Month: May 2016

That Artsy Librarian | Just Finished My Second to Last Semester!

Posted May 27, 2016 by Jana in About Me, That Artsy Librarian / 7 Comments


That Artsy Librarian is a feature all about my journey through graduate school as I work towards my Master’s degree in Library and Information Science.

It’s been a while since I’ve talked about my grad school experience, so I thought I’d do that today! I feel like I’ve been in school forever… And I have. I’ve been in grad school for three years. I honestly can’t believe it. I never thought I’d ever go to grad school, much less do a program that takes almost as long as my undergraduate degree.

I just finished up my second to last semester, and I took library marketing and collection development classes. In marketing I spent the semester writing marketing plans for a local library. The first plan was for the ENTIRE library: all of the services and programs available there. It was so complicated and long… 20 single-spaced pages. The second plan was just for the library’s teen services department and it was 16 single-spaced pages. It was fun, but super stressful because I was never really clear on what my teacher wanted. lol. I also made an 8-minute powerpoint audio/visual presentation for my first plan. The course also required I write reviews of scholarly publications and participate in weekly discussions on our required readings. It was a very intense course.

My collection development course was interesting… I was paired up with a classmate and we had to put together a 15-minute audio/visual presentation on weeding library collections. I also did a group assignment on the principles of collection development, which I did not find incredibly useful. The bulk of my final grade came from a 20-item collection I developed for the same library I used in my marketing class. I decided to do it on art and its influence on popular culture. Seeing as how I got my undergrad degree in art history, I thought this was a really fun topic and I enjoyed my 20+ hours of research. Not only did each collection item have to fit the theme, it also had to have positive professional reviews from publications such as Kirkus and Publishers Weekly. I spent a lot of time researching those and quoting them in my justifications for each item. I also had to fight for why the collection was necessary, how I would maintain the collection and add to it in the future, and I had to include an itemized list of prices and vendors. I also had to design a marketing tool to advertise the collection to the general public. We all know graphic design is my thing, and I made a large format poster that looks awesome.

I’ve always enjoyed collection development, and this was the third collection I developed for my program. I’ve also done a children’s picture book collection on multicultural friendships and a teen collection on post-apocalyptic topics (fiction, graphic novels, non-fiction, reference, DVDs, CDs, etc.). I find collection development to be a bit of a treasure hunt and I have a lot of fun searching for items. This has been something I’ve learned about myself since I joined the program, and I’m actually surprised! It’s a good kind of surprise, though.

This was probably the most work intensive semester I’ve had, hence the lack of activity going on here on the blog. I’ve done my best to keep up, but I know things slowed down a lot. I did get A’s in both classes, though! 100% in marketing and 99% in collection development, so my devotion pid off. Now I have a few months off to read and relax and enjoy the summer before jumping in to my final semester. I’m taking my last class this fall, and it’s my capstone course. Essentially, I will be designing and conducting a research study. My final paper of the program will be discussing the results of that study and their applications and relevancy to the field of information science. I already chose my topic, but more on that in a later post!

Yay summer!!!

Sweet by Emmy Laybourne Paperback Release Giveaway

Posted May 23, 2016 by Jana in Book Spotlight, Giveaway / 13 Comments

Today we’re celebrating the paperback release of Sweet by Emmy Laybourne, which releases on June 7th! It’s also got a brand new cover, which I quite like. The lovely people at Macmillan have offered my readers the chance to win a copy. Read a little bit about the book and enter to win using the Rafflecopter below.

Sweet by Emmy Laybourne
Published by Square Fish on June 7, 2016
(Originally published on June 1, 2015)
Genres: Horror, Contemporary, Thriller, Survival
Pages: 304
AmazonAdd to Goodreads

They’d kill to get thin.

The luxurious celebrity cruise launching the trendy new diet sweetener Solu should be the vacation of a lifetime. But Laurel is starting to regret accepting her friend Viv’s invitation. She’s already completely embarrassed herself in front of celebrity host Tom Forelli-the hottest guy ever!-and she’s too sick to even trythe sweetener. And that’s before Viv and all the other passengers start acting really strange.

Tom knows that he should be grateful for this job and the chance to shed his former-child-star image. His publicists have even set up a ‘romance’ with a sexy reality star. But as things on the ship start to get wild, he finds himself drawn to a different girl. And when the hosting gig turns into an expose on the shocking side effects of Solu, it’s Laurel that he’s determined to save.

Emmy Laybourne, author of the Monument 14 trilogy, takes readers on a dream vacation in Sweet that goes first comically, then tragically, then horrifyingly, wrong!

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Discussion: Lauren Oliver’s Delirium Trilogy Gets New Covers

Posted May 17, 2016 by Jana in Cover Talk, Discussion / 15 Comments

We’ve all come to expect that the trilogies we love might possibly get new covers. It’s kind of a thing that happens. I’m usually not ok with it. I was not happy when Stephanie Perkins’s Anna and the French Kiss companion books were redesigned, I hate the new covers for The Winner’s Curse trilogy by Marie Rutkoski, and redesigning the covers of the Ruby Red trilogy by Kerstin Gier is a downright sin.

