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Authors Are Rockstars

    Authors Are Rockstars Tour: Winners!

    winners

    The Authors Are Rockstars Tour may have ended, but there are still a few giveaways going on throughout the blogosphere. So there may be a few chances left to win a book or prize from one of the rockstar authors on tour. Feel free to check out the SCHEDULE which has direct links to all the tour stops.

    And while I have a few giveaways still open, as promised, today we’re announcing the winners for the Kick-off Giveaways on each of our blogs.

    Be sure to visit Two Chicks on Books and Magical Urban Fantasy Reads to see who the winners were for their giveaways.

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    I will be contacting all winners by email on Friday evening, but for now…

    Giveaway #1

    winner

    For the signed copy of CLOCKWORK PRINCESS + Authors Are Rockstars Stickers + Random Swag (Int’l)…

    May

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    Giveaway #2

    winner

    For the signed copy of UNRAVEL ME + Authors Are Rockstars Stickers + Random Swag (Int’l)…

    Kathy L.

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    Giveaway #3

    winner

    For the signed copy of JUST ONE DAY + Authors Are Rockstars Stickers + Random Swag (Int’l)…

    Danielle B.

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    Giveaway #4

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    For the signed copies of UNRAVELING + UNBREAKABLE + unsigned Extra Content Booklet + Authors Are Rockstars Stickers + Random Swag (US)…

    Emily

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    Giveaway #5

    winner

    For the signed copies of THE 5th WAVE + THE TESTING + Authors Are Rockstars Stickers + Random Swag (US)…

    Rachel S.

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    Congratulations!

    Thanks so much to everyone for stopping by the tour, entering the giveaways and spreading the word. I’m sorry there could be only five winners. If I don’t hear back from the winners within 48 hours of emailing each of them, I will select new winners and update this post.

    I will also be contacting all other giveaway winners for the Authors Are Rockstars Giveaways that have ended. Those winners will be announced in the Rafflecopter forms only.

    And don’t forget to stop by and see who the winners are for Jaime and Mindy’s “Kick-off Giveaways.” Links to each of their blogs are at the top of this post.

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    Authors Are Rockstars Tour: It’s a Wrap!

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    August has ended and so has the 2nd Annual Authors Are Rockstars Tour. This year’s event, with over 160 authors on tour, was a bit more of a challenge, but still a lot of fun.

    There were guest posts, interviews, dueling interviews in which two authors interviewed each other, playlists, top ten lists, deleted scenes, excerpts, a chat and much, much more.

    This year’s author participants sent along some amazing posts for their blog hosts, proving our point that authors are in fact rockstars. And the bloggers that hosted their favorite rockstar authors did a phenomenal job of showing those who stopped by exactly why their author was a rockstar.

    In the end we had 168 participating authors plus one author spotlight and 155 bloggers involved in this event. Which was totally surprising and absolutely amazing. Even with a few mishaps along the way we definitely consider this event a success.

    If August was as crazy a month for you as it was for us and you didn’t get a chance to visit all the stops, CLICK HERE for the full lineup with direct links to each of the stops on tour. There may even be a few giveaways still open, so be sure to check them out.

    For this year’s event we were honored to welcome back a number of authors from last year and were thrilled to welcome a number of new authors to the tour. Some of the author participants have long been on our rockstar authors list but we are totally stoked to be able to call many new or new-to-us authors rockstars this year.

    We hope, for both readers and author and blogger participants alike, that this event was a lot of fun. And we hope that with this year’s tour we were able to put a few new authors and bloggers on your radar.

    The authors on tour this year are all ones we consider rockstars, but they are not all the authors we consider rockstars. While we would have loved to include every single rockstar author on our tour, we are only three bloggers and can only do so much. But we were super excited to be able to add to the number of authors we had on tour last year.

    When we hosted this event last year it was only ever intended to be a one-time event. And while we decided to do this again this year, we currently do not have plans to do this again next year. It’s eleven months away and who knows where we’ll be. But you never know… anything is possible….

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    The Tour Giveaways

    We will each be announcing the winners of our tour “kick-off” giveaways on our respective blogs next weekend. So be sure to stop by to see if you won. Winners will also be contacted by email after the announcements have gone live.

    To Those We Owe Thanks

    Firstly we cannot thank the authors enough for generously giving of their time to this event. Taking the time away from their busy writing and editing schedules to create the posts and answer the questions and to support this event means the world to us.

    Without them there would be no event. And we are eternally grateful.

    Once again we have to thank the wonderful team at Harlequin TEEN for their unfailing support of each and every one of their authors by offering their books for giveaway and for helping to spread the word about this event.

    And, of course, we have to thank the wonderful blog hosts who wrote such heartfelt passages about why their author was a rockstar, who came up with interesting topics and questions for the authors they adore, and who put together some pretty fantastic posts which gave readers the chance to learn a bit more about each of the participating authors on tour.

    We’d also like to give a special thanks to Lost at Midnight Reviews for putting together an amazing post spotlighting her rockstar author when circumstances prevented her from being able to participate. If we hadn’t already considered her author a rockstar, we most certainly would have after reading her post.

    And last, but absolutely not least, we would like to thank all of the readers who followed the tour, left comments sharing their thoughts about the rockstar authors on each of the blog stops, who helped to spread the word about this year’s event, and who share their enthusiasm and love for the authors year after year by reading their books and spreading the word to anyone who will listen.

    Every single one of you totally rocks!

    From One Host to Another

    This year’s event couldn’t have been the success it was without both Jaime of Two Chicks on Books and Mindy of Magical Urban Fantasy Reads co-hosting with me.

    There is no way we could have pulled off an event as large as this year’s event without being able to work together as a team. And I felt like together we were an awesome team.

    I am not the easiest person to work with, I don’t give up control easily, and I don’t trust easily. But you both were absolutely amazing to work with and I’m so glad to have had Mindy on board this year. I’m sure I speak for Jaime when I say that we couldn’t have done this without you.

    I have always considered Jaime a rockstar and without a doubt Mindy totally rocks, too. So I cannot thank you both enough for making this event a rockstar event and keeping me sane during the process.

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    Well, that just about does it….

    If we’ve forgotten to thank anyone, we are so, so sorry. While the event has ended, we are still knee-deep in giveaways, so we are still just a bit frazzled. So… just in case someone was missed, we’d like to thank everyone.

    Thank you everyone!

    The Authors Are Rockstars Giveaway Winners will be posted next weekend, so be sure to stop by each of our blogs to see if you’ve won.

    But for now… it’s a wrap.

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    Authors Are Rockstars Tour: Simone Elkeles ‘Wild Cards’ Excerpt + Giveaway

    Fiktshun-presents_Simone_Elkeles

    I am so thrilled to be able to host the very amazing Simone Elkeles for the final day of the 2nd Annual Authors Are Rockstars Tour. I have been a fan of this author since before I started blogging when I discovered her Perfect Chemistry series and fell in love with two of the Fuentes brothers – Alex and Carlos. (I didn’t have the pleasure of getting to know Luis until much later.)

