"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." —J. R. R. Tolkien

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Spring Blog Carnival - Win RULES OF ATTRACTION by Simone Elkeles






It's time for another blog hop, and this time it's hosted by some amazing people I have to mention! Thank you so much to:

Candace’s Book Blog http://www.candacesbookblog
Reading Angel http://www.readingangel.com
Pure Imagination http://www.pureimaginationblog.com
The Book Swarm http://www.bookswarm.blogspot.com

for organizing this Spring Blog Carnival!



So the funnest thing about these blog hops is trying to decide what from my shelves I can give away. This time, up for grabs is the sequel to a book I absolutely adored. It's a shiny hardcover of:

RULES OF ATTRACTION by Simone Elkeles (Walker, April 13, 2010)


I read PERFECT CHEMISTRY in basically one sitting and loved, loved, loved it! It's no wonder RULES OF ATTRACTION hit the bestseller list!

Check out the OSUM book trailer, too!



From Amazon:

Carlos Fuentes doesn't want any part of the life his older brother, Alex, has laid out for him in Boulder, Colorado. He wants to keep living on the edge, and carve his own path—just like Alex did. Unfortunately, his ties to a Mexican gang aren't easy to break, and he soon finds himself being set up by a drug lord.

When Alex arranges for Carlos to live with his former professor and his family to keep him from being sent to jail, Carlos feels completely out of place. He's even more thrown by his strong feelings for the professor's daughter, Kiara, who is nothing like the girls he's usually drawn to. But Carlos and Kiara soon discover that in matters of the heart, the rules of attraction overpower the social differences that conspire to keep them apart.

As the danger grows for Carlos, he's shocked to discover that it's this seemingly All-American family who can save him. But is he willing to endanger their safety for a chance at the kind of life he's never even dreamed possible?


Source of book: From publisher at BEA

For your chance to win this book, all you need to do is:

1) Follow this blog
2) Comment on this blog post

For extra entries:

1) Blog about this contest and leave a comment telling me
2) Tweet about this contest and leave a comment telling me
3) Also, if you've never won one of my contests, please tell me in the comments, and you'll get an extra entry!

And make sure you leave me a way to get in contact with you when you win!

The contest will run through midnight on Sunday, May 8, 2011!


*****

Don't forget I'm also giving away:

GUARDIANS OF THE HIDDEN SCEPTER by Frank L. Cole (Cedar Fort, March 8, 2011)
CLICK HERE TO ENTER!




HARE MOON by Carrie Ryan




I'm a huge fan of THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH, so keeping that in mind, I consider HARE MOON almost required reading for those who love the world Carrie Ryan's created. It's available as an ebook* only, though it was actually part of the short story collection KISS ME DEADLY (Running Press Kids, August 2010).

HARE MOON by Carrie Ryan (Delacorte, April 5, 2011)


HARE MOON is engaging; it's short; and it's heart-breaking (but really, this shouldn't be a surprise to anyone). Highly recommended for Carrie Ryan fans!

*Wait! You say you don't have an ereader? You can download it and read it on your computer, too :)


From Amazon:

Tabitha can’t shake the feeling that something exists beyond the fences of her village. And when she sneaks out, past the gates and down the path into the Forest of Hands and Teeth, she meets a boy who teaches her heart things she never knew. But love in a world surrounded by so much death doesn’t come without its sacrifices, and Tabitha gradually realizes just how much she’ll have to give up to live among the Unconsecrated.

From New York Times bestselling author Carrie Ryan comes an original story of love after the Return.


And in case you aren't familiar with THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH, here's it's book trailer!



Hope the weekend is going great!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

And in other news...SOLSTICE!




Here's a really exciting announcement I've been dying to make!

*****

P.J. Hoover and the Andrea Brown Literary Agency, Inc. are excited to announce the May release of P.J.'s debut young adult novel SOLSTICE, an intensely romantic story with an innovative mythological angle. SOLSTICE is set in a disturbing future of uncontrolled climate change -- a future that we might very well be facing.

After eighteen years of endless summer, Earth is dying a slow, hot death. Oceans are wastelands of dead fish, deadly heat bubbles threaten to wipe out entire cities, and the soil is so desiccated that plants are in danger of extinction. This is Piper's reality, and her domineering, overprotective mother makes it even more suffocating.

Piper's best friend Chloe is her only outlet from the bleak reality within and without. However, when Piper rebels by secretly opening a mysterious birthday present and getting a tattoo with Chloe, she just exchanges her Global Heating Crisis nightmare for a mythological one.

Suddenly, Piper's world teems with murderous, deceitful gods, legendary monsters, and criminals damned to suffer eternal torments in hell. A creeping moss that only Piper can see coats the skin of the people around her, and a woman with fog-filled eyes stalks her, insisting that Chloe is about to die. As if all that isn't enough, two gorgeous guys show up at her school, both claiming to know her, and they both pursue her. And, strangely, they might be the key to this mythical mystery.

