Breaking Butterflies by M. Anjelais- INTERVIEW AND REVIEW

Author: M. Anjelais
Publisher: Chicken House Books
Publication Date: April 3rd 2014
Blurb Description: Sphinxie and Cadence. Promised to each other in childhood. Drawn together again as teens. Sphinxie is sweet, compassionate, and plain. Cadence is brilliant, charismatic. Damaged. And diseased. When they were kids, he scarred her with a knife. Now, as his illness progresses, he becomes increasingly demanding. She wants to be loyal--but fears for her life. Only the ultimate sacrifice will give this love an ending.

**INTERVIEW**


1. 5 Material Things you can't live without:
My iPhone , my computer (where the magic happens!), sunglasses (I have a legitimate addiction to these), lip balm (my favourite kind is mint-flavoured), and then lastly I'll count my collected journals as one thing. I've kept a journal since age 12 and they're extremely important to me.

2. This or that: 

--High school or college: Can I say neither? I was homeschooled for my entire life and chose not to go to college in order to pursue my writing career. I think some people were skeptical when I told them my plans for my career, but I got long-listed for my publishing house's fiction competition only seven months later.

--Sociopaths or psychopaths: As I understand it, psychopath is just another word for sociopath, so there's no decision to be made here!

--Pasta or noodles: Either! As long as they're gluten-free, please.

--Romance or Fantasy: Fantasy. I'm not at all fond of today's concept of romance in fiction.

3. If Breaking Butterflies were to be turned into a movie:
Dream cast: 

This is going to be such an odd answer because in a dream cast where anything was possible, most roles would be played by people who aren't even actors! Sphinx would be played by a girl I know, who doesn't know she was the inspiration for Sphinx's appearance in the novel. She could also possibly be played by Shailene Woodley, although that's really a stretch for me to try to imagine.

I've never seen any actor who looks quite like Cadence, so I don't think I'd be able to choose ahead of time. The right person would just have to come along.

Sphinx's father is based off of my honorary sister Edie's father, and so would be played by him. 

Sphinx's mother is based on my own mother, but her appearance in my head is actually quite vague - I'd have to really think about what I'd want her actress to look like.

Cadence's mother Leigh would be played by Naomi Watts

Theme song: What Sarah Said by Death Cab For Cutie!

4. For anyone who hasn't had the pleasure, do elaborate (a bit) on the intricacies of Cadence, Sphinx and Cadence and Sphinx (as friends):
Cadence and Sphinx's relationship was initially decided for them. Their mothers had this vision of their childrens' lives, and it included them being connected forever. However, in real life, Sphinx and Cadence are not beneficial to each other, and the devotion sown into them by their mothers turns into a danger. Cadence is a toxic friend if there ever was one, and Sphinx is impressionable and eager to please. Their friendship dynamic is definitely not something to be admired or desired in any conceivable way. 
It's an interesting thing to write about because while it's definitely so unhealthy, there is also beauty to be found in the way that they interact and in the way that Sphinx grows stronger and more independent as a result. I've tried to handle it all very delicately so that their beauty can be recognized without making a friendship like theirs seem like something a young reader should want for themselves. 

5. Have you ever met a Cadence? How ever did you come up with him? This, I'm DYING to know!

Cadence is not based on any particular person in my life! However, I certainly have met a "Cadence" - and you have too! It's impossible not to. After all, 1 in 24 people is a sociopath. As for my character of Cadence, he was born out of an interest in sociopathy and a desire to create a metaphor for my own struggles in life. The bullying, low self-esteem, and urges to end my life that I struggled with as a younger child are embodied in Cadence, who inflicts those struggles in many forms on Sphinx.

6. If you could jump into the world you created, what would be your message to each of our characters? (Cadence, Sphinx, Leigh and Sarah)
--I would promise Cadence that I'd always remember him and his art. I think he'd appreciate that, in his own way.

--I would encourage Sphinx to keep being strong and to know that she'd find purpose in life for herself and be happy. It's funny, one time I was actually at an dance aerobics class and I saw a woman in her mid-thirties, dancing a few feet away from me, and she looked just like what I'd imagine a grown-up Sphinx to be like. It actually gave me closure as the creator of Sphinx in a way.

--I would tell Leigh that I knew she did the best she could with what she was given.

--I would tell Sarah the exact same thing that I would tell Leigh! But then I'd add to her as an afterthought that she should hug Sphinx extra-tight.

**MY REVIEW**


And his eyes, his blue, searching, beautiful eyes, had no light behind them anymore; finally human.”

It was a day, just like any other, when Sarah Quinn’s life changed. She would later look at it as a phase, as would her daughter, the pre- Leigh phase and the post- Leigh phase. Or, more accurately, Sarah’s life before the plan.

Under the dappled sun, inside a little tent, two seven year olds cooked up a plan that unwittingly took control of their lives. A little plan that showed them the path that they and their little miracles would walk on. The path to living the most perfect, idyllic, fairytale life they could imagine even then. And in the strangest way, it worked. Perhaps with a few detours along the way, but the bottom line remained the same. But then, not everything turns out the way we want it too, right?

Promised to each other by their mothers when they were still dormant eggs inside of them, Sphinx and Cadence have lived their whole life under the illusion of the plan.

Cadence shone like a star, brighter and bolder than anybody else. Extraordinary, was what he was, you could tell that just by looking at him. His eyes would shine, so bright and yet so cold, so unusual. Extraordinary was what he was, so much so, that he was broken. So unusual, that there was something wrong with him. So scary, that you couldn’t see it until he wanted you to. So dangerous, that you would think he was an angel.

And under his blinding light, was Sphinx. She worshipped him for all of his broken beauty, his empty feelings, and his frightening escapades. She was the one he wanted, after all. The only one this genius wanted to play with. That is, until he marks her; scars her. And all the illusions of the perfect life come shattering down, with a single tug on a fragile thread. And everything dissolves into nothing…

Years into the precarious future, a strange phone call alters Sphinx’s life again. Shocked back into the reality of what the one she looked up to did to her all that time ago, only to face the news that he is not going to be there anymore. You see, Cadence had used up all his fire to burn too fast, and now, he was on his descent down; his descent back to earth from the place he was.

His dying wish? He wants to see his little playmate from all those years ago. The girl he scarred, leaving her behind an invisible wall for the rest of her life, from all those ‘normal’ people out there. He wants to see Sphinx…

Poignant, beautiful, scary, haunting, bittersweet and SO addicting, Breaking Butterflies has marked me, left me with something I don’t think I will forget, ever. I’ve never, not once, felt what I felt while reading it. It shocked me, because it was not only was it something I’ve never read about before, but it wasn’t at all what I thought it would be, it was a hundred percent better.

Cadence, I don’t even know what to say there. Even if you’re not there with him, Anjelais will make you feel like you are. You’ll feel scared, awed and downright shocked and mystified at this wonder of a character! As much as I liked, wait, LOVED this, I would have done the same so SO much more if it was done from his point of view, which would have been brilliant to execute.

My Verdict:

I’m still shocked. I read it a while ago- but the chills still remain. I don’t know what to say except- READ IT!


BLOG TOUR: Goodbye To You by AJ Matthews- REVIEW & GIVEAWAY

Author: A.J. Matthews
Publication Date: 07/01/14
Publisher: Swoon Romance
Blurb Description: Europe? Nope. Mexico? Nope. Key West?

Not me. This summer, I'm playing nursemaid to my sister. Yeah, I know. Relatively good looking twenty-two-year-olds don't spend the summer bedside in the cancer ward, but that's the plan - until my sister threatens me with bodily harm unless I get on the plane.

That's when I met him. He likes me. Really likes me. But more than that, he loves my boobs -- like can't get enough. I have no idea how to tell him that they'll be gone soon. Courtesy of a preventative double mastectomy. Yep. That's what testing positive for the breast cancer gene mutation will do to a girl.

