Monday, February 24, 2014

Unraveled by Julie Daines

Today I'm participating in a book blast for a new author, Julie Daines. Her novel, UNRAVELED, captured my attention from the moment I saw the cover.

Lovely, isn't it?

Here's a little about the book: When sickness swept through Bronwen’s family, it took the life of her father, brother, and sister, and left her permanently crippled. On the stormy eve of her sixteenth birthday, a faerie-witch gifts her a pair of enchanted shoes. Bronwen slips them on and is healed--but only when the shoes are on her feet. Her grace and beauty catches the eye of the king’s son--Urien, a handsome young man who prides himself on having everything perfect.

When Rhys, an old acquaintance and Captain of the Guard, recognizes Bronwen, he threatens to tell Urien her secret. Desperate to keep her deformity hidden and not to lose the love of handsome Urien, Bronwen quickly finds herself tangled in a web of lies and deceit.

Release date: February 2014
Publisher: Covenant Communications, Inc.
Genre: YA Fantasy/Fairytale
ISBN: 9781621086277

Julie Daines was born in Concord, Massachusetts, and was raised in Utah. She spent eighteen months living in London, where she studied and fell in love with English literature, sticky toffee pudding, and the mysterious guy who ran the kebab store around the corner.

She loves reading, writing, and watching movies—anything that transports her to another world. She picks Captain Wentworth over Mr. Darcy, firmly believes in second breakfast, and never leaves home without her verveine.

But here's the question I know you're dying to have answered: Facebook or Twitter?   
Facebook. Twitter goes too fast for me.
Which doesn't mean you won't find her on Twitter! Here are her links:

Twitter: @juliedaines  
Facebook: Julie Daines Author
Blog: http://www.juliedaines.com
Book on Goodreads: Unraveled
Author on Goodreads: Julie Daines

Win $50 PayPal cash! This giveaway only lasts during the Book Blast so be sure to enter today!
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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Big Reveal

So, I have some news that I've been sitting on for a while.

Since I've been thinking about it so long, you'd think I'd have a fantastically creative way to announce it. But you'd be wrong. The combination of late nights working on edits and standing in line in the sun in the Magic Kingdom have left me brain dead this week. So instead of talking about it. I'll just show you...

Yep, that's my name on the cover. I can't tell you how excited I am about this! It releases in a month, on March 17, which is coming up much faster than I thought it would! Eeeek!

This is a middle grade novel that is close to my heart, one that has had a long journey from concept to print. If you'd like to read the first chapter, you can find it on the new website I set up at, and since I'm back on Facebook now, I'd also love to have you like my spankin' new Author Page at In a few days a Goodreads giveaway will be opening up and you'll be able to register to win one of five copies. The widget for that is omewhere in the left column of this blog. You'll also find the link to it on my Facebook Author Page and new website.

It's been hard not to talk about it, but now that it's out there, I also promise not to drive everyone crazy by talking about nothing else :) At least not until March!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Judging a Book by its Cover

Please don't try to convince me you don't. We all do. Especially when it comes to books. And as a graphic designer, I find myself analyzing covers more than most.

Two days ago I had the pleasure of browsing the MG/YA shelves of Hastings in Coeur d'Alene. Our whole family loves this store because they seriously have something for everyone: books, music, movies, and used versions of all of that as well as new. I wasn't looking for a specific book, just taking in what was there and picking up books that appealed to me.

Right now my favorite cover has to be this one.

I love the colors, the ethereal beauty of the people, the way her hair and dress are billowing, the way their hands are reaching for each other but not quite making it. And of course the stars. I'm always fascinated by stars. This cover tells a story all on its own. It makes me want to read it.

But I haven't bought it yet. Maybe when it comes out in paperback, but even then I might wait. Know why? It's a series. And I'm done with reading book one of a series and waiting a year or two for the next book to come out. And another year or two for the next. Once they're all available, I'll start. So in the meantime, if you've read it, no spoilers!

This book also intrigued me from the moment I glimpsed the cover.

I love the font choice, the way the title is laid out, the way the girl seems to be staring down the city, the way her yellow dress stands boldly against the elegant buildings. And interestingly, as soon as I realized that this is a historical novel, the fact that her hair is down spoke volumes. This girl is a rebel.

So I bought it. Gorgeous cover, stand alone book, strong heroine. Exactly what I'm looking for. With a school break coming up next week, I'm looking forward to plenty of reading time and this is at the top of my pile.

What draws you into a cover? Did either of these attract you?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Booking Hollywood's It Girl

Is it me, or is Shailene Woodley the most literary actress around?

This year she has two eagerly anticipated movies coming out based on highly successful YA novels. Divergent releases March 21 and The Fault in our Stars comes out three months later. The trailer for TFIOS has been the subject of many discussions at the school where I work, since pretty much everyone has read the book. Freshmen and sophomores had it for assigned reading over the summer. (Yes, our teachers are awesome that way!)

If you haven't seen the trailer, you must watch it. Now. I'll wait.

Isn't it amazing?
*wipes tears*

So, Shailene.

She also has a third film releasing this year, White Bird in a Blizzard, and guess what? You got it. The movie is based on a 1999 novel by Laura Kasischke.

Her IMDB profile is filled with movies based on books. Last year she starred in The Spectacular Now (novel by Tim Tharp) and in 2011 she was in the George Clooney movie, The Descendents (novel by Kaui Hart Hemmings). In 2005 she starred in Once Upon a Mattress (gotta love your fairy tales) and Felicity, an American Girl adventure. (We own this one since my daughter was obsessed with American Girl books, dolls and movies.) In fact, every film she was worked on has been based on a book.

Her next two movies are already predetermined since she's locked into the Divergent trilogy. But I can't help but wonder what book to movie adaptation will be next for this young actress.

Two more MG/YA novels-to-movies this year: The Giver and The Maze Runner.

Jeff Bridges might need to grow a little more facial hair :)

And in 2015, the one I'm anticipating the most -- Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. Any book-to-movie adaptations you're looking forward to?
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