Self Published Sunday #6 – #IndieBooksBeSeen Special

sps

My apologies for not posting for a full TWO WEEKS! Can I blame life? Is that a legitimate excuse? … Well it’s what I’m blaming, so there. But today I’m really excited about my post! I’m here to tell y’all about #IndieBooksBeSeen! This movement was started on Twitter by the talented indie author Mark Shaw. Mark wrote The Keeper of the Wind (which was such a great story) and being an indie author he decided he wanted to do something other than sit around and hope his books sold. So he created the hashtag to help get the world aware of indie books.

It started on July 1st when indie authors shared pictures of themselves with their books or posters of their books. Anything that could show the world “Hey, I wrote this, and I’m dang proud!” It was a truly fun day and I felt really connected to a lot of self published authors after that.

Well the madness did not end, and thank goodness. Mark kept it going and other indie authors got involved. Soon #IndieBooksBeSeen was a part of my life and I know I’m not the only one. Anytime I’m posting anything about my book, or my work, I use the tag. On Twitter, Instagram, even Facebook. Heck you remember if you entered my Heavy Hearts giveaway, I even put the tag in the entry tweet. It’s pretty safe to say it’s something that is important to me and I’m so excited it exists.

Since July 1st Mark has put together Booktuber review hauls, he’s encouraging authors to make book teasers that he and other authors are finding shops that will display them, and there is even a website! If you are looking for any good indie books to read, or indie authors to follow, or heck even if you are an indie author looking for advice or want to join the movement, look up the #IndieBooksBeSeen hashtag on Twitter and visit the website to find it all. Continue reading

Silver Screen Saturdays #3 – Trailer Edition

sssHello movie lovers! Today’s Silver Screen Saturday is going to be all trailers. I have two reasons: A. There wasn’t a whole lot of jaw dropping book-to-movie news this month and the stuff that has been released I want to hold til the next post, and B. This is a rare day where I have Saturday morning off, but I work at 6pm so I’m feeling extra lazy… so shoot me. But honestly, who doesn’t love trailers? I do. I could make a playlist of trailers to just sit and watch on the big screen (keep in mind I have done this before…) So without further ado here’s a bunch of trailers from some choice adaptations. Enjoy!

mwc

Paddington-book-cover

mockingjay-book-cover

Continue reading

The Evolution of Mara Dyer – Michelle Hodkin

the-evolution-of-mara-dyer-michelle-hodkinThe Evolution of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer #2) by Michelle Hodkin
Published: October 23rd 2012 by Simon & Schuster
Source: Purchased

Mara Dyer once believed she could run from her past.
She can’t.
She used to think her problems were all in her head.
They aren’t.
She couldn’t imagine that after everything she’s been through, the boy she loves would still be keeping secrets.
She’s wrong.
In this gripping sequel to The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, the truth evolves and choices prove deadly. What will become of Mara Dyer next?

What can I say about the Mara Dyer series that hasn’t already been said? It’s perfect. Michelle Hodkin keeps you turning page after page until there suddenly are no pages left and you are sitting there with a heavy hardcover book in your hands crying quietly to yourself or cursing Michelle’s name at the top of your lungs because you don’t know how you’re going to go on living until the next book is out. Or in my case you toss the book across the room (gently I promise) and yell at it to think about what it’s done.

All that may make you believe that the book left people angry, or ended in a terrible way, but no… that is not what I’m getting at. This book is nothing short of amazing and I am so glad that I picked it up. In my review of book 1 The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer I said “I’ll be starting the second book the moment it arrives on my doorstep, then I’ll be patiently waiting outside the bookstore for the third when it comes out in November.” and that was almost true. I was in the middle of reading two other books when book 2 arrived so I didn’t dive in right away. But once I was free of prior book commitment I was all about Mara Dyer. And I’m not waiting patiently outside the bookstore for book 3, but I am impatiently waiting in my home while burying myself in other books because I don’t know how else to fill the hole in my heart.

Book 1 was amazing. It set up an incredible story, a beautiful love story, and the end left you craving more but also didn’t kill you. Book 2 followed the same pattern as you found out more and more about just what was happening to Mara and Noah, but then there was the end. Yes it leaves you wanting more, but it also destroys you; in the best way possible if that makes sense. I really don’t want to say anything to revealing because I want, no I implore you to read this series! Even if you have to sit and wait with me until the 3rd book arrives DO NOT WAIT! Just start now because it’s too good of a series to wait for. For me it is right up there with Divergent and Shatter Me, and if you know me well then you know that is a good sign.

I can’t stress enough that I recommend this book to everyone and I really hope you go out there and seek it out because you will not be disappointed. The mystery, the romance, the struggle, everything about The Mara Dyer series is so perfect and compelling. I really want to go re-read them right now… so, bye!

