Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Release Blitz & Giveaway: The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver

I am so excited to help spread the word that THE SECRETS WE KEEP by Trisha Leaver is now out in paperback!

If you haven’t yet added this awesome book to your shelf, now’s the perfect time. Just scroll down to learn more about the book and author, to read an excerpt, and to enter the giveaway for a chance to win an Amazon gift card!


Author: Trisha Leaver
Paperback release date: April 26, 2016
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) | Square Fish
Pages: 304
Formats: Paperback 978-1250073624) | hardcover (978-0374300463) | audio (978-1501212222) | eBook (ASIN: B00OFKKFFQ)
Genre: YA Contemporary
Ages: 12 and up


Twin sisters. A fatal accident. A devastating lie. Which girl survived?

"A girl takes over her twin sister's identity in this emotionally charged page-turner about the complicated bond between sisters."

Ella and Maddy Lawton are identical twins. Ella has spent her high school years living in popular Maddy's shadows, but she has never been envious of Maddy. In fact, she's chosen the quiet, safe confines of her sketchbook over the constant battle for attention that has defined Maddy's world.

When--after a heated argument--Maddy and Ella get into a tragic accident that leaves Maddy dead, Ella wakes up in the hospital surrounded by loved ones who believe she is Maddy. Feeling responsible for Maddy's death and everyone's grief, Ella makes a split-second decision to pretend to be Maddy. And everyone believes her. Caught in a web of lies, Ella is faced with two options--confess her deception and risk devastating those who loved Maddy, or give up her own dreams and live her sister's life.
Find it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | IndieBound | Goodreads


*"Leaver's brilliant novel is the high school version of What Happened to Janie? The compelling premise will attract readers and the strong characterization will keep them enthralled." -VOYA, STARRED REVIEW

*“Leaver's story is certainly entertaining and intriguing. VERDICT This should be a primary purchase for any library with patrons who love melodramatic mysteries and romance.” SLJ, STARRED AUDIO REVIEW

"Trisha Leaver crafts a powerful and haunting novel that will keep you up long after you read the last page. Full of twists and turns and FEELS, this book questions how far a person will go for her family . . . even if it means losing herself." - Lynne Matson, author of NIL

The Excerpt

I don’t remember her room being so cold. Even snuggled into her sweater the chill seeps in, settling into my bones like a whisper from beyond. That’s where I will sleep Maddy’s bed, surround by her scent. Mom wants to change the sheets, but I won’t let her. The hint of vanilla mingled with Alex’s dark cologne brings a little piece of my sister back to me each night.

The only thing I have left of my old life is a few sketches and a poor replica of the friendship bracelet Josh gave me. It took me days to re-create, to weave the strings into the right pattern. It’s not perfect, but it goes with me everywhere, a tiny reminder of who I once was and what Josh still means to me. The real bracelet is gone, cut off and tossed aside just like my life.

I want to make peace with my choice, but Maddy’s secret haunts me. The dark pieces of her life are hid- den in the back of her closet for no one but me to see. She’s not who I thought she was, but that doesn’t matter. Maddy was my sister, my twin sister, and I’ll do anything for her, including losing myself.

The Teasers

There was a fear behind his words, a fear that I would change my mind and reveal a secret I didn't even know.”

“I am already gone. I died that night on the side of the road with my sister.”

About Trisha Leaver

Trisha Leaver lives on Cape Cod with her husband, three children, and one rather disobedient black lab. She is a chronic daydreamer who prefers the cozy confines of her own imagination to the mundane routine of everyday life. She writes Young Adult Contemporary Fiction, Historical Fiction, Psychological Horror and Science Fiction and is published with FSG/ Macmillan, Flux/Llewellyn and Merit Press. Her YA Contemporary, THE SECRETS WE KEEP, was named one of the best YA novels for summer (2015) by Teen Vogue and received starred reviews from VOYA Magazine and School Library Journal (audio). For more details, check out her website at

Find her: Website | Twitter | Tumblr | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

The Giveaway

There is a blitz-wide giveaway, courtesy of the author, for:
  • ONE (1) winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card
***Giveaway is open to anyone 13 or older who can accept an Amazon Gift Card***

Enter in the Rafflecopter below.

