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FEUDS Blog Tour: Spotlight + Giveaway

FEUDS Blog Graphic

I was super excited to be chosen to participate in the FEUDS blog tour. I fell in love with this book’s cover when I first saw it and the description totally grabbed me - a forbidden love story, a deadly virus, competitive battles.

And while I was scheduled to share a review for this tour, unfortunately FEUDS didn’t work for me so I’ve opted to share a spotlight and a giveaway instead of a full review. Because, while it wasn’t a book for me, it might appeal another reader.

FEUDS has an incredible premise and touches upon a number of interesting ideas from segregation, to political sabotage, to a disease that targets those who are supposed to be perfect. There’s a forbidden love story, told from dual POVs. And, it seems, this will be the first book in a series.

But I was missing more backstory and word-building and character development. I wanted there to be a deeper connection between the main characters that explained their immediate interest in one another. I didn’t feel as if enough attention was given to all of those ideas that piqued my interest in the first place. And certain elements felt rushed or placed in the story for convenience.

As I had read an eARC, it’s very possible some of the issues I had are addressed in the finished copy. And it’s possible since it is the first book in a series – which I wasn’t aware of until I reached the very last page – that several things will be more fleshed out in the sequel. And as I was so intrigued by this book in the first place, I am definitely curious to see what happens in the next.

If you’d like to learn more about FEUDS, be sure to check out the description below and visit the other stops on this tour, which continues through September 12th. I’ll be updating the tour schedule at the bottom of this post with direct links to each of the stops as they happen.

And if you’d like a chance to win a copy of FEUDS and meet Davis and Cole and learn more about the Priors and the Imps, just enter in the Rafflecopter.

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About Feuds

Feuds

Add to Goodreads

Release date: September 2, 2014
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Pages: 272
Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Description…

For Davis Morrow, perfection is a daily reality. Like all Priors, Davis has spent her whole life primed to be smarter, stronger, and more graceful than the lowly Imperfects, or “Imps.” A fiercely ambitious ballerina, Davis is only a few weeks away from qualifying for the Olympiads and finally living up to her mother’s legacy when she meets Cole, a mysterious boy who leaves her with more questions each time he disappears.

Davis has no idea that Cole has his own agenda, or that he’s a rising star in the FEUDS, an underground fighting ring where Priors gamble on Imps. Cole has every reason to hate Davis—her father’s campaign hinges on the total segregation of the Imps and Priors—but despite his best efforts, Cole finds himself as drawn to Davis as she is to him.

Then Narxis, a deadly virus, takes its hold–and Davis’s friends start dying. When the Priors refuse to acknowledge the epidemic, Davis has no one to turn to but Cole. Falling in love was never part of their plan, but their love may be the only thing that can save her world…in Avery Hastings’s Feuds.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | PAPER LANTERN LIT | GOODREADS


About Avery Hastings

Avery-author-photo

Avery Hastings is an author and former book editor from New York City. Avery grew up in Ohio, graduated in 2006 from the University of Notre Dame and earned her MFA from the New School in 2008. When she’s not reading or writing, Avery can usually be spotted lying around in the park with her affable dog. Like her protagonists, she knows how to throw a powerful right hook and once dreamed of becoming a ballerina. In addition to New York, Avery has recently lived in Mumbai and Paris, but is happy to call Brooklyn home (for now).

TWITTER


The Giveaway

A hardcover copy of FEUDS to ONE winner

  • Must be 13 or older to enter
  • Giveaway is International
  • Prize will be ordered from Amazon or The Book Depository depending upon location
  • Giveaway ends September 5th at 11:59 p.m.
  • There will be ONE winner
  • Winner will be chosen by Random via Rafflecopter
  • Winner will be announced in the Rafflecopter and contacted by email
  • Winner has 72 hours to respond

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway


The Tour Schedule

August 26th – Queen Ella Bee Reads (Review)

August 27th – Such a Novel Idea (Review)

August 28th – Reading Lark (Interview)
August 28th – Fly to Fiction (Review)

August 29th – Fiktshun (Spotlight)

September 1st – I Heart YA Fiction

September 2nd – I Am A Reader (Interview)

September 3rd – A Dream Within A Dream

September 4th – All Things Urban Fantasy
September 4th – Kate’s Book Life

September 5th – Swoony Boys Podcast

September 8th – YA Book Madness
September 8th – BookFever

September 9th – Books Live Forever

September 10th – Royal Social Media

September 11th – Doctor’s Notes

September 12th – Best Books Ever

Posted in Blog Tour, Contests and Giveaways, Extras | Tags: , , ,

THE MAZE RUNNER Movie Spotlight, Trailer + Giveaway

TheMazeRunner

I am super excited for the upcoming film release of THE MAZE RUNNER, which will be in theaters on September 19th. I’ve been anxiously awaiting this movie based on James Dashner’s novel of the same name as it looks totally awesome. And I’m stoked that the wait is finally almost over.

