Thursday, January 31, 2013

Wicked Kiss (Nightwatchers #2) by Michelle Rowen

Wicked Kiss (Nightwatchers, #2)Author: Michelle Rowen
Publication: February 26, 2013
By: Harlequin Teen
3 Stars 

MY KISS CAN KILL.

I used to be ordinary Samantha Day, but that's changed. Now, after one dark kiss from a dangerous boy, I can steal someone's soul...or their life. If I give in to the constant hunger inside me, I hurt anyone I kiss. If I don't...I hurt myself.

Bishop is the one whose kiss I crave most, but if I kiss him, I'll kill him. Then there's another boy, one I can't hurt. One whose kiss seems to miraculously quell my hunger. They're both part of a team of angels and demons that's joined forces in my city to fight a mysterious rising darkness, an evil that threatens everyone I know and love. I just wonder if I'll be able to help Bishop-or if I'm just another part of the darkness he's sworn to destroy....

NIGHTWATCHERS

When angels and demons must work together, something beyond evil is rising...


Thank you Netgalley and Harlequin Teen for this ARC.

I have to admit I was not a huge fan of the first book in this series but this one was much better.  

What I liked: The writing is really good and I found the characters a little more engaging than in the previous book. Kraven, the snarky demon was my favorite and I would love to read more about his story.  This is an interesting take on the good vs. evil plot line and even the supposed "demons" are challenged to do the right thing, always a plus!

What left me wanting:  I had a difficult time connecting with Samantha and the romance between she and Bishop just didn't click for me.

Final verdict: Good sequel in the Nightwatcher's Series. 

Review also posted at YABC 

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Cover Reveal: While He Was Away by Karen Schreck



 While He Was Away Walmart-Exclusive Cover Reveal

Author: Karen Schreck
Published: May 1st 2012 
 By: Sourcebooks Fire

One year--he'll be gone for one year and then we'll be together again and everything will be back to the way it should be.

The day David left, I felt like my heart was breaking. Sure, any long-distance relationship is tough, but David was going to war--to fight, to protect, to put his life in danger. We can get through this, though. We'll talk, we'll email, we won't let anything come between us.

I can be an army girlfriend for one year. But will my sweet, soulful, funny David be the same person when he comes home? Will I? And what if he doesn't come home at all?...



My Top Tips for Writing Even When the Writing Gets Tough
By Karen Schreck

My birthday falls in January, just a few days after New Year’s Day. This January, I received an incredible gift from my publisher, Sourcebooks Fire. My young adult novel, While He Was Away, is being released nation-wide into Walmart with a brand new cover!

When my editor at Sourcebooks, Leah Hultenschmidt, graciously asked if I’d be open to this possibility last fall, I blinked, breathed deep, confirmed I wasn’t dreaming, and said, “Yes!” I held on to the possibility until it became a reality. Then, and only then, did I celebrate.

I won’t speak for all writers, but for me, writing is an act of faith. I love the work deeply, or I wouldn’t do it. I’ve generated a lot of pages that have never seen the light of day, written multiple novels that I’ve relegated to folders on my laptop. Keeping the faith in anything, especially writing, can be hard.

The fact that Sourcebooks believed enough in While He Was Away to bring it to life the first time felt like a much-needed confirmation of years of hard work. The fact that they are standing behind my book again in this way . . . well, it feels like a miracle. I’m truly grateful.

Without further ado, here are my Top Writing Tips (they’ve help me a lot; I hope they help you in some way):

1. Read a lot. Read voraciously. Read like a writer. Read some more. Read people who write in your genre or in a style that is similar to yours and take note of how they do what they do. Read people who write in a completely different way to keep your head clear and give you new ideas. Just. Keep. Reading.

2. Develop a ritual for your writing. I wouldn’t think of telling you what to do. You need to find what works for you, and sometimes that changes with your circumstances. This year, I’ve been working at an ad agency in the city. My ritual is to hunker down in the quiet car on the train and GET A LOT DONE. Previously I’ve written in the very same quiet corner of my local library. In basements. On couches. In bed. By candlelight. I’ve found that consistency and ritual can trigger my creativity. Ring the bell and I’ll salivate. Kind of like that.

3. Don’t be afraid to be messy in your work. Don’t be afraid to push forward even though it isn’t perfect. Nothing is perfect! Embrace that reality, and be kind to yourself. And forgiving of the words on the page.

4. Fall in love with revision. “I’m not a writer,” I once heard a writer say. “I am a re-writer.” I LOVE that. I love the word revision. Re-vision. Seeing again, anew, as if for the first time. Revision gives great perspective. And I think it’s where the real work gets done.

5. Never give up. Keep the faith. Years may pass. But the more you write, the more the very act of writing becomes rewarding. Writing is soul-work; it lends meaning to life. That’s what I believe, and that’s what sees me through. Publication—well, that a wonderful thing. But the writing—that’s where it’s at.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

COVER REVEAL: Stained by Cheryl Rainfield



Sometimes you have to be your own hero.

 Author: Cheryl Rainfield
Publication: November 19, 2013
By: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

  Book Description:
In this heart-wrenching and suspenseful teen thriller, sixteen-year-old Sarah Meadows longs for "normal." Born with a port-wine stain covering half her face, all her life she’s been plagued by stares, giggles, bullying, and disgust. But when she’s abducted on the way home from school, Sarah is forced to uncover the courage she never knew she had, become a hero rather than a victim, and learn to look beyond her face to find the beauty and strength she has inside. It’s that—or succumb to a killer.


Available For Pre-Order on:



Book Trailer



From Author Cheryl Rainfield:
Like I did with SCARS and HUNTED, I drew on some of my own experiences of bullying, abuse, and trauma to write STAINED and to give it greater emotional depth. Like Sarah in STAINED, I experienced abduction, imprisonment, periods of forced starvation, mind control, and having my life threatened. And like Sarah, I tried hard to fight against my abuser, keep my own sense of self, and escape. I hope readers will see Sarah's strength and courage, and appreciate her emotional growth as she reclaims herself.


Also from Cheryl Ranfield:
Stained: Sarah, a teen with a port-wine stain, is abducted, and must find a way to rescue herself. 
Parallel Visions: Kate sees visions of the future--but only when she has an asthma attack.

Hunted: Caitlyn is a telepath in a world where having any paranormal power is illegal. Monica Hughes Award finalist

Scars: Kendra must face her past and stop hurting herself before it's too late. GG Literary Award Finalist, YALSA's Top 10 Quick Picks.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Best Man by Kristan Higgins

The Best ManAuthor: Kristan Higgins
Publication: February 26, 2013
By: Harlequin HQN
5 STARS!

LOVE THIS COVER!

Faith Holland left her hometown after being jilted at the altar. Now a little older and wiser, she's ready to return to the Blue Heron Winery, her family's vineyard, to confront the ghosts of her past, and maybe enjoy a glass of red. After all, there's some great scenery there....

Like Levi Cooper, the local police chief-and best friend of her former fiancé. There's a lot about Levi that Faith never noticed, and it's not just those deep green eyes. The only catch is she's having a hard time forgetting that he helped ruin her wedding all those years ago. If she can find a minute amidst all her family drama to stop and smell the rosÉ, she just might find a reason to stay at Blue Heron, and finish that walk...


Thank you Netgalley and Harlequin for this ARC. 

What I loved: Heartwarming, romantic and hilariously funny, The Best Man is Kristan Higgins' best work yet! I devoured this book in one day and I can't remember laughing so hard or so often. (My stomach hurt from laughing so hard I counted it as my ab workout.) 

Faith, Levi and the rest of this entertaining cast of characters are realistic and relateable.
The scenery is beautiful and the romance is steamilicious without being raunchy, something I found incredibly refreshing in this post "quinquagenarian shadiness" era.  Also, automatic toilets have always frightened me and I'll never look at Justin Timblerake or white hoodies the same way again. *snort* 

One of the things I enjoy about Kristan's MC's is that the women come in all shapes and sizes and the men, while certainly nice to look at, aren't perfect.  Levi for example, is a war veteran and the town's police chief who tends to have issues with control and smiling but trust me, he's completely swoonworthy.  Faith is beautiful, funny and stronger than she realizes. With a little help from family and her dog, Blue, she and Levi both learn what it means to forgive and how loving someone can teach you how to truly live.  
   
What left me wanting: I didn't want this story to end! I could've read another 400+ pages of Faith and Levi's story. :D

Final verdict: Lighthearted romance that you don't want to miss! You can thank me later, or you know, thank Kristan because she wrote it. ;)


Favorite quote(s):
"Want to have a drink sometime?" 
"No! I mean, sure, to catch up, but not romantically, okay? Because I babysat you."  

"Maybe they could go into business. Condescending Looks, LLC



BUY





 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Fault In Our Stars (Audiobook) by John Green

The Fault in Our StarsAuthor: John Green
Published January 10th 2012 (Listened to via audiobook January 2013)
By: Dutton Books
LOVED.IT.SO.HARD.

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now.

Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault.

Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.


My Thoughts: EVERYONE should read this (sniffs) Hazel Grace is amazing and Augustus Waters is my new favorite book boy. (cries) I loved Issac too. Nothing more to add here. SOBS!!!  

 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Pivot Point (Pivot Point #1) by Kasie West

Pivot Point (Pivot Point, #1)Author: Kasie West
Publication: February 12, 2013
By: Harper Teen
4.5 STARS!

Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier. . .

Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.


Thank you Edelweiss and Harper Teen for this ARC.

What I loved: The paranormal element to this story is refreshing and unique and I loved it!  The idea that we could have a chance to see two different outcomes before making a choice is something I think most people would like, but as Addie finds out, it doesn't guarantee happiness. The fact that other people's choices could still play a major role in either outcome also has to be taken into consideration.

The witty banter between these characters is entertaining and the romance is the perfect balance of swoon and heartbreak.  My favorite character was Trevor! *holds up foam finger while chanting his name*  He's funny, sweet and all kinds of cute. He genuinely cares about people and makes the best of any situation and I'm really looking forward to what happens next!

What left me wanting: This is a singular POV that switches back and forth between a dual timeline. You're never quite sure what's real and what's a product of Addie's ability. This is highly entertaining but can be a bit confusing if you aren't playing close attention. At one point, I was completely lost and frustrated and even considered putting it down. However, thanks to the advice of Jodi Meadows, author of Incarnate and Asunder, I kept going and was so glad for it!  That is, until the end, which blew my cupcake loving mind! O.O

I don't suggest trying to finish this late at night because if you do, you will most likely spend the next hour staring off into space wondering, HOW CAN YOU GIVE ME AN ENDING LIKE THAT KASIE WEST?! WHY?! WHY?! WHY?! This reaction, while entirely "normal" (wink wink), is not fun at 1:00a.m. when you're supposed to be sleeping.

Final verdict: Mind blowing debut!

Also posted on YABC







 

Thursday, January 24, 2013

COVER REVEAL: Kiss of Fire by Rebecca Ethington



Joclyn Despain has a scar. In fact, it is almost like a brand on her skin. She doesn’t know why it appeared on her neck, but she doesn’t want anyone to see it, including her best friend Ryland, who knows everything else about her. The scar is the reason she hides herself behind baggy clothes, and won’t let the idea of kissing Ryland enter her mind, no matter how much she wants to.

The scar is the reason she is being hunted.

If only she knew that she was.

If only she had known that the cursed stone her estranged father sent for her 16th birthday would trigger a change in her. Now, she is being stalked by a tall blonde man, and is miraculously throwing her high school bully ten feet in the air.

Joclyn attempts to find some answers and the courage to follow her heart. When Ryland finds her scar; but he knows what it means, and who will kill her because of it.


Find Rebecca Ethington...

Books Available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble


GIVEAWAY: Paperback copies (US ONLY) of Kiss of Fire and Eyes of Ember, or, if you live outside the US and you win this giveaway, you will automatically win ebook copies. :) 

Good luck! 


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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday
 "Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
 
 
The Eternity Cure (Blood of Eden #2) by Julie Kagawa
Publication: April 23rd 2013 
By: Harlequin Teen
 
The Eternity Cure (Blood of Eden, #2)
 From Goodreads:

Allison Sekemoto has vowed to rescue her creator, Kanin, who is being held hostage and tortured by the psychotic vampire Sarren. The call of blood leads her back to the beginning—New Covington and the Fringe, and a vampire prince who wants her dead yet may become her wary ally.

Even as Allie faces shocking revelations and heartbreak like she’s never known, a new strain of the Red Lung virus that decimated humanity is rising to threaten human and vampire alike.
 
 
I have been waiting for this since the moment I finished the first book! FOR REALS!
 
What's your W.O.W.? 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Unravel Me (Shatter Me #2) by Tahereh Mafi


Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2) Author: Tahereh Mafi
Publication: February 5, 2013
By: HarperCollins
LOVED.IT.SO.HARD!

"I'm beginning to think that this situation is the exact antonym of excellent."

tick, tick, tick, tick, tick
it's almost
time for war.

Juliette has escaped to Omega Point. It is a place for people like her—people with gifts—and it is also the headquarters of the rebel resistance.

She's finally free from The Reestablishment, free from their plan to use her as a weapon, and free to love Adam. But Juliette will never be free from her lethal touch.

Or from Warner, who wants Juliette more than she ever thought possible.

In this exhilarating sequel to Shatter Me, Juliette has to make life-changing decisions between what she wants and what she thinks is right. Decisions that might involve choosing between her heart—and Adam's life.

Another shout-out to Jenn at YA Sisterhood (for sharing) and YABC for this ARC! Tahereh Mafi is a genius, I *hearts* her, and this book is UH-MAZING! The End. OK, so not really but STILL.  To say this sequel to the electrifying Shatter Me is intense would be an understatement of epic proportions.  I was merely a few pages into it and my heart decided to jump out of my chest take up residence in my throat where it pretty much stayed before exploding it went *poof* right along with my mind. *poof* I tell you... *POOF!*

Unravel Me pick ups where Shatter Me leaves off and is full of gut-wrenching feels action, suspense and plot twists that are both shocking and heartbreaking. Tahereh's prose is still poetic and beautiful and once again, you feel like you are IN Juliette's head peering out of her eyes. 

Juliette wants nothing more than to fit in and spend her time making out with Adam safe within Omega Point but her battle to overcome a lifetime of believing she's a monster insecurities makes it difficult for her to trust others.  She's supposed to be learning how to manage her ability but a situation arises that leaves her feeling dead, weak, alone and useless.  With the help of the others and the snarkilicious Kenji, Juliette will begin to discover that there is strength in power and while it may be deadly, it can still be good.

Adam is as fantastic as ever but he broke my heart in this book. I seriously wanted to write myself into the story as a character with the ability to bake lethal cupcakes so I could hug him - forever.  He not only has James to look after and a war to prepare for, but he and Juliette will face challenges they never could've imagined.  His love for her is the one constant she can count on but will it be enough?  *clutches chest*

We get to spend more time with Kenji and he is made of awesome!  He's the kind of friend everyone wants needs because can make you laugh one minute with his snark...

"Yeah, bro." Kenji puts his utensils down. "You are moody. It's always 'Shut up, Kenji.' 'Go to sleep, Kenji.' 'No one want to see you naked, Kenji.' When I know for a fact that there are thousands of people who would love to see me naked-"

And throw down some truth when you need to hear it...

"Wake up," he says. "You're not the only person in this world who doesn't want to get out of bed in the morning.  You're not the only one with daddy issues and severely screwed up DNA...."So make a choice," he says.  "Make a choice and stop wasting everyone's time.  Stop wasting your own time. Okay?"  (<-- *fist bumps* Kenji!)

Then there's Warner. *sighs* I didn't think it was possible to love a villain him more but OH.MY.WORD! *fans face*  We get a glimpse of the different layers that make up Warner and he's more broken than Humpty Dumpty.  A tormented mix of strength, hotness and heart aching vulnerability, I couldn't decide if I wanted to punch him in the junk or do something to take all of his hurt away. (Like bake him some brownies and talk like we've done in my dreams.)  Either way, I'm pretty sure Destroy Me will do just that, destroy me.

This book ended with me frantically trying to piece my shredded heart back together and as a result, I predict this will happen with book 3:

1) I will hate love it.

2) I will want to sleep with WarnerAdamJuliette it under my pillow.

3) It will be the death of me.


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Monday, January 21, 2013


COVER REVEAL: Blurred (A Kissed By Death Book)

Author: Tara Fuller
Publication: July 2, 2013
By: Entangled Teen
Some things are worse than death.

Cash is haunted by things. Hungry, hollow things. They only leave him alone when Anaya, Heaven’s beautiful reaper, is around. Cash has always been good with girls, but Anaya isn’t like the others. She’s dead. And with his deteriorating health, Cash might soon be as well.

Anaya never breaks the rules, but the night of the fire she recognized part of Cash’s soul—and doomed him to something worse than death. Cash’s soul now resides in an expired body, making him a shadow walker—a rare, coveted being that can walk between worlds. A being creatures of the underworld would do anything to get their hands on.

The lines between life and death are blurring, and Anaya and Cash find themselves falling helplessly over the edge. Trapped in a world where the living don’t belong, can Cash make it out alive?





BUY



About Tara:
Tara Fuller writes novels. Some about grim reapers​. Some about witches. All of course are delightfully full of teen angst and kissing. Tara grew up in a one stop light town in Oklahoma where once upon a time she stayed up with a flash light reading RL Stine novels and only dreamed of becoming a writer. She has a slight obsession with music and a shameless addiction for zombie fiction, Mystery Science Theater, and black and white mochas. Tara no longer lives in a one stop light town. Now she lives with her family in a slightly larger town in North Carolina where they have at least three stoplights.





Giveaway
ARC's aren't available yet but when they are,
the winner will get the first one!

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Saturday, January 19, 2013

Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

Me Before You
Author: Jojo Moyes
Publication: December 31, 2012
By: Pamela Dorman Books/ Viking
LOVED.IT.SO.HARD!

Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.

What Lou doesn't know is she's about to lose her job or that knowing what's coming is what keeps her sane.

Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he's going to put a stop to that.

What Will doesn't know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they're going to change the other for all time.


Thank you Liza Wiemer and Pamela Dorman Books for sending this to me in exchange for an honest review. Thank you JoJo Moyes for writing this amazing story!  This is one of the BEST books I've EVER read!

You Before Me sucked me in immediately and was very hard for me to put down. It's beautifully written with engaging characters who will make you laugh and make you cry. Lou and Will come from very different backgrounds and Jojo Moyes did an excellent job of portraying the hardships unique to each family. I enjoyed watching the relationship between Lou and Will develop and the growth they experienced together as well as individually. I felt like a participant in Will's life as opposed to an observer and I have a new found appreciation for what people in his position and those who care for them go through. Their romance is unconventional, but an extraordinary example of what it means to really love someone. Their struggles broke my heart but also challenged me to rethink my opinions about "quality of life".

This really is a must read and not a story you'll soon forget!  I also vote for someone to make this into a movie ASAP! 



GIVEAWAY
1 Copy of Me Before You
U.S. Only
Must be 13 years old to enter


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Friday, January 18, 2013

Mind Games (Mind Games #1) by Kiersten White

Mind Games (Mind Games, #1)
Author: Kiersten White
Publication: February 19, 2013
By: HarperTeen 
4.5 Stars!


Fia was born with flawless instincts. Her first impulse, her gut feeling, is always exactly right. Her sister, Annie, is blind to the world around her—except when her mind is gripped by strange visions of the future.

Trapped in a school that uses girls with extraordinary powers as tools for corporate espionage, Annie and Fia are forced to choose over and over between using their abilities in twisted, unthinkable ways… or risking each other’s lives by refusing to obey.

In a stunning departure from her New York Times bestselling Paranormalcy trilogy, Kiersten White delivers a slick, edgy, heartstoppingly intense psychological thriller about two sisters determined to protect each other—no matter the cost.


Thank you Edelweiss and HarperTeen for this ARC. I love the complexity of this cover, from the colors to the tiny squares to her face.


I don't like Eden. There, I said it. 

What I loved: I'm a huge fan of dual POV and this one gives us Fia's story as well as her sister Annie who has a rare gift of her own. The story flips back and forth between the present and the past which not only provides important background information but can be a little confusing at times if you aren't paying close attention. It seems there are two organizations who seek to acquire girls with the skills that Fia possesses and while the devious intentions of one seems blatantly obvious, you're never quite sure about the other. I'm guessing we'll find out more in the next installment of this series. 

Fia was a tough sell for me and not because she isn't well written, because all of these characters are. Fia's just such an angrypants and I had a hard time "liking" her in the beginning. I want to hug her but I'd be afraid she might stab me or something.  She's strong and selfless, especially where Annie is concerned but she's broken in ways we don't fully understand yet. We get glimpses and in those we see that James is partly responsible for the damage Fia's both received and inflicted and it would be really easy to hate him. But then we get to know James a little and if you're anything like me (a sucker for a would-be bad guy) it's kinda hard not to face plant into "serious like" with him. 

There's also Adam to consider and even though we don't get to know him too well in this book, I'm betting he's not quite as "innocent" as he'd like Fia to believe.  However, Fia's encounter with Adam shows her a different side of herself and a different way of life, one that could offer safety for both she and Annie but what is she really risking?

I loved the sisterly bond that Fia and Annie share, so much so, I'm thinking about going out and getting me a sister for myself.  Seriously though, It was really nice to read about sisters who genuinely love each other and who are willing to do whatever necessary to keep each other safe.  

This is one of those books that keeps you engaged and guessing right up to the very end, at which point you become sure of three things, 1) the ending is made of pure awesome, 2) you can't wait for book two and 3) Kiersten White is the one trying to kill you via book heart attack. 

What left me wanting: Um, when does the next book come out? I need to read that like yesterday.

Final verdict: Fast-paced, heart stopping action that will leave you torn between swooning over the bad the guy and routing for the good one, you know, assuming you can figure out whose who.

Review also posted at YABC.




 

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Mythology by Helen Boswell

Welcome to Jenuine Cupcakes!
 Today, I'm talking all things Mythology the unique and engaging debut by Helen Boswell!
(Be sure to enter the giveaway to win a signed paperback copy.)
 
 
About the book:
MythologyAuthor: Helen Boswell
Publication: July 27, 2012
By: CreateSpace
Cover Artist: Brian Hoover
4 Stars!
 
Hope Gentry doesn’t believe in Fate. Born with an unusual power to see the dark memories of those around her, Hope just wants to be a normal teenager. But on the first day of her senior year of high school, she finds herself irresistibly drawn to a transfer student named Micah Condie. At first glance, Micah seems like a boy that most girls would dream about. But when Hope's powers allow her to discover Micah's darkest secret, she quickly becomes entangled in the lives of mythical entities she never dreamed existed. Was this her destiny all along? And will her powers help her survive the evil of the Demon Impiorum?

Mythology isn’t just for English class anymore.
My Thoughts:
Thank you Helen Boswell for providing a copy for review!
What I loved:
I really enjoyed this. It's unlike any other mythology inspired book I've read because it takes into account free will in addition to the good and evil that resides in all of us. The detailed world building makes you feel as if you've just stepped into the story and Hope and Micah are both strong, well developed characters. They both have interesting abilities that when combined, add an extra level of uniqueness to the storyline. I'm really looking forward to seeing where their journey takes them next!

I usually like my book boys tall, dark and snarkilicious but occasionally a blond will sneak in. *coughs* Micah *coughs* ;D

What left me wanting: More Micah please. *bats eyelashes*

Final verdict: Refreshing and unique take on not just mythology but also how we view good and evil.  

*Review also posted at YABC.
 
Interview:
Recently, I had the chance to chat with Hope and Micah, two of the fabulous characters from Helen Boswell's, Mythology and here's what they had to say. 

Welcome Everyone!  *hands out cupcakes* 

Helen, let me start with you.  Where did the idea for Mythology come from?
Thanks for hosting us, Jen. And THANKS for the cupcake! 
Two winters ago, I was people-watching at a Christmas party and thinking about how much of what we see in a person actually represents what they truly are. Essentially, the story began with the idea of Micah: he's beautiful on the outside, but what is he really like as a person? And after Hope discovers his secret, the question becomes even more interesting. *Ahem* No spoilers on this one for anyone who hasn't read it. Also, I've always been a huge fan of Greek mythology and so tied in the central theme of The Fates/The Moirai, but that developed within the story later. Note that Micah also likes people-watching, so I suppose I ultimately owe the idea of the story to him. ;)

Next question is for Hope and Micah. Tell the readers a little bit about yourselves and what your favorite thing about each other is.
Hope: I guess Micah wants me to go first. I've had my fair share of punches in life, but I see no point in letting any of those things get me down. My main goal right now is to go to college for art and design - to combine my love of photography with graphic design. I used to be pretty low-profile at school, but that all changed when I started dating Micah. He has a bit of a reputation and that comes from some of his past (and probably his cool motorcycle adds to what people think of him, too). What I love most about him: his loyalty to and love for the people in his life, especially his family. And the color of his eyes, no matter what they are.

Micah: I'm going into pre-law next year. Hope's right - I owe much of what I am to my adoptive family. My favorite thing about Hope? The way she looks at me, the way she tastes, the way she smells, the feel of her hair, how soft her skin is, the way she's sassy and stands up for things she believes in, the way she believes in me. Sorry. I couldn't narrow it down to just one thing - she drives me crazy. And what do you mean by a reputation, angel?

I'm a huge fan of kissing and Mythology does not disappoint. *winks*  Micah, tell me about the first time you kissed Hope.
Micah: Really, Jen? You want me to kiss and tell?  Dude, just be glad I'm not asking for a first hand demonstration m'kay? Wait, did I say that out loud? *blushes*
It was the first day I met her, which sounds crazy to think about because I'm not like that - I hardly even dated anyone before I met Hope. But we had hung out after school that day - she missed the bus, or it might not have ever happened - and we just clicked, you know? I dropped her off at home and she was so cute and nervous, fumbling with her house keys. (Okay, Hope is rolling her eyes at me right now, but it's the truth.) I touched her arm before she could go into the house, and when she turned around, we were standing so close. Her lips were just a little bit parted, and honestly, I couldn't help myself. *grins* Totally forgot we were standing on her front porch until she broke away, and then I couldn't wait for the next kiss. And the next.

Hope, if you had to choose a song that best describes Micah, what would it be and why?
Hope: I'm going to pick "The Resistance" by Muse because it's a very passionate song, and that's the kind of person that Micah is. Also, it reminds me of how he had to learn to deal with being who he is. Here are a couple of lines that struck me, like these would be what Micah was thinking and feeling during his time of transition:

"Is our secret safe tonight
And are we out of sight
Or will our world come tumbling down?

If we live a life in fear
I'll wait a thousand years
Just to see you smile again

Kill your prayers for love and peace
You'll wake the thought police
We can't hide the truth inside"
*fist bumps* Hope - BIG Muse fan over here!  

Hope and Micah, you guys go through a lot in this book and you're still in high school!  What do you see as your next big challenge? Finals? Prom? Graduation? The "Rules"?
Hope: Finals, for sure. As you might have been able to tell, I am not a huge fan of precalculus. And prom? I think it's kind of overrated, but I'm sure Micah will try to persuade me to go. Big picture-wise though, given what happened to me at the end of Mythology, I think my next big challenge will be figuring out what I really am. I'm pretty excited to see what I can do.

Micah: And that's exactly why my next big challenge will be making sure that Hope doesn't get too overzealous and get us into even more trouble. Sorry, Hope. I love you, but you know it's true. My other personal challenge is to learn more about my heritage. School isn't stressing me out too much, to be perfectly honest. And Hope, you might have just ruined my invitation to go to prom. That's all I'm going to say.


Hope: *interjects* You know those kids who can get good grades and never study? Yeah, that's Micah. So. Unfair. *kisses Micah on the cheek*

Helen, what do you hope readers will take away from Mythology?
Fate was one of the themes of the story, and I wanted to pit the notion of Fate with that of the choices that we make in life. It's interesting to me to see reader's interpretation of this - some think that Fate played the bigger role and others think that it was choice. I think it's always a bit of both - if not "Fate" directly, then life circumstances.
I also placed my characters in challenging situations and allowed them to grow and learn - in that way, I feel like it's very much a coming-of-age story for both Hope and Micah. And you hit it right on earlier when you said it gives a different take on good versus evil. I wanted to break away from stereotypes, both human and not-so-human.
 
Favorite band...
Hope - Arcade Fire
Micah - The Fray
Helen - The Killers


Favorite book...
Hope - Animal Dreams by Barbara Kingsolver
Micah - To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Helen - Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake


Favorite dessert...
Hope - Tiramisu or Baklava...are you really going to make me pick? No, you can have both. :)
Micah - My mom's homemade cannolis
Helen - Anything with chocolate (especially cupcakes! with frosting)
<- I knew I liked her! ;)


Thanks so much guys!

Hope, Micah, and Helen: THANK YOU, JEN!!!!


You can find out more about Helen Boswell and Mythology at the following links:

 

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