2013 Debut Authors Bash Wrap Up: J.J. Howard



It feels like just yesterday that I planned this whole event, when it was actually about 3 months ago that I started the initial process of it. Today, I am so excited to host J.J. Howard, author of That Time I Joined the Circus. Read below to find out more about J.J. Howard and a special Top Ten post from her!


6151349J.J. Howard is wearing headphones right now, most likely. She grew up in York, Pennsylvania, obsessed with music, movies, television, and pop culture. You can call her if you ever need to phone a friend for trivia on any of the above topics, but don’t ask about sports, because she is hopeless at those (along with math).
J.J. graduated from Dickinson College with a BA in English and Tiffin University with an MH in Humanities. She has been some of her students’ favorite English teacher for a quite a few years (she even has a mug somewhere to prove it). THAT TIME I JOINED THE CIRCUS is her first young adult novel.
J.J. would love to hear from her readers and is always ready to trade playlists. Visit at jjhowardbooks.com.




Top Ten Characters Who Need to Catch a Break

Conflict is the heart of the story. But for some characters—especially those who appear in long-running series—it can start to feel like enough is enough. These poor folks have been betrayed, possessed, and given birth to vampire babies. At least some of them have already achieved happily-ever-after (yes, Bella, we know you’ll be pretty forever. You can go away now). But some of them are still mired in a plot mess, looking for a way out.

25668310. Simon Lewis from City of Bones

This poor guy keeps carrying a torch for Clary long, long after Jace shows up and majorly salts his game. And then he gets turned into a vampire. And then he gets turned into a special vampire that everyone’s out to get. And all the while he’s frozen at age sixteen. I feel bad for the guy.







65670179. Lower-case will grayson from Will Grayson, Will Grayson

This poor guy got catfished in heart-crushing way. And his life was already on the crap side.








104290458. Juliette from Shatter Me

This girl needs a break. It’s too bad she and Rogue from the X-men live in different universes, because they could totally form a support group.








Firefly-BoxArt7. Mal from Firefly

Leaving the world of YA for a second, if you have watched this the brilliant-but-cancelled series, you know what I mean. Nothing goes right for Mal, who’s just trying to make a living as a petty crook. If you haven’t seen it, go stream it on Netflix. And then witness the heartbreak that is the follow-up movie, Serenity.







27670526. Katniss from The Hunger Games

Winners retire for life. That’s the rule. Oh, wait a second….psych!









6311695. Eva from Eva

If you’ve never read this little gem by Peter Dickinson, it’s worth a read. But beware: poor Eva is in a terrible accident at the beginning of the book. It’s not a spoiler for me to tell you (because it’s on the dust jacket of the book) that she wakes up to find her brain has been transplanted into the body of a chimp. As you might expect, things go downhill from there.







418654. Bella from Twilight

She got stalked, crushed her best friend’s heart, was attacked by a crazy vampire, stalked by the crazy vamp’s gf, and then died giving birth to a half-vampire baby. But, at least she got her man in the end.








418653. Jacob from Twlight

This poor schmuck. Carries a torch for Bella for three thousand pages, and then winds up in love with a toddler. Couldn’t he just have fallen for Leah? Geez, Meyer. Cut the kid a break.









2566832. Jace from City of Bones

I am stuck on book 5 of this series, primarily because I just can’t take anything else bad happening to this poor guy. When I left him he was like possessed by his half brother or something? I’m upset and confused.









31. Harry Potter

Has any young adult character ever suffered so much for so long? I even cried when he wasn’t made prefect. I’m just glad J.K. gave us that epilogue. After so much heartache, no character deserved a happy ending more.









15843281Lexi Ryan just ran away to join the circus, but not on purpose.

A music-obsessed, slightly snarky New York City girl, Lexi is on her own. After making a huge mistake–and facing a terrible tragedy–Lexi has no choice but to track down her long-absent mother. Rumor has it that Lexi’s mom is somewhere in Florida with a traveling circus.

When Lexi arrives at her new, three-ring reality, her mom isn’t there . . . but her destiny might be. Surrounded by tigers, elephants, and trapeze artists, Lexi finds some surprising friends and an even more surprising chance at true love. She even lucks into a spot as the circus’s fortune teller, reading tarot cards and making predictions.

But then Lexi’s ex-best friend from home shows up, and suddenly it’s Lexi’s own future that’s thrown into question.

With humor, wisdom, and a dazzlingly fresh voice, this debut reminds us of the magic of circus tents, city lights, first kisses, and the importance of an excellent playlist.



Prize #1: 2 copies of That Time I Joined the Circus by J.J. Howard; open to U.S. and Canada

Prize #2: copy of That Time I Joined the Circus; open Internationally

Contest will run from September 30th, 2013 to October 11th, 2013


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