Jan 29, 2016

Reign of Shadows: Night Scapes

Welcome to my stop for the REIGN OF SHADOWS Tour!!!! I absolutely adored this book and I am so excited to share with you some Nightscape images I found that I think represent the book.

Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

With lush writing and a star–crossed romance, Reign of Shadowsis Sophie Jordan at her best.

Sophie Jordan took her adolescent daydreaming one step further and penned her first historical romance in the back of her high school Spanish class. This passion led her to pursue a degree in English and History.

A brief stint in law school taught her that case law was not nearly as interesting as literature - teaching English seemed the natural recourse. After several years teaching high school students to love Antigone, Sophie resigned with the birth of her first child and decided it was time to pursue the long-held dream of writing.

In less than three years, her first book, Once Upon A Wedding Night, a 2006 Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Nominee for Best First Historical, hit book shelves. Her second novel, Too Wicked To Tame, released in March 2007 with a bang, landing on the USA Today Bestseller's List.

3 Finished Copies of REIGN OF SHADOWS
US Only

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blog Tour Schedule:

Sophie's Tour Schedule:
  • St. Louis, MO
  • February 9, 2016
  • Main Street Books, off-site at Spencer Road Library, 7 PM
  • Naperville, IL
  • February 10, 2016
  • Anderson’s Bookshop, 7 PM
  • Washington, D.C.
  • February 11, 2016
  • Politics & Prose, off-site at the Bethesda Library, 7 PM
  • Fairfax, VA
  • February 12, 2016
  • Barnes & Noble, 7 PM
  • Bensalem, PA
  • February 13, 2016
  • Barnes & Noble, 1 PM
  • New York City
  • February 14, 2016
  • Books of Wonder, 4 PM
  • *Billed as “Epic Reads Presents: A Date with Royalty”

Jan 21, 2016

The 100 Blog Tour: Makeup Inspirations


Happy 100 Day, everyone!!! Thanks for stopping by today to chat about The 100 (don't forget season 3 premieres TONIGHT!). While we wait, check out some 100-themed makeup trends!

The 100 Inspired Makeup

New York Times bestseller The 100--now available in a paperback boxed set!

For centuries after a nuclear war destroyed the Earth, the human race has lived on spaceships far above the radioactive surface. Now, for one hundred juvenile delinquents, it's time to return home. Their mission: recolonize the savage land. The future of humanity rests in their hands.

Read the series that inspired the hit TV show. The 100, Day 21,and Homecoming are gathered together for the first time in this striking boxed set, perfect for fans and series newcomers alike.

LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Kass Morgan studied literature at Brown and Oxford, and now resides in Brooklyn, where she lives in constant fear of her Ikea bookcase collapsing and burying her under a mound of science fiction and Victorian novels. Kass is currently working on the sequel to The 100, which she’ll finish as soon as she finds a coffee shop that allows laptops on the weekend.

LINKS: Website | Twitter

3 Boxed Sets of THE 100 by Kass Morgan
-US/Canada Only

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week 1:
1/18: Once Upon A Twilight - Q&A w/Kass Morgan
1/19: Don't Fold The Page - Review (The 100)
1/20: No BS Book Review - Getting' GIFy With It!
1/21: The Irish Banana Review - The 100 Inspired Makeup
1/22: Paperback Princess - Review (Day 21)

Week 2:
1/25: Swoony Boys Podcast - Interview w/Clarke & Bellamy
1/26: BooksABlog - If I Were Part of The 100
1/27: Fangirl Confessions - Review (Homecoming)
1/28: Reading Teen - Why Bellarke Are the OTP
1/29: Bookiemoji - Kass Morgan Guest Post

Jan 19, 2016

Blog Tour: The Impostor Queen by Sarah Fine

World building of THE IMPOSTOR QUEEN
One of the pleasures of writing fantasy is that you can be as far out as you like, invent entirely new worlds, fresh rules, odd societies, unfamiliar customs, and so on. The Impostor Queen includes all that stuff, but I chose to connect it to a very real place.

