Waiting on Wednesday #5

I have some pretty exciting personal news to reveal…

Later this year, I will actually get to meet one of my idols – Cat Winters! Every other year, the library I work for hosts the Ohio River Festival of Book (ohioriverbooks.org), which is a free event that connects the public with some pretty amazing authors. In the planning stages, I had suggested Cat for the young adult audience, and you can’t even begin to imagine my excitement when this actually panned out. October 1st, I’ll actually get to meet her and see her speak, and you better believe I’m counting down the days.

Another thing I’m counting down the days till is the release of this week’s featured Waiting on Wednesday read…

The Steep and Thorny Way

By Cat Winters

Publication Date: March 8, 2016

22838927

Synopsis (via Goodreads)
A thrilling reimagining of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, The Steep and Thorny Way tells the story of a murder most foul and the mighty power of love and acceptance in a state gone terribly rotten.

1920s Oregon is not a welcoming place for Hanalee Denney, the daughter of a white woman and an African-American man. She has almost no rights by law, and the Ku Klux Klan breeds fear and hatred in even Hanalee’s oldest friendships. Plus, her father, Hank Denney, died a year ago, hit by a drunk-driving teenager. Now her father’s killer is out of jail and back in town, and he claims that Hanalee’s father wasn’t killed by the accident at all but, instead, was poisoned by the doctor who looked after him—who happens to be Hanalee’s new stepfather.

The only way for Hanalee to get the answers she needs is to ask Hank himself, a “haint” wandering the roads at night.

Why I’m Waiting

If you’ve never read one of Cat Winters’s books before, prepare for mass amounts of mystery mixed with heaps of history and a dash of mysticism. If In the Shadow of Blackbirds and The Cure for Dreaming are any indication of just how talented Cat Winters is, The Steep and Thorny Way is going to be the one book this year that you DO NOT want to miss!
We all know I’m a sucker for retellings, and it’s been a while since I’ve seen anyone in the YA game approach Shakespeare with a new look. BUT this is exactly the kind of innovated idea that I expect from the author. I read the summary aloud, and then had to shout, “WHERE does she come up with this? I want to have such brilliant ideas!”
The Cure for Dreaming made such a lasting impression on me that, when asked to write a book review for the local newspaper last year, it was a clear choice what book I needed to tell the public all about.

  image2

It’s a fabulous book, and one all of you should check out.

Oh, and before I forget…Cat Winters currently resides in the cultural and creative epicenter of America – Portland,  Oregon. Portland also happens to be home to one of the coolest book stores in the world, Powell’s, where Cat will be doing a signing on March 10th. Know what the coolest part is though? You can preorder one of her signed copies directly from Powell’s – which of course, I did.
 Have I mentioned she’s really receptive to talking to fans on Twitter? Cause she is. I can’t wait to meet this incredible woman! Hopefully, she’ll have a tip or two for writing YA fiction for me.

Add The Steep and Thorny Way to your To Be Read Shelf on Goodreads
Pre-Order via Amazon
Pre-Order via Barnes & Noble

 

Waiting on Wednesday #4

The plots that tend to get stuck in my head usually are of the thriller genre. My on-again-off-again work in progress is tentatively titled Captive, and is about a young girl who has spent the majority of her life imprisoned by her abductor and who must make some very difficult choices in order to save herself. While I was sitting at lunch the other day, an idea struck me for a different story about two friends, self-destruction, a disappearance, and guilt. Won’t reveal too much about that one just yet… BUT I can say that once I saw the synopsis for After the Woods, I knew I would have to read it for the inspiration to tell the story I want to tell. That’s why it earns this week’s Waiting on Wednesday.

After the Woods
By Kim Savage
Publication Date: February 23, 2016

afterthewoods

Synopsis (via Goodreads)

“Would you risk your life to save your best friend?

Julia did. When a paroled predator attacked Liv in the woods, Julia fought back and got caught. Liv ran, leaving Julia in the woods for a terrifying 48 hours that she remembers only in flashbacks. One year later, Liv seems bent on self-destruction, starving herself, doing drugs, and hooking up with a violent new boyfriend. A dead girl turns up in those same woods, and Julia’s memories resurface alongside clues unearthed by an ambitious reporter that link the girl to Julia’s abductor. As the devastating truth becomes clear, Julia realizes that after the woods was just the beginning.”

Why I’m Waiting

Well, if you read the opening of this post, then you know I’m looking for inspiration for my own story. This book sounds right up the alley of what I like to write. I want mystery. I want suspense. I want to see the power of friendship facing the evils of the world.
From the reviews I’ve read (which seemed to consistently be 5 star reviews), it’s looking like Julia will shape up to be a fantastic heroine, strong and self-sacrificing. I’m looking forward to all of the twists, turns, and complications she will encounter.
This is the author’s debut novel, and if it’s as good as I think it will be, then I think Kim Savage will definitely be one to watch in the future. Her next thriller (title TBD) will be available in 2017, so we will have a bit of a wait to see what’s next from her.

Add After the Woods to your To Be Read Shelf on Goodreads
Pre-order via Amazon
Pre-order via Barnes & Noble

Waiting on Wednesday #3

February is such a good month! Know why? Well, yes, it is the month of my birthday, but know why else February is so great? The day after my birthday is the release of Reign of Shadows by Sophie Jordan! There was no debate here, this book definitely tops my Waiting on Wednesday list.