    And while I loved her writing, her characters and her stories, it was hearing her talk on a panel at RT 2011 in Los Angeles that made her a rockstar author to me. It allowed me to get to know more about her, both as a person and as an author, and learn about how she researched her stories and how she developed her characters. She also shared her thoughts about bad boys and bad girls.

    After the event I bought every book she’d written for my collection that I didn’t already own and love. I even got one or two in print because they weren’t available in eBook format at the time. And while I have yet to read the How to Ruin series, I love, love, love every single one of the books in all her other series.

    And that includes WILD CARDS, the first book in her newest series that’s releasing this October.

    I had been dying to read this book ever since I first learned about it last year. I was so excited to have been approved for the eGalley so I didn’t have to wait quite as long for its release. And it was every bit as awesome as I’d thought it would be.

    Which is why I’m totally stoked to be able to share an excerpt from WILD CARDS for my stop on the Authors Are Rockstars Tour today. And while I’d have loved to have been able to share the scene that involved corn fritters and trampolines or the one that involved shaky hands and an ice pack, the one I was given for my stop is kinda sorta perfect.

    Because it’s tells the story of how Derek and Ashtyn meet. And it’s anything but predictable.

    As I am such a huge fan of this author and because I totally loved this book, I’m offering up a few copies for giveaway. So, if after checking out the book’s description and the excerpt you’d like to enter for a chance to win, the giveaway details follow at the end of this post.

    And before I can be accused of taking over this post completely, I’ll step away from the keyboard. But I just have to share my reasons why I think Simone Elkeles is a rockstar before I do.

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    Simone Elkeles is a Rockstar Author because…

    In her books, through her characters, she does sarcasm and does it well.

    She creates unconventional character pairings that feel real and believable and have amazing chemistry… some might even call it perfect.

    She balances toughness with vulnerability which makes her characters sympathetic, relatable, likable.

    She isn’t afraid to make her teenage characters act like teenagers.

    She isn’t afraid to make her characters flawed.

    She isn’t afraid to tackle difficult subjects, difficult relationships and complex issues.

    She writes stories and characters that have an edge, that aren’t perfect, that have pasts that affect them.

    She creates characters that are diverse.

    And she writes passages that surprise me, make me grin, make me roll my eyes, make me swoon, make me tear up, make me anxious, break my heart and make me fall in love with her characters even when I’m reluctant.

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    About the Author

    Simone Elkeles

    About SIMONE ELKELES

    Simone Elkeles is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of novels for teens. Simone’s books have won many awards including being YALSA Top Ten Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers, being named to the YALSA Popular Paperbacks and Teens Top Ten lists, and added to the Illinois “Read for a Lifetime” Reading List. Simone also won the coveted RITA award from the Romance Writers of America for her book Perfect Chemistry. Simone is especially proud of the fact that the Illinois Association of Teachers of English named her Author of the Year. You can learn more about Simone’s awards by clicking on each of the book titles below.

    TWITTER | FACEBOOK | WEBSITE | BLOGYOUTUBE | GOODREADS

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    About the Book

    Wild Cards
    Title: WILD CARDS (Wild Cards #1)

    Release date: October 1, 2013

    Publisher: Walker Childrens

    Pages: 352

    Formats: Hardcover, eBook

    Description:

    After getting kicked out of boarding school, bad boy Derek Fitzpatrick has no choice but to live with his ditzy stepmother while his military dad is deployed. Things quickly go from bad to worse when he finds out she plans to move them back to her childhood home in Illinois. Derek’s counting the days before he can be on his own, and the last thing he needs is to get involved with someone else’s family drama.

    Ashtyn Parker knows one thing for certain–people you care about leave without a backward glance. A football scholarship would finally give her the chance to leave. So she pours everything into winning a state championship, until her boyfriend and star quarterback betrays them all by joining their rival team. Ashtyn needs a new game plan, but it requires trusting Derek—someone she barely knows, someone born to break the rules. Is she willing to put her heart on the line to try and win it all?

    AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | GOODREADS

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    The Excerpt

    My muscles are tense when we pull into the driveway at my stepmother’s childhood home in a small suburb of Chicago.

    As soon as we step out of the cars, an older man I assume is Brandi’s father appears on the front porch of the two-story redbrick house. The dude is staring at Brandi as if she’s a stranger.

    I don’t know what went down with Brandi and her old man.

    She didn’t explain much, except to say she left home right after her parents’ divorce and hadn’t been back . . . until now.

    Brandi grasps Julian by the hand and tugs the tired kid up the porch stairs. “This is my son. Julian, say hello to Grandpa.”

    Brandi’s son is a cool kid who can talk your ear off. But he’s acting shy right now and doesn’t say hello to his grandfather.

    “And this is my stepson, Derek,” Brandi finally says as she waves her hand in my direction.

    Her father looks up. “You didn’t say anything about a stepson when you called.”

    “Didn’t I? I’m such a flake I must’ve forgotten to tell you, with all the moving and packing and . . . other stuff . Derek can stay in the den.”

    “The den is filled with boxes,” he tells her. “And I gave the old couch that was in the den to charity a while back.”

    “If you’d rather, sir,” I drawl, “I can sleep on the porch. Just give me a blanket and toss me scraps of food every now an’ then and I’ll be just fine.”

    “I’ll move the boxes and put a blow-up bed in the den,” her dad says, reluctantly giving in when he realizes that I’m not about to hightail it back to California.

    “I’m cool with that,” I say.

    “Derek, can you and my dad bring our stuff in the house while I put Julian down for a nap?” Brandi asks.

    Before I can answer, she slips through the front door with Julian, leaving me alone with her grouchy old man.

    Her father scans me up and down. He doesn’t look impressed.

    “I don’t expect you to call me Grandpa.”

    “I wasn’t plannin’ on it.”

    “Good. I suppose you can call me Gus.” He disappears inside. I’m tempted not to follow, but I have no choice. He leads me down a hall to a back room and swings open a door.

    “This’ll be your room. I expect you to keep it clean, do your own laundry, and make yourself useful.”

    “Do I get an allowance?” I joke.

    The guy looks at me with a deadpan expression. “You’re a real comedian, aren’t you?”

    “To people with a sense of humor, yeah.”

    He makes a harrumph sound in response.

    I follow again when he makes an about-face and heads back to the car. It doesn’t take us long to lug everything into the house. There’s no conversation. This is definitely going to be an interesting living situation— not in a good way.

    I’m moving boxes to the corner of my room to clear space when Gus reappears. Without a word, he hands me an air mattress and leaves me to figure out how to inflate it.

    I shove my suitcase behind the door and take in my new room.This place doesn’t feel like home— not by a long shot.

    Suddenly this house feels like it’s suffocating me.

    I head to the backyard. I walk through a small garden of weeds to a big wooden shed. An old padlock on the latch is open, so I push back the door.

