Sometimes being a teen is harder than we think, and the adults are not always the reliable ones. Read my review of #sayyoullrememberme and enter to #win a copy!

About Say You’ll Remember Me

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Harlequin Teen (January 30, 2018)

Doesn’t matter who did it. Not anymore. I did the time. It’s over.”

When Drix was convicted of a crime—one he didn’t commit—he thought his life was over. But opportunity came with the Second Chance Program, the governor’s newest pet project to get delinquents off the streets, rehabilitated and back into society. Drix knows this is his chance to get his life back on track, even if it means being paraded in front of reporters for a while.

Elle knows she lives a life of privilege. As the governor’s daughter, she can open doors with her name alone. But the expectations and pressure to be someone she isn’t may be too much to handle. She wants to follow her own path, whatever that means.

When Drix and Elle meet, their connection is immediate, but so are their problems. Drix is not the type of boy Elle’s parents have in mind for her, and Elle is not the kind of girl who can understand Drix’s messy life.

But sometimes love can breach all barriers.

Fighting against a society that can’t imagine them together, Drix and Elle must push themselves—Drix to confront the truth of the robbery, and Elle to assert her independence—and each other to finally get what they deserve.

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Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

Mama Says:
What happens when you have to stand up to someone you love for someone you barely know?  When you try to fight for a scrap of control over your own life, when you are just starting to figure out what you want to do with said life, all while falling headfirst into the unknown? Elle isn’t just a polished daughter of the Governor of Kentucky, but for most of her life, that’s all anyone has known.  Drix is your typical kid from a broken home trying to find any means of escape.  Except for the time he didn’t.  Say You’ll Remember Me is the story of these two meeting in a series of unlikely scenarios that are all too easily misinterpreted by the voracious media, and by everyone in Elle’s father’s senate  campaign.  I found that although the story veered into predictable and sometimes even cheesy territory, the message at its heart was good and true.  Sometimes, to do the right thing, you have to do something that means you lose.  You have to sacrifice to make a difference.  I wasn’t completely swept away by any particular character, but I enjoyed the different relationships and the way the kids took care of one another, as kids often do when there aren’t any adults around to do it for them.  It was a sweet read with an easy pace, and would be suitable for most readers as it wasn’t graphic or explicit, though there is a bit of violence, it’s pretty mild.

3.5 stars and my sincere thanks to Harlequin Teen and TLC Book Tours for the review opportunity!

.

About Katie McGarry

Katie was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

She is the author of the Pushing the Limits and Thunder Road series. Say You’ll Remember Me will be released in 2018.

Katie loves to hear from her readers.

.Connect with Katie

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Would you like to win a gorgeous, brand new hardcover copy of Say You’ll Remember Me? Well, if you’re in the US, you’re in luck because I have an extra copy to give away!
Comment on this post telling me if you’ve ever had to stand up to someone you love, or if you’ve ever helped a stranger, bonus points if you go to the Instagram post and tell me you did so here!

Ends 2/28, US only due to shipping rates unfortunately.

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Fated is available and ready to break your heart. #happyvalentinesday #4stars

Fayed

 Fated by Karen Lynch, the sixth book in the Relentless series, is now available!

Christian Kent has many labels – warrior, protector, friend, lover – but the one label he never wanted was mate. In his lifetime, the only girl he has ever loved, was the one he couldn’t have. He left her to protect her heart, but his own will always belong to her.

As a girl, the one person she believed would never hurt her broke her heart. Now a warrior, she’s loving life and living for the next adventure. She’s put the past behind her, including the man who walked out of her life.

Fate brought them together once, and it’s not done with them yet. When they are suddenly thrown together to battle a lethal new foe, sparks fly and old feelings resurface. Chris will have to work hard to heal the rift between them. But will she be able to let go of the old heartbreak and open her heart to him again?

Can they come together before the threat they are facing tears them apart forever?

Apple: http://bit.ly/Fated_Apple
Amazon: http://bit.ly/Fated_Amazon
Barnes&Noble: http://bit.ly/Fated_BarnesNoble
Kobo: http://bit.ly/Fated_Kobo
Smashwords: http://bit.ly/Fated_Smashwords
Google Play: http://bit.ly/Fated_GooglePlay

Mama Says:
I wasn’t exactly nervous to read this book, but Chris is my favorite and you always get a little anxious when an author decides to give you an entire novel on what is a secondary character in a series. But, this was an unfounded anxiety, because just like she did with Warrior, Karen Lynch gave us a whole new side to our man! I really enjoyed the banter of course, but getting more history was maybe my favorite part. And more Chris. Hello he’s the best! I’m so glad I took a chance to continue this rad series!

It’s about to get gothy up in here with today’s #Shadowsong celebration- including a playlist inspired by @sjaejones writing and a review by yours truly. #ffbctour #wintersong #yalit #bookishplaylist

Shadowsong (Wintersong #2)

by S. Jae-Jones

Publisher: Wednesday Books

Release Date: February 6, 2018

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Synopsis:

Six months after the end of Wintersong, Liesl is working toward furthering both her brother’s and her own musical careers. Although she is determined to look forward and not behind, life in the world above is not as easy as Liesl had hoped. Her younger brother Josef is cold, distant, and withdrawn, while Liesl can’t forget the austere young man she left beneath the earth, and the music he inspired in her. 

When troubling signs arise that the barrier between worlds is crumbling, Liesl must return to the Underground to unravel the mystery of life, death, and the Goblin King—who he was, who he is, and who he will be. What will it take to break the old laws once and for all? What is the true meaning of sacrifice when the fate of the world—or the ones Liesl loves—is in her hands?

Purchase links:
Amazon    B&N  Indiebound   Bookdepository

Sequel to:

I had so much fun putting together this playlist, but as my title mentions, it’s gothy af, so if that’s not your thing, keep an open mind.  I’ve been as careful as possible to avoid spoilers, but if you’re worried you’ll find yourself realizing plot points based on song titles, don’t read them!
Enjoy dears:)

Songs of Shadow

https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/12146971229/playlist/12oTb8X4uUAMrGLQChz5GL

Mama Says:

 

**There are slight spoilers for Wintersong in this review**

“One cannot place a price on a promise.”

Well, if you thought I was done raving about JJ and Der Erlkönig you were very much mistaken.  In Shadowsong we find Liesl is much more affected by her time in the underground than even she realized, and her family is falling apart around her, as she struggles with her own crumbling reality.  Though I do suffer from mood disorders, thus have a bit of a more personal experience with anxiety and weak tethers to reality, I felt the author better portrayed the inner workings of a mind in turmoil in this second novel, where she shied away from it in the first.
We also get a deeper look at the relationship between Josef and Liesl, and we learn more about the Wild Hunt.  Tension mounts and lives are lost in what becomes a desperate race for the family to determine what is real and what is fantasy, what is their fate to be? I found myself gripping the sheets in some chapters for sheer terror of what was about to befall my beloved Elisabeth, or even more so, the Goblin King.
If I were to discuss this book too in depth, I would spoil too much, so instead I’ll just say that, if you are hesitant to read this due to the author’s warnings, or due to your feeling underwhelmed by the first book, please take a chance, you may find this crazy world draws you in and turns you around.  If you haven’t read Wintersong yet, stop reading my blog and go do it.

Rating :  4.5 stars
thanks so much to St. Martins/Wednesday books and FFBC for the review opportunity! I also bought my own copy of course.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

S. Jae-Jones, called JJ, is an artist, an adrenaline junkie, and the NYT bestselling author of Wintersong.

Born and raised in sunny Los Angeles, she lived in New York City for ten years before relocating down to Dixie, where she is comfortably growing fat on grits and barbecue. When not writing, she can be found rock-climbing, skydiving, taking photographs, drawing pictures, and dragging her dog on ridiculously long hikes.

Website   |   Goodreads   |   Twitter   |   Instagram   |   Facebook   |   Pinterest

Giveaway details!

Prize: 1 copy of Shadowsong by S. Jae-Jones (US Only)

Starts: 2/4
Ends: 2/16

RAFFLECOPTER LINK

 

Follow the tour:

 

We’re back from hiatus with a treat: an excerpt from @katiemcgarry upoming release #SayYoullRememberMe from @tlcbooktours #yalit #contemporary

About Say You’ll Remember Me

Hardcover: 464 pages

Publisher: Harlequin Teen (January 30, 2018)

Doesn’t matter who did it. Not anymore. I did the time. It’s over.”

When Drix was convicted of a crime—one he didn’t commit—he thought his life was over. But opportunity came with the Second Chance Program, the governor’s newest pet project to get delinquents off the streets, rehabilitated and back into society. Drix knows this is his chance to get his life back on track, even if it means being paraded in front of reporters for a while.

Elle knows she lives a life of privilege. As the governor’s daughter, she can open doors with her name alone. But the expectations and pressure to be someone she isn’t may be too much to handle. She wants to follow her own path, whatever that means.

When Drix and Elle meet, their connection is immediate, but so are their problems. Drix is not the type of boy Elle’s parents have in mind for her, and Elle is not the kind of girl who can understand Drix’s messy life.

But sometimes love can breach all barriers.

Fighting against a society that can’t imagine them together, Drix and Elle must push themselves—Drix to confront the truth of the robbery, and Elle to assert her independence—and each other to finally get what they deserve.

Add to Goodreads badge

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

Excerpt: HENDRIX

Holiday smacks my arm and wrath owns her eyes. “Why didn’t you talk to her?”

I glance around at my family—Axle, Holiday, my best friend, Dominic, and his younger sister, Kellen. I’m searching for at least one of them to have my back and tell her to step off, but instead they’re curious for the answer. Even Axle’s giving me a questioning gaze, and the last thing my womanizing brother deserves is an explanation from me in my decisions regarding women.

Last time I was home, his reputation was as bad as Dad’s, minus the progeny. There are three siblings in this family, and we have three different birth mothers. Dad not only didn’t know how to use a condom, but he didn’t know how to stay true to one woman.

“I talked to her.”

My younger sister throws her arms out and drops her voice to what I’m assuming is to mimic me, but I don’t sound like an idiot. “You’re good at this.” She resumes her normal tone which is entering high-pitched. “Seriously? That’s all you’ve got? Did you get some sort of amoeba that eats your brain while hanging out in juvie?”

I fold my arms over my chest and wonder if my sister can read pissed-off body language.

“You can still catch the girl and talk to her,” Holiday continues, proving she doesn’t care I’m silently informing her to quit. “Don’t make me chase her for you because that would be embarrassing. Embarrassing for you. Not me. I’ll have to tell her you sent me, and because you’re a wuss, I’ll have to ask her out for you like we’re in sixth grade.”

I find myself missing the middle of nowhere. Trees, bonfires, mosquitos, mud, bears… .company that didn’t talk.

“She’s out of my league.” I haven’t spoken truer words in months. She was beautiful. She was poised. She was a cool breeze after a hot humid rain. She was that first ray of sunshine in the dark woods. She was the smell of honeysuckle in bloom. She was the first damn thing that made me forget who I am and what I’ve gotten myself into over the past year. That means she was out of my league.

Granted, she was out of my league before I was arrested. Everything from her manicured nails, to her brand-name clothes, to her high-end purse, to the way she held herself said she was about a hundred times higher on the social and economic spectrum than me, but the person I was before would have made the play because I was smooth—just like my father.

“She is not out of your league.” Holiday hounds me. “She smiled at you. I know when a girl likes what she sees, and she liked what she saw in you.”

Tension builds in my neck. Yeah, the girl smiled, but she didn’t know what she was smiling at. I’m a pretty façade on the outside. On the inside, I’m a house of cards teetering on a bad foundation.

Axle throws an arm around Holiday’s shoulder and edges her away. “Let’s get some food. Drix is going to have to talk soon, and we don’t want him to do it on an empty stomach. Passing out on TV isn’t a great first impression.”

Wouldn’t want that to happen, would we?

“Hamburger?” Axle calls as he walks backwards for the food truck. “With everything?”

I nod. My brother knows me… .at least who I used to be.

“I’m agreeing with Holiday on this,” comes a deep rough voice to my right. “Pathetic.”

I do a slow head turn toward my best friend and cock an eyebrow at an even slower rate.

He smirks at my expression. “We picked a game we always let you win, and you didn’t even try.”

They picked that game because I used to kick their asses at it, and they were trying to get me to be the old Drix. But I only offer one sloppy lift of my shoulder because I don’t know how to explain that it’s tough to engage.

“It’s creepy hanging with you,” Dominic continues. “It’s like you’re the Walking Dead. I’m half expecting someone to jump out with a samurai sword and slice out your heart.”

“Brain,” Kellen corrects as she adjusts the Spider-Man beanie on her head. It’s a hundred degrees outside, and she wears that hat like it’s thirty below. “They’d take out his brain.”

“That, too.”

Dominic and Kellen stand side by side. Siblings who look and act nothing alike, except for their attachment to me and my family.

Kellen’s barely sixteen, the baby of our group. She’s blond braids with black bows at the ties, and she wears her beloved fitted black Captain America T-shirt and worn jeans with rips. It’s weird seeing her with lip gloss and eye shadow. I’m betting that would be Holiday’s doing, but at least Kellen’s somewhat the same.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

About Katie McGarry

Katie was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

She is the author of the Pushing the Limits and Thunder Road series. Say You’ll Remember Me will be released in 2018.

Katie loves to hear from her readers.

Connect with Katie

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

The latest thriller from @gillymacmillan proves to be another thought-provoking piece of suspense literature. #review #tlcbooktours

About Odd Child Out

• Paperback: 432 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (October 3, 2017)

From New York Times Bestselling Author of WHAT SHE KNEW

“A hugely satisfying and thrilling read. Highly recommended!” -Shari LaPena, New York Times bestselling author of The Couple Next Door

“Literary suspense at its finest.”—Mary Kubica, New York Times bestselling author of Pretty Baby

How well do you know the people you love…?

Best friends Noah Sadler and Abdi Mahad have always been inseparable. But when Noah is found floating unconscious in Bristol’s Feeder Canal, Abdi can’t–or won’t–tell anyone what happened.

Just back from a mandatory leave following his last case, Detective Jim Clemo is now assigned to look into this unfortunate accident. But tragedy strikes and what looked like the simple case of a prank gone wrong soon ignites into a public battle. Noah is British. Abdi is a Somali refugee. And social tensions have been rising rapidly in Bristol. Against this background of fear and fury two families fight for their sons and for the truth. Neither of them know how far they will have to go, what demons they will have to face, what pain they will have to suffer.

Because the truth hurts.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Mama Says:
While I’m not one to shy away from any and all books that might make me uncomfortable, I wouldn’t normally have picked this one up because of there being children involved, however, I’m glad I took a chance, as she handled matters in a very conscious way.  Odd Child Out is a timely, thought provoking read full of questions many people are already asking themselves in these turbulent days.  Family isn’t always honest with each other, good though their intentions may be.  And that dishonesty can have consequences.  While I felt at times there were too many irrelevant plot threads going on, and that they were a bit clumsy and awkward in a few places, Macmillan expertly weaves them all together at the right moments.
Furthermore, she handled issues of race and prejudice in a way that few non-POC writers achieve- without ever reaching the point of condescension or self-righteousness.  It was refreshing to read a story with so many perspectives that really delved into what each person’s experiences were and how they felt about the way they fit (or didn’t) into the world around them.
A slowly building book, yes, but once it sinks its teeth in you’re not going to put it down.  You’ll be wrapped up in mystery, compassion, suspense and bewilderment.  It’s delicious.

4 stars and my thanks to TLC Book Tours and William Morrow books for the review opportunity!

About Gilly Macmillan

Gilly Macmillan is the Edgar Nominated and New York Times bestselling author of What She Knew. She grew up in Swindon, Wiltshire and lived in Northern California in her late teens. She worked at The Burlington Magazine and the Hayward Gallery before starting a family. Since then she’s worked as a part-time lecturer in photography, and now writes full-time. She resides in Bristol, England.

Find out more about Gilly at her website, and connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

Ready for more royal women taking charge of their own destinies? Read #RichestoRags by @authorcaseybond

Title: Riches to Rags
Author: Casey L. Bond
Genre: YA Epic Fantasy, Fairy Tale Retelling (Cinderella)
Editor: Stacy Sanford/ The Girl with the Red Pen
Cover Designer: Melissa Stevens/ The Illustrated Author Design Services
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb: 
Most girls dream of being princesses, but one princess just wants to be a normal girl.
Ella Carina, crown princess of Aelawyn, knows brutality and lies—she’s seen the way her father rules. Princess. Possession. To her father, the words had the same meaning. She was only as valuable as the alliance formed with her betrothal. Her freedom comes from an unlikely place: an attack on the castle.
When the conquering King offers to protect her from the betrothal her father arranged for political gain, she consents. Hiding her within a peasant family is the only way to keep her and her secret safe.
In this simpler life, Ella flourishes and catches the eye of the local Blacksmith’s son. For once, she can be herself and make her own choices, but the life of a princess—even one kept secret—was never meant to be easy.
Trevor, crown prince of Galder has been searching for Ella, but not because of their betrothal. She is in grave danger from the very people who hid her away. His plan is to show her the truth and help her to safety.
Nothing goes as planned. When Trevor finds her, it’s to discover she’s fallen in love with a peasant. Now he has two goals: help her regain her throne… and show her that she belongs with him.
 Buy On Amazon
Mama Says:
With notes reminiscent of Throne of Glass, The Queen of the Tearling, and of course, the original fairy tale which we’re being retold, Riches to Rags is not just another Cinderella story.  It’s a look into the mind of a teenage girl and those who surround her, as well as a coming of age story.  It’s another book in which Casey Bond makes you think you’re going to get cupcakes and rainbows, but from the second chapter you realize that is, in fact, not happening.  Bloodshed and loss and humiliation and despair all take turns on poor Cerina before we even get to the sixth chapter.  As usual, the writing is compelling, the plot well-paced, and the characters grab your hand and take you away to their poor, sad little worlds.
I must admit, this is quite a different style for Bond, but I love it.  It’s not AS dark as some of her recent books, but there’s definitely depth and enough substance to sink your teeth into, without being so heavy I can’t sleep for a week after reading it.
Closer to YA than NA, but still somewhere in the middle, I’d recommend this for ages 14 and up, parental discretion advised.
Award-winning author Casey L. Bond resides in Milton, West Virginia with her husband and their two beautiful daughters. When she’s not busy being a domestic goddess and chasing her baby girls, she loves to write young adult and new adult fiction.You can find more information about Bond’s books via the following links:

I was in my room, lost in my own worries, when the world as I knew it was torn to shreds.
My room was large, and with only a bed and wardrobe inside, it was far too spacious than anything I needed. But it was also my sanctuary. It had to be. Father didn’t allow me to leave the space without an escort, and only then when he gave me permission, which wasn’t often. I considered myself lucky to have a window until that day.
The horrors I saw from that window would stay with me forever.
Sitting quietly in the alcove, watching the comings and goings of the villagers, was how I learned the ever-changing styles in fashion and beauty, how gentlemen and ladies were to properly act, and how some acted very improperly when they thought no one was watching.
The day the Kingdom of Aelawyn fell, I was watching and envying the lives of her people.
Nothing seemed amiss as three large, covered wagons approached the front gate. The man driving the horses that pulled the lead wagon shouted to the guard atop the gate, announcing that they carried supplies, taken from another forest raid. They were granted immediate entry, Father’s guard raising the portcullis for them.
One by one, the wagons crept into the yard. As soon as the gate slammed back to the ground behind the third wagon, a loud whoop sounded. The guards were stunned, so much so that it took far too long for them to spring into action and defend the castle. The wagon canvases were torn to shreds as a small army, clad in armor and donning swords, shields, and all manner of weaponry, unfolded from the wagons and began to slash their way across the yard.
They did not take time to discern villager from soldier, male from female, innocent from guilty.
A river of blood flowed in their wake, draining between the cobblestones. They were so skilled and efficient in battle that they entered the castle before any alarm could be raised to stop them. In no time, they’d taken the castle itself.
Copyright Casey L. Bond

Check out the #ChastityFalls rebrand reveal from @authorlacotton

CHASTITY FALLS REBRAND & RELEASE ANNOUNCEMENT
BY L A COTTON

Chastity Falls is almost three, and to celebrate the series has been given a brand-new look!
What’s more, in January 2018 we’ll be taking one last trip to Chastity Falls.
That’s right. The brooding silent mystery Dennis Hayes is finally getting his own book. Read on for more details…

 START THE SERIES TODAY FOR ONLY 99cents

BUY NOW

Reading Order
Book #1 Loyalty and Lies
Book #2 Salvation and Secrets
Book #3 Tribulation and Truths
Book #4 Redemption and Regrets (can be read as a standalone)
Book #4.5 Penance and Promises
Book #3.5 Affliction (can be read as a standalone)
Book #5 Absolution (can be read as a standalone)

 

 


Earlier this year, Affliction ( Dennis and Cassie’s novella set during the timeline of Ana and Jackson’s story) was published as part of a charity anthology. Well now it’s live on all platforms and can be read as a standalone or after Tribulation and Truths.

Affliction Blurb

Dennis Hayes knows all too well that his life is no place for a relationship. He’s at Chastity Falls Academy to play football and do his job. Not meet girls or have fun. But some rules are meant to broken, and the second his lips touch hers, Dennis knows he’s going to break his most sacred one: never let your heart rule.Cassie Malson watched her friend’s life fall apart at the hands of The Fallen—Chastity Falls Academy’s football team. She never expected to end up in the same position. The lies. The sneaking around. Telling herself it’ll all work out in the end. Because deep down, Cassie knows if she isn’t careful, he’ll bury himself so far in her heart she might never recover.

They’re from different worlds.

They want different things.

It can never work.

Can it?

GRAB YOUR COPY FOR ONLY 99c

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Author of mature young adult and new adult novels, L A is happiest writing the kind of books she loves to read: addictive stories full of teenage angst, tension, twists and turns.Home is a small town in the middle of England where she currently juggles being a full-time writer with being a mother/referee to two little people. In her spare time (and when she’s not camped out in front of the laptop) you’ll most likely find L A immersed in a book, escaping the chaos that is life.

 



A very happy release day to the @authorcaseybond and #RagstoRiches a #cinderella #retelling

Title: Riches to Rags
Author: Casey L. Bond
Genre: YA Epic Fantasy, Fairy Tale Retelling (Cinderella)
Editor: Stacy Sanford/ The Girl with the Red Pen
Cover Designer: Melissa Stevens/ The Illustrated Author Design Services
Blurb:
Most girls dream of being princesses, but one princess just wants to be a normal girl.
Ella Carina, crown princess of Aelawyn, knows brutality and lies—she’s seen the way her father rules. Princess. Possession. To her father, the words had the same meaning. She was only as valuable as the alliance formed with her betrothal. Her freedom comes from an unlikely place: an attack on the castle.
When the conquering King offers to protect her from the betrothal her father arranged for political gain, she consents. Hiding her within a peasant family is the only way to keep her and her secret safe.
In this simpler life, Ella flourishes and catches the eye of the local Blacksmith’s son. For once, she can be herself and make her own choices, but the life of a princess—even one kept secret—was never meant to be easy.
Trevor, crown prince of Galder has been searching for Ella, but not because of their betrothal. She is in grave danger from the very people who hid her away. His plan is to show her the truth and help her to safety.
Nothing goes as planned. When Trevor finds her, it’s to discover she’s fallen in love with a peasant. Now he has two goals: help her regain her throne… and show her that she belongs with him.
Award-winning author Casey L. Bond resides in Milton, West Virginia with her husband and their two beautiful daughters. When she’s not busy being a domestic goddess and chasing her baby girls, she loves to write young adult and new adult fiction.You can find more information about Bond’s books via the following links:

I was in my room, lost in my own worries, when the world as I knew it was torn to shreds.
My room was large, and with only a bed and wardrobe inside, it was far too spacious than anything I needed. But it was also my sanctuary. It had to be. Father didn’t allow me to leave the space without an escort, and only then when he gave me permission, which wasn’t often. I considered myself lucky to have a window until that day.
The horrors I saw from that window would stay with me forever.
Sitting quietly in the alcove, watching the comings and goings of the villagers, was how I learned the ever-changing styles in fashion and beauty, how gentlemen and ladies were to properly act, and how some acted very improperly when they thought no one was watching.
The day the Kingdom of Aelawyn fell, I was watching and envying the lives of her people.
Nothing seemed amiss as three large, covered wagons approached the front gate. The man driving the horses that pulled the lead wagon shouted to the guard atop the gate, announcing that they carried supplies, taken from another forest raid. They were granted immediate entry, Father’s guard raising the portcullis for them.
One by one, the wagons crept into the yard. As soon as the gate slammed back to the ground behind the third wagon, a loud whoop sounded. The guards were stunned, so much so that it took far too long for them to spring into action and defend the castle. The wagon canvases were torn to shreds as a small army, clad in armor and donning swords, shields, and all manner of weaponry, unfolded from the wagons and began to slash their way across the yard.
They did not take time to discern villager from soldier, male from female, innocent from guilty.
A river of blood flowed in their wake, draining between the cobblestones. They were so skilled and efficient in battle that they entered the castle before any alarm could be raised to stop them. In no time, they’d taken the castle itself.
Copyright Casey L. Bond
Buy Link:

Mary Rose becomes the modern ghost story you didn’t know you needed to read.

Synopsis 
 

Mary Rose Moreland and Simon Blake are the perfect couple: successful young professionals in Philadelphia, attractive, madly in love, and ready to start a life together. When they travel to England for Simon to ask her parents’ permission to marry Mary Rose, he learns an unsettling secret: Mary Rose disappeared when she was a little girl while the family was vacationing on a remote Scottish island. She reappeared mysteriously thirty-three days later in the exact same spot without a scratch on her and no memory of what had happened.

After Simon hears about this disturbing episode in Mary Rose’s childhood, he becomes obsessed with finding out what happened. He proceeds to launch his own investigation and arranges during their honeymoon for them to visit the island where she disappeared. But as Mary Rose’s behavior gets stranger after their engagement, the need for Simon to unlock the truth about her past grows even more urgent. What he uncovers is beyond his most terrifying fears.

Mary Rose is author Geoffrey Girard’s chilling and modern take on a classic ghost story originally written by J. M. Barrie. And for years, master of suspense Alfred Hitchcock attempted to adapt Mary Rose into a film but was never successful. With this novel, Girard taps into the nightmarish fears that inspired both Barrie and Hitchcock, while also bringing the story to the present day with his own unique voice.


Praise for MARY ROSE
“An exceptional gothic thriller. Girard’s literary roots shine through, and the dread rises with every turn of the page. Mary Rose will send a true chill down your spine. A haunting, scary, and beautifully written novel.” ―J.T. Ellison, NYT bestselling author of LIE TO ME

 

Mama Says:
This is some of the most dream-like (or rather nightmarish) writing I’ve come across in some time.  Swiftly moving from intriguing to terrifying, and covering everything in between, Mary Rose takes its time bringing you into the dark, but it is no less engrossing.
If you’re a fan of novels that make you shiver, make you sit and stare at the long dark hallway after you’ve finished trying to convince yourself that no, you did not just see a figure looming down there, you’re going to enjoy this book.  Though enjoy feels an odd word to use in reference to such a sad tale, there are bright spots of beautiful prose along the way making it earn such a reputation.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 

Geoffrey Girard writes thrillers, historicals, and dark speculative fiction. His first book, Tales of the Jersey Devil, thirteen original tales based on American folklore, was published by Middle Atlantic Pressin 2005, followed by Tales of the Atlantic Pirates (2006) and Tales of the Eastern Indians (2007). Simon and Schuster published two Girard novels simultaneously in 2013: CAIN’S BLOOD, a techno thriller, and PROJECT CAIN, a companion novel for teen/YA readers which was nominated for a Bram Stoker award for “Superior Achievement in a Young Adult Novel.”

In 2017, Carolrhoda Books published TRUTHERS, a YA novel about the 9/11 conspiracy, and Adaptive Books published MARY ROSE, a psychological thriller/ghost novel.

Girard’s short fiction has appeared in several best-selling anthologies and magazines, including Writers of the Future (a 2003 winner), Prime Codex, Aoife’s Kiss, The Willows, Murky Depths, Apex Horror & Science Fiction Digest, and the Stoker-nominated Dark Faith anthology. The debut collection of his short fiction, first communions, was published by Apex Books in May, 2016.

Born in Germany and shaped in New Jersey, Geoffrey currently lives in Ohio and is the English Department Chair at a famed private boys’ high school. Prior to teaching, he worked as an advertising copywriter, web developer and marketing manager. He has a BA in English literature from Washington College and an MA in creative writing from Miami University, where he is now working on an MFA. He has presented and led workshops on creative writing at schools, bookstores and various writers’ conventions/events.


Photo Content from Geoffrey Girard

Read about our author of the week Nic Stone, including a guest post and more on her newly released book #DearMartin #yalit #guestpost #giveaway

About the Book:

Title: DEAR MARTIN

Author: Nic Stone

Pub. Date: October 17, 2017

Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers

Pages: 224

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook

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Goodreads

Justyce McAllister is top of his class, captain of the debate team, and set for the Ivy League next year—but none of that matters to the police officer who just put him in handcuffs. He is eventually released without charges (or an apology), but the incident has Justyce spooked. Despite leaving his rough neighborhood, he can’t seem to escape the scorn of his former peers or the attitude of his prep school classmates. The only exception: Sarah Jane, Justyce’s gorgeous—and white—debate partner he wishes he didn’t have a thing for.

Struggling to cope with it all, Justyce starts a journal to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. But do Dr. King’s teachings hold up in the modern world? Justyce isn’t so sure.

Then comes the day Justyce goes driving with his best friend, Manny, windows rolled down, music turned up. Way up. Much to the fury of the white off-duty cop beside them. Words fly. Shots are fired. And Justyce and Manny get caught in the crosshairs. In the media fallout, it’s Justyce who is under attack. The truth of what happened that night—some would kill to know. Justyce is dying to forget.

Read more about the author, including her thoughts on pushing morality in YA books below~AK

About Nic:

Nic Stone was born and raised in a suburb of Atlanta, GA, and the only thing she loves more than an adventure is a good story about one. After graduating from Spelman College, she worked extensively in teen mentoring and lived in Israel for a few years before returning to the US to write full-time. Growing up with a wide range of cultures, religions, and backgrounds, Stone strives to bring these diverse voices and stories to her work.

You can find her goofing off and/or fangirling over her husband and sons on most social media platforms as @getnicced.

Website | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube | Goodreads

I want to thank Nic Stone for taking time to share with us her opinion on the importance of morality in ya novels!

There’s a quote from one of my favorite characters (the illustrious and high-minded Lord Henry) in one of my favorite books (The Picture of Dorian Gray): “I never approve, nor disapprove, of anything now. It is an absurd attitude to take towards life. We are not sent into the world to air our moral prejudices.” This is exactly how I feel about morality in YA novels. For me, reading has always been about exploration—seeing bits of the world at large from a perspective that is not my own—and it’s vital for me to have the space, as a reader, to draw my own conclusions, moral or otherwise, about what I’ve read. In fact, if a book has a clear “message” or obvious moral bent, I’ll put it down.

I feel we do teens a disservice when we tell them what to think. The best YA novels, to me, are the ones that present information without comment and allow readers to do what they will with it. Morality has its place in character development because, yes, (most) real people are guided by moral principles, but for morality of any sort to be overt in a novel? Eh. Not for me.

Enter the Giveaway- Details: 3 winners will receive a finished copy of DEAR MARTIN, US Only.