Friday, July 18, 2014

Giveaway & Character Interview: How I Fall by Anne Eliot @yaromance

How I Fall
(Bk 1)
by Anne Eliot
YA Sweet Romance 
(first kisses, butterflies! <3)
Self-Published June 15, 2014

Synopsis via Goodreads:

What if on one fall day, everything goes terribly wrong at school but somehow turns out right? Suddenly you're forced into friendship with your secret crush—thanks to a glitter crazed new-girl who turns your life upside down. Literally. But you know your crush needs to stay how it's always been—distant, impossible, in your head—because you have problems and hide things this crush would never understand.

But what if you all end up in the same group photography project? Suddenly talking and making friends is easy, more than easy. It's almost perfect. What if high school felt normal for once, and what if your crush wasn't who you thought they were at all, and what if they liked you as much as you like them?

And what if when you kiss…it’s so amazing. You tell each other secrets and you make the kind of promises that are impossible to keep when you’re only sixteen and have no control over your own life. Which is why, long before things fall apart you kind of already knew nothing this beautiful could have really been yours for long…

Grab Your Copy:

Anne Eliot writes sweet, first-love stories. She was raised in the mountains of Colorado, but says she really learned about life, love and friendships from summers spent with her large, Italian immigrant family in Ontario, Canada.

Anne is grateful to have had schools with inspiring teachers and librarians who directed her to worlds she would not have found on her own. To this day, she adores school visits, teaching writing to teens, and is dedicated to making sure kids in need have access to books that will fuel their hopes and dreams.

While growing up, Anne hid her own anxieties by hiding and reading book after book. She developed an addiction to first love, first kisses and her favorite: the happy-ever-after story. This is what she writes today. Now she's a mom of two and happily married to her own first love. Anne works hard to juggle being a wife and parent while writing, but fails at cooking because she is still trying to read book, after book of love stories on the side.

Anne Eliot’s first book, Almost, became a top 100 best selling Kindle book, and was a Readers Choice, Top 12 of 2012 book for at #11, and will be translated and released in Germany and Turkey fall 2013. Her second book, Unmaking Hunter Kennedy, is a also a Kindle, top 100 best selling book in Teen Romance for 2013. She's hard at work on her third novel, another sweet teen romance releasing fall/winter, 2013. She loves to hear from readers. Please look for her on Facebook or tweet her @yaromance.

Representation: Anne Eliot’s foreign translations, audio and film rights are represented by Jane Dystel of Dystel and Goderich Literary management.

Connect with Anne:

Go check out my review of How I Fall & the amazing story about this fabulous young lady by the name of Allison! You MUST read about her project & look at her precious photos! The girl is awesomeness! Totally epic awesomesauce! Really... she's incredible. Please click on the logo above and go check her out! :)

I had the pleasure of interviewing Cam & Ellen, the fabulous stars of How I Fall. How much fun was this?! I had a blast & I hope Anne, Ellen & Cam did too ;)

You two are adorable. I absolutely loved your story in How I Fall. I have a few questions for you & I hope you enjoy answering them! I’m going to try and stay away from the stressful questions & keep things light J We all know Ellen has CP but CP does not make her who she is. And Cam, you love her even though she has CP because you know that CP doesn’t make her. She’s Ellen… the absolutely adorable girl you have a crush on and she just happens to have CP. I won’t focus on CP because it’s not the prime focus of your story. 

You two are absolutely adorable..Wait... I said that already. OBVIOUSLY, I’m interviewing you after the conclusion of your tale because, of course, at the end of book two, I can’t really put you two in the same room together… :) 

This question is for both of you! When was the first time you picked up a camera? What is your absolute favorite thing to take a picture of? If you could go take a picture of anything, anything at all, what would your dream focal point be? 

Ellen: “Truthfully, I’m an iPod, iPhone photographer. I didn’t point and shoot until I got an iPod for Christmas. It was the first version that also had a camera, and shortly thereafter, I got Instagram and I was hooked. If I could take a picture of anything (not counting Cam’s eyes) I would seek out more ice. We all know I’ve got a thing for frozen, frozen and more frozen!”

Cam: “I’ve loved photography ever since Mom took me up to Toronto to see this Ansel Adams exhibit at a museum up there. He’s a photographer who took nature pictures. Black and white, landscapes. Mom’s purchased me a new camera every year for either my birthday or my Christmas present. Not because I need one, just because she knows I love cameras. It’s really extravagant of her to do this, but I don’t complain. I love cameras, and I also love the camera on my iPhone as well. If I could take a photograph of anything, (besides stalking Ellen and taking photos of her) I would love to head down and to the USA national parks. Follow in the footsteps of Anesl Adams. Take shots of that, El Capitan down in Yosemetie Valley, California.”

I’m so excited about the photo competition! I can’t wait to see if your entry won [C’mon Anne Eliot! Write faster ;) KIDDING… Magic takes time, I can be patient]. What was your inspiration, Ellen, for your photo contest entry? That was wild & completely fantastic. I wish I could see the photos! 

“I guess, I’m inspired by the frozen landscapes because when you see them around here by Lake Huron, it’s like walking into Narnia or into some sort of place you could never go to besides in your own mind, yet on days when the ice moves over everything, and for the few hours everything is coated, it feels so magic. And I’m not the only one who is fascinated with ice and ice crystals…or did you not see Elsa and Anna and the Disney Frozen movie. Oh do I love that movie.”

Cam, what crossed your mind when the project was explained to you? Did you think she was an absolute creative genius or did you think “holy crap, how are we going to do that?!”

“No. I thought, holy crap, I get to do that with Ellen! Truthfully, my whole prime directive, if you will was to simply get to work and talk to Ellen. I was so excited to have the chance to work with her, to talk to her…thinking about the project and pulling it off never really crossed my mind. I knew Ellen could do it. I saw the shots and I read her plan and I was just like, happy about all of it, you know?”

If you both grow up to have your own studio or your own photography business, what will you call it? Something creative or will you just go by your names? C’mon, you're both young. I know you’ve thought about it ;)

Ellen: “I have not thought about that…honest. It’s too far ahead for me, but it would be cool. How about…’s too impossible to think all the way into the—(blushes)—our future.”

Cam: “If we’re talking about far into the future, I can name our photo studio. I’d call it, Happy Newlywed’s photo studio.”

Ellen: (blushing more and punching him in the arm) “That name SUCKS, but…yeah…it’s also great, dork.”
Cam: “Let the record show, in front of all of these witnesses, this girl just sort of agreed to marry me.”

Ellen: “SHUT it down, crazy. I did not.”

Ooooh Laura! You have to tell me what you really thought of that girl. She was such a hoot (yes, hoot!) and I couldn’t get enough of her spunk and glitter. Now, okay, I’m glad I wasn’t standing next to her because glitter really doesn’t look good on me, but she was completely rocking the glitter and fairies. Ha. Did you ever think you’d end up with such a little firecracker as a solid supporter? Between Laura & Patrick, you guys have some awesome friends. 

Cam: “Laura…what can I say. Most of you don’t know the antics she pulled in book two, but we all know and she’s lucky to be alive. That’s all I’m saying, beyond…yeah. Love her. Seriously love that girl.

Ellen: I agree with Cam, only she did what she needed to do. And I’ve loved her since the day she knocked me flat. Well…maybe since the day after she knocked me flat, but still. No better friend, though for awhile, I thought I would have to dump her and Patrick for being so stupid. And when Patrick went insane and started writing her poetry—

Cam: “The world’s worst poetry!”

Ellen: Let’s just go back to the part where we love them both. Laura’s toned down the glitter this year, also, but I hope she always wears a little.”

Cam: “I do not hope that. I hope to never see glitter in my life, ever again.”

The mascot beanies! Ah! I loved that and would’ve died a happy girl to see Cam cheering with her in the hall that day. I’m sure the other students got quite the kick out of that. Cam, kudos for that. It was awesome. High five! But seriously, did you catch some flack from the football team for that one? Or others in school? I loved how you opened up and really let yourself be…. Well… be you around Ellen & Cam. 

Cam: “Look, me roaring in public is not ‘me, being me’ so don’t even go there. I did it all for Ellen. So, if being and doing insane things is part of being with her, okay then. I’ll take it. And yes, the guys said stuff to me…of course. Who wouldn’t. I deserved it.”

Okay, okay. I’ll get to the questions that I’m sure everyone wants to know… What’s next? What can we plan to see in the continuation of your story? No spoilers but you can give us a tickler right? I’ve stayed away from the tough questions like Ellen’s recovery and Cam’s parents. I know readers would all like to get their hands on Cam’s dad and teach him a few lessons. Again, no spoilers, but whatever you can share about How I Fly would be exciting :)
Cam: “Well, we’ve had this interview together so you can see I’m planning on marrying this girl so…”

Ellen: “And you can see I’m not marrying an insane person…so yeah…um Cam, you can stop talking about that for another 5 years. He and I, we’re friends. Very close friends right now and we’re working on…you know. Being that.”

Cam: “Let the record show this girl, Ellen Foster, has agreed to be with me for at least 5 more years. This is way more than friendship and it always has been.”

Ellen: (laughing) “Oh…here we go again.”

Cam: “It’s a relief this friendship, because truthfully…I almost messed it all up—with my Dad and the car and stealing his wallet--well…we saw what that got me, right?”

Ellen: “No. I almost messed it all up by not following my own mandate that we be patient. The blame at that point was not on Cam. All on me. For sure.”

Cam: “The mess was all mine. Let’s agree on that.”

Ellen: “Fine. Mess yours. Love triangle. That was mine, I think. And the mess was really Laura’s and Patrick’s if we’re keeping any sort of track of who really made the biggest mess.”

Cam:  “Did she say LOVE? Is anyone keeping track of the word LOVE here…just asking…to whom were you referring when you used that word…because I’d rather focus on the words love for the next five years over the word triangle…which is a word I never want to hear again, ever…”

 Anne Eliot: (Is this a spoiler? You decide…)

I’ll leave you both with an open ended question so you can share anything else that’s on your mind: What do you want readers to really take away from your story? A lesson about first love, seeing people for who they are and not “what” they are (Ellen, seriously… I wanted to whip someone when you were called and known by the “handicapped girl’…grrrrr…..), going after your dreams…..?  

Ellen: “I guess, for me…it’s a lesson in this: People are going to say/think what they want. As far as I’m concerned, I’m not going to get stuck on words and definitions. I define myself, I know what I am and what I want to be. Everyone should do the same, you know? Not care about what other people think.”

Cam: “Oh, for me…hmmm…Let’s take away from this story that it’s a lesson in first love. In how I, Camden Campbell, fell in love. Because that’s what it’s called: How I Fall, just add in ‘in love’ okay? And yeah…is anyone recording the use of the love words here?”

Ellen: “You sound like Patrick. Did he give you a lesson in how to act like a fool just before this interview or something?”

Cam. “A lovesick fool…. That’s what I am. Please, Ellen. I define MYSELF. I know what I want to be and I don’t care what others think.”

Ahhh! I just love you both! And I cannot wait for the next book in the series! Thank you for taking a few minutes to answer a few questions. I know my questions don’t seem very vital to your story and they aren’t the typical questions you probably get when you’re interviewed, but I wanted it to be fun and not stressful. I like fun. Too bad Laura couldn’t join us today. Another time maybe ;) 

You both are special in your own way and when you both work together, you soar…
I can’t wait to see how high you fly :) 

Use the Rafflecopter below to enter the tour wide giveaway for your chance to win a signed copy of How I Fall! Good Luck Everyone!!!

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Happy New Release! The Donor (Part 1) by Nikki Rae

Happy Release! I totally missed the official release day yesterday so this post is for those of you for didn't see it yesterday! I'm stoked about this one! Nikki's work is awesome & I'm sure this one is no different!

The Donor (Part One)
by Nikki Rae
Published July 14, 2014
[Disclaimer: This is a serial novella that will be told in parts about the length of a short story (20-30 pages)]

Casey Williams and her family are poor. Her parents work non-stop and so does she, just so they can keep the trailer roof from leaking.
They’re getting by fine enough when the headaches start. Then there’s the nosebleeds. And the inevitable doctor’s bills.
Fortunately for Casey, there’s an exclusive, quick, and almost easy way to pay it all back before her parents even have to know.
All she has to do is give a man she’s never met whatever he wants from her body.

Nikki Rae is a writer who lives in New Jersey. As an independent author, she has appeared numerously on Amazon Best Seller lists and she concentrates on making her imaginary characters as real as possible. Nikki writes mainly dark, scary, romantic tales, but she’ll try anything once. When she is not writing, reading, or thinking, you can find her spending time with animals, drawing in a quiet corner, or studying people. Closely.


Saturday, July 5, 2014

Review! Locks: Rapunzel Unhinged by Sarah J. Pepper

by Sarah J. Pepper
New Adult Fairy Tale
Published July 1, 2014

*E-Arc obtained in exchange for an honest review*

Synopsis via Goodreads:

Gunned down by the hottest killer in the history of the Badass Archives wasn’t exactly Rapunzel’s end-game. But when her reputable extraction skills fail, she uses unorthodox methods to gain her freedom from the Mercenary, whose icy blue eyes have serious panty-dropping capabilities. Even though most girls wouldn’t fall for their would-be assassin, Rapunzel isn’t like most dames. Her major girl-boner for the Mercenary is so pathetically intense it verges on cliché.

Regardless, Rapunzel’s hands are tied. Love chooses its victims, not the other way around. She isn’t the stereotypical Damsel in Distress. Her Bad-Boy Prince Charming is a renowned mercenary, and her “Happy Ending” plays out like a bad movie. However, she is determined to find her freedom—love be damned—and she’ll do it in a fabulous pair of heels.

Grab Your Copy:

I specialize in dark, paranormal romance – think “happy ever after” but with a twisted, dark chocolate center. Real-life romance isn’t only filled with hugs, kisses, unicorns, and rainbows. True-love can be more thoroughly described in times of darkness and tribulation. It’s in those harsh moments where you see what a person is truly capable of – both the good and bad. Sometimes prince-charming isn’t always on time, and the glass slipper is a little snug. However, it doesn’t mean Charming is not Mr. Right, and who says every shoe is the perfect fit?

Connect with Sarah:   Twitter   Website   Facebook    Goodreads   

Who likes fairy tale retellings? You? What about you? Me... Well, I used to think that I wouldn't be able to get into a fairy tale retelling. I've read a few really good ones in the last few years but never thought "Ohhh, a fairy tale retelling! Let me pick that book up!" You know? When I heard Sarah Pepper was going to be writing a Rapunzel spin, I was so excited. I mean, c'mon, have you read her spin on Alice?!?! If you haven't, you MUST go get Death of the Mad Hatter! Loved that book.

Locks was an absolutely brilliant spin on the old fashion tale of Rapunzel! It was fresh, exciting, surprising, and so much fun!

The characters that Sarah created are one of a kind! Yes, even though they spin from the old Rapunzel tale, they're creative, fresh & seriously one of a kind. Rapunzel, AKA Zel - Ahh! That girl's attitude and spunk! Love her!

The plot for this tale took me in a completely unexpected direction. I never expected the directions that the story took. I loved that about this novel! I couldn't put it down and had so many laugh/snort moments, I can't count how many times my husband or whoever happened to be near me in public gave me the "wtf?" look... Ha.

The world building was incredible. Everything was so vivid and detailed just right! I was transported to another dimension! It was so awesome. 

So overall...

Huge 5 Star Novel For Me!
Cover Rating: 5 Huge Stars! I mean, c'mon! Look at that cover!
Characters: 5 Stars
Plot: 5 Stars
Climax: 5 Stars! Eek!
Ending: 5 Stars!