Tired of more of the same? Try more of the STRANGE.

AT STRANGEMORE, WE EXPLORE SPECULATIVE FICTION IN ALL ITS FORMS.

Friday, July 29, 2011

What is the difference between dystopia and utopia?

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How do you define dystopia? What about utopia?


Many people don't know the difference between the two, because the line can be very thin. Hopefully, this article will help you discover the specifics of each. The key differences between dystopian and utopian fiction can be found in how the story is constructed and told.

Dystopia usually presents a story told out of despair. Utopia presents the "prime directive", so to speak, of a message of hope and occasionally, overwhelming so. Dystopia normally has an overwhelming message of warning.


Dystopia, more often than, makes use of "big government" and military, using tactics of intimidation and sometimes mind control; often a sole evil head of government is responsible or a representative of the oppression. Usually, there is a hierarchy that works to the advantage of government loyalists, especially those who never question it's ultimate control. Those outside of the government are seen as lower on the totem pole. Utopia usually has a sort of Council or more of a communal society, where decisions are made based on the "greater good."

Utopian societies are generally based on the so-called equality of all humankind. Meanwhile, dystopia presents societies based on segregation, inequality, and oppression. Many times the equality of the society in utopian fiction is an illusion.

While it's true that most utopia masquerades under the guise of dystopia, the difference is sometimes only in perspective. Is the story told from a perspective of despair or of hope?

If the ending presents hope as an option, then the story more than likely has more utopian qualities. If the message is without hope or full of distress and pain, then it would more likely lean toward dystopia.

The truth is that the line is very thin and both genres can have aspects of the other.

Here are some general guidelines for making the distinction:

Dystopia
Big government and military, evil government leader
Inequality
Segregated and oppressed society
Underlying message of despair and warning

Utopia
Council (or similar) whose members who work for the "greater good"
Equality
Integrated and communal society
Underlying message of hope

Using these guidelines, 1984 is a clear dystopian tale and The Giver would fit well with utopian fiction. For newer titles, The Hunger Games would lean closer to dystopian, as would a book I recently reviewed, Divergent. So far, a few of my other recently reviewed titles, Burn Bright and Incarnate, would be hovering closer to the side of utopian.

Utopia is often grouped together with dystopia and, in some cases, the terms have seemingly become interchangeable. Generally speaking, most utopic books can be considered dystopic, but dystopic books cannot all be considered utopic.

Both sub-genres have their individual merits and both carry important messages for society. Personally, I love utopia and dystopia; I really don't think I could choose one. They are both WAY TOO MUCH FUN. If you haven't given either a chance, I suggest that you give them a try!


CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Review for Incarnate by Jodi Meadows

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A gorgeous YA utopian tale! Nope, not dystopian. Do you know the difference?

This book blew me away with... a Masquerade Ball, reincarnation, slyph, dragons, music, souls, butterfly, slow burn romance, tension, laser pistols, massive library, war stories, dragon battles. Need I go on? I mean - Wow.

I read this in a flurry of addiction. I just couldn't get enough of the world and it's goings-ons. Completely entrancing.

The Rundown

Ana was born into a society of a million souls. A million souls who have known each other in various forms for thousands of years. They reincarnate into a new body every time they die. Except for when Ana was born. When Ana was born, they were expecting one of their own, someone named Ciana, who was now lost forever. Ana's mother hates her for taking the place of Ciana and is ashamed, so she moves her new baby outside the city and locks her away from all the others. Now, Ana is eighteen and on a quest to the city of Heart to find out about her birth and Ciana's disappearance. Will she find the answers she seeks?


The Writing

The author's prose has a very subtle lyricism, and the underlying message of this book seemed to be one of peace and hope for the future, which is a happy change from bleak and desolate outcomes of some recent dystopian fiction.

The main character, Ana, gets things done. The questions Ana posed to herself in her head were realistic and it was refreshing to have a character who asks questions and goes against the grain instead of settling for everyone-else-knows-best. The love interest, Sam, was complex, intriguing and a hottie!

The romance developed at a (GASP!) realistic pace, more so than most paranormal YA. It wasn't all "You looked at me like you LIKE me, so LETSBETOGETHERFOREVER!" I was afraid that it would feel cardboard or manufactured like some recent YA romances have. But it didn't. It felt natural and ended up being higher tension and surprisingly steamier than I had imagined for such a PG book.