The Delirium trilogy has been redesigned three times now. I loved Delirium‘s original cover, especially on the hardback because removing the dust jacket gives you more cover detail of the woman’s face.

I’m not the biggest fan anymore (what can I say? Tastes change). But I like it much better than the “random girl on the cover” syndrome we have been exposed to with the most recent cover redesign.


Boy, did I hate these. At least the original cover stood out from the crowd. These ones look so generic and weird (who shoves flowers in their faces like this?), plus the model looks like she can only make one facial expression: “I’m going to seduce you with my slightly separated lips and my bedroom eyes,” which doesn’t even make sense because love is outlawed in this trilogy. To be honest, I’ve always loved random girls on covers because I like to picture my own characters, thank you very much.


But now… LOOK at this re-design. I love them! I want to re-buy these books with these covers, and this rarely happens to me! But these are so pretty! I love the minimalist design and the colors and the symbolism. SO great. I can see adults, teens, boys, girls, etc. reading these whereas the older covers make the series look so juvenile and geared towards girls. This is so much better, and I can see the trilogy popping back up on everyone’s radar as a result of these new covers. And the novella covers are pretty great too.


So! What do you think of these new covers? What do you think of cover changes in general? Do you usually like the change? Do you get mad having to re-buy books so your covers match? Do you care at all? Let me know in the comments!

(New cover images taken from the Epic Reads site.)

Holly Schindler Guest Post | Spark Blog Tour (+ Giveaway)

Posted May 16, 2016 by Jana in Blog Tour, Giveaway, Guest Post / 2 Comments

Holly Schindler Guest Post | Spark Blog Tour (+ Giveaway)

Welcome to my spot along the Spark blog tour, hosted by The Irish Banana Review! I’m pleased to turn the blog over to the author of Spark, Holly Schindler, for a guest post.

I asked Holly:
If you could write yourself into Spark,
what kind of character would you be and why?

Following her post, read all about Spark and enter to win one of three finished copies of the book!

Holly Schindler on Her Place in Spark

In many ways, I did write myself into SPARK. I’m a little bit Quin—I’ve worn glasses since I was nine, and I’ve always been a giant reader, always written. (I was writing stories at my child-sized rolltop desk when I was a little girl!)

I’m also a little bit Cass—I’m a music junkie, and have always loved anything vintage. In high school, I wore more vintage clothes than new.

And I’m a little bit Dylan—I was a really shy kid. You definitely didn’t hear my voice much in class. I’m not a stutterer—I didn’t have the same reason not to be a big talker—but I do know what it’s like to feel like the quiet one in a giant group of more extraverted classmates.

…And that brings me to one of the central themes of SPARK: Growing up, I also felt, just like all the kids in Advanced Drama, what it was like to be full of flaws. But the thing is, we ALL have flaws. Or at least, perceived flaws, both internal and external. We all have that voice inside our head that says we’re not quite good enough—that’s constantly musing about how great it would be to snap our fingers and fix our shortcomings.

SPARK encourages readers to imagine what it would be like if you could magically erase your flaws.

Spark by Holly Schindler
Published by HarperTeen on May 17, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Magical Realism
Add to Goodreads
Amazon • B&N • IndieBound • iBooks • Book Depository

The local Avery Theater was just a run-down building to Quin—until her mother told her the tragic love story of Nick and Emma that played out on the theater’s stage all those years ago. Quin is convinced it’s the perfect story to rewrite for her drama class, but when she goes searching for more information, she makes a startling discovery—the Avery is rapidly regaining its former splendor and setting the stage for her classmates Dylan and Cass to relive Nick and Emma’s romance. Quin can see the spark between them, but it’s up to her to make sure her friends—and the Avery—can both be saved this time around.

About the Author:

I’m a hybrid author of critically acclaimed traditionally published and Amazon bestselling independently published works for readers of all ages. My previous YAs (A BLUE SO DARK, PLAYING HURT, and FERAL) have received starred reviews from Booklist and Publishers Weekly, won silver and gold medals from ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year and the IPPY Awards, respectively, been featured on Booklist’s First Novels for Youth, School Library Journal’s “What’s Hot in YA,” and been selected as a PW Pick.

Going hybrid means that I’ve been able to explore all sorts of new avenues—short fiction, sequels, I’m even going to be branching out into doing some illustrative work. Throughout 2016, I’m releasing one short story a month in the Forever Finley Short Story Cycle. The cycle begins with “Come December”.



Also, in honor of SPARK’s release, Holly is holding a sale on PLAY IT AGAIN, the sequel to her YA romance, PLAYING HURT. For a limited time, PLAY IT AGAIN is $.99.

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Follow the rest of the tour!

Week 1:
Week 2:

Apollycon ’17 Author/Vendor Line-Up & Registration Options (+ Giveaway)

Posted May 6, 2016 by Jana in Bookish News, Giveaway / 1 Comment

Apollycon Header


Hey there! I’m one of 25 official Apollycon 2017 bloggers so over the next year I’ll be giving you all the information on the conference so you know exactly what’s going on.

