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LOOP Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway


I am so excited to be a part of the LOOP Blog Tour. I’d been wanting to read this book ever since I first read its description. So the chance to read it prior to its release and share my thoughts on the tour was one I could not pass up.

And I have to say that it was every bit as awesome as I’d hoped it would be. I’m a huge fan of time travel stories, especially those with time loops and paradoxes and tidbits to make me stop and think and wonder how it all could possibly happen and what the repercussions could be. I’m thrilled to say that LOOP had it all.

And with the way things end… well… I am already counting the days until TWIST’s release.

If you’d like to know what I thought about LOOP, my review follows the book’s description and author’s details. And if you’d like the chance to win a copy for yourself, the publisher has offered up a copy to include on my stop.


About Loop


Add to Goodreads

Title & Series: LOOP (Loop #1)
Author: Karen Akins
Release date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Pages: 336
Formats: Hardcover, eBook


At a school where Quantum Paradox 101 is a required course and history field trips are literal, sixteen year-old time traveler Bree Bennis excels…at screwing up.

After Bree botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage (a teensy snafu), she stands to lose her scholarship. But when Bree sneaks back to talk the kid into keeping his yap shut, she doesn’t go back far enough. The boy, Finn, now three years older and hot as a solar flare, is convinced he’s in love with Bree, or rather, a future version of her that doesn’t think he’s a complete pain in the arse. To make matters worse, she inadvertently transports him back to the 23rd century with her.

Once home, Bree discovers that a recent rash of accidents at her school are anything but accidental. Someone is attacking time travelers. As Bree and her temporal tagalong uncover seemingly unconnected clues—a broken bracelet, a missing data file, the art heist of the millennium—that lead to the person responsible, she alone has the knowledge to piece the puzzle together. Knowledge only one other person has. Her future self.

But when those closest to her become the next victims, Bree realizes the attacker is willing to do anything to stop her. In the past, present, or future.


About Karen Akins


Karen Akins lives in the MidSouth where she writes humorous, light YA sci-fi. When not writing or reading, she loves lightsaber dueling with her two sons and forcing her husband to watch BBC shows with her.

Karen has been many things in her life: an archery instructor, drummer for the shortest-lived garage band in history, and a shockingly bad tic-tac-toe player.


The Review

LOOP is a captivating, delightful and wildly entertaining read. Set primarily in the 23rd century, this futuristic story travels between the main character’s present and a two-century-old past. It offers readers action, mystery, suspense, romance, humor and enough time loops to blow the mind. And it delivers an ending that will leave readers anxiously awaiting the sequel.

When what should have been a routine mission goes horribly wrong, Bree Bennis must find a way to return to the past to fix her mistake before anyone realizes there was one. Because if she doesn’t, it could have serious repercussions for the timeline and even more dire consequences for herself and her mother.

But with every Shift requiring a transporter, she won’t be able sneak back on her own. And putting her friends at risk is not something she is willing to do. So when an opportunity arises to get back to the 21st century in the vicinity of where and when she needs to be, she takes it.

And it would have been perfect if only she hadn’t arrived three years later than she was supposed to. Or stayed longer than she should have, giving the Institute time to realize that she was missing and to pull her back. Or if she didn’t bring something back with her, something that was against the rules, something that shouldn’t have even survived the trip.

LOOP is not your typical time travel tale – there are no missions to save the world from annihilation, the future isn’t on the verge of collapse. But there are threats to past, present and future. There are trips through time that prove just how dangerous things can get. There are time loops and ontological paradoxes. And it does adhere to the theory of the predestination paradox, making for a fascinating and thrilling and thoroughly engaging read.

Author Karen Akins penned a fast-paced, fun and imaginative story with LOOP. Bree – at least the version of herself introduced in this story – is a likable heroine who finds herself in difficult situations more often than not, who is often responsible for getting into those situations in the first place, who is clever, who questions things, who isn’t too trusting, and who is protective and understanding and absolutely adorable.

