Month: October 2019

Five Books I’d Give Different Titles To

Posted October 21, 2019 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 4 Comments

So… This week’s topic is really, really hard. lol. I don’t know what I’m thinking sometimes when I write up these prompts! There’s a lot of titles out there that I don’t like/hate, but very few I’ve come up with a new title for. My list took way too long, but it was kind of fun to brainstorm and get creative… even if I could only come up with 5.

1. Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett to I Wanted It to Be You
Alex, Approximately has always bothered me as a title. I never figured out where the “approximately” fit into the story. Since the book is a little bit You’ve Got Mail, why not title it Meg Ryan’s famous quote, “I wanted it to be you.” That would have been cute!

2. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas to The Stars Who Listen
I HATE the “A ___ of ___ and ___” titles. They’re so overused and unoriginal. But this alternate title that’s a piece of a quote Rhysand says to Feyre is thought-provoking and interesting. It also mirrors the dreaminess of the city of Velaris.

3. The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye to The Two Enchanters
I feel too many Hunger Games vibes from this title, and eh. I just like the feel of my alternate title more. Vika and Nikolai are the only two enchanters, and must fight to become the Imperial Enchanter. The loser dies. My title just seems more intriguing! I like the word “enchanter”.

4. Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas to Toxic
This title makes the book sound juvenile and “girly”. But the one word that can sum up the entire books is “toxic”. I really like one-word titles.

5. Hunted by Meagan Spooner to Winter Forest
This book’s title tells you nothing. And you certainly have no idea the book is a lovely Beauty and the Beast retelling. My title just sounds more magical!

Ok, that was hard! What titles would you re-title? 


Ten Extraordinary Book Titles

Posted October 14, 2019 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 12 Comments

This week’s topic is “Top Ten Extraordinary Book Titles”, and was submitted by Elise @ A Book and a Cup! This topic is broad and “extraordinary” can be interpreted to mean a bunch of different things. I’ve chosen to pick titles that are really beautiful to me and don’t follow the normal title trends in the book world right now (I’m looking at you, _____ of _____ and _____ titles). There’s SO many really pretty titles out there, so it was hard to pick just ten. I’ve only read one of these books, and one is currently on my TBR. The others… kind of sound like I’d only like them for their titles. lol.

1. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
2. Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name by Vendela Vida
3. The Earth Hums in B Flat by Mari Strachan
4. I Woke Up in Love This Morning by Jennifer Kathleen Gibbons
5. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray (I’ve read this.)
6. Chasing the Sea by Tom Bissell
7. The Anatomy of Melancholy by Robert Burton
8. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón (on my TBR)
9. The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman
10. The Shape of Water by Anne Spollen

Have you read any of these?
What are some pretty titles you’ve come across?


Interview with Lauren Mansy | The Memory Thief Blog Tour (+ Giveaway)

Posted October 14, 2019 by Jana in Author Interview, Blog Tour, Giveaway / 5 Comments

Interview with Lauren Mansy | The Memory Thief Blog Tour (+ Giveaway)

Welcome to The FFBC’s blog tour for The Memory Thief by Lauren Mansy! As the organizer for this tour, I got the opportunity to interview Lauren!


Interview with Lauren Mansy

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

1. Your bio says you’ve spent years working with youth of all ages. How has this impacted your writing career?

LM: It has definitely had a huge impact on my writing! I’ve been very fortunate to have had the chance to work with youth since I was fourteen. I started out as a day camp helper then became a counselor when I was older. In college, I was involved in various activities with younger students, and after graduating, I began working with a local high school program. These were all wonderful experiences, and I’m constantly amazed by the youth of today. Their passion for what they believe in and willingness to take steps to make this world a better place is very moving to me. That grit and determination inspired many of the characters in TMT, and I couldn’t more grateful for the relationships I’ve made along the way.

2. Tell us what your debut year has been like! What have you learned so far?

LM: Incredible! Such a whirlwind of wonderful and surreal moments. I think one of the main things I’ve learned is how a writer’s journey can be so much like the stories we love to read. There are up’s and down’s, moments of difficulty and doubt, and faithful allies who help along the way. This year has been filled with a lot of reflection on my path to publication, and I’m overwhelmed with gratitude for all the support and encouragement – there have been a lot of happy cry moments, and I’m totally not a crier! Writing fiction helped me express myself in ways I’d never done before, and it gave me a voice when I was still struggling to find mine. I’ll be forever grateful for that!

3. Where were you when you found out your book was being published?

LM: I remember this moment very clearly! I was actually driving in my car with my mom when the offer came through, and we both just started screaming. Then once I pulled over, the tears came! I spent the day celebrating with my family and I must’ve said, “I can’t believe this is happening!” a thousand times — those memories still bring the biggest smile to my face!

4. Which book(s) do you feel everyone should read?

LM: Ooo, great question! I’m going to throw us back to a classic and say The Chronicles of Narnia. Those books made me fall in love with storytelling, so they’ll always have a very special place in my heart.

5. What’s next for you?

LM: I’m currently working on a few projects that I’m very excited about! Now that TMT is on shelves (!!), I’m really looking forward to focusing on some new ideas that I’ve had rolling around in my head for a while. It’s so fun to be at the stage where I can really let my mind wander and see what happens!

ABOUT THE BOOK

1. Describe your book in five words or less.

LM: Betrayal, family, secrets, identity, and hope.

2. I understand that The Memory Thief was inspired by your mother. Can you tell us more about that?

LM: Absolutely! When I was a teenager, my mom was diagnosed with a heart condition, which led to an unexpected heart surgery. On the way to the operating room, her heart stopped six times, and the doctors warned my family that it was unlikely she’d survive. And if she did, she may not remember us due to the trauma she’d experienced throughout the ordeal.

I was sitting at her bedside when she first began to stir after her surgery, and I slipped my hand into hers and told her that it was me. Then she began to squeeze my hand three times, our signal for I love you! That collision of fear and joy was the moment which first sparked the idea for The Memory Thief.

Ever since, I’ve been fascinated by how memories make up so much of our identity and influence our relationships. It terrified me that my mom wouldn’t remember me, but I’m so thankful to say that she made a full-recovery. Though it was a long and difficult process, she never gave up hope that things would one day get better. Her unwavering courage inspired me to want to share this story.

COMMENT FROM JANA: Literal tears are flowing. This is so sweet and powerful!

3. Tell us about the kind of person Etta, our heroine, is.

LM: Etta is very much a flawed character, who has made a lot of mistakes in the past and struggles with how to deal with that. She’s haunted by guilt, but at the same time, she never stops fighting to save the people she loves. Etta is by no means perfect, but she’s definitely someone I’d want on my side :)

4. What’s your favorite thing about the world in The Memory Thief?

LM: My favorite thing would probably be how nothing is ever quite what it seems. This is a world where memories reign over everything, and the fact that they can be passed from person to person has created a society where one’s memories aren’t necessarily their own. Sometimes this can be good a thing (such as when someone who has lost their sight is given the chance to “see” a sunset through a memory), but other times, a person’s true identity can be all too easily lost as their own thoughts are buried by foreign memories. I really enjoyed brainstorming this element of the world, as well.

5. What message do you hope readers receive from reading The Memory Thief?

LM: There’s a line in the book that says, “It isn’t the hardships of the past which define us, but the strength we find in overcoming them.” I hope readers will be inspired by Etta’s journey to never lose hope, even in the midst of impossible odds.


The Memory Thief by Lauren Mansy
Published by BLINK on October 1, 2019
Genres: Young Adult Fiction — Fantasy
Add to GoodreadsAmazonB&NBook Depository

In the city of Craewick, memories reign. The power-obsessed ruler of the city, Madame, has cultivated a society in which memories are currency, citizens are divided by ability, and Gifted individuals can take memories from others through touch as they please.

Seventeen-year-old Etta Lark is desperate to live outside of the corrupt culture, but grapples with the guilt of an accident that has left her mother bedridden in the city’s asylum. When Madame threatens to put her mother up for auction, a Craewick practice in which a “criminal’s” memories are sold to the highest bidder before being killed, Etta will do whatever it takes to save her. Even if it means rejoining the Shadows, the rebel group she swore off in the wake of the accident years earlier.

To prove her allegiance to the Shadows and rescue her mother, Etta must steal a memorized map of the Maze, a formidable prison created by the bloodthirsty ruler of a neighboring Realm. So she sets out on a journey in which she faces startling attacks, unexpected romance, and, above all, her own past in order to set things right in her world.


About Lauren Mansy

Lauren lives in the Chicago area, where she’s spent years working with youth, from young children to high schoolers. When she’s not writing, Lauren is usually with her family or exploring the city to find the best deep dish pizza. The Memory Thief, which was inspired by Lauren’s own journey with her mother, is her first novel.

Website | Twitter | Instagram

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Top Ten Things That Make Me Fall In Love with a Book Character

Posted October 7, 2019 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 12 Comments

Welcome, welcome! This week’s TTT topic was submitted by Hannah @ Books Life and Other Oddities! What makes you love a character in one of your books? What is it about their character or their personality that makes you pull for them or fall in love with them or want to make them your very own significant other/parent/best friend/etc.? That’s what this week’s topic is all about! I chose to narrow things a little and share what makes me swoon hard and add a character to my long list of book boyfriends. Funny thing is, most of these are things I look for in real life boyfriends as well!

Bookish

There’s just something about a guy who always has his nose stuck in a book. Like Dash from Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares (Cohn and Levithan) or Michael Tyler from Nocturne (James).

Nerdy/Intelligent

I love nerds! Just ask me to quote Big Bang Theory and you’ll know! Logan from The Summer I Became a Nerd by Leah Rae Miller comes to mind when I think of nerdy characters I love. Sam from Jodi Meadows’s Newsoul trilogy is also really smart and I love that about him. OH and Thomas Cresswell from Kerri Maniscalco’s Stalking Jack the Ripper series!

Unaware of His Hotness

I love it when a guy is confident, but not dripping with it to the point that he thinks he’s God’s gift to the female eye. I know some guys like that in my real life, and gag me with a spoon. Ransom, the Duke of Rothbury from Romancing the Duke by Tessa Dare is blind and scarred and has no idea how attractive he is! He’s not so egotistical that he thinks women should fall into bed with him. I don’t want a guy who is so insecure that he whines and moans, but someone who doesn’t think if himself as a present is very appealing.

Hero Complex/Protective

I love a big, protective man who wants to save me from whatever it is that ails me (whether that’s my own anxieties and struggles or something outside of myself). Thomas Cresswell from Kerri Maniscalco’s Stalking Jack the Ripper series comes to mind again, as does Rhysand in Sarah J. Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Loves Cats

I’m a crazy cat lady, so any guy that can appreciate that is welcome in my books. While I didn’t like Keane from The Trouble with Mistletoe by Jill Shalvis, I could at LEAST stand him because he loved Petunia the cat.

Slightly Mysterious

I like a guy I need to figure out a little bit! Maybe he’s really a jerk and I need to stay clear, or maybe he’s deep or shy or protective of his heart. A little danger is so appealing! Anluan from Heart’s Blood by Juliet Marillier is a GREAT example of a mysterious character.

Chivalrous/Respectful

I’m super traditional. I like guys who open doors for me and treat me like a lady! What can I say? Kadesh from Forbidden by Kimberly Griffiths Little is very respectful of women, and I loved that. And Finn from Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White is so chivalrous. I love it! Oooo. Nate from The Caged Graves by Dianne K. Salerni is too… Maybe now we know why I love historical romances so much!

Romantic/Thoughtful

Romance. Thoughtfulness. It’s hard to come by. When a character says romantic things, I just melt. Here’s a TTT I did a while back with some great quotes.

Funny/Snarky

I love a great sense of humor. Thorne’s snark in Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles series comes to mind. I also love Lucien from A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas. Who else… Gideon from Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier… and a certain boy from Kerri Maniscalco’s brain (fine, I’ll stop mentioning him!), Hale from Ally Carter’s Heist Society books…

Sensitive/Intuitive

I love it when a guy shows signs of feelings! And that he notices something is wrong before you tell him! Matt Finch from Open Road Summer by Emery Lord is like this! And so is Duncan from Welcome, Caller, This is Chloe by Shelley Corriell. Oh, and Sean Kendrick from The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater. OH OH. Wolf from Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles!!

There you have it! A list of reasons why I’m single… I mean. Well.
It’s hard to find guys like this, both in life and in books, so point me in
the direction of bookish or real men you think I’d like! 😂 

 

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