    Rusty garden tools hang on wall hooks, bags of weed killer are scattered on the workbench, and little metal buckets crowd the floor. I kick a bucket aside, then pick up a second one, thinking about everything that’s changed in the past two years.

    I swear under my breath and whip the bucket across the shed, the sound of the metal hitting the wall echoing in the small space.

    “Stop or I’m calling the police!” demands a girl’s voice from behind me.

    I turn to find a hot chick about my age with blond hair in one long braid snaking down her chest. She’s blocking the doorway and holding a rusty pitchfork. She looks like she’s ready to stab me to death, which lessens her hotness factor, but not by much.

    “Who’re you?” I ask, taking in her black T-shirt and matching hoodie.

    “You thugs from Fairfield think you can come here and—”

    I hold up a hand, halting her tirade for the moment. Me, a thug? That’s hilarious. This girl’s thug radar is way off. “I hate to break the news to you, sweetheart, but I’ve got no clue where Fairfield is.”

    “Yeah, right. I’m not stupid. And I’m not your sweetheart.”

    “Put the pitchfork down, honey.” I take a step closer to her and the exit.

    “Not on your life. I’m warning you . . . take one step closer and I’ll stab you.” One glance at her shaking hands tells me she doesn’t have the nerve to go through with her threat.

    I put my hands up in mock surrender. I’m standing directly in front of her now, the points of the pitchfork an inch away from my chest. “You really don’t want to stab me.”

    “Yes, I think I do.” For a second I’m sure the warrior girl’s about to lower her weapon, until I hear something creak behind me. As I glance over my shoulder, a bracket holding a bunch of tools on the wall crashes to the ground.

    The sound startles the girl and she drops the pitchfork. On my foot.

    What the—

    She stares at the pointed tine sticking out of my left shoe and her mouth opens in shock. Before I know it, she backs up and slams the door shut. I’m swallowed by darkness as I hear the padlock snap into place. Two thoughts cross my mind: she thinks I’m a thug and I think she’s a wackjob.

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    Other Books by the Author

    Perfect-Chemistry-Series

    PERFECT CHEMISTRY SERIES

    PERFECT CHEMISTRY (Perfect Chemistry #1)AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

    RULES OF ATTRACTION (Perfect Chemistry #2)AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

    CHAIN REACTION (Perfect Chemistry #3)AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

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    Leaving-Paradise-Series

    LEAVING PARADISE SERIES

    LEAVING PARADISE (Leaving Paradise #1)AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

    RETURN TO PARADISE (Leaving Paradise #2)AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

    PARADISE (Leaving Paradise #1 & #2)AMAZONTHE BOOK DEPOSITORYGOODREADS

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    How-to-Ruin-Full-Series

    HOW TO RUIN SERIES

    HOW TO RUIN A SUMMER VACATION (How to Ruin #1)AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

    HOW TO RUIN MY TEENAGE LIFE (How to Ruin #2)AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

    HOW TO RUIN YOUR BOYFRIEND’S REPUTATION (How to Ruin #3) – AMAZON | B&N | GOODREADS

    RUINED (How to Ruin #1-#3)AMAZON | GOODREADS

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    giveaway

    What’s Up for Grabs

    A pre-order hardcover copy of WILD CARDS to THREE (3) Winners – International

    The Deets

    – You must be 13 or older to enter

    – Giveaway is International

    – Giveaway ends on September 14th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific.

    – Winners will be chosen by Random via Rafflecopter

    – Books will be ordered from Amazon or The Book Depository

    – Winners will be announced in the Rafflecopter and contacted by email

    For each giveaway there is a mandatory “Leave a Comment” entry. All other entries are optional. The tweet entry is a daily option.

    Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    Authors Are Rockstars Tour: Vivi Barnes Interview + Giveaway

    Fiktshun-presents_Vivi_Barnes

    When I first learned that a modern day version of OLIVER TWIST was going to be releasing this year I was ecstatic. When I heard that the main character would be female I was even more thrilled as I was starting to wonder just how Oliver’s naiveté would come across today. Though when I found out that I had a really long wait for OLIVIA TWISTED‘s release, I didn’t think I’d be able to make it.

    So when I was told that I would get the chance to host Vivi Barnes, the author of this upcoming title I so covet, for the Authors Are Rockstars Tour and share a prepared interview with my blog’s readers, I may have done a happy dance. Because I knew I’d get just a little more insight into what OLIVIA TWISTED is all about.

    And of course it wasn’t nearly enough. It was more of a tease. Which makes me that much more excited for its release. At least the wait is only just over two months. That, I think, I can handle.

    Anyway…

    I should probably talk about why I think Vivi Barnes is a Rockstar and then turn the blog over to her so you can hear what she has to say about her inspiration for writing OLIVIA TWISTED, what “twists” she made to the original, and what characters from the original story make an appearance in her story.

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    Vivi Barnes is a Rockstar because…

    She modernized one of my most favorite childhood stories, creating a story I just know I’m going to fall in love with.

    She is not at all afraid to tackle a classic and alter that classic by creating a female MC.

    She gave her characters a much cooler and more exciting criminal enterprise to be involved in – hacking – versus trying to make being a pickpocket sound cool.

    She gave the Artful Dodger an equally awesome name in her story, “Z,” and gave him a Ducati to ride. Yes, it seems she made that “bad” boy into a “bad boy” in her book.

    She authored the very awesome short story “Love Stinks” in the anthology of the same name.

    She is an adrenaline sports enthusiast, a quality I admire. Greatly.

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    And I probably could go on. Actually, I know I could go on. And on. And on. But I really should let you read the book’s description if you haven’t already and take a peek at the interview to learn a bit more about OLIVIA TWISTED.

    There are also a couple of giveaways at the bottom of this post – one for some OLIVIA TWISTED swag and one for a pre-order of the book. So if you are as excited about this book’s upcoming release in November as I am, be sure to check them out!

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    VB_About_Book

    OliviaTwistedCover

    About Olivia Twisted

    Pub. Date: November 5, 2013
    Pages: 352
    Publisher: Entangled Teen
    Formats: Paperback, eBook

    He tilts my chin up so my eyes meet his, his thumb brushing lightly across my lips. I close my eyes. I know Z is trouble. I know that being with him is going to get me into trouble. I don’t care.

    At least at this moment, I don’t care.

    Tossed from foster home to foster home, Olivia’s seen a lot in her sixteen years. She’s hardened, sure, though mostly just wants to fly under the radar until graduation. But her natural ability with computers catches the eye of Z, a mysterious guy at her new school.

    Soon, Z has brought Liv into his team of hacker elite—break into a few bank accounts, and voila, now Z has enough money to purchase and drive a motorcycle. Follow his lead, and Olivia might even be able to escape from her oppressive foster parents.

    As Olivia and Z grow closer, though, so does the watchful eye of Bill Sykes, Z’s boss. And he’s got bigger plans for Liv…

    Z

    I can picture Liv’s face: wide-eyed, trusting. Her smooth lips that taste like strawberry Fanta.