The writing has an easy flow, which allows readers to connect to both the story and its characters and which makes those pages turn. The love story is sweet and romantic and provides the perfect distraction from the whirlwind of events happening in Bree’s life. The science is intriguing but not dense. The humor keeps things light, especially with the futuristic touches the author adds – every reader will want their very own pegamoo. And the ending, which hints at an even more action-packed story to come, ensures that readers will be back for more.

The Rating

05Note: This review is based on an eARC received from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book.

The Giveaway

Courtesy of the publisher, St. Martin’s Griffin, I have a hardcover copy of LOOP to give away for my tour stop today which I’ll be sending out to the winner.

***Giveaway is US ONLY***

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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

THE PERFECTIONISTS Read-Along: Week Three – Chapters 19-27 + Giveaway


Welcome to Week Three of THE PERFECTIONISTS Read-Along. This has been so much fun and I’m totally stoked to be participating in this four-week event with Me, My Shelf and I, Fictitious Delicious, Novel Novice and Good Choice Reading.

If you’re just hearing about this now and would like to catch up on what’s been read so far, check out the past two weeks’ posts in which I share my thoughts on the Prologue and Chapters 1 through 9 and Chapters 10 through 18.

Or if you’d just like to know more about this event, here are the deets:

Each Tuesday – starting on October 7th, THE PERFECTIONISTS Book Birthday – we are sharing our thoughts on each of our blogs about the chapters we’ve read. Each blog will have an awesome giveaway prize to share, so be sure to visit all participating blogs for more chances to win.

If you’d like to follow along, here’s the schedule…

To be a part of the discussion or spread the news about the read-along and giveaway, be sure to use the hashtag #PerfectRead.

At the end of the read-along, on the morning of November 6th, there will be a Twitter Chat with Author Sara Shepard where she’ll be chatting with all the hosts and YOU! Follow the #PerfectRead hashtag to participate. Stay tuned during the read-along for more details.

This week’s chapters are even more exciting than last week’s. So, if you’d like to know what I thought and a little bit about what’s happening, scroll down. My thoughts are a bit further below.


About The Perfectionists

ThePerfectionists_HRTitle: THE PERFECTIONINSTS
Author: Sara Shepard
Release date: October 7, 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 336
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook


From the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling series Pretty Little Liars comes a thrilling new novel about five perfect girls who are framed for a murder they didn’t commit.

In Beacon Heights, Washington, five girls—Ava, Caitlin, Mackenzie, Julie, and Parker—know that you don’t have to be good to be perfect. At first the girls think they have nothing in common, until they realize that they all hate Nolan Hotchkiss, who’s done terrible things to each of them. They come up with the perfect way to kill him—a hypothetical murder, of course. It’s just a joke…until Nolan turns up dead, in exactly the way they planned. Only, they didn’t do it. And unless they find the real killer, their perfect lives will come crashing down around them.

From Sara Shepard, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Pretty Little Liars series, comes another story of dark secrets, shocking twists, and what happens when five beautiful girls will do anything to hide the ugly truth.


About Sara Shepard

Sara-Shepard-BioFor as long as she can remember, Sara Shepard has been writing. However, when she was young she also wanted to be a soap opera star, a designer for LEGO, a filmmaker, a claymation artist, a geneticist, and a fashion magazine editor when she grew up. She and her sister have been creating joint artistic and written projects for years, except they’re pretty sure they’re the only ones who find them funny.

She got her MFA at Brooklyn College and now lives outside Philadelphia, PA with her husband and dogs. Her first adult novel is called The Visibles/ All The Things We Didn’t Say.

Sara’s bestselling young adult series, Pretty Little Liars, is loosely based on her experiences growing up on Philadelphia’s Main Line…although luckily she never had any serious stalkers. The series has also inspired the ABC Family television series of the same name.


The Read-Along

My Thoughts on Chapters 19-27

This week’s chapters were a bit shorter than last week’s and were a lightning fast read, which means I may have accidentally read ahead by a chapter or two. But I’ll be keeping my lips sealed on what happens in those later chapters… for now.

The girls continue to pursue their suspect, hoping to find evidence which will prove to the police that they’re not to blame. But with more information about the cause of Nolan’s death revealed, it opens up the list of potential suspects to practically everyone.

And with several so-called friends, enemies and authority figures exhibiting suspicious behavior, they can’t just rule everyone out no matter how sure they are that Nolan’s killer is who they think it is.

Keeping secrets is putting a strain on all of them. But some of the girls have it worse than others due to threats they received and betrayals they didn’t see coming.

As much of the information revealed in these chapters is incredibly spoiler-y, I’m trying to be as vague as possible. So I can’t reveal what happened to Parker during her therapy sessions. I can’t talk about what revelation Caitlin had and whether or not it was good or bad. I can’t talk about what encounters Julie had that could destroy everything for her. I can’t share what threat Ava received and from whom.

And I can’t discuss what happened with Mackenzie’s audition and what she learned about Claire.

I can say that this story is becoming even more addictive than it has been. It’s getting more exciting. Things are getting even more complicated and dangerous for each of the girls. And with not that many pages remaining, I have a feeling this book will leave me hanging off a pretty major cliff.

With just one week’s worth of reads left in the read-along, I plan on continuing to the very end instead of waiting until closer to next week’s post. But I will keep silent as to what happens next.

Well… at least until next Tuesday…

The Giveaway

ONE Winner will receive THE PERFECTIONISTS tote bag and goodies + one surprise ARC of an upcoming Harper release

Giveaway ships to US only | Ends October 31st

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Posted in Book Thoughts, Contests and Giveaways, Read-Along | Tags: , , , ,

FAMOUS IN LOVE Blog Tour: ‘Celeb Love Triangles’ Guest Post + Giveaway


I can’t wait for FAMOUS IN LOVE‘s release tomorrow – I’ve been dying to read this awesome-sounding book. And I’m so excited to be participating on the FAMOUS IN LOVE Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours.

I am such a huge fan of love triangles (the fictional kind, that is) and all the angst and indecision and heartbreak that goes along with them, so I’m totally stoked that the author stopped by to talk about her favorite Celeb Love Triangle. And while I had no idea about the IRL relationship going on behind the scenes, I totally agree with Rebecca that the on-screen romance made for a pretty fantastic triangle.

Though I might have been rooting for a different outcome… mostly. I almost always tend to root for the first guy. Though the bad boy vs. the boy next door kind of swayed me at times regarding that particular triangle.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about – which you probably don’t as I’ve been totally vague – read on to find out which actors and characters I’ve been rambling about that Rebecca Serle’s post talks about.

And if you keep reading after the Guest Post, there’s some information about FAMOUS IN LOVE and about its author, Rebecca Serle.

There is also a fab giveaway included on this tour, so don’t forget to enter for a chance to win in the Rafflecopter.

The tour schedule is at the end of this post. So if you’d like to read a few interviews, guest posts and reviews, be sure to check it out.


The Guest Post

Celeb Love Triangles

Hey guys! Rebecca Serle here, author of the upcoming series FAMOUS IN LOVE. Fiction meets reality when Paige Townsen, a totally normal girl, is plucked from obscurity to star in the next major film franchise based on a book. When she relocates from her hometown of Portland to Maui (as in, Hawaii!) to film the movie, she falls for the two lead actors she meets on set: Rainer Devon, and Jordan Wilder.

As you can see, FAMOUS IN LOVE was inspired by the real-life stories of celebrities falling in love with one another while the world watched. We all know their names – and the names we’ve given them – Nian, Brangelina, Robsten… but the number one love triangle that inspired FAMOUS IN LOVE began a long time ago, with a boy on a creek in North Carolina.

Dawson’s Creek was (ahem, still is, if you check how much I tweet about it) my favorite show. The central love triangle between sensitive, artistic Dawson, his best friend and girl-next-door Joey, and misunderstood bad boy Pacey – that was what fueled the show for me.

But then behind the scenes, as the show started to film, something amazing happened: Katie Holmes and Joshua Jackson (the actors who played Joey and Pacey) fell in love. IRL.

As an adolescent, I knew nothing about these people other than what characters they played on TV and the brief tidbits I read in in interviews. Before the age of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Perez Hilton, I didn’t have ways to check up on my favorite couple in real time…but I had SO many questions: was James Van Der Beek jealous? Did he and Joshua Jackson really have that on set brawl where he stormed off? What did Katie and Josh do in their free time; what were they really like? But, like all of you who rabidly check for the latest update on your fave celeb couple, most of my questions were never answered. Honestly, that’s kind of the best part.

When it comes to these celebrity romances we all love, there’s always a bit of mystery. We never really know what the truth is behind closed doors. So they fall in love while the world watches…but is what we’re watching actually reality?

In FAMOUS IN LOVE, Paige goes on a similar journey, navigating the price of becoming a celebrity overnight, losing her privacy, and finding maybe a little more love than she bargained for! But here’s the truth: no matter who (or if!) Paige chooses in the end, for me, it will always be Pacey.

About Famous in Love


Add to Goodreads

Title & Series: FAMOUS IN LOVE (Famous in Love #1)
Author: Rebecca Serle
Release date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: Poppy
Pages: 336
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook


The romantic story of a girl who gets plucked from obscurity to star in the next major feature film franchise based on a book and the ensuing love triangles she gets entangled in on—-and off screen.

Meet Paige Townsen, Rainer Devon, and Jordan Wilder…

When Paige Townsen, a young unknown, gets cast in the movie adaptation of a blockbuster book series, her life changes practically overnight. Within a month, Paige has traded the quiet streets of her hometown for a crowded movie set on the shores of Maui, and is spending quality time with her co-star Rainer Devon, one of People’s Sexiest Men Alive. But when troubled star Jordan Wilder lands the role of the other point in the movie’s famous love triangle, Paige’s crazy new life gets even crazier.

In this coming-of-age romance inspired by the kind of celeb hookups that get clever nicknames and a million page views, Paige must figure out who she is – and who she wants – while the whole world watches.

Awesome fact!

LOCKED which is the story/movie script the characters are cast for inside FAMOUS IN LOVE is a real book! Written by Rebecca Serle writing as Parker Witter, who is also the reclusive author character in her Famous in Love series! Read the article in Publishers Weekly HERE!


About Rebecca Serle

Photo by Tara Kelly

Rebecca Serle is the author of When You Were Mine, The Edge of Falling, and Famous in Love and is an obsessive lover of all things pop culture. She blogs about The Vampire Diaries for New York Magazine’s Vulture and can be found on Twitter: @RebeccaASerle.

She, like Caggie, lives in Manhattan—just far from the Upper East Side.


The Giveaway

This is a tour-wide giveaway – US ONLY – for…

  • FIVE WINNERS will receive a finished copy of FAMOUS IN LOVE + an eBook of Parker Witter’s LOCKED!

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Tour Schedule

Week One

Oct. 13th – YA Book Nerd – Interview

Oct. 14th – WhoRuBlog – Review

Oct. 15th – Bewitched Bookworms – Guest Post

Oct. 16th – Fic Fare – Interview + Review

Oct. 17th – Wishful Endings – Review

Week Two

Oct. 20th – Fiktshun – Guest Post

Oct. 21st – Crossroad Reviews – Review + Guest Post

Oct. 22nd – Kimberlyfaye Reads – Review

Oct. 23rd – Me, My Shelf and I – Guest Post

Oct. 24th – Page Turners Blog – Interview


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


Love Me to DeathLOVE ME TO DEATH by Marissa Clarke will be released in the U.S. on October 28, 2014 in paperback and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

Published by Entangled Select, the print edition is 350 pages.

LOVE ME TO DEATH is the first book in Marissa Clarke’s Underveil series.


Medical research scientist Elena Arcos has always lived her life under the radar, which is not easy to do when you live with the craziest woman in the world. But eccentric Aunt Uza is a picnic compared to the other people who enter her orderly life after she is shot in a convenience store robbery.

