30118749-garden-of-thorns?ac=1&from_search=true

After seven grueling years of captivity in the Garden—a burlesque troupe of slave girls—sixteen-year-old Rose finds an opportunity to escape during a performance for the emperor. But the hostage she randomly chose from the crowd to aid her isn’t one of the emperor’s men—not anymore. He’s the former heir to the throne, who is now leading a rebellion against it.

Rayce is a wanted man and dangerously charismatic, the worst person for Rose to get involved with, no matter what his smile promises. But he assumes Rose’s attempt to take him hostage is part of a plot to crush the rebellion, so he takes her as his hostage. Now Rose must prove where her loyalties lie, and she offers Rayce a deal—if he helps her rescue the other girls, she’ll tell him all the Garden’s secrets.

Except the one secret she’s kept for seven years that she’ll to take to her grave if she must.

My Review:

Garden of Thorns is an interesting book. I loved the whole aspect of the girls having garden names, and the gardener I wanted to kick him so hard!

Rose was a likable character, and the best part was how fierce her loyalty was to the other girls in the garden. She was a great friend and sister to them, and it is awesome when a character is selfless.

Rayce was a good character, even though at first he kind of made me mad when he didn’t entirely believe Rose, but then he grew on me. The chemistry with him and Rose was cute.

There were some things that came across as odd, but I liked how different this book was. Overall I would recommend giving this one a try.


Amber Mitchell graduated from the University of South Florida with a BA in Creative Writing. She likes crazy hair styles, reading, D&D, k-dramas, good puns and great food.

When she isn’t putting words on paper, she is using cardstock to craft 3D artwork or exploring new places with her husband Brian. They live a small town in Florida with their four cats where she is still waiting for a madman in a blue box to show up on her doorstep.

Garden of Thorns is her debut novel from Entangled Teen.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15236246.Amber_Mitchell

Twitter: @amberinblunderl

Giveaway!

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