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Kelley Armstrong

    MISSING Blog Tour Review

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    Title: MISSING
    Author: Kelley Armstrong
    Release date: April 18, 2017
    Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers
    Pages: 384
    Formats: Hardcover, eBook

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    Description…

    Fans of Jennifer Donnelly will flock to the new romantic thriller from #1 New York Timesbestselling author Kelley Armstrong.

    The only thing Winter Crane likes about Reeve’s End is that soon she’ll leave it. Like her best friend did. Like her sister did. Like most of the teens born in town have done. There’s nothing for them there but abandoned mines and empty futures. They’re better off taking a chance elsewhere.

    What Winter will miss is the woods. Her only refuge. At least it was. Until the day she found Lennon left for dead, bleeding in a tree.

    But now Lennon is gone too. And he has Winter questioning what she once thought was true. What if nobody left at all? What if they’re all missing?

    AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE | GOODREADS

    NOTE: This review is based on an eARC received from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book. A Kindle eCopy was purchased for my collection.


    The Review

    MISSING is a chilling, suspense-filled, and nail-biting read that will not only keep you guessing, but will have you looking over your shoulder and jumping at every sound until the mystery is solved. With a quick pace, strong characters, an action-packed plot full of shocks and surprises, it will immediately grab hold and won’t let you go until the story’s end.

    Everyone leaves Reeve’s End, and Winter Crane can’t wait until she’s one of those statistics. Once she finishes school she’ll be able to escape, like her friend Edie and her sister Cady did. She already knows what she wants to do with her life – go to college, go to med school. Until then, she just needs to bide her time and avoid her father as much as possible.

    But when she discovers a boy who is beaten and unconscious, she can’t bring herself leave him and hope that the sheriff’s office will do their job. If the pack of wild dogs roaming free in the woods don’t get him, his attacker might come back to finish what he started.

    She knows helping him could be a risk. But she is a capable hunter. She knows these woods. And if he isn’t actually a victim, between her hunting knife, switchblade, and bow and arrows, she should be able to fend him off.

    She just never imagined that her one act of kindness would get her caught up in solving a mystery that goes beyond what happened to the injured boy, one that makes her a target, and one that jeopardizes her chance at ever leaving Reeve’s End.

    Kelley Armstrong penned a story that is exciting and terrifying and unexpected. She created a strong, clever, daring, and persistent heroine in Winter and she partnered her with Jude, a boy who is calculating, dangerous, and secretive. The mystery is complex. The story tension-filled. And the outcome unpredictable. All of which make for a gripping and electrifying read.

    Those who prefer their thrillers spine-tingling, their puzzles not instantly solvable, their criminals cunning, manipulative, and malevolent, their crime solvers fierce, determined, and relentless, and their crimes on the darker side, will absolutely love Kelley Armstrong’s MISSING.

    The Rating


    About Kelley Armstrong

    Kelley Armstrong has been telling stories since before she could write. Her earliest written efforts were disastrous. If asked for a story about girls and dolls, hers would invariably feature undead girls and evil dolls, much to her teachers’ dismay. Today, she continues to spin tales of ghosts and demons and werewolves, while safely locked away in her basement writing dungeon. She lives in southwestern Ontario with her husband, kids and far too many pets.

    WEBSITE | TWITTER | TUMBLR | FACEBOOK | PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSEGOODREADS

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    Book Watch: Releasing This Week #118

    Below are the YA books releasing this week that I am spotlighting for my “Book Watch: Releasing This Week” post.

    These are books for the week of April 2nd-April 8th that I have pre-ordered.

    05

    Nameless Cover
    addtogoodreads

    NAMELESS by Lili St. Crow will be released in the U.S. on April 4, 2013 in hardcover and ebook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Razorbill, the print edition is 336.

    NAMELESS is the first book in author Lili St. Crow’s new series Tales of Beauty and Madness.

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    NAMELESS sounds just so amazing and I’m so excited it’s releasing on Thursday. While I won a signed copy in a charitable auction, I didn’t want to read it because it was signed and I try to never read them if I can help it. So, I’m anxiously awaiting its download to my Kindle on Wednesday Midnight. And I plan on finding some time at the end of this week to dive in.

