Blog Archives

Quickie eBook Giveaway!

I have a pretty big giveaway coming up this week (tomorrow, to be exact). I have some awesome books up for grabs to celebrate this past year of blogging/my birthday. But before I do that giveaway, I wanted to do a quickie giveaway.

I’m giving away two PDF copies of my YA novella, NO PLACE LIKE HOME. I’m currently editing two novels that I plan to self-publish in August, which is why you haven’t really heard from me – well, that and the fact that I’m dealing with my grandmother’s ailing health. I haven’t really had time to read, so I haven’t really had any reviews to post. Anyways, enough rambling. I’m offering up two PDF copies of NO PLACE LIKE HOME to two random readers (you don’t have to review it, but reviews would be lovely).

How do you enter?

Simply send me an (NLSobon[at]gmail[dot]com) by 12AM Eastern Time tonight.

You must be at least thirteen years old to enter.

That simple.

What’s NO PLACE LIKE HOME about? Here you go:

Description from Goodreads:

Her death will reveal the truth.

Savannah awoke in the woods, her skin covered with cuts, blood dripping down her body. But she didn’t know what happened. She didn’t know why she was there, or why she was bleeding. And she couldn’t figure out why she was standing mere feet from her corpse. Everyone thinks that she’s run away, that she’s finally hit rock bottom. But Savannah’s death will reveal the truth.

Some secrets are better left hidden.

 

This isn’t a love-story (you’ll get some of that with CAPTURE in August). It’s a novella about broken individuals. If you’re still interested, just make sure to send an e-mail before midnight eastern time.

I only have PDFs available for the giveaway. I can’t provide other formats at this time. Sorry!

 

Dark Frost (Mythos Academy #3) by Jennifer Estep (Excerpt & Giveaway)!

I have a special excerpt from Dark Frost for you guys today! I also have a giveaway that you’re going to want to enter, so make sure to keep reading!

DARK FROST EXCERPT:

“Well, well, well,” the Reaper girl hissed. “If it isn’t Nike’s Champion, slinging a sword like she actually knows how to use it. I was hoping I might run into you here.”

Her words made my stomach twist with fear, but I pushed the feeling aside. I knew the Reaper girl wanted to kill me. She’d threatened to do so in the memory I had of her stabbing my mom. I supposed I shouldn’t have been surprised that she knew who I was and what I looked like. Professor Metis had once told me that Champions could recognize other Champions, that we were inevitably drawn to each other, attracting and repelling like magnets.

“Yeah, it’s me. Gwen Frost,” I snapped. “Nike’s Champion in the flesh. I know what you did to my mom.”

The girl threw back her head and laughed. She just—laughed. Low, long, and loud. Like it was funny that she’d killed my mom in cold blood. Like it was the most hysterical thing ever that she and her Reaper friends had just done the same thing to a museum full of innocent people.

“Well, I should certainly hope so,” she said. “Killing your weak, sniveling mother was the most fun I’ve had in ages.”

Rage once again filled my heart, blocking out everything else. All my questions, all my worries, all my fears. There was only me and her and my desire for revenge, this burning, burning need I had to make her pay, to make her suffer for taking my mom away from me.

With a roar, I leaped off the dais, raised my sword, and rushed forward—and the Reaper girl stepped up to meet me.

 Have you read the rest of the series? If not, make sure to check out the first two books (as well as the prequel short story):

More about Jennifer:

Jennifer Estep is a New York Times bestselling author. Jennifer writes the Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series for Kensington. Dark Frost, the third book, was released on May 29. Touch of Frost and Kiss of Frost are the other books in the series. Visit www.jenniferestep.com for excerpts and more information about her books.

Onto the giveaway:

Jennifer is offering up one paperback copy of Dark Frost to one of my lucky readers! Interested in entering?

  • You must be a US resident.
  • You must be at least thirteen years old to enter.
  • You must leave a comment with a valid e-mail address stating what you thought of the first two books.

I will draw a winner at random on June 10th, 2012; you have until 11:59 P.M. EST on June 9th, 2012 to enter.

Interested in reading the rest of the posts for the Dark Frost blog tour? Here are some links (start from top to bottom):

Make sure to check Jennifer’s blog for the rest (as today’s links were not yet posted at the time of this post)

Author Interview with Lisa Orchard (+ Giveaway)!

