Blog Tour: POSITIVELY BEAUTIFUL by Wendy Mills – Guest Post and Giveaway
Mar 13th, 2015 by Liza Wiemer



by Wendy Mills

Hardcover, 368 pages

Pub date: March 3, 2015

Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Buy it here: IndieBound | B&N | Amazon | Audible | Book Depository

Connect with the author: Goodreads | Twitter | Website

Guest Post:

Books that make us cry. Why do we love them?

Positively Beautiful Cover

I’m going to preface this post by saying I am a happy person. I am, I swear. I love laughing more than about anything. I like funny people. I like hilarious movies and videos. I absolutely adore those epic auto-correct fails that have me laughing out loud in wildly inappropriate places.

However, having said that, I also like books that make me cry, preferably a good ugly cry with lots of snot and hankies. In fact, I wrote a book that has made me cry every time I read it, all three thousand five hundred and twenty-one times. (But who’s counting?) However, at no time during my thought process leading up to writing Positively Beautiful did I think: I know! I’m going to write a tear-jerker! I want to make people SUFFER! (Hands rubbing together in maniacal glee.) No, it all kind of happened on accident.

I did not start out to write a “cancer” book. When I first started writing Positively Beautiful, I was thinking about the BRCA gene, and what it would be like for a sixteen-year-old to know she could have a gene mutation that could give her up to an 80% chance of getting breast cancer in her lifetime. But the more research I did, the more I realized that this type of knowledge would not happen in a vacuum. Most of the people who carry the BRCA gene have a strong family history of cancer and would have experienced cancer first hand, over and over again. Of course this would color their attitude toward death and cancer. Of course this would play a role in how they decided to handle their own mutation. I set out to write a book about a gene mutation, and by necessity, it turned into a book that included cancer, because this is the natural progression of this type of gene mutation.

But even though there were parts in this book that I dreaded writing, that I actually sat shaking at my keyboard as I wrote, they were a necessary part of this story. And there is no getting around the fact that to some readers (including me), crying over a book is enjoyable in a weird, possibly masochistic way. Not like, why yes, I think you should staple my private parts to the headboard kind of way, but masochistic in the fact that we are doing something that makes us hurt and ENJOYING it at some level. It has forced me to think a lot about why I like books that make me cry and what it says about us as humans.

Why We Like Books That Make Us Cry:

  1. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of catharsis is “purification or purgation of the emotions (as pity and fear) primarily through art.” So basically, we have all these different emotions running though us, and by crying, we expel them like salmonella-coated chicken.
  2. Trying on emotions for size. It’s a subconscious way of preparing ourselves for a time when we may be going through something similarly tragic. We get to feel all the intense emotion of a particular situation, with the benefit of a safety net. We can close the book and start the pot roast.
  3. Reminding us that we are human. Crying for emotion is a unique symptom of the human condition. If we can cry at another person’s pain, then we are empathizing with them on a level that is virtually unknown anywhere else in the animal kingdom.
  4. The addictiveness of connecting with a book. The holy grail of reading is finding that book that you can connect with on such a deep level that you feel raw, visceral emotion about the plight of a character.
  5. Sometimes you just need to cry. There is actually a Wikihow article on “How to Cry and Let it All Out,” (I kid you not, check it out), so evidently I’m not the only one who enjoys a fugly, messy crying session every once in a while. I know I’ve always felt hollowed out and somehow “clean” after a good crying jag.


Why do you like books that make you cry?



March 2nd Jenuine Cupcakes

March 3rd  YA Bibliophile

March 4th  Book Revels

March 5th  The Hardcover Lover

March 6th  Bookiemoji

March 9th  Dana Square

March 10th  Lovin Los Libros

March 11th  The Book Belles

March 12th  Adventures in Reading

March 13th  Who Ru Blog

Wendy Mills Author Photo

Author Biography

WENDY MILLS was born in Virginia and spent several years in North Carolina, but now lives with her family on the tropical island of Bokeelia, off the south-west coast of Florida where she spends her time writing and dodging hurricanes. She has published adult mysteries with Poisoned Pen Press, and Positively Beautiful is her first young adult novel. Visit her online at www.wendymillsbooks.com or on Twitter @WendyMillsBooks.


Giveaway: US only –

1 hardcover of


by Wendy Mills. Entrants must be 13 years or older.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Flashback Friday: STAY by Debbie Caletti
Mar 13th, 2015 by Liza Wiemer

flashback-friday-featuredFlashback Friday is a weekly meme by Swoony Boys Podcast & Fiction Fare featuring novels that are over 2 years old.


by Deb Caletti

Hardcover, 313 pages

Pub. date: April 5, 2011

Published by Simon Pulse

Buy it here: IndieBound | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository

Connect with the author: Goodreads | Website | Twitter | Facebook


From Goodreads:

Clara’s relationship with Christian is intense from the start, and like nothing she’s ever experienced before. But what starts as devotion quickly becomes obsession, and it’s almost too late before Clara realizes how far gone Christian is and what he’s willing to do to make her stay.

Now Clara has left the city and Christian behind. No one back home has any idea where she is, but she still struggles to shake off her fear. She knows Christian won’t let her go that easily, and that no matter how far she runs, it may not be far enough….

My review:

StayStay by Deb Caletti (Read in August, 2011)

Finished this amazing book in one sitting. Wow. Every person who is not in a relationship should read this book, those of you who are in an unhealthy relationship should read this book! Oh heck, everyone should read this book, there is so much to learn and it might save someone from experiencing the kind of hell the main character Clara went through. It’s a cautionary tale of what one person’s obsession can do to another human being. I loved how Deb Caletti brought light out of darkness. I love how she interwove so many secrets into this book, painful and traumatizing yet also revealing and freeing. Clara gets involved with Christian, a boy who at first seems like the most perfect guy. What unravels is shocking and way realistic. I loved the father, flaws and all, I loved Finn and his family. This is a rich, emotional YA novel. Highly recommend.

View all my reviews

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