Friday, July 24, 2015

M9B Friday Reveal: Month9Books Fall Books Preview with Giveaway #M9BFridayReveals

M9B Friday Reveal: Month9Books Fall Books Preview with Giveaway #M9BFridayReveals
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Welcome to this week’s M9B Friday Reveal!
This week, we are sharing the
Month9Books Fall Books Preview!
Check out these amazing titles coming from Month9Books this Fall!.
They look amazing!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
SerpentineEbook
SERPENTINE is a sweeping fantasy set in the ancient Kingdom of Xia and inspired by the rich history of Chinese mythology.
Lush with details from Chinese folklore, SERPENTINE tells the coming of age story of Skybright, a young girl who worries about her growing otherness. As she turns sixteen, Skybright notices troubling changes. By day, she is a companion and handmaid to the youngest daughter of a very wealthy family. But nighttime brings with it a darkness that not even daybreak can quell.
When her plight can no longer be denied, Skybright learns that despite a dark destiny, she must struggle to retain her sense of self – even as she falls in love for the first time.
“Vivid worldbuilding, incendiary romance, heart-pounding action, and characters that will win you over–I highly recommend Serpentine.” Cinda Williams Chima, best-selling author of the Seven Realms and Heir Chronicles fantasy novels
“Serpentine is unique and surprising, with a beautifully-drawn fantasy world that sucked me right in! I love Skybright’s transformative power, and how she learns to take charge of it.” ~Kristin Cashore, NYT Bestseller of the Graceling Realm Series
“Serpentine’s world oozes with lush details and rich lore, and the characters crackle with life. This is one story that you’ll want to lose yourself in.” ~ Marie Lu, New York Times bestselling author of Legend and The Young Elites
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About-the-Author
cindypon_highres-200x300
Cindy Pon is the author of Silver Phoenix (Greenwillow, 2009), which was named one of the Top Ten Fantasy and Science Fiction Books for Youth by the American Library Association’s Booklist, and one of 2009′s best Fantasy, Science Fiction and Horror by VOYA. The sequel to Silver Phoenix, titled Fury of the Phoenix, was released in April 2011. Serpentine, the first title in her next Xia duology, will be published by Month9Books in September 2015. She is the co-founder of Diversity in YA with Malinda Lo and on the advisory board of We Need Diverse Books. Cindy is also a Chinese brush painting student of over a decade. Visit her website at www.cindypon.com.
Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Goodreads
Nameless_450x675
Four clans have been at war for centuries: the Kodiak, the Raven, the Wolf and the Ram. Through brutal war tactics, the Ram have dominated the region, inflicting death and destruction on their neighbors.

Seventeen-year-old Zo is a Wolf and a Healer who volunteers to infiltrate the Ram as a spy on behalf of the allied clans. She offers herself as a Ram slave, joining the people who are called the “nameless.” Hers is a suicide mission – Zo’s despair after losing her parents in a Ram raid has left her seeking both revenge and an end to her own misery. But after her younger sister follows her into Rams Gate, Zo must find a way to survive her dangerous mission and keep her sister safe.

What she doesn’t expect to find is the friendship of a young Ram whose life she saves, the confusing feelings she develops for a Ram soldier, and an underground nameless insurrection. Zo learns that revenge, loyalty and love are more complicated than she ever imagined in the first installment of this two-book series.
add to goodreads

"Jenkins brings edge-of-your-seat adventure to this intriguing new world. I can’t wait to read more!”~ New York Times bestselling author Jessica Day George

"Wow....WOW, WOW, WOW! I have no words to describe how much I love this book. Jenkins writes characters who are just so easy to love, and when you love a character it makes the book so much better. And I loved all the characters. Zo, Tess, Joshua and Gryphon. Gryphon is definitely my favorite - but who wouldn't love Gryphon? Of course I do have a soft spot for our heroine, Zo." ~Bri, Blogger @ Once Upon A Twilight

