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Keeping Up With the Debuts: Favorite Quotes from Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid + Giveaway

Posted August 2, 2015 by Jana in Blog Tour, Book Spotlight, Giveaway, Keeping Up With the Debuts / 1 Comment

Keeping Up With the Debuts: Favorite Quotes from Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid + Giveaway

Welcome to my spot along the Never Always Sometimes blog tour! Adi was a 2014 debut author, with his road trippin’ contemporary romance called Let’s Get Lost. I love keeping up with our former debuts and seeing what they’ve been up to since their first book debuted. Let me introduce to you Adi’s new book, Never always Sometimes, which comes out on Tuesday, August 4th! Read a little about the book, plus I’ve included some quotes from the book that I enjoyed to whet your appetite.


Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid
Published by Harlequin Teen on August 4, 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance
Amazon • Barnes & Noble • Book Depository • iTunes • Kobo
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Never date your best friend

Always be original

Sometimes rules are meant to be broken

Best friends Dave and Julia were determined to never be cliché high school kids—the ones who sit at the same lunch table every day, dissecting the drama from homeroom and plotting their campaigns for prom king and queen. They even wrote their own Never List of everything they vowed they’d never, ever do in high school.

Some of the rules have been easy to follow, like #5, never die your hair a color of the rainbow, or #7, never hook up with a teacher. But Dave has a secret: he’s broken rule #8, never pine silently after someone for the entirety of high school. It’s either that or break rule #10, never date your best friend. Dave has loved Julia for as long as he can remember.

Julia is beautiful, wild and impetuous. So when she suggests they do every Never on the list, Dave is happy to play along. He even dyes his hair an unfortunate shade of green. It starts as a joke, but then a funny thing happens: Dave and Julia discover that by skipping the clichés, they’ve actually been missing out on high school. And maybe even on love.


Jana’s Favorite Quotes

“The sun kept dipping down into the ocean and the lights came on at the harbor, casting sudden shadows on the ground, illuminating the faces that were just a second ago silhouettes. The sky was golden and purple, the ocean a darker shade of violet.”

“The Best you can ever do is to leave the world a little better than you found it.”

“No point in living a life less ordinary if you don’t know what the other side looks like.

“We are more or less kind, or more or less not. More or less selfish, happy, wise, lonely. Just like things are rarely always true, we aren’t ever exactly one thing or another. We are more or less.

It’s like that in out love lives too. We like to think we’re formulas that even out exactly, that we are perfect matches with each other. But we’re not. We match up with lots of people, more or less.”

“People were always belittling teenage heartbreak. But heartbreak was heartbreak was heartbreak.”


About the Author

 

Adi Alsaid was born and raised in Mexico City, then studied at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. While in class, he mostly read fiction and continuously failed to fill out crossword puzzles, so it’s no surprise that after graduating, he did not go into business world but rather packed up his apartment into his car and escaped to the California coastline to become a writer. He’s now back in his hometown, where he writes, coaches high school and elementary basketball, and has perfected the art of making every dish he eats or cooks as spicy as possible. In addition to Mexico, he’s lived in Tel Aviv, Las Vegas, and Monterey, California. A tingly feeling in his feet tells him more places will eventually be added to the list. Let’s Get Lost is his YA debut.

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First Annual Magic, Myth, & Mischief | Event Information, Schedule, & Giveaway

Posted September 1, 2017 by Jana in Blog Event, Giveaway / 3 Comments

 

Welcome to the first annual Magic, Myth, & Mischief event, hosted by me and Bonnie! This is a month-long event that celebrates fairy tales and mythological retellings, as well as retellings of favorite classic novels and books featuring mythical beasts such as mermaids, dragons, and fae! It’s going to be a really fun month of book reviews, blog tours, guest posts, and author interviews, so make sure to join back each day for fun new content!

This post is your go-to spot for all the information about this event. Here you will find the event schedule on my blog (links will be added as posts go live, and additional content will be added as we receive it from authors and guest bloggers), the calendar for the coordinating Instagram photo challenge that we hope you will participate in, an awesome giveaway, and the link-up for anything you’ve posted that fits our event (we want to come visit!).

Our official event hashtag is: #MagicMythMischief

Event Schedule

9/1 –  Event Information, Schedule, & Giveaway
Savage by Nicole Conway | Cover Reveal

9/4 – Interview with Gabrielle Pendergrast | Zero Repeat Forever Blog Tour

9/5 – The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill | Graphic Novel Review
Until the Storm Passes by Elizabeth Doherty | Exclusive Cover Reveal

9/6 – Heather Fawcett Guest Post | Even the Darkest Stars Blog Tour

9/7 – F.M. Boughan Guest Post | Cinderella, Necromancer Blog Tour

9/8 – Everneath by Brodi Ashton | Book Review

9/11 –  Before She Ignites by Jodi Meadows | Blog Tour Book Review

9/12 – Top Ten Retellings of Classic Works I Want to Read | Top Ten Tuesday

9/13 – Rapunzel’s Revenge by Shannon Hale | Graphic Novel Review
Konstanz Silverbow Guest Post

9/14 – Persephone by Kaitlin Bevis | Book Review

9/15 – Rumpelstiltskin’s Daughter by Diane Stanley | Picture Book Review
Combination Station: When Legends Collide by Danielle Shipley | Guest Post

9/18 – The Gift of the Crocodile: A Cinderella Story by Judy Sierre | Picture Book Review
Kaitlin Bevis Interview

9/19 – Tobie Easton Guest Post | Submerged Blog Tour

9/20 – Caraval by Stephanie Garber | Book Review

9/21 – Debut Dish Special Edition with Heather Fawcett and Even the Darkest Stars

9/22 – The Little Red Wolf by Amelie Flechais | Graphic Novel Review
Morgan’s Favorite Fairytale Retellings | Book Blogger Guest Post

9/23 – Favorite Quotes from Hunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco | HPD Blog Tour

9/25 – Nicole Conway Guest Post | Savage Blog Tour

9/26 – Top Ten Books Featuring Mythological Creatures | Top Ten Tuesday

9/27 – A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas | Book Review

9/28 – Laura Holt Guest Post

9/29 – Beneath a Sapphire Sea by Jessica Bryan | Book Review

Bonnie’s schedule of events can be found here.

(For the most part, we will not be posting on weekends but you’ll still see us on Instagram!)

Instagram Photo Challenge

If you take part in the daily photo prompts, you’ll get bonus entries for the event giveaways!

These themes were designed with your creativity in mind. Interpret them however you wish: super literal or not. We’re really excited to see what you come up with. :)

Make sure you tag your photos with #MagicMythMischief so we can come see!

Giveaway

We hope you will be adding some new books to your TBR as you follow along, and we’re going to let you win some! Two of you will be winning books this month, and it’s international as long as Book Depository ships to you!

If you are the first place winner, you can choose any book that Bonnie, Mandy, or I review or feature during Magic, Myth, and Mischief from September 1-30, 2017!

If you are the second place winner, you can choose any fairytale/mythology themed book under $10!

The giveaway ends October 15th, and there will be many opportunities to enter throughout the entire month.

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Join Us!

If you post (or have posted recently) any book reviews, giveaways, vlogs, feature articles, etc. about fairy tales, mythology, or books featuring mythical creatures, link up here so that we can come visit!

All you have to do is link your post below like this: Title of Post (Website).

Thank you for helping us make this event special!


Becky Wallace | 2017 Apollycon Author Spotlight Tour

Posted October 19, 2016 by Jana in Blog Tour, Giveaway / 2 Comments

Becky Wallace | 2017 Apollycon Author Spotlight Tour

Woohoo! Today I get to spotlight the lovely Becky Wallace, who will be joining us at Apollycon in Orlando next year! Becky was one of my 2015 debut authors, and I got to spotlight her last March on the Debut Dish. I love it when Becky takes up my blog space because she is so much fun. I haven’t read either of her books yet, but I own them and am super excited because HELLO. They sound amazing, right?


About Becky Wallace

In second grade, Becky Wallace had to sit in the corner because she refused to write anything except princess stories and fairy tales (and because she talked too much). Her time in isolation gave her plenty of opportunities to dream up the fantasy worlds she’s been dabbling with ever since. She was lucky enough to find her own real-life Prince Charming. They have four munchkins and live in happy little town near Houston, Texas.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram

 

The Keepers’ Chronicles

beckywallacebooks

The Storyspinner Synopsis

Drama and danger abound in this fantasy realm where dukes play a game for the throne, magical warriors race to find the missing heir, and romance blossoms where it is least expected.

In a world where dukes plot their way to the throne, a Performer’s life can get tricky. And in Johanna Von Arlo’s case, it can be fatal. Expelled from her troupe after her father’s death, Johanna is forced to work for the handsome Lord Rafael DeSilva. Too bad they don’t get along. But while Johanna’s father’s death was deemed an accident, the Keepers aren’t so sure.

The Keepers, a race of people with magical abilities, are on a quest to find the princess—the same princess who is supposed to be dead and whose throne the dukes are fighting over. But they aren’t the only ones looking for her. And in the wake of their search, murdered girls keep turning up—girls who look exactly like the princess, and exactly like Johanna.

With dukes, Keepers, and a killer all after the princess, Johanna finds herself caught up in political machinations for the throne, threats on her life, and an unexpected romance that could change everything.

Add to Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository


All 2017 Apollycon attendees are eligible to win one of these awesome prizes! Gift Cards will be distributed to the winners at Apollycon 2017 to be used within the Apollycon bookstore. The passes will allow you to skip to the front of one author’s signing line (your choice).

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Love-A-Thon 2016 | Get to Know Me!

Posted February 20, 2016 by Jana in About Me, Personal / 2 Comments

 

1. What’s your name?
Jana (It rhymes with banana… interesting how many pronunciations people come up with!)

2. Where in the world are you blogging from?
I live in the western USA! (I’m not saying my state because I’m participating in #otspsecretsister and don’t want to give away my location!)

3. How did you get into blogging in the first place?
Way back in 2010, Jamie from the Goodreads College Students group sent out a message asking if anyone wanted to start up a book blog with her. A few of us wrote and said we were interested, and The Broke and the Bookish was born! I never knew book blogging was even a thing before this, and I really fell in love with it. I started this blog about a year and a half later, and I’m still over at TB&TB as well. :)

4. How did you come up with your blog name?
Honestly, it came to me while I was on pain meds during my tonsillectomy recovery! I made the blog so fast, barely thinking, and that entire process is a complete blur to me because pain meds are intense! I’ve never wanted to change it, though, so I guess drugged Jana makes great life choices.

5. What genre do you read and review the most on your blog?
I don’t know? I tend to focus on YA, but I’ve been reading a lot more adult over the last couple years. As for genre… it’s such a mash-up of all the genres, but I’m thinking it’s pretty evenly split between contemporary romance and fantasy.

6. What other types of posts do you do on your blog, apart from reviews?
Well, I host the Debut Author Challenge, so I do a lot of Debut Dish posts. Those are mini author interviews, usually with some giveaways as well. I also participate in Top Ten Tuesday. My regular features have kind of suffered over the last few years since I went back to school, but I’m going to start doing more Bookish Finds and That Artsy Librarian posts soon!

7. Best blogging experience so far?
I’m not sure I can pinpoint one! Receiving my first ARC (Of Poseidon by Anna Banks), going to ALA several times, having my name appear in the acknowledgments of one of my favorite books, and receiving my first blurb in a book have been some of the highlights. I’ve loved making new friends and broadening my reading interests. Really, it’s all been awesome so far!

8. Favorite thing about the blogging community?
I love fangirling over books with people who GET it! And I love it when we force each other to read our favorites, and then happiness all around!

9. Name the 5 books you’re most excited for in 2016!
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas, Map of Fates by Maggie Hall, Heartless by Marissa Meyer, The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson, and Rebellion by J.A. Souders!

10. Name the 5 books you want to read in 2016 that you didn’t get to in previous years!
The Winner’s Crime by Marie Rutkoski, A Madness So Discreet by Mandy McGinnis, Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo, The Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas, and Until We Meet Again by Renee Collins.

11. What’s an underrated book or series that you think everyone should read?
Underrated book? Definitely Wanderlove by Kristen Hubbard. Underrated series would by the Hourglass Door trilogy by Lisa Mangum.

12. Which book boy or girl would be your book BFF?
Hale from Heist Society by Ally Carter would be my BFF! I love him!

13. Which book boy or girl would be your book boyfriend?
Tamlin from A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas makes me weak in the knees.

14. Who would you recruit for your apocalypse squad (5 characters max)?
Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games), Four (Divergent), Carswell Thorne (Lunar Chronicles), Cinder (Lunar Chronicles), and… Perry (Under the Never Sky).

15. Apart from reading, what are your other hobbies or interests?
Graphic design, singing, watching movies, listening to music, shopping, traveling, baking, and scrapbooking.

16. Apart from book shopping, what else do you like shopping for?
JEWELRY. And shoes. And purses. And organizing supplies, like boxes and drawers. I hate shopping for clothes.

17. At a party, the DJ suddenly changes the song – and it’s your song. What song would be playing?
Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey. Sounds cliche, but I love that song so much!

18. Pick out either a book you want turned into a film/TV show, or a film/TV show you want turned into a book.
I want The Lunar Chronicles to be turned into a 5-part movie series of a TV show. I’m good with either!

19. What would your dream library look like?
The most popular answer ever: The Beast’s.

20. Author you want to meet and sit down to tea with?
Sarah J. Maas!

Do we have anything in common? Say hi, and I’ll come visit you!


So… I’m Barely Staying Afloat

Posted March 12, 2015 by Jana in About Me / 26 Comments

As I’m sure you’ve noticed, things have been a little sparse over here at That Artsy Reader Girl. It’s not for lack of trying, I assure you! I am unbelievably busy this semester, plus I’ve had some health issues so things are really stressful right now. Many of you probably remember my post with all the titles for my YA literature class this semester. I’m a really slow reader, so all my non-paper-writing time is spent frantically reading as fast as I can. I’m seriously drowning!

So, I’m making my official “things will be a little slow for a little while” announcement. The Debut Author Challenge is not changing at all. The link-ups, Debut Dish posts, and giveaways will go on as scheduled. You just might see fewer reviews, discussions, and Top Ten Tuesday posts until May when the semester ends. I’m all over Twitter, so come see me there if you’re just not getting enough Jana in your life. :)

Wish me luck!


Zeroboxer by Fonda Lee Book Trailer Reveal + Giveaway

Posted March 10, 2015 by Jana in Giveaway / 0 Comments

Hi! I’m pleased to participate in the book trailer reveal for debut author Fonda Lee’s upcoming book, Zeroboxer. Check back next month to see her on the Debut Dish!


This isn’t your usual book trailer. Instead, I wanted to share with you one of my favorite parts of writing Zeroboxer: envisioning and depicting the sport of zeroboxing. How would a combat sport work in the absence of gravity? Check out what these martial artists and fighters have to say about it.

Then enter the giveaway for a chance to win a prize pack of six science fiction and fantasy books from Flux / Llewellyn, including an ARC of Zeroboxer, which releases on April 8!

– Fonda


Zeroboxer by Fonda Lee
April 8, 2015 from Flux
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A Sci-Fi Thrill Ride Set in the Action-Packed Sports Arena of the Future

A rising star in the weightless combat sport of zeroboxing, Carr “the Raptor” Luka dreams of winning the championship title. Recognizing his talent, the Zero Gravity Fighting Association assigns Risha, an ambitious and beautiful Martian colonist, to be his brandhelm––a personal marketing strategist. It isn’t long before she’s made Carr into a popular celebrity and stolen his heart along the way.

As his fame grows, Carr becomes an inspirational hero on Earth, a once-great planet that’s fallen into the shadow of its more prosperous colonies. But when Carr discovers a far-reaching criminal scheme, he becomes the keeper of a devastating secret. Not only will his choices place everything he cares about in jeopardy, but they may also spill the violence from the sports arena into the solar system.

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Dove Arising Blog Tour | Q&A with Karen Bao

Posted March 3, 2015 by Jana in Author Interview, Blog Tour / 5 Comments

Welcome to my spot along the blog tour for Dove Arising by Karen Bao, hosted by Penguin Teen! Karen is a 2015 debut author of a pretty exciting book about a girl living on the moon (and a whole lot more). I know you’ve already seen here on The Debut Dish, but today we get to learn even more about her!


When did you first come up with the idea for Dove Arising, and how old were you? Did it come out of a particular experience? 

I came up with the idea for Dove Arising when I was seventeen and a senior in high school. I’d just submitted college applications and had many doubts about my future: where would I be next year? What direction would my career take me? Was I ready to leave home?

When Phaet joins Militia, she faces these same questions, but she also deals with many more restrictions on her freedom. Many of these were inspired by my mom’s childhood. At the time, she started telling me about her own experiences in Communist China. Food rationing was a part of life for most people, but Party members still got everything they needed. (Spoiler alert: my mom’s parents weren’t Party members.)

The government banned classical Chinese texts, denied much of recent history, and closed China off from outside influences. My mother’s father, a university professor, was sent to labor camp in the countryside for a decade, and he was absent for most of her childhood. The government needed more scientists for “progress’s sake,” and essentially forced my mom, a straight-A student, to major in chemistry. In many ways, Phaet’s life resembles my mother’s: she also has a missing father and she studies science like crazy, knowing that academic success is the only way out of poverty.

I guess I wrote Dove Arising as an “escape” from real life, but it made me realize how lucky I was to live in a liberal democracy. I could choose which college I wanted to attend, and I could choose what I wanted to study. Also, I could write a book portraying government oppression without fearing for my life.

What are your thoughts on being a female writing science-fiction/fantasy in an often male-dominated genre or category with male main characters?

I feel like I’m writing in a great genre with great company. Authors like Tamora Pierce, Ursula Le Guin, and Octavia Butler sort of paved the way for later female writers in sci-fi/fantasy – and there are a lot of us! Moreover, there’s a growing interest in portraying women, as well as diversity in general. I know male authors who are writing female main characters, and they say it’s easy, just like writing any other person. POC and LGBT characters are also gaining ground. All in all, 2015 is a great time to be a writer!

What’s one of the funniest things that has happened to you during the publication process?

It’s a real challenge to pick the funniest thing that has happened to me in the publication process. I have seen hilarious costumes at Comic Con, had my name spelled “BOA” (like the constrictor) by travel companies, bonded with booksellers about the advantages of wearing leggings instead of real pants, and modeled Dove Arising T-shirts by waving them around like a bullfighter. But perhaps the most laughable incident was when I found out that my book would really take off. Picture this: I’d just taken a shower, so my hair was a wet beehive, and I lunged to pick up my phone (my ringtone sounds like a singing robot). After hearing that Penguin wanted to publish Dove Arising, I was silent. Then I said, “Nawww.” Another pause. Then I squealed and rolled around on the carpet like a happy puppy. I’m glad no one videotaped the scene and shared the footage; I’d lose all professional credibility.

Find Karen at her websiteTwitter, and Facebook.
Add Dove Arising to Goodreads.

So, how does Dove Arising sound to you? What do you think about Karen’s discussion on how she came up with the idea?


Dove Arising by Karen Bao – Propaganda Video Reveal

Posted February 13, 2015 by Jana in Book Spotlight / 2 Comments

Hello! I’m pretty excited to be revealing one of the propaganda videos (in conjunction with my other blog, The Broke and the Bookish) for Dove Arising by debut author Karen Bao! The first video was revealed yesterday on Hypable, and two more are being revealed by IceyBooks and Fangirlish today as well.

Karen is going to be here for the Debut Dish on Sunday and then she’ll be here again for her blog tour on March 3rd, so there’s lots of Karen happenings coming up! Read about Dove Arising on Goodreads! This is a book that should totally be on your radar. I mean, it’s about a girl who lives on the moon and has barely spoken since her father’s death. Well, not until her mother was arrested by the government. Now she has to join the Militia to free her mom and save her siblings!

Anyway, on to the video!

So, what do you think? Did you like the video? Does Dove Arising sound like something you’d enjoy reading? Let me know in the comments!


Top Ten Most Anticipated Books Releasing In the First Half of 2020

Posted January 6, 2020 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 28 Comments

Happy New Year! I hope your 2020 is off to a great start. a new year brings a whole bunch of new books, and this TTT’s focus is on those upcoming releases in January – June of this year! I’m looking forward to a bunch, so this was a fun list to write up and get even more excited about!

1. Last Day by Luanne Rice (February 1, 2020)

Years ago, Beth Lathrop and her sister Kate suffered what they thought would be the worst tragedy of their lives the night both the famous painting Moonlight and their mother were taken. The detective assigned to the case, Conor Reid, swore to protect the sisters from then on.

Beth moved on, throwing herself fully into the art world, running the family gallery, and raising a beautiful daughter with her husband Pete. Kate, instead, retreated into herself and took to the skies as a pilot, always on the run. When Beth is found strangled in her home, and Moonlight goes missing again, Detective Reid can’t help but feel a sense of déjà vu.

Reid immediately suspects Beth’s husband, whose affair is a poorly kept secret. He has an airtight alibi—but he also has a motive, and the evidence seems to point to him. Kate and Reid, along with the sisters’ closest childhood friends, struggle to make sense of Beth’s death, but they only find more questions: Who else would have wanted Beth dead? What’s the significance of Moonlight?

Twenty years ago, Reid vowed to protect Beth and Kate—and he’s failed. Now solving the case is turning into an obsession . . .

2. The Worst Best Man by Mia Sosa (February 4, 2020)

A wedding planner left at the altar. Yeah, the irony isn’t lost on Carolina Santos, either. But despite that embarrassing blip from her past, Lina’s managed to make other people’s dreams come true as a top-tier wedding coordinator in DC. After impressing an influential guest, she’s offered an opportunity that could change her life. There’s just one hitch… she has to collaborate with the best (make that worst) man from her own failed nuptials.

Tired of living in his older brother’s shadow, marketing expert Max Hartley is determined to make his mark with a coveted hotel client looking to expand its brand. Then he learns he’ll be working with his brother’s whip-smart, stunning—absolutely off-limits—ex-fiancée. And she loathes him.

If they can survive the next few weeks and nail their presentation without killing each other, they’ll both come out ahead. Except Max has been public enemy number one ever since he encouraged his brother to jilt the bride, and Lina’s ready to dish out a little payback of her own.

But even the best laid plans can go awry, and soon Lina and Max discover animosity may not be the only emotion creating sparks between them. Still, this star-crossed couple can never be more than temporary playmates because Lina isn’t interested in falling in love and Max refuses to play runner-up to his brother ever again…

3. Love, Unscripted by Owen Nicholls (February 11, 2020)

A film-obsessed romantic rewrites the script to understand why his “picture-perfect” love story crashed and burned in this wonderfully clever debut.

Ellie had the quizzical eyebrows of Broadcast News-era Holly Hunter and the neon-red hair of Kate Winslet in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. At least, that’s what caught Nick’s attention when he met her on the night of 2008’s historic election. A cinema devotee and lover of great love stories, Nick always fancied himself the Tom Hanks of his own romantic comedy, and when sparks flew with Ellie that night, he swiftly cast her as the Meg Ryan of his story. For four blissful years, Nick loved Ellie as much as he loved his job as a film projectionist: wholly, earnestly, cinematically.

But now Ellie has moved out, convinced “the fire’s gone,” and Nick is forced to sift through his memories to figure out where it all went wrong. The fallout from Ellie’s declaration that she “doesn’t love Nick the way she used to” throws him back into recollections of their first night together. Their shared jokes, her wry smile, the “hope” that filled the night air–his memories are as rose-colored as the Hollywood love stories he idealizes.

That night was a perfect meet-cute, yes, but was their romance as destined for a “happily ever after” as he’d thought? Is he really the rom-com hero he believes he’s been? Or did this Harry let his Sally down? Peppered with references to beloved movies, Love, Unscripted explores how even a hopeless romantic can learn that in real life, love isn’t, and shouldn’t be, like what we see in the movies.

4. The Upside of Falling by Alex Light (February 18, 2020)

It’s been years since seventeen-year-old Becca Hart believed in true love. But when her former best friend teases her for not having a boyfriend, Becca impulsively pretends she’s been secretly seeing someone.

Brett Wells has it all. Being captain of the football team and one of the most popular guys in school, he should have no problem finding someone to date, but he’s always been more focused on his future than who to bring to prom. When he overhears Becca’s lie, Brett decides to step in and be her mystery guy. It’s the perfect solution: he gets people off his back for not dating and she can keep up the ruse.

Acting like the perfect couple isn’t easy though, especially when you barely know the other person. But with Becca still picking up the pieces from when her world was blown apart years ago and Brett just barely holding his together now, they begin to realize they have more in common than they ever could have imagined. When the line between real and pretend begins to blur, they are forced to answer the question: is this fake romance the realest thing in either of their lives?

5. The Honey-Don’t List by Christina Lauren (March 24, 2020)

Carey Douglas has worked for home remodeling and design gurus Melissa and Rusty Tripp for nearly a decade. A country girl at heart, Carey started in their first store at sixteen, and—more than anyone would suspect—has helped them build an empire. With a new show and a book about to launch, the Tripps are on the verge of superstardom. There’s only one problem: America’s favorite couple can’t stand each other.

