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Cover Reveal: Fanged Princess by Elisabeth Wheatley

Friday, November 30, 2012
Fanged Princess by Elisabeth Wheatley

Chengalera Press, 95 pages
Release Date: January 22, 2013
Series: Fanged Princess #1

I will not let my brother suffer the same loss…

Hadassah’s father, the Vampire King, punished her for her choice to love a human. Now her brother, the only person in the world who still matters to her, has fallen for a human girl. Determined to keep the girl safe, the three of them flee from their home in New England and find themselves cornered with their father’s minions closing in. If they want to escape, their only hope may be to join forces with the mortal enemies of their kind…

Be ensnared in this dark tale of enduring love, loyalty, and revenge from teenage author, Elisabeth Wheatley.


Elisabeth Wheatley

Elisabeth Wheatley is a high school junior homeschooled in the Texas Hill Country. Her first book, The Key of Amatahns, was published June 30, 2011 when she was fifteen. Since then, her second book, a sequel to her first, has been published. When she’s not day dreaming of adventure and grandeur, she is busy making goat cheese, studying mythology, and training and showing her Jack Russell Terrier, Schnay.

Guest Post: Books that Impacted My Life with Marc Johnson

Thursday, November 29, 2012
Catalyst by Marc Johnson
Blog | Facebook | Twitter

Series: The Passage of Hellsfire #1
Release Date: March 19, 2011

For centuries, the kingdom of Alexandria has protected Northern Shala from the monstrous creatures lurking in the Wastelands. Now, a dark force threatens that fragile peace.
Far from home, Alexandria’s princess is abducted. When a young villager named Hellsfire stumbles upon her and her captors, he rushes in to rescue her, alone and unarmed. His fear and fury unleash an uncontrollable magical force that grants him the power to save the princess—and change the world.
Hellsfire has never craved nor dreamed of power. But such magic as he now possesses has not been seen in Northern Shala for a thousand years, since the devastation of the War of the Wizards and the creation of the Wastelands.
Now Hellsfire must leave all he’s ever known, and make a dangerous journey to learn to master this wild, ferocious power—power he knows he is not ready to wield. More difficult still, he needs to master his emotions. If he can’t, the power will consume him, Alexandria will fall, and darkness will eclipse the land, destroying everyone he loves.
In the dead of cold, the spark shall burn...

Books that Impacted My Life

I love books. That kind of goes with the territory of being a writer. Over the years, I’ve read hundreds (thousands?) of books. A few of them have had an impact in my life, my way of thinking, and my writing.

1. Matilda by Roald Dahl

I loved this book when I was a kid. Since I was about Matilida’s age when I first read this, it connected to me in how strange adults were and how as a kid, you had to overcome so much it seemed like you would never reach adulthood. Of course, now that I’m an adult, there’s nothing glamorous about it.

Even though Matilda was a kid’s book and I was a kid, I knew that this book dealt with some very adult themes like child abuse. I didn’t realize books could work on two vastly different levels at the same time. Yet no matter how mature the themes got, Matilda still had charm, a sense of humor, and salamanders.

2. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Lewis Stevenson

As much as I loved this story and all the various adaptations it has spawned, it was a bit of an oddity when I first read it. Still is, I suppose. Most stories are told from the main character’s perspective, but not this one. It was told from a friend’s point of view. I do wonder what it was like for those that liked during Stevenson’s time. The ending must have been quite a shock to the mystery of who Hyde was and his connection to Jekyll.

3. Redwall by Brian Jacques

This was my first foray into a fantasy series and I would like to thank the Scholastic book form I received in school. I had read a few fantasy books here and there, but what made Redwall great was that every book in the series built upon previous books. I didn’t know such a thing was possible as Redwall revisited familiar characters and situations. While series are common place today, you have to remember that back then(everything pre-mid-90s) a lot of things were one and done especially books and TV shows. Man, I feel old.