But don't feel sorry for me. I'm enjoying him, holding on until the last possible minute, while I muster up the strength to tell him, and watch him walk away.

GOODREADS ** AMAZON ** Barnes And Noble

**GIVEAWAY**



About the Author
I wrote my first book at six. A retelling of The Three Little Pigs, illustrated by my grandmother, the book was never picked up and was self-published instead, glued to cardboard with a cover fashioned from wallpaper scraps.

Today, I write stories featuring nice guys (or nice guys in-the-making) in between my other jobs writing research reports for a commercial real estate company, refereeing two young daughters, navigating the teen waters with a too-cute-for-his-own-good son, spoiling a neurotic cat, and making my darling, patient husband shake his head. I'm also an autism mom, chocolate enthusiast, sports-watcher, nacho-eater, and beer-drinker.
A Maryland native, I live in North Carolina now, but dreams of the beach fuel my fantasties, and my characters can often be found strolling in the sand or sailing along a coast.

Author Links:
Website ** Goodreads ** Twitter ** Facebook

**MY REVIEW**


Can I just start by saying- I LOVE the cover! It’s just super pretty- I know, I know, don’t judge a book be its cover and all but it’s just one of my flaws!

The synopsis, I must say, put me a little off. The first time you read it, you think that the narrator and the guy she meets are total *excuse my language* asses. Which is why I was so pleasantly surprised when the characters in the book were NOTHING like them!

Thea was strong, funny, pretty and most of all, realistic. I loved the way she was shown as someone headstrong, with her weak moments, brave but scared- everything, really, that made me like her!

Shay, on the other hand, was simply BRILLIANT! He is sweet, smart and drool worthy! Moreover, he’s a ‘good’ guy. I’ve read loads on the bad boy that falls for the one girl with a) the tortured past or b) the innocent girl but Shay was different. SO, so, brilliantly different!

While I was expecting something mediocre (think blurb once again) I got something spectacular. Goodbye to You was such a hard book to out down. I loved the way the author handled preventive cancer measures, and what losing your breasts really means.

My Verdict:


For all the TFIOS fans- and even for those who aren’t!


Blog Tour Organized by:

BLOG TOUR: Runaway by Aubrey Kendall- REVIEW

Author: Aubrey Kendall (S.M.Knowles)
Publishing Date: April 2014
Blurb Description: At seventeen years old, Courtney Apuzzo is fed up. With a dead mom and an alcoholic father that beats her every chance he gets, Courtney decides that enough is enough. Packing up only what she needs, Courtney leaves home without telling a soul and heads off to find her new life.

Life on her own is not exactly as she thought it would be. With nowhere to stay, Courtney finds herself sleeping on an old stoop in an abandoned apartment alleyway. A chance meeting with a new group of friends seems like a great beginning to her second chance at a real life. But everything is not as it seems.

Tricked into a life she never wanted and fears, Courtney needs to run away, again. She needs to find a way out of this new and dangerous life. With the help from a man she barely knows, will Courtney find her way out? Or will she find herself on the run from a dangerous past, and a hopeless future? Faced with a choice that will change her life forever.

About the Author
Website  Facebook Twitter



   While growing up, S.M. would travel the roads around her house while       imagining she was somewhere else. Her imagination would take her everywhere, making the long hot summer days seem shorter throughout her fantasies. At the age of twelve, she decided to write her first book. Filled mostly with dialog, she filled up one-hundred pages, front and back. After taking the book downstairs to show her mom, and persuading her to buy her more paper, she excitedly ran back to her room. As she barreled through the door, S.M. tripped over items left on her floor, and her papers came raining down in her room. Discouraged, she stood there in tears, picking up her papers and throwing them in the trash. Her work had no organization, no numbers on her pages, just a child fulfilling a joy that she would put down and not pick up again. When she became older, she joined the military for something different. In that time, she was able to explore many places and even met her husband in Iraq. After coming home, she started her family in Arizona and went back to school, earning a Master's degree in Adult Education and Training.


My Review:


I’ve wanted to read Runaway for a couple of months now. The synopsis sounded pretty intriguing and well, I love watching how authors handle problems like drugs and abuse- and Aubrey Kendall did not disappoint!

Courtney has a grim life. Being used as a punching bag by her father, ever since her mother cut herself many years ago, she longs for escape (although I didn’t feel the conviction when she made the decision to actually leave)

Out of the world she knew, into another, she sees what life is really like for seventeen year olds with literally no place to go- a blank, null void. Sleeping on doorsteps, watching people get murdered and working at menial jobs etc. seems like pretty much all life can offer her. Until she meets Braxton, who saves her being from raped, and inevitable falls for her as well.

She gets pushed into the drug business, working for the only drug lord that rules the streets. With warning that she is always being watched and constant threats of murder and getting busted flying over her head, she begins to question whether this life really is better that the sliver of one she left behind.

I really like Runaway. I loved how Kendall showed us how Courtney changed from a dainty doll to 
someone hard. Street smart. I also loved how she portrayed the drug scene and homelessness (think authentic and the TV show- The Killing), although I would have loved a bit more seriousness.

My Verdict:

All in all, a book worth a read!

THE LIEBSTER AWARD!

*So So So Excited*

A Huge Thank You to Kathy from the The Novelty Of Life for nominating me for the Liebster Award!


Here are the rules:
-Share 11 facts about yourself.
-Answer the 11 questions that were generated by the person who nominated you.
-Nominate nine blogs who have a follower count of less than 300 people-let them know via comment on their blogs that they were nominated.
-Make up 11 questions for your nominees to answer.

11 FACTS ABOUT ME: 
1. I'm an Indian. I don't know if that's a fact, but it's a major part of who I am- I live in a world that's different at its roots.

2. I'm insane about books:) (DUH) When people see me take out a new book and literally go "Put it back right now and actually be social for once in your life!"

3. I'm a very very sarcastic person. And I sometimes come off as mean. It's not something I'm even going to change, though.

4. I sketch, debate, play the piano, MUN, swim and play basketball. (Wait, does this make 6 facts?)

5. As sarcastic as I am, I still own a life sized teddy bear, that I cuddle with when I'm upset.

6. My most swoon worthy book- boyfriend would have to be... SHERLOCK Holmes- Benedict Cumberbatch (<3) more specifically (Okay, the new TV version book of Sherlock!) 

7. I still cry while watching The Lion King- the book that made me fall in love with reading!

8. I actually like doing math, which is weird, but I understand it- soo...

9. I fancy myself to be a fairly good singer- although I have people that will attest to the opposite (my brother, to name one.)

10. I constantly feel this inexplicable need to close to the Wi-Fi- it's like my life depends on it!

11. I'm a haywire person, to be kind. I once put shampoo on my arms before going to sleep, instead of cream!

Questions to Answer:

1. If You could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go? Why?
Honestly, I would love to put myself on a plane and just go. No worries, just living. If I had to choose one, though? it would have to be NYC (Although I've actually already been there) it's just somewhere I really want to be!\

2. What book did you dislike that so many people liked?
I have just one. Boy Nobody by Alan Zaddoff. I was so surprised when I goodreads'd it, it had a higher average rating that TFIOS- but I absolutely detested it!

3. If someone were to ask you why its important to read, what would you say!
"To escape from one world into another (or many others) so that you don't get stuck in just one place"

4. What is your Favorite reading spot?
My Bed, really. Although, I've wanted a garden swing for a while now (so, that would be my wistful fav reading spot!

5. When did you begin blogging?
About 4 months ago! I LOVE it!

6. If you could meet any author, who would you choose to meet?
My answer has always been and will always be J.K.Rowling. Although, I wouldn't really know what to say to her:P

7. Do you prefer e-books or hard copies? Why?
Hard Copies, definitely! There is just something so empowering (or enthralling) with owning a hard copy book!

8. Which is your least favorite book? Why?
August Moon by Tammy Morea- I'm Sorry, but this was just Insta-Love at the heights of annoyance!

9. If you had to get rid of all your books except for five, which five would you keep?
Breaking Butterflies by M. Anjelais, We Were Liars by E.Lockheart, Cruel Summer by James Dawson, This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen and Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo!

10. What is your favorite book? Why?
Actually, this answer would have to be the same as the one above (yes, five of them!)

11. What is the reasoning behind your blog's title?
There is no reason, really. One of the first blogs I stumbled upon was Gina's Behind-the-pages that was originally Behind a Million and One Pages- and from then, I wanted to incorporate the word 'million' in my blog's name!

I Nominate:

Freya @ Sound of A Voice
Sonja@ Books To Remember
Mary Kate@ Wonderwall Palace
Leighann@ Lei's Hideaway


My Questions are:

1. If you could be one fictional character, who would you be?
2. A book world you would want to live in?
3. The one book you will never pick up again is..?
4. What is the best part of being a blogger?
5. Your opinion on the supernatural (and supernatural books)?
6. Who is your favourite book boyfriend?
7. The weirdest thing you've ever done?
8. What is the one book that changed your opinion on something? Why?
9. Your favourite time and place to read?
10. What is the reasoning behind your blog's name?
11. Your top three career choices?

Thanks once again, Kathy!

Let's Get Lost by Adi Alsaid- Book Blitz


Let's Get Lost
Release Date: 07/29/14
Harlequin Teen
Summary from Goodreads: Five strangers.
Countless adventures. One epic way to get lost.
Four teens across the country have only one thing in common: a girl named LEILA.
She crashes into their lives in her absurdly red car at the moment they need
someone the most.
There's HUDSON, a small-town mechanic who is willing to throw away his dreams
for true love. And BREE, a runaway who seizes every Tuesday—and a few stolen
goods along the way. ELLIOT believes in happy endings…until his own life goes
off-script. And SONIA worries that when she lost her boyfriend, she also lost
the ability to love.

Hudson, Bree, Elliot and Sonia find a friend in Leila. And when Leila leaves
them, their lives are forever changed. But it is during Leila's own 4,268-mile
journey that she discovers the most important truth— sometimes, what you need
most is right where you started. And maybe the only way to find what you're
looking for is to get lost along the way.




Pre-Order Today!




Early Praise:
“Reminiscent of John Green’s Paper
Towns
 and road trip novels that feature a teen paving the way to
adulthood, Alsaid’s debut is a gem among contemporary YA novels.” – School
Library Journal

“Five love stories, beautifully woven
together by a special girl in search of adventure, hope, and full
appreciation of life’s simple pleasures. A do-not-miss.  ” – Justine Magazine

“An entertaining and romantic road-trip
debut.” – Kirkus

"Leila's quest to find the Northern
Lights takes readers on a captivating cross-country journey, where four
strangers' adventures collide into one riveting tale of finding yourself." ―YABooksCentral.com


About the Author


Adi Alsaid was born and raised in Mexico City, then studied at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. While in class, he mostly read fiction and continuously failed to fill out crossword puzzles, so it's no surprise that after graduating, he did not go into business world but rather packed up his apartment into his car and escaped to the California coastline to become a

writer. He's now back in his hometown, where he writes, coaches high school and elementary basketball, and has perfected the art of making every dish he eats

or cooks as spicy as possible. In addition to Mexico, he's lived in Tel Aviv, Las Vegas, and Monterey, California. A tingly feeling in his feet tells him more places will eventually be added to the list. Let's Get Lost is his YA
debut.  


Let's Get Lost Website!

Author Links:
 photo iconwebsite-32x32_zps1f477f69.png  photo icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo iconfacebook-32x32_zps64a79d4a.png



***GIVEAWAY***


a Rafflecopter giveaway
And, Today's Post is:
Songs I couldn’t travel without

This is a tough one, as I’m constantly listening to music during my travels. Lowering the windows of a car and blasting music is a crucial element to any road trip, and big headphones make staring out of a bus window feel cinematic.

5. California One/Youth and Beauty Brigade- The Decemberists

4. I Won’t Be Found- Tallest Man on Earth
3.  Estate Sale Sign- The Mountain Goats

2. The Trapeze Swinger- Iron and Wine

1. In the Aeroplane Over the Sea- Neutral Milk Hotel

The Lady Astronomer by Katy O'Dowd- GIVEAWAY, INTERVIEW & REVIEW

Author: Katy O'Dowd
Publisher: Untold Press
Publishing Date: September 26th 2012
Blurb Description: Lucretia's quiet life as an astronomer and hat-maker is quickly turned on its head by her brother. He is commanded by the king to build the grandest telescope in the land. Unfortunately for Lucretia, she is introduced to his majesty as her brother's assistant. Her nights spent on rooftops gazing at the stars are replaced by adventure and danger. In a race to build the Forty-foot telescope on time for the king, her misfortunes take their toll. When Lucretia finds herself held hostage at the Clockwork Court, the innocent country girl doesn't know who to trust. The lady astronomer finds court life to be more dangerous than she could have ever imagined. Even if her brothers manage to build the telescope on time, she might not live to earn her freedom.

With the help of her brothers, Freddie and Al, and her constant companions Leibniz the Lemur and Orion the Eagle Owl, Lucretia embarks on a journey that could change her life forever. Can she find the strength inside to balance her new life and overcome the obstacles threatening her destiny? Only the stars will tell.

**GIVEAWAY**

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**INTERVIEW**

**This is a character interview with the extremely erratic King that you will grow to love in The Lady Astronomer** 
Warning: Read in a funny voice, with an edge madness!

1. A forty foot (telescope) would indeed be a marvel to witness the world above us with... Any other reasons as to why you would like to build one, Your Majesty?
That's obvious my dear child, what what? To build a forty foot would be to proclaim one's greatness not only on the earth but extending to the stars so that they too might bow down. It would also make a rather marvellous setting for a picnic or somesuch, to which one could bring one's favoured subjects to see the might of their Majesty, don't you know.

2. Two brothers, a sister with a fake eye, an owl/ eagle and a lemur- your thoughts on this rather strange family:
Nincompoops! However, well placed to build one's telescope.

3. What would be your royal opinion on feminism? And books?
Feminism? What's that? Some newfangled concept? *royal letter writer explains the concept* *King blusters* Well, Mrs. King would have something to say about that one is sure, but as the Monarch one's aim is to treat one's royal subjects the same be they man or woman. Books? Yes, one is thinking of writing a book, about, perhaps, a forty foot telescope which soars to the skies above.

4. Your Majesty, do tell us a hilarious tale from your childhood:
Hilarity? I think not. One is not to be made fun of young lady.

5. Your most unique of Royal Servants: 

One is taken to understand that there is a monkey who knits. Frightfully handy, don't you know, to knit some socks for the regal tootsies - the castle does get devilish cold during the winter time.

**MY REVIEW**


This book is a BRILLIANT, one of a kind read for all feminists!

So, The Lady Astronomer. I got a copy from the author a while ago but for some reason, didn’t pick it up until fairly recently. And right now, I’m smacking myself on the head wondering why I didn’t!
This book is unusual, to say the least. Whatever I expected from it, it certainly wasn’t what I got! Read the synopsis, I’m sure you understand what I’m talking about.

Set in Europe in what is possibly the 1800’s, inspired by real people, The Lady Astronomer is a fun book- with so many quips, quirks and random instances, that you will find a smile playing at your lips all through the two hundred or so pages! J    

Lucretia is the sister. The responsible, kind, hardworking, erratic one! She has a monoscope for an eye that was hurt years ago, a pet owl/ eagle and a lemur (who, by the way, are HILARIOUS- O’Dowd portrays them as humans, and their mood swings are a stroke of genius.) Her brothers get even stranger. Freddie is the childish one, who puts everybody in the king’s line of sight. Al, the other brother is a genius inventor, with a whole clockwork orchestra!          

The synopsis pretty much gives you a basic outline of what happens- so no more- let me tell you though:

The silly sibling banter, the animals, the strange half names, a very erratic king and a bit of court backstabbing- The Lady Astronomer is a perfectly written book, in the most unusual of ways!

My Verdict:

What are you waiting for? READ IT!                                                                             
                                 

BLOG TOUR: MindWar by Andrew Klavan- Review

Author: Andrew Klavan 
Release Date: 07/15/14
Blurb Description: Rick Dial has the potential to be a hero. He just doesn't know it yet.

Rick's high school football team couldn't be stopped when he was leading them as their quarterback. He was going to Syracuse on a scholarship. But then his dad abandoned them and a terrible accident left him crippled.

Certain his old life is completely lost, Rick spends months hiding away in his room playing video games. He achieves the highest scores on so many games that he's approached by a government agency who claims to be trying to thwart a cyber attack on America that would destroy the technological infrastructure of the entire country. The agents say that the quick-thinking of a quarterback coupled with Nick's gaming experience make him perfect for this assignment. The problem is that there are no extra lives and this isn't just a game . . . but Rick doesn't have many other options at the moment.

Entering "The Realm" gives Rick the one thing he thought he'd never have again: a body that's as fast and as strong as he ever was before the accident. But the more time he spends in The Realm, the more questions he has. What secrets are these agents keeping from him? What really happened to his father? How many others have gone into The Realm already . . . and failed? And perhaps most important, is he the hero they think he is?


Buy Links:
About the Author
Andrew Klavan is a best-selling, award-winning thriller novelist whose books have been made into major motion pictures. He broke into the YA scene with the bestselling Homelanders series, starting with The Last Thing I Remember. He is also a screenwriter and scripted the innovative movie-in-an-app Haunting Melissa.

Author Links:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**MY REVIEW**


A brilliant book- with the best elements from Tron and Inception mashed together!

Rick Dial had everything. A family, a scholarship, a goal, and even a pair of legs. All of this- as of just five months ago? Gone. Like a poof of smoke. Wallowing in self- pity and unable to see what a world can offer to a cripple like him, he hides out in his room, playing pointless video games, literally waiting for lightning to strike.

And then it does. A top secret anti- terrorist government organisation recruits him for the MindWar project- an imaginative realm, with the potential to wreak havoc on the real one. Crazy, right? If you’re in there and die, you soul gets forever stuck in the Netherworld- no escape, no salvation.

Yet, for the first time in a long time, Rick feels some sort of purpose.  Agreeing, he enters a strange world, all aquamarine and yellow on a journey that will redefine who he is.

The MindWar has a very cool concept and you sort of get how it works- very developed technology. I loved the way Klavan visualised the realm, along with all the creatures- both friend and foe inside.

More than that, however, it was the characters that had me reading on and making me give this book 5 stars! With a little brother that just wants to see his older brother happy, a mother that doesn’t ask questions but understand all the same, a missing dad- that we find out actually does care and a brilliant imaginative world- MindWar is not something you should miss!

My Verdict:

READ. IT.

Minty by Christina Banach: GIVEAWAY+INTERVIEW+REVIEW

Author: Christina Banach
Publisher: Three Hares Books
Publishing Date: April 8th 2014
Blurb Description: Fourteen-year old twins Minty and Jess are inseparable. Maybe they bicker now and then, even crave a bit of space once in a while. But they have a connection. Unbreakable. Steadfast. Nothing can gear them apart. Until a family trip to the coast puts their bond in jeopardy. As Minty tries to rescue her dog from drowning she ends up fighting for her life. Will Minty survive? If she doesn't, how will Jess cope without her? Only the stormy sea has the answer.

**GIVEAWAY**


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**INTERVIEW**


We would love to know more about you:

The spookiest things that have ever happened to you:

--I’ve had a few spooky things happen to me in my lifetime. The most memorable is the incident – or incidents - that gave me the idea for the book. After my father died at the end of 2005 I began to smell a strange, yet comforting, aroma around my house. It was a combination of sugar and flour, the sweet distinctive scent that used to cling to my dad’s overalls when he worked as a baker-confectioner when I was a young child. In the months that followed I experienced this smell time and again. Then early one summer morning in 2006, just as the sun came up, I thought I sensed it again. It was perplexing. Unable to get back to sleep, I sat in the sunroom contemplating what was happening to me. Whilst doing this I heard my dog panting and put out my hand to stroke her. Until I remembered – my pet had died the month before. That's when Minty's story came to me. 

This or that:
-- Roman or Greek    Greco-Roman – or is that a cheat of an answer?
-- Apples or Bananas   Definitely bananas
-- Brothers or Sisters   Sisters – but then I would say that because I have an awesome sister who’s also one of my closest friends.

And now onto your masterpiece:

Do give our readers a brief outline of Minty:

Minty is a contemporary young adult (YA) ghost story told from the point of view of the ghost. It’s a cross between The Lovely Bones (without the grim murder!) and Ghost, with elements of The Sixth Sense threaded through it too. I’m told that it’s a real weepy with heart and warmth at its core. It’s the story of fourteen-year-old twins Minty and Jess who are completely inseparable. But then a day trip to the coast puts their bond in jeopardy. As Minty tries to rescue her dog from drowning she ends up fighting for her life, desperate to survive. And survive she must - because if she doesn’t, how will Jess cope without her?

It’s a book about friendship, loss, and coming to terms with consequences. Above all it’s about love and hope.


5. Your favourite character and scene from Minty:

Although I love all of my characters my favourite has to be Minty. Why? Because she’s feisty, brave, loyal and loving with a quick wit and a sarcastic sense of humour. There are several contenders for my favourite scene but, on balance, I reckon I’ll opt for the one where Minty enters Jess’s dream. For me it has a lovely ethereal quality, is full of hope and promise but is ultimately heart-wrenching. 

6. If Minty were turned into a movie: 
-- your dream cast 

Jess and Minty
Jess and Minty: Hailee Steinfield of True Grit fame: 
Iona


For Iona I’ve chosen Malia Obama (US President Obama’s daughter)








For Kirsty I chose Chloe Moretz:
Kirsty
 

If Australian pop singer, Cody Simpson, grew his hair he would make a fantastic Jack.











**MY REVIEW**


What a lot of fun it must be to have a twin- I have always wished, pined after, dreamed of having somebody that I could pull of look-alike stunts with (I must thank The Parent Trap for this) and pretty much everything that comes with having one!

The Jess and Minty ‘show’- they feel each other’s pain, look like looking at yourself in the mirror (Or the front camera of your phone) literally finish each other’s sentences and even share the same dreams! Want a twin yet? Oh, and they’re best friends- of course they bicker, but who doesn’t?

When I read Minty’s synopsis and glanced through certain reviews, I had some sliver idea of what I was picking up. But, as usual, my idea was wrong! Minty was different. Not different bad, and not entirely different good either (though it mostly was) - but just different. And I can honestly say- I liked it just fine that way!

I absolutely loved the way the book opened, diving right into it! The very first beach scene was breath-taking, and had me hooked before I even realised it! I could feel the pain Minty felt, her fear, desperation- all of it just wafting out and hitting me through the pages!

A little into the book, I found it dragging. Just a bit, nothing much- but that phase got over in two chapters I think, and I found myself falling in love again! The ending was simply BRILLIANT! I even felt a tear or two rolling off from my eyes…

Okay- my favourite things about Minty (apart from the whole twin thing, of course):

--Jack (Minty’s ghost buddy who teaches her how to get through to Jess- flawed but simply brilliant all the way!)
--The Roman Aspect (I know a bit about the Romans- Heroes of Olympus fan here) and I loved the way it was a constant regardless of what was going on.
--The Dialogue- it was unusual, and a little strange when I began reading but it grew on me pretty fast!

*Okay, that’s it*

 My Verdict:

A Brilliant new voice to the YA genre!