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...

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Exclusive Sneak Peek: Thief's Mark by Carla Neggers + Giveaway (US/Can)

Thief's Mark (Sharpe & Donovan #7)
Carla Neggers

A murder in a quiet English village, long-buried secrets and a man's search for answers about his traumatic past entangle FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan in the latest edge-of-your-seat Sharpe & Donovan novel

As a young boy, Oliver York witnessed the murder of his wealthy parents in their London apartment. The killers kidnapped him and held him in an isolated Scottish ruin, but he escaped, thwarting their plans for ransom. Now, after thirty years on the run, one of the two men Oliver identified as his tormentors may have surfaced.

Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan are enjoying the final day of their Irish honeymoon when a break-in at the home of Emma's grandfather, private art detective Wendell Sharpe, points to Oliver. The Sharpes have a complicated relationship with the likable, reclusive Englishman, an expert in Celtic mythology and international art thief who taunted Wendell for years. Emma and Colin postpone meetings in London with their elite FBI team and head straight to Oliver. But when they arrive at York's country home, a man is dead and Oliver has vanished.

As the danger mounts, new questions arise about Oliver's account of his boyhood trauma. Do Emma and Colin dare trust him? With the trail leading beyond Oliver's small village to Ireland, Scotland and their own turf in the United States, the stakes are high, and Emma and Colin must unravel the decades-old tangle of secrets and lies before a killer strikes again.

New York Times bestselling author Carla Neggers delivers the gripping, suspense-filled tale readers have been waiting for.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Interview with Caroline Leavitt, Author of Cruel Beautiful World + Giveaway (US only)

I'd like to welcome Caroline Leavitt to the blog today to celebrate the exciting release of Cruel Beautiful World from Algonquin Books!

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

Will you please share a brief introduction with us?

Caroline Leavitt is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Indie Next Pick, Cruel Beautiful World, Is This Tomorrow, Pictures of You, Girls In Trouble, Coming Back To Me, Living Other Lives, Into Thin Air, Family, Jealousies, Lifelines, and Meeting Rozzy Halfway.

Cruel Beautiful World was a Best Book of the Year from Blog Critics and from the Pulpwood Queens, and was a bookclub selection for Booksparks, Reading With Robin, and was selected to be part of Reading Group Month by the Women’s National Book Association.

Her many essays, stories, book reviews and articles have appeared in Salon, Psychology Today, The New York Times Sunday Book Review, The New York Times Modern Love, Publisher's Weekly, People, Real Simple, New York Magazine, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe and numerous anthologies. She won First Prize in Redbook Magazine's Young Writers Contest for her short story, "Meeting Rozzy Halfway," which grew into the novel. The recipient of a 1990 New York Foundation of the Arts Award for Fiction for Into Thin Air, she was also a National Magazine Award nominee for personal essay, and she was awarded a 2005 honorable mention, Goldenberg Prize for Fiction from the Bellevue Literary Review, for "Breathe," a portion of Pictures of You. As a screenwriter, Caroline was a 2003 Nickelodeon Screenwriting Fellow Finalist, and is a recent first-round finalist in the Sundance Screenwriting Lab competition for her script of Is This Tomorrow.


It's amazing to get to feature you today! Readers, here's a bit about the book, which just came out in paperback:

Sixteen-year-old Lucy Gold is about to run away with a much older man to live off the grid in rural Pennsylvania, a rash act that will have vicious repercussions for both her and her older sister, Charlotte. As Lucy’s default parent for most of their lives, Charlotte has seen her youth marked by the burden of responsibility, but never more so than when Lucy’s dream of a rural paradise turns into a nightmare.

Cruel Beautiful World examines the intricate, infinitesimal distance between seduction and love, loyalty and duty, chaos and control, as it explores what happens when you’re responsible for things you cannot make right.

Set against a backdrop of peace, love, and the Manson murders, the novel is a reflection of the era: exuberant, defiant, and precarious all at once. And Caroline Leavitt is at her mesmerizing best in this haunting, nuanced portrait of love, sisters, and the impossible legacy of family.

Describe Cruel Beautiful World in six words.

Young love, dangerous love, last love.

What was your inspiration for the book?

I was 17 and sitting behind a girl in study hall who was engaged to a 30-year-old controlling man. I thought that was strange. When I graduated, I heard the news. She had tried to break up with him, and he had stabbed her 47 times and vanished. I was haunted! I kept wanting to write about it, but I couldn’t understand how she had stayed with a guy like that, or how her friends and family had let her.

Not until ten years later.