4. Lit Life by Kurt Wenzel

Normally, I hate stories that deal with writers talking about how hard writing is. It is hard, but we do it because we love it, and while we may curse and struggle, we enjoy it. Lit Life deals with the life of two writers—one successful and young, the other old and critically acclaimed, and their lives intermingle together. Writing itself is very boring, but this book isn’t. There’s drama, tension, humor, and even a little mystery. A writer’s life is nothing like that!

5. Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

In today’s world, you have to be dark, gritty, and edgy. Be it video games, movies, TV shows, and books, they all do it. What I like about Mistborn is that it’s not dark.

Sanderson’s very good at painting worlds with a very unique magic system, but that wasn’t what got me to love the Mistborn Trilogy. The premise was, but what made me a fan of Sanderson was that he can write books that aren’t dark, gritty, violent, and edgy for the sake of being dark, gritty, violent, and edgy. There are some heavy things in it, but there’s also some light fun in his works. It feels very much like Lord of the Rings, and that’s never a bad thing.

Those are just five books I’ve enjoyed over the years and have impacted me in some way. There are plenty other books out that have touched both me and my writing, and I’m sure there will be plenty more.

The Passage of Hellsfire:


Book Haul (9)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

This book haul is WAY overdue. I was going to forget about this and start on the next batch of books, but then I already had this post put together and didn't want to delete it. Books read = *.

Gifted: (Thank you so much to Vi from Confessions of a Vi3tBabe!)
Onyx by Jennifer L Armentrout*
Defiance by C.J. Redwine *

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo*
Hidden by Sophie Jordan

Signings: (Thank you to Mel from Shot in the Arm for getting The Diviners signed for me!)
The Diviners by Libba Bray
Sweetly by Jackson Pearce
Desires of the Dead by Kimberly Derting*

The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin*
The Crimson Crown by Cinda Williams Chima*
Rebel Heart by Moira Young*

Swag from Kimberly Derting, Finale Tour, and Lisa Schroeder:
The cover model of Patch was at the Finale tour and I totally missed it! But thanks to Mel for getting me a signed poster by "Patch" (Drew Doyon).

What books did YOU get? Did anyone brave those Black Friday lines to get anything?

Review: Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

Friday, November 23, 2012
Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Razorbill, 412 pages
Series: Falling Kingdoms #1
Release Date: December 11, 2012
Source: Stephanie from Cuddlebuggery Book Blog

In a land where magic has been forgotten but peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest is simmering. Three kingdoms grapple for power—brutally transforming their subjects’ lives in the process. Amidst betrayals, bargains, and battles, four young people find their fates forever intertwined:
Cleo: A princess raised in luxury must embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of a magic long thought extinct.
Jonas: Enraged at injustice, a rebel lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country impoverished—and finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.
Lucia: A girl adopted at birth into a royal family discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.
Magnus: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, a firstborn son begins to realize that the heart can be more lethal than the sword...
The only outcome that’s certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

Magic, politics, and a rebellious princess. How could I NOT pick this up?

The story was told in multiple POVs from people all over the kingdom. It was incredible being able to look at the downfall of the kingdoms from all of these different characters. I always felt conflicted when something terrible happens because I could understand it from both perspectives.

There was something that bothered me through out the whole story that I couldn’t put my finger on. It was until Stacy from Girls in the Stacks pointed out on my goodreads that the speech patterns were very modern for an archaic world. One of my favorite things about books set in different periods are the unique speech patterns and that made it difficult to fully enter the world inside Falling Kingdoms because of the modern speech.

There were so many things happening at once. Falling Kingdoms was an intense book full of plot twists, chaotic battles, and betrayals. I was still able to enjoy this book, but I ended up not loving it as much as I thought I would.

Overall: 3 out of 5

Other's who have read and LOVED Falling Kingdoms:
Stephanie - Cuddlebuggery
Asma - IceyBooks
Jaime - Two Chicks on Books

Happy Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Blog Tour - Guest Post & Giveaway: The Midnight Dragonfly Series

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Few of My Favorite Things… 
by Ellie James 

A lot of people ask me how the Midnight Dragonfly series came to be. Truth be told, it was an accident. I never sat down one day and decided, “Hey, I’m going to write a series of Young Adult Thrillers.” Quite the opposite. I had a dream one night, an intense, vivid dream, one of those dreams you wake up and would swear you’d really been somewhere else, doing something else. One of those dreams that, with time, feels so much like a memory that sometimes you forget it wasn’t real.