    It was just a kiss. That’s all. She’s just like any other girl.

    Except that she’s not.

    Thanks to Z, Olivia’s about to get twisted.

    AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | THE BOOK DEPOSITORY | GOODREADS

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    VB_Interview

    What inspired you to write OLIVIA TWISTED?

    I actually watched the movie Oliver! about a hundred times when I was a kid, and long before I read the book. I fell in love with the movie because I was going through a difficult time in middle school (scoliosis, ugh) and seeing how poor Oliver had it so awful made me feel better. Hey, don’t judge – I was in middle school!

    Then as an adult, after reading the book and all the characters kind of “rounded out,” I thought, “What if this story took place today, and the protagonist was a female—and it was called Olivia Twisted?” So really, the story began with a title.

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    What ideas did you “twist” from the original story, and did you keep any of the original themes?

    Taking something that was written over 150 years ago and trying to fit it to contemporary times has its own set of challenges. I mean, they just don’t make top hats like they used to. Not only that, but putting Olivia in a workhouse and having her approach the headmaster to ask for more gruel in the 21st century just might not resonate with young adults today.

    So I decided to put Olivia (or Liv, as she likes to be called) in foster care. Bouncing around from one home to another hasn’t been a picnic for her, but she deals. She heads off to school, where she meets fun-loving Sam and a mysterious guy named Z. They recognize the potential in her computer programming abilities and, much more importantly, they recognize that she’s “unattached,” with no family ties. So it doesn’t take long before they gain Liv’s trust and introduce her to their lifestyle.

    Going back to the original Oliver Twist story, Oliver was brought in to the thieves’ den, but he was an innocent. The question in Olivia Twisted is whether Liv will go through with becoming a criminal, or will she remain true to who she is? When you think you have no place to go, alone in this sometimes-brutal world, will you accept that you need to do what you need to survive? Or will you fight against the odds? This is a theme that is as relevant today as it was 150 years ago.

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    What characters did you keep from the original story?

    I did bring many of the characters to life from the original Oliver Twist story, though they may play combined roles. For example, I loved the Fagin in the movie Oliver! but didn’t care for him in the book. I liked him as the seemingly kind old man who played a father figure to the boys. So I gave Nancy those qualities and put her in charge of the Monroe Street kids. (I always had a soft spot for Nancy in Oliver Twist for standing up to Bill and helping Oliver, though it led to her demise, so making her the “mom” of the home seems to fit.)

    I loved the evil and scary Bill Sykes (Sikes), so in my story, he remained evil and scary Bill Sykes. As for Olivia herself—she has the orphaned story of Oliver; however, instead of allowing her to be manipulated by society, I wanted her to be a true protagonist and shape her own world, make her own decisions.

    And then there’s the Artful Dodger, a.k.a. “Z” in Olivia Twisted. Ahh…what better way to tempt fate than by making him the hot bad boy who rides a Ducati? Though he has his own demons…his own secrets…

    And that’s all I’ll say about that! 😉

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    VB_About_Author

    Vivi author photo

    About Vivi Barnes

    Vivi Barnes was raised on a farm in East Texas where her theater-loving mom and cowboy dad gave her a unique perspective on life. Now living in the magic and sunshine of Orlando, Florida, she divides her time writing, working, goofing off with her husband and three kids, and avoiding dirty dishes. Olivia Twisted is her debut novel, written in homage to one of her favorite classic authors, Charles Dickens.

    TWITTER | FACEBOOK | WEBSITE | BLOG | GOODREADS

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    giveaway

    What’s Up for Grabs

    Giveaway #1: OLIVIA TWISTED Swag including a T-shirt and Bookmark – ONE winner (US only)

    Giveaway #2: A Pre-order copy of OLIVIA TWISTED – TWO winners (International)

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    The Deets

    – You must be 13 or older to enter

    – Giveaway #1 will have ONE winner (US only)

    – Giveaway #2 will have TWO winners (International)

    – ALL giveaways end on September 8th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific

    – ALL winners will be chosen by Random via Rafflecopter

    – Giveaway #1 prizes will be sent directly from the author

    – Giveaway #2 books will be ordered from Amazon or The Book Depository

    – Giveaway #2 books can be in either paperback or eBook formats

    For each giveaway there is a mandatory “Leave a Comment” entry. All other entries are optional. The tweet entry is a daily option.

    Enter in the Rafflecopters below…

    Giveaway #1

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Giveaway #2 a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    Authors Are Rockstars Tour: Naomi Canale Interview + Giveaway

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    I am so excited to be hosting Naomi Canale here on the blog today with a short interview for the Authors Are Rockstars Tour. While I haven’t known of this debut author for quite as long as some of the other rockstar authors I’ve hosted for this event, I still think she’s a total rockstar.

    And here’s why.

    Naomi Canale is a Rockstar because…

    She writes dark things. She likes Poe and King and Aliens according to her bio. And she is not afraid to show her quirky side.

    Her debut novel HIS DARK WAYS sounds seriously awesome. A thrill-seeking pastor’s daughter. A satanic séance. A hotel brimming with paranormal activity. And an intriguing ability that sounds like it might just be more than a little bit dangerous.

    She wrote an incredibly entertaining short story, Nerdentine, which was published in the LOVE STINKS! anthology that I think totally rocks.

    She has an easy-to-connect-with writing style and a voice that is very memorable and paints quite the picture.

    “Can I kiss you?”

    My answer is to press my lips on his. The hammer in my chest tries to break free and shatters my nerves instead. In the pit of my stomach, blood drains in leaving an intense pulse, I’ve felt butterflies before, but this can’t be it. Butterflies are light–fluffy. This is different–it’s heavy and channeling straight to my soul.

    ***

    So, yes, Naomi Canale is someone I totally think of as a rockstar. And as not everyone may have had the chance to “meet” this rockstar author just yet, I thought I’d give away a few Kindle eBook copies of HIS DARK WAYS for her stop on the tour.

    But if you’d like to learn a little bit more about Naomi, be sure to check out her bio, below, or visit her at any of the places she hangs out online. And if you take a peek at the interview, you’ll be able to learn a little bit more about the author’s influences for HIS DARK WAYS and see just why I think she rocks.

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    About_the_Author_Grey2
    Naomi CanaleAbout Naomi Canale

    Naomi Canale is a lifelong Nevadan obsessed with anything vintage and Tim Burton. In between creating art and loving on her three children, she writes young adult and new adult fiction with creepy noir themes.

    She is thrilled to share her debut His Dark Ways with you. Her other work can be seen in the anthology Love Stinks and she’s currently working on a new title she can’t wait to pull out of hiding.

    TWITTER | FACEBOOKWEBSITE | BLOG | GOODREADS | PINTERESTFIGMENT

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    The_Interview_Grey_3

    QuestionHIS DARK WAYS seems to blend religion with the paranormal, horror and perhaps a touch of romance. How did you decide upon each of these elements? And how were you able to combine them in your story in a way that worked?