    I am just so curious how this tale is an “evocative update of Snow White” given the book’s description which makes it sound like a completely unique story. Well, aside from the fact that Cami is taken in and cared for by the head of one of seven Families, much like Snow White who was “adopted” by those seven dwarves.

    I can’t wait to meet Cami and find out just what her secrets are and why she was scarred and mute when she was found. I’m also very interested in meeting the mysterious Tor and finding out about his past.

    I love that this story has the addition of “A Tale of Beauty and Madness” as part of its title, as it makes me all the more intrigued by it. And if I manage to get just a bit more caught up with my must read for review books, I will definitely be diving into NAMELESS later this week.

    The Collector

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    THE COLLECTOR by Victoria Scott will be released in the U.S. on April 2, 2013 in paperback format – the eBook was released on March 25th. It is currently available to pre-order (and order) online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Entangled Teen, the print edition is 400 pages.

    THE COLLECTOR is the first book in the Dante Walker series by author Victoria Scott. The sequel, THE LIBERATOR, is slated for release on August 27, 2013.

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    I actually already have a copy of THE  COLLECTOR on my Kindle from when it downloaded last week. But I decided to order a print copy to add to my collection, too, and I will hopefully get it on Tuesday.

    I’ve already read THE COLLECTOR and fell madly in love with it so there will be no guessing about what Dante Walker was up to in this book. Because I already know. Of course I won’t say what he was up to. That would be spoiler-y. But as you can imagine, if you’ve heard anything about this book, not all of what he’s up to is good.  He is a collector after all.

    I will just say that the book lived up to its hype. Dante may not have been at all what I expected, but I loved who he actually was much more than the hyped version. Of course I may just have to re-read it now that I’ll have a couple copies of the finished version. Especially since the release date for the sequel is almost five months away. And that’s way too long to be without Dante Walker.

    Vengeance Bound

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    VENGEANCE BOUND by Justina Ireland will be released in the U.S. on April 2, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, the print edition is 320 pages.

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    I have been dying to read VENGEANCE BOUND since the moment I checked out the description ages ago. It sounds so completely awesome – bloodlust, the Furies, justice… revenge. And I cannot wait for its release on Tuesday.

    I can’t wait to meet Cory and learn just how she managed to escape the asylum. But more, I want to know how she can live with the Furies constantly in her head. And I also can’t wait to meet Niko and find out why the Furies are quiet around him and what it all means.

    The description calls this book “edgy” and I am so excited to finally be able to go along on Cory’s “quest for revenge.” Even if it means there won’t be a happily ever after in her future.

    If I can’t find the time to read it this week, I definitely hope to add VENGEANCE BOUND to the pile next week.

    Dark Triumph

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    DARK TRIUMPH by Robin LaFevers will be released in the U.S. on April 2, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, the print edition is 400 pages.

    DARK TRIUMPH is the second book in the His Fair Assassin series by author Robin LaFevers. The third book, MORTAL HEART, is slated for release in 2014.

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    I am so excited that DARK TRIUMPH releases on Tuesday and that everyone will have a chance to read this amazing book, which I am currently reading. Sybella is awesome. Seriously, seriously awesome.

    As I already spotlighted it for my Book Watch post a couple of weeks ago, I will be brief. But I just have to say that I love that this second book in the series follows a new character, even though I totally adore Ismae. I think the world that author Robin LaFevers created is so richly detailed and so easy to get lost in that I have no idea why I didn’t read this book the moment I had a copy in hand.

    And I think Sybella’s story is just as exciting as Ismae’s…. maybe a bit more so because I already know I love the world and its characters.

    If I hadn’t already wanted to read this book, the description would have completely sold me on it when it mentioned that DARK TRIUMPH “serves betrayal, treachery, and danger in equal measure….”

    But I already very much wanted to read it. So the fact that I had pre-ordered a copy for my Kindle should come as no surprise. To anyone.

    The Rising

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    THE RISING by Kelley Armstrong will be released in the U.S. on April 2, 2013 in hardcover, audio and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in all formats at AMAZON and in hardcover and eBook formats at BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by HarperCollins, the print edition is 416 pages.

    THE RISING is the third and final book in author Kelley Armstrong’s Darkness Rising trilogy.

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    While I am a little bit behind on this series – I still must read book two – I have THE RISING pre-ordered and cannot wait to read it later this month. After the major cliffhanger at the end of THE GATHERING I was slightly hesitant to pick up the next book in the series without having the final book on hand.

    Well all that changes this week as the end of the trilogy is upon us. And I am so stoked that I will be able to read the rest of the series without having an excruciating wait. And, I don’t have to re-read the first book as it is still totally fresh in my mind… most likely due to the killer cliffhanger ending.

    But I am so excited to get back into this series and see just which of the characters from the author’s other series make their appearance in this one. But I also cannot wait to find out what’s going to happen with Maya… though I refuse to read the description since I haven’t found out exactly what happens in THE CALLING.

    I am so sad that this, too, is a short series as I’d love to see a longer YA series by the author. Her paranormal series for adults is quite a bit longer, and as I love all of her characters in this series and her Darkest Powers series, I wish these series would be longer, too.

    At least this final book will be releasing this week and I won’t have to wait to conclude this series…. Still not sure I’m ready to see it end, though.

    The Sweetest Dark

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    THE SWEETEST DARK by Shana Abe will be released in the U.S. on April 2, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Bantam, the print edition is 352 pages.

    THE SWEETEST DARK is the first book in author Shana Abe’s series of the same name. The sequel, THE DEEPEST NIGHT, is slated for release on August 13, 2013.

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    I fell for THE SWEETEST DARK because of its cover and the last two lines of the description, so of course I had to add it to my list of pre-orders. And I cannot believe that it’s releasing on Tuesday. Especially with the sequel releasing just four months from now.

    No. No, I’m not complaining about that.

    But I cannot wait to get lost in post-Victorian England and in a “love story that defies time.” I cannot wait to discover Lora’s secrets and see just what powers she does have.

    And I can’t wait to choose whether I’ll be rooting for Jesse or Armand to be a part of that love story. As both boys seem to be equally appealing from the description, I haven’t the first clue who I’d choose.

    I really hope to get the chance to visit Iverson and meet these most intriguing characters later this week.

    Moonset

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    MOONSET by Scott Tracey will be released in the U.S. on April 8, 2013 in paperback and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both forats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Flux, the print edition is 384 pages.

    MOONSET is the first book in author Scott Tracey’s The Legacy of Moonset series. Information on the second book in the series is not yet available.

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    MOONSET releases next Monday. Wow. I cannot believe it is really going to be on shelves in less than a week. After such a long, long wait, it’s finally almost here! And while I may have read it more than a few times, that fact makes me no less excited for its release which will hopefully download on Sunday night.

    Of course I will be stalking the bookstore next weekend in the hope that it will be on shelves a few days early. Fingers most definitely crossed.

    And while I could have included MOONSET with next week’s releases, as I follow release weeks from Tuesday through Monday, I just had to list it among this week’s releases.

    As I have read it, and talked about it on the blog A LOT, my lips will be sealed from any further praise. Until my review, that is. But I just have to quickly say that I love this book. I love the fact that the story surrounds a coven of witches and that there is dark magic and a dark past. And I cannot wait to see this story continue in the sequel.

    Rise

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    RISE by Anna Carey will be released in the U.S. on April 2, 2013 in hardcover, audio and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in all formats at AMAZON and in hardcover and eBook formats at BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by HarperCollins, the print edition is 320 pages.

    RISE is the third and final book in Anna Carey’s Eve trilogy.

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    I am so excited that RISE is releasing on Tuesday. Even though I only recently met Eve and Caleb, both already released books have lived on my Kindle since their respective release dates. And so I feel like I’ve known them forever.

    And as I am reading ONCE, I am not going to even glimpse at the Goodreads description. Because I have been burned by spoiler-y descriptions in the past and don’t want to have the ending spoiled when I’m so closed to reaching it.

    So, I will just say that while I only started reading this series the other week, I am incredibly excited to be finishing it up this week. I love not having to wait between each book, because it allows me to stay immersed in the world, to remain connected to the characters and their plight, and to feel like I’m on this incredible adventure with them.

    There is no question that I will be reading RISE on release date, even though it is a series ending book. Because I am not ready to leave the world just yet. I only hope I’ll be ready to say goodbye when the time comes….

