Showing posts with label young adult. Show all posts
Showing posts with label young adult. Show all posts

Friday, June 22, 2018

"Love Me, Love Me Not" by S. M. Coz

REVIEW and GIVEAWAY
Love Me, Love Me Not
by S. M. Coz

Love Me, Love Me Not by S. M. Coz

Love Me, Love Me Not by S. M. Coz is currently on tour with Xpresso Book Tours. The tour stops here today for my review, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


Description
Family, abandonment, and forbidden romance are at the core of S. M. Koz’s powerful and emotionally charged novel about a teen who falls for her foster brother.
When Hailey Brown is removed from her home and put into foster care, all she wants is a safe, comfortable place where she can finish school and move on with her life. It’s not easy adjusting to a new school and a new life, but Mr. and Mrs. Campbell and their teenage son, Brad, welcome Hailey with open arms.
As Hailey begins to adjust to her new life, she and Brad grow closer. For the first time, Hailey feels like she might have a real shot at a future. Soon, however, Hailey realizes her relationship with Brad has crossed the line from friendship into something more. But being with Brad would mean giving up the perfect life that Hailey has waited so long to have.
Can Hailey and Brad resist the feelings that are developing between them - or will they risk it all to be together?
Chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads, S. M. Koz delivers a powerful debut about the ups and downs of being a foster child.

Excerpt
“Hailey Marie Brown, what am I going to do with you,” Sherry says, shaking her head. She’s my social worker and was not at all happy about being woken up in the middle of the night to remove me from another foster home.
I stare at the dotted yellow lines in the road as we travel through rural North Carolina, so I don’t have to see any more disappointment on her face. I’ve known Sherry for a couple years and we’ve grown fairly close in that time. She came out to visit me and my mom on her very first day on the job and has been checking up on us regularly. She’s also the one who finally removed me from that home three days ago. For that, I’ll be eternally grateful, which only worsens the guilt I feel for what I’m putting her through.
“Chase is a negative relationship. You need to start building positive relationships,” she says.
“He’s all I have.”
“You have me.”
“It’s not the same.” Chase made me feel loved when no one else did. He came into my life when I needed him most. He’s not perfect, but who is?
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“I loved this book! Growing up as a foster sibling, I understand how skeptical a family can be. Hailey's history is real and true.” ~ LydiaBeach, reader on SwoonReads.com
“I love how I could feel every emotion through the author’s words. I wouldn’t change anything about the book. It's an amazing book and I would recommend it to anyone!” ~ AnnaBanana, reader on SwoonReads.com
“I love this book! It was so cute yet full of suspense. There were many heated scenes and oh-my-gosh moment, too!” ~ Tay, reader on SwoonReads.com
“This book was amazing! I loved reading about Brad and Hailey, it's such a beautiful book with real life problems. I can't wait to read more about them two.” ~ WattPadBai, reader on SwoonReads.com
"Love this book! Gripping and pulls at the heart strings.” ~ R. Turner, reader on SwoonReads.com

My Review
I received this book in return for an honest review.


By Lynda Dickson
Hailey is sent to a new foster home and has to finish her senior year in a new high school and make new friends. Her new family seems perfect, and her foster brother Brad is hot. But her boyfriend is starting to show his true colors, and they’re not pretty. Will he ruin everything for her? Or will she ruin everything all by herself with the inappropriate feelings she has for Brad?
The story is told in the first person present tense from Hailey’s point-of-view. We get to experience all of the highs and lows of Hailey’s life. We root for her but cringe at some of the decisions she makes. Even though I love Brad, how can any seventeen-year-old be so perfect? The supporting characters are great, too, with Michelle playing the part of the typical mean girl.
A light romance with some serious issues thrown into the mix.
Warnings: coarse language, child abuse, drug references, sex scenes (not graphic).

About the Author
S. M. Koz
S. M. Koz is a medical writer from North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, two sons, and numerous pets. She has a BS in Biology from Duke University and a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from North Carolina State University. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys reading, photographing nature and her family, gardening, travelling, and attempting, usually unsuccessfully, to decorate birthday cakes. Love Me, Love Me Not is her first traditionally published novel.




Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a print copy of Love Me, Love Me Not by S. M. Coz (US/Canada only).

