Waiting on Wednesday – Week 155

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It’s to spotlight upcoming books that I’m DYING to get my hands on!

This week’s WoW is:
Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum

What if the person you need the most is someone you’ve never met?

Julie Buxbaum mixes comedy and tragedy, love and loss, pain and elation, in her debut YA novel whose characters will come to feel like friends. Tell Me Three Things will appeal to fans of Rainbow Rowell, Jennifer Niven, and E. Lockhart. 

Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Just when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago—the closest place she has to something like home—she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

The thing is, Jessie does need help. It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live in LA with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son.

In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?

April 15, 2016 ● Goodreads

I’ve only been noticing more recently how many AWESOME books there are to come in 2016! IT CAN’T GET HERE FAST ENOUGH. Tell Me Three Things sounds like all kinds of awesome. I’m a little afraid of it being more tragic than cute and funny–which I desperately want because of how cute that cover is (I’m seriously craving waffles now). Can’t wait to get my hands on this one!

What are you waiting on?

The Weight of Feathers Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway

The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore

Release Date: September 15, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin (Twitter Tumblr Facebook)
Rated: YA 14+
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository B&N IndieBound Kobo iBooks Google Play Books-A-Million
Goodreads Website

The Night Circus meets Romeo and Juliet in this stunning young adult novel about two teens who fall in love despite the almost impossible odds against them.

The Palomas and the Corbeaus have long been rivals and enemies, locked in an escalating feud for over a generation. Both families make their living as traveling performers in competing shows-the Palomas swimming in mermaid exhibitions, the Corbeaus, former tightrope walkers, performing in the tallest trees they can find. 

Lace Paloma may be new to her family's show, but she knows as well as anyone that the Corbeaus are pure magia negra, black magic from the devil himself. Simply touching one could mean death, and she's been taught from birth to keep away. But when disaster strikes the small town where both families are performing, it's a Corbeau boy, Cluck, who saves Lace's life. And his touch immerses her in the world of the Corbeaus, where falling for him could turn his own family against him, and one misstep can be just as dangerous on the ground as it is in the trees.

The Weight of Feathers was a book I knew I just HAD to read. When I interviewed Mackenzi Lee, this was one of the books she was most enthusiastic about. When I heard there was elements of magical realism in it, I knew that this book was going to be different and special. I haven’t read many books with magical realism in it, but the most prominent one I remember is Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel García Márquez. For those who don’t know, magical realism is the acceptance of magic in the normal world. Pretty interesting, eh? Exactly what I thought. Right from the get-go you do get a sense of entering a world just slightly different to the one we live in. Anyway, I couldn’t put this one down–Anna-Marie McLemore’s debut was so unlike anything I’ve ever read.

I was a little alarmed when I heard that this book was kinda like Romeo and Juliet because insta-love is an absolute no-no for me. But oh my gosh, this romance made me have little butterflies fly around my stomach and flutter around my heart, because it’s BEAUTIFUL. Both Lace and Cluck are such likeable characters and their blooming affection for each other is just so captivating. Of course, two rival families can only mean trouble, so this book was an emotional roller-coaster of all the feels. ALL THE FEELS PEOPLE.

One really interesting aspect of this book (other than the whole magical realism thing) is the duality of languages used in this book. The Palomas are a Spanish-speaking family and the Corbeaus are a French-speaking family. I only understand French, but I loved reading these languages side-by-side. Not only do you start seeing the similarities but you also start to get an idea of cultural context, which only makes the story more richer in detail.

Anna-Marie McLemore’s The Weight of Feathers was magical. An absolutely stunning read, this novel was so wonderfully written I found myself never wanting the story to end. Enchanting and wholly ingenious with a delicious mystery that ends in a shocking twist, I can’t wait to read more from McLemore–this is definitely a book not to miss.

If you like this, try...

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Anna-Marie McLemore was born in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and grew up in a Mexican-American family. She attended University of Southern California on a Trustee Scholarship. A Lambda Literary Fellow, she has had work featured by the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West, CRATE Literary Magazine's cratelit, Camera Obscura's Bridge the Gap Series, and The Portland Review.  The Weight of Feathers is her first novel.



“McLemore’s prose is ethereal and beguiling… The enchanting setup and the forbidden romance that blooms between these two outcasts will quickly draw readers in, along with the steady unspooling of the families’ history and mutual suspicions in this promising first novel.” —Publishers Weekly

“Readers beguiled by the languorous language—a striking mix of French and Spanish phrases, wry colloquialism, lush imagery, and elevated syntax—will find themselves falling under its spell. The third-person narration alternates between Lace and Cluck, doling out twists and building to a satisfying, romantic conclusion.” —Kirkus Reviews

“In this tale of magical realism, the magic is so deftly woven into the fabric of the story… Told with skillful poetic nuances, this Romeo-and-Juliet story of forbidden love will entice fans of Maggie Stiefvater’s Raven Cycle who wished for a little more romance.” —School Library Journal

“Anna-Marie McLemore's debut novel is a very imaginative modern-day romance akin to Romeo and Juliet and is infused with the whimsy of magical realism.” —RT Book Reviews

“An air of mysterious fantasy enshrouds the whole book, pulling the reader through it as if in a spell. McLemore is a writer to watch.”—The Guardian

“You've never read a love story quite like this one. Anna-Marie McLemore has created in entirely imaginative world and rich characters that will pull you in as if she's spinning magic herself.” —Bustle

“With prose as magical as its characters, The Weight of Feathers is an exciting debut.” —Paste Magazine

“McLemore’s debut novel has ties to Romeo and Juliet, David Almond’s mythical Skellig, and the real-life performances of Cirque du Soleil.” —Booklist

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             The feathers were Lace’s first warning. They showed up between suitcases, in the trunk of her father’s station wagon, on the handles of came-with-the-car first-aid kits so old the gauze had yellowed. They snagged on antennas, turning the local stations to static.
             Lace’s mother found a feather in with the family’s costumes the day they crossed into Almendro, a town named for almond fields that once filled the air with the scent of sugary blossoms and bitter wood. But over the last few decades an adhesive plant had bought out the farms that could not survive the droughts, and the acres of almonds dwindled to a couple of orchards on the edge of town.
             The wisp of that black feather caught on a cluster of sequins. Lace knew from the set to her mother’s eyes that she’d throw the whole mermaid tail in a bucket and burn it, elastane and all.

             Lace grabbed the tail and held on. If her mother burned it, it would take Lace and her great-aunt at least a week to remake it. Tía Lora’s hands were growing stiff, and Lace’s were new and slow.

             Her mother tried to pull the tail from her grip, but Lace balled the fabric in her hands.

             “Let go,” her mother warned.

