Author: Meradeth Houston
Publisher: Muse It Up Publishing
Publication Date: May 2nd 2014
Blurb Description: Gabby lives by two unbreakable rules: don’t expose her kind, the Sary, and don’t fall in love—too bad some rules are made to be broken.

When Gabby’s most difficult charge accidentally shoots her in front of a class full of students, the event exposes her carefully hidden identity. She shifts from looking like a normal teen to her secret Sary form, revealing her wings and the existence of her kind—immortals who try to keep people from committing suicide. Her incident attracts the attention of the next leader of the Sary, Jassen, who offers her an impossible bargain: she can keep her wings if she makes amends with those who know the truth. Things get more complicated when a rebel Sary, intent on exposing them to the world, starts interfering with Gabby’s work. And there’s no denying her attraction to Jassen, who is torn between his duties and his heart. With threats at every turn and her immortality on the line, Gabby has to find a way to save the Sary or surrender the sky forever


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1. For all those who haven't had the pleasure, elaborate a bit about the Sary Organisation- what they do, how they got here and whom they are headed by and any other bits of information!

--Where to start! :) Okay, the Sary are the souls of those who died before taking their first breath and are therefore given the chance to come to earth to help those in need--mainly those who are thinking about committing suicide. It's a hard job and their leadership gives them assignments of who they should be helping. Sometimes they're able to get people out of their depression, and other times not. They're kind of like guardian angels, but also not totally (there's not a whole lot of religion in the books). They're facing troubled times during the books in my series--there are a lot of Sary that are interested in losing the secrecy they've always worked with, which is seen in Surrender the Sky, but comes to a head in book #4 :).

2. Talk to us a little about Surrender The Sky: the storyline, your heroine, her male counterpart and their common nemesis- just a little. to give readers an idea of the fun they're in for!

--Let's see, really quick, Gabby is a Sary who loses her assignment, which is bad enough, but royally messes up when she accidentally lets everyone see her Sary form (think wings, and think big no-no!). Anyhow, the soon-to-be leader of the Sary, Jassen, shows up to ‘release’ her, but changes his mind...for certain reasons :) However, Gabby’s accident may possibly expose all of the Sary, due to the brother of a certain special person, whom Gabby has to stop. Hmm, not sure it totally does the book justice, but that's the gist of things!

3. How was your experience writing Surrender the Sky? Since the basis for the Sary has already found its roots in your head in your previous books, was it easier to write this stand alone?

--Actually, this book was far easier. I already know this world so well it's kind of like visiting a favorite spot :) Also, I have already met Gabby and Jassen in other books, so putting everything together was mostly just a good time!

4. Do we get more Sary after this? (please, YES) or are you working on something new altogether?! Talk to us, your avid readers, about your journey to become a writer as well!

--I already hinted a bit about book #4, and I'm hoping that will be finished this summer (fingers crossed!). I also have a bunch of other projects in various levels of completion, mostly in the sci-fi realm of things. My journey to get here has been a long one, filled with lots of stumbling around, but also a lot of amazing people and a ton of learning. Even if at times I get really frustrated (ugh, querying new projects is never fun!), I love to write!

5. We would love to know more about you- a few quick questions!

Favorite Movie? --GATTACA. I think I've seen it at least 20 times.

Favorite Song? --Anything by The Black Keys.

Favorite Book? --No way I can pick just one! I do love A Wrinkle In Time quite a lot though.

Favorite TV Show? --X-Files. I'm a re-run junkie on that show, at least the earlier episodes.

Favorite Hobby?  --Writing! And I love crafting, too :)

Favorite Author? --Madeline L'Engle. And John Steinbeck. And Diana Gabaldon. Shoot, I could go on for ages!

Favourite Character (from a book, of course!)? --Meg from A Wrinkle In Time, but there are far, far more!

About the author: 

Meradeth Houston is the author of The Sary Society. Although she's never been a big fan of talking about herself, here are some random tidbits about her:

>She's a Northern California girl. This generally means she talks too fast and use "like" a lot.
>When she's not writing, she's sequencing dead people's DNA. For fun!
>She's been writing since she was 11 years old. It's her hobby, her passion, and she's so happy to get to share her work!
>If she could have a super-power, it would totally be flying. Which is a little strange, because she's terrified of heights.

My Review:

Surrender The Sky. Let’s start with that- it is a SERIOUSLY cool name! The first time I read it, I felt shivers go up my spine! But, that’s not the point…
If you haven’t read the interview or the blurb description already, the Sary are the souls of those who die before taking their first breaths. They are given a choice between being a Sary or just not existing anymore; fading away into the blackness that eventually consumes all. They are trained on an Island and their leader is referred to as the Teacher. Their main task is to, well, stop people from committing suicide and help them regain their happiness lost due to the tragedies of everyday human life.