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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Release Blitz & Giveaway: The Rose & The Dagger by Renée Ahdieh

I am so excited that THE ROSE & THE DAGGER by Renée Ahdieh releases today and that I get to share the news, along with an awesome giveaway!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Renée Ahdieh, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a paperback of THE WRATH & THE DAWN and a hardcover of THE ROSE & THE DAGGER and an awesome candle from The Melting Library’s Etsy Store, US Only!  So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

Author: Renée Ahdieh
Release Date: April 26, 2016
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, eBook, & audiobook
 Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | iBooks 

The much anticipated sequel to the breathtaking The Wrath and the Dawn, lauded by Publishers Weekly as "a potent page-turner of intrigue and romance."

I am surrounded on all sides by a desert. A guest, in a prison of sand and sun. My family is here. And I do not know whom I can trust.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad has been torn from the love of her husband Khalid, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once believed him a monster, but his secrets revealed a man tormented by guilt and a powerful curse—one that might keep them apart forever. Reunited with her family, who have taken refuge with enemies of Khalid, and Tariq, her childhood sweetheart, she should be happy. But Tariq now commands forces set on destroying Khalid's empire. Shahrzad is almost a prisoner caught between loyalties to people she loves. But she refuses to be a pawn and devises a plan.

While her father, Jahandar, continues to play with magical forces he doesn't yet understand, Shahrzad tries to uncover powers that may lie dormant within her. With the help of a tattered old carpet and a tempestuous but sage young man, Shahrzad will attempt to break the curse and reunite with her one true love.

Praise for The Rose and the Dagger:

“Above all there is the shattering, triumphant catharsis of love… In a story about stories, love is ‘the power to speak without words.’ Thrillingly full of feeling.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Fiery romance, a spirited heroine, shifting loyalties… With more than a few heartrending twists and turns.”—Booklist 


About Renée:
Renée lives in North Carolina (Go Heels!) with her husband Victor and their dog Mushu. Her YA fantasy novel, THE WRATH AND THE DAWN, will be published on May 12th, 2015. In her spare time, she likes to cook, dance salsa, and wreak havoc on the lives of her characters.

She’s also a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, as well as an active member of theScience Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America.

WebsiteTwitter | FacebookGoodreads | Tumblr  |Pinterest | Instagram

Giveaway Details:
1 winner will receive a paperback of THE WRATH & THE DAWN, a hardcover of THE ROSE & THE DAGGER, and a His Calipha candle from The Melting Library’s Etsy Store, US Only.

Ends on May 3rd at Midnight EST!

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Monday, April 25, 2016

Review: The Prey by Tom Isbell

Author:Tom Isbell
Title: The Prey
Series: The Prey #1
Publication: May 28, 2013
Publisher: Harper Teen
Genre: YA 
Source: Publisher

About the Book
The Maze Runner meets The Hunger Games in this heart-pounding trilogy. Orphaned teens, soon to be hunted for sport, must flee their resettlement camps in their fight for survival and a better life. For in the Republic of the True America, it's always hunting season. Riveting action, intense romance, and gripping emotion make this fast-paced adventure a standout debut.

After a radiation blast burned most of the Earth to a crisp, the new government established settlement camps for the survivors. At the camp, these sixteen-year-old "LTs," are eager to graduate as part of the Rite. Until they learn the dark truth: "LTs" doesn't stand for lieutenants but for Less Thans, feared by society and raised to be hunted for sport. They escape and join forces with the Sisters, twin girls who've suffered their own haunting fate. Together they seek the fabled New Territory, with sadistic hunters hot on their trail. Secrets are revealed, allegiances are made, and lives are at stake. As unlikely Book and fearless Hope lead their quest for freedom, these teens must find the best in themselves to fight the worst in their enemies.