Today is the magical day of the unveiling of the Apollycon author and vendor line-up! It started at 9AM EST this morning on the conference Facebook page, and was revealed in three parts (hourly) on the Apollycon Twitter and Instagram accounts. In case you missed it, here’s that list of gold:


Follow the Apollycon social media pages so you don’t miss anything important!

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
(and it’s a good idea to sign up for the Newsletter too)

Ok, so also… Today is the day we tell you all about Apollycon registration options and the different passes you can purchase. There are four: Titan, Apollyon, Demi-god and FAST PASS. Each one is different and provides you with different opportunities, so make sure you read carefully and pick the one that works best for you.


And here are the conference pass options:

apollycon titan pass

Apollycon apollycon pass

Apollycon demigod pass



You will still need to register through the Eventbrite page, but there will be no cost for your general signing ticket. This will grant you entry to the Saturday signing, and all authors and vendors in attendance.

Woo! So exciting! Which pass do you want to buy when the time comes?


Of course, we have a giveaway for you! One winner will receive a “Front of the Line” pass for Apollycon which they may redeem during one of the Apollycon signings to jump the to the front of one line. It is a one-time use pass. ID must be presented when claiming the pass. It is transferrable. If you win and later find you cannot attend, you may transfer the pass once to another attendee.

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This Is Who I Am Now | The Square Root of Summer Blog Tour

Posted May 3, 2016 by Jana in About Me, Blog Tour / 0 Comments

This Is Who I Am Now | The Square Root of Summer Blog Tour

Happy book birthday to Harriet Reuter Hapgood and The Square Root of Summer! In celebration of Harriet’s debut Macmillan, in partnership with Macmillan UK, has put together and fun time capsule blog tour that focuses on capturing who we are right now. Some of us bloggers chose to answer a series of questions about ourselves in February and again in May to see how we’ve changed over those three months. Others opted to mail in a physical object that defines them. These objects are showcased over at, so go take a look.

I decided to answer the questions, and I set up two documents so that I could answer in May without seeing what I wrote in February. See how I’ve changed, and then read a little about this fun, summery book!

What brings you the most joy in life?
February 2016: Turning in a grad school assignment. The earlier, the better.
May 2016: At this very moment, I am feeling joyful because I finished another semester of grad school and feel so much lighter than I have in months.

What are you reading?
February 2016: The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig and The Girl I Used to Be by April Henry
May 2016: The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye and Stars Above by Marissa Meyer

What is something you’re really looking forward to?
February 2016: Being done with the semester!
May 2016: A relaxing summer with fun trips and tons of time to do what I want.

What is one thing that’s worrying you?
February 2016: A marketing assignment for one of my classes.
May 2016: I’m sick right now, and I’m worried it’s going to last forever.

What is something that you always have with you?
February 2016: My phone.
May 2016: My phone!

What is something that you wish you could change?
February 2016: Which classes I chose to take this semester.
May 2016: I just got a haircut, and it was cut WAY too short!

The Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Hapgood
Published by Roaring Brook Press on May 3, 2016
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, Time Travel
Amazon • Barnes and Noble • Add to Goodreads

This is what it means to love someone. This is what it means to grieve someone. It’s a little bit like a black hole. It’s a little bit like infinity.

Gottie H. Oppenheimer is losing time. Literally. When the fabric of the universe around her seaside town begins to fray, she’s hurtled through wormholes to her past:

To last summer, when her grandfather Grey died. To the afternoon she fell in love with Jason, who wouldn’t even hold her hand at the funeral. To the day her best friend Thomas moved away and left her behind with a scar on her hand and a black hole in her memory.

Although Grey is still gone, Jason and Thomas are back, and Gottie’s past, present, and future are about to collide—and someone’s heart is about to be broken.

Join in on social media with #SquareRootofSummer and #thisiswhoIamnow
Visit Harriet’s website and follow her on Twitter and Instagram!

And make sure you stop by all the other participating blogs today!

Art, Books, Coffee Blog
Book Briefs
Bumbles and Fairytales
Confessions of a Book Junkie
Manga Mania Cafe
Ticket to Anywhere
The Irish Banana
Firefly Read It
Across the Words
Books and Makeup
Ex Libris Kate
Dark Faerie Tales
Jenuine Cupcakes
Miss Print
Mundie Moms
Nobs Book Reviews
Seeing Double in Neverland
Reading Teen
Starry Eyed Revue
Read Now, Sleep Later
Forever Young Adult
Gone Pecan
Book Rambles
Perpetual Page Turner
Melissa’s Eclectic Bookshelf
Twirling Pages
Andi’s ABCs
That Artsy Reader Girl
Waste Paper Prose
Evie Bookish
Book Rook Reviews
Fiction Fare
Lady Knight Reads
Book Nerds Across America
Page Turners’ Blog
Tripping Over Books
Consummate Reader
Ageless Pages Reviews
A Perfection Called Books
XPresso Reads
Good Books and Good Wine
Swoony Boys Podcast