I love the concept of Guardian Angels who help people that are thinking about removing themselves from the world we know. Suicide is such a common thing these days and it just feels better to think that, at least in the book, people are receiving the help they crave, but don’t ask for.

So, Gabby is a Sary, who loses her toughest assignment, after he shoots her, forcing her to reveal her wings which violates the top rule of being a Sary. Convinced she is going to be released, or made mortal again, she meets Jassen, the future leader of the Sary. Strangely handsome and completely unattainable, he offers her an impossible bargain: she can keep her wings if she makes amends with those who know the truth…

As if explaining the supernatural to people that don’t want to believe isn’t hard enough, Gabby also has to deal with rouge Sary, who believe that the Sary and all the miracles they make happen should be worshipped, not sworn to secrecy till the end of time.

Surrender the Sky was a fun book! I thoroughly enjoyed it, from cover to cover! There were certain, points, however when I felt that our protagonist was being a bit whiny, with her ‘I am the Worst Sary Ever’ and her jaw dropping open at pretty much every time there was a twist in the tale (and there were many, unexpected twists, that is). I think I would have enjoyed the book a lot better if it were told from the rogue Sary perspective; it would have definitely been one of a kind!

There were a lot of exceptionally written scenes, especially when the ones where Gabby and Jassen were flying off into paradise! They just increased the level of the book for me!

My Verdict:

A fun, light read that will make you smile and beg for more!  


Hi Everyone! I'm Extremely pleased to have Beth Fehlbaum, author of the Patience Trilogy for an interview and Giveaway with her latest book, Big Fat Disaster! We're SO pleased to have you here, Beth!

Author: Beth Felhbaum

Publisher: Merit Press/ F+W Media

Publishing Date: April 18th 2014

Blurb Description: Insecure, shy, and way overweight, Colby hates the limelight as much as her pageant-pretty mom and sisters love it. It's her life: Dad's a superstar, running for office on a family values platform. Then suddenly, he ditches his marriage for a younger woman and gets caught stealing money from the campaign. Everyone hates Colby for finding out and blowing the whistle on him. From a mansion, they end up in a poor relative's trailer, where her mom's contempt swells right along with Colby's supersized jeans. Then, a cruel video of Colby half-dressed, made by her cousin Ryan, finds its way onto the internet. Colby plans her own death. A tragic family accident intervenes, and Colby's role in it seems to paint her as a hero, but she's only a fraud. Finally, threatened with exposure, Colby must face facts about her selfish mother and her own shame. Harrowing and hopeful, proof that the truth that saves us can come with a fierce and terrible price, Big Fat Disaster is that rare thing, a story that is authentically new.


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1. Let's start at the beginning. What inspired you to write Colby's story? Was there a particular point where you said 'I just have to write this!' ?

I was sexually abused from the age of 8 to my late teens, and I used food to numb my feelings from the time I was a teen. I entered recovery when I was 38, and the first thing we worked on was me learning to manage my life without binge eating. After all, it’s about my feelings not the food.
Over the course of a couple of years I began eating more healthily and running/walking. Several years later, I began having problems with my feet and discovered that I have a birth defect Eventually, I became crippled by it. My feet are now better and even walking very quickly can be painful at times.

I was upset by what I saw as a failure when I looked in the mirror, and the hateful self-talk that I had worked so hard to overcome during my six years in therapy returned with a vengeance.I had to ask myself if I was less worthy as a person than I was before I lost the weight? The answer was, and is, of course, NO, but the fact that I so quickly began hating myself again was like a wake-up call to me. I decided to explore that through a teen girl who was not loved for who she is by the very person who should love her the most, unconditionally.  Click to read: Chapter One of Big Fat Disaster.

2. In your words, describe your protagonist and the life she lives (apart from what we read in the book, of course!)

Colby is a loyal person. She has a dry, self-deprecating sense of humor, and she’s not into the same stuff that her parents are into. At the same time, when all is lost because of her father’s choices, especially because she feels somewhat responsible for her family breaking apart, she becomes much more aware of this stuff.  She has a fear of not having enough– like she always feels she is in a love deficit from her parents, especially her mom,
because she IS—but now she is literally fearful of not having basic needs such as food and clothing.  Colby really needs someone to reach out to her with acceptance and love.

3. In your opinion, what would be the perfect song to showcase Colby's life, struggle and story?

“After the Storm” by Mumford and Sons. Especially the line, “I’m scared of what’s behind, and what’s before.” ©

4. Describe your journey as a writer! Your writing schedule, how you handle writers block, how you got here, and anything else you would like to add!

I have always written, ever since I can remember. My grandmother taught me to read before I even started Kindergarten, and I was writing early, too.
I teach language arts full-time from late August through the first week in June, and I write full-time during the summer and as much as possible on holidays and weekends.
In addition to maintaining my website, I founded a group author website (UncommonYA), and I take time each day to upload blog posts and manage the site along with everything else I do.
As far as story, I mostly plot in my mind and have the basic story arc—the beginning and the end for sure—before I start writing. Doesn’t mean that the plot does not change, but I know on a very basic level who my character is and what she wants, as well as what is getting in her way.
I began writing novels when I was in therapy for childhood sexual abuse. I had been writing short stories and poems, trying to process my anger, disbelief, and grief, and I was sharing them with my therapist. About a year or so into therapy, he suggested that I try writing a novel. I finally decided to step outside of myself and observe the recovery of someone else through her eyes. That person was Ashley Nicole Asher, age 15, who is removed from her abusive home with her mom & stepdad and placed in a tiny Texas town (“Patience”), where her life begins again. Courage in Patience and Hope in Patience are available on a limited basis through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and private sellers.
My first two publishers’ failure to thrive placed my books in No Man’s Land, and it breaks my heart; it really does, because The Patience Trilogy  books are my “heart” books. Writing them was so intensely healing for me.

5. Any writing tips to all of us aspiring writers/ bloggers reading this?

JUST. WRITE. Write without looking over your shoulder. Write fearlessly.

6. What can we look toward to next from you? Any plans for great new books?

I have yet to decide if I will write a follow-up to Big Fat Disaster or if I will write a new stand-alone. My publisher, Merit Press, wants something “brave and actionful”.  I will have time this summer to get a good start on the new book.

7. We would love to know more about you, so we have some quick questions for you:

Favorite Movie?  “An Unfinished Life”; I also love the book trailer for Big Fat Disaster!

Favorite Song?  “Ghosts That We Knew” by Mumford and Sons

Favorite Book?  All of Chris Crutcher's books. The first I read was Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes: reading that book is the reason that I became a YA novelist.

Favorite TV Show?  Dateline on ID shows, Snapped, 48 Hours. I have recently discovered Six Feet Under. I like Castle, and I never miss The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. I was a huge Breaking Bad fan!

Favorite Author? Chris Crutcher & Jennifer Brown. It’s a tie.

Favorite Character (from a book, of course!)?  Sarah Byrnes.

9. If you could have written one book, for its literary excellence or amazing storyline, other than yours, which would it be?

Hate List, by Jennifer Brown.


A book about learning to love yourself, especially when no body around you seems to do the same!

If you ever saw the picture of the man running for Senator, and his family who all support him on his 'go back to the basics- family values platform' you might think that they were perfect. The ideal picture of a family. Simply. Perfect.
And yet, pictures can only capture a moment; one moment and sometimes not even that. People are forced to smile to convince others that everything is all right, and so is the case, especially in this family!

With an ex-miss Texas for a mom and two equally pretty sisters, and a politician right that look like they have everything right, Colby is the one part of their family that doesn't fit in; the only one who isn't perfect. She is overweight and binge eats that leads her to keep growing out of her clothes and she simply can't seem to find the right thing to say at the right time. EVER! With a low self esteem that is only prodded further by her self obsessed mother and her two beauty queen sisters, Colby finds all she can do to blot out the pain, the only thing she can do that makes her feel seemingly okay, if only just for a little while, is food. Ding Dongs, Ice cream, Cookie Dough... Ah! The simple pleasures life brings us!

After missing a pep rally one day, Colby discovers a secret. A secret so big, that is shatters the very ground she walks on. Her dad, Mr. Family Is Everything, is having an affair! And then, as if that wasn't enough, he has been embezzling money from campaign supporters and from his insurance company to finance his affair.
With all their assets frozen by the Federal Government, and everybody they thought as friends and family they so loved turning their backs on them, the once perfect family falls lower than the low.

