Blog Tour: When Planets Fall by Abby J. Reed

WHEN PLANETS FALL

30801623 When Planets Fall
Stars Fall Circle #1
Author: Abby J. Reed
Pages: 319 pgs
Genre: YA, Sci-Fi
Release Date: May 10th, 2017

Breaker’s home is cleaved by blood. The three tribes on the planet Scarlatti, whose only difference is their blood color, each want to exploit Breaker’s valley for themselves. The feudal tension has already claimed red-blood Breaker’s leg and his older brother. Now all this 18-year old wants is to maintain the tenuous peace in order to keep his little ‘stroid of a brother alive. Malani, a red-blood raised blue, is a kidnapped POW and only wants to return to her adoptive home with her dangerous blue secrets. Luka, a red-blood stewing for trouble, wants to right wrongs done to his family and bathe his home in justice.

All three intersect when Breaker discovers a wrecked starship and is given seven days by the green-bloods to fix and hand it over as a weapon. Breaker must decide if aiding his enemies is worth the home he knows and his family’s life. War is coming. And war respects no boundaries. And war leaves no survivors.

I was intrigued about this book from the very beginning by the very interesting description and the amazingly beautiful cover. An let me just say that this debut is a fast paced exciting read that will pull you in right from the very beginning.

One of the things I really enjoyed was how the author thrusts you right into the world of the main characters. Everything from the dialogue and narration fits right in with the characters and the environment that they each live in. Although, I will admit that it took me a bit to understand some of the language and references, but once I did it just helped me appreciate everything that was happening more.

Reed also did a pretty spectacular job of showing how different each of the tribes and characters were, not just by blood but also in physical ways as well. Like the wings and mechanical enhancements of the blue bloods, and the prosthetic leg, Circuit, of Breaker’s that became another character in and of itself. She let us see those dramatic differences in ways that enhanced the story and explained the characters and their environments so wonderfully.

Plus, who doesn’t love starships and pretty wings?

I’m definitely interested in more from this series and this author and am already excited to hear about book 2!

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Paper Princess by Erin Watt

28678119 Paper Princess
The Royals #1
Author: Erin Watt
Pages: 370 pgs
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance, NA
Release Date: April 5th 2015

From strip clubs and truck stops to southern coast mansions and prep schools, one girl tries to stay true to herself.

These Royals will ruin you…

Ella Harper is a survivor—a pragmatic optimist. She’s spent her whole life moving from town to town with her flighty mother, struggling to make ends meet and believing that someday she’ll climb out of the gutter. After her mother’s death, Ella is truly alone.

Until Callum Royal appears, plucking Ella out of poverty and tossing her into his posh mansion among his five sons who all hate her. Each Royal boy is more magnetic than the last, but none as captivating as Reed Royal, the boy who is determined to send her back to the slums she came from.

Reed doesn’t want her. He says she doesn’t belong with the Royals.

He might be right.

Wealth. Excess. Deception. It’s like nothing Ella has ever experienced, and if she’s going to survive her time in the Royal palace, she’ll need to learn to issue her own Royal decrees.

This was actually a surprise book for me. I don’t normally read YA contemporary’s, but decided to give this one a try… and was quite surprised. The more I read, the more I wanted to keep going and ended up finishing it in a day.

Erin Watt ( a pseudonym for two wonderful ladies) did a fantastic job not only with the overall story, but also with their characters. For me, I sometimes feel that the characters I’m reading aren’t always distinct enough, but that wasn’t a problem here. I loved getting to know Ella and each of the Royal boys.

I also really enjoyed the fact that Ella was both strong and vulnerable. The Royal boys and those at her new school make life miserable for her, and though the things they did may have hurt her, Ella never let that hold her back. She stood up for herself, even when she wanted to cry, and I loved that!

My only complaint is that I have to wait for the next book, Broken Prince, that comes out in July. The ending left me eagerly anticipating more (just to warn those who may not like cliffhangers) and mad that I’d reached the last page. And all I can really say to that is… Oh Reed Royal!

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Illuminae
The Illuminae Files 1
Author: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Pages: 608 pgs
Genre: YA, Sci-Fi, Dystopian
Release Date: October 20th 2015

This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

I was lucky enough to get an early copy of this book a few months ago and couldn’t wait to start reading. Not only was it a brilliant read, but it left me anxiously awaiting the next installment. Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff are a brilliant team.

The fact that this isn’t told as your typical narrative, but as a dossier full of emails, IM’s, interviews, schematics, etc. only made me even more excited to read. I’d been a little unsure how I’d  like it, but from the very beginning I was pulled in and didn’t want to put it down.

First, Amie and Jay did a brilliant job of planning this entire story out. So many details had to be worked out and in place, and it showed seamlessly. Telling the story this way gave it a fresh perspective for me and allowed, at least for me, the reader to view the events as an observer. I also loved that each characters voice was distinctive and clear throughout.

The design of the book, including schematics and web pages, was top notch and beautiful.

And, the flow of the story, just right. Nothing dragged for me and I loved how things slowly began to be revealed. Things definitely got intense and sad at moments, but it only made the world they created even more exciting. It felt as though, at times, that I was experiencing it all like a movie.

Reaching the end was a sad moment for me, I checked a few times, hoping for more, but I think that speaks even more to what a great job these authors did. Waiting for book 2 will be a long wait, but I have no doubt will be worth it in the end.

Blog Tour: Last Song Before Night by Ilana C. Myer

LAST SONG BEFORE NIGHT
Author: Ilana C. Myer
Pub. Date: September 29, 2015
Publisher: TOR
Pages: 416
Formats: Hardcover & eBook
Find it: AMAZON | B&N | iBOOKS | THE BOOK DEPOSITORY | INDIEBOUND | MACMILLAN | GOODREADS

A high fantasy following a young woman’s defiance of her culture as she undertakes a dangerous quest to restore her world’s lost magic

Her name was Kimbralin Amaristoth: sister to a cruel brother, daughter of a hateful family. But that name she has forsworn, and now she is simply Lin, a musician and lyricist of uncommon ability in a land where women are forbidden to answer such callings—a fugitive who must conceal her identity or risk imprisonment and even death.

On the eve of a great festival, Lin learns that an ancient scourge has returned to the land of Eivar, a pandemic both deadly and unnatural. Its resurgence brings with it the memory of an apocalypse that transformed half a continent. Long ago, magic was everywhere, rising from artistic expression—from song, from verse, from stories. But in Eivar, where poets once wove enchantments from their words and harps, the power was lost. Forbidden experiments in blood divination unleashed the plague that is remembered as the Red Death, killing thousands before it was stopped, and Eivar’s connection to the Otherworld from which all enchantment flowed, broken.

The Red Death’s return can mean only one thing: someone is spilling innocent blood in order to master dark magic. Now poets who thought only to gain fame for their songs face a challenge much greater: galvanized by Valanir Ocune, greatest Seer of the age, Lin and several others set out to reclaim their legacy and reopen the way to the Otherworld—a quest that will test their deepest desires, imperil their lives, and decide the future.

The first thing that caught my eye when I found out about this tour was the cover. Gorgeous and intriguing, it had everything I thought of for a fantasy book. Then I read the description and I knew that I absolutely wanted to read this and jumped at the chance to be a part of this tour. I even did a little happy dance when I got to participate.

High fantasy is one of my favorite genre’s, as regular followers for this blog know, and Ilana did not disappoint. The world building for this story was fantastic. So rich and well thought out, I felt as though I was a part of it from the very beginning. That was also in large part to Ilana’s beautiful, lyrical writing. I wanted to get lost in it for hours.

I loved that for the musician’s, or Poets, music was such an intricate part of their lives. It truly was an art form with the tales that they weaved. It wasn’t just about performing, but creating something.

Now, as it often goes in high fantasies, we are introduced to several characters points of view right off the bat, so we have different story lines that we’re following and different aspects of this amazing world, even an ultimate quest . I never felt as though I couldn’t follow with the character changes, especially as secrets and betrayals began to be revealed or uncovered.

In the end, I loved how their journey’s led them together, to intertwine. And, while their was a satisfying ending, I’m hoping there will be more for this world and for these characters… A sequel perhaps…?

About Ilana C. Myer

Ilana C. Myer has written for the Globe and Mail, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Salon, and the Huffington Post. Previously she was a freelance journalist in Jerusalem for the Jerusalem Post, the Jewish Daily Forward, Time Out Israel and other publications. She lives in New York City.

Ilana was born in New York but grew up in Jerusalem, Israel, where she spent her teen years haunting secondhand bookstores in search of books written in English—especially fantasy. It was in one of these shops that she discovered David Eddings and realized that epic fantasy continued after Tolkien, and from there went on to make such marvelous discoveries as Tad Williams, Robin Hobb, and Guy Gavriel Kay.

Since learning to read, Ilana had decided she would write books, but during college in New York City was confronted with the reality of making rent, and worked as a receptionist, administrative assistant, and executive assistant where she on occasion picked up dry cleaning. She afterwards found more fulfillment as a journalist in Jerusalem where she covered social issues, the arts, and innovations in technology, and co-founded the Middle East environment blog, Green Prophet. It was during these years in Jerusalem, on stolen time, that Last Song Before Night took shape.

She writes as Ilana Teitelbaum for various outlets, but decided early on—since the days of haunting bookstores, in fact—that “Teitelbaum” was too long for a book cover. “Myer” is a variation on the maiden name of her grandmother, whose family was exterminated in Germany. It is a family with a long history of writers, so it seems appropriate to give credit—or blame—where it’s due.

WEBSITE | BLOG | TWITTER | GOODREADS
Giveaway Details

3 winners will receive a finished copy of LAST SONG BEFORE NIGHT. US Only.

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Tour Schedule

Week One:
9/21/2015- Library of a Book Witch– Interview
9/22/2015- A Book and a Latte– Guest Post
9/23/2015- A Trail of Books Left Behind– Review
9/24/2015- Working for the Mandroid– Review
9/25/2015- Chasm of Books– Interview

Week Two:
9/28/2015- Galleywampus– Review
9/29/2015- DanaSquare- Guest Post
9/30/2015- Fic Gal– Review
10/1/2015- The Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club– Interview
10/2/2015- History from a Woman’s Perspective– Review

Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Red Rising
Red Rising Trilogy 1
Author: Pierce Brown
Pages: 382 pgs
Genre: YA, Sci-Fi, Dystopian
Release Date: January 28th 2015

The Earth is dying. Darrow is a Red, a miner in the interior of Mars. His mission is to extract enough precious elements to one day tame the surface of the planet and allow humans to live on it. The Reds are humanity’s last hope.

Or so it appears, until the day Darrow discovers it’s all a lie. That Mars has been habitable – and inhabited – for generations, by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. A class of people who look down on Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.

Until the day that Darrow, with the help of a mysterious group of rebels, disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside. But the command school is a battlefield – and Darrow isn’t the only student with an agenda.

Okay, for anyone who doesn’t know, this was the book my sister chose for me in our sisterly Bookish Dare. AND, since my sister knows me so well, she guessed that I probably would want to stop reading this, but she told me to keep going. I’m so glad that she did.

Let me say this, the only reason I would have stopped reading this is because I’m a wuss. I’ve admitted this before. It took me years to finish Hunger Games because it reminded me of Lord of the Flies. I get nervous when books start getting too intense and sometimes I put them aside. But, in this books case I persevered.

Pierce did a phenomenal job all the way through. From his characters to the setting to the over all story, I was intrigued from the get go and almost wished I could see it playing out before me. I squirmed at some instances and laughed at others, this was definitely not a lighthearted read, but such a good one in the end.

I loved the fact that Darrow struggled throughout the story, not only with his sorrows, but also with finding a balance with the Golds. Infiltrating was one thing, but maintaining his status and remaining vigilant was something else entirely. He wasn’t perfect, in a world where Golds considered themselves just that.

After reaching the end, I couldn’t wait to start the second book in this trilogy and learn more about Darrow’s journey to take down the Golds. And with Pierce coming to my neck of the woods in September, I have even more of an incentive to get caught. Hopefully the wait for book 3 (Morning Star) won’t seem nearly as long now.

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses
A Court of Thorns and Roses 1
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Pages: 416 pgs
Genre: NA, Fantasy
Release Date: May 5th 2015

A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!

For anyone who’s kept up with this blog for the past couple of years, you’ll already know about my love for Sarah J. Maas’ Throne of Glass series. It is absolutely brilliant, and while I was at a book signing for the second book she mentioned a little more about her new series A Court of Thorns and Roses, which I immediately added to my to-read list on Goodreads. I knew it would be wonderful… and it was!

I could not put this book down from the moment I got my hands on it. Not only were the characters great and well developed, but the world Sarah gave us of the Fae was just amazing. She took some of what we could already know from other stories, yet added all her own, making it completely hers.

One of my favorite, which I hope won’t be considered a spoiler, was Feyre’s love of art. Sarah gave readers a different view of it in this story. Instead of having Feyre carrying a sketch book around or something of the like, Sarah showed us how Feyre viewed the world as an artist. The way she experienced colors. It added an element to the story and to Feyre that I really enjoyed.

Though we did get to meet Fae like Tamlin, Lucien, and Rhysand, I can’t wait to see more of them in book 2. Things are bound to be more high stake and more intense, and I can’t wait! Reaching the end of ACOTAR only made me or anxious for more. More of this world and more of these characters.

Unchanged by Jessica Brody

Unchanged
Unremembered 3
Author: Jessica Brody
Pages: 432 pgs
Genre: YA, Sci-Fi
Release Date: February 24th 2015

In this mesmerizing conclusion to the Unremembered trilogy, Sera will fight those who have broken her.

After returning to the Diotech compound and receiving a successful memory transplant, Seraphina is now living a happy life with another synthetically engineered human like herself, with whom she is deeply in love. She has no recollection of Zen. But the nagging feeling that something is missing from her life continues to plague her. Diotech’s newest product is about to be revealed—a line of genetic modifications that will allow people to live longer, fight disease, and change any unfavorable physical attribute they desire.

As more secrets are revealed, more enemies are uncovered, and the reality of a Diotech-controlled world grows closer every day, Sera and Zen must find a way to destroy the company that created her, or they’ll be separated forever.

I’ve had the privilege of seeing Jessica Brody on tour for each book in this series, which only made me even more excited to read each book. I got to hear about her journey as she wrote, her idea for the story, and even her writing process for each book.

Each book for this series has been different than the last, which I’ve really enjoyed. And for Unchanged, Seraphina’s journey takes her back to her time, the future. We got to see her life at the Diotech compound, her struggles, and what was expected of her.

And I love that Seraphina struggles with what she’s been told and what’s in her heart. She battles with herself, wanting to be what Diotech wants of her, and with the truth her learns from others. The doctor that’s chased her throughout time, Dr. Alixter, and even her “Print Mate”, Kaelen, both have expectations for her. But always in the background is Zen, the boy she’s loved through it all.

I can see how there can be, or have been, those who don’t like this ending, but after hearing Jessica’s take on it, and reading it myself, I absolutely loved it. It felt like the perfect ending for this series, and a fresh beginning for the characters we’ve come to know and love.

I don’t even know if I have the right words to explain, only that I really loved it and wish there was more!