Reign of Shadows

By Sophie Jordan

Publication Date: February 9th

reignofshadows

Synopsis (via Goodreads)

“Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

With lush writing and a star–crossed romance, Reign of Shadows is Sophie Jordan at her best.”

Why I’m Waiting

Do you SEE that cover? I have no shame in judging a book by its cover – and this one is going to be good!
Also, by now you know my undying love for dark retellings of classic fairytales. This one here is playing off of Rapunzel, which you don’t see very often. There are all sorts of Cinderella or Alice in Wonderland retellings, but Rapunzel, not so much. I’m excited to dig in and see what fairytale elements have been included.
Another reason I’m waiting for this release is that, if you’ve read any of my recent reviews, you’ll know that most of the books I’ve read lately haven’t had a romantic plot. I’m getting in the mood for a book that will pull at my heartstrings.
I’ve already pre-ordered this one for the library’s collection, so I’ll be anxiously awaiting its arrival. If you happen to get ahold of it first, leave me a comment to let me know what you think of it!

Add Reign of Shadows to your To Be Read Shelf on Goodreads
Pre-order via Amazon
Pre-order via Barnes & Noble

Waiting on Wednesday #2

A new year is just around the corner, which means all sorts of new releases! I, for one, can’t wait. I fully expect this winter to be an outrageously snowy one, so I’m planning on plenty of days spent inside with the heat turned up high, a giant mug of coffee, and something good to read.

At work, I keep a document on my computer that is a calendar for the entire year. When a book description strikes my fancy, I enter the book’s release date on the calendar. For January, my first notable release date happens to be for the 12th. What book is it?

Bookishly Ever After

By Isabel Bandeira

Publication Date: January 12, 2016

bookish

Synopsis (via Goodreads)
In a perfect world, sixteen-year-old Phoebe Martins’ life would be a book. Preferably a YA novel with magic and a hot paranormal love interest. Unfortunately, her life probably wouldn’t even qualify for a quiet contemporary. But when Phoebe finds out that Dev, the hottest guy in the clarinet section, might actually have a crush on her, she turns to her favorite books for advice. Phoebe overhauls her personality to become as awesome as her favorite heroines and win Dev’s heart. But if her plan fails, can she go back to her happy world of fictional boys after falling for the real thing?

Why I’m Waiting

Hold up…what? A book about a girl who loves books? I’m a girl who loves books!  This book seems like it might be the perfect fit for me, as well as any other girl who has ever had a crush on the fictional boys in books. I’m dying to know what characters Phoebe turns to for advice (Elizabeth Bennet, perhaps?). Ratings from those who have received ARCs are altogether positive, but nobody seems to be revealing additional snippets or details from the book yet, which makes me all the more excited to get my hands on it come January 12th. Goodreads has this marked as Ever After #1, which is a good indicator that this is the start to a new series. Also, I feel I just have to mention this… if you’re browsing Goodreads, you might see the author, Isabel Bandeira’s, profile picture. Is she or is she not dressed like Belle from Beauty and the Beast?! No wonder she wrote a book about a girl who loves books.

isabel

Add Bookishly Ever After to your to-be-read shelf on Goodreads

Pre-order via Amazon

Pre-order via Barnes & Noble

Waiting on Wednesday #1

As I am starting to look forward to blogging more and doing more reviews of what I’ve been reading, I’ve decided to also add a weekly Waiting on Wednesday post to highlight upcoming YA releases that I’m excited about.

And as with most things, I’m immediately breaking the rules…

By the time you read this post, the book that I’m desperately looking forward to getting my hands on will no longer be in pre-publication status. It will, in fact, have been published the day before. -BUT- I work for the public library, which means, it may be a little bit before this lovely book falls into my hands, so I’m saying it still qualifies.

The book I’m awarding the very first Waiting on Wednesday post just so happens to be…

The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch
By Daniel Kraus
Publication Date: October 27, 2015

zebulon

Synopsis (via Goodreads)
May 7, 1896. Dusk. A swaggering seventeen-year-old gangster named Zebulon Finch is gunned down on the shores of Lake Michigan. But after mere minutes in the void, he is mysteriously resurrected.
His second life will be nothing like his first.

Zebulon’s new existence begins as a sideshow attraction in a traveling medicine show. From there, he will be poked and prodded by a scientist obsessed with mastering the secrets of death. He will fight in the trenches of World War I. He will run from his nightmares—and from poverty—in Depression-era New York City. And he will become the companion of the most beautiful woman in Hollywood.
Love, hate, hope, and horror—Zebulon finds them. But will he ever find redemption?

Ambitious and heartbreaking, The Death & Life of Zebulon Finch, Volume 1: At the Edge of Empire is the epic saga of what it means to be human in a world so often lacking in humanity.

Why I’m Waiting

When I first read this description, I was reminded of one of the most intriguing writing prompts I’ve ever found – “You’ve been dead for 67 days. You awake to the entire world watching the first human revival. Your revival.”
Playing with the concept of revival will always be interesting to me, as I was fascinated by stories like Frankenstein from an early age. The idea of a gangster receiving a second life and experiencing notable events throughout history has me ready to grab this book as soon as it hits the shelves.
If you happen to get to read it before I do, I hope you’ll post your opinions. I have high hopes for Zebulon Finch, and I can’t wait to see if they are met.

Add The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch on Goodreads

Order from Amazon

Order from Barnes & Noble

What are you waiting on this week?