Titans New Year’s Eve- Special Guest Post from Victoria Scott + Giveaway

Happy New Year’s Eve!! I can’t believe 2015 is all finished up (almost) and a new year is upon us. I am brining in the new year with Victoria Scott author of the upcoming Titans.

About the Book

titansTitans
By: Victoria Scott
Release Date: February 23rd 2016
Publisher: Scholastic Press

Ever since the Titans first appeared in her Detroit neighborhood, Astrid Sullivan’s world has revolved around the mechanical horses. She and her best friend have spent countless hours watching them and their jockeys practice on the track. It’s not just the thrill of the race. It’s the engineering of the horses and the way they’re programmed to seem so lifelike. The Titans are everything that fascinates Astrid, and nothing she’ll ever touch.

She hates them a little, too. Her dad lost everything betting on the Titans. And the races are a reminder of the gap between the rich jockeys who can afford the expensive machines to ride, and the working class friends and neighbors of Astrid’s who wager on them.

But when Astrid’s offered a chance to enter an early model Titan in this year’s derby, well, she decides to risk it all. Because for a girl from the wrong side of the tracks, it’s more than a chance at fame or money. Betting on herself is the only way she can see to hang on to everyone in the world she cares about.

Titans on…

Guest Post from Victoria Scott

Magnolia’s Tips for a Fashionable NYE

Although Astrid Sullivan is the main character in Titans, one would be wise to heed her best friend, Magnolia’s, fashion advice. Especially if you want to make the most of that countdown to 2016, and start off on the right Jimmy Choo (knock off).

Never doubt the glam power of a BFF on your arm. She’ll tell you whether your NYE attire is on-point, or suffering from DBF (Death by Fashion).

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Don’t forget to accessorize. Especially those that belong on the crown of your head. Accessories, and ready-to-party hair for that matter, is tres importante.

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Make a fashionable entrance. Forget muscle cars or limos. You need something memorable. How about the back of a lion? Or better yet, a Titan?

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Whatever you do, don’t worry about a boy on NYE. If that jerk bag doesn’t behave, then find a cute replacement and pucker up when that bell drops. Because new years are the best time for new crushes (or no crushes!).

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Remember, above all else, that looking glam on NYE is all about confidence. If you believe you’re bringing the thunder (which you are), they’ll believe it too. So work it, girl (or boy)!

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Happy NYE, dolls! May your lipstick be fierce, your best friend loyal, and your midnight kiss knee-buckling. See you in 2016!

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Giveaway

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Review of Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott

Fire & Flood (Fire & Flood, #1)Fire & Flood (Fire & Flood #1)
By: Victoria Scott
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Release Date: February 25th 2014

A copy was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

This review might contain very slight spoilers because I express how I felt at various parts of the book (with no details other than things like ‘midway through the book’ etc). If you want to go into this book with a clean slate than read no further (but come back after you read the book and let me know what you thought of it)

 

My Rating:
star

Summary:
Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can’t determine what’s wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She’s lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she’s helpless to change anything.

Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It’s an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother’s illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there’s no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.

The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can’t trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?

The Story:
I have read The Collector by Scott and knew going in that Fire & Flood would be a completely different type of book, and it was. The pacing was fairly fast especially after the midway point. I felt that I had created expectations based on some comparisons I’d seen (Hunger Games in particular). Because of this I expected more blood, higher stakes, and a much more brutal race (especially with the epic name Brimstone Bleed). Because of this comparison (that for the life of me can’t think of where I’d even seen that) I thought this was a dystopian, but it was not. I’m not sure which genre it would belong too but Tella’s world seems very much like our own.

As Tella’s journey began it felt tame and I kept waiting for the stakes to be raised (what happens if you lose the race? Was there any hazards beyond nature?). I admit it was rather difficult for me to get invested in the story and Tella for the first third. I was terrified that I wouldn’t enjoy it because I had such high hopes and it wasn’t fitting the mold I had unintentionally created.

As I continued to read I began to find myself flipping pages faster and some of the twists that Scott pulled I didn’t see coming (one in particular had me put down the book open mouthed). The race started to earn it’s name and I was much happier with the second half. I was relieved that I started to worry for Tella and I wasn’t sure how Scott was going to wrap things up. Fair warning- this book only contains two of the four legs of the Brimstone Bleed. I felt that Scott wrapped up the story arc for this first book but left us with two more races to go.

The Characters:
One of the reasons I had trouble with Fire & Flood in the beginning was because Tella was very difficult for me to relate to. I felt that her narration was very juvenile and I couldn’t connect to her,  though I wanted to. As the story continues this began to change; I don’t know if her character had significant growth or that she grew on me but I became very invested in her and her story.

The side characters were well done and I felt that they enhanced the story because I could understand each of their plights. Well, all of the side characters save one. A specific character felt very one sided to me because I was never able to grasp the reasons behind his actions. This was doubly disappointing because he was intended to be a villain. I didn’t feel that any reason was given for his cruelty and I never had a clear read on his personality or motivations beyond his blanketed brutality. I like my ‘bad’ guys to walk the line of good and evil and have depth in their motivations.

There was a romance in Fire & Flood and I thought it was obvious exactly how it was going to play out but was still very well done and easy to get behind. I felt Tella and this character had good chemistry and banter, making their interactions entertaining and believable. I look forward to seeing more of the two of them.

To my surprise, I really enjoyed the animal companions, Pandoras. When I heard that the book included animals with special skills I feared they would be a tiny bit cheesy or too much like reading Pokémon. I was relieved and impressed with how well Scott was able to add them seamlessly into the storyline and I ended up getting rather attached to a few of them.

Final Thoughts:
Fire & Flood was a departure in style from the Dante Walker series but I believe her fans will enjoy this book as well. I had some trouble in figuring out how I wanted to rate this book.  I chose 3.5 because of the reasons listed above including the story’s villain feeling flat and my slow start in connecting with the main character, Tella. That being said, Victoria Scott was able to create a cast of characters different from the others I’ve read of hers, yet able to keep her style and witty dialog.

Cover Reveal for Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott

I have the honor of posting Victoria Scott’s next book’s cover. I can’t wait to read this one.

Fire & Flood

Summary (via Goodreads):
In a perilous race across the world, having the best Pandora can be the difference between life and death.

Sixteen-year-old Tella Holloway isn’t happy. Her mother rushed them out of Boston and into a craptastic house nestled in Middle of Nowhere, Montana. To make matters worse, Tella’s brother is sick, and though a dozen doctors can’t determine the cause, her mother is sure Montana’s “fresh air” will help. Now Tella spends her days being homeschooled, and uses her imagination as entertainment.

But when a small blue box appears on her bed, Tella’s world is rocked. Inside the strange package she finds a white ear bud—and after she fits it into place and touches its blinking button—an unknown voice fills her head. Tella is invited to join the Brimstone Bleed, a race across four ecosystems: desert, sea, mountains, jungle. The voice in Tella’s ear explains she has 48 hours to retrieve her Pandora, an animal genetically designed to help her win.

Tella has never been the sporty type; she’s more a cheerleader than an athlete. But despite her mother’s warnings, she’s determined to compete in the race. And she’ll do anything to win, because if Tella is the Brimstone Bleed victor, she’ll be granted a specific gift—the cure to save her brother’s life.

Excerpt of The Liberator by Victoria Scott

Victoria Scott released an exclusive excerpt of her upcoming novel, The Liberator, the follow-up to The Collector.

The LiberatorThe Liberator
By: Victoria Scott
Release Date: August 27th 2013
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Summary (via Goodreads):
Bad boy, meet bad girl.

Dante has a shiny new cuff wrapped around his ankle, and he doesn’t like that mess one bit. His new accessory comes straight from Big Guy himself and marks the former demon as a liberator. Despite his gritty past and bad boy ways, Dante Walker has been granted a second chance.

When Dante is given his first mission as a liberator to save the soul of seventeen-year-old Aspen, he knows he’s got this. But Aspen reminds him of the rebellious life he used to live and is making it difficult to resist sinful temptations. Though Dante is committed to living clean for his girlfriend Charlie, this dude’s been a playboy for far too long…and old demons die hard.

With Charlie becoming the girl she was never able to be pre-makeover and Aspen showing him how delicious it feels to embrace his inner beast, Dante will have to go somewhere he never thought he’d return to in order to accomplish the impossible: save the girl he’s been assigned to, and keep the girl he loves.

Click here to read The Liberator Excerpt

The Collector Digital Giveaway

The CollectorSummary (via Goodreads):
He makes good girls…bad.

Dante Walker is flippin’ awesome, and he knows it. His good looks, killer charm, and stellar confidence have made him one of hell’s best—a soul collector. His job is simple: weed through humanity and label those round rears with a big red good or bad stamp. Old Saint Nick gets the good guys, and he gets the fun ones. Bag-and-tag.

Sealing souls is nothing personal. Dante’s an equal-opportunity collector and doesn’t want it any other way. But he’ll have to adjust, because Boss Man has given him a new assignment:

Collect Charlie Cooper’s soul within ten days.

Dante doesn’t know why Boss Man wants Charlie, nor does he care. This assignment means only one thing to him, and that’s a permanent ticket out of hell. But after Dante meets the quirky Nerd Alert chick he’s come to collect, he realizes this assignment will test his abilities as a collector…and uncover emotions deeply buried

Read my review

Have you not read The Collector yet? Here’s your chance, enter to win a digital copy below:
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