Hope and her family have been in hiding for some time from the government. Along with her father and twin sister they've managed to survive on their own but have to constantly be on the move. One day, their father gets hurt and tells the girls that their best chances of survival is to separate. Hope doesn't want to do this but her sister leaves out on her own and for a short while that works until Hope turns back for her, only for them to get captured. What they go through is so horrific, cruel and sadistic trials all in the name of science. On the other side, Book, a boy disillusioned with the ways of the outside world. He thinks that someday they will graduate and become Lieutenants until they discover a boy in the desert on the brink of death, who shows them that the working of the world is much different from what they've been told. What begins as a journey towards freedom becomes something much bigger than their little band of friends. 

This was an okay story for me. It's completely possible that I've gotten tired of this genre but I do like the characters. I'm torn between wanting to know what happens to them in the next book or not reading it at all because of the ending. I felt like I went through so much with them only for them to do what they did. Truthfully after thinking about, I understand why they did it but I don't feel a huge connection to the world they are in. Overall, the pace is really slow and the characters are good but need more development. I think this a book that someone interested in dystopia might enjoy. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Dear Nobody: The True Diary of Mary Rose Edited by Gillian McCain and Legs McNeil

Title: Dear Nobody: The True Diary of Mary Rose
Trade-Paper Release Date: April  5, 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

They call me a freak.
I’m sick of it. It makes me want dangerous, bad things. Drugs—hard drugs—and people who are bad for me, but I don’t care, because I’m so lonely and no matter what their intentions are at least they’re talking to me…

They say that high school is supposed to be the best time of your life. But what if that's just not true?
More than anything, Mary Rose wants to fit in. To be loved. And she'll do whatever it takes to make that happen.

Even if it costs her her life.

Told through the raw and unflinching diary entries of a real teen, Mary Rose struggles with addiction, bullying, and a deadly secret. Her compelling story will inspire you—and remind you that you’re not alone.
Excerpt for Dear Nobody: The True Diary of Mary Rose

Praise for Dear Nobody: The True Diary of Mary Rose

“A rare, no-holds-barred documentation of an American teenager’s life.” –Publishers Weekly

“The voice is authentic, this book is an experience.’ –Kirkus

“The writing style has a beautiful lyricism…Readers will appreciate this unflinchingly honest work.” –School Library Journal

“Mary Rose’s diary is a heart-wrenching tale of a young girl trying to figure everything out…It will appeal to teens.” –VOYA Magazine

“One of the most powerful stories we've read this year.” –Justine Magazine

Goodreads Link:

Buy Links:

About the Editors:
Gillian McCain and Legs McNeil are co-authors of the highly acclaimed Please Kill Me: An Oral History of Punk. McNeil is a former editor at Spin and co-founder of Punk Magazine. Always drawn to “teen misfit” stories, he heard about Mary Rose’s journal through a neighbor and immediately knew it had to be shared. McCain has also collaborated on several poetry and photography collections. She is on the board of directors of The Poetry Project and currently lives in New York City.

Social Media Links:

Rafflecopter Giveaway Link for 2 Copies of Dear Nobody: The True Diary of Mary Rose: Runs April 1-April 30th (US & Canada only):

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Monday, April 4, 2016

Giveaway & Excerpt: Don’t Get Caught by Kurt Dinan

Title: Don’t Get Caught
Author : Kurt Dinan
Release Date: April 1, 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

10:00 tonight at the water tower.  Tell no one.   —Chaos Club

When Max receives a mysterious invite from the untraceable, epic prank-pulling Chaos Club, he has to ask: why him? After all, he’s Mr. 2.5 GPA, Mr. No Social Life. He’s Just Max. And his favorite heist movies have taught him this situation calls for Rule #4: Be suspicious. But it’s also his one shot to leave Just Max in the dust…

Yeah, not so much. Max and four fellow students—who also received invites—are standing on the newly defaced water tower when campus security “catches” them. Definitely a setup. And this time, Max has had enough. It’s time for Rule #7: Always get payback.

Let the prank war begin.
Oceans 11 meets The Breakfast Club in this entertaining, fast-paced debut filled with pranks and cons that will keep readers on their toes, never sure who’s pulling the strings or what’s coming next.
Buy Links:

Don’t Get Caught Book Trailer 

Excerpt for Don’t Get Caught:
Ellie calls it Operation Stranko Caper and gives each member of the Water Tower Five code names related to his or her role.

Adleta is Goon.

Malone is Shadow.

Wheeler is Potatoes.

Ellie is Crybaby.

And I’m Bleeder.

But at the moment, waiting for zero hour while standing in the back hallway where I can view the filled cafeteria, I’m feeling more like Puker because I want to sprint to the bathroom to vomit up my guts.

And to think this was all my idea. Here’s Heist Planning 101:

1.Identify your target. In this case, the target is Stranko’s phone. Clearly he’s investigating the Chaos Club; the pictures he took in the office prove that. Who knows what other evidence against them he might have? 

2.Formulate a plan. It took a week of observing Stranko during school (all of us) and after (thank you, Adleta) 
to realize he’s most separated from his phone during lunch duty. It sits on a table on the stage next to where Stranko polices the cafeteria. Now, if he were to be pulled away from the stage...

3.      Practice, practice, practice. The five of us rehearsed our roles for over a week. The plan isn’t the most complicated, but we only have one shot at Stranko’s phone.

Our final run-through of the plan lasted two hours on Saturday, with Ellie and Wheeler the most excited. Even Adleta, who’s probably risking at least a thousand push-ups every day for the rest of his life, liked the idea. Malone, go figure, predicted failure.

“It won’t work,” she said. “Maybe in a movie, yes, but not in real life it won’t.”

“No, they won’t see it coming,” I said. “No one expects things like this to happen, and especially not from us. We’re trying to stay out of trouble, remember? Why would we risk getting suspended?”

“Max is right,” Adleta said. “There’ll be too much going on for Stranko to realize what’s happened. It’s going to work.”

“What if we get caught?”

“Then we do what you should do whenever you get busted,” Wheeler said. “We lie our asses off.”

I don’t mind Malone’s concerns. In fact, I appreciate them. The more I’m around her, the more I depend on her skepticism. Every heist crew needs someone to point out the weaknesses in a plan. Malone’s perfect for that. She’s also tech savvy, a brilliant artist, and athletic as hell. A jack-of-all-trades, really. Or more like a jill-of-all-trades.

A heist can go wrong for any number of reasons, the worst of which is the double cross. You can just never be sure if everyone is really on your side or if they’re working an angle. I don’t necessarily think anyone in my crew is behind the setup at the water tower, but the hint of doubt is there. Still, why would someone set us up to get busted and include him or herself in the busting? It makes no sense.

We picked Monday for our heist because that’s the school day where everyone, even the administration, just slogs through until the final bell. At the time I was excited, but now it’s nausea city. Reality sucks that way. But I’m not going to back down and hide in the theater again like I did the day after the water tower. Not that I could put a stop to our plan if I wanted to. Everyone’s in position. The pin’s pulled and the grenade heaved. All I can do is try not to get my head blown off.

On stage, Stranko reads something on his phone, then places it on the table beside him before returning to his surveillance. In a lot of ways, thinking of him as a prison guard is dead-on. The entire building is a prison, with the staff as guards, students as prisoners, and rules that dictate when we can stand up and leave, talk, and even go the to the bathroom. The school even has security cameras, which are positioned in all corners of the cafeteria. I’ve seen the room with the video monitors though and am not as worried as I might be in a newer school. The monitors here are in black and white and the images almost blurry, like it may be the first security system ever created, maybe used back in the Garden of Eden where God watched a grainy image of Eve heisting that apple.

Then, right on cue at 11:45, Crybaby, sitting at her usual table near the front of the cafeteria, pushes her tray aside and puts her head down in her arms.

Step One, the Split, has begun.

Praise for Don’t Get Caught
“Don’t Get Caught is just everything I love about young adult fiction. It's funny and awkward and exciting and full of revelations and surprises.” -Josh Berk, author of The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin

"Not only is Don't Get Caught the best kind of underdog story---heartfelt and hilarious---but it's filled with genuine surprises up until the very last page, which features one of my favorite endings in recent memory. I'm highly inspired to prank someone right now." -Lance Rubin, author of Denton Little's Deathdate

"Witty, charming and always surprising...Call it OCEAN'S 11TH GRADE or whatever you like, Don’t Get Caught snatched my attention and got away clean." --Joe Schreiber, author of Con Academy and Au Revoir Crazy European Chick

“Genre-savvy, clever, and full of "Heist Rules" like "If questioned, be evasive" and "Play to your crew's strengths," this twisty tale is funny, fast-paced, and full of surprises. –Publishers Weekly

“This caper comedy about an Ocean's 11-style group of high school masterminds will keep readers guessing.” –Kirkus

“Teen readers will delight in the way such totally different individuals begin to cooperate to triumph over their wrongs.” –VOYA Magazine

About the Author:
Kurt Dinan has taught high school English for over twenty-one years, and while he’s never pulled any of the pranks detailed in this novel, he was once almost arrested in college for blizzarding the campus with fliers promoting a fake concert. He lives and works in the suburbs of Cincinnati with his wife and his four children he affectionately refers to as “the Crime Spree.” Don’t Get Caught is his first novel.

Social Media Links:

Twitter: @KurtDinan

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Friday, April 1, 2016

Giveaway & Excerpt: My Kind of Crazy by Robin Reul

Title: My Kind of Crazy
Author: Robin Reul
Release Date: April 5, 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire 
A promposal that (literally) goes up in flames sparks a friendship that might be just crazy enough to work 
Despite the best of intentions, seventeen-year old, wisecracking Hank Kirby can’t quite seem to catch a break.  It’s not that he means to screw things up all the time, it just happens.  A lot.  Case in point: his attempt to ask out the girl he likes literally goes up in flames when he spells “Prom” in sparklers on her lawn…and nearly burns down her house. 
As if that wasn’t bad enough, Peyton Breedlove, a brooding loner and budding pyromaniac, witnesses the whole thing.  Much to Hank’s dismay, Peyton takes an interest in him—and his “work.” The two are thrust into an unusual friendship, but their boundaries are tested when Hank learns that Peyton is hiding some dark secrets, secrets that may change everything he thought he knew about Peyton.

Buy LinksAmazon | BN | BAM | !ndigo | Indiebound

Excerpt for My Kind of Crazy:
So here’s the thing. It’s not like I woke up this morning and said, “Hey, I think I’ll light the 100-year-old Eastern Red Cedar tree in front of Amanda Carlisle’s house on fire today.” Because I don’t know about you, but when I wake up, my mind doesn’t go straight to arson. Honestly, the first thing I focus on is how fast I can get from my room to the bathroom without my dad’s girlfriend, Monica, trying to chat me up while I’m awkwardly standing there in my boxers.
            I’d read online that how you ask a girl to Prom can completely make or break a guy’s chances. I wanted to do something special that Amanda would never forget. Apparently it worked, just not the way I intended. ‘Use sparklers to spell out PROM’ the article on the Internet said. There was even a picture with them all lit up on the ground. Totally idiot proof.
I snuck into her yard like a ninja under the cover of darkness and tried to jam the sparklers in her lawn, but the soil was hard and unyielding. I looked around, desperate, and then I spied a nice soft patch of mulch underneath the cedar tree near the side of her yard. It was perfect, and the sparkler slid in easily. A few minutes later, I had them all lined up just like I’d seen in the picture, and once they were lit, yelled, “Amanda!” I actually had to call out twice because she didn’t hear me the first time. Then she came to the window and gazed down as the sparklers fizzled down to the ground and--boom!
Turns out that was fresh pine mulch underneath that cedar. Pine trees produce turpentine, so I might as well have lit those sparklers in a pool of gasoline for how quickly the mulch caught fire.
I didn’t know what to do, so I ran. Which is why I’m now hiding behind a bush across the street in her neighbor’s yard. This is definitely going down in history as the most epic promposal fail ever. And then, as if things couldn’t get more catastrophic, they do.
Baseball is practically a religion where I live in South Coast Massachusetts. People take their Red Sox pretty seriously, and the die-hards decorate their trees with red and blue streamers every season in a show of support. The Carlisles are no exception. And it doesn’t take long for the flames to catch and race the length of those ribbons into the dry branches above.
From where I’m crouched down, I have a perfect view of the Carlisle house. I can see Amanda’s eyes widen and her jaw drop open as she observes the quickly escalating situation in her yard. She pulls away from the window, I’m guessing to call the fire department. We should probably talk about Prom some other time.
            With things clearly going south, I do what any sensible person would do: I get the hell out of there. Of course, a sensible person wouldn’t have put sparklers in a pile of fresh mulch directly under a highly flammable tree. Hindsight is 20/20.
So in the most casual way possible, I hook my backpack - which is loaded with empty sparkler boxes - over my shoulders, hop on my bike, and pedal away from the scene at what I hope passes for a normal speed. Cool as a cucumber, that’s me.
I reason for a brief moment that, perhaps, Amanda didn’t actually see me there. Even if she did, she doesn’t know me all that well so she might not recognize me. I am wearing black jeans, and my Batman hoodie conceals my medium-length, stick straight brown hair, so I am sort of camouflaged. Not to mention, those flames were pretty distracting.
The fire station is about five streets away, near the library. I start to worry that the firemen won’t get there fast enough and Amanda’s whole house might burn down. I know I’m a lame-ass chicken shit for hightailing it out of there, but the last thing I need is Dad on my case for something else. As far as he’s concerned, I can’t do much right. I would like to say he’s just being an asshole, but lately I’ve been wondering if he’s onto something.
            I consider turning around and heading back to Amanda’s, which would be the right thing to do, but I swear I’m about to piss myself with fear so I pedal faster, listening for the sounds of approaching police sirens. For good measure, I jerk my bike off the main road, cutting through the back alleys toward home.

Praise for My Kind of Crazy
“I had so much fun reading this book that it made want to accidentally set things on fire. Great characters you instantly care for, and a lot of heart.” -- Adi Alsaid, author of Never Always Sometimes and Let’s Get Lost

“MY KIND OF CRAZY is for everyone who felt they never fit in and weren't sure that they wanted to.” --Eileen Cook, author of Remember and What Would Emma Do?

“Hank Kirby will steal your heart, Peyton Breedlove will set it on fire, and then together they’ll mend the pieces.” --Shaun Hutchinson, author of FML and Violent Ends

“MY KIND OF CRAZY is my kind of read, and Reul, the best kind of writer.” --Gae Polisner, author of The Summer of Letting Go and The Pull of Gravity

“Funny, authentic, and, at turns, heartbreaking.” -- Jessi Kirby, author of Things We Know By Heart

“A sensitive look at two teens with complicated histories learning to build a future together.” –Kirkus
About the Author:
Robin Reul has been writing stories since she was old enough to hold a pen. Though she grew up on movie sets and worked for years in the film and television industry, she ultimately decided to focus her attention on writing young adult novels. And unlike Hank, she does not know how to ride a bike. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, son and daughter. My Kind Of Crazy is her first novel. Find her at Social Media Links: 
Website | My Kind of Crazy Landing Page | Twitter | Facebook 

2 Copies of My Kind of Crazy:
Runs April 1-April 30 (US & Canada only)
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