I am also thrilled to be able to share this post that includes some fab character badges and quote graphics, the film’s wicked cool trailer, and an amazing giveaway.

If you haven’t heard about this film adaptation, here’s some info.

About THE MAZE RUNNER

TMR-1Sht

20th Century Fox
In Theaters September 19

Rated: PG-13
Starring: Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Will Poulter, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Aml Ameen, Ki Hong Lee
Directed By: Wes Ball
Produced By: Ellen Goldsmith-Vein, Wyck Godfrey, Marty Bowen

The Description

When Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) wakes up trapped in a massive maze with a group of other boys, he has no memory of the outside world other than strange dreams about a mysterious organization known as W.C.K.D. Only by piecing together fragments of his past with clues he discovers in the maze can Thomas hope to uncover his true purpose and a way to escape. Based upon the best-selling novel by James Dashner.

Places to connect online

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOOGLE+ | INSTAGRAM | YOUTUBE

And if you’d like to participate in or follow the chatter on Twitter, be sure to use the #MazeRunner hashtag.


The Film Trailer


The Characters

The publicity team created some super fab character badges and quote graphics. Feel free to grab any or all to share your love for the characters and this upcoming film on your blog, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest.

Character Badges

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Quote Graphics

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To grab any of the badges or graphics, just pause the slideshow, right click on the image and save image to download.


The Giveaway

Courtesy of 20th Century Fox, ONE (1) winner will receive:

  • A $25 Visa gift card to see the film in theaters
  • A copy of the book with the movie tie-in cover
  • A Money Maze

Open to US mailing addresses only.

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Posted in Contests and Giveaways, Extras | Tags: , , , ,

My Reading Pile #180

MyReadingPile It was an awesome week at the mailbox this week. I received two very gorgeous ARCs and both signed copies of ISLA AND THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER that I had ordered.

MRP180

I received a SIGNED ARC of THE STARS NEVER RISE by Rachel Vincent thanks to the very talented and amazing author. I read an earlier iteration of this book ages ago – and it was so unbelievably amazing – and I cannot wait to read this new version. And I mean I seriously can’t wait. It doesn’t come out until June of next year, but I will be reading it this weekend.

And I will be offering it up for giveaway in the next week or two so that someone else will get to read it and have a signed ARC by this awesome author for their bookish collection.

I also received an ARC of SUBLIME by Christina Lauren courtesy of the publisher, Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers. There were also two super cute buttons that came with, which I will be adding to a giveaway in future. I first learned about this book a couple of months ago and it looked awesome, so I’m totally stoked to have a copy to read and review. It releases in October, so I will be adding it to the pile soon.

And while I didn’t receive any other print books in the mail or request any eGalleys on NetGalley this past week, I did get approved for an eARC I requested previously and accepted an eARC for review.

NETGALLEY

CHASING POWER by Sarah Beth Durst

I received an eARC for review from the author via NetGalley and cannot wait to read it because it sounds awesome. I love Sarah Beth Durst’s writing and this new YA title of hers, which releases in October, is filled with all sorts of awesome - telekinesis, teleportation, theft, blackmail, kidnapping and a quest. While it won’t get added to the pile this week, I may try to sneak it in. If not, I’ll be reading it over the holiday weekend.

THE WALLS AROUND US by Nova Ren Suma

I had requested an eARC for review from the publisher, Algonquin Young Readers, via NetGalley the other week and I was so surprised that I was approved. I love the author’s writing. Her voice is haunting and beautiful and I just know it’s going to be the same in this book. Just check out the snippet on the author’s website and you’ll know exactly what I mean.

But that, too, won’t be releasing until this October and I have a couple of other books I must read this week. And so…

Here are the books I have in my reading pile this week.