Today, I have an interview with Lisa Orchard, the author of The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer. Lisa was also kind enough to offer up TWO eBook copies of  The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer for two lucky readers, so keep reading for instructions on how to enter. 🙂

1)    When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I started reading books pretty early and by fifth grade I was writing my own mysteries. I guess you could say Nancy Drew inspired me. Anyway, I knew I wanted to be a writer in fifth grade. J

2)    How did you come up with the story “The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer”?

The story is based on some of my own teenage exploits. However, these exploits are greatly embellished in the story. I wanted to be a detective when I was young and my friends and I developed our own detective squad.

3)    What do you hope readers will take away from “The Super Spies and the   Cat Lady Killer”?

Hmmm…good question. What I hope readers take away from the story is that old adage, “you can’t judge a book by its cover.” I wanted the reader to learn right along with the characters that there are reasons why people act the way they do and not to be too quick to judge someone who’s different too harshly.

4)    If there is one piece of advice that you could give aspiring writers, what would it be?

Keep writing.  Don’t let anyone tell you it can’t be done, because it can be.

5)    What can we expect from you in the future? Is there anything in particular that you’re working on?

I just signed the contract for the second book in the “Super Spies” series, it is tentatively scheduled for release sometime this summer. It’s titled “The Super Spies and the High School Bomber”, and my beta readers really enjoyed it!

6)    Describe “The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer” in three words.

Spine-tingling suspense 🙂

Where you can find Lisa online:

About “The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer”:

ebook, 277 pages

Published March 13th 2012 by astraea press

Back cover blurb:

This book opens in a small town in Michigan where fifteen-year-old Sarah Cole is stuck spending the summer at her Aunt and Uncle’s with her sister, Lacey. She’s not happy with the situation until she befriends a girl named Jackie. The three girls stumble upon the ruthless murder of a reclusive neighborhood woman. One of the officers investigating the crime believes the girls are responsible for her death. Fearing that this officer will frame them for the murder, the girls organize their own detective squad. They become the Super Spies and start their own fact-finding mission.  The Super Spies can’t understand why anyone would want to murder the “Cat Lady” until they start digging into her past and discover a horrible crime that happened thirty years ago. They uncover a connection between the two crimes and attempt to bring this information to the police, only to be reprimanded for meddling in the inquest. Not only are the girls upset by the admonition, but they also struggle with the fact that their exuberant investigating could provide a legal loophole allowing the killer to go free. To make matters worse, the police don’t even believe them. Frustrated by this turn of events, the Super Spies realize it’s up to them to snare the Cat Lady killer, or die trying…

Purchase links (only $2.99): Amazon Barnes & Noble

Interested in winning one of two eBook copies? All you need to do is comment below with a valid e-mail address and which format you’d prefer. Again, this is for an eBook copy.

Of course, the usual rules follow:

  • Must be 13 years old or older.
  • Must provide a valid email address.
  • Giveaway runs from 5/23/12 until 5/27/12.

{Blog Tour} Book Review (+Giveaway): Lying Season by Karina Halle

Lying Season (Experiment in Terror, #4)Lying Season by Karina Halle

Review Copy: Purchased

Purchase: Amazon -- Barnes & Noble
Published December 13th 2011 by Metal Blonde Books

Description from Goodreads:

Ama­teur ghost-hunter Perry Palomino has bat­tled ghosts, fought off skin­walk­ers and skirted the fine line between life and death. But can she sur­vive bunk­ing down in Seat­tle for a week with her partner (and man she secretly loves) Dex and his perfect girl­friend, Jennifer? And can she do so while being tor­mented by a mali­cious spirit from Dex’s increas­ingly shady past? With love and life in the bal­ance, Perry must dis­cover the truth among the lies or risk los­ing every­thing she’s ever cared about.

My Review:
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“Lying Season” by Karina Halle starts off strongly and continues on that way until the very end.

What I like best about “Lying Season” is that it works as a stand alone novel. I read, and really, really enjoyed “Darkhouse” (the first book in the Experiment in Terror series). And while I planned on reading the other books before starting this one, I couldn’t find the time to do so before today’s post (thank you, Kindle, for dying)– I will be fixing that. Immediately. Halle does provide enough information within “Lying Season” to avoid confusion for readers that would rather immediately dive into “Lying Season”. But even though “Lying Season” works on its own, I’d highly suggest you take the time to read the series in order. You’re going to want to get to know Perry and Dex from the beginning, trust me.

The best way to describe “Lying Season”: Holy. Frak. There is Perry, a truly fantastic character. There is tension. There are thrilling spooktastic scenes. I mean really, what more can you want?

I’ll be happily drowning myself in the rest of the Experiment in Terror series over the weekend, thank you very much. I cannot recommend this series enough. You can download “Darkhouse” for free right now on Amazon, why not give this fantastic series a chance? You’ll love it. I promise.

View all my reviews

Giveaway:

“Darkhouse”, the first book in the Experiment in Terror series, is currently free. Since you’re able to download the eBook for free (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords), you will be able to choose ANY eBook in the series that you’d like as your prize.

For those who don’t know, this is the published series so far:

  • Darkhouse (Experiment in Terror #1) by Karina Halle
  • Red Fox (Experiment in Terror, #2) by Karina Halle
  • The Benson (Experiment in Terror #2.5) by Karina Halle
  • Dead Sky Morning (Experiment in Terror #3) by Karina Halle
  • Lying Season (Experiment in Terror #4) by Karina Halle

This giveaway will run from 4/20/2012 until 4/25/2012.

In order to enter, all you need to do is comment below with which title you’d like. Make sure to include a VALID e-mail address, I beg of you!

If you are curious to read other blog posts from the tour, make sure to check out the following blogs:

LYING SEASON: EXPERIMENT IN TERROR SERIES TOUR SCHEDULE

April 16:

Kindle & Me ~ Excerpt from DEAD SKY MORNING & eBook Giveaway E

Splash Of Our Worlds~ Excerpt from DARKHOUSE & eBook Giveaway

Book Briefs ~ Review of DARKHOUSE & eBook Giveaway

The Autumn Review ~ Excerpt from LYING SEASON & eBook Giveaway

Good Choice Reading ~ The Writing Cave Guest Post & eBook Giveaway

April 17:

Mercurial Musings ~ DARKHOUSE Spotlight & eBook Giveaway

Bookwhore ~ Review DARKHOUSE & eBook Giveaway

April 18:

April 19:

What the Cat Read ~ Review of RED FOX & eBook Giveaway

Unabridged Bookshelf ~ Character Tweets, Review of LYING SEASON & eBook Giveaway

Kindling the Fire ~ Review of RED FOX and eBook Giveaway

Hackaroo’s Reviews ~ Excerpt and eBook Giveaway

April 20:

Endlessly Bookish ~ Author Interview and eBook Giveaway

Nicole’s YA Book Haven ~ Review of LYING SEASON & eBook Giveaway

The Bookish Babes ~ Dream Cast & Grand Prize Giveaway (ebook copy of entire series)

And while you are at it, why not take some time to learn more about Karina Halle:

Karina Halle

Author of The Experiment in Terror Series
Look for Book #5 – On Demon Wings – out May 13th, 2012

Giveaway: Pre-Order of “Obsidian” by Jennifer L. Armentrout

I’m a huge fan of Jennifer’s, and even though I’ve read (and loved) “Obsidian”, I’m still excited about the re-release. Since the new edition will be hitting shelves on May 15th, I figured I’d offer up a copy for one of my lucky readers.

And guess what? This giveaway is international. 🙂

For those curious, other than the new cover, there are some new additions to this version (taken from Jennifer’s blog):

What does this version have that the original doesn’t?

  • It’s in mass trade size, which all subsequent novels will be in
  • It includes Chapter 1 in Daemon’s POV
  • Two new Daemon POV
  • The first 2 chapters of Onyx

As long as Book Depository ships to your country, you are free to enter!

Now, here are the rules:

  • You must be 13 years old or older to enter.
  • Must be a follower of this blog.
  • Must leave a comment below with either a valid e-mail or twitter handle.

That’s it. I’d love if you tweeted about the contest or posted about it on Facebook, but it isn’t required. 🙂

This giveaway will run from 4/7/2012 until 5/14/12. The winner will be chosen using Random.org and will be contacted by the 15th (it’ll also be announced on the blog).

Giveaway: “Miles from Ordinary” by Carol Lynch Williams

I’m giving away THREE hardcover copies of “Miles from Ordinary” by Carol Lynch Williams over on the Facebook page.

The link to the giveaway: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Nicoles-YA-Book-Haven/197509476970921?sk=app_204684816209053

I kept this giveaway simple. All you need to do is like the Facebook page and/or tweet about the giveaway. Simple as that. US Residents only (as shipping is too much).

You can read my review of “Miles From Ordinary” here.

I will have an Obsidian giveaway up soon (that IS international). But that won’t be live until Saturday (4/7).

Giveaway: “TEN” Bookmarks!

I was lucky enough to receive three signed TEN bookmarks from Gretchen McNeil last week. I will be keeping one, but the other two are up for grabs!

Photo of one of the bookmarks (front and back).

How this giveaway will work:

The giveaway will run from 3/25/2012 until 4/1/2012.

In order you enter, you must be over the age of 13 and live within the United States (I do have an upcoming international book giveaway, so if you can’t enter this giveaway, at least keep an eye out for that one. It should be up next weekend.)

Only one entry per person.

In order to enter, you need to add TEN to your “to-read” list on Goodreads and post a link in the comments below. Make sure you provide a valid email address as well (or if you prefer, you can leave your Twitter name and I’ll contact you that way for your e-mail address). Also, please move TEN to the top of your to-read list (this way it’ll make it easier for me to locate it).

The two winners will be picked using Random.org on the 2nd and announced shortly after.

{Guest Post} Author Jenelle Jack Pierre (+ Giveaway!!!)

Today, I have a special guest post from author Jenelle Jack Pierre. She’s also offering up two eBook copies of her novel, Before I Breathe (the winners will receive a coupon to use on Smashwords to download the format of their choice). This guest post is especially worth reading if you are a writer. Jenelle definitely makes some excellent points. Onwards!

Your Writing Year is Here

Many people have dreams of publishing a novel someday.  They think about, they dream about it, and they sit down and talk about it.  There’s a full range of wannabees out there, and in order for you not to be one of them, you must start at step one.

1.Begin to Write

In order to grow as a writer, you have to write.  Luckily for you, this can happen at any time.  Like in 2012.  Many beginners read numerous novels, not only for entertainment, but as a way of deciphering what makes a book good.  Reading the work of others is important, but equally as important is writing.  We don’t learn to drive by riding in the car and watching others.  We have to get behind the wheel.  It’s important that you carve out regular periods of time to put words to paper.  The goal is not perfection.  The goal is strengthening your writing muscle.  There is value in getting to work and establishing daily or weekly goals. You do not need to read every blog, writers forum, and magazine on writing out there.  You do need to write so you can get a lot better at it.  At the same time —

2.There’s No Need to Rush

I was sitting at my desk, browsing through the Barnes and Nobles website, and noticed that there was a “Meet the Writers” link.  I clicked on it. Browsing through the section, I noticed that the majority of authors had studied writing as undergraduates or graduates.  I had written two young adult novels that were collecting dust on my computer after numerous rejection letters from literary agents.  Sometimes, these letters came back with words of encouragement.  After some time had passed and I reread my stories, I realized that they could be improved.  I’d enjoyed studying Communications as an undergrad, but I realized that it might be a good idea to now focus on what I loved: writing.  I researched schools and applied to Johns Hopkins University.  During the program, my writing gradually improved, I met other writers, and I learned more about the publishing industry.

Today, indie publishing has allowed thousands to bypass honing their writing skills.  You don’t necessarily need to enter a two-year writing program. However, you should take some writing classes, whether it’s at your local community center, online, or by enrolling at your high school or college.  This leads me to my next point.

3. Learn Your Craft

Serious writers view writing as something special.  Books, television shows, movies, and music all begin with the writing.  The world is full of noise, and things thrown out at us to catch and consume.  It’s for this reason that you should learn the basics of good writing, including how to create characters and build a believable world within your story.  Let readers be enlightened, entertained, feel some type of emotion whenever they read your work.

This will only happen if you build a solid foundation as a writer.  And readers will come back to you because you’ve respected their time.

4. Embrace What Makes You Different

You may admire an author’s young adult novel or short story.  She inspired you to write.  You love the way that she constructs sentences, writes descriptions of places, make her characters leap off the page.  But to be inspired by an author does not mean you should imitate them.  Readers want to hear your voice coming through in your writing.  Readers want original stories.  Original stories come from original, creative writers.

About “Before I Breathe”:

Description from Goodreads:

Kalena Moore is a Montgomery High student who isn’t into school. Isaiah Wilkins is a classmate that her friends think is trouble. Life becomes more interesting when Kalena starts dating Isaiah, but soon things spin quickly out of control and she gets pregnant. Then Kalena sees that there’s another side to her boyfriend.

Determined to put her life back together, Kalena takes a path where there is no turning back.

With compelling characters and vivid storytelling, Before I Breathe is irresistible reading.

Now, the giveaway portion of this post:

Since the Smashwords coupon expires on the 19th, I want to end this contest ASAP in order to provide the winners enough time to download their copies. How is it going to work? Simple, just leave a comment below with your Twitter name. Two winners will be picked at random and announced via Twitter.

The rules:

Send me a tweet (@NicsYABookHaven) stating that you want one of two free eBooks! Easy enough, right? Right!

By the way, the reviews for this are pretty dang good, so why haven’t you requested it yet?!

Giveaway: “The Hunger Games” Edition!

I wasn’t going to post this until March 20th, but I’m too excited to wait! Because I know a lot of you guys are fans of The Hunger Games (really, who isn’t?!), I decided that when I was shopping for merchandise, I’d buy some to giveaway to all of you as well.

What’s up for grabs?

If you’ve already entered and would like to change your option to one of the new prizes, just reply to your original comment. I’ll be noting everyone’s preference as I compile the names in a spreadsheet. I can’t guarantee you’ll get what you picked, but if you win, at least it’ll be something cool, right?! Plus, you never know, I may just sneak some extra stuff in with prizes. 😉

How this giveaway will work:

There are six 8 items available for giveaway. In order to win one of them, you will need to be a follower of this blog. You will also need to like Nicole’s YA Haven on Facebook.

  • You must be 13 years old or older.
  • You must be a US resident (sorry guys! I will have another international giveaway soon, I swear!)
  • You must leave a comment on this blog explaining why you love The Hunger Games, along with your e-mail address.
  • Only one entry per person (and household!)

The giveaway will run from March 4th, 2012 until 11:59pm March 20th, 2012. The winners will be picked using Random.org and will be announced on the 21st (note: if there’s a specific prize you’d like, please note it in your comment – I can’t promise you’ll receive it, depending on the demand, but I’ll try!)

Update (3/7/2012): There was a screw-up on Amazon’s end, so the bookmark will not be a Gale bookmark (it’s the flaming Mockingjay bookmark instead). I will be ordering a Gale key-chain in place, this way the trio is covered. Sorry about that, Amazon made a booboo. 🙂

Update (3/15/2012): I will be adding in surprises for the winners (I went on a bit of a shopping spree last week).

Giveaway: ARC Copy of “Virtuosity” by Jessica Martinez

I read Virtuosity last year and truly enjoyed it. And even though I enjoyed it, I see no use for having two copies…so I’m giving my ARC copy away.

More about Virtuosity:

Now is not the time for Carmen to fall in love. And Jeremy is hands-down the wrong guy for her to fall for. He is infuriating, arrogant, and the only person who can stand in the way of Carmen getting the one thing she wants most: to win the prestigious Guarneri competition. Carmen’s whole life is violin, and until she met Jeremy, her whole focus was winning. But what if Jeremy isn’t just hot…what if Jeremy is better?

Carmen knows that kissing Jeremy can’t end well, but she just can’t stay away. Nobody else understands her–and riles her up–like he does. Still, she can’t trust him with her biggest secret: She is so desperate to win she takes anti-anxiety drugs to perform, and what started as an easy fix has become a hungry addiction. Carmen is sick of not feeling anything on stage and even more sick of always doing what she’s told, doing what’s expected.

Sometimes, being on top just means you have a long way to fall….

Here are the rules for the giveaway:

  • Must be a US resident (I can’t afford international postage right now).
  • Must be thirteen years or older.
  • Must be a blog follower.
  • Must leave a comment below (I don’t even care what you write, as long as you leave a valid e-mail address). 🙂

Pretty simple.

The contest will run from 2/26/2012 until 11:59pm EST on 3/3/2012.

Updated on 3/6/2012: This giveaway is now closed! Congrats to Tammra, I’ve just sent you an e-mail. Please respond ASAP. 🙂