    I really wanted to write the story of my heart, and for so long I lied to myself that I was, until I was fortunate enough to mentor under Ellen Hopkins. She taught me a lot about writing, life, and to be truthful when it came to my work. To be real on the page. When I started this book, I decided I wasn’t going to follow any formula and write the story I wanted to tell. My editor’s last comment on my manuscript was, “Girl, you are brave!” Ellen instilled that in me.

    As far as the building blocks of HIS DARK WAYS, each layer of bricks in between the mortar was a part of me. The paranormal aspects came from a dream. I dream a lot. In the dream, I was touching a young man’s face. He was wearing an historical soldier’s uniform, and when I lifted my hand away, he disappeared. The dream never left. And the romance on the page only grew from there.

    The darker side of the book came from the darkest corners of my heart, my past. Oh yes, don’t we all have one of those? I’ve seen a lot of horrific things, lots of death, and to me it’s important to explore those channels to help make sense of them. Sometimes recreating the darkness will give us a better understanding of the light, a longing for it even.

    I feel there is something programmed in us, a switch that’s constantly on, that leaves us always curious. Curious of the unknown, a conviction, or whatever it may be and I wanted to explore that. I wanted to take the things I knew in life and weave that question into the book. One choice can change the course of our life and that thought took hold of me.

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    QuestionPlotter or pantser?

    Definitely a panster! This may come from my ADD ways.

    QuestionWrite all night or write all day?

    All night.

    QuestionWrite with music or write in silence?

    The louder the better! Did I mention that I’m part deaf for this reason?

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    His-Dark-Ways

    His Dark Ways

    About HIS DARK WAYS

    Pub. Date: Aug 19, 2013 (electronic), Sept 17, 2013 (print)
    Publisher: CreateSpace
    Pages: 204
    Formats: Paperback, eBook

    Savanna Christy, a pastor’s daughter, is on a rebellion. Once her Dad told her the Bible warns of opening doors that shouldn’t be opened. She’s become obsessed with finding out if those doors are just as invisible as the God she’s been raised to know.

    One night, during another thrill-seeking adventure, Savanna and her friends Amy and Lucky, head thirty minutes out of their small town of Tonopah, to check out the Goldfield Hotel, known to be one of the most highly active places for paranormal activity in the nation. Together the three of them break in, hoping to open one of the doors the Bible speaks of, and in the middle of a satanic séance the three of them are dragged to various places of the hotel. But when the door shuts before Savanna’s cornered, something saves her. As footsteps slowly make their way to where Savanna is under a window, she reaches out her hand. Daniel, an entity who’s been locked away between space and time, becomes just as visible as Savanna. And her energy can give him life again, only when they touch (which triggers an addiction).

    AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | GOODREADS

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    giveaway

    What’s Up for Grabs

    A Kindle eBook copy of HIS DARK WAYS – 5 Winners

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    The Deets

    • Must be 13 or older to enter
    • Giveaway is open to anyone able to accept Kindle eBook gifts
    • There will be FIVE (5) winners
    • Giveaway ends Friday, September 6th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific
    • All winners will be chosen by Random via Rafflecopter

    There is a mandatory “Leave a Comment” entry. All other entries are optional. The tweet entry is a daily option.

    Enter in the Rafflecopter below…
    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    Authors Are Rockstars Tour: Michelle Zink Guest Post + Giveaways

    Fiktshun-presents-MZ

    I have been a huge fan of author Michelle Zink since before I became a blogger so I am unbelievably stoked to be able to host her here on the blog for the Authors Are Rockstars Tour today.

    And I feel so incredibly lucky to be the recipient of the awesome guest post she wrote for this tour which introduces her character Claire from her upcoming novel THIS WICKED GAME and tells of the first time she witnessed her mother practicing voodoo.

    I have been anxiously awaiting this upcoming book’s release for quite some time, but after having read the last paragraph of the post I am now officially dying to read it. And I think, when you read it, it will make you just as eager to read it too.

    Of course we’ll have to wait for its release in November… well, except for the winner of the giveaway, who will get the chance to read it much earlier than that. I am already officially jealous!

    Once again Michelle Zink has written a story that sounds absolutely intriguing, one that offers something a little bit different to its readers with its setting and its premise. And with its eye-catching cover – yes I noticed the skull in the scrollwork – and its very appealing title, I have a feeling this is going to be one of my favorite books by this author.

    In addition to the amazing guest post and some information about THIS WICKED GAME, I’ve also included just a little bit of info about the author and places where she can be found online. I also just had to include one or two details about her other young adult tiles.

    And at the bottom of this post there are a couple giveaways. The author is giving away an ARC of THIS WICKED GAME along with a paperback copy of A TEMPTATION OF ANGELS. And I’ve added in a giveaway for a book of the winner’s choice of one of Michelle Zink’s books to two winners.

    So be sure to check that all out below. But before all that, after this rather long introductory ramble, I thought I’d mention one or two reasons why I think Michelle Zink is a rockstar.

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    Michelle Zink is a Rockstar because…

    Her stories are gorgeous and haunting and unique and memorable.

    Her writing is absolutely, stunningly beautiful.

    With each and every book she transports me into a world unlike any other I’ve visited before.

    With each world she creates I never want to leave.

    She made me a fan from the very first lines of the very first story I read.

    Perhaps because it seems so appropriate, I don’t notice the rain. It falls in sheets, a blanket of silvery thread rushing to the hard almost-winter ground. Still, I stand without moving at the side of the coffin.

    (Passage from PROPHECY OF THE SISTERS.)

    And she continues to keep me captivated with each and every story.

    Dimitri leans down, placing his lips very near my ear.

    “What do you think?”

    It takes my breath away. I find I cannot do it justice with words, and so I simply smile in answer.

    He reaches to touch my hair, and even now it seems his eyes darken with something like desire. I am surprised when his hand comes away with the ivory comb Father gave me long ago.

    (Passage from GUARDIAN OF THE GATE.)

    “I had a nightmare.”

    His face softens, and he lowers himself to the ground, stretching his body out beside mine and taking me into his arms until my head is pressed to his chest.

    “Tell me,” he says. “Tell me your nightmares.”

    The silence between us is a weight on my heart, and I am reminded of another instance, another time when I was urged to speak of my fears. Of the things growing wild and dark in the fortress of my consciousness.

    (Passage from CIRCLE OF FIRE.)

    Michelle Zink amazes me with stories that are intelligent, rich and full of depth, stories that are also exciting, surprising and riveting. So, yes, she is definitely a rockstar author to me.

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    About the Author

    Michelle Zink

    About Michelle Zink

    Michelle Zink lives in New York with her four children. Prophecy of the Sisters was her first novel, and was chosen as one of Booklist’s Top Ten Debut Novels of 2009 and as one of the Chicago Public Library’s Best Books for Young Readers. It has also been listed on the New York Public Library’s Stuff for the Teen Age and the Lone Star Reading List.

    WEBSITE | BLOG | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS

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    The Guest Post

    In THIS WICKED GAME (November 2013), my main character, Claire, makes passing reference to the first time she saw her mother practicing voodoo. Claire is seventeen in THIS WICKED GAME, but that first encounter with her mother’s practice left a lasting impression, one that only adds to the alienation  Claire feels from the family business. In this guest post, I’ve recreated that moment for Fiktshun readers. I hope you enjoy it!

    MZ

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    The first time I saw my mother practicing voodoo I was seven.

    Sleepy-eyed from a late afternoon nap, I checked the parlor first. That’s where my mother usually was, sipping sweet tea and writing the endless stream of correspondence addressed to Guild members, customers, and anyone else who was due a “proper letter.”

    But she wasn’t there, and I searched the kitchen and then the whole first floor before I finally gave up and climbed the stairs.

    I called her name softly. My mother hated hearing her name shouted throughout the house. “Claire,” she would say, “I won’t speak to you until you address me politely. And by that I mean from a distance that doesn’t require you to shout like a banshee.”

    I made my way down the long hall, the old wood floors accented with exotic carpets, past the doors to my bedroom, two bathrooms, and the guest rooms, finally stopping outside my parent’s room. The fact that the door was closed was unusual. Looking back, I think my mother must have practiced her rituals while I was asleep. Not to protect me. To her, voodoo was — and is — as natural as breathing. I think she just wanted to be alone. Wanted to pray and speak to the loas the way she used to, back when she was just a poor girl from the bayou, before she married my father, inheriting all the expectations of the Guild and the weighty Laveau name.

    I don’t know what made me open the door. Good manners prohibited opening a closed door without knocking, and like most Southern girls, good manners had been drilled into me from infancy. Still, I turned the heavy bronze knob, and the door swung silently open.

    She was there, dressed in the white tunic that was standard ritual garb (we sold them in the store), a purple shawl draped over her shoulders. She looked different. Younger. Her hair, black as midnight, fell in loose curls around her shoulders. Her eyes were closed, her lips moving in whispered prayer, the words strange and foreign, spoken in French. My gaze slid to the altar in front of her, taking it all in. The bible at its center. The purple candles flickering in front of a photograph of our family. The white sage and caraway seeds. The scent of patchouli heavy in the air.

    I caught snippets of her prayer, words that had been used in ritual spell casting in the store, the prayers passed along to customers in need of love, protection, guidance, healing. Spoken like gossip over the bins of incense and gris-gris bags, the words hadn’t scared me then. Our customers were everyday people. They asked my parent’s opinion, purchased ingredients and were on their way. They could have been buying a carton of milk or a canister of chicory coffee from the market.

    But this was different. I was suddenly, unaccountably afraid. When I remembered the moment years later, I would wonder if it was because it was so unfamiliar. I was used to seeing my mother in command. Giving advice that usually felt more like an order than a suggestion. Here she seemed fragile, vulnerable. At the mercy of the loas and their desire to do her bidding — or not.

    That’s what I told myself. That there was nothing to be afraid of. That in its modern incarnation, voodoo was nothing more than holistic medicine with a dash of prayer. A bunch of natural remedies using herbs and roots that probably only worked because the people who bought them were already believers in voodoo. Placebo effect and all that.

    And for a long time I believed it. Until that summer with Xander, Sasha, and the other firstborns. Until Maximilian and Eugenia and poor Elisabeta.

    After that, I knew I’d been lying to myself. Watching my mother from the doorway, I hadn’t been afraid because she seemed unfamiliar. I was afraid because even then, I felt the power that coursed through our veins, as alive and hungry as any beast.

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    This Wicked Game

    This Wicked Game

    About THIS WICKED GAME

    Publisher: Dial
    Release Date: November 14, 2013
    Formats: Hardcover, eBook

    Claire Kincaid’s family has been in business for over fifty years.

    The voodoo business.

    Part of the International Guild of High Priests and Priestesses, a secret society that have practiced voodoo for generations, the Kincaid’s run an underground supply house for authentic voodoo supplies. Claire plays along, filling orders for powders, oils and other bizarre ingredients in the family store, but she has a secret.

    She doesn’t believe.

    Struggling to reconcile her modern sensibilities with a completely unscientific craft based on suspicion, Claire can’t wait to escape New Orleans – and voodoo – when she goes to college, a desire that creates almost constant conflict in her secret affair with Xander Toussaint, son of the Guild’s powerful founding family.

    But when a mysterious customer places an order for a deadly ingredient, Claire begins to realize that there’s more to voodoo – and the families that make up the Guild – than meets the eye.

    Including her own.

    As she bands together with the other firstborns of the Guild, she comes face to face with a deadly enemy – and the disbelief that may very well kill her.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    A Temptation of Angels

    Temptation of Angels

    About A TEMPTATION OF ANGELS

    Publisher: Dial
    Release Date: March 20, 2012
    Formats: Hardcover, paperback, eBook

    Even angels make mistakes in this page-turning epic romance

    When her parents are murdered before her eyes, sixteen-year-old Helen Cartwright finds herself launched into an underground London where a mysterious organization called the Dictata controls the balance of good and evil. Helen learns that she is one of three remaining angelic descendants charged with protecting the world’s past, present, and future. Unbeknownst to her, she has been trained her whole life to accept this responsibility. Now, as she finds herself torn between the angelic brothers protecting her and the devastatingly handsome childhood friend who wants to destroy her, she must prepare to be brave, to be hunted, and above all to be strong, because temptation will be hard to resist, even for an angel.

    Michelle Zink masterfully weaves historical fantasy with paranormal romance to create a gripping tale of love and betrayal.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    Prophecy of the Sisters

    Prophecy-of-the-Sisters-Series

    About PROPHECY OF THE SISTERS

    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
    Release Date: August 1, 2009
    Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook

    An ancient prophecy divides two sisters–one good, one evil.

    Who will prevail?

    Twin sisters Lia and Alice Milthorpe have just become orphans. They have also become enemies. As they discover their roles in a prophecy that has turned generations of sisters against each other, they find themselves entangled in a mystery that involves a tattoo-like mark, their parents’ deaths, a boy, a book, and a lifetime of secrets.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    About GUARDIAN OF THE GATE

    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
    Release Date: August 1, 2012
    Formats: Hardcover, paperback, eBook

    The ultimate battle between sisters is nearing, and its outcome could have catastrophic consequences. As sixteen year-old Lia Milthorpe searches for a way to end the prophecy, her twin sister Alice hones the skills she’ll need to defeat Lia. Alice will stop at nothing to reclaim her sister’s role in the prophecy, and that’s not the only thing she wants: There’s also Lia’s boyfriend James.

