Saturday, June 29, 2013

Book Spotlight: The Secret Side of Empty by Maria Andreu


COMING NEXT SPRING… The Secret Side of Empty

**Read about the book and scroll below for details on how to enter to WIN a $250 Amazon gift card just by liking the author’s Facebook page!**


Here's the reward:

BOOK BLURB for “Secret Side of Empty”

You've heard the news stories.  Now hear the real story.
M.T. is starting her senior year with a lot going for her.  She gets great grades, has a best friend she met in kindergarten and a boyfriend who is sweet and into her.  But life – at least as she knows it – is about to end.
M.T. is what the news calls “illegal” – she came to the U.S. with her parents as a baby and never got the right papers that allowed her to stay.  She lives in fear of her family getting deported, in even more fear that she’ll have to go to the home country she doesn’t even remember, of people finding out her ugly secret and of the increasingly volatile situation at home.  When senior year is over, the protected world she’s found in her small parochial school will disappear.  Without a social security number, she won’t be able to go to college, get a job or, maybe worst of all, get a driver’s license.

But she’ll worry about all that later.  First, she’s got a senior year to take on.

A Note from the Author, Maria Andreu:

The fulfillment of great dreams feels best when shared, which is why I'm inviting people to Like my Facebook page and come along with me on the fabulous and improbable journey of publishing my first novel.  As my thanks, when you like the page by July 31st, you'll be able to enter to win a fan-only sweeps for a $250 Amazon gift card!

Why does it feel so unlikely to get to fulfill my dream?  Well, like M.T., the main character of my novel, I was once an undocumented immigrant, which means I spent my teenage years in fear of getting deported from the only country I've ever called home.  I grew up feeling totally American but knowing that a choice my parents had made for me when I was too young to have a say made me unwanted in my homeland.  Although I got my papers through amnesty when I was 18, for years I carried the shame and secrecy of that experience.  So going from little girl hiding in a Tijuana shack waiting to cross the border to published author living all my dreams feels incredibly lucky and nearly impossible.  But I am living proof that dreams do come true.

The Secret Side of Empty is a novel about a teen girl whose life, as she knows it, is going to end after senior year.  It's not just run-of-the-mill, end-of-high-school anxiety... it's really going to end.  Her parents brought her to the U.S. undocumented as a baby, so she's what the news calls "illegal," although she's an American teenager through and through. With no social security number, she'll have to watch as her friends go off to college, get after-school jobs and drivers' licenses and travel overseas on the senior trip, while her life goes into the dangerous shadow of the undocumented.  No one knows the big secret she's keeping, not her best friend Chelsea and not her super-cool boyfriend, Nate.  Things have gotten pretty bad at home too, so she can't turn to anyone there.

What's it like when you have nowhere left to turn and are stuck in circumstances you didn't create and which are beyond your control?  The Secret Side of Empty explores the fear, the hope and how the human spirit ultimately prevails.

Be the first to get updates on the cover, new tour stops, and fan-only content (plus
enter a sweeps for a $250 Amazon gift card) by liking the author's Facebook page here:

The book is already getting industry buzz and news coverage, so Like the FB page to get updates on that as well.


Maria Andreu is an author and immigration rights activist.  She lives in beautiful Bergen County, New Jersey with her two wonderful middle schoolers.  At the age of 12, she wrote in her diary, "Most of all, I want to be a writer."  Growing up undocumented and poor, she never imagined that dream might come true one day.  Her work has been published in Newsweek, The Washington Post and The Star Ledger and her first novel, The Secret Side of Empty, will be published by Running Press in Spring, 2014.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

TGIF - Feature & Follow Friday #155

FEATURE & FOLLOW FRIDAY is a blog hop that is designed to provide as much exposure towards other bloggers as well as yourself, and to expand following. It's hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read, each whom feature a chosen blog for a week, it's also an interesting way to get to know one another bloggers.

What is your preferred reading format? Hardcover, eBooks, Paperbacks, etc?

I definitely prefer hardcover or paperbacks because I think they're so much easier plus I like the established, classic feel of a book in my hands, you know what I mean? But if I can't find that book, what can I say? I'm pretty desperate!

Review: Fragments by Dan Wells

Fragments (Partials, #2)Title: Fragments
Author: Dan Wells
Release Date: 26th February 2013
Publisher: HarperCollins
Find on: Goodreads

Quick Review: Kira Walker has found the cure for RM, but the battle for the survival of humans and Partials is just beginning. Kira has left East Meadow in a desperate search for clues to who she is. That the Partials themselves hold the cure for RM in their blood cannot be a coincidence—it must be part of a larger plan, a plan that involves Kira, a plan that could save both races. Her companions are Afa Demoux, an unhinged drifter and former employee of ParaGen, and Samm and Heron, the Partials who betrayed her and saved her life, the only ones who know her secret. But can she trust them?

Meanwhile, back on Long Island, what's left of humanity is gearing up for war with the Partials, and Marcus knows his only hope is to delay them until Kira returns. But Kira's journey will take her deep into the overgrown wasteland of postapocalyptic America, and Kira and Marcus both will discover that their greatest enemy may be one they didn't even know existed.

The second installment in the pulse-pounding Partials saga is the story of the eleventh hour of humanity's time on Earth, a journey deep into places unknown to discover the means—and even more important, a reason—for our survival.

Detailed Review: Ok. Long story short. This book was... It was... It was just... Oh my god. I don't know what to say. It was just asd;flkjadflkjaposiu AMAZING. I'm on the verge on a mental breakdown. See what this book has done to me? SEE?!? After reading Partials, I did get a good impression of the author and we even interviewed the author! Yes, we interviewed the famous Dan Wells! (You should already know that if you're a loyal fan of us, which I highly doubt that some of you are *grim smile*)

This book was so action-packed the whole time. And I promise NO SPOILERS. No spoilers just for once! Are you happy? It was just BOOM! Hard on the face. I never thought that this book would keep me so energized but it did. This book was a... It was a... Sorry guys another breakdown. It was an AWESOME book that is so packed with action. And have I told you how THICK the book is? A freaking 584 pages. ALL FILLED WITH ACTION. I promise you. This is an awesome thriller that will always keep you on your toes.

And did I mention the twists? Yes the twists! They're ones to die for! You find yourself heading left and then you suddenly stumble upon something which makes you turn right! And warning: this is a constant feeling you'll get while reading this book. But it's not something you should miss. Take my advice. I'm the wise one here.

Now the saddest part of all: THAT FREAKING CLIFFHANGER.  I can't believe this book just decided to break my heart. ALL OF YOU KNOW HOW I HATE CLIFFHANGERS AND THIS GOT ME SO PISSED. 

And guys, there is romance, but it's called Partial romance, not human romance. And it's at the end. So summon up all your patience and you'll get a reward at the end *thumbs up*.

You can find our interview with Dan Wells here.
You can find my review of Partials, the first book in the saga, here.

Brief Review: This book is just too amazing to say in words. It was overall awesomely done, and just everything was flawless. The plot for once was so intricately done, with the finest detail done to perfection, it just makes me love Dan Wells even more. Science-fiction, thriller and suspense fans, this is definitely a must for you TBR.

Final Rating: 5/5 (Make that a 6) 'Awesome, Amazing and even more Amazingness'

To the scientists who invented the Partials

All things are artificial, for nature is the art of God-----Thomas Browne

Your Reviewer:

Friday, June 21, 2013

TGIF - Feature & Follow Friday #154

FEATURE & FOLLOW FRIDAY is a blog hop that is designed to provide as much exposure towards other bloggers as well as yourself, and to expand following. It's hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read, each whom feature a chosen blog for a week, it's also an interesting way to get to know one another bloggers.

Share your favourite literary quote! 