Elena finds herself rocketed from comfortable predictability to supernatural insanity courtesy of her own private angel of death who happens to have the sexiest accent on earth and a body to match. Her death angel is convinced she’s some kind of freaky half vampire thing and that her deceased dad was the real deal: a blood sucking monster.

Yeah, right. She’ll play along, but then she doesn’t have much choice seeing how as the guy claims to be some immortal law enforcer and has taken her prisoner.

* * *

Nikolai Itzov had expected to fight the urge to torture the progeny of his father’s murderer, but he’d never anticipated battling the urge to kiss her her.

As a Slayer, an elite law enforcer descended from Azrael himself, his charge from the Underveil General is clear: Kill her or die. He has been told she is one of them–an Undead. Nothing but a parasite to be destroyed. But he has been told wrong.

Nikolai and Elena find themselves in a life and death battle to stop a plot designed to lift the Underveil and enslave humans.

With her analytical mind and his centuries of training and experience, they might be able to foil the plot with their lives and maybe their hearts intact. But in order to succeed, he must help her become the very thing he hates the most: an Undead.

Add to Goodreads

Note: This review is based on an eARC received from the author in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book.

The Review

Action-packed and sexy as hell, Marissa Clarke’s LOVE ME TO DEATH is a fantastic and utterly delectable start to this new series. Fascinating lore and intriguing characters that leave the door wide open for many exciting stories to come, two protagonists whose chemistry sizzles, whose personalities clash, and whose love story is swoon-worthy, a host of abilities that keep things interesting, and some truly great writing to keep readers hooked, this first peek at Clarke’s Underveil is incredibly entertaining, completely captivating and a welcome addition to the genre.

The story instantly grabs, bringing readers right into the action when Elena Arcos is first introduced and immediately and reluctantly thrust into a world she never even knew existed. A world of slayers, time-folders, sorcerers, vampires, elves, shifters, seers and more. A world in turmoil. A danger-filled world where she is being hunted. A world where a prophecy is said to determine her fate.

A world where the slayer sent to end her existence, who is supposed to be her sworn enemy, is the one whose touch ignites her like no other has before.

Marissa Clarke created a story that has just the right amounts of heat mixed into an alluring and action-filled plot. It’s a story that will keep readers engaged instead of simply skipping ahead to those steamy scenes that define paranormal romance. Nikolai and Elena’s love story is tumultuous, dangerous, fiery hot and romantic. Their enemies are deadly. The road to happily ever after is filled with seemingly insurmountable obstacles.

Told from both characters’ points of view, readers will get a broader view of the world, get to see just how Elena and Niki really feel about each other, get to see what each thinks the other feels, get to really know and love both of them, and get to know things – and characters – that wouldn’t be possible were this told from a single POV.

While the focus is on Elena and Nikolai and the challenges they face, the author introduces a number of appealing characters whose stories promise to be as interesting, exciting and thoroughly entertaining as theirs – a charismatic, wickedly sexy, millennia-old vampire; a gorgeous, wealthy and nearly indestructible time-folder; a cursed but powerful seer and sorceress; and a beautiful and totally hot slayer who knows how to appreciate male eye-candy no matter their species.

Enticing and electrifying from start to finish, there is nothing not to love about LOVE ME TO DEATH.

The Rating


Posted in Book Reviews | Tags: , , , ,

TALON Blog Tour: Teaser + Giveaway


I am super excited to be a part of the TALON Blog Tour hosted by Kismet Book Touring. Julie Kagawa is an amazing storyteller and this new series by the author has been on my radar for what seems like ever. I love stories about dragons, and while I haven’t read any stories where they were the focus before now, I have watched and loved a ton of films that were dragon-centric.

TALON’s dragons are quite a bit different from those I’ve met in film, but they have that instantly likable quality that Julie Kagawa brings to all her characters. Especially Ember. And I can’t wait for you all to meet her and Dante.

Anyway… for today’s stop on the tour I have a short but hilarious teaser to share along with a giveaway for a hardcover finished copy of the book. And if you’d like the chance to win one of Julie’s handcrafted dragon figurines + swag, follow the instructions for the “Catch the Dragon” grand prize giveaway.

