Friday, April 3, 2015

Interview with Melinda Michaels, Author of Golden + Trailer & Giveaway

Interview with Melinda Michaels

Tell us about the main characters in Golden. Who are Hanna and William?
Hanna and William are descendants of the people who inspired the first fairytales. Hanna is a direct descendent of Goldilocks and William, the Big Bad Wolf. In the Golden series, descendants tend to repeat the fairytale of their heritage every few generations, and while usually these descendants don’t cross paths with others from different stories, Hanna and William have been connected for almost ten years, though they have never met due to an event that took place prior to the book’s beginning.

You’re bio states this is book one in a series. How many books do you have planned for this series? When can we expect the next book?
There will be five all together, though they are a standalone series. The second book, Roses, follows a secondary character in Golden and each future main character will be introduced in the previous novel. Roses is already completed, so I’m currently working on the third, Glass.

What inspired this series?
I think it’s a safe assumption that most kids grew up watching Disney movies and I was no different. To find a prince charming is so deeply ingrained into our culture that I think it sometimes affecting our outlook of real relationships, which are always more complex than happily ever after. I wanted to write a version of the classic ‘Fairytale’ that was more realistic, that demonstrated real people with real insecurities and worries and sacrifices.

You list the genre as YA magical realism. This is a new genre to many of my readers. Can you explain a bit about it?
I guess I would compare it to a very light fantasy. In fantasy, supernatural elements are based on a set of rules that work outside of reality. In magical realism, the supernatural is accepted, hesitantly, in a rational world. I wrote Golden with the idea that magic did exist at one point in time and truthfully, when people believed in witches and fairies, they were real in a sense because they held a presence in people’s lives. In Golden, Hanna herself is a descendent of that magical world that once existed and is a ‘left over’ product of it.

What is your favorite fairy tale?
The Twelve Dancing Princesses. I think it’s because of the picture Arthur Rackham created. I love it.

Which fairy tales do you enjoy more—Disney or Brothers Grimm/Hans Christian Anderson versions?
I always found Hans Christian Anderson versions particularly moving for some reason. I’ve cried reading his stories.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, cost being no object, where would you go?
I’d like to go to the Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany. And Machu Pichu… And Stockholm… And Yellowstone National Park… And Manchester, U.K. I have a bit of a list.

If you could visit any fictional place, where would you go?
I would most like to visit the land of Faerie on the other side of the Wall in Stardust.

If you could have dinner with any fictional character, who would you entertain? What would you serve?
That’s a tough one. If I could only choose one though, it would have to be Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud from Ray Bradbury’s The Halloween Tree. I’d serve Pumpkin Pie and black tea to appease the kid in me, but I don’t think he’d find the humor in my choice of dish.

When did you begin writing?
I began writing when I was about fourteen years old as a means to cope with the difficulties of adolescence. It was a real confidence booster in a way and became a true love of mine.

Do you have any advice for new writers just entering these shark infested waters?
Writing is a job, like any other. If you have a passion for it, a real passion that survives all the times you give up, all the rejections and you still come back to it, you will succeed. But success is different to everyone just like there are different writers. If fame or fortune is your ultimate goal, good luck to you, but if it was that easy everyone would do it. Every writer hopes for those things, but it isn’t the reason they write. There’s only one right reason to write. Hone you skill, nurture your craft, be honest with yourself and persevere.
Then give up.
Then get back to work.

Is there anything else you’d like your readers to know about you or your novel?
I just hope they enjoy it!

Where can readers find you online? 


Melinda Michaels

YA Magical Realism
March 24, 2015

Amazon | Goodreads

High school senior Hanna Loch just suffered a blackout in front of her entire homeroom class. She hasn’t had one in over ten years, and she’s terrified—the last time she blacked out, she woke up with no memory of her life before. To make matters worse, no one can explain why it happens. For Hanna, bad things tend to come in threes.
And that doesn’t even begin to cover it . . .

When she learns she could be a descendant of someone who lived once upon a time, Hanna must put her trust in William Vann, a descendant of one of the most hated villains ever known. Their histories are intertwined in more ways than she expected, and he has answers about her past, answers even her family won’t share.

But is it safe to put her trust in someone who appears to be danger reincarnate, while trying to escape the darkness that tried to kill her ten years ago?

A loose fairytale retelling, GOLDEN is a story that’s just right, weaving together lost secrets, vengeful enemies, and what happens when fiction becomes reality.

About the Author

Melinda Michaels is the author of Golden and currently lives in Milford, Pennsylvania. A self-proclaimed historian with a rare sense of humor, Melinda finds an immense amount of joy in knowing useless facts, exploring historical places and drinking copious amounts of coffee. When she’s not writing she can be found researching obscured time periods for her own amusement or refurbishing old furniture.

Melinda loves Philadelphia and visits often to enjoy the city with her husband Andrew. Together they have three rambunctious pets. Archie the Beagle, Winston the Boston Terrier and Beatrice the cat.

Golden is the first in a Young Adult magic realism series.

Find Melinda Michaels on facebook, twitter, or her website.

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Thursday, April 2, 2015

Book Review: The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy by Sam Maggs

The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy
A Handbook for Girl Geeks

Sam Maggs

May 12, 2015
Quirk Books


Fanfic, cosplay, cons, books, memes, podcasts, vlogs, OTPs and RPGs and MMOs and more—it’s never been a better time to be a girl geek. The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy is the ultimate handbook for ladies living the nerdy life, a fun and feminist take on the often male-dominated world of geekdom. With delightful illustrations and an unabashed love for all the in(ternet)s and outs of geek culture, this book is packed with tips, playthroughs, and cheat codes for everything from starting an online fan community to planning a convention visit to supporting fellow female geeks in the wild.

My Review: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Are you a fangirl? I am. I've been a fangirl of lots of different fandoms for years. If you are a new fangirl or even if you've been around the block a few times, this book is a great reference guide. Want to know where to meet other local fans? There's a section for that. Not sure where you fall in the fandoms- they're all explained.

Nervous about attending your first con? Or maybe you're a seasoned pro looking for some tips. You'll find lots of convention tips and ideas, including costumes. There's also a list of kickass female characters to dress as if you need some ideas. Confused by terms? They're here, including a nifty glossary.

I really loved the party ideas and the interviews with some influential fangirls. I found this guide rather empowering. Women can be trivialized and objectified in the fandom communities. There was some good advice for how to deal with online trolls and haters. If you are a fangirl or just fan-curious, I recommend picking up The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy.

Are you a fangirl? Check out this great Buzzfeed post!

Spring into Cash Giveaway

It's that wonderful time of year again! Temperatures are rising, flowers and in bloom, and summer is just around the corner. Wouldn't it be nice to have an extra $250 to enjoy the season?

Easter Money 2015

An Amazing Group of Authors & Bloggers have joined with me to bring you 1 fabulous prize!! Short on cash? Here is your chance to spring into $250 in Paypal Cash. 1 lucky winner will receive $250 in Paypal Cash!

Sponsor List 

Giveaway Details $250 Paypal Cash Ends 4/15/15 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use money sent via Paypal. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author, bloggers and publishers on the sponsor list. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.   

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The Soul Thief by Majanka Verstraete - Giveaway & Mini-Review

The Soul Thief
The Angel of Death Series # 1

Majanka Verstraete

Genre- YA Paranormal
Published By- Booktrope Publishing
Published On- November 11, 2014

When sixteen-year-old Riley is injured in a car crash and sees a girl stealing a boy’s soul, she’s convinced she’s hallucinating. But when she sees the same girl at the hospital later, she knows she wasn’t dreaming. That’s when Riley learns her secret heritage and who she really is: a halfling Angel of Death.

Riley must come to terms with her new reality and supernatural abilities, but before she can do this, girls her age start dying in mysterious circumstances. It’s up to Riley to figure out why, what the innocent victims have in common, and what she can do to stop them.


About the Author-
Majanka Verstraete begged her Mom to teach her how to read while she was still in kindergarten. By the time she finished fifth grade, she had read through the entire children’s section of her hometown library.

She wrote her first story when she was seven years old, and hasn’t stopped writing since. With an imagination that never sleeps, and hundreds of possible book characters screaming for her attention, writing is more than a passion for her.

She writes about all things supernatural for children of all ages. She’s tried to write contemporary novels before, but something paranormal always manages to crawl in.

Majanka is currently studying for her Master of Laws degree, and hopes one day to be able to combine her passions for law and writing. When she’s not writing, reading or studying, she likes watching “The Vampire Diaries” and “Game of Thrones,” spending time with her friends, or playing “World of Warcraft.”


So a little happy news. Last week I accepted a position with Booktrope as an editor/proofreader. That being said, I feel it is a conflict of interest to post my review of this book, which I only realized was published by Booktrope while preparing the post.

I apologize to the author, Majanka.

So, while I won't post a full review, I don't see any harm in telling you that I really enjoyed the story- especially the characters and the paranormal world the author created. The Soul Thief was a fast-paced enjoyable read :)

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Fall With Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout - Excerpt & Giveaway

We are so excited to bring you the Release Week Blitz for Jennifer L. Armentrout's, also known as J. Lynn’s, FALL WITH ME! FALL WITH ME is a New Adult Contemporary Romance and is a part of Jennifer L. Armentrout’s Wait For You Series, published by Avon Romance. We love this series and can't wait to start reading Roxy and Reece's story!

Fall With me

FWM Teaser 4

  FALL WITH ME Synopsis:

Eleven months ago, bartender and weird-shirt-wearing extraordinaire Roxy and Officer Reece Anders had a one night stand. Well, kind of. She’s been in love with him since she was fifteen, and he wishes that night they shared never happened. She’s sworn him off forever, but the past and future collide, forcing her to rely on the one man who broke her heart not once, but twice.

Her best friend since birth has been in a long-term care facility since he became a victim of a hate crime years ago, and the person who put him in there is out of prison and wanting to make amends with him and Roxy. She’s not sure she has room for forgiveness in her and when she begins to receive frightening messages and is on the receiving end of escalating violence, she thinks she knows who is to blame. The man who already destroyed one life already.

But Reece isn’t convinced. The threats are too personal, and even if Roxy doesn’t believe him, he’s not willing to let anyone hurt her. Including himself. He’s already messed up more than once when it comes to Roxy and he’s not going to let history repeat itself.


Someone—was it Melvin?—catcalled as Reece led me down the hall, and my cheeks flushed. “Okay, heman, I can walk all by my little self.”
He cast a look over his shoulder at me as he opened the office door. “I’m sure you can.”
Then he pulled me inside.
My gaze flipped to the roses—the roses!—but before I could say a word, he closed the door and my back was pressed against it, his hands planted on either side of my head and his face right in mine. Like right there, within kissing distance.
“So, I was at my father’s place in New Jersey most of the day, and you know, he lives out near the Pine Barrens, so service is shit.”
I nodded even though I really wasn’t processing what he was saying as I was too busy staring at his mouth. Those lips, fuller on the bottom, drove me to distraction.
“I pull out of his driveway and I have all these messages from Dennis,” he continued, and I finally caught on to what he was talking about. “I honestly thought he was messing with me at first.”
I cringed. “He . . . um, he wasn’t.”
He shot me a bland look. “That much I figured out.” His hands slid on the door, stopping just shy of touching my shoulders. “What did he do to you?”
“What?” I blinked.
“What did that bastard do to make you throw a book through his windshield?”
Oh. Oh. My heart was now wiggling along with my stomach. “He really didn’t do anything. I just lost my cool. He wanted to talk to me, and I didn’t want to talk to him.”
“You don’t have to talk to him.”
“That’s what Dennis said, but I shouldn’t have damaged his car.”
A muscle flexed along his right jaw. “That’s true.” He shook his head. “Damn, Roxy, can’t say I’m surprised.”
My brows flew up. “You’re not?”
He laughed under his breath. “Babe, you’ve always had a hell of a temper on you.”
Ah, that was kind of true. “Is that a good thing or a bad thing?”
Reece cocked his head to the side. “A sexy thing, but vandalism and destruction of property doesn’t look good on you, sweets.”
“No. It doesn’t match my manicure.” I raised my hands, flashing him the blue nails.
He laughed again and then he sobered up, just like that. Cop Face was on, and yeah . . . the low coiling in my stomach told me I found Cop Face arousing. “You’re lucky. He could’ve pressed charges, and this conversation would be going in a whole different direction.”
My own half smile slipped off my face. “I know. It’s . . . I was just with Charlie, and he’s . . .” Unable to continue, I forced a casual shrug I didn’t feel. “What are you going to do with me?”
His lips parted as his chest rose with a deep breath, then his gaze dropped to my mouth, and his expression tightened. He looked . . . he looked hungry. “I have lots of ideas.”

Author PhotoAbout Jennifer L. Armentrout: # 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV.

She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.  

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


Monday, March 30, 2015

A Time Apart by Rebecca Norinne Caudill - Guest Post, Excerpt & Giveaway

I'm pleased to welcome Rebecca Norinne Caudill to the blog! She was kind enough to join us with a post about her favorite scene in A Time Apart: Book One of the Macauley Series.

My Favorite Scene

A number of people have asked me what my favorite scene in A Time Apart: Book One of the Macauley Series was to write, and while I don’t want to give too many specifics away because it’s quite crucial to the plot, I can say with 100% certainty that my scene is one of the last ones of the book.

When I initially envisioned the full story I knew how I wanted the relationship between William and Olivia to play out. They were always going to get together. Midway through the book we see her making the decision to be with him, which was a joy to write, but I knew it wasn’t The Scene. I felt that it was important for the story that when Olivia truly gives herself over to William that there be a romantic element to ground it. Yes, this book is firmly set in the world of the paranormal, but above all, it’s about the love these two people share for one another.

Immediately I had conceived how it would go, in fact, I knew what I wanted to happen in that scene well before I had ever written the scene where William and Olivia first meet. When the time came to write it, I was a bit worried about going overboard or being able to artfully weave everything that I had initially envisioned in a satisfying way, but when done I felt immensely proud of what I had written. It’s one of the few scenes in the entirety of the book that didn’t really change at all during re-writes editing.

I hope the readers of your blog enjoy it should they read A Time Apart: Book One of the Macauley Series.  

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm dying to read that scene now! Thanks, Rebecca 

A Time Apart
Book One of the Macauley Series

Rebecca Norinne Caudill

Paranormal Romance- Vampire
February 8, 2015

A love story that traverses the confines of time, life, and death, uniting two passionate souls from different worlds and ages …

Olivia Donnelly has spent her whole life obsessing about how she will die. When tragedy strikes, reality comes crashing down and she’s forced to confront her fears head on. Hoping that a move across the globe will help her to cope with a devastating loss, she arrives in Ireland a broken down shell of a woman looking for a second chance at life.

Almost immediately Olivia is drawn to places she’s never been, and to a man that she’s never met. When she crosses paths with the mysterious and frustratingly private William Macauley, her life is thrown into turmoil unlike any she has ever known. The two couldn’t be more different – she’s human, he’s a vampire – but Olivia can’t get him out of her mind. Having acknowledged her overwhelming desire for William, now she must come to terms with how her feelings for him will greatly alter her future.

Olivia’s understanding of life – and death – take on new meaning as she examines the truth of the person she once was, the woman she was born to be, and how William is the key to her everlasting happiness.

Excerpt from Chapter 1

“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome aboard Flight 716 with service from San Francisco to Dublin. We ask that you please fasten your seat belts and secure all baggage beneath the seat in front of you or in the overhead compartments. At this time, please turn all personal electronic devices to airplane mode so that they cannot transmit a signal. As you know, smoking is prohibited for the duration of our journey to Dublin, and that includes in the lavatories. Thank you for choosing Aer Lingus. Enjoy your flight.”

It was usually at this point in any flight where Olivia’s real panic kicked in. Shortly – terrifyingly – the plane would be airborne with nothing but land and sea below. While she knew statistically that airplanes were safer than cars, she’d never known anyone – let alone two anyones – who had been killed, their bodies never recovered, from a freak accident on the freeway. Not to say that it didn’t happen everyday; she just didn’t know anyone that it had happened to.

To distract her mind, she listened to the crew outline the plane’s safety procedures and then the Captain’s welcome, including the weather forecast for Dublin – rainy and brisk, how shocking. Sipping the champagne the flight attendant had offered her when she boarded, Olivia felt the combination of the Valium and the alcohol take over her body, but not quite enough that she gave up the death grip she had on the arm rests. As she felt the tell tale tingle of the Valium working its magic, she thought – not for the first time – that maybe someday a plane crash wouldn’t be the worst thing to happen to her. Maybe someday she’d just never wake up from the self-induced drug and alcohol fueled nothingness she needed just to fly.
Who am I kidding?

Sadly, more and more frequently it wasn’t just plane rides that had her mixing booze and pills. Most days she wrapped herself in a hazy blur of alcohol like a security blanket, protecting her in a cocoon of mental fuzziness.

Olivia felt her pulse beginning to race and her breathing accelerate, and she made a conscious effort not to panic, not to look over at Judgy lest the woman start advocating for professional psychiatric help. It wouldn’t have been the first time some well-meaning motherly type had tried to get Olivia into therapy. She stole a quick glance in Judgy’s direction only to find that she was already engrossed in her novel, Olivia’s neurosis and emotional paralysis the least of her concerns.

Not too long after she had fought back the near panic attack, the whirring of the engines lulled Olivia into a stupor that soon resulted in a fitful sleep. For the next ten hours she didn’t exactly fall into a deep slumber, but she wasn’t fully awake either. Her mind seemed to float between a dreaming and wakeful state, and she felt strangely separated from her body. She’d see snippets of things in her head but wasn’t sure if the images were of events or instances that she was remembering, things she was imagining, or scenarios she was concocting to be used in her novel.
And then Olivia saw, quite clearly, the face of a man she had never met and yet she felt like she had known him all of her life – blue eyes, sharp and unnaturally piercing as if he could see deep into her soul. She saw a field of green that stretched far and wide, rolling hills dotted with sheep and lined with stacked stone walls. She saw herself as a child chasing a puppy larger than she was down by a river while laughing that high-pitched squeal that only a child can make as the dog raced back toward her covered in mud and dripping with water. And then that image changed as quickly as it came and she saw her mother as a young woman, happy and carefree, in love with a man who was not Gerald Donnelly.

And as she always did when in one of her fitful states of sleep, Olivia saw all the ways she could die – car accident; mugging gone horribly wrong after having put up a brave fight; her house on fire, the flames licking at her feet as she tried to run; her body weak and broken as it was ravished by cancer; or her heart slowly stopping as she lay in her bed, blind from old age and hunched with the rigors of time.

And in these dreams she was ready for it – any of it – almost welcoming the vast blackness that would follow whatever her death would be.

And then she saw that face again – the man she didn’t know but felt so deeply that she should. He whispered her name, longingly, “Olivia.”

About the Author

Rebecca Caudill read her first novel when she was just four years old and has been hooked on books ever since. When she wasn't writing her own stories, she was sneaking copies of her mom's paperbacks to read late into the night.

Fast forward several years later and Rebecca graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a B.A. in Journalism and a minor in English Lit, which gave her new insight into the written word. Following college, Rebecca embarked on a career in tech PR in the famed Silicon Valley, which eventually led to her leading Global R&D communications for a Fortune 500 company that everyone knows by name. Finally, after more than a decade of writing words ascribed to other people, in December 2014 she quit her job to pursue writing full time.

Today Rebecca lives with her husband and beautiful-but-neurotic cat in Oakland, California. When not creating fictional worlds inhabited by strong women, rakes, rogues, and dashing heroes, she is planning her next vacation, trying out new recipes, or drinking Islay scotch.

Twitter - @rebecca_caudill 

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