IT’S GIVEAWAY TIME!!

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My first giveaway was such a success and I’m super excited to be doing another one. This one is a bit smaller than my first but still pretty exciting. Here’s what the prize pack includes:

Looking at it now I’d say that’s a lot of stuff. To enter click the link below. The giveaway closes on September 3 and winners will be announced on September 4. Good luck and may the odds be ever in your favor.

Click here to enter the giveaway!

Book Review: The Pretty App

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Synopsis from Amazon.com:

The delightfully smart and funny companion to The Boyfriend App, about a mean girl who changes her ways. Author Katie Sise spins another fully loaded tale of technology, secrets, and big-time romance in this story of what it takes to be #trulybeautiful.

Poor Blake Dawkins! She’s rich, she’s gorgeous, and she’s the queen bee of Harrison High. But it turns out Blake’s life is not so perfect—just talk to her dad, who constantly reminds her that she’s not up to par, or to her ex-bff, Audrey, who doesn’t even look her in the eye.

Then every high school in America becomes obsessed with posting selfies on the ubiquitous Pretty App. Next: Leo, an adorable transfer student, arrives at Harrison and begins to show Blake that maybe being a queen bee doesn’t mean being a queen b*tch. And though Audrey suspects somebody’s playing foul, Blake finds herself catapulted to internet fame after being voted one of the prettiest girls in the country. She’s whisked away to star in a reality show—in Hollywood, on live TV. But she doesn’t know who to trust. Because everybody on the show wants to win. And nobody is there to make friends.

If you haven’t read The Boyfriend App don’t read this review unless you want to be spoiled. This is your last warning. Turn back now. Don’t do this. Good? Good.

I went into this book with low expectations because even though I loved The Boyfriend App I hated Blake and how she treated Audrey and felt like having the story in her point of view was going to be like reading Something Blue after Something Borrowed (if you’ve never read these books you really should!).

Except it wasn’t. Blake has her issues but I definitely didn’t hate her as much as I thought I would. I actually kind of liked her. I also liked that we got to see a lot of Audrey and the characters from the first book in this novel. I thought Blake was funny and interesting. It was hard to sympathize with her at first because as the synopsis states she’s got everything. Once I got to know Blake, however, I realized maybe she doesn’t have everything.

It was interesting getting her point of view on her friendship with Audrey and why it failed. I still think what Blake did was terrible but I also now better understand where she’s coming from. The love story in this book wasn’t as great as that between Aidan and Audrey but it was okay.

Overall, I’d still say this is a buy. It made me laugh and smile and after some of the other books I was reading it was nice to read a pretty simple story without too much drama. It’s a fun read.

Borrow or Buy: Buy!

Favorite Line: 

“Parents are flawed. Maybe it’s just about loving them anyway.”

Stars:

4 stars

Other Reviews

Books Equal Awesomeness

The Eater of Books

What Am I Reading?

Author Spotlight: Katie Sise

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Source: Twitter

Katie Sise is multitalented. She makes and sells her own jewelry, been on TV, and has written both nonfiction and fiction books. I had the pleasure of talking to her and learning about her writing, her newest books, her jewelry making, and much more.

What first inspired you to start writing?

“I’ve always loved to write. I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t writing, even as early as seven and eight-years-old. Writing [is] how I understand the world. I always loved stories as a little kid, and still do today. That need to tell a story is what inspires me to write.”

What was the transition from writing a nonfiction book (Creative Girl) to a fiction novel (The Boyfriend App) like?

“Writing fiction is so different from writing nonfiction, which I learned the hard way. I practiced writing fiction for years before The Boyfriend App clicked. Writing fiction every day was how I learned what worked plot-wise, how to create characters, and how to pace a story. I’m still making mistakes and learning with each new book.”

What was the inspiration behind The Boyfriend App?

“I wanted to create an intelligent heroine whose smarts get her into trouble, and then gets her out of it. I also love exploring the effects that technology has on our lives, and this was a fun way to do it.”

What is the sequel to The Boyfriend App about?

The Pretty App is a companion novel told from Blake Dawkin’s perspective. Blake is Audrey’s sort-of nemesis in The Boyfriend App, so it was a lot of fun to get inside her head and write from her POV. The Pretty App is the story of Blake’s wild and crazy journey to a reality television show in LA based on the premise of The Pretty App, which is another out-of-control app that makes users their most beautiful selves but in a controversial way.”

Are you working on any other novels right now?

“I’m working on a brand new series – I can’t share too much about that one yet, but I’m hoping readers who liked The Boyfriend App will like this one, too.”

Besides writing you also make jewelry. What first got you interested in that profession?

“I’ve always loved creative projects, and when I was in my early twenties I especially loved fashion. I was working in a clothing boutique, and a customer asked how much the necklace I was wearing cost. I’d made the necklace myself but she still wanted to buy it so I quoted a price, she bought it, and the rest was history. The owner of the boutique was very supportive; she cleared a shelf for me and allowed me to start selling my pieces there. Being in her store (Dernier Cri) led to all kinds of fun creative work: I started doing television hosting for style segments, then wrote Creative Girl because of the combination of jewelry and television work, which really then led to writing fiction. I owe a lot to that boutique owner, who I’m still close friends with today.”

Where can fans buy your jewelry?

http://www.katharinesise.com

Outside of writing and jewelry making, what do you do in your free time?

“I read, obsess over movies and my favorite TV shows, and spend time with my family.”

Who are your favorite authors and what are some of your favorite books to read?

I love Kieran Scott’s writing, and particularly love her new book, Only Everything. I also can’t wait for Anna Carey’s Blackbird. This summer I brought Jen Calonita’s Summer State of Mind to the pool and Tana French is my favorite adult writer.”

Do you have any advise for aspiring writers?

“Keep writing! Every day. Set a word goal for yourself ([try] 1000 words per day) and stick to it. You can write an entire book that way in less than three months.”

Is there anything else you would like to add or say to fans?

“Thank you for reading!”

 

Follow her on Twitter and check her out on Facebook.

Book Review: The Boyfriend App

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After I met Katie Sise at a YA Book Panel, I found myself asking how I’d never heard of her before and why I hadn’t picked up her book yet.

Therefore I quickly went on a library quest to find this book and lucky for me it was available on my library’s digital site. After being put on a wait list I finally got it and read it within a day. It was that good.

The novel centers around Audrey McCarthy, a computer whiz, who enters an app making contest in an effort to win a college scholarship that she desperately needs if she has any chance of going to a good school.

Based on her lack of a love life, Audrey comes up with “The Boyfriend App”, an app that originally was just to match girls up with their perfect guy and tell them when said guy was nearby. However, after seeing her friend dissed by her so-called match Audrey realizes she needs to think of an even better idea if she wants to win the contest.

Discovering a secret in Public, the big name company that makes everyone’s technology (very similar to Apple) and is running the contest, Audrey is able to make an even better app that turns her world upside down.

I loved this novel. The chemistry between Audrey and one of her best friends, Aidan, is fantastic. They obviously like each other but they’re just too chicken to realize it and although it drove me crazy throughout the novel it was great when *spoiler alert* they finally get together.

Also, what made me happy about this book was although Audrey is definitely presented as an underdog type character, she’s not pushed around. From the beginning of the novel she stands up for herself against her ex-best friend turned bully/diva, Blake. Audrey is a determined, head strong, and funny character.

From the start she knows what she wants for herself and she’s willing to do whatever it takes to get it without losing herself or changing her morals to do so. Additionally, what I loved about Audrey is she’s really dealing with some heavy stuff. Her father past away a few years back and now she and her mom are on their own, trying to get by. The reason the competition is so important to Audrey is because she knows how smart she is and all she wants is to better her education at a great school and get out of her town but she doesn’t have the money to do so.

That’s what I loved most about this book. Audrey didn’t want to become the most popular girl in school or something ridiculous. She just wants to go to a good college. It’s an admirable goal and I loved her more for it. Plus she was just this awesome cute little nerd that wanted to win. I supported her the whole way.

If you haven’t already, definitely check out this book. It’s a cute, fun read that’s perfect for summer reading by the pool. Also, Sise plans on writing a sequel/companion to the novel which I am now impatiently waiting for.

Favorite Line: “When somebody gets taken away from you, people try to say all kinds of things to make you feel better. Like how time heals (it doesn’t) or how sorry they are (who cares?) or how God has a plan (if He does, why is it crappy so far?). This was the first time someone said something that helped a little bit. I was grateful for it.”

Stars: 5 out of 5. Although it has many of the same qualities of many cliched teen romance novels, there were so many great characters in this novel that I became instantly obsessed with it.

Borrow or Buy: Buy. Totally worth buying. I will probably buy it at some point because I’ve been rereading parts of it since I finished it last week. I even considered renewing it for that reason. Then I figured that would be selfish. Definitely worth adding to your library.

Other Reviews:

Good Books, Good Wine

Chapter by Chapter

A Pondering Moose

Four Awe-Inspiring Authors and One Great Release Party

Kieran Scott, one of my favorite authors, celebrated the release of her newest book, Only Everything, at the Hillsdale Public Library tonight. Along with Scott were three of her fellow Young Adult authors, Jen Calonita (Summer State of Mind), Elizabeth Eulberg (Better Off Friends), and Katie Sise (The Boyfriend App).

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Elizabeth Eulberg, center, reads an excerpt of her newest novel, Better Off Friends.

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Authors (from left to right) Eulberg, Scott, and Sise answer questions from the audience.

Each author read excerpts from their newest releases, and Calonita and Eulberg, along with narration from Scott, acted out the prologue of Only Everything in the most hilarious manner possible. Check out the video below.

Afterwards the floor was open to the audience for questions and everything was fair game including questions about the writing process, the future of our favorite books series, and how getting a book published works.

During the Q&A Scott presented the audience with a great surprise, showing us the second book in the True Love trilogy, Complete Nothing, and the cover for the third book, Something New. Sadly, the cover for the third book is a secret that must be kept therefore I couldn’t take a picture but believe me when I say it’s amazing.

After that awesome reveal we also received some insight on other upcoming novels. For example for those of you that have been anxiously and impatiently waiting for the sequel to The Lonely Hearts Club you will only have to wait a little while longer. The sequel will be released early next year and according Eulberg she’s excited to finally get it out as well. In the mean time she revealed there will be novellas of the series released towards the end of this year that will come in the form of FREE ebooks. Something to definitely look forward to.

Additionally, Scott informed us that the last book in her Shadowlands trilogy will be coming out in July (only two more months!) we will know early on in the novel if Tristan is a good guy or not, thank God. The not knowing is killing me.

Besides all the exclusive book information, it was great to sit and laugh with all these amazing authors that I never thought I’d get to meet in person. They were all so amazing to talk to and I had such a great time.

If you ever get a chance to meet any of these four wonderful ladies I say do it because it’s totally worth it. Also, be sure to check out all of their novels. I left with a long list of books I now need to read and I’m sure you will too.

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My signed copy of Eulberg’s Revenge of the Girl with the Great Personality

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My signed copy of Scott’s Only Everything

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Kieran Scott and I at the release of her new book, Only Everything