#CelebratingDebutantes2013: Helen Douglas (13 Random Facts + Giveaway) + 2013 YA and MG Time Travel Reading Challenge: November Wrap-Up Post

Saturday, November 30, 2013



Y'all are getting a double combo today! Not only am I featuring a debut author but her debut novel is a time travel one! And you all know how the last day of the month is always time travel day in here. So let's all welcome the author of After Eden, HELEN DOUGLAS!


About Helen Douglas

Helen Douglas graduated from the LSE with a degree in economic history. After a stint as a subeditor in London, she moved to California, where she worked as a theatre director, then as an English teacher. A keen stargazer, one of her first memories is of getting up in the middle of the night to sneak outside and watch the Perseid meteor shower with a friend. It was a telescope that she received as a birthday gift that helped inspire EDEN. She now lives in Cornwall with her husband and children.


Website | Twitter | Facebook


THIRTEEN THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT HELEN DOUGLAS

1. My favourite breakfast is peanut butter and Tabasco sauce on toast. In fact, I like Tabasco on pretty much everything savoury.

2. I once got stung by a scorpion deep in the desert, over 80 miles from the nearest doctor. It hurt like hell, but all I had to kill the pain was a bag of ice.


3. I’m an arachnophobe. I’m also short-sighted. I once went hiking in the desert without wearing my glasses. When I finally put them on I discovered that the hundreds of brown smudges on the rocks around me were actually tarantulas.


4. I love deserts but don’t care for dessert.


5. I have been swimming with freshwater crocodiles. (It’s ok, it’s the saltwater ones you have to watch out for!)


6. Peter Pan is one of my all-time favourite stories.


7. If I could travel through time, I would travel a hundred years in the future just to see how everyone I know turns out.


8. If I could have a superpower, it would be either flight or time-travel.


9. I was usually picked last for sports teams at school. The only sport I was even remotely good at was the hurdles.


10. I’m so bad at drawing that even my stick figures are hard to identify.


11. After Eden was written in the hours before dawn, which was quite helpful if I needed to pop outside to look at the stars.


12. Semi-colons are my favourite punctuation mark; I use them far too often.


13. When I was a child, I wanted to be either a meteorologist or a writer. I still like weather.


***
Uhm, can I have you Helen for an aunt or a cousin or whatever? YOU ARE DEFINITELY COOL. I love stars as well but I just like gazing up at them. I can't remember the name of the stars and all that even though I'm in Astronomy Club and I'm good friends with my teacher and even though I have tons of astronomy geeks for friends. Sigh. Now, go and check out AFTER EDEN!

***


After Eden (After Eden, #1)
Title: After Eden (After Eden #1)
Author: Helen Douglas
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children's
Date of Publication: November 5 (USA) | November 7, 2013 (UK)


Eden Anfield loves puzzles, so when mysterious new boy Ryan Westland shows up at her school she's hooked. On the face of it, he's a typical American teenager. So why doesn't he recognise pizza? And how come he hasn't heard of Hitler? What puzzles Eden the most, however, is the interest he's taking in her. 

As Eden starts to fall in love with Ryan, she begins to unravel his secret. Her breakthrough comes one rainy afternoon when she stumbles across a book in Ryan's bedroom - a biography of her best friend - written over fifty years in the future. Confronting Ryan, she discovers that he is there with one unbelievably important purpose ... and she might just have destroyed his only chance of success.

Purchase from Amazon (US) | Amazon (UK) | B&N | TBD (US) | TBD (UK)




Giveaway

Helen is giving away her last ARC of AFTER EDEN! Open internationally. Good luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you Helen for celebrating your debut year with us! Come back tomorrow here at Oops! I Read A Book Again as Christian Schoon visits us! Now, go on to Michelle's blog for her feature on Jennifer Ann Mann!


Are you a 2014 debut author? Are you interested in participating for Celebrating Debutantes 2014? Fill out this form!

Link up your time travel reviews for November here!



Review: After Eden by Helen Douglas

Friday, November 29, 2013

After Eden (After Eden, #1)
Title: After Eden (After Eden #1)
Author: Helen Douglas
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children's
Date of Publication: November 5 (USA) | November 7, 2013 (UK)

Eden Anfield loves puzzles, so when mysterious new boy Ryan Westland shows up at her school she's hooked. On the face of it, he's a typical American teenager. So why doesn't he recognise pizza? And how come he hasn't heard of Hitler? What puzzles Eden the most, however, is the interest he's taking in her.