    White Lines

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    WHITE LINES by Jennifer Banash will be released in the U.S. on April 4, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Putnam Juvenile, the print edition is 304 pages.

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    WHITE LINES will be releasing on Thursday and I cannot wait for my copy to download. I did receive a couple early copies, which I just had to take a peek at. And from what I read so far I absolutely loved the author’s writing style and was intrigued by her main character, Cat. So I had just to pre-order a copy of this book for my collection.

    But it was the description that first grabbed my attention. The setting – New York City in the 1980’s – is one that immediately made this a must read. And the fact that the main character tries to escape into NYC’s nightlife makes this story one that is very relatable to me.

    The description promises a “gritty, atmospheric” story and I cannot wait to find out if that is true and whether I’ll be held captivate from start to finish.

    My plan is to read my early copy before release date. But if I don’t finish reading it by Thursday, I will definitely switch to the finished eBook copy in my collection once it downloads.

    Other Books of Note

    In the Shadow of Blackbirds

    IN THE SHADOW OF BLACKBIRDS by Cat Winters

    Pub. Date: April 2, 2013

    Publisher: Amulet Books

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Light

    LIGHT (Gone #6) by Michael Grant

    Pub. Date: April 2, 2013

    Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    My Life After Now

    My Life After Now by Jessica Verdi

    Pub. Date: April 2, 2013

    Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    If He Had Been With Me

    IF HE HAD BEEN WITH ME by Laura Nowlin

    Pub. Date: April 2, 2013

    Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Fearless

    FEARLESS (Mirrorworld #2) by Cornelia Funke

    Pub. Date: April 2, 2013

    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Stung

    STUNG by Bethany Wiggins

    Pub. Date: April 2, 2013

    Publisher: Walker Childrens

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Renegade Cover

    RENEGADE (Ripper #2) by Amy Carol Reeves

    Pub. Date: April 8, 2013

    Publisher: Flux

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Naturals

    NATURALS (The Lost Souls #2) by Tiffany Truitt

    Pub. Date: April 2, 2013

    Publisher: Entangled Teen

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    02

    I knew the week of April 2nd was a big release week. I just don’t think I knew I had nine books on order. Wow. Plus, I really want to buy IN THE SHADOW OF BLACKBIRDS, but as it isn’t available to pre-order in electronic format, I’m doing a wait-see and will hopefully buy it on release date if it is.

    I already read two of the books I have pre-ordered and plan on finishing four more this week – RISE, THE SWEETEST DARK, DARK TRIUMPH and WHITE LINES. Though I really want to be able to read NAMELESS, too. But I think four books are more than I can handle, so I’d say my plan is overly ambitious. But who knows….

    And I don’t think next week is quite as packed full of new titles as this week is. But if it is, I hope I’ll be able to read most of them and avoid making my TBR pile grow any larger.

    Anyway…

    I hope that you found some amazing titles to add to your collection this week. And if I’ve missed anything, please let me know so that I can check it out and potentially add it to my collection, too.

    And if you have a favorite title releasing this week, I’d love to know which one it is you’re most excited for and whether you’ll be moving it immediately to the “currently reading” pile.

    As always, I would love to hear what you’re hoping to add to your collection this week!

    And if you have any great suggestions of “must read” books to buy that are releasing this week, please let me know!

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    Book Watch: Releasing This Week #112

    Below are the YA books releasing this week that I am spotlighting for my “Book Watch: Releasing This Week” post.

    These are books for the week of February 19th-February 25th that I have pre-ordered.

    05

    Shards & Ashes

    SHARDS & ASHES by Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong et al will be released in the U.S. on February 19, 2013 in hardcover, paperback and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in all formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by HarperCollins, the print edition is 384 pages.

    SHARDS & ASHES includes stories from Kelley Armstrong, Rachel Caine, Kami Garcia, Nancy Holder, Melissa Marr, Beth Revis, Veronica Roth, Carrie Ryan, and Margaret Stohl.

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    I am not the world’s biggest anthology reader, but when there is an antho filled with stories from some of the most amazing authors in YA I just have to add it to my collection.

    And SHARDS & ASHES sounds incredible. Not just because of the authors, but because of their stories. Dystopian stories. Stories of “chemical warfare and cruel gods.” Stories of disease and corruption. Stories where “courage is tested.”

    While I won’t be reading the entire anthology in one sitting, I will most definitely be reading a story here, a story there, in between my required reads over the coming weeks.

    How to Lead a Life of Crime

    HOW TO LEAD A LIFE OF CRIME by Kirsten Miller will be released in the U.S. on February 21, 2013 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at AMAZON and BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by Razorbill, the print edition is 358 pages.

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    I recently discovered HOW TO LEAD A LIFE OF CRIME on NetGalley and while I didn’t request it for review, I did pre-order it. The title and book cover were totally eye-catching and the book’s description makes it sound all sorts of gritty.

    I love that this story involves a school that trains criminals. I love that Mandel Academy has been around for “over a century.” And I love that in order to graduate the students have to be the most ruthless.

    But more than that, I’m so curious as to what happens to those that don’t. The description says they “disappear” and I’m guessing that’s a disappearance of the permanent variety.

    I can’t wait to meet Flick. His criminal behavior seems just a bit less harsh than some of the other students, so he just might be redeemable. I’m curious to see whether he does join forces with his ex or if they take the competition more seriously and battle for the chance to graduate.

    I haven’t yet read anything by author Kirsten Miller, but with HOW TO LEAD A LIFE OF CRIME I’m so very excited to get the chance. And I will definitely be checking this out on release date.

    Mind Games

    MIND GAMES by Kiersten White will be released in the U.S. on February 19, 2013 in hardcover, audio and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in all formats at AMAZON and in hardcover and eBook formats at BARNES & NOBLE.

    Published by HarperTeen, the print edition is 256 pages.

    MIND GAMES is the first book in Kiersten White’s new series of the same name. The second book, as yet untitled, is slated for release in 2014.

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    I can’t believe MIND GAMES is releasing this week. I’d had an early copy which I gave away before I got the chance to read it, but I’m super excited for the chance to read it now that it is releasing.

    As I’ve already spotlighted MIND GAMES for my Book Watch post a few weeks back, I won’t go on and on and on. But I am still just as excited to meet Fia and Annie. I’m just as curious to see what they’re forced to do with their abilities. And I’m so very intrigued by this story that’s dubbed a “psychological thriller.”

    I love “intense” books and if this is just as intense as the description promises, then I will be hooked. And as this is such a different type of story from the author’s Paranormalcy books, I’m that much more excited to read it. Which I hope to do very, very soon.

    Other Books of Note

    Crash and Burn

    CRASH AND BURN by Michael Hassan

    Pub. Date: February 19, 2013

    Publisher: Balzer + Bray

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    The Different Girl

    THE DIFFERENT GIRL by Gordon Dahlquist

    Pub. Date: February 21, 2013

    Publisher: Dutton Juvenile

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    ***

    Neferet's Curse

    NEFERET’S CURSE (House of Night Novellas #3) by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast

    Pub. Date: February 19, 2013

    Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin

    (AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE)

    02

    It’s the calm before the storm… or perhaps, given how many books released last week, it’s the calm during the eye of the storm.

    I only have three books pre-ordered, though I may have pre-ordered the novella for NEFERET’S CURSE, even though I’d stopped reading that series and won’t continue reading it again until it ends. I have this morbid fascination to see just how long it will drag on and what the authors can possibly do to make it continue. Anyway…

    There are three titles I am super excited about that will be downloading to my Kindle this week. And while I will likely be reading the anthology piecemeal, I hope to devour both MIND GAMES and HOW TO LEAD A LIFE OF CRIME in the next few weeks.

    I am getting nervous about just how many books will be releasing at the end of February and the beginning of March, because there is no WAY I’ll be able to catch up anytime soon. So I hope to be able to read both books releasing this week before those other tempting reads download.

    Anyway… I hope you have some great books being delivered to your door, to your bookstore or to your eReader this week. Happy acquiring and happy reading!

    As always, I would love to hear what you’re hoping to add to your collection this week!

    And if you have any great suggestions of “must read” books to buy that are releasing this week, please let me know!

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    Blogoversary Guest Post: Lucy of Moonlight Gleam’s Bookshelf

    Well, time marches on and my blog is now practically three…. Okay, maybe not that much time has passed. But as the weather took a turn for the freezing, it feels a little bit like winter. Which makes it seem like ages since my blogoversary.

    But I still have some seriously awesome bloggers’ advice to share. So the celebrations shall continue on!

    And today it’s Lucy of Moonlight Gleam’s Bookshelf‘s turn on the blog to share some her blogging experiences and to offer advice for those bloggers just starting out.

    For just a little background….

    I “met” Lucy on Facebook. We both began blogging around the same time two years ago. So our blogs sort of “grew up” together. I loved her blog’s design. It was dark and gorgeous and I loved stopping by to stare at it… and of course to read her posts.

    Lucy is a huge fan of the paranormal. And while I didn’t, at that time, venture into those non-YA reads, I loved to see what she got in her mailbox, to take a peek at her bookshelf photos and to check out her thoughts on some of those books that did appeal to me.

    And I loved reading the author interviews she posted on her blog.

    Lucy is one of the nicest bloggers I know. She is passionate about the books and authors she loves. And she’s way more courageous than I am. From very early on she approached authors for interviews and posted some seriously awesome ones on her blog. I could never have imagined approaching an author with a request like she did. I still can’t….

    Lucy was one of the very first bloggers I got the chance to know. And I’m so glad that she is still here, blogging strong, and very much a part of this community. Because she is one of those bloggers that makes this community awesome.

    But now let me stop blathering on and pass my blog over to Lucy.

    Hello fellow book lovers!

    I’m Lucy from Moonlight Gleam’s Bookshelf, and Rachel has kindly invited me to share blogging tips that I wish I would have received earlier on when I started blogging.

    ~~~

    Before I begin, I’d just like to say a quick thank you to Rachel for being such an awesome blogger friend. She’s always willing to answer any questions that I have (blog related or not) and she is just simply amazing. Rach, I adore you and you are definitely a blogger that I look up to and aspire to become. *HUGS!* Congratulations on your two year blogoversary!!!

    ~~~

    When I began blogging two years ago, I had so many questions about what I should do and what I should know about blogging, just like anyone would have when starting out. Over the last two years of blogging, I can say that I’ve definitely learned a lot, and although I have been blogging since 2010, the truth is, I’m still learning…

    ~~~

    I’d like to share some of my personal blogging experiences as well as some general tips that I hope will help all bloggers that are starting out.

    ~~~

    In the first few weeks after having created Moonlight Gleam’s Bookshelf, I received the following piece of advice: “have a vision for your blog, know what you want to accomplish with your blog, and translate that to your readers”.

    The underlying message in this piece of advice is that having a blog and what you decide to do with it is a personal choice which shouldn’t be based on what others are doing or what others want. You are creating a blog for yourself and that you should have fun and enjoy doing. I’ve learned that once blogging starts revolving around what others want or expect to see, all the fun will be taken away, and blogging will end up becoming a chore.

    So, my first personal piece of advice is, do what makes you happy, then worry about the rest. If you love all book genres, don’t stick to one, share your thoughts on all types of books. Why limit yourself to one genre, when you like more than one? If you don’t want to just stick to book reviews, incorporate other things to make it fun.

    ~~~

    The next experience that I want to discuss goes hand in hand with what I mentioned above. Deciding what you want to do with your blog may not be so clear cut at first, ideas will come and go, and it may take time to realize what you truly want.

    Over the last two years, I’ve developed different ideas and blogging habits that didn’t really reflect what I initially envisioned my blog to be. Recently, I’ve been playing around with the idea of either incorporating posts about another non-book related passion that I have, or creating another blog that focuses on it. After a lot of thought and consideration, I decided it would be best for me to create a different blog to keep my two different passions separate.

    So my second personal piece of advice to you all will be that once you decide on what theme, idea, or vision you have for your blog, remember that it isn’t set in stone, and you can always change it or create something new as time passes.

    ~~~

    I’d like to end this post by mentioning that it’s really important to have fun, keep an open mind and don’t limit yourself, because some of the best ideas could be ones that you dismiss earlier on.

    Lastly, if you have any questions that you can’t find answers to, don’t be afraid to ask as there is always someone willing to help.

    You are so right, Lucy. You have to love what you’re doing and all the rest of it will fall into place. And I absolutely agree with your second piece of advice. Nothing is set in stone. If you want to make changes down the line make them. Even though it’s hard to shift gears.

    You can’t be happy if you feel “stuck” by a certain format, a certain style or a certain way of doing things. If you don’t have time to do them anymore, move on. If you don’t love creating those posts or reading those books, you need to find posts and books you do love. Which brings it right back to your first tip – do what makes you happy.

    Thank you so much for sharing your blogging experience and your advice. You and your blog totally rock! And it’s been so absolutely wonderful getting the chance to know you these past two years!

    And… for those of you who have not yet “met” Lucy, you can find her here…

    I know that Lucy is a huge fan of author Kelley Armstrong. She has this amazing reading challenge for the author’s adult series going on all year. But as this is a YA blog I am keeping the giveaways YA.

    And so, to ONE winner, I’m offering up a copy of the first two books in Kelley Armstrong’s Darkness Rising series – THE GATHERING and THE CALLING.

    Enter in the Rafflecopter below, and all my usual giveaway rules apply. (See my giveaway policy if you have any questions.)
    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    Book Watch: Releasing This Week #67

    Below are the YA books coming out this week that I am spotlighting for my “Book Watch: Releasing This Week” post.

    These are books for the week of April 10th-April 16th that I have pre-ordered.

    ***

    The Calling by Kelley Armstrong released today, April 10, 2012, in the U.S. in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to order online in both formats at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

    Published by HarperTeen, the print edition is 336 pages.

    The Calling is the second book in the Darkness Rising series by author Kelley Armstrong.

    ***

    I have been dying to read this sequel to The Gathering since I received an early copy through a trade, but release date has arrived and my Kindle eBook has downloaded and I still haven’t had the chance. But I will be reading it this month. Because I just can’t wait any longer to find out what happened after that ending that left me hanging for this past year.

    I have already spotlighted The Calling last month for my Book Watch post, so I won’t go on and on about how much I’ve been anticipating this book or how much I loved the author’s Darkest Powers series. But I really can’t wait to find out what’s in store for Maya and her friends and to see whether any of the characters from that other series make an appearance in this one.

    The description promises action and romance in this sequel, so I am also curious to find out the who’s and when’s. Especially since the characters seem to be in a rather dangerous situation. And if the description is right, then I can’t wait to be enthralled.

    Taken at Dusk by C.C. Hunter released today, April 10, 2012, in paperback and eBook formats. It is currently available to order online in both formats at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

    Published by St. Martin’s Griffin the print edition is 400 pages.

    Taken at Dusk is the third book in the Shadow Falls series by author C.C. Hunter.

    ***

    I can’t believe today is release day for Taken at Dusk. It feels like ages since I added this to my TBR pile and pre-ordered a copy. I love this series, though I still have to catch up on book two. And I have major cover love for all the covers in this series. Especially for this one.

    I did not take a peek at the Goodreads description because I am not caught up on this series. But I hope things ended well in Awake at Dawn and that Kylie did make it back to Shadow Falls. I also hope that there is a lot more Lucas. Book two’s description mentioned that he returned so I’m hoping that he is also in this third book.

    I love the world the author has created in this series. Shadow Falls, with all the different types of paranormals, sounds like an exciting, albeit dangerous, place to be. And I can’t wait to get caught up and find out just what happens in this next book.

    ***

    The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman

    Pub. Date: April 10, 2012

    Published by: Knopf Books for Young Readers

    (Amazon, Barnes & Noble)

    ***

    I only pre-ordered two books from this week’s releases, but I will be purchasing The Book of Blood and Shadow because it looks awesome. I am glad it’s such a slow release week, though, because May 1st is going to be insane. I think I have seven or eight books pre-ordered… that I know about right now, anyway.

    And with so many amazing books releasing the week before, on April 24th, there is no way I’ll be able to catch up on my ever-growing TBR pile. I really wish I had summers off so that I could just read. I miss those days….

    ***

    As always, I would love to hear what you’re hoping to add to your collection this week!

    And if you have any great suggestions of “must read” books to buy that are releasing this week, please let me know!

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    Book Watch: The Calling

    The Calling by Kelley Armstrong will be released in the U.S. on April 10, 2012 in hardcover and eBook formats.

    It is currently available to pre-order online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble in both formats.

