Friday, July 30, 2010

13-13-13

There are only 13 days, 13 hours and 13 minutes until the release of The Thirteenth Chime by Emma Michaels! Excited yet?

J*Flops Custom Flip Flop Giveaway

Park Avenue Princess is working with J*Flops to give away 3 super cute pairs of flip flops to 3 lucky winners, and one winner will be getting a customized pair made just for them!
This contest is open to all with a US or Canadian mailing address and will end on August 31, 2010.
And if you're a new follower to Park Avenue Princess, be sure to say I sent you because we'll get an extra 50 in the contest!
Click Here to Enter! 

Good luck,

Thursday, July 29, 2010

My Take On: The Poison Eaters: And Other Stories by Holly Black

A dark and fantastic collection of stories from the author of Tithe and The Spiderwick Chronicles.

I love me a good short story, yet when I first pick one up for reading I'm always skeptical, but Holly didn't let me down. I wanted something short but with the same depth of a full lenght book, and this collection delivered!
The first tale, The Coldest Girl in Cold Town, blew my expectations out of the water by not only giving me a gritty, fast-paced, and completely original vampire story, but also (and quite shockingly) a moral.
Despite the mature story elements--such as underage drinking, drug addiction, and the like--there was always some lesson to be learned. The lesson was often the harsh reality of fast living which was dealt with most directly in one of my favorite stories, Going Ironside, in which two naive faeries come to our world to get pregnant and have little faerie babies just for the heck of it, and wind up addicted to heroine and possibly trapped in our world. It was haunting hearing the fearie girl talk about how much she wanted it even though the iron needle burned her arm like fire.
Some stories, as is to be expected, weren't as good others, and I wound up skipping a few of them all together because they were just too explicit for my liking1, but some of them have gained a spot in my mental list of favorite tales. Among the stories I liked best are The Coldest Girl in Cold Town, Going Ironside, The Dog King, and Paper Cuts Rock (which was awesome!). And while I enjoyed many of these stories a lot, I wouldn't recommend The Poison Eaters to everyone on account of such mature themes. I'd say this one is most appropiate for readers 15 and up, if not older, as well as for anyone who likes gritty, raw, harsh dark fantasy and urban fairytales.
As for what you'll find between the covers, there's a story about the darker side of the vampire glamour as told by a girl who's been bitten and must constantly remain drunk to avoid drinking blood; a contest with the Devil himself involving a dog, a car, and gobs of gummy candies; a cautionary tale of what may happen if you believe everything you read; a touching story of a girl who learns to love herself with the help of a vindictive tree spirit; a look at what happens when your lies catch up with you on the quick, relentless feet of a werewolf; a story of a boy, his unicorn, and the ultimate betrayal; some memories of prom that will not be cherished; the story of a boy who must save his childhood love from the greedy clutches of the fey; a story that you can really put yourself into; and more.
I give The Poison Eaters...
...Four zombies
for awesome story telling.

Happy reading,



footnotes________________________________________________
1 As a general rule, I don't read anything that A) I wouldn't want my mama to know I'm reading or B) that I might have to confess. Some people might call me a wuss, but there's nothing wrong with censorship as long as it's you, or a trusted adult, censoring your reading.

Rating Reads: Back and Better Than Ever!

Rating Reads: Back and Better Than Ever!: "Rating Reads is back! And it really is better than ever! There are lots of new things that will (hopefully) improve the blog. First off, w..."

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

New Look, Same Great Blog!

Okay, so "great" might be a bit of a push as I've not been publishing a great deal of things lately, but the "new look" part is completely accurate!
Thanks go to Dahlia's for her help and patience (I'm very fickle). I love the new look, D! Thank you for helping me revamp my blog!
Now, what do y'all think?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Interview with Emma Michaels, author of The Thirteenth Chime

Today I am fortunate enough to have Emma Michaels, author of the upcoming release The Thirteenth Chime, here on my blog for a little Q&A!
Before we get started, I'd just like to note that the fuchsia font is me and the green font is Emma.

Q) Can you give us a brief summary of The Thirteenth Chime?

A) Imagine being a young woman - successful, happy, engaged to a great man and finally getting a good vacation on your Spring Break. You go traveling with your best friend and roommate Stephanie, who is taking you to the West Coast to see the new house her mother has been renovating. Your first night there begins like a dream - the mother welcomes you with open arms and you feel that the week is going to be amazing. Then something happens... Stephanie and her mother are attacked, both ending up in the hospital. You go to the police to ask for help and they refuse to give you answers - they even treat you like a suspect.

So what do you do? You turn to the one man who can help you - your ex-boyfriend, David, who you haven't seen in almost a year. David comes to help you, but what neither of you know is that a madman created a horrifying trap and has been waiting almost fifty years for his moment to come. David, now estranged to you, has no idea of what is coming and of the darkness that is threatening to consume you both. You only know that if you and David are unable to find the bond again that you once had, then the next time the clock rings it won't be a hospital trip you'll be taking... Hatred never dies, and it has been waiting for you for a long time.

Okay, now that sounds awesome!

Q) How did you come up the story idea? Were you struck out of the blue by the Muse, or was it something that developed over a lengthy period of time?

A) The idea came one night when a storm was hitting the area where I live and it had knocked out the power. We went next door to share a few candles and the storm raged outside. Suddenly, the howling of the wind died down and for a moment there was silence. Then the antique grandfather clock in the house began to chime. The sound echoed throughout the house and it made me unconsciously reach out to grab someone's hand, wanting to feel a bond in that moment. It was in that moment that the inspiration for "The Thirteenth Chime" was born.

A story with a story! That's so cool that inspiration literally came like a bolt from out of the blue.
Q) What came first, blogging or writing? Did blogging help you in any way to write/publish your book?

A) I would say that yes it has, not only because it has helped me have a direct line of communication with my potential readers but because it let me see how much books meant to so many people. I had the courage to write my novels before blogging, but not to keep moving forward and submitting past all of the many rejections, because blogging let me know just how worth it, it could be. It let me see how I could help others with somethign I would going to do either way, as long as I was willing to just keep pushing forward.

Q) Have you always wanted to be a writer or was it something that you were drawn to later in life?

A) It wasn't until I was sick one summer and unable to leave my room for a few days that I was given my first YA novel. I was hooked from the beginning of the book. After that, I started playing with story ideas in my head and before long I was writing them down.

Q) Is there an author that you particularly admire or draw inspiration from?

A) Definitely! I really admire Tamora Pierce. Meeting her really encouraged me and helped me believe that it was possible to become an author and really be able to put a smile on so many faces! I was so happy to meet her and so was everyone else. I would love to be able to give someone else that type of joy!

Oh my goodness, I LOVE Tamora Pierce! She's one of my favorite authors. You're so lucky to have met her!

Q) What was the road to publication like for you? Did you hit many walls or was it smooth sailing? Is there anyone to whom you owe thanks for helping you through it?

A) The road to publication was a frustrating one at first. I received well over a hundred standard form rejections from agents who didn't even ask to see a sample of my work, let alone any part of the novel. It wasn't until a dear friend pointed out that they couldn't be basing their decisions off of my writing (as they hadn't read any of it) that I decided to take the plunge and query publishers directly. From that point on, it was smooth sailing, or as close to it as it could be for me. I owe a lot of thanks to not only my fiance for his support, and to Bokheim for their amazing encouragement and assistance, but especially to all of the bloggers and blog readers out there who have been encouraging and supporting me since I first began querying. I love all of you and thank you!

Awe, we love you too, Emma!


Q) Do you have a favorite classic?

A) I adore many of the old favorites but I think my absolute favorite is "The Count of Monte Cristo". I feel there is much to be learned within the story.

Q) What do you have to say to aspiring authors?

A) Don't give up!!! I know it is frustrating (goodness, after a hundred rejections from agents, believe me I know!) and it can be overwhelming, but success can and will happen to those who do not give up and just keep moving forward and getting better at what they do. I want to get to read and enjoy your books just as I hope you will read and enjoy mine. I also hope that I will one day get to be on the "New York Times Bestseller's List" and hope to see you there with me!!!! Let's go for it!

Inspiring words! You make want to write just so we can be on the best seller's list together!

Q) What is something that not many people know about you? (For example, not many people know that my team took first place at an out-of-state soccer tournament in Las Vegas when I was fifteen or that I'm an avid embroiderer.)

A) Hmmm... I LOVE this local restaurant that has different types of Asian food and enjoy drawing. I mostly just do all of my drawings in extremely fine tips pens so that I can include a lot more detail.

Q) Is there anything you wish I'd asked?

A) Yes! I have always wanted someone to ask me what my 'kryptonite' would be if I was a superhero :-) Even if I am not sure what my answer would be. Probably chocolate would be my red kryptonite (addictive) and writers block, while it doesn't happen to me very often, would probably be my green kryptonite (harmful). I guess that can be added as a random fact: I sometimes spout random comic facts, even though I did not read many comics.

I think chocolate might be everyone's red kryptonite! :D
Great answers, Emma! Thank you so much for stopping by!

Thank you so much for having me! I love your questions and really appreciate the support! Thank you to everyone reading and I truly hope that you will love "The Thirteenth Chime"!!!!

I'm really looking forward to reading your book, and I'm sure I'll love it! Good luck!


If y'all want to learn more about Emma and her book, The Thirteenth Chime, which releases Friday the 13th of August, head over to her blog!

Happy reading,
Zombie Girrrl

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Thirteenth Chime by Emma Michaels

I'd just like to shine a little light on an upcoming release, The Thirteenth Chime by Emma Michaels. Emma was a bookblogger before she got the gumption to write her book and seek publication, and now her book is set to release on Friday the 13th of August!
To check out more about her, her blog, and, most importantly, her book, head over to her site!

No one knew of its existence until it was removed from the attic upstairs.
In a beautiful house that overlooks the sea, an antique clock has the power to change the course of their lives.
The power the clock resonates will not only force Destiny and ex-boyfriend David on a journey into the depths of one man's mind long dead, but into the mind of a man filled with hatred and bent on revenge.
With the only clues to the nature of the clock having disappeared into the sea, Destiny and David must retrace the steps the man had taken into the darkness, before they fall prey to the trap he had set in motion over half a century ago.
Hatred never dies.

Happy reading,

Blank Spaces Have Great Potential...