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Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

Title: Wicked Saints
Author: Emily A. Duncan
Publish Date: April 2nd 2019 by Wednesday Books

“Prepare for a snow-frosted, blood-drenched fairy tale where the monsters steal your heart and love ends up being the nightmare.” - Roshani Chokshi, New York Times bestselling author of The Star-Touched Queen

A girl who can speak to gods must save her people without destroying herself.

A prince in danger must decide who to trust.

A boy with a monstrous secret waits in the wings.

Together, they must assassinate the king and stop the war.

In a centuries-long war where beauty and brutality meet, their three paths entwine in a shadowy world of spilled blood and mysterious saints, where a forbidden romance threatens to tip the scales between dark and light. Wicked Saints is the thrilling start to Emily A. Duncan’s devastatingly Gothic Something Dark and Holy trilogy.

“This book destroyed me and I adored it.”- Stephanie Garber, New York Times bestselling author of Caraval


I really loved Wicked Saints it’s so dark and enthralling I just couldn’t stop reading.

I just have to put this out there first though. In order for blood mages to use their magic they need to cut themselves. They do this sometimes by using razor blades in their sleeves. There are points in the book that this made me feel uncomfortable, more so the mention of a particular characters marks. My brother has used cutting as a release for emotional pain and so it might have impacted me differently. I’m not sure how someone with first hand experience would feel.

So back to this amazing, dark and enthralling book. There are so many things I loved about this story, how it so cleverly toes the line between what is a good and what is evil. The characters are rich with personality. You are not only invested in the main POVs but I feel like almost everyone that you come in contact with.

The world building in the book is phenomenal. I truly felt transported into the story. Also the magic system is very interesting. From the use of blood in order for the Blood Mages to cast to the Vultures who are at inhuman level of magic user. Which the crypts are a scary place. Also the fact that on the opposite side we have clerics like Nadya who have been wiped out. I thought the way she interacts with the Saints themselves is very interesting. She can call on a Saint and ask for them to grant her power. Each Saint is different in their abilities and temperament. The best thing about the book is how things are shown in a way that you can see how each person feels they are in the right. That they are actually going to be the one to save the world. Also we are dealing with the two war torn countries of Kalyazi and Tranavia. I felt like the affects the war had on them was well portrayed.

Like I mentioned I felt invested in every character, from main to side. I also loved loved how they all walk this line between good and evil. Really though what makes someone evil, doing everything in their power to save their people. Is there a point where that goes to far? What if you think what you are doing is the right thing or the best thing? Maybe you truly believe it’s the only option. Each character is complex in their own way. Although we see a lot of spotlight on Nadya, Serefin and Malachiasz. There are many other kick ass characters, especially some of the ladies like Parj, Ostyia and the witch in the tower. I really don’t want to give anything away about their personalities and intentions because I think first impressions versus later impressions in the book are important and I don’t want to ruin anything for anyone.

I also want to mention the headers of each chapter is a wonderful addition and helps you to understand some of the history. Both of the Saints and the war of the two countries.

The book is really captivating, dark and magical. I was in an absolute coma after reading it, turning things over and over in my head. I really love a book that can show two sides of a story and make you really think. I both desperately want book 2 and I’m also very afraid.





EMILY A. DUNCAN works as a youth services librarian. She received a Master’s degree in library science from Kent State University, which mostly taught her how to find obscure Slavic folklore texts through interlibrary loan systems. When not reading or writing, she enjoys playing copious amounts of video games and dungeons and dragons. Wicked Saints is her first book. She lives in Ohio.

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Eyes on Me by Rachel Harris


Welcome to the Release Week Blitz for
Eyes on Me by Rachel Harris
presented by Entangled Teen!
Grab your copy today!

Title: Eyes on Me
Author: Rachel Harris
Paperback, 320 pages
Published: March 26th 2019 by Entangled: Teen

Look up the word “nerd” and you’ll find Lily Bailey’s picture. She’s got one goal: first stop valedictorian, next stop Harvard. Until a stint in the hospital from too much stress lands her in the last place a klutz like her ever expected to be: salsa dance lessons.

Look up the word “popular” and you’ll find Stone Torres’s picture. His life seems perfect—star of the football team, small-town hero, lots of friends. But his family is struggling to make ends meet, so if pitching in at his mom's dance studio helps, he’ll do it.

When Lily’s dad offers Stone extra cash to volunteer as Lily’s permanent dance partner, he can’t refuse. But with each dip and turn, each moment her hand is in his, his side job starts to feel all too real. Lily shows Stone he's more than his impressive football stats, and he introduces her to a world outside of studying. But with the lines blurred, can their relationship survive the secret he's been hiding?



One (1) winner will receive a physical copy of Eyes on Me by Rachel Harris (US Only)
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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Rachel Harris writes humorous love stories about girls-next-door and the hot guys that make them swoon. Vibrant settings, witty banter, and strong relationships are a staple in each of her books…and kissing. Lots of kissing. Rachel’s books have been featured in USA Today and Glitter Magazine, and her stories have been finalists in the National Reader’s Choice Award, the Holt Medallion Award, and The Golden Quill.

An admitted bookaholic and homeschool mom, she gets through each day by laughing at herself, hugging her kids, and watching way too much Food Network with her husband. She writes young adult, new adult, and adult romances, and LOVES talking with readers!

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads

Eyes on Me by Rachel Harris

Title: Eyes on Me
Author: Rachel Harris
Paperback, 320 pages
Published: March 26th 2019 by Entangled: Teen

Look up the word “nerd” and you’ll find Lily Bailey’s picture. She’s got one goal: first stop valedictorian, next stop Harvard. Until a stint in the hospital from too much stress lands her in the last place a klutz like her ever expected to be: salsa dance lessons.

Look up the word “popular” and you’ll find Stone Torres’s picture. His life seems perfect—star of the football team, small-town hero, lots of friends. But his family is struggling to make ends meet, so if pitching in at his mom's dance studio helps, he’ll do it.

When Lily’s dad offers Stone extra cash to volunteer as Lily’s permanent dance partner, he can’t refuse. But with each dip and turn, each moment her hand is in his, his side job starts to feel all too real. Lily shows Stone he's more than his impressive football stats, and he introduces her to a world outside of studying. But with the lines blurred, can their relationship survive the secret he's been hiding?




10 Things Readers Don’t Know About Me
Hey friends! I’m Rachel Harris, a wife, homeschool mom, bookaholic, and author of EYES ON ME, my latest YA release, a funny and heartfelt Contemporary Romance. I own those titles. I’m proud of those titles. But beyond that, honestly, I don’t really think too much about myself. 
Seriously, it’s funny. When I saw the topic for this guest post, I smiled and thought “What a fun idea.” Then I sat down to actually write it…and was stumped! Ten facts I think you’d find interesting about me—fact that I haven’t blabbed about already, since I tend to not have much of a filter—was surprisingly difficult. Am I that boring that I couldn’t think of anything fun to share???
The truth is that women in general tend to put so many things before ourselves that we can sometimes forget what makes us special. All those roles I mentioned above are awesome things, but there is so much more to who I am and what makes me unique.
So, I sat down, put my thinking cap on, and dug deep. I went into the archives of my brain to remember favorite moments, funny moments, various truths, and once I got the ball rolling, it became hard to STOP at ten.
Now I challenge YOU, awesome reader friends! Jump in the comments and share your own top ten list of random-yet-interesting facts. Let us know what makes you unique ðŸ˜Š
Rachel’s Top Ten Uniquely Interesting Factoids
1.       I’m ridiculously afraid of frogs

Yeah. I know, it’s weird. My family teases me mercilessly. There’s just something so inherently wrong and ICKY about those things! They judge you with those eyes, they hop around in the pitch dark at night just to freak the crap out of me, and when they hop across my feet...or into my hand when they jump out of my dang door handle (I kid you not!!)…the texture of their skin makes me scream even more. It makes no sense—I realize I’m much bigger and they pose no threat—but they SCARE MEDUDE. I even wrote this phobia into EYES ON ME so someone else could share my fear…even if Lily is fictional.

2.       I can’t use chopsticks
Note I do not say refuse to use them. I try. All. The. Time. I LOVE sushi and poke, we eat it at least once a week, and whenever we go to restaurants I always attempt. I just can’t seem to get the hang of it! It’s so embarrassing as I can just feel the judgement of the people around me as I try and fail…and then ask for the kid ones so I can cheat. Sigh…If you have any tips to share, please feel free to leave them in the comments because it’s seriously pathetic. 
3.       I threw up on my first date
Now if you’ve been following me for a while, you probably know this embarrassing moment as it’s just too good not to share. It’s seriously amazing fodder for a YA novel (though the closest I’ve come is writing an embarrassing vomit after kiss scene in one of my adult romances, The Nanny Arrangement), and it actually happened. See, I was sick, but I refused to admit it. This was my FIRST DATE! I was not canceling! Unfortunately, the sweet guy wore a bit (read: way) too much cologne and kept leaning close to me in the movie theater to be romantic, and my gurgling tummy couldn’t handle it. Fortunately, I did make it to the trash can right outside our theater. Unfortunately, it was seconds before the movie next to ours let out LOL! Shockingly, the guy was awesome about it, rubbing my back, and it didn’t scare him off. That’s YA hero fodder, too!
4.       I interned at Entertainment Tonight and hosted TV shows in college
In my younger days, I was so much cooler than I am now. In college, I was branded LSU’s Jenny McCarthy (ha! Totally dating myself here) and hosted a live dating game show as well as a weekly entertainment program called Doin’ It. Then the summer before my senior year I interned at Entertainment Tonight in NYC and met tons of celebrities—I went to the press junket for America’s Sweethearts, met Heidi Klum in her underwear while she was on set for a Victoria’s Secret commercial, went to a couple premieres, hung out with Mandy Moore’s dad during a photo shoot. Yep, I was much cooler when I was younger. 
5.       I make up songs about the most random things ALL DAY LONG
Another factoid longtime fans probably know, but it’s such a part of my personality that it feels wrong to leave it out. My girls are used to me and my antics—songs make their way into our lessons, when I’m cooking or cleaning, even when we’re out eating (I once made up a song about a Chic Fil A sandwich)—and this is another quirk that I worked into The Nanny Arrangement. I love sprinkling myself into the books I write, especially the really weird parts about me. Embrace the quirk!
6.       My bucket list includes visiting all 7 continents and sleeping in an Irish castle.
I’ve only been to three so far (unless you count a layover in the Dubai airport, which I don’t), but we have a trip to Asia planned for 2021, so that’ll get me over halfway to my goal. The rest will have to happen once we’re empty nesters lol. As for my Irish castle dream, it’ll happen one day. Maybe it’ll finally give me the push to write the Irish fantasy novel that’s been simmering in my head for years, too!
7.       I’m obsessed with the color purple.
It’s not just my favorite, it’s my “signature color.” (Imagine that being said in Julia Roberts’ southern accent in Steel Magnolias!) Purple clothes, purple purse, purple makeup, reddish/purple hair…we even have purple walls in my house. If it’s purple, I want it.
8.       I’m a homeschool mom
Another not surprising fact but again, leaving it out would be weird because it’s SUCH an important part of who I am. I LOVE being a homeschool mom. Sharing my days with my girls, learning alongside them, sharing our love of literature and history and cultures. My girls are now in high school, so my husband teases me that I’ll not know what to do with myself when they go to college in a few years. I foresee me filling the time with lots and lots of books ðŸ˜‰
9.       I met my husband on a double date…where we switched mid-date!
So my husband’s roommate and I were the only ones who didn’t go to our Broadcast Journalism class on 9/11. It never even occurred to me that classes would be held. Because of that, we were paired up for a project, and when I met up with him at a restaurant to drop off the video camera, he was eating dinner with his roommates. I was out of it (I’d had painful dental work done that morning) and didn’t pay attention to any of them, but they convinced my partner to ask me out. He did, he suggested I bring a friend along for his roommate, I did…and a few dances into the night, we just somehow switched dates LOL. My husband and I knew that night that we’d found our person. 18 years later, it keeps getting better and better. He’s the inspiration for every hero I write. 
10.   I love to dance

Which is one of the reasons I love EYES ON ME so much! I took dance lessons from the age of 4-8, at which point I stopped because I didn’t “want someone telling me how to dance” LOL! But in high school I joined the dance team and had an absolute blast. I’m known to rock a dance floor any chance I get, and my husband and I took ballroom lessons for about a year prior to me writing this book. It was so much fun having Lily fall in love with it, too, and I hope that passion for dance comes through.

Now it’s your turn! Give me a few fun unique factoids about YOU!!


New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Rachel Harris writes humorous love stories about girls-next-door and the hot guys that make them swoon. Vibrant settings, witty banter, and strong relationships are a staple in each of her books…and kissing. Lots of kissing. Rachel’s books have been featured in USA Today and Glitter Magazine, and her stories have been finalists in the National Reader’s Choice Award, the Holt Medallion Award, and The Golden Quill.

An admitted bookaholic and homeschool mom, she gets through each day by laughing at herself, hugging her kids, and watching way too much Food Network with her husband. She writes young adult, new adult, and adult romances, and LOVES talking with readers!

Website : Twitter : Instagram

Sky Without Stars by Jessica Brody & Joanne Rendell

Title: Sky Without Stars (System Divine #1)
Authors: Jessica Brody & Joanne Rendell
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: March 26th 2019
Genre: Retellings, Young Adult, Science Fiction

A thief. An officer. A guardian.

Three strangers, one shared destiny . . .

When the Last Days came, the planet of Laterre promised hope. A new life for a wealthy French family and their descendants. But five hundred years later, it’s now a place where an extravagant elite class reigns supreme; where the clouds hide the stars and the poor starve in the streets; where a rebel group, long thought dead, is resurfacing.

Whispers of revolution have begun—a revolution that hinges on three unlikely heroes…

Chatine is a street-savvy thief who will do anything to escape the brutal Regime, including spy on Marcellus, the grandson of the most powerful man on the planet.

Marcellus is an officer—and the son of a renowned traitor. In training to take command of the military, Marcellus begins to doubt the government he’s vowed to serve when his father dies and leaves behind a cryptic message that only one person can read: a girl named Alouette.

Alouette is living in an underground refuge, where she guards and protects the last surviving library on the planet. But a shocking murder will bring Alouette to the surface for the first time in twelve years…and plunge Laterre into chaos.

All three have a role to play in a dangerous game of revolution—and together they will shape the future of a planet.

Power, romance, and destiny collide in this sweeping reimagining of Victor Hugo’s masterpiece, Les Misérables.


Sky Without Stars is a space opera retelling of Les Misérables. I’m a huge fan of the musical, I’ve seen it a couple times. Although I’ve never read the book or seen the movie version but I know that it’s kind of a big undertaking to retell the story.

So as much as I love the musical, I always struggled with the characters. I felt the same with Sky Without Stars. We have Chatine (Éponine), Alouette (Cosette) and Marcellus (Marius) now just because these three perspectives have counterparts in another universe does not mean they are exactly the same.

I feel like I rooted for Chatine’s character the most. I’m not saying she is not flawed and she hasn’t done bad things. This is someone hardened by living in the slums, with really really horrible parents. She has no one who truly loves her or nurtures her. She is kind of adrift and her goal is to get off planet. She might be in the game to provide only for herself but that doesn’t mean she can’t be redeemed.

Alouette was kind of eh. I actually really liked Cosette so I was glad that I enjoyed Alouette’s character more. I think the authors injected her with more spunk and spine. She is someone who is raised complete opposite of Chatine. Warm, safe, feed and loved. She is also a much bigger cog in the wheel of the events occuring in the story.

Marcellus? I think both girls could do better honestly. Which was fine because I was more interested in the plot itself then I was in any romance aspect of it. Maybe the series will sway me differently down the line but really I’m just like get some backbone man!!! I also think that his character is a little bit perfect as well because he comes from the higher class. He really doesn’t understand what it’s like to have to fight for everything like Chatine or be shut away like Alouette. I think his navitivitey to their strife makes absolute sense and is on par for what the character should be.

I really like this reimagining and idea for the plot. I thought the world building is good and when I picture what the planet looks like with the ships used as housing. I kept picturing the end credits of Wall-e. I felt like the descriptions were good and it was easy to imagine. The tech was not too complicated so you weren’t focused on trying to understand how things work. I wish the pacing was a little faster, however. I enjoyed all the components of the book it was just I need things to move along a little faster. This is something I’ve noticed with me and other space operas I’ve read so it might just be a space opera thing.

I enjoyed the story and I think for a book that is co-written, Jessica Brody and Joanne Rendell do a great job of making the writing flawless. The funny thing is I didn’t realize it’s a series at first so when the story was winding down, I’m like wait what? What? Oh okay there is another book, phew.

Jessica Brody is the author of more than 15 books for teens, tweens, and adults including Addie Bell’s Shortcut to Growing Up, A Week of Mondays, Boys of Summer, 52 Reasons to Hate My Father, and the three books in the sci-fi Unremembered trilogy. She’s also the author of the Descendants: School of Secrets series, based on the hit Disney Channel original movie, Descendants. Her books have been translated and published in over 23 countries and Unremembered and 52 Reasons to Hate My Father are currently in development as major motion pictures. She lives with her husband and four dogs and splits her time between California and Colorado.

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Joanne Rendell is the author of three novels and holds a PhD in English literature. She teaches fiction writing to teens and kids and is a board member for the youth Shakespeare company, New Genesis Productions. With her husband and son, Joanne divides her time between New York City, and New Paltz, New York.

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Prize: Win a copy of SKY WITHOUT STARS by Jessica Brody and Joanne Rendell (US Only)
Stars: 20th March 2019
Ends: 2nd April 2019
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The Waking Forest by Alyssa Wees

Title: The Waking Forest
Author: Alyssa Wees
Publisher: Delacorte
Release Date: March 12th 2019
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Pan's Labyrinth meets The Hazel Wood in this novel about a girl with terrify-ing visions and a wish-granting witch whose lives collide in the most unex-pected of ways.

The waking forest has secrets. To Rhea, it appears like a mirage, dark and dense, at the very edge of her backyard. But when she reaches out to touch it, the forest vanishes. She's desperate to know more--until she finds a peculiar boy who offers to reveal its secrets. If she plays a game.

To the Witch, the forest is her home, where she sits on her throne of carved bone, waiting for dreaming children to beg her to grant their wishes. One night, a mysteri-ous visitor arrives and asks her what she wishes for, but the Witch sends him away. And then the uninvited guest returns.

The strangers are just the beginning. Something is stirring in the forest, and when Rhea's and the Witch's paths collide, a truth more treacherous and deadly than ei-ther could ever imagine surfaces. But how much are they willing to risk to survive?


The Waking Forest is such an intriguing story. It has that eerie fairytale quality to it that once you pick it up and start reading. It’s hard to stop.

We start off with two different worlds that we are seeing into. Rhea’s world, with her house and family by the beach. Then there is the Witch of Wishes, with her palace of bone in the Woods and foxes that dance. We alternate between these two realities and learn more about each character. We later add in a third perspective in the form a story that someone tells the witch.There are many layers, kind of like photoshop document. At least that is how my brain thinks of it.

I really liked Rhea and her sisters. She is plagued and haunted by visions of things that are not real. Scary visions of people dying or missing parts of flesh and Woods that magically appear and disappear when she tries to enter. I loved the unique characteristics of each sister and how that blends with the other. They also have a very strong bond.

The Witch is intriguing, and the way she goes about her kingdom. The Witches section of the plot also brings us the story or fairytale of a princess in a kingdom where magic is feared. With a King who seeks to contain and destroy it.

I don’t want to give anything away from the plot but it’s interesting how the pieces fit together in the end. Red string of fate that binds them all. I loved the writing, it has the dreamy feel to it. I also found the plot to be fast paced and engaging. I think sometimes a story like this can drag on but this gave you just enough and kept it interesting.

I really enjoyed The Waking Forest and I think it’s something to read if you like stories like The Hazelwood or The Wren Hunt.


In between training in ballet and watching lots of Disney movies, Alyssa grew up writ-ing stories starring her Beanie Babies. She earned a BA in English from Creighton University and an MFA in Fiction Writing from Columbia College Chicago. Currently she works as an assistant librarian in youth services at an awesome public library. She lives in the Chicagoland area with her husband and their two cats.

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GIVEAWAY

· Prize: 1 copy of THE WAKING FOREST by Alyssa Wees
· US Only
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· Starts: 3/10
· Ends: 3/26

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The Shadow Glass by Rin Chupeco

The Shadow Glass (The Bone Witch #3)
by Rin Chupeco
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: March 5th 2019
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

The dramatic finale to The Bone Witch series! Tea's dark magic eats away at her, but she must save the one she loves most, even while her life—and the kingdoms—are on the brink of destruction.

In the Eight Kingdoms, none have greater strength or influence than the asha, who hold elemental magic. But only a bone witch has the power to raise the dead. Tea has used this dark magic to breathe life into those she has loved and lost...and those who would join her army against the deceitful royals. But Tea's quest to conjure a shadowglass, to achieve immortality for the one person she loves most in the world, threatens to consume her.

Tea's heartsglass only grows darker with each new betrayal. Her work with the monstrous azi, her thirst for retribution, her desire to unmask the Faceless—they all feed the darkrot that is gradually consuming her heartsglass. She is haunted by blackouts and strange visions, and when she wakes with blood on her hands, Tea must answer to a power greater than the elder asha or even her conscience. Tea's life—and the fate of the kingdoms—hangs in the balance



“To be perfect without suffering means no change. If you know neither hurt nor hardship, then you will not know the strength they can summon within a person. What’s life’s meaning if you cannot distinguish between happiness and sorrow?”

I love this series so much because it’s dark and complicated. With a protagonist who toes the line of good and bad. It’s her motivations for her actions that are really the heart of her and the story.

The magic system is fantastic, which follows suit with the other books. We get to see more of the story of magic origins as well and travel to more areas. I have felt the world building in phenomenal in this series. I’ve never been confused by locations or by how the magic system works.

I loved the Bard. Especially his dedication to telling Tea’s story in the purist form. I also love how he mentions multiple times about not reading the end pages of her letters, not wanting to skip to the end of the story before knowing the full thing. Like he’s emploring you as the reader to do the same and to hear Tea completely out. At some point in the story I realized I couldn’t remember the Bard’s real name. Which makes me laugh because this does come into play as things progress.

Oh Tea, you complicated Asha you. I love her even at her darkest moments because she’s such a complex well written character. We see her unfold through both her eyes and the Bard’s eyes. Which gives us multiple perspectives to her actions. It also shows us how much we can see things differently depending on where we are at in a situation. Tea struggles so much in so many ways but her core has always remained constant. Her character develops in a way that it is fitting.

I think out of all the books, this is the book I feel I know Kalen the best. It’s through his love for Tea that you see how truly strong he is. I loved their relationship from start to finish and to see how they grow as a couple. They are stronger when they are together and they have so much faith in eachother. I of course really enjoyed their time Yadosha.

There are many strong side characters as well. Likh and her story as she finds strength in being who she truly is. Khalad in finding love and his steady calm. Of course Fox, who is such a huge part of Tea and Tea is a huge part of him. Plus all the Asha.

The plot is great. I continued to enjoy that the telling of the past and the present at the same time. As they finally meet up together at the end. Plus that ending! Absolutely perfect for the story. The Shadow Glass is definitely my favorite book in the series. If you are like me and drawn to a dark story with complex characters and of course the murder/betrayal that comes along with it but manages to have that shining light fueled by love. Well this is the story for you.

Despite an unsettling resemblance to Japanese revenants, Rin always maintains her sense of hummus. Born and raised in Manila, Philippines, she keeps four pets: a dog, two birds, and a husband. Dances like the neighbors are watching.

She is represented by Rebecca Podos of the Helen Rees Agency. She is also fond of speaking in the third person, and may as well finish this short bio in this manner. While she does not always get to check her Goodreads page, she does answer questions posed to her here as promptly as she is able to.

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Everyone who pre-orders will receive the full short story, a sticker print of Tea AND the first 75 pre-orders will get enamel pins of the azi! More info and to submit the pre-orders, go here: PRE-ORDER

GIVEAWAY

1st Prize: Win a signed copy of Shadowglass, stickers of Tea, Kalen, and Fox, an art print of Tea & signed bookplates (INT)
2nd Prize: Win stickers of Tea, Kalen, and Fox, an art print of Tea & signed bookplates (INT)
Giveaway picture of the goodies available on the tour information folder.
Start Date: 1st March 2019
End Date: 15th March 2019
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To Best the Boys by Mary Weber

Title: To Best the Boys
Author: Mary Weber
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: March 5th 2019
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

Every year for the past fifty-four years, the residents of Pinsbury Port receive a mysterious letter inviting all eligible-aged boys to compete for an esteemed scholarship to the all-male Stemwick University. Every year, the poorer residents look to see that their names are on the list. The wealthier look to see how likely their sons are to survive. And Rhen Tellur opens it to see if she can derive which substances the ink and parchment are created from, using her father’s microscope.

In the province of Caldon, where women are trained in wifely duties and men are encouraged into collegiate education, sixteen-year-old Rhen Tellur wants nothing more than to become a scientist. As the poor of her seaside town fall prey to a deadly disease, she and her father work desperately to find a cure. But when her Mum succumbs to it as well? Rhen decides to take the future into her own hands—through the annual all-male scholarship competition.

With her cousin, Seleni, by her side, the girls don disguises and enter Mr. Holm’s labyrinth, to best the boys and claim the scholarship prize. Except not everyone’s ready for a girl who doesn’t know her place. And not everyone survives the maze.


I loooved To Best The Boys. I’m not surprised because I’m a huge fan of Mary Weber’s writing.

Rhen Tellur has an untameable mind, that doesn’t fit well in a society where women are expected to know their place. That being as wives and homemakers. The world is interesting because it consist of an upper and lower port but also has some fantasy elements. Like ghouls and sirens that haunt the kingdom of Caldon. There is also the Labyrinth that runs a test every year to pick someone to earn a scholarship to the University. This has been traditionally participated in by men but when Rhen’s mom life declines because of the disease she is plagued with. Rhen takes matters into her own hands.

I loved Rhen and Seleni and their friendships. They are cousins but Rhen lives in the Lower Port and Seleni in the Upper. They don’t let their differences have any affect on how they feel about each other. They support one another no matter what. I also like how they both want different things for their lives and it doesn’t make either of them less. Just because Rhen wants to pursue studying Science and Seleni wants to marry and have a family. They don’t knock the other dreams. I love that both sides are represented. It’s something important to me because it’s something my mom infused in me. That either path is the right path if it’s what you want.

I also love Lute and his relationship with Rhen and how she totally calls him out on things he assumes. She’s like seriously you are going to think that without asking me. It’s awesome. I also like how he just likes her for who she is and they are just cute. Just way to cute. I really like them together.

There are also just some lower port characters and of course Beryl that I really liked. Maray Weber always does a great job with side characters.

The plot is fast paced and interesting the entire time. I loved the test in the Labyrinth they weren’t overwhelming or boring. It really kept the book moving. Just a really great story.

So I loved To Best the Boys and if you haven’t read Mary Weber’s other books. I love them all and you should check them out if you enjoy this story!



Hi. I write books. I eat things. I kiss things. I believe in mermaids.

I'm also the author of the Storm Siren Trilogy, The Evaporation of Sofi Snow series, and the March 2019 release, To Best the Boys. When not working, I sing 80’s hairband songs to my three muggle children, and ogle my husband who looks strikingly like Wolverine. We live in California, which is perfect for stalking aging movie stars while wearing fanny packs and sweatpants.

For those who like to know such things (mainly my mom), Storm Siren was featured in the Scholastic Book Fair and my novels have been endorsed by such nice humans as Marissa Meyer, CJ Redwine, Shannon Messenger, and Jonathan Maberry (in fact, Marissa Meyer and I have a fun interview in the paperback of her book, CRESS). Also, Boba tea & sweatpants are life. {We can chat about life (in sweatpants over tea, obviously) in my Newsletter.

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GIVEAWAY
Prize: Win 1 of 2 finished copies of TO BEST THE BOYS by Mary Weber (1 INTERNATIONAL winner & 1 US ONLY winner)

Start Date: 25th February 2019
End Date: 11th March 2019
a Rafflecopter giveaway