Wednesday, March 31, 2010

1st Blogoversary

Whip out the cake and decorations because it is party time!!! It has been a long run and one year ago today Rebecca started her little blog with an introductory post. One year later we're both here and plan to carry on the legacy that is Everything To Do With Books for another year, and a few more years after that.

Now it is time to announce the winners and we will be emailing you over the next couple of days with information about your prizes. Below is the winners and congrats to all. We hope you enjoy our blogoversary as much as we have!

Winners Circle:
Most Comments: Aye.Me?
Swag from the guest post with Leigh Purtill: Kristen H.
Dirty Little Angels: Melissa
Romeo and Juliet: Kathy M. Burnette
Sing Me To Sleep: Melissa
A Match Made in High School Swag:
Second Swag pack: The Library Lurker
Maurice Gee book: Aye.Me?
Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp buttons: Alexandra Torres
The Body Finder Swag: May T.
Third Swag Pack: Erica
The Secret Year Swag: Sherry Salach
Amber Kizer Goodies: Aye.Me?
Shift: The Book Vixen
Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp: Christina/Book Addict
Bad To The Bone: Samantha Launius
Lovestruck Summer: Brodie
Taken by Storm: The Book Vixen
Coffeehouse Angel Mug: LiLi
Far From You: Brodie
TMI: Bethie
Dust of 100 Dogs: Mariska H
Firespell: Lynsey Newton
Swag pack four: Kelsey
Violet Wings: Hannah
Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side: Elie N
Restoring Harmony Goodies: Kathy Martin
Last Chance Swag Pack: Giada M

A Huge Thank You To:

Also, a very special thank you to Reggie who gave me some really good advice. Thank you Reggie! Without your help a lot of this wouldn't have happened.

Without all of you we would not have been able to pull this off. So stick around with us for another year of fun and everything to do with books.

PS Answers will be posted tomorrow in Rebecca's March wrap-up post.

PPS You won't be seeing as much of me as you have been because things will be going back to normal for April. But I had fun and I hope you did too.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Last Chance Swag Pack

As today is the last day to get your entries in for everything. We have decided to make it an easy contest with no challenges, no quizzes, nothing special. All you have to do is fill in the form below. But you have only one day to do it as tomorrow we announce the winners. So you have 24 hours to fill in the form. Easy as cake. And if you haven't entered all the other contests then you should go do that now.


Rules for all contests can be found here.



Monday, March 29, 2010

Giveaway and Guest Post from Joelle Anthony

Today, I am very happy to have a guest post and giveaway from Joelle Anthony. For now I shall leave you with Joelle's post and come back later with the giveaway. Take it away Joelle.


About five years ago, my husband and I traveled to the Gulf Islands of British Columbia for our honeymoon. While we were there, we saw an article posted on a bulletin board about “the end of oil.” It was an excerpt from a book by James Kuntsler called THE LONG EMERGENCY. We found it interesting enough to buy the book when we got home to the U.S.
In the book, Kuntsler states it’s only a matter of time before the world runs out of oil. While I found his theories plausible, what caught hold and stuck in my mind was what he called the inevitable long emergency – essentially a transition period between the time when the world runs out of oil and the time when civilization pulls itself up by the bootstrapand creates a new world order.
I actually only read about half of Kuntsler’s book because I found it so depressing and frankly, terrifying in ways (war, famine, disease, etc.). Plus, it was important to me as a writer to create a transition period unique to me and my story. This sent me on a bit of a search for what other people and organizations were predicting for the future world after oil. Many feel like the world will have replaced oil before we run out, others imagine dimmer prospects than even Kuntsler. I took a little of everything I read, threw it in a blender, added my own ingredients, and the world I came up with became the one my main character, Molly, lives in.
I think when you write a book that takes place during a world crisis, it is very easy for the crisis itself to become the focus of the book. For that reason, avoiding an actual situation and using the transition period also appealed to me. I saw this new world as a great setting, for a much smaller and personal story of courage, strength, and love.
Here’s a bit about the book from the jacket copy:
The year is 2041, and sixteen-year-old Molly McClure has lived a relatively quiet life on an isolated farming island in western Canada. When her family fears the worst may have happened to her grandparents in the US, she must brave the dangerous, chaotic world left after global economic collapse—one of massive oil shortages, rampant crime, and abandoned cities. Molly arrives at her grandparents’ home and is relieved to find them alive, but they’re also starving and financially ruined. What should’ve been a quick trip turns into a full-fledged rescue mission. And when she witnesses something that the crime organization that passes for government in their Portland suburb would rather she hadn’t, her only way home may be to beat them at their own game. Luckily, there’s a handsome stranger who’s willing to help.

Alrighty, now for the giveaway, Joelle has very kindly donated a gorgeous signed tote bag with a postcard and Restoring Harmony magnet inside. Because this is a smaller prize today all you have to do is fill in the form below with your name, email address and your favourite dystopian novel.


Rules for all contests can be found here.




Sunday, March 28, 2010

Vampire Mash-Up

Today's contest is going to be vampire-related. Why? You ask, well today's prize was donated by Beth Fantaskey and it is a signed copy of Jessica's Guide to Dating on The Dark Side and a postcard with the artwork of Jekel Loves Hyde.


Below is a picture featuring 9 books. All vampire books. All you have to do is fill in the form below and guess the title of the book. One clue is that the first 6 books have all been reviewed here. Every correct answer gets you one entry point.



Just fill in the form below:

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Violet Wings

Title: Violet Wings

Author: Victoria Hanley

Published: New York : Egmont, 2009

Pages: 357

Summary: After learning that she is an extremely powerful fairy, twelve-year-old Zaria Tourmaline uses her magic to try to learn about her parents' and brother's disappearance three years before, and to explore the human world--activities which put her and all of Feyland at risk.

Review: Who doesn't love fairies right? Well I know I sure do.  And what better book to read than Violet Wings to fill my fairy addiction. It took me about 3 hours to read Violet Wings because it is a fantastic book and I just didn't want to put it down.
I loved Zaria and I totally loved this book.
The cover is just too cute!
If you're one of those people who absolutely adore fairies then you should definitely check out Violet Wings. Victoria Hanley weaves a magical tale that left me in awe for hours after I finished it. Highly entertaining.

Liked my review? Think you might like a copy yourself? Well with a huge thank you to Victoria Hanley you can get a copy for yourself.  Fill in the form below to be in to win.


Rules for all contests can be found here.




Friday, March 26, 2010

Time For Swag

So who doesn't love swag? I know I do. And so today we are giving you the opportunity to get some swag.  Just fill in the form below, this time there is a bonus question which basically is more for curiosity purposes than anything.


Rules for all contests can be found here.





Thursday, March 25, 2010

Firespell

Title: Firespell


Author: Chloe Neill


Published: Signet, 2010


Pages: 256


Series: Dark Elite, Book One



Summary: As the new girl at the elite St. Sophia’s boarding school, Lily Parker thinks her classmates are the most monstrous things she’ll have to face… 
When Lily’s guardians decided to send her away to a fancy boarding school in Chicago, she was shocked. So was St. Sophia’s. Lily’s ultra-rich brat pack classmates think Lily should be the punchline to every joke, and on top of that, she’s hearing strange noises and seeing bizarre things in the shadows of the creepy building. 
The only thing keeping her sane is her roommate, Scout, but even Scout’s a little weird—she keeps disappearing late at night and won’t tell Lily where she’s been. But when a prank leaves Lily trapped in the catacombs beneath the school, Lily finds Scout running from a real monster. 
Scout’s a member of a splinter group of rebel teens with unique magical talents, who’ve sworn to protect the city against demons, vampires, and Reapers, magic users who’ve been corrupted by their power. And when Lily finds herself in the line of a firespell, Scout tells her the truth about her secret life, even though Lily has no powers of her own—at least none that she’s discovered yet…



Review:  Firspell is such a great book!!!! Definitely worth four exclamation points in my view. However, I just have one little teeny annoyance and that is that I thought it spent a little too much time getting settled into the school but once that was over this book was so cool.
Lily is an awesome character and I totally can't wait to see more of her, Firespell being the first in a series. Yay.
I'm not overly a paranormal fanatic but on occassion I'll pick up a paranormal themed book and I like some of them. I'm glad to say that I loved Firespell. It wasn't too over the top with the paranormal theme.
If you're a fan of the paranormal then Firespell is definitely your book!


Today I am super excited to announce to you that. The very generous and kind Chloe Neill has generously offered up a fantastic prize pack with a signed copy of Firespell, Firespell Bookmark, Friday Night Bites Postcard, I Heart Cadogan Bumper Sticker, and a St. Sophia's Magnet.


Rules for all contests can be found here.





Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Dust of 100 Dogs

Yarr, ye be hearin' right.  Today we be givin' away a signed copy of The Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S. King and some bookmarks thanks to A.S King.


So I can stop talking like a pirate now.  For this contest we wanted to make it nice and fun but not too hard. So seeing as how The Dust of 100 Dogs is about  a pirate.  I scoured the net for a pirate name generator and found one that I thought was pretty cool.


My pirate name is Swabbin' Sandy Kidd
Scarlett's pirate name is Pirate Anne Marie The Fruit


So what do we want you to do?
Today all you have to do is go here and get your pirate name.  Then fill in the form below telling us your pirate name to be in to win.


Rules for all contests can be found here.


Click here to get your pirate name.


Fill in this form to be in to win:


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

TMI

Today, we have an author interview with Sarah Quigley about her book TMI. So without further ado here is Sarah.



What inspired you to write TMI?
TMI is about Becca, a high school sophomore who can't stop herself from telling everyone her personal business. She finally decides to change her ways when her first boyfriend dumps her for kissing and telling. Becca still needs an outlet to vent all her feelings and secrets, so she starts a blog.


I started keeping a diary when I was nine years old and then switched to blogging when I was 24. At that time, blogs were just beginning to become popular. It's probably for the best that I wasn't able to blog when I was a teenager because I might have encountered some of the same difficulties that Becca does.


I also think that these days, with the popularity of blogs and Facebook, we're all trying to figure out how much information we should actually reveal about ourselves online. How much is too much? Who decides? I know that adults and teenagers alike now struggle with these questions, so TMI explores a problem that a lot of people can relate to.

Your character, Becca, in TMI is quite the oversharer, are you yourself a bit of an oversharer?
Definitely! I used to love saying shocking things to get attention. I also didn't understand why some people were so reluctant to talk openly about their own lives. As I've gotten older (and more mature?), I've come to realize that boundaries are important, even in my closest relationships. It's not a good idea to say anything and everything that pops into my head.


On the flip side, I think my openness is a positive thing as well. Many friends have admitted that they tell me things they don't normally discuss with other people. Maybe they feel more comfortable with me. I'm not sure, but I'm always flattered when someone chooses to confide in me.

Do you have any plans for any other books?
I'm currently working on a second novel, not a sequel to TMI. It's a coming-of-age story about a cellist who spends the summer waiting tables at a resort. I can't reveal more than that right now, but I'm very excited about it.

As an author what is your opinion of book bloggers?
They're great! I don't interact with many teenagers in my day-to-day life, and since book bloggers are mostly teen readers, I'm always interested in their opinions. The bloggers have also helped tremendously in getting the word out about TMI, inviting me to do interviews, guest blogs, and contests. I've also had the pleasure of meeting bloggers at some of my book signings. It makes me feel like I have fans!

Is there anything you hope people will get from reading TMI?
I'm always happy when people tell me they thought the book was funny and entertaining. Those were my main goals when I was writing it. I've also heard from readers who said they identified with Becca or wished they had a friend like Jai. It pleased me to know that people thought the characters were realistic and likable.


I also wanted readers to think about some deeper issues, things that didn't occur to me until I was older. As I mentioned, personal boundaries make a lot of relationships easier (although being too closed off can cause problems, too).

Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
Give yourself permission to suck. Seriously, perfectionism takes all the fun out of writing and makes it an exercise in anxiety. Get the words on the page and worry about improving them later. After all, you can't fix what you haven't written. This philosophy has gotten me through many, many bad days and pushed me to continue when I wanted to give up.


Some people wait for inspiration to strike before they sit down to write. I don't have the luxury of that much free time, so I make myself write nearly every day, whether I'm in the mood or not. I think this kind of discipline is necessary to improve and develop my skills.


It's also important to set goals. I was having a hard time working on the first draft of my new novel, so this past fall, I rolled up my sleeves and finished the book in six weeks. I wrote 1,000 words a day (trying hard to suspend judgment on the quality of those words) and gave myself rewards for every 20,000 words. Now I have two new outfits, an appointment for a massage, and a completed manuscript that I'm in the process of improving.

Thank you heaps Sarah.  But don't leave just yet.  Thanks to the very awesome Sarah, we have a copy of TMI to give to one lucky person. And what do you have to do?
You have to fill in the form below, AND you must leave a comment below telling us an embarrassing story.  We have left anonymous commenting on so if you want to comment anonymously you can but you must comment.


Rules for all contests can be found here.


Fill in the form below, and leave a comment telling an embarrassing story.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Far From You

Today thank you to Lisa Schroeder we have a copy of Far From You by Lisa Schroeder to giveaway. So today I figured we'd have a nice easy, laid back day.  So today I'm just going to share some little bits to do with Far From You and if you like the sound of it, at the end just leave your details in the form below.


Book Description:
Lost and alone...down the rabbit hole

Years have passed since Alice lost her mother to cancer, but time hasn't quite healed the wound. Alice copes the best she can, by writing her music, losing herself in the love of her boyfriend, and distancing herself from her father and his new wife.

But when a deadly snowstorm traps Alice with her stepmother and newborn half-sister, she'll face issues she's been avoiding for too long. As Alice looks to the heavens for guidance, she discovers something wonderful.

Perhaps she's not so alone after all...

Cover:


Trailer:




Like what you see? Fill in the form below to be in to win a copy for yourself.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Coffeehouse Angel

Today we have a very special contest!!!  This one is for coffee (or any type of hot drink) lovers.  I myself, am a coffee lover! I have a cup of coffee every morning.  It is very good stuff.

Anyway, thanks to the lovely Suzanne Selfors, you can be in to win this very awesome Coffeehouse Angel Mug pictured below.



But firstly, today we have an interview with Suzanne Selfors, author of Coffeehouse Angel and then I will give you  more details about the giveaway.



What gave you the idea to write Coffeehouse Angel?
I was sitting in this coffeehouse called Hot Shots Java, where I do a lot of my writing, and the character of Katrina popped into my head. I thought, I want to write a story about this girl. She stayed in my head for a few months and because I couldn't get rid of her, I knew her story needed to be told.
I usually don't come up with a story that way. Usually it's the plot that comes to mind first. 


I notice that you write children's and young adult's books, is there much difference between the two?
Total difference. My middle grade books are all about adventure. Middle graders are open to anything and are willing to suspend their disbelief. So I can write about vikings and mermaids, magical farms and people-eating tortoises. And, here's the big difference, I don't have to include a romance in the story.
While my teen books always have an element of magic in them, it has to be more believable, and there always, always needs to be some romantic tension.
  
What do you hope people will get out of reading Coffeehouse Angel?
Pleasure. I write books that are fast-paced and fun because I think the act of reading should be fun. That's it.


Are you, yourself a coffee drinker? If so, how do you have your coffee?
I'm drinking coffee right now. I drink a single, tall nonfat latte. No flavoring. I have one every day. I despise regular brewed coffee.


When you're not writing, what do you enjoy doing?
I feel like I'm always writing these days. But I'm a big movie-goer. Love getting a huge bucket of popcorn and hanging out at the theater. Also love going to plays. I guess I just love stories.


Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Hmmm. There's so much advice. What to choose? Well, if you are writing your very first book, don't start to worry about the publishing process until your book is the best it can be. That means getting some other people to read it, and I don't mean parents or boyfriends. I rely heavily on my writer's group to give me critiques. And that also means being willing to revise, revise, revise. I'm revising my next teen novel for the billionth time. It's hard work.

Thanks heaps Suzanne.

Now for the giveaway.  I have just one little detail I need to point out because it is very important.  This one is open to those with US ADDRESSES ONLY!  So if you live in the US or have someone who lives in the US and can send it to you, then you can enter to win.

All you have to do is fill in the form below.  Not too much hassle. 







Saturday, March 20, 2010

Taken by Storm

Title: Taken by Storm


Author: Angela Morrison


Published: Razorbill, 2009


Pages: 320


Summary: Leesie Hunt has many rules: No kissing. No sex. No dating outside the Mormon faith.




When Michael Walden—a deep-sea diver who lost his parents in a violent hurricane—arrives in town, Leesie sees someone who needs her. They fall for one another, even though his dreams are tied to the depths of the ocean and hers to salvation above.
Will their intense chemistry be too strong to resist?
Leesie and Michael must make the hardest choice of their lives: whether to follow their beliefs or their hearts.


Note: Scarlett and I have done a joint review of this book thanks to Google Docs.


Review: Taken by Storm was an interesting novel, I thought that Leesie was a lot more relatable than Michael.


I loved Taken by Storm!!! For me it was Michael who was relatable. I say that because of the whole grieving over the loss of his parents thing and well I lost my dad so I know how it feels to lose a parent.


I think I found Leesie more relatable because she got picked on a lot at her school for being different. I'm not a mormon and I don't know what it's like to go to a school where you get picked on for your religion but I do know what it's like to be bullied.


I thought the relationship between Michael and Leesie was just so super sweet, they made the most adorable couple ever and I found it to be such an emotional roller-coaster just reading about their entire relationship.


To be honest I didn't think they had much of a relationship, for started Michael and Leesie both kept trying to push each other to do things that neither were comfortable with. They fought a lot too. I just kept getting frustrated with their ups and downs.


I think that overall the main point was that sometimes people do try to make things work. Not giving the ending away but I thought the end was quite fitting.


I felt the ending made the book kind of pointless but I read that there has been a sequel written and if it ever gets published I will definitely head out and read it.


It's good there will be a sequel *crosses fingers* because I would really love to read more about Leesie and Michael. On another note, I would like to say a huge thanks to Angela Morrison, her words astound me and she is a truly brilliant author. I cannot wait to read more by her!


I loved the descriptive words that she uses. I also loved the format of the book. The two perspectives and how they were written were really cool. I think that overall Taken by Storm is a book that is definitely worth a read.