    Published by HarperTeen, the print edition is 336 pages.

    The Calling is the second book in the Darkness Rising series by author Kelley Armstrong.

    ***

    There are two books releasing the week of April 10th that I can’t wait for. But I’ve chosen The Calling as the book to watch this week because the ending for The Gathering has left me hanging for such a long, long time and even though I read it a year ago, it’s still very fresh in my mind.

    I have an ARC of The Calling, so I hope to be able to read it early, but the finished copy will join The Gathering in my permanent collection when it releases next month. And I’m definitely thinking about ordering the print edition because this cover is absolutely stunning.

    I am dying to find out just what happens in this next book. I’m even tempted to take a peek right now. I had no idea until I started creating this post that the description gives almost no hint at what’s to come. Talk about torturous. But now that my curiosity has been piqued I don’t know how long I’ll be able to wait until I just start reading it.

    I know the author’s website mentioned that the third book in the series is likely to include characters from the author’s Darkest Powers trilogy, but that gives me no clue as to what the author has planned for Maya and her friends in this next book. Aside from relying on their survival skills, I have no idea what’s in store for any of them.

    Kelley Armstrong is such an amazing storyteller. Her Darkest Powers trilogy is one I’m still heartbroken about because it ended so soon. I suppose I expected it to go on as long as her adult series. But when The Gathering was released last year I was ecstatic to be able to return to the world – even a slightly different version of it – and to characters who weren’t the same, but who were most definitely in a similar situation.

    With less than a month until its release, there is no way I could pass up the chance to throw the spotlight onto this book and series by an author whose writing I absolutely adore.

    ***

    Book Trailer

    ***

    Places to Stalk

    The author on TWITTER

    The author on FACEBOOK

    The author’s WEBSITE

    The author’s BLOG

    ***

    About the Book

    Goodreads description:

    Maya Delaney’s paw-print birthmark is the mark of what she truly is–a skin-walker. She can run faster, climb higher, and see better than nearly everyone else. Experiencing intense connections with the animals that roam the woods outside her home, Maya knows it’s only a matter of time before she’s able to Shift and become one of them. And she believes there may be others in her small town with surprising talents.

    Now, Maya and her friends have been forced to flee from their homes during a forest fire they suspect was deliberately set. Then they’re kidnapped, and after a chilling helicopter crash, they find themselves in the Vancouver Island wilderness with nothing but their extraordinary abilities to help them get back home.

    ***

    Other Amazing Books to Watch

    Here is another amazing book releasing on April 10th:

    Taken at Dusk by C.C. Hunter

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    ARC Giveaway: The Calling

    I received a duplicate ARC of The Calling by Kelley Armstrong through a trade with another blogger – it will be in My Reading Pile post tomorrow. I tracked down a second copy because I knew a blogger friend of mine was a huge fan of the author and series. But it seems she managed to get a copy of her very own so she doesn’t need it.

    So, now I have an extra. And I don’t need one of those. So I’m giving it away here. There is a slight bend to the top right corner and first few pages – thank you Mr. Postman – but otherwise it looks to be in great condition, though as I haven’t read it I can’t be certain the ARC was properly printed.

    As always, while the giveaway is not restricted, my hope is that if you enter you do plan on reading and reviewing it.

    What’s up for grabs:

    An ARC of The Calling by Kelley Armstrong that I received through a trade to one winner.

    The deets:

    1. One entry per person.

    2. You must be 13 or older.

    3. Giveaway is International.

    4. Contest ends at 9:59 p.m. Pacific on Monday, January 30, 2012.

    5. Winner will be chosen by Random.org and announced on January 31st in this post.

    6. Winner will have 48 hours after notification to respond with their details.

    There is no requirement to like or follow. But if you’d like to spread the word that would be awesome!

    To enter, fill out the form below:

    Good luck to everyone who entered the giveaway for a chance to win The Calling. I’ll be running the names through Random in the morning and announcing the winner here in this post. Stay tuned!

    Congratulations Nikole you are the winner of the ARC of The Calling by Kelley Armstrong. I’ll be contacting you by email and you will have 48 hours to respond with your details or I will be forced to choose another winner.

    Thanks to everyone who stopped by and entered. I’m sure I’ll have another book to give away soon!

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