             “It’s one feather.” Lace dug in her fingers. “It’s not them.” Lace knew the danger of touching a Corbeau. Her abuela said she’d be better off petting a rattlesnake. But these feathers were not the Corbeaus’ skin. They didn’t hold the same poison as a Corbeau’s body.
             “It’s cursed,” her mother said. One hard tug, and she won. She threw the costume tail into a bucket and lit it. The metal pail grew hot as a stove. The fumes off the melting sequins stung Lace’s throat.
             “Did you have to burn the whole thing?” she asked.
             “Better safe, mija,” her mother said, wetting down the undergrowth with day-old aguas frescas so the brush wouldn’t catch.
             They could have cleaned the tail, blessed it, stripped away the feather’s touch. Burning it only gave the Corbeaus more power. Those feathers already had such weight. The fire in the pail was an admission that, against them, Lace’s family had no guard.
             Before Lace was born, the Palomas and the Corbeaus had just been competing acts, two of the only shows left that bothered with the Central Valley’s smallest towns. Back then it was just business, not hate. Even now Lace’s family sometimes ended up in the same town with a band of traveling singers or acrobats, and there were no fights, no blood. Only the wordless agreement that each of them were there to survive, and no grudges after. Every fall when the show season ended, Lace’s aunts swapped hot-plate recipes with a trio of trapeze artists. Her father traded homeschooling lesson plans with a troupe of Georgian folk dancers.
             The Corbeaus never traded anything with anyone. They shared nothing, took nothing. They kept to themselves, only straying from the cheapest motel in town to give one of Lace’s cousins a black eye, or leave a dead fish at the riverbank. Lace and Martha found the last one, its eye shining like a wet marble.
             Before Lace was born, these were bloodless threats, ways the Corbeaus tried to rattle her family before their shows. Now every Paloma knew there was nothing the Corbeaus wouldn’t do.
             Lace’s mother watched the elastane threads curl inside a shell of flame. “They’re coming,” she said.
             “Did you think they wouldn’t?” Lace asked. Her mother smiled. “I can hope, can’t I?”
             She could hope all she wanted. The Corbeaus wouldn’t give up the crowds that came with Almendro’s annual festival. So many tourists, all so eager to fill their scrapbooks. That meant two weeks in Almendro. Two weeks when the younger Paloma men hardened their fists, and their mothers prayed they didn’t come home with broken ribs.
             Lace’s grandmother set the schedule each year, and no one spoke up against Abuela. If they ever did, she’d pack their bags for them. Lace had watched Abuela cram her cousin Licha’s things into a suitcase, clearing her perfumes and lipsticks off the motel dresser with one sweep of her arm. When Lace visited her in Visalia and they went swimming, Licha’s two-piece showed that her escamas, the birthmarks that branded her a Paloma, had disappeared.
             Lace’s mother taught her that those birthmarks kept them safe from the Corbeaus’ feathers. That family was el Diablo on earth, with dark wings strapped to their bodies, French on their tongues, a sprinkling of gypsy blood. When Lace slept, they went with her, living in nightmares made of a thousand wings.
             Another black feather swirled on a downdraft. Lace watched it spin and fall. It settled in her hair, its slight weight like a moth’s feet.
             Her mother snatched it off Lace’s head. “¡Madre mía!” she cried, and threw it into the flames.
             Lace’s cousins said the Corbeaus grew black feathers right out of their heads, like hair. She never believed it. It was another rumor that strengthened the Corbeaus’ place in their nightmares. But the truth, that wind pulled feathers off the wings they wore as costumes, wasn’t a strong enough warning to keep Paloma children from the woods.
             “La magia negra,” her mother said. She always called those feathers black magic.
             The fire dimmed to embers. Lace’s mother gave the pail a hard kick. It tumbled down the bank and into the river, the hot metal hissing and sinking.
             “Let them drown,” her mother said, and the last of the rim vanished.

THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS by Anna-Marie McLemore.  Copyright © 2015 by the author and reprinted by permission of Thomas Dunne Books / St. Martin’s Griffin.

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Giveaway time!
Enter to win...

One (1) SIGNED finished copy of The Weight of Feathers!

US and CANADA only.
Must be 13+ to enter.
This is a publisher-sponsored giveaway: I am not responsible for any lost/damaged packages.
This giveaway will run until the 1st of October (ends at 11:59 pm).
Only I and the publishers will see your mailing address.

Enter via the Rafflecopter below!

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Thank you so much to Michelle at St. Martin’s Press for having me on the blog tour and for sending me a copy for review!

Dream Things True: Review + Interview + Video Clip + Giveaway

Dream Things True by Marie Marquardt

Release Date: September 1, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin (Twitter Facebook)
Rated: YA 14+
Format: eGalley
Source: NetGalley
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository  B&N IndieBound Kobo iBooks Google Play

A modern-day Romeo and Juliet story in which a wealthy Southern boy falls in love with an undocumented Mexican girl and together they face perils in their hostile Georgia town.

Evan, a soccer star and the nephew of a conservative Southern Senator, has never wanted for much -- except a functional family. Alma has lived in Georgia since she was two-years-old, excels in school, and has a large, warm Mexican family. Never mind their differences, the two fall in love, and they fall hard. But when ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) begins raids on their town, Alma knows that she needs to tell Evan her secret. There's too much at stake. But how to tell her country-club boyfriend that she’s an undocumented immigrant? That her whole family and most of her friends live in the country without permission. What follows is a beautiful, nuanced, well-paced exploration of the complications of immigration, young love, defying one’s family, and facing a tangled bureaucracy that threatens to completely upend two young lives.

