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I Belong


Contest Winner: Freeks by Amanda Hocking

January 20th, 2017 @ 10:00 pm
Posted by Kristie under Contest Winner Tags: ,

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Giveaway: Martians Abroad by Carrie Vaughn

January 20th, 2017 @ 12:10 am
Posted by Kristie under Giveaway Tags: , , ,

Carrie VaughnToday we step into the future with Carrie Vaughn’s Martians Abroad. Set just a couple hundred years in the future, humanity has begun to colonize the stars. Polly is from Mars and is forced to move to earth to go to school. She is not excited about it. On earth, she learns some really valuable lessons for when she eventually becomes a pilot. Enter to win your very own copy of this standalone novel at the end of this post! Martians Abroad was released on January 17, 2017 from Tor/Macmillan! Want to know our thoughts? Check out my review here.

I want to give a huge thank you to Tor/Macmillan for today’s giveaway! One lucky winner from North America can win!

About Carrie:

Carrie Vaughn is the New York Time Bestselling author of more than twenty novels and over eighty short stories. She’s best known for the Kitty Norville urban fantasy series about a werewolf who hosts a talk radio advice show for supernatural beings — the series includes fourteen novels and a collection of short stories — and the superhero novels in the Golden Age saga. She’s a contributor to the Wild Cards series of shared-world novels edited by George R.R. Martin, and also writes the Harry and Marlowe steampunk short stories about an alternate nineteenth century that makes use of alien technology. She has a masters degree in English lit, graduated from the Odyssey Fantasy Writing Workshop in 1998, and returned to the workshop as Writer in Residence in 2009. She has been nominated for the Hugo Award, various RT Reviewer Choice Awards — winning for Best First Mystery for Kitty and The Midnight Hour — and won the 2011 WSFA Small Press award for best short story for “Amaryllis.”

A bona fide Air Force brat (her father served on a B-52 flight crew during the Vietnam War), Carrie grew up all over the U.S. but managed to put down roots in Colorado, in the Boulder area, where she pursuers an endlessly growing list of hobbies and enjoys the outdoors as much as she can. She is fiercely guarded by a miniature American Eskimo dog named Lily.

You can visit Carrie around the Web: Website | Facebook | Blog

Want to read more from Carrie Vaughn?

Kitty's Greatest Hits (Kitt...Kitty and the Midnight Hour Kitty Goes to Washington Kitty Takes a Holiday Kitty and the Silver Bullet Kitty and the Dead Man's Hand Kitty Raises Hell Kitty's House of HorrorsKitty Goes to War (Kitty No...Kitty's Big Trouble (Kitty ...Kitty Steals the Show (Kitt...Kitty Rocks the House (Kitt...Kitty in the Underworld (Ki...Low Midnight (Kitty Norvill...Kitty Saves the World (Kitt...Paranormal BromanceAfter the Golden AgeDreams of the Golden AgeSteelVoices of DragonsDiscord's AppleStraying From the PathAmaryllisMartians Abroad

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contest

This contest is provided by Tor/Macmillan!

One lucky reader will win a copy of Martians Abroad by Carrie Vaughn!
(US & Canada)

Martians Abroad

Available January 17, 2017 from Tor/Macmillan

About this Book:

A great new stand-alone science fiction novel from the author of the Kitty Norville series.

Polly Newton has one single-minded dream, to be a starship pilot and travel the galaxy. Her mother, the director of the Mars Colony, derails Polly’s plans when she sends Polly and her genius twin brother, Charles, to Galileo Academy on Earth—the one planet Polly has no desire to visit. Ever.

Homesick and cut off from her desired future, Polly cannot seem to fit into the constraints of life on Earth, unlike Charles, who deftly maneuvers around people and sees through their behavior to their true motives. Strange, unexplained, dangerous coincidences centered on their high-profile classmates begin piling up. Charles may be right—there’s more going on than would appear, and the stakes are high. With the help of Charles, Polly is determined to find the truth, no matter the cost.

Click HERE to read an excerpt

Order from

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Review: Martians Abroad by Carrie Vaughn

January 20th, 2017 @ 12:08 am
Posted by Kristie under Review Tags: , , , ,

Martians AbroadTitle: Martians Abroad

Author: Carrie Vaughn

Genre: YA Science Fiction

Series: N/A

Publication Date: January 17, 2017

Format: Hardcover, 288 Pages

ISBN-10: 0765382202 (Tor/Macmillan)

ISBN-13: 978-0765382207 (Tor/Macmillan)

Reviewed by: Kristie

Synopsis:

A great new stand-alone science fiction novel from the author of the Kitty Norville series.

Polly Newton has one single-minded dream, to be a starship pilot and travel the galaxy. Her mother, the director of the Mars Colony, derails Polly’s plans when she sends Polly and her genius twin brother, Charles, to Galileo Academy on Earth—the one planet Polly has no desire to visit. Ever.

Homesick and cut off from her desired future, Polly cannot seem to fit into the constraints of life on Earth, unlike Charles, who deftly maneuvers around people and sees through their behavior to their true motives. Strange, unexplained, dangerous coincidences centered on their high-profile classmates begin piling up. Charles may be right—there’s more going on than would appear, and the stakes are high. With the help of Charles, Polly is determined to find the truth, no matter the cost.

Quick & Dirty: A fun, yet complicated take on earth when a Martian is put through trials to make it in an earthling school. You gain a whole new appreciation of earth especially when seen through a Martians eyes.

Opening Sentence: There are a thousand shades of brown.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Martians Abroad is a standalone tale from Carrie Vaughn that made me really appreciate earth and the beauty that we have here. This novel is set a couple hundred years in the future. The main character didn’t care much for earth, or at least wasn’t impressed by it, but in her words it made me appreciate it more, especially if you are a horse lover. She loved the rusty browns of Mars over the colors of earth, I would think that if I had grown up on Mars I would be so impressed with earth.

Polly is a Martin. She and her twin brother Charles grew up on Mars. Polly thinks that she has her whole life planned out. She plans to go to an academy on Mars and become a pilot, simple as that, but her mother has a whole different plan. Polly and Charles are going to earth to go to school at the prestigious Galileo Academy. Polly is not happy that she has no choice but to go, the school takes three years before she can hope to get into a piloting program. Plus, Polly doesn’t want to leave Mars at all.

Polly is disappointed that Charles didn’t put up much of a fight. On the way to earth, Polly is determined to see what the cockpit on the ship really looks like, to see how pilot’s truly act and work. Once on earth, Polly reluctantly makes friends with the other offworlders because they have been lumped together, the locals don’t like the “aliens” much. Polly and all the others in her freshman class are put through trials. Charles puts it all together because the school wouldn’t truly put the kids in harmful situations. Polly just believes they are accidents or coincidences until it keeps happening.

Polly is a strange one but not as strange as her brother. She likes to do her own thing whether or not it will get her in trouble. She sees it as an adventure while others might see it as rebelling or troublemaking. But when it comes to true selflessness, Polly has that in spades. When someone is in trouble she has no problem jumping into the action even if that means she could possibly be hurt. I think my only complaint was the fact that Polly wanted to be a pilot but she didn’t want to leave Mars, and while she’s gone all she can think of is Mars. She dreams of flying to all these places but all she really wants to do is be at home on Mars.

I really enjoy Carrie Vaughn’s writing style. It’s really simple in a way that immerses me directly into the story and feeling the emotions that the MC is going through. I think this is a fun book for all young adult ages and more because it had me appreciating earth and all that we have because it could also be gone in an instant. Also, the lesson of helping someone as “the right thing to do” and not because you gain anything from it.

Notable Scene:

In the clear light of morning, I’d started to wish I’d had even more of a reaction. I wished I’d had my punch glass in hand, so I could have poured it all over him. Or I could have just, you know, punched him. “So he just wanted me to look bad and him look . . . what? Clever? Is it just because we’re from Mars?” I sighed and squished my food with the fork. If Tenzig showed up anytime soon, I might just throw the whole tray at him.

“The question is, what are you going to do about it?” Charles said.

I wanted to strangle Tenzig. Grab his head and dunk it in the punch bowl until he drowned. Drop him off the top of the building. Then I remembered . . . don’t let on when you think you’ve lost. Move on.

“Nothing,” I said. “I’m not going to do anything.”

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FTC Advisory: Tor/Macmillan provided me with a copy of Martians Abroad. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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Early Review: To Catch a Killer by Sheryl Scarborough

January 19th, 2017 @ 12:01 am
Posted by Bridget under Review Tags: , , , , ,

to-catch-a-killerTitle: To Catch a Killer

Author: Sheryl Scarborough

Genre: YA Mystery/Thriller

Series: N/A

Publication Date: February 7, 2017

Format: Hardcover, 320 Pages

ISBN-10: 0765381915 (Tor Teen)

ISBN-13: 978-0765381910 (Tor Teen)

Reviewed by: Bridget

Synopsis:

Erin Blake has one of those names. A name that, like Natalee Holloway or Elizabeth Smart, is inextricably linked to a grisly crime. As a toddler, Erin survived for three days alongside the corpse of her murdered mother, and the case—which remains unsolved—fascinated a nation. Her father’s identity unknown, Erin was taken in by her mother’s best friend and has become a relatively normal teen in spite of the looming questions about her past.

Fourteen years later, Erin is once again at the center of a brutal homicide when she finds the body of her biology teacher. When questioned by the police, Erin tells almost the whole truth, but never voices her suspicions that her mother’s killer has struck again in order to protect the casework she’s secretly doing on her own.

Inspired by her uncle, an FBI agent, Erin has ramped up her forensic hobby into a full-blown cold-case investigation. This new murder makes her certain she’s close to the truth, but when all the evidence starts to point the authorities straight to Erin, she turns to her longtime crush (and fellow suspect) Journey Michaels to help her crack the case before it’s too late.

Quick & DirtyA great mystery with realistic characters, cute romance and good suspense. It was slightly predictable, but I still really enjoyed it and highly recommend it to mystery/thriller fans!

Opening Sentence: I sooth my four head against the icy car window and breathe out of path of fog.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

When Erin was two years old her mother was brutally murdered, but for some strange reason Erin was left alive! Her story hit national news and sadly her mothers killer was never found! The identity of Erin’s father is unknown so her mothers best friend raised her as her own.

Despite having a tragic past, Erin has grown up as a rather normal teenager but her mothers unsolved murder is never far from her mind! It has been fourteen years and Erin has developed some forensic skills that she plans to use to solve her mothers case. But tragedy strikes again when Erin discovers the body of her beloved biology teacher. Could it be the same person who killed her mother? Erin is determined to find out and she enlists the help of Journey Michaels, a boy she has crushed on for years, who also happens to be a suspect in the murder!

Erin was a wonderful MC that was very easy to develop a connection with! I think the reason why is despite having an interesting history, Erin was very normal! Sure, she was a little obsessed with solving mysteries but besides that she lived a normal teenage life. She had some great friends, a crush on a cute boy, and a loving parent! She was smart, kind, resourceful and fun. Overall, I thought she was a great character!

I loved Journey! He is one of those guys you can’t help but crush on! He is the star basketball player, very popular but also totally down to earth! The romance was totally insta-like but honestly it worked for me because it totally reminded me of what my high school relationships were like. We would flirt all awkwardly and then all of a sudden we were boyfriend/girlfriend! The relationship between Journey and Erin was very similar but to me it felt realistic and perfect for the story!

To Catch a Killer is a fun mystery filled with suspense and great characters! I don’t really read a lot of mysteries due to the fact that it’s so hard to surprise me but I’m glad I read this one. I will be honest, the killer was very predictable to me, but I still found this to be a very enjoyable read! I love how the author incorporated science and forensics into the story. It gave it a unique twist! If you are a YA mystery/thriller fan, I definitely think you should pick this one up!

Notable Scene:

There’s a quick jolt of recognition. I wasn’t expecting to see him here like this, and I definitely hope he doesn’t see me.

Journey Michaels jaw tightens. His gaze sweeps the room, looking for who or what brought this down on his head. For the second time today, he looks directly at me, only this time instead of sizzle, his expression reveals an anger so hot it could melt tungsten.

I expect him to look different to me now. I mean, if he’s a killer he should look different. Right? I can’t help it, though–I still fill a tug. There’s something about a Journey Michaels that draws me to him.

I bury my face in Rachel shoulder and she strokes my hair.

“Hey, it’s OK to cry, you know. This is one of those times.”

Rachel means well but she never totally gets it.

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FTC Advisory: Tor Teen/Macmillan provided me with a copy of To Catch a Killer. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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Early Review: Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller

January 18th, 2017 @ 12:01 am
Posted by Bridget under Review Tags: , , , ,

daughter-of-the-pirate-kingTitleDaughter of the Pirate King

AuthorTricia Levenseller

Genre: YA Fantasy

Series: Daughter of the Pirate King (Book #1)

Publication Date: February 28, 2017

Format: Hardcover, 320 Pages

ISBN-10: 1250095964 (Macmillan)

ISBN-13: 978-1250095961 (Macmillan)

Reviewed by: Bridget

Synopsis:

A 17-year-old pirate captain intentionally allows herself to get captured by enemy pirates in this thrilling YA adventure.

Sent on a mission to retrieve an ancient hidden map—the key to a legendary treasure trove—seventeen-year-old pirate captain Alosa deliberately allows herself to be captured by her enemies, giving her the perfect opportunity to search their ship.

More than a match for the ruthless pirate crew, Alosa has only one thing standing between her and the map: her captor, the unexpectedly clever and unfairly attractive first mate, Riden. But not to worry, for Alosa has a few tricks up her sleeve, and no lone pirate can stop the Daughter of the Pirate King.

Debut author Tricia Levenseller blends action, adventure, romance, and a little bit of magic into a thrilling YA pirate tale.

Quick & Dirty: Amazing swashbuckling adventure you will not soon forget. This is one of my favorite books I have read in a long time! I suggest everyone pick this one up ASAP!!!

Opening Sentence: I hate having to dress like a man.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

The pirate king has just discovered that there is a very special map on board a enemy pirate ship and he decides to send his best mate to retrieve it! Alosa is the daughter of the pirate king and she is a force to be reckoned with! To accomplish her fathers wishes she stages her own kidnapping to gain passage on the ship! After all, who would suspect that a young women locked inside a cell would be a threat?

But finding the treasure map proves more difficult then Alosa had planned and it doesn’t help that the very attractive first mate is suspicious of her! Can she get the map and get off the ship before her carefully laid out plan is ruined by a boy she shouldn’t even consider being attracted to?

I think Alosa might be one of my all time favorite heroines ever! She is smart, ruthless, beautiful, caring and cunning. She loves dresses and nice things but she also has no problem slitting a mans throat if it will gain her what she needs! I would definitely categorize her as an antihero since she has some very villainous traits, but she is also a good person! I loved how bold and spirited she was, it made her very easy to love. She felt like such a realistic character and like I said, she has easily become one of my new favorite leading ladies!

Riden is the epitome of what I would imagine a dreamy pirate would be like! He is charming, perceptive, kind, dangerous and gorgeous! He doesn’t underestimate Alosa and I loved that he treated her as an equal despite the fact that she was a girl! Their relationship was very entertaining and I loved how they interacted with each other. They brought out both the best and the worst in each other and they were so perfect for each other! If you can’t tell Riden has easily become one of my new favorite book boys and I imagine he will be for a long time to come!

Daughter of the Pirate King was everything I wanted and more! There is swashbuckling adventure, steamy romance, bloody battles and cunning pirates all combined into an epic tale that I couldn’t put down! If you didn’t know I am a huge pirate fan and this story was so captivating and extremely entertaining, especially for anyone that loves pirates like I do! The plot was full of surprises, the characters were wonderfully crafted and the writing was phenomenal! The pacing was spot on and the romance was perfection! If you can’t tell, I was a huge fan of this story and I would say it was hands down the best book I have read this year! I would recommend it to all YA fans. it is a story you don’t want to miss!

Notable Scene:

Once they’re out of sight, I smile. Riden isn’t the only one to have gathered information during our little chat. I learned that Riden and Draxen are brothers, sons of the pirate Lord Jeskor. I’m still unsure as to what happened to Jessore and his original crew for Draxen to inherit the ship, but I’m sure I will learn that later. Riden’s a good shot, and he has his captain’s confidence. How Else did he manage to convince Draxen not to kill any more of my men? I wonder what he whispered to him back on the other ship and why he bothered to step in, in the first place. Riden’s concern for the men on the ship, not just with the normal concern that a first mate might have for the men he oversees. I think back to when he told me each of the men on the ship are killers and how sadden he was by it. He feels responsibility for something. Perhaps it is tied to whatever happened to the original crew of the Night Farer.

There are many secrets aboard the ship, and I will have plenty of time to discover them all, starting tonight. I shake my right arm. I feel the metal slide down and slip into my hand.

It’s the key to my cell.

Daughter of the Pirate King Series:

1. Daughter of the Pirate King (February 28, 2017)

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FTC Advisory: Feiwel & Friends/Macmillan provided me with a copy of Daughter of the Pirate King. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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