That's What HE Said Thursday #39: Nolan from Life Unaware


That's what HE said Thursday is a weekly meme hosted at Chapter Break where you post a favorite line of a book boyfriend to his girl. It's the perfect meme to share all those awesome quotes!

                     Today's quote is from Nolan of Life Unaware by Cole Gibsen.


     Quote:
"In this moment we have everything going against us. Can we maybe just hit pause on all the outside world bullshit and not overthink this?" His fingers twisted deeper into my hair. "For tonight, let's pretend that we have no past history--good or bad--and the only moment that's ever existed between the two of us is this one. With that in mind, give me the first answer that pops into your head and I'll be satisfied with the answer. Do you want to kiss me?"                     
-Nolan to Regan

I think I really don't need to explain why I love this quote so much. ♥ Nolan is just too darn sweet and knows his way with words. I loved that about him. Oh, and you can guess what Regan answered him, right? Heck, my mind was screaming YES YES YES! :D

Life Unaware by Cole Gibsen Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway


Hey, everyone! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour of Life Unaware by Cole Gibsen hosted by YA Bound Book Tours!  Check out below my review and enter the amazing tour-wide giveaway which is open internationally! Also, if you want to check out the other stops on the tour, you can just click here. Thanks for stopping by! 

*****
Title: Life Unaware
Author: Cole Gibsen
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Published: April 28th, 2015
Page Count: 320 Pages
Format: eBook
Source: From tour host 

Book Summary:
Regan Flay has been talking about you. 

Regan Flay is on the cusp of achieving her control-freak mother's "plan" for high school success―cheerleading, student council, the Honor Society—until her life gets turned horribly, horribly upside down. Every bitchy text. Every bitchy email. Every lie, manipulation, and insult she's ever said have been printed out and taped to all the lockers in school. 

Now Regan has gone from popular princess to total pariah. 
The only person who even speaks to her is her former best friend's hot but socially miscreant brother, Nolan Letner. Nolan thinks he knows what Regan's going through, but what nobody knows is that Regan isn't really Little Miss Perfect. In fact, she's barely holding it together under her mom's pressure. But the consequences of Regan's fall from grace are only just beginning. Once the chain reaction starts, no one will remain untouched... 

Especially Regan Flay.

 *The Reader's Review*

     My rating: 5/5 stars
This book is pure genius, there's no other word for it. Okay sure, I can also tell you that it's pretty darn amazing, but most importantly, it's genius. Bullying is a tough and serious topic, so I'm really amazed in how well it was approached by the author. Life Unaware, instead of being a book focused solely on a person being bullied, shows us the point of view of the bully, and how it comes back to get her.

So Regan Flay was a bully, but she wasn't actually a bad person. Between trying to hide her anxiety disorder from everyone and of being under all the pressure of what her mother wants her to do, she falls into the wrong of talking trash about other people behind their backs. However, after getting discovered, everyone in High School start bullying her back. Now Regan is struggling to survive school without falling into panic attacks and even worse, trying not to give in to the temptation of looking for the easiest ways out.

I really felt bad for Regan. I know she did wrong and there's no justifying her actions, but I didn't have it in me to dislike her. She turned into a really nice person after she stops trying to be that person who hurts people to get what she thinks she wants, and I felt proud of her for trying to keep it together, and of trying to prove to herself that she's not all bad. They say that the first (and hardest) step of curing a problem is admitting YOU have a problem, and that's what she does.

One thing I wasn't expecting about this book due to its main plot, was that I would be grinning and laughing a lot. It was a nice surprise and I liked that it was written this way. It showed that even in the darkest and toughest of hours, there will always be a bright spot. Our bright spot was Nolan, Regans' best friend's brother. His upbeat personality was the reason why our main character didn't fall into the pit of depression and managed to get stronger (this after she started tolerating him) . Nolan is so likeable, he made me laugh plenty and I can't ignore his great and swoonish lines, but I still feel like smacking him *shakes fist*. So glad things ended the way they did. It was FAIR, and surprising.

Life Unaware can be considered a light read in comparison to other books about bullying, but it's worth gold and it has a tremendous lasting impression. It made me cry and it even changed my view of some things. Personally, it reminded me that I should be more careful when speaking about people. I don't mean that I talk trash about my friends or strangers, but even a few comments meant only as a joke can really hurt them and I don't want to ever make that mistake. Hand out more compliments and tell people how special they are is what I must do, what everyone must do more often, just like in this book (and now I understand Entangled Teen's giveaway about this book, way to go!).

Now I know this book deserves a better review, but this is all I managed to get out after hours of staring at my screen. So sorry book, you are great, trust me. Words failed me to describe how wonderful you are and how much I loved all of you <3.

To end it all off, all I have left to say is that if you are someone interested on bullying, of trying to get anyone to learn more about it and of its consequences, I highly recommend Life Unaware.

*****

About the Author

Cole Gibsen first realized she different when, in high school, she was still reading comic books while the other girls were reading fashion magazines.

It was her love of superheroes that first inspired her to pick up a pen. Her favorite things to write about are ordinary girls who find themselves in extraordinary situations.
Social Media Links:





Enter the rafflecopter below to win:

 One t-shirt of the winner’s choice from this site: http://store.twloha.com/collections/girls/shirts
US only (sorry internationals!)


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Guest Post with Iain Reading + Giveaway!

Hello everyone, please welcome to the blog Iain Reading, author of the Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency series! He is here to share with us his thoughts about the rewards of keeping fiction realistic (based on his experience with Kitty Hawk). Such a wonderful guest post and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

But first, here's about the first book in the series:

Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold is the thrilling first installment in a new young adult series of adventure mystery stories by Iain Reading. This first book of the Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency Series introduces Kitty Hawk, an intrepid teenage pilot with her own De Havilland Beaver seaplane and a nose for mystery and intrigue. A cross between Amelia Earhart, Nancy Drew and Pippi Longstocking, Kitty is a quirky young heroine with boundless curiosity and a knack for getting herself into all kinds of precarious situations. 


After leaving her home in the western Canadian fishing village of Tofino to spend the summer in Alaska studying humpback whales, Kitty finds herself caught up in an unforgettable adventure involving stolen gold, devious criminals, ghostly shipwrecks, and bone-chilling curses. Kitty's adventure begins with the lingering mystery of a sunken ship called the Clara Nevada. As the plot continues to unfold, this spirited story will have readers anxiously following every twist and turn as they are swept along through the history of the Klondike Gold Rush to a suspenseful final climatic chase across the rugged terrain of Canada's Yukon.

Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold is a perfect book to fire the imagination of readers of all ages. Filled with fascinating and highly Google-able locations and history this book will inspire anyone to learn and experience more for themselves. 

There are currently 5 books in the Kitty Hawk series!
Aren't they pretty? I'm reading the first book right now and I'm loving it so far! This reminds me, before you move along, don't forget to scroll all the way down to the end of the post for your chance to win a copy of Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold! 

Thanks so much for stopping by, now off you go! :)

The Rewards of Keeping Fiction Realistic

As the heroine of my Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency book series makes her way around the world from one geographic location to the next, she finds herself discovering new histories and cultures... and of course new mysteries.  This is one of my favourite things about these books - the fact that Kitty Hawk immerses herself in these amazing new places and somehow manages to stumble across some mysterious puzzle lurking just out of sight that is somehow woven into the very fabric of the place itself.

As the author of these books I can tell you that it's a bit of a puzzle in itself figuring out exactly what the mysteries will be that Kitty Hawk solves as she travels from place to place.  Every strange new land has its own stories, of course, and finding the right one to weave a Kitty Hawk story around is sometimes tricky.  But in my experience I've found that if you find the right angle - turning facts and history around in your hands until they line up just right - then everything suddenly clicks into place and you find yourself swept up and carried along as the story just seems to write itself.  If I immerse myself every bit as much into these places and their histories as Kitty Hawk does then somehow the way forward becomes clear and the story reveals itself.

For me this has been one of the most rewarding aspects of creating these Kitty Hawk books.  Because it's not just Kitty Hawk herself who learns so much.  It's also me who learns.  By keeping her story grounded in realistic facts and history I am forced to learn every bit as much as she does about these incredible locations that she visits on her epic flight around the world.

Right now Kitty Hawk has just completed book number five in the series - she's just left Italy and the rest of Europe behind and is flying south east.  But she's not even at the halfway mark of her epic flight.  There are eight more books to go before she finds her way back home again to Canada.  That's a lot of world left out there for her to explore.  And for me to explore too, of course.  Not to mention everyone else who reads the books as well.  

It's a nice feeling knowing that we're all kind of in this together, isn't it?

*****
YES! It's amazing how even though I may never visit in person all the places I've read about, I still feel like I've seen them. I think I will be in for the trip of my life in your book series. Thanks so much for sharing, Iain! 

 About the Author 
Iain Reading is passionate about Root Beer, music, and writing. He is Canadian, but currently resides in the Netherlands working for the United Nations.

Iain is the author of the Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency Series, The Wizards of Waterfire Series, and the dragon of the month club. To learn more, go to http://www.amazon.com/Iain-Reading/e/B00B0NGI6Q/

Find him online:   Goodreads | Twitter | Amazon

This is a GOOD one.
Enter the rafflecopter below for a chance to win one of SIX copies (3 paperbacks & 3 kindle copies) of Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold! And yes, this giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY. 
Sweet, right? Good luck to everyone!

(And HUGE thanks to the author and the publicist for providing the copies!♥)

The Week's Entrée #61

Hi! Welcome to another edition of The Week's Entrée!

Yesterday I hosted my first twitter chat with the Malediction Trilogy fanbase account! It was awesome. Danielle L. Jensen was fantastic at answering all questions thrown her way and I really, really hope we get to do it again soon. *Crossing fingers* I'll keep you guys posted, you don't want to miss it again because we are now known for hosting some pretty cool giveaways *cough SIGNED books cough*  

And speaking of giveaways, stop by the blog tomorrow because I may have something going on open to worldwide readers. ;)

*****
Book reviews in other sites:


I reviewed Camp Boyfriend by J.K. Rock at Kate Tilton, Connecting Authors & Readers

This book was cutesy and it made me want to go camping (which I've NEVER done before, sister has *grumbles*). It was a 3-star read for me!

Here's the book's summary:

The summer of her dreams is about to get a reality check.

They said it couldn’t be done, but geeky sophomore Lauren Carlson transformed herself into a popular girl after moving to a new school halfway across the country. Amazing what losing her braces and going out for cheerleading will do. Only trouble is, the popular crowd is wearing on Lauren’s nerves and she can’t wait to return to summer camp where she’s valued for her brain instead of her handsprings. She misses her old friends and most of all, her long time camp-only boyfriend, Seth. This year she intends to upgrade their relationship to year-round status once she’s broken up with her new, jock boyfriend, Matt. He doesn’t even begin to know the real her, a girl fascinated by the night sky who dreams of discovering new planets and galaxies.

But Matt isn’t giving her up without a fight. As he makes his case to stay together, Lauren begins to realize his feelings run deeper than she ever would have guessed. What if the guy she thought she was meant to be with forever isn’t really The One? Returning to Camp Juniper Point was supposed to ground her uprooted life, but she’s more adrift than ever. Everything feels different and soon Lauren’s friends are turning on her and both guys question what she really wants. As summer tensions escalate, Lauren wonders if she’s changed more than she thought. Will her first big discovery be herself?
Books I Got Last Week:

{For review}
From Netgalley, authors, etc.


Thanks so much to the author & publicist for the review copy! It's so big and pretty. :)

{Purchased}


Now I just need the second book in the series and I can start reading them! :D

To Read This Week:

I'm almost done with Life Unaware by Cole Gibsen (I'm liking it!) and then I'll be moving to Kitty Hawk!

*****
And that's it for The Week's Entrée! What are you reading this week? :)

That's What HE Said Thursday #38: Matt from Camp Boyfriend


That's what HE said Thursday is a weekly meme hosted at Chapter Break where you post a favorite line of a book boyfriend to his girl. It's the perfect meme to share all those awesome quotes!

                     Today's quote is from Matt of Camp Boyfriend by J.K. Rock.


                                    

     Quote:

"Hell, no. Lauren, that guy will always be a little in love with you, and I'm going to have to live with that. But hearing him talk about you reminded me that I'd be a jerk to let stupid jealousy keep us apart."
                     
-Matt to Lauren


I really loved this quote from Matt. His character was first introduced to us as the typical High School jock who apparently doesn't have a care in the world for other than himself, but he turns out to be a really amazing and mature person with so many interesting layers underneath his perfect appearance. Lauren was supposed to break up with him so she could get together with her summer camp boyfriend, but with lines like this from him, it was inevitable for her (and me!) to fall for him. :)

Mini Book Review: Mama Cried by Talia Haven

Title: Mama Cried
Author: Talia Haven
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal
Published:  January 9th, 2015
Page Count: 12 pages
Format: eBook
Source: From author in exchange of an honest review


Summary:
Jenny was enjoying herself on the swings when Azula, one of the guardians of the playground came to take her away. 
Together they journey to a cinder building where Jenny must make a powerful decision.


*The Reader's Review*
My rating: 5/5 stars
*Gulp* Wow. Before reading this short story, I had no idea that 12 short pages could make me feel so ... sad and helpless. I actually thought Mama Cried was just a children's story with nice illustrations, but I was totally wrong. It's a raw and tough short story. It was unpredictable at first, and then downright shocking as the story progressed. I felt for Jenny and her innocence, of what she went through and what her mother was going through. It tore my heart to read how she had to make the decision even though she just wanted to go back to play with her faithful guardians and be a kid. Simply astounding. This short story really makes you think about the evil in this world and the strength of a pure heart. I really hope many get the chance to read this story. It's worth to check out.

The Week's Entrée #60

Hi! Welcome to another edition of The Week's Entrée!

Guys! I hope you're not doing anything this coming Sunday at 8pm EST because I'm hosting my first twitter chat with Danielle L. Jensen in the fanbase account of the Malediction Trilogy (@StolenSongbird). This is your chance to ask questions to the author and learn more about this amazing series. Plus, there will be giveaways! :D

To join in just use the hashtag #Trollus and make sure to follow both @dljensen_ & @StolenSongbird. Hope to see you there! 

I even made this graphic, so if you want to share, I'd much appreciate it ♥


Hope you all have a great week!

*****
Book reviews in other sites:

I reviewed By Sun and Candlelight by Jessica L. Brooks at Kate Tilton, Connecting Authors & Readers

This is a novella that takes place after the first book, If I Speak True! I really liked it because this time we get to be in Rowan's POV (he's the love interest!). It was a pretty good novella, not VERY exciting, but still amusing.

Here's the novella's summary:

A threat, a missing book, a traitor, and an attack. Even when you choose the light, things aren’t always so black and white when they involve matters of the heart.

Rowan has some decisions to make.

Told in Rowan’s point of view, By Sun and Candlelight (Flora, 1.5) gives you a new view into the characters and daily happenings at Castle Lennox and bridges the gap between If I Speak True (Flora, 1) and Open Thy Heart (Flora 2).

Books I Got Last Week:

{For review}
From Netgalley, authors, etc.

 

OH MY GOD, I GOT APPROVED TO READ HELLO, I LOVE YOU BY KATIE M. STOUT!!!!!
K-Pop + cute romance = MUST READ. Thank you St. Martin's Press! ♥ *cries tears of joy*

I also got Mia and the Bad Boy by Lisa Burstein from Entangled Crush! I already read the book and it turned out to be a cuuute read. ;)

{Purchased}


I grabbed my copy of Bad Romeo! Love the cover so, so much. Thanks for the heads-up, Jazmen! :D

To Read This Week:

I'm currently reading Camp Boyfriend by J.K. Rock! I've been wanting to read this book for a while now, and it's going well so far. After this one, I'll be quickly moving on to Hello, I Love You because I MUST DO SO. Cannot wait any longer!
*****
And that's it for The Week's Entrée! What are you reading this week? :)

Author Interview with L.G. O'Connor + Giveaway!

Hello everyone! I'm super excited to share with you all today a fantastic interview with L.G. O'Connor, author of The Angelorum Twelve Chronicles! This is a fantasy/paranormal series for adults, but she recently released the YA version of the first book, Trinity Stones. Isn't that awesome? 

But before of heading off to the interview (and checking out that giveaway found at the end of this post), please check out what Trinity Stones is all about:




Trinity Stones
 
by L.G. O'Connor

The Angelorum Twelve Chronicles #1
*** This is the ‘Adapted for Young Adult Reader’ version of TRINITY STONES (The Angelorum Twelve Chronicles #1) *** 

Angel Paranormal Romantic Suspense / Urban Fantasy. First book in a four-part series. No cliffhangers. 

Anxiety-ridden New York investment banker, Cara Collins, has little to smile about on her 27th birthday between a hostile work environment and her impossible romantic situation with her longtime friend and first love, Dr. Kai Solomon. But before the day ends, she learns she has inherited $50 million—a windfall that must remain secret or risk the lives of those close to her. 

As Cara unravels the truth surrounding her inheritance, she makes a startling discovery: angels walk among the living, and they’re getting ready to engage in a battle that will determine the future of the human race. In the midst of these revelations, she meets mysterious and sophisticated Simon Young, who offers her the promise of romance for the first time since Kai. 

But when Kai and his daughter are kidnapped by dark forces, Cara must choose: accept her place in a 2,000-year-old prophecy foretold in the Trinity Stones as the First of the Twelve who will lead the final battle between good and evil . . . or risk losing everything she holds dear.


Hi L. G. O’Connor! Thank you so much for taking some time to answer a few questions.

To start it all off, could you please share with us a few random things about yourself and your books?
I’m a big believer that there are no coincidences, but honestly, six years ago, if anyone would’ve told me that I’d write a novel someday, much less five (some aren’t published yet), I would’ve told them they needed a psychiatric evaluation J I have an MBA, not an MFA. In high school, I chose Calculus over English, because that’s how much I disliked writing. Then again, it’s been the things I’ve fought against most that have sucked me in kicking and screaming, and have formed the base for my life’s success. I guess this is just another one of those things.

Other random things: I was a competitive figure skater in high school; I practice Reiki healing; I collect antiques; I’ve read thousands of books over my lifetime; I have two four-legged children, my whippets Chloe and Nevada. Chloe stars as my heroine’s canine companion in the series.
What do you love most when writing your books?
My characters come alive! I love them all, good and bad. When they take over and start driving, that’s when my writing is at its best. They constantly surprise me. 
Why angels?
At the time I started writing the series (2009), there wasn’t as much out with angels, at least in the adult category. I’m a voracious reader of paranormal and urban fantasy, and mostly everything I was reading at the time was vampires in both YA & adult. I guess I’m drawn more to the light even though I don’t avoid the darkness in my series. Also, I wanted to create a story based on real biblical lore and use it as a springboard for my world building. Plus, I’ve always been fascinated by angels. Giving them the added burden of making them human creates an interesting internal conflict. 
Who designed your covers? (I love them!)
Thanks! Derek Murphy of CreativIndie. He’s awesome, and quite the busy guy lately! I’ve worked with him for several years now, and he designed the covers for my unreleased series as well. He’s also done some of Joanna Penn’s covers, and is used by many indies.
I know that you have a YA adapted version of Trinity Stones, could you please tell us more about that?
Originally, I wrote this series for the young adults who have aged out of Happy Potter, Twilight, and the rest of the hot young adult series over the last five years. The themes are similar with older characters in the new adult phase of life. I released the YA adaptation specifically to capture a new younger audience (13+) who can grow with the series (there are a total of 5 books), as well as adults who like YA because it is relatively free from explicit love scenes. I also went out of my way to remove the profanity that’s in the adult version of the series. This way, as the audience ages or their preferences change, they can choose which version to read—new adult or young adult.
Did you happen to cut out many scenes from your books and is there a particular one you were hesitant to take away from the final versions?
In the first draft of Trinity Stones, there was a love triangle that emerged on the page between Cara and Brett. Their chemistry was red hot and I couldn’t ignore it, so I let it go and he was part of the cast for the whole second half of the book. My editor basically made me rip him out. Big pout. Brett stayed in one scene, but his story was pushed to book 2. He actually opens The Wanderer’s Children vs. Cara. I have to say, my editor was right. It detracted from Cara’s romance with Simon. Rewriting the series without that was hard (I had already started writing the next book which had to undergo a major rewrite because of it), but I couldn’t avoid some attraction in book 2 – but it’s there now for a different reason.
You mentioned that one of your characters is a French chef, tell me - Why did you choose that profession for him and not something else?
Ah! Yes. First off, there is nothing sexier to me than a man who can cook – and I don’t just mean cook, I mean cook. Even better when it comes in an unexpected package. Simon, my hero, has a soft side that I love, and he gives himself to people through his food. Painting is his other passion. In his heart of hearts, he’d love to open a restaurant, but that doesn’t fit well with his mission to help Cara save mankind. When he was at his lowest, he left the Guardianship to escape for a while. That’s when he pursued his love of food. I love a beta hero with the right amount of alpha. Simon makes cooking masculine and alpha, yet it gives him a sensitive touch.
What is your favorite quote/scene from the Trinity Stones and why?
My favorite quote is the tagline: “There are no coincidences, only destinies to be fulfilled”
But my favorite scene, is toward the end of the book after Cara has an emotional confrontation with Simon, and ends up on the roof deck with Zeke—a young and irreverent Guardian who gives her some unexpected relationship advice. That scene is not only pivotal for Cara, but has some fabulous dialogue that gives us other revelations and this great sense of Zeke who is while Cara takes a hard look at herself. 
What was the thing you were most afraid of when starting to write the Trinity Stones?
I didn’t know enough to be afraid :)
In what did you do most research on for your books?
Two things: genetics, since this series has a blended sci-fi (light, not hard core) and urban fantasy theme; and biblical angel lore. I found some great research sites on angels in addition to books already in my personal library, in addition to the translated Books of Enoch online.
 I had to refresh all my genetics research for the prequel novella, Hope’s Prelude, which launches in May. That had a much heavier genetics focus than the initial book, since the main character is the scientist who started it all.

What are you currently reading?
I’m in the middle of a few books, and starting a few more. Some for my blog, and other’s for pleasure. Here are the books I’m currently reading:
On the slow burn reading list:The Fiery Cross (Diana Gabaldon) – Historical Time TravelThe Pact (Karina Halle) – New AdultThe King (J.R. Ward) – Paranormal Romance Reading with the intent to finish fast:As White as Snow (Salla Simukka) – YA NoirMidnight Betrayal (Melinda Leigh) – Romantic Suspense Next up: A Vampire’s Soul (Carla Susan Smith) and Red Carpet Day Job, my writer friend, Tasha Cotter’s debut novel.
  
What inspires YOU as a writer?
A story that won’t let me stop writing it
Do you usually eat something while you write?
I have a full-time job, so I write at nights and on weekends. So, I’m usually eating at least one meal or having a cup of coffee as I’m writing.
Share with us a super secret thing that hardly anyone knows about you as an author!
I wish I had a super secret thing!
What is your favorite book-to-movie adaptation?
It would have to be book to TV series, and that is Outlander – by far :)
Who is your favorite book couple?
In YA, it would be Tris and Four in the Divergent Trilogy, and in adult fiction, Claire and Jamie Fraser in the Outlander series.
Harry Potter or Chronicles of Narnia?
Harry Potter :)
Thank you so much again L.G. O'Connor! Can't wait for my sister to finish your book so she can tell me all about it. :D

About L.G. O'Connor


L.G. O’Connor is a member of the Romance Writers of America. A corporate strategy and marketing executive for a Fortune 250 company, she writes adult urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and contemporary romance. She is currently working on the third book in the Angelorum Twelve Chronicles, Book of Four Rings, for publication in 2015. In addition, she is writing an adult contemporary romance series set in Morristown, New Jersey. L.G. lives a life of adventure, navigating her way through dog toys and soccer balls and loaning herself out for the occasional decorating project. When she’s feeling particularly brave, she enters the kitchen…
Social Media Links:



Enter the rafflecopter below for a chance to win one of two kindle copies of the YA adapted version of Trinity Stones by L.G. O'Connor! It's open internationally ;)