I’ve read several books that have Latin American protagonists, but never have I ever read a book where the story deals with illegal Latin American immigrants. This topic isn’t one that is new to me, but it’s definitely new to me in the sense that I’ve never really read any accounts, real or fictional, of characters going through what Alma and her family do in Dream Things True. This was a strong, powerful read. At first I was a bit skeptical because this book’s blurb calls it “a modern-day Romeo and Juliet story,” which turned me off a little bit because insta-love is definitely not my thing. But I definitely wanted to read it for the larger story rather than the romance because this IS an important issue and what better way to learn about something than learn it through a YA novel?

Alma and Evan both had their flaws, but it was totally realistic because it added an edge to the novel on top of the larger problems and conflict. However, what I didn’t enjoy too much was the focus on the romance. This was the only problem I had with the novel, because otherwise it was very well-written and I enjoyed the story very much (and more importantly, learned a lot from it!). I get that it’s YA and being crazy hormonal teenagers we crave some action between the love interests. But when that completely takes over the story and creates a detour for Alma, where her biggest concern for most of the book seemed to be about being with Evan when she clearly has much bigger problems, was when I thought the book should steer back on course before it’s too late. Obviously, this does happen, but I just wish that the book hadn’t strayed away from what it’s really trying to tell us.

There’s some Spanish spoken in this book, and it was a little difficult for me to understand some parts, because I don’t speak Spanish at all (although French did help a teensy bit). However, I love how authentic it made the book. I hate it when books just focus on English and think by throwing in a word here and there in a different language when the characters are CLEARLY bilingual, etc., so this was really excellently done in terms of bringing in more cultural flavour as well as making this a more realistic read.

I didn’t expect a happy ending, but I’m absolutely more than happy with what I got. Dream Things True was poignant and moving–Marie Marquardt clearly has done her research because I took away so much from her debut novel. I definitely can’t wait to read what she has coming next–anything to learn more about different backgrounds and larger conflicts in our world today is a must-read for me. I’m really looking forward to it!

If you like this, try...

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Marie Marquardt is a Scholar-in-Residence at Emory University's Candler School of Theology and the author of Living Illegal: The Human Face of Unauthorized Immigration. She is widely published on issues of Mexican immigrants in the U.S. South. Marquardt has also worked as an advocate among immigrants in Atlanta. She is a founder and  co-chair of El Refugio, a hospitality house near the Stewart Detention Center in Georgia. Dream Things True is Marie's first young adult novel.

Website Facebook Twitter Instagram Goodreads


“In this YA debut, immigration activist Marquardt knowledgably takes on the plight of undocumented families in the U.S. Readers seeking a star-crossed love story with a twist won’t be disappointed.” —Publishers Weekly

“Various aspects of undocumented immigration are explored: the economic factors influencing the decision to come to the United States, the often harrowing journey, the exploitation upon arrival, and the political factors that influence policy… [A] worthy examination of undocumented immigration in the American South through the lens of young love.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Marquardt provides a critical view of the stigmas and difficulties plaguing undocumented youth in U.S. schools without glossing over the legal realities of deportation and detainment.” —School Library Journal

“Marquardt's Dream Things True vividly weaves to life the thrill of falling in love in the South while awakening readers to the struggles of US-Mexican immigration policies. In this touching coming-of-age story, full of hope and possibilities, Marquardt captures the bittersweet world of undocumented teens living in the US and the power of true love.” 
Malin Alegria, author of Estrella’s Quinceañera and the Border Town series

Dream Things True by Marie Marquardt is a story that must be told and needs to be read.  With sensitivity and care, Marquardt deftly illustrates the struggles and hopes of Alma, an undocumented teenager living in the United States.  Alma's story reflects the lives of millions of young people trapped between countries and cultures, longing for a place to belong.  An important story that's full of heart, it will forever change the way you view those who live their lives in the shadows.” —Jennifer Mathieu, author of The Truth About Alice

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with Marie Marquardt

As this is your debut novel, what was the road to publishing like?

Long, arduous, and involving many dead-ends. It took me about three years to write this book (I kept having to put it down to do other things, like have babies and write academic books). Then it took me another four years to see it in print. If I didn’t care so much about this story, I would have given up a long time ago. I’m very glad that I didn’t give up.

Why did you decide to write for a young adult audience?

I knew that I wanted to tell the story of an immigrant DREAMer, since I have worked with many over the years, and their stories have had a profound impact on me.  DREAMers are young adults who were brought to the United States as children without legal status and, currently, they have no way to get permanent legal status. I wanted the book to be not only about them, but also for them and the non-immigrant teenagers they are growing up with. So, I decided to write it as a YA novel.  This was an easy decision, since I love to read contemporary YA. 

What was the most challenging thing when it came to writing DREAM THINGS TRUE?

Well, here’s a little confession: I have never played an organized sport. I mean, never.  So the hardest part of getting this story onto paper was not writing the heart-wrenching love scenes. It was writing the soccer scenes (and don’t even get me started on golf!). I spent days reading sports journalism, and then, after attempting to write realistic scenes, I relied heavily on my sister—a soccer fanatic—to make sure all the players were in the right place at the right time. 

DREAM THINGS TRUE is called “a modern-day Romeo and Juliet”–how much of Shakespeare’s play has influenced your novel?

I have read the play many times (and I love the Leonardo & Claire movie version!). I do run with the basic premise, but I don’t think that the play’s influence runs terribly deep. Evan and Alma fall for each other fast, to be sure, but not as lightening-fast as Romeo and Juliet.  They are “star-crossed” in the sense of having fate (in the form of social norms and laws) working against them. And there is a really awful bad guy in the story, who is sort-of like a Tybalt. But Alma is much more savvy than Juliet, and Evan definitely is way less dramatic and impulsive than Romeo! 

Also, and most importantly, this is a story about many kinds of love, not just romantic love.  It’s about a son’s love for his mother, even when she’s emotionally distant. It’s about a sister’s love for her brother, even when he makes choices she disagrees with. It’s about the love we have for friends who do the unthinkable, but then seek our forgiveness. Love runs deep and broad in this story. 

What was the research process like for your book?

I have been working for almost two decades with Latin American immigrants as a researcher, advocate, and service provider. I’ve spent time in many Southern immigrant communities, on the U.S. – Mexico border, and in some of the small Mexican and Central American towns that immigrants have come from.  So, the research process was long and complex. I wanted to be sure that the legal aspects of the story were accurate. Immigration law is insanely complex, and I wanted to get it right. I interviewed several immigration attorneys and paralegals, and I had them read through drafts.

What can’t you write without, and what are your writing conditions like?

I need quiet, which is not an easy thing for a mother of four to obtain. I wrote almost all of Dream Things True between four-thirty and six-thirty in the morning. It’s a great time of day, with many fewer e-mails and tweets and Facebook posts breaking into the stillness. Writing during this timeframe requires much caffeine, though. I spend a lot of money on coffee.

Who or what made you want to become an author? Who are some of the authors that inspire you?

I wanted to tell this story, because I believed it was such an important story. In the process of writing and editing it, I discovered that I love this work – it feeds me – and I feel like I have more stories to tell.  So I will keep writing them.

There are so many fabulous authors of Young Adult contemporary fiction. I am awed by some of them (e.g. Rainbow Rowell, Matt de la Peña, and Jandy Nelson) because they are such astoundingly good writers.  Others inspire me because they are telling stories that are so important, and they are committed to writing for young adults because they want to open space for dialogue about tough issues. I am thinking here of the amazing Laurie Halse Anderson, Jenny Downham (You Against Me is one of my favorite books of all time), and Meg Medina, who is so thoughtful about the role of authors in civil society, and about our responsibility to encourage conversation and community building. 

What can we expect from you next?

