Monday, June 17, 2013

Interview with Amy Tintera ( REBOOT)

Hey guys! As part of Amy Tintera's Australian Blog Tour for her YA debut, REBOOT (Australian Publisher - Allen and Unwin), she's stopping over at Badass Bookie for a quick Q and A today. I don't know how many of you have heard of Amy's debut, REBOOT, but it sounds amazing! Definitely can't wait to dig into my copy!

Interview with Amy Tintera 

1) Can you describe Reboot for us in three words?

Enslaved undead teenagers!

2) How did you come up with the plot for Reboot? (It’s such a unique and interesting concept I WANT TO KNOW EVERYTHING)
Thank you! J I came up with Wren first, and the plot followed. I got this idea for a girl who’d been dead for 178 minutes, and I wanted to put a new twist on the zombie story. Zombies were always these gross, undead things, but I thought it would be interesting to see things from their perspective (you know, without the rotting flesh!).

3) Can you tell us about why you were interested in writing a YA novel?

I love reading YA. I love the fast pace and the romance and the wide range of genres you can find in the YA category. It felt like the best place to be!

4) Is there a character in Reboot you feel you can relate most to?

Callum, probably. I would be lost and confused in the Reboot world, and I certainly wouldn’t be any good at training! Wren makes some choices in the book that I would probably never make (and so does Callum), but he’s always made more sense to me.
5) Is there a story behind the names of characters?

Not really! I usually just look up names online until one jumps out at me. Wren and Callum were easy, the names jumped out at me right away.
6) Are you planning to write any other books outside of the series?

Definitely! I’m working on a couple different YA projects in different genres. But whatever I write next will have a healthy dose of action and romance, like REBOOT!

7) Who would play the characters in a movie adaption of Reboot?

I wish I knew! I have no answer for you. J I never think of actors as I’m writing, and I haven’t become attached to any particular actors for the roles. I think a great actor comes in and makes the part theirs, so if the movie ever gets made that’s all I’m hoping for.
8) Can you give us an insider's Scoop? (Any fun facts about the novel or your writing process?)

About The Book

Five years ago, Wren Connolly was shot three times in the chest. After 178 minutes she came back as a Reboot: stronger, faster, able to heal, and less emotional. The longer Reboots are dead, the less human they are when they return. Wren 178 is the deadliest Reboot in the Republic of Texas. Now seventeen years old, she serves as a soldier for HARC (Human Advancement and Repopulation Corporation).

Wren’s favorite part of the job is training new Reboots, but her latest newbie is the worst she’s ever seen. As a 22, Callum Reyes is practically human. His reflexes are too slow, he’s always asking questions, and his ever-present smile is freaking her out. Yet there’s something about him she can’t ignore. When Callum refuses to follow an order, Wren is given one last chance to get him in line—or she’ll have to eliminate him. Wren has never disobeyed before and knows if she does, she’ll be eliminated, too. But she has also never felt as alive as she does around Callum.

The perfect soldier is done taking orders.

Purchase REBOOT -  The Book Depository | Fishpond | The Nile | Bookworld

About the Author

Amy Tinteragrew up in Austin, Texas and graduated from Texas A&M University with a degree in journalism. After receiving a masters in film at Emerson College she moved to Los Angeles, where she promptly discovered she didn’t enjoy working in the film industry, and went back to her first love, writing.

Her debut, REBOOT, is out now from Allen and Unwin, with the sequel to follow in 2014. Film rights have been optioned by Fox 2000. 
Find Amy On - Website | Twitter | Facebook

Badass Bookie xx 

Saturday, June 15, 2013

The Madness Underneath

Review Time! So I kinda fell off the blogging wagon again this week - there is just so much going on which my preparation for Germany and the term finishing up etc etc! However I do have a review for you today! The Madness Underneath is the sequel to Maureen Johnson's The Name of the Star - I didn't even know there was going to be sequel but HERE IT IS! You can purchase The Madness Underneath from Fishpond | The Book Depository | The Nile | Bookworld. Thanks to HarperCollins for the review copy!

(Goodreads) After her near-fatal run-in with the Jack the Ripper copycat, Rory Devereaux has been living in Bristol under the close watch of her parents. So when her therapist suddenly suggests she return to Wexford, Rory jumps at the chance to get back to her friends. But Rory’s brush with the Ripper touched her more than she thought possible: she’s become a human terminus, with the power to eliminate ghosts on contact. She soon finds out that the Shades—the city’s secret ghost-fighting police—are responsible for her return. The Ripper may be gone, but now there is a string of new inexplicable deaths threatening London. Rory has evidence that the deaths are no coincidence. Something much more sinister is going on, and now she must convince the squad to listen to her before it’s too late.

The Short Story? - The Madness Underneath started off as an average read for me -  after a stunning series debut, I almost felt like this sequel fell flat however as I progressively began to read, I started to enjoy the book more and more. It's a slower pace but nevertheless worth your time! Great plot, incredible ending and a great protagonist. Overall a very solid read, I'll definitely be continuing with the series!

The Long Story? - The Madness Underneath was a complete surprise to me. Not a bad surprise but a surprise nevertheless. When I heard Johnson was writing a sequel to The Name of the Star, my thoughts automatically turned to perhaps a new ghost psychopath on the loose or maybe the ripper returns but that's definitely not what The Madness Underneath is about. The plot follows our protagonist Rory as she struggles to find balance in her life again after the events set in the first novel. The plot lacks the intensity and the edge-of-your-seat action that was present in the first book, it's a more subdued plot. This isn't necessarily a bad thing but I love my fast-paced plots so I found myself a little bored in the middle of the novel. However to be blatantly honest, no matter how average the first half of the novel was, the ending totally made it worth the read. The ending was AMAZING. Dramatic, heart-breaking, romantic, tense and an absolute cliff-hanger - I must applaud Johnson for that spectacular finale!

The characterisation was good although I did have some minor issues regarding the development of secondary characters. I didn't feel the characters were being further developed. A lot of the characters are still a mystery to me and that makes it really difficult for me to understand their actions and connect with them. It's also the second book in the series so I sort of expected to finish the book with everyone figured out. That said the characterisation was still really fantastic! One of my favourite things about Johnson's writing is that all her characters are so unique and out of the norm. They're not all good-looking, unrealistic people! Theses are REAL characters. Our protagonist Rory, was a little weird BUT that's what I liked about her. Her personality was very out there and she loved to talk ( just like me!). Rory wasn't always likeable and some of her decisions were definitely a no-no but overall I felt like I could connect with her and that's all that mattered!

I always find sequels harder to review because I try to keep my reviews spoiler-free! The Madness Underneath was nothing like what I expected it to be but that didn't make it any less enjoyable! Johnson has a refreshingly different prose and her novels are always very well written. There were minor flaws in the characterisation and the plot however nothing could have made the novel less enjoyable! A killer ending (haha punz!), great protagonist and beautifully written, The Madness Underneath is definitely worth the read! It's an upward climb from here, eagerly anticipating the next book!

What's it Worth? - Squeeze into the Budget/ Hand Over the Paycheck

Badass Bookie xx

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Eternity Cure

Review Time! I originally planned to post this review at the start of May - we're 5 days into June, how horrible am I? I will be playing review catch-up for a long, long time! The Eternity Cure is the sequel to Julie Kagawa's The Immortal Rules, a series about a post-apocalyptic world where vampires rule and humans are just cattles waiting to be farmed. If you enjoyed The Farm by Emily McKay, this one is sort of on the same lines but different! You can purchase The Eternity Cure from The Book Depository | Fishpond | The Nile | Bookworld. Thanks to Harlequin Teen for the review copy!

(Goodreads) In Allison Sekemoto's world, there is one one rule left: Blood Calls to blood.

Cast out of Eden and separated from the boy she dared to love, Allie will follow the call of blood to save her creator, Kanin, from the psychotic vampire, Sarren. But when the trail leads to Allie's birthplace in New Covington, what she finds there will the change the world forever - and possibly end human and vampire existence.

There's a new plague on the rise, a strain of the Red Lung virus that wiped out most of humanity generations ago - deadly to humans and vampires alike. The only hope for a cure lies in the secrets Kanin carries. If Allie can get to him in time...

The Short Story? - An edgy and exciting sequel, The Eternity Cure was packed with action from start to finish! A badass heroine, a time sensitive rescue mission and an unlikely alliance along the way, Kagawa does not disappoint fans with the cut throat and intense sequel to The Immortal Rules. These aren't your regular vampires and this isn't your regular vampire-human story, The Eternity Cure was nothing less than amazing! Two thumbs up from this pleased reader!

The Long Story? - I went into this novel not knowing what to think because although I really enjoyed The Immortal Rules, it wasn't a standout for me last year. It was a strong start to a new series but it wasn't powerful. I can't say the same for The Eternity Cure because this book was a roller coaster ride from cover to cover! I'm all about action, kicking ass and a body count and I'm happy to say that Mrs Kagawa has made me a very happy person with her combination of all three in this highly anticipated sequel. There wasn't a single boring moment from start to finish, I enjoyed every twist and turn, every secret exposed and every unlikely event that shouldn't have happened but did happen. It was so exciting and gripping, the writing was beautiful and that ending! A massive cliff hanger that will continue to haunt me until I get my hands on the next book! Thrilling and captivating, Kagawa has out done herself!

If the characterisation hasn't improved in a sequel, the author is definitely doing something wrong. Sequels are all about further developing characters and challenging them, Kagawa has done a fine job of both! I loved Allie in the first novel but I loved her even more in this one! She's right next to Rose Hathaway as one of my favourite badass heroines of all time! She's tough, snarky and she has a serious sense of attitude. She doesn't put up with ANYBODY'S crap! However at the same time, she's still human and she understands and feels compassion. I'm always a sucker for a good villain especially when they surprise you so it's no surprise that my favourite character is Jackson. It also helps that he's good-looking. Zeke, I like him but he's human and I always feel like a good vampire story doesn't necessarily need humans but Allie likes him so whatever she wants, I'm down with! Kanin, I've always had a soft spot for Kanin because he is just so cool and calm and collected! There is something classy about Kanin! I can't pick out a flaw in the characterisation, honestly a very good job on Kagawa's part!

I know I've been nothing but praise in this review but honestly, I can't pick on anything! The Eternity Cure was just brilliant. I'm surprised by how much I enjoyed it but this book was so intese! What a killer! Highly recommend anyone who hasn't picked up The Eternity Cure or this series to start reading them because I can just tell that it's only going to get better from here! A job well done to Kagawa for this phenomenal sequel to an amazing series!

What's it Worth - Break Out the Piggybank 

Badass Bookie xx

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Debut of the Month - The Symptoms of My Insanity + Giveaway

Book Profile

Name - The Symptoms of My Insanity (Goodreads)
Author - Mindy Raf
Genre - Contemporary
Release Date - April 18th 2013

When you’re a hypochondriac, there are a million different things that could be wrong with you, but for Izzy, focusing on what could be wrong might be keeping her from dealing with what’s really wrong.

I almost raised my hand, but what would I say? “Mr. Bayer, may I please be excused? I’m not totally positive, but I think I might have cancer.” No way. Then everyone at school would know, and they would treat me differently, and I would be known as “Izzy, that poor girl who diagnosed herself with breast cancer during biology.”

But Izzy’s sense of humor can only get her so far when suddenly her best friend appears to have undergone a personality transplant, her mother’s health takes a turn for the worse, and her beautiful maybe-boyfriend is going all hot and cold. Izzy thinks she’s preparing for the worst-case scenario, but when the worst-case scenario actually hits, it’s a different story altogether—and there’s no tidy list of symptoms to help her through the insanity.

The Insider's Scoop

1) I randomly met my editor at a stand-up comedy show. She watched me do stand-up, we chatted after the show, and later that week she emailed me about writing YA. (At the time I mostly wrote stand-up, sketch comedy, humor essays)

2) The bra fitting scene in the first chapter is the actual first scene I wrote as Izzy.

3) In the first draft Izzy’s dad was around. He lived nearby with a new wife who was an ex plastic surgeon/current spiritual healer.

4) There wasn’t a working title for the book until the third round of revisions. We always just referred to it as “Izzy” or “Izzy & Co”

5) My own mother (who was battling stomach cancer) passed away during the third revision. Finishing the book was especially tough, though at times quite cathartic. (Sending love your way Mindy!)


Katie is giving away (1) SIGNED Copy of The Symptoms of My Insanity + Bookmarks!

Rule of Entry -

- International 
- Ends 5th of July
- Must be 13 or older
- Optional Entries :
   * Leaving comment on either of Mindy's posts +1 each
   * Follow Me on Twitter +1
   * Follow Mindy on Twitter +1
   * Tweeting Giveaway +1
   * Follow Badass Bookie via GFC/Linky/Bloglovin  +2

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Badass Bookie xx

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Debut of the Month - Mindy Raf ( The Symptoms of My Insanity)

Debutante Profile

Name – Mindy Raf
Debut – The Symptoms of My Insanity
Genre – Contemporary
Website– HERE
Facebook -  HERE
Twitter - HERE

Mindy Raf is a writer, comedy performer, and musician based in Brooklyn, NY. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan, and grew up in a Detroit suburb right around here (visualize someone pointing to the inner part of their thumb). She has written for VH1,, was a contributor to the “My Parents Were Awesome” anthology. She has been invited to perform at the Women in Comedy Festival, SketchFestNYC, NY Funny Songs Fest, and the Bridgetown Comedy Festival, where she was named a “stellar surprise” by The Portland Mercury.

Dream Debutante Dress - 

The Witches is one of my favorite books, and I absolutely love the movie. Plus, who doesn’t need the perfect black cocktail dress with a PURPLE LINED CAPE! A classy, versatile, sexy dress (that’s also a witch disguise), that’s how I want to debut!

Notes from a YA Debutante

Some stream of consciousness facts:

- I perform stand-up comedy, storytelling and musical comedy when I’m not writing.

- I live in Brooklyn.

- I grew up in Michigan. (A suburb outside Detroit)
  No, not near 8 mile.

  Okay, well not that far from 8 mile.

  Stupid 8 mile movie STILL making me answer that question every single time.

- Okay, fine, Eminem and I used to rap battle all the time. I’d drive in from the suburbs and we’d freestyle. They just cut that part out of the movie.

- One of these facts so far is a lie.

- I grew up with five cats all named after food: Mocha, Fudge, Cookie, Sugar, Oreo.

- One of them (Oreo) we kind of stole thinking he was a stray, but he actually belonged to our neighbour.

- The neighbor ended up giving it to us because he liked my mom so much. (His real name -and what we called him after- was Dudley)

- Someone just sent me an e-mail asking me if my boobs growing up were the same size as my protagonist’s Izzy. Wow.

- The answer is yes. Kind of. In the book Izzy is a 34 DD. That was my size in 8th grade, and until about two years ago when I went to one of those fancy specialty stores for a fitting (thank you, Oprah). I was resized from the 34 DD to a 32 G. Wha? Yeah.

- Did I share too much?

- I just ate an entire bag of Jalapeno flavored potato chips.

And. . .scene.

Bookie's Note: Okay so technically Mindy is an April Debutante but I was busy and she was busy and it just ending in June okay? JUST GO WITH IT!!! Mindy, your thoughts were so funny, I thought it deserved to be in different colours. And definitely not too much. It was funny, like really funny, like I'm still cracking up about Oreo funny! Everyone agree? Yeah, yeah? YEAH?

Anyhow, remember to come back tomorrow to see the second half of Mindy's feature and for a giveaway! :)

Badass Bookie xx

Monday, June 3, 2013

Tall, Dark and Distant

Review Time! Now that I've finally managed to climb out of exam preparation hole, I can catch up on all these reviews I have to write! Tall, Dark and Distant by Julie Fison is one of the books from Hardie Grant Egmont's new YA-romance cross over series called Smitten! I'm a huge fan of YA and romance so of course I'm very excited to read them all! Today I have the review of the first book, well the first book that I read because they're all standalones! You can purchase Tall, Dark and Distant from Fishpond | The Nile | Booktopia | Bookworld. Thanks to Hardie Grant Egmont for the review copy!

(Goodreads) When Georgia meets Nik on her summer holiday, she’s sure he’s too good to be true. He’s gorgeous, with god-like abs and an adorable English accent. Then she discovers that he’s actually a member of an obscenely wealthy Russian family – and he wants to get to know her better.

Nik catapults Georgia into a world of private yachts, fast cars and expensive jewellery. Having a billionaire for a boyfriend certainly comes with benefits ... but it also comes with a price. How long will it take before life in the fast lane spins out of control?

The Short Story? - A little on the cheesy side, Tall, Dark and Distant is everything you would expect a YA-romance to be! Fluffy, funny and very cute, it's definitely a feel good novel that I would pick up if I was in a slump or when I hit the beach! I have to say that some of the things were overly cheesy, being a girl who isn't entirely in love with the idea of love, it was a little cringe-worthy. However as the novel progressed I really got emotionally invested in Georgia and Nik's love story! The characterisation really fit well with the story and the writing was easy to read! If you're looking for a summer read, feel good read, cheesy love story - this is your book!

The Long Story? - I want to start off by saying that Tall, Dark and Distant is written by an australian author and it takes place in Australia - this makes me incredibly happy because I love where I live and I feel like more novels should be set in Australia! So if you're into finding out more about Australia, pick this one up! Plot wise, there wasn't anything that really ruined the book but just a word of warning, prepare for cliches and really sappy romance scenes. I'm not the biggest romantic so I kind of had to get used to them! Another point, this is a big case of insta-love. I'm always a little skeptical about these insta-love stories especially in contemporary fiction since this is meant to be, you know, SORTA realistic. However I'm not going to read too much into all the cliches and sappy moments because that's what YA-romances are about. Drama, tension, love and relationships - Tall, Dark and Distant was all those things and so much more!

I thought the characterisation was alright, I had a couple of problems with Georgia. Firstly, I don't know how realistic Georgia was as a character. I mean, I understand if you're awkward around guys but come on, you went through high school, watched movies and heard from friends - one can not be THIS clueless! Another point, this poor girl constantly performs acts of embarrassment, I don't know why authors do this to their characters but *I* always feel SO bad for the characters! Characters need pride as well! Other than that, I really did enjoy Georgia as a character, she was sweet, very down to earth and smart. I liked Nik as a character, he is totally out of this world because we all know that nice, hot and rich guys only exist in YA fiction but he was perfect! I loved Georgia and Nik together and the rest of the characters were all fantastic as well so although the characterisation wasn't the best, it was't bad either!

Would I recommend Tall, Dark and Distant? Yes and No. It entirely depends whether you're into this kind of book! If you sappy love stories that are completely cliched but very, very fun to read then you should definitely pick this one up! If you don't? Then, well this probably won't be your cup of tea!  Tall, Dark and Distant is the PERFECT summer read for all the US readers out there! Light, breezy and very fun, Tall, Dark and Distant is for all you hopeless romantics out there!

What's it Worth? - Squeeze into the Budget/ Hand Over the Paycheck

Badass Bookie xx