Homeless, Broke and just plain desperate, the only person who offers them solace is Colby's dad's washed up sister, Leah, who was ridiculed and shamed by her family when her husband abused her, is a town so small that you can walk through it an not break into a sweat,

From a palatial mansion in D.C to a trailer in Carolina, from having everything to nothing at all, Literally. From being looked up to as idolised as perfect to being picked on, Big Fat Disaster is one girls' story on how she and her family cope with the incident that changed their lives, and, more specifically, about a girl with a tendency to overeat in a family where everyone is a size Zero, and how she manages to find herself in the complicated mess she calls her life!

my only drawback with the book, would be the ending.On one page, she is just going to kill herself, and quite literally on the next, she is feeling all better! Just one more thing, I have never met a mother more dispassionate, scheming and just plain mean that Colby's mom. God.


I would highly recommend it! 4 stars! I loved Colby, even through her bad choices like wanting to kill herself , I've never read a book this honest and I hated her mother for what she did to her. Big Fat Disaster is a book everybody should read, regardless of your body size, because it can never hurt to know what people like Colby go through, and to try to be more compassionate! :)

Stolen Songbird by Danielle. L. Jensen

Author: Danielle. L. Jensen
Publisher: Strange Chemistry (Angry Robot)
Publishing Date:  April 1st 2014
Blurb Description: For five centuries, a witch’s curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the ruins of Forsaken Mountain. Time enough for their dark and nefarious magic to fade from human memory and into myth. But a prophesy has been spoken of a union with the power to set the trolls free, and when Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain, she learns there is far more to the myth of the trolls than she could have imagined.

Cécile has only one thing on her mind after she is brought to Trollus: escape. Only the trolls are clever, fast, and inhumanly strong. She will have to bide her time, wait for the perfect opportunity.

But something unexpected happens while she’s waiting – she begins to fall for the enigmatic troll prince to whom she has been bonded and married. She begins to make friends. And she begins to see that she may be the only hope for the half-bloods – part troll, part human creatures who are slaves to the full-blooded trolls. There is a rebellion brewing. And her prince, Tristan, the future king, is its secret leader.

As Cécile becomes involved in the intricate political games of Trollus, she becomes more than a farmer’s daughter. She becomes a princess, the hope of a people, and a witch with magic powerful enough to change Trollus forever.
My Rating: 

My Review:

I Loved. This. Book. A perfectly executed, amazingly fun book with all the right ingredients, Stolen Songbird is officially my Favourite book yet of 2014!

When I think of what to say, what to tell everybody reading this, I find myself at a loss for words (and now, writing this, I’m hoping something does come to me) because there wasn’t even a single flaw, not a single second when I wondered whether or not this book would be a good one! So, let me start…

“Prince of Night, Daughter of Day, Bound as one the witch they’ll slay” (*shivering*)

Taken from her home, her family, and the life she was promised she would have, Cécile de Troyes finds herself in an unknown world. One filled with wicked beauty, devious charm and intricately entwined splendor- Trollus- home of the trolls- trolls that are only whispered about in the tales children whisper to one another in the dead of night. Forced to be bonded to Trollus’ enigmatic, charming and calculating prince, Tristan, Cécile finds that everything that was once completely hers, is not anymore- not even her deepest emotions. And why? Because it was foretold, that it would be her and the Prince that would break the curse; the curse that has kept the trolls in confines for centuries. The curse that has kept them longing, waiting and hoping for the day when they can see the marvelous light of day again.

While being a princess in one of the most cunning courts ever to exist is quite the contrary at to what Cécile has ever wanted, this Forbidden City and its Prince who are mythical to almost everyone who isn’t confined in it, grows on her with all of their splendor and wickedness alike. For in Trollus, Deception is a game, promises binding, power is the prize and Everybody’s playing!

I won’t ruin this book for you, by explaining what happens, even though I can- but suffice to say that this book will make you open it again, the second you’ve flipped the last page! You’ll laugh at all the brilliantly thought out fake quarrels, almost fall of your seat every time something new comes along, wish and hope that you were living in Trollus at that very minute and of course, wait desperately for the next installment just like me!

From a farm-girl to a princess, from a boy to a king, from magic to terror, from beauty to wickedness, from hatred to love, from foes to friends, this book will serve it all up on a Golden Platter!

My Verdict:

Just one more thing, what are you waiting for? Go ahead! I couldn’t give a stronger recommendation!   

Buy Here: 

#16 Things Things I thought Were True- INTERVIEW!

Welcome Janet Gurtler on to A Thousand Words A Million Books, for a post blog tour interview on her latest book, #16Things I Thought Were True! We're SO pleased to have you here, Janet. Now, without further ado, Here is her interview:


1. I believe that road trips, at any point in one’s life, is just something essential to experience- Could you tell us a little about your latest book, 16 Things I Thought Were True, for all those out there that haven’t yet had the pleasure?

Sure! Here is a tidy little summary! A Twitter-obsessed teen takes a road-trip and finds real friends who help her understand what is and is not true about family, friendship and love.  

2. Could you sum up your three main protagonists- Morgan, Adam and Amy- in a couple of words each? Which one of them was your personal favourite to imagine and which one can you relate to the most?

Morgan- scared, lonely, searching
Adam- focused, driven, empathetic
Amy- kooky, honest, unfiltered, kind
I loved all the characters, but Amy really stole my heart. I most relate to Morgan I think.  When I was a teen I was kind of searching for who I was and didn’t always know who my real friends were.

3. Was writing 16 things any different from writing your other books? How so?

Every book really is different to write. Some flow out really easily. This one was fairly easy to write. I could relate to Morgan and what she was going through and I knew what her journey was. I kind of struggled for a while about where the book was going to end up, but about half way through I had an epiphany and for me it really pulled the story together and made it make sense.

4. If you had to pick, what would be the best scene in 16 things- one that you would just love to live in?

I loved the scene on the ferry when Amy and a little boy are whale watching.  I have watched whales and I think it’s one of the most beautiful and peaceful things in the world. I’d love to go and do that again.

5. Tell us a little about what inspired you to write 16 things, your writing schedule (some time of day, or just how and where you go about it) and what made you start writing itself!?

16 Things kind of came to me as a What If. There’s so much social media now which is completely different from the world I grew up in. Teens especially have to learn how to deal with all of it. Figure out who they really are versus who they are in their online presence. So I thought, what if a girl was on a video that went viral online. How would she handle that? I wanted to show the irony that she hid out online, which was the place where she was overexposed.
My writing schedule is that I write during the day, when my son is at school and poolside while he is swimming. (he swims every day except Sunday as a competitive swimmer)
Writing is something I’ve always loved to do.  I wrote my first book when my son was a baby, and after that one, I kept going.

6.What and who were your favourite books and authors back in the day? What are you currently reading?

I loved Judy Blume. My day was a while ago ha ha. As a teen I also loved books like Go Ask Alice and books by S. E. Hinton.  Funny enough, my son is reading the Outsiders for school, and that is what I am reading now. It’s really interesting to me how popular that book remains and the way it is written. It’s brilliant, but different in many ways from today’s YA.

7.Any tales brewing in the back of your head we should look forward to?

I have a book coming out in 2015 called The Truth About Us.  When Jess is forced to work at a soup 
kitchen for the summer, she discover that sometimes the person who shouldn’t fit in your world is the one who makes you feel like you belong.  I also have a mermaid MG series coming out in 2015 that I’m currently writing. It’s so different from my realistic YA stories, but a lot of fun to write!

8.A small message to all of your fans and wannabe writers, please?

I have a really hard time using the word fans. Fans are for people like Jennifer Lawrence or Christina Aguilera.
I love that I have readers, and that’s what I call people who like my books. Readers for the win!!!

My message for wannabe writers and readers is this…always be who you are.  Be true to yourself. Amy is a great example to me of a person who okay with who she is, even if she doesn’t “fit the mold.” Same thing for writers. Figure out what you love to write.  And write that.  Read a lot. Write a lot.  And be true to yourself!

**My Review**

An Apple a day keeps the doctor away# things I thought were true.

Meet Morgan McLean, the 18 year old girl with a perfectly normal life- well except with a father who abandoned her before she was even born (who her mother refuses to talk about), a best friend who posted a video of her dancing in her underwear on the internet, that went viral, an almost 5000 followers on twitter for her posts on #things I thought were true, and a mother who just wound up in the hospital, for a heart condition!

And for her, life just couldn’t get any more humiliating. Until, her mother gives her the contact details of her father, Bob White, a last- minute- something when she thinks she is going to die from the surgery; a little piece of information that Morgan has waited all her life for!

Road trips are cliché# things I thought were true.

Now, Morgan just has to go meet the man who left her all those years ago, despite how he might hurt her even now. There is just one problem- he lives all the way in Canada. So, with her Nerdy (but cute) boss from the amusement park she works in, Adam, and the world’s biggest chatterbox, tell it like it is girl, Amy, she sets of on a journey that changes that course of her life as she knows it!

But, should some secrets stay buried# things I thought were true.

I really liked 16 Things I Thought Were True! It was a quick read on friendship, love, family, secrets, life and choices! I thought it would be a bit typical, but it was not. This is one of the few books I’ve read that shines some light to the advantages of social networking. It had a lot of elements, that I felt could have been explained a little better; some of the emotional scenes given more importance too but a good book all in all!- READ it!