Saturday, August 19, 2017

7 Heart Review: Love Her Wild by Atticus

Love Her Wild
Atticus

Page Count: 225

Release Date: July 11th 2017
Publisher: Atria Books (Simon & Schuster)
Source: Complimentary copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest and unbiased review (thank you, Atria Books!)
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

The first collection of poetry by Instagram sensation Atticus.

Love Her Wild
is a collection of new and beloved poems from Atticus, the young writer who has captured the hearts and minds of hundreds of thousands of avid followers on his Instagram account @atticuspoetry, including superstars like Karlie Kloss and Shay Mitchell. He was dubbed the “#1 poet to follow” by Teen Vogue and “the world’s most tattoo-able” poet by Galore magazine, in Love Her Wild, Atticus captures what is both raw and relatable about the smallest and the grandest moments in life: the first glimpse of a new love in Paris; skinny dipping on a summer’s night; the irrepressible exuberance of the female spirit; or drinking whiskey in the desert watching the rising sun. With honesty, poignancy, and romantic flair, Atticus distills the most exhilarating highs and the heartbreaking lows of life and love into a few perfectly evocative lines, ensuring that his words will become etched in your mind—and will awaken your sense of adventure.
Atticus is an anonymous poet who gained online traction through his Instagram and Tumblr posts, and for the first time his work is being featured in a published paperback edition. The collection is divided into three different chapters: Love, which includes pieces about crushes, falling in love, and heartbreak; Her, detailing the beauty of a special unnamed woman who deserves great love; and Wild, a scattering of poems about travel, philosophy, and finding your true self.

I am impressed by the creative scope of his work, and admire his ability to express emotions about relationships, pride, and art that everyone will be able to relate to, combined with the typography aesthetic that has its own appeal. However, his poetry isn't particularly deep or significantly moving, and is actually quite basic. I think I would have enjoyed poetry like this back when I was twelve years old and just starting to write love poems about imaginary lovers, myself—a much simpler time in my life. The content of Love Her Wild will appeal primarily to middle-grade readers, particular preteen and teen girls, as they span the topics of pure and young love, wanderlust, and the importance of inner beauty.

That said, there are a few poems that truly stood out to me: Love could be labeled poison and we'd drink it anyways and When it comes to love we are primates breaking sticks while pointing to our hearts. There's just a charming simplicity and vulnerability to both of them. If all his poems were as effective as those two, I'd be much more inclined to recommend him to audiences other than teenagers.

Although in the end, this isn't fiction like I normally review but rather poetry, which is an entirely different art form; while Love Her Wild isn't groundbreaking to me, it can certainly be appreciated by anyone who knows what to make of it.

Pros


Plenty of poems to enjoy in the three different "chapters": Love, Her, and Wild // Beautiful black-and-white images in a softbound edition—would make a great gift or coffee table book // Atticus certainly has a way with words and some of the poems are touching

Cons


Much of the content is quite teen-angsty and melodramatic, attempting to be ~deep~ through simple, unstructured verse

Love




Verdict


As Atticus's first print poetry compilation, Love Her Wild speaks to his success as an Internet-famous writer who has touched the hearts of young-and-in-love budding romantics, especially among adolescent audiences. The minimalistic style and tender words of this syrupy volume make it pleasant to read, aesthetically appealing, and highly quotable, especially through visual mediums (e.g. Instagram posts). I would not be surprised to see excerpts of Love Her Wild widely quoted in the mainstream Americanflag

7 hearts: Not perfect, but overall enjoyable; would recommend, but borrow a copy before you buy! (x)

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Wish You Were Here by Renée Carlino Giveaway (US/Can)

Wish You Were Here
Renée Carlino
Atria Books // Simon & Schuster

You know when you’re looking at someone and you can’t help but smile at how oblivious they are to their own charm? That’s what was happening to me, and it was making me feel... happy. Euphoric. Something indescribable. It was like we already knew each other, like we had met in a previous life. Memories that didn’t exist began exploding in my mind like fireworks.

Charlotte has spent her twenties adrift, searching for a spark to jump-start her life and give her a sense of purpose. She’s had as many jobs as she’s had bad relationships, and now she’s feeling especially lost in her less-than-glamorous gig at a pie-and-fry joint in Los Angeles, where the uniforms are bad and the tips are even worse.

Then she collides—literally—with Adam, an intriguing, handsome, and mysterious painter. Their serendipitous meeting on the street turns into a whirlwind one-night stand that has Charlotte feeling enchanted by Adam’s spontaneity and joy for life. There’s promise in both his words and actions, but in the harsh light of morning, Adam’s tune changes, leaving Charlotte to wonder if her notorious bad luck with men is really just her own bad judgment.

Months later, a new relationship with Seth, a charming baseball player, is turning into something more meaningful, but Charlotte’s still having trouble moving past her one enthralling night with Adam. Why? When she searches for answers, she finds the situation with Adam is far more complicated than she ever imagined. Faced with the decision to write a new story with Seth or finish the one started with Adam, Charlotte embarks on a life-altering journey, one that takes her across the world and back again, bringing a lifetime’s worth of pain, joy, and wisdom.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The First Line of It Takes One to Tango by Winifred M. Reilly + Giveaway (US/Can)

It Takes One to Tango
Winifred M. Reilly
from Touchstone // Simon & Schuster

With a focus on self-empowerment and resilience, this refreshing and witty relationship guide has a reassuring counterintuitive message for unhappy spouses: you only need one partner to initiate far-reaching positive change in a marriage.

Conventional wisdom says that “it takes two” to turn a troubled marriage around and that both partners must have a shared commitment to change. So when couples can’t agree on how—or whether—to make their marriage better, many give up or settle for a less-than-satisfying marriage (or think the only way out is divorce).

Fortunately, there is an alternative.

It Takes One to Tango is a groundbreaking guide that shows how one determined partner—acting alone—can spark lasting, significant change in a marriage, often accomplishing change that cannot be made any other way. It doesn’t matter how short-fused, argumentative, or seemingly impossible your partner can be—or how long you’ve been stuck.

Marriage and family therapist Winifred Reilly has this message for struggling partners: Take the lead. Doing so is effective—and powerful. Through Reilly’s own story of reclaiming her now nearly forty-year marriage, along with anecdotes from many clients she’s worked with, you’ll learn how to:
  • Focus on your own behaviors and change them in ways that make you feel good about yourself and your marriage
  • Take a firm stand for what truly matters to you without arguing, cajoling, or resorting to threats
  • Identify the “big picture” issues at the basis of your repetitive fights—and learn how to unhook from them
  • Be less reactive, especially in the face of your spouse’s provocations
  • Develop the strength and stamina to be the sole agent of change

Combining psychological theory, practical advice, and personal narrative, It Takes One to Tango is a fresh and engaging guide that will empower those who choose to take a bold, proactive approach to creating a loving and lasting marriage.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Top 5 Writing Tips I Wish I'd Known Before Publishing by Kate Hamer, Author of The Doll Funeral + Giveaway (US/Can)

The Doll Funeral
Kate Hamer
from Melville House

It’s the birthday gift every 13-year-old wants: The discovery that your parents aren’t your real parents. For Ruby, the discovery that she’s adopted, and that her abusive parents aren’t her actual parents, the discovery is galvanizing.

Determined to find her real mother and father, she runs away into the woods with nothing but a suitcase and the company of her only true friend—the imaginary Shadow Boy. There, she discovers a group of siblings living by their wits. They take her in, but while they offer the closest Ruby’s ever had to a family, it’s not always clear what’s real and what’s not—or who’s trying to help her and who might be a threat.

Told from shifting timelines, and the alternating perspectives of Ruby; her mother, Anna; and even the Shadow Boy, The Doll Funeral is a dazzling follow-up to Kate Hamer’s breakout debut, The Girl in the Red Coat, and a gripping, exquisitely mysterious novel about the connections that remain after a family has been broken apart.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Dog Dish of Doom by E.J. Copperman Giveaway (US/Can)

Dog Dish of Doom (Agent to the Paws #1)
E.J. Copperman
Thomas Dunne // Minotaur Books // St. Martin's Press

Cozy fans and animal lovers alike won't be able to keep their paws off Dog Dish of Doom. Laugh-out-loud funny, E.J. Copperman's series debut is "lots of fun" (Library Journal, starred).

Kay Powell wants to find that break-out client who will become a star. And she thinks she’s found him: His name is Bruno, and he has to be walked three times a day.

Kay is the Agent to the Paws, representing showbiz clients who aren’t exactly people. In fact: they're dogs. Bruno’s humans, Trent and Louise, are pains in the you-know-what, and Les McMaster, the famous director mounting a revival of Annie, might not hire Bruno just because he can’t stand them.

This becomes less of an issue when Trent is discovered face down in Bruno’s water dish, with a kitchen knife in his back. Kay’s perfectly fine to let the NYPD handle the murder, but when the whole plot seems to center on Bruno, her protective instincts come into play. You can kill any people you want, but you’d better leave Kay’s clients alone.

Giveaway!


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of Dog Dish of Doom—yay!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me in the comments below:
What is your favorite aspect about your dog? If you aren't a current dog owner: are you a dog person or do you prefer other pets?
Please make your comment MEANINGFUL. Comments solely consisting of stock responses or irrelevant fluff like "Thanks for the giveaway!" will not be considered for entry. E.J. and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

My dog will paw at my hands if I stop scratching his ears. He'll do it until I pick my hand up and start scratching again. Classical conditioning at its funniest!

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the publisher—a huge thank you to the lovely folks over at St. Martin's Press!
Giveaway ends August 28th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US and Canada residents only—sorry, everyone else! Please check my sidebar for a list of currently running giveaways that are open worldwide. There are plenty to choose from!
Void where prohibited.
Winners have 48 hours to claim their prize once they are chosen, or else their winnings will be forfeited.
Although I do randomly select winners, I am in no way responsible for prizes, nor for shipping and handling.
As a reminder, you do not have to follow my blog to enter, though it is always very much appreciated ❤
Good luck!

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Interview with Rachel Linden, Author of Ascension Of Larks + Giveaway (US/Can)

I'd like to welcome Rachel Linden to the blog today to celebrate the exciting release of Ascension of Larks from Thomas Nelson!

Welcome to Books à la Mode, Rachel! Let's get this interview started.

Will you please share a brief introduction with us?

Rachel Linden spent her childhood in a magical world of make-believe, enjoying countless hours playing pioneer house under a towering blue spruce tree, mixing potions for enchantments, and pretending to be a member of the French Resistance in WWII. These early adventures prompted her to write stories with such exciting titles as Beans!, which she fashioned into books bound in cardboard from cereal boxes.

Rachel’s taste for adventure and her interest in the world led her to a career as an international worker with a faith-based charity, and her experiences living and traveling in forty-seven countries around the globe continue to provide excellent grist for her stories.

Rachel holds a BA in Literature from Huntington University, an MA in Intercultural Studies from Wheaton College, and studied creative writing at Oxford University in England during her undergraduate education. She currently splits her time between Seattle, Washington, and Budapest, Hungary, where she lives with her husband and son on the banks of the Danube River.

When she is not dreaming up a new story, Rachel spends her time traveling on trains across Central Europe with her family, enjoying good food and wine with friends from around the world, and exploring the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest and the history and architecture of Europe.


It's amazing to get to feature you today! Readers, here's a bit about the book, which hit shelves in June:

When globetrotting photographer Magdalena Henry loses the only man she’s ever loved, she risks her stellar career to care for his widow and young children on a remote island in the Pacific Northwest.

Free-spirited and fiercely independent, Maggie adores her life of travel and adventure. But she has a secret. She can’t let go of her first and only love, renowned architect Marco Firelli, now married to her best friend Lena.

When Marco drowns in a kayaking accident, Maggie rushes to the Firelli family’s summer home on San Juan Island. Once there she discovers that Marco was hiding something that could destroy his family. As fragile, perfectionistic Lena slowly falls apart, Maggie tries to provide stability for Marco and Lena’s three young children.

When Maggie is offered a once-in-a-lifetime chance to compete in the world’s most prestigious photography competition, she thinks she’s found the answer to their problems. Then Lena makes a choice with unexpected and devastating consequences, forcing Maggie to grapple with an agonizing decision. Does she sacrifice the golden opportunity of her career or abandon the Firellis just when they need her the most?

Gradually the island begins to work its magic. A century-old ritual to beckon loved ones home offers hope in the midst of sorrow. And a guilt-ridden yet compelling stranger hiding on the island may offer Maggie a second chance at love, but only if she can relinquish the past and move forward to find joy in unexpected places.

What was your favorite book as a child?

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. The plucky, kind, and intelligent March sisters were inspirational. Also any story where girls were having grand adventures!

Growing up homeschooled in rural Ohio, I had plenty of time to devour books by the dozen. Those stories gave me a thirst for adventure that significantly influenced my life’s direction. I just got my 50th country stamp in my passport last year (I think it was Morocco) and have lived for the past 7 years in Europe working with a faith based organization.

This summer our family relocated from Budapest back to our beloved Seattle. This week we finally unpacked our 14 boxes of books. (That’s after we pared down a lot!) In one box I found my tattered copy of Little Women. It was like being reunited with a childhood friend.


What book did you read that first made you want to be an author?  

Little Women for starters. As a little girl I wanted to be a writer like Jo and even wrote my own books with scintillating titles like Beans! that I bound in cardboard from cereal boxes.

Also Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott. When I read it in college it was like a light bulb flickering on in my head. Lamott describes the inner life of a writer so perfectly, and I thought “Oh, this is me! I can identify with this.” It gave me permission to call myself a writer.


What books are currently on your nightstand?

Given our recent international move and my darling and exuberant toddler son and infant daughter, my formerly luxurious hours of reading are now confined to a few hasty minutes with a headlamp before sleep, but I’m still a confirmed bookworm.

Currently on my nightstand: With by Skye Jethani which is a spiritual breath of fresh air. The stunning Pulitzer Prize winner All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. I’m managing to read about 2 pages at a time but I’m savoring it! And my beloved Kindle. It saved my literary life living in Central Europe where English language books are rare and expensive. My Kindle has traveled on plane, trains, buses and boats to about 35 countries with me.


Where can you be found on the web?


Before we conclude this interview, is there anything you'd like to ask our readers?

The main character in Ascension of Larks is a professional photographer. If this was your profession, what would you like to capture through a camera lens?

It was a pleasure to be able to get to know you better today, Rachel! Thank you again for dropping by, and best of luck with future endeavors!


Giveaway!


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of Ascension of Larks—woohoo! To enter, all you have to do is answer Rachel's question in the comments below:
If you were a professional photographer, what would you want to capture through a camera lens?
Please make your comment MEANINGFUL. Comments solely consisting of stock responses or irrelevant fluff like "Thanks for the giveaway!" will not be considered for entry. Rachel and I really want to hear your thoughts! :)
Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the tour publicist and publisher—a huge thank you to the lovely folks over at TLC Book Tours and Thomas Nelson!
Giveaway ends August 26th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US and Canada residents only. Sorry, everyone else! Please check my sidebar on the right for a list of currently running giveaways that are open worldwide—there are plenty to choose from!
Void where prohibited.
Winners have 48 hours to claim their prize once they are chosen, or else their winnings will be forfeited.
Although I do randomly select winners, I am in no way responsible for prizes, nor for shipping and handling.
As a reminder, you do not have to follow my blog to enter, though it is always very much appreciated ❤
Good luck!

Friday, August 11, 2017

My Favorite Season by Maureen Child, Author of His Unexpected Heir from A Summer of Romance Sampler + Giveaway (US/Can)

His Unexpected Heir
Maureen Child
from Harlequin Desire // Harlequin // HarperCollins

Between duty, honor... and a baby! Only from USA TODAY bestselling author Maureen Child.

Six months. That’s how long Rita Marchetti has mourned Jack Buchanan. Yet here he is, alive, standing in front of her, perfect... and devastatingly sexy! Even more amazing is the former marine’s admission that he wanted Rita to think he’d died. But the two of them are about to become three and Jack is back just in time.

That baby Rita is carrying is his. Despite the pain he holds so close to his heart, Jack can’t walk away from his child. A marriage in name only would solve everything. Everything except a desire too deeply buried and too long denied...