Saturday, May 28, 2011

New Releases Giveaway! (Giveaway CLOSED)

Welcome to Giveaway #3 for the First Annual Anniversary Celebration! Below is a gallery of pictures from all of my 2011 New This Week! posts. They're sporadic, but I think I have done enough to give you a nice variety to choose from! Each link will direct you to a different post, beginning from this week's post back to January.

(1) Choose one book from the options below to receive if you're picked as the winner of this contest.
(2) Make sure to read the rules on this post before entering.
(3) Contest is INTERNATIONAL.
(4) Fill out THIS FORM to be entered!

Good luck!!

Don't forget that this giveaway is part of a four-part giveaway for the 1st Annual Anniversary Celebration. If you haven't done so already, be sure to check out and enter the other giveaways below as well.
Giveaway #1: In My Mailbox
Giveaway #2: Before & After

New This Week!

These are just some of the books that were released this week!
Click on the picture for more information.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Before & After Giveaway! (Giveaway CLOSED!)

Before I say anything else, I want to apologize for flooding your Google Readers with my B&A posts today. I scheduled all of my posts last week because I knew I wouldn't be around much this week. Unfortunately, my mind is a month ahead of time... I ended up scheduling them all for a week in June instead of May! Then, Blogger decided it didn't want to cooperate, so I had to re-do them all over again today. Again, sorry!


Welcome to Giveaway #2 for the First Annual Anniversary Celebration! Below is a gallery of pictures from all of my Before & After posts. Each photo is linked to its corresponding post. Only the author's featured book is eligible for this giveaway!

**This giveaway includes the opportunity to earn extra entries. Simply comment on the posts below for +1 for each comment. Add up your points and include them in the entry form!**

(1) Choose one book from the options below to receive if you're picked as the winner of this contest.
(2) Make sure to read the rules on this post before entering.
(3) Contest is INTERNATIONAL.
(4) Fill out THIS FORM to be entered!

Good luck!!

Remember, this is Giveaway #2 of my 4 giveaways this week. Click here to enter Giveaway #1, and be sure to keep an eye out for the last two giveaways that will be posted this weekend!!

Cloud Nine Review

Cloud Nine: A Paranormal Romance of the Guardians of Man
by Melissa Smith

Publisher: Smith Books
Release Date:
January 3, 2011
The Guardians of Man
YA, Paranormal Romance
5/5 (Avg 4.5/5)
What happens when you receive a guardian angel?
What if you don't believe you need one?
What if one wants you removed?

Claire Grayson is a seventeen year old girl on the verge of graduating high school. Better than a year ago her mother went back to work full time. Her father, being an attorney, has always been gone long hours, so that is nothing new to her. So now she has learned to take care of her basic needs on her own. For spending and gas money she works part time as a tutor for other students who need a little help in various subjects.

Her best friends are the bright spots that helped to keep her laughing when she thought herself in love only to have thim break her heart. After the crash of her heart, it took her a while to come back to the land of the living. Just when she did, when she was finally done waiting for him to realize his mistake. When she decided that it was time for her to move on. She meets Sterling Warde.

Sterling Warde is a Guardian. He helps people in need and helps them get on in life with a better understanding of living. While with a charge that was almost ready to take back his own life, Sterling catches a glimpse of Claire and is startled by his reaction to her. Puzzled, he follows her to see what the spark was. What made her reach out and touch his nerves and steal his breath. When he finally reveals himself to her she is afraid of him and doesn't want him around. But with time and patientence, he works to see her safe.

There are people out there that want each of them for themselves. Someone who will stop at nothing to have Sterling. Someone who will do anything to reclaim Claire's affections. Together, Sterling and Claire will dissuade them. Someone will fall. Someone will hurt. And others will...
I cannot sum up this book better than what is already said by the synopsis, so all I can do is offer my humble opinion of the story. It's amazing. The whole concept of this specific guardian form was something that I had to get used to, but once Sterling took on a human form.. it was much easier to adjust.

The characters are great. Claire is your typical teenager in the way that she has a typical teenage voice - a little confusing and erratic and sometimes all out irrational, but it is exactly what you would expect from someone her age. I love the interactions between her and Sterling, who is definitely one of those lovable guy's in YA that we love to swoon over. He is definitely a guardian and I think he did his job well, especially when it came to protecting and taking care of Claire. I also have to note that the other characters in the book are just as great - from Claire's friend to Sterling's "sibling" guardians... and even Sterling's ex, who is someone you just love to hate. She does "woman scorned" quite well.

This is yet another great book from another great indie author! I'd say this is a definite recommended read to all of my YA paranormal romance lovers out there. Melissa Smith is a wonderful writer and I look forward to more from her in the future.

Before & After: Aimee Carter

Aimée Carter was born and raised in Michigan, where she currently resides. Her first novel for young adults, THE GODDESS TEST, will be published by Harlequin Teen on April 19th, 2011. The sequel, GODDESS INTERRUPTED, will follow in January 2012.

Check out more at

It's all much more nerve-wrecking than I'd anticipated. The fear of how readers will react - negatively, or worse, no one will bother buying the book at all - has a nasty habit of showing up at the most unexpected of times, and as a result, I've been a lot more jumpy and anxious than usual. Typically I'm calm and laid-back, but right now I'm wavering between excited anticipation, complete and utter terror, and massive worry that I'll buckle under the weight of more stress than I've felt in a very long time.

And then come the hours when I forget I have a book coming out in a matter of weeks and instead focus on the norm. Those are always nice, and if I could make myself forget more often, I would. But since I'm in the middle of writing the third book right now, the impending release makes me hyper-aware of the fact that I'm writing for an audience, making things even more nail-biting. Sometimes I have to take a break, unplug the internet, and curl up with good book or movie to forget where I am for a while.

In other words, I'd imagine things are progressing rather normally for me at this point in the game. :)
It's been a roller coaster, that's for sure, but I'm much calmer now and more relaxed about seeing it on shelves. Whenever I go to a bookstore, I see if they have it in stock. It doesn't feel real yet, and it'll be a long time before it does, I think. But seeing the book there does feel like a huge accomplishment. Even if only a handful of people ever read it, at least those people gave it a chance, and that means the world to me.

I'm still focused on writing the third book right now, and that odd perspective, knowing that the book I'm working on now will hit shelves in a year and a half too, is still hanging with me. But my anxiety levels have returned to normal for now. Now that one book is out, it's easier for me to accept that all three of them will be up there on the shelves some day, and I can't wait to see readers' reactions as the trilogy unfolds. I'm excited for that, nervous for sales, and so, so thrilled to have this opportunity to begin with.

Thank you so much!

Reviews for The Goddess Test
Missy's Reads & Reviews
Sophistikatied Reviews
The Well-Read Wife

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Before & After: Jennifer Archer

A Baby Boomer Is Born: I am born in a small town in North Central Texas the same year Humphrey Bogart dies, the same year "Beatnik" becomes a commonly used word in the American vocabulary and the first living being…a dog…orbits outer space on Sputnik II. Author Jack Kerouac’s On the Road and Dr. Seuss’s The Cat in the Hat hit bookstore shelves that year, the play West Side Story opens in New York City, and Bridgette Bardot’s movie And God Created Woman sparks controversy over its sexual content. What is the year of my birth? I’ll let you figure it out.

Only 25 days until my debut Young Adult novel, THROUGH HER EYES, makes an entrance into the world! I feel like an expectant mother, excited to show of my baby. There’s so much left to do to get ready for the big day, and because of that I’m also feeling a little scattered – uncertain of what to do first and afraid I’m forgetting something important. My three week blog tour begins next week, so I’ve been double-checking to make sure all the fantastic bloggers participating have all the information they need. After the book’s release, I’ll be speaking to students at a few schools, and I’m preparing my presentations. And I’ll be attending a couple of conferences in the weeks ahead, as well as going on a live book tour, so I’ve been scheduling flights and booking hotel rooms.

In between all of this, I’m waiting on revisions from my editor for my second Young Adult novel, THE SHADOW GIRL. And I’ve been working on a new story that I’m really excited about, so that helps me take my mind off of all my nervousness about the release of THROUGH HER EYES. Why am I nervous? I want readers to love the book as much as I do. Tansy, Tate, Bethyl Ann, Henry and Isabel – the characters – became real to me while writing the book, and I care about them. And, of course, I hope readers will care about them, too. So far, the reviews have been good, so I tell myself that’s a promising sign!

Mostly, however, I feel fortunate and happy that THROUGH HER EYES found a “home” at Harper Teen. Because of that, I get to spend my days doing work I love. And that is truly a gift.

Ten days have passed since the release of my debut YA novel THROUGH HER EYES and life is crazy busy but good! I attended the Texas Library Association convention in Austin last week and autographed books in the Harper Teen booth. It was wonderful to meet some of the librarians and so many teens that are excited about reading and books. Three girls stand out in my mind most of all. After the signing, I was walking through the convention center and met these young ladies. I handed them each a bookmark and they squealed! One of them said, "You wrote this book? We've been hearing great things about it." It was an unforgettable moment and the best feeling in the world. Yesterday I had a booksigning in my hometown of Amarillo, Texas and sold out! I feel so fortunate to have such support from my community.

In spite of all this good news, I still fret. I can't help it. I worry because bookstores are struggling and I know that, because of this, a lot of them aren't ordering as many copies of a debut YA novel than they would have a year ago. I worry that readers will go to the store and not be able to find the book, and that they won't realize they can ask the store to order it for them without being charged for shipping. I worry that my book will not be on the shelf when a potential reader looking for a new author to try is browsing the bookstore aisles, so they won't be drawn to the beautiful cover of THROUGH HER EYES.

The world of publishing is in a major state of change at the moment, and I am doing everything I can to learn how to change, as well, in the ways I must if I want to remain a part of it. I want to continue doing what I love to do -- write stories that I hope will be a source of enjoyment for a segment of readers.

Reviews of Through Her Eyes
The Book Scout
The Elliott Review
Electrifying Reviews

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Before & After: Lisa Cach

Lisa Cach has authored a whole genre of books including books on paranormal works, chick literature, romantic erotica, and young adult. The breadth of her work continues to expand as she grows as a novelist.

WAKE UNTO ME is her debut Young Adult novel.

I feel a mix of excitement, trepidation, and relief.

I spent a couple years writing, rewriting, and editing Wake Unto Me, and I’ve spent the last several months sending ARCs to bloggers, answering interview questions, scheduling book signings, and trying to come up with clever ways to get attention for the book. Writing and releasing a book is like planning a party or a trip: you expend lots of effort trying to get everything in order and trying to make the event the best it can possibly be, but at a certain point there’s nothing more that you can do. You’ve done all you can, and the time has come to release all control over what is going to happen.

That’s how I’m feeling now: I’ve done all I can to make the book the best book it could be, and to give it a great sendoff into the world. Now I can only watch, and hope. There’s a feeling of powerlessness and trepidation with that, but also a sense of freedom and relief. Whatever happens, I know I did my best.

To my surprise, my efforts to give Wake Unto Me a solid push into the world have not slowed down. If anything, they feel more intense, given that I’ve been going to book signings. Real world interactions leave a vivid impression, and I’m enjoying hearing people’s voices, and watching their expressions as we talk. It’s a little surreal, too, to be the one on the ‘author’ side of the signing table; I only wish I was better at letting people know how much it means to me that they came to see me, or bought my book. Meeting a reader is the ultimate payoff for all the work that went into writing Wake Unto Me.

At the end of the month I’ll be taking off on a research trip to Central America for three weeks. The trip will force me to unplug from the internet and my promo efforts, and get back to writing... Which is good, because heaven knows I haven’t been able to pull the plug myself.

Reviews for Wake Unto Me
Tales of a Ravenous Reader
The Book Scout
Presenting Lenore

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