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Waiting on Wednesday: EVERY LAST WORD by Tamara Ireland Stone
Jan 7th, 2015 by Liza Wiemer

New WoW

Waiting on Wednesday: (A meme started by Breaking the Spine)

EVERY LAST WORD23341894

by Tamara Ireland Stone

Hardcover, 368 pages

Pub. date: June 16, 2015

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Add to your Goodreads list

Pre-order: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

Connect with Tamara: Goodreads | Twitter | Website | Facebook

 

From Goodreads: 

If you could read my mind, you wouldn’t be smiling.

Samantha McAllister looks just like the rest of the popular girls in her junior class. But hidden beneath the straightened hair and expertly applied makeup is a secret that her friends would never understand: Sam has Purely-Obsessional OCD and is consumed by a stream of dark thoughts and worries that she can’t turn off.

Second-guessing every move, thought, and word makes daily life a struggle, and it doesn’t help that her lifelong friends will turn toxic at the first sign of a wrong outfit, wrong lunch, or wrong crush. Yet Sam knows she’d be truly crazy to leave the protection of the most popular girls in school. So when Sam meets Caroline, she has to keep her new friend with a refreshing sense of humor and no style a secret, right up there with Sam’s weekly visits to her psychiatrist.

Caroline introduces Sam to the Poet’s Corner, a hidden room and a tight-knit group of misfits who have been ignored by the school at large. Sam is drawn to them immediately, especially a guitar-playing guy with a talent for verse, and starts to discover a whole new side of herself. Slowly, she begins to feel more “normal” than she ever has as part of the popular crowd . . . until she finds a new reason to question her sanity and all she holds dear.

Why am I excited for this?

Cover: No, this isn’t the reason why I’m excited for this novel, but I do think it’s really cool!

I am a huge fan of Tamara’s. Loved her YA novels Time Between Us and the sequel, Time After TimeShe writes strong, memorable characters, and from the description above, I have no doubt that Samantha is going to be another one of those characters. Read Tamara’s books, and I have no doubt you’ll be swept into the story.

I talked with Tamara while this was a WIP (work in progress) and she was so excited about it. I know Samantha was inspired by a teen Tamara knows, and what better way to infuse authenticity? There’s romance too, and I’m looking forward to seeing how this plays out. Poet’s corner? How exciting is that. I know I’ll love this aspect of the novel.

OCD: What an important topic to show in a YA novel! Knowing Tamara, it’s going to be handled with compassion, authenticity. So important.

Highlights from the School Library Journal #TeenSummer Online Event #SLJST
Jul 24th, 2013 by Liza Wiemer

Summerteen2013_header10

Today, I participated in the online School Library Journal SummerTeen event, which I would describe as an outstanding, informative, dynamic, interactive event with live web broadcasts, panel discussions, chats with authors, publishers, a film director & fellow YA enthusiasts-teachers, librarians, writers. Besides the online site through SLJ, we used the hashtag #SLJST to connect with others. It was a productive time and I found myself glued to the computer and actively participating and listening. It took me over an hour to prepare the omelet I made for lunch because I kept turning back to my computer.

Here were some of my favorite tweets I posted or RT
today:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

17262252While visiting the Candlewick booth, I learned about FALLOUT by Todd Strasser. The publication date is September 10, 2013 and there are 272 pages. I think it will be a fascinating historical fiction novel and I’m looking forward to reading it.

Here’s the description from Goodreads:
What if the bomb had actually been dropped? What if your family was the only one with a shelter?

In the summer of 1962, the possibility of nuclear war is all anyone talks about. But Scott’s dad is the only one in the neighborhood who actually prepares for the worst. As the neighbors scoff, he builds a bomb shelter to hold his family and stocks it with just enough supplies to keep the four of them alive for two critical weeks. In the middle of the night in late October, when the unthinkable happens, those same neighbors force their way into the shelter before Scott’s dad can shut the door. With not enough room, not enough food, and not enough air, life inside the shelter is filthy, physically draining, and emotionally fraught. But even worse is the question of what will — and won’t — remain when the door is opened again. Internationally best-selling author Todd Strasser has written his most impressive and personal novel to date, ruthlessly yet sensitively exploring the terrifying what-ifs of one of the most explosive moments in human history.

I also was fascinated by this YA book trailer for Aquifer by Jonathan Friesen, which is being published by Blink YA Books:

Another highlight was Penguin’s Authors Stand Up for Free Speech video, which talks about banned books:

My tweet:

Over at Disney, I participated in a wonderful chat with Tamara Ireland Stone (see tweet above about the video I discovered) and am thrilled to have been able to download onto my iPad her newest book TIME AFTER TIME! I absolutely LOVED her first novel, TIME BETWEEN US! I had posted about it on my blog here: http://www.whorublog.com/?p=1374

Here’s the video:

At Scholastic, I chatted with Katie Alender, author of Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer. I learned that she spent quite a bit of time in Paris researching this novel and took  forty-five minute tour of the Catacombs. When I asked her what her most surprising discovery was while doing research for this novel, she said that Paris was the perfect location for a murdering ghost! And since I’ve been to Paris, I’d have to agree. Lots of old buildings, nooks and crannies, and, of course, the Catacombs!

I listened to several webinars, including Tamora Pierce who was the keynote speaker. (See tweets above.) I loved Allen Zadoff, author of Boy Nobody who was a part of the Real Life Mysteries and Thrillers Panel. (See tweets above.) Technology in Teen Lit and Humor Me! Panel were great too. (See tweets above.) I had no idea that Paul Rudnick was so funny!
I can’t thank SLJ, the publishers, authors, and participants enough for this free event. I look forward to participating next year.

Page-Turner Thursday – Three YA novels you won’t be able to put down:
Sep 27th, 2012 by Liza Wiemer

Without any doubt, there are some outstanding YA novels out there. Lately, I’ve lost quite a bit of sleep because I couldn’t put a novel down. So, I decided to share with you thee of them on PAGE-TURNER THURSDAY. In no particular order:

TIME BETWEEN US by Tamara Ireland Stone. I read the ARC, which I received at the BEA. (Pub date: October 9th)

From Goodreads:

Anna and Bennett were never supposed to meet: she lives in 1995 Chicago and he lives in 2012 San Francisco. But Bennett has the unique ability to travel through time and space, which brings him into Anna’s life, and with him a new world of adventure and possibility.

As their relationship deepens, the two face the reality that time may knock Bennett back to where he belongs, even as a devastating crisis throws everything they believe into question. Against a ticking clock, Anna and Bennett are forced to ask themselves how far they can push the bounds of fate, what consequences they can bear in order to stay together, and whether their love can stand the test of time.

My impression: Trust me – everyone will be buzzing about TIME BETWEEN US! Time-travel novel perfection. I absolutely LOVED this novel. From page one I was drawn in and could not stop reading. There were so many twists and turns and unexpected moments that my heartbeat seemed to quicken with each chapter. And when I reached the last page, I wanted to start all over again. Anna and Bennett are one of my most favorite YA couples. Tamara does a such a beautiful job writing this story that it’s easy to suspend disbelief and completely embrace this time-travel story.

I was so excited about the novel that I tweeted Tamara immediately. As you can see, I couldn’t keep my enthusiasm to 140 characters!

For more information on Tamara Ireland Stone and TIME BETWEEN US visit her webpage: http://tamarairelandstone.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

MY LIFE NEXT DOOR by Huntley Fitzpatrick –

From Goodreads:

The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, numerous, messy, affectionate. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen-year-old Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love, Jase’s family makes Samantha one of their own. Then in an instant, the bottom drops out of her world and she is suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

A dreamy summer read, full of characters who stay with you long after the story is over.

My impression: OMGosh – I fell in love from page one. This was a novel I had put on hold from the library. I was the first to get a copy and read it. Honestly, MLND is so good that I bought my own. I raved to the librarians. I’ve raved on Twitter. I’ve raved on Facebook. I’m a sucker for a fabulous romance and really believe that MLND has a shot at winning an award from the Romance Writers of America in the YA Contemporary Category. Unfortunately, I can’t vote. :(

I highly encourage you to read this novel, and when you’re done please tweet: @HuntleyFitz #MoreGarretts – You’ll understand exactly what I mean the second you finish turning the last page, if not before! <3 <3 <3 We need more Garretts. Help us with this Twitter campaign!

For more info on Huntley Fitzpatrick and MY LIFE NEXT DOOR, visit her webpage at: http://www.huntleyfitzpatrick.com/

 

BLINK ONCE by Cylin Busby

From Goodreads:

West is a high school senior who has everything going for him until an accident leaves him paralyzed. Strapped down in his hospital bed, slipping in and out of consciousness, West is terrified and alone. Until he meets Olivia.

She’s the girl next door—sort of. A patient in the room next to his, only Olivia can tell what West is thinking, and only Olivia seems to know that the terrible dreams he’s been having are not just a result of his medication. Yet as West comes to rely on Olivia—to love her, even—certain questions pull at him: Why has Olivia been in the hospital for so long? And what does it mean that she is at the center of his nightmares? But the biggest question of all comes when West begins to recover and learns that the mysterious girl he’s fallen in love with has a secret he could never have seen coming.

My impression: I had to read this because I saw a review from Hayden Casey, a YA Blogger I respect. Since he loved it, I immediately added the novel to my to-read list. What else can I say except THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

BLINK ONCE is AMAZING! Teachers, parents – this is a great novel for those reluctant readers out there. And don’t let the cover keep you from recommending this to boys! It’s perfect for boys! (Actually, I hope the paperback will have a cover that will be appealing to boys, because they definitely need to read this! It’s written from West’s point-of-view, for goodness sake! But hey, I get it. Girls read more than boys? Let’s change that!

This is the review I posted on Goodreads and on Amazon.com – Cylin Busby’s Blink Once is an engrossing, mysterious novel that will keep you guessing. In many ways, it reminded me of Megan Miranda’s outstanding novel Fracture. The reader learns quickly that West has been in a biking accident and is now paralyzed and unable to speak because of a breathing tube. The description of his hospital experience is at times heart breaking and touching. As the story unfolds, we are introduced to Olivia, a sick girl who’s room is next to West’s. Olivia, a vivacious, sad, bold girl who helps bring West out of his shell. She devises a plan of communication. Blink once means yes, blink twice means no. Her visits provide friendship and courage and hope. And in time, West and Olivia fall in love.
With every page, the reader is pulled deeper and deeper into the mystery of West and his paralysis. Will he recover? What will happen between Olivia and him?
I loved this novel and I think it is perfect for reluctant readers. Guaranteed to draw them in.
Definitely a winner, put it on your must-read list.

For more info on Cylin Busby and BLINK ONCE, visit her webpage at: http://www.cylinbusby.com/

I hope to continue with PAGE-TURNER THURSDAY in future posts.

 

BEA & NYC YA Author/Blogger Rooftop Party Highlights & Giveaway
Jun 10th, 2012 by Liza Wiemer

It all started with this:

 

 

 

 

 

I hadn’t planned on going to BEA (Book Expo America), but Jeremy’s tweet got me thinking. So, I talked to my husband Jim about it. Without any hesitation, he said that of course I had to go. I contacted Nili, one of my many cousins who live in NYC, and asked if I could stay with her. That led to one simple thought: Wouldn’t it be awesome to have a party with YA authors and bloggers?

That thought led to action. I contacted Nili about renting a space in her apartment building, which turned out to be the glass enclosed rooftop solarium on the forty-second floor of her building. I had never seen the space, but I could imagine how spectacular the view would be – The Statue of Liberty, Manhattan, the Hudson River, Hoboken, NJ. Nili didn’t hesitate, and because of her, this party became reality. Thank you, thank you, thank you!! xo (See pictures here: http://www.whorublog.com/?page_id=1122 )

Almost immediately, I knew I’d need some help. The talented blogger/designer Jeremy West of Novel Thoughts http://www.novelthoughtsblog.com/ jumped on board to make the gorgeous evites, logo, etc, and then the fabulous Andye and Amy from Reading Teen http://www.readingteen.net/, whom I’ve admired and respected for years because of their thorough and fair book reviews, their sense of humor, their willingness to blog about their opinions on tough topics in YA novels.

The NYC YA Author/Blogger Rooftop Party was on its way.

At the very beginning, there were a few moments of doubt. Will people come? But I asked myself what the worst case scenario would be. The answer was simple – the money spent would be gone and no one would show up but us. (After all, BEA week is extremely busy and authors and bloggers have other parties to attend.) I decided I could live with these risks. Huge expenditure of time, energy, money. But in one conversation I had with Jeremy, I said, “I’d rather take the risk and fall flat on my face, than not try at all.” Generally speaking, that’s one of my philosophy’s toward life. It has served me well.

The experience was way more than we could ever imagined. Each of us brought our strengths to the table and shared ideas through email, Skype, Google Video Chat, texting, and HeyTell. Andye kept an online spreadsheet that included authors and their publishers, bloggers, RSVPs, author facts for our True and False icebreaker. It took tremendous organization and communication. I’ve planned parties in Milwaukee, but never one out of state. I never thought about how convenient it is to get in a car, drive to the grocery store, and get everything I need. In NYC, you have to think about what you can carry. Delivery service is the absolute norm. We had lists of items to bring from out-of-town-I checked two bags at the airport and Amy and Andye’s car was loaded with the centerpieces, books, etc. Jeremy took a bus with name tags, our True and False icebreaker activity, and a canvas he designed for all the authors to sign for one of the ten raffles we had.

These are the book covers of the authors who joined us!

The raffles included Amy’s magnificent book-themed centerpieces (to see her incredible work click here: http://www.readingteen.net/2012/06/my-bookish-crafty-project-for-rooftop.html, Starbucks gift certificates, books, and journals with a cover designed by my husband using all the authors’ covers and Jeremy’s logo. Party favors included blinking “lightbulb” pens, glow-in-the-dark items, Figment tot bags, which we filled with books from Candlewick, Sourcebooks, Harlequin, Flux, Little Brown, Simon & Schuster, Scholastic, Disney, Pendrell, Bloombury, Harper Collins, Random House, Macmillan, Hachette. Thank you to all these publishers for making the party extra special by donating YA novels for us to share. In addition, Simon and Schuster gave us suntan lotion in honor of Burn for Burn, Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian’s new YA novel.

Nili’s apartment was filled with boxes from publishers, party places, and on the day of, tons and tons of food and beverages.

Several additional people were integral to making this party a success. Jeremy West’s awesome brother Jeffrey of Novel Thoughts was our official photographer and also had been a part of some of the planning. So glad you could make it to NYC. Thanks so much. xo

From nearly the very beginning, Kelsey Dickson of Reading and Breathing gave us a hand. She put together the playlist for the evening, including songs she found on authors’ playlists of the music they listened to while writing their YA novels. She also brought disposable cameras and glow-in-the-dark necklaces and bracelets, which were a HUGE hit! She helped set up, too. Thanks Kels! xo

The YA from Reading Teen, Austin, Abigaile, and Kit, also were an integral part of the party. Their help was critical for putting our gift bags together, setting up, welcoming our guests, cleaning up. Y’all are awesome! Thank you so much. xo

And my cousin Aryeh, who stayed behind the scene and kept everyone in refreshments and made Amy laugh. Love you. xo

Mitali of Alley of Books and the Teen Author Carnival also came early to help set up. Thanks!

Throughout the planning, we prayed for good weather. (It did end up raining a little, but for the majority of the time, we could use not only the solarium, but the rooftop.) By eight o’clock, the guests arrived. Some of the authors made near Herculean efforts to get to us, including Adele Griffin who was in a taxi for an hour! Tweets were sent, some with the hashtag #RooftopParty. Many of the authors said it was the BEST party they had been to all week. Overall, the evening was a HUGE success. There was laughter, photos taken, budding friendships formed, breathtaking views.

To hear about the experience from Stacy and Shannon from Girls in the Stacks, listen to their comments about the Rooftop Party, which start at approximately 13:00 minutes. (I recommend the entire podcast – their comments about the BEA will make you smile and laugh.) http://girlsinthestacks.com/podcasts/ya-podcast/2012/06/bea-2012/

I have a few more highlights to share with you, but these come from the BEA and the Teen Author Carnival.

Lucas Klauss and Jennifer E. Smith

Jackson Pearce and Eliot Schrefer

Teen Author Carnival was held Tuesday night at Jefferson Market Library. The panel discussions were fantastic. I went to “You Don’t Know You’re Beautiful – Keeping it Realistic” and “What Doesn’t Kill You, Makes You Stronger (Kick Ass Characters)” with over twenty YA authors. http://teenauthorcarnival.tumblr.com/

I saw numerous twitter/blogger friends including Briana from The Book Pixie. Neither of us knew the other was attending, and we just happened to get into the same loooog book signing line right next to each other. I’ll cherish our hug and conversation for a long time. Seeing Stacy (and later Shannon) from Girls In The Stacks also made my day. I saw the AWESOME Lauren Oliver and had her sign her latest middle grade book.

Lauren Oliver and me

Patricia MacLachlan and me

On Wednesday, I arrived extra early for the Children’s Breakfast. To my utter amazement, I was standing next to the legendary Newbery Metal award winning author Patricia MacLachlan. Goose bumps bloomed all over my skin. Talking with her was a tremendous honor. She was so kind, even when I went completely fangirl and asked to have my photo taken with her.

Chris Colfer from “Glee” MC’d the breakfast. He was hysterical, joking with the crowd that he wrote the fan-fiction Fifty Shades of Green, in honor of John Green. You can listen to the clip here: http://lover4klaineandcrisscolfer.tumblr.com/post/24540342391/chris-colfer-confesses-to-writing-the-fifty-shades

Lois Lowry had people in tears. She spoke about her journey writing The Giver and the three novels that followed. She talked about how her son who was killed serving our country influenced her writing. It was his questions that led to writing The Giver.  She said that every generation must have hope to vanquish evil.

I met some extraordinary people standing in line for author book signs. Those connections will stay with me for a long time, and I feel truly grateful and blessed to have made them.

TO SEE PHOTOS OF THE NYC YA AUTHOR/BLOGGER ROOFTOP PARTY GO HERE: http://www.whorublog.com/?page_id=1122

GIVEAWAY:  In honor of the Rooftop Party and BEA, I’m offering several giveaways, including this prize package of Burn for Burn and a signed copy by Rebecca Serle of her newYA novel When You Were Mine, which has been optioned for a movie!

WINNERS CHOSEN – SEE SCOOT READ & UNABRIDGED SHELF, THANKS TO ALL FOR ENTERING 

BURN FOR BURN, by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian, BURN FOR BURN Sunscreen, Figment Bag, and a signed copy of WHEN YOU WHERE MINE by Rebecca Serle

Entering the giveaway is easy – just leave a comment. Posting on Facebook or tweeting about it adds an extra entry, please let me know. AND, extra entry if you follow me on TWITTER: https://twitter.com/#!/LizaWiemer – Let me know if you’re a Twitter friend. 😀 Giveaway ends Tuesday, June 19, 2012 at 8 PM CST. (US and Canada only)

To enter additional giveaways from our Rooftop Party go here:

Reading Teen

http://www.readingteen.net/2012/06/rooftop-after-party-giveaway.html

Novel Thoughts –

novelthoughtsblog.com/2012/06/bea-rooftop-after-party-giveaway.html

 

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