Waiting on Wednesday {133}: Caraval

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. This week's can't-wait-to-read pre-publication book is: Caraval.

Caraval (Untitled, #1)


by Stephanie Garber

Publication date: January 31st, 2017

From Goodreads:

Before you enter the world of Caraval, you must remember that it’s all a game . . .

Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their ruthless father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the legendary, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

Then, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation to Caraval finally arrives. So, Tella enlists a mysterious sailor’s help to whisk Scarlett away to this year’s show. But as soon as the trio arrives, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nonetheless soon becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with her sister, with Legend, and with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

Waiting on Wednesday {132}: We are Still Tornados

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. This week's can't-wait-to-read pre-publication book is: We Are Still Tornados.

We Are Still Tornadoes

We Are Still Tornados

by Michael Kun and Susan Mullen

Publication date: November 1, 2016

From Goodreads:

Growing up across the street from each other, Scott and Cath have been best friends their entire lives. Cath would help Scott with his English homework, he would make her mix tapes (it's the 80's after all), and any fight they had would be forgotten over TV and cookies. But now they've graduated high school and Cath is off to college while Scott is at home pursuing his musical dreams.

During their first year apart, Scott and Cath's letters help them understand heartache, annoying roommates, family drama and the pressure to figure out what to do with the rest of their lives. And through it all, they realize that the only person they want to turn to is each other. But does that mean they should be more than friends? The only thing that's clear is that change is an inescapable part of growing up. And the friends who help us navigate it share an unshakable bond.

This funny yet deeply moving book--set to an awesome 80's soundtrack--captures all the beautiful confusion and emotional intensity we find on the verge of adulthood...and first love.

Waiting on Wednesday {131}: Our Chemical Hearts

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. This week's can't-wait-to-read pre-publication book is: Our Chemical Hearts.

Our Chemical Hearts

Our Chemical Hearts

By Krystal Sutherland

Publication date: October 4, 2016

From Goodreads:

Henry Page has never been in love. He fancies himself a hopeless romantic, but the slo-mo, heart palpitating, can't-eat-can't-sleep kind of love that he's been hoping for just hasn't been in the cards for him—at least not yet. Instead, he's been happy to focus on his grades, on getting into a semi-decent college and finally becoming editor of his school newspaper. Then Grace Town walks into his first period class on the third Tuesday of senior year and he knows everything's about to change.

Grace isn't who Henry pictured as his dream girl—she walks with a cane, wears oversized boys' clothes, and rarely seems to shower. But when Grace and Henry are both chosen to edit the school paper, he quickly finds himself falling for her. It's obvious there's something broken about Grace, but it seems to make her even more beautiful to Henry, and he wants nothing more than to help her put the pieces back together again. And yet, this isn't your average story of boy meets girl. Krystal Sutherland's brilliant debut is equal parts wit and heartbreak, a potent reminder of the bittersweet bliss that is first love.

Waiting on Wednesday {130}: SPINDLE (A Thousand Nights, #2)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. This week's can't-wait-to-read pre-publication book is: Spindle.

Spindle (A Thousand Nights, #2)


By E.K. Johnston

Publication date: December 6, 2016

From Goodreads:

The world is made safe by a woman...but it is a very big world.

It has been generations since the Storyteller Queen drove the demon out of her husband and saved her country from fire and blood. Her family has prospered beyond the borders of their village, and two new kingdoms have sprouted on either side of the mountains where the demons are kept prisoner by bright iron, and by the creatures the Storyteller Queen made to keep them contained.

But the prison is crumbling. Through years of careful manipulation, a demon has regained her power. She has made one kingdom strong and brought the other to its knees, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. When a princess is born, the demon is ready with the final blow: a curse that will cost the princess her very soul, or force her to destroy her own people to save her life.

The threads of magic are tightly spun, binding princess and exiled spinners into a desperate plot to break the curse before the demon can become a queen of men. But the web of power is dangerously tangled--and they may not see the true pattern until it is unspooled.

#TopTenTuesday: Top 10 TV Shows I Wish Hadn't Been Cancelled

It's been a while since I blogged. (Since before summer started, I think. Yeah, I know. That's pretty bad.) Since a lot has been going on, I've been focusing on the proper/best ways to spend my time. But when I saw this week's TtT theme (TV)--thanks The Broke and The Bookish!!!--I had to jump on board, because who doesn't want to share some of their favorite shows? I've even linked each show to IMDB for your convenience. :D (Pretty sure many of you will not have heard of at least a few of these--feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.)

(in no particular order)

1.  Kidnapped

Lovemuffin and I were really into this show. You never knew what was going to happen, and each show led you a little closer to figuring out why someone was... kidnapped. (Surprise!) And then, the show just... stopped at the end of season uno. Season ones love us, but seasons two tend to hate us. BOO.


2.  Hellcats

Aly Michalka? Ashely Tisdale? And a bunch of other great people? It was a) college, not high school b) cheerleading and c) so much dang drama that I could. not. get enough. I still mourn the loss of this one every once in a while. :( And if you're keeping track, this is show number two I liked that was cancelled after one season.

(Good news! You can watch Hellcats season one at CW's Seed.)

3.  Lie to Me

This entire premise was great. I felt like I learned something every episode! Being able to tell whether people are lying based on body language? Perfect! Plus the actors were A+. Lovemuffin and I loved Tim Roth, I LOVE Kelli Williams, and the cast was lovely and, as usual, we didn't know we were watching the last season and didn't have time to prepare ourselves.  :(

4.  October Road

This show ended after... two seasons. It had a GREAT cast (Bryan Greenberg as Nick, Laura Prepon, Evan Jones, and so many other wonderful people), and here was the premise:

An author returns to his hometown to face the people whom he based his book on.


Drama + author + great cast + small town = a Jonathan Tropper book--oh wait, there is that, but this was supposed to equal OCTOBER ROAD.

I don't know how many people even know about this one. But still.

My birthday is coming up. I say this because this post has reminded me how much I need a DVD set.

5.  Journeyman

Yes. Journeyman. Allow me to introduce you:







It took a few episodes to get into this one, but then, I was STUCK. Remember that whole, season-two-hates-us thing? I may not have come across this show until recently (it came out in 2007), but I AM SO UPSET that it ended after one season. In fact, the fans were so upset at the time, that they PETITIONED for this one season to be put on DVD. (It still hasn't been. Thinking I found the motherload of someone's collection, I, uh, accidentally ordered shady copies. OOPS.)

(Would Kevin still have been on Grey's, had this done well? Or would this show have still been going on? Who knows!)

6.  About a Boy

First things first: MINNIE DRIVER!

Also: Based on a Book (which was also a movie!)

Also also: great neighbor guy who makes bad choices but is totes (mostly) there for neighbor kid! What's not to like?

2 seasons; then whack. (TV executive people you are very, very mean.)

7.  The Finder

An Iraq war vet suffers a brain injury that triggers the ability to see connections between seemingly unrelated events, objects or people.

This wasn't one of my favorite favorites, but I was starting to get into it when it was axed. Maybe one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much was because of Geoff Stults (*cough* October Road alumni *cough*). Ask me how many seasons it got??? ONE.

8.  Boston Public

People forget about this show. Yes, it was created by David E. Kelly., the same guy who created the more famous Boston Legal (and The Practice, and Ally McBeal...) But this one, I felt, had more heart. Plus a wonderful cast. (Seriously. Go to that little link up there and check out all of the great peeps. I'll wait.) And great episodes. And it was in high school but you didn't feel like YOU were a student.

Was I a little more attached to this show because I went into labor whilst watching it? Mayyyybe. Regardless, after four seasons, I was sad to see it go.

9.  Las Vegas

Sometimes it takes me a while to warm up to people shows. This was yet another one of those. But once I did (JOSH DUHAMEL!), I got all into the drama, and then (TOM SELLECK!!), suddenly, everything stopped.

What the what, NBC?

10.  Life as We Know It


Okay, yes, I'm being a little dramatic, especially since...

Confession: I've never even seen this. I found out about it years ago and have been kicking myself in the pants ever since for having no idea that it existed. You've got Missy Peregrym (Stick It, Rookie Blue), Sean Faris (so many things, but my absolute fave is Forever Strong--oh, did I mention he was the inspiration for Rowan in the Flora series? I did? Well anyway...), and DELL Chris Lowell (*cough* Private Practice *cough*), and that's only the beginning.

Add this to my list of how-the-heck-am-I-gonna-get-hold-of-this (WHAT? It's on DVD now???) because I suddenly feel like Veruca Salt.

So... have you seen any of these? Were you sad to see them go, too? Feel free to share your sob stories in the comments.

#16DABash DIG TOO DEEP by Amy Allgeyer + #Giveaway!

Dig Too Deep

By Amy Allgeyer
Publication date: April 1st, 2016
Category: YA

From Goodreads: With her mother facing prison time for a violent political protest, seventeen-year-old Liberty Briscoe has no choice but to leave her Washington, DC, apartment and take a bus to Ebbottsville, Kentucky, to live with her granny. There she can finish high school and put some distance between herself and her mother--her 'former' mother, as she calls her. But Ebbottsville isn't the same as Liberty remembers, and it's not just because the top of Tanner's Peak has been blown away to mine for coal. Half the county is out of work, an awful lot of people in town seem to be sick, and the tap water is bright orange--the same water that officials claim is safe to drink. When Granny's lingering cold turns out to be something much worse, Liberty is convinced the mine is to blame, and starts an investigation that quickly plunges her into a world of secrets, lies, threats, and danger. Liberty isn't deterred by any of it, but as all her searches turn into dead ends, she comes to a difficult decision: turn to violence like her former mother or give up her quest for good. 

DIG TOO DEEP was a great look at the current water crises all over this country due to Mountaintop Removal mining. In fact, every time I see a post by Erin Brockovich on Facebook, I'm immediately reminded of DIG TOO DEEP, as not only is this story a reality for many, many people at the moment, but it's also informative as to how the mining culture feels the way they do about speaking against everything. (And how the water contamination can get to be so bad, so fast!)

Another thing I appreciated about DIG TOO DEEP was how the main character, Liberty, stood up for what she believed in, even though it wasn't the safe or easiest decision. Between the writing, the dynamic between a few of the characters (Liberty and her grandmother, especially) and getting a taste of the great Kentucky setting, I found DIG TOO DEEP to be informative, articulate, interesting, and a downright frustrating, wonderful book. I was excited to talk to Amy about DTD, and asked,

What are the difficulties/struggles/or rewards of writing about such a real life, complex topic?

Her response:

This is such a great question because part of what drew me to the issue of Mountaintop Removal mining is that it *is* so very complex.

It’s clear that Mountaintop Removal mining is disastrous for the environment. And it’s become evident that there are very serious health issues associated with living near MTR mines.

But at the same time, the people in these communities depend on the mines for jobs. Often, mining jobs are the highest paying jobs in the area. The money from mining jobs doesn’t just help families of mine workers. It also helps the local businesses where they shop. Mine jobs often pay enough that the families have some disposable income, which creates a market for bookstores and hair salons, home improvement contractors and house cleaners—businesses that otherwise might not even exist in these areas. So mining jobs create other jobs.

But…people are dying in these communities because of the mines. Cancer, gall bladder issues, birth defects and stillbirths. These are lives literally lost because of Mountaintop Removal mines.

The bottom line: MTR mines keep towns alive at the same time they’re killing the residents. It’s a savage sort of irony. And when you add in the coal companies’ drive for profit, the crippling poverty in the area, the deep pockets of coal lobbyists which sway the government from enacting protective measures that might force coal mines to find safer ways to extract coal…it’s a very complex and difficult situation.

I love writing about heavy issues with no clear right and wrong. Putting a character, like Liberty, through the difficult process of choosing where to make her stand creates amazing tension. And I think those moments really resonate with people…especially teens, who grapple with figuring out who they are and what they stand for on a daily basis. The difficulty in writing about complex issues, though, is that there will always be people who disagree with your story—people who think you got it totally wrong. And as a writer, that’s an uncomfortable place to be.

Whew! I'm so glad she loved writing about this, because it's something we ALL need to be more aware of. :(

About Amy:

The youngest of seven kids, Amy has been writing stories since she first learned to make her letters face the right way. Her work has appeared in Family Fun, A Fly in Amber and Stories for Children. As an architect, she spends her days restoring hundred-year-old homes in Boise where she lives with her son, a feral house cat, and a fake owl named Alan. She hates chocolate, but loves vegetables. She also loves travelling to foreign lands and the smell of honeysuckle on humid Southern nights. 

Amy's Website | Twitter | InstagramGoodreads

And now, for a giveaway! Amy is giving away a hard copy of DIG TOO DEEP and some swag to one winner (US only)! I highly recommend entering this (or picking up a copy for yourself--it's so pretty) DTD is a bit of an underrated book, I think, and was easily a four-and-a-half star read. Aside from a bit of profanity and talk of drugs, I'd recommend it to anyone 12 and up.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wanting to check out more 2016 debut authors? Here's the schedule for the entire month of June! (Blogs not hyperlinked yet, sorry!)

June 1st

My Book Addiction - Kristy Acevedo

SleepsOnTables – Michele Bacon

Adventures in Writing – Jennifer DiGiovanni

Sci-Fi and Scary - Margaret Dilloway

YaReads - A. E. Conran

BookCatPin - Anna Michels

June 2nd

Alice Reeds – Sarah Alexander

The Hermit Librarian – Anna Breslaw

Me, Myself, and I - Melissa Gorzelanczyk

Pulp and Mystery Shelf – Kim Savage

With Love for Books - Kat Helgeson

June 3rd 

Let Me Tell You A Story - Amy Allgeyer

Gabriella M Reads – Tobie Easton

Bookish Wanderlove – Emily Martin

Brittany's Book Rambles - Robin Reul – Guest Post

Kirstyes - Books, Occupation - Magic! - Jennifer Mason-Black

Diane’s Book Blog – Michael Miller

Pimples, Popularity, and Protagonists – R.S. Grey

June 4th

Ink Sisters Write – Brooks Benjamin

21st Century Once Upon A Times – Lucy Keating

With Love for Books – Amber Smith

Swoony Boys Podcast - Mia Siegert

Vi3tBabe – Judy Sheehan

June 5th  

Diane’s Book Blog – Sarah Ahiers

 Cover2Cover - Kerry Kletter

 The Candid Cover - Jenny Moyer

 Lost in Lit – Katherine Fleet

 Alice Reeds - Jenny Manzer

 June 6th 

 Gabriella M Reads - Ami Allen-Vath

 Two Chicks on Books - Nicole Castroman

 Lisa Loves Literature – Janet B. Taylor

 Downright Dystopian – Jeff Garvin

 June 7th 

The Hardcover Lover - Ashley Herring Blake 

Here's to Happy Endings - Meg Leder

 Vox Libris – Catherine Lo

 YaReads – Scarlett Kol

 The Book Cellar - Julie Hammerle

 Ink Sisters Write - Kenneth Logan

 Pimples, Popularity, and Protagonists – Jenna Welch

 June 8th 

Go Read A Book - Natalie Blitt

 Curling Up With A Good Book - Lindsey Klingele

 Across the Bookiverse - Kathy MacMillan

 The Reading Nook Reviews - Rebecca Podos 

June 9th 

The Book Beacon - Andrew Brumbach

The Turning Pages – Shannon M. Parker

 Book Lovers Life - Patrick Samphire

 Bibliophilia, Please - Gordon Jack

 June 10th 

With Love for Books - Harriet Reuter

Hapgood the bookdragon - Marisa Reichardt

 Cue My Muse - Laura Shovan

 Rockin' Book Reviews – Bryan Methods

 June 11th 

Kirstyes - Books, Occupation - Magic! - Kiran Millwood Hargrave 

Arctic Books – Laura Tims

Book Lovers Life - Sarah Schauerte Reida

 June 12th 

Bibliophilia, Please - Julie Eshbaugh

Mundie Kids – Robin Yardi

YaReads – Martine Lewis

June 13th 

Little Book Heaven - Michelle Andreani

YaReads – Carrie Firestone

 Me, Myshelf, and I – Peter HoffMeister

 Emily Reads Everything – Emily Skrutskie

 June 14th 

Downright Dystopian - Christian McKay Heidicker

Brittany's Book Rambles - Kerri Maniscalco

Platypire Reviews – Nanci Turner Steveson

June 15th 

My Book Addiction – Jennie K Brown

 Sci-Fi and Scary - Jennifer Bardsley

June 16th 

Milky Way of Books – Ava Jae

Rachel's Book Reviews – Jeff Zentner

June 17th 

Write Writing Written - Lily Anderson

Two Chicks on Books – Kim Zarins

Pink Polka Dot Books - Heather Smith Meloche

June 18th 

Pimples, Popularity, and Protagonists – K.C. Held

Wishful Endings – Elizabeth Briggs

Cue My Muse - Lee Gjertsen Malone

June 19th 

Read.Sleep.Repeat. - Rahul Kanakia

YaReads – Dee Romito

With Love for Books – Jessica Taylor

 June 20th 

YaReads – Kurt Dinan

A Perfection Called Books – Erin Summerill

21st Century Once Upon A Times - Riley Redgate

My Book Addiction - Janet Sumner Johnson

June 21st 

YaReads - J. Keller Ford

What's Write About This – Erin Teagan

Alice Reeds - Aditi Khorana

Latte Nights Reviews – Mia Garcia

June 22nd 

Pink Polka Dot Books – Emily France

Emily Reads Everything - Sonya Mukherjee

YaReads - Everly Frost

Little Book Heaven - Paula Garner

June 23rd 

Latte Nights Reviews - Kathleen Glasgow

Bookish Wanderlove - Karen Hattrup

 June 24th 

My Bookish Year – Erica M Chapman

The Eater of Books! – Julie Buxbaum

The Book Cellar - Jill Diamond

YaReads - Dana Elmendorf

June 25th 

Pretty Deadly Reviews - Laurie Elizabeth Flynn

My Book Addiction - Erin Petti

SleepsOnTables - Parker Peevyhouse

The Phantom Paragrapher - Julie Leung

June 26th 

The Book Cellar - Evangeline Denmark

 The Reading Nook Reviews – Kathryn Purdie

 Gabriella M Reads – Stephanie Scott

 Read.Sleep.Repeat. - Lisa A. Koosis

 June 27th 

The Book Beacon - Claire Fayers

YaReads - Cheryl Blackford

Bookish Wanderlove - Jenn P. Nguyen

Bibliophilekid - Emily Cox and Nicole Allen

BookCatPin - Laura Stampler

June 28th 

Pandora’s Books - Audrey Coulthurst 

My Book Addiction – Abby Cooper

Downright Dystopian – Katie Kennedy

Hannah Plus Books – Tom Crosshill

Book Lovers Life - Cynthia Reeg

June 29th 

Media Geeks Unite - Tricia Clasen 

Tigersbooksandme - Destiny Soria

Mindjacked – Margot Harrison

books are love - Caleb Roehrig 

Emily Reads Everything - Janet McNally

Platypire Reviews – Tara Sims

YaReads - Isabel Bandeira 

June 30th 

On Starships and Dragonwings – Traci Chee

Doodle's Book Reviews - Meghan Rogers

Pandora’s Books - Kathleen Burkinshaw

Bibliophilia, Please - Bridget Hodder

Swoony Boys Podcast - Krystal Sutherland

 Alice Reeds - Karen Fortunati

 My Book Addiction - Mike Grosso

 The Reading Nook Reviews - Lindsey Roth Culli

Book Lover’s Life– Abigail Johnson

YaReads – Sarah Glenn Marsh

What's Write About This - Wade Albert White

Waiting on Wednesday {129}: United (Alienated, #3)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. This week's can't-wait-to-read pre-publication book is: United.

United (Alienated, #3)


By Melissa Landers

Publication date: August 2, 2016

From Goodreads:

After thwarting a deadly coup and saving the alliance between their worlds, Cara and Aelyx have finally earned a break. Their tiny island colony is everything they dreamed it would be―days spent gathering shells on the beach and nights in each other’s arms.

But the vacation is short-lived.

The treaty between Earth and L’eihr has awakened an ancient force that threatens to destroy them all. The Aribol, mysterious guardians charged with maintaining interstellar peace, deem the alliance a threat to the galaxy. They order a separation of the races, decreeing humans and L’eihrs must return to their own planets within the month or face extinction. In fact, they already have agents in place on Earth, ready to begin.

With the clock ticking, Aelyx and Cara assemble a team of colonists and race back to Earth, where they unite with old friends to solve the mystery of who the Aribol are, what they want, and the real reason the alliance has provoked them. As tensions build to a full-scale war, Aelyx and Cara must fight harder than ever―not just for their future, but for the survival of both their worlds.