Although few and far between, there were some unobtrusive religious, or possibly even anti-religious, undertones. The thing was that I couldn't tell. I couldn't see an agenda hidden behind the words and I appreciate that. These undertones were woven in delicately and did not overwhelm the world or the characters. It seemed to be more about raising the questions, instead of forcing an answer on you.

Should you believe in something you can't see? That's one of the questions it raises. Novels should be able to raise questions without imposing the author's answers onto on unsuspecting readers. Books should make you think and learn and discover the answers for yourselves. I felt this one did that pitch perfectly.

One complaint I do have, however, is the lack of dialog tags; oftentimes, it was necessary to reread passages over and over to figure out who was saying what. But that might just be my ADD talking. *sings* It's the FINAL COUNTDOWN. Doodoodoo. Wait, what was I saying...

The World-Building

A fresh and unique twist on the mythology of reincarnation. Finally! It is handled beautifully and seems intensely creative. But I want more! I'm so excited to learn more from the next books in the series.

In actuality, there are SO many interesting things you could do with this society. What if the same couple had been together for ten lifetimes but in the next, one just isn't attracted at ALL to the other. Oh, the scandal!

Even though I love the reincarnation concept used by Jodi Meadows, it still weirds me out a bit. Statistically someone who had been your lover in a past life could end up being your parent in the next....or vice versa. *shudder*

In general, I still have so many questions about the world-building. It was exciting and unique, but I wanted more details. More answers.

But I guess we don't know everything about even our favorite mythologies. Like what the hell are midichlorians (besides "bacteria") and how do they work? And WHY can't Darth Vader teleport? I mean, if the Weasley Twins can do it, why can't the original Dark Lord do it?

Regardless, I LOVED Incarnate. I inhaled it. This is definitely more of a 4.5, but it could have been a 5 if the ending had been more dynamic.

I was expecting something more emotionally heart-wrenching. Break my heart into pieces and then put them back together just in time for the last sentence. Give us a huge reveal, more answers, something epic, something shocking, something weep-worthy! However, it just didn't quite do that for me, but I'm hoping that the next books in the series will.

I CANNOT WAIT to read the sequels.

Just look at this word cloud. How can a book with this word cloud NOT be awesome?



There's only one thing it needs: NINJAS! Because if I had lived for over 5000 years already, I would definitely have learned to be a ninja by now.


CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Review for Divergent by Veronica Roth

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Divergent (Divergent Trilogy)

by Veronica Roth
Published May 3rd 2011
Published by Katherine Tegen Books

From Amazon: In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.


Everything that rises must Diverge.

Or so seems to be the philosophy of this book. Divergent poses that as a society progresses, it becomes more segregated, as opposed to more integrated. Likely? NO. Fun? HELL YES.


Does it smell like Hunger Games in here to you?



Check out the video for this 
Hunger Games parody 
at the end of the article:





Imagine a culture where everyone is separated into groups based on their one key defining character trait.

One of these five traits: Honesty. Selflessness. Intelligence. Bravery. Peacefulness.


We all know that honesty is the best policy and that money is the root... YAWN!! We want to know about those dystopian shenanigans!


Some of the Dystopian Shenanigans in Divergent

  • Jumping off moving things.
  • Jumping off tall things.
  • Climbing tall things.
  • Shoot em up, shoot em up dystopian style.
  • Making out with a camp counselor, I mean, another member of Dauntless. Haha, whoops, just got, um, confused there for a second. *clears throat* I wouldn't know anything about making out with a camp counselor. Because, yeah, who does that?

Beatrice Prior is a member of Abnegation, the selfless, but she dreams of another life. One where she can look at her own reflection without being scolded or dress in something other than a gray potato sack (Fine, they don't actually wear potato sacks, but it sounds like they might as well have). So she chooses to join Dauntless, the fearless and brave, and her life, as well as her disappointed family's, is forever altered. Now known as Tris, she gets thrown into a world of speeding trains, speeding bullets, and unusual looking lead male characters.

You want to know about our Dauntless hottie?

Here are a few snippets of description: The corners of his mouth turn down naturally. He has very long thin fingers, a scar on his chin, and eye sockets that are so deep they sound like a deformity when described by Tris, with eyes so dark blue they're almost black... and a light blue patch in those eyes.

So basically, he looks like.....this?


