Life Update: Seeing Love, Simon, Winning New Books and Health Changes

Hello readers!

This is the first non blog tour post that I’ve done for a while now, here on this blog. I’ve loved participating in a variety of promotional tours for publishers and discovering new worlds and characters along the way. It’s one of my favourite things as a blogger, the chance to promote upcoming works and authors onto the online stage. One of my aims for 2018 was to focus on blog tours, mainly YA and so far, I’ve been a part of over ten promotional tours. So many beautiful banners ready for display that are sent to me via the tour companies/publishers which is always super exciting! Here is a quick update of what has been happening in my world, away from the blog tour scene.

A few weeks ago, myself and my boyfriend went to see Love, Simon at the local Odeon cinema and by the end, I was tearing up in front of everyone (awkward), if you haven’t seen it yet, please go and treat yourself, you will laugh, cry, reflect and witness a beautiful adaptation of a good YA novel, written by Becky Albertalli. I personally preferred the film to the book but I still recommend both. As students, both of us got some form of discount for the cinema. I have to admit that here in the UK, going to the movies is so overpriced and sometimes, I freak out a little because I have this childish fear of the dark and when the lights in the cinema screen go all dim, I feel kind of trapped. Anyone else feel the same?

If you haven’t heard of this website (UK readers, this one is for you!), then you should stop by and enter giveaways for free releases of new books before their general release date. The delight when you get an email to say that you’ve won a book or two… It’s called Readers First and by reviewing books, you earn points and then once you’ve reached a certain amount, you can exchange those points for more free books! It’s actually helped me to save money as well as discover some new authors. The two latest books that I’ve won are called On Leopard Rock by Wilbur Smith and Mr Peacock’s Possessions by Lydia Syson. They are both adult fiction novels but YA novels do frequently pop up for giveaways, so keep checking back at the start of each week to see what books are up for grabs. Once they both arrive, I will be leaving full reviews for them on my Goodreads profile (www.Goodreads.com/Marriedtobooks44).

Regarding my health, I haven’t really shared much detail about it online. But recently, my anxiety and depression issues really took a toll on me. I really felt lost, torn and confused. As of right now, I will be finishing up my Pre-University course by the end of May but regarding University, I am not 100% sure whether I will decide to go or not. This has been a very difficult time for me and personally, I really did struggle and fell behind on some work. When you feel distraught and alone, the littlest thing may set you off. It did for me and the results weren’t positive. I still self-manage, as I’ve always done for many years because I like to try and be independent. I am very happy however, for all of my friends and fellow bloggers who managed to get into their first choice University!

Today, I posted this tweet which as of right now and according to Twitter Analytics, it has been seen by over 1,300 users! But, I’m delighted to finally have in my collection, this gorgeous edition of Leah On The Offbeat! One of my most anticipated releases of the year fell into my hands and I literally just couldn’t stop smiling.

Also readers, I totally recommend the iced mango and cream, it was delicious! T2 stock some amazing tea flavours and have recently started going back there for my takeaway teas. I still have a hidden crush on the Crème Brulee one and just had one before typing up this post!

There are so many amazing YA releases this month, which I’m really excited for. Examples are I Was Born For This by Alice Oseman, The Smoke Thieves by Sally Green and The Surface Breaks by Louise O’Neill! And they are all released on the same day… Which always seems to happen to me whenever I want to binge-buy all of the new releases from my local Waterstones/WHSmith stores in my home city!

What books have you been reading recently? Any latest releases that are on your TBR? I’d love to know in the comments below! Thanks so much for reading this chatty life update post, don’t forget to follow me on Twitter (www.Twitter.com/MarriedToBooks3) and Instagram (www.Instagram.com/alicetiedthebookishknot) for regular uploads and updates! See you all soon with a new post!

Alice x

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Blog Tour: Magnetic

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Hello all! Welcome back to my blog for the novel Magnetic written by Carissa Miller, a YA novel that is inspired by true events. This post will include a full spoiler-free review as well as a giveaway opportunity and more details about where to purchase a copy. Enjoy reading!

Magnetic

Book details:
Magnetic
by Carissa Miller
Publication date: September 10th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

 

Synopsis:

When Elle Christiansen’s rebellion leads to her father’s expulsion from a parsonage in small-town Ohio, the forlorn pair is forced to move to Oklahoma to live with an aunt neither of them has ever met. Here she encounters her aunt’s neighbor—Maverick Mason, the quietly confident son of a wealthy oil tycoon who infuriates her as much as he inexplicably draws her in…

Maverick slowly gains Elle’s trust and coaxes her out from the seemingly impenetrable walls of self-protection she erected around her heart when her mother was murdered. He convinces Elle to confide the secrets of her tortured past: that she saw her mother’s murder before it took place, and she was the one who found her, bleeding to death at the end of a lonely dirt road. Together the unlikely pair begins to unlock the secrets of not only Elle’s sordid past, but her mother’s and grandmother’s as well, to uncover decades of greed, corporate corruption, lies, and murder. Quickly, the sobering realization hits: if they do not solve her mother’s murder, Elle will undoubtedly suffer the same fate. As she continues her journey toward truth alongside the boy she is magnetically drawn to in a way both frightening and uncontrollable, Elle finds the road she is most afraid of going down—that one lane dirt road where her mother was murdered—just might be the only place she can truly find redemption.

Magnetic tells of the enduring pain of living with unsolved violent crime. Inspired by debut author Carissa Miller’s true-life events, it’s a haunting account of a young girl’s struggle in the aftermath of shattering loss. With an unravelling love story, puzzling mystery, unexpected twists and turns, and a gripping pace that will keep you turning pages, our heroine takes you on her journey as she learns one of life’s great lessons: facing your fears instead of running from them, is the only way to truly find freedom.

Purchase:

Carissa

AUTHOR BIO:
Carissa Miller writes a lifestyle and design blog called CC and Mike, where she and her husband blog about their experiences designing, building, and flipping houses in the Midwest. She was inspired to write her debut novel–Magnetic—because of her firsthand experience living with the trauma of an unsolved violent crime, her mother’s attempted murder. When she’s not writing, blogging, or designing, Carissa loves Oklahoma summers on the lake with her husband and three children, going to Oklahoma State sporting events and cheering on the Cowboys, and traveling cross country with her family in the RV she and her husband renovated. Carissa laughs loudly, loves with her whole heart, tells it how it is to a fault, and enjoys living life to the fullest, every moment of every day.

You can follow along with Carissa and her family on Instagram – ccandmikecreative, Facebook – CC and Mike, Pinterest – CC and Mike, Twitter, or by subscribing to their blog – http://www.ccandmike.com/.

Author links:
REVIEW: Magnetic was a novel I read in a single sitting and one that even to this moment, as I type my thoughts up, that I’m still trying to digest fully what happened throughout with the mysteries and scary nightmares that the main character Elle experiences. Even though the genre above is listed contemporary, I would also add mystery/thriller to that list, since it was definitely a thrilling read that kept me eager to read up to the last page. Elle moves to Oklahoma with her Dad and moves in with a mysterious aunt who has hidden secrets of her own. Soon, Elle meets other young teens and attends the prep school where her Dad has a new job as a teacher. The romance for me did feel a little bit insta-love, however, the suspense from the nightmares and family secrets finally unlocked were the parts I enjoyed the most. Also, being inspired from true events, it made me feel more interested as a reader, wanting to know more about past experiences and trying a new book by a new author!
GIVEAWAY: Closing date for entries is 10th May 2018
For the chance to win a $25 Amazon giftcard, to spend on whatever you want (books, games, dvds), then head over to the giveaway link. This giveaway is open for international entries!: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232411
That concludes this tour post, a big thanks to the team at Xpresso and the author Carissa for letting me be a part of the promotional tour. Have a great day and see you all with a new post soon!
Alice x

Blog Tour: Sons of Gods

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It’s blog tour day once again! Welcome back to my blog for the promotional tour post for Sons of Gods by Arthur J Gonzalez. This is a YA Mythology novel that I was kindly sent for review via Xpresso Tours, as always, my post will contain more details about the novel with purchase links, a quick-fire review (always spoiler-free) and a giveaway opportunity. So, let’s get started!

Sons

Book details:
Sons of Gods
by Arthur J. Gonzalez
Publication date: January 25th 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Mythology, Young Adult

Synopsis:

Long ago, the wrath of the three God brothers marked the onset of the Great War. The other Gods watched in horror, until they, too, were forced to take sides. Their beloved Mt Olympus collapsed, ruin was brought to all Divine, and the Age of Darkness gripped the world in its clutches. But a group of Gods was wise, and before their impending deaths, they had crafted a pact, committing to one day rebuilding the Territories – the Heavens, Seas, and the Underworld. It would usher in the world they protected and honored out from its darkness. And from it would rise the new Greats: the Sons of Gods.

Cienzo has always had an affliction for metal and fire; never did he anticipate it would one day translate to wielding dormant powers. It is during a journey to fulfill a promise to his dying sister, that he is plunged into a dark and magical world, and where great responsibility is bestowed upon him.

Is he worthy of assuming the throne of the Territories? Can shattering steel and splitting fire change his mind?

Purchase:
Arthur
AUTHOR BIO:
Arthur J. Gonzalez is a Young Adult author of the Photo Traveler series. Originally born in Miami, FL, you can now find him living on the West side in Los Angeles. If he’s not drinking coffee or playing with his adorable Schnoodle, Sookie, then he’s probably enjoying a nap. Also, he forgets the lyrics to nearly every song.
Author links:
REVIEWS: Readers, I have a huge secret that I would like to share… I have quite a strong interest for mythology so when the chance came to sign-up for the promotional blog tour for a new YA novel that was mythology featured, I leapt at the chance! The battles between Gods have forced new plans to be drawn up in order to protect their world. The main character Cienzo has a mission to complete which is, to save his sister who is rapidly dying. To accomplish this, he must leave his surroundings behind and face the threats of violence along the way. The main strength for Sons of Gods was definitely the dialogue, it kept the pacing strong throughout. When it came to the violence, some of the descriptions were a little gory at times, however, it made for an interesting plot and gave me a good mythology fix!
Giveaway: Closing Date for Entries is April 26th 2018!
To be in with the chance of winning a £25 Amazon voucher to spend on whatever you like, head over to this link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232398/
That concludes this tour post, a massive thank you to the team at Xpresso and the author Arthur for letting me be a part of the promotional tour. See you all soon!
Alice x

Blog Tour: Dreamer

DreamerTourBannerHello! I’m back on my blog today for a new tour post. This time, the promotional tour post is for the novel Dreamer by L.E DeLano, a YA Fantasy novel that was discovered on the website Swoon Reads and selected for publication. As always, this post will contain all of the details that you need to know regarding purchasing a copy, also a giveaway opportunity and review of the novel. Please note that Dreamer is the second book in the Traveler (series?) so you will need to pick up a copy of the first one called Traveler before diving into Dreamer!

Dreamer cover

Book details:
Dreamer
by L.E. DeLano
(Traveler #2)
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: April 10th 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

Synopsis:

This thrilling sequel to Traveler doles out adventure and heartbreak in equal measure as it takes readers through a kaleidoscope of intricately crafted worlds of wonder, discovery, and danger.

You’re still you no matter where you go.

Jessa has learned the hard way that traveling to alternate dimensions isn’t all delicious, glittering desserts and fancy parties: it also means accidentally running into people she thought she’d never see again. Still mourning a devastating loss, Jessa isn’t really prepared for the arrival of a reckless version of someone she once loved who is now bent on revenge. Add an increasingly complicated relationship with her best friend Ben, the reappearance of an old enemy, and the threat of the multiverse collapsing, and Jessa’s got a lot on her plate. She may be destined to help save an infinite multitude of worlds… but in the end, all Jessa really wants to do is save her friends.

In Dreamer, the young adult fantasy follow up to Traveler, author L. E. DeLano delivers a gripping, emotional story that will leave readers on the edge of their seat.

 

Delano

AUTHOR BIO:
L.E. DeLano is a YA novelist rep’d by Barry Goldblatt Literary agency, author of the upcoming “Traveler” (Swoon Reads/MacMillan 2017) and lifelong writer. Her work has been featured on various online outlets and she lives in Pennsylvania with two very adventurous kids and two very ridiculous cats. In her spare time, she writes (of course) and binge-watches way too much Netflix.
Author links:

 

REVIEW: Dreamer was an adventurous follow-on from the first book Traveler, Jessa our main character is still struggling with an event that occurred right at the end of the previous novel. She, however, must deal with love and revenge from a figure that she thought had left her life for good. The various worlds that take place within the storyline made for a good visual read. Dialogue was strong with the pacing mostly stable throughout, leaving for interesting moments such as Jessa and one of the other characters Ben together. Personally, it was the covers that drew me into picking up both copies of Traveler and Dreamer, bright and simply beautiful to look at! A nice conclusion which I am definitely curious to see if there are any follow-ups to Dreamer which I hope there is (crosses fingers and toes) XD

Giveaway: Closing date for entries is April 19th 2018!
Tour-wide giveaway (US/CAN)
  • Paperback copy of Dreamer

To be in with a chance to win a paperback copy of Dreamer, head over to this link. Entries are only open to residents living in the USA/Canada: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232388/

That concludes this post, a massive thank you to Xpresso and the author L.E DeLano for letting me be a part of the promotional tour for Dreamer!

Alice x

 

Blog Tour: Entombed In Glass

EntombedInGlassBlitzBanner.png Hello all! Welcome back to my blog, for today’s tour post for the novel Entombed in Glass by Stacey Rourke. This is the second book in the Unfortunate Soul Chronicles series which is a YA Fantasy! I read and reviewed book one: Rise of the Sea Witch also as part of the tour, which you can find my spoiler-free Goodreads review for here:  https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2352396089?book_show_action=false 

Entombed

Book details:
Entombed in Glass
by Stacey Rourke
(Unfortunate Soul Chronicles, #2)
Publication date: March 29th 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Synopsis:

Mirror, mirror on the wall.
What’s behind that fated call?
He’s the seer of present, future, and past,
Yet remains a nameless face entombed in glass.

Raised as a servant in the underwater kingdom of Atlantica, Alastor worked his way up to a regal member of the Royal Guard. Only as a decorated soldier did he stand a chance of winning the hand of the woman he’s loved since childhood … Poseidon’s only daughter, Princess Vanessa. But, when the war against humans rages, dark magics are evoked to give the mermen a fighting chance. Temporarily granted legs, they charge from the sea into a doomed battle.

Doing the bidding of his masters as a trusted pawn,
The claims of his loyalty couldn’t be more wrong.

Waking on land, with bodies all around, Alastor’s lone goal becomes returning to the ocean and the only life he’s ever known. A plan that is quickly diverted when Hades, Lord of the Underworld, appears with a twisted agenda all his own. Cast to a land far from the lapping comforts of home, Alastor’s sole companion is a troubled misfit named Sterling that soon comes to depend on him. Trained to be a hero, how far is Alastor willing to go to return to the woman he loves? And can he live with the sacrifices he’s forced to make?

Each day he schemes to break free from their thrall,
and honor a self-made vow … to kill them all.

Purchase:
Stacey
AUTHOR BIO:
RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel
Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013
Readers’ Favorite Silver Medal Winner for Crane 2015

Stacey Rourke is the author of the award winning YA Gryphon Series, the chillingly suspenseful Legends Saga, and the romantic comedy Reel Romance Series. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction, and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head.

Author links:
REVIEW: Entombed in Glass follows on from the events of Rise of the Sea Witch but following a different character called Alastor. He used to have a deep crush towards Vanessa/Ursula but now is trapped in the world where humans are and not under the sea where he is originally from. Alastor and his new companion Sterling must battle the elements and push past threats from Hades to return back home before they both meet certain death. Although the dialogue and pacing were strong throughout, I did struggle a little with character connection. I would have liked to have seen more underwater setting as this was predominately featured in Rise of the Sea Witch. However, this was also a quick fast-paced and thrilling read that had a good conclusion. Whoever designed the covers for this series has done a fabulous job, they are stunning and show up really well on my iPad, which I use as a digital reading device.
Giveaway: Closing date for entries is April 8th 2018!
Tour-wide giveaway (INTL)
  • A Decoupaged basket filled with surprise goodies! Inside, the lucky winner will find FIVE signed paperbacks from Stacey and various authors, and TEN different swag items!

If you would like to enter the giveaway, here is the link: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0a59996f22/

That concludes this tour post, a massive thanks to the team at Xpresso as well as the author Stacey for letting me be a part of the tour. See you all soon!

Alice x

Blog Tour: Meet Me In The Strange

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Hello readers! Today is my blog tour post for the novella Meet Me In The Strange by Leander Watts. This post will include a review (spoiler-free) as well as the opportunity to enter into the giveaway running and purchase links so if you are interested, you can grab yourself a copy. This is a YA Science Fiction novella and was kindly sent the ARC for review for being part of the promotional tour. Let’s get started!

MeetMe

Book details:
Meet Me in the Strange
by Leander Watts
Publication date: March 27th 2018
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Synopsis:

From the author of Beautiful City of the Dead and Stonecutter comes a dreamy, atmospheric coming of age story that will appeal to readers of all ages.

Davi tries to help a new friend, Anna Z, escape a cruel and controlling brother, and the teens end up running away to follow the tour of their rock idol, the otherworldly Django Conn. The story is set in a weird and wonderful retro-futuristic city of glam-girls and glister-boys and a strange phenomenon that Anna Z calls the “Alien Drift.”

Purchase:
Leander
AUTHOR BIO:
An avid musician, Leander Watts has played and sung for decades in a wide variety of bands. His interests range from garage rock to skronky jazz, from baroque organ to Appalachian gospel. The first rock concert he attended was David Bowie on the Diamond Dogs tour in 1974. He teaches writing and literature at the State University of New York at Geneseo (his alma mater). Leander Watts is the author of Stonecutter, Wild Ride to Heaven, Ten Thousand Charms, and Beautiful City of the Dead.
Author links:
REVIEW: Meet Me In The Strange was definitely an interesting YA novella, the length was short, so that was good for me to read on a very busy day in particular (same day as this post is uploaded). The novella is told from Davi’s point of view as he goes to a concert for the artist Django Conn and locks eyes with a strange girl that he later finds out is called Anna Z. She has a burning secret of her own regarding her past family life and doesn’t want to be found by her brother. Together, they make plans to run away and follow their idol Django across his supposed final tour. The futuristic city makes for the sci-fi setting with the Alien Drift being a curious plot twist. The pacing was fast but does make it ideal for a short novella that is completely standalone.
Giveaway: This closes for entries on April 19th 2018!

Tour-wide giveaway
  • $25 Amazon gift card

For the chance to win an Amazon gift card to spend on whatever you like, head over to this link to enter: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232356/

That concludes this post, a massive thank you to the team at Xpresso as well as the author Leander for letting me be a part of the tour. See you all soon with a new post!

Alice x

Blog Tour: Starfish

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Hello readers! I’m super excited to help launch the promotional blog tour for a brand new YA release: Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman! The banner above lists the Twitter usernames for all of the other bloggers that will be a part of the tour. I was kindly sent a physical copy for review by the publishers Ink Road, so a massive thank you to them. Here is everything you need to know about Starfish and my personal thoughts on the novel itself!

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Genre: YA Contemporary

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1481487728/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29456598-starfish

Blurb: Kiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking. With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half-Japanese heritage she doesn’t quite understand, Kiko prefers to keep her head down, certain that once she makes it into her dream art school, Prism, her real life will begin.

But then Kiko doesn’t get into Prism, at the same time her abusive uncle moves back in with her family. So when she receives an invitation from her childhood friend to leave her small town and tour art schools on the west coast, Kiko jumps at the opportunity in spite of the anxieties and fears that attempt to hold her back. And now that she is finally free to be her own person outside the constricting walls of her home life, Kiko learns life-changing truths about herself, her past, and how to be brave.

REVIEW: First of all, the representation for Anxiety in Starfish was just… very well done. I have an anxiety disorder and finding stories with main characters in that have anxiety with great representation is a massive struggle. Some of the topics within the novel (sexual abuse, suicide) can make it a heavy and hard-hitting read at times but I simply cannot deny how much I really enjoyed reading about Kiko’s life and how she battled with her worries and having a passion for art. Because of the anxiety rep, I found it easy to connect to Kiko as a character. The California setting was something I also enjoyed reading about since I would love to visit there at some point in the future! One of the insights about Kiko which really opened my eyes as a reader were the various points within the story which said ‘What I want to say’ and ‘What I actually say’, this in my personal life I can really relate to a lot. The pacing was even with plot twists that I didn’t expect. My paperback edition of the novel is absolutely stunning and will make a great addition to your collection! A solid 4.5 star read and one that I would happily re-read in the future!

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Akemi Dawn Bowman is the author of Starfish (Simon Pulse/Simon & Schuster) and Summer Bird Blue (Fall 2018). She’s a proud Ravenclaw and Star Wars enthusiast, who served in the US Navy for five years and has a BA in social sciences from UNLV. Originally from Las Vegas, she currently lives in England with her husband, two children, and their Pekingese mix. She is represented by Penny Moore of Empire Literary.

Follow the author on Twitter: https://twitter.com/akemidawn

Check out Akemi’s website!: http://akemidawnbowman.com/

That concludes this post, a massive thank you to the publishers Ink Road and the author Akemi for letting me be a part of the promotional tour. See you all soon with a new post!

Alice x