TALON releases on October 28th, so the wait is almost over (YAY!), but the tour continues through next week, so there are a few more teasers and posts to make the wait a little less torturous. The schedule is included at the bottom of this post if you’d like to check out all the stops.


About Talon


Add to Goodreads

Title & Series: TALON (Talon #1)
Author: Julie Kagawa
Release date: October 28, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Pages: 464
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook


Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they’re positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser.

Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George.

Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon’s newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey: and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember’s bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him: and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons.


About Julie Kagawa


Julie Kagawa was born in Sacramento, California. But nothing exciting really happened to her there. So, at the age of nine she and her family moved to Hawaii, which she soon discovered was inhabited by large carnivorous insects, colonies of house geckos and frequent hurricanes. She spent much of her time in the ocean, when she wasn’t getting chased out of it by reef sharks, jellyfish and the odd eel.

To pay the rent, Julie worked in different bookstores over the years, but discovered the managers frowned upon her reading the books she was supposed to be shelving. So she turned to her other passion: training animals. She worked as a professional dog trainer for several years, dodging Chihuahua bites and overly enthusiastic Labradors, until her first book sold and she stopped training to write full-time.

Julie now lives in Louisville, Kentucky, where the frequency of shark attacks are at an all-time low. She lives with her husband, two obnoxious cats, one Australian shepherd who is too smart for his own good and the latest addition, a hyperactive Papillon puppy.


The Teaser


The Giveaway


  • Each tour stop (including mine) is offering up a finished hardcover copy of TALON for giveaway
  • FIVE lucky Grand Prize winners will receive one of Julie’s amazing dragon figurines as well as some fun signed swag

***Giveaway is open to US/Canada***

To enter for the grand prize, you MUST follow the tour each day, find and catch the dragon, and answer the daily question.

Catch the Dragon Contest

Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, a dragon will appear on a different blog and stay there for 48hrs. Once you have found the dragon, click on it and you will be directed to a Rafflecopter entry form for the Grand Prize Giveaway! To enter, you must answer the daily question found at the tour stop!!!

Where could the dragon appear? On all Book Blogger Tour Hosts and The Harlequin Paranormal Blog, so go now and catch yourself a dragon! Will you find it? And will you be able to keep it?

Dragon Hunt_Remy

“Catch the Dragon” Question

Aside from TALON, what is your favorite dragon-focused book cover?

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Tour Schedule

Week One

Thursday, Oct. 2nd – Harlequin Blog

Week Two

Monday, Oct. 6th – Step Into Fiction

Wednesday, Oct. 8th – Katie’s Book Blog

Friday, Oct. 10th – Page Turners

Week Three

Monday, Oct. 13th – Bewitched Bookworms

Wednesday, Oct. 15th – Mundie Moms

Friday, Oct. 17th – Fiktshun

Week Four

Monday, Oct. 20th – Two Chicks on Books

Wednesday, Oct. 22nd – YA Interrobang

Friday, Oct. 24th – Supernatural Snark


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

SNOW LIKE ASHES Blog Tour: ‘First Lines’ Guest Post + Giveaway


SNOW LIKE ASHES released yesterday and I hope by now that everyone stopping by for my tour stop on the SNOW LIKE ASHES Blog Tour already has their copy in hand and has read it. It is my favorite debut novel of the year – and one of my top ten favorite novels of the year – and though I read it ages ago – back in May – I am still madly in love with it.

And while I haven’t yet, since I just got my finished copy yesterday, I definitely plan on re-reading it again in the next few weeks. Yeah, it was that fan-freaking-tastic.


I have an awesome guest post from Author Sara Raasch in which she shares some of the original first lines from her novel (formerly known as GIVING LIGHT). I happen to think the line she chose to start her book (and series) is perfect. So I’m kind of glad that those other lines didn’t work out. I also am in love with her book’s title… its characters… the plot… the writing…. Every. Single. Thing. About. It. I love all of it.

