where have i been?

hey everyone! after a straight month or so of not blogging, i’ve decided to come back and give it a try.

where have i been?

ever since school started back up, i’ve been busy with homework and studying. i’m taking three AP, or advanced placement, classes (english, calculus, and psychology) and three regular classes (spanish level 4, personal finance, and anatomy/physiology). the work load for each class has been a lot more than i expected, and i’ve been busy trying to maintain straight A’s. along with that, i have had lots of tennis practices and matches after school. to sum it up, i haven’t had time to read, let alone blog.

what’s new?

i haven’t been able to finish a book in quite a while. i believe the last book i read (and LOVED) was when we collided by emery lord. it easily became one of my favorite books of 2016. i am currently reading a court of mist and fury (still), harry potter and the goblet of fire, empire of storms, and heartless.

I BINGED SEASON ONE OF STRANGER THINGS AND I AM HOPELESSLY OBSESSED.

the show is incredible. if you haven’t seen it, please find time to watch it. if you’ve already seen it, did you like it? who is your favorite character? what are some theories you have for season two? have you seen the LA devotee music video featuring noah schnapp aka will byers?

that wraps up this post. sorry it is so short, and sorry i’ve been MIA lately. i’ll try to write up a couple more posts this weekend *if* i find the time.

-sophia

interview with author sophia whittemore!

hi everyone! *waves* today, i’ll be interviewing author sophia whittemore! sophia has a couple published books, some upcoming, and a few WIPs that she is going to be talking about!

1) tell us a bit about yourself, and share the link to your blog! also, feel free to link any other social media you have!

Author bio. Sophia Whittemore is a multiracial author with an Indonesian mother and a Minnesotan father. She penned THE FUNNYMAN during her sophomore year of high school at Benet Academy and published it as a senior. Her love for the English language manifested itself in eighth grade when she went to the Scripps National Spelling Bee and has continued with other languages such as Spanish and Indonesian. Her prior publications include “A Clock’s Work” in a Handersen
Publishing magazine, “Blind Man’s Bluff” in Parallel Ink, and winning awards in the Best Midwestern Writing competition for high school writers. She currently resides in Chicago, Illinois with her family and food- loving mini schnauzer called Tiger. Drawing on inspiration from her two cultural backgrounds, Sophia lives a life playing tennis, traveling, and writing about her dual life experiences through other characters in her works or on her blog.
Soph: I love Chicago! And tennis! That is awesome that you penned your first novel as a sophomore!

2) what are the title of your books that have been published? how about the upcoming ones? the WIPs? can you give a short summary of each?

The first of the Impetus Rising Series was titled “The FUNNYMAN”. The second coming out July 21st of 2016 is “Death’s Fool”. And the WIP is the final book in the series “Madcap”. Here’s the summary for the first book:
Do not call his name. Whatever you do, do not let the Impetus god Fear find you.
Too late for Diana. Kidnapped. Trapped in a beautiful world that kills. There’s no one she can turn to. Even her knight in shining armor is deadly.
Can Diana escape from a world where love ends in bloodshed, humans are pets, and your own shadow can kill you? Or will she remain a plaything of the Impetus gods…forever?
The second book follows the first where the Impetus must do battle against the mutations of Fear’s shadow-human hybrid army. And the final book follows the Apocalypse and the Impetus attempts to stop it.

3) how long have you been writing? how old were you when you started?

I’ve been writing since I learned how to write a story in third grade. (So forever basically) but serious, magazine related writing started in eight grade when I searched for submissions in magazines and competitions.

Soph: That’s crazy (and awesome) that you started so young!

4) do you have a quote from any of your books? why does it stand out to you?

“To love, to live, to feel so much that your world keeps spinning, faster and faster, in that wonderful, chaotic mess of humanity that you’d so hastily give up. Immortality is overrated. It is nothing but the ability to live through it all and not experience a single thing, to eat everything without tasting it at all.” Isak’s eyes shone with a desperate need. He wanted, more than anything it seemed, to be like me, when all I wanted was to be like him.”
― Sophia Whittemore, The Funnyman
This quote stood out for me because it was me speaking from the heart. For a second, I just became my characters and spoke as I would within that situation. And it was beautiful.
Soph: Oh, this is beautiful! You can really tell that this came from your heart!

5) what genre(s) do you categorize your books in?

Fantasy. Adventure. Romance. Urban fantasy. And action.

6) let’s hear about some characters- give us a few fun facts about each one! the characters can be from any work of yours!

Well, my character of Isaakios is an immortal god who is a god of comedy who lacks humor because of a dark past. My main character Diana is half Indian and I’m half Indonesian (so she’s sort of like me in that respect!) and the Impetus gods are based on a mix of multiple mythologies and spiritualities with concepts like universal power, immortality, and reincarnation.

Soph: Did someone say gods and mythologies? I NEED this book!

7) where do your books normally take place? does the location have any special meaning to you?

Location goes urban usually to a basic suburb. I grew up in a suburb so the almost boring feeling behind it lends itself to characters ready to go on a highly paced adventure!

8) who are some authors you look up to, if there are any, and why? have they inspired any part of your writing?

Neil Gaiman for sure and Stephen King. Their different pieces of advice on writing motivated me to keep trying even through the difficult rejections and writer’s block.

9) what can we look forward to in your upcoming books?

The characters will bring the battlefield to some new locations both worldwide and in the Impetus realms! Castles, dungeons, and bustling world marketplaces here we come!

Soph: YAY!

10) are there any events in real life that have impacted your stories? if so, how? 

My dad had cancer during my high school career and my mom had diabetes that same time. My characters felt forced when I tried to write life into them. I fell into a pitfall of not feeling good enough, powerless to write any life into these all powerful godly types.
Luckily writing also got me out of that funk and back into a healthy lifestyle.
Soph: I’m sorry to hear that. I hope all is well! And I’m glad writing helped you get out of the funk ❤

11) what are some books you grew up reading? if you had to choose, which would be your favorite?

Besides every single one of the books by my favorite authors, T.A. Barron and Tamora Pierce introduced me to strong female heroines who kicked butt and solved quests along the way. Go girls!
My favorite would be: The Immortal Lioness- Tamora Pierce

12) last but not least, sell us one of your upcoming books in five words! it can be any book you choose, since you have quite a few releasing in the near future!

The Impetus Rising Series: What happens when gods lie?

Soph: You’ve sold it to me. XD

Huge thank you to Sophia for taking the time to answer these questions and talk about her novels! I cannot wait to get my hands on one! (which do I even start with? they all sound amazing!)

the black season: novel discussion with nicole!

hey everyone! today, i’ll be interviewing nicole from a myriad of books! she is going to be giving us a little info on her WIP, currently titled The Black Season! i’ll also be leaving little notes/responses below her answers to the questions!

1) hi nicole! tell us a bit about yourself, and share the link to your blog! also, feel free to link us to any other social media you have!

I’m Nicole and I’m 27-years old. I’ve been married for 3 years. I’m a fur-parent to a 2-year-old Shih Tzu named Ollie. 🙂 I graduated college in 2011 with a BA in English with an emphasis in creative writing. I’ve been writing and reading since I was in elementary school but I never started taking it seriously until I was in college. I’ve always loved to do both but diving into the book community on Instagram, Twitter, and Goodreads has reawakened a deep love for all things books and writing. You can find me here:

Blog: amyriadofbooks.wordpress.com

Instagram: @_amyriadofbooks

Goodreads: amyriadofbooks

Twitter & Snapchat: wemapthestars

2) give us the title (if you have one) of your current WIP and a little summary/synopsis!

I’m actually working on two books but I’m actively working on one. I’m horrible at titles so the tentative title for my current WIP is The Black Season. It tells the story of Eirian, the daughter of a duke and relative of the king and queen, who gets caught up in a plot to overthrow the monarchy and get rid of the aristocracy. Her father, the duke of Ferula, wants nothing more than for her to marry well but when an extremist group targets her family and friends, Eirian knows she can no longer sit by idly. A string of harrowing events, including a revelation about her own heritage, cause Eirian to rethink her world and her role in it and she learns she has to take control of her own life lest she lose everything in it.

soph: wow. that is… wow. when can i get this book in my hands??

3) how long have you been working on your novel? when did you start writing it?

I’ve been working on the novel above for almost 3 years. In reality, it may be shorter than that because there are dry periods in my writing (I’m talking months without writing). I struggled with it a lot but I’m amazed how one simple decision to make the character choose something else has caused an explosion of writing. It makes me happy though!

soph: that is awesome! i wish i put that much time into writing! good for you, especially since it makes you happy!

4) do you have a favorite line from your novel?

Hm…a favorite line? It’s tough for me to pick something from my own work but… I do have some favorite parts, haha. It doesn’t seem like anything extra special but in my mind and the plans I have for my characters make this part fun:

He climbed on the horse and offered his hand to Eirian. She stared at it.

“I can ride alone,” she said.

“It’s best if we ride through the city like this. You can ride alone once we get close to the palace,” Damien said, his hand still extended. She didn’t take it and he suddenly laughed. “Does the thought make you uncomfortable, your ladyship?”

“Of course not!” she blurted out, perhaps too quickly. She took his hand and shrieked when he pulled her up in front of him. She let go on his hand and quickly tried to pull down the skirt of her dress. “I’m just not accustomed to riding with someone.”

“No worries, your ladyship. I think I can manage,” he said.

Eirian felt his breath on the back of her neck. It smelled like mint and Eirian was suddenly conscious of her lack of hygiene. She pursed her lips and winced at the pain. His body was warm against hers and she tried to push herself away from him without being obvious. She heard him chuckle low and under his breath. She didn’t want to dignify him with a look over her shoulder so she gripped the pommel of the saddle as the horse started forward.

soph: SWOOOON. is it bad that i don’t know much about these characters and already ship them?

5) in what genre would you categorize your WIP? are there any certain things that contribute to the genre? (ex: fantasy, because the novel includes magic)

I categorize my work as Young Adult fantasy. There’s magic but it’s only lightly explored. It will play a larger role as the story progresses.

6) let’s hear about some characters you’ve created- give us a few fun facts about each one!

So here’s a list of a few of the characters in my WIP.

Lady Eirian – Kindhearted, always wants to see the good in people, naïve (a bit of a character flaw), loves and cares fiercely. Her mother died when she was young and her father, the duke, isn’t the kindest man. She looks after the estate, meeting and working with the tenants on their land. She wants to make sure everyone is happy and there’s nothing to complain about but she struggles with the pressure her father places on her (his idea of “knowing her place in society”).

Declan, Duke of Ferula – Eirian’s father. Brash and cold. He loves his daughter but doesn’t know how to show it. He was devastated after his wife died and that has caused a break in his relationship with his daughter. What he considers “the best” for his daughter is for her to marry well. He’s always aware of social propriety and their place in society. First impressions and looks matter to him a great deal.

Damien Conley – tenant living on the duke’s land. His family has been here for years and years. He doesn’t appreciate what he views as “charity” that Eirian offers. He’s a hard worker and an overall good person but he has a distorted view of the nobility and monarchy due to past events in his life. He tries to be grateful but it sometimes comes off as sarcasm and discontent.

7) where does your novel take place? does the location have any special meaning to you?

My novel takes place in a fantasy world I created. It’s actually a tie-in with my other novel but that’ll be for later… Eirian lives in the city of Ferula. Her father is the duke of Ferula so he owns a great deal of land and the buildings on the land. The king and queen live in Readlyn, the capitol. There’s a major port city, Seleca, which plays a role in the story. They live on the Northern Islands, surrounded by a crystal blue sea. There’s magic but it’s limited to only those who were born with it in their blood (as my main character will soon discover) and their role in society is valued and prestigious as there are so few people with magical blood. There’s a societal hierarchy: king and queen, a slew of nobles, and then the working class. There’s the in between, like merchants and traders who make a great deal of money but don’t have a title to their name. I shaped the society after my love of Victorian & Edwardian English society so most of my stories involve kings and queens and the like.

soph: any victorian-era society immediately has me hooked! (victorian english society, victorian london society, etc)

8) who are some authors you look up to, if there are any, and why? have they/their writing inspired any part of you story?

Like I’ve said, I’ve always loved reading and writing. I read Tamora Pierce when I was younger and she greatly influenced the startup of my other WIP. Fantasy has always been my go-to genre because you can be pretty liberal with the world you create. Of course, there are always limitations thought. Some of my favorite authors include: Marie Lu, Marie Rutkoski, Maggie Stiefvater, Sarah J Maas, Jane Austen, Charlotte Brontë, and Virginia Woolf. If I could have a smidgen of their talent, I might feel a little better about myself, haha! My love for British royalty and the hierarchy of the 1700, 1800, and 1900s have influenced my writing, too.

soph: i LOVE sarah j maas, marie lu, and marie rutkoski! still want/need to read stiefvater, bronte, austen, and woolf!

9) has any part of this novel been published? (ex. on wattpad) if not do you plan on publishing it someday?

I haven’t published any part of this novel. I don’t have a Wattpad and don’t plan to get one. I’ll just try to publish the old-fashioned way, haha. My goal is to have the 2nd draft finished in the next couple of months, have some beta readers, and then do a large editing overhaul. I’m hoping for a final version by the beginning of next year!

soph: yay! if you ever need me to beta, i would totally do it! 😉

10) are there any events from your life that have impacted the novel? if so, how? did it affect the writing, plot, mood, etc?

Since this is fantasy there isn’t much from my own life that has greatly impacted the work of the novel unless you count my love for fantasy novels. ❤ I think I just try to create characters that I aspire to be (despite the character flaws). As I said before, my love for late 1800s and early 1900s British society has influenced my writing. I try to capture some of the emotions and major events during the time period, working them for my own plot use. I’ve been fascinated with the large divide between royalty and working class, especially in a time when the working class didn’t have much of a voice.

soph: i love the fact that your characters are who you aspire to be! that is definitely a very unique way to create characters, i love it!

11) last but not least- sell us your novel in 5 words!

5 words?! Ah! Um… Fantasy, magic, romance, royalty, explosions! Or something like that… 😉

HUGE thank you to nicole for volunteering to do this interview/discussion! i am extremely excited to read your novel when it is published (and trust me, this will be published!) and hopefully learn even more about it soon!

twenty one pilots book tag!

if you didn’t already know, i LOVE doing book tags so its no surprise that i found yet another to do. but guess what? its a TWENTY ONE PILOTS BOOK TAG. i repeat: TWENTY ONE PILOTS. i love them and their music so much! (any other TOP fans out there? *waves*)

**i found this amazing twenty one pilots book tag from momo @ the booktube girl, who also happens to be the creator of this tag!

without further ado, lets get started!

stressed out: name a popular book or series that everyone is reading you’re stressing to get to

heroes-of-olympus

HEROES OF OLYMPUS, by rick riordan! i recently finished percy jackson and the olympians and i am SO READY for more rick riordan books because the PJO series was so amazing. everyone tells me that the characters in HOO are amazing, and some even like this series better than PJO… i guess i’ll have to see what i think!

car radio: name a book that contained issues you connected to on a personal level

my-lady-jane_gallery_large

this isn’t really a serious issue, but i really felt like i could connect to jane from MY LADY JANE because like her, i constantly have people telling me that i read too much and my time could be better spent elsewhere. JUST LEAVE ME AND MY BOOKS ALONE.

ride: name a book that you never wanted to end

harry-potter-series201

harry potter, of course! i’m glad we still have CURSED CHILD and FANTASTIC BEASTS to look forward to, but it isn’t the same. what i really want (and i’m sure everyone else does, too) is a series on the marauders and their time at hogwarts. how cool would that be??

holding onto you: what is a book or series that you have loved since your childhood?

the-hunger-game-series-650x321

to be completely honest, i wasn’t much of a reader until i was 11. my favorite series at that time was the hunger games, so does that count? i also read divergent (didn’t like) and lots of john green books (they were meh) but THG is definitely my favorite.

tear in my heart: name a book that gave you all of the emotions

champion.indd

can i name more than one? because there are a LOT. queen of shadows, harry potter and the deathly hallows, clockwork princess, percy jackson and the last olympian. but the one book i love that was really emotional was CHAMPION, by marie lu. if you’ve read it… well, you know why i chose it.

fairly local: what is your favorite underground book or series?

(i *think* this means a series that never gets talked about?) if so, then for me it would have to be the between the lines/off the page duology! i absolutely LOVED these books, but i have yet to find another person who has read them! i HIGHLY recommend this duology!

between-the-lines_510    off-the-page-by-jodi-picoult

ode to sleep: what is a book that is full of twists and turns that kept you on the edge of your seat?

caraval-stephanie-garber   love-that-split-the-world-emily-henry

i have two: CARAVAL by stephanie garner, and THE LOVE THAT SPLIT THE WORLD by emily henry. i’m only gonna say one thing: read these books! they’re incredible. trust me, you’ll love them.

goner: what is a book character you fell in love with from the very beginning?

Screen Shot 2016-08-12 at 3.28.27 PMi, again, have two: william herondale and james carstairs. from the moment i read about them (did anyone else start singing BURN at the beginning of that sentence?) i knew i was going to love them. they have such contrasting personalities, but that is exactly what makes me love them SO MUCH. parabatai goals.

migraine: name a book that gave you a headache to read?

91vouob3dtl-_sl1500_

i really wanted to like THESE BROKEN STARS by amie kaufman and meagan spooner, but i guess it just wasn’t for me. i thought it dragged a lot in the middle, and the ending was rushed. it took me ages to read, i couldn’t understand anything towards the end, and it bothered me.

we don’t believe whats on tv: what is a book or series that you love that most people seem to hate?

the-maze-runner-trilogy   red_queen_book_cover_a_p

THE MAZE RUNNER by james dashner and RED QUEEN by victoria aveyard! i actually love both of these series, but the majority of the book community seems to think differently. that being said, i am incredibly excited for THE FEVER CODE (out september 27th) and KING’S CAGE (out february 7th).

my unannounced hiatus + why i’ve been gone

hey everyone! its been awhile since i’ve posted anything new on here, and this post is pretty much gonna sum up why. i’m sorry that i’ve been gone awhile without any explanation as to where i’ve been and what has been going on.

i wasn’t really planning on a hiatus. it just happened. i thought that i would be posting every few days, like i usually do. then, my summer got really busy.

  1. vacation: i went on vacation in hilton head for a week earlier in july, and forgot my laptop. *smacks self on forehead* i was going to try posting via my phone, but it was too difficult and i thought it would mess up the layout of my posts.
  2. camp: i went to a wilson collegiate tennis camp for 5 days. we played 6-8 hours of tennis each day, then had night activities. i barely even had time to eat, let alone blog. i didn’t even read (and that was awful).
  3. school work: i finally started my summer work, and it is taking longer than i thought. i had 3 spanish assignments, 2 (LONG) AP chemistry assignments, reading + writing for AP english, and 6 modules for AP psychology. i’ve only finished spanish, and i’m about halfway through chemistry, so i apologize in advance if there are any more unannounced hiatuses.
  4. tennis: for most of june and july, i played tennis monday through friday every week. now, monday through wednesday from 8-12 i have tennis tryouts for my school team and i’m super stressed because a) most of the new freshman trying out are really good, b) i have shin splints and a hip problem, and c) my favorite coach (who has been my coach for two years) left to be the head coach for another school. plus, after tryouts, i’ll have practice and matches every week until the end of september.
  5. girl meets world & once upon a time: i’ve finally caught up with the only two tv shows i follow and MY GOODNESS they’re good. the GMW love triangle FINALLY got solved but i think the show is getting cancelled after this season and if it does i really don’t know what i’m gonna do because things just got intense and you can’t just leave people with that bad of a cliffhanger. as for once upon a time, i’m making my way through season four and it is one of my favorite seasons (season 3 was really good ngl)

so, those are the main reasons i haven’t posted in forever and why i may disappear randomly throughout the year. i’m going to try to participate in arc august, so hopefully i can get some reading & reviewing done before summer is over. also, random note: if any of you know of some fun book tags, please let me know! i LOVE posting book tags, and think they’re super fun! so, um, yea. i *hope* to see you soon & to post more often!

-soph

discussing your novel: maha!

1) tell us a bit about yourself, and share the link to your blog! also, feel free to any other social media you have!

hello, my name is maha, i’m fifteen and i blog over at younicorn reads! i’m also on instagram, twitter and tumblr.

2) give us the title (if you have one) of your current WIP and a little summary/synopsis!

i currently do not have a title for my wip, but here’s a little summary: Lila’s life isn’t as different as the life of other teenagers her age. School is taking over her life, and all she does to fix it is procrastinate by watching her favorite shows and being on her phone all the time. She also have a couple of friends she always trusted. but what happens when these friends betray her? Lila gets more lonely than ever. then she meets Amal and Daniel, and that’s when Lila starts questioning herself.

3) how long have you been working on your novel? when did you start writing it?

umm, i started not long ago. i only wrote about two chapters, but i’m hoping to write MUCH more in July’s Camp NaNoWriMo.

4) do you have any favorite line from your WIP that you’ve written?

yes i have one: “And that’s the moment I realize: Friendships are only made to break your heart.”

(SOPH) Oooh! VERY interesting stance on friendship!

5) what genre would you categorize your WIP in? are there any certain things that contribute to the genre? (ex: fantasy, because it has magic.)

i would definitely categorize my wip as a young adult contemporary, because i think it has all the elements that contribute to that genre.

6) let’s hear about some characters you’ve created -give us a few fun facts about each one!

okay so here are some fun facts about my characters (aka my babies): Lila, the main character is asian and is addicted to her smartphone and to ice-cream, is lazy, and has sweating problems. Daniel (or Dan) is latino and loves dogs to death. Amal is arab and muslim, overweight, has a brown skin, and is unsecure of her body. Izel, Dan’s sister, is caring even though she’s a little rude sometimes, and she loves Oreos.

(SOPH) I LOVE THEM ALREADY. perfectly imperfect!

7) where does your novel take place? does the location have any special meaning to you?

my novel might be taking place in Florida, but i have to do a lot of research for all the streets and places (which i will do eventually).

(SOPH) Good choice! I love Florida! We vacation there every year.

8) who are some authors you look up to, if there are any, and why? have they inspired any part of your story?

some of the authors i look up to are Morgan Matson and Jenny Han. Matson’s book, SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE, is a major inspiration for me because it discusses friendship and stepping out of your comfort zone. and Han’s book, TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE has inspired me to talk more about family in my wip.

(SOPH) That’s awesome! I still need to read those books…

9) has any part of this novel been published? wattpad, or any other platforms? if not, do you plan on publishing it some day?

no part from this wip is published, and i’m not sure if i should publish it on wattpad. i’m still thinking about it, but i have to write a first draft first.

(SOPH) *Whispers* publish!

10) are there any events that happened in your life that have impacted the novel? if so, how? did it affect the writing, plot, mood, etc?

i think basically my whole life had an impact on this novel, because i, myself, am still learning how to be happy with what i have, and how to step out of my comfort zone.

11) finally, sell your novel to us in five words!

umm, maybe FLUFFINESS, FRIENDSHIPS, FAMILY, ICE-CREAM and DOGS.

(SOPH) Yep. You have me sold.

Huge thank you to Maha for answering these questions and telling us all about her current WIP! This sounds like a contemporary I’d like to read!

 

how to say goodbye: novel discussion with elizabeth!

1) tell us a bit about yourself, and share the link to your blog! also, feel free to link us to any other social media you have!

I’m Elizabeth. Everyone calls me Lizzi. I’m 19, and have been blogging since 2011. I would share my first blog, but it’s super cringe-worthy and I’m not ready for that. I currently blog at xbelleofthebooks.com, and am on Twitter as @dizzylizzii!

2) give us the title (if you have one) of your current WIP and a little summary/synopsis!

My WIP is called How To Say Goodbye. It’s a New Adult contemporary, about a girl who lost her boyfriend to suicide and is learning to cope with it while working at a local mustang rescue. She is paired with a troubled horse who seems to just “get” her. They bond, and heal together. There’s also a little romance, between flashbacks and a new budding romance that springs up at the Stable where my MC works.

(SOPH) I LOVE the idea of the human/horse bond! That is something I haven’t read about! XD

3) how long have you been working on your novel? when did you start writing it?

I’ve been working on HTSGB for about 6 months, and am in the process of editing, rewriting certain parts, and getting it ready for my beta reader.

4) do you have a favorite line from your novel?

That’s a tough one! I definitely have a favorite scene, but I don’t think I can narrow it down to one line! I think I’ll go with this though: “With the wind against my face, my hair whipping all over the place, I felt like I was flying. For the first time since Kai died, I felt free, and I didn’t want to let that go”.

5) in what genre would you categorize your WIP? are there any certain things that contribute to the genre? (ex: fantasy, because the novel includes magic)

I’d definitely categorize it as contemporary, although I’m playing around with a kind of mystical, mysterious theme. It’s not definitive, but we will see where the editing takes me.

(SOPH) contemporary AND mystical/mysterious? ooooh…  i like it!

6) let’s hear about some characters you’ve created- give us a few fun facts about each one!

There are 3 characters that I’ll share a little bit about with you today. We have Huntley, Ino, and Lily.
Huntley is the main protagonist. She’s 20 years old, blonde, and really shy. She’s an introvert, but she enjoys the company of a few people, including her best friend Lily.

Lily is Huntley’s best friend since 8th grade. She’s basically the opposite of Huntley, and they really balance each other out. Lily is fiercely loyal, and has been taking care of Huntley since her boyfriend died. Spending more time focusing on Huntley than herself.

Ino is a 4 year old mustang gelding rescue at Seaside Stables where Huntley was sent to work as part of her therapy. He’s a temperamental horse, with a lot of trust issues. He latches on to Huntley as soon as he sees her though, and they form a really unique bond that nothing can break.

7) where does your novel take place? does the location have any special meaning to you?

My novel takes place in a very small city on Oahu Hawaii. I don’t really know what made me choose that location to be honest. I basically just started writing, and it ended up being on the islands.

8) who are some authors you look up to, if there are any, and why? have they/their writing inspired any part of you story?

Lauren DeStefano, Kami Garcia, and Deb Caletti are three of my favorite authors. I can’t say that any of them have directly influenced this story in particular, but I do draw inspiration from their work, using it to motivate me to do my best on this novel.

9) has any part of this novel been published? (ex. on wattpad) if not do you plan on publishing it someday?

This novel is completely unpublished, though I do have plans to submit it to SwoonReads and see if they pick it up. If not, I plan on self-publishing it as an ebook and limited edition paperback.

(SOPH) I really hope SwoonReads picks it up! I’ll be buying it when they do 😉

10) are there any events from your life that have impacted the novel? if so, how? did it affect the writing, plot, mood, etc?

Every girl has a first love, and essentially, a first heartbreak. I was pretty torn apart by my first heartbreak, although it wasn’t the typical “breakup” that did the deed. My experience has definitely influenced the mood of the story, but the experience that Huntley is going through is completely different than mine.

11) last but not least- sell us your novel in 5 words!

It’s six words, if you include “and”, but…. Unbreakable bonds. Love, heartbreak, and horses.

(SOPH) you had me at unbreakable bonds.

Thank you, Elizabeth, for telling us all about your WIP! It sounds like its gonna be a super cool and unique read!

I hope you guys enjoy these interviews about bloggers and their WIPs! I have about 4 more coming, so stay tuned! 😀

review: my lady jane, by jodi meadows, brodi ashton, and cynthia hand

MY LADY JANE
authors: cynthia hand, brodi ashton, jodi meadows
genre: historical fiction, fantasy, YA, retellings
pub date: june 7, 2016
publisher: harperteen
pages: 491
source: purchased

Edward (long live the king) is the King of England. He’s also dying, which is inconvenient, as he’s only sixteen and he’d much rather be planning for his first kiss than considering who will inherit his crown…

Jane (reads too many books) is Edward’s cousin, and far more interested in books than romance. Unfortunately for Jane, Edward has arranged to marry her off to secure the line of succession. And there’s something a little odd about her intended…

Gifford (call him G) is a horse. That is, he’s an Eðian (eth-y-un, for the uninitiated). Every day at dawn he becomes a noble chestnut steed—but then he wakes at dusk with a mouthful of hay. It’s all very undignified.

The plot thickens as Edward, Jane, and G are drawn into a dangerous conspiracy. With the fate of the kingdom at stake, our heroes will have to engage in some conspiring of their own. But can they pull off their plan before it’s off with their heads?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

i’d like to give a special shoutout to these wonderful authors for 1) writing a beautiful historical fiction novel that i adored, and 2) HAVING THE MAIN CHARACTER BE A REDHEAD. #gingerpride

going into this book, i was a little unsure about whether or not i was gonna like it. i’m not huge on the historical fiction genre. after hearing other bloggers rave about how good this was, i decided to pick it up and try it. well, whaddaya know? my lady jane ended up being one of my all time favorite books. lesson learned: TRY NEW THINGS.

obviously, there are a ton of things i loved about this book, but most of all, the characters. jane, edward, gifford, ALL OF THEM. they each had such unique traits that i couldn’t help but love. jane is a massive bookworm, edward is a little cinnamon roll who just wants to experience his first kiss before he dies, and gifford is a horse. you’ll understand when you’ve read the book.

the thing that really piqued my interest was the fact that some of the characters were edians, also known as people who can take on their human form as well as an animal form. BUT you had to learn to control it so that you didn’t just go switching forms every 10 minutes. because, you know. that’d be awkward. in many books i read, it seems like the characters can perfect their abilities within seconds, and that doesn’t seem lifelike. it isn’t as if i could pick up a tennis racket and be as good as serena williams the next day. these characters (not gonna say who bc spoilers) had to try and try and try again to control their edian form, and i appreciated the realistic situation they were put into! plus, edians are cool. i wanna be one! 

as you can tell by my ranting/fangirling review of this book so far, there are SO MANY things i loved about it. here’s another: the king (royalty ofc) wasn’t a snob. sometimes authors purposely make the royalty snobbish and spoiled, but edward is everything but that. like i said earlier, he is a sweet little cinnamon roll that deserves a happy life. 2016 has been the year for books about kings and queens, but my lady jane is by far my favorite.

THE HUMOR IN THIS BOOK. THE HORSE JOKES. “was that a horse joke?” “neigh.” i kid you not, if a book and its characters have any sort of humor within them, i am immediately in love with it/him/her. who doesn’t love doing that stupid blow-air-out-of-your-nose-instead-of-actually-laughing thing when you read something funny? and don’t act like you don’t know what i’m talking about. we all do it.

different POVs are another thing i really enjoy in books. it is nice to be able to see situations from everyone’s POV, and not just the POV of the main character. in MLJ, we get to read from edward, jane, and gifford’s POV. there are things some characters know that others don’t. the suspense! this way, the puzzle pieces don’t all come together at once. it slowly unravels as the story goes on.

this wraps up my review for my lady jane! i give it 10/5 stars, because 5 isn’t enough. i only have one question for you: if you were an edian, what animal form would you take? i would be an owl!

the musical book tag!

thank you taylor @ tayloramartin for tagging me to do the musical book tag! i’m just gonna jump right into it:

wicked: favorite fictional friendship

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anyone from tlc, there are so many to choose from! but i think i have to go with cinder and thorne from the lunar chronicles, because they’re pretty much friend goals. and thorne is hilarious! they’re my brotp for life.

sweeny todd: favorite villain

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the darkling, without a doubt! i couldn’t help but actually fall in love with this villain rather than not liking him. he was a special kind of villain, in my opinion. he wasn’t completely evil, if that makes sense. he still had a bit of good in him.

phantom of the opera: favorite love triangle

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obviously, the only love triangle that actually worked. will, jem, and tessa from the infernal devices! you really can’t choose wessa or jessa, so herongraystairs it is! these three are pretty much my life and i’ve read the trilogy more times than any other book i’ve read. it never gets old.

the lion king: favorite sidekick

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kashmir from the girl from everywhere! i totally shipped him and nix so hard, but they haven’t passed the friend zone quite yet. (but i’m REALLY hoping that they will!) (or maybe they did and i’m just really bad at recalling stuff that happened in the book?)

grease: least favorite ending

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allegiant. i don’t know if this counts since i didn’t actually finish the book, but i know what happens. i quit reading halfway through (the bookmark is still in the book from 2012) because it got so boring.

matilda – the musical: favorite movie adaptation

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there are so many! harry potter, the hunger games, the maze runner, the 5th wave! but i have to say, maze runner & scorch trials are probably my favorites. they’re the only movies that can still be good without directly following the books.

les miserables: favorite death in a book (SPOILERS)

bellatrix! I CHEERED WHEN SHE DIED. especially the way it happened! “not my daughter you…” you get the point.

this tag was so fun! i now tag the following people, if they haven’t already done it!

jill @ abooknerdreads

karleigh @ readbykarleigh

ali @ arcticbooks

 

 

six months & where i am now

today is my six month blogoversary! i cannot believe how fast the time has gone!

quick note – i switched from blogger to wordpress today! i thought my blog needed refreshing and needed a better setup so here i am! i titled this post “six months & where i am now” because i’m writing this to tell you about my blogging journey so far. i know, super cheesy, but just keep reading.

i started blogging on december 23rd, 2015, and i like to think that i’ve come pretty far. do i have a lot of followers on here? no. how about instagram or twitter? a decent amount. but have i made new friends? have i come to love the book community? you bet i have.

while some people like to think that blog stats are everything, i believe that how far you come depends on what makes you happy, such as communicating with other booklovers, or that feeling of satisfaction when your bookstagram feed is just how you want it. (i brought this up specifically because i really am proud of how far my feed has come)

the book community is one of the best things that has happened to me. i only have about two friends in real life who actually enjoy reading, and every so often they get annoyed with my constant ranting and fangirling. but the book community? they understand me. we all get feels from books, we love to shout to the world “READ THIS BOOK!” and we love to cry over fictional characters because we know they’ll never be real.

since i can’t really put it into paragraphs, here are six things i am thankful for, six things i have learned through blogging, and of course, six book recommendations!

i’m thankful for…

bookstagram – i made my bookstagram before i even started blogging. it is my favorite social media platform and i love taking pictures and filtering them to make my feed look good!

ya diversity – in case you didn’t know, this is the book club i am a part of, along with jade (metamorphicbooks), sky (hello.books365), alexis (beyondthepagesblog), and ale (aleteration). each month, we choose a diverse book to read! (hence the name ya DIVERSITY)

book conventions – bookcon was one of the best experiences of my life. you can read more about my trip here.

harry potter – did you really think that this wouldn’t be on the list? unfortunately, i hadn’t created a blog until after i read these books. they changed my life and i highly doubt there will ever be a time where they’re no longer my favorite series .

twitter – i have connected with so many other book nerds via twitter, and i can’t begin to express how grateful i am that i met you all. there are too many to name, but you know who you are!

the book community – if you are ever considering joining the book community, DO IT. it is full of the most incredible, sweetest, book-crazy people you will ever meet.

since i started blogging, i have learned…

i can post whatever i want. i shouldn’t let other people decide what i can and can’t post.

blogging is extremely time consuming, but totally worth it.

interact with other bloggers! commenting on other blogs is a great way to find new people!

book tags are LOTS of fun!

you can blog about things other than books (which i’ll be doing soon, so stay tuned!)

don’t compare you blog to others just because so-and-so’s blog has better stats. your blog is who you are, and you should’t let anyone change that!

six book recommendations!

the love that split the world / emily henry

my lady jane / jodi meadows, brodi ashton, cynthia hand

the girl from everywhere / heidi heilig

between the lines-off the page duology / jodi picoult & samantha van leer

caraval / stephanie garber (hasn’t been released yet, but trust me, you won’t wanna miss this when it hits shelves january 2017!)

carry on / rainbow rowell

this wraps up my six month blogoversary post! how long have you been blogging. and what is your favorite part about it?