Being the OCD person that I am, I became a little obsessed with what happened in the shadows of my sleep, when I was with a group of teens breaking into a beautiful mansion in the Garden District of New Orleans, long abandoned to the cruelties of time and neglect. What were they doing? What if one of the girls was psychic? What if she saw something really bad? What if no one believed her…

Soon, the bones of a story came together, that of a teenage psychic in New Orleans, on a dark journey to explore not only the scope of her abilities, but a past that has been hidden from her, a future foretold in prophecy, and two very different guys. For me, it was the beginning of the most exciting writing experience of my life.

Here are just a few of my favorite things… 

1. Exploring the Unexplained/Psychic Phenomenon 

From premonitions to dream interpretation, communicating with the dead, hypnosis, mind control, even Ouija boards, laying of the hands and reincarnation, the Midnight Dragonfly series enabled me to play around with two of my favorite topics: the frontiers of the human mind, and the ties that bind us all. The possibilities are endless, and the more research I did, the more I wanted to know, and the more intense Trinity’s journey became…

2. The City of New Orleans

The French Quarter. The Garden District. Cities of the dead. Haunting above ground crypts. Voodoo. Mysticism. Centuries-old oak trees dripping with Spanish moss. Abandoned buildings. Music. Secrets Laissez faire… The Crescent City quickly emerged, not as a setting, but as a central character in Trinity’s story, providing endless opportunity, and mystery. Sitting down to write was a like a daily mini vacation…where anything goes.

3. The Dragonfly Amulet 

During the first book, I was writing a scene where Trinity is learning more about her mother, who died when she was a little girl. As part of this scene, I suddenly had Trinity receiving a necklace that belonged to her mother. This wasn’t something I plotted in advance, but the words just flowed, so I went with it. I needed to describe the amulet, and without really thinking, found myself talking about a dragonfly. From there, I began researching dragonfly necklaces, and quickly found this:

It was so amazing, and so perfect and, ultimately, led to the name for the series! However, that was just the beginning. I’d always loved dragonflies, but didn’t know much about them. However, as I began researching them, I was blown away by just how perfectly they fit the series. Legends about dragonflies abound. Like Trinity, they exist in two worlds, two realms. They represent dreams, the afterlife. One particular Native American legend maintains that dragonflies are actually the souls of the departed…

4. Messing around with dreams 

Dreams have always fascinated me. What are they and why do we have them? What do they mean? Where do they come from? Are they random entertainment generated from the subconscious mind? Symbolic representations of challenges and stresses faced during the waking hours? Or are they something else, something far more compelling?

Movies like the Matrix or Inception or Shutter Island make my brain hurt, even as they thrill that curious place inside me—and fed the Midnight Dragonfly series. Is there more to our dreams than we realize? Can we harness them, access them later? Explore them? What if…our dream life is every bit as real as our waking life? What if it’s more real?

5. Watching Trinity Grow

Trinity arrives in New Orleans having spent the past fourteen years living alone in the mountains of Colorado with a rigid (but loving) grandmother who refused to talk of the past. She knows she’s different, that she sees things most people don’t, but she has no idea of the dark legacy awaiting her…or the future about to unfold. The first book is all about Trinity coming to terms with who she is. She’s curious, but unsure. She feels compelled to help, but doesn’t know how. By the time she second book opens, however, she’s much more comfortable with her abilities, and more than a little eager to see where they can take her! I was more than happy to show her.

6. Hands-on research trips

Remember that whole New Orleans thing? Yeah. If a city serves as a character in a story, you kinda gotta go there, right? So I did. Over, and over, and over. I walked every street Trinity walks, explored the cemeteries, ran the same route she runs through the Quarter. I stood outside the big abandoned hospital—and, um, maybe sorta slipped into some place that features prominently in Book 2, where, um, maybe I wasn’t supposed to go. …

7. An excuse to eat beignets

Nothing else needs to be said.

8. Meeting My Editor

Sometimes the planets just align. They do. And that’s exactly what happened when Destiny brought me to My Editor. The first time we actually sat down together, we were blown away by all the “me, too’s.” I’m an Aries…Me, too! My significant other is a Libra…Me, too! His name is Charles…Me, too! I love LOST…Me, too! I adore JJ Abrams…Me, too! I love things that can’t be explained…Me, too! I adore Haunted Houses….Me, too!

Serendipity. There’s nothing else like it!

9. Trinity’s relationship with her aunt 

Trinity comes to New Orleans to live with her aunt, a hip, stylish thirty-something who she’s only met a handful of times. It’s a huge shock for both of them, thrown together by shared blood and yet essentially strangers. And yet, as Trinity’s life begins to unravel, it’s Sara who steps in with love and understanding, treating her with respect rather than like a child, and in doing so quickly becomes the one person Trinity can count on…

10. The way the characters took over

I had the story planned. I had the story plotted. I knew what was going to happen. I knew, that is, until I started to write. That’s when the characters took over, shoving aside my carefully detailed outline and revealing the REAL story…a story richer and more intricate than I ever imagined, especially….

11. Dylan

Yeah, Dylan. Sigh…

12. Stepping out on a ledge

In taking over, the characters took me to places I never imagined going, including ledges I tried to protect them from. But Trinity and Chase and Dylan didn’t want to be protected. They wanted to step out on the ledge, and drag me right along with them. But they didn’t just want to be on the ledge. They wanted to go over it—and take me right along with them.

I jumped off a cliff once. It was in Colorado, along the Colorado River. We were white water rafting. Halfway through the trip, the guides stopped by these sheer cliffs. 33 feet they said…and invited anyone who wanted to jump, to jump. I said no. Those around me began to nudge me. Peer pressure took over, and I found myself standing on the edge of a cliff, shaking like a leaf. Just walk off, the guide told me. Don’t jump. Don’t leap. Just walk off. Um…yeah, okay. Just walk off a cliff. It’s not like that goes against ever instinct one has for survival or anything. But I did it. I walked off the cliff…and so does Trinity.

It was a lot more fun with Trinity.

13. All the Amazing People I’ve met along the way

Seriously. This has been so fantastic and unreal. The Midnight Dragonfly series has brought me in contact with fabulous readers and bloggers and publishing professionals, at conferences and book signings and talks, through my Facebook page and Twitter and email. We’ve talked Trinity and Chase and Dylan. We’ve talked dreams and premonitions and clairvoyance. We’ve talked about strong YA heroines and swoon-worthy heroes. We’ve talked writing and reading. Life. And it’s such a gift to make these connections and see all those awesome ties that bind in action.

14. Oh…did I mention eating beignets?


The Midnight Dragonfly Series:

Glimpses. That’s all they are. Shadowy premonitions flickering through sixteen year old psychic Trinity Monsour’s dreams. Some terrify: a girl screaming, a knife lifting, a body in the grass. But others--the dark, tortured eyes and the shattering kiss, the promise of forever--whisper to her soul. They come without warning. They come without detail.

But they always mean the same thing: The clock is ticking, and only Trinity can stop it.

Find out how in Shattered Dreams, Broken Illusions, and Fragile Darkness, available from Griffin Teen!


Ellie James
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Most people who know Ellie think she’s your nice, average wife and mom of two little kids. They see someone who does all that normal stuff, like grocery shopping, going to soccer games, and somehow always forgetting to get the house cleaned and laundry done.
What they don't know is that more often than not, this LSU J-School alum is somewhere far, far away, deeply embroiled in solving a riddle or puzzle or crime, testing the limits of possibility, exploring the unexplained, and holding her breath while two people fall in love.
Regardless of which world Ellie’s in, she loves rain and wind and thunder and lightning; the first warm kiss of spring and the first cool whisper of fall; family, friends, and animals; dreams and happy endings; Lost and Fringe; Arcade Fire and Dave Matthews, and last but not least…warm gooey chocolate chip cookies.

