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Meet the Authors of GEORGETOWN ACADEMY

Thursday, January 24, 2013
Would you attend Georgetown Academy if you were given the opportunity? 
Yes! We were partially inspired to write the book because we love hearing stories about the inner-workings and back room drama of politics and being a student at Georgetown Academy would give you a front-row seat to viewing that drama, making for a pretty unique and exciting high school experience. Plus, for some reason, there are lots of attractive guys at G.A. which always make things a little more fun, too!

If you were a character in Georgetown, which character would you be and who would you want as your friend?
If we were a character, we’d probably be Ellie because she’s always trying to balance a million different things that pull her in different directions, something we can relate to. (Plus, we just think it would be cool to have a mom who’s a no-nonsense, powerful U.S. senator). And we’d want Brinley as our friend…mainly because we wouldn’t want her as our enemy! And it would mean we could borrow some of her amazing clothing from the “vault”.

Were any of your high school experiences put into the story? 
A lot of the small details! The assigned seats at lunch (Alyssa went to a very conservative prep school in Virginia!), the school retreat in Book Three, the school chapel where Ellie and Gabe often sneak off to, the squirting chicken in Book One, and countless combos of first and last names of teachers and students throughout the series. We definitely got to relive the upsides and downsides of high school while we were writing.

Can you tell us about your author experience since you published this book?
The best thing about it has been hearing the feedback from our fans. What’s been so interesting for us is everyone seems to have a different favorite character and is rooting for different couples to make it. It’s really fun for us to hear people talking about the characters in so much detail because for us, we’ve spent so much time with them, we feel like they’re real! It’s been an amazing experience to hear from fans whether it be on our Twitter, Facebook page or website.

Describe your book in one word.

Ultimate Reading Pet Peeve: Over-hyped books that end up disappointing you once you finally read them
Favorite Reading Place: By a cozy fire with hot chocolate
Current Read: The Round House by Louise Erdrich
Favorite Author: Like we could pick just one! Jane Austen, Margaret Mitchell, Harlan Coben, Jennifer Egan, Emily Giffin, Jonathan Tropper, Lisa Lutz, Nick Hornby
Tea or Coffee: BOTH! We’ll take our caffeine any way we can get it!

Jessica Etting and Alyssa Schwartz met the first day of freshman year at the University of Southern California and instantly bonded over their obsessions with Brenda Walsh, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and The Babysitters Club books they read growing up. After spending a full year mourning the end of college, they began writing television and feature scripts together. They have set up pilots at ABC, NBC, Fox and CW, and sold films to The Weinstein Company, Happy Madison, Paramount, New Regency, MGM and Alloy Entertainment. They love writing female-centric stories, especially for teen and tween audiences, mainly because they still think they are the 18-year-old girls they were when they first met at USC.

Find them on: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Book 1 | Book 2 | Book 3

It’s the beginning of a new political administration. That might not mean much at most high schools, but at Georgetown Academy, Washington D.C.’s most elite prep school, January 20th means new alliances, new flings, and new places to party.

In a town where one misstep can turn into a national scandal, the students at D.C.’s elite Georgetown Academy know there’s only one rule: whatever you do, don’t get caught.

Blog Tour: Guest Post & Giveaway - PROVEX CITY by Michael Pierce

Monday, January 21, 2013

Provex City by Michael Pierce
Blog | Website | Twitter | Twitter

Series: The Lorne Family Volt #1
Release Date: March 5, 2012
Fifteen-year-old Oliver Grain begins his school year fighting off bullies, learning about the boy who committed suicide in his room, and trying to understand why his history teacher, Mr. Gordon, has taken such a personal interest in him.

Do you believe in ghosts? Do you believe you can make bullies simply disappear? Do you believe you can walk through walls?

Mr. Gordon tells Oliver: "When you truly believe anything is possible, you will be able to open doors where there were only walls." And one of those doors leads Oliver to Provex City, which puts him in far greater danger than he can possibly fathom.

