diversity

Saturday Night Author Fever #17 with Zoë Sumra

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Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!

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This Saturday Night we welcome Zoë Sumra. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.

Zoë, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?

I’m a child of the 80s and, as such, a lot of my favourite bands or soloists started their careers in the 70s and continued into the 80s – particularly I’d like to single out Queen and Meat Loaf.  My first published book, Sailor to a Siren, is named after a Meat Loaf song (from 1984… my favourite Meat Loaf periods are probably the 70s/earliest 80s and the 90s, but this one song from the mid 80s always stood out to me).  Sailor to a Siren is a space opera novel: it’s a gangland thriller set on an alien planet, with magic, explosions, and quite a lot of shouting.

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Saturday Night Author Fever #16 with Miri Castor

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Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!

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This Saturday Night we welcome Miri Castor. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.

Miri, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?

Hey there! My name’s Miri and I’m a YA SFF author for the Opal Charm series. It follows Opal Charm, a young bisexual black girl through her destiny to save Earth and an alternate world from a mysterious overlord. My books tend to be about self-discovery, love, and the power of friendship!

This is what I think of 70s music: Saturday Night Fever! Disco parties! Black people with the huge fros! 70s music made the 70s a time to be alive.

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Diversity Spotlight Thursday #4 Enemies to Lovers Edition

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Hi readers out there in the galaxy, welcome to my fourth Diversity Spotlight Thursday post. I haven’t done a post like this in a while but I’m so excited to be back. This meme was created by Aimal @ Bookshelves & Paperbacks and the point of the meme is to every Thursday feature three books that follow these points,

  1. A diverse book you have read and enjoyed.
  2. A diverse book that has already been released but you have not read.
  3. A diverse book that has not yet been released.

If you are interested in joining the meme, you can read the rules and see more of how the meme works here.

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A diverse book I’ve read and enjoyed

A diverse book I’ve read and enjoyed is A Crown of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi. This young adult fantasy is honestly one of my favorite reads of the year. The book has both lyrical writing and amazing characters. The main characters Vikram and Gauri are from enemy kingdoms, where Vikram is courageous and witty and Gauri is headstrong and has a hidden soft side. If you want a book that has an amazing “enemies to lovers” story, with adventures and characters to invest in, A Crown of Wishes is really a great choice. I fell in love with the banter, the love story, the world, and the writing. You can find the book on Goodreads and Amazon.

A diverse book released and on my TBR

However, a diverse book released but I haven’t read yet is We Go Together by Carla de Guzman. It’s a young adult retelling of William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing and is about Bea and Ben who used to be together and in love but are now are angry, bitter rivals who can’t seem to get along. This book is a #romanceclass novel (and you know how much I love #romanceclass) and on top of that, the “enemies to lovers” trope is always amazing. I’ve had this book on my Kindle for ages but I’m excited to read it soon. Find the book on Goodreads and Amazon.

A diverse book not yet released

Down by Contact by Santino Hassell is a diverse book not yet released that I’m dying to read. Down by Contact is the second book in The Barons series. The reason why I’m so excited for Down by Contact is that I loved the first book, Illegal Contact, and I have a strong feeling the sequel will make me feel the same way. We were introduced to Simeon, one of the main characters of Down by Contact, in the first installment of the series and I’m already in love with him. I can’t wait to see this “enemies to lovers” romance evolve, 2018 could not come sooner. You can find this book on Goodreads and Amazon.

What diverse books have you read or am excited to read? Have you also made a Diversity Thursday post? If yes, link it to me!

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Saturday Night Author Fever #15 with Hayley Chewins

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Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!

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This Saturday Night we welcome Hayley Chewins. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.

Hayley, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?

Sure! My debut is called THE TURNAWAY GIRLS and it’s a middle grade fantasy about girls who are trained to turn boys’ songs into gold but who aren’t permitted to make any music themselves. The main character, Delphernia Undersea, sings in secret—and discovers a new kind of magic that changes her whole world. It’s coming out in September 2018 from Candlewick in the US and Walker Books in the UK and Australia.

Music is a huge part of my life. In fact, until I was eighteen I wanted to be a professional singer. I really connected with the singer-songwriter tradition of the 70s when I was a teenager. I loved Cat Stevens and Bob Dylan. I also listened to a lot of ABBA growing up, because my mum loves them. That music is pure happiness to me.

I hardly ever perform, but I still love singing. I’m writing some songs as an accompaniment to THE TURNAWAY GIRLS—hopefully I’ll be brave enough to share them closer to my release date.