My Beatrisssssssssssss.

Regardless of the less than stellar description of our love interest, named Four, I still managed to imagine him as a hottie toward the end. However, I just wasn't all that interested in him, which seems to be a common occurrence for me lately. Color me blinded by Barrons, I guess. Nearly every love interest I have read since, just doesn't live up to my expectations.

Now, a love interest who would have been intriguing and a major shock: Peter. This douchebag was the Dauntless nemesis of both Tris and Four; however, he was way more interesting to me than Four. If he had turned out to be the other Divergent and had been just acting like a jerk the entire time, it could have been different for me. There was an instant where I thought, "Maybe?" But alas, no. He was still just being a douche.

I have to say that, although the world itself doesn't make much sense, since when does any oppressive society make SENSE? At least to those of us who have common sense. Horrible and ridiculous things happen all the time and there have been many ages of oppression throughout history. None of them make a hell of a lot of sense. Slavery? The holocaust? Genocide? Nope, I don't get it. But that doesn't mean it can't and won't happen.

If you are one for analyzing the politics and economics of the world you are reading about, then this one may fall short for you. If you are someone who can easily suspend your disbelief in favor of action and new experiences, then you just might love this. Me? Well, I fall somewhere in between, but definitely more toward LOVING it.

For nay-sayers who claim that dystopian fiction is unrealistic because those kinds of societies would never work:

I think that is the point these books are trying to make, isn't it? It doesn't work. That's why those types of government either self-destruct or are deconstructed by others, and those who initiate those governments either fall apart or are taken apart. That's one reason that I think books like this are so important; they exist to remind us what humans are capable of: the good and the bad.

Humans can kill and be killed, give life and have it taken from them, love or hate, help others or help destroy them.

Even though this book concentrates on just 5 important characteristics, there are so many more traits that are important. So, what character trait is your strongest? Are you brave? Helpful? Funny? Creative? A good listener? What trait can you use to help transform others? Or the world? That's a question that can be found in between the lines of this book, and it's an important one. One that we should all ask ourselves.

Divergent was one of those books that just consumed every corner of my mind while I was reading it. As much as I love The Hunger Games, the subsequent deterioration of my interest in the sequels still weighs heavy on my mind. Here's to hoping that this is a series that only gets better with age.


And now a bit of Bonus Material:

Check out how I really pictured Four in this My Book Boyfriend segment!

Here is a fan made trailer that is pretty fantastic:



Below is the official trailer, which I didn't care for too much. It seemed underwhelming and awfully vague.


CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

My Book Boyfriend Four Divergent

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My Book Boyfriend #1


Four 
from Divergent 
by Veronica Roth 


My Book Boyfriend is a weekly meme where we talk about a literary crush who makes us swoon hosted by Missie from The Unread Reader.






Check out my review of Divergent!

Stats:
  • eighteen years old
  • member of the Faction called Dauntless
  • extremely deep set, very dark blue eyes
  • long and slender fingers
  • several tattoos that aren't easily visible

Four is brave, strong, sensitive when he needs to be and ruthless when he has to be.  Although, I don't think that Veronica Roth did the hero in Divergent, named Four, justice in her descriptions, he still managed to make me swoon a couple times. I tried to block out the picture her words painted and paint one all my own. The actor Max Irons was a perfect match...




"My first instinct is to push you until you break, just to see how hard I have to press." he says, his fingers squeezing at the word break. My body tenses at the edge in his voice, so I am coiled as tight as a spring, and I forget to breathe.

His dark eyes lifting to mine, he adds, "But I resist it."

"Why..." I swallow hard. "Why is that your first instinct?"

"Fear doesn't shut you down; it wakes you up. I've seen it. It's fascinating." He releases me but doesn't pull away, his hand grazing my jaw, my neck. "Sometimes I just want to see it again. Want to see you awake."



""What do you want?" Then his face tightens  "Me?" Slowly I nod. He nods too, and takes my hand in his gently.  He guides my palms to his stomach.  His eyes lowered, he pushes my hands up, over his neck.  My palms tingle with the feel of his skin, smooth, warm.  My face is hot, but I shiver anyway."




These last three are all fantastic fanart from DefynGravity





I completely agree with the choice of Saoirse Ronan as Tris. She was actually the actress I pictured after seeing her in the fantastic movie Hanna.





Also, check out Nic's version of Four at Irresistible Reads.





CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Grand Opening Giveaway Winner

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Announcement of the Winner!
Strangemore's Grand Opening
Choice of one of the following books:

Linger (Wolves of Mercy Falls #2)
Delirium (Delirium #1)
The Candidates (Delacroix Acadmey #1)
Inside Out (Inside Out #1)







The winner of the random drawing is....

Hayden of The Teen Bookworm

who chose a copy of Delirium by Lauren Oliver.

Congrats!




Everyone else - Don't despair!
Another winner is just around the corner.
Enter to win an ARC copy of
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Steifvater:





CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Author Interview with Marianne de Pierres and Campaign for Burn Bright in the US

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Before we get to the interview with Marianne de Pierres, the author of Burn Bright, I just wanted to say that she couldn't have been more wonderful and was everything we all hope for in a YA author. I thought Burn Bright was an outstanding start to a series that I can't wait to read more about. It's fully immersive and addictive. If you haven't already, take a few minutes to read my review of Burn Bright.

I also would love to get a campaign going to have this book published in the US, because it is currently only available in Australia. Please check out the info at the bottom of the interview, if you are also interested in seeing Burn Bright come to the US.


Thus, without further ado... the interview:

A lot of us want to know about the covers of The Night Creatures series: Did you have any input into the cover designs for these books and how did they come about?

My publisher was beginning to put together a cover concept and their designer, Astred Hicks, suggested Jaroslaw Kubicki's artwork among others. We all knew instantly that it was a match made in gothic heaven. It then remained for Astred to contact him and get permission to use the artwork. You can read Astred's account of it at her blog. I was in the happy position to be able to just say, ‘Yes, I love it!’

Which character is portrayed on the cover of Burn Bright? Also, who is portrayed on Angel Arias?

My publisher likes to think of the Angel Arias portraying Ruzalia, and I like to think of Burn Bright as Naif. But really they can be who you want them to be.

Do you have any idea who will be on the cover of Blaze Dark? When can we expect to see it?

I have a sneaking suspicion, but it hasn’t been confirmed yet, so I’d better not say. However, it will fit with the same tone as the previous covers.

I love the texture of the book. Did you have any idea how unique it would be? And what did you think when you held it in your hands for the first time?

I think that was my publisher. She talked about how she wanted a certain texture and lettering on the cover. I really wasn’t exactly sure what she meant until I held it in my hand and went … WOW!

I have already been inspired by the hugely creative world in your book, Burn Bright, and I'm sure that many young people will be as well; what were your biggest influences growing up?

Thank you Lyndsey, that’s a great compliment. Most of my influences growing up came from books and television, and to a much lesser extent film. Older generation writers like D.H. Lawrence and Victoria Holt (historical murder/mystery/romance). TV series like the original Avengers and Callan inspired that sense of danger in my writing.

Where did the inspiration for the world of Ixion come from?

It was an intersection of various interests I had at the time I began writing it; nocturnal lifestyles, gothic architecture, sleep and our need for it, islands (I’ve lived on one). I also wanted to write something with strong fantasy imagery to have a change from straight SF.

Will The Night Creatures series be published in the US? When might it be available?

We’re in talk with publishers now and I hope I’ll have some news soon. The publishing industry moves quite slowly, so, fingers crossed, maybe next year.

Let's talk love interests. It seems there are so many choices for our heroine. I would ask you who you think Retra/Naif should end up with, but that may lead to a spoiler. So, does she end up with who you think she should or does she have a mind of her own on that matter?

Oh yes, I couldn’t tell you where the love thing goes - that would spoil everything. I will say though, that it depends very much on what Naif wants and at the moment she’s very new to the whole experience. I’ve given her permission to be confused and change her mind, because we’ve all done that. 

People have said that Retra's interest in Markes is entirely unfounded, but I found that as a teenager, I often became infatuated with boys I didn't know anything about. It was a very realistic way to portray her. Are Retra's experiences and characteristics in any way based on your own?

Well, I’m with you. I had secret crushes on lots of different boys when I was a teen. In book 2 , though, Naif begins to learn much more about Markes, which adds weight to her feelings for him, but it gets quite complicated.

Are you currently working on any other projects besides The Night Creatures? Can you tell us about them?

I’m currently writing my humourous crime series (www.tarasharp.com) and my SF/Western comic (www.mariannedepierres.com/peacemaker) but the ideas for my next teen series are simmering as well. It will be called Emo Trader and is literally about being able to trade your emotions with other people, or check them in to the Emo Bank. But of course that comes at a cost.

What is your writing style?

I’m a write first, revise later person to a degree. I’ve schooled myself to be that way, otherwise I would agonize too long over passages and never get the story written. I’ve also found that good story flow produces better work for me. The emotion needs to be strong, which is much harder to achieve when you are stop/start editing all the time.

Do you have any writing tips for unpublished writers?

My best tips are here – they’re simple but the best advice I can give, other than to say don’t give up and good luck! http://www.mariannedepierres.com/extras/writing-tips/

Thanks for having me, Lyndsey! Burn Bright!

Thanks, Marianne! You were absolutely fantastic and I really hope we get to see The Night Creatures series here in the US... and SOON!!

We want Burn Bright in the US!


Join the Campaign


If you would be interested in seeing Burn Bright and it's sequels published in the States, do any or all of the following:

1) Visit the Facebook page for Burn Bright and LIKE it. Also, visit and LIKE this page and vote for your country to let publishers know that you want to see this series there!

2) Send a tweet to the publishers. You can use the one I have included below or compose your own with the hashtag #WeWantBurnBrightInTheUS and tweet to @harperteen @randomhouse @littlebrown @simonkidsya

<----Click here to share your interest in Burn Bright.







CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Review for Burn Bright by Marianne de Pierres

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Title: Burn Bright
Author: Marianne de Pierres
Series: The Night Creatures
Published: March 1st, 2011
Publishers: Random House Australia

From Random House Australia:
Into a world of wild pleasures and deadly secrets comes a girl whose innocence may be her greatest strength . . . Retra doesn't want to go to Ixion, the island of ever-night. Retra is a Seal - sealed minds, sealed community. She doesn't crave parties and pleasure like all the others. But her brother left for Ixion two years ago, and Retra is determined to find him. Braving the pain of her obedience strip to escape the only home she's ever known, Retra finds herself drawn deeper into the intoxicating world of Ixion. Come to me, whispers a voice in her head. Who are the Ripers, the mysterious guardians of Ixion? What are the Night Creatures Retra can see in the shadows? And what happens to those who grow too old for Ixion? Retra will find that Ixion has its pleasures - but its secrets are deadly. 

Welcome to Ixion. A place of constant darkness, the Ever Dark. It is a bazaar of the bizarre. On this strange island, everything is a party. Modesty is a sin.

Ixion is like Party Zion. You know that scene in Matrix Reloaded with the rave where everyone is going crazy and dancing up on each other. That is how Ixion is ALL the time. But instead of Machines lurking outside the walls, there are the Night Creatures.


After her brother runs away to Ixion, a distraught and lonely Retra follows him there in the hopes of bringing him back home. She gets way more than she bargained for in this bizarre land and discovers a world full of things unknown to her. A place of gratification and self-absorption with a war brewing in the dark. A place that can change her. She will become someone else and she will call herself: Naif.

The island of Ixion exists purely for pleasure and purely for young. Anyone considered an "over-ager" mysteriously disappears, unless they are first taken by Ruzalia the pirate. Rumor has it that she uses the over-agers as slaves or pets. Since no one knows what happens to those that disappear, some would rather risk slavery to Ruzalia than the possibility of disappearing off the island into oblivion or death. In her case, Retra would rather risk the unknown than live without her brother. She would possibly even risk death, because she can't bear the thought of life without him.

This book got me thinking a lot about human motivation. Why we do a lot of the things we do. Because don't many of the things we do come down to what we feel is the "better case scenario". There's even a game we invented called "would you rather." Who ever picks the option that sounds the worst to them?

Is that why war exists? Some feel the better option is to attack others, rather than risk being attacked themselves. Things may be said like: "Get them before they get us." "Their sinful ways will be the death of us." "It's you or me, buddy." We see this kind of reasoning a lot. In movies, books, and even in reality. Defending yourself isn't wrong but there is a thin line between defense and offensive defense. In adventure or sci-fi fiction particulary, it isn't often that a true line of communication is opened. War just seems to break out. It makes me wonder how often "talking it out" is overlooked in the real world.

In this world that we live in, ruled by information and communication, where no one is left unspoken for, where open mindedness is encouraged - why does war still exist?

I think true dystopia raises questions about human nature.

Dystopia should have a life all it's own. A life that thrives on our our fears, skitters away from our comforts, draws questions from our concerns. Burn Bright does just that. A few examples:

"Is it the rules and restrainsts in your life that have made you self-sacrificing? Is guilt the foundation of your kindness?"

"They're passionate in their beliefs" "They are misled - as passion most often is. Beware it, baby bat. Beware the foolishness of passion."


This book is unlike the new wave of artificial dystopias that plague the YA shelves. This is infused with passion for the story and the author seems to have a great love for the characters. The prose is vague and haunting, with scant background information.

The beginning requires a difficult adjustment period from the reader. I feel like we are so used to "instant gratification" that we struggle when things aren't easy to understand. This is not a book to be read lightly. You can't skim this. Bits of information are worked in so scarcely that you will feel lost if you try to read it quickly.

Burn Bright contains unusual dialogue and things are often mentioned without being fully explained. You are left somewhat to your own devices a lot of the time, but I find myself okay with that. Sometimes, it's a necessity for me because I find myself to easily bored if I understand and know everything right away.

Marianne's  imagery was so different from what I'm used to with YA and strangely vivid for such a dark world. The descriptions are not all too well defined and the reader is required to make their own assumptions about the details of the world and their surroundings, but I actually enjoyed that part of it and found it to be very Hitchcockian. Sometimes, less is more. More exciting, at least.

This world is fully immersive, but not for everyone. It's eerie and untraditional. You are required to see things in different shades of darkness, multiple shades of gray. I tend to like things that are a bit off the edge, those things that lie in the dark of the deep end.

If you have a similar craving for something different, then you just might love this the way I did.

___________________________

Check out the fantastic book trailer for Burn Bright! Then head over to Marianne's blog for tons of extra content including a book soundtrack.


CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Friday, July 8, 2011

FREEBIE ALERT for Kindle - Hunted by the Others by Jess Haines

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You can currently get the Urban Fantasy Kindle ebook Hunted By The Others by Jess Haines for FREE on Amazon.

From Publisher's Weekly: Haines's mediocre debut rounds up the usual urban fantasy suspects and locks them into a plodding PI story. Shiarra Waynest runs a detective agency in an alternate New York where werewolves, vampires, and magi came out in the aftermath of 9/11. She and her wealthy, clever partner–in–crime solving, Sara, usually steer clear of Others, but financial troubles have forced them to take on a case for a mage who wants an artifact currently held by sexy, ancient vampire businessman Alec Royce. With two other good-looking men—cute, geeky mage Arnold and Shiarra's werewolf ex-boyfriend, Chaz—along for the ride, things keep looking like they should heat up, but Shiarra's nonexistent detecting skills and general preference for flailing panic over careful thought keep the plot from ever catching fire or even giving off sparks. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

These deals don't usually last long, so if you're interested, get it while you can!
CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Giveaway - Enter to win an ARC copy of Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

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Enter to WIN
The Scorpio Races 
Contest Ends on July 27th. Open Internationally!


Extra entries for Goodreads and Facebook Friends, Likes, Tweets, and blog posts. Here are some links to help you get the maximum number of entries!




From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Shiver and Linger comes a brand new, heartstopping novel. With  her trademark lyricism, Maggie Stiefvater turns to a new world, where a  pair are swept up in a daring, dangerous race across a cliff--with more  than just their lives at stake should they lose.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Best YouTube Book Trailers Part Two

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Well, this is Part Two of The Best YouTube Book Trailers. It turns out that what I thought was going to be a cool idea for one of my very first posts – was actually one of the most difficult posts I could have chosen to put together. This was definitely a lot more work than I expected.


Make sure to check out PART ONE.


I just reeeally hope you guys havent already seen ALL of these. Because, well, damn.

Read on for more videos...

This is an in depth look at what goes into designing a book cover. Don't watch if you don't want to ruin the mystery! Who needs mystery when you can have BOOK COVER DESINGING INSIDE KNOWLEDGE?! The featured book is Blameless (The Parasol Protectorate) by Gail Carriger.



This one for Going West by Maurice Geedidn't make me want to read the book, but it DID really make me want a magic pop-up book:



Creeptastic trailer for the book Room: A Novel by Emma Donoghue.



This next video reminded me of a wambam-balosion Michael-Bay-blosion version of Ponies!



I don't even know what to say about this one for Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C. Clarke:

Rendezvous with Rama - Vancouver Film School (VFS) from Vancouver Film School on Vimeo.



Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card– Yeah.



I don't know why they thought they needed the “He was programmed from birth” line, but it's still an excellent trailer none the less.

For the gamers:

This Halo short was created combining real life actors with CGI. They did a damn good job of it, too. Makes me wish that Peter Jackson would make the movie, already.



And now: Zelda – Need I say more? Well, actually yes, I need say more because of all the ridiculous things that I find fascinating – Men in tights are at the top of the list. No, really. Mmmmmmmm. Especially if they're in green. I'm actually not kidding.



For the anime fans:

Technotise Live Action Trailer



Cage-fighting Pokemon. Can we say “I choose you!”?



Scott Pilgrim mash up with the Matrix, and it's as awesome as it sounds.



Can't forget the Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 Motion Comic, which is all official and stuff. You can buy it on DVD or get it on Amazon Instant.



That's all for now!

Over the next week or so, I will be posting more videos and I'm compiling a Hunger Games and Harry Potter list now. If you have any suggestions, you can shoot me an email. I'm going for the best of the best!



Here's a sneak peek at what you have to look forward to with my FAVORITE Hunger Games video! It also might just be my favorite YouTube video ever.



CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Best YouTube Book Trailers Part One

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One of my first official acts as a blogger will be to distract you with moving images, otherwise known as YouTube videos. Make sure you have some time and some bandwidth, suckaaaaas!

I have compiled a list of my favorite book related vids. Keep in mind, that I am recommending the videos, not the actual books, since I haven't read most of them, anyway. I'm sure there are plenty more trailers, so send your recommendations my way and I will keep the lists coming.

This first video is of an almost classic book. The beginning is rather ambiguous, but the ending just grabs you. Hehe. I haven't actually read this book and I must say that I wasn't very interested until I saw this trailer.



But wait, theres more! Much more...



By the way, that was Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters by Ben H. Winters. Aaaand since we are on the issue of slaying classic history...

Here is a trailer for another book I haven't read, though I did buy it during a vampire-slayer-merchandise-induced-buying-coma. Yes, my eyes go all glassy and everything.

It is Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith.



Whether or not the books are any good (which is yet to be determined, for me, at least), these people are seriously good at making book trailers. Next up is Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls (Quirk Classics). By the way, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is on sale for Kindle for 4.79, if you haven't taken a peek at it yet. I know I haven't gotten to it, yet.



And another, Night of the Living Trekkies (Quirk Fiction) by by Kevin David Anderson and Sam Stall:



Damn, these people are ca-razy. It makes me really excited for the future of book trailers and in result, the future of book movies. These people definitely raise the bar and make it so easy, then they laugh while everyone else tries to limbo under their super low bars.

The next one is an experiment in animation to match the stunning sketches inside the actual book of Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld.



Another animated trailer is up next for Tell Me a Secret by Holly Cupala. The animation and production is outstanding but the flicker effect makes me want to stab myself in the eye just to make it STOP.



Another super cute trailer for the book Just Like Heaven by Julia Quinn, which I'd never heard of and probably won't read, well because I would probably be bored. But that doesn't stop me from thinking this is adorable:



I had never heard of this one either, but, wow, now I feel like I NEED to read it. Then again, I wonder if there's a reason I hadn't heard of it.

The Hourglass Door (The Hourglass Door Trilogy) (Hourglass Door (Quality)) Series by Lisa Magnum.



Is it just me or does that sound like Jewel Staite (Kaylee from Firefly)?! And that guy! Where the hell do I know him from? Hottie.

On to Part Two!

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Kindle $1.99 Deal - A Quick Bite by Lynsay Sands

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You can currently pre-order the Paranormal Romance
for only $1.99, until July 19th, 2011.


Here's the official description from Amazon:


That hot guy tied to Lissianna Argeneau's bed? He's not dessert—he's the main course! For a limited time, discover the Argeneau saga for only $1.99, plus three excerpts, including The Heiress, The Reluctant Vampire, and a preview of Lynsay’s short story in A Bite Before Christmas, available this October!

These deals don't usually last long, so if you're interested, get it while you can!

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

 
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