    Lia and Alice always knew the Prophecy would turn those closest to them against them. But they didn’t know what betrayal could lead them to do. In the end, only one sister will be left standing.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    About CIRCLE OF FIRE

    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
    Release Date: August 3, 2011
    Formats: Hardcover, paperback, eBook

    With time dwindling but her will to end the Prophecy stronger than ever, Lia sets out on a journey to find the remaining keys, locate the missing pages of the Prophecy, and convince her sister Alice to help–or risk her life trying. Lia has her beloved Dimitri by her side, but Alice has James, the man who once loved her sister–and maybe still does. James doesn’t know the truth about either sister, or the prophecy that divides them. And Alice intends to keep it that way.

    There are some secrets sisters aren’t meant to share. Because when they do, it destroys them. This stunning conclusion to Michelle Zink’s Prophecy of the Sisters trilogy will make saying good-bye bittersweet for readers.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    The Novellas

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    About WHISPER OF SOULS

    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
    Release Date: June 5, 2012
    Format: eBook

    Before Prophecy of the Sisters, before Alice and Lia became pawns in the curse that turned sister against sister, the burden of the prophecy belonged to their mother, Adelaide. This is her story.

    Adelaide Milthorpe is losing her grip on sanity. She is a Gate-a human portal to the Otherworlds, destined to bring forth Samael, the most powerful demon of all time, and his Lost Souls. Prowling the halls of Birchwood Manor, Adelaide is haunted by the whispers of the otherworldly Souls, who seek to use her for entry into the real world, where they would wreak havoc and rule beside their leader, Samael, in chaos. Their pleas plague her, torture her, tempt her. Samael calls to her, his promise of peace in the Otherworlds increasingly difficult to resist. And the stakes are high, for if Adelaide gives in to his urgings, her two daughters will inherit the same curse, forcing them to make the same impossible choice as they, too, are cast in the roles of Guardian and Gate.

    In this novella that delves further into the Prophecy, Adelaide’s struggle to reconcile her two worlds as she descends into madness will captivate fans of the Prophecy of the Sisters series and new readers alike.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    About MISTRESS OF SOULS

    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
    Release Date: June 19, 2012
    Format: eBook

    After the tragic events of Prophecy of the Sisters, Lia Milthorpe fled New York, leaving her twin behind. While Lia was in London, preparing for the battle ahead, Alice spent months isolated in Birchwood, her story of solitude untold. Until now.

    Alice Milthorpe is alone. Now that her sister Lia has left Birchwood, her brother dead, her family gone, there is no one to keep Alice from the Dark Room. She spends entire days and nights there, willing her spirit to travel to the Otherworlds where the Souls welcome her, where the demon Samael gives her the companionship she so desperately desires.

    Yet she does not belong in the Otherworlds. Whether she likes it or not, she belongs in the physical world, tethered to a role in the prophecy she does not want and a world she is not truly a part of. But when a chance encounter with James, her sister’s abandoned fiancé, sparks a fragile friendship, Alice begins to think that she is not as alone as she thought – and that maybe there is a reason to anchor herself to the physical world after all.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    About RISE OF SOULS

    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
    Release Date: July 3, 2012
    Format: eBook

    The third of three haunting novella spin-offs to Prophecy of the Sisters to be published as e-books.

    The Gate to the mortal world is finally closed. Lia Milthorpe has settled with her husband on Altus, the land that bridges the gap between the Otherworlds and the physical one.

    Samael’s banishment has brought prosperity to the land, and no one is happier than Una Whelan. For the first time in centuries, those who live on the island–including Una and her suitor, Fenris–can do so in peace. Or so they thought.

    This novella reveals what happens to Lia, Dimitri, and Altus after Circle of Fire, the final book in the Prophecy of the Sisters trilogy. If you thought there was a happy ending, think again.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    giveaway

    What’s Up for Grabs

    Giveaway #1: An ARC of THIS WICKED GAME + a paperback copy of A TEMPTATION OF ANGELS to ONE winner – US ONLY

    Giveaway #2: Winner’s choice of one of author Michelle Zink’s books (or a pre-order of THIS WICKED GAME) to TWO winners – International

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    The Deets

    – You must be 13 or older to enter

    – Giveaway #1 will have ONE winner (US only)

    – Giveaway #2 will have TWO winners (International)

    – ALL giveaways end on August 31st at 11:59 p.m. Pacific

    – ALL winners will be chosen by Random via Rafflecopter

    – Giveaway #1 prizes will be sent directly from the author

    – Giveaway #2 books will be ordered from Amazon or The Book Depository

    – Giveaway #2 books can be in either hardcover, paperback or eBook formats

    For each giveaway there is a mandatory “Leave a Comment” entry. All other entries are optional. The tweet entry is a daily option.

    Giveaway #1

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Giveaway #2

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Share

    Authors Are Rockstars Tour: Jessica Spotswood Guest Post + Giveaways

    Fiktshun-presents-JS

    I am so happy that I’m co-hosting the Authors Are Rockstars Tour, because it means that I get to have an author that I think is a total rockstar stop by the blog for a guest post. And that author is none other than the very awesome Jessica Spotswood.

    If it weren’t for this tour I’d have never had the courage to invite the author to stop by. And I definitely wouldn’t have been able to ask her why she chose Cate as the voice of her series.

    While Cate is a heroine I absolutely adore – for all those reasons the author mentions in her post, below – she isn’t the stereotypical heroine. Of course that’s probably why I love that it’s her voice the story is told in.

    But that’s not the only reason why I love the Cahill Witch Chronicles. The writing is beautiful. The story is completely captivating, magical, suspenseful, exciting and more than a little bit heartbreaking.

    And while I may only have been recently introduced to this author’s writing, the intriguing world she built and the amazing characters she created, I instantly fell in love and Jessica Spotswood achieved immediate rockstar status.

    But if you haven’t yet read the first two books in this amazing series, and you haven’t yet met Cate Cahill, be sure to check out the “Why Cate Cahill?” guest post, below, to learn just a little bit more about her, and the books’ descriptions that follow below the post, to discover more about the series.

    And if you want a chance to win some bookish prizes be sure to enter the giveaways at the end of this post.

    But before all of that, if you’d like to know why I think this author rocks, here’s why….

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    Jessica Spotswood is a Rockstar because…

    Her writing is beautiful, gorgeous, heartbreaking, riveting, enchanting.

    She made me fall in love – and fall hard – with a series whose setting and world are not from my “go to” genre.

    She made me adore a heroine who isn’t perfect or kick-a** or “the best” or “the most.”

    She made me root for the good boy. (Believe me, it’s not an easy feat.)

    She was able to instantly transport me into the world she created and keep me there from beginning to end. (I never wanted to leave.)

    She knows how to create killer cliffhanger endings. (I’m still reeling over what happened at the end of STAR CURSED.)

    And she made me swoon with passages like this one….

    Finn tilts my chin up with one finger, and I kiss him. I kiss him as though I will break into a thousand tiny pieces if I don’t; I kiss him as though my lips on his can protect him from any possible danger.

    When he pulls away, there are tears gathering in my eyes. I tilt my head down so he won’t see them.

    (Passage from STAR CURSED.)

    Oh and she named a character Finn. (Favorite character name ever.)

    Although Jessica Spotswood has only recently become a rockstar author to me, she is one that I know will forever hold that title. I will read everything fiction she has on offer. And heck yes, I wish the third book in the Cahill Witch Chronicles was “on offer” right about now.

    About Jessica Spotswood

    Jessica Spotswood

    Jessica Spotswood is the author of the Cahill Witch Chronicles: BORN WICKED (2012), STAR CURSED (2013), and as-yet-untitled book 3 (summer 2014).

    She grew up in a tiny, one-stoplight town in Pennsylvania, where she could be found swimming, playing clarinet, memorizing lines for the school play, or – most often – with her nose in a book.

    Now Jess lives in Washington, DC with her playwright husband and a cuddly cat named Monkey. She can be found doing yoga, teaching writing workshops for teens, or – most often – with her nose in a book.

    Some things never change.

    WEBSITE | BLOG | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS

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    The Guest Post

    Why Cate Cahill?

    One of the topics Rachel proposed was: Why Cate Cahill? The Cahill Witch Chronicles explores the relationship between three sisters, so why did I choose Cate as the protagonist? Why tell the story from her point of view?

    Cate isn’t the cleverest of the three (that’s Tess). She isn’t the prettiest (that’s Maura). I’ll leave the question of whether she is the most powerful aside for now, for fear of STAR CURSED spoilers – but she isn’t the one who wants to be the most powerful (Maura again). Maura dreams big – of sailing off to Dubai or Paris on an adventure, of falling in love, of a world where witches are governing New England. Tess has a questioning spirit; Paul and Cate joke in BORN WICKED about how when she was little, she went around constantly asking why? She dreams of learning new languages and reading all the books in the Sisterhood’s library and then writing her own someday. Cate’s dreams are smaller: she wants a garden of her own and a husband and children. She wants to be safe. In many ways, she’s the most traditional of the three sisters. She has to be dragged (well, blackmailed) into adventure, and when she’s presented with enormous responsibilities – well, she manages, but she doesn’t leap into them joyfully. She frets and whines and wonders why me for a bit first.

    Does it make her a typical heroine? No. But I think – hope? – it makes her relatable. Cate isn’t like Katniss or Katsa or Tris. She’s not badass; she’s not kickass; she doesn’t have any particular physical strength. She’s clever, but she’s not Hermione either. She’s just stubborn and loyal; she wants to take care of the people she loves. In STAR CURSED we learn that she’s extremely good at healing magic, because she is able to put aside her body’s natural reticence and endure the subsequent sickness in order to help people. Her best quality – how fiercely she wants to protect her sisters – is also her biggest flaw, because she can’t see around what she wants for Maura and Tess in order to let them live their own lives. And, oh, are there consequences when she makes decisions for them that go against their own wishes. The bad things that happen to Cate can often be traced back to her own mistakes. That interests me.

    Cate is flawed. It was important to me to write a heroine who isn’t perfect. She is super bossy – borne in part from her promise to her dying mother to look after Maura and Tess, but also because she’s the oldest and it’s the role she’s been playing for so long it’s become habit. She keeps secrets when she shouldn’t – not just from her sisters but from her father and her friends and Finn – in part to protect them, but in part because she thinks she knows what’s best. Also, Cate is judgey. She prefers climbing trees and running through the gardens to dressing up for a fine tea party. She would rather not draw attention to herself, which means she tends to wear serviceable blues and grays instead of the bright hues and lace and feathers that are all the fashion; she would rather be alone with her hands in the dirt than make awkward small talk. She has so many secrets to keep that at the beginning of BORN WICKED, she’s never sought out any girl friends; she doesn’t see the need for them. In fact, she judges girls like Sachi and Rory who are loud and laughing, who flirt and take pleasure in looking pretty. Cate calls them cabbageheads and thinks they’re stupid. But the fantastic thing about having a flawed heroine is that over the course of the series, she has an opportunity to change. She can realize her own mistakes and try to do better. I think – hope? – that makes Cate her own kind of powerful heroine, and one we can all relate to.

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    About the Books

    BW+SC

    About BORN WICKED…

    A gorgeous, witchy, romantic fantasy by a debut author! Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and the Beautiful Creatures series!

    Everybody thinks Cate Cahill and her sisters are eccentric. Too pretty, too reclusive, and far too educated for their own good. But the truth is even worse: they’re witches. And if their secret is discovered by the priests of the Brotherhood, it would mean an asylum, a prison ship–or an early grave. Then Cate finds her mother’s diary, and uncovers a secret that could spell her family’s destruction. Desperate to find alternatives to their fate, Cate starts scouring banned books and questioning rebellious new friends, all while juggling tea parties, shocking marriage proposals, and a forbidden romance with the completely unsuitable Finn Belastra. But if what her mother wrote is true, the Cahill girls aren’t safe–not even from each other.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    About STAR CURSED…

    With the Brotherhood persecuting witches like never before, a divided Sisterhood desperately needs Cate to come into her Prophesied powers. And after Cate’s friend Sachi is arrested for using magic, a war-thirsty Sister offers to help her find answers—if Cate is willing to endanger everyone she loves.

    Cate doesn’t want to be a weapon, and she doesn’t want to involve her friends and Finn in the Sisterhood’s schemes. But when Maura and Tess join the Sisterhood, Maura makes it clear that she’ll do whatever it takes to lead the witches to victory. Even if it means sacrifices. Even if it means overthrowing Cate. Even if it means all-out war.

    In the highly anticipated sequel to Born Wicked, the Cahill Witch Chronicles continue Cate, Maura and Tess’s quest to find love, protect family, and explore their magic against all odds in an alternate history of New England.

    GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE

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    The Cahill Witch Chronicles

    GOODREADS | FACEBOOK | PINTEREST

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    giveaway

    What’s Up for Grabs

    Giveaway #1 – There will be three winners total for this giveaway.

    –A signed copy of STAR CURSED to ONE winner (US/Canada)

    — A Cahill Witch Chronicles swag pack containing BORN WICKED and STAR CURSED bookplates and stickers, bookmarks, a BORN WICKED wristlet and a STAR CURSED postcard to TWO winners (International)

    Giveaway #2 – There will be one winner for this giveaway.

    –A set of BORN WICKED and STAR CURSED to ONE winner (International)

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    The Deets

    – You must be 13 or older to enter

    – Giveaway #1 will have 3 winners (one US/Canada ONLY, two International)

    – Giveaway #2 will have 1 winner (International)

    – ALL giveaways end on August 31st at 11:59 p.m. Pacific

    – ALL winners will be chosen by Random via Rafflecopter

    – Giveaway #1 prizes will be sent directly from the author

    – Giveaway #2 books will be ordered from Amazon or The Book Depository

    For each giveaway there is a mandatory “Leave a Comment” entry. And for giveaway #1 there is an additional requirement to determine eligibility US/Canada or International.

    All other entries are optional. The tweet entry is a daily option.

    Giveaway #1

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Giveaway #2

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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