Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Blogoversary Giveaway!


Hey friends! So it's been two years since IFB has been up and running, and thanks to you I definitely want to keep doing this. As a little way to show my appreciation to my supporters, I've asked a few awesome authors to donate a prize. There will be two giveaways, one for U.S. and the other will be open internationally, both ending on MAY 23RD so there's plenty of time to enter for the chance to win some cool books and swags. 

*Special thanks to these wonderful authors for their contribution:

Ashley Elston
Brooklyn Skye
Leah Raeder
Kimberly Derting
Cheyanne Young
Jennifer Echols
Elle Casey
Mindy Hayes
Mindee Arnett
Rachel Harris
Bella Forrest
Victoria H. Smith
Leila Howland



Monday, April 14, 2014

COVER REVEAL SIGN-UP: Myself in Blue by Renata F. Barcelos [April 21st]


Join the Renata F. Barcelos cover reveal for Myself in Blue. This doesn't have to be your top post, but please have it scheduled and promoted on April 21st. 

Release date: June 2014

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Sunday Morning is nineteen and recently diagnosed with Osteosarcoma. She finds it fair: a deathly cancer to pay for her sins. 

The fourth of five daughters, Sunday could never overcome the jealousy she felt for her sisters, especially the youngest and her Rett Syndrome with all the attention she required. She knows her resentment and rebellion as a wayward teen brought tragedy to her family, but never learned exactly the extent. Self-exiled in Brazil living a hard life of penitence for five years, she finally feels it's possible to come back and try to mend things.

Scott Goodwin writes bestseller biographies and always dreamed of writing about his idol, Grandma's Eye's vocalist, Iris Morning. The singer and her husband, Douglas Oshiro, have been reclusive since 1984, when their famous psychedelic rock band announced a surprising halt. Scott is thrilled when Iris finally agrees to let him write the book and even more so when she explains why. She hopes the bio will help finding her daughter Sunday and rebuild her shattered family.

It is Sunday, however, who finds Scott. Still too mortified to face her family, she offers her story to Scott in exchange for inside information about them. Scott has no idea how intensely the deal will change their lives when he agrees. 

Through her own family's history, from the first Oshiros and Mornings, WWII impact on her ancestors and the struggle to form the band despite Iris’ abusive stepfather—the chain of events that led to the band’s success, the birth of a new generation, and the night that changed everything—Scott will try to show Sunday nobody is perfect, and perhaps everything happens for a reason. 

Sunday and Scott may not have much time, with her diagnosis and the fact she doesn't feel worthy of redemption, but he will not give up easily. Scott has become Sunday’s only link to the past, and perhaps her only chance to have a future.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Renata F. Barcelos lives in Brazil with her teenager daughter, Maria, constantly complaining about the heat and dreaming of moving somewhere snowy. 
She has a Law Degree, but promises never to use it. She prefers to study and teach languages and to write. Facing a three-hour daily commute, Renata uses this time to listen to audiobook after audiobook, plot, and write. Sometimes she hurts herself walking and writing at the same time—forgetting to look where she’s going. 
Her characters usually don’t respect her wishes, taking the stories to places she never imagined they could go; she loves it when that happens. 
Renata is always working on a new novel, and so far has three published books: Mean, My Sore Hush-a-Bye and Merge. Her next novel, Myself in Blue, will be released in June, 2014. 



Thursday, April 10, 2014

Cover Reveal & Giveaway: Birthright (Descendant #2) by Nichole Giles

IFB is hosting the cover reveal of Nichole Giles Birthright. This is the second book in her young adult fantasy series, Descendant. Check out the cover below and continue on for the giveaway.


Series: Descendant #2
Release date: May 1st 2014
Publisher: Jelly Bean Press

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Two months ago, Abigail Johnson saved the life of the boy she believes is her destiny and defeated an army of demons that have pursued her ancestors for centuries. Now, she and Kye should be taking their place as leaders of the new generation of Gifted. But the curse they thought was broken has returned, and every minute together brings them closer to death. 

When remaining shadow demons attack again, the Dragons send Abby to Mexico. Being apart from Kye is slowly killing her soul, and it turns out she isn’t any safer here than she was back home. The shadows have tracked her, the locals expect her to help with their own demon problems, and the more time she spends away from Kye, the more she doubts the destiny that ties them together.

When the demons destroy her safe house, Abby has no choice but to take the fight to them. But the arrival of an old nemesis throws their careful plans into disarray, and Abby and her friends find themselves facing new adversaries in a battle that turns fatal. This time, not everyone will make it out alive.


17332031Descendant #1
Release date: May 1st 2013
Publisher: Rhemalda Publishing

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Seventeen-year-old Abigail Johnson is Gifted.

Blessed—or cursed—with Sight and Healing, Abby lives an unsettled life, moving from place to place and staying one step ahead of the darkness that hunts her. When she arrives in Jackson, Wyoming, she is desperate to maintain the illusion of normalcy, but she is plagued with visions of past lives mixed with frightening glimpses of her future. Then she meets Kye, a mysterious boy who seems so achingly familiar that Abby is drawn to him like he’s a missing piece of her own soul.

Before Abby can discover the reason for her feelings toward Kye, the darkness catches up to her and she is forced to flee again. But this time she’s not just running. She is fighting back with Kye at her side, and it’s not just Abby’s life at stake.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Nichole Giles was born in Nevada, and moved with her parents to a number of cities in and around the West. Writing is her passion, but she also loves to spend time with her husband and four children, travel to tropical and exotic destinations, drive in the rain with the convertible top down, and play music at full volume so she can sing along. 








Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Review: The Summer I Found You by Jolene Perry

18378839Release date: March 1st 2014
Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:
All they have in common is that they're less than perfect. And all they're looking for is the perfect distraction.

Kate's dream boyfriend has just broken up with her and she's still reeling from her diagnosis of type 1 diabetes. Aidan planned on being a lifer in the army and went to Afghanistan straight out of high school. Now he's a disabled young veteran struggling to embrace his new life. When Kate and Aidan find each other neither one wants to get attached. But could they be right for each other after all?


*Publisher approved my request via netgalley in exchange of an honest review.




My emotions are mixed on this one. The Summer I Found You had the potential to be so much more than what I got. I liked the concept of a wounded soldier (both physically and emotionally), along with a young girl struggling to accept her disease. It was the first book I've read with such premise and I was intrigued. Sadly, I didn't get the feels as I wanted to. 

The main issue for me was Kate. Her character put me off a lot. I felt she was complacent after learning she had diabetes and refused to take it seriously even after a year had passed. Like how much more time do you need to understand that something could kill you if you don't start taking care of yourself? That just bothered me throughout the story and I couldn't warm up to her. At first I tried to understand her feelings, that it was hard to just stop liking the things she'd gotten so used to eating and the way she used to live carefree. It sucks. But you have to do what you have to do to survive. I also didn't like how she kept it a secret from Aidan throughout the story when they obviously had so much they could relate to and it would have helped him not feel so alone, I guess. I just thought that aspect of it should have been brought up to him way sooner.

As for Aidan, I liked him. What he was going through and his emotions were real. I could understand him better than Kate and warmed up to his character more. He was a nice guy with a lot of issues and it's very truthful to what real soldiers go through. I liked how in the end he finally found the courage to speak to his friend's wife. That was great and not a lot of people can find the strength to do that. 

Relationship wise, it was interesting seeing how these two individuals with so much going on found something real between each other when they were only looking to distract their minds from their reality. In a way, them being together helped them face what they were dealing with. So the romance was great, and so was the alternate POV and pace of the story. Like I said, my main issue was with Kate and her fussiness and how the story could have been much stronger. Another thing that I noticed (though it didn't influence my rating), was that the story doesn't take place in summer nor is it as bright and sweet as the cover depicts. There's a disconnect there in my opinion, but who am I to judge when my own covers don't add up all the way :)

Overall, good read. I recommend this book if you're looking for a young adult contemporary with realistic elements. 


Waiting on Wednesday #87


 
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spines. This is a cool way to spotlight a upcoming release that you're anxious about, as well as checking out what other book lovers are anticipating as well. So, check out my WoW for this week:

16005219Get Even 
by Gretchen McNeil
Release date: September 16th 2014
Publisher: Balzer & Bray

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Follows the secretive exploits of four high school juniors - Kitty, Olivia, Margot and Bree - at an exclusive Catholic prep school. To all outward appearances, the girls barely know each other. At best, they don't move in the same social circles; at worst, they're overtly hostile.

Margot Mejia – academically ranked number two in her class, Margot is a focused overachiever bound for the Ivy League.

Kitty Wei – captain of the California state and national champion varsity girls' volleyball team, she's been recruited by a dozen colleges and has dreams of winning an Olympic gold medal.

Olivia Hayes – popular star of the drama program, she's been voted "most eligible bachelorette" two years running in the high school yearbook and has an almost lethal combination of beauty and charm.

Bree Deringer – outcast, misfit and the kind of girl you don't want to meet in a dark alley, the stop sign red-haired punk is a constant thorn in the side of teachers and school administrators alike. Different goals, different friends, different lives, but the girls share a secret no one would ever guess. They are members of Don't Get Mad, a society specializing in seeking revenge for fellow students who have been silently victimized by their peers. Each girl has her own reason for joining the group, her own set of demons to assuage by evening the score for someone else. And though school administration is desperate to find out who is behind the DGM "events", the girls have managed to keep their secret well hidden.

That is until one of their targets – a douchebag senior who took advantage of a drunk underclassman during a house party, videotaped it on his phone, and posted it on YouTube – turns up dead, and DGM is implicated in the murder. Now the girls don't know who to trust, and as their tenuous alliance begins to crumble, the secrets they've hidden for so long might be their ultimate undoing.


17331828Talon
by Julie Kagawa
Release date: October 28th 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Synopsis via Goodreads:
In Julie Kagawa's groundbreaking modern fantasy series, dragons walk among us in human form.

Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser.

Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George.

Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon's newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey: and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember's bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him: and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons.



Why I'm Waiting


Both seem like interesting stories and I've been meaning to pick up a book by these authors for a while now, so hopefully their new series will be worth it. Get Even pulls me because it has some similarities to Burn for Burn and I really liked that book. As for Talon, I haven't read anything involving modern-day dragons so I'm curious about that. 

What are you waiting for?

Friday, April 4, 2014

Feature and Follow #77

Alison Can Read Feature & Follow

This is a weekly blog hop hosted by the wonderful Parajunkee and Alison Can Read. This week's featured blogger is The unusual Files

Question of the Week: Late April Fools. What was the best prank you’ve played or had played on you? Share!


As always, its a good topic, I just can't remember any though. Hmm...let's see??? Nope, I can't remember the last time I pulled a prank or even got played. That's how lonesome my world is when all I do is blog, write, and read. 

How about you?
 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Review: The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mathieu

The Truth About AliceRelease date: June 3rd 2014
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Everyone has a lot to say about Alice Franklin, and it stopped mattering whether it’s true. 

The rumors started at a party when Alice supposedly had sex with two guys in one night. When school starts everyone almost forgets about Alice until one of those guys, super-popular Brandon, dies in a car wreck that was allegedly all Alice’s fault. 

Now the only friend she has is a boy who may be the only other person who knows the truth, but is too afraid to admit it. Told from the perspectives of popular girl Elaine, football star Josh, former outcast Kelsie, and shy genius Kurt, we see how everyone has a motive to bring – and keep – Alice down.

*Approved via netgalley




There's always more going on beneath the surface, and this story proves that we should never be too quick to judge or simply take another person's word for it. 
The Truth About Alice was as realistic as society gets, especially when it comes to today's youth. What I liked about the story was how it was written, transitioning from the perspective of the key characters involved, with Alice being last. This was a great decision by the author because it gives readers a better idea of what's going on in that person's head and where all the issues stem from. Some of them will just blow your mind.

In regards to the actual plot, I knew throughout the story that something wasn't right about those rumors. That Alice wasn't as terrible as they made her out to be. Towards the end, not only was I right about the rumors, I had actually predicted her story wrong at the same time. When the first chapter opened up saying she had slept with two guys in one night and in the same hour, I quickly believed she was raped. And my assumption had a lot to do with the person who started the rumor. Brandon. 

Brandon came off to me as the town's football hero. In fact, it seemed like everyone was concerned with how they were going to excel in the sport after he died. That aside, I wasn't as big a fan as they were. The way he treated girls disgusted me, and to be honest, I felt his death to be karma for starting those rumors about Alice. But Brandon wasn't the only despicable character in the story, every single person who lied about Alice and continued spreading nasty rumors on her were just as bad if not worst. Take her supposed-to-be best friend for example, Kelsie. When the reader was given the opportunity to get inside Kelsie's head, I couldn't believe some of the petty things she said and thought of. She justified turning her back on Alice and even adding to the already out of control issue because of some really stupid and rather childish thing from a while back. I couldn't even believe she actually went ahead and blamed Alice for stupid mistake. And you know what, her parents are to blame as well. When you learn about the kind of person Kelsie's mother was and the hypocritical thing she did, it'll make you shake your head.

Not only Kelsie's family had issues though, so did Elaine's. Elaine was as shallow as they come. Wow! She was all about her so-called "power" in the school due to her popularity. There were many times I wanted to smack her for the conceitedness, but to be honest, her character wasn't as hard to fathom as Kelsie or Brandon. She was actually tolerable.

As for Josh, to me he was a coward. But aren't they all? I also felt there was something else going on within him that he needed to work on and even though it wasn't expressed much in the story, I don't think it necessarily had to because I easily figured it out on my own without him ever coming to terms with that. 

The most likable characters in the book were Kurt and in fact, Alice. I was happy with the way Kurt dealt with the situation, even though he probably should have said something sooner, but I liked that he showed her so much respect and really liked the person she was. 

Overall, it was a great story. The only thing is I wish those other three characters aside from Kurt and Alice would have come clean about their parts in the mess, especially Josh. And I would have loved to get more of Alice's POV. I think she's a strong girl, and not many teens could have held on to that strength with everything happening to her. Admittedly, I was afraid suicide would be the end result of the story but thankfully it wasn't. The Truth About Alice is a true testament that verbal bullying is just as cruel as the physical, and I believe that parents should be parents, not friends of their kids, and really teach them to be honest, respectable human beings, and teach them about the importance of not conforming but rather hold on to their morals and do the right thing. 


Jennifer Mathieu
About the Author
Jennifer Mathieu is an English teacher, wife, and mom who lives in Texas and writes books for and about young adults. THE TRUTH ABOUT ALICE is her debut novel. Jennifer is a native of the East Coast and a former journalist. She enjoys writing contemporary young adult fiction that treats teenagers like real people.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #73

STSmall_thumb[2]

This is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews, where you showcase all the books you've received in the past week. 


I haven't done a book haul in two weeks but I did get two goodies from Penguin and purchased four books from Amazon (broke my ban, yikes). 

From Penguin (thank you)


Purchased:

Green Days by the River (Caribbean Writers Series) Dazzle (Delaney's Gift, #1)

***

And that's my haul for this week. What did you get?

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