Dec 24, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!
Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun!


Top Ten Books I Want Santa to Bring Me (in 2014)
***I'm cheating a little because I have a bad habit of buying all the books I want in finished copy form, so this is more about the books I can't wait to own next year!***


You might've seen me posting about this book on twitter yesterday and with good reason. This is the book I am most excited about in 2014. I am such a Kasie West fan(atic), but this book is right up my alley. Also? That cover is beyond stunning.


I may be cheating a bit (a bit more?) as I've already read this one, but I need a finished copy for my shelf. NEED IT.


Another book I've already been fortunate enough to read and simply must own. Sophie Jordan is in top form with this imaginative, thrilling, romantic story. I can't wait for the world to read it.


Yes, I've read this one, too, and need a finished copy. I absolutely adore this series by J. Lynn. If you've yet to fall in love with Cam and Jase and Ollie, then you have some delicious catching up to do.


I could not love this sequel to PIVOT POINT any more. Yes, Kasie is making a double appearance in this feature because I cannot get enough of her books. 


I am so excited and curious to see how Kiera Cass will end America's story. Aspen? Maxon? Who will be the one?


If there was one book that I think will speak universally to every person in 2014, it's The Winner's Curse. This book has it all--action, suspense, romance, deception, and redemption. It is a brilliant start to a new series and Marie Rutkoski is simply amazing.


This is pitched as Romeo and Juliet meets Sons of Anarchy. Line for this one starts behind me.


I love, love Jenny Han. She is such a fun and engaging writer. Her Summer series was one of my favorites, and I cannot wait for this one!


It's Jen Armentrout ... do I really need to say more than that? Really? OK, well I am also curious about the thriller aspect to this. It seems like a break from her normal books (and I use the term "normal" loosely because this girl can write about anything and I'd read it), so it's making me even more excited to read!

Dec 23, 2013

2013 Recap

A little-known fact about me is that I'm also a ThirtyOne consultant. My director sent out this little survey a week or so ago and it made me realize I could apply this to blogging. So, here is my 2013 recap.



1. What was remarkable about the year?
It was three years ago this month that I started toying with the idea of blogging. I had never used twitter, never really blogged before (does livejournal count? No?), and had no idea how to obtain and keep followers. 

Now I have over 2,200 followers, nearly 700 facebook likes and over 1,600 twitter followers. I have attended BEA twice and plan to go again this year. I'm also going to attend ALA MW for the first time ever in January. This year I was asked to speak on a panel about blogging at the Baltimore Book Festival, went on a PubCrawl in NYC, and attended more book signings and launches than I ever dreamed possible. 

In short, this year has been a dream.

2. Who came into my life this year and made an impact?
This is where I'm getting a little misty-eyed. When I first started blogging, I felt so isolated and out of touch with the blogging community. Slowly I started to make friends, but I must say that in 2013 I have found several people who have changed my life for the better and I don't know if I could survive without them.

Jen (Jenuine Cupcakes/YABC): Back in April I attended the Annapolis Book Festival and a few seats over was Jen. Imagine our joint shock when we realized a few minutes later (after an amusing argument with my mom we still chuckle over) that we lived less than 10 minutes apart. Since then, I have crossed many a state lines attended book events with her, carried (and eaten) more cupcakes than I can count, and found someone who will listen to me rant, rave, and giggle about books and writing. She's talked me off more writing ledges than I can count and entertains all my crazy ideas. Her friendship is truly a God-sent blessing in my life.

Nicole (Paperback Princess): You know when you find that one person, who fills this void you didn't even realize you had in your heart? That's Nicole. She gets me in a way that few people do. She is one of the most generous, giving, compassionate women I know. I know I can call her in the middle of the night if I need to gush or cry or need help hiding a body. She's my person.

YADC: This is a group started by Andye (Reading Teen) for bloggers, authors, librarians and book fanatic in NoVA, MD, and DC. Through YADC I have met some of the best people, who I adore completely. Not just Andye, but also Liza, Steph, and Christina - I love you guys. 

Liza (Who R U Blog): You are one of the most amazing, talented, and organized women I've ever met. I wish you lived closer so I could see you every day for your hugs alone. 

