"Waiting On" Wednesday #1

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week’s pre-publication “can’t-wait-to-read” selection is:

 The Fine Art of Truth or Dare by Melissa Jensen

Out on February 16th 2012.

Pretty in Pink meets Anna and the French Kiss in this charming romantic comedy

Ella is nearly invisible at the Willing School, and that’s just fine by her. She’s got her friends – the fabulous Frankie and their sweet cohort Sadie. She’s got her art – and her idol, the unappreciated 19th-century painter Edward Willing. Still, it’s hard being a nobody and having a crush on the biggest somebody in the school: Alex Bainbridge. Especially when he is your French tutor, and lessons have started becoming, well, certainly more interesting than French ever has been before. But can the invisible girl actually end up with a happily ever after with the golden boy, when no one even knows they’re dating? And is Ella going to dare to be that girl?

I loved Anna and the French Kiss and Pretty in Pink is one of my favorite movies so every book declaring itself as a mix between these two things is a must-read for me. I can’t wait to have this book in my hands!

The "Stay Tuned!" Whirlwind Tour

As part of this special promotional extravaganza sponsored by Novel Publicity, the price of the Stay Tuned eBook edition has dropped to just 99 cents this week. What’s more, by purchasing this fantastic book at an incredibly low price, you can enter to win many awesome prizes, including lots of Amazon gift cards (up to $100 in amount) and 5 autographed copies of the book. Be sure to enter before the end of the day on Friday, December 2nd, so you don’t miss out.  

To Win the Prizes:

1. Purchase your copy of Stay Tuned for just 99 cents on Amazon or Barnes & Noble (You’ll need it for the big contest on Friday) 2. Fill-out the form on Novel Publicity to enter for the prizes 3. Visit today’s featured event; you may win an autographed copy of the book or a $50 gift card!  

…And I can win too!

Over 100 bloggers are participating in this gigantic event, and there are plenty of prizes for us too. The blogger who receives the most votes in the traffic-breaker poll will win a $100 gift card as well. So when you visit Novel Publicity’s site to fill-out the contest entry form, don’t forget to say that I referred you, so I can get a point in the poll.  

The Featured Events include:

Monday, Radio Interview with Novel Publicity! We’re kicking-off on the Novel Publicity Free Advice blog. We interviewed Lauren on our radio show Sunday night and have embedded the full podcast and blogged about its highlights. Give it a listen and then leave a comment on the blog post. This is a great chance to get to know more about this fun and bubbly author. One commenter will win an autographed copy of Stay Tuned. Don’t forget to enter for the other contest prizes while you’re over there!  

Tuesday, Twitter sharing contest! A tweet is tiny, only 140 characters. But on Tuesday, it could win you $50. Send the following tweet across the twittersphere, and you just may win a $50 Amazon gift card. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. The winners will be announced Wednesday morning. Here’s the tweet: Take a break from the holiday frenzy, and read Stay Tuned. It’s fast, fun, and reduced to just 99 cents! http://ow.ly/7zA1e #whirlwind  

Wednesday, Google+ sharing contest! Yup, there’s yet another awesome opportunity to win a $50 Amazon gift card, and this time it just takes a single click! Visit Google+ and share Emlyn Chand’s most recent post (you’ll see the Stay Tuned book cover included with it). On Thursday morning, one lucky sharer will be $50 richer. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. Two chances to win with just one click! How about that?  

Thursday, Facebook sharing contest! Stop by Novel Publicity’s Facebook page and share their latest post (you’ll see the Stay Tuned book cover included with it). It’s ridiculously easy to win! On Friday morning, one lucky sharer will be $50 richer. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs.  

Friday, special contest on the author’s site! Are you ready for some more fun? Take a picture of yourself with your copy of Stay Tuned either in paperback or on an eReading device, tag Lauren Clark’s Facebook page, and you can enter to win one of three Amazon gift cards! A $100 prize will go to the most creative photo, $50 to the best BFF photo, and $50 to the photo with the most people in it. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. If you need help learning how to tag a photo, you can visit Lauren’s Facebook page for detailed instructions.  

Remember, it’s all about the books!

