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The Calling

    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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    The Trailers: April

    They’re back! For those times when you just need a short break from reading.

    Here, for your viewing pleasure, are a few amazing book trailers for just some of the books releasing in April, a peek at a few of those coming out in May and June and a glimpse at one author talking about their upcoming book.

    And as I missed this post for the month of March, I just couldn’t resist taking a look back at some of those missed February and March trailers.

    ***

    Also, be sure to check out Entertainment Weekly for an exclusive look at the City of Lost Souls trailer book trailer. City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare releases on May 8, 2012.

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    Immortal City by Scott Speer

    Release date: April 3, 2012

    (PenguinYoungReaders)

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    Fear by Michael Grant

    Release date: April 3, 2012

    (harperteen) – Interactive Video

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    Black Heart by Holly Black

    Release date: April 3, 2012

    (SimonSchusterVideos) – The Curse Workers Series Trailer

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    Taken at Dusk by C.C. Hunter

    Release date: April 10, 2012

    (cchunterbooks)

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    The Calling by Kelley Armstrong

    Release date: April 10, 2012

    (harperteen)

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    The Last Echo by Kimberly Derting

    Release date: April 17, 2012

    (harperteen)

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    The Springsweet by Saundra Mitchell

    Release date: April 17, 2012

    (slmitchell1973)

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    The Selection by Kiera Cass

    Release date: April 24, 2012

    (harperteen)

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    Dark Eden: Eve of Destruction by Patrick Carman

    Release date: April 24, 2012

    (harperteen) – Series Trailer

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    Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris

    Release date: April 24, 2012

    (harperteen)

    ***

    The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

    Release date: April 24, 2012

    (harlequinbooks) – Official Trailer

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    The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

    Release date: April 24, 2012

    (Mirainkbooks) – Mira Ink’s Trailer

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    Whisper by Alyson Noel

    Release date: April 24, 2012

    (MacmillanChildrens)

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    The Temptation by Alisa Valdes

    Release date: April 24, 2012

    (harperteen)

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    And for just a peek ahead at what’s coming in May and June…

    Insurgent by Veronica Roth

    Release date: May 1, 2012

    (harperteen)

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    Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins

    Release date: May 1, 2012

    (harperteen)

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    Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore

    Release date: May 1, 2012

    (PenguinYoungReaders) – Series Trailer

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    Wanted by Heidi Ayarbe

    Release date: May 1, 2012

    (HeidiArb)

    ***

    Shine by Jeri Smith-Ready

    Release date: May 1, 2012

    (jsmithready) – Teaser Video

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    Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

    Release date: June 5, 2012

    (MacmillanChildrens)

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    The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

    Release date: June 12, 2012

    (BloodlinesBooks) – Teaser #1

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    The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

    Release date: June 12, 2012

    (BloodlinesBooks) – Teaser #2

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    Rapture by Lauren Kate

    Release date: June 12, 2012

    (RandomHouseAustralia) – Teaser Trailer

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    Here’s what one author is saying…

    Black Dawn by Rachel Caine

    Release date: May 1, 2012

    (PenguinGroupUSA) – the author talks about her book and series

    ***

    And for a look back at a few of those we may have missed…

    Fever by Lauren DeStefano

    Release date: February 21, 2012

    (SimonSchusterVideos)

    ***

    Allegiance by Cayla Kluver

    Release date: February 28, 2012

    (harlequinbooks)

    ***

    Embrace by Jessica Shirvington

    Release date: March 6, 2012

    (cosproductions)

    ***

    Balthazar by Claudia Gray

    Release date: March 6, 2012

    (harperteen)

    ***

    Illuminate by Aimee Agresti

    Release date: March 6, 2012

    (hmhbooks)

    ***

    Scorched Skies by Samantha Young

    Release date: March 9, 2012

    (yafantasyauthor)

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    Starters by Lissa Price

    Release date: March 13, 2012

    (RandomBooks)

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    Infamous by Sherrilyn Kenyon

    Release date: March 13, 2012

    (DarkHunterSeries)

    ***

    A Temptation of Angels by Michelle Zink

    Release date: March 20, 2012

    (AuthorMichelleZink)

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    Forgiven by Jana Oliver

    Release date: March 27, 2012

    (TrapperCJ) – Series Trailer

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    Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter

    Release date: March 27, 2012

    (harlequinbooks)

    ***

    We hope you enjoyed the lovely distractions. Stay tuned…we’ll be back with our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow.

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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

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    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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