Sunday, May 1, 2016

Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge -May Link Up


Welcome to the May Review Link Up for the 2016 Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge. Before linking your reviews make sure you are signed up for the challenge here.
  • When submitting a review please do it in this format: Title of Reviewed Book (Name of Blog). Author names are not necessary. 
  • This link up will be open until May 31st
  • If you have and questions feel free to ask in the comments, email Emisbookblog@aol.com, or tweet me @FallingForYA
May Link Up

Thursday, April 21, 2016

A Criminal Magic Q&A w/Lee Kelly + Giveaway


 A Criminal Magic
Author: Lee Kelly
Publisher: Saga Press
Publication Date: February 2, 2016

Synopsis
THE NIGHT CIRCUS meets THE PEAKY BLINDERS in Lee Kelly's new crossover fantasy novel.
Magic is powerful, dangerous and addictive - and after passage of the 18th Amendment, it is finally illegal.
It's 1926 in Washington, DC, and while Anti-Sorcery activists have achieved the Prohibition of sorcery, the city's magic underworld is booming. Sorcerers cast illusions to aid mobsters' crime sprees. Smugglers funnel magic contraband in from overseas. Gangs have established secret performance venues where patrons can lose themselves in magic, and take a mind-bending, intoxicating elixir known as the sorcerer's shine.
Joan Kendrick, a young sorcerer from Norfolk County, Virginia accepts an offer to work for DC's most notorious crime syndicate, the Shaw Gang, when her family's home is repossessed. Alex Danfrey, a first-year Federal Prohibition Unit trainee with a complicated past and talents of his own, becomes tapped to go undercover and infiltrate the Shaws.
Through different paths, Joan and Alex tread deep into the violent, dangerous world of criminal magic - and when their paths cross at the Shaws' performance venue, despite their orders, and despite themselves, Joan and Alex become enchanted with one another. But when gang alliances begin to shift, the two sorcerers are forced to question their ultimate allegiances and motivations. And soon, Joan and Alex find themselves pitted against each other in a treacherous, heady game of cat-and-mouse.
A CRIMINAL MAGIC casts a spell of magic, high stakes and intrigue against the backdrop of a very different Roaring Twenties.
Q&A
What were your biggest inspirations while writing your book?
I wanted A Criminal Magic to feel like an intense game of cat-and-mouse inside a very dangerous underworld, and so Martin Scorsese’s film The Departed was a great starting place. I also binge-watched The Peaky Blinders (this amazing BBC 1920s-period drama starring Cillian Murphy) – all of the characters of the show are fully-realized, and the gritty landscape of 1920s Ireland is so evocative it almost feels like a character itself.

For the sorcery threads in the novel, I looked to The Night Circus, Harry Potter and The Magicians series as inspiration!
What’s usually on your nightstand?

Books, naturally J – usually the one I’m currently reading and the few that are in contention for what I’m going to read next – plus my cell phone and my kids’ sleep monitors.

Which character in your book is most like yourself?
I guess I wrote a little of me into both of my two main protagonists, Alex and Joan (I think you can’t help it, especially when you write in first person), but I would say that I’m more like Alex than Joan. Alex is the undercover agent in A Criminal Magic – but only joined the Prohibition Unit to quash suspicion that he was helping his father run one of the largest criminal magic schemes in history.

Alex begins the story as jealous and insecure, and wearing a massive chip on his shoulder – all things that I can be at my worst! Like Alex, I’m at my best when I’m working towards a goal – when I can channel my overactive mind and tendency to over-analyze into a singular task, and rise above my weaknesses.
Which authors have most influenced your writing?
A. Suzanne Collins, for her amazing ability to make you care about her characters while simultaneously driving you wild from story tension and suspense.
B. Cormac McCarthy, for his awesome and enviable balance of the beautiful and the bleak, especially in The Road (some of his lines still haunt me, and I read the book years ago).
C. Gillian Flynn, of course for her twisty plots, but moreover for creating such deep, wonderful, complicated, dangerous, different female characters.
What is your favorite scene in your novel?
Fun question! I’ll try not to reveal any spoilers, as the scene happens about halfway into the novel:

There’s this place in the book called The Red Den, which is this underground performance space where illegal magic is served and performed away from the eyes of the law. And through various turns of events, both Joan and Alex end up finding themselves at the Den, at an immersive magic show. The evening begins with sorcerer performances and parlor tricks, then cascades into an “immersive magic finale” where a troupe of sorcerers puts on a full-scale magic illusion, and then the night finally culminates with patrons imbibing a shot of sorcerer’s shine (pure magic in a glass). Writing that scene – with all of the magic tricks and the festive excitement of the crowd and the flirty tension between Joan and Alex – it was so much fun I ended up writing a much longer scene than I’d originally intended.
About the author
Lee Kelly has wanted to write since she was old enough to hold a pencil, but it wasn’t until she began studying for the California Bar Exam that she conveniently started putting pen to paper.

An entertainment lawyer by trade, Lee has practiced law in Los Angeles and New York.

She lives with her husband and son in Millburn, New Jersey, though after a decade in Manhattan, she can’t help but still call herself a New Yorker.

City of Savages is her first novel. Visit her at NewWriteCity.com.
Giveaway
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Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Glittering Court Release Day Blitz + Giveaway


I am so excited that THE GLITTERING COURT by Richelle Mead releases today and that I get to share the news, along with a special giveaway!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Richelle Mead, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a signed copy of the book and a $25 Sephora Gift Card courtesy of Richelle, Penguin Teen, and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

Title: THE GLITTERING COURT
Author: Richelle Mead
Pub. Date: April 5, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Format: Hardcover, eBook, & audiobook

The Selection meets Reign in this dazzling trilogy of interwoven novels about three girls on a quest for freedom and true love from #1 internationally bestselling author Richelle Mead.

"Brilliant and original, Mead’s new series starts off with a bang and will leave readers on the edge of their seats until the very end."
—School Library Journal

For a select group of girls, the Glittering Court offers a shot at a life they’ve only ever dreamed of, one of luxury, glamour, and leisure. To high-born Adelaide, whose wealthy family is forcing her into a loveless marriage, the Glittering Court represents something else: the chance to chart her own destiny, and adventure in an unspoiled, prosperous new land across the sea.

After a chance meeting with the dazzling Cedric Thorn, Adelaide poses as a servant to join the crop of impoverished girls he promises to transform into proper ladies. But her familiarity with upper class life comes with a price: she must hide her identity from her new friends, mysterious refugee Mira and fiery former laundress Tamsin, and most importantly, from Cedric himself—even though she’s falling in love with him. 

Everything begins to crumble when Cedric discovers Adelaide’s ruse, and she catches the eye of a powerful young governor, who wants her for a wife. She didn’t leave the gilded cage of her old life behind just to become someone else's property. But nothing is as daunting—or as wonderful—as the potent, forbidden attraction simmering between Adelaide and Cedric. One that, if acted on, would make them both outcasts in a wild, dangerous, uncharted world, and possibly lead them to their deaths.

Exclusive Excerpt





About the Author

Richelle Mead has written over twenty-five novels for teens and adults. She is the author of the international #1 bestselling Vampire Academy series and its spinoff series, Bloodlines. Her recent standalone novel, Soundless, draws upon Chinese mythology and history, and her forthcoming series, The Glittering Court, follows the adventures of girls destined for arranged marriages in a fantasy world inspired by colonial America. A lifelong reader, Richelle has always had a particular fascination with mythology and folklore. When she can actually tear herself away from books (either reading or writing them), she enjoys bad reality TV, traveling, trying interesting cocktails, and shopping for dresses to wear on tour. She is a self-professed coffee addict, works in her pajamas, and has a passion for all things wacky and humorous. Originally from Michigan, Richelle now lives in Seattle, Washington, where she is hard at work on her next novel.


Giveaway
1 winner will receive a hardcover of THE GLITTERING COURT & a $25 Sephora Gift Card. US Only.


Ends on April 15th at Midnight EST!


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Friday, April 1, 2016

Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge- April Link Up


Welcome to the April Review Link Up for the 2016 Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge. Before linking your reviews make sure you are signed up for the challenge here.
  • When submitting a review please do it in this format: Title of Reviewed Book (Name of Blog). Author names are not necessary. 
  • This link up will be open until April 30th
  • If you have and questions feel free to ask in the comments, email Emisbookblog@aol.com, or tweet me @FallingForYA
April Link Up

Monday, March 28, 2016

Where I've Been



Let's Chat!

As you can see if you look around Falling For YA I haven't been posting very often....


It was a slow process. At first I wasn't posting as frequently, then it was only weekly, and bi-weekly. Now I look at the blog and realize I haven't written a post in almost a month. It isn't because I've stopped loving reading, or I don't like blogging anymore. My priorities have just shifted.

In September I started Library school! I am in a one year intensive program to get my MLIS with a certificate in Law Librarianship from the University of Washington. Because it is intensive my focus has shifted to that. Library school and internships take up the bulk of my time. I'm already 8 books behind in my Goodreads challenge.

I'm not complaining though. This has been the best year of my life!

In February I got engaged! Allan is my bookend. Our brains work in the same way, he is absolutely hilarious, and I feel lucky every day that he stumbled in to my life.


I have also begun writing again. I started blogging at a time in my life when I needed something to distract me. I was going through law school, and reading/blogging was my creative outlet. Now that I am surrounding my life with the things I love, I'm ready to get back to a dream gave up a long time ago. I want to be a published author.

From March 14-18 I attended the Aspiring Writer's Workshop hosted by Madcap Retreats in Lyles, Tennessee. 12 Authors, 42 Retreat Attendees. It was amazing!


This author panel kind of blew my mind. Yes, that is really Courtney Stevens, Julie Murphy, Natalie Parker, Maggie Stiefvater, Carrie Ryan, Brenna Yovanoff, Tessa Gratton, Renee Ahdeieh and Sarah Henning!

What blew my mind even more then meeting these really talented authors was the supportive community all the madcappers created. Everyone at the retreat was welcoming, friendly. and intensely supportive. It didn't matter if you had never completed a draft or if you had written nine manuscripts and never had one published. We had each others backs.  

Yes, that is me with Maggie Stiefvater! 
Being in this environment renewed my passion for writing. It made me not want to give up on my dream, but rather strive my hardest to produce the best manuscript I can! If that sells wonderful, it it doesn't I'll try again.

So, that is where I have been. I've been studying to be a librarian, getting engaged, attending writing workshops and living my dreams. 2016 has already been a whirlwind and I don't expect it to stop any time soon.

This isn't a post saying I'm leaving. It's a post telling you what's happening in my life. It's a post letting you know that I'll still be here but at less frequent intervals and about a range of topics. This blog has been a part of my life since 2011. It's not going anywhere but for now it's not my top priority.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge - March Link Up


Welcome to the March Review Link Up for the 2016 Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge. Before linking your reviews make sure you are signed up for the challenge here.
  • When submitting a review please do it in this format: Title of Reviewed Book (Name of Blog). Author names are not necessary. 
  • This link up will be open until March 31st
  • If you have and questions feel free to ask in the comments, email Emisbookblog@aol.com, or tweet me @FallingForYA
March Link Up

Friday, February 26, 2016

Blood Passage by Heather Demetrios Blog Tour + Giveaway


Blood Passage
Author: Heather Demetrios
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: March 1, 2016

Synopsis:
A jinni who's lost everything.
A master with nothing to lose.
A revolutionary with everything to gain.
When Nalia arrives in Morocco to fulfil Malek's third and final wish she's not expecting it to be easy. Though Nalia is free from the shackles that once bound her to Malek as his slave, she's in more danger than ever before.
Meanwhile, Malek's past returns with a vengeance as he confronts the darkness within himself, and Raif must decide what's more important: his love for Nalia, or his devotion to the cause of Arjinnan freedom.
Set upon by powerful forces that threaten to break her, Nalia encounters unexpected allies and discovers that her survival depends on the very things she thought made her weak. From the souks of Marrakech to the dunes of the Sahara, The Arabian Nights come to life in this dazzling second installment of the Dark Passage Cycle.

Playlist




1. Virus (Bjork)

This one is a Malek song. He’s like a virus in Nalia’s life, totally in love and obsessed with her. He just won’t give up when it comes to her. I also like the fragility of this song, the gentle lullaby quality of it. Here are the lyrics because they are just perfect:

Like a virus needs a body 
As soft tissue feeds on blood 
Some day I'll find you, the urge is here 

Like a mushroom on a tree trunk 
As the protein transmutates 
I knock on your skin, and I am in 

The perfect match, you and me 
I adapt, contagious 
You open up, say welcome 

Like a flame that seeks explosives 
As gunpowder needs a war 
I feast inside you, my host is you 

The perfect match, you and I 
You fail to resist 
My crystalline charm 

Like a virus, patient hunter 
I'm waiting for you, I'm starving for you 

My sweet adversary 
My sweet adversary 
My sweet adversary 

2. I Choose You (Sara Bareilles) 
This is an expression Raif uses when professing his love for Nalia in all three books. This song is so sweet and joyful. It’s very Nalia and Raif. 

3. Shake It Out (Florence + The Machine) 
I put Nalia through the ringer in this book. This song is all about not dwelling on the past and getting up again. She uses the expression it’s always darkest before the dawn and that is very true for Nalia. Her happy endings are hard won. 

4. Green Eyes (Coldplay) 
I had to put this one on there for Raif and his emerald eyes. I feel like this song would make Nalia think of him. It’s a very romantic very sweet song. 

5. Lasya (Anoushka Shankar) 
This is a gorgeous sitar piece that brings to life the world of the book. It’s set in Morocco and when I hear this it just takes me back there with Nalia, Raif, and Malek on all their adventures.

About the Author 
When she’s not traipsing around the world or spending time in imaginary places, Heather Demetrios lives with her husband in New York City. Originally from Los Angeles, she now calls the East Coast home. Heather has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is a recipient of the PEN New England Susan P. Bloom Discovery Award for her debut novel, Something Real. Her other novels include Exquisite Captive, the first in the Dark Caravan Cycle fantasy series, and I’ll Meet You There. She is the founder of Live Your What, an organization dedicated to fostering passion in people of all ages and creating writing opportunities for underserved youth. Find out more about Heather and her books atwww.heatherdemetrios.com and www.darkcaravancycle.com, or come hang out with her on Twitter (@HDemetrios) and any number of social media sites.

Giveaway
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Thursday, February 18, 2016

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

Passenger
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Publication Date: January 5, 2015
Goodreads

Review:
I began reading Passenger with such excitement. I’d heard rave reviews from other bloggers, and this was my first Alexandra Bracken book. I had high expectations but as the pages dragged on, and on, and on, I found myself getting decidedly less excited. I ended up finishing this book feeling let down.

This plot was slow. There were things that needed to happen to drive the plot and I could see them lurking in the shadows but the scenes dragged on. The only exciting part of this novel happened to be at the very end. I think I would have been able to slog through a slow plot had the characters been interesting, but I didn’t even like them.

The main character Etta is from present day New York and after her mother is captured and she is taken back in time to the 1700’s. Which doesn’t really seem to bother Etta. She adapts quickly and learns the political background of the ruling time travel family. The problem was Etta felt one dimensional she has a very specific goal and doesn’t really deviate. Nicholas is a mixed race son from the ruling traveling family. He is from the 1700’s but doesn’t hold any of the 1700’s ideals. This really bothered me because I just didn’t think it rang true.

The romantic relationship in this book was probably what I disliked the most. I wanted to like it. It’s not often authors write a diverse romance but I just thought it all moved too fast. I couldn’t believe the relationship between Etta and Nicholas. I didn’t see the spark and so everything that happened after felt rushed and unnatural.

Overall, this novel was just plain boring and when it wasn’t boring the romance was confusing. I still plan on giving The Darkest Minds a try, since I already have the book, but I’m not in a huge hurry to pick it up. And I will definitely be skipping the sequel to this novel.



Tuesday, February 9, 2016

My Top 10 YA Ships


With Valentines Day on Sunday I thought it would be fun to share my Top 10 Favorite YA Ships! Some of these ships will never sail but a girl can always hope ^.~

1 Anna & Etienne from Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
2 The Darkling & Alina from Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
3 Ronan & Kavinsky from The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

4 Evie & Death from Endless Knight by Kresley Cole
5 June & Day from Legend by Marie Lu

6 Rose & Dimitri from Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
7 Morpheus & Alyssa from Splintered by A.G. Howard
8 Arin & Kestrel from The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski

9 Jem & Tessa from Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare
10 Scarlet & Robin Hood from Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

Monday, February 8, 2016

The Winner's Kiss by Marie Rutkoski Blog Tour


The Winner's Kiss
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Publication Date: March 29th, 2016
Publisher: Farrar, Strauss, Giroux

Synopsis
War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it with untrustworthy new allies and the empire as his enemy. Though he has convinced himself that he no longer loves Kestrel, Arin hasn’t forgotten her, or how she became exactly the kind of person he has always despised. She cared more for the empire than she did for the lives of innocent people—and certainly more than she did for him.
At least, that’s what he thinks.
In the frozen north, Kestrel is a prisoner in a brutal work camp. As she searches desperately for a way to escape, she wishes Arin could know what she sacrificed for him. She wishes she could make the empire pay for what they’ve done to her.
But no one gets what they want just by wishing.
As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover that the world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and they are caught in between. With so much to lose, can anybody really win?
Goodreads | Amazon | B&N 

My favorite literary kiss
There are so many great kisses throughout literary history but my absolute favorite kiss is a more recent one. It is when Jem kisses Tessa for the first time in Clockwork Prince.

I never thought my ship would sail and so when Jem pulled Tessa toward him and finally made a move I thought my heart would burst. I had never been a Will/Tessa person. Even though it was (sort of) justified I didn't like the way Will treated people. I definitely thought that Jem deserved some happiness with Tessa. 

Why is it your favorite?
This is my favorite kiss because I never thought it would happen! I thought Jem was just going to be relegated to side character status and that nothing would happen for him. Jem deserved so much more and I was so happy for him and Tessa.  

Bonus Question: what kiss do you hope will occur in Marie Rutkoski's The Winner's Kiss?
I am in the middle of reading The Winner's Kiss right now and all I want is a happy ending for Arin and Kestrel! They have both been through so much that they're owed a little piece of happily ever after. It'll be a bonus if that happily ever after includes kisses =P
About the Author
Marie Rutkoski is the author of The Kronos Chronicles, including The Cabinet of Wonders and The Celestial Globe. The Cabinet of Wonders, her debut novel, was named an Indie Next Kids’ List Great Read and a Bank Street Best Children’s Book of the Year, among other honors. Rutkoski grew up in Bolingbrook, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago), as the oldest of four children. She attended the University of Iowa, where she took Writers’ Workshop classes and studied with Pulitzer Prize-winner James Alan McPherson. After graduating, she lived in Moscow and Prague. Upon receiving her Ph.D. from Harvard University, she held dual appointments as a lecturer there in both English and American Literature and Language, and History and Literature. Rutkoski is currently a professor at Brooklyn College, where she teaches Renaissance Drama, children’s literature and creative writing. She lives in New York City with her husband and cat.