Saturday, April 20, 2019

Spotlight: Strength (The Legacy Chronicles #2)

Spotlight
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Strength

(The Legacy Chronicles #2)

First she has to fight to adopt her son; then she has to fight to keep him.

Reemah is a Ra’hos. She has led a life of privilege and luxury, flouting the rules to suit her every whim. Now she must face the consequences of breaking those rules to save a human infant. What will her father demand in return for allowing her latest, most reprehensible, disobedience?

Mahsan has grown up in a world where he doesn’t belong—always alone, always less than his peers. He longs for a place to fit in, a place to be himself. Can discovering the truth about his past hold the key to his future happiness?

Amidst court intrigue and deadly plots, will one mother and son out-manoeuvre unseen enemies to stay together, or will rash decisions tear them apart?

Friday, April 19, 2019

First Impression: 4/19/19

I found this meme on Joe @Storey of Stories‘s page called “First Impression”.

It will be a meme where you talk about a book that you JUST STARTED! Maybe you’re only two sentences in the book, a chapter or two , maybe a little farther.  The goal is to  give a few impressions and predict what you’ll think by the end.  It will be fun to go back to this post once you’ll have finished the book! Did you think you’d love it and ended up hating it? Or did you think you’d hate it and wound up loving it? Or were you right all along?

• Based on this sampling of your current read, give a few impressions and predict what you’ll think by the end.
• Did you think you’d love and ended up hating it? Or did you think you’d hate it and wound up loving it? Or were you exactly right?
• Link back to Storeys of Stories so I can enjoy reading all the First Impression Fridays out there!

From Goodreads:

From USA Today, Washington Post and Amazon Charts Bestselling author and Goodreads Best Fiction Finalist comes an exhilarating new YA series.

Abandoned at eleven with no memory of her family, Alexia seeks her true identity. Under the new government’s regime, sixteen year-olds are evaluated for their desire to harm others. Throughout the test, Alexia struggles to conceal her psychic ability to read the past and future of anyone she touches. When her secret is revealed, Alexia is taken to an island where other highly skilled agents and readers like her train to survive.

As Alexia gains more control over her abilities, she desperately tries to piece together her elusive past. In her quest for the truth, Alexia’s loyalties are tested when forced to make an impossible choice between those she loves and the family she can’t remember.

A spell-binding adventure of friendship, love, unforeseen twists and learning that our most dangerous enemies are often the people we trust the most. A captivating novel filled with forbidden romance and shocking betrayals that demands the question – Can One Decision Determine Your Destiny?

43517657So, I’m almost finished with one book, and the other books are part of a series, so I wanted to focus on something new, and this one seems like a perfect fit. I’m looking forward to reading this one, but know very little about it. After downloading it, and using it for today’s ‘first lines’ post as well…I’m really interested to see what happens. The writing style has already grabbed my attention in just over a paragraph, so I’m hoping that means I’m going to love it!

 

 

 

 

 

Last time I did this was in July 2018 with Smoke and Iron. I loved it, but it was more of a filler, building up the the last book. Still, it set the stage, and I’m looking forward to seeing how things turn out for Jess and his friends!

Friday Finds: 6/22/18 (Repost)

Friday Finds is a weekly meme hosted by Jenn at A Daily Rhythm where you spotlight books that you’ve recently added to your To Be Read list. Shown below are all the books I’ve added to my TBR on Goodreads in the last week!

(I hope to start doing this one again, but I’m currently removing everything from the TBR/To-Read shelf so I can better sort it, and it’s taking a while to transfer the books to a ‘temp’ shelf on Goodreads as there are a few thousand… (Like 6k total? on my TBR XD) I loved the covers on this batch, and decided to just repost this once since it’s been a while, and I tend to forget about this when I’m planning posts unless it’s been recently posted/saved, haha. Oops!)

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357959523451378539094653

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Other Titles:

 

First Lines Fridays: 4/19/19

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?
  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

The hard fist comes at the girl from the left. She throws her arm up. The fist slams against the bone above her wrist. She bites her teeth into her lip as the bone cracks. Pain radiates from her arm to every part of her body.

43517657The Circle

 

by Sage Sask 
From USA Today, Washington Post and Amazon Charts Bestselling author and Goodreads Best Fiction Finalist comes an exhilarating new YA series.

Abandoned at eleven with no memory of her family, Alexia seeks her true identity. Under the new government’s regime, sixteen year-olds are evaluated for their desire to harm others. Throughout the test, Alexia struggles to conceal her psychic ability to read the past and future of anyone she touches. When her secret is revealed, Alexia is taken to an island where other highly skilled agents and readers like her train to survive.

As Alexia gains more control over her abilities, she desperately tries to piece together her elusive past. In her quest for the truth, Alexia’s loyalties are tested when forced to make an impossible choice between those she loves and the family she can’t remember.

A spell-binding adventure of friendship, love, unforeseen twists and learning that our most dangerous enemies are often the people we trust the most. A captivating novel filled with forbidden romance and shocking betrayals that demands the question – Can One Decision Determine Your Destiny?

 

Not the book I planned to feature for this, but I’m now kind of interested to see who this girl is! I just downloaded my ARC of this and Finale, so I’ve got some interesting stories ahead!

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Blog Tour: Slumbering

Welcome to the Slumbering blog tour! Here we have another gorgeous book, this time the first installment in a wonderful YA series, called The Starlight Chronicles by C.S. Johnson. Read on for exclusive content and a chance to win a print copy of the book!

Slumbering Cover

Slumbering

Publication Date: December 2014

Genre: YA Urban Fantasy/ Satire

Sixteen-year-old Hamilton Dinger leads a charmed life. He’s got the grades for the top of the class, the abilities of a star athlete and Tetris player, and the charisma to get away with anything. Everything seems to be going along perfectly, including his plans to ask out Gwen Kessler, as he enters into tenth grade at Apollo Central High School. Everything, that is, until a meteor crashes into the city, releasing the Seven Deadly Sinisters and their leader, Orpheus, from their celestial prison, and awakening Hamilton’s longtime dormant supernatural abilities. Suddenly Hamilton finds reluctantly allied with his self-declared mentor, Elysian, a changeling dragon, and Starry Knight, a beautiful but dangerous warrior, as they seek to protect the souls of Apollo City from the Sinisters and their evil intentions. Can Hamilton overcome his ignorance and narrow-mindedness to see what is truly real? Can he give up his self-proclaimed entitlement to happiness in order to follow the call of a duty he doesn’t want? More importantly, will he willingly sacrifice all he has to find out the truth?

 

Review: 

I’m only recently discovering C.S. Johnson’s work, but already, I’m really enjoying her book, and look forward to reading more! Complex world-building and character, a touch of humor to add the the character appeal, and plenty of action and growth going on throughout the story. I loved this setting, and the characters quickly made an impression, it didn’t take long for me to find myself drawn to their story, especially Hamilton’s.

Add to Goodreads

The Starlight Chronicles

The Starlight Chronicles

Interview:

  • In 10 words or less, how would you describe SLUMBERING?

Only ten?? I’m a novelist for good reason, ha!  But …

Egotistical teenager discovers he’s a superhero, has trouble being selfless.

  • Why do you love writing? When did you first have a love for writing, and how was it formed?

I love writing a lot of the same way I love myself; it’s difficult, but the words I produce are mine, and it reflects, both for good and for ill, the essence of who I am. My love for writing was grounded in my love for reading and nurtured in very similar ways, with finding favorites and trying new books. My mother helped with this a lot. She used to read to me before bed at night, and after I learned to read, I found it was the easiest way to ignore things I didn’t want to be bothered with.

  • Who are your favorite authors, and which ones have had an impact on you? Who has affected your writing style the most?

I have a few favorite authors; I like C. S. Lewis and Samuel Johnson – part of the reason I adore God’s sense of humor in getting to be married into a Johnson family – and T. S. Eliot. I also like Amy Tan, for her focus on mothers and daughters, George Orwell for his “despair writing,” as I call it, Andrew Klavan for his thrillers, Gabriel Garcia-Marquez for his magical realism. I like authors who are not afraid to talk about some topics, including religion and politics. Each of my favorite authors offers work that provides a portal of the realm of the human soul, and even if I disagree with them on some points – and I always do – I admire the wit, humor, and beauty they put into their work. As to which one has influenced me as far as style the most, I’m not entirely sure.

  • What are your favorite genres to read and write? What are your favorite books?

When it comes to reading, I am a sucker for a good love story, so I probably read romance the most. But I also like history and fairy tales, and occasionally a good sci-fi novel. The books I enjoy the most are memoirs; I like experiencing another’s life through their eyes. My favorite novel is consistently Till We Have Faces, and I try to reread it every year. I also like Lewis’ Out of the Silent Planet.

  • What do you do when you’re not writing? Is writing a part-time or full-time job?

I am a stay at home mom when I’m not writing. I like being able to be there for my kids if they need me. My husband works in healthcare so he has a good job that is able to provide for us both. I make the joke all the time that he goes to work and saves real lives, and I stay at home and kill imaginary ones. It’s funny because it’s true.

  • Which genre  is your favorite? If you could only write or recommend readers read one, what would your ‘go-to’ genre be?

If I have a go-to genre, it’s probably fantasy; there’s a lot you can do with fantasy, and I like playing with the imagination. There are dangers in living in your imagination for too long, but I also think it’s a great sword and shield for the individual soul. The other nice thing is that my science can be a little blurry and no one minds overly much.

  • Which character was the easiest to write, and who was the hardest to write?

For Slumbering, the easiest character to write was easily Hamilton. He is half-based on me in high school. I was not popular, and I was not one to voice my inner thoughts quite so much as he does; but a lot of his observations and ambitions were mine. I wanted to be smart, I wanted to be liked; I wanted to be in charge of my life, and I had a good enough handle on it that it was easy to look down on people who didn’t. And of course, there are quite a few surprises that life offers us that force us into a more humble stance. I always kind of laugh when I have people tell me how much they hate his character, because it really is a good reflection of how I was.

The hardest character to write in the series was probably Alethia, who comes onto the scene in Book 2 but becomes more of a major character in book 3. She is a very gracious character, and sometimes that demeanor is difficult for me to maintain, since I tend to be impatient and easily frustrated. If I was trying to help Hamilton save the world and he was whining about having to skip out from a date, I would come off more like Starry Knight and Elysian do when they’re with him.

  • What is your go-to cure for writer’s block?

In truth, I don’t have one that works. But playfully I tell people to think of a book that’s famous, one that’s made a lot of money, and one that’s just not very good even though it’s very popular – I’m sure you can think of at least one – and use it as inspiration that you can do it, too. If “This book” can do it, I can write a book that can, too.

  • Where is your favorite place to read or write?

My local coffeeshop is my favorite place. I keep coming up with coffee shop theme ideas, so I have this feeling that I secretly want to own one of my own one day.

  • Do you have any tips to any aspiring authors or writers?

I actually just published a book on writing for this, called Good Writing is Like Good Sex: Sort of Sexy Thoughts on Writing. It’s not graphic at all, and more tongue-in-cheek in tone, so if you’re around the age of sixteen, you’ll likely be able to read it without your parents worrying. That is my shortcut to answering this question, since I get asked that a lot. The truth is that everyone is a little different, but there are universal things people should know before publishing, and that’s where it gets tricky since all those people who ask me are often at different levels. People also want different things out of their writing. Not everyone does it for money, and not everyone wants to do it for a sense of meaning. So I wrote a book covering most of the basics, and published it so it’ll be there for people who want to know what I think.

Available on Amazon!

About the Author

Author-CS-Johnson

C. S. Johnson is the award-winning, genre-hopping author of several novels, including young adult sci-fi and fantasy adventures such as the Starlight Chronicles, the Once Upon a Princess saga, and the Divine Space Pirates trilogy. With a gift for sarcasm and an apologetic heart, she currently lives in Atlanta with her family. Find out more at http://www.csjohnson.me

CS Johnson | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

Giveaway Graphic

For your chance to win a print copy of Slumbering by C.S. Johnson, click the link below!