My fiancé had died suddenly, and I was cataclysmic with grief. After 4 months, I couldn’t bear it anymore, and I got the bright idea that if I threw myself fin a new relationship, at least I’d be busy. I found this guy who seemed kind, nice, etc. and always spoke in a low, loving tone. But then he began to be manipulative. He told me I didn’t need to eat dinner (I was 95 pounds at the time). He monitored my friends, saying they were crazy. He monitored my clothes. He would wake me repeatedly in the middle of the night, whispering, marry me, marry me—and he wouldn’t let me sleep unless I said okay. Because he talked so kindly to me, I began to think he was right about me. But after two years, I reached a breaking point when he went into my computer and deleted a chapter, replacing it with one he had written, complete with Groucho Marx jokes. When I asked him, “Did you do this?” He said yes, and it was better. “That was mine!” I cried and he got very close to me and said very quietly. “Listen to me. There is no you. There is no me. There is only us.”

That’s when I was able to leave, able to understand my friend, and write about her.


That is seriously creepy, but has certainly evolved into a chilling story! Tell us about your road to publication, such as how you first queried, unexpected challenges, and things you picked up along the way. 

I am the poster girl for never giving up. I never queried agents or did anything but collect rejection slips from the many magazines I sent my short stories to. My first novel came out of a short story and it won First Prize in the Young Writers’ Contest. Then suddenly, I had a book deal! My first novel, Meeting Rozzy Halfway was a huge success, but then I had 8 failures. Publishers went out of business. Editors left. The publicity department did nothing. My 9th novel was actually rejected from my then publisher (I have had 5) for “not being special.” I cried and cried and cried to my friends and one of them suggested I contact her editor at Algonquin. I knew they wouldn’t want me—what publisher would take on someone who had no sales, no name, no anything? But they did, and they took that “non-special” book and put it into 6 printings before publication, and it made the New York Times Bestseller List its first month out!

Since then I’ve done 4 other novels with Algonquin, and I hope to always have them as my publisher! I’ve learned that you never know what is going to happen and your job is simply to write the best book you can and be open to surprises.

Be kind to everyone. Thank people who help you. Never compare yourself to anyone else. All those things are important.


Are the characters from your book based off anyone you know in real life?

Oh yes, Iris, the woman who falls in love for the first time is based on my mom. My mom had a terrible love life all her life. Jilted at the altar, marrying my father, a brute, on the rebound, and then reluctantly having to go into an independent living place at 90. And within a month, she fell in love. “For the first time,” she told us. Walter, her boyfriend was wonderful. They were like teenagers, together all the time for four years. And the blessing was that my mother got dementia days after Walter fell and died. She believes he is still very much alive, and we encourage that because it makes her so, so happy.

A lot of time, I am trying to figure out some issue I have in my novels (I call it my paper psychiatrist) so people I know do factor in my work, but I’m always careful to change their names, their appearances, their jobs, etc. I don’t want to get sued!


Which character from Cruel Beautiful World was most difficult to write?

Definitely William, the controlling boyfriend of young Lucy. I didn’t want him to be cardboard. I made him a man who is desperate to do the right thing, to do good in the world, and he just can’t. He loves Lucy—he truly does—and I had to make him a little ambiguous. And I realized, since most villains do not think they are villains, that I had to let him speak at the end, and tell his version of the story. And that was what was so difficult. It was a version. I never knew when I was writing it if William believed what he was saying, if he knew he was lying, or if he was telling the truth. I kept worrying, are readers going to understand that this is a deeply troubled, flawed human being who is desperate for absolution?

Readers, click "Read more" to find out Caroline's advice to aspiring writers, the message she wants readers to grasp, and how she reacts to harsh reviews. We're also hosting a giveaway for finished copies of Cruel Beautiful Wrold, so you don't want to miss that either!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Mrs. Saint and the Defectives by Julie Lawson Timmer Giveaway (US only)

Mrs. Saint and the Defectives
Julie Lawson Timmer
Lake Union // Amazon

Critically acclaimed author Julie Lawson Timmer returns with a tale of how community can heal the brokenness in all of us.

Markie, a forty-something divorcée who has suffered a humiliating and very public fall from marital, financial, and professional grace, moves, along with her teenage son, Jesse, to a new town, hoping to lick her wounds in private. But Markie and Jesse are unable to escape the attention of their new neighbor Mrs. Saint, an irascible, elderly New European woman who takes it upon herself, along with her ragtag group of “defectives” to identify and fix the flaws in those around her, whether they want her to or not.

What Markie doesn’t realize is that Mrs. Saint has big plans for the divorcée’s broken spirit. Soon, the quirky yet endearing woman recruits Markie to join her eccentric community, a world where both hidden truths and hope unite them. But when Mrs. Saint’s own secrets threaten to unravel their fragile web of healing, it’s up to Markie to mend these wounds and usher in a new era for the “defectives”—one full of second chances and happiness.

Giveaway!


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of Mrs. Saint and the Defectives—yay!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me in the comments below:
Have you ever experienced or been affected by a natural disaster? What happened?
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. Julie and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

Thankfully nothing disastrous, but northern California is known for earthquakes and during my time here I have experienced a few minor one.

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the publicist—a huge thank you to the lovely folks over at Goldberg McDuffie!
Giveaway ends August 22nd at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US 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 5, 2017

The Andalucian Nights Trilogy by Hannah Fielding + Legacy Giveaway (Open Internationally!)

Andalucían Nights Trilogy
Hannah Fielding
from London Wall Publishing

The award-winning epic Andalucían Nights Trilogy sweeps the reader from the wild landscapes of Spain in the 1950s, through a history of dangerous liaisons and revenge dramas, to a modern world of undercover missions and buried secrets. Romantic, exotic and deeply compelling, and featuring a brilliant cast of characters, including a passionate young gypsy, a troubled young writer and an estranged family, the Andalucían Nights Trilogy is a romantic treat waiting to be discovered.
Buy the book from: Amazon | KoboGoogle Play

Giveaway!


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of Legacy, the third book in the series—yay!!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me:
What is your favorite season and why?
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. Hannah and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

I would have to say the the transition period between spring and summer (April-June), when everything is warm but not yet scorching hot and the year still feels new and brimming with possibilities. While I do like fall weather and fall holidays (Halloween, Thanksgiving, etc.), I sort of see it as the "dying season" where everything gets cold and wilts ha!

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the author—a huge thank you to the lovely Hannah Fielding!
Giveaway ends August 19th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open internationally—woohoo! That means anyone in the world can enter, provided you have a verifiable mailing address.
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!

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Ice-Cream Makers by Ernest van der Kwast Giveaway (US/Can)

The Ice-Cream Makers
Ernest van der Kwast
37 INK // Atria Books // Simon & Schuster

In this international bestseller, a poet struggles to decide if he should put his family’s or his own needs first when he returns to Italy help run the ice cream dynasty he left behind years ago in this charming tale perfect for fans of A Man Called Ove.

As the heir to a proud Northern Italian ice-cream dynasty, Giovanni Calamine’s family is none too happy when he decides to break with tradition and travel the world as a notable poet. So when Giovanni receives an unexpected call from his brother, he is faced with a difficult decision: return home to serve in his family’s interests or continue on his own path in life once and for all?

In a heartwarming tale that weaves history with lore and poetry with delicious culinary curiosities, The Ice-Cream Makers paints a century-long, multigenerational portrait of a family wrestling with the conflicting pulls of legacy and desire.

Giveaway!


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of The Ice-Cream Makers—yay!!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me:
What ice cream flavor do you wish existed? Or perhaps already exists but you've been dying to try?
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. Ernest and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

I would love a strawberry shortcake ice cream with real pieces of pound cake in it. That would be so tasty, and perfect for summer!

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the publisher—a huge thank you to the lovely folks at Atria Books!
Giveaway ends August 17th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US and Canada readers only—sorry, everyone else! Please check my sidebar for the 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!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Searching for Irene by Marlene Bateman Giveaway (US only)

Searching for Irene
Marlene Bateman
from Deseret Book // Covenant Communications

What happened to Irene?

When Anna Coughlin, a modern 1920’s woman, travels to the secluded hills of Virginia to work for wealthy Lawrence Richardson, she discovers that the previous secretary, Irene, has mysteriously disappeared. Upon arriving at the castle-like mansion, Anna finds that Lawrence’s handsome, but antagonistic son, Tyler, wants nothing more than to have her gone. And he isn’t the only one.

Caught up in a maze of intrigue in a tormented and troubled household, Anna sets out to find the truth behind Irene’s disappearance. She is helped—and often hindered—by the temperamental Tyler Richardson, who—despite her best intentions—begins to steal her heart.

But even as Anna begins to uncover dark secrets, she must continue to hide a significant one of her own. Then, her life is threatened, and Anna is left to wonder if she’ll be able to unravel the mystery before she disappears as mysteriously as the unfortunate Irene.

Giveaway!


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy and one eBook of Searching for Irene—that's two winners total! Yay!!

To enter, all you have to do is answer Marlene's question in the comments below:
Have you ever had a hard time forgiving your parents or grandparents for something they did that hurt you?
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. Marlene and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the author—a huge thank you to the lovely Marlene Bateman!
Giveaway ends August 16th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US 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!