Monday, August 31, 2009

Author Uncovered: Maggie Stiefvater (Author Interview)

Hiya guys! For today's Secret Agent Uncovered, I have Maggie Stiefvater sitting here with me in the interrogation room! (do you get the joke? Undercover=interrogation? Okay, guess not...) Anyway, aside from my not-so-funny sense of humor, I had the pleasure of interviewing the amazing author of SHIVER! YAY! I was so excited when she emailed me back the interview answers! Here it is. Hope you LURVE it!

Current Releases:

What's the most impulsive decision you've ever made?
Getting engaged. I’d been dating my boyfriend for a month and a half and I’d sort of known I was going to marry him after a week. Well, he asked (at a stop light) and I said “okay.” Anyway, we’re still married. I’m actually writing the answers to this interview in the car on the way back from seeing a movie with him. (He’s driving, in case you’re wondering at my multi-tasking).

I’m a big believer in impulse and intuition.

What’s up next for you writing-wise?
I’m working on the third book in the Shiver trilogy now, and after that, I have a standalone book that I can’t tell you anything about but I’m very excited about. *insert evil grin here*

What’s your favorite piece of advice for writers?
Read. Read the bestsellers in your genre and read industry blogs. No point being an ignoramus when everyone around you knows what they’re talking about.

How are you and Grace alike? How are you different?
Oh, we’re not very alike at all. I stole some part of my husband for her, but then I started adding bits and pieces of various friends to her. Grace is very pragmatic and stoic and good with numbers. I am very impatient and impulsive (clearly) and head-in-the-clouds. I guess we’re both similar in that we’re both level-headed in a crisis. I’m not a screamer. I just see a problem and fix it.

What’s the last thing you Googled?
Oh man, probably myself. No, I’m kidding. I think it was for the blog post I just did on who I would cast as Sam and Grace in a hypothetical Shiver movie. I was looking for photos of Alex Turner to be Sam. Google images, baby!

Who or what was your inspiration for Shiver?
Well, it was twofold: a desire to make people bawl, and a desire to write a werewolf story with non-slobbery werewolves.

How does it feel like, knowing your books are on those bookshelves in a bookstore?
Um, it’s really weird. It’s weirder still looking at the bestseller list and knowing just how many thousands of people have removed my book from the shelves. It’s weird to think of that many people out there all reading my words and my characters at the same time.

Any phobias you’re willing to admit to?
I really am not afraid of much -- my sense of self preservation is desperately damaged. But I will say that I really don’t care for wasps. I just have this suspicion that when I see one in a room, all they really want to do is come over and sting me. No one else. Just me. This is further confirmed by last year when I walked outside and promptly got stung on the back of the neck by a killer mutant jumbo wasp. It made a little volcano on the back of my neck and made my entire left arm numb. The bastard. You may edit out that last part if you want to keep this G-rated.

If you weren't an author, what would you like to be?
A soundtrack writer. I will be. One day. Just watch me.

What's the best piece of advice you like to give to young, aspiring authors?
The exact same piece of advice I would give to any writer, which is to read, every bit of fiction I could get my hands on, and read industry blogs. And never take “no” for an answer, unless it’s from me, because I mean it. ;p

That's it guys! I can't believe Maggie married impulsively! That is SOOOOO coolio! LOL!

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Sunday, August 30, 2009

In My Mailbox (4)

Hiya guys! This is my IMM post for this week. As usual, IMM is created by the wonderful Story Siren. Anyway, this is my mailbox for this week. I was SOOOOO happy when I finally got Perfect Chemistry!!!

The Mooched:

The Received:

PERFECT CHEMISTRY!!!!! - Simone Elkeles
Backlisted - Gena Showalter
Hacking Harvard - Robin Wasserman
Gifted: Better Late Than Never - Marilyn Kaye
Triskellion - Will Peterson

The Bought:
Again, none! I'm saving up for book-shopping tomorrow though...hehe! So it doesn't really count...

The Swag:
Cherry Cheva was SOOO nice to send me 15 signed She's so Money postcards and she threw in a red Family Guy cap for me! It look so cool! I might post a picture later on!