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Blog Tour Schedule

April 15th

Reads & Reels (Review) http://www.readsandreels.com

Daily Waffle (Excerpt) http://www.dailywaffle.co.uk

Sophril Reads (Excerpt) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com

April 16th

I Smell Sheep (Cover Love Feature) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

Quirky Cat’s Fat Stacks (Review) https://quirkycatsfatstacks.com/

I Love Books and Stuff (Excerpt) https://ilovebooksandstuffblog.wordpress.com

Reading Nook (Excerpt) http://readingnook84.wordpress.com

The Bookworm Drinketh (Excerpt) http://thebookwormdrinketh.wordpress.com/

April 17th

Jessica Rachow (Review) http://jessicarachow.wordpress.com

#Bookish (Excerpt) http://erindeckerblog.wordpress.com

Yearwood La Novella (Excerpt) http://yearwooddailybookreview.wordpress.com

April 18th

J Bronder Reviews (Review) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/

The Bibliophagist (Review) http://thebibliophagist.blog/

B is for Book Review (Excerpt) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com

April 19th

Breakeven Books (Interview) https://breakevenbooks.com

The Invisible Moth (Review) https://daleydowning.wordpress.com

Stacy is Reading (Review) https://stacyisreading.blogspot.com/?m=0

 

Excerpt:

After the meteorite has fallen, Hamilton starts to wonder if he is crazy; and when he starts getting visions of another time and place, he struggles to accept they could be something more than a mental illness or a physical ailment.

But even in the perfect teenage life of mine, I got bored easily.

Such as later, when I was sitting in drama class.

It was ninth period, and I felt my attention drooping as much as my eyelids. Mr. Lockard was droning on and on about Shakespeare and the Global Theater …or was it Globe Theater? I wondered briefly how Gwen could lap this stuff up like cream. It left a dry taste on my tongue.

Had time passed at all since class began? I wondered. I dared not look up at the clock for fear Lockard would use it as an excuse to call on me.

I shifted in my seat. Immediately, I grimaced at the highly noticeable lack of legroom.

I sighed. Drama was the stupidest class ever. (Ironic I would think so, I know.) Gwen was the reason I’d signed up for it this year. Once she’d been assigned to another period, I made it my life’s mission to drop the class.

Unfortunately, the parentals were not as keen on the idea. Mark and Cheryl made me keep it to “teach me a lesson” about suffering through things I detested. I still hated them for it. My parents would never understand how the anxiety produced in this class crippled my lifetime potential.

Not to mention my actual life was at risk while I was in the class. The drama room was located inconveniently (extremely inconveniently) underneath the stage. The wood-sanded ceiling-stage was composed of creaking boards only two inches thick. Two inches to keep people safe from falling onto unsuspecting students below, who were probably already half dead from boredom.

I was just waiting for the day when an amplifier, or microphone, or some fat kid caused the stage to collapse.

The humdrum of class slowly turned into muffles, which then twirled off into music. I was falling from consciousness, but not into sleep.

I panicked briefly for a moment as I fell back into the world of starlight, where I was flying freely, awing over the wonders of space and time Hubble had yet to find.

But even as I felt uneasy, I let myself be eased into contentedness. I wanted to enjoy it, even as I feared I was going crazy.

That same melody, the one from the hospital, called out to me, and I felt eagerness and euphoria, as though joy and anticipation had procreated an entirely new emotion within me.

My universe started to move with the music—as though the music had become not just sounds beautifully laced together, but a dance for all time and space to follow.

I couldn’t help it when I laughed. Joy had tickled me, inside and out, so I laughed.

“Hamilton Dinger!”

My attention was roughly jolted back to reality as Mr. Lockard (loudly) called me out. The celestial background dropped from my eyes, as though a light switch had been flipped on, chasing away the warmth and protection of darkness, and I was faced with the white-hot exposure of Lockard’s face.

“Just what is so funny?”

“Uh … ” was the best response I could make. I had been laughing aloud, unintentionally. “Nothing.”

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