"Nameless destroyed me in the best way possible. The romance was subtle, but written beautifully. The plot was very intriguing and the pacing was spot on. I loved the entire cast of characters, every single one of them added to the story. Trust me when I say you should preorder it, add it to your TBR, request it from your library, do whatever you have to do to get this book in your hands because if you are a YA fantasy fan like me you need this book in your life!" ~Bridget, Blogger @ Dark Faerie Tales

"NAMELESS is epic storytelling at its best. My mind is still reeling from the world that I have just been immersed in and I don't want to leave it. Can I please have the sequel NOW? Because I need to know what happens next but in the meantime I'm just going to re-read it again and again. Is it that good, you may ask? Hell yes!!! And you will think so too. Trust me." Nancy, Blogger @ Tales of A Ravenous Reader

"To say that I love this book is an understatement. It completely blew me away! I am so happy that I took a chance on it. NAMELESS is one book that you can re-read over and over again and it will still feel fresh! I cannot wait for the world to read it and fall under the NAMELESS spell. Because that’s what I feel like I am under, a spell that has me trapped in Zo's world and won’t let me out! I don’t want out!"~Damaris, Blogger @ Good Choice Reading


About-the-Author
Jennifer Jenkins
With her degree in History and Secondary Education, Jennifer had every intention of teaching teens to love George Washington and appreciate the finer points of ancient battle stratagem. (Seriously, she’s obsessed with ancient warfare.) However, life had different plans in store when the writing began. As a proud member of Writers Cubed, and a co-founder of the Teen Author Boot Camp, she feels blessed to be able to fulfill both her ambition to work with teens as well as write Young Adult fiction.
Jennifer has three children who are experts at naming her characters, one loving, supportive husband, a dog with little-man syndrome, and three chickens (of whom she is secretly afraid).
Visit her online at jajenkins.com

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest |Instagram
Minotaur.v3
“Where shall I start?” asked Minotaur.

Ovid made an expansive gesture with both hands. “Where else but the beginning of course.”

Minotaur nodded his huge head. “Yes,” he said. “Yes,” his eyes already glazing over with the weight of thousand year old memories. And then he began.

So begins the story of Asterion, later known as Minotaur, the supposed half bull creature of Greek legend. Recorded by the famous Roman poet, Ovid, Asterion tells of his boyhood in Crete under the cruel hand of his stepfather Minos, his adventures with his friend, Theseus, and his growing love for the beautiful Phaedra.And of course what really happened in the labyrinth.

This is the true story of the Minotaur.
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Lovers of mythology will enjoy this coming-of-age adventure and be surprised by the believable, "true story" of the Minotaur.”~ School Library Journal
About-the-Author

Phillip W Simpson
Phillip W. Simpson is the author of many novels, chapter books and other stories for children. His publishers include Macmillan, Penguin, Pearson, Cengage, Raintree and Oxford University Press.
He received both his undergraduate degree in Ancient History and Archaeology and his Masters (Hons) degree in Archaeology from the University of Auckland.
Before embarking on his writing career, he joined the army as an officer cadet, owned a comic shop and worked in recruitment in both the UK and Australia.
His first young adult novel, Rapture (Rapture Trilogy #1), was shortlisted for the Sir Julius Vogel Awards for best Youth novel in 2012.

He is represented by Vicki Marsdon at Wordlink literary agency.

When not writing, he works as a school teacher.
Phillip lives and writes in Auckland, New Zealand with his wife Rose, their son, Jack and their two border terriers, Whiskey and Raffles. He loves fishing, reading, movies, football (soccer) and single malt Whiskeys.
Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
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Monday, July 20, 2015

My #NewAgent Entry

Hey!  I love Twitter and Twitter contests. This is my entry in the #NewAgent contest. Got any tips for me??

Title: Crawdad
YA Contemporary

Query:

Black teen Jamil Ramos lived all his seventeen years on Alabama’s Gulf Coast believing his mom, Loretta, was his only living relative. She put a trumpet in his hands as a toddler and sparked his love of jazz. Now, sick with emphysema, Loretta drops a bomb on Jamil from her deathbed. She’s not his mama and his daddy is still alive, living in Charleston, S.C.

With the only mama he’s ever known gone and the Loyola University trumpet audition less than a week away, Jamil has trouble feeling his music. When his band teacher tells him to get it together, Jamil decides to hitchhike to S.C. to find his father and get his questions answered. All he has is a name – Leon Ramos. When Jamil is robbed of his most prized possession along the way, his trumpet, his plans go anywhere but where he’d hoped.

First 250 Words:

Theodore, Alabama~ June

Sometimes people do the best they can, but it ain't no good. There's no shame in it. Well, maybe there is, but there ain't nothing you can do about it anyway. No use getting mad about it.

The day my mama died I'd been sitting there, wondering what I was gonna do, just like I had for the last three days of mama's coma. The hospice lady said I should tell mama is was all right to let go, but I didn't want to. I wanted her to sit up in bed and tell me what the hell she was thinking when she said I wasn't really her son. Who else's son would I be? Hadn't she been with me every single day of my life? It was only seventeen years, but I remembered her in almost every one of them. She was my mom as sure as August in Alabama is miserable hot, as sure as honey sticks to your fingers, and then she had to go and ruin it all.

"Jamil," she whispered to me, ‘cause the emphysema had stolen most of her raspy voice. "I need to tell you something."

"It's OK, Mama. I know you wished you'd never smoked."

She done told me that about a million times. Made me swear on my immortal soul I'd never do it. I couldn't tell her I already had. It’d crush her.

"It's not that."

She raised a bony hand for me to hold, her nails like claws they'd gotten so long.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Always Learning ~ The Stones are the Path


I've always been a writer, but it was about 8 or 9 years ago I decided to get serious about getting published. I took the Institute for Children's Literature correspondence course because I'd never had any true "training" and I'm a firm believer in training. I wouldn't just assume I could be a geologist without schooling. Why would I just assume I could be a writer? Returning to school for an MFA wasn't an option, so I chose correspondence. 

I also joined some writer's groups. I struggled a bit to find the best place for me, but eventually settled into the Society for Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). Through SCBWI, I attended conferences and workshops. I was able to pitch agents and editors I never would have had access to before and meet other writers just like myself. It was refreshing because, believe me, living out in the sticks can sure make a person feel isolated. I attended non-SCBWI events as well to expand my training and to make new connections.

Since I started, I've self-published and been published by two different small presses. I still don't have an agent, but it's not for lack of trying. Over the years, I've seen a lot of other writers go through the same experiences - some self-published, some traditionally published, some with agents, some without. No one's experience is exactly the same. I feel like I've learned some things about publishing, but by no means do I know everything. What I do know is there's no one single path.

As a writer, my main concern is that I am read by others. Would I like to have a high-powered agent and be read by thousands or even millions? Sure, who wouldn't? But if I had to choose between being read by a handful of readers or not being read at all, I'd chose the former. Some writers believe they must follow the traditional path: query agent, get agent, agent makes sale. Other writers don't believe that the absence of an agent means they can't be published. They find editors willing to accept un-agented material or they self-publish. 

Either path you choose, make no mistake about it, it is a long, hard, stony path with obstacles at every turn. But as a very astute friend of mine once pointed out, perhaps the stones are the path



It is the journey that makes the final results worth the effort and the journey never truly ends. Publishing one book does not mean you're on easy street. The next one is just as hard, as is the next one. The process is a circle, not a line. With every new book, you begin at square one again. You write it and then you do whatever it takes to get it to your readers. The outcome is never guaranteed, unless you have a multi-book publishing deal of course. :) And even then, you have a lot of hard work ahead of you. The take away lesson for me is where I'm at today is an accomplishment to be proud of, but I will always be learning more and always traveling to see where the path leads.

Friday, July 17, 2015

M9B Friday Reveal: Chapter One Reveal for Nameless by Jennifer Jenkins with Giveaway #M9BFridayReveals


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Welcome to this week’s M9B Friday Reveal!
This week, we are revealing CHAPTER ONE of
Nameless by Jennifer Jenkins
presented byMonth9Books!
NAMELESS is in development for film by Benderspink! That’s the same company who optioned Victoria Aveyard’s Red Queen and produced the
I AM NUMBER FOUR film!

Jennifer is also one of the co-founders of Teen Author Boot Camp, and works with amazing authors like James Dashner and Brandon Sanderson to help teens master the craft or writing.

New York Times bestselling author Jessica Day George read NAMELESS and loved it!:
"Jenkins brings edge-of-your-seat adventure to this intriguing new world. I can’t wait to read more!”
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Nameless_450x675
Four clans have been at war for centuries: the Kodiak, the Raven, the Wolf and the Ram. Through brutal war tactics, the Ram have dominated the region, inflicting death and destruction on their neighbors.

Seventeen-year-old Zo is a Wolf and a Healer who volunteers to infiltrate the Ram as a spy on behalf of the allied clans. She offers herself as a Ram slave, joining the people who are called the “nameless.” Hers is a suicide mission – Zo’s despair after losing her parents in a Ram raid has left her seeking both revenge and an end to her own misery. But after her younger sister follows her into Rams Gate, Zo must find a way to survive her dangerous mission and keep her sister safe.

What she doesn’t expect to find is the friendship of a young Ram whose life she saves, the confusing feelings she develops for a Ram soldier, and an underground nameless insurrection. Zo learns that revenge, loyalty and love are more complicated than she ever imagined in the first installment of this two-book series.
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Pre-order Links:

excerpt

Chapter 1
Zo couldn’t remember a time when she didn’t fear the Ram.
Even after the raid, when so much of her fear had turned
to hate, the fear still existed beneath. It was a foundation that
she came to rely upon. A constant.
Sleeping under a fir tree so close to Ram’s Gate went
against her very nature. While her body revolted, she couldn’t
think of a more appropriate place to be. Zo choked down the
beastly fear clawing its way up her throat and smiled like this
was just another assignment. “It’s time, Gabe.”
Her guard, Gabe, rested on soggy pine needles beside her.
His hands were tucked behind his shaggy blond head, eyes
closed in feigned sleep. He used to lay like that, with his arms
arrogantly thrown back and his chest puffed out like he owned
the world, when they were kids. The river would rush by
carrying rumors of starving clans and battles lost—heartache
that pulled tight strings of tension throughout Zo’s body—
while Gabe just laid back and chewed on a grass root.
Today, Gabe’s pretend-sleep didn’t fool Zo any more than
it ever had. They both knew he hadn’t slept soundly since
they’d left the Allied Camp a week ago. With eyes still closed,
Gabe frowned as Zo left the protection of his side to bundle her
bedroll. She crawled out from under the skirt of the enormous
fir tree. Its sweeping limbs that kissed the uneven ground had
kept them as safe as one could be in this godforsaken region.
Behind her, Gabe growled impatiently as he gathered his
things to follow.
“There’s no need to rush this.” He pushed the branch aside
and threw out his pack with more force than necessary. Zo
flinched, not used to seeing her childhood friend angry.
“You didn’t wake me for my watch again,” said Zo,
unsurprised. Ever since they’d left the Allies, Gabe had been
insanely overprotective.
“You need your sleep.”
“And you don’t?”
Gabe sighed and scooped a blob of mud from the newly
thawed earth. He frowned and smeared it along the curved
planes of Zo’s face and neck. The cool mud felt surprisingly
comforting, but it could have just been Gabe’s touch. His
capable hands shook while lines of worry deepened across his
brow.
“This won’t work.” He stopped and cupped his muddy
hand at the base of her neck, his blue eyes pleading. “You’re
too pretty. A little mud can’t change that.”
Zo yanked on the sleeve of her shirt until the seam split then
ripped and frayed the cuff of her pant legs. Young, unarmed
women just didn’t go on casual strolls through the perilous
hills of the Ram. Commander Laden said she needed to look
desperate if she wanted them to believe her story. Her lie.
As if looking desperate is hard, Zo thought.
Gabe stood a full head taller than Zo. Despite his large
frame, he could outrun a jackrabbit and his mind was just as
quick. A valuable weapon for the Allies. But with all of his
abilities, he was not the one walking into the lion’s den this
morning.
He untwisted the strap of Zo’s medical satchel and let out a
long breath before dropping his hands to his sides.
“I’ll miss you,” said Zo. Her voice carried the mechanical
cadence she’d adopted several years ago. A small part of her—
the part that wasn’t dead—hated disappointing Gabe. He’d
done so much for her and her little sister, Tess, since they’d
journeyed from the Valley of Wolves to live with Commander
Laden and the Allies.
Thinking of her wild, eight-year-old sister brought a
temporary smile to Zo’s muddied face. She couldn’t think of
Tess and not imagine her tromping through the forest trying
to catch squirrels and sneak up on rabbits. It was her second
favorite thing to do, next to following Zo around the Allied
Camp. The little tick wouldn’t take her absence well. Zo had
left a note and arranged for her care, but that didn’t mean the
kid wouldn’t be furious.
Gabe pressed his cold hands to Zo’s face and forced her to
look at him. “Come back with me, Zo. Let Commander Laden
send someone else. Someone with less to lose.”
“We’re not doing this again.” Zo pulled away. She had
begged for this mission, and she would see it through. No
matter what the cost. The Allies desperately needed information
that only she could provide, if they hoped to defeat the most
powerful military force in the region.
Gabe’s hands curled into fists. His voice rose to carry over
the wind that whipped his unruly hair. “Entering Ram’s Gate
is suicide! We don’t even know if you can get the information
Laden’s after.”
The truth was far worse than Gabe could possibly know.
He hadn’t heard what life would be like inside the Gate. They
would eventually discover her, and once they did, they’d kill
her. Plain and simple.
There were worse things a person could endure.
She’d do anything for the Cause.
“Goodbye, Gabe.” She kissed his frozen, whiskered cheek.
His hand clamped down on Zo’s wrist and he yanked her
into a fierce embrace. “I’ll be close, waiting to help you escape
the minute you send word.” He smoothed down her wild, dark
hair. “I’ll find a way to keep you safe, Zo. I swear it.”
Zo forced a hollow smile, for Gabe’s sake. “Look after
Tess. Tell her I’m doing this for her. Tell her I’m doing it for
our parents.”
She left Gabe standing frozen in the low light of morning.
After a hard climb, Zo reached the towering wall of Ram’s
Gate. The wall was comprised of redwood logs at least four
feet in diameter and fifty feet tall, bound together with heavy
rope and shaved to a point at the top. Black tar and broken
glass glimmered along the high rim of the wall to discourage
clans foolish enough to attack, and souls brave enough to dare
escape.
Zo looked right and left and saw no end to the wall through
the thick maze of aspen and evergreens. From her training with
Commander Laden, she knew the giant wall ran for miles in
each direction until it reached the cliffs that dropped off to the
freezing ocean below. Inside the wall were hundreds of acres
of farmlands, mountainous forests, and enough homes to house
thousands of Ram and the slaves they called “Nameless.”
Calmer than a sane person should be, Zo dropped to her
knees in the shadow of the ominous wall. Knowing these
might be the last free moments of her life, she allowed herself
to think about things that were normally buried deep within
her. The memory of her mother’s soft skin. The safety of her
father’s smile. Tess’ dimples and her eagerness to please,
despite her stubborn ways.
The moment was as sweet as it was brief. But it was hers.
Deep-voiced drums boomed and the enormous gate rose
inch by inch. Men shouted orders and whips cracked. Through
the gap of the slow-rising gate she saw at least forty men in
tattered animal hides with harnesses on their backs. They
slipped through mud while struggling to turn a giant wheel
connected to a thick chain to raise the gate.
The Nameless. The Ram had kept slaves for hundreds of
years, some were captured, others came willingly, while most
were born into the lowly title.
Instinct told her to run, but fear and determination kept her
frozen in place. She locked the people she loved back into the
cage that was her heart and prepared to face her enemy.
Zo pressed her nose into the icy mud in a show of
submission. The drums ceased and the silence echoed in her
chest like a painful heartbeat.
The metal of short swords clinked against armor as men
approached. She peeked up to sight of a bald leader walking
ahead of a wall of six soldiers. His cold eyes seemed too big
for his head, protuberant like those of a frog.
“Get up,” the leader commanded.
Zo climbed to her feet but kept her gaze focused on the
man’s fur-lined boots.
“State your name and clan,” he ordered.
“I am from the family Shaw of the Kodiak Clan,” Zo said,
hoping her accent would pass. The Ram had raided one of the
Kodiak settlements a few weeks earlier. Many of the women
and children whose husbands had died in the raid would
come to the Gate, choosing to offer themselves as slaves over
watching their children starve to death.
The leader circled her. “Age?”
“Seventeen.”
A few of the guards in the line exchanged words. One
laughed under his breath.
“You’re too thin to claim the Kodiak as your clan. Your
jaw is more square than round.”
The sound of a young girl’s scream saved Zo from having
to answer.
“Let me go! You’re hurting me!” the girl cried.
Zo froze. It couldn’t be …
A guard dressed in full armor carried the kicking child up
the muddy hill and dropped her at the bald leader’s feet.
Zo’s whole body went rigid as her eight-year-old sister,
Tess, scrambled up to hug her. “I’m so sorry,” Tess cried. She
must have secretly followed them from the Allies, though how
she survived the dangerous journey unnoticed was beyond Zo.
“Tess, I thought I’d lost you,” Zo stammered. She hoped
her shock registered as relief instead of panic. “Don’t say a
word,” Zo whispered in her ear as they embraced.
“Who is this child?” the frog-eyed leader asked.
“She is my sister, sir. We were separated. She found me.”
“Clearly.” He circled the girls once more then reached out
and grabbed Zo by the throat, forcing her to the ground on her
back. His lips brushed her cheek as he spoke. “How do I know
you’re not a stinking Wolf? That you’re not feeding me some
story?” His breath reeked of stale cabbage and rotten sausage.
Zo’s heels dug small trenches in the mud as she struggled
against the hand tightening around her throat. Black dots
invaded her vision.
The leader smiled and licked his lips as if she were his next
meal. “We don’t allow Wolves through the Gate.” A string of
spittle escaped his lips and landed on her cheek. “Ever.” He
released his grip and Zo gasped for air.
Tess rushed to Zo’s side, her eyes wet with tears.
“With all of the clans mixing, it’s getting harder and harder
to sort the wheat from the tares. I can’t take any chances …
” He shrugged and nodded to his guard. The men moved in,
pulling the sisters apart. Tess let out a shrill cry. A guard struck
her tiny cheek.
“Please!” Zo fought against firm hands digging into her
arms. “I come from three generations of healers. My sister is
learning too. We beg the mercy of the Ram, and pledge our
lives to your service!”
The Gate Master held up a hand, and his men threw Zo to
the ground. His round, glassy eyes stayed fixed on her as he
grunted a soft command to one of his men. The soldier nodded,
bowed, and ran back through the Gate.
“A healer, you say?” The corner of his lip pulled up to
reveal rotting teeth as he smiled. “We’ll see about that.”
about-the-author
©NicholeV Photography, LLC 2008. http://actions.nicholeV.com. This work is registered and protected under US and international copyright laws. Any violation of this copyright will be diligently prosecuted.
©NicholeV Photography, LLC 2008. http://actions.nicholeV.com. This work is registered and protected under US and international copyright laws. Any violation of this copyright will be diligently prosecuted.[/caption]

With her degree in History and Secondary Education, Jennifer had every intention of teaching teens to love George Washington and appreciate the finer points of ancient battle stratagem. (Seriously, she’s obsessed with ancient warfare.) However, life had different plans in store when the writing began. As a proud member of Writers Cubed, and a co-founder of the Teen Author Boot Camp, she feels blessed to be able to fulfill both her ambition to work with teens as well as write Young Adult fiction.
Jennifer has three children who are experts at naming her characters, one loving, supportive husband, a dog with little-man syndrome, and three chickens (of whom she is secretly afraid).
Visit her online at jajenkins.com
Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest | Instagram

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

M9B Two for Thursday Book Blitz – The Looking Glass by Jessica Arnold and Of Breakable Things by A. Lynden Rolland with Giveaway #T4T


T4T-Banner

Welcome to this week’s Two for Thursday Book Blitz #T4T
presented by Month9books/Tantrum Books!
Today, we will be showcasing two titles that may tickle your fancy,
and we’ll share what readers have to say about these titles!
You just might find your next read!
This week, #T4T presents to you:
The Looking Glass by Jessica Arnold and
Of Breakable Things by A. Lynden Rolland
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

The Looking Glass
Find the diary, break the curse, step through The Looking Glass!
Fifteen-year-old Alice Montgomery wakes up in the lobby of the B&B where she has been vacationing with her family to a startling discovery: no one can see or hear her. The cheap desk lights have been replaced with gas lamps and the linoleum floor with hardwood and rich Oriental carpeting. Someone has replaced the artwork with eerie paintings of Elizabeth Blackwell, the insane actress and rumored witch who killed herself at the hotel in the 1880s. Alice watches from behind the looking glass where she is haunted by Elizabeth Blackwell. Trapped in the 19th-century version of the hotel, Alice must figure out a way to break Elizabeth’s curse—with the help of Elizabeth's old diary and Tony, the son of a ghost hunter who is investigating the haunted B&B—before she becomes the inn's next victim.
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WHAT READER’S ARE SAYING:
Curses, ghosts, betrayal and love. All elements to a perfect ghostly story..” – Jasmyn, Bitten by Romance
“I think one of the creepiest things about The Looking Glass was the way it made me feel so claustrophobic. It was similar to the way I felt when I read Stephen King's Under the Dome--trapped and a bit panicked.”Kelly, Reviewer
“It was so different and so beautifully written and detailed that I really could not put this story down and I felt as though I was there with Alice throughout the story.” – Melissa, Simplistic Reviews
about-the-author
Jessica Arnold
Jessica Arnold writes YA, codes ebooks, and is currently a graduate student in publishing at Emerson College in Boston. She spends most of her time in class or work or slogging through the homework swamp. If she has a spare moment, she’s always up for a round of Boggle. Given the opportunity, Jessica will pontificate at length on the virtues of the serial comma, when and where to use an en dash, and why the semicolon is the best punctuation mark pretty much ever.
Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
Of Breakable Things
A captivating debut about the fragility of life, love, and perspective.
When Chase dies tragically, Alex embraces her own mortality. What she didn’t expect was that she’d have to make a choice: forget the years of pain and suffering once and for all, or linger as a spirit and get another chance at life and love.
Alex doesn’t hesitate to choose; she’d follow Chase anywhere. But the spirit world is nothing like she expected, and Alex finds she's forced to fight for her life once more. For even in a world where secrets are buried much deeper than six feet under, a legacy can continue to haunt you—and in a place this dangerous, no one is resting in peace.
WHAT READER’S ARE SAYING:
“I am so in love with this story.”Linda, Lala Toadstone

“This is one book that I can see being turned into a film adaptation successfully!”Victoria, Escape into Pages
The concepts and worldbuilding are imaginative and fun--and so well written!--but it was the emotions and characters that really carry this from good to great for me.” – A.M. Supinger, Author
about-the-author
A. Lynden Rolland
A. Lynden Rolland was born and raised in Annapolis, Maryland, a picturesque town obsessed with boats and blue crabs. She has always been intrigued by the dramatic and the broken, compiling her eccentric tales of tragic characters in a weathered notebook she began to carry in grade school. She is a sports fanatic, a coffee addict, and a lover of Sauvignon Blanc, thunderstorms and autumn leaves. When she isn’t hunched behind a laptop at her local bookstore, she can be found chasing her two vivacious children. She now resides just outside Annapolis with her husband and young sons.

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A Midsummer's Eve's Dreaming~ My Dark Fairy Queen's Writing Contest Entry



My master is an odd sort. Yes, he’s a troll, but Mortalus is odd even for a troll. On this balmy midsummer’s eve he sent me on an errand just before midnight, much to my dismay.

“Out of bed, Pip! I need a jewel toad,” he said, dragging my covers off me.

“A jewel toad? What on earth?”

“By the lake. You shall see. Hurry.”

Mortalus pushed me out the door and shut it without another word. I sighed. Such was my lot in life, indentured servant to a barely-sane troll.

“Good summer’s eve to you, Pip,” whispered Nairy, hovering by my ear “What are you doing out at this hour? The fae will spirit you away, they will.” She giggled at her little joke, for she was one of them.

“Mortalus says he wants a jewel toad, whatever that is,” I said yawning and rubbing my eyes. “Maybe I’m dreaming?”

“Yes! That must be it” said Nairy. “Dreaming is always the best time.”

I listened in the darkness to hear the toads singing merrily with the crickets in the distance. With only the moonlight to find my way, I plodded along the path to the lake so calm it looked like a pool of stars. It was silly of me, I know, but I knelt on the shore and called out, “Jewel toad, come hither!”
Without warning, a pair of bulbous eyes poked out of the water right in front of me.

“What?” he croaked.

“Come home with me to meet my Master.”

“He will eat me!”

I considered it. It was a definite possibility, but I tried to reassure him.

“He only wishes to speak with you. You are wise in ways he is not.”

“Answer my riddle first.”

I nodded, hoping it wasn’t too difficult for my cobweb -congested mind.

“What can soar on wings, but has no heart? What can only be given, but never saved?”

I shook my head.

“It makes no sense.”

“Of course it does, Pip.” Nairy still hovered by my side the way she always did, her glinting green wings shining in the moonlight. And then I saw it in her eyes, the way she looked at me. Had it always been there? I hadn’t noticed it before, but now under a never ending galaxy of stars I could finally see.

“It’s love.”



Sunday, July 12, 2015

Writing #QuietYA



I happened across a new-ish hashtag today - #QuietYA - and it inspired this post. Inspired because I'm working on a manuscript, two actually, right now that I think qualify as #QuietYA. There's no vampires, no swearing, no love triangles, no flashy-flash. I've shopped them both a bit to agents and editors and each time they're read, they've been rejected. One agent who said it was really good writing, better than most of what comes across her desk, but no, she can't sell it.

Maybe its because my manuscripts aren't the biggest concept or a retelling of something everybody already knows. Those seem really hot these days, but I've never been one for retellings. What I write is #QuietYA. It's character-driven, emotional stuff and I get the feeling its not what big publishers think people want to read. And maybe it isn't what most people read, but there are readers out there who enjoy #QuietYA. I've met them. I'm one of them. And I'm ok with that. I kinda like being quiet sometimes.



I remember years ago when I first wanted to write YA, everything I saw marketed for teens was super gritty, serious stuff about anorexia or rape or suicide. (That was before the Twilight craze that brought fantasy back, which I'm actually really glad for.) I wanted to write for middle graders and teens, but it didn't seem like I wrote the kind of stuff that was being published. I spoke to a published author at an Idaho Writer's League conference about my fears. Was there any room for me in publishing?

I don't recall her exact words anymore, but as they say, I do remember how she made me feel. Her answer was, and it still is, yes, there is room in publishing for #QuietYA. There are readers who want quiet, poignant, thought provoking stories.  With that author's encouragement, I started to write the stories I'd always wanted to.

I still worry about marketability and I still fret that quiet stories are passed over far too often for the flashy titles. But I found my own writer's voice and wrote the stories I wanted to read. I'm happy with that. It's where I want to be. Peace~