The northernmost point in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is the Keweenaw Peninsula. If you know the place, you will find the map of Kupari in The Impostor Queen to be quite familiar. Part of the peninsula is actually referred to by some as Copper Island—or “Kuparisaari”—in Finnish. Copper mining was the primary industry in that area for a time, and immigrants from Finland were a large part of the population.

When I create a world, I feel no real obligation to stick to facts and history (that’s why it’s called “fantasy”), but I like using them as prompts or jumping-off points, and Keweenaw was exactly that for me. I used Finnish language and mythology as inspiration, as well as the general climate and geology of the Upper Peninsula, and then I just made a bunch of stuff up. That’s my (crazy, wonderful, can’t believe I get to do this as a real) job as an author. But the actual place provided the rich soil from which so many of my ideas grew, including the notion that the copper in the land might have something important to do with why only the Kupari people possess ice and fire magic, and why pulling it from the ground might impact more than just the environment.

I think grounding a fantasy in the familiar or real can sometimes help us as readers connect to a world while still allowing it to be strange and fresh in our imaginations. It gives us a scaffolding from which to hang all the fantastical ornaments we discover throughout the story. I hope that the wintery world of the Kupari feels that way: new, yet reachable, and a place easy to fall into and difficult to leave behind. Now that The Impostor Queen is out in the wild, we’ll find out if it worked!
Sixteen-year-old Elli was a small child when the Elders of Kupari chose her to succeed the Valtia, the queen who wields infinitely powerful ice and fire magic. Since then, Elli has lived in the temple, surrounded by luxury and tutored by magical priests, as she prepares for the day when the Valtia perishes and the magic finds a new home in her. Elli is destined to be the most powerful Valtia to ever rule.

But when the queen dies defending the kingdom from invading warriors, the magic doesn’t enter Elli. It’s nowhere to be found.

Disgraced, Elli flees to the outlands, the home of banished criminals—some who would love to see the temple burn with all its priests inside. As she finds her footing in this new world, Elli uncovers devastating new information about the Kupari magic, those who wield it, and the prophecy that foretold her destiny. Torn between the love she has for her people and her growing loyalty to the banished, Elli struggles to understand the true role she was meant to play. But as war looms, she must align with the right side—before the kingdom and its magic are completely destroyed.


I’m the author of several books for teens, including Of Metal and Wishes(McElderry/Simon & Schuster) and its sequel, Of Dreams and Rust, the Guards of the Shadowlands YA urban fantasy series (Skyscape/Amazon Children’s Publishing), and The Impostor Queen (McElderry, January 2016).
I’m also the co-author (with Walter Jury) of two YA sci-fi thrillers published by Putnam/Penguin: Scanand its sequel Burn. My first adult urban fantasy romance series, Servants of Fate, includes Marked,Claimed, and Fated, all published by 47North in 2015, and my second adult UF series — The Reliquary, kicks off in summer 2016. When I’m not writing, I’m psychologizing. Sometimes I do both at the same time. The results are unpredictable.

3 Finished Copies of THE IMPOSTOR QUEEN 
(US Only)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

The Isle Blog Tour: Guest Post

The trouble and triumphs of world building.....

World building is definitely something I struggled with in the first book. Despite having a pretty thorough image of the Ward, the Isle, and Upstate in my head, I found it difficult to translate from my head to the reader’s mind. I believe there’s a quote by Christopher Nolan, where he talks about efficiency of language… How you explain an idea to an audience a million different ways and yet no one will understand you. But if you find the right, single way to express your idea -- leaving out the unnecessary bits -- they will. That quote applies to so many aspects of storytelling, as well, but I find it particularly useful when thinking about world building.

As for the triumphs, well, they’re limitless. You can build from the ground up. You can discover new species or reinvent history. You have, as Genie would say...

For Type A's like myself, this is a serious joy.


Drought season is coming....

The Ward is in trouble—its streets filled with seawater after a devastating flood and its impoverished inhabitants suffering from a deadly disease called the Blight.

Ren, with the help of her scientist friend, Callum, and her racing buddy, Derek, has discovered a cure—miraculous spring water—administering it to her sick sister, Aven. But when Aven is kidnapped by Governor Voss, the malevolent dictator of the United Metro Isles (UMI), Ren must go on a dangerous mission to save her sister, again.

The mysterious healing water is the only source of freshwater throughout the entire UMI—water that Ren had been tasked by the government to discover. Although she refuses to give up the water’s location, Governor Voss has his own selfish reasons for wanting it. And he will do anything to satisfy his thirst for unquenchable power.

But Ren and Aven have more enemies than the governor. An ancient order, the Tètai, has been guarding the magical water for hundreds of years. And they will kill to protect it. With the Ward in desperate need of freshwater and wracked by disease—and deadly enemies at every turn—the sisters face a dangerous journey, marred by mysterious secrets and horrifying truths, to save their friends and neighbors, and a city.

Jordana Frankel is a Jersey native.

She's been a camp counselor, a salesperson of diamonds, a hostess at a southwestern grill, an archivist of rare books, a yoga instructor, and a reading teacher, but her shining moment was when she got to hang out in Walmart for 12 hours a day as the AXE girl.

She received her B.A. in English from Goucher College, graduated and then went to live in Italy for a year. Afterwards she then went for her MFA in Poetry at Hollins University.

But then she graduated and she moved back to NYC. 

She got her first job at The Literary Group International as a literary agency, where she'd started as an intern reading queries and then assisted editorially. At Linn Prentis Literary, also a literary agency, she handled foreign sales, picked up gems from unsolicited mail, and helped authors through the publishing process. And then it was onto The Book Report Network where she handled ads and promos for features on Teenreads.com, Kidsreads.com, and GraphicNovelReporter.com. 

Jordana is currently writing a (history textbook/)novel entitled THE WARD, forthcoming from KT Books/HarperCollins in 2013. She also teaches creative writing workshops for kids ages 8 to 18 through Writopia Lab, a non-profit organization based in New York City.

LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook

3 Finished copies of THE ISLE (US Only)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:
Week 1:

Week 2
1/22: Emily Reads Everything - Review

Jan 15, 2016

Review & Giveaway: Mastered by Maya Banks

Title: Mastered
Author:  Maya Banks
Publication Date: 12.29.2015
Series: Enforcers#1
Source:  ARC from publisher

Rating: 4 Stars

Summary (from Goodreads):
What he wants, he takes with no remorse or guilt.

She stood out in his club like a gem, unspoiled and untouched. A lamb among wolves, she clearly didn’t belong. Drawn to her innocence he watched as she was surrounded by men who saw what he did—but no one but him could touch her. He summoned her to his private quarters. He sensed her fear. He also recognized the desire in her eyes. And he knew she wouldn’t leave before he possessed her. She had no need to know his secrets. Not until he had her under his complete and utter control.

What he wants, she isn’t sure she can give him.

The moment he told her want he wanted, she couldn’t resist. Instinct told her to run, but her heart said stay and walk the fine line between pleasure and pain. Though she wasn’t sure she could ever completely surrender, the primal part of her wanted to try, even knowing this man could break her in ways she never imagined. Because once he possessed her, he owned her and it would be too late to turn back. She can only pray that he doesn’t destroy her in the end.

I am a huge Maya Banks fan and when I saw that she was delving into a new series, I was 100% on board. If Maya writes it, I reads it. That’s how we were. So when MASTERED landed on my doorstep, I was beyond excited.

Here’s the thing, this book is full of Maya’s telltale awesomeness – hot scenes that will leave you blushing and biting your lip and a cast of characters that sets up a delicious new series.

My problems were with Evangeline and Drake, mostly Evangeline. Drake is a total Dom—controlling and demanding and always in control. Sometimes he was a bit more of an ass than he needed to be, but I was OK with it.

Evangeline was a bit too self-absorbed for me. She had her moments where I genuinely enjoyed her as a character, but I also felt a lot of frustration at her forced naiveté. No one is that ignorant. And while I can allow some leeway because she’s fumbling through this new relationship, she makes some major missteps that I’m still shaking my head over.

But this book ends on a massive cliffhanger that I simply must know the end to, and there is a cast of peripheral characters that you know are going to get their own books later on down the road and I can’t wait to read their stories. That’s why I gave this book 4 stars. Because it’s a hopeful start to a new series by an author I really love.

The lovely people at Sullivan and Partners are letting me give away 1 finished copy of MASTERED. 
US & Canada Only
Winner must be over 17

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Jan 11, 2016

Truthwitch Pen Pal Blog Tour

Hi, y'all! Welcome to the TRUTHWITCH Pen Pal Blog Tour, combining my love of pen pals and blog tours (seriously, brilliant idea)! A few weeks ago I was introduced to the lovely Ellie at Curiosity Killed the Bookworm and we got to ask Susan Dennard a question (OK, Ellie's the brains behind the question).

If a threadwitch was watching us read, what would she see in our threads? This can be specific to readingTruthwitch or just in general.
Fun question! So when a Threadwitch looks at someone, she (because they’re all female!) sees winding, glowing strands hovering above the person. The color of the Threads indicates what a person is feeling.
Because Iseult (and other Threadwitches) is so accustomed to reading a person’s emotion through their Threads, she’s not great with facial expressions. Not only can’t she read them easily, but she can’t even make them herself. She’s just always known “the weave of the world” by simply glancing at Threads.

So if a Threadwitch was to watch you read a really awesome book (let’s say Harry Potter!), then she’d probably see *** focus with flickering shades of *** excitement or *** pleasure or even grayish fear. If a Threadwitch were to watch you read a school textbook, though, she might see something more like *** boredom and *** annoyance. ;)

Let's also take a second to check out these two covers, shall we?

First the US:

And now the UK:

Any way you cut it, TRUTHWITCH has a gorgeous cover.

On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.

In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.

Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.

Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.

Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

Susan Dennard has come a long way from small-town Georgia. With a masters degree in marine biology, she got to travel the world—six out of seven continents, to be exact (she’ll get to Asia one of these days!)—before she settled down as a full-time novelist and writing instructor.

She is the author of the Something Strange and Deadly series (from HarperTeen) as well as the forthcoming Witchlands Series (Tor, 2015). When not writing, she can be found hiking with her dogs, exploring tidal pools, or earning bruises at the dojo.

You can learn more about Susan on her websiteblognewsletterTwitter, or Pinterest.

Jan 8, 2016

The Tsar's Guard Parade

Welcome to The Tsar's Guard Parade!!! We are gearing up with this months long parade of blogs to celebrate one of the most anticipated titles of 2016 - THE CROWN'S GAME by Evelyn Skye!

To celebrate the book (and my love of all things sparkly), I wanted to share with you some makeup looks I think would be fitting for THE CROWN'S GAME and The Tsar's Guard.

First off, I think a gold smokey eye is a must have:

And of course what goes great with gold? Red. A red lip, that is.

And who doesn't love a strong cat eye?

Make sure you check out the rest of the parade: http://www.evelynskye.com/events/
About the Book:
Author: Evelyn Skye
Release Date: May 17th, 2016
Pages: 416
Publisher: Balzer+Bray
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.

And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.

Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?

For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.

And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love . . . or be killed himself.

As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear . . . the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.

About Evelyn:
Evelyn Skye was once offered a job by the C.I.A., she not-so-secretly wishes she was on "So You Think You Can Dance," and if you challenge her to a pizza-eating contest, she guarantees she will win. When she isn't writing, Evelyn can be found chasing her daughter on the playground or sitting on the couch, immersed in a good book and eating way too many cookies. THE CROWN'S GAME is her first novel. Evelyn can be found online at www.evelynskye.com and on Twitter @EvelynSkyeYA.

1 winner will receive an ARC of THE CROWN’S GAME. International.

a Rafflecopter giveaway