Guest Post
October 24, 2014 posted by Nichole

Guest Post: A Few Minutes Inside Scott Wieczorek’s Head

awakening

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Forget everything you ever thought to be true about our world. Angels are real. And they are fighting for control over the human race.

 What would you do if you learned everything you knew about the world was wrong? Microbiology student Elena Michaels is about to find out. After a few chance encounters with Alexavier Edmunds, a strange but intriguing student on campus, Elena is on the run from an ancient organization of angel-like beings. Strange things are awakening within her, and there is only one with the answers—the Elder. But can she make it to him in time?

 

 

 

About the author:

scott

Scott Wieczorek is a professional archaeologist working in the American Middle-Atlantic region. He has written numerous short stories and several full-length novels ranging from science fiction, to paranormal mystery, to horror. In addition, he writes reviews of books by Independent authors. Samples of his work are available on his blog at wieczorekfictblog.blogspot.com.

 

AWAKENING EXCERPT

Elena’s face felt cold as the blood drained from it. She had not seen the woman’s mouth move while she spoke. She sobered almost instantly, the hackles on her neck rising as she stared at the woman’s cold smile. She recognized the voice in a moment of lucidity as the one she had heard at the airport, their tail, their stalker—one of the Opposition.

My mistress was right, the woman’s voice continued. She told me it would be a matter of time before one of you two slipped up. The amazing thing is you both slipped up at the same time. The woman turned to Elena.

The woman stood nearly a whole foot shorter than Elena and appeared much more fragile. Elena tried to gauge whether or not she would be able to handle this woman on her own. She knew from experience Daimon men were quite powerful, but never expected such strength from females.

Let me clue you in on some secrets. First, Daimon men cannot handle their liquor. In fact, all Daimones are very quickly undone by alcohol. The woman eyed Elena up and down before saying, Second, you could never take me on. To illustrate her point, the small woman gripped the countertop and crushed a small section of it into powder.

“What do you want from me?” Elena asked.

The choice is simple, the woman replied mentally. Either come with me to see my mistress. Or…

“Or?” Elena asked, realizing she would regret this decision.

Or you and your companion die, the woman replied. A placid and sickly happy smile spread across her face as she said it.

The woman’s evident pleasure at making such a dire threat sent a chill down Elena’s spine. She conjured up the most severe feeling of pain she could imagine and directed it right at the Daimon woman as she had done to the other Daimon in Canada. However, instead of the anticipated effect of crippling pain she had seen in the Daimon man, the woman’s eyes flashed, and then she laughed.

Silly girl, the woman said to her mentally. I am no mere weakling. Your foolish mind games have no effect on me.

Alec…I need your help! Elena cried out, hoping beyond hope he would hear and come to her aid.

The woman started laughing even louder. A terrifying grin crossed her face. He can’t hear you. Alcohol impairs Daimon abilities. And Alec has had a few too many. I guess I shouldn’t have bought him so many rounds!

Elena didn’t wait for the woman to move. Filled with blind rage over being trapped by this woman, she pressed her attack. If her death was on the menu, then she would take this woman with her as dessert.

Elena bowled into the small Daimon woman, throwing all of her weight into the attack. To her surprise, the woman fell backward with her arm clutching at the sink.

She didn’t stay down for long, though and responded by pushing back at Elena with startling speed, shoving her back a few paces.

Elena responded as fast. She threw her hands up in anticipation of the Daimon woman’s attack. However, she couldn’t fathom what kind of attack to expect coming at her.

The small woman was lithe. She maneuvered herself underneath Elena’s arms and thrust upward with both arms like lofting a volleyball lifting Elena off of her feet and throwing her into the far wall. Elena managed to turn herself sideways in order to absorb her impact with the wall and push herself off into a counterattack.

Elena rushed across the room. The woman crouched at her approach. Instead of missing her target, however, Elena lowered her center of gravity and leapt, flying over the woman’s back. While sailing over her opponent’s body, Elena stretched out and grasped the woman around the waist.

Elena’s momentum carried her forward, and she tucked her head and rolled, pulling the Daimon woman off her feet and flipping her onto her head with startling force. The Daimon’s legs flailed and slammed into the large wall mirror, shattering it.

But she did not stay down for long. Before Elena could right herself, the woman leapt up and moved back across the room. Elena stood and whirled to face the woman but was caught off guard as a fist struck her across the face. Surprisingly, it did not carry much force. Elena brushed the blow off and delivered her own to the woman’s chest, forcing the woman back several feet.

The Daimon crumpled, winded by the force of Elena’s attack. When the Daimon stood again, she clutched a large shard of the broken mirror, which she wielded like a knife.

 

Guest post:

One of the most frequent things people say to me as a writer is: I would love to get inside your head. So, the purpose of my guest post today is to do that: give you a few minutes inside my head (please pardon the cobwebs).

First, let me say that this is a horrible thing to say to a writer. For me personally, this just triggers a knee-jerk reaction in my mind two simultaneous thoughts—one of someone using a pen, pencil, or other seemingly innocuous item to vivisect my brain, the other of a small person crawling into my skull through either my nose or ear. However, after this reaction, I understand what they really mean is that they would like to be able to see the world from my perspective and view the world from a writer’s point of view.

I have to say, as a writer, that I have a unique way of seeing things. A meme recently posted on the internet captures, in part, one of key elements to this unique perspective. The meme displays a door hanging slightly ajar with text saying something to the tune of: For most people this door is ajar. For a writer… There are several permutations of the final text, but all of them drive home the point that writers tend not to take things at face value, and also tend to have overactive imaginations. The long shot of this is that the open door merely represents an invitation to create a story about how, and why that door is open, and what will happen next when someone encounters it.

Since childhood, I have been plagued with a highly overactive imagination. The best way to channel this creativity, for me, was writing. So I take every opportunity to look at the open doors, and let my imagination wander because there is always the chance that inside may lay the greatest story yet untold.

I hope you have enjoyed the last few minutes in my head… now please get out (and take the other voices with you).

 

 

 

Top Ten Tuesday
October 21, 2014 posted by Nichole

Top New Series I Want To Start

Top Ten Tuesday

Hi, everyone! Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday! This meme is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Today’s topic is Top New Series I Want To Start

1 The Lunar Chronicles

Cress

2 The Grisha series

14061957

3 The Raven Cycle series

17378508

4 The Winners’ Trilogy

the winners curse

5 Dorothy Must Die

dorothy must die

6 The Beautiful Creatures series – I’ve only read the first book. I loved it and I loved the movie. I’m not sure why I haven’t continued it…but I can’t wait!

beautifulcreatures

7 The Black City series

black city

8 The Taken series

frozen

9 The Dark Elements series

white hot kiss

10 Pushing the Limits series

pushing-the-limits
News
October 20, 2014 posted by Nichole

My side of the story…

I wasn’t sure I wanted to write this post. First, I’m not sure that it’s everyone’s business… I don’t mean that in a rude way, I just feel that, at the moment, this is really intensely between three different parties. I’m not saying that everyone else doesn’t have a reason to be concerned and, well, afraid, but there’s a reason the main parties haven’t thrown themselves head first into the drama. Second, I don’t do drama. Sure, I’m advocating it at the moment, but I really don’t want to be pulled into the mess anymore than possible. But I’ve been receiving a lot of emails, direct messages, and tweets on Twitter from close blogger friends showing their support for both myself and Blythe and also letting me know that our community really wants to know what the heck is going on.

 

First off, I’ll start out by letting everyone know that I’m the one who gave KH Blythe’s mailing address. It’s not a secret nor something I thought I would ever have to be ashamed of. Why? Because I received Blythe’s permission to give it to KH.

 

This all started because of the 2014 debut authors bash. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a big event that YaReads hosts each year since 2013 where we gather up all the debut authors and pair them with other bloggers. During sign ups, we ask the authors if they have a specific blogger that they would like to work with. This is not a requirement. We are more than willing to randomly pair bloggers and authors. In fact, that’s what most of the authors choose to do. In this case, though, KH specifically requested Blythe as her blogger host.

 

Now, I mentioned I don’t do drama, right? So, I had no idea that KH was previously engaged in some blogger scandal. I still don’t really know that much about it because I don’t care enough to look it up and ask around. Well, as soon as I emailed Blythe about it she seemed a little confused. She was willing to host KH for the Bash, but she didn’t really understand why KH wanted to be paired with her since she didn’t like her book. So, I emailed KH about it and she informed me that she knew that Blythe didn’t like her book and that’s exactly why she wanted to be paired with her. She also wanted to talk about the previous controversy in the interview they were to do together. Blythe agreed and everything was set for them to be paired together for the Bash.

Let me back track a second since this seems to be the super important part. When KH requested Blythe as her blogger, she also asked me to get Blythe’s mailing address for her because she wanted to send her a gift for hosting her for the Bash. I sent Blythe an email and she seemed super excited and gave me her permission to pass on her mailing address to KH. It seemed safe and simple. I read in KH’s article that she was requested to donate some signed books and that’s why she wanted Blythe’s mailing address. When we send invitations out to the debut authors we give them a set of questions. One of those questions is whether or not they will be hosting a giveaway for the event and if it will be open to US, US & CAN, or INT. We never ask any of the authors to host a giveaway nor do we ask them to donate specific prizes. If they have questions about the giveaway we answer them, but that is completely up to them. Most of the authors chose to do a giveaway this year, but we did have quite a few who did not host one.

As we started to get closer to deadlines for the Bash, it was becoming slightly difficult to get ahold of Blythe about the interview. KH emailed me a few times and it was obvious that she was a bit frustrated that Blythe wasn’t communicating with her. At one point she said that it was starting to get a bit ridiculous but nothing exceeded mild annoyance. I remember that she requested a phone interview or a video chat between her and Blythe, but Blythe wasn’t interested in either of those. Eventually, I asked Blythe if she needed to be removed from the tour and we agreed that would be the best option since she was having some family issues going on and she would soon be traveling to Europe. It really wasn’t a big deal. We changed KH’s blogger to someone else that she wanted and I thought that was that.

I remember that KH had emailed me asking if Blythe sent me the correct mailing address because it was under someone else’s name. Of course, me not being very attentive, didn’t put two and two together that it was weird that she knew that. I’m not very savvy online, so I just figured that she went to put it on some post office site and it came back weird. That sounds stupid now, huh? I think I emailed Blythe about it, but I can’t remember that whole conversation and don’t want to put words in anyone’s mouth. Later on, KH emailed me asking what to do with the gift she was going to send Blythe. I thought that was a little strange since I thought she had already sent it to her. I let it go, though, and just told her to hold onto it or give it to her new blogger….whatever she wanted to do with it, really.

Honestly, that seemed to be the extent of it. KH emailed me a few weeks ago asking me if YaReads stood for another blog. I remember I was slightly offended because we’re a pretty well known blog, not to mention that I worked my butt off on the 2014 debut authors bash all by myself, but I politely let her know that nope…we’re YaReads!

Other than that, I haven’t talked to KH or Blythe since we hooked up KH with another blogger. The last connection I had with Blythe was my email to her letting her know that we replaced her with another blogger for the 2014 debut authors bash. I didn’t even know about KH’s article until a day after it posted…..which you can all imagine how pleasant that was for me. I emailed KH about it and she requested that I call her, but I wasn’t (and am still not) overly comfortable giving her my phone number at that point.

 

Other than that, I’ve talked to Blythe a little bit about the situation as well as some pretty close friends in the blogging community who know bits and pieces but are close enough to have kept quiet about it. I’m still a little in shock and more than a little betrayed. Mostly, I’m in shock since I’m directly in the middle and completely flabbergasted that this happened.

 

I’d like to thank all of you for defending us and protecting the blogging community. What happened was absolutely horrifying and I can’t even imagine how Blythe must be feeling right now or even a few days ago. I would like to encourage everyone to tone it down just a little bit. This is already intense enough at the moment and I know that I personally want it to just die down a little bit. I know that steps are going to be taken, but other than that, I’m not going to share anymore details.

 

I feel like I just wrote a book, but I also know that I just grossly fascinated all of you. This is my statement. I know that you all are very curious and upset about this whole situation, but I would like to ask all of you to respect my space and privacy during this confusing time.

News
October 19, 2014 posted by Nichole

Books for sale!

Hey, everyone! Welcome back!

 

I know everyone is concerned with the drama today, but I’m taking a step back for now. So, I went through a bunch of books in my room that need to go. These books will be on sale for two weeks (longer if it seems to be going well) and then I’m just going to donate the rest or something.

 

Hardbacks are $5 each

Paperbacks are $3 each

 

Deals: 3 paperbacks for $7/ 3 hardbacks for $12

 

You must pay shipping which is not included in these promises. Shipping depends on the amount of packaging used and the weight.

 

Please email me at American.yareaders2@gmail.com with your choices. And I promise, cross my heart, that I will not pull a Hale on you. All addresses will be deleted and WILL NOT be shared.

 

Shipping will be done on Saturdays. If I am able to get it out sooner, I will.

 

Hardbacks

Red by Alison Cherry

The Strange Maid by Tessa Gratton

Bad Luck Girl by Sarah Zettel

Allegiant by Veronica Roth

The Gollywhopper Games: The New Champion by Jody Feldman (MG)

The Cabinet of Curiosities: 36 Tales Brief and Sinister by Stegan Bachmann, Katherine Catmull, Claire Legrand and Emma Trevayne

Immortal City by Scott Speer

The Glass Casket by McCormick Templeman

Meridian by Josin L. McQuein

Bloodrose by Andrea Cremer

The Haven by Carol Lynch Williams

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron

Dark Companion by Marta Acosta

Burning by Elana K. Arnold

A Matter of Days by Amber Kizer

Charm & Strange by Stephanie Kuehn

Fates by Lanie Bross

Seven Wonders: The Tomb of Shadows by Peter LeRangis

The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler

Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell

Until I Die by Amy Plum

Ironskin by Tina Connolly

Scowler by Daniel Kraus

Intentions by Deborah Heiligman

Incineratior by Niall Leonard

The School of Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

Girl in Reverse by Barbara Stuber

The Living by Matt De La Pena

Expiration Day by William Campbell Powell

After the End by Amy Plum (2 copies)

Hanging by a Thread by Sophie Littlefield

Man Made Boy by Jon Skovron

The Planet Thieves by Dan Krokos

Love Me by Rachel Shukert

Road Rash by Mark Huntley Parsons

Prince of Shadows by Rachel Caine

The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman

The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

Pathfinder by Angie Sage

Even in Paradise by Chelsey Philpot

Black Ice by Becca Fitzpatrick

Taking Flight by Michaela DePrince

The Serpent’s Curse by Tony Abbott

The Good Sister by Jamie Kain (2 copies)

Flat Stanley’s Worldwide Adventures: Escape to California by Jeff Brown

The Graveyard Book Volume 1 by Neil Gaiman (graphic novel)

 

 

Paperbacks

Eternal by CC Hunter

Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Conjure by Lea Nolan

Ashes of Twilight by Kassy Tayler

World After by Susan Ee

Stormbringer by Shannon Delany

Quarantine by James Phelan

Survivor by James Phelan

Just One Day by Gayle Forman

Echo by Alyson Noel

Seven Wonders Journals by Peter Lerangis

Blackwood by Gwenda Bond

Midnight City by J Barton Mitchell

The Neptune Project by Polly Holyoke

How to Meet Boys by Catherine Clark

Switched by Amanda Hocking

 

Book Reviews
October 18, 2014 posted by Nichole

September/October Books Read in My Classroom

Hi everyone! Welcome back!

 

Since I’ve become a preschool teacher, I’ve been reading way more children’s book than I did for my one a week story time kids. Since I ADORE picture books, I wanted to share with you some of the books we’ve been reading lately [= This is only a few of them, of course.

 

Brief Thief – Both my story-time kids and my students love this book. It’s just way too hilarious. If you want your kids to be quiet while reading a story, though, then this is not the book to read!

Brief Thief

Harry Goes to Dog School – They loved it!

Harry Goes to Dog School

How to Be a SuperHero – My boys are OBSESSED with superheroes. Every single one of them has either a Batman or Spiderman hoodie. They did enjoy this. I thought it was going to be a much bigger hit than it was.

superhero

Ten Orange Pumpkins/A Counting Book – My kids loved taking turns counting the pumpkins. I even let on of them hold up the book (after we had already done it as a class) and let their friends count the pumpkins. Big hit!

ten orange pumpkins

Can You Make a Scary Face? – I’ve talked about this book before. Probably the best interactive book ever. Every kid loves this book.

can you make a scary face

Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf – I know that this one is a classic, but I didn’t like. My kids didn’t care for it, either. We even did an activity after reading it and it just wasn’t a hit.

Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf

 

Halloween Books I bought this last week for my class:

Curious George: Haunted Halloween

Curious George

The Night Before Halloween

The Night Before Halloween

Disney 5 minute spooky stories – My kids absolutely adore this book! I won’t let them actually touch this one, though, because I want it to last a long time.

5 minute stories
audiobook
October 17, 2014 posted by Nichole

DNF Audiobook Review: Icons (Icons #1) by Margaret Stohl

iconsYour heart beats only with their permission.

Everything changed on The Day. The day the windows shattered. The day the power stopped. The day Dol′s family dropped dead. The day Earth lost a war it didn′t know it was fighting.

Since then, Dol has lived a simple life in the countryside – safe from the shadow of the Icon and its terrifying power. Hiding from the one truth she can′t avoid.

She′s different. She survived. Why?

When Dol and her best friend, Ro, are captured and taken to the Embassy, off the coast of the sprawling metropolis once known as the City of Angels, they find only more questions. While Ro and fellow hostage Tima rage against their captors, Dol finds herself drawn to Lucas, the Ambassador′s privileged son. But the four teens are more alike than they might think, and the timing of their meeting isn′t a coincidence. It′s a conspiracy.

Within the Icon′s reach, Dol, Ro, Tima, and Lucas discover that their uncontrollable emotions – which they′ve always thought to be their greatest weaknesses – may actually be their greatest strengths.

Bestselling author Margaret Stohl delivers the first book in a heart-pounding series set in a haunting new world where four teens must piece together the mysteries of their pasts – in order to save the future.

 

My Review:

Ok….so I gave this one about 2 discs in the car. I was on like chapter 7 or 8 and I have no. idea. what. the. hell. was. going. on. Nothing made sense! I didn’t understand the characters, the plot, the setting, the whole freaking concept…nothing! I honestly don’t even know what this book is about and that should have been covered within the first few chapters. I got to the point where I dreaded listening to it in the car because I was just so confused.

 

Who knows….maybe this is a better book to hold and read? But listening to it was just way too confusing.

 

Pages: 368

Publication Date: May 7th 2013

Publisher: Harper

Rating: DNF

Book Reviews
October 16, 2014 posted by Nichole

DNF Review: The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

the infinite seaHow do you rid the Earth of seven billion humans? Rid the humans of their humanity.

Surviving the first four waves was nearly impossible. Now Cassie Sullivan finds herself in a new world, a world in which the fundamental trust that binds us together is gone. As the 5th Wave rolls across the landscape, Cassie, Ben, and Ringer are forced to confront the Others’ ultimate goal: the extermination of the human race.

Cassie and her friends haven’t seen the depths to which the Others will sink, nor have the Others seen the heights to which humanity will rise, in the ultimate battle between life and death, hope and despair, love and hate.

 

My Review:

This is a tough review for me to write, because I remember that I LOVED The 5th Wave.  I had a really hard time getting into this book, though. In fact, I DNF’d it….if you didn’t already see that in the title above. It’s just that it’s been so long since I read The 5th Wave, and The Infinite Sea did not go into any background details AT. ALL. I also had a really hard time identifying who the characters were and keeping up with whose POV I was reading in each chapter.

I can’t remember how far I made it in this book. I think I made it around 100 or so pages before I finally just gave up. The writing style was extremely difficult to get into and I found it to be wayyyy too poetic for my personal taste. And seriously…….did I mention that I had no idea what was going on or who was talking?! Give some damn background info! The first book came out a year ago and I don’t like to reread books!

 

Ugh.

 

This one just wasn’t for me.

Blog Tour
October 15, 2014 posted by Nichole

Book Blitz: Last House Burning by Katy Scott

Last House Burning Banner

Last House BurningLast House Burning by Katy Scott

Genre: YA/NA urban fantasy with a touch of satire

Publication Date: October 14th, 2014

Publisher: Herringshaw Press

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Last-House-Burning-Katy-Scott-ebook/dp/B00NO94B1I

In an old house in a deserted, burned-down village, a young woman called Verla lives alone. Year after year she stays there while the world changes around her, no one else ever stepping foot in the village, the people in the nearby towns leaving her well alone. Verla is used to it. It’s the way things have to be.
Until Ben, a bored teenager visiting the area with his family, barges into her life and demands to know her story. He’s strangely drawn to the house and its reclusive occupant, and when he finds out her terrible secret he’s only more determined to help.
But Ben is dealing with forces he never even imagined existed. As he spirals deeper and deeper into the bureaucratic world of Heaven and Hell that Verla is part of, he realizes that it’s going to take more than just an appointment at the local office of the underworld if he and Verla plan to face down her devilish foe and give her a final chance at freedom.
About the Author:
Katy Scott
I write books in a couple of different genres: urban fantasy and chick lit/romance. When I’m not writing books I write for lifestyle magazines and corporate websites, and I blog about gaming over at warpkey.org.
I like movies, video games, cheese, shoes and my husband. I’m technically an adult but most of the time I feel like I’m just pretending to be one.
The Excerpt:
That night, Ben lay fully-clothed on his bed, thinking. No one else seemed fascinated with Verla and her big house, and he felt a little foolish about his persistence with finding out what her story was. But he had a sense of curiosity, not just about the house but Verla herself, and he had a strange but distinct feeling that whatever was going on in her life, he could help her.
But she hadn’t been particularly forthcoming about her circumstances, and everyone else was showing a frustrating lack of interest. What did people do when they were in this situation?
In the movies they trotted down to their local library, found a large dingy room with pools of sunlight dropping through the windows, and searched through huge, dusty tomes until they found the answer. But Ben didn’t know what he was looking for in the first place. Maybe finding out more about the town’s history would be a good start.
“Mom?” he called, jumping up from his bed. “Do you know if there’s a library around here? Would it be open now? I need to look something up!”
“It’s ten o’clock at night,” his mother’s voice floated back to him. “Can’t you just Google it?”
Right, of course. Ben rolled his eyes at himself.
His phone still wouldn’t connect to the internet, so he settled himself in front of his father’s laptop in the lounge and brought up a search page. Feeling more than a bit like a stalker, he typed in ‘Verla’ and ‘Carmenton’.
No results.
Like it was going to be that easy, he told himself – did he expect that she’d have a personal website with her full story detailed?
He searched for ‘Carmenton fire’ and scrolled through the results. Swimming carnivals from 1950 onwards. The official website for the bottle cap museum. After he’d clicked on a few dead ends, the website for the Carmenton Historical Society flashed up in front of him.
There was a page dedicated to the fire, with a few black and white photos of burned houses and a list of everyone who had died. Ben scanned through the names and felt a small pang when he saw the name ‘Diamant’ appearing a number of times. He’d had no idea his mother’s ancestors had been so involved in this little town and its big tragedy.
The photo gallery contained sepia images of large, imposing houses: the mansions before the fires ruined their grandeur. Even though the pictures were faded and marked, he could see how beautiful the town must have been. There were groups of people posing stiffly in front of the houses, with the formal faces that usually appeared in the photographs of that time.
He scrolled through a whole page of these photos, and sighed to himself. It hadn’t told him anything he didn’t know already. He’d just have to go back and pester Verla again. At least she’d said they could be friends. He closed the lid of the laptop and with nothing better to do, went to bed to read his book for a while before going to sleep.
Hours later, Ben woke with a start, and lay in bed listening to the silence of the night. Something was sitting at the back of his mind, something was trying to tell him something…
He leapt out of bed, into the lounge room and back to the laptop. He hunted through the browser history to find the historical society’s website, and clicked on the photo gallery. After scrolling past several images, he finally came to the one he was looking for. A picture of a man and a woman with three little boys and a teenage girl. Ben stared at the picture, then zoomed in impatiently. The girl’s face stared at him, unsmiling and formal. She was dressed in a high-collared dress with a long flared skirt, which reminded him of some pictures he’d seen of Amish people. He looked from her clothes to her face, the dark eyes, the black hair and the now-familiar sombre expression.
“Oh no,” Ben whispered. “Verla.”
The Giveaway:
3 ecopies of Last House Burning by Katy Scott

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blog Tour
October 14, 2014 posted by Nichole

Book Blitz: Learning to Swim by Annie Cosby

learning to swim banner

Learning to SwimLearning to Swim by Annie Cosby

Genre: YA Contemporary/Fantasy

The ebook is free until Oct. 16! Amazon

When Cora’s mother whisks the family away for the summer, Cora must decide between forging her future in the glimmering world of second homes where her parents belong, or getting lost in the bewitching world of the locals and the mystery surrounding a lonely old woman who claims to be a selkie creature—and who probably needs Cora more than anyone else.

Through the fantastical tales and anguished stories of the batty Mrs. O’Leary, as well as the company of a particularly gorgeous local boy called Ronan, Cora finds an escape from the reality of planning her life after high school. But will it come at the cost of alienating Cora’s mother, who struggles with her own tragic memories?

As the summer wanes, it becomes apparent that Ronan just may hold the answer to Mrs. O’Leary’s tragic past—and Cora’s future.

About the Author:

annie cosby

Annie Cosby reads and writes in Galway, Ireland, where she lives with her boyfriend and a whole lot of seagulls.
Learning to Swim is the first book in her USA Today-recommended Hearts Out of Water series, and the second book releases Nov. 30.
When she’s not writing, she’s usually editing for awesome clients like Anna Katmore and Month9Books/Swoon Romance. And she loves to hear from you!
unnamed (1)
Excerpt:
“Do you know about the Merrow, dearie?”

 

“I don’t think so,” I said.

She nodded and seemed to deliberate whether to go on. I knew she would. She always did. “The Irish told each other stories about a sea creature much like the mermaid. Only she’s called the Merrow.” She readjusted the scarf on her head as she nodded knowingly. “They’re sweet, sweet creatures. Capable of real love. Well, human love—if that can be said to be real love.”

“Do you believe in them?” I asked skeptically.

The old woman’s eyes remained fixed on a spot on the horizon. I followed her gaze. There was nothing but boats and seagulls, the normal fare of the ocean. She finally seemed to find herself and her eyes continued to rove.

“They say that love cannot overcome nature,” she finally said. “Supposedly the nature of the Merrow always overcomes whatever love they held for their human man. She will always go back to her people under the sea.”

Sounded to me like a cruel comment on female nature made by a bitter man.

“And the merman, oh, there are stories of mermen. Terrible stories. The mermen have cages at the bottom of the ocean in which they keep the souls of our drowned sailors and fishermen.”

A chill ran through me despite my unwillingness to become involved in the story. The pale, bloated body at the pier drifted to the forefront of my mind. Souls, chained to the bottom of the ocean, fighting uselessly, perpetually against their chains, appeared in my imagination. The soul had long been gone from that bloated body when I found it.

I only then became aware of the old woman looking at me. Her eyes were narrowed and she looked at me with an intensity that I had previously only seen her use on the ocean. I felt my cheeks redden.

“They play music, too,” she said. “Do you ever hear music under the water?”

I’ve never been under the water. I shook my head.

The old woman sighed. “I suppose one must listen for it, then. I haven’t listened in a very long time. A very, very … very long time.”

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Top Ten Tuesday
October 14, 2014 posted by Nichole

Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want To Visit

Top Ten Tuesday

Hi, everyone! Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday! This meme is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Today’s topic is Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want To Visit

 

This one is kind of hard because it’s making me think.

 

1.Paris –  A lot of books are heading toward Paris: Anna and the French Kiss, The Beautiful & the Cursed, the Die for Me series. I would love to go there.

2. The South – I’m just putting this in general. I’ve been to Florida, but I just went on vacation to Disney World and that’s not really the experience that I’m talking about.  A lot of books in the YA genre seemed to be based in the south.

3. Chicago - I’m obsessed with the Chicagoland Vampires series by Chloe Neill, and I’ve heard such great things about the pizza in Chicago. I would go there in a flat second

4. New York - I’ve always wanted to go to New York, but I love when books are set there.

5. California - I’ve already been to California, but I would love to go back!

6. Hogwarts – Enough set

7. The Capital - You know, if they didn’t make me participate in the Hunger Games or anything

8. Russia – As long I was absolutely safe and Dimitri was with me [;

 

I’m drawing a blank. That’s all I’ve got!