Fab Five Friday – Authors I Want to Hug

YOU GUYS! Today is the day! We will be embarking on our epic 8 hour road trip to attend YALLWest- an incredible young adult book festival in Santa Monica featuring nearly 40 authors, panels, book signings, events, and food trucks!

yallwest logo

Shortly, we will be packing up the rental car, gearing up our playlist, and settling in for our long drive. I’m sure we’ll discuss the finer points of recent books we’ve read, strategize over which author panels and signings we plan to attend, and of course, gush over our favorite authors.

Here are my fab five favorite authors I hope to hug this weekend!


shannon hale

Shannon Hale

I LOVED her adult books, Austenland and Midnight in Austenland. On twitter, she always participates in engaging dialogue on various topics in young adult literature. Plus, she seems like a super sweet person! I can’t wait to meet her!

Shannon Hale is the New York Times best-selling author of six young adult novels: the Newbery Honor book Princess Academy, multiple award winner Book of a Thousand Days, and the highly acclaimed Books of Bayern series. She has written three books for adults, including the upcoming Midnight in Austenland (Jan. 2012), companion book to Austenland. She co-wrote the hit graphic novel Rapunzel’s Revenge and its sequel Calamity Jack with husband Dean Hale. They live near Salt Lake City, Utah with their four small children, and their pet, a small, plastic pig.


stephanie perkins

Stephanie Perkins

This gal is a young adult lit bad ass. Forserious. Her books so perfectly capture all the feels of being a teenager facing tough decisions and determining one’s identity. Plus, there’s plenty of swoony moments. LOVE. HER.

Hi, there! I’m Steph, and I wrote ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS, LOLA AND THE BOY NEXT DOOR, and ISLA AND THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER. I also edited (and contributed a short story to) a romantic holiday anthology called MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME. A companion anthology, SUMMER DAYS & SUMMER NIGHTS, will be released in 2016. My next YA novel will be horror—a teen slasher published by Dutton.
robin lafevers

Robin LaFevers

Y’all, this lady is the MASTER of alternative historical fiction. Her His Fair Assassin series blew my mind! I cannot wait to meet this ridiculously talented author!

R.L. LaFevers (Robin Lorraine when she’s in really big trouble) grew up surrounded by shelves of old dusty books and a passel of brothers. She has also spent a large portion of her life being told she was making up things that weren’t there, which only proves she was destined to write fiction. She is the author of over fourteen books for young readers, including THEODOSIA AND THE SERPENTS OF CHAOS, (Houghton Mifflin, 2007) which received starred reviews and was a Junior Library Guild selection, a Booksense Summer Pick, and nominated for the Malice Domestic’s Agatha Award, and the NATHANIEL FLUDD, BEASTOLOGIST series. Her first young adult novel, GRAVE MERCY, will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in Spring of 2012. She currently lives with her husband and a demonic cat in Southern California and spends her days gazing longingly at ancient artifacts or wallowing in old forgotten texts.


richelle mead

Richelle Mead

I recently whipped through the entire Vampire Academy series, and I LOVE this chick’s take on the paranormal. Plus, she’s a ginger.

Scorpio Richelle Mead is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of urban fantasy books for both adults and teens. Originally from Michigan, Richelle now lives in Seattle, Washington where she works on her three series full-time: Georgina Kincaid, Dark Swan, and Vampire Academy. A life-long reader, Richelle has always loved mythology and folklore. When she can actually tear herself away from books (either reading or writing them), she enjoys bad reality TV, traveling, trying interesting cocktails, and shopping for dresses. She’s a self-professed coffee addict and has a passion for all things wacky and humorous.


veronica roth

Veronica Roth

Ok, so I’ve only read the first book in the Divergent series, but I still really want to meet her! She is a HUGE YA lit celebrity, and I really want to meet someone who has encountered so much success.

Veronica Roth is from a Chicago suburb. She studied creative writing at Northwestern University, and wrote DIVERGENT (Katherine Tegen Books, May 2011) and INSURGENT (May 2012). The third and final book in The Divergent Trilogy, ALLEGIANT, will come out on October 22, 2013. In the meantime she will spend endless hours browsing Wikipedia in her pajamas as she eats corn flakes. (Or some other kind of bland breakfast cereal.)


*Images and author bios courtesy of Goodreads*

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Fab Five Friday – TBR Before YALLWest!

yallwest logo

If y’all follow us on Twitter, then you are well aware that we are GEEKING OUT over an upcoming book event! We are rocking an 8 hour road trip to sunny SoCal to attend YALLWest- the west coast version of YALLFest.

Two whole days of young adult author panels, book signings, special events, and food trucks set in the gorgeous backdrop of Santa Monica. This is the first year for this kick butt amazing festival of young adult books, and we are thrilled to attend!

In preparation, of course I want to read ALL THE BOOKS by ALL THE AUTHORS. (It’s always a little bit awkward when I go to a signing for an author where I haven’t read ANY of their works… oops!) I made a list of the panels I hope to attend, then a list of the authors on those panels, and then a list of the top books by those authors that I plan on reading beforehand. I came up with over 16 books.

The problem is, I HATE feeling forced to read something. It could sound like the coolest book ever, but if I feel pressured into reading it, then I stubbornly kick my heels into the sand and refuse to budge. Even if the one who is doing the pressuring is myself.

As such, I have one week before YALLFest and an untouched TBR list. It’s crunchtime, you guys!!

Here is my more realistic, top five books I want to read before YALLFest!


isla and the happily ever after


Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Love ignites in the City That Never Sleeps, but can it last?

Hopeless romantic Isla has had a crush on introspective cartoonist Josh since their first year at the School of America in Paris. And after a chance encounter in Manhattan over the summer, romance might be closer than Isla imagined. But as they begin their senior year back in France, Isla and Josh are forced to confront the challenges every young couple must face, including family drama, uncertainty about their college futures, and the very real possibility of being apart.

Featuring cameos from fan-favorites Anna, Étienne, Lola, and Cricket, this sweet and sexy story of true love—set against the stunning backdrops of New York City, Paris, and Barcelona—is a swoonworthy conclusion to Stephanie Perkins’s beloved series.

I love, love, love Stephanie Perkin’s writing style! Her first two books were fabulous, and I don’t know why I’ve waited so long to read the conclusion to the series. I need to get on it!


red queen


Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers. To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change. Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control. But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?

If you haven’t heard the buzz surrounding this debut novel, then you’ve been living under a rock. I’ve heard so many good things, plus Aveyard is hysterical on twitter! Need to read. STAT.




Bloodlines by Richelle Mead

Blood doesn’t lie…

Sydney is an alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of human and vampires. They protect vampire secrets – and human lives. When Sydney is torn from her bed in the middle of the night, at first she thinks she’s still being punished for her complicated alliance with dhampir Rose Hathaway. But what unfolds is far worse. Jill Dragomir – the sister of Moroi Queen Lissa Dragomir – is in mortal danger, and the Moroi must send her into hiding. To avoid a civil war, Sydney is called upon to act as Jill’s guardian and protector, posing as her roommate in the last place anyone would think to look for vampire royalty – a human boarding school in Palm Springs, California. But instead of finding safety at Amberwood Prep, Sydney discovers the drama is only just beginning…

I DEVOURED the Vampire Academy series last month, and now I’m hooked. I’d love to get a start on this series before I get to meet Mead in person!




Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Ninety-five days, and then I’ll be safe. I wonder whether the procedure will hurt. I want to get it over with. It’s hard to be patient. It’s hard not to be afraid while I’m still uncured, though so far the deliria hasn’t touched me yet. Still, I worry. They say that in the old days, love drove people to madness. The deadliest of all deadly things: It kills you both when you have it and when you don’t.

I have yet to read anything by Oliver, but I’ve heard good things. Out of all of her novels, this one sounded interesting to me. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to check it out!



Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Insurgent is a 2012 science fiction young adult novel by American novelist Veronica Roth, the second book in the Divergent trilogy. As the sequel to the 2011 bestseller Divergent, it continues the story of Tris Prior and the dystopian post-apocalyptic version of Chicago. Following the events of the previous novel, a war now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. While trying to save the people that she loves, Tris faces questions of grief, forgiveness, identity, loyalty, politics, and love.

I’m embarrassed to admit that I have only read the first book in the Divergent series. Since I’ll be attending tea with the award-winning, super-famous author, I need to get a move on and read these books!


Anyone else out there attending YALLWest?! Is your TBR list as long as mine? What are YOUR fab five TBR before go time next week?


*Cover images and descriptions courtesy of Goodreads*

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Fab Five Mommy Stories

Fab Five Women’s Fiction Mommy Stories

Do you love mommy drama? Here are the top five fiction stories about being a mom I’ve read!

1. The Accidental Mother by Rowan Coleman: I really enjoyed this story! Sophie is a career woman who has lost touch with her old best friend, Carrie. Carrie passed away, leaving six-year-old Bella and three-year-old Izzy to Sophie, since their dad ran off a few years ago. Sophie never imagined herself as a mother, but she finds herself falling in love with the girls when their father returns. I really loved this book, although it was somewhat cliche, it was adorable and fun!

2. Totlandia: Book One: The Onesies-Fall by Josie Brown: I just read this book and was surprised at how much I liked it. Four parents are trying to get into the exclusive Pacific Heights Moms and Tots Club, their first step to their children’s successful future. However, each parent has a secret they want to keep hidden from the group. The readers get to read the story from the different parents’ different perspectives. It was really interesting how they’re all trying to keep secrets from each other and all the crazy rules of the Moms and Tots Club. I got really sucked into each story!

3. But I said Forever by Jennifer Gilby Roberts: Brittany is a mother who feels she has lost her own identity in being a wife and mother. She starts attempting to become more independent, when she finds out a secret about her husband, Philip. I feel like a lot of moms will be able to relate to Brittany’s feelings in this story.

4. A Year in the Life of the Playground Mother by Christie Barlow: This is the story of a mother who moves into a new town and has to deal with the “playground mafia.” She has some crazy neighbors and fellow moms to deal with, so the story gets pretty hilarious. Rachel, the main character, is a likeable woman and just about the only good mother around. You pity her!

5. Finding Emma by Steena Holmes: Megan’s daughter, Emma, has been missing for two years and she thinks she sees her daughter everywhere. I loved this book! The emotion was so real in all the characters. They truly felt like real people going through an unspeakable crisis. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time! If you like books about mothers and relationships, buy this book!

***The buy link above is from Amazon. I do not get paid by authors or publishers for my reviews. They are 100% my personal, honest opinion. I DO, however, receive a small commission when a book purchase is made by clicking on the provided link. This does not impact the authenticity of my reviews in any way.***


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Fab Five Friday – Favorite Book Covers

I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but OhMyWord, you guys! These book covers make my nerdy heart so happy!

This Fab Five Friday is dedicated to my favorite covers.

Some folks HATE having people on the cover. They say that it distracts them from the story, and prevents them from creating their own image of the characters as they read for themselves.

Clearly, I am not one of those people.

I LOVE covers with gorgeous gowns, beautiful backgrounds, or provocative poses. To me, they sweep the reader straight into the setting, and smoothly places them in the thick of the action.


the selection series

The Selection series.

Ok, ok, I’ll admit it. Part of the appeal of these covers is that they feature a redhead (GINGER POWER!). They also spotlight STUNNING dresses that I really wish I could wear to a fancy ball. America’s expressions also range from cheeky to thoughtful to confident as the series progresses. I’m a fan!


his fiar assassin series

His Fair Assassin series.

ForTheLoveOfAllThingsSparkly. THESE COVERS! Can’t you just FEEL the emotion radiating from the screen?! Bad ass heroines sporting hard core weapons with fierce expressions. What more can you ask for?


maid of honor series

Maids of Honor series.

These covers illustrate character casting at its finest. The cover image manages to capture the essence of the leading lady perfectly! Plus, the hunky guys. Yummm! ;)


illusions of fate

Illusions of Fate.

This is the perfect example of why you should never judge a book by its cover. Isn’t the cover SUBLIME? The story, however, was a bit of a let-down. I LOVE the mischievous smile, the dainty teacup, and the steam of crows. SO MUCH BEAUTY in this cover! I just wish the insides had lived up to the outsides.


the falconer

The Falconer.

Once again, a cover featuring a fierce, totally bad ass heroine. Gotta love the steampunk feel, as well!


What do YOU think? What elements make a fetching cover design? What are some of your favorites? Share in the comments below!


Cover images obtained from Goodreads.
Please see our policies page for our review policies.

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