James McCann, MIT graduate and engineering genius, was originally hired as a structural engineer, but the job isn’t all he thought it’d be. The last straw? Both he and Carey must go on book tour with the Tripps and keep the wheels from falling off the proverbial bus.

Unfortunately, neither of them is in any position to quit. Carey needs health insurance, and James has been promised the role of a lifetime if he can just keep the couple on track for a few more weeks. While road-tripping with the Tripps up the West Coast, Carey and James vow to work together to keep their bosses’ secrets hidden, and their own jobs secure. But if they stop playing along—and start playing for keeps—they may have the chance to build something beautiful together…

6. The Return by Rachel Harrison (March 24, 2020)

An edgy and haunting debut novel about a group of friends who reunite after one of them has returned from a mysterious two-year disappearance.

Julie is missing, and the missing don’t often return. But Elise knows Julie better than anyone, and she feels in her bones that her best friend is out there, and that one day she’ll come back. She’s right. Two years to the day that Julie went missing, she reappears with no memory of where she’s been or what happened to her.

7. If I Never Met You by Mhairi McFarlane (March 24, 2020)

If faking love is this easy… how do you know when it’s real?

When her partner of over a decade suddenly ends things, Laurie is left reeling—not only because they work at the same law firm and she has to see him every day. Her once perfect life is in shambles and the thought of dating again in the age of Tinder is nothing short of horrifying. When news of her ex’s pregnant girlfriend hits the office grapevine, taking the humiliation lying down is not an option. Then a chance encounter in a broken-down elevator with the office playboy opens up a new possibility.

Jamie Carter doesn’t believe in love, but he needs a respectable, steady girlfriend to impress their bosses. Laurie wants a hot new man to give the rumor mill something else to talk about. It’s the perfect proposition: a fauxmance played out on social media, with strategically staged photographs and a specific end date in mind. With the plan hatched, Laurie and Jamie begin to flaunt their new couple status, to the astonishment—and jealousy—of their friends and colleagues. But there’s a fine line between pretending to be in love and actually falling for your charming, handsome fake boyfriend…

8. Chasing Lucky by Jenn Bennett (May 5, 2020)

Sometimes to find the good, you have to embrace the bad.

Budding photographer Josie Saint-Martin has spent half her life with her single mother, moving from city to city. When they return to her historical New England hometown years later to run the family bookstore, Josie knows it’s not forever. Her dreams are on the opposite coast, and she has a plan to get there.

What she doesn’t plan for is a run-in with the town bad boy, Lucky Karras. Outsider, rebel…and her former childhood best friend. Lucky makes it clear he wants nothing to do with the newly returned Josie. But everything changes after a disastrous pool party, and a poorly executed act of revenge lands Josie in some big-time trouble—with Lucky unexpectedly taking the blame.

Determined to understand why Lucky was so quick to cover for her, Josie discovers that both of them have changed, and that the good boy she once knew now has a dark sense of humor and a smile that makes her heart race. And maybe, just maybe, he’s not quite the brooding bad boy everyone thinks he is…

9. The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler (May 5, 2020)

When Graham Barnett named his diner The Tourist Trap, he meant it as a joke. Now he’s stuck slinging reindeer dogs to an endless string of resort visitors who couldn’t interest him less. Not even the sweet, enthusiastic tourist in the corner who blushes every time he looks her way…

Two weeks in Alaska isn’t just the top item on Zoey Caldwell’s bucket list. It’s the whole bucket. One look at the mountain town of Moose Springs and she’s smitten. But when an act of kindness brings Zoey into Graham’s world, she may just find there’s more to the man than meets the eye…and more to love in Moose Springs than just the Alaskan wilderness.

10. By the Book by Amanda Sellet (May 12, 2020)

As a devotee of classic novels, Mary Porter-Malcolm knows all about Mistakes That Have Been Made, especially by impressionable young women. So when a girl at her new high school nearly succumbs to the wiles of a notorious cad, Mary starts compiling the Scoundrel Survival Guide, a rundown of literary types to be avoided at all costs.

Unfortunately, Mary is better at dishing out advice than taking it—and the number one bad boy on her list is terribly debonair. As her best intentions go up in flames, Mary discovers life doesn’t follow the same rules as fiction. If she wants a happy ending IRL, she’ll have to write it herself.

 

Which upcoming releases are you excited about?


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

Posted October 14, 2019 by Jana in Author Interview, Blog Tour, Giveaway / 6 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.

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