Guest Post: The Mortal Instruments in a Nutshell

We’re big fans of The Mortal Instruments series over here at Confessions of a Book Addict. So, to celebrate the release, a friend of mine, Delaney, wrote a guest post discussing the TMI series.

It seems that everyone is writing their own young adult series, hoping to be the next J.K. Rowling. There will never be a series that will achieve everything Harry Potter has nor will the series ever be dethroned by another young adult set of books. This will not stem the tide of movies based off of young adult novels however. There is one book universe though that stands apart from the pack and is worthy of the discussion and hype surrounding it: The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare which by the end of its course will have twelve books and three separate series to its name.

It has everything that constitutes brilliant fantasy and then some. In just one book, a completely immersive reading experience is created. Readers become fluent in its lingo, soon grasp what it means to have the language of Heaven imprinted on one’s skin. The processes, the lore, every piece of information one could ever hope to want or need to enjoy a brand new world of angels and demons is provided step by step in every book. The character development is insane and fast paced. It has to be to keep up with everything else. Speed does not negate quality however.

Yet, the most remarkable aspect of Clare’s work is not her characters or the world she has created, it is her plotlines that stand her apart from the usual fare. Being a rather intelligent reader, it is not easy for me to be surprised whilst reading. I am not easily led astray nor do I miss foreshadowing. The Mortal Instruments provide a unique and challenging experience. The twists and turns of the story are unpredictable. Clare does not have a formula for her work. The plots are never structured the same way, never are they repeated. Every new book is an entirely different creature than the last. Not only are there plots, there are subplots and even smaller plots still, all tightly woven and interconnected that they can hardly be removed or looked at simply on their own. The reading experience is simply incredible.

Her plot structure is not solely admirable. The plots themselves are extraordinarily complicated and intriguing. Her work is not only entertaining, but also provides social commentary. She is the first young adult novelist I have read who has included homosexual themes and not merely in side characters, but in two main characters. I do not believe there is a controversial social convention she has not touched upon at least once. Yet she is not preachy. She has simply included these themes. They’re not awkwardly placed. In fact, without theme, I do believe the story would lose much.

All around there is something in these books for everyone. They are terribly clever and there is no place in Clare’s world for gender roles. Male or female her characters kick ass, literally and metaphorically. These books are a must read. Lingo that harkens the reader to the days of Hogwarts? Intensely written fight scenes? Some pretty saucy and insanely written romance? Count me in.

Speaking of romance, since it’s inescapable for the young adult genre, it should be said that Clare writes romance like no one else. Is there a love triangle? Sadly, yes, but at least only super early in the series. I, personally, despise love triangles. They are an abomination. Clare wrote one that I find surprisingly tolerable. Even the things I hate she writes and makes me at least somewhat like it. There is honestly nothing that I hate about these books. Clare has written a truly connectable and captivating story. I do not want it to end yet I frantically anticipate reading its conclusion.

You can catch The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones in theaters now.


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Torch by Cambria Hebert Book Blast

Torch is the first book in a brand new New Adult series by Cambria Hebert.

Title: Torch (Take It Off #1)
Author: Cambria Hebert
Genre: New Adult
Pages: Kindle edition, 252
Publication: August 13, 2013

Synopsis:
If you can’t take the heat… stay away from the flame.

Katie Parks has been on her own since the age of fifteen. All she’s ever wanted is a place to call her own—a life that is wholly hers that no one can take away. She thought she finally had it, but with the strike of a single match, everything she worked so hard for is reduced to a pile of smoking ash. And she almost is too.

Now she’s being stalked by someone who’s decided it’s her time to die. The only thing standing in the path of her blazing death is sexy firefighter Holt Arkain.

Katie’s body might be safe with Holt… but her heart is another story.

As the danger heats up, sparks fly and the only thing Katie knows for sure is that her whole life is about to go up in flames.