{August 24, 2014 – August 30, 2014}


The Stars Never Rise

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First up on the pile is THE STARS NEVER RISE by Rachel Vincent. I received the ARC from the author this week and I cannot wait to start reading it. So much so that I’ve set aside my current read so that I can devour this immediately.

I read an earlier version of this back in November of 2012 – and I may have re-read that version once or twice since then – but I am just so curious about how the story has changed. I have no doubt in my mind that it’s going to be even more epically awesome. And while it doesn’t release until June of next year, I am already anxiously awaiting the sequel.

I am going to try to read this “fresh” and not try to make any comparisons. And I am also going to try very hard to let it go without a re-read so that someone else will get the chance at an early read. It’s not going to be easy, because I know I’m going to want to.

And I am also going to try to quickly finish this post so that I can start reading this now before I have to head out for the day.

The Description…

Sixteen-year-old Nina Kane should be worrying about her immortal soul, but she’s too busy trying to actually survive. Her town’s population has been decimated by soul-consuming demons, and souls are in short supply. Watching over her younger sister, Mellie, and scraping together food and money are all that matters. The two of them are a family. They gave up on their deadbeat mom a long time ago.

When Nina discovers that Mellie is keeping a secret that threatens their very existence, she’ll do anything to protect her. Because in New Temperance, sins are prosecuted as crimes by the brutal Church and its army of black-robed exorcists. And Mellie’s sin has put her in serious trouble.

To keep them both alive, Nina will need to trust Finn, a fugitive with deep green eyes who has already saved her life once and who might just be an exorcist. But what kind of exorcist wears a hoodie?

Wanted by the Church and hunted by dark forces, Nina knows she can’t survive on her own. She needs Finn and his group of rogue friends just as much as they need her.


Feuds

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Next up on the pile is FEUDS by Avery Hastings. I received an eARC for review from the publisher, St. Martin’s Griffin, via NetGalley awhile back and I am so excited to finally get it on the pile… though I may have already started reading it this past week.

The description sounded awesome so I just had to request it: a future society where perfection is the key to a better life, segregation between the perfect and imperfect, underground fighting, and a deadly virus that targets those that are perfect. All that, plus a mysterious boy and a love story. How could I not want to devour this book?

And from what I’ve read so far, it’s a story totally worth devouring. As I’ll be on the tour this week, I’ll be sharing my thoughts in the form of a review. So I will definitely be finished reading FEUDS before then.

The Description…

In this breathless story of impossible love, perfection comes at a deadly cost.

For Davis Morrow, perfection is a daily reality. Like all Priors, Davis has spent her whole life primed to be smarter, stronger, and more graceful than the lowly Imperfects, or “Imps.” A fiercely ambitious ballerina, Davis is only a few weeks away from qualifying for the Olympiads and finally living up to her mother’s legacy when she meets Cole, a mysterious boy who leaves her with more questions each time he disappears.

Davis has no idea that Cole has his own agenda, or that he’s a rising star in the FEUDS, an underground fighting ring where Priors gamble on Imps. Cole has every reason to hate Davis—her father’s campaign hinges on the total segregation of the Imps and Priors—but despite his best efforts, Cole finds himself as drawn to Davis as she is to him.

Then Narxis, a deadly virus, takes its hold–and Davis’s friends start dying. When the Priors refuse to acknowledge the epidemic, Davis has no one to turn to but Cole. Falling in love was never part of their plan, but their love may be the only thing that can save her world…in Avery Hastings’s Feuds.


Wishful Thinking Reads

My wishful thinking read this week is ALL BROKE DOWN by Cora Carmack. I loved the first book in the author’s NA series and am very much in the mood to get back into the series. But as I have two books on the pile this week, and have a couple of books I really need to read before next week, this will just have to be a wish.


Those Left Behind

I read ISLA AND THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER and I love, love, loved it. So I’m not technically behind on my reads, though I haven’t yet finished my review. Oddly, it feels like it’s been ages since I had read it and I’m totally surprised it was the book on last week’s pile. I think I have to blame sleep deprivation and marathon TV watching of Teen Wolf.

Which means I also didn’t do much reading, blogging or reviewing this week. I’d planned on posting a review here on the blog, but I was struggling with my words. I’m still not sure, after finally getting a good night’s rest, on how to express my thoughts about it. Hopefully my brain will clear up and I’ll be able to this week. We shall see.

I also planned on posting my review of ISLA AND THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER on a different blog. But as things are still in transition with that, I decided to hold off.

