Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Guest Post: Nicole Zoltack, author of Champion of Valor with Giveaway


The Mystical Conch Shell of the Sea has been stolen, and it's up to Selliki, the selkie, to get it back. Selliki sets across the continent of Alethereia to find Arnhem, and Gabrael, the Mage she loves. Selliki knows no union between a selkie and a human have ever had a happy ending, but neither can ignore their feelings. Each night, they experience terrible, real dreams that show how doomed their love is.

The final war between Arnhem and Speica is threatening the entire world. Lucifer has aligned himself with Speica and wants nothing less than to bring about the Apocalypse before it's time. In the last batttle, cowardice is revealed, promises are broken, and many people die. Trolls fight icthyocentaurs, dwarves arm up against the Drow, angels against demons. Only one kingdom will prevail; that is, if the world doesn't end.




When we think of marriage, we first think of love. Two sides of the same coin.

But this was not the same way of thinking back in the Middle Ages.

Women had no choice in who they married. Oftentimes, they married a total stranger, a man they had never met before they walked down the aisle.

The idea of arranged marriages is foreign to some of us today, even though it is still common practice in some parts of the world today.

I already mentioned that women had no choice; however (typical male-dominated society), there were some cases in which the man could decide his bride.

Sometimes, love found the couple after they were married as backward as that sounds to us. Many times, even if they did not grow to love each other, lasting friendships bloomed.

Marriage was done at a young age – the girls as young as 12, the boys 17 – and for financial, practical, or dynastic reasons.

The feudal relationship between a knight and his liege lord was the model for courtly love as well as the code of chivalry. The knight swears the same obedience and loyalty to his courtly lady that he would his liege lord. This ideal is taken from bards’ songs and hardly ever practiced. After all, most knights would not be submissive to their lady! However, his love for her was a source for inspiration, for courage, and power, to do great deeds, in order to win her favor, to be good enough for her.

Oftentimes, the knight fell in love with a married lady. Remember, most marriages were not born out of love. Courtly love was a means for the knights to show their affection despite the marital state of the lady. The most famous instance of this occurrence is Sir Lancelot and Queen Guinevere.

Personally, as much as I love the Middle Ages, I'm so glad I can choose whom to love and I married a knight in his own right.

Is there a time period other than now that you would rather live in?

Be sure to leave a comment for a chance to win some signed postcards and magnets. Each comment along the Kingdom of Arnhem Blog Tour gives you an entry for the grand prize: a copy of the entire Kingdom of Arnhem series - Woman of Honor, Knight of Glory, and Champion of Valor.

For more about this author, please visit:




Nicole has always been fascinated with the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. She devoured books about chivalry and knight, love and romance, she even had a Renaissance themed wedding.

Throughout her research, she wondered if there were any female knights, knowing how women were treated back then. To her surprise, she uncovered information about an entire order of female knights - the Order of the Hatchet in Catalonia. These brave women protected their town of Tortosa from Moor attack. Along with their new status, the women were exempted from taxes and preceded over men in public assemblies.

This inspired her to write about a young girl who wishes to become a knight, citing these brave women.

Currently, she is residing in Pennsylvania with her loving husband and two adorable sons. She is an Infinite World of Fantasy Author (IWOFA) and a member of Classic Romance Revival (CRR).

Her debut novel - WOMAN OF HONOR (Desert Breeze Publishing, April 2009) is the first in the Kingdom of Arnhem series, the story of the young would-be female knight. Book II - KNIGHT OF GLORY further explores the medieval fantasy land of Arnhem.

CHAMPION OF VALOR will be released May 1st, 2011.

She has also sold numerous short stories for inclusion in various anthologies including the print anthologies: Bloody Carnival, Mertales, Daily Bites of Flesh, and Daily Flash.

She loves writing, reading, horses, collecting swords, and going to the Pa Renaissance Faire (dressed in Renaissance garb, of course!).

Teaser Tuesday: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • 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 that 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 add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


"Is there any point in asking what you're going to do to me?"

He grinned wickedly. "Not really."

Fabulous. "Does it involve the use of a safe word?"

~ARC p. 173


Y'all. Y'ALL. I don't...I can't even...I just... This book is the greatest thing of all time. OF ALL TIME.

And now I'm going to save the rest of my gushing fangirl ravings for my review.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Guest Post: Joshua's Ten Favorite Things About Wilburton, Oklahoma by Tara Hudson (Hereafter)




Coming June 7, 2011!

Can there truly be love after death?

Drifting in the dark waters of a mysterious river, the only thing Amelia knows for sure is that she's dead. With no recollection of her past life—or her actual death—she's trapped alone in a nightmarish existence. All of this changes when she tries to rescue a boy, Joshua, from drowning in her river. As a ghost, she can do nothing but will him to live. Yet in an unforgettable moment of connection, she helps him survive.

Amelia and Joshua grow ever closer as they begin to uncover the strange circumstances of her death and the secrets of the dark river that held her captive for so long. But even while they struggle to keep their bond hidden from the living world, a frightening spirit named Eli is doing everything in his power to destroy their newfound happiness and drag Amelia back into the ghost world...forever.

Thrilling and evocative, with moments of pure pleasure, Hereafter is a sensation you won't want to miss.



Joshua's Ten Favorite Things About Wilburton, Oklahoma:


10. Wilburton High School. I actually don't mind school - I like my friends, my sports, most of my classes (ahem, Ms. Wolters). And school is even better, now that I have a certain invisible girl following me around the halls.

9. David O'Reilly's Barn. We've had some crazy parties there. I'm definitely going to have to take Amelia to one of them, someday.

8. Bigfoot. I swear, at least ten of my friends claim to have seen Bigfoot around southeastern Oklahoma. Personally, I think it's just Eli and his stupid, long hair.

7. My parent's backyard. Okay, I know it's dorky, but that yard is literally the only place I can concentrate enough to do my homework, now that Amelia has become such a welcome distraction.

6. The Fourche Maline Creek. Well, this used to be one of my favorite things: good fishing, nice scenery...you get the picture. But now that I realize it flows under High Bridge, I'm not so sure Amelia and I should go to visit it any time soon.

5. The Talimena Drive. It's 54 miles of this beautiful drive through the Ouachita Mountains in eastern Oklahoma. Don't tell Amelia, but I think that's where I'm going to take her for Valentine's Day.

4. Small town life. Except for the rickety old bridges. And the evil ghosts. And the superstitious group of creepy people my Grandma Ruth hangs out with. Hm, maybe I should rethink this answer....

3. Robbers Cave State Park. Kind of obvious, huh? Not only did I spend like half my childhood climbing around its network of caves, but it's also the first place Amelia and I touched. 

2. Amelia's parent's house. The one time I've been inside was pretty sad. Except for that kiss....

1. High Bridge. Is that weird, considering I almost died there? Probably. But it's also where I met Amelia. Guess that's just how our relationship works: part sad, part scary, part best-thing-ever.




Born and raised in Oklahoma, Tara Hudson graduated with a degree in law, mostly because she believed all the horror stories about English majors and their careers in the food-service industry. Luckily, she soon remembered how much she loved telling ghost stories, particularly to her girlfriends who liked visiting abandoned cemeteries as much as she did. Tara currently lives in Oklahoma with her husband, son, and a menagerie of ill-behaved pets.


For more about this author, please visit:



Come back June 10 for my review of Hereafter!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

New Release Roundup: May 29 - June 4, 2011

A weekly feature I started to showcase the exciting new releases hitting shelves this week.


May 30


Watched by Sharde Richardson

Mikayla doesn’t want much: just to rock out to her favorite band, become the next Kwiki Stop video gaming champion, and keep her Q-tip habit under control. What she does want is the sight of the sudden inexplicable dark auras around everyone to stop. Problem is, those auras are demons and Mikayla is the last trait holder with the power to ban them. Which is a total buzz kill.

To make matters worse, the town folk of Sulphur Springs don’t look the same, and her classmates are a little dark in the eyes. There are murders, suicides, reckless skinny-dipping, gratuitous use of Q-tips, and newfound powers that Mikayla must learn to control.

Her past becomes present when a shape-shifter tells her what her true identity is, and how to keep the demons of Hell from nipping at her Converse. Through him she’ll discover who to trust, who to kiss, and how valuable her abilities are to the right beings. Because the evils of Hell aren’t staying down without a fight.

Or without her soul.


May 31


Nightspell (Mistwood #2) by Leah Cypess

Here be ghosts, the maps said, and that was all.

In this haunted kingdom, ghosts linger—not just in the deepest forests or the darkest caverns, but alongside the living, as part of a twisted palace court that revels all night and sleeps through the daylight hours.

Darri's sister was trapped in this place of fear and shadows as a child. And now Darri has a chance to save her sister . . . if she agrees to a betrothal with the prince of the dead. But nothing is simple in this eerie kingdom—not her sister, who has changed beyond recognition; not her plan, which will be thrown off track almost at once; and not the undead prince, who seems more alive than anyone else.

In a court seething with the desire for vengeance, Darri holds the key to the balance between life and death. Can her warrior heart withstand the most wrenching choice of all?


Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini

How do you defy destiny?

Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is—no easy task on an island as small and sheltered as Nantucket. And it's getting harder. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she's haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood . . . and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, she has no way of knowing they're destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history.

As Helen unlocks the secrets of her ancestry, she realizes that some myths are more than just legend. But even demigod powers might not be enough to defy the forces that are both drawing her and Lucas together—and trying to tear them apart.


June 1


Ladybird, Ladybird by Abra Ebner

Samantha was born on a full moon to a mother already dead. Revived by doctors and given to her unloving father, Samantha was raised a cursed child, her only friend the ghost of her mother who speaks to her through keys. From the inside out, Sam burned with life, a fire so vivid it kept her peers at a distance, all except one. Leith, a quiet farmboy with a broken heart and demons of his own, enjoys the seclusion his classmates grant him, but the seclusion is all too familiar to Sam.

When their worlds collide... fires burn.


Ashes, Ashes by Jo Treggiari

A thrilling tale of adventure, romance, and one girl's unyielding courage through the darkest of nightmares.

Epidemics, floods, droughts--for sixteen-year-old Lucy, the end of the world came and went, taking 99% of the population with it. As the weather continues to rage out of control, and Sweepers clean the streets of plague victims, Lucy survives alone in the wilds of Central Park. But when she's rescued from a pack of hunting dogs by a mysterious boy named Aidan, she reluctantly realizes she can't continue on her own. She joins his band of survivors, yet, a new danger awaits her: the Sweepers are looking for her. There's something special about Lucy, and they will stop at nothing to have her.


The Vampire Stalker by Allison Van Diepen

What if the characters in a vampire novel left their world--and came into yours?

Amy is in love with someone who doesn't exist: Alexander Banks, the dashing hero in a popular series of vampire novels. Then one night, Amy meets a boy who bears an eerie resemblance to Alexander. In fact, he IS Alexander, who has escaped from the pages of the book and is in hot pursuit of a wicked vampire named Vigo. Together, Amy and Alexander set out to track Vigo and learn how and why Alexander crossed over. But when she and Alexander begin to fall for each other, Amy wonders if she even wants him to ever return to the realm of fiction.


Stupid Fast by Geoff Herbach

Fifteen-year-old Felton Reinstein has always been on the smallish side, but in his sophomore year he starts growing...and growing.

During gym one day he smokes the football jocks in a 600-yard race. Felton has never been interested in sports, but there's no doubt-he is "stupid fast." As he juggles his newfound athletic prowess, his mom's sudden depression, an annoying little brother, and his first love, he discovers a shocking secret about his past which explains why he's turning out the way he is.


She Loves You, She Loves You Not by Julie Anne Peters

Seventeen-year-old Alyssa thought she knew who she was. She had her family, her best friends, and most importantly, she had Sarah. Sarah, her girlfriend, with whom she dreamed with about the day they could move far away and live out and proud and accepted for themselves, instead of having to hide their relationship.

Alyssa never thought she would have to make that move by herself, but disowned by her father and cut off from everyone she loves, she is forced to move hundreds of miles away to live with Carly, a mother she barely knows, in a town where everyone immediately dismisses her as 'Carly's girl.' Struggling to forget her past and come to terms with her future, will Alyssa be able to build a new life for herself and believe in love again? Or will she be forced to relive the mistakes that have cost her everything and everyone she cared about?

This compelling novel about coming out, finding love, and discovering your place in the world will speak to anyone who has known the joy and pain of first love and the struggle to start over again.


Spoiled by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan

16-year-old Molly Dix loves her ordinary life in suburban Indiana, so when her single mother passes away, she is shocked to discover that her biological father is Brick Berlin, world famous movie star and red carpet regular.

Equally intrigued and terrified by her Hollywood lineage, Molly moves to Southern California and plunges head-first into the deep end of Beverly Hills celebrity life. Just as Molly thinks her new life and family couldn't get any stranger, she meets Brooke Berlin, her gorgeous and spoiled half-sister whom welcomes Molly to la-la land with a healthy dose of passive-aggressive "sisterly love."

Set against the backdrop of a sparkling and fashion-filled Los Angeles, this deliciously dysfunctional family soap opera will satisfy every reader looking for their next lifestyles-of-the-rich-and-famous beach read.

Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan are fashion writers in Los Angeles California. Their blog www.gofugyourself.com draws an average of four million readers a month, and their dispatches from the front rows of Fashion Week are routinely the most-read stories on New Yorkmagazine's web site. Heather and Jessica have been called "fashion assassins" by Joan Rivers and "a viciously funny duo" by theHollywood Reporter. Spoiled is their first novel for young adults.


The Eternal Sea (Everlasting #2) by Angie Frazier

Romance and adventure are just around the corner...

After the thrilling journey that led Camille through the dangerous discovery of love, secrets, and a magical stone that grants immortality, Camille has everything she wants. She's escaped the men who wanted her dead, and now she is ready to build a new life with Oscar, her one true love. But things are not to be so simple. Oscar is acting strangely, and before they can even board a ship from Australia back home, to San Francisco, Camille learns that the journey is not over. If she does not follow the magic of the curse of Umandu, her life and Ocar's could be in grave danger.


Bloodspell by Amalie Howard

The spell was simple...

Cruentus Protectum (Defend the Blood)

But what do you do if your blood is your enemy?

Victoria Warrick has always known she was different. An outcast at school, she is no stranger to adversity. But when she receives an old journal for her seventeenth birthday, nothing prepares her for the dark secrets it holds -- much less one that reveals she's a witch with unimaginable power.

What's more, when she meets the dazzling but enigmatic Christian Devereux, she has no idea how much her life is about to change. Enemies will hunt her. Friends will turn on her. The terrible curse that makes her blood run black will stop at nothing to control her. And Christian has a sinister secret of his own...

Without knowing whom to trust, can Victoria survive her blood's deadly desires? Or will she lose everything, including herself?


June 2


Forgiven (Faithful #2) by Janet Fox

Kula Baker never expected to find herself on the streets of San Francisco, alone but for a letter of introduction. Though she has come to the city to save her father from a cruel fate, Kula soon finds herself swept up in a world of art and elegance - a world she hardly dared dream of back in Montana, where she was no more than the daughter of an outlaw. And then there is the handsome David Wong, whose smiling eyes and soft-spoken manner have an uncanny way of breaking through Kula's carefully crafted reserve. Yet when disaster strikes and the wreckage threatens all she holds dear, Kula realizes that only by unlocking her heart can she begin to carve a new future for herself.


So many books I'm excited for this week! I've been waiting for Nightspell ever since I read Mistwood. I really need to read Starcrossed -- I got it from NetGalley and I've heard it's amazing. So many books so little time! I also picked up Stupid Fast at the Book Blogger Con on Friday, and I heard Geoff do a reading at the Class of 2K11 signing and it sounds hilarious! I've also been looking forward to Bloodspell for a while now, and I met Amalie on Friday too =)

What new release are you most excited for this week?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Trailer Thursday: Enclave by Ann Aguirre

I recently reviewed Enclave by Ann Aguirre, but I just discovered the trailer. Take a look:





I'm impressed. This has such a professional, cinematic feel. Plus, it DEFINITELY captures the eeriness and intensity of life in the enclave -- with some sexual tension to boot.

What do you think? Does this make you want to read the book?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking the Spine to highlight upcoming releases we're anxiously awaiting!

Coming September 13, 2011!


The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

This book just sounds so fun and different, don't you think? What future release are you most excited for this week?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Catching Fire (Hunger Games #2) by Suzanne Collins


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • 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 that 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 add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


If he does, everything will just get more complicated and I really can't think about kissing when I've got a rebellion to incite. I give my head a little shake to clear it.  ~ p.125-6

I just loved this quote -- it made me laugh out loud. Oh Katniss, you're leading an unfathomable life yet you're still just a teenager at heart.

Monday, May 23, 2011

New Release Roundup: May 22 - 29, 2011

A weekly feature I started to showcase the exciting new releases hitting shelves this week.


May 23


Awaken by Katie Kacvinsky

Maddie lives in a world where everything is done on the computer. Whether it’s to go to school or on a date, people don’t venture out of their home. There’s really no need. For the most part, Maddie’s okay with the solitary, digital life—until she meets Justin. Justin likes being with people. He enjoys the physical closeness of face-to-face interactions. People aren’t meant to be alone, he tells her.

Suddenly, Maddie feels something awakening inside her—a feeling that maybe there is a different, better way to live. But with society and her parents telling her otherwise, Maddie is going to have to learn to stand up for herself if she wants to change the path her life is taking.

In this not-so-brave new world, two young people struggle to carve out their own space.


May 24


Between Here and Forever by Elizabeth Scott

Abby accepted that she can’t measure up to her beautiful, magnetic sister Tess a long time ago, and knows exactly what she is: Second best. Invisible.

Until the accident.

Now Tess is in a coma, and Abby’s life is on hold. It may have been hard living with Tess, but it's nothing compared to living without her.

She's got a plan to bring Tess back though, involving the gorgeous and mysterious Eli, but then Abby learns something about Tess, something that was always there, but that she’d never seen.

Abby is about to find out that truth isn't always what you think it is, and that life holds more than she ever thought it could...


The Warlock (Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel #5) by Michael Scott

The fifth book in the New York Times bestselling series The Secrets of the Nicholas Flamel—The Warlock

Alcatraz:
Although their ally Dr. John Dee has been declared utlaga, Machiavelli and Billy the Kid will follow the plans the Elders have laid before them: they will loose the monsters of Alcatraz on the city of San Francisco, thereby triggering the end of the humani race.

Danu Talis:
The Shadowrealm that Scatty and Joan of Arc have entered is far more dangerous than they could ever have imagined. And they haven’t landed here by chance-the warriors were called for a reason. So were Saint-Germain, Palamededs, and Shakespeare. The group was summoned because they must travel back in time to Danu Talis and destroy it. For the island of Danu Talis, known in humani myth as the lost city of Atlantis, must fall if the modern world is to exist.

San Francisco:
The end is finally near. Josh Newman has chosen a side, and he will not stand with his sister, Sophie, or with the Alchemyst, Nicholas Flamel. He will fight alongside Dee and the mysterious Virginia Dare. Unless Sophie can find her twin before the battle begins, all is lost – forever.

In the fifth installment of this bestselling series, the twins of prophecy have been divided, and the end is finally beginning.

With Scatty, Joan of Arc, Saint Germain, Palamedes, and Shakespeare all in Danu Talis, Sophie is on her own with the ever-weakening Nicholas and Perenelle Flamel. She must depend on Niten to help her find an immortal to teach her Earth Magic. The surprise is that she will find her teacher in the most ordinary of places.


Something Deadly This Way Comes (Madison Avery #3) by Kim Harrison

I'm Madison Avery, in charge of heaven's hit squad . . . and fighting it all the way.

When Madison died the night of her prom, she knew her life would never be the same. Now she has a powerful amulet, a team of rogue angels by her side, and the ability to flash forward into the future to see the shape of destiny. And of course, now she's finally with Josh—a perfect boyfriend who doesn't even mind that she's dead.

But being dead has its disadvantages, too. Madison feels caught between the light and the dark, and between her real life and her timekeeper status. When Madison has the opportunity to get her body back—to bealive again—she faces her most difficult decision yet. If she claims it, she could return to being a normal girl—and have a chance at a real relationship with Josh. But would having the one thing she wants most in the world also mean giving up everything she's worked so hard for?


Notes from the Blender by Trish Cook and Brenda Halpin

Declan loves death metal--particularly from Finland. And video games--violent ones. And internet porn--any kind, really. He goes to school with Neilly Foster and spends most of his classroom time wondering what it might be like to know her, to talk to her, maybe even to graze against her sweater in the hallway. Neilly is an accomplished gymnast, naturally beautiful, and a constant presence at all the best parties (to which Declan is never invited). She's the queen of cool, the princess of poker face, and her rule is uncontested-- or it was until today, when she's dumped by her boyfriend, betrayed by her former BFF Lulu, and then informed she's getting a new brother--of the freaky fellow classmate variety. Declan's dad is marrying Neilly's mom. Soon. Which means they'll be moving in together.


Welcome to Bordertown by Various Authors

Bordertown: a city on the border between our human world and the elfin realm. Runaway teens come from both sides of the border to find adventure, to find themselves. Elves play in rock bands and race down the street on spell-powered motorbikes. Human kids recreate themselves in the squats and clubs and artists' studios of Soho. Terri Windling's original Bordertown series was the forerunner of today's urban fantasy, introducing authors that included Charles de Lint, Will Shetterly, Emma Bull, and Ellen Kushner. In this volume of all-new work (including a 15-page graphic story), the original writers are now joined by the generation that grew up dreaming of Bordertown, including acclaimed authors Holly Black, Cassandra Clare, Cory Doctorow, Neil Gaiman, Catherynne M. Valente, and many more. They all meet here on the streets of Bordertown in more than twenty new interconnected songs, poems, and stories.


If I Could Fly by Judith Ortiz Cofer

Fifteen-year-old Doris is used to taking care of herself. Her musician parents have always spent more time singing in nightclubs than watching after her. But when her ailing mother goes home to Puerto Rico to get well and pursue a singing career there, and her father finds a new girlfriend, Doris is more alone than she’s ever been. Disconnected from her family and her best friends, who are intertwined in terrifying relationships with a violent classmate, Doris finds refuge in taking care of homing pigeons on her apartment building’s roof. As Doris tries to make sense of it all, she learns that, just like the pigeons, she might have to fly far distances before she finds out where she belongs.


Lark by Tracey Porter

When sixteen-year-old Lark Austin is kidnapped from her Virginia hometown and left for dead in a snowy forest, she leaves behind two girls who are shocked by the loss of their former friend. At the same time Eve must face the hole left by Lark’s absence, she also can’t shake the guilt that Lark’s death was her fault. Meanwhile, Nyetta is haunted by Lark’s ghost, who comes through the bedroom window and begs Nyetta to set her soul free. Eve and Nyetta realize it is their responsibility to uncover why Lark is trapped in limbo, but only by coming together to find the missing pieces of themselves can they bring peace to Lark.

Told in alternating sections by each of the three heroines, Tracey Porter’s stunning narrative about love and loss demonstrates that forgiveness can never come too late.


Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly

Willow knows she’s different from other girls, and not just because she loves tinkering with cars. Willow has a gift. She can look into the future and know people’s dreams and hopes, their sorrows and regrets, just by touching them. She has no idea where this power comes from. But the assassin, Alex, does. Gorgeous, mysterious Alex knows more about Willow than Willow herself does. He knows that her powers link to dark and dangerous forces, and that he's one of the few humans left who can fight them. When Alex finds himself falling in love with his sworn enemy, he discovers that nothing is as it seems, least of all good and evil. In the first book in an action-packed romantic trilogy, L. A. Weatherly sends readers on a thrill ride of a road trip — and depicts the human race at the brink of a future as catastrophic as it is deceptively beautiful.


The Girl in the Steel Corset by Kody Cross

In 1897 England, sixteen-year-old Finley Jayne has no one…except the "thing" inside her.

When a young lord tries to take advantage of Finley, she fights back. And wins. But no normal Victorian girl has a darker side that makes her capable of knocking out a full-grown man with one punch….

Only Griffin King sees the magical darkness inside her that says she's special, says she's one of them. The orphaned duke takes her in from the gaslit streets against the wishes of his band of misfits: Emily, who has her own special abilities and an unrequited love for Sam, who is part robot; and Jasper, an American cowboy with a shadowy secret.

Griffin's investigating a criminal called The Machinist, the mastermind behind several recent crimes by automatons. Finley thinks she can help—and finally be a part of something, finally fit in.

But The Machinist wants to tear Griff's little company of strays apart, and it isn't long before trust is tested on all sides. At least Finley knows whose side she's on—even if it seems no one believes her.


Wrapped by Jennifer Bradbury

Agnes Wilkins is standing in front of an Egyptian mummy, about to make the first cut into the wrappings, about to unlock ancient (and not-so-ancient) history.

Maybe you think this girl is wearing a pith helmet with antique dust swirling around her.
Maybe you think she is a young Egyptologist who has arrived in Cairo on camelback.

Maybe she would like to think that too. Agnes Wilkins dreams of adventures that reach beyond the garden walls, but reality for a seventeen-year-old debutante in 1815 London does not allow for camels—or dust, even. No, Agnes can only see a mummy when she is wearing a new silk gown and standing on the verdant lawns of Lord Showalter’s estate, with chaperones fussing about and strolling sitar players straining to create an exotic “atmosphere” for the first party of the season. An unwrapping.

This is the start of it all, Agnes’s debut season, the pretty girl parade that offers only ever-shrinking options: home, husband, and high society. It’s also the start of something else, because the mummy Agnes unwraps isn’t just a mummy. It’s a host for a secret that could unravel a new destiny—unleashing mystery, an international intrigue, and possibly a curse in the bargain.

Get wrapped up in the adventure . . . but keep your wits about you, dear Agnes.


I've been excited for a lot of these for quite a while, and I've got reviews of several coming up soon! What new release are you most excited for this week?

Sunday, May 22, 2011

In My Mailbox: May 16 - 22, 2011

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren.


For Review:


Wildefire by Karsten Knight

Thanks to Simon & Schuster!

Coming July 26, 2011!

Every flame begins with a spark.

Ashline Wilde is having a rough sophomore year. She’s struggling to find her place as the only Polynesian girl in school, her boyfriend just cheated on her, and now her runaway sister, Eve, has decided to barge back into her life. When Eve’s violent behavior escalates and she does the unthinkable, Ash transfers to a remote private school nestled in California’s redwoods, hoping to put the tragedy behind her. But her fresh start at Blackwood Academy doesn’t go as planned. Just as Ash is beginning to enjoy the perks of her new school—being captain of the tennis team, a steamy romance with a hot, local park ranger—Ash discovers that a group of gods and goddesses have mysteriously enrolled at Blackwood…and she’s one of them. To make matters worse, Eve has resurfaced to haunt Ash, and she’s got some strange abilities of her own. With a war between the gods looming over campus, Ash must master the new fire smoldering within before she clashes with her sister one more time… And when warm and cold fronts collide, there’s guaranteed to be a storm.


The Lost Crown: A Novel of Romanov Russia by Sarah Miller

Thanks to Simon & Schuster!

Coming June 14, 2011!

Olga, Tatiana, Maria, and Anastasia. Like the fingers on a hand--first headstrong Olga; then Tatiana, the tallest; Maria the most hopeful for a ring; and Anastasia, the smallest. These are the daughters of Tsar Nicholas II, grand dutchesses living a life steeped in tradition and priviledge. They are each on the brink of starting their own lives, at the mercy of royal matchmakers. The summer of 1914 is that precious last wink of time when they can still be sisters together--sisters that link arms and laugh, sisters that share their dreams and worries, and flirt with the officers of their imperial yacht.

But in a gunshot the future changes for these sisters and for Russia.

As World War I ignites across Europe, political unrest sweeps Russia. First dissent, then disorder, mutiny, and revolution. For Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia, the end of their girlhood together is colliding with the end of more than they ever imagined.

At the same time hopeful and hopeless, naive and wise, the voices of these sisters become a chorus singing the final song of Imperial Russia. Impeccably researched and utterly fascinating, this novel by acclaimed author Sarah Miller recounts the final days of Imperial Russia with lyricism, criticism and true compassion.


The Map of Time by Felix J. Palma

Thanks to Simon & Schuster!

Coming June 28, 2011!

A Map of Time by Felix J. Palma. Set in Victorian London with characters real and imagined, The Map of Time is a page-turner that boasts a triple play of intertwined plots in which a skeptical H.G. Wells is called upon to investigage purported incidents of time travel and to save lives and literary classics, including Dracula and The Time Machine, from being wiped from existence. What happens if we change history?



Love Story by Jennifer Echols

Thanks to Simon & Schuster!

Coming July 19, 2011!

Erin Blackwell is headed to college in New York City to study creative writing and earn a living as a romance novelist. Her grandmother has other plans: she approves of the college, but she wants Erin to major in business and then come back home to Kentucky to run the family’s famous racehorse farm. There is no way Erin will agree. Studying in New York and writing her way into a career is her escape from the farm and the family tragedy that happened there. So Erin’s grandmother decides Erin really will live life as a starving artist. She takes Erin’s future job running the farm, her inheritance, even her college tuition, and gives them all to Hunter Allen
.
Hunter has lived on the farm for years. He’s Erin’s age, he’s the stable boy, and he’s the romantic dream of every girl in her high school. But he was involved in the family tragedy. Erin has always given him a wide berth. And he’s a slick opportunist. She’s furious that he fooled her grandmother into giving him Erin’s birthright and sending him to Erin’s college.

At least she’s free of him in her creative writing class. So she pens a story that has haunted her lately, in which the horse farm heiress at the very first Kentucky Derby starts a forbidden affair with the lowly stable boy. Unfortunately for her, the day she’s sharing this story with her New York classmates, Hunter walks in. He’s switching to her class. And after reading about himself in Erin’s story, he writes his own sexy assignments that lure Erin into dangerous fantasies about what could have been between them, and what might be.


Beauty Queens by Libba Bray

Thanks to Chelsy at Big Honcho Media!

Coming May 24, 2011!

From bestselling, Printz Award-winning author Libba Bray, the story of a plane of beauty pageant contestants that crashes on a desert island.

Teen beauty queens. A "Lost"-like island. Mysteries and dangers. No access to email. And the spirit of fierce, feral competition that lives underground in girls, a savage brutality that can only be revealed by a journey into the heart of non-exfoliated darkness. Oh, the horror, the horror! Only funnier. With evening gowns. And a body count.



Won:


Impossible by Nancy Werlin

Signed!

Thanks to Misty at The Book Rat!

Lucy is seventeen when she discovers that she is the latest recipient of a generations-old family curse that requires her to complete three seemingly impossible tasks or risk falling into madness and passing the curse on to the next generation. Unlike her ancestors, though, Lucy has family, friends, and other modern resources to help her out. But will it be enough to conquer this age-old evil?

A beautifully wrought modern fairy tale from master storyteller and award-winning author Nancy Werlin.Inspired by the classic folk ballad "Scarborough Fair," this is a wonderfully riveting and haunting novel of suspense, romance, and fantasy.


Extraordinary by Nancy Werlin

Signed!

Thanks to Misty at The Book Rat!

Phoebe finds herself drawn to Mallory, the strange and secretive new kid in school, and the two girls become as close as sisters . . . until Mallory's magnetic older brother, Ryland, shows up during their junior year. Ryland has an immediate, exciting hold on Phoebe, but a dangerous hold, for she begins to question her feelings about her best friend and, worse, about herself. Soon she'll discover the shocking truth about Ryland and Mallory: that these two are visitors from the faerie realm who have come to collect on an age-old debt. Generations ago, the faerie queen promised Pheobe's ancestor five extraordinary sons in exchange for the sacrifice of one ordinary female heir. But in hundreds of years there hasn't been a single ordinary girl in the family, and now the faeries are dying. Could Phoebe be the first ordinary one? Could she save the faeries, or is she special enough to save herself?


I've been looking forward to all of these! What's in your mailbox this week?

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