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    Quarter Talk: What These 8 Bloggers are Saying – Q1 2013


    Quarter Talk* is a new quarterly feature that I’m trying out here on Fiktshun. The plan is for it to be a quarterly post – hence the name – where I check in with five to ten bloggers to see how they answer the following five questions about favorite reads from the past quarter, anticipated reads from the upcoming quarter, recommended debuts, trends and covers.

    Q1. What has been your favorite read during the first quarter of 2013 (January-March)?

    Q2. What is your most anticipated book releasing in April-June 2013?

    Q3. What debut book/author released in Q1 2013 would you recommend?

    Q4. What genre/sub-genre/trend do you think was “hot” during the first quarter of this year?

    Q5. What is your favorite cover of Q1 2013?

    While the blogger participants may change, the questions will remain the same. And on or around the 15th of the month after each end of Quarter there will be a new post where the bloggers I’ve invited will share their thoughts.

    I will attempt to include a somewhat diverse, but small, group of bloggers in order to get a representative sampling of what’s “hot” and what’s on their radars each quarter. Therefore not all titles will be YA.

    *Credit for the name Quarter Talk goes to Rachel of Parajunkee Design who created the banner. She came up with this title when I drew a blank as to the name I’d originally decided upon and couldn’t come up with a clever alternative when put on the spot.


    *** UPDATED to include an 8th participant 4.15.13 08:00 PDT ***

    Quarter Talk Participants

    For this first Quarter Talk, the blogger participants are…

    Jaime from Two Chicks on Books

    Mindy from Magical Urban Fantasy Reads

    Kt from A Book Obsession

    Jenna from Jenna Does Books

    Alba from BookPics

    Lisa from A Life Bound By Books

    Ashley from The Bookish Brunette

    Katie from Mundie Moms


    Question 1

    What has been your favorite read during the first quarter of 2013 (January-March)?

    Jaime says…

    I read it before January but since it’s a January release I’m using it. SPLINTERED by A.G. Howard. It’s by far one of my favorites of 2013 and will be on my top 10 list for sure.


    …Mindy says

    Dang you Rachel! This question is so hard to answer! It’s a toss-up between THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green and SWEET PERIL by Wendy Higgins. I’m a super fan of Wendy Higgins’ Sweet Trilogy, so SWEET PERIL shouldn’t be a surprise one bit…Oh!, this book was amazing. And THE FAULT IN OUR STARS just blew me away! I’m so in love with this book that I want to marry it.


    Kt says…

    YA – WITH ALL MY SOUL by Rachel Vincent – This book was INCREDIBLE. I just cannot express my sheer and utter love of this book. It was everything I had hoped for in the series ender.

    Adult – WRITTEN IN RED by Anne Bishop – This one really caught me off guard. I have to be honest, that the blurb didn’t grab me, but I decided to give it a chance anyway. Boy am I glad I did! It was absolutely fantastic! It just is everything an Urban Fantasy should be. The monsters were actually monsters, not the romanticized versions that have become rather prevalent here as of late.


    …Jenna says

    ELEANOR & PARK by Rainbow Rowell, hands down. The lives of these two characters, their difficulties in connecting with their family and peers, their personal struggles and (most of all) the development of their relationship with each other… Rainbow’s brilliant treatment of all these items combined makes ELEANOR & PARK THE BEST contemporary novel I have ever read. Ever.


    Alba says…

    As always, asking me such difficult questions woman!! But since I seldom get the chance to read just released books or debut authors’ books this time the answer hasn’t been as hard to make. 😀

    And since I can’t remember if I’m allowed to cheat 😀 I’ll just call it me being clever… Or something.

    Seriously though, the first book that comes to mind, the one that’s on top of my fave reads so far has got to be BREAKING POINT by Kristen Simmons. I was absolutely stunned at how much a book could impact and surprise and shatter me. It even was special since I haven’t actually read Article 5, but the way the author depicts the setting, her writing, and the characters… They all made me forget I was reading a sequel to which I hadn’t read the prequel of just yet. I cried so hard and sometimes I just felt dumb from all the awesomeness of it all.

    There’s SINS & NEEDLES by Karina Halle of course, which simply blew my mind and let us not forget my first read EVER of author Jennifer L. Armentrout’s writing as J.Lynn-> WAIT FOR YOU, which melted my heart into puddles and puddles of something I don’t even know the name of.


    …Lisa says

    Wow, hard but great question. I can’t pick just ONE that’s been my favorite so how about a few books that I’ve loved so far this year? ELEANOR & PARK By: Rainbow Rowell, THE 5TH WAVE By: Rick Yancey, THE TRAGEDY PAPER By: Elizabeth LaBan, DARK TRIUMPH By: Robin LaFevers, THE COLLECTOR By: Victoria Scott, THROUGH THE EVER NIGHT By: Veronica Rossi… Okay, so I’ve read a few that I’ve loved. I’m sure I’m missing some but those are at the top of my list.


    Ashley says…

    THE COLLECTOR by Victoria Scott.

    Line_001…Katie says

    CLOCKWORK PRINCESS by Cassandra Clare! This is my all time favorite book so far. I LOVED IT!


    Question 2

    What is your most anticipated book releasing in April-June 2013?

    Jaime says…

    I read ahead a lot so I don’t really have any that are most anticipated since I’ve read the ones I really wanted to. But out of the group I’ve read it has to be THE TESTING by Joelle Charbonneau. It’s a dystopian and I LOVED it!!!

    Line_001…Mindy says

    SWEET PERIL is my #1 but I was lucky to have already read it!

    Line_001 Kt says…

    Books that I have an ARC of but haven’t read yet:

    YA – FALL OF NIGHT by Rachel Caine – I’m a huge fan of the Morganville series, and I’m super excited to see how Claire copes with the HUGE choice she made in the last installment!

    Adult – DARKNESS UNMASKED by Keri Arthur – I LOVE LOVE LOVE Keri’s books. Whenever I need a pallet cleanse from YA books, I go straight to Keri’s books as I know she will bring the smexy time while still having a stellar plot and great characters to boot!

    Books that I have to wait until release day for (sad face 🙁 )

    YA – GODDESS by Jospehine Angelini – I cannot wait to see how things play out. I’m a sucker for star-crossed lovers!

    Adult – TEMPEST REBORN by Nicole Peeler – I’m both excited for and yet dreading this one as it brings the end of a much loved series. I’ll definitely miss Jane’s Snark. Line_001

    …Jenna says

    THE 5th WAVE by Rick Yancey. I am hearing about this one all over the interwebs – and after reading the first 70 pages released so far, I am HOOKED. Yay for getting the opportunity to meet the author on May 18th!

    Line_001Alba says…

    No way!! You’re kidding right??

    First of all I KNOW I’ll mess this up somehow because I’ve never EVER been good at release dates, therefore I’m pretty sure I won’t mention books that I know I’ll die when they release in between April and June but since I don’t know their exact release dates I’ll try not to feel like bawling after I realize the ones did I miss mentioning.

    The first book I’m DYING for right this moment is actually the sequel to one of my favorite reads in Q1. SHOOTING SCARS by Karina Halle. Because, really, who WOULDN’T be dying after THAT FREAKING ENDING THAT SIMPLY TOOK MY HEART and shredded it so bad that when I pasted it back up it wouldn’t even resemble a human organ T_T I need this book in my life NOW!

    But also, I’m really excited for OATH BOUND (Unbound #3) by Rachel Vincent, she’s one of my all time favorite authors and even though I’ve yet to read the first 2 books I’m incredibly excited for her while also sad because I believe this is the last book 🙁


    …Lisa says

    I have two – SIEGE AND STORM By: Leigh Bardugo & ARCLIGHT By: Josin L. McQuein. Those are right at the top of my must reads for April & June.


    Ashley says…

    Oh God… I was DYING for TOUCH & GEAUX (Cut & Run #7) by Abigail Roux and it was AMAZING!!!!!

    I’m also freaking out for:

    INVISIBILITY by Andrea Cremer & David Levithan and DANCE OF THE RED DEATH by Bethany Griffin.


    …Katie says

    Oh that’s a good question. There are a lot of books coming out I can’t wait to read it, but I’d have to say Leigh Bardugo’s SIEGE & STORM, even though I’ve read it, I can’t wait for it to actually be out.


    Question 3

    What debut book/author released in Q1 2013 would you recommend?

    Jaime says…

    There’s 2 actually! THE MADMAN’S DAUGHTER by Megan Shepherd and SPLINTERED by A.G. Howard. Both are fantastic books!

    Line_001…Mindy says

    SPLINTERED by A.G. Howard and THE MADMAN’S DAUGHTER by Megan Shepherd.

    Line_001Kt says…

    YA – Kasie West (PIVOT POINT) — This book really impressed me and I absolutely adored the main character. I also loved the way the story was told as the two paths twisted around each other. Definitely worth checking out!

    Adult – Anne Bishop (WRITTEN IN RED) This isn’t her debut novel by far, but it is the first in a new series, and she is a new to me author. As I said earlier, it was fantastic.


    …Jenna says

    THE END GAMES by T. Michael Martin. Post-apocalyptic zombie books rarely get better than this. May also appeal as a crossover for fans of Justin Cronin or Stephen King. I read it and loved it – and so did my husband. THE END GAMES is the first book he’s read through completely in just about years – and he liked it!

    Line_001Alba says…

    I haven’t read any. 🙁


    …Lisa says

    Easy! Hands down, without questions – THE COLLECTOR By: Victoria Scott.


    Ashley says…

    Crap… I don’t know that I’ve read any debut authors! :/ I haven’t!!! I’ve only read 42 books so far… I need to read a couple this year!!!


    …Katie says

    I loved Shannon Messenger’s LET THE SKY FALL, and I also enjoyed Kasie West’s PIVOT POINT, and Megan Shepphard’s THE MADMAN’S DAUGHTER.


    Question 4

    What genre/sub-genre/trend do you think was “hot” during the first quarter of this year?

    Jaime says…

    New Adult was very hot! Unfortunately it’s not a genre I would read so I haven’t fallen into the hype.

    Line_001 …Mindy says

    I think that the hot trend is “New Adult Contemporary.” I gave EASY by Tammara Webber a try, and I really liked it even though this genre is still something I won’t be frequently reading.

    Line_001 Kt says…

    Hmm that’s a really hard one. I think YA books are still holding very strong, especially dystopian and paranormal. I’m also seeing an increase in YA lite sci-fi, which I’m really enjoying.

    On the adult side of things, Urban fantasy and paranormal romance still seem to be holding strong. (Thank goodness! I’d hate to run out of new books to read. Never mind my massive, about ready to kill me, TBR pile.


    …Jenna says

    Series Continuations and Endings – if that even counts as a trend. I think the most dominant thing I have seen this quarter is series continuations and endings. SHADES OF EARTH, SCARLET, THROUGH THE EVER NIGHT, BOUNDLESS, ASUNDER, REQUIEM, EVERBOUND, SHADOWS IN THE SILENCE, UNRAVEL ME, LIGHT, RISE, DARK TRIUMPH… shall I go on? No particular genre, just series in general.


    Alba says…

    Oh wow, can I say New Adult?! I don’t know if it is already considered an official genre but it sure had a sudden surge in everyone’s kindles.

    It’s become so huge that a LOT of YA authors have tried it out or have re-released their books that from the beginning were for a more mature audience but didn’t get noticed until after this huge thing.

    I’ve considered myself a fan ever since I read Tammara Webber’s EASY.

    And WOW another trend. Can you say “hello” to that trend of black & white covers with colored font used for the tittle? Funny, that these 2 trends come in a package.

    So for me, New Adult plus Black & White covers was kind of “Hot” but I wouldn’t mind some change in the cover department.


    …Lisa says

    Well, if we’re talking new(ish) categories, I’d say “New Adult.” A lot of people (like me) are all over books that fit into this category. I know it’s caused some commotion throughout the blogosphere, but for me it’s a new favorite. As for genre’s… Contemporaries are high on my watch list as is High Fantasy. I’m more into if it looks good/sounds good I’ll give it a try.


    Ashley says…

    New Adult has been super hot this year! Along with the influx in erotica!!!


    …Katie says

    Great question, and I think Contemporary. I’ve read some great ones, but personally, I feel like I’ve heard more recs for contemp books than anything else.


    Question 5

    What is your favorite cover of Q1 2013?

    Jaime says…

    CLOCKWORK PRINCESS was probably my favorite even though the end of the book disappointed me quite a bit.

    PULSE by Patrick Carman is a close second though. I may not have liked the book but the cover is gorgeous! And I’m kind of sick of chicks in dresses lol

    Line_001…Mindy says

    SPLINTERED by A.G. Howard…hands down!

    Line_001Kt says…

    YA – WITH ALL MY SOUL by Rachel Vincent – Okay, it is another “girl in a dress” cover, but that gold is stunning and made it really stand out for me.

    PIVOT POINT by Kasie West- I love mirror image covers, and this one may just take the cake for me with the bubble distortion.

    UNRAVEL ME by Tahereh Mafi- I have to admit that I’m not usually a big fan of cover makeovers in the middle of the series. I hate it when my books don’t match. That being said, I think they really nailed it with the eyes on these covers. Simply stunning!!

    Adult – EVER AFTER by Kim Harrison – I love this series, and this cover shows Rachel in all her Bad-assery!

    BETWEEN by Kerry Schafer – I love all the many details of this cover. From the scales on her arm to the dragon in the globe, even the fact that her clothes are sensible rather than the usual leather clad stuff we see. Definitely a fan of this cover!


    …Jenna says

    Ohhh, tough question. I really appreciate the visual imagery on the covers of both UNRAVEL ME by Tahereh Mafi (best redesign ever) and THE ARCHIVED by Victoria Schwab (which is also a very nice cover to pet, may I add) – but since I can’t get my mind off of ELEANOR & PARK, I also can’t help but think that simplistic covers are great, too. Can I jut say all three??

    Line_001Alba says…


    But since I’ve already written more than was asked of me I’ll have to just go ahead and say, SINS & NEEDLES by Karina Halle cover is ABSOLUTELY and COMPLETELY fitting for the story!

    But my favorite is EVERBOUND by Brodi Ashton and WITH ALL MY SOUL by Rachel Vincent.


    …Lisa says

    I think that would have to be LET THE SKY FALL By: Shannon Messenger….  It’s been one of the most memorable for me, just so beautifully done. Kind of mesmerizing from the movement shown in the graphic to the colors. I just love it!

    Also, I think it should be mentioned that there have been some pretty amazing covers being produced lately for self published authors. One I loved is THE DEEPER WE FALL By: Chelsea M. Cameron. Oh and another self published cover that I think is pretty amazing – THE SPACE BETWEEN By: Kristie Cook. I think I’ll leave it at these three because I keep thinking of others I could add to this list.


    Ashley says…

    SPLINTERED by A.G. Howard.


    …Katie says

    There have been a lot of fabulous covers, but I’m going to say CLOCKWORK PRINCESS. I love the covers in this series, and I’m not normally a fan of seeing people on covers like this, but I’ve loved seeing Will, Jem and Tessa.


    In Sum

    Well there you have it. Quite an interesting mix of favorite reads in Q1. Some bloggers chose previously released books, others selected books yet to be released. The same is true for Q2 anticipated reads. Not everyone got a chance to discover a new debut author. And the consensus seems to be that the New Adult trend was “hot” during the first quarter even if not everyone is a fan. Also in keeping with the varied results, cover love seems to be all over the map.

    *** UPDATE: Given the addition of an eighth participant, much of the summation still stands, though now it’s less a consensus and more a slight majority saying that New Adult is the “hot” trend.***


    What Do You Think?

    But that’s what those seven eight bloggers think. What about you?

    Do you agree with any of their picks? Would you answer the questions differently if you were asked?

    Is there a trend or genre/sub-genre that you think is “hot” right now that wasn’t mentioned? Or do you think the blogger participants covered all the bases?

    Leave a comment if you do. I’d love to know!

    And if you’d be interested in participating in the next Quarter Talk, coming July 15th, feel free to CONTACT ME.



    Interview: Mindy of Magical Urban Fantasy Reads

    It has taken me forever, but I finally got the courage to interview Mindy of Magical Urban Fantasy Reads for the blog.

    Instead of asking her the typical questions I might normally have asked, I thought I’d mix things up a bit. And no… it wasn’t just to make this a bit more of a complicated interview for her. I really wanted to know those answers.

    Mindy is an awesome blogger, incredibly generous with the books she receives, extremely supportive of the authors she loves, and just so unbelievably nice. I could go on and on about how amazing Mindy is, but as this post is an interview that is supposed to reveal just a little bit more about the blogger behind the blog, I’ll stop my rambling and let Mindy speak for herself.

    Blogger: Mindy

    Blog: Magical Urban Fantasy Reads

    Years Blogging: 1.5


    1. If you had to describe yourself (as it pertains to reading/reviewing/blogging) in 20 words or less, how would you describe yourself?

    I’m a left-brained, stubborn Gemini who loves YA Fantasy, UF, Dystopian & Sci-Fi books and who loves blogging about it!

    2. If you had to describe your blog in 20 words or less, how would you describe it?

    My posts mostly consist of my feelings about books; books I’m obsessing over and books I’m excited to read!

    3. What are your three favorite things about being a book blogger and why?

    First of all, I love the community!  I’ve met some totally awesome bloggers and authors, and I can no longer imagine my life without them.  Second, I love that I’m able to talk about books that I’m obsessing over and love that people actually WANT to listen to my obsessing. And the last thing is that I’ve realized that most of the books I’ve recently read that I now consider some of my favorites, I probably never would have known existed if I weren’t blogging and also getting recommendations from other book bloggers.

    4. What are your three least favorite things about being a book blogger and why?

    DRAMA!  I’m actually pretty good at keeping out of the drama and, luckily, a lot of times I don’t even know when drama is happening.  But I hate it!  Blogging drama has been a huge factor in sometimes making me feel like I want to quit.

    PLAGIARISM!  Being plagiarized, big or small, sucks!  All it does is it brings out horrific, ugly and horrible feelings in me, and I hate to see when anyone else has been a victim.  It makes me sick…and sometimes I want to cry for those victims.

    PRESSURE!  I know that really, when it comes to blogging, you can decide how much pressure you want to put on yourself.  But this is a problem that I’ve been trying to tackle with myself over the last few months and, hopefully, I’ll be able to find a happy medium.

    5. Name three blogs you like to follow that we might not already know you follow and what it is you like most about those blogs?

    Three?  Really?? Only 3???

    Amy with Book Loving Mom:  I think I’ve followed Amy’s blog since really early on in her blogging career because, even though she started blogging after me, it feels like I’ve been following her since I first started blogging.  She is super sweet!  I love her reviews, her taste in books and I love her vlogs.

    Becky with Stories and Sweeties: I feel like I’ve been following Becky’s blog for forever as well. A lot of times I was a quiet stalker on her blog and occasionally I’d comment.  But it was when we met at a signing in SF that we really started having the occasional chat.  I love her reviews and I’ve found some awesome books by stalking her WOW posts.

    Nancy with Tales of a Ravenous Reader:  I know that you, Rachel, know that I follow Nancy because of the Sweet Evil Read Along, but I’d like to share with everyone else how awesome Nancy is.  I’ve been a stalker of Nancy’s blog for a really long time.  I first met Nancy at NCIBA in 2011, and I meet up with her at just about every book signing I’ve ever attended…no lie!  The number one thing I love about Nancy’s blog is that she keeps all upcoming local events posted on her blog.  The next thing I love about her blog is that she reviews a lot of audio books.  I’ve become a little obsessive with audio books lately, so I like to check out her reviews before I order one.

    Can I quickly throw in HD with Reading Writing Breathing?  I met him at ALA and he was super cool and friendly and even though he doesn’t post all that frequently, I’m always looking forward to what he has to say in his posts.

    6. What are a few of your favorite “features” to see on a blog – review, guest post, interview, meme post, discussion post, etc.?

    I’m a huge fan of Waiting on Wednesday.  I look forward to Wednesday posts because I like searching through blogs and learning about books I’ve never heard about before.  I’m also a big fan of character Q&A’s and scenes from books in the POV of another character.

    7. Is there a new-to-you author that you’ve “discovered” in the past three months that is one you call a favorite? And why?

    I have two!  I’ve gone to several signings where I’ve met Veronica Rossi a few times but I only just read her books, Under the Never Sky, and, Through the Ever Night, this past September.  I’m partially beating myself up that I waited so long to read Under the Never Sky, but at the same time, I’m happy because I didn’t have to wait to read Through the Ever Night.  I’m now a super fan and I’d squeal if I got my hands on anything else Veronica writes because she’s brilliant.

    The other is Kresley Cole.  I absolutely loved Poison Princess and I’m a little bit obsessive over it and I can hardly wait for the next book in the series.

    8. In YA, the “best friend” character always seems to get the short end of the stick in a love triangle. What three – yes, I’m going for a “three” themed interview here – best friends that are boys do you wish got their HEA?

    This was actually quite hard for me!  But here’s my list:

    Kenji from Unravel Me
    Wes from Embers and Echoes
    Marcus from Partials

    9. Without revealing any spoilers, what book (and/or series) had the most killer moment or cliffhanger ending that you’ve read in 2012?

    How long can this answer be? LOL.  Shades of Earth and Unravel Me both have some crazy moments throughout.  The end of Requiem is killer, Black City has a pretty epic twist, and the books with the craziest killer cliffhangers are Delirium, Pandemonium, Unraveling, Insurgent, Embers and Echoes, Through the Ever Night, Deity and Poison Princess.

    10. Is there a book that was recommended to you by another blogger, that you never would have taken a second look at, that you now consider among your favorites of all time? If so, what is that book, why is it a favorite, and who is that blogger that recommended it?

    Almost all of the books I’ve recently read have been recommended by other bloggers.

    5 Quickie Q’s

    1. Kindle, nook, audio player, mass market paperback, trade paperback, hardback?


    2. Pick your favorite – (All YA) – Paranormal/UF, Dystopian/Post-apocalyptic, Contemporary, Historical Romance, Sci-fi, High-fantasy/Epic-fantasy, Horror?


    3. Book signings or book conferences?

    Oooo!!! This one’s hard!  Depends on who’s attending.

    4. Host a giveaway or enter a giveaway?


    5. Night blogger or day blogger?


    Okay first off, thank you so much for agreeing to answer all those questions! I love your answers.

    Secondly, yes, by being a part of this community you are totally amongst friends who WANT to obsess over books. In fact, most of us can’t not obsess. And I totally agree that blogging helps introduce bloggers to books and authors they might never have otherwise discovered. I know that happens to me all the time!

    I totally hate, hate, hate drama and plagiarism. But while I don’t love pressure, I think I kind of thrive on it. If that makes any sense at all…. But so sorry it takes you down!

    Oh, and I love the four – Ha! You couldn’t narrow it to three! – blogs you chose. While I haven’t yet “met” Nancy and one of the other bloggers you listed, I definitely will have to remedy that at some point in 2013.

    You were not the only person to have never read UNDER THE NEVER SKY. I still haven’t read it. But it’s very close to the top of the pile. Although as I don’t have the sequel just yet, I am not in quite the same rush.

    And oh, Kenji and Wes (I haven’t yet met Marcus) but I’m so sad for those boys. Not enough for me to want to change the outcome of their fates, but it still makes me sad that they haven’t captured the main character’s eye.

    Seriously, though, thank you so much for agreeing to be interviewed for the blog. While all my questions weren’t traditional ones, I hope you don’t mind that I changed things up a bit. I really did want to see how you’d answer.

    And for those readers who stopped by to check out Mindy’s interview, if you have questions for her, be sure to check out her blog and say “hi” on Twitter!


    Blogoversary Guest Post: Mindy of Magical Urban Fantasy Reads

    Okay, so technically today is no longer my blogoversary. My blog is now officially older than two. Which means that it is already on its way to turning three. Wow, not going to think about that blogoversary yet.

    Anyway… while this is no longer my blogoversary, it’s still a part of my blogoversary celebration. And to celebrate the fact that my blog is now two, I have yet another guest stopping by the blog to share her wisdom as an established blogger in the book blogging community.

    She’s someone who I admire enormously – she’s a working mom and still manages to find time to read and blog about books, she is incredibly generous, and is so supportive of the authors she loves. She is also someone who inspired a short story by author K.A. Tucker. Unfortunately for her, things did not end well for her character. You can check the story out on her blog HERE if you’d like to read about her early demise.

    Well, if you haven’t guessed by now, I’m talking about Mindy of Magical Urban Fantasy Reads.

    For just a little background….

    I have no idea where I first met Mindy. It had to have been on Twitter. Chances are we got to talking about awesome fic boys. And it was likely a Jaime introduction. But I feel like I’ve known Mindy forever. I actually don’t remember being a blogger before we met.

    Like me, she’s a bit of a Parajunkee Design Junkee. And like me, she has also seen the highs and lows of book blogging. But she’s more like Jaime on the whole “being social” front. She is not afraid to speak her mind. She is not at all afraid of heading to all the best book signings, events and conferences in her part of the country. And she has no problem taking a break when she needs one.

    She is another blogger that I adore and know I can trust. She is so supportive and helpful. And I can’t imagine this community without her.

    So, with all my ramblings out of the way, let me turn this over to the very awesome Mindy!

    I feel so incredibly special that Rachel chose me to write a post for her Two Year Blogoversary Celebration. I absolutely adore Rachel, and I’m a major fan of all of her blogs. Love you Rachel and congrats!

    Questions I ask myself as a book blogger and you should too!

    Why am I a book blogger?

    This is a question I have to ask myself quite frequently because even though there are a lot of awesome things about being a book blogger, there are also a few sucky things too.

    Am I doing it just for free books?

    For me, that’s a BIG no because I spend at least 5 times more now on books, going to book events, hosting giveaways and maintaining my blog than I did before I started blogging. Not to mention all the time I put into reading and writing reviews on the books themselves. But I do have to admit, getting to read books early or before they’re published is a huge plus for me.

    Do I do it for the community?

    YES! I love the book blogging community. I’ve met some totally awesome people through book blogging, people with whom I get to share one of my greatest of all passions! And I’ve grown to care for these people (bloggers and authors alike) so much that I consider them good friends. But the book blogging community isn’t all fluffy with pretty, pink frills. There’s sometimes major drama and it’s almost impossible to escape or hide from it, and, personally, I hate drama. The biggest downer for me is content thieves. I get super pissed off when I hear of someone (and not just a friend) who’s had their book pirated or their post(s) plagiarized. When this happens, the crazy comes out of me. And you truly don’t want to be on the receiving end, hearing me rant about thieves.

    Is it important to me to have followers and traffic daily?

    I can’t deny that I get all giddy and excited when I see a new follower, when I see that there are actually people stopping by my blog, and when people leave comments on my posts. And I can’t deny that is one of the main reasons I’ve continued blogging for as long as I have. But I’m not determined to find ways to just have “quick stop by and leave” visitors because I assume they’ll never return. I’d much prefer that my visitors stop by because they actually want to see my content and actually want to read the stuff I put so much effort into creating, in hopes that they like it enough to come back again.

    Do I have a problem with envy? Or even egotism?

    I’d like to say I’m not envious, but I do envy pretty much every blog I stalk. I envy them for their creativity, individuality, capability, enthusiasm and inspiration. I think those are all aspects that bloggers should aspire to be like! And I can’t say that I don’t get jealous when I see someone with a book that I’ve been dying to get my hands on. But even while I’m jealous, I’m still happy someone gets to read that book early…but they just may get stalked a little bit by me. And while I personally do not think I have an ego problem because of the reasons above (notwithstanding my problem with envy), I can be adamantly opinionated and not easily swayed about certain opinions because I (super ego I) truly believe those opinions are right, and everyone who disagrees is utterly wrong. Bahahaha! And to be completely honest…I’m not a fan of bloggers who seem to be suffering from narcissism and who appear to believe that everyone should be following in their footsteps or worshiping the ground they walk on. Nope…not a fan. So I’d prefer to avoid any egotistical thoughts myself.

    Final piece of advice.

    Be careful to NOT post or tweet something you may later regret. AND PLEASE!!! If you read a book early….do not reveal spoilers!

    Again, thank you soooooo much Rachel for including me in such an awesome occasion, and I’m thrilled that I get to celebrate along with you. Congratulations Rachel for surviving 2 whole years, and good luck for many years to come.

    I absolutely love that your advice came in the form of questions you post to yourself. I totally agree it’s so important to keep asking yourself these questions to be sure you’re blogging for the right reasons and not solely for the “free” books, the “popularity” or the egotism.

    I, too, am not a fan of the drama, the thieves or the narcissists. But fortunately there are so many more amazing readers, bloggers and authors in this community than bad apples.

    Thank you so, so much for sharing your thoughts and your wisdom and for being a part of my blogoversary event!


    For those of you who have not yet “met” Mindy, you can find her here…

    So I asked Mindy what her favorite read was these past couple of months and it just so happened to be a book I’m very much dying to read. Which is…

    So, I am offering up for giveaway – to be ordered from Amazon or The Book Depository depending upon location – to two winners a copy of BLACK CITY by Elizabeth Richards.

    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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