I don’t plan on reviewing THE STARS NEVER RISE this week, as it’s way too soon for a review. But I may end up sharing my thoughts about it and tease it on that other blog. And, as mentioned above, I will be sharing my thoughts about FEUDS for the tour this week. So nothing will be left behind in next week’s post.


NetGalley Pile Adds & Finds

I did not request any review books from NetGalley this past week. And I only stalked it to see whether a book I’ll be on tour for showed up. (It didn’t.) But I visited it this morning in order to prep this post and found a few titles that look interesting. And…

Here are this week’s finds…

VALLEY OF FIRES (Conquered Earth #3) by J. Barton Mitchell (St. Martin’s Griffin, Dec 2 2014)

PORTRAITS OF CELINA by Sue Whiting (Capstone Young Readers, Apr 1 2015)

THE RUBY AIRSHIP (Sequel to the Diamond Thief) by Sharon Gosling (Capstone Young Readers, Feb 2 2015)

RED RISING (Red Rising Trilogy #1) by Pierce Brown (Hodder & Stoughton, Sep 25 2014) **UK Reviewers Preferred**

THE SHIP by Antonia Honeywell (Orion Publishing Group, Feb 19 2015) **UK Reviewers Preferred**

UNMARKED by Kami Garcia (Simon and Schuster UK Children’s, Sep 11 2014) **UK Reviewers Preferred**


It’s been another odd summer week here on the blog this past week. I took a bit of a break from blogging, though it was completely unintentional. I had planned on posting a couple of reviews, but that just didn’t happen. I’ve had quite a bit going on IRL and at work and instead of sitting at the computer, I spent my limited free time watching TV. I have also been neurotically checking that other blog that’s in the works and testing out some of its features. So that has been a bit of a distraction.

And while things are going to be crazy at work for the next couple of weeks, I am hopeful that I’ll have time to post a few reviews, host a giveaway or two, and fangirl all over THE STARS NEVER RISE.

I am also really, really, really, hopeful that I’ll be caught up with Teen Wolf so that I can dive into a few more “must read” and “desperately want to read” books.

Anyway… here’s to hoping that I’ll be a more productive blogger this week.

And, as ever, I wish you a happy reading week this week, I hope you had an amazing week last week and that you received all sorts of lovely books to read.

Happy reading!

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Do you create a reading pile?

If so, what’s in your reading pile this week?

Posted in Fiction, My Reading Pile | Tags: , , , ,

DIRTY LITTLE MISERY Blog Tour: Teaser Spotlight + Giveaway

DLMBannerMMSAI

I am thrilled to be able to join the tour for DIRTY LITTLE MISERY hosted by Me, My Shelf and I. I only just learned about this series today, but once I read the description I knew that I would be adding it to my TBR pile. And it’s on there now – as I just bought the first two books in the series and can’t wait to dive in.

Though I haven’t yet read the first book, WICKED MISERY, I did take a little peek at book two and I can already say I’m going to love it. The writing grabbed me instantly - from the very first sentence, actually. It’s clever and a bit sarcastic – the perfect kind of voice for a sexy, urban fantasy story.

Here’s just a taste…

Be careful what you wish for.

Ever since the day I first stepped foot on the marble floor of Gryphon Headquarters in Boston, I’d dreamed of strolling through the massive lobby with a purpose. And by purpose, I didn’t mean because I was visiting my father’s office, or as part of a school tour. I meant purpose. As in, I was there because I was supposed to be there. I was there because I was someone important.

I should have been more specific in my daydreams about what “supposed to be” and “important” entailed.

In the past week, I’d been in Gryphon Headquarters because I was supposed to be and because I was someone important an awful lot, and neither reason was good.

And while I’d love to tease a little more, as I’ve only read the first chapter of this sequel I don’t want to continue reading until I’ve read the first book. Though I may have found just one other passage to tease…

The line of blond hairs that ran from his chest into his waistband called to me, and I set my lips to them, slowly kissing my way down. As he was a pred, I couldn’t taste Lucen’s emotions, but I could hear the way his breathing changed and feel his body shifting beneath mine, and it was as heady a rush as anything I’d ever experienced.

So yeah, awesome right?

If you’d like to learn a little bit more about each of the books in the series, their descriptions are below. And if you’d like to “meet” the author, her bio and places to find her online follow DIRTY LITTLE MISERY’s description.