Rating

Ky5Star

(actually I give it like a million flames, but since it’s a 5 based scale I’ll stick with 5)

Anna and the French Kiss – Stephanie Perkins

anna-and-the-french-kiss-stephanie-perkins-book-cover Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Published: December 2nd 2010 by Dutton Juvenile
Source: Purchased

Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris–until she meets Étienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Étienne has it all…including a serious girlfriend.

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?

When purchasing books I strongly urge you to check if they are a part of a series. Stephanie Perkins has written 3 adorable books, Anna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, and the recent Isla and the Happily Ever After. I had no clue they were a part of a series. I just thought they all had adorabley similar names. So I read Lola and the Boy Next Door first. If you’ve read the books in these series you know that they aren’t 100% linked to each other, but they have elements of each other in them. So in Lola and the Boy Next Door the main character, Lola, works with Anna at their local movie theater. So Anna and St. Clair are in the book, but it’s not like it’s totally based on them because Lola does her own thing and now I’m just rambling, you get the point, moving on.

So since I read Lola first I was afraid that it would’ve ruined things in Anna and the French Kiss for me, but boy was I wrong. This book is beautiful, and amazing, and did I mention beautiful? A Southern American thrown into France to attend her senior year where she meets an amazingly hot boy with a British accent. What’s not to love?

Like I said before, Stephanie Perkins’ writing is just adorable. I absolutely love it! This contemporary romance had me feeling all the feels and I couldn’t put it down. Not even to sleep. I read the majority of it in one day because it was just all I could do, then I finished the rest at work. Sshhh don’t tattle 😉

The way I tell if I know I’m reading a romance that I love is by the amount of “awwws” I say and how many tears I shed. With Anna there was a lot of both. And by tears I of course mean happy tears. I’m a total sap what can I say.

Étienne St. Clair is the perfect book boyfriend (although since I read Lola first Cricket Bell will always have a special place in my heart). He’s charming and totally swoon-worthy, but he’s not perfect either. Perfection is scary in my opinion. But the chemistry between Anna and St. Clair is to die for. And since he has a girlfriend and their romance feels slightly forbidden it makes everything oh so juicy and keeps you craving more.

I recommend Anna and the French Kiss to everyone. If you don’t have a thing for contemporaries, this is the book to change your mind, and if you love contemporaries then voila! Anna is just what you need.

Rating

Ky5Star

Cinder – Marissa Meyer

Cinder-Book-Cover Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer
Published:
January 3rd 2012 by Feiwel & Friends
Source: Purchased

Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl.

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

I read this book per recommendation from a few people, and while I was slightly disappointed I am glad I read it. Cinder wasn’t anything super spectacular, but it was a fun book and it did set up a great story for what I’m hoping will be a really good series. Since Little Red Riding Hood is my favorite fairy tale I was eager to get through this first book so I could get to Scarlet, and I am really excited to read it.

The writing is spectacular, however. Marissa Meyer has created this complex sci-fi world that is so futuristic, but it also has an old world charm to it. It’s set in New Beijing, but I got a very Aladdin-esque feel from it. The marketplace, the palace, it all felt really homey and familiar,  then the net screens, hover crafts, and uhm hello, cyborgs! That all had a very future-y feel to it and it was great.

Another thing that I did love beyond Marissa’s writing style was the story between Kai and Cinder. Every time those two were on the page together I was hooked. Kai is so cool, I really don’t have a better word to describe him beyond that. I have to give Cinder some serious props for being able to keep herself composed around him. Those two were what kept me reading.

For the most part though it was kind of slow moving. All the world politics stuff that was going on with Prince Kai and the rest of the world leaders was a little stale, but I kind of understand why it had to be put in. Kai is under a lot of pressure after all. But those parts, along with some of the virus cure research parts, were a little blah.

When it comes to the ending it was slightly predictable in some ways and then in others I was slightly blown away.

If you haven’t read the book and you don’t care for spoilers, shield your eyes. Continue reading

Book to Movie Review – If I Stay

ifistay

Today was the release for the popular book-to-movie adaptation of Gayle Forman’s If I Stay. The book made me cry, the trailer made me cry, and the movie made me cry so much I thought I was the one teetering on the edge of death. Okay, that’s a little dramatic, but I know I’m not the only one that slightly feels this way.

R.J. Cutler directed this tear jerking masterpiece, and along with Chloë Grace Moretz as Mia and Jamie Blackley as Adam, this book was done some serious justice. I first read this book a little over a year ago now, and while I wasn’t head over heels in love with it I still enjoyed it. I do have to say, and booklovers don’t hate me for it, but I did enjoy this movie more than I did the book. And I think I have a pretty legitimate argument as to why.

So if you’ve read the book you know how it goes, car accident right off the bat, lots of flashbacks, lots of Mia listening to what her loved ones have to say while she figures out if she wants to live and be an orphan or die and be with her family. Personally I felt like some of the flashback scenes in the book were dry and drawn out. I though it was all written beautifully, Gayle Forman has such a way with words, but I just felt like things were a bit ‘blah’ at times. Since movies tend to cut things out for time I noticed that a lot of those slow moving parts in the book were dropped for a film adaptation. That made me enjoy it thoroughly. I loved this film and I encourage everyone to see it!

Now for the burning questions that all serious booklovers want to know when deciding to see a beloved book turned film: What’s different?

(Spoiler warning!) Continue reading

Self Published Sundays #4 – Spotlight on The Pendant Trilogy

sps

Today I have something special to share with you. Part of being a self published author is finding more self published authors to chat with, support, and even promote. I absolutely adore being in the indie book world and I love all the new authors I’m meeting over the wonderful world wide web. Just like writing duo Sarena and Sasha Nanua, young twin authors who wrote and self published The Pendant Trilogy.

I’m just about finished with book 1, The Gemstone, and I am loving it! Not only am I enjoying the book, but I really love the unique way Sarena and Sasha write, and the fact that they are a team. Such young talent deserves recognition.

ssSarena and Sasha Nanua are teenage twins living in Ontario. They love reading books in their spare time and enjoy science fiction and fantasy novels. They have been writing books since they were nine-years-old. The Gemstone is their first novel. You can visit them online at www.thependanttrilogy.com

 

 

book

The Gemstone – One gemstone that changed her life… Now it was almost before me. My breath quickened as I struggled to let go of the necklace. I even stood to pull the box with me, but the ribbon of the necklace reddened my wrist like a hot coal and I cried out in pain. Suddenly all I heard was my breath-in, out. The figure moved quicker and quicker, closer and closer…
The figure was now above me, drifting over my head, and then it tumbled on me with the force of gravity.

And then with a whimper, I fell unconscious as darkness surrounded me.

ARICA MILLER is thrilled to begin her sophomore year at Hill Valley Private Arts Academy. Little does she know that the prestigious school holds more hidden secrets than she’d anticipated-especially with the headmistress. After she accidentally comes into contact with a mysterious gemstone necklace, she receives strange hallucinations that connect to her family’s past. Arica soon realizes that this is no regular necklace, but a necklace that contains power beyond her knowledge. And that’s not all. Her world unwinds as she is absorbed with knowledge of a world of sorcery.

All dating up to Halloween night, Arica must face suspicious friends, monstrous creatures, and the truth of her family’s connection with sorcery. But worst of all, she must face a powerful enemy keen on only one thing: the gemstones – Goodreads synopsis Continue reading

Silver Screen Saturdays #2

sssIt’s been two weeks since we last talked about what’s new in the Hollywood book world, and not much happened. But some stuff did happen!

maika-monroe-1367774096 Maika Monroe joined the cast of The Fifth Wave as Ringer. I can definitely see it, to be honest this is how I picture Cassie. But I’m still keeping hope alive that Moretz does the job justice. I’m just skeptical at the moment. Not that I think she will be a bad Cassie, but just because I can’t picture it yet. It’s one of those things I know I need to see before I judge. But Maika as Ringer looks like a good fit, but at the same time who can say before we get to see it. I have faith in adaptations though, and I’m very excited for this one.

 

frostbite-440x310Things aren’t looking to hot for the Vampire Academy sequel – Frostbite. The film’s IndieGoGo started off strong, but has since dwindled. Money is coming in slowly and screenwriter Pier Ashworth has a message for fans stating “We have to get this movie made.” Check out the full message here, and donate to VA’s IndieGoGo here.

The_Giver_poster

 

The Giver hit theaters this weekend. Box office numbers for it’s release on Thursday evening were $750,000 and it’s projected to make $13 million, less than hoped. I wrote a review for The Giver and you can check that out here.

 

robin1Tragedy struck on Monday evening when it was announced that beloved comedic actor Robin Williams took his own life at 63-years-old. I can’t say if any of his films were book adaptations, and I don’t have the heart to look it up right now, but he was an amazing actor and he will be greatly missed by all. RIP Robin Williams.

 

Now that I’ve possibly made you cry, that’s all I got. By the time we get together again If I Stay will be in theaters and hopefully making all the money. Another one to look forward to is The Maze Runner. I don’t know about you, but this is one movie that looks better than the book. I hope the film lives up to it’s amazing trailer. Before I go I’m going to leave you with something I saw the other day that made me equal parts laugh and cringe… but mostly cringe.

Book to Movie Review – The Giver

The Giver

Today was the wide release of The Giver, a movie directed by Phillip Noyce and adapted from the beloved novel of the same name by Lowis Lowry. this book is iconic, but I’m not going to scold you if you haven’t read it (like I see some reviews doing). I read this book, but when I was 12. I planned on re-reading before watching the movie, but 1. I didn’t have time, and 2. I honestly didn’t want to judge it against the book. I have a strong belief that an adaptation is called an adaptation for a reason. The definition of adapt is as follows: to make suitable to requirements or conditions; adjust or modify fittingly.

Movies are never going to be just like the books, period. Once you move past that then you should be able to enjoy a film. It’s instances like this that it drives me insane when someone will sit down, watch a great movie, but tear it to shreds because it didn’t follow the book to the T. Enough of my rant though, you came for a review, and that’s just what I have.

Ps. There may be a few spoilers in here, but I’ll let you know when I get to that point.

I was extremely moved by this movie. There were some things I wish they would’ve done different, but for the most part this is an extremely well made film. That’s why it pains me so to see it being bashed by diehard fans of the book. But to each his own and I cannot argue that there were some big changes.

From a total non-book lover standpoint, I adored The Giver. It kept you intrigued with this totally weird society that has no color, no emotion, no lies, and so much more no’s. It may not be dark, depleted, impossible to survive dystopia, but it’s one of the scariest societies I’ve ever witnessed. Morning injections take away everything that makes you who you are, and you truly do become just another one of the “sheeple” just walking around not knowing what real life is like. These people aren’t starving, they aren’t destitute, they are just being poisoned. It gives me the shivers when I think about not being able to love.

Then we bring in Jonas, a boy who doesn’t always feel like he fit in, and they put him in a situation where he finds out he truly doesn’t. The thing that always boggles my mind is that they literally tell him that their whole life is a lie, how can anyone accept that? Just take it all in stride and go about their day like everything’s the same. I don’t blame Jonas for what he did. I think his response was totally natural, at any age. Which brings me to my first book to movie difference (that I think is a perfectly reasonable difference) book Jonas is 12, movie Jonas is 16.

Honestly, I think a 12-year-old would’ve handled the entire situation different, so I think it makes an abundance of sense for him to be aged up. However, Lowis Lowry wrote him as a 12-year-old boy and it worked, but on a personal standpoint I think it works better with an older boy. If all that was happening to me at 12 I would run and hide and never return. Especially after learning the memory of pain. Nope, I’d be outta there. I don’t think I could handle it at 16 either, but I’d at least be able to talk myself down. So the aging up Jonas aspect is upsetting a lot of people, but I think it’s a win.

[ I think things get a little spoilery here ] Continue reading

Self Published Sundays #3

sps

Today is all about process.

So sometimes it helps to talk to other writers about how they write so you can get an idea of some do’s and don’ts in the writing world. Everyone is different, so that’s something that should always be remembered, and no two authors should write alike (hopefully)

It’s also not even totally about knowing what not to do and what to do, but it’s a good insight to know how another writer gets in the zone so you can battle writer’s block. Or I could just be totally wrong and maybe you don’t want to know how someone else gets in the writing groove. Personally I do, and I’ve spoken with several aspiring writers, as well as a few published writers, and have received some great tips.

So my writing process is a mess. I have no rhyme or rhythm to it, I just do it. That can be a problem in the editing process, but for the actual writing process it’s a pretty decent technique I think. I never stop writing, even when it doesn’t make sense. I have this thing with punctuation, I don’t like it. I often will write three paragraphs or pages with no punctuation and then I’m kicking myself because I have to go back and fix it all. Who likes a book without punctuation? I’ve read a couple and they weren’t bad books, but I just don’t think it’s something I can accomplish. Maybe someday.

I normally write at late night. I work during the days and am still in school at 25 years old, so the wee hours of the night are my time to shine. There are some nights where I’ll write from 11:00 pm to almost 4:00 am. Not so good on the whole sleep schedule thing, but it get’s the job done.

Music. I’ve heard many writers say they won’t listen to music because it distracts them, and I’ve heard others say that music drives them. For me personally it can be both. I listen to the Creativity Boost playlist on Spotify, and I absolutely love it. Sometimes, though, I love it a little too much. I can get really into the songs and start singing my heart away and even stopping myself for a dance break. This is where the staying up all night to write thing comes in handy because then I have no one awake to judge me. Another thing that can stop my writing process while I’m jammin’ to some tunes is that I’ll hear something I really like and have to go look up every other song that artist has produced. BUT if I write in silence, I’m utterly lost. It’s a love hate relationship to say the least.

So that’s some stuff. My process is my process and it works for me, so ya know. If you’re a writer I’d love to hear what your writing process is like. Who knows, maybe we could help each other out. I may not have a ton of advice to give, and I’m not a totally successful author (yet) but if there is one thing I can say to you it is this: keep writing, never stop, even when it doesn’t make sense because things can always be fixed in editing and who knows what amazing things you might write while rambling away at the keyboard.

See ya next week readers and writers ❤