Thursday, August 17, 2017

Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell

Book: The Last Magician 
Author: Lisa Maxwell
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Pages: 512
Pub Date: July 18th 2017

Goodreads Link: Goodreads

Where To Buy:

Book Description:

Stop the Magician.
Steal the book.
Save the future.

In modern day New York, magic is all but extinct. The remaining few who have an affinity for magic—the Mageus—live in the shadows, hiding who they are. Any Mageus who enters Manhattan becomes trapped by the Brink, a dark energy barrier that confines them to the island. Crossing it means losing their power—and often their lives.

Esta is a talented thief, and she's been raised to steal magical artifacts from the sinister Order that created the Brink. With her innate ability to manipulate time, Esta can pilfer from the past, collecting these artifacts before the Order even realizes she’s there. And all of Esta’s training has been for one final job: traveling back to 1902 to steal an ancient book containing the secrets of the Order—and the Brink—before the Magician can destroy it and doom the Mageus to a hopeless future.

But Old New York is a dangerous world ruled by ruthless gangs and secret societies, a world where the very air crackles with magic. Nothing is as it seems, including the Magician himself. And for Esta to save her future, she may have to betray everyone in the past.

Lisa Maxwell is the author of The Last MagicianUnhookedSweet Unrest, and The Gathering Deep. She grew up in Akron, Ohio, and has a PhD in English. She’s worked as a teacher, scholar, editor, writer, and bookseller (at Little Professor Book Center in Alabama). When she’s not writing books, she’s a professor at a local college. She now lives near Washington, DC, with her husband and two sons. You can follow her on Twitter @LisaMaxwellYA or learn more about her upcoming books at

Author Website:
Book Website (with special content):
Twitter: @LisaMaxwellYA
Instagram: @LisaMaxwell13

~~~~~~  The Last Magician—My Writing Process ~~~~~~
     I wrote my first three books fast, in a flurry of words that took a month or so to churn out. Then I took the time to revise them for plot, character, consistency. UNHOOKED took a lot of revision, in part because I wrote the first version for NaNoWriMo and the first draft was a hot mess. Even after UNHOOKED sold, the revisions on it were intensive, mostly because I hadn’t really done a ton of world building before I wrote it. I had to go back through and make the world have a natural logic and consistency. But revising UNHOOKED taught me to write more with craft in mind, and many of the techniques I learned revising on my own and then later with my editor were techniques that I used on THE LAST MAGICIAN. I started THE LAST MAGICIAN with more brainstorming and world building than I’d ever done before. I laid out the magic system and, most importantly, laid out the details of the plot. When I pitched the book to my editor, I had a 10+ page (single-spaced) synopsis that laid out every twist and turn in the book. You would think that with all that planning, with knowing exactly what needed to happen, that THE LAST MAGICIAN would have been a joy to write. Nope. The book made me work for it, that’s for sure. I started drafting in August of 2015. By December, I had the bones of the book, but it fought me the entire way to get that first draft. I usually draft in Word. I have no idea what it is, but I can’t seem to write in anything else. It doesn’t even make logical sense, but I freeze up in Pages or Scrivener, but with Word, I can just write. I usually write in one long document and I leave it single-spaced, so I can see as many words on the screen as possible. Once I had the bulk of my draft done, and I’d therefore realized that the book was not going to be the dual POV that I’d planned, but something much bigger and more complicated, I plugged the whole thing into Scrivener. I don’t write in Scrivener, but I love using it for revision. Because it allows you to make separate folders and documents for each chapter and scene, it was really convenient to move things around, change the POV of a chapter, or just play with the larger structure until I got it right. I also use spreadsheets to edit. Once I have what I think is a good, solid draft, I print out the entire thing and then I go through the hard copy, page-by- page, making notes. As I read, I reverse-outline the whole book into a spreadsheet, so I can see where each of the scenes are, how long each chapter is, and what the plot beats are for each chapter. Forcing myself to reverse-outline the book in a spreadsheet means that I can more easily see when the story is not keeping up with the pace it needs to. I can see where chapters are dragging and where I’m missing major emotional beats in the story.

    The spreadsheet also allows me to better track the world building. I can list when a character is introduced or when a fact is revealed, and I can see if I’m using multiple scenes for the same purpose—and get rid of them. Once I have a really solid version of the book, off it goes to Beta readers and I use their feedback to make sure I’m not missing anything important. I don’t really have Critique Partners that I exchange pages or chapters with. Instead, I have a few people I really trust to read the book and give me big-picture issues. Strangely enough, my non-fiction- reading husband is always one of my first and best readers. If he can get through the book and like it, I know I’m on the right track. The rest of my writing process has a lot to do with revision. THE LAST MAGICIAN went through multiple rounds of revision with my first editor. Then he left the publisher and my new editor had some bigger issues she wanted to work on, so we went at it all over again and the book changed even more. I’d love to say that this is a magic formula for writing, but I’ve found that every book needs to be written in its own way. I wrote a lot of THE LAST MAGICIAN at home in my dark bedroom listening to Chris Cornell’s Higher Truth album. I worked from a really detailed synopsis. For the sequel, I’ve found I can only work on it outside of my house. I have a loose outline of where I think it’s going and a general idea of the end…and the rest is a mystery. But once it’s drafted, I’ll still go through the process of printing it out, slowing myself down, and analyzing it structurally. That’s not how I wrote my first book. It’s probably not how I’ll write my last book. I think, though, that the most important thing about writing and any writer’s process is to let it take the shape it needs to take, so you can balance creativity and storytelling with the craft of the novel. Thanks so much for reading! If you have any questions about craft or the writing process, I’d be
happy to answer them!