As Eden starts to fall in love with Ryan, she begins to unravel his secret. Her breakthrough comes one rainy afternoon when she stumbles across a book in Ryan's bedroom - a biography of her best friend - written over fifty years in the future. Confronting Ryan, she discovers that he is there with one unbelievably important purpose ... and she might just have destroyed his only chance of success.


Review

My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Thank you to Bloomsbury UK/ANZ and NetGalley for the review copy! This in no way affected my views of the novel.

Scene: My self-imposed deadline for finishing this book is November 28. I have a new adult book I have to finish by November 26. But since I wasn't in the mood for NA, I started this November 24 even though it's shouldn't be my priority because YA + time travel + romance = UHM, HECK YEAH. And then I couldn't stop reading that I ended up staying up until 2AM of (technically) November 26. I had work and classes and all that stuff but still, I couldn't not finish it. That was how  engrossed I was with AFTER EDEN.

AFTER EDEN has a common time travel trope, the new mysterious guy who takes an interest on our "average" or shy heroine, who in truth is a guy from the future tasked to edit the timeline. In a small quiet town in England, Ryan, our new guy, transfers schools. He's hot and all that but he doesn't know what pizza is. Or who Hitler was. Red flags raise on Eden's mind but she can't help but be intrigued with this guy (and eventually, like) who takes an interest in her as well.

Truth be told, I didn't read the synopsis much before I read this book so I was eager to know what Ryan's mission was. So when that bit came, I was so interested because the pro-environment advocacy really shined through and I love that. Moreover, the science behind the time travel in this, while not fully explained, was correct and that's always a plus.

However, as engaged as I was with AFTER EDEN, I didn't really feel so invested in the characters or in the story. It's as if I was just reading about them and not living with them, which is my usual indication if I really like a novel. I think Eden didn't shine as a character and neither did Ryan. He was a cardboard mysterious hot new guy and Eden was kind of passive most of the novel. Well, I can't blame her as that's her personality. But when she started getting into Ryan's mission and became pro-active in everything, I think it became much much more interesting and I got invested in the whole shebang.

Like some reviewers observed, while the romance was sweet, it didn't feel epic which is kind of how time travel romances go. Maybe it's because the characters weren't that memorable for me or that their ordeals and the bittersweet factor were downplayed in my opinion. Because yes, by the end, deus ex machina! I think I would have preferred the ending be bittersweet because it would have worked perfectly well. Although I would end up with a broken heart at 2AM, not everything must end up happily. So I ended up rolling my eyes a bit at the end. But whatever, right? ALL FOR LOVE. I'm also all for love. I admit to feeling giddy though at the last scene. What? I'm still a romance-loving girl!

Still, After Eden was a sweet time travel romance with a strong environmental advocacy. It's not preachy though so no worries! Will I read the sequel? Of course! Although I didn't feel much for this book, I am still interested in what happens next. What are the repercussions of Ryan's actions? Will their love survive all the odds? Eeepp! I'm getting excited already! Love against time will forever be my favorite.

About Helen Douglas

Helen Douglas graduated from the LSE with a degree in economic history. After a stint as a subeditor in London, she moved to California, where she worked as a theatre director, then as an English teacher. A keen stargazer, one of her first memories is of getting up in the middle of the night to sneak outside and watch the Perseid meteor shower with a friend. It was a telescope that she received as a birthday gift that helped inspire EDEN. She now lives in Cornwall with her husband and children.

#CelebratingDebutantes2013: Danielle DeVor (13 Random Facts + Giveaway)



Our featured author today didn't just release her debut novel this 2013. She even released three books! Let's all welcome, DANIELLE DEVOR!

About Danielle DeVor


Danielle DeVor spent her early years fantasizing about vampires and watching “Salem’s Lot” way too many times. After living briefly in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, she moved back to her hometown to write. When not writing and reading about weird things, you will find her hanging out at the nearest coffee shop, enjoying a mocha frappuccino.

