Monday, February 29, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday (47) ~ Are You in the Mood For an Adventure?

Top Ten Tuesdays is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and a weekly meme where we simply make a top ten list for the week's topic.
Top Books To Read If You're in the Mood For Adventurous Travel
All of these books feature characters that don't stay in the same place for very long. Be it a chase, heist, search, or a race, there's something that forces the characters to keep moving along in search of answers, vengeance, a loved one, safety--something. Each (besides maybe The Golden Compass since I can't remember the pacing) move pretty quickly, making them fun adventures that are also easy to be sucked into.

Setting Out To Save a Loved One

Satisfying a Thirst For Vengeance

Attempting To Pull Off a Near Impossible Heist

Competing in a Dangerous Race

Being Chased Across Multiple Nations

Fighting in an Alternate World War I

A fun question for you: I sorted my list into six different adventure types! Which is your favorite of those types? Do you have any recommendations that could fit into the categories?

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Attacking a Monthly TBR When You Have a Mountain of Books

This post can also be called "How to Make a TBR List," but that's not quite as fun, is it?

I'll dive in with . . .
Step One
Bravely approach your entire TBR. TBRs can be imposing things and need to approached with great valor.
Hey, I have dragons to help me!
Step Two
Assess your priorities. Blog tours? Review copies releasing soon? Books you just want to get to already because you've been putting them off for ever?

Step Three
Make a list! This can be in a notebook, on your phone, on your blog, on a whiteboard--just pick a place. Write down the books you want to read. You can also load up your TBR with way more than you know you can read just to give yourself a ton of options. You can also write down categories (review copy, comic, adult fantasy, book club read, reread, etc.) that you would like to fill in instead of titles if you want. Just do whatever works for you.
Huh. I'm actually serious with this step. I'm not serious with that TBR in the photo...my real one isn't made yet. Whoops.

Step Four
Start off the month with enthusiasm! Or maybe dread if you're not looking forward to reading any of the books on your list...in that case, maybe you should redo step three so you can put books you're excited about on there...

Step Five
Sometime after that enthusiasm fades (it could take anywhere from a couple days to a few weeks--it's typically half a month for me), kick your entire TBR list to the curb and forget that you had plans. Just go with your gut. If needed, repeat step one if your gut says READ EVERYTHING.


Step Six
Stumble across that list you made in step three at the end of the month and make sure you've crossed out all the ones you've read. 
I crossed out six books! I read four of them, DNFed one, and skim reread another. This is typically how my TBR lists look like at the end of the month...
Step Seven (Completely Optional)
Post about how far you strayed from your original TBR for the month on your blog, Instagram, Twitter, etc. Or you can be like me and disguise the experience as a "how to" of sorts, equipped with pictures, gifs, and explanations. Post it before the month officially ends because, let's face it, you aren't going to read anything else from that abandoned TBR list of yours.



When you're all done with these steps, feel free to start all over again with the new month. ☺

Monday, February 22, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday (46) ~ None of These Books Are My Typical Reads

Top Ten Tuesdays is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and a weekly meme where we simply make a top ten list for the week's topic.

This week's topic is all about books we've enjoyed in the past year-ish that were out of our comfort zone/not our typical type of books. It turns out that I haven't read many of those recently! (Man, I need to branch out more...) So, I'm splitting this list into two categories: 4 books I recently enjoyed that weren't my typical type of read and 6 books I really want to read that aren't my typical type of books.

Top Four Books I Recently Enjoyed That Weren't My Usual Type of Read


Changing His Game - I don't read books that are quite this adult. One of my reading goals is to read all of Megan Erickson's books and that included this one. (I also read the sequel.) It was really good! The characters were awesome.

Double Life - It's short. It's sci-fi. It's a free kindle book (I have sooooo many of these, but I rarely choose them over ones I paid money for). I read it because S. Usher Evans is awesome and I was seeing some flailing over it on Twitter, so I became curious!! Plus, I challenged myself to read at least one indie book last month, which resulting in a binge read of the entire series. :D

Mamotte! Lollipop - This was my first manga, but I'm putting it on this list because I usually shy away from really cutesy looking books. This ended up being a fun read and I've read two others in the series so far.

The Night Circus - It's adult and historical. It's also a book I've abandoned reading in the past and I don't revisit those that often. But THIS BOOK IS SO GOOD. I'm kinda mad at my past self for not finishing it the first time, but I think I appreciated it more on my second try.

Top Six Books I Want to Read That Aren't My Usual Type of Book
Corrupt - This one is a dark romance that sounds like something I'm going to HATE (or get SUPER ANGRY AT), but . . . it's on my list of recommendations from Holly. She's 90 percent of the reason I'm even considering this. The other 10 percent is my own curiosity. Will I hate it? We shall see...

When a Scott Ties the Knot - Alyssa @ The Eater of Books! LOVES this book. Historical fiction can be a hit or miss for me and adult historical romance is a genre that I haven't dipped into yet. This is the book that has made me interested in changing that! It's the third in a series and I can be strict about reading in order (whether it's necessary or not), so I may start with Romancing the Duke.

The Bell Jar - I rarely read classics, but this one has been catching my eye lately! I've been interested in it for a long time, but, you know, it's not my usual type of book--I obviously don't branch out much. *eyes first half of post*

Vermilion - This one looks interesting! And sooooo different from what I usually read. The description ends with this: "From British Fantasy Award nominee Molly Tanzer comes debut novel Vermilion, a spirited weird Western adventure that puts the punk back into steampunk." (Whooaaaa.) Adult, steampunk (though I love it!), and western--all rolled into one book, too--aren't what I pick up often!

Hour of the Bees - This is an MG magical realism that sounds really pretty. I don't find myself interested in many MG books, but I really want to read this one!

Catch-22 - Another classic! I've been eyeing this one for a few years. I heard that's it's a really interesting read. And possibly very weird? I can't remember exactly what I heard about it when I was in high school.


Have you read any of these books?? How did you do on with this topic?

*scrolls through list one last time* This looks like such a WEIRD assortment of books to me...I found this interesting to put together. :D

Saturday, February 20, 2016

An Anime Update ~ Everything I've Seen So Far

Back in October, I was convinced to start watching anime! I'm still pretty new to it (I think?) and I haven't mentioned it very much here, but I figured that I might as start doing that. It's been eating a loooot of my reading time this past week. It sure deserves a post. :D

I'm going to include all the anime I've seen so far, including seasons I've completed and ones I just started. I'll attempt to quickly summarize some of them.
Finished Shows and Seasons
Ouran High School Host Club

This was the first one I watched! I frequently see it recommended as a starting point and I definitely agree. It's adorable. And there are so many goofy characters that you can't help but like. I had a lot of fun watching this one. I wasn't ready for it to end, though. :(

Clannad + Clannad After Story

This anime is so lovely and happy, but it's also SAD. (Yes, it's both happy and sad and it's wonderful.) I cried near the beginning of Clannad, but way more in the last couple episodes of Clannad After Story. There's a lot of cute characters in this one!

Death Note

Looooovvveeee. The concept is so great. It's about a guy that discovers a notebook that he can kill people with by writing their name on the pages. The deaths that he anonymously administered attracts the attention of investigators, including the super smart L. I ADORE that character. I liked the first half of the show way more than the second half, but the ending is really good.

Sword Art Online (season 1)

I have mixed feelings about SAO. The players of a new Virtual Reality Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game become trapped inside and are told that the only way out is to beat the game (beat level 100, that is). Oh, and when they die in the game, they die in their real life (where they're left comatose). I love this concept! The art is gorgeous and the fight scenes are pretty fun. I just wasn't always into the storyline. It was a bit jumpy in the beginning and the second half didn't seem as interesting. But it's still a nice show!

Black Butler (season 1)

I love this one!! It may be tied for my favorite so far because I loved the art, story, and characters. The setting (Victorian era England) and the paranormal elements are also great.  Sebastion is such a cool character--one hell of a butler, too. ;)

Black Rock Shooter

This is such a pretty anime! The story is about a group of young girls and their pain (and how they handle it). It alternates between the human world and Black Rock Shooter's fantasy world, which has absolutely beautiful artwork. The characters in the human world lead normal lives, but the ones in the fantasy world focus solely on fighting each other. My favorite part was seeing how the two worlds connected.☺

Tokyo Ghoul (both seasons)


This is about a guy that gets turned into a half-ghoul. It feels odd to sum it up like that because there's SO MUCH MORE to it, but that could get lengthy. :D This and Black Butler tie as my favorites so far. The story is amazing! It's also heartbreaking in so many ways. :( The art is some of my favorite that I've seen in anime so far. (It's very bloody, though.)

Kill la Kill

This one is WEIRD. It can be summed up as a war between humans and clothing. It's one of the most ridiculous things I've ever seen, but I really liked it? It was supposed to be ridiculous and a bit nonsensical, though (some of the characters even mention that it's how they are), which was one of my favorite things about it. I don't necessarily recommend it, but I had fun with it.

Everything Else I've Seen
The Future Diaries (currently watching) - It's not turning out to be one of my favorites, but I like it! Think a group of 12 people given cell phones that tell the near future and have to find and kill each other off. Oh, and one of them is in love with one of the others--in an obsessive, yandere way.

Durarara!! (kinda-sorta watching?) - I've seen three episodes and ehhhhh. I was told it starts off really slow, though, so I'll try pushing through it.

Naruto (watched one episode to see what it was like) - I'm not totally against the idea of continuing this one someday, but the entire thing (with Naruto and the continuation show) is 600+ episodes and that is wayyy too daunting for me.

Inuyasha (on pause) - I watched four episodes and *shrugs*. I'm not interested in watching more.

Rosario + Vampire (dropped) - It took two episodes for me to know that this isn't for me. 

~~~

Do you watch anime, too? What are your favorites? Do you have any recommendations?

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

"Out of Your Comfort Zone"

The Top Ten Tuesday for next week is on books that you enjoyed recently that weren't your typical read or were out of your comfort zone. The "out of your comfort zone" bit has me thinking...what IS my comfort zone? What even makes a type of book go out of it? Is it because I usually dislike a certain type of book or is it because I'm more reluctant to give it a try?
Comfort Zones Aren't Always About 
What You Enjoy Reading
My journey with New Adult has been...kinda a strange one. I first got into it in the summer of 2012, which was a year before I started blogging. It was also before I got into reviewing books. I had no problems with the stories or the content or the category as a whole--in fact, I LOVED the NAs I read. It was very much within my comfort zone.

But when I started blogging, I pulled back a bit on the category. I don't know if it was changing or if I was becoming more reluctant to read it (or both), but a lot of it felt out of my comfort zone. I still read it, but I was focused on finding "cleaner" books. I find that kinda funny now because I don't think I ever had a problem with the content and certain scenes (I was more worried about that taking over the story and becoming the entire point). NA was probably out of my comfort zone because it's known for having a lot of sex and that's a topic that I just NEVER about with anyone. Showing an interest in NA publicly (AKA on the internet) was what pushed into that uncomfortable zone.

That has changed a lot over the past year, though. I've become way more comfortable with the topic (I even sometimes address sex scenes in reviews), so NA is back within my comfort zone. I don't see a point in being uncomfortable with it anymore, especially since I really like most of the NAs I read. I connect and relate to many of the characters and many of them grow SO MUCH. There's a lot I love about the category, but I would need an entire different post to discuss that. :D

All this said, when I think of comfort zones, I don't necessarily think of types of books I enjoy vs. ones I don't enjoy. I think of the level of comfort I feel when it comes to the idea of reading certain types of books. There are some genres or types of books that I tend to enjoy reading, but I'm not as comfortable with them as others.
What Is Out of My Comfort Zone, Then?
YA contemporaries with zero romance in them - I oftentimes go to YA contemporary when I'm in the mood for something romance-y, so I kinda have to force myself to read the ones that I know don't have any romance. It doesn't make me like the books any less, but it does make me a bit more reluctant to dive into them.

YA historical fiction - Like I said, it can be a hit or a miss for me. It can be super sloooowwwww and I'm not a huge fan of slogging through books.

Classics - I've liked most of the classics I've read! I just have a hard time making myself read them. They take me longer to read. There are so many that I do want to read, but I keep gravitating towards books I'm comfortable with.

Science Fiction - This can be another hit or miss, so I can be really reluctant to pick up a book in this genre unless I hear REALLY good things about it. I oftentimes consider it my least favorite genre, but I feel bad saying that because there's quite a few sci-fi (including dystopia sci-fis) that I absolutely LOVE.
Genres I Don't Read
I guess you can say giving new genres a try is out of my comfort zone, though I can't say the same about any the particular genres because I haven't had enough experience with them to say that.

Adult historical romance (specifically regency) is one of the genres that I don't believe I've tried at all. YA HF can be a hit or a miss for me, but I can get much more into it when there's romance in it. So, adult HF might be within my comfort zone without me even knowing it.

Other genres I don't read (or haven't read much from): MG, nonfiction, erotica, religious fiction, comic books, manga.
What About You?
What does "out of your comfort zone" mean to you? Are there any genres that you're really into now that used to be out of your comfort zone? 

Monday, February 15, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday (45) ~ My Reading List Castoffs

Top Ten Tuesdays is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and a weekly meme where we simply make a top ten list for the week's topic.


This week is all about music and books! There doesn't seem to a concrete topic, so I'm going with...

Top Ten Songs That I Failed At Making Full Reading Lists For
I have a feature that focuses on giving a Reading List (think of it as a reverse playlist) for specific songs. I've had a lot of ideas for it, but there are songs that I have trouble with pairing with more one or two books. Since I aim for at least four books for the lists, I have to put some ideas aside. So, this list is of some abandoned Reading Lists.☺

"Sex Yeah" - Marina and the Diamonds
In Deeper, Caroline's ex posts naked photos of her online and she's left to deal with the fallout. She feels beaten down in the beginning, but she realizes that she has nothing to be ashamed of. It seems to fit "Sex Yeah" because both are focused on how sex is treated in society in some way. 

"Sober" - Niykee Heaton
The song goes so well with this book! Addicted to You features an alcoholic and sex addict enabling each other's addictions, but finding the situation much tougher when emotions are involved and other people start noticing their habits. Here are some lyrics from the song: "I'm still lying awake by your side / & even though I know I shouldn't I'm / Feeding the monsters I'm afraid to fight."

"I'm Yours" - Alessia Cara
Winter does NOT let many people in, and the lyrics of "I'm Yours" reminds me a lot of her and Cade's journey. This part especially makes the song fit: "But I tore down my walls / And opened my doors / And made room for one / So baby I'm yours."

"Jet Black Heart" - 5 Seconds of Summer
This isn't a strong pairing, but I was listening to this song while reading a scene (think the morning after a dance) and it suddenly seemed PERFECT. It seems to be fit that part and Mercedes and Zach's relationship more than the book as a whole.

"I Think I'm in Love" - Kat Dahlia
This song reminds me of the moments when Joss starts realizing her feelings for Matt, especially in the chorus: "I didn't think it could be true / Let alone that it would be you."

"Give Me Love" - Ed Sheeran
"Give Me Love" has so much passion and love and pain in it. It reminds me of Zed and Aly's story in the District Ballet Company books. Both the series and the song are intense and beautiful--add in lyrics that fit with the couple and it's a perfect pairing!

"Harlem" - New Politics
If this book were a movie, I imagine this song playing in a scene when the characters are traveling to New York or maybe at some point when they're in the city. 

First of all, I keep picturing that cover when I listen to the song. The story and its vibe also goes with it! Both are a little dark and the song seems more of a mystery/thriller song than a dystopia one. (It's on on the Mockingjay soundtrack.)

"Hello" - Adele
I really wanted to make a Reading List post for "Hello," but I had the hardest time. I think I was too focused on pairing the lyrics with a character's story. I keep connecting it to The Opportunist, though. There's definitely a lot of distance between Olivia and Caleb (though it's because he lost his memory) and there's a lot that she could say sorry for. 

"Colors" - Halsey
Halsey's music and Cam Girl are PERFECT for each other. "Colors" is the one that reminds me of the book the most (despite the fact that I haven't even read more than half of it yet). The entire Badlands album can fit with it, though.

What do you think of my pairings? Are there any other books you would pair with the songs I included?

A Hold on Me

Hello and welcome to my third (and last) post for the Valentine's Blog Hop!! I'm helping to feature some of the #WO2016 authors with some interviews. If you aren't familiar with #WO2016, here's some info that Julia Ember gave me:
Wo2016 originally stood for ‘Waiting on 2016’ and was started as a supportive FB group for writers publishing a book in 2016 by Suzanne Van Rooyen and Louise Gornall. The group is comprised primarily of YA and NA authors, about 70% of whom are debuts. The idea behind the group was to provide a safe space for writers to chat about their anxieties, share little successes and offer/advice and encouragement to each other as we all journey down the publishing road! The group also runs a fortnightly twitter chat on a variety of subjects.
I featured Jessica Gunn, the author of Gyre on Saturday and Suzanne van Rooyen yesterday. Now it's Pat Esden's turn! I've been super excited for this one ever since I discovered it. It sounds SO GOOD. The fact that it's a gothic/paranormal NA makes it sound even better. ☺ There's a big hop-wide giveaway after the interview that you should definitely enter. *nudges*
About A Hold on Me

This is a NA gothic/paranormal romance that's releasing on February 26th from Kensington Books. You can add it to Goodreads here.

Indiebound | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books a Million
She never wanted to return.

He wants nothing more than for her to leave.

But the fire between them is as strong as the past that haunts them.

Annie Freemont grew up on the road, immersed in the romance of rare things, cultivating an eye for artifacts and a spirit for bargaining. It’s a freewheeling life she loves and plans to continue until her dad is diagnosed with dementia. His illness forces them to return to Moonhill, their ancestral home on the coast of Maine and to the family they left behind fifteen years ago, after Annie’s mother died in a suspicious accident.

Once at Moonhill, Annie is shocked when her aunt separates her from her father. The next time Annie sees him, he’s a bizarre, violent shadow of his former self.

Confused, she turns to an unlikely ally for support Chase, the dangerously seductive young groundskeeper. With his dark good looks and powerful presence, Chase has an air of mystery that Annie is irresistibly drawn to. But she also senses that behind his penetrating eyes are secrets she can’t even begin to imagine. Secrets that hold the key to the past, to Annie’s own longings and to all of their futures. Now, to unlock them, she’ll have to face her greatest fears and embrace her legacy...
1)Two of my favorite things about NA is how much I can relate to the characters and how much they grow over the course of the book. How much did you relate to your own characters? How much did you learn from writing their story?

In A HOLD ON ME, the main character, Annie, is twenty years old. She’s grown up traveling and dealing antiques with her dad. They have a very close and loving relationship, but she’s starting to move away from him and toward her own career and life. But, just as this begins to happen, her dad is diagnosed with a form of dementia. She could never leave him while he’s ill, so her plans are put on hold. To add another layer to this problem, she then meets a guy. She’s dated and had sexual relationships with other guys, but this time the feelings are much more intense. Basically, a large part of this series is about family relationships and how they change as Annie makes choices and moves into a new stage of her life: from dependent daughter to an independent woman. 

I’m not so sure I learned a lot about relationships while writing A HOLD ON ME. But discussing the characters and novel with my critique partners and editor did reaffirm how universal many aspects of the new adult experience are.

2) Since this is a Valentine's hop, tell me about the romance in your book! What is the relationship between the two characters like?
A HOLD ON ME is the first book in the Dark Heart series. Annie meets Chase early in the novel and is very attracted to him physically. She’s also very leery of him, unsure where his allegiances lie and certain there is more to him than meets the eye. Also, a guy who was Annie’s best friend, recently broke her heart.

Actually, unlike some romance novels, A HOLD ON ME is written from one point of view. So—whether it’s Valentines Day or not--I’m not going to give away any more about the romance. I’d rather let the reader experience the questions, truths, and slow burn through Annie’s eyes.

3) What would be the ideal Valentine's Day date for the couple in your book?

The entire series takes place on the seacoast of Maine during the summer. If that was when Valentines happened, then I’m fairly certain their Valentines date would be outdoors in Chase’s secret spot. It’s a ledge that overlooks both the harbor of Port St. Claire and the broad ocean. Annie would bring a bottle of strawberry vodka and fresh orange juice—and maybe macaroons, an assortment of snacks, and sandwiches from Moonhill’s kitchen. They’d watch the sunset and moonrise. Then they’d lie back on a blanket, making love as the stars came out and until they fell asleep. 
About Pat

Pat Esden would love to say she spent her childhood in intellectual pursuits. The truth is she was fonder of exploring abandoned houses and old cemeteries. When not out on her own adventures, she can be found in her northern Vermont home writing stories about brave, smart women and the men who capture their hearts. An antique-dealing florist by trade, she’s also a member of Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, Romance Writers of America, and the League of Vermont Writers. Her short stories have appeared in a number of publications, including Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show, the Mythopoeic Society’s Mythic Circle literary magazine, and George H. Scither’s anthology Cat Tales.

Visit her online at www.PatEsden.com

Author Links: Website | Blog | Facebook | TwitterGoodreads | Tumblr | Pinterest
Giveaway
OPEN INTERNATIONALLY

Prizes:
1 x Paperback ARC Copy of Pat Esden's A Hold On Me with Book Swag
1 x Hardback Copy of Sarah Ahier's Assassin's Heart  with Book Swag
1 x Hardback Copy of Pintip Dunn's Forget Tomorrow with Book Swag
1 x Paperback Copy of Suzanne Van Rooyen's Scardust 
1 x Paperback Copy of Jessica Gunn's Gyre with Book Swag
1 x Paperback Copy of Jodie Andrefski's The Girlfriend Request 
1 x Paperback Copy of Vicki Weavil's Facsimile 
1 x Paperback ARC Copy of Lucy Briand's Magnetic Shift with Book Swag
1 x eArC of Julia Ember's Unicorn Tracks With Book Swag
1 x eArC of Nina Rossing's Fjord Blue 
1 x eArC of CK Oliver's Daybreak Rising with Book Swag
1 x eArC of Courtney Sloan's Of Scions and Men with Book Swag
1 x Ebook copy of Amy McNulty's Nobody's Goddess 
1 x Ebook copy of Melanie McFarlane's There Were Once Stars 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Valentine's Blog Hop ~ Suzanne Van Rooyen

Hello and welcome to my second post for the Valentine's Blog Hop!! I'm helping to feature some of the #WO2016 authors with some interviews. If you aren't familiar with #WO2016, here's some info that Julia Ember gave me:
Wo2016 originally stood for ‘Waiting on 2016’ and was started as a supportive FB group for writers publishing a book in 2016 by Suzanne Van Rooyen and Louise Gornall. The group is comprised primarily of YA and NA authors, about 70% of whom are debuts. The idea behind the group was to provide a safe space for writers to chat about their anxieties, share little successes and offer/advice and encouragement to each other as we all journey down the publishing road! The group also runs a fortnightly twitter chat on a variety of subjects.
I featured Jessica Gunn, the author of Gyre, yesterday. Today, I'm featuring Suzanne van Rooyen, who wrote a really cool sounding sci-fi NA! I'm pretty excited for it, especially since I rarely ever read speculative NA. ☺ Don't forget that there's a big hop-wide giveaway after the interview! There are a lot of great prizes.
About Scardust

This is a sci-fi NA that released on February 8th from Entangled. Add it to Goodreads!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Dead Rock, Texas, 2037

Raleigh Williams made a promise to his brother before he died, that he’d scatter his ashes on Mars. Desperate to leave a life of bad memories behind and start over in the Martian colony, Raleigh fully intends to keep that promise. But his plans are thwarted when a meteor near-misses him in the desert, and Raleigh finds in its crater not debris or even a spacecraft, but a man covered in swirling scars and with no memory of who he is. At least he looks like a man—a man Raleigh can’t seem to keep his eyes off of—but whenever they touch it ignites a memory swap between them.

Raleigh agrees to help Meteor Man piece together his life through their cosmic connection. But the memory share goes both ways, and Raleigh becomes inexplicably entangled with a guy who is everything he needs—everything good that Raleigh is not—but might not even be human. As their minds and worlds collide, reality unravels and Raleigh must face a painful truth, one that could shatter his dreams of finding love, reaching Mars, and fulfilling his brother’s last wish.
A Short Interview
1) Two of my favorite things about NA is how much I can relate to the characters and how much they grow over the course of the book. How much did you relate to your own characters? How much did you learn from writing their story?
I always relate to my characters on some level since so much of what I write draws on personal experience. There are aspects of both my main characters, Raleigh and Crow, that I relate to a lot: Raleigh's sense of wanting to do more with his life and making his big dreams come true, and Crow's need to take life a little less seriously, coping with stress by having a sense of humor.

I learned a lot writing this book, specifically about having the courage to confront inner demons and to be able to use negative past experiences to positively influence the future of who you are. It was one of the hardest books I've ever written and took me more than two years to complete a draft I was happy with.

2) Since this is a Valentine's hop, tell me about the romance in your book! What is the relationship between the two characters like?
Complicated! Raleigh and Crow are deeply entangled in each other because they're sharing memories, which means there's very little they can hide from each other. This also gives them a unique perspective and understanding of one another which only deepens their relationship. This makes their love incredibly powerful but also potentially traumatic since there's no keeping secrets. They also can't seem to keep their hands off each other ;)

3) What would be the ideal Valentine's Day date for the couple in your book?
A day at the beach. Raleigh has never seen the sea, so for Crow to take him to the ocean would be all kinds of magical, and it would leave them both half naked and free to ogle each other. I imagine they'd build sandcastles of structures found on Mars, argue about existentialism, and then spend the rest of the day making out in the dunes.

About Suzanne
Suzanne is the author of the YA novels THE OTHER ME and I HEART ROBOT, as well as the forthcoming NA novel SCARDUST. A tattooed storyteller from South Africa, Suzanne currently lives in Sweden and is busy making friends with the ghosts of her Viking ancestors. Although she has a Master’s degree in music, Suzanne prefers conjuring strange worlds and creating quirky characters. When she grows up, she wants to be an elf – until then, she spends her time (when not writing) wall climbing, buying far too many books, and entertaining her shiba inu, Lego.
Author Links: Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook


Giveaway
OPEN INTERNATIONALLY

Prizes:
1 x Paperback ARC Copy of Pat Esden's A Hold On Me with Book Swag
1 x Hardback Copy of Sarah Ahier's Assassin's Heart  with Book Swag
1 x Hardback Copy of Pintip Dunn's Forget Tomorrow with Book Swag
1 x Paperback Copy of Suzanne Van Rooyen's Scardust 
1 x Paperback Copy of Jessica Gunn's Gyre with Book Swag
1 x Paperback Copy of Jodie Andrefski's The Girlfriend Request 
1 x Paperback Copy of Vicki Weavil's Facsimile 
1 x Paperback ARC Copy of Lucy Briand's Magnetic Shift with Book Swag
1 x eArC of Julia Ember's Unicorn Tracks With Book Swag
1 x eArC of Nina Rossing's Fjord Blue 
1 x eArC of CK Oliver's Daybreak Rising with Book Swag
1 x eArC of Courtney Sloan's Of Scions and Men with Book Swag
1 x Ebook copy of Amy McNulty's Nobody's Goddess 
1 x Ebook copy of Melanie McFarlane's There Were Once Stars 

a Rafflecopter giveaway