Friday, April 17, 2015

BLOG TOUR [Guest Post + Giveaway] Never Sleep by Cady Vance



Never Sleep 
by Cady Vance 
Publication date: March 15th 2015
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

Synopsis:
Thora Green had a life once upon a time.  But that ended the day her parents enrolled her in a sleep clinic prison. At the facility, her chronic months-long insomnia is observed by scads of doctors, but she is never actually treated for her dire disease. In a feat of desperation, Thora escapes for New York City. Buried deep in the city’s underbelly, there is rumored to be a secret haven called the Insomniac CafĂ©: a place where people like Thora can find relief.

As Thora joins forces with Aiden and Florence, two fellow insomniacs, their midnight quest will take them from the dusty bookshelves of The Strand, to the smokey underground clubs in the Lower East Side, to countless taxi and subway rides. Clues leading to their final destination are waiting for them at every turn. But so are Sleepers—a powerful core of sworn-enemies to all Insomniacs—who wish to see Thora and her friends destroyed at any cost.




5 Things I Could Give My Character for Her Birthday

The main character in Never Sleep, Thora Green, is a film buff, a director-wannabe, and a chronic insomniac, so she’d be pretty easy to shop for when her next birthday rolls around (if she survives until then!).

1. The entire series box set of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She’s a big fan of Joss Whedon, of course.
2. A year-long supply of the strongest sleeping pills I could find.
3. A sleeping mask. It might not help her sleep, but she could pretend to block the world out for a night.
4. A cool video camera to help her make some films, something she’s never had the chance to do, even though she’s always wanted to.
5. An Unlimited Ride Metrocard, so she can scour New York City for the Insomniac Cafe, a rumored haven for the sleepless.



AUTHOR BIO:

Cady Vance is the author of YA and NA speculative fiction. After growing up in small-town Tennessee, she decided to embark on a grand adventure by packing up her bags and moving to NYC. Now, she studies for her PhD in the UK and dreams of seeing the universe.







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Thursday, April 16, 2015

BOOK BLITZ [Excerpt] The Ark by Laura Liddell Nolen





The Ark 
by Laura Liddell Nolen 
Published by: HarperVoyager
Publication date: March 26th 2015
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

Synopsis:
There’s a meteor headed for Earth, and there is only one way to survive.

With her criminal record, sixteen-year-old Char is never going to get a place on an Ark, one of the five massive bioships designed to protect Earth’s survivors. The Arks are reserved for the real goody-goodies, like Char’s mom, dad, and brother, all of whom have long since turned their backs on her.

With Earth on the brink of destruction, Char must use all her tricks of the trade to swindle her way into outer space, where she hopes to reunite with her family, regardless of whether they want to see her or not.

Once she arrives on the North American Ark, Char discovers that the remnants of humanity haven’t achieved the egalitarian utopia they’d planned for. For starters, the “Officers of the Peace” are anything but peaceful, especially since stealing a spot on an Ark is a crime punishable by death…

 



On the last day of Earth, I couldn’t find my hairbrush. That probably seems like a silly thing to worry about, what with the imminent destruction of, well, everything, but my mom was always after me about my usual ratty ponytail. Normally, I’d ignore her. Or, if I were having a really bad day, I’d tell her what she could do with her hairbrush. But like I said, it was the last day of Earth. And I figured, since it was the last time she’d ever see me, I wanted it to go smoothly. I wanted her to remember me, if not fondly, then at least without anger.
A girl can dream.
I slipped out of my cell as soon as the door swung open. I’d done the same every day for the past month, and my family had yet to show up. Their OPT—Off-Planet Transport—took off in eighteen hours, so they still had time. Barely. I couldn’t blame them if they didn’t come. It wasn’t hard to imagine that they’d rather escape to the stars without so much as a backward glance at me, their big disappointment. Even my father’s influence couldn’t persuade the government to give me a spot on an OPT.
Turns out, when humankind is deciding which of its children to save, the last place it looks is in prison.
But I was pretty sure they’d come. West had said as much in his last transmission. The thought of my younger brother actually halted me mid-step, like one of those punches in the gut where you can’t breathe for a few seconds.
“Looking for something?” The lazy drawl floated out of the nearest cell.
Against my better instincts, I turned to see Cassa lying on her bunk, her arm draped across Kip. My Kip. Or at least, my ex-Kip. Whatever. In twenty-two hours, I wouldn’t have to think about him anymore.
See? Silver lining. And they called me a perpetual pessimist at my last psych workup.
They barely fit next to each other on the flimsy mattress, but that wasn’t the weird part. The guys’ ward was separated by a substantial metal wall. We were kept apart during evening hours, for obvious reasons. Not that anyone cared anymore. The med staff had been the first to go, followed by the cleaning crew, followed by the kitchen crew. To show you where girls like me fell on the government’s list of priorities, there was still a skeleton crew of guards lurking around, despite the fact that I hadn’t had a real meal for going on a week. The guards would be gone soon, too, and then there’d be no one in here but us chickens.
I figured either Kip had a key, or the guards had left already. A key could be useful. My curiosity got the best of me. “How’d he get in here before the first bell?”
He cocked an eyebrow. “I got some tricks you ain’t seen, babe. Why don’t you join us? End of the world and all.”
The guards were gone, then. I felt a small trill of anxiety deep in my chest. If the guards were gone, my family was even less likely to show. But it was never smart to show fear. “The Pinball could be headed straight for this building, and I still wouldn’t be desperate enough to touch you. Oh, wait. Guess you don’t have to take my word for it.”
I turned to leave, but he continued. “Now is that any way to treat your dear ole partners? Be nice or I won’t give you back your stuff.”
“Ugh, you were in my room?” I flexed my shoulder blades, making sure my gun was still tightly secured between them.
“Don’t worry, Char. I didn’t handle the merchandise. Didn’t want to wake you up. Just lifted me a few keepsakes.” He pronounced my name the way I like: Char, as in charred. Something that got burned.
I wasn’t sure what Kip and Cassa were planning, but I knew I wouldn’t like it. They were thieves and liars. I would know. I used to be one of them. That was before the last job, when Cassa had attacked an elderly man in the home we were robbing. She’d kicked him until he stopped fighting back. Kip had called her off after a few licks, but I just stood there, staring. The old man looked at me, like right at me, while we made our getaway, and my stomach twisted into a knot so tight that I tasted bile. That was the moment I knew I wanted out.
But by then, no one believed me. Or, if they did, no one cared. Except for Kip and Cassa, of course. They’d taken the news pretty hard, to put it lightly.
If I lunged for the box, I could probably grab my hairbrush and get out of there. I wouldn’t have time for more than that. Then again, I’d be doing exactly what they expected, and I didn’t have time for delays. My family could be in the commissary any second now.
“Ahem. Seeing as it’s your last day of life, I might let you have one thing back,” said Kip.
“In exchange for what?”
“I’m hurt. All our time together, and you still don’t believe in my inherent generosity. But now that you mention it, I’ve got a hankering for some peanut butter crackers.”
“Sorry, Kip. I’m fresh out of food. Kinda like everyone else.”
“Nice try, Charrr.” He drew my name out, as though tasting it. “I saw them yesterday. Figured you were hiding them under your pillow when I couldn’t find them last night.”
“You figured wrong.”
All I could think about was my brother’s face. And how I had this one last chance to apologize to my parents, for everything. I shrugged and turned to leave.
That was probably a mistake.


AUTHOR BIO:
Laura grew up in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, where she spent an excellent childhood playing make-believe with her two younger brothers. TheArk is the direct result of those stories and a lifelong devotion to space-themed television. It received a Work in Progress Grant from theSociety of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Laura has a degree in French and a license to practice law, but both are frozen in carbonite at present. She lives in Texas with her family.







Wednesday, April 15, 2015

VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR [Excerpt] Skeletal by Katherine Hayton



Skeletal
by Katherine Hayton
Young Adult Mystery
Date Published: January 2015


Three months before she died Daina Harrow faced a bully at school.
Six weeks before she died Daina Harrow suffered an assault in the park.
One week before she died Daina Harrow stole a secret people had killed to hide.

