31.7.18

#BlogTour: STAR-TOUCHED STORIES by Roshani Chokshi // #Review + #interview + #Giveaway

Hello and welcome to my blog tour post for

STAR-TOUCHED STORIES by Roshani Chokshi!

I have a review of the book for you plus an interview with the author so be sure to read all the way through for that! I am also giving away a copy of either THE STAR-TOUCHED QUEEN or A CROWN OF WISHES to one lucky reader! But first, let's learn more about the book...

STAR-TOUCHED STORIES

Author: Roshani Chokshi
Series: The Star-Touched Queen #2.5
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: August 7, 2018
Rating: 5/5 stars

Summary:
Three lush and adventurous stories in the Star-Touched world.

Death and Night
He was Lord of Death, cursed never to love. She was Night incarnate, destined to stay alone. After a chance meeting, they wonder if, perhaps, they could be meant for more. But danger crouches in their paths, and the choices they make will set them on a journey that will span lifetimes. 

Poison and Gold
Now that her wish for a choice has come true, Aasha struggles to control her powers. But when an opportunity to help Queen Gauri and King Vikram's new reign presents itself, she is thrown into the path of the fearsome yet enchanting Spy Mistress. To help her friends, Aasha will have to battle her insecurities and perhaps, along the way, find love. 

Rose and Sword
There is a tale whispered in the dark of the Empire of Bharat-Jain. A tale of a bride who loses her bridegroom on the eve of her wedding. But is it a tale or a truth?
Purchase:

Other books in this series...

THE STAR-TOUCHED QUEEN

Author: Roshani Chokshi
Series: The Star-Touched Queen #1
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Publication Date: April 26, 2016

Summary:
Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.
Purchase:

30.7.18

#Discussion: Planning Your Instagram Feed // #Instagram101

There have been a lot of articles written about the pros and cons of Instagram, how to "hack" the new Instagram algorithm, and anything else you can think of regarding the largest photo sharing social media platform. Whether you're using Instagram for business or personal, here are some tips for creating a feed that everyone wants to follow - and have "post notifications" for.

Today's post is about how to plan your feed, which includes a bit of foresight into how you want to take your pictures.

Read the whole series to upgrade and maintain your Instagram feed by clicking on the different links below!
Planning Your Feed | Taking The "Perfect" Pictures | Posting On Instagram | Caption Writing 101

I'm no expert in growing your audience because I have just over 1600 followers on Instagram but I have a good ratio of interaction and am growing consistently considering I haven't been as active on Instagram of late as I should be. However, here are what people like when perusing Instagram.

Inspiration Searching

All artists use some sort of inspiration for their creative works and taking photos is no different. It’s important to look to other accounts for inspiration but do not just copy their feed –and especially do not steal other people’s photos.

I run a book blog, so I look at other "bookstagram" accounts, but I also like to look to other niche blogging accounts like beauty accounts, DIY accounts, and home renovation accounts. These let me see how other people use space, lighting, and highlight their chosen topic in a way that isn't "typical" for books.

Find a few people who you like their entire feed – not just one photo. Then determine what it is about those photos you like and try to recreate it using your own personal touch. 

Remember that this is about personal branding. If you look like you are just strictly copying someone else, your engagement will not be very high – and you could make someone very angry.

Consistency

If you want to (and have the time), you can post once, twice, three times a day. Or you can only post on specific days. As long as your followers know when they can expect your photos, that's what is most important. I try to post around 9:30am EDT and 2:00pm EDT every day. That means I need to plan at least 14 photos on Sunday so that I know I have something for the entire week.

27.7.18

#BlogTour: THE CHEERLEADERS by Kara Thomas // #Spotlight + #Giveaway

Hello and welcome to my blog tour post for

THE CHEERLEADERS by Kara Thomas!

Learn more about the book and enter to win one of three copies of the book, if you are in the US!


THE CHEERLEADERS


Author: Kara Thomas
Series: N/A
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: July 31, 2018

Summary:

There are no more cheerleaders in the town of Sunnybrook.

First there was the car accident—two girls gone after hitting a tree on a rainy night. Not long after, the murders happened. Those two girls were killed by the man next door. The police shot him, so no one will ever know why he did it. Monica’s sister was the last cheerleader to die. After her suicide, Sunnybrook High disbanded the cheer squad. No one wanted to be reminded of the girls they lost.


That was five years ago. Now the faculty and students at Sunnybrook High want to remember the lost cheerleaders. But for Monica, it’s not that easy. She just wants to forget. Only, Monica’s world is starting to unravel. There are the letters in her stepdad’s desk, an unearthed, years-old cell phone, a strange new friend at school. . . . Whatever happened five years ago isn’t over. Some people in town know more than they’re saying. And somehow Monica is at the center of it all.



There are no more cheerleaders in Sunnybrook, but that doesn’t mean anyone else is safe.
Purchase:
Amazon | Chapters | TBD
Kara Thomas is a true crime addict and the author of THE DARKEST CORNERS, LITTLE MONSTERS, and THE CHEERLEADERS, all published by Delacorte Press. You can find her on Twitter (@karatwrites), Instagram (@kara__thomas), or at http://www.kara-thomas.com.

Connect with the Author:
7/23/2018- The Heart of a Book BloggerReview
7/24/2018- A Dream Within A DreamReview
7/25/2018- Portrait of a BookReview
7/26/2018- Here's to Happy EndingsReview
7/27/2018- Books and LaddersReview

Week Two:
7/30/2018- The Clever ReaderReview
7/31/2018- Diary of an Avid ReaderReview
8/1/2018- Never Too Many To ReadReview
8/2/2018- Confessions of a YA ReaderReview
8/3/2018- Adventures of a Book JunkieInterview

Week Three:
8/6/2018- laura bookish cornerReview
8/7/2018- The Phantom ParagrapherReview
8/8/2018- Mama Reads BlogReview
8/9/2018- To Be ReadReview
8/10/2018- Savings in SecondsReview

Week Four:
8/13/2018- The Young FolksReview
8/14/2018- BookHounds YA- Interview
8/15/2018- Simply Daniel RadcliffeReview
8/16/2018- Moonlight RendezvousReview
8/17/2018- Two points of interestReview

25.7.18

#Review: ALWAYS NEVER YOURS by Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka

ALWAYS NEVER YOURS

Authors: Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka
Series: N/A
Source: Finished Copy via Publisher
Publisher: Speak
Publication Date: May 22, 2018
Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary:
Megan Harper is the girl before. All her exes find their one true love right after dating her. It’s not a curse or anything, it’s just the way things are, and Megan refuses to waste time feeling sorry for herself. Instead, she focuses on pursuing her next fling, directing theatre, and fulfilling her dream school’s acting requirement in the smallest role possible. 

But her plans quickly crumble when she’s cast as none other than Juliet–yes, that Juliet–in her high school’s production. It’s a nightmare. No–a disaster. Megan’s not an actress and she’s certainly not a Juliet. Then she meets Owen Okita, an aspiring playwright who agrees to help Megan catch the eye of a sexy stagehand in exchange for help writing his new script. 

Between rehearsals and contending with her divided family, Megan begins to notice Owen–thoughtful, unconventional, and utterly unlike her exes, and wonders: shouldn’t a girl get to play the lead in her own love story?
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received a finished copy of this book from the publisher. This in no way impacts my opinion.

I absolutely adored this one. There was so much goodness in Megan and her story. I loved the unabashed discussions around sex and sexuality. I also really connected to all the characters in this one. I highly recommend it! What a stellar debut novel.

23.7.18

#ARCAugust 2018 Reading List!

It's my favourite time of year:

ARC AUGUST! 

I am so grateful to the women at Read.Sleep.Repeat. for hosting this amazing event every year because it helps me with keeping up to date on backlist and frontlist ARCs that I've been sent that I haven't gotten a chance to read yet!
Here's all the books I can choose from to read! If you see one that you have, message me or leave a comment and we can buddy read it together!

As part of ARC August, there is a readathon from August 4-5, which kicks off the long weekend here in Canada so I am very excited to take part in that! I'll hopefully knock off half my list from that weekend. 


I have a list of ARCs from 2017 that I never got to in a series of blog posts that I potentially could read as well:

20.7.18

ARC #Review: ANGELS CAN'T SWIM by Alexandra McCann

ANGELS CAN'T SWIM

Author: Alexandra McCann
Series: N/A
Source: eARC from Author
Publisher: KDP
Publication Date: June 22, 2018
Rating: 3/5 stars

Summary:
Angels Can’t Swim is an original, honest coming-of-age novella that examines what goes on behind the scenes for three college swimmers. Jenna, Maggie, and Eden are each incredibly different in their personalities and struggles, yet under pressure they must come together in this compelling story of friendship and what it means to be a good teammate. While balancing the pressures of swimming at a high level and also dealing with the realities of college life, the three young women grow immensely as individual people and in their bonds with each other. In portraying these bonds, the novella tackles important issues such as eating disorders and what it means to be an LGBTQ young person. This intense, unforgettable novella is a must-read for young adults, college students, and all people who wish to take a glimpse into a world not often seen.
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

This was good but something kept me from fully connecting to it. I think part of it was the length (since it is a novella), but there was also something in the narrative that had me at arm's length from this one. 

18.7.18

Subscription Box #Review: Nerdy Post June 2018!

I love surprises and subscription boxes so I decided to buy a few different ones and then review them for you guys because why not! So you will get to see a few different subscription box reviews!

Just so everyone knows, I live in Canada, so the prices and such that I am going to talk about are in Canadian Dollars and shipping times are based on shipping to Canada.


The NerdyPost website!

Every month. They offer a bunch of different options, so check them out below! Plus, you can order past boxes, build your own box, and a host of other options to get Nerdy Post items!

Nerdy Post Lite: $9.95 USD
Nerdy Post: $13.95 USD
Ultimate Nerdy Post: $22.95 USD
Nerdy Tees: $15.95 USD
Nerdy Combo: $29.90 USD
Ultimate Nerdy Combo: $38.90 USD

Each option has a different combination of items which you can see on their website. I get the Nerdy Post option - and that is what I will be reviewing today. The Nerdy Post option includes:

  • Large Print
  • Two Mini Prints
  • Bookmark
  • Sticker
  • Pin
  • Post Card, and
  • Bonus Item

Plus shipping, which for me, cost $9.00 USD

I just looked at my credit card statement and it cost me $30.25 Canadian

17.7.18

#BlogTour: LIKE NEVER AND ALWAYS by Ann Aguirre // #Excerpt+ #Giveaway

Hello and welcome to my blog tour post for

LIKE NEVER AND ALWAYS by Ann Aguirre!

Today I have an except from the novel plus you can enter below to win a Kindle Oasis & 5 finished copies of the book, courtesy of Ann and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post. But first, let's learn more about the novel!



LIKE NEVER AND ALWAYS

Author: Ann Aguirre
Series: N/A
Publisher: Tor Teen
Publication Date: July 17, 2018

Summary:

On a hot summer night, a screech of brakes and shattering glass changes two lives forever.

Liv wakes in the hospital, confused when they call her Morgan. She assumes it’s a case of mistaken identity, yet when the bandages come off, it’s not her face in the mirror anymore. It’s her best friend Morgan’s.



Morgan always seemed to have the perfect life, yet Liv must navigate endlessly disturbing secrets of the criminal and murderous variety—and a romance that feels like a betrayal. Torn between the boy she loved as Liv and the boy she’s grown to love as Morgan, Liv still has to survive Morgan’s last request.
Purchase:
“Just let this be the second secret you keep for me,” I say then. “Thanks for not telling Nathan, by the way.”

Clay leans his arm along the door frame, tilting his head slightly out the open window as if he needs the air. “You couldn’t pay me to talk to that jackass lately.”

“You two fighting?”

“No. He’s just . . . Nathan.” He hesitates. “I wasn’t going to tell you this . . .”

“What?” Anything that could divert me from my precarious situation, even momentarily, seems like a welcome distraction.

“He brought a girl home last night.” From his tone he expects this to destroy me.

And sure, there’s a twinge because before, I thought Nathan and I had a soul-deep connection. Fact is, he’s a little immature, a lot selfish, and I just never noticed. They say love is blind, but I’d say that infatuation is blind, and love is tolerant. When you really love someone, it’s not that you can’t see the flaws; you’re just willing to forgive them.