Mary (The Book Swarm): I wouldn't have met you if Jenny hadn't introduced us at BEA this year, and that would have just sucked. You are so vibrant and bubbly and fantastic. I love having you in my life.

3. What were my best accomplishments and achievements?
The best thing I did this year was adding a co-blogger. Gabrielle has given me room to breathe and more flexibility with what and when I read. Before I was constantly feeling like all I could do was read books I was obligated to review. I bought 10 books for Christmas and didn't touch any of them because I had no time to just read for me. Having someone to share the review load with was the best choice I made. Plus, it's helped bring me closer to my cousin, which I adore. Love you, Brie!

4. What am I most proud of and why?
I've done several series of posts this year - ARC Essentials, BEA Blitz, BEA Tips & Tricks - which have gotten a lot of attention and, yeah, made me kind of proud.

5. What was my BEST surprise?
The day I came home and had an envelope waiting in my mailbox from Kasie West was pretty epic. She sent me a copy of SPLIT SECOND, a follow up to her smash debut, Pivot Point, that I utterly adore beyond words. That she took the time to send me one of her books meant more than she will ever know.

6. What was my favorite time and moment?
I think PubCrawl 2013 will go down as my favorite time and moment of the year. Jen and I spent a day in NYC, visiting and hanging out with different publishers and learned so much. 

7. What was my biggest disappointment?
My biggest disappointment wasn't so much blogging related, although I was annoyed with
myself several time because I mis-timed blog posts and blog tours and went through a bit of a drag where I didn't post as much. On a more personal level, I'm disappointed that I didn't complete one of the many novels that are bouncing around in my head. I was a #NanoFail twice this year.

8. When I look back on the year, I could never have imagined ___________ (fill in the blank).
I would be so blessed. With books, with people, with memories ... 2013 was amazing.

9. What was the single most significant event of the year?
BEA (BookExpo America) was probably the most important event this year. Between the networking I did, parties I was fortunate enough to attend, and friends I got to meet in person, it was the best four days of the year.

On a more personal note, the biggest event of the year was the birth of my niece who is now an energetic, giggling, adorable 11-month-old I can't get enough of.

10. How do I want next year to be different?
Not different. I don't want different. I want more of the same. More books to fall in love with, more authors to engage with, and more friends to laugh with. This year has been a wild ride, and I can't wait to see what happens in 2014. Bring it on.


Dec 20, 2013

ARC Essentials with Random House


ARC Essentials is a new feature here on the blog where I have interviewed several publishers about the process for requesting review copies and then what to do once your review is written and posted. Each publisher has their own way of handling things, so what works for one doesn't necessarily work for another.

Today we have:



1. What should I include when asking for a review copy (Page view stats? Follower count? All social media accounts)?
UVM stats are VERY helpful, as well as social media accounts. It’s also nice if you note one or two that you’ve heard something about or why you’re requesting them, instead of a just a big list.

2. How long should I be blogging before I ask for a review copy?
Depends! We certainly wouldn’t turn down a new blog that has an impressive following.

3. Who should I contact about receiving review copies?
Feel free to contact individual publicists if you know they are working on the title, but if you’re not sure, we check our rhkidspublicity@randomhouse.com inbox daily, and those emails get forwarded to the appropriate person.

4. Should I email an author about obtaining a review copy and have them forward my request onto their publicist?
If you have a relationship with the author already (via Twitter, etc), this is fine to do. In most cases, it’s just easier to go straight to the publicist, though!

5. Do you expect me to review books I never requested, such as an ARC or finished copy I was sent but never asked for?
We never feel like we are OWED a review. If you receive ARCs that you didn’t ask for, it’s probably because we think you’ll really love it!

6. Where can I send in review links?
Usually, best to send them to the publicist working on the title. Again, if you’re not sure, the general inbox is best! rhkidspublicity@randomhouse.com

7. Do you want to see all reviews I’ve done—positive and negative?
I appreciate seeing them all, with a heads up that maybe you didn’t love the book. It’s good for us to see that you still took the time to read and review.

8. Am I more likely to get approved if I request an eARC of a book instead of a physical copy?
Definitely. It’s just a numbers game—we only print a limited quantity of galleys, but e-galleys are infinite.

9. When is the best time to request a book or be asked to be put on a list to receive a review copy?
I would say 3-4 months before publication.

10. Do you have a catalog mailing list for bloggers that I can request to be a part of?
We actually don’t make a printed catalog anymore! All info can be found on Edelweiss.

11. If I want to interview an author or ask them to write a guest post for my blog, is it best to contact the author directly?
See question #4!

12. Anything else you would like to add that you think bloggers should/need to know?

We appreciate the work you do! Bloggers are such a crucial part of building buzz for our books and introducing/recommending them to new readers. Thanks for writing!

Giveaway:
Random House is giving away a fabulous prize pack of ARCs and finished copies this week! Fill out the rafflecopter to enter!

AND WE STAY by Jenny Hubbard
BEING SLOANE JACOBS by Lauren Morrill
GATED by Amy Christine Parker
DON’T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT by Sarah Mlynowski
LOVE ME by Rachel Shukert
THE MIRK AND MIDNIGHT HOUR by Jane Nickerson
TOXIC HEART by Theo Lawrence
THE TRAGEDY PAPER (paperback) by Elizabeth LaBan
THE TYRANT’S DAUGHTER by J.C. Carleson
WE WERE LIARS by E. Lockhart


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Dec 18, 2013

Review: Something Like Normal by Trish Doller

Title: Something Like Normal
Author: Trish Doller
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Publication Date: 6.19.2012
Pages: 224
Genre: Contemporary, Real Life Issues, New Adult
Series: No
Source: Purchased ebook

Rating: A+

Summary (from Goodreads):
When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother’s stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he’s haunted by nightmares of his best friend’s death. It’s not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he’s had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis’s dry sense of humor, and incredible sense of honor, make him an irresistible and eminently lovable hero.

Review:
I’m going to let you guys in on a little secret: I sometimes quit reading.

I think I get burned out and tired of the same revolving plots, characters, clich├ęs, and tropes that everything starts to blur and I just get exhausted. So it’s not uncommon for me to take a sabbatical from reading for several weeks or a couple months. I recently hit this point in October. I was just over the constant read, review, repeat. I took a break and had just felt like crawling back into the world of reading when a friend (*cough*JEN*cough*) told me I needed to read Something Like Normal. I had read Trish Doller’s other book (Where the Stars Still Shine) and loved it, so I figured why not?

Cut to twenty-four hours later to me sitting in my office, furiously reading the ebook on my kindle app on my iPhone as I kept an ear open to notice if anyone was coming down the hall to bust me. But it didn’t matter because I was hopeless, desperately, irrevocably in love with this book.

Doller has a simple beauty in the way she tells a story. There are little frills and lace, but an inherent sophistication to her writing. Every word is precise and weighted to keep the reader firmly tethered to the story and characters. Travis had my heart from the first line to moment he signed off at the end. In fact, my heart is probably going to be eternally trapped somewhere in those pages.

I also have to say that this book is entirely told from Travis’ point of view. It’s sometimes awkward for a female writer to give a male character a voice that isn’t, well, girly. I’ve seen it go wrong more times than right, but this is one of those books where it was so spot-on, so incredibly perfect. Travis was a complexly uncomplex guy. He’s battling PTSD while trying to maintain that strong, macho bravado that it seems men need to cling to so as not to appear weak.

I loved his relationship with Harper. I loved that Harper was a strong, vibrant girl who wasn’t a doormat but also wasn’t a bulldozer. She didn’t let Travis get away with anything and she wasn’t on a mission to change or even save him. She was patient and listened and argued when needed. Their relationship had this perfect way of balancing each other, and that is what I love seeing. There was no insta-love or wildly unbridled passion … It was fluid and natural and organic.

I am such a hardcore Trish Doller fan (in case you were unsure). Now and forever, I will follow her words to the ends of the earth and beyond. She’s a writer who just gets human emotion and is able to capture it with a grace that is inspiring. This book made me so excited about reading all over again. I had forgotten that magic moment where a book touches your heart for a little while. Something Like Normal made me believe in book magic again.


