Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Lethal Inheritance by Tahlia Newland: Author Interview (Happy Halloween!)

Happy Halloween from The Cozy Reading Corner! I hope you're having a spook-tascular day! I have an interview with Tahlia Newland for you today which is especially fitting, seeing as how her book contains demons!  :))

Title: Lethal Inheritance
Author: Tahlia Newland
Publisher: Catapult Press
Publication Date: October 10, 2012

Synopsis: If last night was real, Ariel should be dead. She’s not, but her mother has disappeared, there are bruises on her neck and the hideous beast in the photo looks frighteningly familiar.

You can’t send police into a tunnel that doesn’t exist after a villain they can’t see, so when shadow demons kidnap her mother, Ariel has to mount the rescue mission herself. Hot on the trail, she enters a hidden layer of reality only to find that the demons are hunting her, and they feed on fear. Ariel must defeat them before they kill her and enslave her mother. But how do you kill terrifying demons when your fear makes them stronger?

A quirky old guide teaches her how to locate and unleash her inner power, and while battling hallucinogenic mist, treacherous terrain, murderous earth spirits and self-doubt, she falls in love with Nick, a Warrior whose power is more than either of them can handle.

Ariel’s journey challenges her perception, tests her awareness and takes her deep into her heart and mind to confront, and ultimately transcend, her fear and anger.

About the Author: Tahlia is an author, avid reader, extremely casual high school teacher & occasional mask-maker. She writes urban fantasy and magical realism for adults & young adults and likes to challenge readers to look more closely at the nature of their world, their mind and their perception. After creating, scripting and performing in Visual Theatre shows for 20 years, she's now a bone-fide expatriate of the performing arts. She lives in an Australian rainforest, is married with a teenage daughter and loves cats, but she doesn't have one because they eat native birds.


First off, I'd like to thank you for joining me on the blog today!
Thanks for inviting me.

1. Describe Lethal Inheritance as a tweet  (140 characters or less)!
When shadow demons kidnap her mother, Ariel must enter a hidden realm to rescue her.

2. If you could re-title Lethal Inheritance what would you call it and why?
Originally, I called it the ‘The Blade of Aarod’ because that’s Ariel’s lethal inheritance, left to her after her father died. But with it comes the prophecy that one with the blade and the copper mark will kill the Master Demon. The prophecy is only hinted at in this book. It’s not revealed until book 3. I changed the title because it sounded too much like sword and sorcery, which it isn’t.

3. What inspired you to start writing?
I had the idea about seven years  ago, but I wasn’t sure which point of view to write it in, so I made a few notes but never actually started on it. Then I read ‘Sabriel’ by Garth Nix about five years ago and that set me off. I realised that I wanted to write it the same way ie third person. I also found the writing in the book inspiring. Then the scenes just flowed into my head, as if a stopper had been pulled out, and I couldn’t not write it down.

4. What kind of research, if any, did you do for Lethal Inheritance?
I drew on my 14 years of study and practice of meditation and Buddhist philosophy to create the demons and the method of killing them. One reviewer called it ‘a unique & notable new approach to magical powers.’ Ariel's weapons to defeat the demons are focus, clarity, & power. These are the three aspects of  our mind when it’s unfettered by distractions, and everyone has these powers, they are just undeveloped. Ariel finds herself in a place where she must develop them or face death at the hands of the demons.

5. How did you come up with the concept for the demons in Lethal Inheritance?
I liked the Buddhist idea of demons as physical manifestations of negative emotions. Since we all struggle with our emotions, I thought it would be an interesting idea to play with, and one that would relate to everyone. Demons appear in different guises in the various Buddhist cultures, but they all represent our destructive tendencies projected outwards. The way they look in my story just popped into my mind, as if I was watching a scene in a movie. There are three kinds, but the worse are black slimy creatures, a bit like the ring wraiths in Lord of the Rings.  They have long talons that they use to suck energy from their prey.

6. Do you have a specific place where you write?
I can write anywhere because I can totally immerse myself in a scene and not be distracted by anything around me, but usually I write in my office at home. I live in the bush, so it’s a beautiful peaceful environment.

This or That...

Ebook or Real book?

Twitter or Facebook? 
Um, Facebook.

Chocolate or Vanilla?

Past or Future?

And just for fun- What is the strangest thing on your desk right now?
A china cat piggy bank  with a spaced out look on its face.
Thank you so much for stopping by my blog!
Thanks. I enjoyed your questions.

