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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday (88)- Ten Underrated/Hidden Gem Books I've Read In The Past Year Or So



Hi thanks for stopping by!!! And welcome to my Top 10 Tuesday post! 

Thanks to the lovely ladies at The Broke And The Bookish for creating this weekly meme!

Here's this week's topic.

January 17:  Ten Underrated/Hidden Gem Books I've Read In The Past Year Or So 

Lately I've been reading some more Indie Authors and I've found some amazing books so they will definitely be on this list. I've also been reading more adult fantasy so I will add those too.

I'll link to their goodreads pages so you can see their books. And if you want to buy them click on the book covers to be taken to Amazon!


1.  THE AIR AWAKENS Series by Elise Kova. You all know I love a good fantasy series and I binge read this series in 5 days! It was freaking awesome! And the best part is the eBook box set  (that's all 5 books!) is only $9.99 on Amazon and free for Kindle Unlimited Users!







2. IF THE SHOE FITS by Shirley McCoy. Yes I know that cover is horrible but don't let that fool you! This is an awesome adult re-imagining of the Cinderella story except of focuses more on the step-sisters and their love lives which gets pretty steamy! Loved this one!








3. THE BIRD AND THE SWORD by Amy Harmon. Another indie fantasy that was fantastic! It's a stand alone but I fell in love with this world and characters that I'd really like to read more!




4. THE AFFILIATE by K.A. Linde. I wouldn't have picked this one up but my friend Damaris from Good Choice Reading kept saying how awesome it was. So when it went on a .99 kindle sale I grabbed it, devoured it, then was dying to get book 2! It's like The Selection Books but with magic and better IMO.




5. THE WINTER KING by C.L. Wilson. Another amazing adult high fantasy! I can't wait for the rest of the series!






6.  A DANCE OF DRAGONS Series by Kaitlyn Davis. Another indie high fantasy series! I'm reading this one right now and loving it! And the best part is you can get the starter bundle for free! But the complete eBook set (3 books plus the 4 novellas) is only $9.99 so I got that. I love her writing so much after I finish this I plan to read her other series 




7. THE NINE KINGDOMS Series by Lynn Kurland. I recently read the first 3 books and they were awesome! I'm not sure why they were marketed for the adult audience as they clearly have the crossover appeal like Maria V. Snyder's series.




8. UNKNOWN by Wendy Higgins. This is Wendy's first foray into New Adult and I'm so glad she didn't go the contemporary route. Instead we get a sci-fi story with a kick ass chick and romantic tension so thick you could cut it with a knife! I loved every page!




9. A PROMISE OF FIRE by Amanda Bouchet. I freaking loved this adult fantasy! It's a great story and very sexy!






10. THE ARCHITECT OF SONG by A.G. Howard. I know A.G. is a pretty big author but this is her first self published work and I personally think it's a favorite out of all her books! It's a historical Gothic New Adult and in typical A.G. Howard style the writing is beautiful and magical and romantic!






So what about you? What are some underrayed/hidden gems that you have read? And check back next week for my Ten.... there's no topic yet so I guess we'll have to wait and see!

Hugs,
Jaime



Release Day Celebration- DAMAGED GOODS by Jennifer Bardsley & A Giveaway!


I am so excited that DAMAGED GOODS by Jennifer Bardsley releases today and that I get to share the news!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Jennifer Bardsley, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a Perfectly Posh, Posh To Meet You Set ($20 value), US Only courtesy of Month9Books. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.




About The Book:

Title: DAMAGED GOODS (Blank Slate #2)
Author: Jennifer Bardsley
Pub. Date: January 17, 2017
Publisher: Month9Books
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, eBook
Pages: 300
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | TBD

Blanca has everything she ever wanted, a hot boyfriend named Seth and the loving support of her foster father, Cal. She’s finally escaped the abusive control of her birth father, Barbelo Nemo, and her tortured childhood at Tabula Rasa School.

But the scars of Blanca’s Vestal upbringing run deep, especially when the FBI start asking questions. Blanca feels abandoned by Seth who is hunting for Lilith, Blanca’s only blood relative. The Defectos, a support group of Vestal-Rejects, offer Blanca comfort instead.

While the Vestal order crumbles, Chinese rivals called the Guardians rise to power and wrest control of important Tabula Rasa contacts. Now Blanca’s life is in peril once more, and this time, Blanca struggles to recognize friend from foe.


Title: GENESIS GIRL (Blank Slate #1)
Author: Jennifer Bardsley
Pub. Date: June 14, 2016
Publisher: Month9Books
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, eBook
Pages: 280

Eighteen-year-old Blanca has lived a sheltered life. Her entire childhood has been spent at Tabula Rasa School where she’s been protected from the Internet. 

Blanca has never been online and doesn’t even know how to text. Her lack of a virtual footprint makes her extremely valuable, and upon graduation, Blanca and those like her are sold to the highest bidders.

Blanca is purchased by Cal McNeal, who uses her to achieve personal gain. But the McNeals are soon horrified by just how obedient and non-defiant Blanca is. All those mind-numbing years locked away from society have made her mind almost impenetrable. 

By the time Blanca is ready to think for herself, she is trapped. Her only chance of escape is to go online. 



Excerpt

I look to where he points, and the flash of thumb-cameras blinds me. Vestals must never have their pictures taken by random people. That privilege belongs to the companies that purchase them and market a Vestal’s privacy one advertisement at a time. I reach my arms out by instinct, to protect my face from the public. “I’m fine with it,” I lie, pulling my hands down. “But we better leave now or we’ll be late to the restaurant.”

“My dad can wait a few minutes.” Seth scoops me in his arms.

“Blanca!” one of the spectators calls. “And Veritas Rex! Is that really you?”

Seth holds up his hand and wiggles his finger-chips. “The one and only!” Then he dips me back for a kiss.

I stiffen like cardboard. “Stop it,” I mumble, trying not to squirm. All I can think about is the cameras, my face flashed worldwide and weirdoes slobbering over my private moment with Seth. 

“We’ve got to go or we’ll be late.”

Seth kisses my nose. “I didn’t know you were so punctual.”

“Yes.” I pull myself out of his grasp. “Cal’s waiting.” The sooner I put my helmet on and get back on my motorcycle, the better.

“Blanca,” a man calls as we ride away. “I love you! I’ve watched you all year!”


Underneath my jacket, I shiver. The fame that surrounds me is chilling.

About Jennifer: 
Jennifer Bardsley writes the parenting column “I Brake for Moms” for the Sunday edition of The Everett Daily HeraldShe also blogs at Teaching My Baby to Read with the mission of sparking a national debate on the important roll parents play in education. Jennifer is a graduate of Stanford University and a member of SCBWI. She lives with her husband and two children in Edmonds, WA.
GENESIS GIRL will release in 2016 and is about an 18 year-old girl whose lack of a virtual footprint makes her so valuable that she is auctioned off to the highest bidder, the sequel  will come out in 2017. Jennifer is represented by Liza Fleissig of the Liza Royce Literary AgencyLLC.

Follow the Jennifer on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Goodreads.





Giveaway Details:
(1) winner will receive a Perfectly Posh, Posh To Meet You Set ($20 value), US Only.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, January 13, 2017

Blog Tour- HEARTSTONE by Elle Katharine White An Interview & Giveaway!


I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the blog tour for HEARTSTONE by Elle Katharine White! I loved this freaking awesome historical fantasy re-imagining of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE! I have an interview with Elle to share with you today! And make sure to enter the awesome giveaway for a chance to win the book!!


Haven't heard of HEARTSTONE? Check it out!

Title: HEARTSTONE
Author: Elle Katharine White
Pub. Date: January 17, 2017
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Pages: 352
Formats: Paperback eBook
A debut historical fantasy that recasts Jane Austen’s beloved Pride & Prejudice in an imaginative world of wyverns, dragons, and the warriors who fight alongside them against the monsters that threaten the kingdom: gryphons, direwolves, lamias, banshees, and lindworms.

They say a Rider in possession of a good blade must be in want of a monster to slay—and Merybourne Manor has plenty of monsters.

Passionate, headstrong Aliza Bentaine knows this all too well; she’s already lost one sister to the invading gryphons. So when Lord Merybourne hires a band of Riders to hunt down the horde, Aliza is relieved her home will soon be safe again.

Her relief is short-lived. With the arrival of the haughty and handsome dragonrider, Alastair Daired, Aliza expects a battle; what she doesn’t expect is a romantic clash of wills, pitting words and wit against the pride of an ancient house. Nor does she anticipate the mystery that follows them from Merybourne Manor, its roots running deep as the foundations of the kingdom itself, where something old and dreadful slumbers . . . something far more sinister than gryphons.

It’s a war Aliza is ill-prepared to wage, on a battlefield she’s never known before: one spanning kingdoms, class lines, and the curious nature of her own heart.

Elle Katharine White infuses elements of Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic, crafting a modern epic fantasy that conjures a familiar yet wondrously unique new world.


Now on to the interview!

Hi Elle! First I want to say welcome to Two Chicks on Books! HEARTSTONE was absolutely fantastic and I can’t wait for everyone to read it! And am so happy that you could stop by for a visit!

For the readers: Can you tell us a little bit about HEARTSTONE and the characters?

Thanks for having me! HEARTSTONE is a reimagining of Pride and Prejudice in an epic fantasy world where dragons are commonplace, monsters run amok, and the gentry have traded in their cravats and petticoats for hauberks and swords. Darcy is Alastair Daired, heir to a long line of dragon-riding monster-hunters and professional grouch. Elizabeth is Aliza Bentaine, a healer and artist who doesn’t like the sight of blood and whose curiosity often gets her into trouble. Needless to say they do not hit it off well . . . at first.

Is this a standalone or a series? And if it’s a series do you have a title for book 2 yet? And if it’s a standalone what are you working on next? Also I would love to see a reimagining of Persuasion set in this world ;)

Right now HEARTSTONE is a standalone, but who knows? We may see more adventures in Arle in the future. In the meantime I’m working on a series of cyberpunk novels filled with ALL my favorite things: augmented transhuman drama, corporate espionage, complicated sibling dynamics, and GIRL POWER.  

Were any of the characters in the book inspired by people from your real life?

Yep. Mari, the bookish Bentaine sister, is teenaged-me. I was always the one to bring a book to the party and hoped no one noticed me in the corner.

Who was your favorite character to write? What about your least favorite?

I loved writing the hobgoblins and creature characters; Tobble the Hobgoblin is my favorite. I could hear his voice in my head every time he entered a scene, which made his dialogue easy to write. Charis Brysney, my reimagined Caroline Bingley, was the hardest, as her voice had to walk the tricky line between haughty, aloof, and endearing. 

What is your favorite passage/scene in HEARTSTONE?

The first scene between Daired, Aliza, and Tobble is my favorite, if only because it never ceases to make me laugh. (A hint to those who haven’t read it yet: it involves Daired getting pelted with mud by an irate inconvenience of hobgoblins.)

What kind of research did you have to do for the story?

As someone to whom the complexities of mathematics might as well be sorcery, I’m quite proud of the fact that I managed to calculate the average airspeed velocity of an unladen European swallower, I mean dragonin order to make the travel scenes realistic. I also spent a lot of time binge-watching medieval weaponry masters on YouTube as they demonstrated the best methods for beheading and the proper way to wear chainmail.

Who is your ultimate book boyfriend?

Gabriel Syme from G.K. Chesterton’s The Man Who Was Thursday. Brave, British, good with words, rocks a cravat, soul of a poet, and just a little bit crazy. My kinda man.

What inspired you to write a Jane Austen reimagining?

I’ve been obsessed with the fantasy genre since I was a child and I fell in love with Darcy the moment I read Pride and Prejudice, so some part of me has always wanted to read a mash-up of the two. After years of searching without luck, I finally thought, “Aw, screw it. I write it myself.” The final piece of inspiration fell into place one Sunday afternoon in college when my housemate started the movie How to Train Your Dragon. I happened to be rereading P&P in the same room, and halfway through the movie I had the sudden image of Mr. Darcy riding a dragon and thought “THAT’S IT.” I couldn’t sleep until I outlined the story that would become HEARTSTONE.

Lightening Round Questions

What are you reading right now? Or what do you have on your TBR that you’re dying to read?

N.K. Jemisin’s dark and lovely The Killing Moon. And I’m kicking myself for waiting so long, but I’m dying to read V.E. Schwab’s A Gathering of Shadows, because I MUST finish it in time for the release of A Conjuring of Light.

What Hogwarts House would the Sorting Hat place you in?
        
Ravenclaw.

Twitter or Facebook?
          
Twitter. A helpful training tool for writers looking to kill characters.

Favorite Superhero?
          
Batman, of course. Because he’s Batman.

Favorite TV show?
          
Doctor Who, Sherlock, and anything by Masterpiece: Mystery!

Sweet or Salty?
        
Yes.

Any Phobias?
          
Heights. And velociraptors. (I’m serious. Don’t ask.)

Song you can’t get enough of right now?
          
“Hold My Hand” by Jess Glynne

2017 movie you’re most looking forward to?
          
It’s a tie between Beauty and the Beast and The Dark Tower.


Thanks so much Elle for answering my questions! I can’t wait for everyone to read HEARTSTONE!





About Elle:
Elle was born and raised in Buffalo, NY, where she learned valuable life skills like how to clear a snowy driveway in under twenty minutes (a lot easier than you think) and how to cheer for the perennial underdog (a lot harder than you think).
MEET ELLE

When she's not writing she spends her time reading, drinking absurd amounts of tea, having strong feelings about fictional characters, and doing her best to live with no regrets.
Connect with her on Facebook at @ellewhite.author, or witness the hilarious spectacle that is a writer contending with the 140-character limit on Twitter at @elle_k_writes.



Giveaway Details:


3 winners will receive a finished copy of HEARTSTONE, US Only.




Tour Schedule:


Week One:
1/9/2017- YA Book NerdInterview         
1/10/2017- Seeing Double In Neverland Review
1/11/2017- Novel NoviceGuest Post     
1/12/2017- What the Cat ReadReview 
1/13/2017- Two Chicks on BooksInterview        

Week Two:
1/16/2017- Fiction Fare Review
1/17/2017- The Eater of Books!Excerpt
1/18/2017- History from a Woman's PerspectiveReview             
1/19/2017- Stories & SweetiesExcerpt
1/20/2017- The Book NutReview       

M9B Friday Reveal- THE SKY THRONE by Chris Ledbetter Chapter 1 & A Giveaway!


Today Chris Ledbetter and Month9Books are revealing the cover and first chapter for THE SKY THRONE which releases April 18, 2017! Check out the gorgeous cover and enter to be one of the first readers to receive a eGalley!!

A quick note from the author:
Since my father put the first book of mythology in my hand, I've loved myths and legends. I always favored Greek mythology. I actually think I was Greek in a past life. Beginning in 2011, I conceived a story to sit down and have Zeus tell me what his childhood was like, especially his teenage years. All I did was listen to what he told me and put it down on paper.

On to the reveal! 


Title: THE SKY THRONE
Author: Chris Ledbetter
Pub. Date: April 18, 2017
Publisher: Month9Books
Format: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 292
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | TBD

Duality dwells at every turn, and an adolescent Zeus will learn that all too well when Hyperion attacks his family on Crete.

When the dust settles, his mother is unconscious and his best friend left for dead.

Stacking epic insult upon fatal injury, Zeus discovers the woman who raised him is not his biological mother. But to ensure her safety while she recovers, a heavy-hearted Zeus leaves her behind to seek answers at Mount Olympus Preparatory Academia.

Zeus embarks on a quest to discover who ordered the attack on his home, avenge the death of his friend, and find his birth mother. When some of his new schoolmates vanish, Zeus's quest is turned upside down, and the only way to make things right is to access the power of The Sky Throne, confront a most dangerous enemy, and take his life back.



On his way to becoming king of the Greek gods, Zeus will learn to seize power, neutralize his enemies, and fall in love.



Excerpt


CHAPTER ONE

Since the moment I started at Eastern Crete Lower Academy two years ago, I’d felt like such an outcast. The guys, mostly Potamoi and sons of Headmasters Okeanos and Tethys, never regarded me as an equal. I didn’t even warrant bullying. It’s like I never even existed. If only I’d known how visible I’d become in the coming days. I always got picked last for swim team and crew in physical fitness class. I actually was the third best wrestler overall in school and peerless in javelin throwing due to superior training from my guardians, the Kouretes. When Eastern Crete competed in the Mediterranean Invitational Games against academies from Phoenicia, Egypt, and Libya, I placed first in the javelin event, beating Gurzil from Libya who was the reigning champion from years past. I even won my weight class, the lightest class there was, in wrestling by beating Melqart from Phoenicia. But none of that mattered.

I was still invisible.

I loved science class. The lessons where we studied energy and matter were like fresh spring water to a parched throat. But the rest of my classes bored me to tears. We had language arts, music, and math in the mornings. Physical fitness, agriculture, and science took up our afternoons. I wouldn’t say I was intellectually ahead of them, because, hey, that’d be conceited. But my mother prepared me well, with all the goat tending and such. And she always said when I came home from classes each night that they just didn’t know how to teach me on my level.

So, I was forced to make my own fun. No one would probably notice anyway.

After the big Invitational Games win, I was posted up at the school’s entry columns with my best friend, Anytos, watching the Oceanids as they arrived for classes one morning. Sisters to the Potamoi, the Oceanids were the sea nymph daughters of our headmasters. Okeanos and Tethys, aside from being our school administrators, were also Elder Deities of the vast ocean, which is why we at Eastern Crete dominated all water sports. Swimming. Cliff diving. Crew. We bested all comers. But not me. I dove and swam exactly the same … like an anvil.

The Oceanids descended upon the campus from their barracks like a wave crashing against the shore. Telesto, the most beautiful sea nymph by several stadia, smiled at me for the first time since I’d been going to the school. Okay, it wasn’t a full smile. The corner of her lip twitched upward as she flipped her wavy, aquamarine hair over her shoulder and glanced past me. But that counts, right?

I backhanded Anytos in the chest. “You saw that. That’s my opening. If I don’t make my move, she’ll be gone to the upper school next year.”

“Pssht, she is beyond the Mediterranean beautiful. Completely unattainable.”

“Did you see that come hither stare she flashed me?”

“Looked more like indigestion.”

“You are as wrong as you are false. Cover my back. I’m moving in.”

I crossed the courtyard in a flash and caught Telesto’s arm as she reached the weather-beaten front door to the main school hall.

“Telesto, you look as if the sun radiates from you.”

She paused and leaned back against the doorframe. “You’re just saying that because I wore my yellow tunic today.”

“You shine with such brilliance; you should wear yellow every day.”

She folded a strand or two of stunning teal hair behind her ear and twirled the ends. “But what happens when I wear my purple tunic?”

“A tunic hasn’t been invented that could dampen your beauty.”

She giggled and turned away from me for a moment. “Zeus, is it?”

I nodded, surprised she even knew my name.

“You’re the one who pulled that massive prank on my mother, Headmaster Tethys, aren’t you?”

Oh, that’s how she knew me. Not invisible after all. I bowed. “I am him. He is me. One and the same.”

“Crazy. She was so mad.” She shook her head, stifling a smile.

“As far as I can tell, language arts must be your favorite subject. Your tongue is spectacularly sharp-witted.”

“Not really. But I am feeling a little inspired right now.”

Several strands of her hair fell to cover half her face. “Are you going to the bonfire at the beach tomorrow night?”

“I wasn’t invite—”

Several of Telesto’s broad-shouldered, dark-haired brothers bumped into me from behind. “Those are uncharted waters, boy. Careful now,” One of them called over his shoulder. Those were the first words they’d ever spoken to me. Telesto rolled her eyes. “Pay them no mind. They’re harmless. You were saying?”

“Those bonfires are an Oceanids and Potamoi thing? It’s kind of a secret club that you have to be born into, right? Being brothers and sisters, children of Headmasters Okeanos and Tethys… young water deities in training… masters of rivers and streams…”

“I guess. But you should come out any way. It’s all night, under the stars. Eating, drinking, stargazing… What’s better than that?”

Gazing into her mesmerizing, iridescent eyes, my mouth fired before I could stop it. “Kissing you under the stars. That’s better.”

“Sprint much? You’re a fast mover.”

“I just go after what I want.”

“Well … ” A pink tint rose on her high cheek bones. “We shall see. But first you have to show up.” Her lips twitched gain. “I have to go to class. See you tomorrow?” She disappeared inside the school hall.

I turned to Tos with a pterodactyl-eating grin on my face. He shook his head and smiled.

The boring part of my daily routine was set to commence. School. Classes. Ugh. I wished the school day was already over so I could just go to games practice. As Tos and I walked to first period, I was struck by the overwhelming urge to liven my day up just a bit.

“Tos, I have a good one. You with me?”

“Oh heavens. Is it what I think it is?”

“I feel the need … the need to prank!”

Tos shook his head. “My pranking days are over.”

“Come on. Just one more. Promise it’s the last one.”

He glared at me.

I explained the entire idea to him. “It’ll be after language arts, all right? It’s going to be good.”

After class, Tos and I waited until all other students had left. He took his position at the door to make sure no one came in. I approached Professor Ceto at the front of the room. Tablets and scrolls decorated the top of her desk.

“Professor, do you have strong hands?”

Her intelligent eyes narrowed. “Sure, I do. Why?”

“I bet you a homework pass that you can’t balance a goblet on the back of your hand.”

Her forehead wrinkled.

“Place your hand on the desk, palm down,” I said.

She complied.

I filled her water goblet and placed it on the back of her hand.

She smiled. “See. No problem at all.”

I picked up the goblet. “Now place your other hand on top of this one.”

She sighed. “Why? Is that supposed to be harder? So, if I fail, you get a homework pass, yes? If I complete the task, what do I get?”

“It’s a surprise.”

“Go ahead, then,” she said, placing her left hand atop her right.

“Get on with it.”

Barely able to contain my giddiness, I balanced the full water goblet on the top of her two hands.

“See,” she said with triumph in her voice. “I did it. Where’s my surprise?”

“All right then, I’ll see you next week. Have a good weekend.” I walked quickly to the door.

“What? Wait, I can’t move my hands without spilling water all over my scrolls.”

Tos opened the door and we both rounded the corner in a flash. We were halfway to period two music when I heard an unholy roar across campus.

“ZEUS!”

Tos and I laughed our behinds off and slapped hands as we passed a solitary blueish post in the center of the courtyard. No one knew much about it or who designed it. But its presence was striking.

Upon reaching music class, Tos and I took our positions near the kithara and lyre. Our teacher, Professor Leucosia and several more students entered and we prepared for instruction. Leucosia had the most beautiful singing voice. Simply spellbinding. Sometimes, I felt light-headed when she’d sing along with our accompaniment. Shortly after arriving in class, Headmasters Okeanos and Tethys shadowed the doorway to our room. The expression on Tethys’ face could have killed a wild boar at forty paces.

“Zeus, Anytos, we need you to step outside right now.” Tethys said. Her eyes mirrored the Aegean during a storm.

I looked at Tos. My heart rate quickened to a pace I’d only felt after running sprints. Slowly, I rose to my feet. This couldn’t have been good.

We walked over to Okeanos. I had to crane my neck just to see the Headmaster’s eyes. His biceps were bigger than my head, despite silvery blue hair atop his head and an aged, wrinkly face.

His somber and deliberate voice rumbled. “You are hereby expelled from Eastern Crete Lower Academy. This infraction and expulsion will go on your master record. You may apply again next term.”

“Why? What did I do to deserve this?”

Professor Tethys stepped forward to grab my arm. “Your little pranks have gotten you in deeper water than you can swim in, young man. You obviously need some time to think about how you can be a better contributor to the educational system.”

“No. You can’t expel me. Please!” I clasped my hands in front of my face. “My mother will kill me!”

“Not our concern.” Okeanos folded his gigantic arms. His voice rumbled again. “You must learn to be a better student. A better citizen.”

“But they were just pranks,” I pleaded.

“Yes. And this is the seventh such prank we’ve endured at your hands. And since Anytos helped you, he shall accompany you home.”

Tethys pointed east toward Mount Ida, the highest peak on Crete.

“You have until the sun chariot reaches its zenith to leave campus.”

She gazed upward. “By the looks of things, your time’s nearly at an end.”






Chris Ledbetter grew up in Durham, NC before moving to Charlottesville, VA in 11th grade. After high school, he attended Hampton University where he promptly “walked-on” to the best drum line in the conference without any prior percussion experience. He carried the bass drum for four years, something his back is not very happy about now.

After a change of heart and major, he enrolled in Old Dominion University and earned his degree in Business Administration. He’s worked in various managerial and marketing capacities throughout his life. He taught high school for six years in Culpeper, VA, and also coached football.

He has walked the streets of Los Angeles and New York City, waded in the waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, and climbed Diamond Head crater on Hawaii and rang in the New Year in Tokyo, Japan. But he dreams of one day visiting Greece and Italy.






3 winners will receive and eGalley of THE SKY THRONE, International.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Blog Tour- POISON'S KISS by Breeana Shields An Interview & Giveaway!


I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the blog tour for POISON'S KISS by Breeana Shields! I loved this amazing historical fantasy book! I have an interview with Breeana to share with you today! And make sure to enter the awesome giveaway for a chance to win the book!!


Haven't heard of POISON'S KISS? Check it out!

Title: POISON'S KISS
Author: Breeana Shields
Pub. Date: January 10, 2017
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Pages: 304
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, eBook
A teenage assassin kills with a single kiss until she is ordered to kill the one boy she loves. This commercial YA fantasy is romantic and addictive like-- a poison kiss-- and will thrill fans of Sarah J. Maas and Victoria Aveyard.

Marinda has kissed dozens of boys. They all die afterward. It s a miserable life, but being a visha kanya a poison maiden is what she was created to do. Marinda serves the Raja by dispatching his enemies with only her lips as a weapon.

Until now, the men she was ordered to kiss have been strangers, enemies of the kingdom. Then she receives orders to kiss Deven, a boy she knows too well to be convinced he needs to die. She begins to question who she s really working for. And that is a thread that, once pulled, will unravel more than she can afford to lose.

This rich, surprising, and accessible debut is based in Indian folklore and delivers a story that will keep readers on the edge of their seats. 


Now on to the interview!

Hi Breeana! First, I want to say welcome to Two Chicks on Books! Thanks for stopping by to answer my questions! I loved POISON’S KISS and I can’t wait for everyone to read it!

Thanks so much for having me!

For the readers: can you tell us a little bit about POISON’S KISS and the characters?

Sure! POISON’S KISS is about a girl named Marinda who can kill a man with a single kiss. She’s working as an assassin for her kingdom, but when she receives orders to kill someone she knowssomeone shes sure doesnt deserve to dieshe starts to question everything about her life.

Is this a standalone or a series? And if it’s a series do you have a title for book 2 yet? And if it’s a standalone what are you working on next?

POISON’S KISS is the first in a duology. The second book is due out in early 2018 and will be called POISON’S CAGE.

Were any of the characters in the book inspired by people from your real life?

I don’t ever base characters off people I knowat least not consciouslybut my writing is still informed by my real life. I have a little brother (he’s over 6 feet tall now and would probably take great exception to being called “little”) who is ten years younger than I am, and I spent a lot of time taking care of him when he was small.  So, I definitely think my love for him helped shape Marinda’s love for Mani.

What is your favorite passage/scene from POISON’S KISS?

This is so hard to answer without spoilers! Let me just say that there are two scenes between Marinda and Kadru that are both favorites. I love the two of them together.

Who was your favorite character to write? What about your least favorite?

I don’t really have any least favorite charactersI loved writing them all but the easiest and most fun character to write was definitely Kadru. Whenever I put her into a scene she took over and the writing became effortless.

Who is your ultimate Book Boyfriend?

Will it be completely cliché if I say Mr. Darcy? Because it’s Mr. Darcy.

What inspired you to write YA?

I love this age groupreaders firmly in that gray area between leaving childhood and becoming a full-fledged adult.  As a teenager, you make so many choices about which paths you want to take and who you want to become that affect the rest of your life. It’s a time of both fear and breathless wonder. Also, YA tends to be more plot-focused and faster-paced than a lot of adult fiction. (I think that’s one reason so many adults love reading it). And as a writer who loves a great story as much as I love pretty words, YA is a perfect fit.

Lightening Round Questions

What are you reading right now? Or what do you have on your TBR that you’re dying to read?

I’m reading THE FORGETTING by Sharon Cameron. It’s great so far!

What Hogwarts House would the Sorting Hat place you in?

I desperately want to say Ravenclaw, but every time I take the test, I get sorted into Hufflepuff.

Twitter or Facebook?

Twitter

Favorite Superhero?

Anne Shirley. (And I’ll fight anyone who claims she’s not a superhero!)

Favorite TV show?

Jane the Virgin

Sweet or Salty?

Salty. Though it’s a bonus if it can be both---salted caramel was invented for people like me.

Any Phobias?

Snakes. Don’t laugh when you see my book cover.

Song you can’t get enough of right now?

NOT A ONE by the Young Wild.

2017 Movie you’re most looking forward to?

I can’t wait to see Beauty and the Beast.

Thanks so much Breeana for answering my questions! I can’t wait for everyone to read POISON’S KISS!



About Breeana:
Breeana Shields graduated from Brigham Young University with a BA in English.
Her debut young adult fantasy, POISON’S KISS, will be released from Random House in 2017 with a sequel to follow in 2018.
When she’s not writing about herself in the third person, Breeana loves reading, traveling, and spending time with her husband, her three children and an extremely spoiled miniature poodle.



Giveaway Details:


3 winners will receive a signed finished copy of POISON’S KISS, US Only.




Tour Schedule:


Week One:
1/2/2017- Literary Meanderings - Interview
1/3/2017- Fiction Fare- Review
1/4/2017- It Starts at Midnight- Excerpt
1/5/2017- One Night Book StandReview
1/6/2017- Brooke- Reports- Interview

Week Two:
1/9/2017- Curling Up With A Good BookReview
1/10/2017- Brittany's Book RamblesGuest Post
1/11/2017- ParajunkeeReview
1/12/2017- Two Chicks on Books- Interview
1/13/2017- IceyBooksQuote Candy

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