And I can’t wait for the next book in the series. I’ve been waiting for nearly five months already. The wait is killing me.

Well, enough about how much I adore this book and how anxious I am for the sequel. Sara Raasch’s post is much more interesting and fun to read. And so I’m going to stop rambling so that you can read it.

Then, if for some reason you haven’t yet heard about this amazing book, be sure to check out its description and add it to your Goodreads shelf. And if you’d like to enter the tour-wide giveaway for some SNOW LIKE ASHES swag, be sure to enter in the Rafflecopter form.

The tour ends in a couple of days, but if you’d like to read a few reviews and interviews and a couple of other guest posts, the schedule with links to all the stops is at the bottom of this post.

Now, without any further ado, let me turn the blog over to Sara Raasch so she can share those former first lines from SLA.

The Guest Post

The various first lines that the different versions of SNOW LIKE ASHES has had over the years

Many of you know that I wrote the first draft of SLA when I was twelve-ish. Since then, it has gone through a few major overhauls, leaving me with a plethora of first lines. Let’s explore these lines in yet another self-deprecating adventure, shall we?

*drum roll*

“This war reminded Duncan of the fairy tales he used to tell his children, except for one unavoidable difference.”

This was the first line of the first draft of SLA (then titled GIVING LIGHT).

Meh. Duncan has since been reduced to a very minor side character (poor former king of Winter, he didn’t do anything wrong), not to mention the world building issues that mentioning “fairy tales” brings up. Do they even have FAIRIES in this world? Um, no. Why would they call their made-up stories fairy tales then? Oh, preteen Sara, you left a nice little mess for me to clean up.

“Once upon a time, in the desolate world of Primoria, there was a kingdom known to all for its beauty and majesty.”

The first line of the next draft of SLA was…not much better. Vague, much? Though there is something classy about starting a story with “once upon a time.”

“I will be a soldier today and no one will stop me.”

Fast-forward to last year, when I underwent an excruciating attempt to shove a prologue onto the beginning of SLA. This attempt left me with a pile of now-retired prologues, but one rather badass opening line.

I liked it enough that every prologue started with this line. Which may have been why they all flopped. DON’T RUIN MY ILLUSION.


Which brings me to here and now, with the real, final, end-all first line of SNOW LIKE ASHES. And that first line, the line that descended from all these other lines, the line that holds an entire book upon its hinges, is none other than one word. One action, even. Short and sweet, not unlike the MC, Meira.

Thanks for having me, Rachel!

About Snow Like Ashes


Add to Goodreads

Title: SNOW LIKES ASHES (Snow Like Ashes #1)
Author: Sara Raasch
Release date: October 14, 2014
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook


A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.

Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.

Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.

So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.


About Sara Raasch


Sara Raasch has known she was destined for bookish things since the age of five, when her friends had a lemonade stand and she tagged along to sell her hand-drawn picture books too. Not much has changed since then — her friends still cock concerned eyebrows when she attempts to draw things and her enthusiasm for the written word still drives her to extreme measures. Her debut YA fantasy, SNOW LIKE ASHES, the first in a trilogy, comes out October 14, 2014 from Balzer + Bray. It does not feature her hand-drawn pictures.


The Giveaway


This tour comes with an awesome giveaway for…

  • FOUR WINNERS will receive a SNOW LIKE ASHES Swag Pack – two postcards, two bookmarks, SLA buttons, and a bag of instant snow

Giveaway is US ONLY.

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Tour Schedule

Week One

Oct. 6th – Bookish – Interview

Oct. 7th – Magical Urban Fantasy Reads – Review

Oct. 8th – Bewitched Bookworms – Guest Post

Oct. 9th – Fictitious Delicious – Review

Oct. 10th – Adventures of a Book Junkie – Interview

Week Two

Oct. 13th – Fiction Freak – Review

Oct. 14th – Dark Faerie Tales – Interview

Oct. 15th – Fiktshun – Guest Post

Oct. 16th – Icey Books – Review

Oct. 17th – Two Chicks on Books – Guest Post


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