-Kristen ♥

Monday, October 29, 2012

It's Just Another Manic Monday.... (Or is it?)

It's Monday. Which is normally really depressing because it's the start of another busy week. But today is a good Monday! Ya know why? Because today precedes the release date of:

Sapphire Blue (Edelstein Trilogie #2) by

At least Gwen has plenty of help. Her best friend Lesley follows every lead diligently on the Internet. James the ghost teaches Gwen how to fit in at an eighteenth century party. And Xemerius, the gargoyle demon who has been following Gwen since he caught her kissing Gideon in a church, offers advice on everything. Oh, yes. And of course there is Gideon, the Diamond. One minute he’s very warm indeed; the next he’s freezing cold. Gwen’s not sure what’s going on there, but she’s pretty much destined to find out.
Yes, you read that correctly! Sapphire Blue comes out tomorrow: October 30, 2012! Yay!!! I'm so exicted, that it has turned another "Manic Monday" into a really happy day! Hopefully, it'll work that way for you too! :))

-Kristen ♥

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (5)

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:
The Almost Truth by Eileen Cook

Synopsis: From the author of Unraveling Isobel and The Education of Hailey Kendrick, a smart, romantic novel about a teenage con artist who might be in over her head.

Sadie can’t wait to get away from her backwards small town, her delusional mom, her jailbird dad, and the tiny trailer where she was raised…even though leaving those things behind also means leaving Brendan. Sadie wants a better life, and she has been working steadily toward it, one con at a time.

But when Sadie’s mother wipes out Sadie’s savings, her escape plan is suddenly gone. She needs to come up with a lot of cash—and fast—or she’ll be stuck in this town forever.

With Brendan’s help, she devises a plan—the ultimate con—to get the money. But the more lies Sadie spins, the more she starts falling for her own hoax…and perhaps for the wrong boy. Sadie wanted to change her life, but she wasn't prepared to have it flipped upside down by her own deception. With her future at stake and her heart on the line, suddenly it seems like she has a lot more than just money to lose....

This book comes out December 4, 2012! Not long now!  :))

-Kristen ♥

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Book Release: Flutter by Gina Linko (Book Trailer)

Title: Flutter
Author: Gina Linko
Publisher: Random House Books
Publication Date: October 23, 2012

Synopsis: All Emery Land wants is to be like any other 17-year-old—to go to school, hang out with her friends, and just be normal. But for as long as she can remember, she’s suffered from seizures. And in recent years they’ve consumed her life. To Emery they’re much more than seizures, she calls them loops—moments when she travels through wormholes back and forth in time and to a mysterious town. The loops are taking their toll on her physically. So she practically lives in the hospital where her scientist father and an ever-growing team of doctors monitor her every move. They’re extremely interested in the data they collect when Emery seizes. It appears that she’s tapping into parts of the brain typically left untouched by normal human beings.

Escaping from the hospital, Emery travels to Esperanza, the town from her loops on the upper peninsula of Michigan, where she meets Asher Clarke. Ash’s life is governed by his single-minded pursuit of performing good Samaritan acts to atone for the death of a loved one. His journey is very much entwined with Emery’s loops.

Drawn together they must unravel their complicated connection before it’s too late.

About the Author: Gina Linko has a graduate degree in creative writing from DePaul University and lives outside Chicago with her husband and three children. Gina teaches college English part-time, but her real passion is sitting down at a blank computer screen and asking herself the question, "What if...?"

Website    Twitter    Goodreads


-Kristen ♥

Monday, October 22, 2012

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

This meme is hosted by BookJourney!
This week I plan to read:


Last week I read:
-Kristen ♥

Friday, October 19, 2012

Reading is Fundamental!


" OUR VISION: Our vision is a literate America in which all children have access to books and discover the joys and value of reading.
OUR MISSION: To motivate young children to read by working with them, their parents, and community members to make reading a fun and beneficial part of everyday life. RIF's highest priority is reaching underserved children from birth to age 8.

Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) is the largest children’s literacy nonprofit in the United States. We prepare and motivate children to read by delivering free books and literacy resources to those children and families who need them most. We inspire children to be lifelong readers through the power of choice. RIF provides new, free books for children to choose from and make their own. The seeds of inspiration in these books have motivated children to follow their dreams and achieve their potential. Yes, it seems incredible for a book to launch a life, but it happens every day as hungry, inquisitive young minds reach out and grab hold of the new people, places, and ideas that books bring them.
Nearly two-thirds of
low-income families in
the U.S. own no books.
Planting seeds of inspiration in our nation’s most vulnerable children is what RIF and a network of more than 400,000 volunteers do. Whether in schools, homeless shelters, or community centers—wherever you find children—RIF volunteers spend countless hours distributing books, staging reading motivation activities, and promoting the importance of literacy in their communities.
RIF is generously supported by corporations, foundations, community organizations, and thousands of individuals. Your generosity is what allows us to fulfill our mission and positively impact the lives of our nation’s children and their families. "
**Taken from their website**
You can visit their official website HERE!

-Kristen ♥

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Peasant Prince by Stephen Cody: Interview & Excerpt

Title: The Peasant Prince
Author: Stephen Cody
Publisher: Trajan Books, Inc.
Publication Date: September 22, 2012

Synopsis: Art Williams is the son of the new American Ambassador to London. In his first 48 hours in London, Art makes an enemy of Princess Guinevere, the teenage daughter of the new Queen of England, has a trio of banshees foretelling his doom, is stalked by a shape-shifting witch, and destroys the American Ambassador's mansion.

Art may be the only thing standing in the way of the enslavement of the world. Dark forces are at work. If they can sacrifice an infant king, the Worlds of Man and Magic will be reunited. Or it could unravel Time itself. Queen Caroline, Guinevere’s mother, has an infant prince, the heir to her throne.

With his classmates, the sons and daughters of diplomats from Australia, Canada, India, and China, Art discovers they have a chance of saving the Royal Family, England, and the world. But first, they must gather the skills needed and make alliances with what little magic is left in this world. And they must lay claim to Excalibur, the Sword of Destiny.

About the Author: Stephen Cody is a Miami based author and consultant. He is a graduate of the writing program at Florida State University. The focus of his major was on both fiction and articles and essays. The articles and essay part helped him later when he became a lawyer. The fiction part helped out when he tried to explain why the court should rule for his corporate and banking clients.
Steve is the author of three published novels: "The Peasant Prince", "Lying in State", and "Soulless". He's also published his first children's book, "There's An Elephant Following Me!"


First off, I'd like to thank you for joining me on the blog today!

Thanks, Kristen.  I appreciate your having me here.  There’s nothing I like better than talking about books.  Not just mine, but everybody’s. 

1. Describe The Peasant Prince as a tweet  (140 characters or less)!
An American boy meets a Royal Princess. Ancient curses. Murders. Dwarves. Trolls. Magic. Excalibur. The Grand Ball.  And Dragons in London. (Made it with one character to spare.)

2. If you could re-title The Peasant Prince what would you call it and why?
The title was originally going to be The Midnight Realm and remained that through several drafts.  The book examines royalty.  Princess Guinevere, the daughter of Britain’s new queen, is obviously royal and maybe a little too proud of that fact.  Art Williams, the son of the new American Ambassador to London, is descended from two American presidents on his mother’s side and, through her, to senators, governors, generals, and admirals. He is as close to royalty as we get in America.  Art, however, is a typical American teenager, smart but not motivated to excel when we first meet him.  There is a second prince, one who is dark and mysterious, who forms the sharpest corner on a relationship triangle with Art and Guinevere.  That Prince resides in the Midnight Realm. 

3. What inspired you to start writing?
The book started as a dream fragment.  I knew of the legend of the ravens at the Tower of London.  Charles I decreed that there should always be at least six ravens at the Tower to combat the prophesy that if they were to leave, the Kingdom would collapse and the Tower would fall into the River Thames.  I dreamt that the Ravenmaster, the keeper of the crows, came out in the middle of the night and found that nine black dragon hatchlings had eaten the six official ravens and the three spares.  That got me thinking the next morning as to why the ravens would get eaten and what it could mean for England and the world.  The book slowly unraveled in my head from that one dream. 

4. What kind of research, if any, did you do for The Peasant Prince?
I did tons of research for the book.  Much of it takes place at The American School in London, a U.S. style K-12 school in the heart of London.  I not only read up on the School, but tracked down some graduates and informally interviewed them. One the chief characters in the book is a retired professor who teaches Art and his five classmates, the sons and daughters of diplomats from China, Australia, Canada, and India.  I had learn enough so I could make Professor Merwin seem real, like the genius he is in the book.  I also had to research the customs of the British Royal Court and the castles and palaces used in the novel.  Plus, I came to know the Tower of London, even the parts off-limits to visitors as well as my own house.  In addition, I learned about British geography, old Celtic legends, and read several books on the legend of King Arthur. 

5. Do you have a specific place where you write?
Years ago, I bought a big house and had the two car garage converted into an office.  That’s where I write.  I also write and illustrate storybooks and iPad apps, so my computers are there.  I’m planning on building a sound recording booth that looks like Doctor Who’s TARDIS so I can record narration from my book and sound effects for my apps. 

This or That...

Ebook or Real book?
I like both.  I grew up loving the feel of book in my hands.  My family has been in the paper and printing business, so there’s nothing quite like the feel of a well made book.  Sometimes they’re almost alive.  They have leather skins and the leaves inside were once standing the heart of a sun-dappled forest.  On the pages are captured whispers.  Authors long gone can reach across time and share a story, a laugh or a tear.  That's real magic. 

It’s also magic that all of that can be compressed into a data stream.  Like a stream of conciseness, it moves into your Kindle or Nook or iPad and waits for you.  In a device weighing just a few ounces, you can hold more books than in the legendary library in Alexandria, Egypt, once thought to be the greatest storehouse of knowledge.  

Twitter or Facebook?
I do both.  Twitter is a challenge for me.  I find having to limit myself to 140 characters to be very hard.  There is a certain haiku-ness to it.  You can only sketch and stab at an idea.  Facebook allows me to give news, express political views, attach bits my friends might like, and keep up with people I lost touch with once, but now have rediscovered.  You can connect with me @benedictmarshal on Twitter.  My Facebook page is 

Chocolate or Vanilla?
I found out recently that I’m a diabetic.  So I guess you could say I’m certifiably sweet.  When I’m allowed to indulge my old sweet tooth, I’ll take chocolate.  I like rich, complex flavors. (In fact, I’d rather drink a really good root beer than a real beer anyday.)

Past or Future?
Ha!  The Peasant Prince involves a wee bit of time travel, so it has a bit of the past and the future as important plot points.  One of the characters in the book tells Arthur an old saying of his people, which when translated is: “A fool wishes he could change the past, but a wise man knows he cannot change the future.”
I love learning about the past.  But I plan spending the rest of my life in the future. 

And just for fun- What is the strangest thing on your desk right now?
I have a lamp that my grandfather made out of a 1920’s candlestick style phone.  When you take the earpiece off the holder, it springs up and turns the lamp on.  It is my favorite piece of furniture. 

Thank you so much for stopping by my blog!
Thanks for having me, Kristen!

The Peasant Prince by Stephen Cody - Chapter 1

-Kristen ♥

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (4)

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:
Bitter Blood (The Morganville Vampires #13) by

Lucky #13! I AM SO FRIGGIN' EXCITED!!! This is one of my top favorite series ever and November 6, 2012 needs to be here tomorrow!

-Kristen ♥

Monday, October 15, 2012

Review: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

Title: Shadow and Bone
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Series: The Grisha, #1
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Publication Date: June 5, 2012

Synopsis: Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.

Review: I had heard great things about this book, but I still remained a bit skeptical. Now I wonder if I suffered from a moment of insanity for not reading this amazing masterpiece as soon as it came out. On the beautiful cover there is a quote from a favorite author of mine, Veronica Roth, and she said that this book was "unlike anything I've ever read" and she was exactly right. Shadow and Bone is a unique treasure of a story. I can't even begin to try and explain it to you, I can only encourage you to read it because it's a move that you won't regret. It was an un-put-down-able read and I devoured all 356 pages in a single day. The characters that Leigh Bardugo created were unique and compelling, the world-building splendid, and the plot absolutely enthralling. I look forward to my next trip to the bookstore so I can buy my own copy of the book to display on the shelves so I can rediscover the magic of it again and again. I also look forward to June 4, 2013; the release date for the sequel! :))

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Author Response:

-Kristen ♥

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Cover Reveal: Apollyon by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Apollyon
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: Covenant, #4
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Publication Date: April 9, 2013

Previous books in the series:
                                                   Click HERE to read Elixir!
AND NOW, the newest addition:
**Isn't it gorgeous?**
-Kristen ♥

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Tatted Thursday (2)

Tatted Thursday is a weekly meme hosted at Word Spelunking that features literary inspired tattoos.
Twilight Quote
Harry Potter!
HP Spell!
Peter Pan  :)
-Kristen ♥

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (3)

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

Walking Disaster (Beautiful, #2) by Jamie McGuire

Synopsis: Beautiful Disaster told in Travis point of view.

How much is too much to love?

Travis Maddox learned two things from his mother before she died: Love hard. Fight harder.

In Walking Disaster, the life of Travis is full of fast women, underground gambling, and violence. Just when he thought he was invincible, Abby Abernathy brings him to his knees.

Every story has two sides. In Jamie McGuire's New York Times bestseller Beautiful Disaster Abby had her say. Now it's time to see the story through Travis's eyes.

You have no idea how much this excites me! I loved Beautiful Disaster! And now we get to re-read it from Travis' POV! **dies**  April 16, 2013 cannot get here soon enough!

-Kristen ♥

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Get Matched!

I'm feeling pretty slack for not having read Matched yet, but I hope to remedy that soon! In order to celebrate the upcoming publication for, Reached, the third and final novel in the Matched trilogy some bloggers have decided to post the trailer and an excerpt from Matched!  :))

You can find the excerpt HERE!

Do you want to help the Archivists spread the word? Post the trailer and excerpt on your blog, Facebook, Twitter etc.  And if you do tweet, don't forget to use the hashtag #getmatched.  :))

-Kristen ♥

Monday, October 8, 2012

Review: Undeadly by Michele Vail

Title: Undeadly
Author: Michele Vail
Series: The Reaper Diaries, #1
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: November 20, 2012

Synopsis: The day I turned 16, my boyfriend-to-be died. I brought him back to life. Then things got a little weird...

Molly Bartolucci wants to blend in, date hottie Rick and keep her zombie-raising abilities on the down-low. Then the god Anubis chooses her to become a reaper-and she accidentally undoes the work of another reaper, Rath. Within days, she’s shipped off to the Nekyia Academy, an elite school that trains the best necromancers in the world. And her personal reaping tutor? Rath. Who seems to hate her guts.

Rath will be watching closely to be sure she completes her first assignment-reaping Rick, the boy who should have died. The boy she still wants to be with. To make matters worse, students at the academy start turning up catatonic, and accusations fly-against Molly. The only way out of this mess? To go through hell. Literally.

Verdict: This book was pretty good, but it had the potential to be great. The story had a strong beginning, starting out with Molly Bartolucci working at her dad's zombie business, Big Al's Zomporium. Yes, you read that correctly, in the world that Michele Vail created, zombies are a basic part of every day life. And there are people called reapers who have the power to either create zombies, deal with ghosts, or do other such reaper activities. The story continues strongly, with Molly describing her crush on a High School senior named Rick and her upcoming 16th Birthday party (Random note- I know she's a teenager, but she said "Whatevs" a little too much and it became slightly annoying). Unfortunately, this is where the story started to slack off a little. It seemed to me that the author was too eager to get to the point and didn't elaborate enough. Basically, Molly gets sent to this school just for reapers and I can't get into it too much without spoiling the story, but she makes new friends far too quickly to be realistic, gets a ghoul named Henry (who I liked very much) for a butler, makes an enemy who hates her completely on sight, and gets a possible love interest named Rath as an independent study teacher. It would have been so easy for me to develop a fictional crush on Rath, since I already liked the idea of him, but the reader isn't given enough details to feel any deep emotional connection to him. The plot was pretty good, but also needed more development because there were certain scenes that jumped too much without any explanation. I don't want to come across like I'm bashing this book, it has so much potential and I really have to give Michele Vail props for the Egyptian mythology she used for her Reapers because that was very clever! Undeadly basically just read like a really good first draft, and with a little tweaking could become a fantastic final draft! Would I recommend it? Maybe. If you're looking for a book to form a deep emotional connection with, then this probably isn't the one for you. But, if you just want a little mindless entertainment, then it definitely serves its purpose. Undeadly also had an ending that was very intriguing, so I will definitely be checking out the sequel once it comes out. :)

(view spoiler)[These are a few other things from the book that bothered me enough to want to point out, but are definite spoilers.

-In the book, Molly finds out that her dad isn't her biological father. She's hurt, her dad has lied to her, her entire life. It's okay to be upset and take a little time to adjust. But Molly was really cruel to her dad and this really turned me off to the story.

-Molly gets two visions in the form of dreams while at the reaper school. The first one was of a student getting her soul sucked out of her, then turning into stone and shattering. She doesn't really think anything of it, because it was probably just a stress dream, right? Wrong. The next day, she finds out a student was killed. And what does she do? Nothing. She tells no one. Then, she gets another vision about another student meeting the same fate, and she. does. absolutely. nothing. She isn't really affected by seeing the death of two students and not doing anything to try and stop it. That is not normal human behavior and was another huge turn off to the story.]

Rating: 3/5 Stars

-Kristen ♥

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Athena Effect by Derrolyn Anderson: Excerpt & Giveaway

Title: The Athena Effect
Author: Derrolyn Anderson
Publication Date: August 30, 2012

Synopsis: Country girl Cali has been kept a secret her entire life, raised in isolation by two very troubled people. Despite her parent’s disturbing fits, Cal is perfectly content, living at one with the nature that surrounds her, and finding adventure inside the pages of her beloved books. When an awful tragedy tears her away from her remote cabin in the woods, nothing she’s ever read has prepared her for a world that she knows very little about.

Girls and motorcycles are what bad-boy Cal’s life is all about. Brought up in a raucous party house by his biker brother, he’s free to do as he pleases, going through the motions on his final days of high school. Aimless, Cal stopped thinking about his future a long time ago.

Attacked by a gang of thugs while running an errand for his brother, Cal is in serious trouble until a fierce girl appears out of nowhere to intervene. She chases off three grown men, sparing Cal a brutal beating before disappearing into the night like a spirit. He can’t stop thinking about his mysterious rescuer, and when she turns out to be the weird new girl at school who goes out of her way to avoid him, he can’t contain his curiosity.

He’s never met anyone like her before, and the more he learns about the unusual girl who shares his nickname, the more he wants to know. Cal can’t help falling for Cal, but can he keep her from falling victim to a dangerous enemy from her parent’s tragic past?

About the Author: Derrolyn Anderson is a visual artist and writer of fiction. The creator of the four part "Marina's Tales" series and the YA romance, "The Athena Effect", she's currently hard at work on her next book, "The Mackenzie Legacy".

You can visit her at her webiste:

And follow her on Pinterest:


She stepped out from the shadows, shrieking, “Stop it! You’re going to kill him!”

The three thugs looked up with shocked faces, “What the…”

The punching man stopped in mid-swing and charged at her. She tried to run back into the tree line, but was thrown to the ground by a flying tackle and dragged by her ankles into the clearing. She kicked and fought, twisting and clawing at the turf, but she was unable to break free. Her hood slipped down and a mass of curly blonde hair spilled out.

“Let go of me!” she screamed, remembering the last time a killer tried to drag her away.

The man lunged on top of her, straddling her and pinning her arms to the ground over her head.

“Shut up or I’ll shut you up,” he grunted from the exertion. The other two men stood looking down at her as she struggled futilely to get away.

“Here to save your boyfriend?” one of them asked, making the other one laugh.

“Help!” she screamed at the top of her lungs. The man on top of her released one of her arms to slap her hard across the cheek, and it was all the opening she needed.

With a well-practiced grab, she drew her hunting knife from its sheath on her belt and pressed it to his side, ready to plunge it in. He looked down in horror and reeled back from the long blade, allowing her to push him over onto his back and spring to her feet in one swift move. She crouched above him, poised to plunge it into his belly.

“I swear I’ll gut him!” she yelled, her eyes flashing at the men who stood frozen. “Get back,” she growled through gritted teeth, trying her hardest to send them all an icy blue blast of fear.

It seemed to work, because the man lying on the ground called out, “Do what she says…” His eyes were wide in the moonlight, locked onto the gleaming silver blade.

“Back off,” she yelled again, watching the others as they slowly moved away. She kept the knife raised with both hands, shaking from the rush of adrenalin. A police siren wailed in the distance and the two men looked over their shoulders nervously.

“Take it easy Blondie,” the one on the ground said. “We were just leaving.”

She slowly backed away, keeping her knife at the ready, fully prepared to dive on him and stick it deep into his belly without hesitation. The man scrambled backwards, finally rising to join the others. He brushed himself off, trying to regain his dignity, and signaled for them to leave. She watched the three of them disappear back into the shadows they’d come from.

Satisfied that they were really going, she turned her attention to the beaten boy.

Cal had crawled to his knees and witnessed the whole scene, and he looked up with bleary eyes to see the girl standing over him, her golden hair reflecting the moonlight like the halo of a guardian angel. The police siren grew louder on the road beneath the hill, passing them by and fading away into the distance.

She bent down to offer him a hand, and he took it, focusing on the two raised scars that ran down the length of her forearm. She pulled him to his feet and he stood wavering, rubbing his sore jaw. It hurt to breathe, and he wondered if they had a broken rib.

He watched in a daze as she slipped her knife back into its sheath, pulling her oversized sweatshirt down to conceal it. She pushed her sleeves down over her arms and flipped the hood back up to cover her glowing mane of hair. It occurred to him that she might be a ghost.

“You need to get out of here before they come back,” she said.

“Where did you come from?” he choked out, looking back the way the men left. “Who are you?”

When he turned around she was gone.
Giveaway Time!
This is an international contest because the prize will be emailed to the winner. After the winner is contacted on October 20th, he/she will have 5 days to respond to my email before a new winner will be chosen. To win all you have to do is read my giveaway policy and complete the Rafflecopter form below. Good Luck! :))
The prize is an ebook copy of The Athena Effect from Smashwords!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

-Kristen ♥

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Cover Reveal: The Elite by Kiera Cass

Title: The Elite
Author: Kiera Cass
Series: The Selection, #2
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: April 23, 2013

Synopsis: The hotly-anticipated sequel to the New York Times bestseller The Selection.

Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.

Predecessor's Cover:

AND NOW, the moment you've all been waiting for! **drum-roll** The beautiful cover of The Elite!

-Kristen ♥

Book Trailer: Skinny by Donna Cooner

Title: Skinny
Author: Donna Cooner
Publisher: Point
Publication Date: October 1, 2012

Synopsis: Find your voice.

Hopeless. Freak. Elephant. Pitiful. These are the words of Skinny, the vicious voice that lives inside fifteen-year-old Ever Davies’s head. Skinny tells Ever all the dark thoughts her classmates have about her. Ever knows she weighs over three hundred pounds, knows she’ll probably never be loved, and Skinny makes sure she never forgets it.

But there is another voice: Ever’s singing voice, which is beautiful but has been silenced by Skinny. Partly in the hopes of trying out for the school musical—and partly to try and save her own life—Ever decides to undergo a risky surgery that may help her lose weight and start over.

With the support of her best friend, Ever begins the uphill battle toward change. But demons, she finds, are not so easy to shake, not even as she sheds pounds. Because Skinny is still around. And Ever will have to confront that voice before she can truly find her own.

About the Author: Donna Cooner was born and raised in Texas. She is a three time graduate of Texas A&M University. A former teacher and school administrator, she now teaches teachers and principals at Colorado State University where she is the director of the School of Teacher Education and Principal Preparation. She lives in Fort Collins, Colorado, with her two labs and a cat named Stu. She's a big fan of chocolate and laughing (not necessarily in that order). Donna is the author of over twenty picture books and was a founding member of the Brazos Valley Society of Children's Bookwriters and Illustrators. She has also written children's television shows for PBS and textbooks for future teachers. SKINNY is her debut novel for young adults.

Book Trailer:

-Kristen ♥

Friday, October 5, 2012

Cover Reveal: Phoenix by Elizabeth Richards

Title: Phoenix
Author: Elizabeth Richards
Series: Black City, #2
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons BYR
Publication Date: June 2013

Synopsis: The much anticipated second book in the enthralling Black City series

Engaged to be married, Ash and Natalie are just starting to build a life together, when things in the United Sentry States go from bad to worse. Ash and Natalie find themselves at the center of the turmoil when dictator Purian Rose threatens Natalie’s life unless Ash votes in favor of Rose’s law—a law that will send Darklings and other dissenters to a deadly concentration camp known as the Tenth.

Ash can’t bring himself to trade Natalie’s life for those of millions of Darklings. The only way to save everyone is to escape Black City and find the Ora, a powerful weapon that could take down Purian Rose for good. But fleeing the city and finding this weapon is easier said than done, if it even exists, and becomes a quest that could tear Ash and Natalie apart, even pushing them into the arms of others.

About the Author: Elizabeth Richards is a YA author who loves books about supernatural boys, kissing and blood. Elizabeth recently signed a three-book deal with Putnam, Penguin. BLACK CITY, Book #1 of the BLACK CITY trilogy will be published in North America in November 2012. You can visit her at her website:

Predecessor's Cover:

And now, the moment you've all been waiting for! The BEAUTIFUL cover reveal for Phoenix:

**I think the two books go together perfectly!**
-Kristen ♥

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Vessel by Sarah Beth Durst: Author Interview

Title: Vessel
Author: Sarah Beth Durst
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Publication Date: September 11, 2013

Synopsis: In a desert world of sandstorms and sand-wolves, a teen girl must defy the gods to save her tribe in this mystical, atmospheric tale from the author of Drink, Slay, Love.

Liyana has trained her entire life to be the vessel of a goddess. The goddess will inhabit Liyana’s body and use magic to bring rain to the desert. But Liyana’s goddess never comes. Abandoned by her angry tribe, Liyana expects to die in the desert. Until a boy walks out of the dust in search of her.

Korbyn is a god inside his vessel, and a trickster god at that. He tells Liyana that five other gods are missing, and they set off across the desert in search of the other vessels. For the desert tribes cannot survive without the magic of their gods. But the journey is dangerous, even with a god’s help. And not everyone is willing to believe the trickster god’s tale.

The closer she grows to Korbyn, the less Liyana wants to disappear to make way for her goddess. But she has no choice: She must die for her tribe to live. Unless a trickster god can help her to trick fate—or a human girl can muster some magic of her own.

About the Author: Sarah Beth Durst is the author of Vessel, Drink, Slay, Love, Enchanted Ivy, and Ice from Simon & Schuster, as well as Into the Wild and its sequel Out of the Wild from Penguin Young Readers. She has been writing fantasy stories since she was ten years old and holds an English degree from Princeton University, where she spent four years studying English, writing about dragons, and wondering what the campus gargoyles would say if they could talk. Sarah lives in Stony Brook, New York, with her husband and children. For more information, visit her at

Author Interview:

1. Describe Vessel as a tweet  (140 characters or less)!

 In a harsh desert land, a girl is destined to sacrifice herself so her clan's goddess can inhabit her body... but her goddess never comes.  

2. How did the idea for Vessel come to you?

 One night, I had a dream about a girl who was dancing barefoot on the desert sand and who knew when the dance ended, she'd die.  I woke up wondering who she was and why she was going to die.

 3. If you could re-title Vessel what would you call it and why?

 VESSEL is the only novel I've written so far that hasn't had a myriad of titles.  (INTO THE WILD was first THE WISHING WELL MOTEL and then RAPUNZEL'S HAIR SALON.  ICE was originally THE POLAR BEAR KING.  DRINK, SLAY, LOVE went through about thirty somewhat-bloody titles before the final one.)  But I really can't imagine VESSEL having another title.  It just... fits.  Liyana is a vessel, a human whose body will be inhabited by a goddess.

 4. What inspired you to start writing?

I've always wanted to be a writer.  It's the only thing I've ever wanted to be.  (Except Wonder Woman.  I really wanted to be Wonder Woman when I was five.  I would also have accepted Unicorn Princess.)

I was inspired by all the books I read that I loved, the books that transported me into other worlds and other lives, that introduced me to fictional friends, that made me laugh and made me cry.  I wanted to craft stories like that too.

 5. Which one of your books has been your favorite to write so far?

 DRINK, SLAY, LOVE was the most fun to write because the protagonist (my vampire girl Pearl) is fearless, full of snark, and totally evil.  And VESSEL was the most immersive experience because it is set in a lush, harsh, faraway place.  Really, though, I have loved writing all of them. Writing a novel is such an intense experience that you have to love your story.

6. What kind of research, if any, did you do for Vessel?

I researched various deserts: the Sahara, the Gobi, and several in the southwest United States.  I love to mix fantasy and reality so I try to include as many real details as I can and then weave in the magic.

7. Do you have a specific place where you write?

My desk.  I'd love to be able to write on a mountaintop or in a cafe or some exotic locale, but truthfully, I'm most comfortable just at my desk with easy access to my fridge!

This or That...

Ebook or Real book?

I read both, but my heart belongs to real books.

Twitter or Facebook?

I'm on both, but my heart belongs to Twitter.

Chocolate or Vanilla?


Past or Future?


And just for fun- What is the strangest thing on your desk right now?

A carving of a polar bear.  (My husband always buys me presents that are thematically linked to my novels.  The bear is for ICE, my Arctic adventure novel.)

Thanks so much for interviewing me!
And thank you, Sarah, for stopping by my blog!

-Kristen ♥
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