Heart on Fire Pre-Pub Tour: Griffin’s POV and Giveaway!

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Heart on Fire

The riveting conclusion to The Kingmaker Chronicles coming January 2018!

 CVR Heart on Fire

GODS. I’M AN IDIOT.

Without Griffin—and apparently a few meddling Gods—to push me along, I’d still be telling fortunes at the circus, lying about my past, ignoring my future, and living as far away from my tyrant mother as humanly possible.

 

True understanding thuds into place. Hope isn’t just an abstract concept; it’s me. Flesh and blood me. Griffin knew it all along. Probably everyone did. I’m an idea in human form._

 

I have the power of the Gods at my fingertips.

The only thing ever stopping me has been me.

 

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Waiting on Wednesday: The Legend of Shadow High by Shannon and Dean Hale

Monster High/Ever After High: The Legend of Shadow High

Hardcover, 336 pages
Expected publication: October 17th 2017 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
 After completely falling in love with Shannon Hale’s original Ever After High Trilogy, I was so stoked to discover that she was coming back to write another book in the same universe AND that it included characters from Monster High as well.  Unfortunately, I think I over-hyped it in my head.  It didn’t come together as well as I was expecting.
It also didn’t continue the original story!!  Aaah.  I was so hoping to get back to find out about those loose threads, but there was no hint of those here.  I also didn’t get the same Narrator/Maddie interactions that I loved.  Maybe if I had read this book first and followed it up with the original trilogy.  But as it is, I was sad that it wasn’t what I was expecting.
That said, I liked the crossover idea and getting to dig into the lore that encompasses all the realms.  The interactions between monsters and fairy tales were so much fun to read that this is definitely something that I plan to share and recommend.

Summary:

A dangerous story is bubbling and almost all the Narrators are scared to tell it. Cracks in the World of Stories are spreading, and the ominous Shadow High is gaining power. Only one young, brave Narrator, Brooke Page, is ready to tell this tale.

As the first cracks show, Frankie and Draculaura are accidentally transported to Ever After High, where they meet Raven Queen and Apple White. After the girls recover from the shock of learning that fairytales and monsters are real, they discover that the Evil Queen has escaped her mirror prison in search of the ultimate power, hidden in Shadow High. Frankie, Raven, Draculaura, Apple, and Brooke must stop the Evil Queen and save the World of Stories from the evil that lurks in Shadow High!

Manic Monday: The Tiger’s Daughter by K. Arsenault Rivera

The Tiger’s Daughter (Their Bright Ascendency #1)

Paperback, 512 pages
Expected publication: October 3rd 2017 by Tor Books
 I fell in love with the description of this book as soon as I read it.  The teaser chapters just added to the intrigue and built up my excitement!  I was lucky enough to be approved for an eArc on NetGalley and then traded for a physical copy on #booksfortrade (I prefer to read physical copies when possible).  The first half of the book really captured my attention and left me always wanting more of this story and characters.  It reads similarly to The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss in that the bulk of the story is told like a series of long flashbacks.  The difference between the two tellings being that Rothfuss had his narrator telling his own life story whereas Rivera has one of her main characters relating her life story in relation to the other main character in the form of a very, very long letter.
The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #1)
Like I said, I devoured the first half of the book.  But when I reached about page 300, I felt myself slowing down drastically.  The story was still fascinating, and the character growth was still great.  The issue I had was the wordiness and pacing.  I wanted to know more about the present story line, which was only briefly mentioned a handful of times.  I also wanted to know more about the magic, the idea of slaying gods, and why I was supposed to care about some of the side characters.
I fully expect that the next book in the series will see some of these things answered and some of the structural issues smoothed out.  I can’t wait to see what wonderful ideas this author has to share with us in the future.  Definitely an author to watch!

Summary:

Even gods can be slain….

The Hokkaran empire has conquered every land within their bold reach―but failed to notice a lurking darkness festering within the people. Now, their border walls begin to crumble, and villages fall to demons swarming out of the forests.

Away on the silver steppes, the remaining tribes of nomadic Qorin retreat and protect their own, having bartered a treaty with the empire, exchanging inheritance through the dynasties. It is up to two young warriors, raised together across borders since their prophesied birth, to save the world from the encroaching demons.

This is the story of an infamous Qorin warrior, Barsalayaa Shefali, a spoiled divine warrior empress, O-Shizuka, and a power that can reach through time and space to save a land from a truly insidious evil.

#OTSPsecretsister August and September!

I decided to join a fun little project through Twitter called The Secret Sister Project, which runs for a six month period (this one is August through January) and is meant to bring a little joy and cheer to strangers accepted into the program and secretly paired up.  You can check out more details here.  It’s been so much fun to plan little care and gift packages and writing back and forth on real paper, so I decided to share how awesome my Secret Sister is this round!  I’d share the packages I’ve put together, but then my secret sis would totally figure out it was me 🙂

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For the first month, which was August, my secret sister put together some great little fun things with no theme.  Gel pens, positive stickers, Legacies signed by Rosemary Edghill, and the Valerian soundtrack!!  Not to mention that steampunk octopus art notecard created by Jessica Douglas 🙂  On point and amazing!  We have so much in common it turns out and I’m loving our new friendship.

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So for this month, I received a wonderfully themed box: Classic Redux.  Another glorious art piece from Jessica Douglas, goldfish (rainbow), Monster High stickers and a mini (children of classic monsters), Prince of Egypt (musical retelling of Moses), and Indexing by Seanan McGuire, who I’m so excited to meet at the end of next week!!  And the book is a fairy tale retelling in an urban setting as a police procedural.  Loved it (expect my review very soon)!

I’m so impressed with my sister’s attention to details and love exchanging letters in between packages.  We have so much to talk about that it’s a great well to relieve stress and spread a little bit of fun and fandom.  I can’t help but want to do little things for my awesome sister, so I’ve sent a few signed bookplates her direction and will probably continue to do fun things like that for the rest of this session.  Love this program so much!!

Fangirl Friday: Recent Contest Winnings

About a month ago, I won several Twitter/blog/random giveaways, and they all came in by a week or so ago.  I had meant to get this post together to say thank you to all the people who hosted these giveaways!  But alas, I got busy and then fell ill.  If you read all the way to the bottom middle of my Mask of Shadows review, then you’ll have seen the fun package I received from Sourcebooks Fire as a random winner during their promotional prerelease activities.  (Quick note: some of these happened awhile ago and I don’t remember all the details.  Mostly I wanted to share my thanks and gratitude with the people/author/publishers who hosted the giveaways!)

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August 2017 Releases to Read

Here’s a roundup of new releases that I haven’t had a chance to dig into yet.  August wasn’t quite as crazy as July, but it did disappear just as quickly!  So many good books, so little time 🙂

Ready to Read-Look for My Review Later:

The Epic Crush of Genie LoEx Libris: Stories of Librarians, Libraries, and LoreSwarm and SteelAn Alchemy of Masques and Mirrors

Books I Plan to Read as Time Allows:

Venturess (Mechanica, #2)Shimmer and Burn (Shimmer and Burn, #1)Call of Fire (Blood of Earth, #2)Beast & Crown (Beast & Crown #1)The Book of EstherThornhill

Did I miss one of your most anticipateds for August?  Let me know in the comments!

Throwback Thursday: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

Shadow and Bone (Shadow and Bone, #1)

Hardcover, 358 pages
Published June 5th 2012 by Henry Holt and Company
 To be completely honest, Leigh Bardugo wasn’t on my radar until after the release of Six of Crows when I attended ALA for the first time through work.  I had heard really great things about it and that the sequel would be releasing soon, so I bought a used copy of Shadow and Bone to get signed and made up bookplates as well.  Just in case I fell in love with her writing 🙂
After meeting her briefly in the signing line and seeing her have lots of fun up on stage with Marissa Meyer, who I did love, I was convinced I would love Leigh’s books as well.  Unfortunately, I still didn’t get around to making time to read any of them until last week.  When I knew I was planning to meet her on tour tomorrow!  (I think it might have been that the original cover doesn’t appeal to me very much.)
The Gathering Dark (The Grisha, #1)
When I finally did start reading the first Grisha book, I was not at all surprised to find that I did like the story.  A lot!  I was compulsively reading it whenever possible and finished it quickly.  There are a lot of reviews out there that break the book down and talk about worldbuilding and characterization (both are great).  And plenty of fans that will tell you how amazing the author is (it’s true).  Plus several that will mention that the story isn’t new (because it’s not).  However, the only opinion that matters is how this story makes you feel.  That’s what reading is all about, right?
I liked this story a lot.  The characters were fun and the world was interesting (if a little confusing on some points).  But it made me remember why I like reading.  And that’s pretty awesome 🙂  So I definitely plan to finish this first trilogy and dive into Six of Crows with high expectations.  And hopefully, Leigh stills has some stories to tell in this world!
Shadow and Bone (Shadow and Bone, #1)

Summary:

Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.

#BookHaul after a Holiday Weekend

book haul box

So, normally I don’t go crazy and order a million things that all show up on the same day, but since the mail has been a little slow, September is full of amazing new releases, September is also full of art show prep and a Leigh Bardugo event, and I’d traded for several books, plus you throw in a holiday.  Can you see where this is going?  All these things combined meant that yesterday I came home to a tower of boxes that almost reached my hips (and I’m not short).  I loved every second of opening each one and gazing at all the beautiful new books that probably won’t fit on my shelves at this time 🙂

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#TheReadingQuest Update the First

Here’s my first update for this magical quest so many people are participating in!  In case you want to see my original, here’s a link.  The quest is taking place between Sunday 13th August to Sunday 10th September, 2017, so we’re about half way through.  Honestly, I was hoping to have more tasks accomplished by now, but I have enough to do a quick update 🙂

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