Buy: Amazon

Waiting on Wednesday: A Girl Called Fearless by Catherine Linka


"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly waiting to get into our hands.



This week I'm waiting on....

A Girl Called Fearless
By: Catherine Linka

Summary:
Avie Reveare has the normal life of a privileged teen growing up in L.A., at least as normal as any girl's life is these days.  After a synthetic hormone in beef killed 50 million American women ten years ago, only young girls, old women, men and boys are left to pick up the pieces. The death threat is past, but fathers still fear for their daughters’ safety, and the Paternalist Movement, which was begun to “protect” young women, is taking over all the choices they make. 

 Like all her friends, Avie still mourns the loss of her mother, but she's also dreaming about college and love and what she'll make of her life.  But when her dad contracts her to marry a rich, older man to raise the money to save his struggling company, her life suddenly narrows to two choices:  be trapped in a marriage with a controlling politician, or run.  Her lifelong friend, student revolutionary Yates, urges her to run to freedom over the border to Canada.  He's always believed she's fearless and will help her escape if she's willing.  As their friendship turns to passion, the decision to leave becomes harder and harder.  Running away is incredibly dangerous and it's possible she'll never see Yates again.

But staying could mean death.

Why I Want It:
I am a fan of disaster scenarios. Movies, books, tv shows .... the more dire the straits, the happier I am. So this book is totally up my alley. It sounds a lot like Eve by Anna Carey, which I adored .... until the series fizzled. Hopefully this one will be amazing!

A Girl Called Fearless will be released on May 6, 2013 by St. Martin's Griffin

Dec 13, 2013

ARC Essentials with Bloomsbury


ARC Essentials is a new feature here on the blog where I have interviewed several publishers about the process for requesting review copies and then what to do once your review is written and posted. Each publisher has their own way of handling things, so what works for one doesn't necessarily work for another.

Today we have:




1. What should I include when asking for a review copy (Page view stats? Follower count? All social media accounts)?
Yes to all of the above! It never hurts to include as much info as possible.

2. How long should I be blogging before I ask for a review copy?
That depends on how many reviews, interviews, etc. you post. Basically, the more content you have, the better. But if you’re new to blogging and don’t have impressive stats to share, tell us what inspired you to start.

3. Who should I contact about receiving review copies?
At Bloomsbury, both marketing and publicity work with bloggers, so we recommend you send your request to TeensUSA@bloomsbury.com, which reaches all of us. We’ll take note of your request, even if we don’t respond, and do our best to get you what you’re looking for.  Also, let us know if you’d like to be included on our blog tour outreach. And please please please include your address. Even if you know we have it, always put it at the bottom of your email. It saves us so much time!

4. Should I email an author about obtaining a review copy and have them forward my request onto their publicist?
You can try that if you and the author have a relationship. But authors get a lot of emails, so you might find it’s not often fruitful. In general, we would prefer review copy requests come directly to us.

5. Do you expect me to review books I never requested, such as an ARC or finished copy I was sent but never asked for?
Not at all. We hope you’ll read—and love!—the books we send, but there is no expectation.

6. When is the best time to post a review?
No more than one month before on-sale, ideally the week it comes out. While pre-ordering is easy enough to do these days, it’s always better when your readers can get their hands on a book you’re excited about right away and share that joy with you. 

7. Where can I send in review links?
TeensUSA@bloomsbury.com. But also be sure to tweet it to us (@bwkids) so we can retweet!

8. Do you want to see all reviews I’ve done—positive and negative?
Yep! We want to know what you think. And if there’s something in your review you didn’t want to say publicly, feel free to include it in the email. We want to hear it all. 

9. Am I more likely to get approved if I request an eARC of a book instead of a physical copy?
Yes, if you can accept eARCs, that works in your favor because we don’t make as many physical ARCs as some of the bigger publishing houses. But if you prefer physical ARCs for any reason (you plan to use it for an ARC tour, for instance), let us know.

10. When is the best time to request a book or be asked to be put on a list to receive a review copy?
4-6 months before publication. Our mailings (for physical ARCs) will be sent 2-4 months in advance, which is about the same time as we post on Netgalley, so be patient if you don’t receive it or get approved on Netgalley right away.

11. Do you have a catalog mailing list for bloggers that I can request to be a part of?
No, but you can find our catalogs here: http://www.bloomsbury.com/us/company/catalogs.  Then send your requests in an email to TeensUSA@bloomsbury.com.

12. If I want to interview an author or ask them to write a guest post for my blog, is it best to contact the author directly?
You can do that, but bear in mind that we might be planning a blog tour and, therefore, you’d have a better chance of getting the author to do this by going through us. Also, in general, an author is going to be more likely to do it if the request comes through his/her publicist. But plenty of authors are open to being contacted directly, particularly debuts. So consider what you think is going to be the best route for that book and author.

13. Anything else you would like to add that you think bloggers should/need to know?
Sure!

1)      We respond to enthusiasm. Did you love an author’s earlier book and give it five stars (or whatever)? Include that in your email! Is this the book you’re more looking forward to this season? Or did you meet the author at an event or see them speak at a conference? Tell us!

2)      We sometimes like to do blogger meet-and-greets with authors before events, so if an author is coming to your city and you’re excited about it, tell us that! Or, if you want to hear about it when we have authors coming to your city, let us know and we’ll make a note.


3)      Finally, if a book is already on sale, consider buying it instead of asking us to send it. Just like galleys, we have limited copies of finished books available to send out. Plus, it’ll win our hearts. And also, it’ll probably be faster.  

Giveaway:
So this week I have another giant prize pack of Winter 2014 ARCs to giveaway from Bloomsbury! Here's what you could win:

A Breath of Frost by Alyxandra Harvey
Going Rogue by Robin Benway
Bright Before Sunrise by Tiffany Schmidt
Insanity by Susan Vaught
Lady Thief by A.C. Gaughen
Cured by Bethany Wiggins
Dangerous by Shannon Hale
Open Road Summer by Emery Lord


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Dec 12, 2013

Review: Snakeroot by Andrea Cremer

Title: Snakeroot
Author: Andrea Cremer
Publisher: Philomel
Publication Date: 12.10.2013
Pages: 366
Genre: Paranormal
Series: Nightshade Legacy #1
Source: ARC from publisher

Rating: A-

Summary (from Goodreads):
Fans asked for it, and now they've got it! Andrea Cremer is continuing the story she began in in her internationally bestselling trilogy: Nightshade, Wolfsbane and Bloodrose. In this new installment, Bosque Mar haunts the dreams of both Adne and Logan, trying to escape for the Nether, where Calla, Shay and the other Guardians trapped him in the final battle in the War of All Against All. Will he turn Adne to the dark side? Will Logan reclaim his birthright? And will darkness take over our world?

Review:
This is one of those books I had to take a deep breath and brace myself for before reading. Andrea Cremer blew me away with her debut novel, Nightshade when I first started blogging. I raved about this book, but I became increasingly frustrated with the characters and at the end of that series, I was heartbroken. Destroyed. In the worst way possible.

And then I heard a little rumor about this book that gave me this flutter of hope. And since it happens in the beginning of the book, I don’t see it as spoilery:

Ren is ALIVE.

Sort of. We’ll get to that. But Ren plays a huge part in Snakeroot and I’m sure the rest of the series. For you Ren fans, that may be reason enough to pull you back into this incredible world that Cremer has created. But there’s more.

This obviously takes place after the events of the original Nightshade trilogy. And while we were stuck in Calla’s head for that series, Cremer pulls back and we get a glimpse of the bigger picture and see what’s happening in this world now that things have fallen apart. Adne is a huge part of the reason Ren is back, and I feel like this will be Adne’s story—Adne is Ren’s half-sister, for those who may have forgotten.

My heart is still fragile after the way it was crushed my last time around with Cremer. But I’m willing to give this a go because I adore the way Andrea Cremer writes a story and creates a world. It’s magic and beautiful and so vivid. Everyone needs to go read this. Read and adore Cremer’s books, and know that the Ren fans now have hope.

Buy: Amazon

Dec 11, 2013

Review: Bitter Sweet Love by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Bitter Sweet Love
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publisher: HarlequinTeen
Publication Date: 12.1.2013
Pages: 105
Genre: Novella; Prequel; Paranormal Romance
Series: Dark Elements #0.5
Source: eARC from publisher

Rating: A

Summary (from Goodreads):
Dez wasn't just Jasmine's crush. A gargoyle Warden like Jas, he helped her come to terms with her destiny—fending off demons and maintaining balance between good and evil. He was her everything...right until the moment he disappeared without a trace. It didn't help that Jas's father had just announced that she and Dez would one day be mated. Hard not to take that personally.

And now he's back, three years older, ten times hotter, ready to pick up exactly where they left off. But Jas isn't taking that risk again. Dez has seven days to meet all her conditions and earn back her trust. Seven days filled with terrifying danger and sweet temptation. Seven days to win her heart—or shatter it all over again...

Review:
I had already read book one in this series, White Hot Kiss, before I had a chance to read Bitter Sweet Love.

What? Don’t judge me. I had it in my hands and devoured it. In a day. But that’s a review for another time.

Bitter Sweet Love is the tantalizing glimpse into the new, incredible world that Jennifer L. Armentrout is creating this time around. With gargoyles. Yes. You read that correctly.

I love paranormal romances, but I get tired of the same werewolves and vampires and angels … Give me something original! I need it! And Armentrout does just that, with her signature steam and snark lighting up every page.

I love love stories where the couple has history, especially one as friends. This crucial connection was so fundamental to Dez and Jas’ romance and made it all the more, well, bittersweet.  I loved watching them find their way back to each other and learning to accept one another for who they were and not just what they had.

Armentrout wastes no time sucking you into this brilliantly imagined world of flying guardians of the night and demons and mystery and seriously hot romance. This is the start to what will be an amazing series.


Buy: Amazon

Dec 6, 2013

Blog Tour: Ink is Thicker Than Water by Amy Spalding



Title: Ink Is Thicker Than Water
Author: Amy Spalding
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Publication Date: 12.3.2013
Pages: 320          
Genre: Contemporary
Series: No
Source: eARC for blog tour

Rating: B

Summary (from Goodreads):
For Kellie Brooks, family has always been a tough word to define. Combine her hippie mom and tattooist stepdad, her adopted overachieving sister, her younger half brother, and her tough-love dad, and average Kellie’s the one stuck in the middle, overlooked and impermanent. When Kellie’s sister finally meets her birth mother and her best friend starts hanging with a cooler crowd, the feeling only grows stronger.

But then she reconnects with Oliver, the sweet and sensitive college guy she had a near hookup with last year. Oliver is intense and attractive, and she’s sure he’s totally out of her league. But as she discovers that maybe intensity isn’t always a good thing, it’s yet another relationship she feels is spiraling out of her control.

It’ll take a new role on the school newspaper and a new job at her mom’s tattoo shop for Kellie to realize that defining herself both outside and within her family is what can finally allow her to feel permanent, just like a tattoo.

Review:
Ink is Thicker Than Water is a fun, fast and entertaining read from Amy Spalding. This is a great book if you aren’t looking for something too heavy and just need a break—which I did when I read this.

Kellie is a likeable enough character. I felt like she was very true the image of a teenager nowadays. Spalding did a fantastic job of putting her in real, relatable situations (new relationships, family drama, etc.) that most teens can relate to.

This is very much a coming-of-age novel that I think teens will enjoy. As an adult, it admittedly felt a little young at times. Kellie made some immature decisions and reacted in ways that kept me from fully falling head over heels in love with her character and her story. But, like I said, I think teens (who this book is aimed at) will genuinely enjoy Kellie and Spalding’s story telling.

Overall, I liked this book. It was a quick afternoon read that I devoured in a few hours. If you’re a fan of contemporaries and character-driven plots, then I definitely recommend this book for you!

About Amy:

Amy Spalding grew up in St. Louis, but now lives in the better weather of Los Angeles. She received a B.A. in Advertising & Marketing Communications from Webster University, and currently works as the Digital Media Planner for an independent film advertising agency. Amy studied longform improv at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, and can be seen performing around L.A.

Photo by Jessie Weinberg.
For more about Amy be sure to read the F.A.Q.


Giveaway: 



Tour Schedule:
Week One:

11/25/2013- The Bookmark Blog- Review

11/26/2013- Donnie Darko Girl- Review

11/27/2013- Reading the Best of the Best- Review

11/28/2013- She Dreams in Fiction- Review

11/29/2013- My Reading Room- Interview & Review

Week Two:

12/2/2013- YA Story Teller- Review

12/3/2013- LeAnn's Book Reviews- Review

12/4/2013- Bookish Things & More- Review

12/5/2013- Bookworm1858- Review

12/6/2013- The Irish Banana Review- Review
https://mail.google.com/mail/ca/u/1/images/cleardot.gif

ARC Essentials with Macmillan


ARC Essentials is a new feature here on the blog where I have interviewed several publishers about the process for requesting review copies and then what to do once your review is written and posted. Each publisher has their own way of handling things, so what works for one doesn't necessarily work for another.

Today we have:


1. What should I include when asking for a review copy (Page view stats? Follower count? All social media accounts)?
Please include the following:
your blog url (you’d be surprised how many people actually don’t)
stats (page views, how long you’ve been blogging, etc)
social media accounts
review of books we’ve published (if possible)
and a short list (if you have one) of any upcoming galleys you’d like to receive

We tend to not send out finished copies once a book has gone on sale.

2. How long should I be blogging before I ask for a review copy?
Ideally, at least 6 months. No joke, we’ve gotten requests from bloggers who have only been blogging like a week!

3. Who should I contact about receiving review copies?
We at MCPG have a general publicity inbox that gets checked very regularly. The e-mail address is: childrens.publicity@macmillanusa.com

4. Should I email an author about obtaining a review copy and have them forward my request onto their publicist?
Sometimes bloggers will reach out to the author directly for review copies, which is fine, and when that happens, the author will forward those requests to us for us to handle at our discretion.

5. Do you expect me to review books I never requested, such as an ARC or finished copy I was sent but never asked for?
If you have received a book from us that you did not request, you do not have to review it. But if you do end up reviewing, all I can say is Thank You!

6. When is the best time to post a review?
Ideally, anytime between two months before pub date through the after-pub date. We understand that not everyone will be able to review everything before pub date, so we truly appreciate books being reviewed even after pub date.

7. Where can I send in review links?
If you’re already in contact with me, you can e-mail me directly with review links.
If not, you can e-mail review links to childrens.publicity@macmillanusa.com

8. Do you want to see all reviews I’ve done—positive and negative?
Yes!

9. Am I more likely to get approved if I request an eARC of a book instead of a physical copy?
It honestly does not matter.

10. When is the best time to request a book or be asked to be put on a list to receive a review copy?
You can contact us for consideration for a galley copy usually four to five months in advance. But, again, please keep in mind, that we tend to not send out review copies once books are on sale.

11. Do you have a catalog mailing list for bloggers that I can request to be a part of?
We send out a catalog via e-mail to our blogger contacts three times a year. If you’d like to be considered for that outreach to receive galleys, please e-mail, for consideration, childrens.publicity@macmillanusa.com

12. If I want to interview an author or ask them to write a guest post for my blog, is it best to contact the author directly?
I see a lot of authors and bloggers already interacting directly (which is great) and setting up Q&As and guest posts together. If you’re ever uncertain about contacting an author for this, do feel free to contact us and ask. We can always forward your request to the author.

13. Anything else you would like to add that you think bloggers should/need to know?
I always try to stress this, whether on a panel or on a Q&A: Be a book blogger for the love of books and sharing your love of reading.



Giveaway:
As a special way to kick this series off, Macmillan is offering a massive ARC pack of books from their Winter 2014 catalog, including:

Drama Queens in the House by Julie Williams
The Rule of Three by Eric Walters
Grandmaster by David Klass
Plus One by Elizabeth Fama
Sekret by Lindsay Smith
Something Real by Heather Demetrios
Tin Star by Cecil Castellucci
Cress by Marissa Meyer
Nil by Lynne Matson
Unforgotten by Jessica Brody




*Must be over 13 and live in the US or Canada*

Links: