Sunday, December 20, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (57)


Welcome to this week's Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga`s Reviews. It features books I bought or received for review each week. It is about adding books to my book shelf whether it by physical, virtual or audio. Thanks for stopping by!
Purchased from Chapters Indigo:


I am currently reading The Beautiful and the Cursed and I'm liking it so far. I'm not that far into it, I have not had much time to read recently. Hopefully that will change with the holidays coming up. For those of you that celebrate, I hope you have an amazing Christmas!

Raquel
xoxo

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Expected Publication Date: May 3rd, 2016

Synopsis: (Taken from Goodreads)
Cursed with a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, sixteen-year-old Maya has only earned the scorn and fear of her father's kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her world is upheaved when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. But when her wedding takes a fatal turn, Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Yet neither roles are what she expected. As Akaran's queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar's wife, she finds friendship and warmth.

But Akaran has its own secrets - thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Beneath Akaran's magic, Maya begins to suspect her life is in danger. When she ignores Amar's plea for patience, her discoveries put more than new love at risk - it threatens the balance of all realms, human and Otherworldly.

Now, Maya must confront a secret that spans reincarnated lives and fight her way through the dangerous underbelly of the Otherworld if she wants to protect the people she loves.

THE STAR-TOUCHED QUEEN is a lush, beautifully written and vividly imagined fantasy inspired by Indian mythology.


Raquel
xoxo

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Release Day Blast: Wicked Reunion by Michelle A. Valentine

wr-releaseday

It's time to meet your newest rockstar obsession, Jared Kraft, in WICKED REUNION by Michelle A. Valentine! WICKED REUNION is the ultimate second chance romance - Jared and London's story is available now!

Valentine-WickedReunion-19879-CV-FL-V4

About WICKED REUNION:

College sweethearts London Uphill and Jared Kraft were inseparable. He was a rising baseball star with a promising future, and she seemed destined to become “Mrs. Kraft.” Then a tragic night and a series of devastating mistakes caused Jared to walk away from his life, leaving London without any explanation and tearing the couple apart. Five years later, Jared has reinvented himself by putting down the bat and picking up a guitar to play for the red-hot band Wicked White. In all that time, London hasn’t gotten over her forever love—or the pain—despite seeking solace in the arms of the one man no one dreamed she’d run to. When Wicked White’s lead singer goes MIA, Jared finds the time—and courage—to return to his hometown and face the mess he made. He’s shocked at how London’s life has changed, yet he’s determined to prove their love is worth fighting for. Is this breakup too big for any hope of a reunion tour? Or can London open her heart to Jared once again?
Add WICKED REUNION to Goodreads here!
Buy WICKED REUNION now: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Missed meeting Ace in WICKED WHITE? Grab it now! Amazon | Barnes and Noble

EXCERPT

My mouth drops open and I can’t do anything but stare. It’s like seeing a ghost—something you never in your life ever expected to see—and I just can’t look away. I resist the urge to reach down and pinch myself to make sure this moment is real. Is this his idea of some twisted joke? I mean, there’s no way in hell that Jared Kraft is standing in my doorway with a dozen yellow roses after five years without a single word. Shit like that only happens in movies, and my life for damn sure isn’t some glamorous fairy tale. I stand there, staring like an idiot, while my brain tries to work out exactly what’s going on here. I furrow my brow. This has to be a dream. No way this man has the nerve to just show up here like this—not after all this time. I step back and take a long moment to study his face. He looks exactly the same as the last time I saw him, only his hair is longer—more shaggy and unkempt—the style I’ve seen him wear whenever I see pictures of him with his band, Wicked White. To prove to myself that this really is a dream, I reach down and bunch some skin up on my arm and then pinch with all my might. “Ouch!” I yelp as I inspect the flesh my nails dug into. My breath catches the moment I realize that the man who used to be my everything—the man who took off five years ago, leaving me and his family behind without so much as a good-bye or piss off—is standing on my porch. When my eyes meet his, so many questions rage through my mind, but before I can open my mouth to ask a single one, anger begins to boil over inside me. How dare he just come waltzing into my life after all this time? My body reacts of its own accord and my hand darts out to snatch the flowers out of his hand. His eyes grow wider when I slam them down onto my porch and then smack his face as hard as I can.
 