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Saturday Night Author Fever #14 with Kim Turrisi

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Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!

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This Saturday Night we welcome Kim Turrisi. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.

Kim, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?

I’m an Air Force brat, dog lover, die hard Florida State fan and have a killer sock collection. JUST A NORMAL TUESDAY is my debut and quite close to me. It deals with the aftermath of suicide, something I experienced first-hand. After spiraling out of control, fifteen-year-old Kai Sheehan lands at Grief Camp. JANT offers a roadmap for anyone who has been touched by loss and anyone who is looking for hope in a broken world.

What do you think about 70s music? I love it!! I write to music so often times, it’s 70’s music that inspires me. I’m listening to it right now.

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Saturday Night Author Fever #13 with Ines Bautista-Yao

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Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!

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This Saturday Night we welcome Ines Bautista. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.

Ines, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?

First of all, I love 70s music. When we were teenagers, my friends and I used to follow this 70s band called The Groove. We would attend their gigs and dance the night away. The drummer even had an afro. My favorite song was “Dancing Queen” by Abba. I was around 17 when this happened, I felt like the song was written for me. Ha ha!

But today, I am no longer 17 and I don’t have time to go dancing anymore. The only dancing I do is to Hi-5 whenever my daughters want to watch and dance together. I’m a mom to two little girls, one is 9 and the other is 3. They are my life and I have devoted my days to raising them. I write on the side, whenever I find the time.

I used to teach high school and freshman college English and literature and I used to be the editor in chief of a children’s magazine, then later, a teen magazine. I was also the editor of the chick lit books published by the same magazine company. I also used to and still write lots of feature articles. Today, I do all my writing and editing from home, in school, in Starbucks waiting for my kids while they’re in school, or on my bedroom floor while the kids are asleep.

I wrote my first book, One Crazy Summer, when my eldest daughter was three years old and took three-hour naps. I had actually started it when I was pregnant but shelved it because I thought it sucked (after thinking it was awesome haha). Then three years later, I stumbled across it again and wanted to know what was going to happen next. So I tried typing a few words and didn’t stop till I had a novella that I pitched to my publisher. They accepted it and published it and I came out with my second book, What’s in your Heart, two years later. I now also indie publish. It’s the best way to come out with books quickly. It takes a while for publishers to come out with books, and when you do it yourself, you’re in control.

The books I write are mostly sweet young or new adult romances. I love that age because everything is fresh and new but covered in so much angst and pain and confusion. I love having my main character figure her life out and grow up alongside an adorable boy who is usually hopelessly in love with her.

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Saturday Night Author Fever #12 with Tif Marcelo

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Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!

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This Saturday Night we welcome Tif Marcelo. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.

Tif, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?

Thank you for having me, Olivia! I’m the forthcoming debut romance author of the Journey to the Heart series (Pocket Star), with three books to be published this year. I’m a military spouse, a mom of four, a U.S. Army veteran and registered nurse. Which basically sums up why I’m shackled to my coffee pot and Passion Planner.

And, without giving my age (though I’m so blessed to have reached this point in my life), I am a lover of 70’s music, due to my mother’s extensive vinyl collection, which I continued to play through to my teen years in the 90’s.

Continue Reading ➞

Saturday Night Author Fever #11 with Charlotte Hamilton

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Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!

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This Saturday Night we welcome Charlotte Hamilton. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.

Charlotte, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?

Well, I’m 21, Scottish, part unicorn, mermaid and firebender. As for my books they can be summed up with one phrase: queer, magic ladies. Sometimes I step away from SFF but most of the time, there’s an element of magic in my stories. LAMBS CAN ALWAYS BECOME LIONS is a f/f Robin Hood retelling novella that I’m super proud of! And I love 70s music, even if I am more of an 80s gal.

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SURPRISE: I’m doing #ARCAugust ✯ Featuring My Entire August TBR

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Hi, galaxy travelers and readers! As the title of this post suggests, I made a last minute decision to, for the second year in a row, join ARC August hosted by Read.Sleep.Repeat. Last year I thought it went so-so for me since I didn’t read the books I wanted to go through during the month. However, I’m excited to give it another shot this year. Especially since I’m actually reading a lot more this summer. I’m very excited to share my August TBR with you all.

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The ARCs I want to get through during August are the following,

I have a few ARC requests pending so I might also add a few more books to my TBR before the month is over. I’m really hoping I’ll be accepted for them, but we’ll see how it goes.

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ARC Review of Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert

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Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert

Publication Date: August 8, 2017.

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.

Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBT, Mental Illness, and Romance.

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Purchase here: Amazon | The Book Depository

Synopsis: A stunning novel on love, loss, identity, and redemption, from Publishers Weekly Flying Start author Brandy Colbert.

When Suzette comes home to Los Angeles from her boarding school in New England, she isn’t sure if she’ll ever want to go back. L.A. is where her friends and family are (along with her crush, Emil). And her stepbrother, Lionel, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, needs her emotional support.

But as she settles into her old life, Suzette finds herself falling for someone new…the same girl her brother is in love with. When Lionel’s disorder spirals out of control, Suzette is forced to confront her past mistakes and find a way to help her brother before he hurts himself–or worse.

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Thank you, Hachette Book Group, for my advanced review copy of Little & Lion. I received this ARC in exchange for an honest review; this does not affect my opinion. Any quotes mentioned below are taken from the ARC and are subject to change upon publication.

Little & Lion is my favorite read this year and truth to be told, I love it in a way that is hard for me to describe. There are some books that you read that you just know will mean a lot to you and Little & Lion was definitely that for me. When I heard this book was being released, many months ago, I just knew I had to read it. My expectations were sky-high and for that reason, I was also scared to start it. However, as it turns out, the book exceeded all of my expectations.

Little & Lion is about Suzette, a black Jewish bisexual girl still trying to figure out who she is, and her brother Lionel, who is bipolar. Suzette and Lionel’s bond was formed as kids when Suzette’s mom, Nadine, and Lionel’s dad, Saul, started dating and then after two years decided to join their families and merge households. Despite the fact that there is a large dose of romance in this book, both for Suzette and for Lionel, Little & Lion is about family and Suzette’s and Lionel’s relationship as siblings. Their relationship is not always easy, especially with Lionel’s bipolar disorder. There are disagreements, secrets, and even distance. However, there is also so much love between the two. It’s clear that Suzette and Lionel’s bond is special and beautiful, which is further highlighted through flashback chapters, and I love that we got to see both the good and the bad of their relationship. It makes you root for them both that much more. Suzette and Lionel are characters you can relate to, and you will definitely question and cheer for decisions both of them make throughout the book. However, despite it all, by the end of it, they are in a good place with each other which is what I loved the most.

“It’s no big deal.” He looks at his feet, sticking up beneath the covers. “You’re my sisters.”

I know that’s what he’s saying every time he calls me Little—acknowledging that we’re siblings, even if we’re not related by blood. But I like hearing him say it so plainly. It makes me think there’ll never be a time when we question our bond.

As I mentioned earlier, there is a lot of romance in this book and lots of drama that surrounds it. There is somewhat of a love square (instead of a triangle) at one point in the story, and I feel like it was done in such a way that it just made sense for the story and the characters. These teens are figuring out who they are, who they want to love and be and what that says about them. Teenage love is new and exciting and confusing, and it deserves to be just that. This also leads to me into Suzette and her bisexuality. First of all, I love how this story called out bisexual stereotypes and misconceptions. However, my favorite part of the story was definitely how we get to see Suzette realize that she is, in fact, bisexual. The reader gets to see Suzette’s doubts and thoughts, where she tries to decipher what her feelings for both girls and boys mean, and I think that will be meaningful for a lot of readers. Figuring out who you are is not always easy or instant, and I love how Little & Lion showed that.

Honestly, there is so much to love about Little & Lion. I love the way it makes me feel, I love that it made me both laugh and cry, and I love that there are so many characters to love in this book. Two people have gone unmentioned so far are the two love interests, Rafaela and Emil. I especially fell in love with Emil, who is black and Korean, because he is literally the sweetest guy ever. Moreover, another aspect I love about Little & Lion is what an important aspect Suzette’s Judaism had in the story. Suzette has to deal with a lot because of Jewish stereotypes that exist, particularly what it means to be both black and Jewish. However, she also mentions how her Judaism is her connection to Saul, her stepfather, and how she’s proud of it, and I thought that was really beautiful.

All in all, I love this story and recommend it to everyone who loves young adult literature (but also if you don’t, trust me, you won’t regret it). This book means a lot to me and even if this review appears to be coherent, I honestly just want to fangirl and scream over how much I adore this book. I will recommend this book for a long time to come and I’m sure I will be rereading my favorite parts whenever I want to experience the joyous feeling this book gave me, all over again. Don’t miss out on getting to know Suzette and Lionel, Little and Lion, and make sure this book is on your radar and TBR.

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