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday: Conjured by Sarah Beth Durst

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by us, which highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

ConjuredTitle: Conjured
Author: Sarah Beth Durst
Release Date: 27th August 2013
Publisher: Walker Children's
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

Eve has a new home, a new face, and a new name—but no memories of her past. She’s been told that she's in a witness protection program. That she escaped a dangerous magic-wielding serial killer who still hunts her. The only thing she knows for sure is that there is something horrifying in her memories the people hiding her want to access—and there is nothing they won’t say—or do—to her to get her to remember.

At night she dreams of a tattered carnival tent and buttons being sewn into her skin. But during the day, she shelves books at the local library, trying to not let anyone know that she can do things—things like change the color of her eyes or walk through walls. When she does use her strange powers, she blacks out and is drawn into terrifying visions, returning to find that days or weeks have passed—and she’s lost all short-term memories. Eve must find out who and what she really is before the killer finds her—but the truth may be more dangerous than anyone could have ever imagined.

I found out a few weeks ago that this book was available at BEA and I was like, "WHY MUST I LIVE IN FREAKING MALAYSIA, OF ALL COUNTRIES?!?' I'm really fascinated by the plot and really curious and the cover is really nice and creative. Nice covers just have that effect on me I guess.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Say Hi to the New Google Reader!

We just received some sad news on Wednesday... Google has announced that Google Reader is closing down on the 1st of July... But do not fear the new Google Reader is here to save your day!!! Presenting to you Bloglovin', where you can find your favourite blogs and follow their every post! So what must you do?

Step 1:
Get a Bloglovin' account. Seriously it only takes a few minutes. It's not nice to be lazy.

Step 2:
Just click on the link at the bottom and you'll get the picture below. Click 'Import from Google Reader' and choose an account which you'd like to import from.

Screen shot 2013-03-14 at 6.40.13 PM

Step 3:

WAIT. Patience is a virtue.

Step 4:
Voila! Welcome to the new Google Reader!

DON'T FORGET TO FOLLOW US IF YOU LOVE US VERY MUCH THANK YOU. See that lovely looking lady on the sidebar with the words 'bloglovin' on top of her face? Just click on it then you'll be directed to our Bloglovin' page! And don't forget to click 'Follow'!

TGIF - Feature & Follow #153

FEATURE & FOLLOW FRIDAY is a blog hop that is designed to provide as much exposure towards other bloggers as well as yourself, and to expand following. It's hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read, each whom feature a chosen blog for a week, it's also an interesting way to get to know one another bloggers.

Activity: Spine Poetry. Create a line of poetry with your book spines (take a pic). Not feeling creative? Tell us about your favourite poem.

Sorry if you can't read the top book. Here (top to bottom): Fearless, Torment, Forever, Once, Virals, Unravel Me, Nevermore and Until The End. 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Authors Please Be Aware of This Post!!! Thank You!!!

Dear Authors, 

Please read the NOTICE below. 

Hello fellow authors! We are currently very busy in and out of the human world and would like to notify you that we will not be online until 24th of June 2013 due to certain reasons of overloaded reviews! So we will not be taking any reviews until that date. After the 24th of June, we'll be deleting this NOTICE and continuing as before! 

I hope you understand!!!

 ~ Thank you ~

Girl In The Woods Reviews

Waiting on Wednesday: Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by us, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating. 

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

Forgive Me, Leonard PeacockTitle: Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock
Author: Matthew Quick
Release Date: 13th August 2013
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

In addition to the P-38, there are four gifts, one for each of my friends. I want to say good-bye to them properly. I want to give them each something to remember me by. To let them know I really cared about them and I'm sorry I couldn't be more than I was—that I couldn't stick around—and that what's going to happen today isn't their fault.

Today is Leonard Peacock's birthday. It is also the day he hides a gun in his backpack. Because today is the day he will kill his former best friend, and then himself, with his grandfather's P-38 pistol.

But first he must say good-bye to the four people who matter most to him: his Humphrey Bogart-obsessed next-door neighbor, Walt; his classmate Baback, a violin virtuoso; Lauren, the Christian homeschooler he has a crush on; and Herr Silverman, who teaches the high school's class on the Holocaust. Speaking to each in turn, Leonard slowly reveals his secrets as the hours tick by and the moment of truth approaches.

In this riveting book, acclaimed author Matthew Quick unflinchingly examines the impossible choices that must be made—and the light in us all that never goes out.

This book reminds me so much of Thirteen Reasons Why. But it seems just so interesting... And I've never heard of this author before so I'm willing to give it a try! I'm hoping that it will be good! I think that there would be tears and laughter in it...

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Review: The Reckoning by Kelley Armstrong

The Reckoning (Darkest Powers, #3)
Title: The Reckoning
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Release Date: 6th April 2010
Publisher: Orbit
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

Quick Review: Chloe Saunders is fifteen and would love to be normal. Unfortunately, Chloe happens to be a genetically engineered necromancer who can raise the dead without even trying. She and her equally gifted (or should that be 'cursed'?) friends are now running for their lives from the evil corporation that created them.

As if that's not enough, Chloe is struggling with her feelings for Simon, a sweet-tempered sorcerer, and his brother Derek, a not so sweet-tempered werewolf. And she has a horrible feeling she's leaning towards the werewolf...

Definitely not normal.

Detailed Review: This is what happens when you've read all three books consecutively in a trilogy.

First book: Ummm... Sounds good! I want more! On to the sequel now!

Second book: Ahhhhh!!! Gimme more!!! Amazing!

Third book: BOOM BOOM BOOM. All the amazingness of the book explodes into your face.

This practically sums up how I reacted while reading the Darkest Powers trilogy. And my thoughts the whole time was:


And yes, the flower of romance in this book has finally bloomed. And it sure is beautiful. But what you shouldn't look at is just the love but the story. How can I describe the story? It's just tooooo good. So so good. Amazing.

And I think Chloe can enter the list of Best Heroine of All Time. She's brave and cares for people. And as Tori says, 'too nice'. But being too nice is better than being nothing at all. I mean, when you are faced with danger and conspiracies every time you think it's safe and when your normal life is gone, it's a great feat that you manage to survive in the end. That's the characteristics of a good heroine. I've got to thank the author for that.

I really really wanna ask Kelley if she's gonna write a fourth book for this series. But it's been 4 years!!! I get the feeling that the answer is...


Yup, I know it's sad but,,,

Isn't life unfair?



Brief Review: This was a refreshing read for me as the author's writing once again keeps me hooked all the way. There wasn't a time where I wasn't paralysed by fear for the characters. Kelley's writing is like a magic wand ready to whisk you away to a land where dangers lurk.

Final Rating:
5/5 'Totally Amazing!'


I want Chloe to know this (who always ignores her inner voice),

Listen to your intuition. It will tell you everything you need to know----Anthony J. D'Angelo

Your Reviewer:

Friday, June 7, 2013

Book Spotlight and Interview with Nicky Peacock

Today, we're spotlighting a book and we also had an interview with the author. She entertained us with thoughts on the horror genre industry and some of her answers were a bit... ahem... surprising.

Bad Blood
Title: Bad Blood

Author: Nicky Peacock
Publisher: Noble Romance Publishing, LLC -- Noble Young Adult, LLC
Genre: Young Adult, Horror, Paranormal.
Theme & Special Content: Zombies, Vampires, Violence, England, post-apocalyptic
Release Date: May 2013
ISBN#: 9781605923482
Length of book: 170 pages – print     119 pages - eBook
Heat rating: n/a
Purchase & Excerpt Link:
1.      Us:  Since the vampire classic Dracula, how do you think it has evolved into the vampire fiction we've had lately?

Nicky: I think vampires have really lost their scare factor. They’re more romantic leads than monsters now. When you look at the old legends of vampires, these beings were really frightening – I remember watching the movie of Stephen King’s ‘Salem’s Lot’ when I was a kid and wearing a cross for five years after! Now, people specifically go online seeking out vampire interaction – if vampires are really real, they’ve done a great job in making us humans sympathetic to them now... don’t you think?

2.     Us: Which do you think would be more successful in the horror genre: zombies or vampires?

Nicky: In horror, I’d say zombies, decaying hands down. With the movie version of ‘World War Z’ coming out later this year and HBO’s ‘The Walking Dead’ getting some of its best rating ever, I think that zombies are eclipsing vampires. Now, when it comes to paranormal romance, I think vampires will always win this battle – they’re sexy; and ‘Warm Bodies’ aside you don’t get many zombie love interests.

3.      Us: Who or what inspires you to write horror?

Nicky: I think that the responsibility for my horror addiction rests squarely with my family. My parents were very liberal and let me and my older brother watch horror movies and read horror novels from a very early age. We have a family legend ghost story too, that they use to tell us. The paranormal has always fascinated me and as a writer, there are so many possibilities with the horror genre – there are really no limits.

4.      Us: How have you been influenced by vampires and zombies?

Nicky: There have been some amazing vampire characters through the years – I loved Anne Rice’s ‘Interview with a Vampire’ and I remember reading the book for the first time when I was at college. Zombies are probably the only thing I’m kind of scared of myself. You only have to Google ‘Zombie ants’ to see that we are just one mad scientist away from a zombie uprising – let’s just hope that, if the undead crap hits the fan, there are some ‘Bad Blood’ style vampires around to save us!

5.   Us: If you were caught in a zombie apocalypse, what would you do to survive?

Nicky: I’m kind of lazy! So probably not as much as you’d think! It’s kind of a running joke with my family and friends, but I actually do have a Plan Z for if zombies invade Britain. All my loved ones know where to meet, what to pick up on the way and I’ve chosen a local building that has really high walls and lots of food (It’s a garden centre – not sure you call them this in the US though)

6.     Us:What made you decide to write horror instead of other genres such as contemporary?

Nicky: I’ve tried to write other genres in the past, but I just get bored with them and if the writer is getting bored, then the reader wouldn’t be far behind! I find horror excites me to write and hopefully that comes through to the reader too. Bad Blood is action packed because I hate those types of horrors that take half the book before you see something even remotely exciting happen. I wanted my characters to lurch from one problem to another to keep it as real as I could in an unreal environment.

7.      Us:What do you think makes the horror genre successful, especially in the YA industry?

Nicky: Everybody loves a good scare! It’s why we ride roller-coasters. When it comes to YA, I think it gives teens a taste of the adult world – although I don’t hold back in Bad Blood – it’s as violent and gory as it would have been if it were aimed at the adult market. As an author I don’t believe in censoring that side for YA – if there is a supernatural edge then it makes it unreal anyway, so takes the edge off the violence.

8.   Us: Is it important to have some romance in the book when it's horror?

Nicky: I believe so. There has to more to a horror than blood and guts, something for the reader to cheer for. The romance in Bad Blood is quite complicated, as the main character, Britannia has been in love with a man for centuries who, in her head, she’s created this whole day-dream like life with. Day dreams are dangerous when it comes to love – dream men have no faults. And she is in for a very tough lesson when a man turns up she believes is his reincarnation.

9    Us: Do you think horror should be publicised more? 

Nicky: With the amount of movies and books in the genre, I think it’s doing better than ever. If, 20 years ago, you told someone that you like horror they’d think you were a bit weird and perhaps even worry about you! Now it’s almost a natural genre to love, and there are sooooo many subgenres that are really coming into their own, such as: Steampunk, Dark Fantasy and paranormal romance.

1       Us: If you had a chance to be a vampire or zombie character in a book, who would it be and why?

      Nicky: As I write first person from Britannia’s point of view, it would have to be her. As her creator and voice I’m so close to her already. I’d love to be a vampire, although I’d need to read all the small print before totally committing! 

TGIF - Feature & Follow Friday #152

FEATURE & FOLLOW FRIDAY is a blog hop that is designed to provide as much exposure towards other bloggers as well as yourself, and to expand following. It's hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read, each whom feature a chosen blog for a week, it's also an interesting way to get to know one another bloggers.


Have you broken up with a series? If so which one and why? 

Yes, sadly it was Twilight. I've watched the movies and thought they were ok but when I read the first paragraph I just couldn't continue reading. But maybe I would give it one more chance in the future...

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday: Dissonance by Erica O'Rourke

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by us, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

DissonanceTitle: Dissonance
Author: Erica O'Rourke
Release Date: 6th August 2014
Publisher: Simon & Schuster BFYR
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

Delancy Sullivan has always known there's more to reality than what people see. Every time someone makes a choice, a new, parallel world branches off from the existing one. Eating breakfast or skipping it, turning left instead of right, sneaking out instead of staying in bed ~ all of these choices create an alternate universe in which an echo self takes the road not travelled and makes the opposite decision. As a Walker, someone who can navigate between these worlds, Del's job is to keep all of the dimensions in harmony. Normally, Del can hear the dissonant frequency that each world emits as clear as a bell. But when a training session in an off-key world goes horribly wrong, she is forbidden from Walking by the Council. But Del's not big on following the rules and she secretly starts to investigate these other worlds. Something strange connecting them and it's not just her random encounters with echo versions of the guy she likes, Simon Lane. But Del's decisions have unimaginable consequences and, as she begins to fall for the Echo Simons in each world, she draws closer to a truth that the Council of Walkers is trying to hide ~ a secret that threatens the fate of the entire multiverse.

The story sounds so so cool! I really really wish I could do what Del can do. It would be amazing to see what happens after people make a particular decision. It's like seeing the unseeable future! Also the romance is interesting. Imagine falling in love with the same guy but in different worlds... 


IT'S ONLY COMING OUT IN 2014!!!!! Why?!?

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Review: The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong

The Awakening (Darkest Powers, #2)Title: The Awakening
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Release Date: 28th April 2009
Publisher: HarperCollins
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

 Review: Chloe Saunders is on the run
and raising hell. Literally. 

Chloe Saunders is not your average supernatural teenager. Genetically altered at birth by a sinister team of scientists, she can barely control her terrifying powers. Now the team that created her has decided it's time to end the experiment. Permanently.

Now Chloe is running for her life along with a charming sorcerer, a troubled werewolf and a temperamental young witch. Together they have a chance for freedom - but can Chloe trust her new friends?

Detailed Review: This book was amazingly well-written. It had every ingredient to make an awesome paranormal book.

As for the romance, it's coming but not quite mature yet. Unlike The Summoning, which was more of a finding-out-that-your-special story, The Awakening is much more fast-paced and more action a
s the story turns into a we-have-to-escape story. The transition from the first book to the second book couldn't have been smoother. 

My thoughts on how the heroine of the book, Chloe has matured and evolved in the story is that she's making good progress. She's got the qualities of a heroine: brave and thoughtful. The way she takes charge, when one of her friends, Derek is about to Change. You've gotta admire how she handles it so well. And when she accidentally summons spirits back into their corpses and had the guts to release them again. That takes a lot.

And I love how the other characters in this particular book because they have changed too. They've become more fitting in the story and I just love that. I just don't like characters that stick out of the story like they were put there for fun or for some unknown reason.

So what could you NOT want in a book that isn't already perfect? Everything has been constant throughout the series, no sudden changes but not the same monotonous patterns either. The author learns to vary the story without overwriting everything. So that's a trophy for Armstrong.

As for the story, let me tell you this, it's just basically running. For more information, go read the book.(God I sound like one of those teachers who says 'If you want to know more, go search on the Internet.') But really I don't want to ruin the story for some people. I don't feel the need for spoilers today.

Brief Review: Fast-paced all the way, you won't find the urge to put the book down until you've reached the last page. No boring parts, just endless questions for you to find answers for and some twists to expect.

Final Rating: 5/5 'Totally Amazing'


Now, to honour all the supernaturals in the book,

'The supernatural is the natural not yet understood.'-----Elbert Hubbard

Your Reviewer: