Monday, July 30, 2012

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: THE ROCK OF IVANORE, by Laurisa White Reyes--with a giveaway!

Since I'm under a tight KEEPER 2 deadline, the always amazing Deb Marshall (THANK YOU DEB!!!) volunteered to cover my MMGM. And she's chosen to feature THE ROCK OF IVANORE, by Laurisa White Reyes



Here's how the publisher describes it:

The annual Great Quest is about to be announced in Quendel, a task that will determine the future of Marcus and the other boys from the village who are coming of age. The wizard Zyll commands them to find the Rock of Ivanore, but he doesn’t tell them what the Rock is exactly or where it can be found. Marcus must reach deep within himself to develop new powers of magic and find the strength to survive the wild lands and fierce enemies he encounters as he searches for the illusive Rock. If he succeeds, he will live a life of honor; if he fails, he will live a life of menial labor in shame. With more twists and turns than a labyrinth, and a story in which nothing is at it seems, this tale of deception and discovery keeps readers in suspense until the end.

Middle readers will find that The Rock of Ivanore fits nicely among the traditional fantasies they so enjoy. They will also appreciate its fresh and inventive take on the genre.


And just like in previous times, here's Deb explain for herself why all of us need to read this one. Take it away Deb!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
Sometime ago I was fortunate enough to receive a copy of  THE ROCK OF IVANORE via NetGalley   {my how I love that service} by Laurisa White Reyes!

And my oh my, another wonderful read that I highly recommend. In fact, next trip to the bookstore I am buying this one. Need to have it on my bookshelves, ya know?

THE ROCK OF IVANORE is a multi-charactered high fantasy with those moments that make you laugh, make you cry, make you say “wow, how cool is that!” as the quest for something called The Rock of Ivanore  is given to a group of young boys hoping to prove themselves men.

From the lead character who is horribly afraid of the dark, to his friend who trusts no one to a sidekick who only gets tired if he has to exercise too much, to a know-it-all rich kid who will dump his fellow questers in a heart beat if he needs to, you and your middle grade readers will not be disappointed-even by one character who sort of can’t be trusted to not eat them if he gets too hungry.  Not only that, the author really knew how to build a strong and believable world and take you through it without bogging the reader down with details. She knows how to provide just enough to let our imaginations do the rest and just enough to create a need to know more about the various creatures and realms that make up this world. Map provided at beginning which is always cool.

AND-does this author know how to write a battle scene? Oh man, yes she does, and the writing of them creates these big hero moments that I love in fantasy in particular. Sure, I cried a couple of times…and one time shouted NO! But that is how well she pulled me into the story and showed me how much I’d come to care for the characters.

If you’ve a fan of THE LAST APPRENTICE series on your hands, this is one for them, of that I am certain. I am now patiently awaiting the next book. Okay, not so patiently-I read the beginning of book two as it was at the end of book one. Gack! I need to know what happens next. Besides I really want to visit that world and all of those characters again. 


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

Ooo, this one has been on my TBR List for a while. So glad to hear you loved it, Deb!

In the meantime, I want one of you to have the chance to discover it, so I'm giving away a copy to one lucky winner. To enter, make sure you leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm PST on Sunday, 5th. I'll draw one random winner and post their name on Monday, August 6th. International entries welcome.

For more awesome middle grade recommendations, check out these other MMGMs floating around the blogosphere.*
- Author Claire Legrand has another entry her awesome series called Middle Grade Memories. Click HERE to see author Alison Cherry discuss the books she loved growing up--with a GIVEAWAY! 
- Laurisa Reyes has an interview with author Adam Sidwell--plus a GIVEAWAY! Click HERE for details 
- Michelle Isenhoff is raving about WHEN YOU REACH ME. Click HERE to see why. 
- Brennan and Meyrick Murphy are cheering for the classic A LITTLE PRINCESS. Click HERE to see what these two middle grade readers thought of it.  
- Andrea Mack is cheering for INSIDE OUT AND BACK AGAIN. Click HERE to learn why she thinks its worth a read. 
- Chelanne Green is spreading the love for MOCKINGBIRD. Click HERE to see why.   
- Julie DeGuia is interviewing author Jacqueline West and highlighting THE BOOKS OF ELSEWHERE VOL1: THE SHADOWS. Click HERE to see what she thought. 
- Heidi Grange is championing SLEUTH OR DARE--with a GIVEAWAY. Click HERE for details.  
- Michelle Mason is gushing about LIESL & PO. Click HERE to see why she enjoyed it.
- Barbara Watson is swept up in CIRCLE OF SECRETS--with a GIVEAWAY. Click HERE for details. 
-Mrs. Heise is sold on ONE FOR THE MURPHYS. Click HERE to see why. 
- Myrna Foster is recommending THE FALSE PRINCE. Click HERE to read her thoughts. 
- Melanie Conklin is showcasing GREGOR THE OVERLANDER--with a GIVEAWAY! Click HERE to enter.  
- Dorine White is reviewing the BINDI WILDLIFE ADVENTURES BOOK #&: CROC CAPERS. Click HERE to see what she thought.
- Deb Marshall is interviewing author Margo Sorenson--with a GIVEAWAY of ISLAND DANGER. Click HERE to see why she loved it so very much.

- Pam Torres always has an MMGM up on her blog. Click HERE to see what she's spotlighting this week.

- The Mundie Moms are always part of the MMGM fun (YAY!). Click HERE to see their newest recommendations. And if you aren't also following their Mundie Kids site, get thee over THERE and check out all the awesome!

- The lovely Shannon O'Donnell always has an MMGM ready for you! Click HERE to see what she's featuring this week!

- Karen Yingling also always has some awesome MMGM recommendations for you. Click HERE to which ones she picked this time!


If you would like to join in the MMGM fun, all you have to do is blog about a middle grade book you love (contests, author interviews and whatnot also count--but are most definitely not required) and email me the title of the book you're featuring and a link to your blog at SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com. (Make sure you put MMGM or Marvelous Middle Grade Monday in the subject line so I see it)

NOTE: I used to not have a cut-off time for adding links to the post, but with how insane my schedule is right now, if you don't email me by Sunday evening (usually around 11pm PST is when I put the links together) I can't guarantee I'll have a chance to add you. BUT, you are welcome to add your link in the comments on this post so people can find you!


*Please note: these posts are not a reflection of my own opinions on the books featured. Each blogger is responsible for their own MMGM content and I do not pre-screen posts ahead of time, nor do I control what books they choose. I simply assemble the list based on the links that are emailed to me ahead of time.HERE

Sunday, July 29, 2012

LET THE SKY FALL Bookmark Winners

Sorry this is a few hours late--took me a while to draw all these winners. I mean 20. TWENTY! So exciting!

And I got waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more entries than I expected. Which is awesome. So glad you love the bookmarks as much as I do. I mean, aren't they pretty?


Front                                                             Back

But right--THE WINNERS.

caitlin8251

*Phew* I really hope that's actually 20 (counting + revision brain = not as easy as it should be).

And YAY

*tosses confetti*

And if that's you, please email me at SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com with your mailing address--and please put LTSF BOOKMARK WINNER in the subject line--and I will send off your prize. 

For the rest of you--thank you SOOOO much for your enthusiasm for LET THE SKY FALL. I promise I'll do more bookmark giveaways. And of course there will be some ARC giveaways coming up at some point too. Stay tuned!

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Friday, July 27, 2012

More truth is out there!

Hey guys!

Just a very quick post to let you know that it's my week over at Friday the Thirteeners today. I'm tackling another truth this time, and sharing some of the disastrous titles I suggested for LET THE SKY FALL (you can also find out the original title we sold it under)

Hop over HERE if you want to check it out!

And if you missed it on Wednesday, I'm giving away 20 lovely LET THE SKY FALL bookmarks over HERE. Still time to enter--don't miss your chance!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Yet another milestone reached--and a contest!!!!

Not sure if you saw this on FB or Twitter already, but yesterday I reached another crazy milestone. After three very long, marathon reading/working days, I made it through my LET THE SKY FALL  1st pass pages and fed-exed them off to S&S.

*jumps up and down*

*sniffles*

*collapses*

Turning in 1st pass is always (and by "always" I mean, yanno, BOTH times I've done it now) a strange mix of giddiness and terror (plus a healthy dose of exhaustion). It's my last chance to change anything from the ARC to the final copies people will buy, and when I turn it in I'm officially done with my work on the book. S&S will still be keying my changes in and proofreading a few more times. But for me, it's kind of like this:



Months and months and months of my life (and waaaaaaay more hours than I ever want to think about) have been poured into the book trying to make it as perfect as I can get it. I've read it eleventy billion times. Questioned and stressed and obsessed over every single word (no, really, I have friends who will back this up). And now... my work is done. All that's left to do is share it with you guys and hope it doesn't let you down.

Which is a SCARY and SUPER AMAZINGLY EXCITING thing. So I thought it called for a small celebration.

I don't think I've shown you guys the GORGEOUS bookmarks Keary Taylor designed for me:

Front                                                             Back

Aren't they AMAZING?????

And it's high time to give some away! (And they're even SIGNED)

I'm giving away 20--yes TWENTY--to lucky random commenters. 

*tries not to worry that she will not get twenty comments*

If you would like one, leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm Pacific Time on Saturday, July 28th. I'll draw 20 random winners and post their names on Sunday, July 29th. International entries welcome!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday Link Extravaganza

Sorry guys--once again I have no MMGM this week. KEEPER 2 is currently squishing my brain into a  gooey pulp (how's THAT for a mental image on a Monday morning) so I haven't had time to read or think or breathe. I promise things will be back on track as soon as the revised draft is in my editor's inbox.

And in the meantime, here's the list of all the amazing MMGM's floating around the blogosphere today*:
- Author Claire Legrand has another entry her awesome series called Middle Grade Memories. And  um... IT'S ME! Click HERE to see me discuss the books I loved growing up--with a GIVEAWAY!  
- Joanne Fritz is swooning over WHAT CAME FROM THE STARS. Click HERE to see why. 
-Mrs. Heise is cheering for GOLD METAL SUMMER. Click HERE to see what she thought.  
- Barbara Watson is rocking out to NATE ROCKS THE BOAT--with a GIVEAWAY. Click HERE for details. 
- Ruth Donnelly is showcasing THE EXTRAORDINARY EDUCATION OF NICHOLAS BENEDICT. Click HERE to see her reviews.   
- Michelle Mason is shining a light on A FAREWELL TO CHARMS. Click HERE to see why she enjoyed it.
- Julie DeGuia is highlighting INSIDE OUT & BACK AGAIN. Click HERE to see what she thought. 
- Michelle Isenhoff is featuring BENEATH THE SLASHINGS--with an ARC GIVEAWAY! Click HERE for all the details. 
- Jemi Fraser is championing A SCARY GOOD BOOK. Click HERE to see why she thinks you'll love it too. 
- Susan Olson is over the moon for ON THE BLUE COMET. Click HERE to see why. 
- Andrea Mack is wowed by WONDER. Click HERE to learn why she thinks its worth a read. 
- Brennan and Meyrick Murphy are spooked for GHOSTOPOLIS. Click HERE to see what these two middle grade readers thought of it. 
- Deb Marshall is blind with love for SEEING CINDERELLA. Click HERE to see why she loved it so very much.  
- Laurisa Reyes has an interview with author Elizabeth Barrows--plus a GIVEAWAY! Click HERE for details 
- Danica Dinsmore is back to celebrate BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA. Click HERE for her feature.  
- Natalie Aguirre is interviewing author Natalie Dias Lorenzi and GIVING AWAY an THE FLYING DRAGON.  Click HERE for all the details.    
- Pam Torres always has an MMGM up on her blog. Click HERE to see what she's spotlighting this week.  
- The Mundie Moms are always part of the MMGM fun (YAY!). Click HERE to see their newest recommendations. And if you aren't also following their Mundie Kids site, get thee over THERE and check out all the awesome! 
- The lovely Shannon O'Donnell always has an MMGM ready for you! Click HERE to see what she's featuring this week! 
- Karen Yingling also always has some awesome MMGM recommendations for you. Click HERE to which ones she picked this time! 

If you would like to join in the MMGM fun, all you have to do is blog about a middle grade book you love (contests, author interviews and whatnot also count--but are most definitely not required) and email me the title of the book you're featuring and a link to your blog at SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com. (Make sure you put MMGM or Marvelous Middle Grade Monday in the subject line so I see it)

NOTE: I used to not have a cut-off time for adding links to the post, but with how insane my schedule is right now, if you don't email me by Sunday evening (usually around 11pm PST is when I put the links together) I can't guarantee I'll have a chance to add you. BUT, you are welcome to add your link in the comments on this post so people can find you!

*Please note: these posts are not a reflection of my own opinions on the books featured. Each blogger is responsible for their own MMGM content and I do not pre-screen posts ahead of time, nor do I control what books they choose. I simply assemble the list based on the links that are emailed to me ahead of time.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Proof that I have the coolest job EVER!

As if the impossible-to-wrap-my-head-aroud Shelf Awareness ad wasn't proof enough, I have to show you guys THE COOLEST THING EVER.

(No really, it is seriously, honestly, the most incredible thing!)

My first KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES fan art!!!!!

From a 13-year-old reader who wrote the sweetest message along with it (yes, I TOTALLY cried).

ISN'T THIS AMAZING????


I... I don't even know where to start. Not only is this gorgeous (seriously, this is one talented kid--and this is so getting framed and hanging in my office) (it also makes me want a KEEPER manga like whoa--ARE YOU LISTENING, UNIVERSE???) but I know exactly which scene this is and just... to see a reader so inspired by these crazy characters who live in my head is just... well, once again I have no words

I'M A WRITER AND I KEEP RUNNING OUT OF WORDS!!!!

Except that I can say that clearly I have the best job ever. Which was great to be reminded of because the revision on KEEPER 2 is currently kicking my butt. So this is just the motivation I needed to keep slogging through.

And I just want to add a quick thank you to all the others who've taken the time to send me emails about loving KEEPER (of which there has been quite a lot, surprisingly enough). I haven't posted your letters because it just seems... shamelessly self promoting. But I have read and loved each and every one of them and if I haven't replied yet I promise I will. And in the meantime THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

Okay... back to revising! (well... after staring at this gorgeousness just a *little* bit longer)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The one where Shannon gets Speechless...

So... yesterday THIS happened:


And a day later I still have no words. Because really--THERE ARE NO WORDS!!!!

None.

Zero.

I mean... how do you... ? 

I can't even... 

Yeah. 

Just... whoa. 

WHOA. 

*stares* 

*stares more* 

*still staring*


I wasn't going to mention it or talk about it or draw any attention to it because...

a) That's rather hard to do without words

b) It feels sort of... ookie. 

Like hey guys--LOOK AT THIS. Like I'm complimenting myself somehow,  even though I'm not the one who wrote the ad or knew it was coming or had anything to do with it. It's just weird posting such an indescribable thing being said about me. Well... said about my books. But I mean, I did write them so it's indirectly about me--but it's more about my books I guess. Gah--I'm rambling, aren't I? 

*goes back to staring*

But apparently a bunch of you guys saw it in Shelf Awareness and contacted me about it to make sure I'd seen it (HUGE thanks to all of you who tweeted or emailed me links) and I started to worry that I'd seem a little... ungrateful if I didn't mention it. Which I would never want. 

So I'm posting it. 

And rambling awkwardly about it. 

And you can't see it, but there's been a whole lot of twitching and fidgeting and deleting things as I've tried to put enough words together to make this awkward post. 

And I'm still having second thoughts about posting it (especially since I also feel like I probably haven't said anything coherent). But I'm posting it.

*clicks schedule before she can change her mind*

And now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going back to staring.

*stares*

Monday, July 16, 2012

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday Linky Round-Up

Ugh, I am sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo tired from Comic Con that I do NOT have the brain power to put together an MMGM this week. SORRY. It'll be a miracle if I manage just to get the links right!

But first, I have the winner of last week's MMGM to announce. The winner of LIESL & PO is...

SOPHIE

YAY!

*tosses confetti*

If that's you, email me at SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com with your mailing address and I will ship off your prize!

Okay, that's done. Now on to the awesome list of all the other amazing MMGM's floating around the blogosphere today*:

- Julie DeGuia joins the MMGM fun with her first feature, on THE DOLL PEOPLE. Click HERE to welcome her to the group. 
-Mrs. Heise is cheering for CAPTURE THE FLAG. Click HERE to see what she thought and welcome her to the group!
- Dorine White is featuring MIDDLE SCHOOL MAGIC, THE KINDLING--with a GIVEAWAY. Click HERE for all the fun.  
- Barbara Watson is caught up in THE SECRET TREE. Click HERE to see why she thinks you'll be too.   
- Joanne Fritz is jumping for JUMP INTO THE SKY. Click HERE to see why .  
- Michelle Mason is cheering for THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM.  Click HERE to see why she enjoyed it.   
- Susan Olson has been swept away by THE SIXTY-EIGHT ROOMS. Click HERE to see her review. 
- Andrea Mack is taken with THIS DARK ENDEAVOUR. Click HERE to learn why she thinks its a great upper middle-grade read.  
- Melanie Conklin is spending the day with TURTLE IN PARADISE. Click HERE to see why. 
- Erica Haugland is glowing for RADIANCE. Click HERE to see why its one of her new favorites.
- Laurisa Reyes has an interview with author Lorin Barber--plus a GIVEAWAY! Click HERE for details    
- Brennan and Meyrick Murphy are cheering for ARTEMIS THE LOYAL. Click HERE to see what these two middle grade readers thought of it.
- Michelle Isenhoff has found love for NICK OF TIME. Click HERE to see why.   
- Jennifer Rumberger is featuring Kaline Klattermaster's Tree House. Click HERE to see her review.  
- Jasmine Marie has fallen for THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET. Click HERE to read her feature. 
- Chelanne Green is spreading the love for MIDDLE SCHOOL, THE WORST YEARS OF MY LIFE. Click HERE to see why. 
- Deb Marshall is also sharing the love  for THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM. Click HERE to see why she loved it too. 
- Kim Aippersback has three awesome features: THE MOON OVER HIGH STREET, HATE THAT CAT, and THE UNFINISHED ANGEL. Click HERE to check them all out. 
 - Pam Torres always has an MMGM up on her blog. Click HERE to see what she's spotlighting this week.   
- The Mundie Moms are always part of the MMGM fun (YAY!). Click HERE to see their newest recommendations. And if you aren't also following their Mundie Kids site, get thee over THERE and check out all the awesome! 
- The lovely Shannon O'Donnell always has an MMGM ready for you! Click HERE to see what she's featuring this week!    
 Karen Yingling also always has some awesome MMGM recommendations for you. Click HERE to which ones she picked this time!    


If you would like to join in the MMGM fun, all you have to do is blog about a middle grade book you love (contests, author interviews and whatnot also count--but are most definitely not required) and email me the title of the book you're featuring and a link to your blog at SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com. (Make sure you put MMGM or Marvelous Middle Grade Monday in the subject line so I see it)

NOTE: I used to not have a cut-off time for adding links to the post, but with how insane my schedule is right now, if you don't email me by Sunday evening (usually around 11pm PST is when I put the links together) I can't guarantee I'll have a chance to add you. BUT, you are welcome to add your link in the comments on this post so people can find you!


*Please note: these posts are not a reflection of my own opinions on the books featured. Each blogger is responsible for their own MMGM content and I do not pre-screen posts ahead of time, nor do I control what books they choose. I simply assemble the list based on the links that are emailed to me ahead of time.