Friday, December 30, 2011

Random Act of Kindness–January Edition

The girls at Book Soulmates started a very cool project. The concept is to post a wish list and someone might just send a gift to you! Of course, you might wanna be nice to and offer someone something from their wish list as well!

Here are the details, from their website.

Rules:

• Sign up each month you'd like to participate in.

• Show off your participation! Grab one of the buttons available :)

• Create a wishlist and post it in the Google Doc located in each R.A.K post for the month.

{Post on your blog, Amazon, where ever as long as there's a link to it.}

• If you choose to do a R.A.K for someone, check out their wishlist and contact that blogger for their address.

• At the end of the month, SHOW US YOUR R.A.K!

Make a post saying 'Thank You' to whoever granted one of your wishes and share it with us :)

OPEN TO EVERYONE!

Let's keep our International bloggers in mind and in our hearts.

Remember, there's always the Book Depository and they offer FREE shipping!

Last month I received

By Tara                 by Cindy                  by Kate

Thanks ladies!! <3

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I also offered...

To Cindy           To Christen

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Here’s my wish list for this month ^^ I know it’s quite long, but you’ll have plenty to choose from!

If you wish to offer me something, just email me at TyngaUF(a)gmail.com and I will give you my mailing addy

  • Beautiful Chaos – Kami & Margaret

  • Venom, Tangled Threads & Spider’s Revenge– Jennifer Estep

  • Frostbitten, Waking the Witch – Kelley Armstrong (I’d like the MM edition, to match my collection ^^)

  • Acheron by Sherrilyn Kenyon (MM please ^^)

  • Alien Huntress series by Gena Showalter

  • Wraith by Phaedra Weldon

  • Cold Sight – Leslie Parish

  • The Rift Walker -  Clay & Susan Griffith

  • Charlie Madigan series by Kelly Gay

  • Unknown, Unseen – Rachel Caine

  • Firestorm, Thin Air, Gale Force, Cape Storm, Total Eclipse – Rachel Caine

I really hope you join the fun! I think it’s a great way to meet new bloggers as well as give a bit of joy in this world!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

A Christmas With… Elizabeth C Bunce

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Today is the last day of A Christmas With… and I’m really happy to spend it with Elizabeth C Bunce, author of Starcrossed & Liar’s Moon! I loved Starcrossed and can’t wait to get started on the second book ^^

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1- Starcrossed, the first book in the Thief Errant series was a huge success, how different was the release of Liar's Moon for you?

I think the response to StarCrossed caught us all off guard, so with Liar's Moon, my publisher has done a lot to promote the release, particularly to booksellers and e-book readers (for a limited time, the e-book edition of StarCrossed is available for $2.99, and includes a big sample of Liar's Moon!). Liar's Moon is getting a lot of exciting press and attention, and it's been fun to see more and more people discovering Digger!

2- Your characters have very original names, I find myself wondering where you find your inspiration?

I have a background in anthropology and linguistics, so my first priority is to make the names seem to fit the cultural/linguistic background they're coming from. My second priority is to make them easy for a reader to pronounce! (I am not always successful with this last one, alas! Sometimes a character just arrives, complete with her name, and you have to go with it.)

3- If you had to pick three theme songs for Liar's Moon, what would they be?

I actually did have a playlist, of sorts--particular songs that evoked a mood, a relationship, or a scene for me, although put together they sound really eclectic. The first one would be Billy Joel's "Blonde Over Blue," which I'd call the "Koya and Durrel Theme." The next would be the clanky instrumental "Discombobulate/Marital Sabotage" from the Sherlock Holmes (2010) soundtrack, which was sort of my "Gerse Theme," because every time I heard it, it put me right into that dirty, mysterious city. And the now-infamous last scene Liar's Moon was totally inspired by an old English sea chantey called "Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate," and that probably makes no sense to anyone but me!

4- How many books can we expect in the series? Do you have a tentative title/release date for the next book?

At the moment, Digger's future is not firmly established. I know we'd all love for there to be a third book, and my editor and I have talked at length about what that book will be, but nothing is firm as of yet. It depends on the fans, really!

Now onto some Xmas-y questions:

5- What's a typical Christmas like in the Digger's World?

Well, there's no Christmas in Digger's world, but like many cultures, there is a sacred midwinter holiday. In Llyvraneth, it's called the Dead of Winter, and corresponds to the closest full moon of Marau, god of the dead, to midwinter. Instead of a holiday of merriment and festivity, it's a solemn day of remembrance of the dead. There is also a tradition of feeding birds on the Dead of Winter, as birds (particularly crows, rooks, and ravens) are thought to communicate between the world of the living and the world of the dead.

6- What's the best Christmas gift we could offer her?

I know we're supposed to say something like "peace in Llyvraneth and safety for her friends..." but Digger likes *things,* so she'd be pretty easy to buy for. Her favorite gifts have been small, lavish, and portable (like the embroidered black gloves Durrel gives her in StarCrossed)... so I think she would really like an Iphone, although service is spotty right now in post-war Gerse.

7- What's your best Christmas memory as a kid?

Oh, that's tough! I vividly remember being five years old and waking up very, very early in the morning to use the bathroom. I knew it was too early to get up and check under the tree, but as I toddled down the hallway, I accidentally (hear that, Mom? ACCIDENTALLY!) caught a glimpse of a huge, hulking shadow in the living room that scared the daylights out of me. I crept down the hall to investigate... to discover a giant (GIANT) teddy bear sitting on the sofa! He was probably a good 5' tall, and much bigger around than my five-year-old arms could reach around. Like a good little girl, I scuttled straight back to bed until the sun rose and my big brother got me up.

8- What can we wish you for this Merry time?

Well, I would like world peace and health and safety for my friends!  This is the first holiday season in five or six years that I haven't been just coming off a deadline, and it's lovely--for the first time in ages I have all this mental space to enjoy the holidays, not just survive them! We even got our decorations up before Thanksgiving, which I think is a first ever.

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If it got you curious, here’s a bit more about Liar’s Moon

Liar's Moon (Thief Errant, #2)Prisons, poisons, and passions combine in a gorgeously written fantasy noir.

As a pickpocket, Digger expects to spend a night in jail every now and then. But she doesn't expect to find Lord Durrel Decath there as well--or to hear he's soon to be executed for killing his wife.

Durrel once saved Digger's life, and when she goes free, she decides to use her skills as a thief, forger, and spy to return the favor. But each new clue only opens up new mysteries. Durrel's late wife had an illegal business on the wrong side of the civil war raging just outside the city gates. Digger keeps finding forbidden magic in places it has no reason to be.

And for a thief in a town full of liars, sometimes it doesn't pay to know the truth.

Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository

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Scholastic Canada would like to offer 3 copies of Starcrossed!

Open to Canada Only

Giveaway Ends January 4th, 2012.

All you have to do is fill the Rafflecopter form below.

The only mandatory entry is to provide your name and email addy =)



a Rafflecopter giveaway


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“I write historical fantasy for young adults and discerning not-so-young adults. "Historical fantasy" means my work is inspired by real places and cultures of the past, but with fantastical, otherworldly, or magical elements.

I've been writing as long as I can remember--even before I knew it was a job! I’ve always been interested in literature, folklore, history, and culture, so I studied English and anthropology in college. But I’ve only ever worked as a writer (although not all my writing jobs were as interesting as being a novelist).

I’m a native Midwesterner, currently living in the tall grass prairie near Kansas City with my husband and our dogs. When I’m not writing, you can find me with a book, a dog, or my needlework in hand, sometimes all of the above, which makes for some furry embroidery.”

You can visit Elizabeth here.

More of Elizabeth Bunce‘s books:

A Curse Dark as GoldStarcrossed (Thief Errant, #1)
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Daring You To Read…The Iron Duke by Meljean Brook

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For my last post of the year, I’m daring you all to read a more recent work: a delicious steampunk romance from Meljean Brook.

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After the Iron Duke freed England from Horde control, he instantly became a national hero. Now Rhys Trahaearn has built a merchant empire on the power — and fear — of his name. And when a dead body is dropped from an airship onto his doorstep, bringing Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth into his dangerous world, he intends to make her his next possession.

Mina can’t afford his interest, however. Horde blood runs through her veins, and despite the nanotech enhancing her body, she barely scratches out a living in London society. Becoming Rhys’s lover would destroy both her career and her family, yet the investigation prevents her from avoiding him…and the Iron Duke’s ruthless pursuit makes him difficult to resist.

But when Mina uncovers the victim’s identity, she stumbles upon a conspiracy that threatens the lives of everyone in England. To save them, Mina and Rhys must race across zombie-infested wastelands and treacherous oceans — and Mina discovers the danger is not only to her countrymen as she finds herself tempted to give up everything to the Iron Duke.

Released on October 5, 2010, The Iron Duke is the first full-length novel in the Iron Seas, Meljean Brook’s steampunk romance series. (There are a couple novellas that were previously published but you don’t need to read them to get into The Iron Duke.) It’s a great adventure story filled with steampunk gadgets and amazing chemistry between Rhys and Mina. Rhys is a big hero, having freed England from 200 years of tyranny of the Horde (yeah, Genghis Khan’s descendants), an invading force that took over by sneaking nanotechnology, or bugs, into imported sugar and tea, and then using the bugs to control the population, until the Iron Duke destroyed the radio tower controlling the bugs, setting the population free. Mina is much less famous, and more reviled, as a half-Horde resident of London struggling to make a life for herself. Romantic entanglements aside, Meljean tackles a lot of issues in this novel, including some biggies like racism and women’s rights, and it’s done in a thought-provoking but not in-your-face way. And the worldbuilding is just fantastic. The world of the Iron Seas has just about everything you can think of -- zombies, the Horde, pirates, airships -- and more!

Plus, the cover is a lovely example of the trendy headless man torso we’ve been seeing more and more of. Check out those abs! ;)

Read an excerpt
(You’ll need to scroll down a little bit)

So what are you waiting for?

Don’t forget to add your own Daring You To Read… post in the linky below.

If you want to learn more about the meme, read the inaugural post!




Jennsig2

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

StarCrossed by Elizabeth C Bunce

StarCrossed by Elizabeth C Bunce

Book Stats:
Hardcover: 400 pages
Reading level: YA
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books
Release date: October 1, 2010

Series: Thief Errant #1

Source: Personal Shelf

Reviewed by: Tynga

Purchase: Amazon | Kindle (2,99$) | Book Depository

Digger thrives as a spy and sneak-thief among the feuding religious factions of Gerse, dodging the Greenmen who have banned all magic. But when a routine job goes horribly wrong and her partner and lover Tegen is killed, she has to get out of the city, fast, and hides herself in a merry group of nobles to do so.

Accepted as a lady's maid to shy young Merista Nemair, Digger finds new peace and friendship at the Nemair stronghold--as well as plenty of jewels for the taking.

But after the devious Lord Daul catches her in the act of thievery, he blackmails her into becoming his personal spy in the castle, and Digger soon realizes that her noble hosts aren't as apolitical as she thought... that indeed, she may be at the heart of a magical rebellion.

War between Faiths brought an entire population to hide at all cost since King Bardolph won. The King believes in Celys de Goddess of Life & Harvest and hates everything magical. Showing your Faith to Sar, the magic Goddess, or even worst, having magic of any kind, can get a Sarist killed in no time. Digger doesn’t have any magical powers, but she can see magic and for that reason, she has been declared filthy and was shunned out by her brother, her last living relative. Roaming the streets as a professional thief to earn a living, she will run into trouble and will be forced to run away from Gerse. Little did she know, she will find herself in a far worst situation.

StarCrossed was a great fantasy novel and even though it was action-packed from the start I had a hard time getting into the story for one specific reason: The terminology. See, I read the book on my kindle and strived hard to figure out the Lore, to finally find a glossary at the very end, when I was finished *sigh*. So, if like me, you are reading it in ebook, be aware that there is a glossary available and that it will be pretty handy! Once I figured out the lore, I found it very original. In Digger’s world, there are seven moons, each representing a God or Goddess. The magical powers very few possess also sound very promising, even though we only get a glimpse of them, for obvious reasons. 

Bunce surprised her readers with an intricate story line and I liked the change of tones throughout the book. I particularly enjoyed the second part of the story because it’s full of suspense and intrigue. You do have a good idea of whom might stab you in the back, but you never know when they will pounce!

Elizabeth provided an array of great characters with shinning personalities. I wish we would’ve seen more of Raffin & Durrel because I quickly grew fond of them, but no such luck. Digger’s evolution was a show on its own and I’m anxious to see what Elizabeth Bunce will do to top that in the next installment.

The end was a maelstrom of emotions and I found the conclusion very satisfying. Thank God it doesn’t end on a cliffhanger, but Digger sets in motion a whole new adventure and I’m really excited for the second round, Liar’s Moon.

Fantasy lovers will love this series, I’m quite sure. I would definitely recommend it to fans of Maria V Snyder & Kristin Cashore.

Read an excerpt

tyngasig

A Christmas With… Anna Carey

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A Christmas With is almost over, but worry not, there’s fun until the end! I’m really happy to have Anna Carey by my side, author of Eve, to celebrate it’s release =)

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1- Eve is your first YA novel, was it a challenge to change from a middle grade audience to an older one?

The two series are very different, but it didn't feel challenge to write for an older audience. I'd had Eve's voice stuck in my head, and when I began the book I just wrote from her perspective and the process felt very natural. The book is actually an incarnation of another book I was working on in graduate school, which was solidly adult.

2- Eve is part of a trilogy, Once is the title of the second book, have you already picked the third book's title? How hard is it for you to choose your book's title?

I'm currently discussing the title of the third book with my editor. I can't reveal it yet, but soon! I can have a hard time picking titles and rely heavily on her opinion. I'm sometimes so close to the book I can't pin point the one message or feeling that the reader will take away from it. That said, the first and third book were much easer to title than the second one.

4- If your book was turned into a movie, which actors would you pick to play your characters?

Ahh yes...fantasy casting! Eve's been optioned for television, and there's a pilot in development. Eve is a genuinely kind person, but grows stronger (and fiercer) over the course of the series. I love Pretty Little Liars, and even though Sasha Pieterse (Ali) is a bit evil in that show, that actress seems to have a mix of sweetness and strength. For Caleb, I keep thinking of Jackson Rathbone from the Twilight movies. If you take off all that vampire makeup and get rid of his red contacts, he definitely has Caleb's look. For full explanations and pictures, check out the official EVE web site: http://theevetrilogy.alloyentertainment.com/anna-carey-fantasy-casts-eve/#1

Now onto some Christmas-y questions!

5- What's your favorite Christmas song?

Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree. Whenever I hear it I think of that scene in Home Alone, when Kevin is pretending to have the party at his house. Growing up, I watched that movie hundreds of times with my brother, so that song always reminds me of him.

6- What is Christmas like in Eve's world?

For those who live in the wild, beyond the City of Sand, Christmas comes and goes like most other days. Presents are scavenged items wrapped in the pages of old books. Holidays bring up pain more than anything else, and remind survivors of the time before the plague, and loved ones they lost. Inside the City of Sand (which you'll learn much more about in Once) Christmas is a celebration, and an opportunity for the new government to show the citizens inside the walls all the City has to offer.

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If it got you curious, here’s a bit more about Eve

EveWhere do you go when nowhere is safe?

Sixteen years after a deadly virus wiped out most of Earth’s population, the world is a perilous place. Eighteen-year-old Eve has never been beyond the heavily guarded perimeter of her school, where she and two hundred other orphaned girls have been promised a future as the teachers and artists of the New America. But the night before graduation, Eve learns the shocking truth about her school’s real purpose—and the horrifying fate that awaits her.

Fleeing the only home she’s ever known, Eve sets off on a long, treacherous journey, searching for a place she can survive. Along the way she encounters Arden, her former rival from school, and Caleb, a rough, rebellious boy living in the wild. Separated from men her whole life, Eve has been taught to fear them, but Caleb slowly wins her trust . . . and her heart. He promises to protect her, but when soldiers begin hunting them, Eve must choose between true love and her life.

Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository

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Harper Collins would like to offer 1 copy of the book (US only) and Anna is also offering a signed copy (US & Canada only)!

Giveaway Ends January 4th, 2012.

All you have to do is fill the Rafflecopter form below.

The only mandatory entry is to provide your name and email addy =)



a Rafflecopter giveaway


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Anna Carey is the author of the forthcoming EVE trilogy, which releases October 4th, 2011. She grew up on Long Island, the daughter of a special education teacher and an astronomer.  Early on she talked of being a painter, district attorney, flutist, physical therapist, or graphic designer, but eventually pursued writing—the one thing that allowed her to be all of the above. She studied Literature and Creative Writing at NYU, and took part in her fair share of snowball fights in Washington Square Park. After college, she worked as an editor in children’s publishing before getting a Masters in Fiction from Brooklyn College. She now lives in Los Angeles, where the apartments are bigger and the weather is sunnier, but she still misses New York.

You can visit Anna here.

More of Anna Carey‘s books:

Sloane Sisters (Sloane Sisters...Survival of the Fiercest (Sloa...Once (Eve, #2)

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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Drink Deep by Chloe Neill

image Drink Deep by Chloe Neill

Book stats:
Trade paperback: 352 pages
Reading level: Adult
Genre: Urban fantasy
Publisher: New American Library
Release date: November 1, 2011

Series: Chicagoland Vampires #5

Source: Personal shelf

Reviewed by: Jenn

Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository

Clouds are brewing over Cadogan House, and Merit the vampire can't tell if this is the darkness before the dawn, or the calm before the storm. With the city itself in turmoil over paranormals and the state threatening to pass a paranormal registration act, times have never been more precarious for the vampires. If only they could lay low for a bit...

Then magic rears its ugly head when Lake Michigan turns black.

The mayor insists it's nothing to worry about, but Merit knows a panic is coming. She'll have to turn to friends old and new to find out who's behind this, and stop them before it's too late for both the vampires and humans.

WARNING: There is NO way to talk about Drink Deep without discussing the I-can’t-believe-that-just-happened moment from Hard Bitten so please don’t read this review if you are unaware of what I’m talking about.

You have been forewarned. =)

After the epic-ness of Hard Bitten, I was expecting something truly incredible out of Drink Deep. Unfortunately, I wasn’t quite as blown away as I’d hoped. Don’t get me wrong -- Drink Deep is an excellent installment in the Chicagoland Vampires series but it just didn’t knock my socks off in the same way that Hard Bitten did. That being said, it’s still a solid novel filled with lots of excitement, fights, and mystery; it just didn’t punch me in the gut the way Hard Bitten did at the end.

Drink Deep takes place about two months after the tragic events of Hard Bitten. In some ways, the book is all about treading water -- the characters are all struggling in the wake of the events from the last book -- the anti-vampire movement, the Greenwich Presidium taking over Cadogan House, Ethan’s sacrifice -- including Merit, who also has to contend with Jonah’s increased presence in her life and his offer to join the Red Guard, a secret group of vampires who try to protect vampirekind outside of (and sometimes from) the system. Merit is understandably discombobulated by everything, though it’s Ethan’s loss that’s really put her off her game. As bad as I felt for Merit, it was nice to see just how much Ethan meant to her.

It was also really neat to see Malik as the leader of Cadogan House. He’s one of the characters who’ve been hiding in the shadows in some ways, since he wasn’t super important for any of the previous storylines, and it’s refreshing to see him in a more central role because I’ve always enjoyed his quiet and his wisdom. Unfortunately for him, he’s taken over the House at a terrible time and he has to deal with Frank, the weaselly representative from the Greenwich Presidium, and the anti-vampire protests that continue from the last novel.

The central problem of Drink Deep -- the magics mentioned in the blurb -- is a well-written mystery that leads Merit and Jonah down several wrong paths before homing in on the answers. I love it when authors are able to have their characters make smart decisions that end up going nowhere, since it adds a realistic level of frustration and tension to the story.

You know who was really frustrated in Drink Deep? Jonah. He’s been interested in Merit for a while and he’s itching to make his move so we get to see more of smoldering Jonah than we have in the past. Jonah’s really grown on me, much as he has for Merit, and there’s a part of me that’s definitely rooting for his handsome self. I don’t have much hope for it but I’ve got my fingers crossed all the same.

As always, Chloe Neill has delivered an engaging novel full of surprises and left her readers dying for more. We’ll have to wait until August to read the next installment, Biting Cold, so there’s plenty of time to speculate about what incredible surprises she has in store for us next.

Read an excerpt

Jennsig2

A Christmas With… Cynthia Hand

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Please welcome today’s guest, Cynthia Hand, author of Unearthly and the soon-to-be released Hallowed. Make sure you read on the discover more about the series and a particularly delightful Christmas story!

** If you haven’t read Unearthly yet, you can purchase the ebook for only 1,09$ on Amazon**

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1- Unearthly received raving reviews from readers and fellow writers alike, what do you expect with Hallowed?

I think that most people who liked Unearthly will like Hallowed, for most of the same reasons. Hallowed is a middle book, and sometimes readers don't fancy the middle book as much as the first. I'm like that, actually. I am generally not as thrilled with sequels because I miss the initial rush of getting to know the characters and their world. But Clara is still Clara and Tucker is still Tucker and their story carries on. Hallowed is a more serious, contemplative book than Unearthly, but I also think it is more emotionally powerful, for that reason.

2- Where will Clara take us this time around?

We're still in Jackson, Wyoming, but the world has definitely changed for Clara in this second book. In Unearthly, Clara very much saw the world in black and white, but in Hallowed she comes to live in a world of grays. We'll find out a lot more about angel-bloods in general, about Black Wings and White Wings, purpose, and, of course, we'll find out more about Christian.

3- How did you manage to keep the tension, to not say love-triangle between Christian-Clara-Tucker alive?Unearthly (Unearthly #1)

Ha, I love these love triangle questions. What cracks me up about the reviews for Unearthly is how often folks talked about the love triangle. I don't think I even thought the words love triangle when I was writing Unearthly, simply because I didn't mean for the reader to truly get to know Christian. Clara has a crush on Christian in Unearthly, but it's a crush on who she imagines him to be, not who he truly is. And she really gets to know and love Tucker. So there's no contest, really. That said, in Hallowed, she really does get to know Christian, and she's attracted to him and all that he represents, so it very much is more of a traditional triangle. I'm not really trying to manipulate the reader into being team Christian or team Tucker. I'm just interested in getting to know the characters and seeing what they do on the page.

4- How many books can we expect in the series? And when will the next one release?

Sigh. Well there were originally going to be four books in the series. Harper Collins only bought the first three, but I was working on the third book this summer and fall with the idea that there would be a fourth book. But my editor has recently convinced me that the story would be better served as a trilogy--that I didn't quite have enough there for four books, so I am revising the third book to be the final book of the series. This makes me sad, in some ways, to leave Clara's world, but it's also exciting because there are some other projects I've been itching to work on and now I can get to those sooner. I don't know what the release date will be yet.

Now onto some Xmas-y questions:

5- What was your favorite part of Christmas when you were a kid?

I think I loved the beauty and pageantry of Christmas best. I loved the lights and the tree and the candles that we used to light while we sang Silent Night at church on Christmas Eve and the all-in-all glowiness of Christmas.

6- Is there one present you received that really stuck to your memory?

I have a funny story about this. I'd been having some doubts about the existence of Santa, but when I confessed this to my parents, they said I would have to prove my theory. Or, in other words, disprove Santa's existence. Nice, right? I tried to do this for a couple of years. I stuck notes up the chimney giving Santa instructions to bite off the gingerbread cookie's left arm (if he really came down the chimney, he'd find the note and follow the instructions) and I tried to stay up late to catch my parents, but it never worked. I had savvy, savvy parents. Then one year I hit on an ingenious idea. We made our yearly trip to see Santa in the mall, and I told him I wanted a sewing kit. But I told my parents that I told him I wanted a specific kind of doll (what I really wanted). Oh how clever I was. Mwa ha ha. It was too good not to share, so I told my piano teacher all about my insidious plan. And I made her promise not to tell my parents. She promised. (She did not, however, promise not to tell ANYBODY, as I found out years later that it was her mother who called my parents and ratted me out). So Christmas morning. I bust downstairs to look under the tree, and there it was. . . the sewing kit. I was so astonished. Maybe Santa was real after all.

7- Is there a special tradition in your family?Dec2010_0080

Oh, lots. We open one present on Christmas Eve. We always read The Night Before Christmas on the night before Christmas (and The Grinch who stole Christmas) and we don't open presents until at least 7am, and I like to make cinnamon rolls on Christmas morning.

8- What would a typical Christmas be like for Clara?

I actually wrote a quick Christmas scene in Hallowed that was eventually cut, where Clara and Billy were decorating the tree. But I think Christmas is pretty ordinary for Clara. Maggie always wanted her kids to have normal upbringings as much as possible, so I think they had pretty standard traditions. That said, I'd guess that there would be a lot more angel jokes than usual around this day.

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If it got you curious, here’s a bit more about Hallowed

Hallowed (Unearthly, #2)For months part-angel Clara Gardner trained to face the raging forest fire from her visions and rescue the alluring and mysterious Christian Prescott from the blaze. But nothing could prepare her for the fateful decisions she would be forced to make that day, or the startling revelation that her purpose—the task she was put on earth to accomplish—is not as straightforward as she thought. Now, torn between her increasingly complicated feelings for Christian and her love for her boyfriend, Tucker, Clara struggles to make sense of what she was supposed to do the day of the fire. And, as she is drawn further into the world of part angels and the growing conflict between White Wings and Black Wings, Clara learns of the terrifying new reality that she must face: Someone close to her will die in a matter of months. With her future uncertain, the only thing Clara knows for sure is that the fire was just the beginning.

Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository

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Cynthia would like to offer one of you an ARC of Hallowed!

Open Internationally

Giveaway Ends January 4th, 2012.

All you have to do is fill the Rafflecopter form below.

The only mandatory entry is to provide your name and email addy =)



a Rafflecopter giveaway


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Cynthia Hand

 

Cynthia Hand divides her time between Southern California, where she lives with her husband and son, and southeast Idaho near the Teton mountains. She teaches creative writing at Pepperdine University.  She is the author of Unearthly.

You can visit Cynthia here.

More of Cynthia Hand‘s books:

Unearthly (Unearthly #1)

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Monday, December 26, 2011

A Christmas With… Kersten Hamilton

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In the Forests of the Night is the second book in the Goblin Wars series and released just last month. To celebrate the occasion Kersten accepted to stop by for a very touching interview. Please welcome her warmly =)

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1- In the Forest of the Night is your second YA book, how was the transition from writing to a younger audience?

Story is the heart of fiction, and readers of all ages crave it. A good picture book, one with story, can usually be turned into a good novel. Tyger, Tyger, the first book in the Goblin Wars series is proof of that—it started out as a picture book!

Writing picture books is hard because you must work with pure distilled essence of story. There is no Tyger Tyger coverroom for error or extra words. It is so hard, in fact, that when I manage to write a good picture book, I put on my YA novelist hat and send my picture book self a box of truffles.

Even when I wrote Tyger Tyger as a picture book, I knew I wanted to expand it. I had to wait until my own children were grown and out of the house before I could settle into it, though. When I am writing, I am very, very focused, to the point that the rest of the world becomes a shadow land. While my children were at home I limited myself to writing picture books and MG novels. Even so, the children only survived because they learned to call out for pizza at a very early age.

Writing picture books is fun because it is such a challenge. Writing MG novels is fun because you get to step into the world of a ten or twelve year old, and enjoy the newness of the world all over again. I really enjoy writing YA because I can go wild with themes and thoughts. I love them all!

2- Tea finds herself between a rock and a hard place in this second installment, how will she manage to get the upper hand?

Now, Tynga. I can’t tell you how or even if she’ll get the upper hand or what it would look like if she did. It is an Irish story after all, and you know how they can be. I can say that readers will be surprised. Several times.

3- How many books can we expect in the Goblin Wars series? Do you have some exclusive tidbits to share with us?

I’m not sure yet – at least three, but maybe more. The only tidbit I can share is that if you loved Tyger Tyger you will LOVE the next book….

Now onto some Xmas-y questions:

5- What's a typical Christmas like in the Hamilton family?

The whole Christmas season is fun. When my kids were little, we like picking out presents from the Angel tree – that is usually presents for children of men or women who are in prison, that are then sent from their parents. I like that idea a lot better than Santa Claus. I had real problems with that jolly old elf when I was a child—he never brought me anything. We always had a Christmas tree with ornaments from every Christmas we had been together; candlelight Christmas Eve service with carols; and stockings and presents at about nine o’clock on Christmas morning. Yes, you read that right. My children were all night owls, and even on Christmas I had a hard time getting them out of bed before nine! Now–a–days, I am just as happy to be traveling at Christmas as staying home.

6- How is it different from when you were a kid?

HighRollsVery, very different. When I was a child we were very, very poor. I remember spending one Christmas in a basement because we were homeless. We did have carols and fun, but we almost never had presents, unless a charity sent over a box—and let me tell you, people put the weirdest things in those boxes. One Christmas I got a red striped shirt that was two sizes to large, and a choke collar for a dog. Which might have been useful…if I’d had a dog.  And that was my problem with Santa Claus. It is very rough on a little kid to go to school after Christmas and be asked “What did Santa bring you?” Because he usually didn’t bring us anything, and everyone knew that Santa brings presents to good little children. Which meant…I wasn’t good and I had to stand up in front of class and admit it. My family wasn’t good because we were poor.  Needless to say, I never told my children that Santa Claus brought gifts.

7- What's Christmas like in Mag Mell?

Mag Mell is a bit like Narnia before Aslan returned. In Narnia it was always winter and never Christmas; in Mag Mell it is always summer, but the result is the same.

8- What could we offer Tea for Christmas?

A magic box to keep precious things in—a box that couldn’t be broken or stolen away by goblins.

Thank you for having me on your blog, Tynga. And Merry Christmas!

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If it got you curious, here’s a bit more about In the Forests of the Night

In the Forests of the Night (Goblin Wars, #2)The battle against goblinkind continues . . . but which side will Teagan be on?

Teagan, Finn, and Aiden have made it out of Mag Mell alive, but the Dark Man’s forces are hot on their heels. Back in Chicago, Tea’s goblin cousins show up at her school, sure she will come back to Mag Mell, as goblin blood is never passive once awoken. Soon she will belong to Fear Doirich and join them. In the meantime, they are happy to entertain themselves by trying to seduce, kidnap, or kill Tea’s family and friends. Tea knows she doesn’t have much time left, and she refuses to leave Finn or her family to be tortured and killed. A wild Stormrider, born to rule and reign, is growing stronger inside her. But as long as she can hold on, she’s still Teagan Wylltson, who plans to be a veterinarian and who heals the sick and hurting. The disease that’s destroying her—that’s destroying them all—has a name: Fear Doirich. And Teagan Wylltson is not going to let him win.

Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository

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Kersten would like to offer one of you a paperback copy of Tyger Tyger!

Open Internationally

Giveaway Ends January 4th, 2012.

All you have to do is fill the Rafflecopter form below.

The only mandatory entry is to provide your name and email addy =)



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You can visit Kersten here.

More of Kersten Hamilton‘s books:

Tyger Tyger (Goblin Wars, #1)Violet's Turning Point, Book 3...Laylie's Daring QuestLaylie's Daring QuestA Life of Faith CollectionA Freaky Kind of CourageCaleb, Son of NoneThe Battle of Trickum CountyA Gathering of Brothers

Red TruckPolice Officers on PatrolFirefighters to the RescueThis Is the Ocean

 

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