Monday, December 18, 2017

Author Interview with Giveaway: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber

 
 I feel so bad that I didn't see the interview was ready for my post on Sunday, so I am going to give the author's interview its very own special post today.  She did a lot of fun answers and I really want to share them!  My original post is HERE.   And I've included a link to the giveaway down after all of the interview questions.



1.    What does your writing process look like? Do you know the whole story when you start?  Or do you just start writing and go with it (seat of the pants writing)?  If you plan it out, how do you do that?  Outline, notecards, post-it-notes, etc.?
*laughs* Truthfully? My writing process is a bit of a hot mess – but five books in, it’s a routine of a mess at least! (Right?)
Step 1: Start with a character and story idea in mind.
Step 2: Go for lots of drives to develop creative thoughts.
Step 3: Drag sister, Kati, out for three hours of chips and guacamole, and hash out a workable plot. Eat more guacamole than chips.
Step 4: Drag the husband out for food and force him to help fill in plot details.
Step 5: Start writing book.
Step 6: Go for more drives to develop thoughts.
Step 7: Get 80 pages into book and realize you need to re-plot, so, call your sister in a panic, to which she says, “Oh good, you’re at the panic spot. About time.” And then you spend 2 hours replotting said book over the phone.
Step 8: Finish writing book.



2. How do you come up with your ideas for your stories?
I’m forever fascinated by people and the world around me, and I’m particularly inspired by the stories and struggles of the teens I work with. Their courage and determination are always the defining heartbeat in each of my books. With The Evaporation of Sofi Snow, they particularly inspired the characters of Sofi and Miguel.


3.    How long have you been writing?
Nine years. Which is incidentally the amount of time I’ve been drinking my weight in coffee.

4.    What tips do you have for aspiring writers?
(1)  Do iiiiiit!
(2)  Read and write – even when you’re not in the mood.
(3) Join a good critique group.
(4) Dig into your soul until you find your own story and voice—the one that’s scared of what people will think or tries to put on the grown-up shoes so no one will know you’re secretly insecure. Because we’re all insecure. But when you tap into the dreams and fears, and give that hidden self a voice? It’ll begin to sing. And that is where I believe our stories take on heart. And your heart is one the world needs to hear from. 


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5.    How important are names in your books?  Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds, or the meaning?  Do you have any name choosing resources you recommend?
Okay, so I ultimately choose character and location names based upon sound. However, I spend a lot of time beforehand researching their origins and meanings to narrow the selection down. I’ve used everything from historical books, myths, baby name sites, and science journals to find them. Also? It is not beneath me to go through my kids’ school books. ;)

6.  What are your favorite:
Books/authors/genres – Anything by Robin LaFevers, Marissa Meyer, Maggie Steifvater, and Dorothy Sayers.
Movies/TV ShowsMovies - Lord of the Rings & Babe (yes, the pig movie – I love it so much) / TV ShowsPsyche & Stranger Things
Music – I’m currently enjoying Jaymes Young
Food/Writing snack – Well, my daughter just walked in with this, so… (true story!)



About the Author:
Mary Weber is the multiple-award-winning author of the bestselling young adult Storm Siren Trilogy, and The Evaporation of Sofi Snow series (all by HarperCollins). An avid high school, middle school, and conference speaker, Mary's passion is helping others find their voice amid a world that often feels too loud. When she's not plotting adventures involving tough girls who frequently take over the world, Mary sings 80's hairband songs to her three muggle children, and ogles her husband who looks strikingly like Wolverine. They live in California which is perfect for stalking L.A. bands, Comic-Con, and the ocean.


Mary's debut, Storm Siren, was featured in the Scholastic School Book Fairs, and her novels have been endorsed by bestselling authors Marissa Meyer, Jay Asher, Wendy Higgins, CJ Redwine, and Jonathan Maberry.


You can also find Mary's fun interviews in the paperback of Marissa Meyer's NYT bestselling, CRESS, and in Jay Asher's 13 REASONS WHY movie tie-in edition. Most recently, you can see her and her family as extras in the NETFLIX Original Series, 13 REASONS WHY.


She gets nerdy at @maryweber.com, FACEBOOK , INSTAGRAM, TWITTER, and GOODREADS. Come say hi!!

Giveaway:




   Prize: Everything in the picture— Backpack, earbuds, hardcover copy of the book

      US/Canada only
      Starts: 12/11
      Ends: 12/29
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Check out the rest of the tour stops HERE.

Blog Tour Review: Cowboy Up (Coming Home #3) by Harper Sloan

    New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Harper Sloan returns with a passionate and breathless romance about the sparks that ignite when a cautious cowboy and a once-scorned woman open up to each other in the third installment of the Coming Home series. 

Book info:
TitleCowboy Up  
Author:  Harper Sloan
SeriesComing Home #3  
Genre:  Adult contemporary/western romance
Published:  December 19th, 2017
 
Synopsis:
As the eldest Davis, Clayton has always tried to lead by example. He takes his job as head of the family businesses seriously, making sure the farm and auto shop are running smoothly—along with keeping an eye on his brother and sister. For him, there’s a time and place to let go of the control he holds with an iron grip. And with the way he grew up, coupled with a disastrous end to his last relationship, he’s just fine with his quiet, solitary life.  

Most of the time. 

What he hadn't counted on was the cute, quirky, shy bookstore owner, Caroline Michaels. She's the proverbial woman next door—well, the next town over, that is. Caroline hasn't lived an easy life, but after escaping a verbally abusive ex, she's finally living it for herself. The last thing she ever expected was a one-night stand with Clay Davis she can’t stop thinking about. 

 So when she falls on hard times and Clay comes out of nowhere to her rescue, she realizes just how impossible it’ll be to stay away from him. Now all she has to do is convince him to live a little…. Will Clay be able to give up the reins and finally settle down? And, more importantly, will Caroline muster enough courage to lasso him up?  

Amazon US |  Paperback | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | Barnes and NobleKobo | iBooks

 

Excerpt:
I push my hands from his shoulders and palm his jaw as his stubble prickles against my fingers while my hands wander up to his hair. His hat falls to the ground with a thud and I know he’s just as lost in me as I am in him, because he doesn’t even make a move to pick it up. He lets out a deep grunt when I mold myself against his body, seeking some sort of friction. The next thing I know, my back is against the door and he’s gripping my bottom. His mouth hits my jaw with a bite of his teeth, making a squeak of pleasure shoot up my throat, and his deep rumble of laughter reaches my ears as he presses me harder into the door with his hips. The heavy bulge of his erection against that spot makes me so desperate for him that I whimper in relief when his mouth finally closes over mine in a wet tangle of tongues.

I’ve never been kissed so thoroughly.

This is the kind of kiss that sets the bar for any that might follow.

The kind that shows you everything you’ve been missing and everything you never knew you wanted. I’m going to be comparing every kiss I ever have to my dark cowboy’s, even though I know there’s a good chance no one will ever compare. The sounds coming from my mouth, the ones being swallowed by his, are nothing short of needy. My hips move in tandem with the thrusts of his, and even though we’re both fully clothed, I know it won’t take much more of this for me to go off like the town’s fireworks on the Fourth of July.

“Fuck, you taste just like apple pie,” he whispers against my lips, breaking away with a gasp.

“Huh?”

“Goddamn, I love apple pie,” he says before his mouth is back on mine, this time with a whole new kind of hunger deepening his kisses.

I’m held captive, enraptured. Then his hands move from my bottom to glide up my torso. He lifts his hard chest off mine and suddenly those delicious fingers are at my breasts. Even if I had big boobs his hands would dwarf them, I’m sure, but as it is he covers both with a firm grasp before adjusting his hold with a deft twist of the wrists. His mouth continues to feast on mine while his huge hands learn my body with slow movements. I tear my mouth from his with a breathy moan when he pushes my shirt up and slips his fingers into the cups of my bra to tweak my nipples.

“Oh, God,” I moan when he does it again.

“I can’t get enough of you,” he rumbles.

“Please,” I beg, not with the slightest clue as to what I’m begging for.

His hips dig even harder into mine as he leans back, supporting me against the door with that connection alone as he pulls my shirt off. The darkness makes me feel more confident than I normally would be, almost half naked with a man—no, a stranger.

“Yours too,” I tell him as his fingers move to unclasp my bra. “I want to feel your skin on mine,” I breathe, taking over the task so he’ll hopefully give me what I want.

I fumble in my haste to feel more of this dangerous arousal he’s creating in my body, but the second my bra is free and dangling toward the floor, his naked chest collides against mine, pushing me into the door with a force that sends the air rushing out of my lungs.

His mouth hits my collarbone at the same time his hands grasp my bottom, sliding me up the door until I feel the wet heat of his breath against my breast.

Then he stops.
    
        
My Review:
My rating:  4 stars

This was a sweet romance.  I like stories where you get both characters' points of view in alternating chapters.  While our main characters definitely had their pasts to overcome, once they figured out how they felt about each other, the main drama and stress in the book came from outside issues, exes or dealing with the loss of Caroline's bookstore or else her horrible mother. It's nice to read a story where the people in love are able to know that and not have to stress back and forth and not trust each other or push each other away.  Sometimes it is nice to read a "perfect" love story, and this is definitely one where that takes place. There are very steamy sex scenes, but also very dreamy romantic scenes.  There are also good family members, on Clayton's side, as well as some great friends of Caroline's.  There are babies, and a wedding as well.  

I did have a few scenes where the sexy bits kind of jarred with the sweetness, didn't quite fit seamlessly together.  And there was a lot of crying at the end that seemed a bit overdramatic to me,  as well as some of the professions of love did get to be a bit much.  But overall I enjoyed the story, and would definitely love to go back and read how the other couples got together.  I'm sure if I'd read all the books in order, it would have made the epilogue set 15 years in the future mean more to me.

If you like a sweet romance, without drama between the lovers, steamy sex between them, flirting, funny friends, all of that, this is the book for you! 

About the Author
Harper is a NEW YORK TIMES, WALL STREET JOURNAL and USA TODAY bestselling author residing in Georgia with her husband and three daughters. She has a borderline unhealthy obsession with books, hibachi, tattoos and Game of Thrones. When she isn't writing you can almost always find her with a book in hand.  

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Blog Tour with Giveaway: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber

Book info:
TitleThe Evaporation of Sofi Snow  
Author:  Mary Weber
Publisher:  Thomas Nelson
Release Date:   June 6th, 2017
Genre:  YA Science fiction, dystopia


Synopsis:
 
Ever since the Delonese ice-planet arrived eleven years ago, Sofi's dreams have been vivid. Alien. In a system where Earth's corporations rule in place of governments and the humanoid race orbiting the moon are allies, her only constant has been her younger brother, Shilo. As an online gamer, Sofi battles behind the scenes of Earth's Fantasy Fighting arena where Shilo is forced to compete in a mix of real and virtual blood sport. But when a bomb takes out a quarter of the arena, Sofi's the only one who believes Shilo survived. She has dreams of him. And she's convinced he's been taken to the ice-planet.

Except no one but ambassadors are allowed there.

For Miguel, Earth's charming young playboy, the games are of a different sort. As Ambassador to the Delonese, his career has been built on trading secrets and seduction. Until the Fantasy Fight's bomb goes off. Now the tables have turned and he's a target for blackmail. The game is simple: Help the blackmailers, or lose more than anyone can fathom, or Earth can afford.


BOOK LINKS


TOUR SCHEDULE

About the Author:

Mary Weber is the multiple-award-winning author of the bestselling young adult Storm Siren Trilogy, and The Evaporation of Sofi Snow series (all by HarperCollins). An avid high school, middle school, and conference speaker, Mary's passion is helping others find their voice amid a world that often feels too loud. When she's not plotting adventures involving tough girls who frequently take over the world, Mary sings 80's hairband songs to her three muggle children, and ogles her husband who looks strikingly like Wolverine. They live in California which is perfect for stalking L.A. bands, Comic-Con, and the ocean.



Mary's debut, Storm Siren, was featured in the Scholastic School Book Fairs, and her novels have been endorsed by bestselling authors Marissa Meyer, Jay Asher, Wendy Higgins, CJ Redwine, and Jonathan Maberry.



You can also find Mary's fun interviews in the paperback of Marissa Meyer's NYT bestselling, CRESS, and in Jay Asher's 13 REASONS WHY movie tie-in edition. Most recently, you can see her and her family as extras in the NETFLIX Original Series, 13 REASONS WHY.



She gets nerdy at @maryweber.com, FACEBOOK , INSTAGRAM, TWITTER, and GOODREADS. Come say hi!!
 
Giveaway:

      Prize: Everything in the picture— Backpack, earbuds, hardcover copy of the book
      US/Canada only
      Starts: 12/11
      Ends: 12/29
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, December 16, 2017

End of the Year Double Giveaway

I've got two giveaways that I'm going to put up on my own.  These will go till the end of the year, so please feel free to enter, and there will be some ways you can enter once a day, comments and tweets.  One giveaway is geared to my readers who like adult romances.  The second giveaway is geared more to my YA readers.  You can enter both!  Unfortunately these have to be US only, unless you are able to get Kindle books, as one of the prizes is for a set of Kindle books by a favorite author of mine.

Romance Reader Giveaway Prizes:

There will be five winners.

1.  Kindle copy of all three books out in the Ad Agency Series by Nicole Archer






2.  Amy Daws Harris Brothers Series T-shirt.




3.  Cool set with autographed copy of Forks, Knives, and Spoons by Leah DeCesare along with a set of earrings and a charm bracelet that goes with the book.



4.  A copy of I Love You Subject to the Following Terms and Conditions by Erin Lyon



5.  Package of mystery swag - no picture, just will be bookmarks, postcards, etc. that I picked up at different book conventions over the past year.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


 YA Reader Giveaway:

There will be two winners.

1.  Choose 2 books from whatever books are in my extra pile and I'll throw in 2 surprise books.  Here is a picture of what it looks like at the moment.  Books could be added between now and the end of the month, and some books may get traded and not be available anymore.



2.  Package of mystery YA Swag picked up from other trades and conventions I've been to.

  a Rafflecopter giveaway