That was ten years ago. Ten long years.

Now, her bones have been found on a building site. A coroner's inquest has been reopened. A parade of witnesses is about to start.

And Daina's here. Watching every day as her mother cries in the courtroom. Watching every day as her friends, and her enemies, and her killers lie about her on the stand.

Watching, and making sure that no matter what the coroner hears, you know the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

So help you God.

Warning: this book contains some bad language, and scenes of sexual assault. Recommended for ages 17+ only.



Watch this. Watch this now. Those men - the ones in the fluoro vests and the hard hats and the mud-caked boots. They’ve removed the bricks of the house, by hand. They’ve piled them up and put them aside in neat square packages wrapped in tarpaulin, ready to use again when the time comes. They’re about to raise the house off its foundations.
   It’s amazing.
   Before the earthquake, no one had ever really tried something like this before. It was a proposition of something that might work in a trade magazine that no one would ever have read. Except now it was read, and practiced, because there were so many opportunities to try out things people had never tried before.
   Opportunity, and the potential to save money. A perfect combination for experiments. And this thing works.
   Watch them. Right there. They’re lifting the denuded house up off the foundations. It creaks and groans but it holds together. Amazing.
   And look down in the foundations. Where they’re cracked and broken and the floor on one side has dropped almost a foot in height because of the liquefaction souping up the earth. That bit, where it’s broken so much the bare earth can be seen straight through the concreted silt. Even before anyone starts to try to crack it up. Broken along a prior instability.
   That’s where I am.
   Watch them as they pull aside the hard clods, and now – that one – he’s reaching forward, pulling one aside to expose a creamy white bone. He’s taking a step back now. He’s calling over his shoulder to a colleague. His site manager is about to be wholly pissed off, and frustrated because he’s not allowed to show it. Not in this situation.
   But the whole site’s going to be roped off and their work is going to be backed up and he’s going to be on the phone for the rest of the day trying to shuffle everything around so he doesn’t lose more than a day’s wages for his crew.
   It’ll take a while before they know that it’s me. There’s going to be a stream of ‘professionals’ coming by. They’ll carefully dig, and photograph, and exhume each bone. They’ll lay it out on a board in a morgue, making sure that each and every little piece of me is tagged and laid out in place.
   They’ll drill into the bone, the femur, and try to get a read on the DNA left in the dried out marrow. They’re going to find a match with a file on a missing person. And that missing person file is going to be me.
   My mum’s going to get a knock on the door that she’s been waiting for, and dreading, for a decade. She’s going to break down and cry with the easy tears of a drunk, even though her ten year chip takes pride of place in her jewellery box.
   She’ll cry, and won’t hear half of what they say. But they’ll be patient, and they’ll go through everything with her again. And again.
   I would cry too, if I still had something to cry with.
   But for now that’s all poised in the distance, a series of dominos not yet pushed into action. For now, there’s just the hi-viz workers and the glimpse of something they know shouldn’t be there. For now there’s just my dead bones and the cold ground they’ve been stored in, hidden in, waiting for the puff of fresh air to caress their curves and lines. Waiting for the dirt to be brushed aside and their porous surface to inhale the warmth of the sun.
   Waiting to be found.



Katherine Hayton is a 41 year old woman who works in insurance, doesn't have children or pets, can't drive, has lived in Christchurch her entire life, and currently resides a two minute walk from where she was born. Fascinating, eh?
She's the author of two spectacular un-bestselling books (unless you count tiny niche genres on Amazon, which of course you should) FOUND, NEAR WATER and new release SKELETAL.
She is currently curled up on her couch with her typewriter (laptop) while she tries very hard to give birth to her next novel AS YET UNNAMED BUT PROBABLY INVOLVING GRUESOME MURDERS.





Tuesday, April 14, 2015

BOOK BLITZ ~ Excerpt: Bittersweet by Kimberly Loth



Bittersweet
by Kimberly Loth
Publication date: March 21st 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult

Synopsis:
Every Sunday Savannah Ray gets an email from her dead dad. She doesn’t know how the emails work and she doesn’t mind either as she’s not ready to let go. Now that her mom is fed up of her rebellious behavior, she has to go to the one place she swore she’d never set foot in after he died—Haunted Valley, the amusement park. Once there and bullied by co-workers & customers, she is distracted by the charming Dallas and falls hard for him.  But Savannah and Dallas both hold secrets that threaten their new relationship. Will Haunted Valley help her move on, or will it destroy her from the inside out?








Dallas sat on the rock, his face turned up to the sunlight. Damn, he was hot. My head went a little fuzzy. Whoa. Where did the nothing go? Feelings were coming more and more often now. It was crazy that I’d never felt a thing for Zane, but in less than two weeks I was feeling all kinds of crazy things for Dallas.
“I’m still not sure about this,” I said as we walked out into the park. He wore a real polo shirt with a popped collar and loose khaki shorts. Definitely a rich boy. Usually I avoided this type at school, they were cocky and never had the time of day for a girl like me unless I was the butt of a joke.
“Do coasters make you sick?” he asked.
“No, they just hold too many memories,” I kept my eyes trained on my tennis shoes instead of him.
“More cryptic answers. I’ll get them out of you one of these days.” I risked a look and he had that devastating smile plastered on his face again. If he kept looking at me like that, then he was right. I’d spill my guts faster than the Demon Drop plummeted.
All of the rides in Spook Alley were built with dark brown wood, and when I stepped inside I felt like I was in a massive haunted tree house with pictures of little witches and cute ghosts everywhere. The smell of cotton candy was overwhelming. Instead I inhaled deeply and smiled. Amusement parks always smelled like cotton candy. That and corn dogs.
He cocked his head.
“What?” I asked, suddenly self-conscious.
“You’re smiling a real smile. It’s a sight I don’t see very often. It’s much prettier than the fake one.”
I blushed.
“I smell cotton candy. It’s one of my favorite smells.”
He nodded. “I’ll remember that next time I buy cologne. Cotton candy and chocolate.”
I laughed. “Good luck with that one. FYI, chocolate scented things don’t really smell like chocolate. It’s the real stuff or nothing.”
“So if I carry a Hershey bar in my pocket, will that work?”
“No. That’s weak chocolate. Go European.”
He was quiet for a minute as we walked deeper into Spook Alley. The rides got smaller and smaller. I didn’t even know if we were allowed to ride them.
“Do heights bother you?”
            “Not really.” I looked around at the little kid rides. All the lines were empty.
“Then the Sneaking Ghost it is.”
“Sounds scary.” I replied.
He laughed.
            “Oh yeah, real scary.”
We climbed two flights of stairs and into a little ghost car. The girl checking our belts flirted with Dallas. I rolled my eyes. Was there any girl who didn’t want him?
“When are you going to come out with the Spook Alley gang again? We miss you.” She pouted a little. Unfortunately, it just made her look cute. He really could have anyone. No way he actually wanted me. This was either about Grant or chocolate.
He held up his hands in an “I don’t know” gesture.
“My evenings are a little full,” he said and put his arm around me. Some girls would’ve been ecstatic, but I was a little annoyed he used me to put her off. Shame on him to lead me on.
The car jerked a little and off we went. About two miles per hour on an elevated flat track. I shrugged off his arm.
 “My, my, you are in high demand.”
He grimaced and rubbed the back of his neck.
“Obviously that was a total lie. Most nights I go home and read a book.”
I didn’t believe that for a second.
“Right and I party every night with a different guy.” I folded my arms in front of my chest. Why was I doing this again?
He sat back and looked out over the kids running around under the track. I thought maybe I’d offended him until he turned back to me, his eyebrows creased.
 “It’s true. But I have an idea. Why don’t we hang out every night? Then I wouldn’t be lying, would I?”
            I looked over at him and he smiled. I replied without thinking.
“Okay.”
He put his arm around me again. This time I let him. The girl was nowhere in sight and so he wasn’t just using me. Plus, it felt nice. Then I immediately felt guilty. What right did I have to feel nice? Never mind that I was feeling again.
“Why are you so concerned with the little white lie?” I asked.
“I don’t like lying to people. Ever. But when she pounced on me like that I didn’t know what else to say.”
“I take it you don’t like her.”
He sighed and tugged me a little closer. My heart beat faster. I took a deep breath, hoping to still my heart. He didn’t seem to notice. A few kids screamed below us and I had to lean closer to him to hear. He had very nice lips. They weren’t cracked like a lot of boys’. He must use Chapstick or something.
“She’s nice enough. But she came with us to the casino last week and I couldn’t shake her off. She followed me around to all the tables. I’d finally found a slot machine deep in the middle of a crowd and I thought I’d lost her but just after I put a twenty into the machine the person next to me left and she sat down. She went on for thirty minutes about why we would be perfect for each other. As soon as she said the M word, I bailed. Left six bucks in the machine and didn’t look back.”
“The M word?”
“Marriage.”
I laughed. “Poor girl.”
He mocked outrage.
“Poor girl? Poor me. Well, not anymore, as my social calendar is now completely full. Thanks to an unsuspecting Savannah.”
The little ghost pulled back into the station and Dallas held out his hand to help me out. Instead of letting go, he adjusted his grip so that our fingers intertwined. His hand was smooth and his fingers swallowed mine.
Butterflies.
Holy crap.
The last time I felt butterflies was the summer before my sophomore year when Eddie kissed me on the Ferris wheel at the fair. So clichĂ©, but I remembered the butterflies because Dad had died the following week. I hadn’t felt that way since. Even now my chest ached, the pain of my dad’s death as raw as it was two years ago. I shook my head. Empty. Go back to the empty.


AUTHOR BIO:
Kimberly Loth can't decide where she wants to settle down. She's lived in Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, Utah, California, Oregon, and South Carolina. She finally decided to make the leap and leave the U.S. behind for a few years. Currently, she lives in Cairo, Egypt with her husband and two kids.

She is a high school math teacher by day (please don't hold that against her) and YA author by night. She loves romantic movies, chocolate, roses, and crazy adventures. Kissed is her first novel.





COVER REVEAL~ Illuminate (The Light Key Trilogy #3) by Tracy Clark


Release Date: 10/06/15
Entangled Teen
320 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
Can one girl be the light in a world spiraling toward darkness?

Haunted by the loss of her loved ones, Cora Sandoval, one of the remaining few of an extraordinary race known as Scintilla, holds the key to disentangling the biggest conspiracy in human history...and its link to the fate of the human race. As Cora follows a trail of centuries-old clues and secrets, she collides with a truth not only shocking, but dangerous. 

With enemies both known and unknown hot on her trail, Cora must locate each of the ancient clues hidden in the art, religions, and mythologies of humankind. And through it all, she must keep her heart from being torn apart by the two boys she loves most. One is Scintilla, one is Arazzi. 

 Save herself. Save the Scintilla. Save the world.

Or die trying…



Books in this series:
(covers linked to Goodreads)
 

Buy Links for Scintillate:

Buy Links for Deviate:

About the Author
Tracy Clark is a young-adult writer because she believes teens deserve to know how much they matter and that regardless of what they’re going through, they aren’t alone. In other words, she writes books for her teen self.
She grew up a “Valley Girl” in Southern California but now lives in her home state of Nevada, in a small town at the base of the Sierra Foothills. Her two children teach her the art of distraction and are a continuous source of great dialogue. She’s an unapologetic dog person who is currently owned by a cat.
Tracy was the recipient of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Work in Progress Grant. A two-time participant in the prestigious Nevada SCBWI Mentor Program where she was lucky enough to be mentored by bestselling author, Ellen Hopkins, who taught her so much about the art of writing and cured her of her ellipsis addiction.
Her debut novel was inspired by her enchantment with metaphysics as a teen, seeing it as the real magic in life. Tracy is a part-time college student, a private pilot, and an irredeemable dreamer.

Author Links:
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Cover Reveal Organized by: