Friday, December 29, 2017

📚 2018 Reading Challenges ~ What am I reading in 2018?


Hello fellow book lovers!

It has been two years since I've participated in any reading challenges. I am breaking that streak for 2018!

I have noticed that in the past year, my blog is lacking in reviews. I began this blog with the hope of putting my reviews out there for fellow book-lovers, and while I still post reviews, I find myself strapped for time (or just lazy, let's be real) and at the point where I would rather post for a blog tour or spotlight a book with a giveaway. These things will not be going away, but for 2018 I plan to really get back into the reviewing groove. Instead of just one review  month, I will post at least two a week. The following challenges are to help me with my blogging goals for the new year. :)

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2018 Blogger Shame Challenge
SIGN-UP HERE

This challenge is meant to help you get through some past-due review copies that've been neglected. Books must be at least 4 months past due. 

Past-due review books I plan to review for 2018:

01.) Grit by Gillian FrenchREAD MY REVIEW
02.) The Secret History of Us by Kessi Kirby
03.) The Art of Starving by Sam J. Miller
04.) Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy
05.) Such a Good Girl by Amanda K. Morgan
06.) Bombshell by Rowan Maness
07.) The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas
08.) Twisted by Hannah Jayne
09.) The Disappearances by Emily Bain Murphy
10.) Bad Romance by Heather Demetrios
11.) Follow Me Back by A.V. Geiger
12.) It Looks Like This by Rafi Mittlefehldt
13.) North of Happy by Adi Alsaid
14.) Trusting You & Other Lies by Nicole Williams
15.) We All Fall Down by Natalie D. Richards

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2018 Beat the Backlist Challenge
HOSTED BY NOVELKNIGHT
SIGN-UP HERE

This challenge is similar to the first, except this one is targeted toward your TBR list overall, not just review copies. I am ready to tackle some books I have been meaning to read for years! To qualify, books for this challenge must be published prior to 2018. :)

In addition to getting through your TBR pile, this challenge inserts you into a team and each time you read/review a book you finished, you get points for your team! This can lead to you or someone on your team winning a book at the end of each month. Neat, right?

TBR Pile books I plan to read for 2018:

01.) The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola YoonReview Coming
02.) Almost Perfect by Brian KatcherReview Coming
03.) Timestorm by Julie Cross
04.) Rage by Julie Anne Peters
05.) The Maze Runner by James Dashner
06.) Everneath by Brodi Ashton
07.) Throne of Glass by Sarah J. MaasReview Coming
08.) Sever by Lauren DeStefano
09.) Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers
10.) The Sweet Gum Tree by Katherine Allred
11.) Far From You by Tess Sharpe
12.) The Family by Marissa Kennerson
13.) Consent by Nancy Ohlin
14.) The Countdown by Kimberly Derting
15.) The Vast and Brutal Sea by Zoraida Cordova

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And last, but not least, is my on-going challenge of reading ONE MILLION PAGES in a lifetime. :) This has a dedicated post. Check it out below (click the banner)!


What challenges are you participating in this year?! Link me up with your post so I can check it out! Or you can just comment below and tell me about it. ^-^ Thanks so much for visiting! Happy Reading! ♥


Tuesday, December 26, 2017

{Blog Tour} BETWEEN THE BLADE AND THE HEART by Amanda Hocking—Excerpt + Giveaway

PRESENTED BY ST. MARTIN'S PRESS
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Between the Blade and the Heart
by Amanda Hocking


When the fate of the world is at stake
Loyalties will be tested

Game of Thrones meets Blade Runner in this commanding new YA fantasy inspired by Norse Mythology from New York Times bestselling author Amanda Hocking.

As one of Odin's Valkyries, Malin's greatest responsibility is to slay immortals and return them to the underworld. But when she unearths a secret that could unravel the balance of all she knows, Malin along with her best friend and her ex-girlfriend must decide where their loyalties lie. And if helping the blue-eyed boy Asher enact his revenge is worth the risk—to the world and her heart.

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Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
• Pub Date: January 2nd, 2018
Publisher: Wednesday Books/St. Martin's Press
Add the book on Goodreads!
Purchase: Amazon - B&N - TBD - IndieBound

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ONE
The air reeked of fermented fish and rotten fruit, thanks to the overflowing dumpster from the restaurant behind us. The polluted alley felt narrow and claustrophobic, sandwiched between skyscrapers.
In the city, it was never quiet or peaceful, even at three in the morning. There were more than thirty million humans and supernatural beings coexisting, living on top of each other. It was the only life I’d ever really known, but the noise of the congestion grated on me tonight.
My eyes were locked on the flickering neon lights of the gambling parlor across the street. The u in Shibuya had gone out, so the sign flashed SHIB YA at me.
The sword sheathed at my side felt heavy, and my body felt restless and electric. I couldn’t keep from fidgeting and cracked my knuckles.
“He’ll be here soon,” my mother, Marlow, assured me. She leaned back against the brick wall beside me, casually eating large jackfruit seeds from a brown paper sack. Always bring a snack on a stakeout was one of her first lessons, but I was far too nervous and excited to eat.
The thick cowl of her frayed black sweater had been pulled up like a hood, covering her cropped blond hair from the icy mist that fell on us. Her tall leather boots only went to her calf, thanks to her long legs. Her style tended to be monochromatic—black on black on black—aside from the shock of dark red lipstick.
My mother was only a few years shy of her fiftieth birthday, with almost thirty years of experience working as a Valkyrie, and she was still as strong and vital as ever. On her hip, her sword Mördare glowed a dull red through its sheath.
The sword of the Valkyries was one that appeared as if it had been broken in half—its blade only a foot long before stopping at a sharp angle. Mördare’s blade was several thousand years old, forged in fires to look like red glass that would glow when the time was nigh.
My sword was called SigrĂșn, a present on my eighteenth birthday from Marlow. It was a bit shorter than Mördare, with a thicker blade, so it appeared stubby and fat. The handle was black utilitarian, a replacement that my mom had had custom-made from an army supply store, to match her own.
The ancient blade appeared almost black, but as it grew closer to its target, it would glow a vibrant purple. For the past hour that we’d been waiting on our stakeout, SigrĂșn had been glowing dully on my hip.
The mist grew heavier, soaking my long black hair. I kept the left side of my head shaved, parting my hair over to the right, and my scalp should’ve been freezing from the cold, but I didn’t feel it. I didn’t feel anything.
It had begun—the instinct of the Valkyrie, pushing aside my humanity to become a weapon. When the Valkyrie in me took over, I was little more than a scythe for the Grim Reaper of the gods.
“He’s coming,” Marlow said behind me, but I already knew.
The world fell into hyperfocus, and I could see every droplet of rain as it splashed toward the ground. Every sound echoed through me, from the bird flapping its wings a block away, to the club door as it groaned open.
Eleazar BĂ©langer stumbled out, his heavy feet clomping in the puddles. He was chubby and short, barely over four feet tall, and he would’ve appeared to be an average middle-aged man if it wasn’t for the two knobby horns that stuck out on either side of his forehead. Graying tufts of black hair stuck out from under a bright red cap, and as he walked ahead, he had a noticeable limp favoring his right leg.
He was a Trasgu, a troublemaking goblin, and his appearance belied the strength and cunning that lurked within him. He was over three hundred years old, and today would be the day he died.
I waited in the shadows of the alley for him to cross the street. A coughing fit caused him to double over, and he braced himself against the brick wall.
I approached him quietly—this all went easier when they didn’t have time to prepare. He took off his hat to use it to wipe the snot from his nose, and when he looked up at me, his green eyes flashed with understanding.
“It’s you,” Eleazar said in a weak, craggy voice. We’d never met, and I doubt he’d ever seen me before, but he recognized me, the way they all did when their time was up.
“Eleazar BĂ©langer, you have been chosen to die,” I said, reciting my script, the words automatic and cold on my lips. “It is my duty to return you to the darkness from whence you came.”
“No, wait!” He held up his pudgy hands at me. “I have money. I can pay you. We can work this out.”
“This is not my decision to make,” I said as I pulled the sword from my sheath.
His eyes widened as he realized I couldn’t be bargained with. For a moment I thought he might just accept his fate, but they rarely did. He bowed his head and ran at me like a goat. He was stronger than he looked and caused me to stumble back a step, but he didn’t have anywhere to go.
My mother stood blocking the mouth of the alley, in case I needed her. Eleazar tried to run toward the other end, but his leg slowed him, and I easily overtook him. Using the handle of my sword, I cracked him on the back of the skull, and he fell to the ground on his knees.
SigrĂșn glowed brightly, with light shining out from it and causing the air to glow purple around us. Eleazar mumbled a prayer to the Vanir gods. I held the sword with both hands, and I struck it across his neck, decapitating him.
And then, finally, the electricity that had filled my body, making my muscles quiver and my bones ache, left me, and I breathed in deeply. The corpse of an immortal goblin lay in a puddle at my feet, and I felt nothing but relief.
“It was a good return,” my mother said, and put her hand on my shoulder. “You did well, Malin.”


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Amanda Hocking is the author of over twenty young adult novels, including the New York Times bestselling Trylle Trilogy and Kanin Chronicles. Her love of pop culture and all things paranormal influence her writing. She spends her time in Minnesota, taking care of her menagerie of pets and working on her next book.







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Continue on for the giveaway! ~

Saturday, December 23, 2017

🎄 Holiday Giveaway: Enter to win books + $100 Amazon gift card!


It's that time again, lovelies! My annual holiday giveaway is here! This time around there will be four winners. ^-^  Without me blabbing on too much, I hope you all have a safe and happy holiday season. Onto the goodies:


Three winners will each receive one book of their choice from The Book Depository

And one lucky winner will receive a $100 Amazon gift card

Giveaway details: International entries are welcome! My full giveaway terms can be viewed here. Please take a peek before entering if you have any questions or are unsure of anything. To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter below (after the page break)! ^-^

Continue on for the Rafflecopter →

Thursday, December 21, 2017

{Blog Tour} HINDER by Kristin Ping—Excerpt + Giveaway

PRESENTED BY XPRESSO BOOK TOURS
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Hinder
by Kristin Ping


Ethan Sutcliff seems like a normal seventeen-year-old—at least that’s what he’s trying to portray. In a secret society run by the Supernaturals, Ethan is what witches call a Bender. Benders are Witches’ Guardians, who are able to control a witches’ ability, bend it, or move it away from harming humans. In Ethan’s case, he is able to bend the Earth element. But at the age of fifteen, he lost all connection to it, and the reasons behind it could only mean one of two things: His Wielder is either dead, or hiding out somewhere.

Alex Burgendorf has been living in her aunt’s locket for the past sixteen years with her mother—a Fire Wielder, and her father—a Water Wielder. For sixteen years, her parents vowed to protect her, and they have, as she is the last Earth wielding witch. However, time is running out. Alex must find her Bender, or the fate of the Supernaturals might be at stake.

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Genres: New Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
• Pub Date: May 15th, 2018
Publisher: Fire Quill Publishing
Add the book on Goodreads!
Purchase: Amazon - B&N - Kobo - iBooks

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Before Sentinels it was just earth Wielders. That was how powerful they were and Ethan was the lucky boy that was going to be part of that. He was going to become the next earth Wielder’s protector in every way possible.
Tears formed in Ethan’s eyes, but he refused to let them roll down his cheek. He tried so hard to live up to his element, to be strong and special.
Sad that the boy didn’t know how strong or special he already was. Maybe it was my fault as a father, as a parent.
I wanted to tell Natalie that she should stop making him feel so terrible. He was just exploring. But what good would that do? We would just end up fighting again. I was so tired of our fights. Shoulders slumped, I turned to go inside. That was when I heard the roar of engines.
The hair on my arms and neck stood straight. Adrenaline poured into my blood like jet fuel and my heartbeat skyrocketed as I turned to see Natalie running toward me across the yard, jerking little Ethan along by the hand.
“Get rid of them. Now.” She shouldered past me into the house.
No one had seen what Ethan had done, right? No, it wasn’t possible. Was it?
Three black Jeeps and a silver one careened into the driveway, spitting gravel behind their shiny black tires. I leaped off the steps but then composed myself. With great effort, I slowed to a sedate walk. I had to try to make this farmhouse seem like any other sleepy home on this continent—even though it was far from it.
Who are these people? What are they doing here?
They weren’t Necrocretors. Necrocretors didn’t use Jeeps or SUVs to make their entrances. Whoever they were, they were driving fast. Too fast.
As they pulled closer, the sun glinted off the tinted windows and blinded me. Then when they turned an angle, I saw it. It was the outline of a barrel.
I dove for the willow. Bullets shredded bark above my head. Splinters and sawdust flew everywhere.
My back was firmly against the tree, safe from the bullets, or so I hoped. Thank goodness he grew a fully mature tree, I marveled. Otherwise I’d be dead.
I recited words that hadn’t touched my tongue in years. I carried them in my skin on my tattoo, across my chest, close to my heart. A phrase scribbled in Latin that I’ve learned at a very young age: Estque vel me vel.
Its meaning was simple: It is either them or me.
If someone had to die, it wasn’t going to be me.
I took out the Zippo in my back pocket, closed my eyes, and used my diaphragmatic breathing exercises to calm my heart.
More gunshots sizzled overhead. Bits of the porch railing and the
willow bar exploded. The air filled with the scent of sulfur and singed wood.
I took a deep breath.
Then I flicked the flint.


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Kristin resides in South Africa with her husband, two beautiful girls and two bulldogs that tries to eat her house. She has been writing for the past eight years and her first debut novel, Hinder: A Bender’s novel will be published 2018 by Fire Quill Publishing.

When she isn’t writing, she is spending her time with her family, or trying to teach her two bulldogs to not eat her house.






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Continue on for the giveaway! ~

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Giveaway Hop: Midwinter's Eve ~ Enter to win a $25 Amazon gift card!



 
Midwinter's Eve
Giveaway Hop



As always, very huge thanks to our hop host:
Mary @ BookHounds






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~MY  GIVEAWAY~
One winner will receive a $25.00 Amazon gift card! 

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International entries are welcome! My full giveaway terms can be viewed here. Please take a peek before entering if you have any questions or are unsure of anything. To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter below (after the page break)! ^-^


DON'T FORGET TO VISIT THE REST OF THE BLOGS/SITES PARTICIPATING! ^-^
>> CLICK HERE <<

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Good luck & thanks for visiting!
Happy Reading!

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Spotlight: LOVE, LIFE, AND THE LIST by Kasie West + Giveaway

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Love, Life, and the List
by Kasie West


Everyone knows Abby Turner is in love with her best friend, Cooper Wells. Including Cooper Wells. But despite what people tell her, it doesn’t affect their friendship. And she’s practically over it, anyway. What she really can’t get over is when her boss at the local museum tells her that her paintings lack heart.

Art is Abby’s passion and she hopes her future as well. She is determined to change his mind and earn her way into the upcoming exhibit at the gallery. So along with her family’s help, she compiles “The Heart List,” a series of soul-stretching experiences that are sure to make her a deeper person and better artist in six weeks or less. When Cooper decides to complete the list along with her, she realizes this list is expanding her heart in more ways than one. Maybe she needs to start another project.

Love, Life, and the List is about a girl who, in an effort to bring more emotional depth to her art, compiles a list of soul-stretching experiences to complete with her best friend—a boy she also happens to be in love with.

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Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance
• Pub Date: December 26, 2017
Publisher: HarperTeen/Harpercollins
Add the book on Goodreads!
Purchase: Amazon - B&N - TBDIndieBound

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I write YA. I eat Junior Mints. Sometimes I go crazy and do both at the same time. My novels are: PIVOT POINT and its sequel SPLIT SECOND. And my contemporary novels: THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US, ON THE FENCE, THE FILL-IN BOYFRIEND, PS I LIKE YOU, and BY YOUR SIDE. My agent is the talented and funny Michelle Wolfson.






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Continue on for the giveaway! ~

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Cover Reveal & First Look: THE HEART FORGER by Rin Chupeco

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The Heart Forger
by Rin Chupeco


In The Bone Witch, Tea mastered resurrection―now she's after revenge...

No one knows death like Tea. A bone witch who can resurrect the dead, she has the power to take life...and return it. And she is done with her self-imposed exile. Her heart is set on vengeance, and she now possesses all she needs to command the mighty daeva. With the help of these terrifying beasts, she can finally enact revenge against the royals who wronged her―and took the life of her one true love.

But there are those who plot against her, those who would use Tea's dark power for their own nefarious ends. Because you can't kill someone who can never die...

War is brewing among the kingdoms, and when dark magic is at play, no one is safe.

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Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
• Pub Date: March 20, 2018
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Add the book on Goodreads!
Purchase: Amazon - B&N - TBD - IndieBound

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Despite an unsettling resemblance to Japanese revenants, Rin always maintains her sense of hummus. Born and raised in Manila, Philippines, she keeps four pets: a dog, two birds, and a husband. Dances like the neighbors are watching.

She is represented by Rebecca Podos of the Helen Rees Agency. She is also fond of speaking in the third person, and may as well finish this short bio in this manner.





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Thanks so much for stopping by! Happy Reading!

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{Blog Tour} THE EVAPORATION OF SOFI SNOW by Mary Weber + Giveaway

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The Evaporation of Sofi Snow
by Mary Weber


Ever since the Delonese ice-planet arrived eleven years ago, Sofi's dreams have been vivid. Alien. In a system where Earth's corporations rule in place of governments and the humanoid race orbiting the moon are allies, her only constant has been her younger brother, Shilo. As an online gamer, Sofi battles behind the scenes of Earth's Fantasy Fighting arena where Shilo is forced to compete in a mix of real and virtual blood sport. But when a bomb takes out a quarter of the arena, Sofi's the only one who believes Shilo survived. She has dreams of him. And she's convinced he's been taken to the ice-planet.

Except no one but ambassadors are allowed there.

For Miguel, Earth's charming young playboy, the games are of a different sort. As Ambassador to the Delonese, his career has been built on trading secrets and seduction. Until the Fantasy Fight's bomb goes off. Now the tables have turned and he's a target for blackmail. The game is simple: Help the blackmailers, or lose more than anyone can fathom, or Earth can afford.

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Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia
Publisher: Thomas Nelson/Harpercollins
Add the book on Goodreads!
Purchase: Amazon - B&N - Kobo - TBDIndieBound

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Mary Weber is the multiple-award-winning author of the bestselling young adult Storm Siren Trilogy, and The Evaporation of Sofi Snow series (all by HarperCollins). An avid high school, middle school, and conference speaker, Mary's passion is helping others find their voice amid a world that often feels too loud. When she's not plotting adventures involving tough girls who frequently take over the world, Mary sings 80's hairband songs to her three muggle children, and ogles her husband who looks strikingly like Wolverine. They live in California which is perfect for stalking L.A. bands, Comic-Con, and the ocean.

Mary's debut, Storm Siren, was featured in the Scholastic School Book Fairs, and her novels have been endorsed by bestselling authors Marissa Meyer, Jay Asher, Wendy Higgins, CJ Redwine, and Jonathan Maberry.

You can also find Mary's fun interviews in the paperback of Marissa Meyer's NYT bestselling, CRESS, and in Jay Asher's 13 REASONS WHY movie tie-in edition. Most recently, you can see her and her family as extras in the NETFLIX Original Series, 13 REASONS WHY.


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Continue on for the giveaway! ~