About Stay Tuned:

What happens when a #1 news team becomes the top story instead of reporting it? For TV producer Melissa Moore, crisis management comes with the job. From employee disputes to her high-maintenance boss, there’s not much she hasn’t seen or can’t handle. But no one—including Melissa—expects a fistfight during the ten o’clock news. When sexy-but-crazy Alyssa Andrews lands a punch on her co-anchor’s face, Melissa jumps on set to help. She’s determined that WSGA’s reputation won’t be destroyed on her watch. Both anchors are fired and Melissa agrees to fill in—but not before polishing her look from haircut to heels. While the new Melissa wows WSGA viewers, her personal life starts fraying at the edges. Melissa’s husband is away more than he’s home, leaving cryptic Post-it notes in his wake. Her mother’s antics spiral out of control at the nursing home and a stalker decides Melissa is her next target. What happens next? Stay Tuned to find out… Get it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble. About the Author: Lauren Clark has been a voracious reader since the age of four and would rather be stranded at the library than on a desert island. In her former life, she worked as an anchor and producer for CBS affiliates in Upstate New York and Alabama. Lauren adores her family, yoga, her new Electra bike, and flavored coffee. She lives near the Florida Gulf Coast. Visit her on her website, Twitter, Facebook, or GoodReads.  

Now please enjoy this sneak peek of Stay Tuned Chapter 1

Alyssa Andrews was missing. Gone, vanished, MIA with just minutes to airtime. “Melissa, where is she?” Our news director, Joe, shot a harried look in my direction. After dealing with a broken studio camera, spotty satellite reception, and last-minute script changes, his nerves were fried to a crisp. “She’ll be here,” I promised, knowing my confidence was a front. Alyssa, one of WSGA-TV’s main news anchors, was a constant source of angst in my already-stressful job. She was young, talented, gorgeous…and chronically late. This lack of punctuality was a problem, especially when WSGA ran a show at exactly six and ten o’clock every night. Not a moment later. WSGA was Macon, Georgia’s number one news station and had been for two years running. If we wanted to keep it that way, timing was everything. Every second mattered. I produced both evening shows, which meant—among a dozen other tasks—organizing the day’s stories, writing copy, and checking video. Each segment had to run seamlessly between three-minute commercial breaks. Deep breath, Melissa. Send up a little prayer. She’ll show up. The red numbers on the clock continued to march forward. Another deep breath. Everything’s in place. Alyssa just needs to walk in and get on set… “Tighten up on camera one.” Joe peppered the room with demands. “Mic check, now, not yesterday.” Tim Donaldson, Alyssa’s co-anchor, obliged, counting backwards from the number five. Joe’s thick fingers punched buttons on the massive keyboard in front of him. “Bring up the live shot.” Still, no Alyssa. Joe raked a huge hand through his long gray hair. “Five minutes!” he growled, with a glare into his empty coffee cup. At this point, it was Joe’s show to run. He was in charge. I shuffled my scripts. “How about I call her?” “She’s an adult,” he grumbled. “You shouldn’t have to.” Joe expected nothing less than perfection. He was experienced, hard working, and a stickler for detail. Alyssa’s nonchalance made him crazy. Which, at 9:55:36 on a Friday night, gave him the patience of a gnat. On crack. This was particularly dangerous for an unsuspecting new employee, all of twenty years old and pimple-faced, who crept up behind us. Joe ignored him at first, barking an order to me instead. “Fine, fine. Melissa, tell Princess A. she’s needed in the studio.” On autopilot, I punched her extension, eyes focused on the row of monitors above my head in case she decided to appear. While the phone rang, the new kid rocked on his heels nervously. I flashed a smile and shook my head gently in his direction, hoping he’d get the hint. Not now. Nope. The kid stood there, coughed lightly, and waited for one of us to turn around. “What?” Joe finally snapped. The force of the word made the kid’s body jerk back. Jaw open, unable to speak, his face turned crimson. Joe waited about a second for the kid to talk, and then leaned back over the control panel. He pressed at switches, clearly annoyed. The kid looked sick. Joe rolled his eyes. My anxiety level cranked up ten notches. 9:58:09. Less than two minutes. Wait…a flash of an ivory suit and blond hair. “There she is,” I interrupted the tension with a cool nod toward the monitors. Front and center, Alyssa sauntered into the studio, lips puckered, blowing her shell-pink nail polish dry. She slid into her seat next to Tim, and gave him a playful pat on the shoulder. Joe muttered something I couldn’t repeat. I stifled a loud sigh of relief and glanced around the room. The new guy was the only one in the building unimpressed with Alyssa’s arrival. With a shaking hand, he reached out and tapped Joe’s burly shoulder. “Mr. Joe, there’s a problem with one of the machines—” Joe’s back stiffened. He turned a millimeter in the kid’s direction and exploded. “Get your butt back there. Get one of the engineers. Fix it. Call someone.” I caught the now-completely mortified kid’s eye, and motioned for him to come toward me. Grabbing the nearest piece of paper, I jotted down the engineer’s extension and held it at arm’s length with a kind smile. Poor guy. Lots to learn. With a grateful look, the new kid plucked the scrap from my fingers and darted away. Time to get started. I settled in, gripped my pen hard, and looked up. Okay. Alyssa’s collar was turned under. Minor detail, but sure to garner at least five viewer complaints. You wouldn’t believe what people called in about. I leaned toward the microphone to let Alyssa know. “Dare you not to tell her,” Joe muttered. It wasn’t a secret that the guys would willingly let Alyssa go on air with underwear on her head. She hadn’t made friends. Or tried to. Tim, her co-anchor and current boyfriend, didn’t count. “Just part of those darn producer duties, Joe. You know that.” I flashed him a smile and pressed the button to talk. “Alyssa, fix your collar.” Her mouth parted into an O. Alyssa frowned, glanced down, and straightened the pale edge. Just in time. Like a well-directed movie, the WSGA-TV opening video flashed across monitor one. Macon, Georgia’s skyline filled the screen. My body tingled with a familiar rush of excitement. It happened every time we went on air. The cameras and lights, the beat of the music, the thrill of live television. Here we go. Seconds later, Alyssa and Tim appeared under the lights, their bright anchor smiles pasted on. “Good evening, I’m Alyssa Andrews. “And I’m Tim Donaldson.” And on it went, without a blip, for the first ten minutes. I started breathing again after the third break. Stanley and Sunshine, the weather cat, were ready for the five-day forecast, check. Commercial break, check. Sports, check. I didn’t worry about that three-minute slot. Plenty to talk about, visual stories; the anchors could get away with jokes and ad-libbing. Viewers loved it. We rounded out the show with an inspirational kicker about a local scholarship winner, a kid first in his family to go to college. He’d won forty thousand dollars and was going to Georgia Tech to study astrophysics. The show wrapped with a standard goodnight, credits, and a wide shot of the WSGA set. The second the master control operator switched to break, Alyssa flounced off the set in silicone fashion. She barked into her jewel-encrusted cell phone about her min-pin puppy’s cancelled spa appointment and stomped out of the studio, teetering precariously in four-inch heels. Yikes! I climbed the flight of stairs back to the newsroom, relieved the night was almost over. The phones started to ring five seconds later.

In My Mailbox #1

In My Mailbox is a meme hosted by The Story Siren where bloggers share would books they have gathered over the week.
Books I won

Books I bought

The Girl In The Park di Mariah Fredericks

Title: The Girl In The Park

Author: Mariah Fredericks
Release Date: April 24, 2012
Publisher: Random House Children’s Books
Pages: 224
Genre: Young Adult, Crime, Mistery

GR Synopsis: When Wendy Geller’s body is found in Central Park after the night of a rager, newspaper headlines scream,”Death in the Park: Party Girl Found Strangled.” But shy Rain, once Wendy’s best friend, knows there was more to Wendy than just “party girl.” As she struggles to separate the friend she knew from the tangle of gossip and headlines, Rain becomes determined to discover the truth about the murder. Written in a voice at once immediate, riveting, and utterly convincing, Mariah Frederick’s mystery brilliantly exposes the cracks in this exclusive New York City world and the teenagers that move within it.

This ARC was provided to me through netgalley.com in exchange for this fair and unbiased review. 

Rain Donovan is a shy, insecure girl, one who “lives in her head” so to speak. A condition at birth made her cautious and observant about the world around her. Wendy, however, with her zest for life and carefree attitude, she was the right counter-party for Rain, until time and life made them slip away from each other. One Sunday morning, Wendy’s mother called Rain and asks her about her daughter. Rain said she saw her for the last time at a party the previous night, but she doesn’t know anything else. The conversation ends, but now the feeling that something bad happened to Wendy does not abandon Rain. The reality is in fact the worst: Wendy’s body was found in Central Park. Rain now is set to found the killer of her former best friend.

Before reading of “The Girl In The Park” I had never read anything about this writer. I was quite surprised, then, to discover that this is her first book of such genre. Her writing is simple, but effective. The pace of the narrative, marked in days rather than chapters, keeps alive the tension surrounding the murder of Wendy. The dialogues are not just functional to the story, the solution of the mystery, but they provide a complex picture, at times disturbing, of the machinations, the secrets and mysteries within an exclusive New York school.

One element that I much enjoyed about this book is the fact that, even if I had my main suspect from the beginning, the author was able to maintain that aura of ambiguity and possibility right to the end. The author has made sure that I doubted myself and my suspects more than once and this is a skill not common for those new to write this kind of book for the first time.

In conclusion, this book has exceeded my expectations. It captured and involved me. I recommend it to fans of the genre: it will be very difficult not to read it at once!

Teaser Tuesdays #4 – November 22th

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly book meme, hosted by Should Be Reading.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
1) Grab your current read
2) Open to a random page
3) Share one (1) OR two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
4) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My Teasers:

I peel my gaze from the sky to meet his eyes. “Will you come home next weekend?”

He closes them. I get the strangest sense he’s thanking someone.

“Yes,” he says. “Of course”

pg. 153 – Lola and The Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

2012 Dystopian Reading Challenge

This challenge is hosted by The Non Reluctant Reader.
Rules:
  • This challenge lasts from January 1st, 2012 to December 31st, 2012
  • All books must be started on/after January 1st, 2012
  • Crossovers with other challenges are allowed.
  • After the challenge has started, you can decide to choose a higher level, but you can not choose to go down a level.
  • All books must be dystopian (duh) and either Young Adult or Middle Grade (I can’t think of any MG dystopian though).
  • Must post all your reviews to either your blog or goodreads. Sorry, non blogging folks!
  • Must create a sign-up post that includes a link to this post, the level you’ve signed up for, and the button above. 
  • Must sign-up before June 1st, 2012.
Important Info:
  • After each month I will do a recap where you can link your reviews, I will also declare what the prize will be for the current month and the winner of last month’s giveaway.
  • Each month there will be a giveaway for all those who reviewed a book, each review = one entry. The giveaway item could range from a gift card, a book, swag, and more.  
The Levels:
  • Easy: Read 5-8 books.
  • Medium: Read 8-14 books.
  • Hard: 15-20 books.
  • So Hard it Would Have it’s Own Apocalypse!: 21+
For this challenge I’m going with Easy!

  1.  Delirium by Lauren Oliver (review will come)
  2. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi (review will come)
  3.  

The Juliet Spell di Douglas Rees

Titolo: The Juliet Spell  (The Juliet Spell)

Autore: Douglas Rees
Data di pubblicazione:
Settembre 27, 2011
Casa Editrice: Harlequin Teen
Pagine: 304
Genere: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance, Time Travel

Trama GR: I wanted the role of Juliet more than anything. I studied hard. I gave a great reading for it—even with Bobby checking me out the whole time. I deserved the part. I didn’t get it. So I decided to level the playing field, though I actually might have leveled the whole play. You see, since there aren’t any Success in Getting to Be Juliet in Your High School Play spells, I thought I’d cast the next best—a Fame spell. Good idea, right? Yeah. Instead of bringing me a little fame, it brought me someone a little famous. Shakespeare. Well, Edmund Shakespeare. William’s younger brother. Good thing he’s sweet and enthusiastic about helping me with the play…and—ahem—maybe a little bit hot. But he’s from the past. Way past. Cars amaze him—cars! And cell phones? Ugh. Still, there’s something about him that’s making my eyes go star-crossed….

Il sogno di Miranda è quello di interpretare Giulietta. Studia, si prepara, partecipa all’audizione, ma non è abbastanza e allora si rivolge alla magia. Tira fuori il suo kit da teen witch ed evoca un po’ di successo… ci riesce? No! Al suo posto si ritrova Edmund Shakeshaft, o meglio Shakespeare, il fratello minore del ben più famoso William. E da qui inizia la storia…

Douglas Rees ha scritto un libro che è divertente e romantico. Mi piacciono le storie che trattano di viaggi nel tempo, e la componente shakespeariana ha aggiunto quel tocco in più che non guasta mai.

Edmund è semplicemente adorabile con il suo modo di parlare e comportarsi, con le sue mille abilità e con la sua capacità di adattarsi in maniera sorprendente al nuovo mondo che si ritrova davanti. Miranda, voce narrante e protagonista, è anche lei una ragazza che si fa amare facilmente. Capisce di aver combinato un guaio e se ne assume le responsabilità; aiuta Edmund e, ovviamente, finisce per innamorarsene. Chi non lo farebbe?! Poi ci sono tutti i personaggi secondari: Drew, prima amico silenzioso poi serio candidato al ruolo di rubacuori al posto di Edmund (almeno per me!); Bobby, il primo candidato al ruolo di Romeo; Vivian, la sostituta di Miranda non solo nel ruolo di Giulietta; la madre di Miranda, il padre, i vari attori dell’opera…

Insomma è un libro piuttosto corale. Tutti, o almeno la cerchia principale, sono a conoscenza del fatto che Edmund non è nel suo ambiente naturale e cercano di aiutarlo. E’ adorabile la complicità che si instaura tra Miranda, sua madre e Edmund; diventano una famiglia ed è davvero un piacere leggere di loro.

Ovviamente bisogna mettere in conto che, anche se c’è una componente di magia, il libro è comunque comtemporary, quindi si può immaginare che qualche lacrimuccia potrà sfuggire al controllo. In ogni caso, la risoluzione, per quanto amara da mandare giù, non mi ha dato fastidio. E’ stata gestita bene, talmente bene che mi sono trovata in equilibrio tra le due parti più di una volta!

In conclusione, e come ho ripetuto più volte, The Juliet Spell è un libro adorabile. Consigliato vivamente per passare qualche ora serena; se siete appassionati di viaggi nel tempo o se semplicemente se siete dei romanticoni.

Voto: Okay

WWW Wednesdays #2 – November 16th

This is a weekly book meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…
 
• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

My answers…

1. I’m currently reading two books: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins and ARC of The Girl in the Park by Mariah Fredericks. Both books are really awesome and they are so different from each other!

2. I recently finished reading The Juliet Spell by Douglas Rees. This book was cute, really an easy reading.

3. I think I will read next (and finally!) Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling. And maybe I’ll start Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins.

Wishlist Wednesday #3 – November 16th

Wishlist Wednesday is a book blog hop hosted by Pen to Paper in which you can list a book that you really want to read or keep meaning to get.

What do you need to do to join in?

  • Follow Pen to Paper as host of the meme.
  • Pick a book from your wishlist that you are dying to get to put on your shelves.
  • Do a post telling your readers about the book and why it’s on your wishlist.
  • Add your blog to the linky at the bottom of this post.
  • Put a link back to pen to paper (http://vogue-pentopaper.blogspot.com) somewhere in your post.
  • Visit the other blogs and enjoy!

Here’s my choice for this week…

Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Before scientists found the cure, people thought love was a good thing. They didn’t understand that once love — the deliria — blooms in your blood, there is no escaping its hold. Things are different now. Scientists are able to eradicate love, and the government demands that all citizens receive the cure upon turning eighteen. Lena Holoway has always looked forward to the day when she’ll be cured. A life without love is a life without pain: safe, measured, predictable, and happy.

But with ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena does the unthinkable: She falls in love. [GR]

As soon as I found out about this book, I thought that it was an amazing idea… A world where feelings – love – are seen as a disease… this concept really got me hooked. And I’ve read so many good reviews… I just wish I wasn’t broke! LOL

Teaser Tuesdays #3 – November 15th

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly book meme, hosted by Should Be Reading. Information of what you need to do can be found here.

That night, I finally get up the nerve to look at my messages.
Taylor called. “You were right and I suck Call me.”

Rima called three times. But she only left one message.

“WHAT DID YOU DO?”

– pg. 135 – The Girl In The Park by Mariah Fredericks