The tour includes a few fab giveaways, so just scroll down to enter. And if you’d like to check out a few reviews and guest posts, the schedule is included at the bottom of this post or you can stop by Me, My Shelf and I’s tour page by clicking the link in the banner above.

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About Dirty Little Misery

DirtyLittleMiseryCover

Add to Goodreads

Series: Miss Misery #2
Release date: August 12, 2014
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd
Pages: 286
Formats: eBook

Description…

Lust can be downright lethal.

Thanks to her freakish, satyr-like power, Jessica Moore was denied her dream to join the Gryphons, the magical law-enforcement officers protecting humanity from the pred races. But after the Gryphons tried to arrest her for murders she didn’t commit, Jess is no longer interested. Too bad—they are.

Now that they know what she can do, they want Jess on their side. If she doesn’t agree to help them solve a new case, they’ll charge her with every magical crime she’s ever committed.

Nine people are dead. The cause? Exhaustion. The activity? Never-ending sex. Someone sold them tainted F, an illegal aphrodisiac made by satyrs. No surprise, Jess’s satyr allies aren’t pleased with her investigation. Worse, it strains her tenuous relationship with Lucen, the one satyr she counts as a friend.

As Jess delves into the shady satyr business world, she unravels a scheme more sinister than dirty drugs—and her relationship with Lucen unravels right along with it. Only the truth will save their friendship. But not before it turns Jess into an ambitious killer’s next target.

Warning: Contains blackmail, betrayal, and sex that’s literally to die for. Plus plenty of bad stiff jokes to go with it. Remember, just say no to magical drugs.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | GOODREADS


About Tracey Martin

TMartin

Tracey Martin grew up outside of Philadelphia, the lucky recipient of a drama-free childhood, which is why she spent so much time reading about other people’s lives. It was while she was working on her doctorate in psychology that she had an epiphany–imaginary people are way more fun than real ones. And so she began writing. Never able to choose just one of anything, she currently writes both urban fantasy for adults and contemporary stories for teens.

She likes her coffee simple, her music epic, and her movies to contain explosions. A city girl at heart, she doesn’t understand how she and her husband ended up living in New Hampshire, but writing keeps her off the mean, small town streets.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | GOODREADS


Other Books in the Series

Wicked MiseryTitle: WICKED MISERY (Miss Misery #1)
Release date: October 8, 2013
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd
Pages: 306
Formats: eBook

Find it: AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | GOODREADS

Description…

It s all quasi-legal fun until somebody gets framed for murder.

Jessica Moore thrives on misery. Literally. Thanks to a goblin’s curse, she gets a magical high from humanity’s suffering. A shameful talent like that could bury a girl in guilt, so to atone, she uses her dark power to hunt murderers, rapists and other scumbags until one of them frames her for his crimes.

In desperation, Jessica seeks refuge with the one person she trusts to not turn her in, a satyr named Lucen. Like every member of his race, Lucen uses his lusty magic to control Boston’s human population, and Jessica isn’t immune to his power. But the murder victims belonged to a rival race, and when they discover Lucen is harboring Jessica, dodging the cops becomes the least of her problems.

With only five days to find the real killer, Jessica faces a danger far more serious than the brewing magical war. The danger of succumbing to Lucen’s molten seduction.

Warning: Contains a heroine with a lust for misery, creepy murders, and creepier goblins, satyrs so hot you’d sell your soul for one, and scaly sewer rats masquerading as dragons. Who said magic was all sparkles and tiaras?


Beautiful MiseryTitle: BEAUTIFUL MISERY (Miss Misery #1.5)
Release date: March 25, 2014
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd
Pages: 18
Formats: eBook

Find it: AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | GOODREADS

Description…

For ten years, Jessica Moore ran away from her friend Lucen, afraid of what his lusty satyr magic might drive her to do. Even one brush of his bare skin was too risky. Or so she told herself. It was easier to believe that than to admit she might have feelings for him. But now Jess is done running…

“Beautiful Misery” is a standalone short story set immediately after Wicked Misery ends.


MiseryLovesCompanyCoverTitle: MISERY LOVES COMPANY (Miss Misery #3)
Release date: Coming January 27, 2015
Find it: WEBSITE

Description…

When it comes to magic, more isn’t always merrier.

Keep letting the Gryphons blackmail her? Or join a goblin for tea? Choices, choices.