About the Author:
Cambria Hebert is a latte sipping author of the Heven & Hell series, the Death Escorts series, and the Take It Off series. She loves a caramel latte, hates math and is afraid of chickens (yes, chickens). She went to college for a bachelor’s degree, couldn’t pick a major and ended up with a degree in cosmetology. So rest assured her characters will always have good hair. She currently lives in North Carolina with her husband and children (both human and furry) where she is plotting her next book. You can find out more about Cambria and her work by visiting http://www.cambriahebert.com

Waiting on Wednesday: Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

13188676Title: Ignite Me
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Genre: Dystopia
Pages: Hardcover, 352
Publication: February 4, 2014

Synopsis:
The heart-stopping conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, which Ransom Riggs, bestselling author of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, called “a thrilling, high-stakes saga of self-discovery and forbidden love”

Juliette now knows she may be the only one who can stop the Reestablishment. But to take them down, she’ll need the help of the one person she never thought she could trust: Warner. And as they work together, Juliette will discover that everything she thought she knew-about Warner, her abilities, and even Adam-was wrong.

In Shatter Me, Tahereh Mafi created a captivating and original story that combined the best of dystopian and paranormal and was praised by Publishers Weekly as “a gripping read from an author who’s not afraid to take risks.” The sequel, Unravel Me, blew readers away with heart-racing twists and turns, and New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia said it was “dangerous, sexy, romantic, and intense.” Now this final book brings the series to a shocking and climactic end.

OH MY GOD GUYS I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS BOOK. I absolutely LOVED the first two books in this series, and I can’t wait for the third and final installment. It’s going to be so epic. I can’t wait to be back in this fantastic world back in Tahereh’s writing. I love her writing style. This series is just so fantastic, I can hardly describe it. AND THIS COVER. It’s absolutely gorgeous! Definitely my favorite of the series.

What are you waiting on?


COVER REVEALS: The Between Series by Cyndi Tefft

Courtesy of Gabrielle Prendergast of Cover Your Dreams the Between series by Cyndi Tefft has brand new covers. Check them out:


 photo Betweennewcover.jpg
Sometimes death is just the beginning…


It just figures that the love of Lindsey Water’s life isn’t alive at all, but the grim reaper, complete with a dimpled smile and Scottish accent.

After transporting souls to heaven for the last 300 years, Aiden MacRae has all but given up on finding the one whose love will redeem him and allow him entry through the pearly gates.

Torn between her growing attraction to Aiden and heaven’s siren song, Lindsey must learn the hard way whether love really can transcend all boundaries.

Between is available for purchase here:
Ebook only: Smashwords, Apple, Kobo
Print and ebook: Amazon, Barnes and Noble



  photo HellTransporternewcover.jpg
The Between series continues… 
 Aiden MacRae has been given a new life after being stuck transporting souls to heaven for the last three hundred years. He doesn’t know the culture, the times or the slang, but there is one thing he does know: he didn’t come forward alone.

The master of hell has other plans for the Scottish Highlander and has sent a transporter of his own to get the deed done. Will Lindsey be able to save him or get caught in the crossfire?


Hell Transporter is available for purchase here:
Print and ebook: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Print only: Createspace, My store (signed copy)
Ebook only: Smashwords, Apple, Kobo


 photo EvenInDarknessnewcover.jpg
I thought it was over, that all our troubles were behind us.


We had a fairytale castle wedding surrounded by family and friends. Aiden wore a dress kilt, looking so handsome it made my heart squeeze, and I floated on air in a white version of the ball gown he’d cast for me in Versailles. Flower girl, ring bearer, Scottish ceilidh afterward—check, check, and check. It was perfect.

We were supposed to live happily ever after.

But that was before I walked in to find another woman in his bed, a demon with blood red eyes who’d disguised herself as me in order to get what she wanted most: a child from a heaven transporter.

And it was in that moment—watching my entire world crumble to the ground—that I knew.

