Tuesday, November 25, 2014

GUEST POST + Giveaway: Flury: Journey of the Snowman (Claus #3) by Tony Bertauski

Flury banner

This is my stop during the blog tour for Flury: Journey of the Snowman by Tony Bertauski. This blog tour is organized by Lola's Blog Tours. The blog tour runs from 14 till 27 November, you can view the complete tour schedule here.
So far this series contains 3 books, all books can be read as standalones.

FluryFlury: Journey of the Snowman (Claus #3)
by Tony Bertauski

Genre: Science Fiction
Age category: Young Adult
Release Date: November 15, 2014

Blurb:
Life hasn’t been kind to Oliver Toye.

As if juvenile diabetes isn’t enough, he’s forced to live with his tyrannical grandmother in a snow-bound house. He spends his days doing chores and the nights listening to the forest rumble.
But when he discovers the first leather-bound journal, the family secrets begin to surface. The mystery of his great-grandfather’s voyage to the North Pole is revealed. That’s when the snowman appears.
Flury.

Magical and mysterious, the snowman will save Oliver more than once. But when the time comes for Oliver to discover the truth, will he have the courage? When he Flury needs him, will he have the strength? When believing isn’t enough, will he save the snowman from melting away?

Because sometimes even magic needs a little help.


You can find Flury on Goodreads

You can buy Flury here:
- Amazon


Earlier books in this series:
Claus - Legend of the Fat ManClaus: Legend of the Fat Man (Claus #1)
by Tony Bertauski

Genre: Science Fiction
Age category: Young Adult
Release Date: June 19, 2012

Blurb:
Santa is not just about the presents. See something deeper in this mythological figure. A story that’s meaningful. Find a cast of gritty, compassionate and courageous characters that make the journey to mythological fame despite their shortcomings and frailties. Pull away the veil of magic, reveal the difficulties of love and loss and struggle with life.

Because Santa Claus is much more than presents.

In the early 1800s, Nicholas, Jessica and Jon Santa attempt the first human trek to the North Pole and stumble upon an ancient race of people left over from the Ice Age. They are short, fat and hairy. They slide across the ice on scaly soles and carve their homes in the ice that floats on the Arctic Ocean. The elven are adapted to life in the extreme cold. They are as wise as they are ancient.

Their scientific advancements have yielded great inventions -- time-stopping devices and gravitational spheres that build living snowmen and genetically-modified reindeer that leap great distances. They’ve even unlocked the secrets to aging. For 40,000 years, they have lived in peace.

Until now.

An elven known as The Cold One has divided his people. He’s tired of their seclusion and wants to conquer the world. Only one elven stands between The Cold
One and total chaos. He’s white-bearded and red-coated. The Santa family will help him stop The Cold One. They will come to the aid of a legendary elven
known as… Claus.


You can find Claus on Goodreads

You can buy Claus here:
- Amazon
- Kobo


JackJack: The Tale of Frost (Claus #2)
by Tony Bertauski

Genre: Science Fiction
Age category: Young Adult
Release Date: October 17, 2013

Blurb:
Sura is sixteen years old when she meets Mr. Frost. He’s very short and very fat and he likes his room very, very cold. Some might say inhumanly cold. His first name isn’t Jack, she’s told. And that’s all she needed to know.

Mr. Frost’s love for Christmas is over-the-top and slightly psychotic. And why not? He’s made billions of dollars off the holiday he invented. Or so he claims. Rumor is he’s an elven, but that’s silly. Elven aren’t real. And if they were, they wouldn’t live in South Carolina. They wouldn’t hide in a tower and go to the basement to make…things.

Nonetheless, Sura will work for this odd little recluse. Frost Plantation is where she’ll meet the love of her life. It’s where she’ll finally feel like she belongs somewhere. And it’s where she’ll meet someone fatter, balder and stranger than Mr. Frost. It’s where she’ll meet Jack.

Jack hates Christmas.


You can find Jack on Goodreads

You can buy Jack here:
- Amazon
- Kobo


Things I Love to Hear My Readers Say
I cried. That's a good one.

Recently, I received a heartfelt email from a reader that said my stories brought her relief in an otherwise hard and dark life (you can read my reaction to it here.) It was a lovely message, and yet heartbreaking. I don't know her or her life, but the fact that my stories connected with her in a meaningful way is the reason I write.

I started writing fiction because I enjoyed the experience. For me, it's similar to reading a good book, except when I'm the writer of the story instead of the reader, it's much more intimate. The characters come to life in a much more personable way. I strive for stories that are entertaining, but also have some deeper meaning, something that will cause the reader to think of things (their life, the world around them) a little differently. And the emotional connection, yes. 

I recently worked an event in Charleston, SC called YAllfest. It's a book festival that includes most of today's most famous YA authors (James Dashner, Veronica Roth, etc). The lines were long and anxious, filling the sidewalks for hours. I watched reader after reader come up to Michelle Hodkin and Sarah Dessen with their books clutched to their chests, sometimes their hands shaking, each one in awe of the author that takes them on unforgettable journeys. And all the authors get it, too. They know how special their stories are to these readers. They take the time to recognize their impact on their readers. 

My wife asked me if I wanted that to be me one day. I said no, at first. I didn't want that kind of fame. But I did want to share my stories with people on that level. So I guess yes, because writing stories, in my experience, in a vacuum is lonely. The element of sharing them, to put them out there to be loved, to be hated, to be criticized and hailed is as much as part of the experience as sitting at the computer and letting the story unfold.

And if someone says they cried, I say hooray. 
 


Tony 2About the Author:
During the day, I'm a horticulturist. While I've spent much of my career designing landscapes or diagnosing dying plants, I've always been a storyteller. My writing career began with magazine columns, landscape design textbooks, and a gardening column at the Post and Courier (Charleston, SC). However, I've always fancied fiction.

My grandpa never graduated high school. He retired from a steel mill in the mid-70s. He was uneducated, but he was a voracious reader. I remember going through his bookshelves of paperback sci-fi novels, smelling musty old paper, pulling Piers Anthony and Isaac Asimov off shelf and promising to bring them back. I was fascinated by robots that could think and act like people. What happened when they died?

I'm a cynical reader. I demand the writer sweep me into his/her story and carry me to the end. I'd rather sail a boat than climb a mountain. That's the sort of stuff I want to write, not the assigned reading we got in school. I want to create stories that kept you up late.

Having a story unfold inside your head is an experience different than reading. You connect with characters in a deeper, more meaningful way. You feel them, empathize with them, cheer for them and even mourn. The challenge is to get the reader to experience the same thing, even if it's only a fraction of what the writer feels. Not so easy.

tonyIn 2008, I won the South Carolina Fiction Open with Four Letter Words, a short story inspired by my grandfather and Alzheimer's Disease. My first step as a novelist began when I developed a story to encourage my young son to read. This story became The Socket Greeny Saga. Socket tapped into my lifetime fascination with consciousness and identity, but this character does it from a young adult's struggle with his place in the world.

After Socket, I thought I was done with fiction. But then the ideas kept coming, and I kept writing. Most of my work investigates the human condition and the meaning of life, but not in ordinary fashion. About half of my work is Young Adult (Socket Greeny, Claus, Foreverland) because it speaks to that age of indecision and the struggle with identity. But I like to venture into adult fiction (Halfskin, Drayton) so I can cuss. Either way, I like to be entertaining.

And I'm a big fan of plot twists.

You can find and contact Tony here:
- Blog


There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of Flury. One winner wins e-copies of all 3 books in the Claus series so far: Claus, Jack and Flury. Each individual blogger also can hold a giveaway for an e-copy of the winner’s choice from Tony Bertauski’s books.

For a chance to win enter the rafflecopter below:
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BOOK BLITZ [Excerpt + Giveaway] Anomaly (Schrodinger's Consortium #1) by Tonya Kuper


Release Date: 11/25/14
Entangled Teen

Summary from Goodreads:
Reality is only an illusion.
Except for those who can control it…

Worst. Birthday. Ever.
My first boyfriend dumped me – happy birthday, Josie!- my dad is who knows where, I have some weird virus that makes me want to hurl, and now my ex is licking another girl’s tonsils. Oh, and I’m officially the same age as my brother was when he died. Yeah, today is about as fun-filled as the swamps of Dagobah. But then weird things start happening…


Like I make something materialize just by thinking about it.
When hot badass Reid Wentworth shows up on a motorcycle, everything changes. Like, everything. Who I am. My family. What really happened to my brother. Existence. I am Oculi, and I have the ability to change reality with my thoughts. Now Reid, in all his hotness, is charged with guiding and protecting me as I begin learning how to bend reality. And he’s the only thing standing between me and the secret organization that wants me dead…


Buy Links:
AmazonBarnes & NobleKobo BooksThe Book DepositoryiBooks




Another bell rang. I spun wildly, searching for the source, and my foot slipped out from under me. My left foot joined my right, sliding down a rocky surface.
            A scream tore past my lips.
My brain fought to figure out what was happening as my hands gripped for something—anything—because I was falling. My head swiveled.
            I couldn’t comprehend the giant, gaping crack I’d fallen into. A fissure in the ground at least eight feet wide. My fingers sunk into the cracked concrete, barely holding on. Sliding.
            Then I looked down.
            No end in sight. An abyss.
            Everything around me blurred, and all I could see was black. And in that blackness was the one thing I was terrified of: death. My stomach pitched and my chest heaved, but no air moved in or out of my lungs. I was suffocating.
            Ripping my eyes away from the darkness, I focused on my hands, still grasping at the gravely terrain crumbling beneath them. My right foot slipped, and my fingers dug deeper into the ground. It was a mixture of rock, and mud, and I didn’t know what. It felt like glass shards were being shoved under my fingernails.
I dug in with my toes, using the muscles in my legs to slow my descent. I slid to a halt, but the rocks and substrate continued to crumble beneath me. I searched blindly for a sturdy foothold. My foot found a rocky lip, but as soon as I thought it was safe, it gave way. My right silver flip-flop plummeted into the darkness so eager to swallow me.
Attempting to force my gaze upward, I focused on the contrast of the dark surrounding me and the bright light above, the line where they met. Technically, I’d die in broad daylight.
“Think, Josie.” The voice was strong, demanding. It took a second for it to register. “Josie, look at me.”
Reid. Reid was here. That’s where I was. I was at Reid’s place. I’d come here to train. I’m an Oculi. It all became clear as I broke free from the terror.
I wrenched my head toward his voice, my gaze meeting his. He crouched above me at the surface, his eyes my lifeline because he didn’t offer a hand. He wasn’t about to coddle me. That wasn’t his style. He said, “Breathe. Think.”
Dragging in an uneven breath, looking into his clear eyes, something clicked in the far reaches of my mind.
Stairs.
I Pushed with no effort. No headache, no nausea. I blinked, and stairs carved themselves into the side of the chasm, jutted out as if they’d always been there. With great hesitancy, I climbed the stairs on all fours, close to the wall. I could see the surface, right within my reach.
Whoosh.
The stairs were gone.
I felt myself tumbling, falling. Flailing along the wall of the abyss with nothing to stop my descent.
“React, Josie!”
Think.
I focused on the surface, on the light growing dimmer the farther I skidded. Earth. Ground beneath my feet. I Pushed. And Pushed.
Pain. Nausea. Dizziness.
Thunder sounded below, like the darkness of the chasm was rising up to swallow me whole. Something hit my feet so hard that it tossed me in the air.
Up. Up. Into the light.
My thoughts didn’t coalesce clearly, but I felt myself rising. The pain behind my eyes made my vision waver. I shot to the warehouse floor. Reid reached for me as I collapsed.
My lungs rebelled, and tears burned trails down my cheeks. Dirt covered my hands and caked beneath my fingertips. One fingernail had broken to the quick. It bled sullenly. I wasn’t about to look weak in front of him, though, so I held out my arm to ward off his offer of help. I stood tall on trembling legs.
Reid closed the gap between us, his arms extended like he would embrace me. “Josie—”
The light streaming through the warehouse windows dimmed and flickered. Darkness edged my periphery. I balled my trembling fist and slammed my knuckles into his cheek. White heat shot through my hand before everything went black.


About the Author
Tonya Kuper's debut, ANOMALY, the first in the Schrodinger's Consortium young adult scifi trilogy, releases November 2014 by Entangled Teen. She lives in Omaha, NE with her two rad boys and husband, is a music junkie, and a chocolate addict. Star Wars & Sherlock fan.

Author Links:
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GIVEAWAY:
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Book Blitz Organized by:

Monday, November 24, 2014

RELEASE DAY BLITZ: (Un) Bidden by Melissa Haag


(Un) Bidden by Melissa Haag
Release Day Blitz
November 24, 2014


I left home because I didn’t want to end up in a cage like a lab rat. Hitching rides, begging for cash, and sleeping on the ground got old fast. That was the only reason I braved an overgrown path to a group of buildings. I’d hoped to find a bed and a decent night’s sleep. However, what I found was a place overrun by werewolves.

While on the run, Charlene finds herself surrounded by werewolves, creatures she can’t control with her mind like she can humans. Their existence has her believing she’s found a safe place to stay, a place where secrets are okay. However, she soon discovers she’s anything but safe. Charlene must learn how to use her abilities to influence the strange new species because if she can’t, the next bite she suffers might just kill her.

Read how the cycle begins, and have no doubt. Charlene’s past will shape the future of the Judgements.

BUY IT ON AMAZON: http://bit.ly/UnBiddenAM

Have you read the first book, Hope(less), in the series? It’s currently FREE!


Gabby's brain is like a human fish finder. It comes in handy when she wants to avoid people. Mostly men. They seem to like her a bit too much. It's lonely being different, but she's adapted to it. Really. She just wishes she knew why she is different, though.

In her search for answers, she discovers a hidden community of werewolves. She immerses herself in their culture, learning about their world until she meets Clay. He's unkempt, prone to mood swings, intense without saying a word, and he thinks Gabby is his.

It's going to take every trick she knows to convince Clay to go away, and every bit of willpower not to fall for him when she discovers the man beneath the rough exterior.

Delve into a riveting world of werewolves and young women with unexplained abilities, in Hope(less).

BUY IT AT:
 Smashwords: http://bit.ly/HopelessSW


~*~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~*~

Melissa Haag currently resides in Wisconsin with her husband and three children. Touch is her first published novel. She is currently working on book five of a separate six book series. To learn more about her upcoming projects, visit her at: http://melissahaag.com , and you can connect with her on: https://twitter.com/imagine2live  & https://www.facebook.com/author.MelissaHaag