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May Reading Wrap-Up

Yes — hit my five book goal for May. 🤗
(Links –> Goodreads.)

13508607The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton
1. Lush historical fiction. The Secret Keeper jumps timelines (“WWII England through the blitz, to the ’60s and beyond” as Goodreads puts it) but maintains a strong sense of time and place through the various narratives and settings.
2. Twisty turns. The story centers around a bizarre killing (was it murder? self defense?) witnessed by teen Laurel, and principle to her character’s decades-spanning arch. The mystery kept me guessing throughout, and its conclusion was really surprising and super satisfying. All the scandalous secrets in this one!
3. Sister story. While Laurel and her sisters aren’t necessarily central to the story’s main and complex plot, their characterizations and relationships jump off the page, and cemented my investment in the story.

34520598The Leading Edge of Now by Marci Lyn Curtis (September, 2018)
1. Perfect blend of light and dark. I’m in awe of the way Marci Lyn Curtis combines humor and romance with much more serious topics like grief, sexual assault, estrangement, and the child welfare system. This is a profound and important story, one that’s full of heart and spirit.
2. Extraordinary protagonist. Grace is a survivor in so many ways; she’s faced a seemingly unfair amount of adversity in her seventeen years, but she’s witty and independent and strong and compassionate. Her voice is both hilarious and heartfelt, and she’s so easy to root for. I think YA fans are going to adore her.
3. Owen, Owen, Owen. I worry that my thoughts here might be a bit of a spoiler, so I’m printing them in white. If you’re interested in reading, highlight… Grace’s longtime off-and-on love interest has faced challenges of his own, but he’s endlessly kind and supportive and wonderful. Plus, he has a hint of an Aussie accent, so that’s delightful… ❤

35098412The Queen’s Rising by Rebecca Ross
1. Sisterhood. My favorite thing about this beautifully written fantasy is its focus on female empowerment. Main character Brienna doesn’t have biological sisters, but she fosters bonds with her school mates (as well as another woman named *spoiler*) and I loved seeing how those relationships came to impact the plot.
2. Fascinating world-building. Author Rebecca Ross has done some unique things with Brienna’s world, beginning with the “passions” she studies at her school, Magnolia House. I thought the rival countries of Valenia and Maevana were distinct and well drawn, too.
3. Strong conclusion. The Queen’s Rising is the first book in a trilogy, but it ends in fulfilling way — no frustrating cliffhanger! There are plenty of threads left open for story to come, and I’m curious to find out what happens to Brienna and company next, but I appreciate the closure Rebecca Ross provided.

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Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi
1. A study in voice. I loved this book, but it took me three weeks to read because I was pouring over sentences and passages, studying their perfect combinations of words. Emergency Contact‘s prose is as full of charisma as its main characters.
2. All the feels. Parts of this book are hysterical and parts of in are heartbreaking, but it’s entirely relatable. I found myself cringing, sometimes, because I felt Sam and Penny’s emotions so viscerally. Also, their friendship and the tentative beginnings of their romance are, in my opinion, flawlessly written.
3. Set. In. College. Guys, I wish there were more books that take place during the years just after high school. The freedom a college setting affords characters is wonderfully conducive to self discovery, and all sorts of mischief. The dynamic that both Sam and Penny have with their mothers at this point in their lives is fascinating, too.

36575818Meet the Sky by McCall Hoyle (September, 2018)
1. Survival story. I love books (and movies) about characters who are stranded, forced to by mother nature to test themselves in ways that incite growth and change. Meet the Sky‘s Sophie is a selfless, resilient girl before the hurricane hits her island home, but after? Whoa. Her courage and resourcefulness make her a character worth cheering for. It doesn’t hurt that love interest Finn provokes change in her, too, as she challenges him. I love the intensity the storm brought to their fledging relationship.
2. Beach-set book. It’s no secret that I love stories set near the ocean, and Meet the Sky takes place on North Carolina’s Outer Banks. The scenery is beautifully and evocatively described, making the setting feel like a character all its own.
3. Powerful prose. McCall Hoyle has a gift with words. Every line of her sophomore novel is compelling and lyrical. I felt Sophie’s worries and wishes as if they were my own.

Tell me: What’s the best book you read in May?

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Upcoming Events

michal-grosicki-366027(Image by: Michał Grosicki)

Hi, friends! Below, find a couple of upcoming events I’ll be participating in. If you’re in the Philadelphia or D.C./Northern Virginia areas, you should check them out! 

Swoon Reads Author Showcase & Signing
w/ Karole CozzoSandy HallL.E. Delano, & Devon Taylor
Main Point Books
Wayne, PA
February 18, 2018 4 PM
(books will be available for purchase from Main Point Books)

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NoVa TEEN Book Festival
Washington Lee High School
Arlington, VA
March 10, 2018
(Schedule / Register (free!) / Preorder Books)

Hope to see you!

I ❤️ the Holidays YA Giveaway!

 

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ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE!

(U.S. only. Ends Friday, December 15th at 11:59 PM.)

Upcoming Events…

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(Photo by Brigitte Tohm)

So looking forward to these December events;
if you’re in the Virginia/D.C./Maryland area, come see us!

Museum of Contemporary American Teenagers
Lit Night
Contemporary YA Panel
w/ Christina June & Brigid Kremmerer
Bethesda Popup Museum
Bethesda, MD
December 8, 2017 6 PM – 7 PM

YA Author Game Night
w/ Leah HendersonChristina June, & Lisa Maxwell
Scrawl Books
Reston, VA
December 15, 2017 6 PM – 8 PM

Hope to see you!

October Events

20645250_10213835576221259_8156803949160231629_oYA Debuts Reading
with Meg Eden, Lisa Rosinsky, and Misa Sugiura
East City Bookshop
October 13, 2017 6:30 PM
“Come hear debut YA authors Misa Sugiura (IT’S NOT LIKE IT’S A SECRET), Katy Upperman (KISSING MAX HOLDEN), Lisa Rosinsky (INEVITABLE AND ONLY), and Meg Eden (POST HIGH-SCHOOL REALITY QUEST) read from their works and talk about the writing and publishing process. Then, stick around for the first meeting of W(h)ine & Angst, a YA book club for readers 21+, discussing AN INHERITANCE OF ASHES by Leah Bobet.”

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Fall For the Book Festival
In the Mood for Love Panel
with Ada Calhoun & Lindsay Detwiler
Merten Hall, Room 1203, George Mason University
October 14, 2017 2:30
“Ada Calhoun, Lindsay Detwiler and Katy Upperman chat about the art of writing about L-O-V-E across genres. In WEDDING TOASTS I’LL NEVER GIVE author Ada Calhoun is revered for her honesty, poignancy, and sense of humor in her memoir about the complexity of marriage. Calhoun is a contributor to the New York Times’ “Modern Love” column. Romance novelist Lindsay Detwiler shares the gripping tale of a married couple, fighting for their lives and their love in the novel REMEMBER WHEN. Katy Upperman continues the discussion with her debut YA novel KISSING MAX HOLDEN about a forbidden teenage romance with the boy next door.”

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Roundtable: A Conversation with Authors of Teen Fiction
Catonsville Library
Sunday, October 22, 2017 2:00
“Join 6 writers of fiction for teens (Faith Boughan, Meg Eden, Christina June, Kathy MacMillan, Sharon Huss Roat, and Katy Upperman) for a lively, interactive panel discussion about their inspirations, writing process, and the value of stories in the modern world. Books will be available for purchase and signing after the program.  This panel is co-sponsored by Baltimore County Public Library and the MD/DE/WV Region of the Society for Book Writers and Illustrators.”

Hope to see you! ❤

YA Scavenger Hunt (Team Pink 🤗)

Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt!

This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors… and a chance to win some awesome prizes!

During this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each participating author, you also get a numerical clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize — one lucky winner will receive one book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 120 hours!
Team Pink There are seven contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one, or all! I am part of the PINK TEAM — but there is also a red team, orange team, gold team, green team, purple team, and blue team, all offering a chance to win different sets of books! 

(To learn more about the hunt, find links for all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page.)

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SCAVENGER HUNT PUZZLE

Directions: Below, I’ve “hidden” my favorite number. (Okay, hint — it’s highlighted in pink!) Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the pink team, and then add them up (don’t worry, you can use a calculator!).

Entry Form: Once you’ve visited the blogs of all members of the pink team AND added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form HERE to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number answer will qualify.

Fine Print: Open internationally. Anyone under the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian’s permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by Sunday, October 8th, at noon PST. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.

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SCAVENGER HUNT GUEST AUTHOR

Tera

Today, I’m super excited to welcome Tera Lynn Childs to my blog! She’s the RITA-award-winning young adult author of the mythology-based Oh. My. Gods. series, the Forgive My Fins mermaid romance series, the kick-butt monster-hunting Sweet Venom trilogy, and the Darkly Fae series. She also wrote the City Chicks sweet chick lit romance series and co-wrote the Hero Agenda and Creative HeArts series. Tera lives nowhere in particular and spends her time writing wherever she can find a comfy chair and a steady stream of caffeinated beverages. Learn more about Tera by checking out her author website, where you can also find more information about her books! Tera also has a Facebook page, and Goodreads author page, and you can follow her on Twitter!

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EXCLUSIVE CONTENT FROM TERA LYNN CHILDS

Pearls

As best friend and emissary to her mer kingdom’s princess, Periwinkle Wentletrap juggles many responsibilities. At the moment those include getting the princess (and herself) ready for the upcoming Sea Harvest Dance. When a trip to the Thalassinian marketplace for pearls and dress-making supplies leads to a reunion with her long-time crush, Peri is once again caught up in the swirl of emotions she feels for a thoughtful pearl trader who reminds her of a dashing pirate. But things are never simple with Riatus Ballenato. The shadows of his past have come back to haunt him and he will do anything to keep those he cares about from getting caught in the darkness. Even if that means pushing away the girl he’s falling for. With the dance fast approaching, it might take a little outside help to bring Peri and her crush together at last.

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And now, some really fun exclusive content from Tera — and Peri!

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Ahoy! Periwinkle Wentletrap here, aka the star of Pretty in Pearls and the best friend since guppihood of Lily Sanderson, Crown Princess of Thalassinia.

When TLC asked me to come up with something special to share for the YA Scavenger Hunt, my first thought was PIRATES! My first thought is usually pirates, so that’s not surprising to anyone who knows me. (After you read Pretty in Pearls you’ll understand why I have a special affinity for the rebellious sea captain sort. *cough* Riatus *cough*)

So here, in no particular order, is my list of my top ten favorite pirate(ish) movies.

1 – Pirates of the Caribbean

2 – Captain Ron

3 – Hook

4 – Swiss Family Robinson

5 – The Princess Bride

6 – Treasure Island

7 – Muppet Treasure Island

8 – Pirates of Penzance

9 – Cutthroat Island

10 – Scooby-Doo! Pirates Ahoy!

If you love pirates as much as I do, then I think you’ll love these movies.

Yo-ho-ho,
Peri

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Okay, scavenger hunters! Don’t forget to enter the contest for a chance to win a ton of books from me, Tera Lynn Childs, plus many more authors! To enter, you need to have found my favorite number (in pink!) hidden somewhere in this post. Add up all the favorite numbers of the authors on the PINK TEAM and you’ll have the secret code to enter for our grand prize!

To keep going on your quest for the secret code,  check out the next author on the PINK TEAM, Ginger Scott

KISSING MAX HOLDEN Preorder Incentive

Friends, preordering a book is an AWESOME thing to do.

First, preordering almost always ensures that you’ll pay the lowest price; many online retailers have a preorder price guarantee, meaning even if you order the book now at its full price, you’ll end up paying the lowest price that book might fall to. Win!

Second, preordering means you’ll have a brand new book delivered to your doorstep, very often on its release day. So, you don’t have to get dressed, or forgo your hot cup of coffee, or battle traffic to get that new book you’ve had your eye on. Again, win!

Third, preordering helps authors; when booksellers see preorder interest in forthcoming releases, they often purchase and shelve more copies of those releases, giving them more exposure and, hopefully, greater sales. And again, WIN!

Fourth, sometimes (THIS TIME!) there are incentives associated with preordering…

Upperman - Kissing Max Holden HI RES

If you have preordered or plan to preorder a copy of Kissing Max Holden, you’re eligible to receive the preorder incentives detailed below! 

Tier One
A gift for all who enter, while supplies last. Includes one signed Kissing Max Holden bookmark, one card featuring the secret recipe for Jilly’s *Best* Chocolate Chip Cookies, and one exclusive bookplate, personalized and signed, just for you! International.

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Tier Two
Three winners will be chosen at random to receive the gifts in Tier One, plus a cupcake notebook, nail polish in “Dream On”, a Lindt Caramel Brownie treat, and a Swoon Reads coloring book. U.S. only.

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Tier Three
One winner will be chosen at random to receive the gifts from Tiers One and Two, as well as a kissy lips cookie cutter, an arrow-heart spatula, a hardcover edition of the Cookie Love cookbook, and a “Happily Ever After” candle. U.S only.

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Here’s How To Enter

  1. Preorder a hardcover (ISBN 9781250111166) or eBook (ISBN 9781250111159) of Kissing Max Holden {UK edition hardcover (ISBN-10: 1250111161) or eBook (ISBN-13: 978-1250111166} from your favorite bookseller. For convenience, here are some quick links: AmazonIndie BoundBarnes & NobleBAM!TargetPowell’sOne More Page BooksAmazon UK, Chapters Indigo.
  2. Photograph or screenshot your proof of purchase.
  3. Fill out this KISSING MAX HOLDEN Preorder Incentive form, including your name, email address, mailing address, and preferred bookplate personalization.
  4. Email your proof of purchase to UppermanPreorders@gmail.com.

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Fine Print

Entries must be submitted via the linked form by July 31st at 11:59 PM. First Tier gifts are available to all entrants. Second and Third Tier gifts are available only to entrants with U.S. mailing addresses. Proof of purchase must be submitted for eligibility. Preorder incentive is open as long as supplies last. Gifts will be mailed on a first-come, first-serve basis, beginning in August.

Questions? Please email them to UppermanPreorders@gmail.com.

As always, thank you so much for your support! 😘