Her next book, FRAGILE DARKNESS, is available from Griffin Teen November 27, 2012.

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Top Ten Books: I'd Want On A Deserted Island

Monday, November 12, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the wonderful people of Broke and Bookish
This week's topic: Top Ten Books I'd Want On A Deserted Island

If I was on a deserted island then I'd either be a 1 or 10 on my emotion scale. 

1. Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
2. The Piper's Son by Melina Marchetta
3. Where She Went by Gayle Forman
4. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
5. Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder

6. Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley
7. Pushing the Limits by Katy McGarry
8. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
9. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

What are YOUR Top Ten Books You'd Want On A Deserted Island?

Review: Meant To Be by Lauren Morrill

Sunday, November 4, 2012
Meant To Be by Lauren Morrill
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Random House Children's Books, 256 pages
Date: November 13, 2012
Source: Publisher, via NetGalley

Meant to be or not meant to be . . . that is the question.

It's one thing to fall head over heels into a puddle of hazelnut coffee, and quite another to fall for the—gasp—wrong guy. Straight-A junior Julia may be accident prone, but she's queen of following rules and being prepared. That's why she keeps a pencil sharpener in her purse and a pocket Shakespeare in her, well, pocket. And that's also why she's chosen Mark Bixford, her childhood crush, as her MTB ("meant to be").

But this spring break, Julia's rules are about to get defenestrated (SAT word: to be thrown from a window) when she's partnered with her personal nemesis, class-clown Jason, on a school trip to London. After one wild party, Julia starts receiving romantic texts . . . from an unknown number! Jason promises to help discover the identity of her mysterious new suitor if she agrees to break a few rules along the way. And thus begins a wild goose chase through London, leading Julia closer and closer to the biggest surprise of all: true love.

Because sometimes the things you least expect are the most meant to be.

A school trip to London. How can things not be interesting?

Meant To Be consists of one of my favorite things which is shipping and OTPs. I have this serious issue where I ship anything and everything. In this book it's referred to as MTB as in meant to be. Julia happens to believe that Mark Bixford is her MTB, but her trip to London makes her doubt if Mark is her true MTB when she gets paired with Jason, her personal nemesis.

Julia and Jason. They just have so much fun messing with each other that it was bound for them to get a bit "friendlier". There were many cute and awkward moments while they were paired to go on this trop together. I had a slight problem with them though. I liked them as characters separately, but I felt as though the two didn't connect well together.

Even though I had trouble with Julia and Jason, I still enjoyed reading Meant To Be. It was a fun and light hearted read that was absolutely adorable.

Overall: 4 out of 5 

Cover Reveal: Extracted by Sherry D. Ficklin & Tyler H. Jolley

Friday, November 2, 2012

Extracted by Sherry D. Ficklin & Tyler H. Jolley

Spencer Hill Press 
Release Date: November 12, 2013
Series: The Lost Imperials #1
ISBN: 978-1-937053-68-0

Welcome to the war.

The Tesla Institute is a premier academy that trains young time travelers called Rifters. Created by Nicola Tesla, the Institute seeks special individuals who can help preserve the time stream against those who try to alter it.

The Hollows is a rogue band of Rifters who tear through time with little care for the consequences. Armed with their own group of lost teens--their only desire to find Tesla and put an end to his corruption of the time stream.

Torn between them are Lex and Ember, two Rifters with no memories of their life before joining the time war.

When Lex’s girlfriend dies during a mission, the only way he can save her is to retrieve the Dox, a piece of tech which allows Rifters to re-enter their own timeline without collapsing the time stream. But the Dox is hidden deep within the Telsa Institute, which means Lex must go into the enemy camp. It’s there he meets Ember, and the past that was stolen from them both comes flooding back.

Now armed with the truth of who they are, Lex and Ember must work together to save the future before the battle for time destroys them both…again.

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