Evil Warlord Book Hoarding Bloggers

Did I catch your attention? I hope so!

Recently on Twitter (like today) #kloutthecrown has been trending with book bloggers along with this pretty sweet image created by Michele @ Reader Respite

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So, of course I needed to look into it. Apparently Crown considers any blogger who does not review a book immediately an "evil warlord book hoarder". Yup, you read that correctly, for a break down of their program Blogging for Books and their fine print, head over to Reader's Respite Blog and read her extremely informative post.

My feelings on this are as follows:
  • To say that a book blogger is a hoarder because it takes them time to read and write a review is pretty harsh. Personally, I have a full time job and I am a part time student, reading and book blogging is a hobby so sometimes it gets put on the back burner when I'm busy - that is just part of life. (*Please note that since starting this post, Michele has said that Crown has apologized and taken the phrase "Evil Warlord Book Hoarding Bloggers" down from their website and is making changes, but I still think the damage is done)
  • Measuring a bloggers influence just seems weird to me and I agree with Michele from Reader's Respite that I feel bad for authors who are given to bloggers with low Klout scores. I also think that by doing this they could be potentially limiting themselves, but I guess that's more their problem then mine.
  • To require book reviews to contain specific elements and be a certain length takes away creative freedom, which is part of what a blog is all about; I share my thoughts as they are formed in my head - I'm not preparing a book report and actually don't like book reviews that are too lengthy and sound like book reports.
  • To require reviews to be posted to specific places also rubs me the wrong way. I post to my blog and goodreads because I enjoy both. I share on facebook and twitter when I feel I have something worth sharing with more than my regular followers. I post to Amazon when an author or publisher has asked me to, and asking is much different than requiring.
What does all this mean? I most definitely will not be joining Blogging for Books! 
Will I boycott Crown all together? No, but I won't go out of my way to purchase or review thier products either.

Let me know in the comments: What are your thoughts on being an "Evil Warlord Book Hoarding Blogger" or on the policies when someone enrolls in "Blogging for Books"?

Crane: Book Blitz, Giveaway

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Crane by Stacey Rourke
Publication Date: May 26, 2014
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal
Amazon ~ B&N ~ Smashwords

Synopsis:The Horseman is unending,
his presence shan’t lessen.
If you break the curse,
you become the legend.
Washington Irving and Rip Van Winkle had no choice but to cover up the deadly truth behind Ichabod Crane’s disappearance. Centuries later, a Crane returns to Sleepy Hollow awakening macabre secrets once believed to be buried deep.
What if the monster that spawned the legend lived within you?
Now, Ireland Crane, reeling from a break-up and seeking a fresh start, must rely on the newly awakened Rip Van Winkle to discover the key to channeling the darkness swirling within her. Bodies are piling high and Ireland is the only one that can save Sleepy Hollow by embracing her own damning curse.
But is anyone truly safe when the Horseman rides?

Displaying Stacey.jpgAUTHOR BIO
RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel
Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013

Stacey Rourke lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant, dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head. Mark your calendars! Her latest literary adventure, Crane, will release May 26, 2014. She is currently hard at work on the continuations of this thrilling Legends Saga, as well as other literary projects.

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Blood Oath: Book Blitz, Excerpt, Giveaway

by Samantha Coville
Release Date: 04/29/14
Amazon ~ B&N ~ Smashwords

Summary from Goodreads:
Raya Sarian has always known she was different. The water calls to her in a way that isn't human. She has seen things that would scar anyone for life. And her father has been non existent in her childhood.
Because he is a Siren.
A blood drinker.
A monster.
And now she must live with him in a world populated with enemies and dangerous friends. Can she survive the year?


It had seemed like a great idea eleven years ago, but, now, with Elder Eden staring him down like he was a disobedient child, Christopher Sarian feared that maybe it wasn’t as brilliant as he had originally thought. Her aqua eyes bore into his and he shifted in his seat, uncomfortable with the situation he had put himself in.
Her voice was silky smooth and strong, even in her old age. It also had a slight hiss to it when she was angered. That hiss seeped through in her words to Christopher. “No one will accept her here; her kind is not welcome by others. You can try to win my approval all you want, but the others will make her miserable. Is that really the best for the child?”
“She will be seventeen, you know.” In comparison to the Elder’s, his voice was small and quiet.
“I do know, Christopher, and I know that her presence would bring unrest to our already shaky colony.” Her wrinkled and dainty hands rested softly on the large oak table that was usually occupied by the Elders of the area. Now it was just her and him and the uneasy air between them.
He cleared his throat a little. He was usually so sure of himself and his power over everyone, but now he was reminded that the Elders would always be the ones in charge no matter who had the crown. But that had its upsides; they were a great source of advice and information. They hadn’t failed him yet. “I haven’t seen her for eleven years, Eden. She’ll be an adult soon and she’ll leave me behind forever. I want to see her, and claim her as my daughter, for one last time before then.”
Eden sighed and took a seat in her usual high back chair. She rubbed her temples in slow circles and then lifted her eyes to the man she had watched grow over the years. When Christopher had been crowned, she had kept a business relationship between them, calling him by his title and expecting the same back. But they were far more than that, they were family though not by blood. “Fine. You are my Lord after all. But if anything goes awry during her time here,” she threatened.
“Everything will go perfectly, I promise.”
She pointed a firm finger at him accusingly, but a faint smile crossed her full lips. “We’ll see about that, young man!”

About the Author:Samantha Coville is an editor and literary critic at her website, Sammy the Bookworm. She’s been writing short stories for six years and has appeared in magazines, both in print and online. When she’s not doing something book related, she is singing in her church choir or enjoying one of the theme parks in her home state of Florida.

$20 Amazon Gift Card (INT)

Book Blitz Organized by:

Top Ten Tuesday #10 (5/27/2014)

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted over at The Broke and Bookish, and this weeks Top Ten is a freebie (pick your own topic)Top Ten Books I'm Glad Were Recommended to Me 

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by JK Rowling (recommended by a teacher in elementary school)
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1)

Ender's Shadow by Orsen Scott Card (recommended by my sister)
Ender's Shadow (Ender's Shadow, #1)

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (recommended by my students)
The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1)

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein (recommended by Val @ Innocent Smiley Reviews)
Code Name Verity

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (recommended by a friend)
The Fault in Our Stars

Cinder by Melissa Meyer (recommended by pretty much everyone who has a YA book blog)
Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1)

Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris (recommended by a friend)
Dead Until Dark (Sookie Stackhouse, #1)

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (recommended by my cousin)
The Night Circus

Living Backwards by Tracey Sweeney (recommended by a friend)
Living Backwards

Don't Fall: Book Blitz, Excerpt, and Giveaway

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Don't Fall by Rachel Schieffelbein
Release Date: 2014
Swoon Romance
Summary from Goodreads:
In which a teenage girl endures the over-protective love of her adoptive mother until she falls for a boy who has her wanting to spread her wings, pitched as a contemporary retelling of RAPUNZEL.
Seventeen-year-old Anya leads a very secluded life in a house on the edge of town with her adopted mother. She doesn't go to school, but instead has a private tutor. Her over-protective mom keeps her so sheltered that she doesn't even have a best friend.
But Anya doesn't seem to mind. She has her books, her photography, and her daydreams, and would do anything to please her mom. Until one day at the library, the only place she's allowed to go, she takes a picture of a beautiful boy.
Before long she's lying to her mom, and sneaking out late at night to meet Zander. But Zander wants more than a secret romance. If Anya wants to be with the boy of her dreams, she will have to risk her relationship with the only other person she's ever cared about.

Guest Post- Retellings
First of all, thank you so much for having me on your blog! I’m going to talk a bit about fairy tales and why I wrote this retelling.

I have always loved fairy tales. I grew up on them, and I suppose I’m a bit of a romantic. I love magic, and true love, and happily ever afters. It makes me happy that retellings are gaining in popularity. All those old stories I loved are getting a new light shone on them, new twists, new characters, and new perspectives.

Rapunzel has been my favorite fairy tale from long before Disney made its version of it. (Although the Disney version is pretty cute.) To be honest, I think a big part of why it’s my favorite has to do with fond memories of visiting an elderly neighbor who used to read it to me.

It was a story I really wanted to work with, but making it contemporary had its challenges! So I will tell you now, no one climbs anyone’s hair. It’s the theme of the story I wanted to hold onto. The idea of this girl being locked away from the world, and how she has to set herself free to really find herself. 

I love Anya, my Rapunzel. She’s sweet and innocent, but also spunky and fun. I wanted to write her a modern fairy tale, with its own kind of magic, true love, and happily ever after. Hopefully I’ve succeeded, and readers will fall for her and Zander, too.

About the Author
Rachel grew up in a tiny town in Minnesota. She still lives there, with her husband and their four kids. She coaches high school speech and theater, rides Arabian horses, reads as much as she can, and writes stories.
Author Links:

1 ebook of Don’t Fall + $10 Amazon Gift Card (INT) 

Book Blitz Organized by:

Ever Near

Ever Near

Author: Melissa MacVicar
Publication Date: September 2013
Red Adept Publishing
Source: Author/Publisher in exchange for an honest review
Summary from Goodreads: Love is ever near. But trouble is never far.
Nantucket Island is haunted, but only sixteen-year-old Jade Irving knows it. Ignoring the disturbing spirits isn’t an option, because one dwells in the enormous historic home she shares with her newly blended family. Jade is finding it more and more difficult to explain away Lacey’s ghostly, anguished tantrums, especially with Charlie, her gorgeous, almost step-brother, living right across the hall.
When a power-hungry ghost hunter tracks down Jade and blackmails her, Jade’s secret teeters on the edge of exposure, and her entire future hangs in the balance. If anyone finds out Jade can talk to ghosts, her life will be forever changed.
Can she save herself, free Lacey, and hang on to her tenuous connection with Charlie? Or will everything she ever wanted slip through her fingers?Love is ever near. But trouble is never far.
Nantucket Island is haunted, but only sixteen-year-old Jade Irving knows it. Ignoring the disturbing spirits isn’t an option, because one dwells in the enormous historic home she shares with her newly blended family. Jade is finding it more and more difficult to explain away Lacey’s ghostly, anguished tantrums, especially with Charlie, her gorgeous, almost step-brother, living right across the hall.
When a power-hungry ghost hunter tracks down Jade and blackmails her, Jade’s secret teeters on the edge of exposure, and her entire future hangs in the balance. If anyone finds out Jade can talk to ghosts, her life will be forever changed.
Can she save herself, free Lacey, and hang on to her tenuous connection with Charlie? Or will everything she ever wanted slip through her fingers?

Rating: 3 Stars

Review: I was quickly drawn into this book, the description of Nantucket and scene setting was excellent. The book started out feeling like it was going to lean more toward romance, but later it took a pretty dark twist and became more of a paranormal book.

Jade is a pretty typical teenage girl, she is a bit whiny and makes decisions that don’t always make sense. I love Jade’s best friend. I like Charlie and felt like he was pretty consistent. The ghosts are not nice; they are angry and sad and lash out. They were an excellent touch.

The book was a quick, easy read. The romance was well done, but I found the whole step-brother thing to be a bit weird and an unnecessary plot element. The ghost hunter also felt a bit unnecessary and I really didn’t like where things went with him.

Overall, I enjoyed this book and it’s unique setting and unique take on ghosts and spirits.

Code Name Verity

Code Name Verity

Author: Elizabeth Wein
Publication: May 15, 2012
Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads: Oct. 11th, 1943-A British spy plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France. Its pilot and passenger are best friends. One of the girls has a chance at survival. The other has lost the game before it's barely begun.
When "Verity" is arrested by the Gestapo, she's sure she doesn't stand a chance. As a secret agent captured in enemy territory, she's living a spy's worst nightmare. Her Nazi interrogators give her a simple choice: reveal her mission or face a grisly execution.
As she intricately weaves her confession, Verity uncovers her past, how she became friends with the pilot Maddie, and why she left Maddie in the wrecked fuselage of their plane. On each new scrap of paper, Verity battles for her life, confronting her views on courage, failure and her desperate hope to make it home. But will trading her secrets be enough to save her from the enemy?
A Michael L. Printz Award Honor book that was called "a fiendishly-plotted mind game of a novel" in The New York Times, Code Name Verity is a visceral read of danger, resolve, and survival that shows just how far true friends will go to save each other.

Rating: 4 stars

Review: Normally, I am not a historical fiction reader, but when a book blogger who basically has the same favorites as me recommends a book, I give it a shot.

I can’t tell you about much because it will give things away, but I will tell you I read this book in under 24 hours – which translates to “I think you should read it”. It’s the type of book that I think will be even more powerful the second time you read it. I also suggest that you avoid reading reviews because most likely something will be spoiled, but since I can’t help but review the book and do my best to avoid spoiling it, here goes…

The perspective was unique, it’s a writing style that I haven’t experienced before and I liked it. While this is a fictional story with fictional characters, it feels like it could have been real and it feels like it could have actually happened. The book feels well researched. The first half of the book took a bit of pushing myself to get through but around the 75% mark I was so happy to have persevered.

There were a few things that bugged me while reading this book, first of all there was a lot of technical-ish talk and details the stalled the plot a bit. Some of the storytelling lacked finesse – bits and pieces thrown in, choppy-ness, telling more than showing – but I think this was purposeful because of the situation the person is in. I also felt like there was a lot of nothing, again, it seemed purposeful. The friendship is a crucial part of this story and I wish there was more in the development of the friendship.

BUT, it’s a captivating story. You can’t help but become invested in the two main characters. It’s suspenseful – you will be wondering how much of what she says is true and you will wonder who is working for what side and you will guess and then change your mind several times – it’s really cleverly done. Pay attention while you read, there are so many intricate details that tie together beautifully (and to be totally honest I probably missed some and will have a greater appreciation the second time I read this book).

The ending will crush you, literally I thought my heart was ripped out for a few minutes to collect my thoughts and process what had happened. This powerful scene definitely boosted the star rating for me, because this book sticks with you, it almost haunts you with “KISS ME HARDY! Kiss me QUICK!”

Stacking the Shelves #13 (5/24/2014)

Stacking the Shelves

Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

From the Library 
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Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
(special shout out to Val @ The Innocent Smiley for the recommendation)

Top Ten Tuesday #9 (5/20/2014)

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted over at The Broke and Bookish, and this weeks Top Ten is: Top Ten Books about Friendship

The Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling
Harry, Ron, and Hermione - umm hello definition of BEST FRIENDS FOREVER (and let's be honest if I can add Harry Potter to a list, I'm going to do it!)
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1)

Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow by Orsen Scott Card
Ender forms friendships despite his situation in battle school. I love the relationship between Ender and Bean, which you really learn about in Ender's Shadow.
Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet, #1)  Ender's Shadow (Ender's Shadow, #1) 

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Katniss and Rue - making friends in unlikely situations.
The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1) 

The Ascendance Trilogy by Jennifer A Neilsen
I don't want to give things away but the friendship that develops over these books is really powerful.
The False Prince (The Ascendance Trilogy, #1)

The Sookie Stackhouse Series by Charlaine Harris
Sookie is the definition of a good friend, she is seriously willing to go to bat for the people (or vampires or shifters) that she cares about.
Dead Until Dark (Sookie Stackhouse, #1)

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
This is another book about an unlikely friendship.
The Help

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
I know this one seems like a stretch but I really think there are some important lessons about the power of friendship and the effects it can have.
Thirteen Reasons Why

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry
Annemarie and Ellen, friends who become sisters and stand up for what is right.
Number the Stars

Living Backwards by Tracey Sweeney
Friendship that stands the test of time.
Living Backwards

Imagination Designs