The trouble is, Piper can't resist either of them, even though they seem to be sworn enemies. She's falling for brooding, passionate Shayne and for seductive, rebellious Reese. Piper needs to make a decision, and the stakes are high in ways she can't even begin to guess.

Choose the wrong guy, and the uneasy boundary between the mythological world and the human world will disappear, Piper will never learn the truth about herself or her family, and ... all hope for the future will be lost.

SOLSTICE is the first front-list novel to be independently published by an Andrea Brown Literary Agency author. SOLSTICE will be available on Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords in May. More news about the exact release date coming soon!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Happy Birthday to me!

I had every intention of doing a special vlog for my birthday. I even had planned out what I was going to do. But on Sunday, my eyes got all big and red and puffy and sadly they still are. So the vlog will have to wait until I look like I haven't been experimenting with the illegal.

It's not a milestone birthday this year. I one year past over the hill (29 hex). But it's been a great year with tons of good stuff going on.

In lieu of this year's vlog (at least for the short term), I'm going to rerun my vlog from last year.



Hope you all have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

BUT I LOVE HIM by Amanda Grace




Oddly enough, reading this book was a breath of fresh air for me. Why? Because it hooked me from the first word and forced me to stay up late until I was done, and I love when that happens.

BUT I LOVE HIM by Amanda Grace* (Flux, May 8, 2011)


I picked up the book during my daughter's swimming lesson, and couldn't stop reading. Sadly, I had to take a break in there to pretend to make dinner for my family, but once that was out of the way, I went right back to reading. BUT I LOVE HIM deals with physical and emotional abuse in a teen relationship, and the writing engages readers from the first word and refuses to let them stop.

The story is told backwards. We start one year into the relationship, and from there, the narrator moves backwards, only bringing us back to present to remind us of the final outcome. At first, I wasn't sold on this reverse linear structure, but as the story progressed, I came to have a way deeper understanding for why the author did it this way. The key point (I think) she was trying to make is that there may not be one defining moment when abuse begins. It may be easy to stand on the outside and vow to never enter an abusive relationship. But reading this book gives a whole new perspective on the matter, and makes the reader realize it is not that straightforward and easy.

Okay, so there was the fact that I read it in basically one sitting. But even after that, BUT I LOVE HIM is the kind of book that keeps bringing the reader back and making them think through the issues. It's not a graphic or gratuitous book, so no worries for those readers who don't want to read about abuse. It's a book that I put on the same playing field as THIRTEEN REASONS WHY. These are important books to read and share with teens, and these are stories that have to be told.

Highly recommended for girls and boys, readers if all genres, seventh grade and up.

* Amanda Grace is a pseudonym for literary agent Mandy Hubbard.

From Amazon:

Sometimes at night, I wake up and stare at the heart for hours. I think of how I collected each piece from the beach, how I glued it all together into one big sculpture. I wonder if Connor realizes what it means, that he'll always have a piece of me no matter what happens. Each piece of glass is another piece of myself that I gave to him.

It's too bad I didn't keep any pieces for myself.

At the beginning of senior year, Ann was a smiling, straight-A student and track star with friends and a future. Then she met a haunted young man named Connor. Only she can heal his emotional scars; only he could make her feel so loved - and needed. Ann can't recall the pivotal moment it all changed, when she surrendered everything to be with him, but by graduation, her life has become a dangerous high wire act. Just one mistake could trigger Connor's rage, a senseless storm of cruel words and violence damaging everything - and everyone - in its path.

This evocative slideshow of flashbacks reveals a heartbreaking story of love gone terribly wrong.



Source of book: From publisher by request

Hoppy Easter Eggstravaganza Winner!

Thank you to everyone who entered the Hoppy Easter Eggstravaganza! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

The winner of the nine book set is...


Look for more giveaways this week!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

GUARDIANS OF THE HIDDEN SCEPTER Interview and Giveaway!




Happy Monday! Today I'm thrilled to be part of a blog tour for Frank L. Cole and his amazing new middle grade fantasy. There's a book giveaway going on, so make sure to follow and leave a comment to win!

GUARDIANS OF THE HIDDEN SCEPTER by Frank L. Cole (Cedar Fort, March 8, 2011)


I started reading GUARDIANS having no idea really what to expect. I'm not big on reading jacket copy, but the cover drew me in (yes, I admit, I do judge a book by its cover). And seriously, once I started reading, I was thrilled. I felt like I tucked myself into a cozy blanket and sank back into a world I love. GUARDIANS OF THE HIDDEN SCEPTER reminded me how much fun middle grade fantasy can be. It had adventure and age-old secrets and mysteries and double-crossers and archaeology and wait...a huge treasure to be found! And there were consequences. And real things happening.

Okay, in short, it reminded me a ton of my Forgotten Worlds trilogy, and seeing as how I love my own books, you can see why I loved GUARDIANS. I highly recommend this one for fans of Harry Potter and Percy Jackson books, and of course fans of my books!

Frank was kind enough to stop by and answer a few questions for us here on ROOTS IN MYTH!

*****

PJH: If the apocalypse came, would you still find a way to write? If yes, then how and why?

FC: Oh definitely. I mean if I’m still alive and I have somewhat of an ability to write and tell a story, I’ll probably have a fairly captive audience. Plus, think of all the material for stories! I’m guessing finding something to write on won’t be the issue, but finding a writing utensil will. Cockroaches are supposed to be able to survive almost anything. I’ll use them.


PJH: You can go back in time and talk to anyone in history. Who would it be and why?

FC: My great-great Grandpa Rolph. Allegedly, he saw some fiend from the underworld over a hundred years ago and took that belief to his grave. Most of the people and my relatives in the town believed him and there’s even mention of it in a published book. I’m pretty sure he’d fallen and hit his head, but still. The story had to be stupendous!

(PJH: Love this answer!)


PJH: Favorite Wonder of the Ancient World? Why?

FC: Great Pyramid of Giza of course! Why? It’s still in existence. That shows heart and determination.



PJH: What are five things you collect?

FC: I collect:

1. Legos (in various forms and sets)

2. Books (so many books!)

3. Music on my IPod

4. Silly putty (I have a giant ball of at least 20 packs… way cool and pointless)

5. Rejection Letters (so that I can weep over them.)



PJH: Mummy vs. Bigfoot... Who would win and why?

FC: Bigfoot would unravel the Mummy. For starters, I don’t think ole’ Sasquatch would mess around and from what I’ve seen, the Mummy’s a little slow and confused. And have you seen Bigfoot lately? No? Well, I have and he’s been working out.


PJH: Thanks, Frank!
*****

Huge thank you to the publisher, Cedar Fort Books, for providing the book for giveaway!

For your chance to win this book, all you need to do is:

1) Follow this blog
2) Comment on this blog post

For extra entries:

1) Blog about this contest and leave a comment telling me
2) Tweet about this contest and leave a comment telling me
3) Also, if you've never won one of my contests, please tell me in the comments, and you'll get an extra entry!

And make sure you leave me a way to get in contact with you when you win!

The contest will run through midnight on Friday, May 6, 2011!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Contest Winners!

I hope you're all having a happy, snake-free weekend! Thank you to all who entered to win these fabulous books!

The winner of THE REVENANT by Sonia Gensler (Knopf/Random House, June 14, 2011)


is...
EVA SB at Eva's Black Spot!

****

The winner of four beautiful Aladdin MIX titles



is....


*****

Don't forget I'm also giving away a set of nine books from my publisher (including my trilogy)!
CLICK HERE TO ENTER!



THE EMERALD TABLET by P.J. Hoover (CBAY, October 2008) (hardcover)
THE NAVEL OF THE WORLD by P.J. Hoover (CBAY, October 2009) (hardcover)
THE NECROPOLIS by P.J. Hoover (CBAY, October 2010) (hardcover)
THE AMULET OF AMON-RA by Leslie Carmichael (CBAY, 2009) (paperback)
THE SECRETS OF THE CHEESE SYNDICATE by Donna St. Cyr (CBAY, 2009) (paperback) *SIGNED*
DRY SOULS by Denise Getson (CBAY, 2011) (paperback) *SIGNED* *JUST RELEASED*
THE BOOK OF NONSENSE by David Michael Slater (CBAY, October 2008) (hardcover)
THE BOOK OF KNOWLEDGE by David Michael Slater (CBAY, October 2009) (hardcover)
THE BOOK OF MAPS by David Michael Slater (CBAY, October 2010) (hardcover)

Friday, April 22, 2011

On inspiration and coincidence...




There's nothing like finding this in the garage to inspire one to spend the next three hours cleaning and getting rid of stuff.


Here are my deep thoughts for the day:

1) This thing is wicked poisonous. It has a neurotoxin that will kill in hours.
2) It was in our garage where we keep the tortoises at night.
3) My 9 year-old son has been the one putting the tortoises away at night (here's where my mom starts freaking out. Trust me, mom, I'm freaked enough for both of us).
4) Our elliptical machine is in the garage.
5) Our elliptical machine has been broken for like two months now.
6) It's taken them forever to get us the parts and to finally get the service appointment scheduled.
7) Today, finally, Josh and Josh come over to fix the elliptical machine.
8) When they are done, Josh 1 brings me out to the garage so he can show me what he fixed on the elliptical machine.
9) He happens to look into the tort habitat and says, "is that a snake?"
10) Josh 1 just happened to work at the Exotic Pet store before this job fixing elliptical machines.
11) He and Josh 2 proceed to use Kung Fu weapons and clippers around the garage to hold it in place and chop its head off.

Okay, I know this is deep, but here goes. I may have been annoyed it took so long to get the elliptical machine fixed. I may have been frustrated that the parts took so long to come in. I may have thought I didn't want to spend Good Friday having the elliptical repair guys come over.

But...

If they hadn't been over today and seen the snake and taken care of it, what could have happened?

Coincidence? Divine intervention? Just really good timing? I know what I believe.

Happy Weekend!

Hope you crack lots of cascarones! We have a gross sitting on the dining room table just waiting to be cracked.

And in case that isn't enough, you should totally check out the Polish tradition of Dyngus Day. In short you dump water on those in the house still asleep (or at least that's how we interpret it around here).

Easter Monday is a good day to be the first one awake.

Enjoy the weekend!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Hoppy Easter Eggstravaganza: HUGE BOOK GIVEAWAY!





Hey Everyone! I love this time of year! And once again, the amazing Kathy Habel at I am a Reader, Not a Writer has organized a blog hop giveaway! Yay, Kathy! We love this!

This time is huge. I'm giving away not one, but NINE (9) books!

Okay, and I have to say, since it is so many, I have to keep it limited to the United States only.

I'm sorry, international followers. Please keep checking because most of my other giveaways are international.

Up for giveaway are these amazing books from my publisher. There is something for everyone here, ranging from lower MG to YA.

***MY TRILOGY***
THE EMERALD TABLET by P.J. Hoover (CBAY, October 2008) (hardcover)
THE NAVEL OF THE WORLD by P.J. Hoover (CBAY, October 2009) (hardcover)
THE NECROPOLIS by P.J. Hoover (CBAY, October 2010) (hardcover)


*********

***OTHER BOOKS***
THE AMULET OF AMON-RA by Leslie Carmichael (CBAY, 2009) (paperback)

THE SECRETS OF THE CHEESE SYNDICATE by Donna St. Cyr (CBAY, 2009) (paperback) *SIGNED*

DRY SOULS by Denise Getson (CBAY, 2011) (paperback) *SIGNED* *JUST RELEASED*



THE BOOK OF NONSENSE by David Michael Slater (CBAY, October 2008) (hardcover)
THE BOOK OF KNOWLEDGE by David Michael Slater (CBAY, October 2009) (hardcover)
THE BOOK OF MAPS by David Michael Slater (CBAY, October 2010) (hardcover)


*******

Huge thank you to my publisher, CBAY Books, for providing the books for giveaway!

For your chance to win these books, all you need to do is:

1) Follow this blog
2) Comment on this blog post

For extra entries:

1) Blog about this contest and leave a comment telling me
2) Tweet about this contest and leave a comment telling me
3) Also, if you've never won one of my contests, please tell me in the comments, and you'll get an extra entry!

And make sure you leave me a way to get in contact with you when you win!

The contest will run through midnight on Monday, April 25, 2011!


*****

Don't forget I'm also giving away:

These beautiful Aladdin MIX titles!
CLICK HERE TO ENTER!




THE REVENANT by Sonia Gensler (Knopf/Random House, June 14, 2011)
CLICK HERE TO ENTER.

*****

For a full list of the blogs participating in the blog hop, check out the list below!

TLA Report 2011




The past week was an explosion of books like I haven't seen since ALA last year. Seriously, if you're looking for an amazing librarian conference, TLA is a don't-miss opportunity. Why go to TLA you might ask? Because it's a bunch of cool people talking about a bunch of cool books.

FACEBOOKI posted all my pictures over on Facebook (come friend me!), but here are just a handful of pics to give you an idea of the beauty of having TLA in Austin!



Wow! Look at the display my publisher had set up for my books!


Jessica Lee Anderson and I signing in the author area.
I'm wearing my new favorite shirt. *love*


K. A. Holt, Jenny Ziegler, Rosemary Clement-Moore, and Jessica Lee Anderson


Me with an alien. No clue why.


Getting ready for our Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels ice-cream social.
Do you see the huge ice-cream case?


Fellow panelist Phil Bildner, K. A. Holt, and Shelli Cornelison


Greg Leitich Smith and Joy Preble


Jessica Lee Anderson with her latest book, CALLI (Milkweed, September 2011)


Awesome librarians Michelle Beebower and Nichole Chagnon and me


Me with my Kung Fu, author buddy, the singing zoologist, Lucas Miller


Chilling after a long day