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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Dying to Read (40)- RUINS by Dan Wells

Hey y’all thanks for stopping by to see my Dying to Read post and of course as always I have to give credit to the lovely Jill over at Breaking the Spine for the Waiting on Wednesday Meme!

This week the book I’m dying to read is RUINS by Dan Wells!!!!! He about killed me with book 2 FRAGMENTS and wouldn’t give me any hints about book 3! So yep I’m dying to get my hands on this one!!!!

Dan Wells
Release Date: March 11, 2014
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Balzer + Bray (Harper)
ISBN: 978-0062071101

Kira, Samm, and Marcus fight to prevent a final war between Partials and humans in the gripping final installment of the blockbuster Partials Sequence.

Our time is almost up.

As the clock ticks closer and closer to the final Partial expiration date, humans and Partials stand on the brink of war. Caught in the middle, thousands of miles apart, are Samm and Kira: Samm, who is trapped on the far side of the continent beyond the vast toxic wasteland of the American Midwest; and Kira, now in the hands of Dr. Morgan, who is hell-bent on saving what's left of the Partials, even if she has to destroy Kira to do it.

The only hope lies in the hands of the scattered people of both races who seek a way to prevent the rapidly escalating conflict. But in their midst appears a mysterious figure, neither human nor Partial, with solemn warnings of the new apocalypse-one that none of them may be able to avert.

The last book in the Partials Sequence is a thrill ride of epic proportions, as the last remnants of life on our planet fight to determine its final fate.

So what do you think? Will you be adding this to your pile? What are you dying to read this week?

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Blog Tour- SHADOWLARK by Meagan Spooner and a Giveaway!

Hey y’all! Today I have Meagan Spooner, author of SKYLARK and SHADOWLARK here for an interviewsor the SHADOWLARK blog tour hosted by Step Into Fiction! Also stay tuned because we have some giveaways for you after the post!

Haven’t heard about SHADOWLARK? Check it out!

SHADOWLARK, by Meagan Spooner

Oct. 1, 2013 (Carolrhoda Lab/Lerner Books)
Ever since she escaped the city within the Wall, Lark Ainsley's wanted one thing: to find her brother Basil. She's always believed he would be the one to put an end to the constant fear and flight. And now, hidden underground in the chaotically magical city of Lethe, Lark feels closer to him than ever.

But Lethe is a city cowering in fear of its founder, the mysterious Prometheus, and of his private police force. To get the truth about what happened to Basil, Lark has no choice but to face Prometheus.

Facing her fears has become second nature to Lark. Facing the truth is another matter.

Lark never asked to be anyone's savior. She certainly never wanted to be anyone's weapon. She might not have a choice.

Now on to the interview!

Hi Megan! Thanks so much for stopping by Two Chicks on Books!

How different was it writing the second book in the Skylark Series?

Second books are always tricky. Because they fall naturally in between the start and end of the story, they end up having a sort of “middle” feel that isn’t always what you want. So with SHADOWLARK I had to plan out what was going to happen, a lot more so than I did with SKYLARK. I knew exactly how the book was going to end, so it was almost more of a puzzle, figuring out how to put all the pieces in the right places to lead the reader through the story.

You co-authored a book with Amie Kaufman ALL THESE BROKEN STARS how different was it writing with a partner? Would you do it again?

I love writing with Amie, and would do it again in a heartbeat (and in fact, already did, as we’ve written book two in the Starbound series and are on to book 3!). When you write by yourself, you often reach places where you feel stuck, or where you start doubting your creative abilities. When you’ve got a partner there, they can take over when you start to lose steam--and they can reassure you when you start to doubt yourself.

What has been your favorite place to visit and why?

I absolutely love to travel, but it’s impossible for me to pick just one spot that I love most! Egypt was an amazing place to be, because I’d been reading about and studying Ancient Egyptian culture for most of my life, and used to want to be an archaeologist. Antarctica was astonishingly beautiful, and so foreign—I think it’s as close to being on another planet as it’s possible to be without leaving Earth. But I think, of all my trips, my recent trip to southern Africa was the most memorable. I love wildlife and nature, and being amongst all these incredible animals and landscapes that I’d only ever seen in movies… it was beyond anything I could have imagined.

What are some of your favorite TV shows?

I LOVE watching TV. I’m a big believer that you can be inspired by anything, and so I watch lots of TV and movies, listen to a lot of music, attend the theater often, and--of course--read tons of books. Some of my favorite TV shows include: Firefly, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Doctor Who, Farscape, and Avatar: The Last Airbender/Korra. And I love comedies too, like Arrested Development, Friends, Parks & Recreation, etc.

I see you play guitar what is the hardest song you ever learned to play?

I play guitar, yes, but really only so far as being able to accompany myself while I sing. I love to do creative things that aren’t writing (singing, guitar, drawing) but I wouldn’t actually say I’m GOOD at any of them! They’re great for unwinding after a long day of work. I’d say the trickiest thing I ever learned was a song called Anna by a wonderful musician named Antje Duvekot. It sounds deceptively simple, but I learned the whole thing by ear, including strange retuning of the guitar and nonstandard chords. Then, of course, I promptly forgot how to play it a few months later!

What are some of your favorite books you’ve read recently?

I’ve read a few books that aren’t actually sold/announced yet, so I can’t talk about those! But books that are published… I absolutely loved THE MADMAN’S DAUGHTER by Megan Shepherd. I also just stayed up all night reading BETWEEN THE DEVILAND THE DEEP BLUE SEA by April G. Tucholke, which was a great read!

Did you make a playlist for the Skylark Series? Would you like to share some of the songs?

I don’t usually listen to music while I write, simply because I find it distracting. But I usually have a playlist of songs that I’ll listen to while thinking about the book, or getting into the mood to write. One song that would not leave me alone while I was writing SHADOWLARK was “The Ocean” by The Bravery, because Lark is searching for her brother and the song has this wistful sadness.

Do you have any writing rituals? Like is there a snack you absolutely have to have to write or a lucky pen or anything?

I have writing pants. I know that sounds weird… but whenever I go into a writing session, I change into these lounge-style pants so that I can be super comfortable. It’s not much of a ritual, but it does tell my brain that it’s time to get to work! I’ll also often light a candle on my desk while I work. I find the flame to be a good focal point when I need to stop and think about what comes next… if I look around, I might get distracted.

Thanks so much Meagan!

Meagan Spooner is the author of the Skylark Trilogy; SKYLARK, the first in the series, came out last year and its sequel, SHADOWLARK, will be available from Carolrhoda Lab/Lerner Books Oct. 1, 2013. She is also the co-author of THESE BROKEN STARS, the first in a young adult science fiction trilogy available from Disney-Hyperion Dec. 10, 2013. She's traveled all over the world, and there's a bit of every trip in every story she writes. She currently lives and writes in Asheville, North Carolina, but the siren call of travel is hard to resist, and there's no telling how long she'll stay there.



Grand Prize you'll need a password to unlock all the options and each stop has a unique password. My password is OREN

US/Canada residents can win a signed copy of Skylark AND Shadowlark.
International residents can win (unsigned) copies of Skylark AND Shadowlark sent via Book Depository.
The winner will also win either a query critique (if an aspiring author) OR a pre-order copy of These Broken Stars (her new series co-written with Amie Kaufman).

This contest will run from September 23 – October 6 with the winner being chosen on October 7.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Two Chicks Prize!

1 signed copy of SKYLARK book 1 in the Skylark series and signed swag. US Only
  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule

Monday, September 23

·                     Review - Xpresso Reads

Tuesday, September 24

·                     Interview - Two Chicks on Books

Wednesday, September 25

·                     Review - Good Books and Good Wine

Thursday, September 26

·                     Guest Post - Fantasy Book Addict

Friday, September 27

·                     Review - Ageless Pages Reviews

Monday, September 30

·                     Review - Melissa’s Eclectic Bookshelf

Tuesday, October 1 {RELEASE DAY}

·                     Guest Post - The Book Smugglers

Wednesday, October 2

·                     Review - Anna Reads

Thursday, October 3

·                     Interview -Literary Rambles

Friday, October 4

·                     Review - YA Sisterhood

Monday, September 23, 2013

Blog Tour- WITCHSTRUCK by Victoria Lamb and a Giveaway!!

Hey y’all! Today I have Victoria Lamb, author of WITCHSTRUCK stopping by with a guest post for the WITCHSTRUCK blog tour hosted by Kismet Book Tours! Also there’s an awesome giveaway from Harlequin Teen so make sure to stick around to enter!

Haven’t heard about WITCHSTRUCK? Check it out!

The Tudor Witch Trilogy Book 1
Publication date: September 24th by Harlequin Teen

If she sink, she be no witch and shall be drowned.
If she float, she be a witch and must be hanged.
Meg Lytton has always known she is different—that she bears a dark and powerful gift. But in 1554 England, in service at Woodstock Palace to the banished Tudor princess Elizabeth, it has never been more dangerous to practise witchcraft. Meg knows she must guard her secret carefully from the many suspicious eyes watching over the princess and her companions. One wrong move could mean her life, and the life of Elizabeth, rightful heir to the English throne.
With witchfinder Marcus Dent determined to have Meg’s hand in marriage, and Meg’s own family conspiring against the English queen, there isn’t a single person Meg can trust. Certainly not the enigmatic young Spanish priest Alejandro de Castillo, despite her undeniable feelings. But when all the world turns against her, Meg must open her heart to a dangerous choice.

The Secret Circle meets The Other Boleyn Girl in Witchstruck, the first book of the magical Tudor Witch trilogy

Now on to the Guest Post!

12 Survival Tips for Witches in the 1500s – Victoria Lamb

Avoid being spotted with thy besom – or broom of twigs – out of doors, unless actually sweeping!

Use a cooking pot for a cauldron to make it seem more innocent to prying eyes. Always remember to scour the pot thoroughly after spells!

Cut a short hazel wand or use an ordinary kitchen knife for ritual use, especially if performing spells outdoors. These will be easier to explain if caught than a ceremonial athame - a witch’s dagger – or ceremonial staff.

Keep no familiars that might be seen by those unfriendly to the craft. A toad concealed in your pocket makes a better spell-companion than any black cat or michievous crow, for these are too well-known as portents of the dark arts.

Before casting the circle indoors, throw salt over thy shoulder; if open to the four winds, assuage the fairies and country spirits with offerings before any spell be made.

Keep always a neat wifely cap and bible to hand for when the witchfinder comes calling. Seem biddable and obedient, cast down thine eyes to the floor, and call him ‘Master’. Never speak thy mind before a man: it is the mark of the witch.

When casting the circle, include some charm to protect that sacred space from spies and onlookers, whether innocent or malicious. Dance on clover for best protection, or by a stout holly bush; make a magickal staff from the wood of the ash tree; keep fennel or bay leaves on hand to guard against intruders.

Place only the most natural, chance-found things upon thy altar: a bird’s feather; a rabbit’s foot or skull; a handful of bruised nettles or rosemary sprigs; a bright stone from the stream; the stump or spill of a tallow candle. Then all will be easily cleared away and seem innocent to any visitor.

If there is any Devil’s Mark about thy body, conceal it.

Do not boast of hearing voices or commands from the spirits, nor of casting spells. The witchfinder always listens when the tongue runs loose.

Do not live alone and unmarried, for this invites accusation. Keep a husband about the house, but conceal all grimoires and magickal objects from his sight!

Trust no one with thy secret, for even the most loyal may accuse a witch under torture.

 Thanks so much Victoria!

About Victoria Lamb - her website | Goodreads |  Twitter | Facebook

Victoria Lamb grew up in the peaceful Isle of Man, benefiting from a vast library of books and a family of writers from which to take inspiration. She now lives with her own family in a three-hundred year old farmhouse on the fringes of Cornwall’s Bodmin Moor, where she walks most days and writes in a study overlooking fields of moorland ponies.
She has a serious addiction to Twitter, and invites other such addicts to chat with her there about books and nonsense.

Contest Info: There are two giveaways for those following her tour!

The first giveaway is a daily one for the chance to win a copy of WITCHSTRUCK!  
The second giveaway is for personalized astrological birth chart and Amazon gift card for framing!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Monday, September 16th – All Things Urban Fantasy
Wednesday, September 18th - The Book Cellar
Friday, September 20th – Harlequin Tour Stop

Monday, September  23th – Two Chicks on Books
Wednesday, September 25th - Oh Chrys
Friday, September 27th – Magical Urban Fantasy

Monday, September  30th – Unabridged Bookshelf
Wednesday, October 2nd – Such a Novel Idea

Friday, October 4th - Chapter by Chapter

Friday, September 20, 2013

Blog Tour- GOLD by Talia Vance A Scene from Austin's POV and a Giveaway!!!

I am stoked today! Not just because I am hosting my good friend Talia Vance of the final day of the blog tour for GOLD but, because I have a scene I’ve been begging her to write for a long time! And she finally did it!!!!! And now I get to share the yummy Austin with you all! Make sure to enter the giveaway for signed books at the end of the post as well.

Check out GOLD!

Title: GOLD (A Bandia Novel #2)
Author: Talia Vance
Pub. Date: September 8, 2013
Publisher: Flux
Pages: 408

Descended from an Irish demigod, Brianna has fled to Ireland to escape destruction at the hands of her sworn enemies, the Sons of Killian. Taking refuge at the estate of her former nemesis, Austin Montgomery, Brianna discovers a rift in time that opens to an era before the feud began.

Wrestling with her newfound feelings for the more innocent Austin, Brianna begins to wonder if she can alter the past. But when Brianna and Austin learn that the Sons are raising an army of mythical beasts, the pair will need to use their magical strength in the present to avoid a tragic end.

And now on to the Quarters Scene from Austin’s POV!


Thanks so much Talia for sharing this! I’ve always wanted to know what he was thinking in this scene!

About Talia:
Talia Vance is a practicing litigation attorney living in Northern California with her real life love interest, two-point-five kids, and a needy Saint Bernard named Huckleberry. Talia has been writing since she could talk, making up stories for every doll, stuffed animal and action figure she could get her hands on. She grew up hoping to write the great American novel, but her life ran more along the lines of tortured romance and fast paced thrillers, so that's what she writes.

Giveaway Details:
For First Place (US ONLY)
2 signed copies of SILVER and GOLD
Second place (US Only)

3 Signed copies of GOLD

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Check out the rest of the tour schedule for more awesome posts!
Week 1
9/9/2013- My Guilty ObsessionGuest Post
9/10/2013- FiktshunBlake Interview
9/11/2013- Magical Urban Fantasy ReadsGuest Post
9/12/2013- Ravenous ReaderGuest Post
9/13/2013- Taters Tall TailsAustin Interview

Week 2
9/16/2013- Book PicsBrianna Interview
9/17/2013- What the Cat ReadInterview
9/18/2013- Ya SisterhoodGuest Post
9/19/2013- A Book ObsessionInterview

9/20/2013- Two Chicks on BooksAustin Guest Post- Quarters Scene from Austin’s POV

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Dying to Read (39)- ALL THAT GLOWS by Ryan Graudin

Hey y’all thanks for stopping by to see my Dying to Read post and of course as always I have to give credit to the lovely Jill over at Breaking the Spine for the Waiting on Wednesday Meme!

This week the book I’m dying to read is ALL THAT GLOWS by Ryan Graudin!!!!! I just saw this cover and fell in love!! Also it’s about Faeries and I am so in need of a new Fae series!

All That Glows
Ryan Graudin
Release Date: February 11, 2014
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: HarperTeen
ISBN: 978-0062187413

For fans of Maggie Stiefvater and Lesley Livingston comes a clever twist on the mortal/immortal love story by hot debut author Ryan Graudin. Intense and electric, this is the ultimate tale of forbidden love.                                                                                                                                                 Emrys—a fiery, red-headed Fae—always embraced her life in the Highlands, far from the city’s draining technology, until she’s sent to London to rejoin the Faery Guard. But this isn’t any normal assignment—she’s sent to guard Prince Richard: Britain’s notorious, partying bad boy and soon-to-be King. The prince’s careless ways and royal blood make him the irresistible for the dark spirits that feed on mortals. Sweet, disheveled, and alive with adventure—Richard is one charge who will put Emrys’s magic and heart to the test.

When an ancient force begins preying on the monarchy, Emrys must hunt through the London’s magical underworld, facing down Banshees, Black Dogs and Green Women to find the one who threatens Richard’s life. In this chaos of dark magic, palace murders and paparazzi, Emrys finds herself facing an impossible choice. For despite all her powers, Emrys has discovered a force that burns brighter than magic: love.

So what do you think? Will you be adding this to your pile? What are you dying to read this week?

Monday, September 16, 2013

Blog Tour- THE BURNING SKY by Sherry Thomas a Deleted Scene and a Giveaway!

Hey y’all! I’m really stoked to have Sherry Thomas here today as a part of THE BURNING SKY Blog Tour! I LOVED this book! One of the things I loved was its High Fantasy but, it has a foothold in the real world. Actually a good portion of the book takes place in London and while I loved the Mage Realms I thought I’d like to know why Sherry decided to write this book with both a Fantasy World (Which is amazing and I want to live there!) and a real world aspect.

What brought about this post was I wanted to know what part of London was (my new book boyfriend sorry Iolanthe lol) Titus’s absolute favorite place so we get a deleted scene! Haven’t heard of THE BURNING SKY? Check it out and then stick around for the guest post and the awesome giveaway!

Title: THE BURNING SKY (The Elemental Trilogy #1)
Author: Sherry Thomas
Pub. Date: September 17, 2013
Publisher: Balzer + Bray 
Pages: 480

It all began with a ruined elixir and an accidental bolt of lightning…

Iolanthe Seabourne is the greatest elemental mage of her generation—or so she's being told. The one prophesied for years to be the savior of The Realm. It is her duty and destiny to face and defeat the Bane, the greatest mage tyrant the world has ever known. A suicide task for anyone let alone a sixteen-year-old girl with no training, facing a prophecy that foretells a fiery clash to the death.

Prince Titus of Elberon has sworn to protect Iolanthe at all costs but he's also a powerful mage committed to obliterating the Bane to avenge the death of his family—even if he must sacrifice both Iolanthe and himself to achieve his goal.

But Titus makes the terrifying mistake of falling in love with the girl who should have been only a means to an end. Now, with the servants of the Bane closing in, he must choose between his mission and her life.

Now on to the awesome guest post!

Jaime has asked me to write a post about Titus’s favorite place at the nonmage boarding school he attends.  To do that, let me first give you a little background on the school itself.
I always knew that The Burning Sky was not going to be high fantasy in the manner of The Lord of the Rings.  It was always going to have one foot firmly in the real world and that real-world footing was going to be a boarding school for boys.
At one point, a friend asked why I didn’t make up a fictional boarding school. My answer?  I wanted more authenticity.  But also, I wanted a world I didn’t have to construct from scratch.  Not to mention, while freedom to create is wonderful, I’ve always felt that limits and restraints are what truly spur creativity to flourish.
So I put my mage protagonists at Eton College, a real school for boys located some twenty-five miles east of London, which still exists today—both Prince William and Prince Harry are Old Etonians.  And by doing that, I am bound by the seasons and traditions of that school. 
A huge part of student life at Eton is sports.  The school has three academic terms a year, called Halves—a name obviously made up by someone who couldn’t do fractions. J  Each half is dominated by a couple of signature sports.  And the signature sports of the Summer Half, which runs from April to July, are cricket and rowing. 
(The Burning Sky’s timeline runs the length of Summer Half, 1883.)
Iolanthe/Fairfax is a cricketer.  Titus, on the other hand, rows.  And that venue for rowing, the Thames River, is Titus’s favorite place at this school.

They stood some distance from the house, near the banks of the brown and silent Thames. Titus had rowed on the river for years. The repetition, the perspiration, and the good, clean exhaustion quieted his mind beautifully.

It’s interesting to me, because rowing is the ultimate team sport.  Everyone’s motions must be exactly synchronized, and the slightest slippage would cause a team to lose the competitive edge.  You would think Titus would hate something like this.  And I posit that perhaps he had, in the beginning, since he is a lone wolf accustomed to doing everything by himself.
But underneath that aloofness is a boy who wanted to belong to a wider humanity.  And he grew to enjoy rowing precisely because of the teamwork—and because it is teamwork that does not require him to speak or otherwise communicate. 
Titus could totally get down with that.
I usually don’t do deleted scenes for my books, cuz deleted scenes are deleted for a reason. But there are always exceptions. And I think the passage below, which is not in the final text of the book, is such an exception.

“Let’s go see what the wet bobs are doing,” said Sutherland, at the end of the day’s cricket practice.
Students who played cricket in summer half were called dry bobs; rowers were wet bobs.  There was quite a hierarchy of rowers.  The school boats had ranks—the nuances of which largely escaped Iolanthe.  And every rower aspired to be one of the eight who rowed for the school in the Henley Regatta. 
On the Thames, three boats were headed upstream, two downstream.
“That’s St. John,” said Sutherland, spotting a boy from Mrs. Dawlish’s house on a four-man scull.  “Put your back into it, St. John!”
“You row like Mrs. Dawlish!” shouted someone else.
The boys laughed.  St. John stuck his tongue out but otherwise made no response. 
Iolanthe was curious to see the prince row. She found it difficult to imagine him, with his restless, clever mind, doing something so repetitive.
Two more boats passed them, carrying no one from Mrs. Dawlish’s house.  A third boat appeared, headed upstream. 
“Is that Titus?” asked Rogers. 
It still jarred her to hear the prince called by his name.  She almost turned to Rogers to admonish him not to be so familiar.  Instead she squinted her eyes.  “No, that’s not him.”
Another four-man scull rounded the bend.  The rowers had their back to her, but she immediately recognized the prince, seated second from the front.
“How good is His Highness as a rower?” she asked.
“His build is wrong for rowing—not brawny enough,” said Kashkari.  “But he has extraordinary techniques—or so the captain of the eight tells me.”
It was odd to see the prince in a team endeavor, he who probably didn’t even want to partner with her.  Yet he was very much one of the team.  The crew rowed as one, their pulls strong and smooth, the blades of their oars slicing into water with perfect unison, in exact alignment. 
Rowing was honest and simple—precisely what his life was not.

And there you have it, the Thames River, Titus’s favorite thing about Eton.

Eeeeeeppppp ok that was awesome thanks so much for sharing Sherry! Also Prince Harry *Swoons*

About Sherry:
Sherry Thomas is one of the most acclaimed romance authors working today. Her books regularly receive starred reviews from trade publications and are frequently found on best-of-the-year lists. She is also a two-time winner of Romance Writers of America's prestigious RITA® Award.

English is Sherry's second language—she has come a long way from the days when she made her laborious way through Rosemary Roger's Sweet Savage Love with an English-Chinese dictionary. She enjoys digging down to the emotional core of stories. And when she is not writing, she thinks about the zen and zaniness of her profession, plays computer games with her sons, and reads as many fabulous books as she can find.

Sherry’s next book, THE BURNING SKY, volume one of her young adult fantasy trilogy, will be available fall 2013.

Author photo by the lovely and talented Jennifer Sparks Harriman at Sparks Studio.

Check out the Book Trailer!

Giveaway Details:
For First Place (US Only):
1 Hardcover of THE BURNING SKY a tote bag, and handmade balm, scrub, and bath tea.

Runners Up (US Only)
 3 Hardcovers of THE BURNING SKY and a tote bag.

3 runners up will get swag packs (stickers, bookmarks, signed bookplates)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week 1
9/9/2013- Bewitched Bookworms- Guest Post
9/10/2013- Jenna Does Books- Interview
9/11/2013- Fiction Fare- Interview
9/12/2013- Readers in Wonderland- Review
9/13/2013- Working for the Mandroid- Interview

Week 2
9/16/2013- Two Chicks on Books- Guest Post                      
9/17/2013- Fiktshun- Guest Post
9/18/2013- Seeing Night Reviews- Review
9/19/2013- Supernatural Snark- Interview

9/20/2013- Michelle & Leslie's Book Picks- Review
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