Thursday, July 28, 2016

Book Review: Summer of Supernovas by Darcy Woods

The blurb as seen on Goodreads:
Release Date: May 10, 2016
Publisher: Crown Books
352 Pages

Fans of Jennifer E. Smith and Jenny Han will fall in love with this heartfelt and humor-laced debut following one girl’s race to find the guy of her cosmic dreams.

When zodiac-obsessed teen Wilamena Carlisle discovers a planetary alignment that won’t repeat for a decade, she’s forced to tackle her greatest astrological fear: The Fifth House—relationships and love.

But when Wil falls for a sensitive guitar player hailing from the wrong side of the astrology chart, she must decide whether a cosmically doomed love is worth rejecting her dead mother’s legacy and the very system she’s faithfully followed through a lifetime of unfailing belief.

To Wilamena Carlisle the stars tell her everything. Most importantly, they tell her her perfect love match. That knowledge, plus a promise made to her mother, sends Wil on a mission to find her match. This includes going into a bar and using the cheesy "What's your sign?" line. Then she meets Grant and Seth - brothers, of course. One who seems to be her perfect match and the other who seems to be the one she was warned against. 

So. here's the thing. This book has a love triangle, like majorly. I know that some people don't like that sort of thing and I get it. Me? I can go either way. Sometimes I love them and the drama they provide, other times they don't fit the scenario and seem like just another plot point but provide nothing to the overlying story. This one? It worked for me. And both boys were great. Seth- the fun loving, easy going younger brother and then Grant - the brooding musician with a tortured past. Guess who I wanted her to choose?

Summer of Supernovas was cute. A great summer read and I liked that you didn't have to be well versed in astrology to follow the plot. Now, if you're like me, you read your horoscopes and you maybe have looked up your ideal mates sign, but that's as far as I've ever gone. Woods includes astrology as it's own plot but presents it in a way that it's easy to understand. 

I adored Wil. She was quirky, fun, and made mistakes - she was human. Her love for her best friend and grandmother jumped off of the pages and just added more depth to this book. This was the first book from Woods and I cannot wait to read more. 

Monday, July 25, 2016

Cover Reveal: Opposition & Shadows by Jennifer Armentrout

Opposition & Shadows Cover Reveals Banner

Let us know what you think of the NEW covers for Opposition and Shadows by Jennifer L. Armentrout!

Opposition (Lux, #5) and Shadows (Lux, #0.5) release on November 1, 2016

This cover reveal is brought to you by Entangled TEEN and YA Books Central!

About Opposition:

Don't miss Opposition, the fifth and final book in Jennifer L. Armentrout's bestselling Lux series, now available as a standalone in print for the first time! "An unmissable series!" –Samantha Young, New York Times bestselling author of On Dublin Street “This is the stuff swoons are made of.” —Wendy Higgins, New York Times bestselling author of Sweet Evil Katy knows the world changed the night the Luxen came. She can't believe Daemon stood by as his kind threatened to obliterate every last human and hybrid on Earth. But the lines between good and bad have blurred. Daemon will do anything to save those he loves, even if it means betrayal. But when it quickly becomes impossible to tell friend from foe, and the world is crumbling around them, they may lose everything to ensure the survival of their friends…and mankind. Want to read the LUX series on your ereader? Each book is sold individually in e-format: #1: Obsidian #2: Onyx #3: Opal #4: Origin #5: Opposition Dawsons story: Shadows

Want to Read More? Pre-order Opposition Today!


Amazon | B&N | |


About Shadows:

Don't miss Shadows, Dawson Blacks story in Jennifer L. Armentrout's bestselling Lux series, now available as a standalone in print for the first time! "An unmissable series!" –Samantha Young, New York Times bestselling author of On Dublin Street “This is the stuff swoons are made of.” —Wendy Higgins, New York Times bestselling author of Sweet Evil The last thing Dawson Black expected was Bethany Williams. As a Luxen, an alien life-form on Earth, human girls are…well, fun. But since the Luxen have to keep their true identities a secret, falling for one would be insane. Dangerous. Tempting. Undeniable. Bethany can't deny the immediate connection between her and Dawson. And even though boys aren't a complication she wants, she can't stay away from him. Still, whenever they lock eyes, she's drawn in. Captivated. Lured. Loved. Dawson is keeping a secret that will change her existence…and put her life in jeopardy. But even he can't stop risking everything for one human girl. Or from a fate that is as unavoidable as love itself.
Want to read the LUX series on your ereader? Each book is sold individually in e-format: #1: Obsidian #2: Onyx #3: Opal #4: Origin #5: Opposition Dawsons story: Shadows

Want to Read More? Pre-order Shadows Today!


Amazon | B&N | |

About the Author:

JenniferLArmentrout # 1 New York Times and # 1 International Bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki. Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV. Her young adult romantic suspense novel DON’T LOOK BACK was a 2014 nominated Best in Young Adult Fiction by YALSA. She also writes Adult and New Adult contemporary and paranormal romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.

Find Jennifer L. Armentrout Online:


Thank you so much to Entangled Teen for allowing me to take part in this cover release. Jennifer Armentrout is one of my favorite authors and I encourage all of you to check out any of her writings. You will not be disappointed! 


Monday, July 18, 2016

Guest Post with Shannon Lee Alexander!

Music and Writing

Years and years ago, back in the day when I had cable, there was a funny Drew Barrymore and Hugh Grant movie called Music and Lyrics. It used to come on All. The. Time. And of course, it was adorable (because they are adorable), and so I’d end up watching it All. The. Time.

I haven’t thought of that movie in ages. But when I made a note to myself about this guest post, Music and Writing, it made me think of it. I seem to remember that Hugh Grant’s character was a musician from an old 80s band or something, and he needed to write a comeback song, but he was crap at lyrics. In comes Drew Barrymore. Actually, she came in to water his plants because he was apparently too lazy to do this himself? I don’t know, whatever. I can’t sit in judgment because I killed a cactus once (and then made a cute felt one to replace it because I’d really liked that cactus, but obviously couldn’t be trusted to keep plants alive). 

Okay, I swear, I’m getting to the point!

So, my point is that you should watch this movie because—no, sorry. My point is that sometimes music can unlock words within us. Hugh Grant’s character stunk at writing the lyrics until he met Drew Barrymore and realized he had something important to say. And sometimes writing is like that—we end up stuck in a rut because we’re not sure what we really want to communicate. Music is great at giving us the boost we need to get out of the rut.

I can’t actually write and listen to music at the same time. I generally need quiet or white noise (I love to burn wooden wick candles because they hum and pop while they burn and make great white noise). But when I’m stuck in my writing, I take a break and listen to music.

I’ll do something mindless like fold laundry or walk the dog while listening, and before long, the music has unraveled the knot in my mind and I’m flooded with new ideas for my story and characters. I’m sure there’s science behind it (when doing research for LOVE AND OTHER UNKNOWN VARIABLES I remember reading about the ways music and other forms of art can affect our brains), but what’s important is that it works. Every. Time.

I like to make playlists for various characters, settings, or moods to go with whatever I’m currently working on. Listening to a certain character’s playlist before writing a tough scene with them always helps me jump right into the character.

I struggled for a while finding Becca’s voice in LIFE AFTER JULIET. Becca had changed a lot from when I wrote her in LAOUV, so finding the new Becca, the after-Charlotte version of Becca, was difficult. I had LAOUV readers help me put together a Spotify playlist of songs for Becca.

The list is entitled “Defy the Stars,” a theme from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet I was trying to help Becca incorporate into her own life. Anytime I felt lost writing in Becca’s voice, I’d take a break and listen to one of the songs on her playlist. Something about the familiar songs would take me right back to where I needed to be—the perfect mindset for capturing the essence of Becca Hanson.

Take a listen to Defy the Stars and then let me know if you have any other songs you think sound like Becca. I’d love to add them to my list. An unexpected benefit to keeping playlists like these is that when I get lonely for my old characters and stories, listening to their playlists takes me right into the heart of my memories.


I want to say a HUGE thank you to Shannon Lee Alexander for taking the time to stop by and give us a little insight into her writing prep. And I know I posted my review of Life After Juliet a few days ago, but I just want to say again that if you haven't read it, please check it out now! I mean, I gave it 5 stars! Also, that playlist...there are some great songs on there and I implore you to take a listen :)

Please please please check this book out! You will not be disapointed!


Thursday, July 14, 2016

ARC Review: His Royal Secret (His Royal Secret #1) by Lilah Pace

The blurb as seen on Goodreads:
Release Date: July 19, 2016
Publisher: Intermix
185 Pages

The first in an enchanting new male/male romantic duology from Lilah Pace, author of Asking for More and Begging for It ....

James, the handsome, cosmopolitan Prince of Wales, is used to being in the public eye. But he's keeping a king-sized secret...James, next in line for the throne, is gay.

He’s been able to hide his sexual orientation with the help of his best friend and beard, Lady Cassandra. Sometimes he feels like a coward for not coming out, but he daren’t risk losing the crown. If he did, the succession would fall on his deeply troubled younger sister, Princess Amelia. To protect her, James is willing to live a lie.

While on holiday, he meets Benjamin Dahan—a rugged international reporter with a globe-trotting, unattached life—who catches far more than James's eye. And when Ben is transferred to London, it seems fate may finally be smiling on James.

But what began as a torrid fling grows into something far more intimate and powerful. Soon James will have decide who he is, what he wants from life and love, and what he’s willing to sacrifice for the truth...

So, I was a little scared going into this. Mostly because of the titles of Pace's previous works. Yes, I admit it, I judged books based on their titles. But come on, I'm not the only one. Anyway, however, when I saw this involved a royal family I had to jump in. My love of royals knows no bounds.
You don't have to tell me, Obama.

Anyway, the book. 

Future King of England is hiding something from the people - and a majority of his family. He's gay. His very public relationship with Lady Cassandra is a lie conceived between two best friends to protect the monarchy and James's little sister. Because James knows that England is not ready for a gay King and if he abdicated the throne it would fall on the shoulders of his little sister who is riddled with anxiety and suffers from some sort of mental disorder. But all that changes when Cassandra falls in love (not with James but someone else) and James meets Benjamin. 

Reading this was like reading the OK! magazine or something along that line. It was just so scandalous! All of the lies, the sneaking around - it made me feel like I was in on this huge secret and the rest of the world was oblivious, which I guess in a way I kind of was. 

I found James to be adorably mature. He knew what his role in this world was and what was expected of him: to put duty before family. And he was doing just that. But we also got to see the side that wasn't so put together and was scared and just wanting something real. Ben, on the other hand, was openly gay but didn't want a relationship. Having been burned in the past he was completely fine just being casual. The way these two came together and made each other stronger was fun to read. I really liked how the author combined the royal duties with Jame's sexual orientation and the consequences of coming out. 

Based on the way this one ended, I cannot wait to read the next one to see the fallout of James's decision. 

I received an e-copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.


Wednesday, July 13, 2016

ARC Review: The Memory Book by Lara Avery

The blurb as seen on Goodreads:
Release Date: July 5, 2016
Publisher: Alloy Entertainment
368 Pages

They tell me that my memory will never be the same, that I'll start forgetting things. At first just a little, and then a lot. So I'm writing to remember.

Sammie was always a girl with a plan: graduate at the top of her class and get out of her small town as soon as humanly possible. Nothing will stand in her way--not even a rare genetic disorder the doctors say will slowly start to steal her memories and then her health. What she needs is a new plan.

So the Memory Book is born: Sammie's notes to her future self, a document of moments great and small. It's where she'll record every perfect detail of her first date with longtime crush, Stuart--a brilliant young writer who is home for the summer. And where she'll admit how much she's missed her childhood best friend, Cooper, and even take some of the blame for the fight that ended their friendship.

Through a mix of heartfelt journal entries, mementos, and guest posts from friends and family, readers will fall in love with Sammie, a brave and remarkable girl who learns to live and love life fully, even though it's not the life she planned.

Man, this book was tough.

And weirdly enough, it was tough on two completely different levels for me. The first, for a majority of the book I didn't really like it. I was more reading just to get to the end. As much as I felt for what Sammie was going through, I just could not connect with her. But then the last 10 pages or so happened and suddenly my emotions were everywhere. Suddenly it was tough to read what was happening to and around Sammie. And geez, that last page...
The Memory Book is told in kind of a journal format. After finding out that she has a rare disease that will eventually rob her of her memories, Sammie decides to start writing everything down for her future self. And honestly, it's kind of boring. Sammie was kind of bland - most entries were spent discussing the upcoming debate final, or her massive crush on Stuart, or just fretting about being valedictorian. She lacked any real personality other than being socially awkward - which we were told she was, not really shown.

When the disease starts taking over, the journal entries become frantic and sometimes nonsensical - which made sense and I really liked seeing the way the author portrayed her deterioration. For that, the author gets props. Finally, personality was starting to come through in bits and I could start to feel Sammie's frustration and fear.

Another issue I had was the way the love interests were showcased and ultimately dealt with. Feelings sort of came out of nowhere and were jarring - at least to me.

Overall, it was an interesting book to read. I had never heard of the disease that Sammie had before reading this but couldn't even imagine going through what she did. But guys, seriously, that last just gutted me.

I received an e-copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Teaser Tuesday 7/12


Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted MizB at Books and a Beat!
To participate, all you have to do is:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure what you share doesn't give too much away! You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can ad the book to their TBR lists if they like your teasers!

Maybe I thought I was entrapping him...
Maybe I did think it would hurt him - or kill him.
Maybe I didn't think anything could kill him.

Chapter 34, page 180,

What are you reading this week?
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