That's it for my IMM this week! I hope you enjoyed it! Now let me see what's in yours! Just link up to your IMM post in Mr. Linky below!

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Saturday, August 29, 2009

Review, Interview/Publicity Policy

Review Policy:For authors and publishers:

If you want to send me an ARC or a book to review, it is NOT 100% guaranteed that I will review them. But even when I have a humongous pile of books, I make way for all of the books for review I have. They are my FIRST(ish) priority. If I have a lot of books for review, I read the ones that get sent to me first. I read any genre of YA. Feel free to contact me at

Also, it is NOT guaranteed that I will post a favorable review for the book. It will be an honest review. If I rate it low or if I didn't like the book, I will always justify why I didn't like it. I ALWAYS try to review objectively.

Book Formats I Accept: 
ARC (Advance Readers Copy)
Finished Copy
Kindle/E-book Format

You can see my reviewing system over here.

Interview/Publicity Policy:

If you are an author or publisher who would like to promote a book on my blog, contact me at I check my email everyday. I'd be happy to promote! I also do interviews with different YA authors and I can host contests for you. Currently, I have a feature called Author Week. It's when I host an author for an entire week! Please contact me if you're interested!

Examples of Author Week Set-Ups here.

Previous Author Weeks:
Jennifer Echols
Terri Clark
Lisa Sandell
Janette Rallison
Angela Morrison
Deb Caletti
(Publisher) Putnam Juvenile
(Publisher) Graphia

E-book/Self-published Policy:

I accept E-books and self-published manuscripts. If you want to send me an e-book, again, contact me at


Thank you so much! If you have any complaints or any additions to this, don't hesitate to contact me (you know where to find me!) or to comment on this post.

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Friday, August 28, 2009

Author Uncovered: Cherry Cheva (Author Interview)

Yo peeps! LOL! For this week's Secret Agent Uncovered, I interviewed Cherry Cheva! She's the author of the already-released She's so Money and her upcoming book DupliKate. She's so nice! And she likes Thai food...duh! She's Thai and who doesn't like Thai? I LOVE their Chai Yen! So yummy! Anyway (I'm getting of topic here! LOL), she was awesome to answer all of my random questions regarding her and her books...well, here it is! Enjoy!

Check out my review of She's so Money over here!

Current Releases:

Upcoming Books:

How does it feel like, knowing your books are on those bookshelves in
a bookstore?
It feels AWESOME. It feels very “official,” like hey, here is a thing that I can point to that I wrote that somebody can pick up and read! What? That’s crazy! How did that happen? And I’m equally psyched that my book is in libraries. I looove libraries.

Did you base any of your characters on real people?
Only the surface details of some of them. The structure of the family in She’s So Money is like mine, and Maya is loosely based on me, what with the whole Thai restaurant thing and being from Michigan and whatever, but personality-wise, the characters are all made up.

What is your typical day?
Get up, go to work at Family Guy, drink free coffee, eat free candy, eat free chocolate, eat free ice cream, eat free pudding, and pitch a bunch of jokes around a big table with all the other Family Guy writers, all of whom are hilarious and also eating many free things. It is not a bad way to spend a day. :) Then if I’m also working on book stuff I do that when I get home, unless it’s too late and I’m tired, which is often the case.

What’s the best thing a reader ever said to you?
Uh, you giving me an A+? :) I think I may have to go with the classic “Everything’s my favorite!” thing here because literally every time someone says the book made them laugh out loud, or they related to Maya’s character, or they thought Maya and Camden were a good couple, or whatever, I mentally squeal with delight. Oh, someone once said they liked Camden/Maya better than Bella/Edward, which was awesome.

What was the last book you read and loved?
Gingerbread by Rachel Cohn.

Any phobias you’re willing to admit to?
I will NOT sing karaoke in a place where there’s a stage and the whole bar can hear you; I’ll do it if someone sings with me and it’s one of those little rooms you rent out with just your friends, but get up in front of a whole place? No way.

What’s the last thing you Googled?
Ha! Probably something having to do with So You Think You Can Dance. I’m obsessed. Wait, I’ll just check-- oh, it was The Cleveland Show, which is the Family Guy spinoff coming out this fall, because I wanted to know how TCAs went (that’s this press thing where reporters get to ask questions about new shows that are premiering).

What’s one thing you’re really proud of?
Well, actually managing to be paid to write, because that’s not exactly a job that’s easy to get, but even before that, making the decision to give writing a shot in the first place. My parents were pushing me towards being a doctor or a lawyer when I was a kid (ah, Asian parents), and then I actually went to law school, but instead of becoming a lawyer, I put all my stuff in my car and moved to LA. I didn’t know anybody there, but I wanted to see if I could get a job in the entertainment industry and eventually break into writing. So I’m proud of deciding to do that. Plus this way I managed to avoid taking the bar exam. :)

How are you and Maya alike? How are you different?
We are both short, Thai, from Michigan, and have one younger brother. We have both waited tables in our parents’ restaurant but she’s way, way, way better at it than I am. She’s also much smarter and harder-working. Oh, and she’s much hotter than I am and has much better vision.

What’s the most challenging aspect of writing? Easiest?
Ugh, oh my god, it’s all hard, it’s so ridiculous that something can be super hard and a pain in the ass, yet also super fun and the best thing ever. Okay, probably first draft because there is nothing on your screen yet. I mean, I usually work off an outline, but it’s still way easier to rewrite over pages that are already there. The easiest part is...hmmmm. Picking character names isn’t too taxing, I guess. I’m not that fussy about them, so for the most part I just choose something that sounds right and get on with it.

Is it fun being an author and writer for Family Guy (I love Family Guy!!!)?

That's it! I hope you enjoyed the interview! And watch out for Cherry's upcoming book DupliKate! :-)

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009


So, I have this AWESOME blogger friend Colleen from the Handle Like Hendrix blog and she was SUPER NICE to me and added me to her contest for extra entries. You guys better join! It' a pretty BIG giveaway! I wish I could join too! LOL! Anyway, here it is. Please GO TO HER BLOG TO ENTER.

Various Twilight stuff giveaway!

Hey guys! I thought with the New Moon movie playing this fall, I should have a Twilight-related giveaway.
Here's what the winner will recieve:

This is a new,never been read copy.
You will also get the 3 Twilight bookmarks above. They are still in the plastic protector because I liked them better that way. Keep in mind that the photo above is showing the back of each one, and that is why there are 6 pictured.

This is an opened copy but it's been used once so it's in new condition.

And this is Twilight the soundtrack and it's been played about twice so it is also in new condition.
For entries:
+3 for being or becoming a follower
+2 for voting on the poll in the sidebar
+3 for being or becoming a follower of The Undercover Book Lover
+4 for twittering or blogging or posting in sidebar about this contest
+2 for saying something that makes you different/unique
+2 for telling me if you could read a book in spanish
This is open to U.S. and Canada adresses, so if you are not living in either country, I can send it to an address there and then they can send it to you or something like that.
And I think that's it. This contest will end in about 15 or so days. I will let you know.
There it is! Hope you guys enter!
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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The OFFICIAL Hush, Hush Trailer!!!!!!!

Hey guys! This is a post with the OFFICIAL Hush, Hush trailer! If you've been living in a rock, Hush, Hush is one of THE MOST anticipated debuts of 2009! This trailer is amazing! You have to see it! Anyway, here it is:

So how do you like it? I, for one, FIND IT UH-MAZE-TASTIC!!! Seriously! WATCH IT NOW!

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Character Connection: All Character Interviews

Character Interviews:
Dan Devlin - Sleepless
Trinity Michaels - Sleepless
Michael Walden - Taken By Storm
Leesie Hunt - Taken By Storm
Beth Evans - Sing Me to Sleep
Derek Collins - Sing Me to Sleep
Luce Price - Fallen
Daniel Grigori - Fallen
Violet Ambrose - The Body Finder
Jay Heaton - The Body Finder
CS=Coming Soon
Patch Cipriano - Hush, Hush (CS)
Nora Grey - Hush, Hush (CS)

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Uninvited by Amanda Marrone

Title: Uninvited
Author: Amanda Marrone
Pages: 224
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: October 23, 2007

Jordan's life sucks. Her boyfriend, Michael, dumped her, slept his way through half the student body, and then killed himself. But now, somehow, he appears at her window every night, begging her to let him in.

Jordan can't understand why he wants her, but she feels her resistance wearing down. After all, her life -- once a broken record of boring parties, meaningless hookups, and friends she couldn't relate to -- now consists of her drinking alone in her room as she waits for the sun to go down.

Michael needs to be invited in before he can enter. All Jordan has to do is say the words....

Michael needs to be invited into Jordan's bedroom before he can enter. It's been months since his death and he patiently begs Jordan to let him in, waiting for the right moment...if there is one. Jordan doesn't know whether or not to trust him. She's not sure if he's even human! Will she slip up? Or will she have the courage to save herself from this monster?

Uninvited is a completely fluctuating read. The eerie and distinct depictions are what endows the intense, haunting atmosphere. Marrone will constantly keep the reader on edge with her misleading and sinuous twists and turns that is eventually concluded and cleared up in the very, very surprising ending.

The delivery of this novel, is climactic and dramatic. It will lure the reader in. Readers will get to know the characters better, through flawlessly written flashbacks, cleverly distributed throughout the entirety of Uninvited.

One thing that is not so flawless, is the overly-stuffed plot, brimming with tons of action and events. Too much is happening and it's likely that the reader will get confused with all of the occurrences. The reader will drown with the overload of happenings and surroundings. It's too much for the senses.

Uninvited is a unique novel that needs less action but is a fantastic read if you're looking for good-quality writing. It's chilling, full of suspense...and danger...lots of danger...

The Bottom Line: I loved it but it was too crowded. Marrone should have taken it down a notch. It was one-of-a-kind read that will leave readers asking for more Jordan! Risks are taken and lives are in danger...but because of who? (hehe, suspense! mwahhahaha!!!! Do you like my evil laugh?) B+ :-)

---Report Card---
Originality: 10/10
Ending: 8/10
Characters: 9.5/10
Plot: 6/10
My reaction/enjoyment: 7/10
Theme: 6/10
Imagery: 10/10
Setting: 5/5
Voice: 4/5
Style: 4/5
Tone: 5/5
Cover: 9.5/10
Total Score: 84/100 (B+)

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Monday, August 24, 2009

Living Your Five

Hey guys! I just wanted to let you know about this AMAZING website called Living Your Five! It's an amazing charity event that is created by some of our favorite authors:

They are doing such an amazing thing here! The opportunity to help here is unlimited. So spread the word!
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Boy Toy Contest over at Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf!!!!

Hey guys! My friend Lauren over at Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf is having her Boy Toy contest over here! If you guys wanna join, I suggest you do! She's super nice! I hear Barry Lynga is a GREAT author!!!!! The contest ends on August 28 so hurry up and join! You know you want to!

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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Cracked Up To Be by Courtney Summers

Title: Cracked Up To Be
Author: Courtney Summers
Pages: 224
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Publication Date: December 23, 2008

What's the worst thing you've ever done?

When 'Perfect' Parker Fadley starts drinking at school and failing her classes, all of St. Peter's High goes on alert. How has the cheerleading captain, girlfriend of the most popular guy in school, consummate teacher's pet, and future valedictorian fallen so far from grace?

Parker doesn't want to talk about it. She'd just like to be left along, to disappear, to be ignored. But her parents have placed her on suicide watch and her counselors are demanding the truth. Worse, there's a nice guy falling in love with her and he's making her feel things again when she'd really rather not be feeling anything at all. Nobody would have guessed she'd turn out like this. But nobody knows the truth.

Something horrible has happened, and it just might be her fault.

One word to describe Parker before the incident would be 'perfect'. After the incident, it would be 'careless'. How could a person like Parker become a suicidal, self-absorbed person who doesn't care anymore? Everything revolves around 'the incident' or 'the accident'. Parker has many obstacles thrown at her, and everything goes wrong. Her relationship with her friends is slowly crumbling and her feelings toward Jake seem to be growing...awkwardly. Has Parker finally cracked?

Cracked Up To Be is an amazingly realistic and suspenseful debut novel. Parker is a character that will absorb the reader into her daily life and problems. Readers will be itching to find out her secret and what she did. Parker's life has turned into one big mess because of one thing that completely and utterly changed her life.

Many contradicting and controversial issues are brought up in Cracked Up To Be. Parker deals with suicide, drugs, alchohol, and pressure. Summers delivers every single one of these issues, straightforwardly without sugar-coating them. Just plain and raw in its most simple form.

The mystery of Parker's grief is slowly, and smoothly unraveled through a series of strategically placed flashbacks. As her secret is carefully revealed, she is forced to deal with all her surroundings and obstacles. Will the thought of never living with herself take over her completely? Or is she still the same Parker that can overcome anything...perfectly?

The Bottom Line: Cracked Up To Be was an emotionally-draining read for me! It will take me longer to read something like that again...even though I read this one in an hour! It was so depressing for me to read about all her problems. She was suffocating in them...literally! I felt I was too! A devastatingly perfect read! A+ :-)

---Report Card---
Originality: 10/10
Ending: 8/10
Characters: 9.5/10
Plot: 10/10
My reaction/enjoyment: 9/10
Theme: 10/10
Imagery: 10/10
Setting: 5/5
Voice: 5/5
Style: 5/5
Tone: 5/5
Cover: 10/10
Total Score: 96.5/100 (A+)

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Saturday, August 22, 2009

M.I.A. Mission --- Sorry about that!

Hey peeps!

As you probably know, I only posted ONE book review this week. I was MIA because I was on a Top Secret do homework! Anyway, I promise to try not to do that again! It's really difficult though because of all my classes and homework. Being a freshman isn't all that...come to think of it...I miss junior high! French and Science are killing me! I haven't even gotten past page 13 of Aurelia and I have 24 books on my TBR pile! I promise you guys that this coming week, I'll post at least 3 book reviews!

I hope you haven't given up on me. You guys are the best Secret Agents ever! Luv y'all!!!

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In My Mailbox (3)

Heyers you guys! As usual, IMM is created by the lovely Story Siren. This is my third IMM posting and for the FIRST TIME in my life, I left the bookstore with ZERO books this week! I'm so is my mom...haha! Anyway, this week was a little slow, but, oh it is:
The Mooched:

Saving Francesca -Melina Marchetta
This came all the way from good ole' Aussie land (my pathetic attempt to be at least a little Australian. Too bad I failed! hehe)
I can't wait to read it!

The Bought:

NONE! My mom was so!
But I WAS tempted to go get that hardcover of Swoon...maybe next time...hehe

The Swag:
I got 'the goods' from the amazingly lovely Jessica Verday! She also gave me SO MUCH extra swag!!! Thanks Jessica! I can't wait for The Hollow!

The Recieved:

Crash Into Me - Albert Borris

Lauren over at Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf sent this hardcover baby over here to me! She had an extra copy so I asked for it. She is sooooooooo nice...she totally understands books and moms...haha! Thanks so much Lauren!!!!!!!!

The Borrowed:

Evernight - Claudia Gray

This one isn't from the library. My friend Trixie let me borrow it...I'm so jealous! LOL! I've heard so many good things about this book, so I thought I'd try it out!

What did you get in your mailbox? Add yours in Mr. Linky below or comment if it isn't working.

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Author Uncovered: Suzanne Selfors (Author Interview)

Hiya guys! For today's Secret Agent Uncovered, I had the honor of interviewing Suzanne Selfors, author of Saving Juliet and Coffeehouse Angel. Both books are great! Thanks again Suzanne!

Current Releases:

Upcoming Releases:

Did you always want to become an author?
Yes, but I didn't tell any people. The problem was, I'd never met an author. I can't remember any coming to my elementary or middle school, so I didn't really know that you could do it as a job. And I had no idea how to go about becoming an author. So I wrote lots of stuff, and then I took a writing class and met this really great teacher who helped guide the way.

What is the best part about being an author?
Meeting readers. That's the VERY BEST PART!

Who or what was your inspiration for Saving Juliet?
Well, I was in the play in the 9th grade. If you go to my website you can see the photo of me playing Mercutio. And I've always loved the story, but have always hated the ending. I always thought it would be great to give Juliet a 2nd chance.

How does it feel like, knowing your books are on those bookshelves in a bookstore?
It's pretty great, let me tell you, to walk into a bookstore and see a book that you sweated and lost sleep over. Writing is really hard work. Lots of people don't know that. Especially the first published book, because often a writer has written a handful of novels before one actually gets published.

If you had to pick three things with you to bring on a deserted island, what would they be?
Well, first I'd bring a book called, "How to Survive on a Deserted Island," because I'm a practical kind of person. Then I'd bring my dog because he's simply the best dog ever. And then I'd bring something to open coconuts with.

How are you and Katrina alike? How are you different?
We're alike in that I tried lots and lots of things in high school and didn't really know what to do with myself. And we're both of Norwegian heritage. We're different in that I've never met an angel.

What's the craziest thing you've done?
I went on a date with Mick Jagger. It's true!

Do you have any upcoming books?
Yes. Next May, my 3rd middle grade book, Smells Like Dog, will be released. Very funny book. And I'm working on the 3rd YA novel, which is top secret at the moment.

OHH! Top sure to watch out for this amazing author's new books! I can't wait what she has in store for us!

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cupidity by Caroline Goode

Title: Cupidity
Author: Caroline Goode
Pages: 288
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: December 28, 2004

Dating in high school is like reality TV. It can get pretty surreal.

Between the strict social ladder (geeks' lockers left, jocks' to the right), and silly, pointless rules (no hand-holding, no kissing, no breathing!), high school is the single worst place to fin a boyfriend. And Laura Sweeney is no exception. She hasn't had a date since...well, ever.

Desperate times call for desperate measures. So Laura is calling in the big guns. She needs guidance. A proven "get the guy" strategy. Luckily she knows exactly the expert to call. He's a matchmaking mastermind who actually has the bow and arrow to prove it. Let's just call him...Cupid.

Laura Sweeney is the typical trying-to-be-valedictorian senior. She's smart, but not so popular. She buries herself in books, trying to beat out her competition with her 4.0 GPA. At the start of the year, she swears to herself that she will have a boyfriend. She makes a wish to the god, Jupiter for his help and he sends him Cupid...or Cupidity. Laura's life becomes upside down and topsy-turvy; jocks going out with goths, brainiacs dating cheerleaders, everything changes as her life spins out of control. When will she get her wish?

Confusing, random, and only slightly entertaining, Cupidity will not impress readers. Only people with the general knowlege of mythology will be able to understand the gods and the creatures in this novel. Judging by the cover, you would think that it probably has something to do with a dating service, but it's really about the Cupid. Goode's writing was entertaining, but cheesy and choppy.

The cast of characters in this book were extremely generic and stereotypical. They weren't individualized at all! They were the 'so-called-normal' jocks, skater dudes, goths, cheerleaders and it fails to impress readers. Without a good plot, and without good characters, Goode was just not able to accomplish a good RoCom.

One thing the reader will recognize though, is the originality of the plot. The connection between high school and Greek mythology was interesting and fresh. Otherwise, that's it. It would be a good read for those readers who like cheesy romance, a little touch of mythology, and a bucket full of stereotypes.

The Bottom Line: I really, really didn't like this book. Everything was just way too random and way too complicated! High schools don't really have stereotypical cliques and a 'social ladder'. In some books, this was the case...but for Cupidity, this is all that Goode focused on! I was frustrated and annoyed with Laura and the other characters. Also, does anybody know who that guy in the cover is? I don't think he was even mentioned in the book! I'm confused. You might like Cupidity...but I don't. B-

---Report Card---

Originality: 8/10
Ending: 6.5/10
Characters: 5/10
Plot: 9/10
My reaction/enjoyment: 7.5/10
Theme: 8/10
Imagery: 8/10
Setting: 4/5
Voice: 3/5
Style: 3/5
Tone: 3/5
Cover: 7/10
Total Score: 72/100 (B-)

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Author Uncovered: Amber Kizer (Author Interview)

Hey guys!

For my next Secret Agent Uncovered, I'm interviewing Amber Kizer. She has a newly released book called Meridian. Perhaps you've heard of it? I HAVE! It's on so many blogs! I can't wait to read it! Thanks for allowing me to interview you Amber!

Current Releases:

What was the last movie you watched?
Coraline, Mama Mia, Taken, and Hotel for Dogs

What's your favorite sports team?
I am a college basketball addict, but I don't have a favorite team. I just like watching really beautiful ball and I tend to root for the underdog if they're playing smart.

Who is your biggest influence as a writer?
Everything and everyone-anything that goes in can find its way out onto the page.

Rejection letters - save ‘em or toss ‘em?
I only saved them in a file until I signed with an agent and publisher to help me keep track of who I'd sent what to-they're just a piece of paper!

Who or what was your inspiration for Meridian?
This book is very close to my heart--the idea came from sitting vigil as my grandparents died (about 18 months apart). They both had very different dying experiences, though in both cases, as a family, we chose to work with a wonderful hospice organization (St. Vincent's Inpatient Hospice Care, in Indianapolis, IN).

With everything in life, I like to know as much as possible so I read and did a bunch of research on dying, the physical process itself, the psychological process, and people's near-death experiences.

For this story, I wanted to explore the idea that the "light" people talk about as they die is an actual person and what that might mean. What if everyday of a person's life was that of being a window to beyond? I wanted to give a face to death that wasn't the Reaper's, wasn't something out of nightmares. And saying "God" is there in death doesn't say much--what does that mean really? How does that look?

And from a science aspect we're all energy. Where does that energy go? And isn't a soul of any animal or plant worthy energy? How does that look? How does that fit with the major religions and cultural norms?

And I also wanted to explore some organized religion as fear based--the idea that people hide behind religion because they're afraid or upset or angry. How does that twist what can be profound and comforting in faith? The mob mentality is so easy to manipulate if you're good at it--I wanted a character (Perimo) who was good at it and used it.

Readers can find the first three chapters on

What authors do you like to read?
I read everything but computer programming and math theory. Those are foreign languages and give me a headache! Gabriel Garcia Marquez, William Faulkner, Stephen King, Margaret Atwood, Maya Angelou, Jude Deveraux, James Whitcomb Riley, Eudora Welty -are favorites. I post reviews on Goodreads and always mention my most favorite current reads in my monthly newsletter--interested readers can sign up for on

If you could be any supernatural character who would it be?
Wonder Woman.

What's one thing you're really proud of?
Besides getting published and staying a working author? I send mail to our troops and have since we engaged in the middle east in 2001. I also make and send quilts to the Freedom Quilt Project which matches quilts with families who have a family member killed in action. Those are two things I'm very proud of being a part of.

What's up next for you writing-wise?
I have lots of projects in various stages, but a companion novel for MERIDIAN is in the works as is a book about an influenza pandemic.

What's your favorite piece of advice for writers?
Write. Practice-it's like being an Olympic athlete or a concert violinist-it's not always fun, but hard work and dedication will get you where you want to go. But you have to practice! Do you have any other upcoming books other than Meridian? The next in the GERT GARIBALDI'S RANTS AND RAVES SERIES: FROM BUTT TO BOOTY will be out soon. And like I said the next book in the Fenestra series will be out in 2011. I'm also writing adult romance and I'd love to see those on the shelves sooner rather than later!

Fans can keep up with the latest information by finding me on Facebook, Goodreads and my own websites:,, and

Thanks for having me!

That's it! Thanks again Amber!

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Hey guys!

Guess what? Taschima from the Bloody Bookaholic is having a totally cool MEGA PALOOZA CONTEST! It's wayyy cool!

This was her post:


I have been talking about this for a L-O-N-G time. Been consulting it with my pillow. And just today my pillow said yes.

Welcome to Bloody Bookaholic's Mega Palooza contest! Celebrating 200 followers, more than half a year of blogging, and countless tears & blood generated by all the writing, editing, and reading.


There are going to be a bunch of books to give away, options:

- Signed copy of Dreaming Anastasia + Goodies
- Hardback Another Faust
- Hardback Prophecy of the Sisters
- ARC The Dark Divine
- ARC Hush Hush
- ARC Give Up The Ghost
- ARC Ash
- ARC Behind Every Illusion
- ARC Shiver
- ARC Eyes Like Stars
- ARC The Demon's Lexicon
- ARC Betraying Season
- ARC Any Given Doomsday
- Dead Until Dark
- Gossip Girl 1st Book
- The Black Tatto + poster
- Vampire Academy
- Frost Bite, a Vampire Academy Novel.
- Shadow Kiss, a Vampire Academy Novel.
- Blood Promise, a Vampire Academy Novel.

20 books, now I am going to have 3 winners.

Winner number One gets to pick 7 books out of the bunch.

Winner number Two gets 3 books out of the bunch.

Winner number Three gets 1 book out of the bunch.

Only the first winner gets to choose his or her prize.
For the other two I get to choose what they get.


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Sunday, August 16, 2009

In My Mailbox (2)

Hey guys! IMM is created by Kristi from The Story Siren. YAY!

This is my second IMM post and I got lots this week!!! Mostly thanks to Kristi over at The Story Siren! I won her Kristi! This is going to be a long one...LOL! :-)

Books (and stuff!) Won From Kristi:


  • Ballads of Suburbia by Stephanie Kuehnert (PB)
  • Intertwined by Gena Showalter (ARC)
  • Initiation by Susan Fine (PB)
  • The Espressologist by Kristina Springer (ARC)
  • Stealing Death by Janet Lee Carey (ARC)
  • The Everafter by Amy Huntley (ARC)
  • A Banquet for Hungry Ghosts by Ying Chang Compestine (ARC)
  • The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen (PB)
  • Another Faust by Daniel and Dina Nayeri (ARC)
  • After the Moment by Garret Freymann-Weyr (ARC)
Swag Stuff:

  • The Chronicles of Vladimir Todd poster
  • Only a Witch Can Fly stickers
  • set of four Gifted series bookmarks
  • The Cinderella Society bookmark, signed by Kay Cassidy
  • books for teens by Simone Elkeles bookmark
  • Silver Phoenix bookmark, featuring original art by Cindy Pon
  • Violet Wings bookmark
  • Ballads of Suburbia boomark
  • Meg Cabot bookmark
  • The Dust of 100 Dogs bookmark
  • Never Slow Dance with a Zombie bookmark
  • Lisa Schroeder postcard, signed by Lisa Schroeder
  • Front and Center postcard
  • Flash Burnout postcard
The Bought:

Academy 7 -- Anne Osterlund
Aurelia -- Anne Osterlund

From Emma at Don't Lose My Place: Thanks EMMA!!!!!!!!

I won this from her Prophecy contest:

1)Signed Prophecy poster
2)Prophecy tatoos
3)Prophecy bookmark
4)Prophecy magnet
5)Prophecy folder
6)Rose pin
7)Rose bracelet
8)Silver pom-poms

And Emma was SUPER nice to me and gave me:

AN ARC FOR CRAZY BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!! She had two copies so she gave me one! THANKS SO MUCH EMMA!!!

From Authors:

SIGNED Give Up The Ghost bookmarks from Megan Crewe --- I'm giving them away on a contest soon!

And I was SUPER excited to get SIGNED All About Vee and Love, Meg postcards from Leigh Purtill ---I'm also giving some of these away on my contest soon! I just have to organize it!

I don't have a picture of the postcards because my camera is BROKEN!!! It's so annoying. All of these pictures were not taken by me.

Thanks again! What did you get in your mailbox? Hopefully a lot! Comment so that I can see!!!
Thanks you guys! Happy reading!

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