Links

Monday, June 18, 2018

"Memory Walker" by Carly Marino

EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
Memory Walker
(Inflexaen Book 1)
by Carly Marino

Memory Walker (Inflexaen Book 1) by Carly Marino

Memory Walker by Carly Marion is currently on tour with YA Bound Book Tours. The tour stops here today for an excerpt and two giveaways. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


Description
Imagine having the ability to walk in a person's memory at the slightest touch of their skin.
High school rumors are the worst. In fact, high school’s the worst. Especially for the school freak who has to avoid human contact.
Freshman year, seventeen-year-old Thea Scott developed the suckiest burden ever. At the brief touch of a person’s skin, she’s forced to walk in their memories. She’d give anything to get rid of this ability - one she can’t control. Well, until the first day of senior year when breathtakingly gorgeous Cole Conway strolls through the auditorium doors and she faints, making an utter fool of herself, again. He acts like he knows her secret, and the last thing she wants is to end up in a lab with her brain in a jar. To protect herself, she decides to do the very thing she runs from, use her ability to enter his memories.
What she didn’t expect to find: out-of-this-world beings who have to “borrow” life essence from humans to survive. Cole unveils dangers she never imagined existed and turns out her own past is her greatest fear. The deeper she falls, the more turmoil and heartbreak crash into her. Dreams of fitting in soon dissolve, and she realizes it was way easier being just a high school freak.


Excerpt
Principal Warren coughed. “Good afternoon. This year the administration and I have decided…”
My stomach rocked with queasiness, but not from nerves. From something else. I swallowed the saliva gagging the back of my throat and bent my knuckles to calm the quiver in my hands, digging my fingernails into my thighs.
I couldn’t breathe.
Warm droplets trickled into my eyes, and cold and hot shivers rippled through my skin. My teeth chattered. Was I getting the flu? I couldn’t remember the last time I’d been sick. At least not like this. I hadn’t eaten lunch so it couldn’t be food poisoning. I cupped my forehead in hopes to stop the constant spinning. I had to get out of there. My cheeks puffed, holding in what I feared was coming. Throwing up on the guy in front of me would add more crazy to the ever-growing rumor pile.
My gaze reached the exit sign above the auditorium doors, and they swung open. A handsome guy strolled inside, and like a bucket of cool water dousing a fire, my sickness washed away and my vision cleared, zeroing in on him. He had to be new. There was no way I would’ve gone three years without noticing him.
His light-gray shirt highlighted his long, muscular upper body. A sexy mess of chestnut-brown waves hung to his chin, and his intentional five o’clock shadow and thick dark eyebrows gave him a bad-boy kind of look. But the slight squint of his bluish-green eyes had a shyness to them. Something sweet and caring hid behind his rugged features. He slid a hand into the front pocket of his frayed dark jeans, his stare traveling the stadium seating.
Even a girl like me, who’d sworn off guys, could admit he was undeniably H-O-T, all in caps and written twice. Maybe even three times.
A quick tug on my sleeve made me yelp.
Principal Warren narrowed his eyes in our direction, and I covered the flush heating my cheeks, slinking lower in my chair.
He cleared his throat, again. “As I was saying…”
I glared at Wynter, and she motioned with her head toward the door. “Cole Conway.”
Cole ambled past the stage, not seeming to care what anyone thought, or that he had interrupted the principal’s speech. Not that Principal Warren even seemed to notice. He flipped one of his note cards and continued talking about student activities.
“Cole Conway?” I asked.
“I saw him registering with Miss Rachel this morning. He’s crazy hot.” She glanced at Ethan. “Second to Ethan, of course.”
“Of course,” I muttered and lifted slightly in my chair to get a better look. Another wave of nausea crashed into me, swaying me to the side. The far end of the auditorium flickered like an old TV fighting to get a signal. I blinked away my sickness-induced haze, and Cole came into view.
A girl with warm-brown skin and a ponytail of black dreadlocks appeared and hugged him. She crossed her arms and rested against the wall. Beside her, a guy with a faded haircut, dressed in a navy-blue button down and black jeans, didn’t budge or greet them. He shared the girl’s burnt sienna undertones, rounded nose, and gunmetal-blue eyes. He was cute but didn’t even come close to Cole.
“Do you know the people he’s with? Are they new, too?” I asked Wynter without taking my eyes off them.
“You’re kidding?” Ethan interrupted. “Nora and Drake moved here sophomore year.”
“Huh?”
Wynter cast a look in my direction. “Their parents unnelled a lot so they missed a ton of school. When they were here, they kept to themselves. I talk to everyone, and I’ve maybe said a handful of words to them.”
Wynter wasn’t joking. She had the inside-outs of every important person in our school. Though after my freshman incident, her queen bee status dropped a few levels and Tatum took over.
“Thanks, everyone. Have a great week. Oh, and go Birds!” the principal finished.
Laughter and jabber filled the room, and another tap on the microphone did little to quiet the conversations. “Get home safely, everyone,” Miss Rachel said, “and Ethan, please meet me in the office.”
Ethan groaned. “Looks like my ex-mom had a chat with Mr. Barbosa.”
“Just tell her it was my fault,” I said.
He grinned. “Nah, I kinda like pissing her off. Keeps her on her toes.”
I rolled my eyes, and Wynter did the same. “Did you take Friday night off for Nora and Drake’s party? It’s going to be so lit.” Wynter shimmied. “And Thea’s going.”
“Finally,” Ethan chimed in, nudging Wynter with his elbow. “Can’t wait.”
“Yay,” I said in the most sarcastic voice I could muster.
I waited for the rows in front of us to empty. Wynter and Ethan whispered and giggled behind me, so I stared over heads at Nora and Drake.
Our high school had like three-hundred kids. I took mostly AP classes, but the possibility of us not bumping into each other, or me not knowing their names, was bizarre. Then again, I wasn’t itching to meet new people. At least not until…
I stepped into the aisle. Cole was lingering at the bottom of the stairs. His Caribbean sea-colored eyes linked with mine, stuttering my heart. I descended without breaking contact, and his mouth slowly tilted into a half-smile that brought a shiver to my shoulders.
White and blue stars flashed before me, followed by an intense lightheadedness. I sucked in a breath, my lashes fluttering like I was about to faint. I steadied myself on the back of a chair. Please, don’t tumble down the stairs. I’d be mortified. My blurred vision unnelled in on Cole’s face. He winked and walked out the door.
As if an invisible rope wrapped around my ribcage and jerked, I plunged forward. Screams echoed in my ears, and I wasn’t sure if they were mine or someone else’s. Pain shot up my spine as my arms and legs collided with unknown objects. Students caught me, their memories bombarding me, drowning me. I flailed to free myself from their pasts, but my head slammed into something, and I sank into darkness.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“I adored this book and can't wait for the next one! I'm really into high school paranormal romances and this book has everything I could have hoped for. I'm addicted!” ~ Alyssa
“I LOVED the story and can’t wait for Book 2! As a busy mom, I usually can never find time to read, but this book kept me tuned in, and was such a page turner! I was transported to the setting each time I opened the pages and the characters stayed with me whenever I put the book down. Can’t wait for more!!!” ~ Amazon Customer
Memory Walker is a fast-paced, exciting read! High school angst and drama is captured well, but it was the paranormal/Sci-Fi elements and romance that kept me turning the pages. Wonderful debut!” ~ E.L.
“Great quick read! Unique idea and likable characters. I highly recommend if you like paranormal romance. Great for adults and also appropriate for a younger audience. Can’t wait for book 2.” ~ Amanda
“If you love a great, fast paced science fiction novel packed with action, mystery, and romance, this is definitely your next read!” ~ fairestskyebooks


About the Author
Carly Marino
I love writing and reading about love. There’s nothing better than two characters finding each other in unusual situations and conquering all odds to be together. *Sigh* Regardless the genre – paranormal, contemporary, fantasy – if there’s romance - I wanna read it!
I was born in Hawai’i but grew up most of my life in the sticks of Michigan and the sunny beaches of Florida. After graduating high school, I return to my island ohana for college where I wrote my thesis on how to write a young adult book. (Oddly enough)
Wife, mother, dog owner, and author, my hat constantly changes but I love every minute of the hustle. Writing is my passion and the wonderful nagging voice in my head. I’m blessed to have amazing family and friends who’ve supported me from my first story, written in poor phonics and elementary chicken scratch.


Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a swag pack (ends 31 July).


Enter the author’s selfie giveaway for a chance to win a Kindle plus swag pack (ends 27 June).


Links

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

"The Staircase of Fire" by Ben Woodard

EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
The Staircase of Fire
(A Shakertown Adventure Book 3)
by Ben Woodard

The Staircase of Fire (A Shakertown Adventure Book 3) by Ben Woodard

The Staircase of Fire is the third book in the Shakertown Adventure series by Ben Woodard. Also available: A Stairway to Danger (read my blog post) and Steps Into Darkness (read my blog post).

A Stairway to Danger by Ben WoodardSteps into Darkness by Ben Woodard


The Staircase of Fire is currently on tour with BeachBoundBooks. The tour stops here today for an excerpt and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


Description
A quiet town in Kentucky explodes from a racial incident and fourteen-year-old Tom Wallace is in the thick of it. His past haunts him and now he’s witness to a horrific event leaving him devastated and afraid.
Tom and his cousin, Will, search for lost Shaker gold he believes can help him escape his town and memories. But leaving has consequences. He will lose his friends and his new love.
On a fiery staircase Tom finally realizes that he must face his inner demons and his terrifying nightmares. To do so he must take a stand that could change his life … or end it.
Author Ben Woodard relies on firsthand experience and family history to tell this moving story of personal tragedy and racial hatred set in the rolling countryside of Kentucky in 1923.


Excerpt
Every night when Tom went to sleep, He thought of her. Every night when he closed his eyes, he saw her face. But he never cried.
“I’m so sorry, Tom, but you know, we can’t tell anyone we saw this. The Klan would come after us.”
Tom didn’t reply.
“Please, Tom, don’t tell anyone. They will kill us—and our families.”
Tom nodded slightly. He was afraid for Helen.
They separated and as he watched Helen disappear into the woods, the world changed.
The leaves drooped and the trees sighed. Creatures stilled and his heart ached.
Death surrounded him. A cloud. a fog, a mist of death.
Enveloped him, chilled him, terrified him. Mary was dead. Mama was dead. Now one more death.
Why was he alive?
He slumped against a shagbark hickory.
“I’ll find out who the Grand Dragon is,” he screamed, “and I will kill him. With a gun, or my bow, or my hands.”
Tom’s fists lashed out at the loose bark pounding it until blood splattered chips littered the ground.
Then the sweats started. Tom dropped to his knees and gasped for air.
He wrapped his arms around the tree and gagged. Retching as the sweat turned to chills. He shivered and threw up into the grass. Again and again until the last of his breakfast competed with morning dew to cover the ground.
He collapsed on the cool dirt and curled into a ball. He lay there gulping for breath thinking how he couldn’t go on. The pain was too much.
Tom used the tree to pull himself up, but his knees buckled and he hugged the tree waiting until he regained his strength and then struggled back to the West Lot house.
[Want more? Click below to read another excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
The Staircase of Fire succeeds in offering dramatic action, mystery, social insights, and a story line that evolves from pure adventure to something deeper … a highly recommended pick for teens looking for something different …” ~ D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review
The Staircase of Fire is a riveting and intense tale ...” ~ The Children's Book Review
“Tom grows a lot in this book and I really enjoyed reading his journey. It seems like almost every white character is racist in some way (which is historically accurate) and it was refreshing to see Tom learn to break out of the narrow-minded thinking that he had and which surrounds him.” ~ Eustacia Tan
“An inspiring adventure where the reader discovers that strength of character, the belief in what is right, and facing your demons, is the only answer to true inner peace – Highly recommended.” ~ Susan Keefe
The Staircase of Fire is an extraordinary book for children aged 12 upwards.” ~ Robbie Cheadle
“The story is wonderful. I liked the settings, and the characters are well-thought out. I recommend this book to older teen readers, due to light adult content.” ~ Alyssa Elmore for Readers' Favorite


About the Author
Ben Woodard
Ben is a (mostly) retired amateur adventurer who has traveled across Tibet, climbed to 18,000 feet on Mt. Everest, and solo backpacked wilderness areas. Now his adventures come in the form of imagining stories, writing and telling them to kids and teens. He works with teachers, schools and literacy organizations spreading the word that books are vital - and fun.



Giveaway
Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.

Links