Blog | Twitter | Facebook


THIRTEEN THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT DANIELLE DEVOR

1. Loves Bratwurst, but hates American hot dogs.

2. Has a huge collection of pointe shoes.


3. Loves animals.


4. Her favorite color it black.


5. Has not run across anything yet that is too chocolatey.


6. Is sometimes inspired by dreams.


7. Can play the harp.


8. Once wanted to be a special effects make-up artist.


9. Does not like talking on the phone.


10. Roses are her favorite flower.


11. Thinks Praying Mantis are fun insects.


12. Does not like getting dressed up.


13. Makes amazing chocolate chip cookies.


***
Nom nom nom! Send some chocolate chip cookies my way, Danielle! So let's get to know Danielle's debut novel, TAIL OF THE DEVIL!

***


Tail of the Devil
Title: Tail of the Devil
Author: Danielle DeVor
Publisher: Eirelander Publishing
Date of Publication: April 26, 2013


Like many homeless kids, fifteen-year-old Mathias Drvar died on the streets. Unlike the rest, he came back– as a vampire.

If Mathias thought being homeless sucked, being a vampire is worse. The vampires who transformed him believe he is the reincarnation of an ancient king. They expect him to quit swearing, use a napkin, and play by their weird, ancient rules. F— that.

But after the reigning queen assaults Mathias, he has visions of a past life in which he was that king. Turns out the current queen killed him then, and wants to kill him again. He’d better grow up fast, because if he doesn’t his second life may be shorter than his first.
Purchase from Amazon | B&N

Giveaway

Danielle is giving away three bookmarks for one lucky winner! Good luck!


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Thank you Danielle for celebrating your debut year with us! Come back tomorrow here at Oops! I Read A Book Again as Helen Douglas visits us! Now, go on to Michelle's blog for her feature on Leila Howland!


Are you a 2014 debut author? Are you interested in participating for Celebrating Debutantes 2014? Fill out this form!

Spotlight + Giveaway: Sworn to Conflict by Terah Edun

Thursday, November 28, 2013

SWORN TO CONFLICT, the third book in Terah Edun’s young adult fantasy COURTLIGHT series, will be released this December 6! Not familiar with the series? Check all three books in here and get a chance to win awesome prizes!

Sworn to Conflict (Courtlight #3)
Title: Sworn to Conflict (Courtlight #3)
Author: Terah Edun
Date of Publication: December 6, 2013

Ciardis Weathervane fought for the living dead and won. But worse than taking on a mass murderer, was her discovery that she had been deceived by her friends. Now she needs to not only fight a war in the North and survive, but also decide where she stands in the midst of competing sides.

A threat to all she holds dear lies in the North and her heart is not the only thing she might lose. A massive army awaits in the mountain pass, surging closer to the gates of the southern lands. Nothing the Algardis army has done so far has dissuaded their march forward and Ciardis finds out that her powers to enhance are needed now more than ever.

As she faces her greatest fears on the battlefields and her heart is torn between her love of Sebastian and loyalty to her family, Ciardis must choose her fate carefully. For in her path, lies the destiny of the empire.

This third novel continues the story of Ciardis Weathervane from Sworn To Transfer.

For those new with the series (you can catch up now!), here are the blurbs for the first two books.

Sworn to Raise (Courtlight #1)
Title: Sworn to Raise (Courtlight #1)
Author: Terah Edun
Date of Publication: April 10, 2013

Seventeen-year-old Ciardis has grown up in poverty, a cleaner in a small vale on the outskirts of the empire. But beneath her empire’s seemingly idyllic surface lies a hidden secret. Whispers of an inept crown Prince are growing ever louder—intensified by the five year anniversary of the soulbond initiations.

Amidst scandalous whispers, Ciardis finds herself chosen to train for the Companion’s Guild. She leaves her home and sets off on a personal journey to become a Court Companion. A position she’d never thought possible for a lowly servant to obtain, she must prove that she has the skills to attract a Patron.

But she must master those skills quickly. If the legends are true, only Ciardis can harness the power to raise a Prince in an Imperial Court sworn to bring him down.

This sensational series debut melds intricate storylines with remarkable characters and unforgettable magic. Sworn To Raise is ideal for fans of Kristin Cashore, Michelle Sagara, and Maria Snyder.
Purchase from Amazon | B&N

Sworn To Transfer (Courtlight #2)
Title: Sworn to Transfer (Courtlight #2)
Author: Terah Edun
Date of Publication: September 17, 2013

Eighteen-year-old companion trainee Ciardis Weathervane has won the friendship of the royal heir and saved his claim to the throne. Yet her interference in the inheritance rights leaves more harm done than good. The Ameles Forest lies unprotected and its inhabitants are dying.