~~~~~ There Are Two Giveaways! ~~~~~

(Tour Wide Giveaway): One (1) winner will receive a signed copy of The Last Magician along with a swag pack and other exclusive goodies.

(Just For My Blog Giveaway): One (1) winner will receive a The Last Magician swag pack courtesy of the author 

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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday #121

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Breaking the Spine

Last Star Burning (Last Star Burning, #1)
Caitlin Sangster
Young Adult Fantasy
October 10th 2017
Goodreads Link


Sev is branded with the mark of a criminal—a star burned into her hand. That’s the penalty for being the daughter of the woman who betrayed their entire nation.

Now her mother’s body is displayed above Traitor’s Arch, kept in a paralyzed half sleep by the same plague that destroyed the rest of the world. And as further punishment, Sev is forced to do hard labor to prove that she’s more valuable alive than dead.

When the government blames Sev for a horrific bombing, she must escape the city or face the chopping block. Unimaginable dangers lurk outside the city walls, and Sev’s only hope of survival lies with the most unlikely person—Howl, the chairman’s son. Though he promises to lead her to safety, Howl has secrets, and Sev can’t help but wonder if he knows more about her past—and her mother’s crimes—than he lets on.

But in a hostile world, trust is a luxury. Even when Sev’s life and the lives of everyone she loves may hang in the balance.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Release Week Blitz: The Epic Crush of Genie Lo by F.C. Lee

I am so excited that THE EPIC CRUSH OF GENIE LO by F.C. Yee is available now and that I get to share the news!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author F.C. Yee, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for 5 finished copies of the book and a bookmark courtesy of Pique and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The Book:

Author: F.C. Yee
Pub. Date: August 8, 2017
Publisher: Amulet Books
Pages: 336
Formats: Hardcover, eBook

The struggle to get into a top-tier college consumes sixteen-year-old Genie Lo's every waking thought. But when her sleepy Bay Area town comes under siege from hell-spawn straight out of Chinese folklore, her priorities are suddenly and forcefully rearranged.

Her only guide to the demonic chaos breaking out around her is Quentin Sun, a beguiling, maddening new transfer student from overseas. Quentin assures Genie she is strong enough to fight these monsters, for she unknowingly harbors an inner power that can level the very gates of Heaven.

Genie will have to dig deep within herself to summon the otherworldly strength that Quentin keeps talking about. But as she does, she finds the secret of her true nature is entwined with his, in a way she could never have imagined…


Now, I’d done my best to describe this guy to the police. They pressed me hard for details, as apparently this wasn’t the first group mugging in recent weeks.

But I’d let Officers Davis and Rodriguez down. Nice eyes and a winning smile weren’t much to go by. I was too frazzled to notice anything before, which meant this was my first decent look at the boy without the influence of adrenaline.

So a couple of things.

One: He was short. Like, really short for a guy. I felt bad that my brain went there first, but he wasn’t even as tall as Mrs. Nanda.

Two: He was totally okay, physically. I didn’t see how anyone could be up and about after that beating, but here he was, unbruised and unblemished. I felt relieved and disturbed at the same time to see there wasn’t a scratch on him.

And his mint condition just made Point Three even more obvious.

He was . . . yeesh.

Nothing good could come of our new classmate being that handsome. It was destructive. Twisted. Weaponized. He had the cheekbones and sharp jawline of a pop star, but his thick eyebrows and wild, unkempt hair lent him an air of natural ruggedness that some pampered singer could never achieve in a million years of makeup.

“Argh, my ovaries,” Yunie mumbled. She wasn’t alone, judging by the soft intakes of breath coming from around the room.

“Arrived from where?” said Mrs. Nanda.

Quentin looked at her in amusement. “China?”

“Yes, but where in, though?” said Mrs. Nanda, trying her best to convey that she was sensitive to the regional differences. Fujianese, Taishanese, Beijingren—she’d taught them all.

He just shrugged. “The stones,” he said.

“You mean the mountains, sweetie?” said Rachel Li, batting her eyelashes at him from the front row.

“No! I don’t misspeak.”

The class giggled at his English. But none of it was incorrect, technically speaking.

“Tell us a little about yourself,” Mrs. Nanda said.

Quentin puffed out his chest. The white button-down shirt and black pants of our school’s uniform for boys made most of them look like limo drivers. But on him, the cheap stitching just made it clearer that he was extremely well-muscled underneath.

“I am the greatest of my kind,” he said. “In this world I have no equal. I am known to thousands in faraway lands, and everyone I meet can’t help but declare me king!”

There was a moment of silence and sputtering before guffaws broke out.

“Well . . . um . . . we are all high achievers here at SF Prep,” said

Mrs. Nanda as politely as she could. “I’m sure you’ll fit right in?”

Quentin surveyed the cramped beige classroom with a cool squint. To him, the other twenty-two laughing students were merely peons on whom his important message had been lost.

“Enough wasting of time,” he snapped. “I came to these petty halls only to reclaim what is mine.”

Before anyone could stop him, he hopped onto Rachel’s desk and stepped over her to the next one, like she wasn’t even there.

“Hey! Quentin!” Mrs. Nanda said, frantically waving her hands. “Get down now!”

The new student ignored her, stalking down the column of desks. Toward mine.

Everyone in his way leaned to the side to avoid getting kicked. They were all too flabbergasted to do anything but serve as his counterweights.

He stopped on my desk and crouched down, looking me in the eye. His gaze pinned me to my seat.
I couldn’t turn away. He was so close our noses were almost touching. He smelled like wine and peaches.

“You!” he said.

“What?” I squeaked.

Quentin gave me a grin that was utterly feral. He tilted his head as if to whisper, but spoke loud enough for everyone to hear.

“You belong to me”

About F.C:

F. C. Yee grew up in New Jersey and went to school in New England, but has called the San Francisco Bay Area home ever since he beat a friend at a board game and shouted “That’s how we do it in NorCal, baby!” Outside of writing, he practices capoeira, a Brazilian form of martial arts, and has a day job mostly involving spreadsheets.


Giveaway Details:

5 winners will receive Genie Lo prize packs—complete with a finished copy of the book and a special Genie Lo horoscope (that doubles as a bookmark!), US Only.

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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #120

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Breaking the Spine

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns (Rise of the Empress, #1)
Julie C. Dao
Young Adult Fantasy
October 10th 2017
Goodreads Link


An East Asian fantasy reimagining of The Evil Queen legend about one peasant girl's quest to become Empress--and the darkness she must unleash to achieve her destiny.

Eighteen-year-old Xifeng is beautiful. The stars say she is destined for greatness, that she is meant to be Empress of Feng Lu. But only if she embraces the darkness within her. Growing up as a peasant in a forgotten village on the edge of the map, Xifeng longs to fulfill the destiny promised to her by her cruel aunt, the witch Guma, who has read the cards and seen glimmers of Xifeng's majestic future. But is the price of the throne too high?

Because in order to achieve greatness, she must spurn the young man who loves her and exploit the callous magic that runs through her veins--sorcery fueled by eating the hearts of the recently killed. For the god who has sent her on this journey will not be satisfied until his power is absolute.

What's your Waiting on Wednesday pick for this week? Are you excited for this release as well?

Thursday, August 3, 2017

My Most Anticipated August 2017 Releases!

Shimmer & Burn
Mary Taranta
Young Adult Fantasy
August 8th 2017

To save her sister’s life, Faris must smuggle magic into a plague-ridden neighboring kingdom in this exciting and dangerous start to a brand-new fantasy duology.

Faris grew up fighting to survive in the slums of Brindaigel while caring for her sister, Cadence. But when Cadence is caught trying to flee the kingdom and is sold into slavery, Faris reluctantly agrees to a lucrative scheme to buy her back, inadvertently binding herself to the power-hungry Princess Bryn, who wants to steal her father’s throne.

Now Faris must smuggle stolen magic into neighboring Avinea to incite its prince to alliance—magic that addicts in the war-torn country can sense in her blood and can steal with a touch. She and Bryn turn to a handsome traveling magician, North, who offers protection from Avinea’s many dangers, but he cannot save Faris from Bryn’s cruelty as she leverages Cadence’s freedom to force Faris to do anything—or kill anyone—she asks. Yet Faris is as fierce as Bryn, and even as she finds herself falling for North, she develops schemes of her own.

With the fate of kingdoms at stake, Faris, Bryn, and North maneuver through a dangerous game of magical and political machinations, where lives can be destroyed—or saved—with only a touch.

Reunited (Reawakened, #3)
Colleen Houck
Young Adult Fantasy
August 8th 2017

Crystal Blade (Burning Glass, #2) 
Kathryn Purdie
Young Adult Fantasy
August 15th 2017

The Broken World (The Marked Girl, #2)
Lindsey Klingele
Young Adult Fantasy
August 29th 2017

 Wonder Woman: Warbringer (DC Icons, #1)
Leigh Bardugo
Young Adult Retelling
August 29th 2017

She will become one of the world’s greatest heroes: WONDER WOMAN. But first she is Diana, Princess of the Amazons. And her fight is just beginning. . . .

Diana longs to prove herself to her legendary warrior sisters. But when the opportunity finally comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law—risking exile—to save a mere mortal. Even worse, Alia Keralis is no ordinary girl and with this single brave act, Diana may have doomed the world.

Alia just wanted to escape her overprotective brother with a semester at sea. She doesn’t know she is being hunted. When a bomb detonates aboard her ship, Alia is rescued by a mysterious girl of extraordinary strength and forced to confront a horrible truth: Alia is a Warbringer—a direct descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery.

Together, Diana and Alia will face an army of enemies—mortal and divine—determined to either destroy or possess the Warbringer. If they have any hope of saving both their worlds, they will have to stand side by side against the tide of war.

Mask of Shadows (Untitled, #1)
Linsey Miller
Young Adult Fantasy
August 29th 2017

“I love every aspect of this amazing book—a gender fluid hero, a deadly contest, and vicious courtly intrigue. Get! Read! Now!” —Tamora Pierce, #1 New York Times bestselling author
I Needed to Win.
They Needed to Die.
Sallot Leon is a thief, and a good one at that. But gender fluid Sal wants nothing more than to escape the drudgery of life as a highway robber and get closer to the upper-class—and the nobles who destroyed their home.

When Sal steals a flyer for an audition to become a member of The Left Hand—the Queen’s personal assassins, named after the rings she wears—Sal jumps at the chance to infiltrate the court and get revenge.

But the audition is a fight to the death filled with clever circus acrobats, lethal apothecaries, and vicious ex-soldiers. A childhood as a common criminal hardly prepared Sal for the trials. And as Sal succeeds in the competition, and wins the heart of Elise, an intriguing scribe at court, they start to dream of a new life and a different future, but one that Sal can have only if they survive.

Thirteen Rising (Zodiac, #4) 
Romina Russell
Young Adult Science Fiction

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday #119

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Breaking the Spine

27 Hours (The Nightside Saga, #1)
Tristina Wright
Young Adult Science Fiction
October 3rd 2017
Goodreads Link


Rumor Mora fears two things: hellhounds too strong for him to kill, and failure. Jude Welton has two dreams: for humans to stop killing monsters, and for his strange abilities to vanish.

But in no reality should a boy raised to love monsters fall for a boy raised to kill them.

Nyx Llorca keeps two secrets: the moon speaks to her, and she's in love with Dahlia, her best friend. Braeden Tennant wants two things: to get out from his mother's shadow, and to unlearn Epsilon's darkest secret.

They'll both have to commit treason to find the truth.

During one twenty-seven-hour night, if they can't stop the war between the colonies and the monsters from becoming a war of extinction, the things they wish for will never come true, and the things they fear will be all that's left.

What's your Waiting on Wednesday pick for this week? Are you excited for this release as well?

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #118

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Breaking the Spine

An Enchantment of Ravens 
Margaret Rogerson
Young Adult Fantasy
September 26th 2017
Goodreads Link


Isobel is a prodigy portrait artist with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, immortal creatures who cannot bake bread, weave cloth, or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and Isobel’s paintings are highly prized among them. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes – a weakness that could cost him his life.

Furious and devastated, Rook spirits her away to the autumnlands to stand trial for her crime. Waylaid by the Wild Hunt’s ghostly hounds, the tainted influence of the Alder King, and hideous monsters risen from barrow mounds, Isobel and Rook depend on one another for survival. Their alliance blossoms into trust, then love, violating the fair folks’ ruthless Good Law. There's only one way to save both their lives, Isobel must drink from the Green Well, whose water will transform her into a fair one—at the cost of her Craft, for immortality is as stagnant as it is timeless.

Isobel has a choice: she can sacrifice her art for a future, or arm herself with paint and canvas against the ancient power of the fairy courts. Because secretly, her Craft represents a threat the fair folk have never faced in all the millennia of their unchanging lives: for the first time, her portraits have the power to make them feel.

What's your Waiting on Wednesday pick for this week? Are you excited for this release as well?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #117

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Breaking the Spine

One Dark Throne (Three Dark Crown's, #2)
Kendare Blake
Young Adult Fantasy
September 19th 2017
Goodreads Link


*No synopsis due to spoilers

What's your Waiting on Wednesday pick for this week? Are you excited for this release as well?

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #116

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Breaking the Spine

Before She Ignites (Fallen Isles Trilogy, #1)
Jodi Meadows
Young Adult Fantasy
September 12th 2017
Goodreads Link



Mira Minkoba is the Hopebearer. Since the day she was born, she’s been told she’s special. Important. Perfect. She’s known across the Fallen Isles not just for her beauty, but for the Mira Treaty named after her, a peace agreement which united the seven islands against their enemies on the mainland.

But Mira has never felt as perfect as everyone says. She counts compulsively. She struggles with crippling anxiety. And she’s far too interested in dragons for a girl of her station.


Then Mira discovers an explosive secret that challenges everything she and the Treaty stand for. Betrayed by the very people she spent her life serving, Mira is sentenced to the Pit–the deadliest prison in the Fallen Isles. There, a cruel guard would do anything to discover the secret she would die to protect.

No longer beholden to those who betrayed her, Mira must learn to survive on her own and unearth the dark truths about the Fallen Isles–and herself–before her very world begins to collapse.

What's your Waiting on Wednesday pick for this week? Are you excited for this release as well?

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #115

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Breaking the Spine

Nyxia (The Nyxia Triad, #1)
Scott Reintgen
Young Adult Science Fiction
September 12th 2017
Goodreads Link


Every life has a price in this sci-fi thriller that has the nonstop action of The Maze Runner and the high-stakes space setting of Illuminae. This is the first in a new three-book series called the Nyxia Triad that will take a group of broken teens to the far reaches of the universe and force them to decide what they're willing to risk for a lifetime of fortune.

Emmett Atwater isn't just leaving Detroit; he's leaving Earth. Why the Babel Corporation recruited him is a mystery, but the number of zeroes on their contract has him boarding their lightship and hoping to return to Earth with enough money to take care of his family. 


Before long, Emmett discovers that he is one of ten recruits, all of whom have troubled pasts and are a long way from home. Now each recruit must earn the right to travel down to the planet of Eden--a planet that Babel has kept hidden--where they will mine a substance called Nyxia that has quietly become the most valuable material in the universe. 

But Babel's ship is full of secrets. And Emmett will face the ultimate choice: win the fortune at any cost, or find a way to fight that won't forever compromise what it means to be human.

What's your Waiting on Wednesday pick for this week? Are you excited for this release as well?

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Most Anticipated July 2017 Releases!

Dark Goddess (Alpha Goddess, #2)
Amalie Howard
Young Adult Fantasy
July 11th 2017

The Savage Dawn (The Girl At Midnight, #3)
Melissa Grey
Young Adult Fantasy
July 11th 2017

Because You Love To Hate Me: 13 Tales of Villainy
Edited by Ameriie
Young Adult Retellings/ Anthology
July 11th 2017

The Last Magician
Lisa Maxwell
Young Adult Fantasy
July 18th 2017

Daughter of the Burning City
Amanda Foody
Young Adult Fantasy
July 25th 2017