GIVEAWAY

Want to win a $20 Amazon giftcard? Enter the rafflecopter below! a Rafflecopter giveaway  

ABOUT MICHELLE A. VALENTINE

Michelle A. Valentine is a Central Ohio nurse turned New York Times & USA Today bestselling author of erotic and New Adult romance. Her love of hard-rock music, tattoos, and sexy musicians inspired her erotic BLACK FALCON series. Website | Newsletter | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram Be a little naughty - join Valentine's Vixens on Facebook for sneak peeks at Michelle's upcoming works, as well as fun and chatting with her and other re

Monday, December 14, 2015

Excerpt: Wicked Reunion by Michelle A. Valentine

Valentine-WickedReunion-19879-CV-FL-V4


About WICKED REUNION:
College sweethearts London Uphill and Jared Kraft were inseparable. He was a rising baseball star with a promising future, and she seemed destined to become “Mrs. Kraft.” Then a tragic night and a series of devastating mistakes caused Jared to walk away from his life, leaving London without any explanation and tearing the couple apart. Five years later, Jared has reinvented himself by putting down the bat and picking up a guitar to play for the red-hot band Wicked White. In all that time, London hasn’t gotten over her forever love—or the pain—despite seeking solace in the arms of the one man no one dreamed she’d run to. When Wicked White’s lead singer goes MIA, Jared finds the time—and courage—to return to his hometown and face the mess he made. He’s shocked at how London’s life has changed, yet he’s determined to prove their love is worth fighting for. Is this breakup too big for any hope of a reunion tour? Or can London open her heart to Jared once again?

Add WICKED REUNION to Goodreads here!
Buy WICKED REUNION now: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Missed meeting Ace in WICKED WHITE? Grab it now! Amazon | Barnes and Noble

EXCERPT
He cups my face. “London . . .”
“Jared.” I can only whisper his name in return before he pulls me in for a kiss.
He doesn’t move too fast. He holds my face in his hands as he presses his mouth to mine. There’s no urgency in his actions. It’s almost as if he’s taking the time to savor every second of this.
He wraps his arms around my waist and pulls me in tighter. “I’ve missed you so much. Can you ever forgive me for leaving you—for that night in the parking lot? For everything? You should hate me, I know that, but I swear to God if you’ll let me, I’ll make it up to you.”

For years I’ve dreamed of him saying this, begging for my forgiveness and promising that he would make it up to me.

GIVEAWAY
Want to win a $20 Amazon giftcard? Enter the rafflecopter below! a Rafflecopter giveaway    

ABOUT MICHELLE A. VALENTINE
Michelle A. Valentine is a Central Ohio nurse turned New York Times & USA Today bestselling author of erotic and New Adult romance. Her love of hard-rock music, tattoos, and sexy musicians inspired her erotic BLACK FALCON series. Website | Newsletter | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram Be a little naughty - join Valentine's Vixens on Facebook for sneak peeks at Michelle's upcoming works, as well as fun and chatting with her and other readers!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (56)


Welcome to this week's Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga`s Reviews. It features books I bought or received for review each week. It is about adding books to my book shelf whether it by physical, virtual or audio. Thanks for stopping by!

Purchased from Amazon:

Magic Stars (Grey Wolf #1) (Kate Daniels 8.5) by Ilona Andrews

I am so excited to start reading this book. From the reviews I read, this novella can not be missed if you love the Kate Daniels series. Not sure when I will get a chance to start reading it as I seem to be in a reading slump. I have been in one for the last 2-3 weeks. Maybe this book will get me out of it.

I put a few books on my Christmas list like Frozen Tides by Morgan Rhodes and others but I kinda wish now I didn't because I wanna get those books now.  I am being impatient but I want them, like yesterday. Hopefully the time passes by fast.

On another note, I apologize for being MIA the last couple of weeks. I have been going through some changes and it has been a little harder to adjust than I thought. Things are now back to normal and I am extremely happy about that. 

What new books did you get this week?

Thanks for stopping by!

Raquel
xoxo

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (65)

Fire Touched (Mercy Thompson #9) by Patricia Briggs

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I just want to say I never want this author to stop writing the Mercy Thompson series. I have grown to really love this series and I am of course so excited for this next installment.

Expected Publication Date: March 8, 2016

Synopsis: (Taken from Goodreads)
Tensions between the fae and humans are coming to a head. And when coyote shapeshifter Mercy and her Alpha werewolf mate, Adam, are called upon to stop a rampaging troll, they find themselves with something that could be used to make the fae back down and forestall out-and-out war: a human child stolen long ago by the fae.
 
Defying the most powerful werewolf in the country, the humans, and the fae, Mercy, Adam, and their pack choose to protect the boy no matter what the cost. But who will protect them from a boy who is fire touched?


Raquel 
xoxo

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (55)


Welcome to this week's Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga`s Reviews. It features books I bought or received for review each week. It is about adding books to my book shelf whether it by physical, virtual or audio. Thanks for stopping by!

Purchased from Amazon:
The Fall Up by Aly Martinez

King (King #1) by T.M. Frazier

The Paper Swan by Leylah Attar

Nameless by Jennifer Jenkins

I have been waiting awhile to get all of these books. I remembered I had a gift card so I purchased them on kindle format. I am so excited to start reading them! As well as listening to Scarlet on audiobook,  I just started reading The Pact by Katrina Halle. I just started it about 3% in. I am anxious to dive into it further to see how everything plays out.

Thanks for stopping by!

Raquel
xoxo

Friday, November 20, 2015

Cover Reveal: Chasing Crazy by Kelly Siskind

We're so thrilled to reveal the cover of debut author Kelly Siskind's CHASING CRAZY, which releases January 12th from Forever Yours! We absolutely can't wait for everyone to get their hands on this new adult contemporary romance. Check out the beautiful cover below, read a sneak peek, and enter to win a $20 Amazon gift card!

Siskind_ChasingCrazy_ebook

About CHASING CRAZY
"With an endearingly awkward female protagonist, a swoon-worthy male love interest, and Siskind's superb storytelling, this is one of the best New Adult contemporary romances I've read to date." -- USA Today bestselling author K.A. Tucker 

Synopsis
Dear Mom & Dad, I dropped out of school. I'm going backpacking. Sorry. Love you both. At nineteen, Nina has endured two lifetime's worth of humiliation. Tired of waiting for it to get better, she decides to get going-across the globe to New Zealand. There she soon faces what she most fears: a super sexy guy ready to be Nina's next mistake. Once Sam's life was all about having fun. That was before the accident. Now his friends have bailed and his world is broken. But when a gorgeous girl on his flight looks at him with passion instead of pity, Sam feels his old self coming back to life. Now traveling together, Nina and Sam know this isn't just a fling. They're falling fast, hard, and deep. More than anything, Sam wants Nina to forget her fears. But to help her do that he must reveal his own painful secret-and risk Nina never seeing him the same way again.

CHASING CRAZY releases January 12, 2016 - add it to your Goodreads list here!
Preorder CHASING CRAZY now: Amazon | Barnes and Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Excerpt
Frickin’ Hot Guy and his stupid hike. He thought his limp would slow us down, but I’m the one huffing and puffing, trying to figure out how I ended up on Mount Everest while in New Zealand. I chance a glance up, using the moment to inhale a mouthful of air. Sam leans over the edge, hands on his knees, grinning down at me. If there was ever a reason to summit a mountain, that face is it. Sam, who I’m falling for. Sam, with that jaw. Sam, who I’ll be sleeping with. In a tent. Alone. Another five agonizing steps later, he’s got me by the shoulders, helping me up. In the blink of an eye, he has my straps undone and is easing the bazillion-pound weight from my back. The air still feels sharp in my lungs, like it could slice through me. “Keep moving around,” he says. “Come on, let’s walk it off.” He grabs my hand and leads me over the rocky ground, the two of us walking in wide circles. After a few laps, the air is less daggerlike and my breathing slows. I blink at my surroundings. So focused on my aches and pains, I didn’t stop to soak in the landscape, if that’s what you’d call it. This is probably what the moon looks like. A few hikers passed us on the climb, but we’re alone in this crater, surrounded by jagged outcrops of brownish-black rocks and yellow tufts of grass, low mountains on all sides. It’s majestic and eerie and otherworldly, and I’m here because of Sam. “Beautiful, isn’t it?” he asks. He’s still holding my hand as the silence engulfs us, my heart pounding in my ears. The air is cold and damp. It alleviates the heat from that insane climb but doesn’t do much to quell the warmth between Sam’s hand and mine. Still, I don’t let go. And he doesn’t let go. I could stand here forever. “Yeah, beautiful,” I finally say, no longer referring to the scenery.

Giveaway Want to win a $20 Amazon giftcard from Kelly Siskind? You can enter to win on the Rafflecopter below! a Rafflecopter giveaway

About Kelly Siskind
A small-town girl at heart, Kelly moved from the city to open a cheese shop with her husband in Northern Ontario. When she’s not neck deep in cheese or out hiking, you can find her, notepad in hand, scribbling down one of the many plot bunnies bouncing around in her head. She laughs at her own jokes and has been known to eat her feelings—Gummy Bears heal all. She’s also an incurable romantic, devouring romance novels into the wee hours of the morning. She is represented by Stacey Donaghy of the Donaghy Literary Group. 2015 Golden Heart® Finalist

Connect with Kelly Siskind Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (64)

Glass Sword (Red Queen #2) by Victoria Aveyard

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Expected Publication Date: February 9, 2016

Synopsis: (Taken from Goodreads)
Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control. 

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors. 

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat. 

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?


Raquel
xoxo

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (54)


Welcome to this week's Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga`s Reviews. It features books I bought or received for review each week. It is about adding books to my book shelf whether it by physical, virtual or audio. Thanks for stopping by!

Book from Audible:


I have finally finished Cinder and I have to say I really enjoyed it. The audio book narration is pretty good and brings the story to life for me and I know the second installment, Scarlet, will do the same. Last week I didn't  get any books. I am hoping next week I will get some but I have not really seen anything I really want to get. Hopefully that changes soon :)

Raquel 
xoxo

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (63)

Feverborn (Fever #8) by Karen Marie Moning

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I can't tell you how much I love this series. It is definitely one of my favourite series of all time. Although I have not read Burned (Fever #7), I am super excited for this series to continue.

Expected Publication Date: January 19, 2016

Synopsis: (Taken from Goodreads)
In Karen Marie Moning’s latest installment of the epic #1 New York Times bestselling Fever series, the stakes have never been higher and the chemistry has never been hotter. Hurtling us into a realm of labyrinthine intrigue and consummate seduction, FEVERBORN is a riveting tale of ancient evil, lust, betrayal, forgiveness and the redemptive power of love.

When the immortal race of the Fae destroyed the ancient wall dividing the worlds of Man and Faery, the very fabric of the universe was damaged and now Earth is vanishing bit by bit. Only the long-lost Song of Making—a haunting, dangerous melody that is the source of all life itself—can save the planet.

But those who seek the mythic Song—Mac, Barrons, Ryodan and Jada—must contend with old wounds and new enemies, passions that burn hot and hunger for vengeance that runs deep. The challenges are many: The Keltar at war with nine immortals who’ve secretly ruled Dublin for eons, Mac and Jada hunted by the masses, the Seelie queen nowhere to be found, and the most powerful Unseelie prince in all creation determined to rule both Fae and Man. Now the task of solving the ancient riddle of the Song of Making falls to a band of deadly warriors divided among—and within—themselves.

Once a normal city possessing a touch of ancient magic, Dublin is now a treacherously magical city with only a touch of normal. And in those war-torn streets, Mac will come face to face with her most savage enemy yet: herself.


Raquel
xoxo

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (62)

The Winner's Kiss (The Winner's Trilogy #3) by Marie Rutkoski

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I have not read the second book in the series yet but I am still excited to read this third book to see how everything pans out. Of course the cover is just as beautiful as rest of the series.

Expected Publication Date: March 1, 2015

Synopsis: (Taken from Goodreads)
War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it, with the East as his ally and the empire as his enemy. He’s finally managed to dismiss the memory of Kestrel, even if he can’t quite forget her. Kestrel turned into someone he could no longer recognize: someone who cared more for the empire than for the lives of innocent people—and certainly more than she cared for him. At least, that’s what he thinks.

But far north lies a work camp where Kestrel is a prisoner. Can she manage to escape before she loses herself? As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover unexpected roles in battle, terrible secrets, and a fragile hope. The world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and Kestrel and Arin are caught between. In a game like this, can anybody really win?
 


Raquel
xoxo

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (53)


Welcome to this week's Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga`s Reviews. It features books I bought or received for review each week. It is about adding books to my book shelf whether it by physical, virtual or audio. Thanks for stopping by!

Books from Audible.com:
The Rose Society by Marie Lu

Legacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

I am really into listening to audiobooks these days. I am hoping I can get to listen to these books this month. I am a little behind in reading as I am still listening to Heir of Fire. The book is about 20 hours long so that is like 2 regular books. I will be finished with it this week though.

Raquel
xoxo

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Interview: The Wildenstern Saga by Oisin McGann

Synopsis:
Nate Wildenstern's brother has been killed, and the finger is pointed at him . . . After nearly two years, eighteen-year-old Nate returns home to the family empire ruled by his father - the ruthless Wildenstern Patriarch. But Nate's life is soon shattered by his brother's death, and the Rules of Ascension, allowing the assassination of one male family member by another, means he's being blamed. He knows that he is not the murderer, but who is? With the aid of his troublesome sister-in-law, Daisy, and his cousin Gerald, he means to find out. But when the victims of the family's tyrannical regime choose the funeral to seek their revenge, they accidentally uncover the bodies of some ancient Wildenstern ancestors, one of whom bears a Patriarch's ring. The lives of Nate and his family are about to take a strange and horrifying turn . . .

Interview with Oisin McGann: 

1. Where did you get the idea for The Wildenstern Saga?

The original ideas came together, forming around the concept of a vampire-like family whose power came from money rather than blood, and avoiding all the usual vampire tropes. It was going to be a much more science fiction/fantasy world, but I wanted to appeal to a more mainstream audience. Sometimes you can entertain yourself by going really weird, but end up alienating readers. I realized the core ideas of the story would fit well in a Victorian world, but I didn’t want to lose the freedom and imagination that sci-fi/fantasy offers and I wanted to add more humour and a touch of chaos. That was when I brought in the engimals, the living machines, as a new thread, and wove them into the science of the story and the mythology of the world. I also wanted to avoid the usual English setting, so I set it in Ireland instead, which added a whole load of extra historical spice, as those were fiery times.

2. The series is set in Victorian Ireland and incorporates many aspects of steampunk. How did you become interested in steampunk? Do you participate in steampunk culture often?

I’ve always been fascinated with the Victorian contrast of civil and delicate manners against the grit and grime of the Industrial Revolution and the massive difference between rich and poor, between science and religion, between virtuous Christian values of a developing society and the beginning of a grinding factory society. It’s a fascinating period in history, which is why it attracts so much attention. Plus, of course, when I was growing up, Jules Verne was the granddaddy of science fiction (I didn’t read HG Wells until later in my life). I think there’s a nostalgia for that kind of sci-fi, because for many of us, the technology is still understandable and is very visual. Electronics have made tech almost magical, but has meant it can be almost any shape, which has led to many everday things ending up shaped like a very practical round-edged box (cars, phones, trains, radios and TVs). Steampunk is visually stimulating because it’s chunky and often ugly or ridiculously ornate, the shapes either dictated by the function or the d├ęcor of someone’s house – and it’s gorgeously funky because of all that. I don’t participate in the cosplaying or model-making, but there’s some really lovely stuff out there.

3. Engimals are engine-animal hybrids that can be tamed to work as machines in society. What’s your favorite engimal?

I suppose it would have to be Flash, the wild motorcycle Nate captures at the beginning of the book, but they were ALL fun to make. I think we’ve a funny relationship with machines; we can’t help treating them like animals – we shout at our computers, wrestle with our vacuum cleaners and have strange relationships with our cars. Creating machines that actually behaved like animals; a toaster that gets a thrill from having toast inserted in its back, or a bird that sings like a stereo, or a street-sweeper that can be led like a cow or sharp-edged, paper-like creatures that can fly and draw their power by basking in the sun . . . these all seemed a very natural step in a weird direction.

4. The Rules of Ascension are very harsh and taken very seriously in getting to the top of the family line. How did the idea for the Rules come about?

They were worked out pretty logically according to how I imagined a family like this would be governed. The aim is to create ruthless businessmen, to always increase the family’s wealth and power. So family life is shaped to breed predators and weed out the weak, allowing someone to kill someone in a superior position, as long as it conforms to the rules and no one outside the family finds out. As the family’s motto goes: ‘Suffer No Weakness’. If you take greed to its ultimate extreme, I figure this is what you’d get.

5. How long did it take you to write Ancient Appetites?

I plan ahead quite a bit, so when I start writing a book, I turn it out pretty fast and I like to have as finished a story as possible by the time I write ‘The End’ (I still write ‘The End’ – it gets taken out by the editor, but I still write it). That said, I’m normally working on two or three projects at a time, maybe more – though usually only one novel, unless I’m editing one and writing another. I think Ancient Appetites took about four or five months to write the first draft.

6. Ancient Appetites is set in 19th century Ireland. If you could live in any time period and any place, what/where would it be and why?

Oh, I’d visit other times, but I’d stay living right here. Vaccines, antiseptic, antibiotics, modern medicine and dentistry, the ability to travel, the access to information, human rights . . . we’re steadily making the world a better place. I do wish we hadn’t trashed our environment so badly, but there’s still hope there too. The past is lovely and all that, but it can stay right where it is. Certainly, you’d have to be an eejit to want to live in 19th century Ireland – most people had it pretty rough back then.

7. Do your three children influence your stories at all?

Mostly they distract me from my work, but yes, there are bits of them in the writing – that would be true of anyone I spend a lot of time with. We’re constantly influenced by the people and environment around us.

8. You’re both a writer and an illustrator. How do your creative processes differ for both?

I write imagining how I’d draw (or film) each scene and I’m constantly imagining dialogue and action while I draw. They’re two sides of the same coin for me. In fact, when I started teaching writing classes, which I still do, I’d never done any formal writing classes myself, I hadn’t learned any systematic steps, so my approach was the one I’d learned in art college; break everything into simple isolated elements, learn how to recreate those and how they fit together to make more complex things.

9. What young adult authors inspire you?

YA is more of a marketing thing than an audience thing. Writers who would have influenced me in different ways would include Terry Pratchett, Stephen King, Pat Mills (a UK comics writer), Tolkien, CS Lewis, Ernest Hemingway, Beatrix Potter, Roald Dahl, Willard Price, Alan Moore, Louis L’Amour, Craig Thomas, Agatha Christie and I loved books like Treasure Island, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Watership Down, The Wind in the Willows, The Iron Man, Pippi Longstocking and Moby Dick. I went through an Enid Blyton phase for a while, And then there was Jules Verne, of course.

10. What can you tell us about The Wisdom of Dead Men and Merciless Reason, the next books in the trilogy?

More of the same, but worse. By the time we get to Merciless Reason, things are really getting out of hand. The climax of that was a LOT of fun to write.

11. When you’re not writing or illustrating, what are some of your favorite hobbies?

I like walking in the mountains (though I’ve done less of that since our two youngest were born – the hills are still calling to me), I love films, reading and answering my children’s oddball questions. I travel around quite a bit, particularly in Ireland and I love seeing new places, but staying at home and getting jobs done on the house has become a bit of a treat. I like tinkering with stuff to figure out how it works. I was into martial arts for years and keep promising, when I’ve got the time, that I’ll get back into it. I still like a good fight scene, though I’m getting a lot less tolerant of the scripts of martial arts films now. Some of them are really shite. I have two dogs and a cat that demand a fair bit of my time too.

12. Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

Loads, but it wouldn’t fit here. Mainly, write what you love to read, so it will always be fun. Life’s too short for meeting other people’s expectations and this is too weird, frustrating and inconsistent a job to do if it’s not fun. I have no time for the perception of the miserable, tortured artist. Sod that, write what you love – all the rest is a bonus.

13. Do you think you have any similar characters to Nate Wildenstern, the main character in Ancient Appetites?

I think it’s important to make every character distinctive. I’d hope that every character I create is different from all the others. Part of the fun of writing is the challenge to make your characters interesting to write and it’s the only way to create that empathy in the reader.

14. Do you ever get writer’s block? How do you overcome it?

No, I really don’t. I think one skill a writer should train into themselves is the ability to observe and to make ideas out of the things around them. The world is FULL of stimulation for our brains, we only need to open ourselves up to it. I don’t believe in writer’s block as some kind of psychological affliction. If you get stuck in a story, find a way to make up something new or stop taking it so seriously and take a break and go and write something else. Don’t stop writing, just change what you’re doing. Everyone can get stuck, all the best writers do, but we do this for a living – you have to knuckle down and get on with it. If you can be beaten into submission by a blank page, you’re in the wrong job.

15. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

I’ve had loads of good advice, but one practical one is that my English teacher once asked me how sure I was of the end of my stories before I start writing. In a burst of light exploding in my brain, I realized that sometimes I hadn’t a clue how my stories ended and I COULD THINK AHEAD AND FIX THAT. Now, I have the ending of my story before I start writing. I can change it – it’s my story, I can do what I like – but it give me a direction to go and helps me maintain pace throughout. It doesn’t suit every writer, but it works for me.

16. Your books have elements of fantasy, science fiction, adventure, and mystery in them. What’s the most challenging part of combining so many genres into one cohesive story?

I try not to think in genres. I like a bit of weird in my stories, so they often have a sci-fi/fantasy/horror element to them – letting go with the imagination is just too much fun –but there still have to be clear rules for those unreal bits, so that there can be no magical escapes or easy answers. Nothing pisses a reader off worse than giving a character a convenient or lazy way out of a problem. I think that once you can create character, suspense and pace, you can bring them into any type of story, and the type of story is dictated by the setting and the challenges your characters face.

17. What’s your favorite bookstore?

I don’t have one – there are a number in Dublin that I’d visit regularly and we have a couple of good local ones, but my wife is a librarian, so I can order home delivery any time I want.

18. Which character did you enjoy writing most in Ancient Appetites?

I don’t have a favourite character (as you can gather, I don’t really do favourites much at all), but Gerald was cool to write; he has this dry wit that delivers some of the best lines, and Tatiana was great – someone once described her as ‘pathologically bubbly’ and that’s a pretty good description. She’s a ray of sunshine in a family of predators.

19. Who is your favorite literary character?

Aw, I don’t know. Bilbo Baggins or Gollum? Charley from Charley’s War? Long John Silver? It’s a bit like asking a parent who their favourite child is. There are already too many to choose and I still want to find more of them.

20. Are you working on anything currently?

I’m always, always writing. I’ve just finished the sequel to Rat Runners and I’m now working on another novel, a kind of near-future Cold-War-thriller with an environmental theme. I’m also pitching a few different younger kids’ projects to publishers, I’m tweaking some new editions of an existing series and I’m just wrapping up the last few pieces for a project where we were exploring climate change through storytelling, trying to find different, and more positive ways of portraying it and looking to the future. But I’m ALWAYS writing. I’ll do it until somebody stops me.

Raquel
xoxo

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (61)

The Rose and the Dagger (The Wrath and the Dawn #2) by Renee Ahdieh


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I am SOOOOOO EXCITED for this book, it is unbelievable. The Wrath and the Dawn was honestly one of my favourite reads in 2015 so far and I know book number 2 will not disappoint. The cover is just as gorgeous as the first book. The waiting is killer! I wish the whole series came out at once.
Expected Publication Date: May 3rd, 2016

Synopsis: (Taken from Goodreads)
The much anticipated sequel to the breathtaking The Wrath and the Dawn, lauded by Publishers Weekly as "a potent page-turner of intrigue and romance."
I am surrounded on all sides by a desert. A guest, in a prison of sand and sun. My family is here. And I do not know whom I can trust.
In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad has been torn from the love of her husband Khalid, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once believed him a monster, but his secrets revealed a man tormented by guilt and a powerful curse—one that might keep them apart forever. Reunited with her family, who have taken refuge with enemies of Khalid, and Tariq, her childhood sweetheart, she should be happy. But Tariq now commands forces set on destroying Khalid's empire. Shahrzad is almost a prisoner caught between loyalties to people she loves. But she refuses to be a pawn and devises a plan.

While her father, Jahandar, continues to play with magical forces he doesn't yet understand, Shahrzad tries to uncover powers that may lie dormant within her. With the help of a tattered old carpet and a tempestuous but sage young man, Shahrzad will attempt to break the curse and reunite with her one true love.


Raquel
xoxo

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Release Blitz: Surviving Ice by K.A. Tucker

Surviving Ice - RWB banner

We are so excited to bring you the Release Week Blitz for K.A. Tucker's SURVIVING ICE! SURVIVING ICE is a standalone romantic suspense novel and is the fourth book in K.A. Tucker's Burying Water Series, published by Atria, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. Grab your copy today!


Surviving Ice - Cover Amazon ** Barnes and Noble ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound

 SURVIVING ICE Synopsis: The USA TODAY bestselling author of the Ten Tiny Breaths series and Burying Water—which Kirkus Reviews called “a sexy, romantic, gangster-tinged page-turner”—returns with a new novel packed with romance, plot twists, and psychological suspense. Ivy Lee, a talented tattoo artist who spent the early part of her twenties on the move, is looking for a place to call home. She thinks she might have finally found it working in her uncle’s tattoo shop in San Francisco. But all that changes when a robbery turns deadly, compelling her to pack up her things yet again. When they need the best, they call him. That’s why Sebastian Riker is back in California, cleaning up the mess made after a tattoo shop owner with a penchant for blackmail got himself shot. But it’s impossible to get the answers he needs from a dead body, leaving him to look elsewhere. Namely, to the twenty-something-year-old niece who believes this was a random attack. Who needs to keep believing that until Sebastian finds what he’s searching for. Ivy has one foot out of San Francisco when a chance encounter with a stranger stalls her departure. She’s always been drawn to intense men, so it’s no wonder that she now finds a reason to stay after all, quickly intoxicated by his dark smile, his intimidating strength, and his quiet control. That is, until Ivy discovers that their encounter was no accident—and that their attraction could be her undoing.


Surviving Ice - RDL teaser

And don’t miss the previous titles in the Burying Water Series!

burying-water-9781476774183

BURYING WATER

Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound

becoming-rain-9781476774206

BECOMING RAIN

Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound

 

chasing-river-9781476774237_lg

CHASING RIVER

Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound

Surviving Ice - RWB teaser 2


Author pic - KA Tucker        About K.A. Tucker: Born in small-town Ontario, K.A. Tucker published her first book at the age of six with the help of her elementary school librarian and a box of crayons. She currently resides in a quaint town outside of Toronto with her husband, two beautiful girls, and an exhausting brood of four-legged creatures.          

Website ** Twitter ** Facebook ** Novel Goodreads ** Author Goodreads **

YouTube ** Pinterest ** Instagram

 

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Sunday, October 25, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (52)


Welcome to this week's Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga`s Reviews. It features books I bought or received for review each week. It is about adding books to my book shelf whether it by physical, virtual or audio. Thanks for stopping by!

I have only purchased one book this week through Audible.com:

I am still listening to Heir of Fire which I am enjoying a lot. I am excited to get through the rest of it and continue onto Queen of Shadows. 

Also if you have not done so already, you can enter my giveaway for Spooktacular Giveaway Hop.

Raquel
xoxo

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (60)

White Hot (Hidden Legacy #2) by Ilona Andrews

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This book was originally releases this month but it got pushed back  to 2016 and I am so bummed about it. I listened to the first book, Burn for Me, in audiobook version which was great. The beginning was a little slow but after that a lot happened. Certain parts I replayed over and over again. Overall I really enjoyed Burn for Me and I am really excited to see where the story goes.

Expected Publication Date: June 2016

Synopsis: (Taken from Goodreads)
It is listed on the website as late spring/early summer 2016

Nevada Baylor has a unique and secret skill—she knows when people are lying—and she's used that magic (along with plain, hard work) to keep her colorful and close-knit family's detective agency afloat. But her new case pits her against the shadowy forces that almost destroyed the city of Houston once before, bringing Nevada back into contact with Connor "Mad" Rogan.

Rogan is a billionaire Prime—the highest rank of magic user—and as unreadable as ever, despite Nevada's "talent." But there's no hiding the sparks between them. Now that the stakes are even higher, both professionally and personally, and their foes are unimaginably powerful, Rogan and Nevada will find that nothing burns like ice . . .


Raquel
xoxo