As humans begin to die in gruesome deaths, the Emperor dispatches the royal heir to the forests with the solution to the kith concerns.

With enemies closing ranks in Sandrin, Ciardis can little afford to leave the city’s nest of vipers to take on a new task. But she’s given no choice when her loyalty to the crown and courts are called into question.

To keep the Companions’ Guild happy and the favor of the Imperial Court, Ciardis will be tested in frightening new ways, especially when she’s faced with an obstacle that could risk the lives of her friends and the family she never thought she had.

This second novel continues the story of Ciardis Weathervane from Sworn To Raise.
Purchase from Amazon | B&N

About Terah Edun

Terah Edun is a young adult fantasy writer born and raised in the Atlanta metropolitan area, who transplanted to the Northeast region for college, and has spent years living abroad in South Sudan and Morocco. She writes the stories that she always loved to read as a young girl.

She prefers tales of adventure, magic, fellowship and courtship – in other words high fantasy. But she’s not adverse to the occasional contemporary fantasy coming her way. Sometimes you’ll see cloaks, daggers, independent and strong girls, independent and strong guys, sweet and soft spoken girls, sweet and soft spoken guys, sparkly magic and irritatingly know-it-all boys. The book she’s currently working on is SWORN TO SECRECY, the fourth in the Courtlight series.

Outside of writing, she’s a international development professional with a penchant for Starbucks.


Giveaway


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#CelebratingDebutantes2013: Chelsea Pitcher (13 Random Facts + Giveaway)



Today, we have the author of THE S-WORD from Simon and Schuster's Gallery imprint, CHELSEA PITCHER!


About Chelsea Pitcher


Chelsea Pitcher is a native of Portland, OR where she received her BA in English Literature. Fascinated by all things literary, she began gobbling up stories as soon as she could read, and especially enjoys delving into the darker places to see if she can draw out some light. 

Her debut novel “THE S-WORD” is available now from Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster.


Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook


THIRTEEN THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT CHELSEA PITCHER

1. I have two cats: a white one named Aurora, and a black one named Janky. They pretend to be mortal enemies, but on more than one occasion I've caught them sleeping near each other when they thought no one was watching.

2. I once wrote an 84,000-word novel in a month.


3. Once, while singing “Pour Some Sugar on Me” at karaoke, the DJ actually did toss some sugar on me. He got up, sprinted out of the room, and returned with a sugar shaker that he sprinkled about the stage.


4. Aspects of THE S-WORD were inspired by FIGHT CLUB.


5. My favorite holiday is Halloween; I take costuming Very Seriously.


6. In my late teens, I read THE MISTS OF AVALON and ATLAS SHRUGGED. One of them is my favorite book of all time. The other is my least favorite.


7. My hair has been dyed blonde, brown, black, red, orange, magenta, purple and blue. But never green. 


8. “Pan’s Labyrinth” made me cry within the first three minutes.


9. I have an obsession with scoring 100% on video games (I’m currently working on Super Mario World).


10. My upcoming release (titled THE LAST CHANGELING) took me seven years to rewrite to my satisfaction.


11. By the time I was in high school, I’d been to six different schools.


12. I have traveled to Canada, Mexico and France.


13. Like Angie in THE S-WORD, my closest guy friend in high school was named Jesse, and he was quite nice. But the similarities between the character Jesse and the real Jesse end there.


***
Fight Club!!! I have a copy of THE S-WORD that I really need to get to but if you're not familiar with it, check it out below!

***

The S-Word
Title: The S-Word
Author: Chelsea Pitcher
Publisher: Gallery Books
Date of Publication: May 7, 2013


First it was SLUT scribbled all over Lizzie Hart’s locker.

But one week after Lizzie kills herself, SUICIDE SLUT replaces it—in Lizzie's looping scrawl.


Lizzie’s reputation is destroyed when she's caught in bed with her best friend’s boyfriend on prom night. With the whole school turned against her, and Angie not speaking to her, Lizzie takes her own life. But someone isn’t letting her go quietly. As graffiti and photocopies of Lizzie’s diary plaster the school, Angie begins a relentless investigation into who, exactly, made Lizzie feel she didn’t deserve to keep living. And while she claims she simply wants to punish Lizzie’s tormentors, Angie's own anguish over abandoning her best friend will drive her deep into the dark, twisted side of Verity High—and she might not be able to pull herself back out.


Debut author Chelsea Pitcher daringly depicts the harsh reality of modern high schools, where one bad decision can ruin a reputation, and one cruel word can ruin a life. Angie’s quest for the truth behind Lizzie’s suicide is addictive and thrilling, and her razor-sharp wit and fierce sleuthing skills makes her impossible not to root for—even when it becomes clear that both avenging Lizzie and avoiding self-destruction might not be possible.

Purchase from Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository


Giveaway

Chelsea is giving away THE S-WORD! Open to US/Can residents only. Good luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you Chelsea for celebrating your debut year with us! Come back tomorrow here at Oops! I Read A Book Again as Danielle DeVor visits us! Now, go on to Michelle's blog for her feature on C.J. Flood!


Are you a 2014 debut author? Are you interested in participating for Celebrating Debutantes 2014? Fill out this form!

{Blog Tour} Spotlight + Giveaway: Second Chance Summer by Emma Hart

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Second Chance Summer (Chance Series, #1)
Title: Second Chance Summer (Chance #1)
Author: Emma Hart
Date of Publication: September 21, 2013

From the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Love Game and Playing for Keeps is a story of hope and the beauty of getting a second chance at the kind of love that comes once in a lifetime…

“You don’t get a love like ours and get to leave it behind.”

Kia James was never meant to return to her hometown of Harlan Grove, Alabama… But she has.
And Reese Pembleton was definitely not supposed to still be in love with her the way she is him… But he is.

Last summer was the summer to end all summers. It was the summer they both fell in too deep to get out, and try as she might, Kia can’t deny that whatever was there between them a year ago is still there. If she’s honest with herself, there’s so much more there than there ever was, but the way her dad walked out six years ago has shattered her belief of that fairytale love every girl craves.

Reese isn’t giving up so easily. His biggest mistake was not chasing after Kia the way he wanted to when she upped and left him without a word. Despite what she says, he knows her better than anyone, and he knows she still wants him the way he wants her. And this time, nothing will stop him from getting – and keeping – his girl.

But nothing is that easy. When Kia’s dad arrives back in town, family secrets come tumbling out she never realized existed. Everything her mom has ever told her about the reason he left is a lie – but how can she trust the man who, by his own admission, didn’t fight for her as hard as he could have?

With her past and present wants and needs colliding, Kia is thrown into the turmoil of the biggest decisions of her life. And she realizes, sometimes a second chance is all you need.

Purchase from Amazon | Amazon (UK) | B&N | iTunes | Kobo

Excerpt

“Shit! Kia!” Reese calls after me. “I didn't mean it like that!”

I ignore him and keep walking. Step, step, step. Keep going, Kia, don’t stop for him. His hand grabs my arm, and I turn, yanking my arm back as I near where his truck is parked.

“What, Reese? You've made it clear last summer was a mistake. You’re right. It was. It was just a whirlwind mess between two people who had no idea what they wanted from life.”

“I didn't mean it like it came out. I just meant I didn't want you to hate this place because of me.”

“I don’t hate it because of you.” I look at him and laugh bitterly. Shadows play across his face in the darkness. “I hate this place because of what it means to me.”

“What does it mean, Kia? Tell me.” He loosens his grip on my arm; his thumb gently stroking my skin.

“It means nothing,” I say quietly, stepping back. “Nothing.”

“You’re lying,” Reese steps closer and holds my other arm. “If it meant nothin', you wouldn't be running from me.”

“I’m not running from you! Why would I be? One summer, that’s all we had.”

“Is it?” he asks quietly. “One summer? Is that really all we had? Do you think my feelings disappeared the way you did? Do you think they upped and went in the middle of the night just like you?”

“I never said that-”

“‘Cause they damn well didn't!”

“Rumor has it you’re seein' someone, or have you forgotten that?” I throw back at him.

“Maybe I don’t care about her. The person I care about is front of me.”

“After eleven months? Why don’t I believe you?”

“Let me show you. Make you believe me.”

I shake my head. “You’re so fucking funny.” I pull myself from his grip and move toward my car, passing his truck.

“Am I?” he growls, grabbing my hand and pulling me toward him. My back hits the door of his truck, and he stops in front of me. He places his hands either side of my head, his face bent into mine. “Am I funny, Kia? Really?”

My heart is pounding furiously at his nearness, and I push at his arm. My blood is thundering through my body, my breathing coming hard and fast. I can feel the warmth emanating from his body. I want more. I need more. I want to feel his body pressed against mine, even if it’s just for a second. I need to feel it.

His hazel eyes collide with mine, and I can see he feels the same. It’s been a year. He still feels it. I still feel it.

“Jokes usually are funny,” I retort, trying to move away from him in an attempt to regain control of my body.

His mouth crashes into mine, his lips molding to mine. One of his hands cups the side of my head, the other resting on my waist. I grab his shirt when he nips my bottom lip. My mouth opens, and his tongue meets mine, stroking it in a gentle caress. Our bodies push together, and I drink him in, kissing him greedily.

Now, I remember. I remember why I can’t fight it. Why I’m powerless. Why, at nineteen, he is all there is.

I open my eyes as our mouths part. His lips are hovering over mine, close enough they could touch mine again, but they don’t. In the small gap between us all,I feel is the chilling night air where, just seconds ago, there was nothing but heat.

“Am I funny now, Kia?” he breathes, still holding my face.

“Yep,” I whisper, my voice slightly shaky. “You’re fucking hilarious.”

Reese’s hand leaves my waist and tugs the door open. “Then you better get in the truck so you can find out exactly how not funny I am.”

“I’m not...”

“Get in,” he growls, his eyes promising me a fight.

“No,” I say, pushing him back. I shake my head. “No.”

“What?”

I walk around him and away from him, walking backward. I shake my head, everything warring inside me. “I… No, Reese. I can't.”

“Kia?” he calls.

“That…” I take a deep breath and stop at my car. “That shouldn't have happened.”

About Emma Hart

By day, New York Times and USA Today bestselling New Adult author Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to two beautiful little monsters. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of whatever she fancies – usually wine – and writes books.

Emma is working on Top Secret projects she will share with her followers and fans at every available opportunity. Naturally, all Top Secret projects involve a dashingly hot guy who likes to forget to wear a shirt, a sprinkling (or several) of hold-onto-your-panties hot scenes, and a whole lotta love.

She likes to be busy - unless busy involves doing the dishes, but that seems to be when all the ideas come to life.


Giveaway

We have three giveaway, you guys! And all are open internationally!



#CelebratingDebutantes2013: Victoria Scott (13 Random Facts)



Let's all get to know the one who made hearts aflutter with the bad boy of 2013 Dante Walker, VICTORIA SCOTT!


About Victoria Scott


Victoria Scott is a teen fiction writer represented by Sara Crowe of the Harvey-Klinger Literary Agency. She’s the author of the FIRE & FLOOD series published by Scholastic, and the DANTE WALKER trilogy published by Entangled Teen. Her books have been bought and translated in eight foreign markets including the UK, Turkey, China, Germany, Australia, Brazil, New Zealand, and the Netherlands.

Victoria lives in Dallas with her husband and hearts cotton candy something fierce.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Youtube


THIRTEEN THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT VICTORIA SCOTT

1. I have a fierce collection of heels that I rarely wear. 

2. “Chenille blanket” is always on my Christmas list.


3. I’m deathly afraid of monkeys. No animal should look that much like a human.


4. My favorite vacation was spent in Santé Fe, New Mexico. 


5. I adore lamps. There are at least three on in my home at any given moment. 


6. Cotton candy is my jam.


7. Right now, more than anything, I want to buy a Louis Vuitton Keepall 60. 


8. I have an iron rooster statue in my garden. I love him.


9. I take a glass of water with me everywhere I go. I also repeatedly dump it out and refill it for no reason.


10. I’m a cat person all day long. I’m also allergic to them. 


11. The first concert I ever attended was a Tool concert. I lost sight of my friend within five minutes of the music starting, and spent the rest of the night crowd surfing. I was fifteen. 


12. A shiny black Escalade is my favorite vehicle. 


13. My favorite color is yellow. I don’t feel like it gets near enough street-cred.

***

The Collector (Dante Walker, #1)
Title: The Collector (Dante Walker #1)
Author: Victoria Scott
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Date of Publication: April 2, 2013


He makes good girls...bad.

Dante Walker is flippin’ awesome, and he knows it. His good looks, killer charm, and stellar confidence have made him one of hell’s best—a soul collector. His job is simple: weed through humanity and label those round rears with a big red good or bad stamp. Old Saint Nick gets the good guys, and he gets the fun ones. Bag-and-tag.

Sealing souls is nothing personal. Dante’s an equal-opportunity collector and doesn't want it any other way. But he’ll have to adjust, because Boss Man has given him a new assignment:

Collect Charlie Cooper’s soul within ten days.

Dante doesn't know why Boss Man wants Charlie, nor does he care. This assignment means only one thing to him, and that’s a permanent ticket out of hell. But after Dante meets the quirky Nerd Alert chick he’s come to collect, he realizes this assignment will test his abilities as a collector…and uncover emotions deeply buried.
Purchase from Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository

The Liberator (Dante Walker, #2)
Title: The Liberator (Dante Walker #2)
Author: Victoria Scott
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Date of Publication: August 27, 2013


Bad boy, meet bad girl.

Dante has a shiny new cuff wrapped around his ankle, and he doesn't like that mess one bit. His new accessory comes straight from Big Guy himself and marks the former demon as a liberator. Despite his gritty past and bad boy ways, Dante Walker has been granted a second chance.

When Dante is given his first mission as a liberator to save the soul of seventeen-year-old Aspen, he knows he’s got this. But Aspen reminds him of the rebellious life he used to live and is making it difficult to resist sinful temptations. Though Dante is committed to living clean for his girlfriend Charlie, this dude’s been a playboy for far too long…and old demons die hard.

With Charlie becoming the girl she was never able to be pre-makeover and Aspen showing him how delicious it feels to embrace his inner beast, Dante will have to go somewhere he never thought he’d return to in order to accomplish the impossible: save the girl he’s been assigned to, and keep the girl he loves.
Purchase from Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository

***

Thank you Victoria for celebrating your debut year with us! Come back tomorrow here at Oops! I Read A Book Again as Chelsea Pitcher visits us! Now, go on to Michelle's blog for her feature on Lauren Roedy Vaughn!

Are you a 2014 debut author? Are you interested in participating for Celebrating Debutantes 2014? Fill out this form!

Review: Crash into You by Katie McGarry

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Crash Into You
Title: Crash into You (Pushing the Limits #3)
Author: Katie McGarry
Publisher: Harlequin Teen | MIRA Ink | Harlequin Teen Australia
Date of Publication: November 26, 2013 (US & UK) | December 1, 2013 (Aus)

From acclaimed author Katie McGarry comes an explosive new tale of a good girl with a reckless streak, a street-smart guy with nothing to lose, and a romance forged in the fast lane

The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life-that's who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers...and she's just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can't get him out of her mind.

Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look.

But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they'll go to save each other.

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Review

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Thank you to Polina of Harlequin Australia and NetGalley for the review copy! Having received a review copy did not affect my views of the novel.

Which of the following statement/s is/are true?

A) I read CRASH INTO YOU twice in a row.
B) I am 3 for 3 in getting a book boyfriend from Katie McGarry's novels.
C) I cried while reading CRASH INTO YOU.
D) All of the above

What's your guess? I think it's pretty obvious that the answer is D. Duh. It's a Katie McGarry book, what do you even expect?

I've been meaning to write this review for so long but every single time, I failed. At first, Choice B was "I *might* love Isaiah more than Ryan". WOAH, shocking, right? So I mulled over that bit for so long because I can't believe I was thinking that. Because Ryan is in another league and for me to think that, I had to have been reeling from the awesomeness that is CRASH INTO YOU. And that was what was happening then. It was so amazing I can't even do another thing that I went back and reread it. YES. True story. After spending weeks, I finally proclaimed Ryan the winner with just a hair breadth on Isaiah. (Because he loved Beth. BETH. Come on.) I still love all of the McGarry boys though and I will be spazzing about Isaiah in 3.. 2... 1...

I can't even explain how
Sexyamazinglysweetchivalrousbravesaddeninglybrokenandalonebutstillturnedoutgreat you
Are but you,
Isaiah
Are one
Heck of a great guy I'd steal from Rachel in a heartbeat.

Ha! So much for my lameass attempt on an acrostic ode to Isaiah. But you get the point. Isaiah rocks. Hard. He takes no shit from people and he loves Rachel so much he'd die for her. Seriously. Sure, Isaiah's a bit (a lot) rough on the edges but it's just the image he projects. We do know from the first two books that Isaiah's a great guy and a softie when you think of it. But in here, he takes the spotlight and blinds you with how much you will want to be his girl. Even with all his angst, he can be the light, the warm flame for Rachel. His need and want to protect Rachel, which one time puts a wedge in their relationship, is just so swoonworthy. I can go on and on about Isaiah but I'll stop right now and get to Rachel.

Rachel is a new character but I felt like I knew her all along when I was reading CRASH INTO YOU. She's sort of shy and naive, being protected all her life, such a great contrast with the worldly Isaiah. She's known as the weak and weird girl in school and I just ache for her because she isn't weak and she isn't a freak. In fact, she's hella awesome. She knows and loves cars more than your average guy and SHE'S JUST SO COOL but she can't see it. And she isn't weak. Sure, she has extreme panic attacks but having a disease isn't a sign of weakness. She's so strong and brave and especially by the end when she finally stops playing the Rachel her family needs and loves. When she was herself.

Admittedly, Isaiah's family life is sad but I found myself pitying Rachel more. Being such a prideful person, I know, on some level, how Rachel feels. Personally, I want to go home myself and not have my dad pick me up at school at night even though I AM 20 YEARS OLD. But he loves doing that for me but I do my best to get away from it. I just want to be my own person and in the same sense, Rachel just wants that. Her character story resonated with me a lot. Sure, my heart's also broken for Isaiah and all the hardships he was forced to face because he's in foster care but I think I've suffered that back then with Noah so I'm more invested in Rachel's family life.

I read some reviews that the villain, Eric, wasn't as formidable and scary. Sure, I didn't feel like Eric was such a real threat because I was sure they'd get out of their debt to him but it didn't take away from my emotional investment in the plot and the characters. Sure, I'm more into the scorching hot yet clean romance Rachel and Isaiah have going one and their own character plots, but all the other subplots were A+. Beth and Isaiah finally fixes their relationship. Yes, Beth appears in here and while I pretty much rolled my eyes when she came into the picture (can't blame me), I was so happy that they're now okay. Actually, we see A LOT of previous characters in here. Of course, Noah and Echo are as strong as ever. We get to see Ryan, Beth and Chris because Logan, their adrenaline-junkie friends, ends up being bros with Isaiah. He helped them earn money to pay off their debt to Eric. We also get to know Abby more, Isaiah's only friend aside from Noah, Echo and Beth. Moreover, Rachel's family! Rachel has four brothers and West, the bad boy out of them, is the next book's main character. I cannot wait for it, truth be told. And I'm going off tangent!

I know more about cars now because of CRASH INTO YOU. I'm not a car fanatic (I can't drive stick or any other type actually) but Katie made the adrenaline junkie in me interested. Yes, I admit to being a bit like Logan but not so much. I like myself safe too. Ha. The amount of research Katie put into making the characters so knowledgeable in cars is amazing. Katie just keeps on pushing what she can do. I don't even have to say that of course the writing was great, right? But if you need to ask, YES, it is holyfreakinohmy.

That bit by the end scared me actually. Have you watched the season finale of Chuck's Season 4? The bit at the church? If yes, you'd get me. I was ready to cry and I was sure Katie was playing me and she did play me! Whew. I wouldn't know what to do and feel if it happened. Just read the book if you don't get me! Haha! Isaiah and Rachel are pretty much open books and so is their romance which was such a relief. I mean, I don't know if I could have dealt if another layer of conflict was added. I love that they just love each other and they just went against everything thrown against them. I remember saying that I'll just read up until they first met (I read an excerpt and it made me so agitated to read it) but I ended up finishing the whole book in one sitting. And like I said, I reread it too right after. It's because from the moment they first met, sparks flew. But they didn't love each other right away. Yey for no instalove! They got to know each other and naturally, feelings developed. (IF YOU DON'T DEVELOP FEELINGS FOR ISAIAH, I DON'T EVEN KNOW.)

All in all, CRASH INTO YOU is a deliciously sweet and angsty realistic contemporary novel. It's everything you expected of Katie and maybe more. And I am definitely antsy to read the next book.

KATIE I LOVE YOU AND THE MCGARRY BOYS WILL FOREVER HAVE MY HEART!!!

About Katie McGarry

KATIE MCGARRY was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, and reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

 
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