Top 10 Lessons of Provex City

1. Elliott Smith is irrefutably awesome (Desiree says so).

2. The three second rule applies to approaching girls just as much as it applies to food dropped on the floor.

3. Shop lifting is not cool.

4. Bullies only have the power you give to them.

5. A change in perspective can change the world around you.

6. Be careful of mistaking Jell-O shots for Jell-O.

7. Parents need support from their children, too.

8. Always look both ways before walking into a busy street (and especially a highway).

9. Beware of the wolf-head tattoo.

10. When you truly believe anything is possible, you will be able to open doors where there were only walls.

Three winners will receive a paperback of Provex City and a $15 Amazon Gift Card (INT)
Five additional winners will win paperback copies of Provex City. (INT)

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About the Author:

Michael Pierce lives in Southern California with his wife, daughter, and two ultra-protective Chiweenies. Provex City is his debut novel and the first book in the young adult fantasy Lorne Family Vault Series.

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January Means a New Start, Right?!

Friday, January 18, 2013
A new year equals a new start, right?!

 Unfortunately, my high school runs on a semester schedule, and a new year just means a month closer to finals. My days can now be organized into time I spend studying and time I don't spend studying.

Accurate finals memes that I just had to post: 

This is actually true and all of these tests leading up to finals is driving me nuts.

Studying for finals is sadly resulting in a neglected blog. BUT DO NOT FRET (Monsieur Marius*... Yes, I watched Les Miserables. And yes, the songs are still stuck in my head) I WILL BE BACK AFTER FINALS ARE DONE! I'll still have a couple of posts up, but it's going to be slow on the blog the exams are over. I still read my emails incase you were wondering, but I just haven't had the time to respond. I promise I am not ignoring anyone!

In the mean time, I recommend my latest 5 star reads!

*lame attempt at "A Little Fall of Rain" reference

Mini-Review: Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Sunday, January 13, 2013
Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist* by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan 
Cohn: Twitter | Facebook | Website
Levithan: Facebook | Website

Random House, 183 pages
Release Date: May 23, 2006
Source: Library
It all starts when Nick asks Norah to be his girlfriend for five minutes. He only needs five minutes to avoid his ex-girlfriend, who’s just walked in to his band’s show. With a new guy. And then, with one kiss, Nick and Norah are off on an adventure set against the backdrop of New York City—and smack in the middle of all the joy, anxiety, confusion, and excitement of a first date.

This he said/she said romance told by YA stars Rachel Cohn and David Levithan is a sexy, funny roller coaster of a story about one date over one very long night, with two teenagers, both recovering from broken hearts, who are just trying to figure out who they want to be—and where the next great band is playing.

Told in alternating chapters, teeming with music references, humor, angst, and endearing side characters, this is a love story you’ll wish were your very own. Working together for the first time, Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have combined forces to create a book that is sure to grab readers of all ages and never let them go.

Problem: Nick spots his ex-girlfriend heading towards him with a new guy
Response: Asks the girl next to him to be his girlfriend for five minutes
Result: An unexpected, fun filled night in New York City

I  just had to pick this up when I heard that the story took place over one night! The story was told in alternating chapters full of hilarious and sarcastic commentary from Nick and Norah. They were both battling heart breaks when they bumped into each other at a show. My favorite part of the story was how music played such an important role. Throughout the night, Nick and Norah constantly made references, tossed out song lyrics, and even chased after one of their favorite bands for a secret show.

This was a short and fun read that made me laugh throughout the whole night.
Overall: 3 out of 5

*paperback version of the cover

Review: Shadowlands by Kate Brian

Sunday, January 6, 2013
Shadowlands by Kate Brian
Twitter | Website

Hyperion, 336 pages
Series: Shadowlands #1
Release Date: January 8, 2013
Source: Publisher, via NetGalley
Rory Miller had one chance to fight back and she took it. Rory survived… and the serial killer who attacked her escaped. Now that the infamous Steven Nell is on the loose, Rory must enter the witness protection with her father and sister, Darcy, leaving their friends and family without so much as a goodbye.

Starting over in a new town with only each other is unimaginable for Rory and Darcy. They were inseparable as children, but now they can barely stand each other. As the sisters settle in to Juniper Landing, a picturesque vacation island, it seems like their new home may be just the fresh start they need. They fall in with a group of beautiful, carefree teens and spend their days surfing, partying on the beach, and hiking into endless sunsets. But just as they’re starting to feel safe again, one of their new friends goes missing. Is it a coincidence? Or is the nightmare beginning all over again?

For some strange reason I thought it would be the most incredible idea to pick up Shadowlands at 11pm at night. And this was before I realized that this was about a SERIAL KILLER. The story begins with Rory Miller being attacked and then escaping the serial killer. There was no way I could go to sleep after that, so I stayed up the entire night/morning and finished this mind blowing book. The one fact that was quickly learned about this serial killer was that he never lets a job go unfinished. NEVER.

The story was told in alternating point of views between Rory and the serial killer. I absolutely loved reading about Rory because of how realistic she was portrayed. Her character had the most natural development  This is going to sound kind of sick, but I wished there were more POVs from the serial killer. He was a fleshed out character that I wanted to dig deeper into.

Shadowlands really messed with me. I felt as if I couldn't grasp at anything solid. There's a supernatural element in the story that wasn't talked about in depth. I only got a taste of it and I'm extremely eager for an explanation. This was such a fantastic read that was absolutely not appropriate to finish in the middle of the night. The story kept me guessing and looking out of my window the entire time.

Overall: 5 out of 5
This is highly recommended to fans of The Body Finders series by Kimberly Derting and the Mara Dyer series by Michelle Hodkin, or just fans of thrillers and mysteries!

Review: Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway

Friday, January 4, 2013
Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway
Website | Twitter | Facebook

Razorbill, 320 pages 
Release Date: April 10, 2008
Source: Library
California high school student Audrey Cuttler dumps self-involved Evan, the lead singer of a little band called The Do-Gooders. Evan writes, “Audrey, Wait!” a break-up song that’s so good it rockets up the billboard charts. And Audrey is suddenly famous!

Now rabid fans are invading her school. People is running articles about her arm-warmers. The lead singer of the Lolitas wants her as his muse. (And the Internet is documenting her every move!) Audrey can't hang out with her best friend or get with her new crush without being mobbed by fans and paparazzi.

Take a wild ride with Audrey as she makes headlines, has outrageous amounts of fun, confronts her ex on MTV, and gets the chance to show the world who she really is.

We’ve all listened to that one catchy song a singer wrote about his/her ex, and we’ve all unconsciously sided with the artist as the “good” person. Come on now, we must have all listened to Hey There Delilah or a song off of Maroon 5's album, Songs About Jane, at least once. But have we ever thought about how the ex feels? AUDREY, WAIT! tells the story of Audrey, the ex in the situation, who’s life changes just as drastically as her ex-boyfriend’s after he writes “Audrey, Wait!”. 

Audrey Cuttler, where do I begin with this girl? CAN WE BE FRIENDS NOW, AUDREY?! Well the simple break down is that she's a 16 year old "average" girl who absolutely loves music. Unlike her best friend, Audrey hates her instant rise to fame with a fiery passion. Her extremely sarcastic comments through out the entire story made everything hilarious. She's sassy through and through, which gets her in some trouble during interviews! 

I read this in one sitting because of the fun and light writing style. This was an incredibly entertaining read that made me laugh the whole way through! While being in the spotlight might sound glamorous, Audrey gets the chance to share her side of how the fame actually went. 

Overall: 4 out of 5

Bring YA to YOUR Hometown

Wednesday, January 2, 2013
Have you ever wished that a big YA book tour would make a stop in your hometown? Well, here's your chance for that wish to come true! YA2U is a program that features five award-winning and best-selling authors who are holding a contest to see what city they should visit in an exclusive tour stop!

The authors are collecting votes from January 1 to February 15, and any city in the continental US or any Canadian city that has an international airport can win an exclusive visit from all five authors, including an author panel and book signing! Entering is super easy--and if you help spread the word about the contest, you can also enter win a signed copy of all of their books (TEN signed books in total!)--and the book contest is open internationally!

And they want to have an event in your home town! To participate, just got to the YA2U website and let them know what city you want them to come to. And while you're there, help spread the word about the contest and you can be entered to win all of their books--TEN signed books in total!

Here's why the YA2U Team should come to MY hometown! 
Portland, OR has a POWELL'S INDEPENDENT BOOK STORE, the city of books as we call it. But it doesn't even have to be at Powell's! There's a large number of readers and bloggers here who would absolutely LOVE to have these amazing authors visit.

My vote is going towards PORTLAND, OR. 

Why should the YA2U Team come to your hometown? 
Why not join in the fun today and share with others about this program and your hometown. The more votes your town gets, the closer you are to having your very own personal tour stop! Vote for YOUR town here!

And if you help spread the word, you can also participate in the book giveaway. Tell them that you learned about YA2U from me and we both get extra entries in the contest!

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