This was not over. Not by a long shot.

Even In Darkness is available for purchase here:
Print and ebook: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Print only: Createspace
Ebook only: Smashwords, Apple, Kobo

Love these smokin’ hot new covers? Share them with everyone!

Clear Your Shelf Giveaway Hop!


The Clear Your Shelf Giveaway Hop is hosted by Bookhounds and I Am A Reader, Not a Writer. There are TONS of blogs participating in this giveaway hop (see below to check out the other blogs involved). The giveaway hop starts today, August 20 and ends August 27.

We’re giving away two awesome prize packs!

First Prize Pack:

Second Prize Pack:

Waiting on Wednesday: Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott

Title: Heartbeat
Author: Elizabeth Scott
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Pages: Hardcover- 304
Publication: August 27, 2013

Synopsis:
Life. Death. And…Love?

Emma would give anything to talk to her mother one last time. Tell her about her slipping grades, her anger with her stepfather, and the boy with the bad reputation who might be the only one Emma can be herself with.

But Emma can’t tell her mother anything. Because her mother is brain-dead and being kept alive by machines for the baby growing inside her.

Meeting bad-boy Caleb Harrison wouldn’t have interested Old Emma. But New Emma-the one who exists in a fog of grief, who no longer cares about school, whose only social outlet is her best friend Olivia-New Emma is startled by the connection she and Caleb forge.

Feeling her own heart beat again wakes Emma from the grief that has grayed her existence. Is there hope for life after death-and maybe, for love?


I absolutely love stories of perseverance. The tales where you watch the characters grow from a seemingly rock bottom to a beautiful thriving person. I completely cant wait  for this book to come out! Although I am a little iffy on the release date, Goodreads says that it is released on January 28, 2014 and the Barnes and Noble says that its released August 27, 2013, so I guess we shall see! But either way I cannot wait to get my hands on this book! 

Blog Tour + Author Interview: Apollo Academy by Kimberly P. Chase

Title: The Apollo Academy
Author: Kimberly P. Chase
Genre: New Adult; Science Fiction
Pages: 340
Publication: August 6, 2013

Synopsis:
The Apollo Academy (Apollo Academy, #1)As the heiress to Titon Technologies, eighteen-year-old Aurora Titon can have whatever she wants—clothes, expensive gadgets, anything money can buy. All she really wants is to escape her pampered, paparazzi-prone life for the stars. Becoming the first female pilot to train as an astronaut for the Apollo Academy is exactly the chance for which she has been waiting. Everything would be perfect if it weren’t for her unreciprocated crush on a fellow student, the sexy astronaut bent on making her life hell, and the fact that someone keeps trying to kill her.


The first in a four book new adult science fiction series, The Apollo Academy, is an action packed story of love, discovery, and survival.

ON SALE NOW! Available at Amazon, B&N, and iTunes

Book Trailer:

About the author:
Kimberly P. Chase holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, which basically means she’s kind of a geek and loves flying airplanes. Naturally, her books tend to include aviation, hot flight instructors, aviator glasses, and—let’s not forget—kissing! When Kimberly’s not writing or reading, she’s hanging out with her husband, four-year-old son, and two dogs.

Find Kimberly here:
Interview with the Author:
1. The concept of your new book, The Apollo Academy, is very interesting and unique. <–Thank you! How did you think of it? I feel like I’ve been collecting pieces of The Apollo Academy my entire life. From nights spent looking through a telescope, Space Camp, flying lessons, to reading science fiction books. Little pieces of this story were collecting in my mind until one day I finally decided it was time to write it all down.  It wasn’t until I finished writing TAA that I realized this was the book I’d been wanting to find in my own reading pile. A book about a young woman who loved to fly. One that wasn’t historical. One that was fun and sexy….The Apollo Academy stemmed from this idea. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book about astronaut training that’s been done in a fun, young way. 

2. What was one of the challenges you faced while writing your book? Believing that I could write the story in the first place. When I began writing The Apollo Academy, I had zero experience with writing or with the publishing industry. There was a lot to learn! It wasn’t until I was about half way through the book that I truly began to believe I could do it.

3. What was the best part of writing your book? Being able to pour my knowledge and love of space exploration and aviation into the story.

4. What do you think your readers will enjoy most about your book? The flying scenes!

5. How can this book be accessed? Physcial copy? eBook? Both? Both. You can purchase The Apollo Academy at Amazonand Barnes & Noble.

6. Is there any book or author that inspired you to write? I’m an avid reader, so there are a ton of authors I look up to. Cinda Williams Chima, Kimberly Derting, Cassandra Clare, Cora Carmack, Marisa Meyer, Colleen Houck, the list goes on….Though I do think Ben Bova was the first author to get me really excited about realistic science fiction novels.

7. Most everybody has a book that got them into reading. What was yours? That’s a tough one! I’ll go with Mars by Ben Bova, which I read for the first time in ninth grade!

8. Currently, what’s your top three favorite books? Throne of Glass, Poison Princess, and the Tiger’s Curse series.

9. Young adult, new adult, or adult novels? Which do you prefer? Right now, YA. And that’s only because there’s so much to offer–Fantasy/Contemp/SciFi/etc. But as New Adult continues to grow and we see authors move outside of the NA contemp genre, I think my favorite will eventually switch to NA. It’s such a fun age to read.
Giveaway:

Review: The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson

The Crown of Embers (Fire and Thorns, #2)Title: The Crown of Embers (The Girl of Fire and Thorns #1)
Author: Rae Carson
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: Hardcover, 410
Publication: September 18, 2012

Synopsis:
In the sequel to the acclaimed The Girl of Fire and Thorns, a seventeen-year-old princess turned war queen faces sorcery, adventure, untold power, and romance as she fulfills her epic destiny.

Elisa is the hero of her country. She led her people to victory against a terrifying enemy, and now she is their queen. But she is only seventeen years old. Her rivals may have simply retreated, choosing stealth over battle. And no one within her court trusts her-except Hector, the commander of the royal guard, and her companions. As the country begins to crumble beneath her and her enemies emerge from the shadows, Elisa will take another journey. With a one-eyed warrior, a loyal friend, an enemy defector, and the man she is falling in love with, Elisa crosses the ocean in search of the perilous, uncharted, and mythical source of the Godstone’s power. That is not all she finds. A breathtaking, romantic, and dangerous second volume in the Fire and Thorns trilogy.

When I first read The Girl of Fire and Thorns, the first book in this series, I generally liked it. It was a nice, fun fantasy, but I wasn’t IN LOVE with it. Well, this book completely changed my opinion about the series. After finishing The Crown of Embers, I fell absolutely in love with this series. It was exciting and so much more than I initially thought.

This book seemed even more epic than the first. The stakes are higher, the characters are in more danger (especially Elisa), and it makes the story even more riveting. I was glued to the book for the days it took me to read it.

Rae Carson is an unbelievable story teller. Her writing style is brilliant. Her words are written beautifully, and so are her characters. Starting this book was almost like starting another series itself. After the ending of The Girl of Fire and Thorns, a lot of things had changed. Principle characters were dead or scattered in different places. This meant I was introduced to a whole slew of characters in The Crown of Embers that I absolutely fell in love with *cough*HECTOR*cough*.Characters that were secondary in the first book became main characters in this book, and I fell in love with each in every one of them.

Props to Rae Carson. She knows how to write badass, strong female characters. In The Girl of Fire and Thorns, Elisa was strong, yet unsure and self-conscious, but in The Crown of Embers, we see Elisa the strongest we’ve ever seen her. By the end of the story, she takes control of the situations that she’s in and becomes the confident and badass queen we all knew she could be. Elisa grew up a lot in this book, and I loved her even more for it.

AND OH MY GOD HECTOR. There are literally no words to describe my undying love for the captain of the queen’s guard. He’s smart and hot and so darn amazing. His and Elisa’s relationship is absolutely amazing. I love how they are together, and I can’t wait to see how things turn out between them in The Bitter Kingdom.

I don’t know how much longer I can wait for the next book in the series. There are SO many unanswered questions that I want to know now. With The Crown of Embers ending the way it did, I can say that The Bitter Kingdom is going to be AMAZING. I can’t wait for it.


Waiting on Wednesday: Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

Cruel BeautyTitle: Cruel Beauty
Author: Rosamund Hodge
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: Hardcover, 336
Publication: January 28, 2014

Synopsis:
Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy about one girl’s journey to fulfill her destiny and the monster who gets in her way-by stealing her heart.

Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.

Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.

With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she’s ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.

But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle-a shifting maze of magical rooms-enthralls her.

As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex’s secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.

I absolutely ADORE fairy tale retellings. I recently read a retelling of Peter Pan (i.e. Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson) and I loved it. So, when I found out that retelling of my all time favorite fairy tale was going to be released in January I was SUPER excited. Plus, who can resist this cover?! It’s absolutely gorgeous. I can’t wait to get my hands on this book!

http://www.goodreads.com/book/add_to_books_widget_frame/0439139600?atmb_widget%5Bbutton%5D=atmb_widget_1.png

Cruel Beauty

http://www.goodreads.com/book/add_to_books_widget_frame/0062224735?atmb_widget%5Bbutton%5D=atmb_widget_1.png

COVER REVEAL: Chaos by Christine O’Neil

Today Christine O’Neil and Entangled Teen Ember are revealing the cover for book 1 in The Kardia Chronicles Series, CHAOS

Synopsis:
My name is Maggie Raynard. After sixteen years being just plain me, suddenly I can kill people when I lose my temper. Turns out I’m a semi-god, descended from Aphrodite. Sounds cool in theory, but when I accidentally put my ex-boyfriend in a coma, things go downhill pretty fast.

Now some new guy named Mac Finnegan has made it his mission in life to continually piss me off. I’m stuck learning how to use my new powers while also dealing with regular high school problems, and with this—annoying and super-hot—guy all up in my business, I’m about to flip out.

But it gets worse. I just learned there’s this council for semis that wants me dead. They think I’m bad to the bone and when my ex suddenly dies, it’s like everyone is determined to take me out. Mac might turn out to be my only salvation, but he’s got secrets of his own—that may just kill us both.


Exclusive excerpt:

I was done with guys.


Not in that fake, I-say-that-but-deep-down-I-really-want-a-boyfriend kind of way, but in, like, the seriously-I’d-rather-eat-maggoty-cheese kind of way. No relationships. Not for me. Not now and maybe not ever. Who I am…what I am, and what I’m capable of? Everyone’s better off this way.

“I have to stop at my locker real quick,” I said, veering to the right and cutting through the crush of kids heading straight like wildebeests to a watering hole. Libby followed and then stood by me as I fiddled with the lock.

“What’s that?” She pointed to a white piece of paper sticking out half an inch from one of the slots in the olive metal door.

I tugged the padlock open and flicked the catch with my thumb. “Dunno.” Maybe Bink had left me another note. Bink was my neighbor, bud, and—most days—my ride home. Last time I’d found a note in my locker, it was when his cell phone died and he needed to bail early. I seriously hoped this wasn’t a repeat performance.

I mentally ran down the list of people I could bug for a ride and came up empty. Libby always had to stay after for some activity or another, and I only really had two other people I could call “friends” and neither lived near me. I wrinkled my nose in anticipation of the dirty-sneakers-meets-day-old-bologna smell of a bus filled with kids who’d had last-period gym and opted not to change clothes. 

With a sigh, I pulled open the door and the white rectangle floated to the floor.

Libby bent to grab it and read it out loud. “‘Dear Sad and Lonely…'” She trailed off and went quiet 
for a few seconds until her peachy complexion went hot pink, and then she gasped. “Oh my God. 
Holy… Oh, Mags, you are so not going to like this.”

I snatched the paper from her, trying to ward off the growing pit in my gut.

Dear Sad and Lonely,

Since I can almost guarantee She is about to give you some seriously shite advice like she does every week, let me be the voice of reason. Your boyfriend is just like most high school guys. Cut him some slack and, even better, why not offer to learn how to play some of the games he likes? He’d probably appreciate the effort and might even take you somewhere nice after. If that doesn’t work, sit him down and let him know how you’re feeling so he can tell you what’s going on with him. Could be that constantly calling the things he likes stupid isn’t the best way to get what you want in this situation, yeah? In any case, don’t let the ramblings of some bitter emo chick who’s probably never had a boyfriend ruin your relationship.

Hope it helps,
He

The shock was too thick to let the anger in right away, but as stunned as I was, I knew exactly who was behind this. There was only one person in the whole school who would use the word “shite.”
Mac Finnegan.

Opinionated, annoying, hot—did I mention annoying?—Mac Finnegan, who had barely given me the time of day since he’d come to Crestwood High a couple months ago. Mac Finnegan, who thought he was soooo cool with his Irish accent and his mocking smile. Mac Finnegan, who inexplicably made me want to lick him like an ice cream cone and then immediately rinse my mouth out with acid.

How had he discovered my secret? Only Bink and Libby knew I was the girl behind “That’s What She Said,” and I would have bet everything I owned that neither of them would have ratted me out.

Didn’t matter, though. One way or another, he knew. Even worse, he’d chosen to taunt me with it. Bitter emo chick who’s probably never had a boyfriend, indeed. I had a boyfriend once and it hadn’t ended well for either of us. I was in no rush to repeat the experience. Besides, what did this Irish asshat care?

Anger tightened my chest. I could feel the power rising in me, clawing to get out, roaring to be heard. The hair on my arms stood on end as I tried to breathe through it, to let the fury dissipate and flow out of my pores in harmless pings of energy, but it was no use. I pressed a hand to my locker and opened up the tiniest of escape valves, the spout of the teakettle, whistling off a stream of steam. The cheap metal instantly heated against my skin, the door buckling and warping on the spot just beneath my fingertips.

“Uh, Mags—” Libby whispered urgently, but a male voice cut her off.

“How’s it going there, Libby? Maggie.”

I turned around, still trying to catch my breath, and there he was, strolling by, a grin splitting his sinfully beautiful face.

Mac Finnegan, who had decided that being the new kid wasn’t bad enough, so he had to actively go out of his way to make enemies. Mac Finnegan, who wanted to turn my world upside down rather than minding his own business. Mac Finnegan, who didn’t know the meaning of live and let live.

Mac Finnegan, who clearly had no idea who he was fucking with.

About the Author:
Christine O’Neil is one half of the happiest couple in the world. She and her handsome hubby currently reside in Pennsylvania with a four-pack of teenage boys and their two dogs, Gimli and Pug. If she gets time off from her duties as maid, chef, chauffeur, or therapist, she can be found reading just about anything she can get her hands on, from Young Adult novels to books on poker theory. She doesn’t like root beer, clowns or bugs (except ladybugs, on account of their cute outfits), but lurrves chocolate, going to the movies, the New York Giants and playing Texas Hold ‘Em. Writing is her passion, but if she had to pick another occupation, she would be a pirate…or, like, a ninja maybe. She loves writing fun and adventure-filled romance stories, but also hopes to one day publish something her dad can read without wanting to dig his eyes out with rusty spoons. Christine loves to hear from readers, so please feel free to get in touch with her via the Contact Page. Christine also writes adult romance under the name Christine Bell.