Q&A WITH JENN BENNETT – STARRY EYES BLOG TOUR

Hey Guys!
Special post today, I got the honour to interview the lovely Jenn Bennett all about her new novel Starry Eyes – huge thanks to Simon and Schuster for sending me the novel to read early and for allowing me to interview Jenn, keep reading below to find all about Jenn’s latest novel.

1.      What inspired you to write Starry Eyes?

I started out with a single idea: a boy with two moms that own a female-friendly sex shop. That’s not what the book is about, of course, but that’s the first spark of an idea I had. My family’s done a lot of camping, which is the setting for this, and my brother and sister-in-law got married immediately after bonding over a harrowing wilderness experience. Somehow, all of this sort of snowballed together.

2.      What is one message you want readers to get from Starry Eyes after reading?

That no matter how hard you try to control every-little-thing in your life, you really can’t. Being able to adapt and roll with change may mean the difference in your overall happiness.

3.      Was Starry Eyes a different writing experience than your other novels?

It was written during the 2016 U.S. presidential elections, and their aftermath, which was enormously stressful for me. I had to force myself to turn off the news and stay focused on this lovely, good world I’d built, which was difficult.

4.      If you were to cast Zorie and Lennon for a movie, who would you cast to be them?

Oh my! That’s a hard question. I think in my head, when I was writing, Lennon was somewhere between a young Gerard Way and Rami Malek. And Zorie…not sure. I guess I’d let readers tell me who they’d cast, as they are usually better at dream-casting!

5.      And lastly, how long did it take for you to finish writing Starry Eyes

I wrote the first draft in six weeks—which is fairly typical for me, six to nine weeks. However, I got cold feet about three months before it was due, thinking that I wasn’t a gung-ho wilderness pro and therefore couldn’t authentically write it. I’ve done a lot of camping from childhood on, but I wouldn’t say I’m an expert. Or even an enthusiast. (When I was growing up and going on family camping trips, I would have said I was forced to camp against my will, LOL.) But my literary agent convinced me to have faith in myself and write it, and I’m really glad I did!

Book information + Synopsis:

Starry Eyes by Jenn Bennett
Publication date: June 1, 2018
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Synopsis:
Ever since last year’s homecoming dance, best-friends-turned-worst-enemies Zorie and Lennon have made an art of avoiding each other. It doesn’t hurt that their families are the modern-day version of the Montagues and Capulets. But when a group camping trip goes south, Zorie and Lennon find themselves stranded in the wilderness. Alone. Together. Zorie and Lennon have no choice but to try to make their way to safety. But as the two travel deeper into the rugged Californian countryside, secrets and hidden feelings surface. Soon it’s not simply a matter of enduring each other’s company, but taming their growing feelings for each other.

Jenn Bennett is an award-winning author of young adult contemporary romance books, including: Alex, Approximately; Night Owls; and Starry Eyes. She also writes romance and urban fantasy for adults. Her books have garnered multiple starred reviews, won the Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA® Award, and been included on Publishers Weekly Best Books annual list. She lives near Atlanta with one husband and two dogs.

Keep up with Jenn:
Twitter: http://twitter.com/Jenn_Benn
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/j3nn_benn/
Website: http://www.jennbennett.net/

Purchase Starry Eyes here:
Amazon.com.au – https://amzn.to/2qLMkvV
Booktopia – https://bit.ly/2Hy3EPE
Dymocks – https://bit.ly/2HLnDrL
QBD – https://bit.ly/2JXajks
Readings – https://bit.ly/2J9K5KH
Kindle – https://amzn.to/2vtpY80
iBooks – https://apple.co/2JsNhBf

See the rest of the blog tour posts from other amazing bloggers here: http://www.simonandschuster.com.au/c/starryeyesblogtour

Huge thanks to Simon and Schuster and Aus Ya Bloggers for hosting this amazing Blog Tour and allowing me to have a part in it, hope you all enjoy Starry Eyes as much as I did!

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COFFEE BOOK TAG!

Hey Pals,

Long time no post, I’ve had a bit of personal stuff going on so haven’t really had the time to get on and post let alone read like I usually do but I’m getting back I promise! Here is a fun tag to get us back on track again!

ONE: Black: Name a series that’s tough to get into but has hardcore fans:
Nevernight by Jay Kristoff for sure, the start of the book is reallyyyy hard to get into but once you get past the first 100 pages or so you will get hooked and it has a lot of harcore fans (me included) that absolutely can’t wait for Darkdawn to arrive!

TWO: Peppermint Mocha: Name a book that gets more popular during the winter or a festive time of year:
The logical answer for this has to be Harry Potter, the festival season isn’t right if I don’t get in a Harry Potter marathon either the books or the films but for sure Harry Potter!

THREE: Hot chocolate: What is your favourite children’s book:
As a child I used to adore the A Series of Unfortunate Events, still do love the idea of the series however have recently been turned off of the author. Also Roald Dahl books were a very popular read for me as a child.

FOUR: Double Shot of Espresso: Name a book that kept you on the edge of your seat from start to finish:
A Court of Wings and Ruin for sure, I didn’t know who was gonna live and I was soooooo scared for my faves and I just wanted such a happy ending and didn’t know if Sarah J Maas was going to give us one.

FIVE: Starbucks: Name a book you see everywhere:
Currently Simon vs the Homosapiens Agenda because the movie has just came out BUT I’m so proud of it and glad that people get to read such a cute story that has a great LGBTQIA+ rep.

SIX: That Hipster Coffee Shop: Give a book by an indie author a shoutout:
The Miranda Contract by Ben Langdon! If you’re into reading about super powers and love reading Australian Lit (set in Melbourne!) then this book will be up your alley!

SEVEN: Oops! I accidentally got decaf: Name a book you were expecting more from:
I was really kinda bummed over The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings, I was expecting a fair bit more and found that the chapters were quite short and didn’t have too much detail to them but the storyline had so much potential.

EIGHT: The Perfect Blend: Name a book or series that was both bitter and sweet but ultimately satisfying:
The first book that comes to mind for this would have to be The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh, the ending was so bittersweet and poetic and I wouldn’t have it any other way honestly.

Andddd thats a wrap! Thanks so much for reading! I tag any of my blogger friends that haven’t done this tag and would like to do it, also comment some of your answers below!

TIN HEART BOOK REVIEW!

TIN HEART BY SHIVAUN PLOZZA BOOK REVIEW!

SYNOPSIS:

When Marlowe gets a heart transplant and a second chance at life, all she wants is to thank her donor’s family. Maybe then she can move on. Maybe then she’ll discover who she is if she’s no longer ‘The Dying Girl’.

But with a little brother who dresses like every day is Halloween, a vegan warrior for a mother and an all-out war with the hot butcher’s apprentice next door, Marlowe’s life is already pretty complicated. And her second chance is about to take an unexpected turn…

MY THOUGHTS:

Tin Heart was absolutely beautiful, from the quirky characters to the amazing plot with the added bonus of veganism being a huge part of the novel, this book was well worth the wait and anticipation.

Family was such a huge theme of Tin Heart and I think it was very refreshing to see as not a lot of Young Adult novels have the aspect of family let alone as strong as it was in Tin Heart. Pip, Marlowe’s younger brother was one of the best side characters I have ever read, he was beyond unique and such a sweet and loving brother to Malowe, his self confidence was beautiful and I think it was a big inspiration to Marlowe as she struggled a lot especially at the beginning as she was going back to school for the first time after her heart transplant. Marlowe herself was a quiet character and didn’t like drawing attention to herself which wasn’t the case as she was going back to school for the first time after everyone thought she was never coming back. The growth and development of Marlowe throughout the book was also very inspiring, she struggled to find the new Marlowe after not having her old heart and watching her grow as a person while finding the new Marlowe was truly beautiful.

In terms of the writing of Tin Heart, Shivaun was very raw, one minute you were laughing and the next you would be sobbing. I never thought I could love anything of Shivaun’s more than I adored Frankie but Tin Heart just blew me away. Tin Heart also talked about a lot of things that heaps of Young Adult Novels haven’t mentioned (well I personally haven’t read any YA Books that have) such as veganism, a character that has been through a heart transplant and also just the topic and importance of family isn’t talked about as much as it should be.

Overall, Tin Heart was a beautiful, raw, emotional and inspiring novel with a lot of unique and important topics that more novel’s should include. I really would recommend this book to everyone as I feel a lot of different people could get different things out of it and especially if you are looking for a unique read, this one is for you.

STAR RATING: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS

BUY HERE: https://www.booktopia.com.au/tin-heart-shivaun-plozza/prod9780143786276.html

Huge thanks to Penguin Teen Australia for providing me with a copy of Tin Heart in exchange of an honest review.

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AUTHOR INTERVIEW WITH SARA BARNARD!

Hey Lovelies!
Today I bring to you an interview of the lovely Sara Barnard who is the author of newly published book Goodbye, Perfect, I would love to thank Pan Macmillan for allowing this interview to happen and without further or do here is the Q&A!

How long did it take you to write Goodbye, Perfect?

Six months, plus editing time. That’s how long my first drafts usually take.

What is the most important thing you would like readers to get out of Goodbye, Perfect?

That you are more than your label. Whoever gave it to you, or wherever it came from, it’s just a label that you can discard. Also that you never know other people quite as well as you think you do, and you should always be open to them changing, or you may find that one day you just won’t recognise them anymore.

How did you come up with the characters in Goodbye Perfect? Are any based off of you or people you know?

This sounds very pretentious but I always feel more like I’m meeting my characters than inventing them. Eden came along with her abrasiveness and Bonnie was the good girl from the beginning. I don’t tend to base characters of people I know because that would just be very weird.

Did you occur any problems while writing Goodbye, Perfect?

It involved a lot of logistics in terms of where Bonnie and Mr Cohn would go and how they’d get around while on the run – most of it wasn’t even in the book, but I had to know it in order to write it. Logistics aren’t my strong point, so that was quite challenging.

How would you compare writing Goodbye, Perfect to writing your other novels? Was it any different or did you find it very much the same?

Every book is different in its own way. Eden in particular is different to my previous protagonists and so that changed how I wrote about certain things, such as how she describes Bonnie, Connor, Daisy and Valerie to the reader.

What was your favorite read of 2017?

La Belle Sauvage, by Philip Pullman.

And that is a wrap! Hope you enjoyed this Q&A! To read my review of Goodbye, Perfect click here and to purchase Goodbye, Perfect click here

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GRAEVALE BOOK REVIEW

GRAEVALE BY LYNETTE NONI BOOK REVIEW:

DISCLAIMER: THIS IS BOOK 4 OF THE MEDORA CHRONICLES, IF YOU HAVEN’T READ THE PREVIOUS BOOKS, CONTINUE AT YOUR OWN RISK.

SYNOPSIS:

Light or dark, only one can win. This world cannot survive in shades of grey.

Now that Aven Dalmarta sits upon the throne of Meya, Alex must race against the clock to save the rest of Medora from the Rebel Prince’s wrath.

Haunted by an unspeakable vision of the future, Alex and her friends set out to warn the mortal races. But making allies out of ancient enemies proves difficult.

With her nights spent deep in the Library under the guidance of a mysterious new mentor, Alex is desperate to strengthen her gift and keep all those she loves safe. Because in a world where nothing is certain, she is sure of only one thing:

Aven is coming.

MY THOUGHTS:

I feel like I say this every review for a Medora Chronicles book but I swear i mean it – THIS BOOK WAS MY FAVE OF THE SERIES SO FAR.

As always its always a blast to read about Alex and co and their adventures, if you compare Graevale to Akarnae you can see such a huge character development between the books and it makes me so happy to see my faves change and become better people. Alex in particular has grown to be such an independent and also an amazing leader to the crew, if you compare her to the scared and mundane Alex in Akarnae its like having a proud mum moment seeing her in Graevale she’s so grown up ahh. Also just like Draekora, one of the other character highlights for me are definitely Niyx he grew on me so much more in Graevale I didn’t even think it was possible to adore him even more.  Basically what I’m trying to say in this long as paragraph is that the character development in this book is insane and I just can’t handle it.

In typical Noni form, this book is beautifully written, her world building is always so vivid and it leaves you with such a detailed picture of Medora and it honestly makes me sad that I can’t visit. Not to mention that Noni is also VERY good at breaking your heart, soul and wishes, go into this book with a box (or two) of tissues – you’ll need it I assure you!

Overall, Graevale is a heartbreaking and beautiful book filled with a cast of amazing characters who only seem to get better every chapter, this book leaves you in huge anticipation for Book 5! Honestly still crying over 1) the book and 2) waiting for the next book.

STAR RATING: ALL THE STARS EVER

Huge thanks to Pantera Press for sending me a copy in exchange of an honest review.

PRE ORDER HERE: https://www.booktopia.com.au/graevale-medoran-chronicles-book-lynette-noni/prod9781921997945.html

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ZENITH BOOK REVIEW

ZENITH BY LINDSAY CUMMINGS AND SASHA ALSBERG BOOK REVIEW!

SYNOPSIS:

Most know Androma Racella as the Bloody Baroness, a powerful mercenary whose reign of terror stretches across the Mirabel Galaxy. To those aboard her glass starship, Marauder, however, she’s just Andi, their friend and fearless leader.

But when a routine mission goes awry, the Marauder‘s all-girl crew is tested as they find themselves in a treacherous situation and at the mercy of a sadistic bounty hunter from Andi’s past.

Meanwhile, across the galaxy, a ruthless ruler waits in the shadows of the planet Xen Ptera, biding her time to exact revenge for the destruction of her people. The pieces of her deadly plan are about to fall into place, unleashing a plot that will tear Mirabel in two.

Andi and her crew embark on a dangerous, soul-testing journey that could restore order to their shipor just as easily start a war that will devour worlds. As the Marauder hurtles toward the unknown, and Mirabel hangs in the balance, the only certainty is that in a galaxy run on lies and illusion, no one can be trusted.

MY THOUGHTS:

I actually really liked this book more than I was anticipating, there has been a fair bit of mixed feedback which had me a little iffy but I actually for the most part enjoyed Zenith.

In terms of characters I found that Androma was a little back and forth – one second she’s killed someone and the next she’s moaning that she didn’t want to do it but at the time of the killing she’s made out to be this mega badass? However Androma was also a very strong lead character that many compare to Celena from Throne of Glass but in space and I think that is a fairly accurate description as she is a very kickass character and a leader like Celena is. Androma besides the above stated was a very good leader and was a pretty good captain of the ship and her backstory was really interesting. However the one that stole the show for me was Dex – he was another great leader, him and Androma clashed so much and their constant bickering and sass had me crying laughing at some points. For the most part the characters were very head strong, sassy and badass and I did enjoy them, but no character is ever perfect.

The writing of the story flowed, you couldn’t tell that two people had wrote it which is one thing I always find with two authors writing one book. I did find the beginning of the novel a little slower than the end, making it a little harder to get into but the ending was worth it and once you got past the first 150 pages it gets faster and more action packed and the pace moves faster. Another thing that confused me was at the start of the chapters, a character was named whose ‘point of view’ the story was from but the book was written in third point of view so I kinda found that it confused me when I think I’m reading from Androma but next minute we are reading about what Dex is doing. I must say though that I read the advanced readers copy and therefore the characters names on the chapters may have been taken away but if they are still there and you are finding yourself getting confused – I just didn’t read them and the story made more sense and flowed a little better for me.

Overall, this book was addicting and has a very female based cast filled with some kick ass characters and a hint of space. It wasn’t the most perfect book ever but I did read an Uncorrected Proof copy and it is a debut novel on Sasha’s part so for those aspects in place I found that it was fairly enjoyable. If you like space and reading about very head strong sassy characters with little romance then I think you would enjoy this book!

STAR RATING: 4 OUT OF 5 STARS

Huge thanks to Harlequin Teen Australia for sending me a copy for review in exchange of an honest review

PRE ORDER HERE: https://www.booktopia.com.au/zenith-sasha-alsberg/prod9780008228330.html

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THE LAST DAYS OF US BOOK REVIEW!

THE LAST DAYS OF US BY BECK NICHOLAS BOOK REVIEW:

SYNOPSIS:

Five teens, one derelict Kombi and an unforgettable road trip…

Six months ago, Zoey’s life went off the rails. After the tragic loss of her brother, she partied her way to oblivion, estranged her best friend, Cass, and pushed away her now ex, Finn. But when her destructive behaviour reaches dangerous heights, Zoey realises she needs to pull herself together and get her old life back, including her ex. There’s just one complication: Finn is now dating Cass.

Now, it’s the last week of summer and Zoey, Cass and Finn are setting out on the road trip of a lifetime to see their favourite musician, Gray, perform live, joined by Finn’s infuriatingly attractive bad-boy cousin Luc and his vibrant younger sister Jolie. Zoey thinks this is her chance to put things to rights and convince Finn they should get back together. But she wasn’t counting on her friends’ lingering resentment, Luc’s disarming sincerity, and Jolie’s infectious love for life to turn her plans upside down.

This emotional coming-of-age story will resonate with anyone who’s ever messed up, fallen in love, or taken off on an adventure.

MY THOUGHTS:

This book was such an emotional roller coaster, it kept me pulled in the entire time and I finished it all in the one sitting it was so addicting.

The characters of the story were all pretty intriguing, Jolie was a personal favourite of mine because of her bubbly attitude towards everything she did and her sense of adventure was also very thrilling. Luc was also one of those swoon worthy characters that you can’t help but love and adore, he also had that mysterious side to him that had me doing circles about what he was hiding in his past. Zoey was also a character that went through a lot of development throughout the novel and at the beginning of the novel has just lost her brother and just is not coping – her parents are also absent from her life as well, which makes going on this road trip a very important part of Zoey’s journey to becoming herself.

The writing was just the usual that you expect from Beck, always short but detailed chapters that keep you hooked and very addicting for sure. Her writing just gets better and better every novel she writes and the meanings of her novels also hold a very big theme in the plot of the story and this one is one has to be personally my favourite of the ones she has written.

Overall, The Last Days Of Us was a very addicting novel, with a very heartfelt story filled with a great cast of characters that were all filled with life and really made the story. I recommend this to anyone that loves reading books that leave you thinking long after reading, crying your eyes out and also if you just enjoy Young Adult road trip books – this book is for you.

STAR RATING: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS

Huge thanks to Harlequin Teen Australia for sending me an advanced readers copy in exchange for an honest review

PREORDER HERE: https://www.booktopia.com.au/the-last-days-of-us-beck-nicholas/prod9781489220493.html

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