Furious at the Gryphons’ betrayal, former vigilante Jessica Moore is determined to cut the law enforcement agency from her life—and hopes doing so will solidify her rocky relationship with Lucen.

When a friend’s soul is sucked dry by a goblin, Jess finds it’s not so easy to let go of her past. Unwilling to let down someone who needs help, she puts aside her anger to work with the Gryphons and solve the case.

A stolen soul isn’t her only problem. Boston’s goblin leader is calling in the debt Jess owes. To plug the holes in both her personal and professional dam, Jess must unearth information about a magic she never knew existed, all the while testing Lucen’s patience and stirring the wrath of old enemies.

What she discovers will reveal the terrifying truth behind the Gryphons’ treachery, and force her to choose where her loyalty—and her heart—truly lie.

Warning: Secrets will be revealed, friendships will be tested, and old enemies will pick fights. On the bright side, there are still naked satyrs for a distraction between battles.


The Giveaway

MartinGiveaway

The tour includes a few awesome giveaways!

  • GRAND PRIZE: A gryphon necklace, winner’s choice of a $15 gift card from B&N or Amazon, and an eBook Choice from the Miss Misery Series. (Open to US Only) – ONE WINNER
  • GIVEAWAY: A choice of a $15 gift card form B&N or Amazon and an eBook Choice from the Miss Misery Series. (International) – TWO WINNERS

**Must be 13 or older to enter | Shipping requirements vary by prize**

Just enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway


The Tour Schedule

August 13th – A Dream Within A Dream – Review
August 14th – Me, My Shelf and I – Spotlight
August 15th – Sabrina’s Paranormal Palace – Review
August 16th – Curling Up With A Good Book – 10 Random Things
August 17th – Once Upon A Twilight – Spotlight
August 18th – The Cover Contessa – Book Excerpt
August 19th – Fiktshun – Spotlight
August 20th – Deal Sharing Aunt – Review
August 21st – Taking it One Book at a Time – Review
August 22nd – Book Passion For Life – Review

Posted in Blog Tour, Contests and Giveaways | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Random Thoughts: On Being Yourself

randomthoughts

It’s so easy to create an online persona that is nothing like who you really are or more like you than you’ve ever shown anyone. Online you’re somewhat anonymous. Online you have the freedom to be completely different. You can be confident, shy, snarky, sweet, clever, simple, mean, nice, pretty, plain. You can be silly. You can be serious. You can be younger. You can be older. You can create the you that you’ve always wanted to be or be the you that you’ve always hidden from everyone. Online you can slip into an identity that is a completely different version of yourself.

But once you’ve created that online persona or brand it’s not always as easy to walk away from it. Not if you’ve put a lot of time, money and effort into developing that persona and brand.

As a book blogger and reviewer once you’ve “created” the you that you want to be, found your reviewer’s voice and designed your blog, it’s hard to reinvent yourself when you’ve grown tired of the you that you’ve previously presented to the world. Your readers and those that you work with have expectations based upon the you that you’ve shown them.

If you decided to be someone fun and silly or someone who tells it like it is or someone who gives a thoughtful and critical analysis of what they’ve read, changing it up, becoming someone different, is difficult. You might lose readership. You might lose professional connections. You might lose trust.

Starting over isn’t always an option. Especially if you don’t have the time or energy to rebuild your brand or you don’t want to sacrifice all the work you’ve already put into your blog.

But sometimes it’s the only option if you want to continue being a happy blogger.

Maybe you were someone who liked to show your playful side online and now you’re feeling anything but whimsical. Maybe you were someone who loved to snark about everything but now find it tough to come up with the clever, witty posts that keep your readers engaged. Maybe you were someone who liked to keep things professional but you’ve gotten jealous of those bloggers that seem to have a lot more fun and take things a lot less seriously.

Maybe you’ve outgrown the person who you used to be. Maybe you’re tired of putting on the mask you’ve been wearing.

Being someone other than who you are in real life may seem deceptive, but is it really?

We all have different sides to ourselves. We all have different faces we put on for the different people we interact with. We don’t act the same with friends as we do with family or with co-workers or with employers or teachers. We don’t act the same in front of those we find attractive, those we like or those we dislike.

And we aren’t static. We are constantly reinventing ourselves. We aren’t the same people we were five, ten years ago. We don’t necessarily like the same things we once did, enjoy the same books, think the same way.

We may not want to wear the same masks – online or offline.

As bloggers we are constantly asked to be honest in our thoughts about the books we read. We’re asked to speak in our own voices. We’re asked to be unique and interesting. But what if our thoughts have changed or the way we wish to express them has? How can we be unique if we feel tied to the brand we developed one, two, five years ago? How can we be interesting if we’re trying to meet everyone’s expectations of us?

How can we be ourselves if we feel tethered to the identity we created for ourselves long ago?

The simple answer is that we can’t be.

The identity we created for ourselves may not have been the one we showed to everyone in our offline lives but at one point it was exactly who we were and wanted to be. But if it isn’t who we are now, then we are being deceptive.

If we haven’t modified our online selves along the way, if we’re clinging to outdated versions of ourselves, then this once better, stronger, happier, sillier, sarcastic version of us is now just like an ill-fitting pair of pants – uncomfortable and unflattering. If it’s not who we are or who we want to be, we should not still be trying to make it work.

And yet we still hold on. Tightly. Why?

Because we’re just as afraid now as we once were that maybe the “new” version of who we are won’t be liked. Maybe our readers will be disappointed in us. Maybe our reviews won’t be as good. Maybe our contacts will ignore us. Maybe… Maybe… Maybe.

And maybe we won’t be liked. Maybe our readers will walk away. Maybe our reviews will be less trafficked. Maybe we’ll lose some contacts. Maybe we won’t land any “hot” tours. But…

…maybe we will. And maybe, just maybe, we’ll find new friends and readers and contacts. Maybe those who claimed to be friends no matter what will remain our friends no matter what. Maybe this new version won’t be as surprising as we think it will be, because it is still us after all.

We just have to be willing to take the risk. Because we have to be happy with who we are online and offline. Even if our online self is just one of the many versions of who we are.

Posted in Random Thoughts | Tags: , ,

GHOST HOUSE Blog Tour: Character Interview + Giveaway

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I am super excited to be today’s stop on the GHOST HOUSE Blog Tour hosted by Kismet Book Touring and to be able to share an interview with Chloe Kennedy. I was so thrilled to learn of this new series by the author and was totally stoked that I got the chance to read this first book in the series just a little bit early and meet Chloe, Alex, Joe and even Isobel.

As I don’t want to give anything away about what happens at Grange Hall, I will try very hard not to ramble in this intro. I will just say that there were a few twists that I did not expect, a setting that was perfect for a ghost story, and two boys I adored. If you’d like to know more, be sure to check out the book’s description below and the Q&A with Chloe which follows below that.

GHOST HOUSE comes out next week on the 26th and I can’t wait to see what you think about the story and the way things end. But until then, there are (and will be) some awesome guest posts by and interviews with the author on the other stops on this tour. And at each stop there’s a giveaway for a chance to win a copy of the book and a grand prize giveaway for a bookish gift card. So be sure to visit all the stops on tour!

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About Ghost House

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Series: The Ghost House Saga #1
Release date: August 26th
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Pages: 320
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

GHOST HOUSE, book one of a powerful new trilogy by New York Times bestselling author Alexandra Adornetto, follows Chloe Kennedy whose frightening ability to see the dead leads her into peril.

Wracked by grief after his wife’s death, Chloe’s dad sends her far away from sunny California to live with relatives in the rainy English countryside. Unhappy with the change of scenery, Chloe changes her mind when she encounters Alexander Reade, a mysterious and handsome young man. Unfortunately, Alexander is no ordinary crush – he’s a former resident of her grandmother’s house who died over a century ago and whose ghost has not moved on.

As a small child, Chloe had been frightened by ghostly apparitions. But the spirits had one day disappeared and Chloe believed she had put her weird talent behind her. Now she can not only see Alexander but talk to him, even touch him in her dreams. Their connection is immediate and intense, but when their budding relationship awakens a vengeful spirit, Chloe’s tangled emotions could have dangerous consequences. Will she be dragged forever into the world of the dead?

Alexandra Adornetto’s romantically eerie storytelling has a proven bestselling track record and this first book in the GHOST HOUSE trilogy does not disappoint, mixing scary supernatural situations with a heartbreaking love story!

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | THE BOOK DEPOSITORY | INDIEBOUND


The Character Interview

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with Chloe Kennedy

Q. For those who haven’t met you how would you describe yourself in 15 words or less?

At this point in my life, I’d say nothing shocks me anymore. Go ahead, try…

Q. What was it like to discover that you were able to see ghosts? And what was it like when they started to reappear to you after having been gone from your life for ten years?

I never really “discovered” that I could see ghosts. They were always there, right from when I was a child and I sort of just accepted them. But as I got older, they started to scare me and my mom taught me how to block them with my mind. So the woman in the graveyard came as quite a shock, although I can’t say it doesn’t make sense. As soon as my mom was gone, they came back.

Q. How were you able to keep your secret from your friends for all those years?

It’s an easy secret to keep because no one else can see them! The only time it was tough, was if I saw a ghost and I happened to be with one of my friends. Then I had to act cool and pretend like nothing happened. But I wouldn’t trust my friends to keep the secret anyway. They might judge me or think I’m crazy or turn it into gossip. I don’t know how they’d react, but I don’t want to find out!

Q. After everything that has happened, do you wish you were never able to see spirits or are you glad you have that ability? And why?

Until I met Alex, I wished I was normal. I didn’t understand why I had this strange affliction and I would have traded places with anyone to be free of it. But Alex taught me that the dead might not be with us physically anymore, but they’re still people with complex thoughts and feelings and emotions. He taught me that love doesn’t distinguish between life and death. There’s a reason I am this way. I don’t know exactly what my purpose is right now, but I know one day I can use this gift for good.

Q. It was quite a shock when you discovered that your Gran had arranged for you and your brother to stay with her at her home in England. How did you feel about going? And did your feelings change about being there after having met Alexander Reade?

England was the last place I wanted to go. I wasn’t particularly close with Grandma Fee and I didn’t want to leave my home. But in hindsight, it wasn’t a home anymore without my mom. Alex, of course, impacted heavily on my feelings about Grange Hall. No one I know has suffered more loss than him and he helped me cope with my own grief, by getting me to understand that just because a person is gone from this world, doesn’t mean they aren’t close-by.

Q. Speaking of Alex, can you tell us a little but about him and what you think of him?

Alex is very beautiful but in a way that doesn’t seem real. He’s like a painting come to life and you’re constantly wondering if he’ll fade away when you turn your back. But he’s so much more than that. His mind is fascinating. He’s had a century and a half to observe human behavior and so he is is constantly evolving. He has known great love and great loss and I feel like I could tell him anything.

Q. If you had any moment to do over what would it be – and why – or do you have no regrets?

Although it was a transcendent moment in my life, looking back on it I shouldn’t have kissed Alex on the night of the Winter Ball. I wasn’t thinking and it was my fault that Joe got hurt. I knew what Isobel was capable of and I let my own selfish desires get the better of me. My friend could have died and I wouldn’t have been able to live with that.

Q. If you could share one secret about what you discovered or experienced at Grange Hall, what would it be?

Death is not final.


About Alexandra Adornetto

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Alexandra Adornetto started writing at a very young age, with her first novel being released when she was only thirteen. A native of Australia, Alexandra moved to the US to study at the University of Mississippi. She is currently living in Hollywood and working on a number of film projects, both as a writer and an actress.

GHOST HOUSE is Alexandra’s seventh published novel and the first book in what will become her third trilogy. The first two novels of her beloved Halo series both debuted on the New York Times bestseller list and her books are sold in more than 25 countries worldwide.

TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS


The Giveaway

This tour includes an couple of awesome giveaways.

  • A copy of GHOST HOUSE – ONE winner at each stop
  • A $100 gift card from either Amazon, B&N or iTunes – one GRAND PRIZE winner

Giveaway is US/Canada.

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway


The Tour Schedule

Week One

Monday, August 11th – Our Wolves Den – Guest Post

Wednesday, August 13th – Xpresso Reads – Author Interview

Friday, August 15th – Swoony Boys Podcast – Guest Post

Week Two

Monday, August 18th – Fiktshun – Character Interview (Chloe)

Wednesday, August 20th – Candace’s Book Blog – Guest Post

Friday, August 22nd – This Girl Reads a Lot – Author Interview

Week Three

Monday, August 25th – Parajunkee - Guest Post

Wednesday, August 27th – Bo-ok Nerd – Author Interview

Friday, August 29th – Book Briefs – Guest Post

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Posted in Blog Tour, Contests and Giveaways, Interviews | Tags: , , , , , ,

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