Category Archives: Author Interviews

Author Interviews
February 17, 2017 posted by Nichole

Island of Exiles Blog Tour: Author Interview with Erica Cameron

Island of Exiles (The Ryogan Chronicles, #1) by Erica Cameron

Genre: YA Fantasy

Published by Entangled Teen

To Be Released on February 14th, 2017

In Khya’s world, every breath is a battle.

On the isolated desert island of Shiara, dying young is inevitable. The clan comes before self, and protecting her home means Khya is a warrior above all else.

But when following the clan and obeying their leaders could cost her brother his life, Khya’s home becomes a deadly trap. The only person who can help is Tessen, her lifelong rival and the boy who challenges her at every turn. The council she hoped to join has betrayed her, and their secrets, hundreds of years deep, reach around a world she’s never seen.

To save her brother’s life and her island home, her only choice is to trust Tessen, turn against her clan, and go on the run—a betrayal and a death sentence.

About the Author:

After a lifelong obsession with books, Erica Cameron spent her college years getting credit for reading and learning how to make stories of her own. Erica graduated with a double major in psychology and creative writing from Florida State University and began pursuing a career as an author.

Erica is many things but most notably the following: writer, reader, editor, asexual, dance fan, choreographer, singer, lover of musical theater, movie obsessed, sucker for romance, Florida resident, and quasi-recluse. She loves the beach but hates the heat, has equal passion for the art of Salvador Dali and Venetian Carnival masks, has a penchant for unique jewelry and sun/moon décor pieces, and a desire to travel the entire world on a cruise ship. Or a private yacht. You know, whatever works.

Her debut novel, Sing Sweet Nightingale, released March 2014 and it was the first volume of The Dream War Saga. In May 2015, Erica and her co-author Lani Woodland launched the Laguna Tides series with Taken by Chance. Riptide’s new YA imprint Triton Books will release both books in the Assassins series, Discord and Nemesis, in 2016. The Ryogan Chronicles, a fantasy trilogy set to launch through Entangled Teen, will launch in 2017 with Island of Exiles.

Read below for an excerpt from the book:

I breathe the briny air and try to consider the options objectively. As objectively as I ever can when my brother is involved.

Yorri was the first person to tell me that one day I’d be kaigo, just like our blood-parents, serving the Miriseh and earning high honors in Ryogo. I’d flicked him on the shoulder and said “Of course I will be,” but his faith had been what convinced me I was right.

Yorri gets so excited he stumbles over his own words when he’s explaining how he solved some new, impossible puzzle. He devotes himself with frightening fervor to anything that ensnares his arrow-quick mind, but sometimes needs reminding that the rest of the world exists.

Forget objectivity. It’s worth the risk.

I am going to keep him safe, just like I always have.

“You’re going to be late for the vigil if you stand here staring into nothing for much longer, Khya.”

I tense, keeping my eyes on the angry, dark, blue white-capped waves. I’d heard the footsteps approaching, but several people had come and gone already and left me alone.

Tessen, however, never was able to keep his thoughts inside his head.

“I won’t be late.” I answer without looking at him until he moves into my peripheral vision.

He leans against the wall to the left of me, his forearms crossed on the ledge and his head tilted up. With his arms folded on the ledge and his body held slightly away from the wall, I can make out the lines of muscle under layers of cloth, all of it hard-earned—though I probably won’t ever admit that to him. I don’t look directly at him, but I turn my head enough to get a better look at his face.

He’s taller than me, so looking down on him like this is strange. Seeing him without the hood and atakafu we always wear on duty is stranger. I don’t think I’ve seen his whole face since he became nyshin over a year ago.

His thick eyebrows sit low over his deep-set eyes and the line of his nose is straight, because somehow he was always quick enough in training to avoid all but the most glancing blows to his face. The setting sun highlights the red in his terra-cotta skin and makes his oddly pale eyes flash. Usually they’re limestone gray, but now they’re paler than ever and gleaming almost as bright as the sunlight off the ocean.

“Shouldn’t you be off training? Or guarding something?” I ask before he speaks.

“I am.” He smirks at me. “I’m guarding the mad nyshin girl who’s decided to perch on the walls and imitate a mykyn bird.”

“I’m not planning on attempting flight.” I wave my hand at him, trying to brush him off. “You can go, Nyshin-ten.”

His lips purse; I hide a smile. It was delightful discovering exactly how annoyed he got when I called him by his class and rank instead of his name. The flash of aggravation disappears quickly, replaced by his more usual sardonic smile. “Should I guess what has you lost in your own head the night of a vigil?”

“No. I don’t have that much time.”

“Then I won’t guess. Only your brother puts that look on your face.”

I look at him, expecting to see mockery in his eyes. There isn’t any. He looks almost…serious?

“You’re worried about his herynshi. Unless he’s in trouble again? It’s been a while. He’s overdue.”

“It’s been a while because he doesn’t have to deal with people who point out his every mistake anymore. Like you.” Gritting my teeth, I bend to brace my hand on the ledge and jump down to where Tessen stands. At six feet, he’s only an inch or two taller than me. Our eyes are nearly level when I square off against him. “You’re one of the reasons he ever got in trouble in the first place.”

“And you spent years trying to make him invisible.” Tessen’s lips thin, and the muscles in his jaw clench for a moment. “Even before you found your wards, you shielded him from everything. What he can do now that you’re not there to monitor his every move should be all the proof you need.”

“He would have died if I hadn’t protected him.” Nothing will ever convince me it was wrong to keep him alive. “You can’t seriously be suggesting I should have let that happen?”

“No, that isn’t— You don’t even know what he’s capable of! How long has it been since you’ve seen him fight? It’s been—” He steps back, his lips pressed tight and his hands held away from his weapons. “Bellows, Khya. I didn’t come here to fight with you. This isn’t how this was supposed to go.”

I blink. “What?” Tessen backing away from an argument? This has to be a trick. “How what was supposed to go?”

He shakes his head, a small smile quirking up the corners of his mouth. “I only came to ask if you’d dance with me tonight at the celebration.”

He can’t be serious…but there’s not a single sign that he isn’t being sincere.

I drop my gaze to hide the confusion that has to show on my face. My focus catches on the pendant gleaming against the undyed cloth of his tunic—a two-inch iron disc etched with crossed zeeka swords. Blood and rot, I hate seeing that around his neck. The zeeka is the symbol of the kaigo; the pendant is a symbol of their students.

Tessen is wearing the kaigo-sei pendant that should have been mine.

Out of the whole clan, the Miriseh and the kaigo only choose one nyshin-ten per year. His blood-mother, Neeva, is on the kaigo council. Being named a kaigo-sei isn’t a guarantee of advancement, but it is a sign that the leaders of the clan are keeping an eye on you. The kaigo-sei are given extra training and have to face additional tests of magic, skill, and leadership. Not every nyshin named a kaigo-sei student becomes a council member, but no one who isn’t a kaigo-sei will ever become one. I can still earn one—and I will, sooner rather than later—but it seems like they’re already grooming Tessen to take Kaigo Neeva’s place one day.

Rot take him, it was supposed to be me.

Swallowing the fruitless envy building in my chest, I raise my eyes to meet Tessen’s again. “I don’t make promises I don’t intend to keep.”

“But that’s not a no, so I’ll ask again tonight.” He smiles, inclines his head, and then walks away whistling. I hate that sound, and I’m almost positive he knows that.

Read below for an interview with the author:

Can you tell us about your book, Island of Exiles, in 40 words or less?

Trying to survive on Shiara takes power, skill, and fearlessness, but there are secrets hidden on the island, ones older than the city Khya lives in, and it’s disturbing those secrets that puts Khya in real danger.

What was your favorite scene to write?

There are so many! I love the way Khya and her friends interact, but her moments with Tessen are especially fun to write. They’ve known each other since infancy, basically, and they know exactly how to push each other. In the best and worst ways.

What was the hardest scene to edit out?

I’ve grown used to edits, so although it can be extremely difficult to lose certain scenes, I know it’s almost always moving me toward a better book in the end. Writing scenes, though… That can be painful. There’s an especially grueling scene in the middle of the book, and another one near the end. Not going to say what they are, but they were hard to get down on paper. Or computer screen.

How many books will be in this series?

Three! Book two, Sea of Strangers, should be out either December of 2016 or early 2017, and book three, which doesn’t have a title yet, will release in late 2018. There’s a lot I’d love to tell you about where the story is going, but SPOILERS! 😉

What theme song would you give Island of Exiles?

It’s been unusually hard for me to put together a playlist for this series, partially because I can’t help imagining my characters’ reactions to modern music. They’d be very confused and thrown off by most of it. Zion, a song by Fluke that was on the Matrix Reloaded soundtrack is definitely a fitting song. It always reminds me of Itagami, specifically their monthly celebrations and the tokiansu—the dance they perform with deadly sharp weapons.

What else are you currently working on?

A lot. Right now, I’m editing the third Dream War Saga book, rewriting the second Ryogan Chronicles book, and playing with the worldbuilding and first draft of the first Pax Novis novel! There are three very different stories, which helps a bit in keeping them straight in my head, but it’s an interesting experience to have three mental worlds spinning in orbit at the same time.

Follow the rest of the tour:

February 7th

Bibliobibuli YA – Author Interview

Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – Spotlight Post

February 8th

Mythical Books – Guest Post

The Novel Knight – Spotlight Post

February 9th

RoloPoloBookBlog – Spotlight Post

A Leisure Moment – Spotlight Post

February 10th

The Book Beacon – Guest Post

Roxy’s Book Reviews – Spotlight Post

February 11th

Verbosity Reviews – Review

Literary Meanderings – Spotlight Post

February 12th

Adventures in Writing – Spotlight Post

Sleeps on Tables– Spotlight Post

February 13th

Just One More Chapter – Spotlight Post

Lost in Ever After – Review

February 14th

Book-Keeping – Review

Elizabeth Delana Rosa – Spotlight Post

February 15th

With Love For Books – Review

Book Lovers Life – Spotlight Post

February 16th

A Dream Within A Dream – Spotlight Post

Cozy Little Book Nook – Spotlight Post

Allthingschristine – Review

February 17th

YaReads – Author Interview

PBC – Spotlight Post

February 18th

books are love – Review

The Reading Nook Reviews – Spotlight Post

February 19th

Tales of the Ravenous Reader – Author Interview

Crossroad Reviews – Spotlight Post

February 20th

The Booknerd – Review

Bookishly Thinking – Guest Post

Author Interviews
January 5, 2017 posted by Nichole

In Truth & Ashes Blog Tour: Author Interview with Nicole Luiken

in truth and ashes nicole luiken

through fire and seaThrough Fire & Sea (Otherselves, #1) by Nicole Luiken:

Synopsis:

There is one True World, and then there are the four mirror worlds: fire, water, air, and stone. And each has a magic of its own…

In the Fire World, seventeen-year-old Leah is the illegitimate daughter of one of the realm’s most powerful lords. She’s hot-blooded—able to communicate with the tempestuous volcano gods. But she has another gift…the ability to Call her twin “Otherselves” on other worlds.

Holly resides in the Water World—our world. When she’s called by Leah from the Fire World, she nearly drowns. Suddenly the world Holly thought she knew is filled with secrets, magic…and deadly peril.

For a malevolent force seeks to destroy the mirror worlds. And as Leah and Holly are swept up in the tides of chaos and danger, they have only one choice to save the mirror worlds—to shatter every rule they’ve ever known…

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25338152-through-fire-sea

Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Through-Fire-Sea-Entangled-Teen-ebook/dp/B00W1H5BT0

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/through-fire-sea-nicole-luiken/1121725505

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/through-fire-sea-entangled/id985135785

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/through-fire-sea-entangled-teen

Amazon.co.uk: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Through-Fire-Sea-Entangled-Teen-ebook/dp/B00W1H5BT0/

Amazon.ca: http://www.amazon.ca/Through-Fire-Sea-Entangled-Teen-ebook/dp/B00W1H5BT0

Entangled Page: http://www.entangledpublishing.com/through-fire-sea/

 

itaa-throughfireandseasale

AMID WIND AND STONE 1600x2400 (1)Amid Wind & Stone (Otherselves, #2)

Author: Nicole Luiken

Release Date: Mar. 7, 2016

Genre: YA Fantasy

 

There is one True World, and then there are the four Mirror Worlds: Fire, Water, Air, and Stone.

Audrey and Dorotea are “otherselves”—twin copies of each other who live on different Mirror Worlds.

On Air, Audrey has the ability to communicate with wind spirits. As war looms, she’s torn between loyalty to her country and her feelings for a roguish phantom who may be a dangerous spy.

Blackouts and earthquakes threaten the few remaining humans on Stone, who have been forced to live underground. To save her injured sister, Dorotea breaks taboo and releases an imprisoned gargoyle. Brooding, sensitive Jasper makes her wonder if gargoyles aretruly traitors, as she’s always been told.

Unbeknownst to them, they both face the same enemy—an evil sorceress bent on shattering all the Mirror Worlds.

 

Goodreads Book Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28597398-amid-wind-stone

Amazon Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/Amid-Stone-Otherselves-Nicole-Luiken-ebook/dp/B01BKMMFPE

Barnes & Noble Buy Link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/amid-wind-and-stone-nicole-luiken/1123387309

iBooks Buy Link: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/book/amid-wind-and-stone/id1082374406

Kobo Buy Link: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/amid-wind-and-stone

Amazon.co.uk: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Amid-Stone-Otherselves-Nicole-Luiken-ebook/dp/B01BKMMFPE

Amazon.ca: http://www.amazon.ca/Amid-Stone-Otherselves-Nicole-Luiken-ebook/dp/B01BKMMFPE

Entangled Page: http://www.entangledpublishing.com/amid-wind-stone/


in truth and ashesIn Truth & Ashes (Otherselves, #3) by Nicole Luiken

Author: Nicole Luiken

Release Date: January 2nd, 2017

Genre: YA Fantasy

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33014994-in-truth-and-ashes

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/in-truth-and-ashes-nicole-luiken/1125262532?ean=9781633755451

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01NCKVY0H?tag=entangpublis-20

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/in-truth-and-ashes

What she can’t remember could ruin her life.

The Mirror Worlds are but dull reflections of the True World, where magic and technology blend together…

On the True World, Belinda Loring has known from childhood that she must Bond with the son of another noble First Family. Uniting the families ensures hers will hold onto its powerful position, and so she’s always pushed down the tender feelings she has for her best friend—gorgeous, steadfast Demian, who isn’t noble.

But when the ceremonial magic goes disastrously wrong, Belinda becomes a national disgrace. Scorned as Broken, she turns to Demian for help getting revenge on the man who ruined her: the radical Malachi.

But the seeds of Malachi’s murderous plans lie buried in Belinda’s past, in the dark days of her kidnapping—a period of which she has no memory. And Demian may hold the key to recovering all that she’s lost—and saving the worlds.

 

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Ab0ut the Author

nicole-luiken

Nicole Luiken wrote her first book at age 13 and never stopped.
She is the author of nine published books for young adults, including Violet Eyes and its sequels Silver Eyes and Angels Eyes, Frost, Unlocking the Doors, The Catalyst, Escape to the Overworld, Dreamfire and the sequel Dreamline. Through Fire & Sea, book one of Otherselves, and Amid Wind & Stone, book two of Otherselves, are her most recent releases. She also has an adult thriller, Running on Instinct, under the name N.M. Luiken and a fantasy romance series, Gate to Kandrith and Soul of Kandrith.
Nicole lives with her family in Edmonton, AB. It is physically impossible for her to go more than three days in a row without writing.

Author Website: http://www.nicoleluiken.com/

Author Twitter: @NicoleLuiken

Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Nicole-Luiken-50793836133/

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/223320.Nicole_Luiken\

 

Read below for an excerpt from In Truth & Ashes:

Nightmare

Fire World

Leah wept in her sleep. And dreamed:

She was a dragon, floating on an orange sea of molten rock. Far above her was a hole like an eye, the Volcano Lord Thunderhead’s caldera. At first, the heat felt pleasant, soaking away the lingering chill of death, but then it increased in intensity as the magma invaded every nerve and lit them each on fire. She screamed through her ruined throat and convulsed—

Leah bolted upright and found herself in the Aerie, the top room of Qeturah’s Tower. She must have fallen asleep on Gideon’s bed.

She was shaking, her heart trying to beat its way out of her chest. Her skin felt clammy. What a terrible, awful nightmare.

One whole side of the Aerie opened out onto a large natural stone balcony. Outside, the sun silhouetted Thunderhead’s steep-sided black cone against the red sky. Thin trails of lava trickled down his sides as he erupted again.

The Volcano Lord grieved for the loss of his son, just as Leah grieved.

Leah had met Gideon here in this very room. He’d been feverish, and she’d been spying for her father, Duke Ruben, trying to prove that the evil sorceress Qeturah had something to do with the dragon attacks on their valley. Only, by the time she found out Gideon shape-shifted into the dragon at night and his mother Qeturah used a magic amulet to control him, Leah had already fallen in love with Gideon, and turning him in had been unthinkable.

But in the end, she’d been unable to protect him from her father. Duke Ruben’s army had shot the dragon down with a huge crossbow, and Gideon had died. And his death had signaled the beginning of the end of Fire World.

Gideon’s father, Thunderhead, had erupted and killed Duke Ruben and three other dukes. Their deaths, in turn, had sent the Volcano Lords linked to them into a mindless fury, and they’d all exploded. Those not killed in the eruptions would likely starve in the next year, since falling ash had blighted all the crops.

And Leah could barely bring herself to care.

Gideon was dead. Duke Ruben, her father, whom she’d alternately feared and wanted to please, was dead. Likely so were Jehannah, her half-sister, and her mother, Beulah. Her childhood home was destroyed.

Leah had spent all her time since the cataclysm struggling to stop Qeturah. But now Qeturah was dead, too. And Leah had no purpose.

Oh, the war hadn’t ended: Qeturah had had a mentor named Malachi who had supported her. He was still out there, no doubt still scheming to shatter the other Mirror Worlds, but Leah had run out of energy to fight. Let someone else take him down, someone from the True World.

Malachi wasn’t her problem.

Leah would just stay here with her memories. Alone.

Only the thought of the nightmare returning kept her from sleeping the rest of the day away.

 

Read Below for an interview with Nicole Luiken:

 

Can you tell us about your newest book, In Truth & Ashes, in 40 words or less?

When Belinda’s Bonding ceremony goes horribly wrong, she turns to her loyal friend Demian to help her defeat madman Malachi and save the True World and the four Mirror Worlds. Whew! Made it.

What was your favorite scene to write?

The scene where Belinda discovers that Demian, who’s been her best friend since childhood, is a freaking demi-god.

What was the hardest scene to edit out?

Some authors write long first drafts and have to edit things down to a manageable length. I actually write short first drafts and have to add scenes during revision. The hardest revision work I did was writing a new chapter one. The book originally started at chapter two at the beginning of Belinda’s Bonding ceremony, but there was just so much that needed to be explained that I regretfully had to back up a day in the timeline and start with Belinda finding out Warren (her Bonded to be) has been sneaking around with her friend Violet.

What theme song would you give In Truth & Ashes?

I Know Places by Taylor Swift

Will this be the last book in the series or do you have plans for more?

Yes, this is definitely the last book. In the fantasy setting I invented there are four Mirror Worlds and one True World. I structured the books to each focus on two worlds and two girls (who are mirror twins, otherselves, of each other). So Through Fire & Sea is set on Fire World and Water World and featured Leah and Holly respectively. Amid Wind & Stone is set on Air World and Stone World, featuring Audrey and Dorotea. In Truth & Ashes is set on the True World with Belinda and has a subplot returning to Leah and the shattered Fire World. (Leah will finally get her Happy Ever After this book.)

What else are you working on?

My current Work in Progress is tentatively titled Doppelganger and is about a shapeshifter girl who’s being forced by her uncle to assassinate and replace a princess. Once the first draft is done I hope to get back to an older project of mine, Feral, about a girl born into a clan of werewolves who fears she’s a Dud because she can’t shift.

What is currently in your TBR pile?

Heartfire by Kate Boorman (sequel to Winterkill and Darkthaw)

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare (I’m so far behind in this series!)

Front Lines by Michael Grant

Soldier by Julie Kagawa

There’s more–I’m an avid reader and keep long lists of books I want to read–but those are the four YA ones I’m planning to read next.

Follow the rest of the tour below:

January 2nd

For Love of Books4 – Spotlight Post

YA Book Madness – Review Book #3

January 3rd

RoloPoloBookBlog – Spotlight Post

January 4th

Queekie Girl Reads – Guest Post

January 5th

YaReads – Author Interview

Sizzling Hot Books – Review Book #1

January 6th

The Book Beacon – Review Book #3

Pearls Cast Before A McPig – Spotlight Post

January 7th
Just One More Chapter – Spotlight Post

January 8th

Roxy’s Book Reviews – Spotlight Post

January 9th

Mythical Books – Author Interview

The Crafty Engineer’s Bookshelf- Review Book #3- Review Book #3

January 10th

Captivated Reading – Guest Post

January 11th

Crossroad Reviews – Spotlight Post

Splashes Into Books – Review Book #3

January 12th

YA Book Divas – Guest Post

January 13th

Sleeps on Tables – Spotlight Post

Home of Writing – Review Book #2

January 14th

Verbosity Reviews – Review Book #1

January 15th

Tales of the Ravenous Reader – Author Interview

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Author Interviews
December 12, 2016 posted by Nichole

The Broken One Blog Tour: Author Interview with Christine Bailey

The broken one christine bailey

The Broken OneThe Broken One by Christine Bailey

Genre: Contemporary YA

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Broken-One-Christine-Bailey/dp/099717322X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1478623604&sr=8-2&keywords=the+broken+one

 

The Broken One. Sixteen-year-old Farris Sloan is picking up the pieces after the untimely death of her best friend Kelsey. But even one year later, Farris can’t seem to find “normal” again—not until Lane Evans pops back into her life and pushes her to face reality. When he offers her the chance to find out the truth about Kelsey’s death, Farris fears what will surface. Is it too much too soon or just what she needs to move forward? The Broken One explores a teen’s struggle to overcome loss and her hope to rediscover what it truly means to live and love.

About the Author:

Christine

Christine H. Bailey teaches creative writing and written composition at a private university in Tennessee. Before teaching English, Bailey worked as a journalist, a marketing/public relations writer, and a freelance editor. Girl in the Middle is Bailey’s debut novel that takes a look at the aftermath of a family crisis and what happens to a family when a child goes missing. The book also touches on the hierarchical nature of high school. Bailey’s third YA novel (April 2016), The Broken One, deals with love, loss, and a beautiful awakening after a tragedy. Bailey is currently working on her fourth YA novel. Bailey, a native Canadian, is also a blogger, teacher, speaker, and mom of two ! Check out her weekly blog at https://girlinthemiddlebailey.wordpress.com/

Website: cibailey.com

Twitter: @cibailey44

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Christine-Bailey/118957858286312?ref=bookmarks

 

Read below for an excerpt from The Broken One:

I turned onto Miller Street, a dead-end road with only one turnoff, which led into Kelsey’s neighborhood. I immediately spotted flashing blue lights ahead in the distance, up the hill at the dead-end. An unexplainable force pulled me toward the mesmerizing lights that danced against the overcast sky. I didn’t think—I just sped off past the wall of trees that edged the front of Kelsey’s upscale neighborhood and passed right by the turn onto her street. My legs burned as I fought my way uphill. At first, I ran as fast as I could, but the closer I got to the lights, the farther off they seemed to be and the slower I moved.

When I finally made it to the top of the hill, I stopped and stood a few yards away from a fire truck and police SUV that, together, formed a barricade. It was all a blur—a blur of uniforms, colliding voices, rumbling engines, and emergency dispatchers echoing from radios. In all the chaos, I managed to slip between the two vehicles unnoticed, like a ghost.

At first, I only saw the yellow police tape. Then I spotted the back of Kelsey’s two-door hatchback with its “Stay Weird” bumper sticker. Beyond the silver car, I saw the guardrail Kelsey and I had dented two years ago in her dad’s golf cart. My eyes narrowed in on the dulled metal, pulling me in like a magnet.

I moved closer, marching to the loud drumming in my ears, and only stopped when my legs hit the rail. I gripped the cool metal and looked down over the steep ravine, watching a few small rocks tumble down the side. I blinked a couple of times, trying to focus on the activity down below where even more uniformed officers stood. Then I saw it. “No,” I whispered. “No.”

All of a sudden, I felt someone pulling me from behind and fell onto the pavement, hitting the side of my head on the way down. Slowly opening my eyes, I caught a blurry glimpse of the officer who had taken me down. He asked me if I was okay, and I nodded, shutting my eyes again.


Flashes of the silver car I’d been in a million times flew by in my mind, spliced in with another image—of the body I’d just seen at the bottom of the ravine. I kept seeing it over and over like a trailer for the latest horror movie. But it wasn’t some actress in a film. It was my best friend’s lifeless body at the bottom of that rocky cliff. The stark image taunted me: large, jagged boulders breaking out from a coating of pure white snow forever marked with her blood—her body, splayed across them, crooked and broken.

 

The Giveaway:

Two signed copies of The Broken One;

A signed copy of Girl in the Middle by Christine Bailey

Two $5 giftcards to Amazon

 

Physical copies are open to US residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Read Below for an Interview with the Author!

Can you tell us about your book, The Broken One, in 40 words or less?

A girl searches for answers after her best friend is killed, but what she finds is not at all what she expected.

 

What was your favorite scene to write?

That’s a hard one. One of my favorites is in chapter one, when Farris first arrives at the crime scene. Capturing the character’s raw emotion and the setting while building the suspense were too important to mess up. But, I also liked the school dance scene, when Farris locks eyes with the boy she realizes she isn’t over yet.

 

What was the hardest scene to edit out?

I had a surprise ending that took the book in an entirely different direction. It was hard to let go of that concept, but I’m sure it will come up in another book of mine.

 

Is this part of a series or a standalone?

This is a standalone book, but my next book is part of a series dealing with small-town southern life. It also has an element of suspense.

 

What theme song would you give The Broken One?

Madness by Muse. It could represent Farris’ madness/obsession with finding out what happened to her best friend, but it could also stand for the other past relationships with the characters in the book.

I, I can’t get these memories out of my mind,
And some kind of madness has started to evolve.
And I, I tried so hard to let you go,
But some kind of madness is swallowing me whole, yeah

 

Who would you cast as the main characters?

Elle Fanning from Maleficent as Farris and maybe Jake Austin as Lane.

 

What else are you currently working on?

I have just finished my fifth YA novel, which is about a high school student who is trying to remember the night of a car accident. She’s left with one clue—a notebook, which leads her on a dark and twisted journey into the secret lives of her classmates.

 

What is currently in your TBR pile?

The Catcher in the Rye (again) and The Beginning of Everything.

Author Interviews
December 9, 2016 posted by Nichole

Sauvage Domicile Blog Tour: Author Interview with Courtney Ruggles

Sauvage Domicile Banner

sixthThe Sixth Domicile (The Domicile Series Book 1) by Courtney Ruggles

Published on January 20th, 2016

Published by Elephantine Publishing

Genre: New Adult Dystopian

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28405871-the-sixth-domicile?ac=1&from_search=true

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Sixth-Domicile-Book-ebook/dp/B017O08SDO/192-0301566-9071950?ie=UTF8&redirect=true

In a future ravaged by greed and war, The Domicile has emerged. A new civilization governed by clandestine Elders where citizens are united by white masks and uniform identities. To remove one’s mask, to go outside the Domicile, to show defiance, means being sent to the Meurtre, a horrifying death sentence.

Q437B doesn’t follow the rules. She craves sunlight, dares to love her childhood friend B116A, and–the most forbidden of all–has seen the true face of her beloved beneath his mask.

But when Q becomes an Adulte, The Domicile threatens to take away everything that makes her happy. She is forced to marry an abusive soldier who demands she conform.

Whispers spread about the unconventional lessons she teaches her new students. And when Q openly disobeys the Elders, the people become restless, questioning the truth of the world in the wake of such defiance.

Rumblings of discontent stir as others begin to follow the path toward their freedom. The Revolution has begun, and Q is the spark that ignited the flames.

The Sixth Domicile is book 1 in the Domicile Series, A New Adult dystopian. Fans of Veronica Roth’s Divergent and Ally Condie’s Matched series will love The Sixth Domicile.

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vraiThe Vrai Domicile (The Domicile Series Book 2) by Courtney Ruggles

Genre: New Adult Dystopian

To be released on August 24th, 2016

https://www.amazon.com/Vrai-Domicile-Book-ebook/dp/B01H80246W

Q437B was ready to die for the Second Revolution. Then she entered the Meurtre

Q and B expected death when the Elders ordered their execution. What they discover instead changes everything they thought they knew about their world. Saved by the mercy of the Elders, they awaken in the Vrai Domicile, a mysterious place hidden below the Sixth Domicile housing hundreds of former rebels.

Except these rebels have been brainwashed, conditioned to be blind followers.

Q quickly learns of the Elders’ new plan for her – she is to become their warrior, to reunite the Vrai and Sixth Domiciles with purity, love, and unwavering faith. But to Q, she’ll be undoing everything she and the rebels fought for.

Now Q and B must fight to survive once more, forced to forge new alliances with strangers who promise nothing is as it seems. But surviving comes with a choice – follow the Elders and quash the Revolution, or defy them and free the people, putting B’s and Grandmother’s lives at risk.

In a place where the fire of rebellion is extinguished at every turn, can Q continue to be the spark that fuels the Revolution?

Book 2 in The Sixth Domicile Series by Courtney Ruggles, a 5 star Readers Favorite!

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Sauvage Domicile

The Sauvage Domicile (book #3) by Courtney Ruggles

Genre: New Adult Dystopian

The Revolution just entered the wild.

Q’s escape from the Vrai Domicile was supposed to be the final spark to ignite the people. But that spark was doused by a sacrifice that threatens to destroy her.

Now Q must forge a new path. Led deep into the woods to find the elusive Transients, she must not only protect those who escaped the Sixth Domicile with her, but also align with Transients who have their own plans of warfare. And their war calls for more death and destruction than Q ever thought possible.

As Q unites both Transient and Domicilian, she quickly realizes that even in the wilderness, no one is free. They must take the fight back to the Domicile. But this war brings with it more secrets, heartbreaking betrayals, and even worse sacrifices, as Q fights to protect her people from Elders who always seem to be one step ahead.

The face of the Revolution has changed. Q has entered the sauvage – a place she isn’t sure she can survive.

Book 3 in the Readers’ Favorite Domicile Series by Courtney Ruggles.

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.com/Sauvage-Domicile-Book-ebook/dp/B01MG3QRBT

Price: $3.99

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Courtney’s love for writing started pretty much when she learned to read, which her mother would tell you was a feat in itself back when she was in the first grade. Once she aced those flashcards with vocabulary words, Courtney’s writing took off. And her love with it. In school, she was always writing short stories on a word processor (What?? Word processor with floppy disks?). Oh yes, she literally had a card filing case full of floppy disks.

Now getting her Doctorate in social work, she’s used this education to help her write some of the gritty issues entwined in her stories. When Courtney isn’t writing her next book while drinking coffee, you can find her doing homework (drag) with chocolate chip flavored coffee, reading series of books (because school books are only so interesting) while drinking pumpkin flavored coffee, playing with her little boy, or daydreaming of future beach houses while drinking some other scrumptious flavor of coffee.

Media Links

Website: www.courtneyruggles.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorCRuggles

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCourtneyRuggles/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

Instagram: @courtneyruggles

Read below for an interview with Courtney:

Can you tell us about your newest book, Sauvage Domicile, in 30 words or less?

The Sauvage Domicile picks up where The Vrai Domicile left off. It dives into the wild, the Sauvage, and Q learns she and the Domicilians aren’t the only ones the Elders are trying to control.

What was your favorite scene to write?

Oh, I have a couple! The scene with Chrysanthe giving K706A a show was a fun scene to write and had me giggling almost the entire time. Really, the entire book was fun for me as it took a huge turn and we begin to see Q really grow up into a courageous woman. The characters are definitely unique, like Barrow and Chrysanthe and K706A. I love them all.

What was the hardest scene to edit out?

Thankfully, I didn’t have to edit out any full scenes! So that made me very happy. Before I was finished with the story, the ending changed a few times, but I am very very happy with the final product and wouldn’t change it for anything now.

Will this be the last book in the series or is there more to come?

There will be one more in the series to conclude everything! I’m excited about the conclusion, though I’m not ready to say goodbye officially to Q and B.

What theme song would you give Sauvage Domicile?

Music is my muse when I’m writing, so I have a soundtrack for each book! I can’t pick a theme song but some of these songs I would love on the soundtrack! Run Wild by King & Country, Unstoppable by Sia, Come Back For Me by Jaymes Young, Wolves by Down Like Silver, I Found by Amber Run, You Should Know Where I’m Coming From by Banks are only a few. A couple of those could be on a soundtrack for any of the books in the Domicile Series.

What else are you currently working on?

Right now I am writing Book 4 in The Domicile Series, but I have a couple other WIPs up my sleeve, including a fantasy, a paranormal, and a romantic comedy!

What is currently in your TBR pile?

The Geneva Project Series by Christina Benjamin and The Treemakers Trilogy by Christina Rozelle, plus Kristina Circelli’s paranormal series Take Me Home, and Heather Hildenbrand’s Imitation.

Author Interviews
November 1, 2016 posted by Nichole

A Lover’s Lament Blog Tour + Author Interview

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a lovers lamentA Lover’s Lament by K.L. Grayson and B.T. Urruela

Genre: Romance/Contemporary/Military/General

Published by Spencer Hill Press

Published on November 1st, 2016

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26166418-a-lover-s-lament

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Lovers-Lament-K-L-Grayson-ebook/dp/B014FVO6LS

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-lovers-lament-kl-grayson/1122752582

Heartwrenching and heartwarming describe this unique romance that draws from the experiences of coauthors KL Grayson, a seasoned bestselling romance author and mother, and BT Urruela, a first-time author and wounded Iraq vet. This blend of female/male coauthors makes this story raw and real.

 

In a matter of seconds my entire world changed, and it was in that moment that I stopped living and simply began to exist. In my grief, I sent a letter to the first boy I ever loved. I didn’t expect him to write back. Sergeant Devin Ulysses Clay did what I couldn’t: he put the shattered pieces of my heart back together. But now that I’m whole, I have a decision to make. Do I return to my life as I knew it and the fiancé I left behind, or do I walk away from it all for the only man to ever break my heart?

***

A letter from Katie Devora—a letter that I almost didn’t open. Her words put a fire back inside of me that I didn’t know I’d lost. The Army saved me from a callous mother and a life on the wrong side of the tracks that was quickly spiraling out of control. So unlike most of the men in my platoon, going home wasn’t something I longed for. I was content overseas, spending my days defending this country that gave me my life back. Fighting became my new normal … until her.

 

 

Below are some quick facts about A LOVER’S LAMENT.

 

Pub Date: 11/01/2016

Publisher: Spencer Hill Press

ISBN: 9781633921023

Page Count: 384

Audience: Adult

BISACs: FICTION FIC027000, 27020, 27220/ Romance/Contemporary/Military/General

 

Read below for an author interview!

 

Can you tell us about your book, A Lover’s Lament, in 45 words or less?

It’s a story about second chances, forgiveness and a love that can overcome virtually anything.

 

What was your favorite scene to write?

The airport scene by far … and of course the sexy scene that comes after the airport scene 😉

 

What was the hardest scene to edit out?

The hardest scene to edit out for me was the hospital scene … but I can’t say much more without giving the book away 😉

 

Will this be part of a series?

Maybe 😉

 

What theme song would you give to A Lover’s Lament?

This Year’s Love

 

Who would you cast as the main characters in a movie?

Minka Kelly and Channing Tatum .. because, Channing!

 

What is the best book you’ve read recently?

There are tons! You aren’t going to make me choose, right?! Okay, fine, It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover.

 

What else are you currently working on?

I’m working on a Romantic Comedy titled The Truth About Lennon.

 

Read below for an excerpt from the book:

Excerpt from A Lover’s Lament, Chapter 2, by KL Grayson & BT Urruela . All rights reserved.

 

I lost a part of myself that day. Most people would say I was too young to really know what love is, but I disagree. Admittedly, I’m not sure what part of myself I lost—or how permanent the emptiness is—but I’m sure it must’ve been significant if the gaping hole inside my chest is any indication.

 

“I can’t believe this,” I whisper to no one but myself. What are the chances that his name would show up on a pen pal list that my psychiatrist sent me? It’s a passing thought, but one that I can’t ignore.

 

What if his name was meant for me to see? It wouldn’t surprise me, considering that Devin was always the one person who could help me work through my problems, however big or small they were . . . at least until the day he decided to leave me without a word.

 

Bitterness seeps into my veins, but I fight against it because there is no way in hell that I will allow Devin Ulysses Clay to have that kind of control over me, especially after the way he left. And now I have to write him, because if I don’t, I’m letting him win—I’m letting the bitterness win—and I’m tired of fucking losing.

 

No, there is no reason at all that I can’t write him a letter. A measly little letter. Who knows? Maybe it will be good for me. Without giving it much more thought, I open up a Word document to start typing my letter when I remember what Dr. Perry said.

 

“Damn it,” I mumble. Shutting down my laptop, I grab the paper I wrote the address on and the pen lying next to it. Now what? My fingers twirl the pen as I contemplate what to write.

 

Fuck you! I laugh out loud when I scribble the words on the paper. Then I quickly scratch them out, because as much as I’d like to write that, I’m not that big of a bitch.

 

My phone buzzes on the end table next to me. Looking down, I see Wyatt’s name pop up on the screen. I tip my head back and groan. Something has shifted between us over the past several months, and if I’m being completely honest with myself, I’ve felt different about Wyatt for quite some time. As to what exactly has changed, I’m not so sure, but things are different . . . I’m different.

 

Before the accident, I seriously thought that it was all in my head. I figured I had just gotten too comfortable in our relationship and it was a phase that I would have to work through. After the accident, I began to realize that the love I feel for him is no different than the love I feel for my mom and Bailey. Now the love I felt for Devin . . .

 

Whoa! Where the hell did that come from? Hell no, Katie, I tell myself. Not. Going. There.

 

My phone continues to buzz so I push the green button to answer the call. “Hello?”

 

“Hey. Did you make dinner tonight? I just got off work and can head over.” His voice sounds hopeful, and something about that just pisses me off. Hell no, I didn’t make him dinner. I didn’t even make myself dinner.

 

“No,” I snap, dropping my head into my hand. It’s been a long-ass day and I’m beyond exhausted, but I don’t need to take it out on Wyatt. “I’ve been busy all day, and I just got done at my appointment with Dr. Perry and now I’m—” I quickly cut myself off. Do I really want to tell Wyatt about the letter I’m going to write? He and Devin were never really on friendly terms, and I’m sure it would only create more waves in our already churning ocean of problems.

 

“Now you’re what?”

 

“I—uh… Now I’m getting ready to make dinner. So if you want, you can give me about an hour and then head over. Is that okay?” Son of a bitch. I don’t want him to come over tonight. I don’t want anyone to come over tonight. I want to write this stupid-ass letter and then go to bed, dinner be damned.

Author Interviews
September 25, 2016 posted by Nichole

The Tokyo Cover Girls Blog Tour: Author Interview with Jackie Amsden

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TokyoCoverGirlscover (1)The Tokyo Cover Girls by Jackie Amsden

Genre: contemporary YA

https://www.amazon.com/Tokyo-Cover-Girls-Jackie-Amsden-ebook/dp/B01EZ8VOH0/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1466024516&sr=1-1&keywords=tokyo+cover+girls

https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/the-tokyo-cover-girls

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1111578958

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-tokyo-cover-girls-jackie-amsden/1123768491;jsessionid=0A61A21AAB86A91A1111D53EC9043797.prodny_store02-atgap04?ean=2940153181349

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30051752-the-tokyo-cover-girls

New York has Jacobs, Paris has Chanel, Milan has Versace and Tokyo has . . . Hello Kitty toilet plungers? With its cute-obsessed catalogue and magazine market, anyone who is anyone knows that modeling in Japan means being at the bottom of the fashion industry. Blake, Jess, and Hailey are doing their best to survive yet another casting where pigtails and toddler-impressions are a must when they stumble upon the opportunity of a lifetime. The prestigious Satsujin company has selected them to compete for a campaign that will transform the winner from commercial nobody to haute couture superstar faster than you can say Vogue Italia.

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Jackie Amsden worked as a fashion model in China, Japan, and Taiwan before retiring at the age of eighteen after one too many agent threats, nude photo shoot requests, and self-loathing-induced Pocky binges. If you’d like to learn more about her decent into the darker side of Asia’s candy-coated modeling industry sign up for free installments of her upcoming memoir, Toy Girl, at www.jackieamsden.com.

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Read below for an author interview with Jackie Amsden:

Can you tell us about your book, The Tokyo Girls, in 40 words or less?

When three teens are offered the chance to compete for a high-profile clothing campaign, their dreams of becoming the world’s next models of the moment seem about to come true. Of course, nothing is ever what it seems in the fashion world. Just ask all those dead girls…

What was your favorite scene to write?

One of my trips to Tokyo I lived above a girl named Kirsten, an American model also signed to my agency. I based the Jess character on Kirsten and like her, Kirsten had an American-Japanese boyfriend named Taro. Taro was a funny, gorgeous business student and they were adorable together. Having never had a boyfriend myself at that time, I was naturally totally jealous of their relationship and had a desperate crush on him.

In one of the earlier drafts of my novel, I wrote a scene where Jess goes to see Taro at his home, an austere house in one of Tokyo’s upscale neighbourhoods, Yoyogi-koen. They eat some food, drink some wine, make out, and ultimately sleep together. In other words, do all the stuff I had fantasised about doing when I was seventeen. Maybe it was the wine I was drinking that day, but I had way too much fun writing that chapter.

What was the hardest scene to edit out?

So, apparently the pages I write when I’m drunk aren’t nearly as good as they seem at the time. In fact, they pretty much stink. Much as it killed me, I eventually had to cut the Taro-Jess love scene–but it will live on forever in my heart.

What theme song would you give to the Tokyo Girls?

Every Breath You Take by The Police. It’s creepy, yet gorgeous and sexy at the same time. In The Tokyo Cover Girls, my goal was to create a world just like that.

Are you currently working on anything else?

The sequel!

What is currently in your TBR pile?

I’m always interested in books written by and about the modelling industry. Next on my list is a memoir, A Model Tells All by Ines C, about a woman from Serbia who spent 15 years in the industry and represented some of the biggest names in the fashion world. I’m also interested in reading The Stories Models Never Tell by Christine Hart, another modelling world veteran who started her career after completing a law degree at the age of 25.

Follow the rest of the tour!

September 15th

The Cozy Little Book Nook – Review

RoloPoloBookBlog – Spotlight Post

September 16th

Book Lover Promo – Spotlight Post

Roxy’s Book Reviews – Spotlight Post

September 17th

The Phantom Paragrapher – Review

September 18th

VampyreLady’s Cover Reveals, Blog Tours, New Releases & All Things Bookish – Spotlight Post

Live to Read – Promo Post

September 19th

Alice’s Book Vault – Promo Post

September 20th

The Procrastinator’s Corner – Review

September 21st

Down the Bookhole – Spotlight Post

September 22nd

Bookrantings – Review

September 23rd

YA Book Divas – Review

September 24th

Little Miss Trainwreck – Author Interview

Book Lovers Life – Spotlight Post

September 25th

YaReads – Author Interview

September 26th

Lekeisha the Booknerd – Review

September 27th

The Book Beacon – Guest Post

Pandora’s Books – Promo Post

September 28th

Just One More Chapter – Spotlight Post

Noshelfcontrol – Author Interview

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Author Interviews
September 22, 2016 posted by Nichole

Olivia Decoded Blog Tour: Author Interview with Vivi Barnes

Olivia Decoded Banner

Olivia TwistedOlivia Twisted Synopsis (Olivia Twisted, #1):

 

Tossed from foster home to foster home, Olivia’s seen a lot in her sixteen years. She’s hardened, sure, though mostly just wants to fly under the radar until graduation. But her natural ability with computers catches the eye of Z, a mysterious guy at her new school. Soon, Z has brought Liv into his team of hacker elite—break into a few bank accounts, and voila, he drives a motorcycle. Follow his lead, and Liv might even be able to escape from her oppressive foster parents. As Liv and Z grow closer, though, so does the watchful eye of Bill Sykes, Z’s boss. And he’s got bigger plans for Liv…

 

Thanks to Z, Olivia’s about to get twisted.

 

Goodreads Book Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17343436-olivia-twisted

Amazon Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/Olivia-Twisted-Vivi-Barnes-ebook/dp/B00BRAFR4Q

Barnes & Noble Buy Link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/olivia-twisted-vivi-barnes/1114511531

iBooks Buy Link: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/olivia-twisted/id620469564

Kobo Buy Link: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/olivia-twisted

Amazon.co.uk: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Olivia-Twisted-Vivi-Barnes-ebook/dp/B00BRAFR4Q

Amazon.ca: https://www.amazon.ca/Olivia-Twisted-Vivi-Barnes-ebook/dp/B00BRAFR4Q

Entangled Publishing: http://www.entangledpublishing.com/olivia-twisted/


Olivia DecodedBook Title: Olivia Decoded (Olivia Twisted, #2)

Author: Vivi Barnes

Release Date: Sept. 6, 2016

Genre: YA Thriller

Olivia Decoded Book Synopsis:

This isn’t my Jack, who once looked at me like I was his world. The guy who’s occupied the better part of my mind for eight months.

 

This is Z, criminal hacker with a twisted agenda and an arsenal full of anger.

 

I’ve spent the past year trying to get my life on track. New school. New friends. New attitude. But old flames die hard, and one look at Jack—the hacker who enlisted me into his life and his hacking ring, stole my heart, and then left me—and every memory, every moment, every feeling comes rushing back. But Jack’s not the only one who’s resurfaced in my life. And if I can’t break through Z’s defenses and reach the old Jack, someone will get hurt…or worse.

 

Goodreads Book Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29500584-olivia-decoded

Amazon Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/Olivia-Decoded-Vivi-Barnes/dp/1633754901

Barnes & Noble Buy Link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/olivia-decoded-vivi-barnes/1123733469

iBooks Buy Link: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/book/olivia-decoded/id1080308160

Kobo Buy Link: https://store.kobobooks.com/ebook/olivia-decoded

Amazon.co.uk: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Olivia-Decoded-Vivi-Barnes/dp/1633754901/

Amazon.ca: https://www.amazon.ca/Olivia-Decoded-Vivi-Barnes-ebook/dp/B01BBXSJKM/

Entangled Publishing: http://www.entangledpublishing.com/olivia-decoded


About the Author:

ViviBarnes

Vivi Barnes was raised on a farm in East Texas where her theater-loving mom and cowboy dad gave her a unique perspective on life. After college, she convinced her supportive husband to

move with her to be part of the sunshine and magic in Orlando, Florida. On a good day, she manages to divide her time writing, working, reading, goofing off with her three kids, and avoiding dirty dishes. Vivi is a proud member of SCBWI and attends conferences whenever she can.

Author Blog: https://4chicks.wordpress.com/

Author Twitter: https://twitter.com/ViviBarnes

Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vivibarnes.author

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6926794.Vivi_Barnes

 

The Giveaway:

A signed copy of Olivia Decoded + a $25 Amazon Gift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Read below for an excerpt from the book:

“Wow, who gave you that?”

“My grandfather. He left it on my car seat this morning.”

“Oh, boo. I thought maybe you had a secret admirer or something.” I try not to smile at her obvious disappointment. Emerson’s been on me to date for months now. She knows I had someone back in Richmond who was special, but only that we broke it off before I moved here. She doesn’t know anything else about Jack. No one does, because what would I say? The last guy I dated is a criminal, and the last time I saw him was right after we got kidnapped by his horrible boss and almost died trying to escape. That’d go over really well.

“I don’t know, what do you think?” Emerson breaks into my thoughts as we walk down the hallway to our lockers.

“About what?”

She sighs. “Where Kade’s taking me tonight. Girl, you are not with it today, are you? Are you doing anything tonight?”

“My grandfather’s taking me to dinner.”

“Sweet. Not so romantic, but sweet.”

I smile. “Yes, he’s sweet. But a little over the top on gifts sometimes.” Even after eight months of living the wealthy life, I’d be happier if he gave me a gift card to a bookstore instead of extravagant jewelry I rarely wear.

My phone starts buzzing, and I pull it from my pocket. Grandfather’s text reads: What gift?

I frown, typing, The bracelet you left in my car. I snap a quick picture of the bracelet on my wrist and send it to him. Maybe his text was a hint to send a picture, though I doubt it. He’s usually pretty direct about things.

“What’s up?” Emerson asks.

“Looks like Grandfather forgot he left me the bracelet.” But even as I say it, it doesn’t sound right. He’s one of the sharpest people I’ve ever known, and he runs a financial institution.

“Maybe he gave it to one of his staff to put in your car.” Her voice has the usual bitter tone whenever she’s thinking of her parents. They’re hardly ever around, and when they are, they don’t pay much attention to her.

“Yeah, you’re probably right.” I don’t believe that, though. Even though it’s possible Mrs. Bedwin did put it there, I doubt it. Grandfather is the type to handle things himself when it comes to me. But Emerson’s parents travel so much for their business that they often let their staff handle things like birthdays and other events they think aren’t important. So as grateful as I am that Grandfather’s always there for me, I don’t like to rub that in Emerson’s face.

“Maybe you really do have a secret admirer,” she says hopefully.

I roll my eyes.“I doubt that.”

“Oh, really?” She stops in her tracks, her eyes fixed straight ahead. I follow her gaze, a sharp sense of dread creeping down my spine. A white rose is dangling from the vent in my locker.

A rose I know wasn’t placed there by my grandfather.

Read below for an author interview with Vivi Barnes:

Can you tell us about your newest book, Olivia Decoded, in 40 words or less?

After eight months apart, Liv and Jack find themselves thrown together to figure out who is stalking her and stealing from him.

What was your favorite scene to write?

Any of the romance scenes between Jack and Liv – for sure. Those are always my favorite. There is also one scene where Liv tells her best friend about her past – that one was a very emotional one for me to write.

What was the hardest scene to write?

Tying together the mystery of who is after Liv and Jack and making sure I didn’t leave any open holes – that was definitely the most challenging. My dear friend Marlana helped me do this and I dedicated the book to her.

What theme song would you give Olivia Decoded?

I’d give it Breathe No More by Evanescence because I listened to it over and over when writing that story. Haunting and beautiful. I gave Olivia Twisted Tainted Love (the version sung by Marilyn Manson) because I thought that was very fitting for that particular story.

Is this the last book in the series or will there be more?

I think it’s time to let Liv and Jack enjoy their lives (I’ve meddled with them enough, I think), so this will be the last story in the series.

What made you decide to write an Oliver Twist retelling?

I loved Oliver Twist as a child – more specifically, the movie Oliver!. I was going through a difficult time with scoliosis, and watching that movie helped because I thought “now there’s a kid with real problems!” Later, I thought it’d be cool to do a retelling, but instead using a female lead who falls in love with the Artful Dodger. And, of course, using hackers made more sense as a contemporary novel than pickpockets. Pickpockets are so 19th century! 😉

What else are you currently working on?

I’m currently writing a humorous middle grade novel about a boy whose parents own a movie theater. Hoping to finish that one soon!

What is the best book you’ve read recently?

I absolutely loved Every Falling Star by SunJu Lee and Elizabeth McClelland. It’s a haunting memoir about a boy’s life in North Korea and his subsequent escape. I’d say it’s my favorite recent book. Right now I’m thoroughly enjoying The Replacement Crush by Lisa Brown Roberts–it’s so adorable and fun!

What top 3 books are in your TBR pile?

Smash & Grab by Amy Christine Parker

Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

A Princess of Landover (it’s a final book in the “Magic Kingdom for Sale: Sold” series by Terry Brooks. I read the series a long time ago and never realized there was this last one available!)