I am working on another YA contemporary novel, which should be out with St Martin’s in the Fall of 2016. It’s also a love story, framed by the issue of gang-related violence in Central America – and kids fleeing that violence to travel on foot through Mexico and enter the United States. I’ve been working with Central American asylum seekers for a few years now. They also have some incredible – and incredibly heartbreaking – stories to tell.  I want to help those stories be heard.

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I also have an awesome video clip of Marie Marquardt to share!

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Giveaway time!
Enter to win...

A copy of Dream Things True!

US and CANADA only.
Must be 13+ to enter.
This is a publisher-sponsored giveaway: I am not responsible for any lost/damaged packages.
This giveaway will run until the 24th of September (ends at 11:59 pm).
Only I and the publishers will see your mailing address.

Enter via the Rafflecopter below!

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Thank you so much to Marie Marquardt for answering my questions and to Michelle at St. Martin’s Press for having me on the blog tour!

Ladies Living Dangerously Recap

Hey guys! So today, I went to BTAF (Boston Teen Author Festival) Preview Event: LADIES LIVING DANGEROUSLY featuring Erin Bowman, Eva Darrows/Hillary Monahan, and Laurie Faria Stolarz.

It was all kinds of awesome! Unfortunately for me, the T (subway) was running late so I arrived around 25 minutes late because the T was moving super slowly, there were some delays along the way, I had to cut through Harvard (where there were several tour groups) to get to the Cambridge Public Library, it was hot, and...just all kinds of things. ANYWAY, I arrived when they were talking answering questions that were presented by Sarah, a member of the BTAF staff, and I managed to get a seat right in the middle, in the second row–well, technically the first row, because no one was actually sitting in the first row.

As I said, it was all kinds of awesome. I can’t remember too many specifics since I was having such a good time just listening to all three authors talk about their books and writing books in general. It was definitely very feminist-driven, I’m happy to say! All about writing female characters, why there should be all kinds of female characters (not just the “strong female character”), and where they pull their source material from, just to name a few things that they talked about. Hillary Monahan/Eva Darrows is a HOOT, lemme tell you that people!

And then of course, came the signing:

I’d previously met Hillary Monahan/Eva Darrows at last year’s BTAF, and I got Mary: The Summoning signed then, and she actually remembered my name when Erin Bowman was signing my book! I was super excited about that. Isn’t her hair the COOLEST? She was also wearing this awesome shade of blue lipstick. 

I’ve read Vengeance Road and absolutely loved it (it’s one of my top reads this year!), but unfortunately because of all the money I’ve spent on books recently–both for this event and the upcoming main BTAF event–I couldn’t buy a copy :( I did have my copy of Taken though, to get signed. I told her how I gave my sister this book to read and she ended up loving it. Erin Bowman was super sweet and she had such awesome swag (which is in a picture below).

And finally, Laurie Faria Stolarz. She was actually the first person to sign one of my books, so I don’t know why I did it in this order. Any-hoo. Like Hillary, I’d also met Laurie at last year’s BTAF when she signed my copy of Deadly Little Secrets. Welcome to the Dark House sounds like a super creepy read–and she mentioned she’s not a fan of horror but loves suspense and thrillers like me!–and I’m so looking forward to reading it. Laurie was super sweet as well and I got an awesome postcard with her books on it.

Check out the swag I got!
This was such a fantastic event, I’m so glad I decided to go. Thank you so much to the BTAF staff and Cambridge Public Library for hosting this, and I can’t wait for the Boston Teen Author Festival! This year’s is gonna be epic.

Book Trailer: This Monstrous Thing by Mackenzi Lee

Hey guys! Recently, the book trailer for Mackenzi Lee’s upcoming YA debut This Monstrous Thing was released. I only just got to check it out, and it’s AMAZING. Like seriously, better than most book trailers out there. Check it out below:

Isn’t it so good? Doesn’t it make you just want to get your hands on a copy immediately?! Here’s a bit more about This Monstrous Thing:

September 22, 2015

In 1818 Geneva, men built with clockwork parts live hidden away from society, cared for only by illegal mechanics called Shadow Boys. Two years ago, Shadow Boy Alasdair Finch’s life shattered to bits.

His brother, Oliver—dead.

His sweetheart, Mary—gone.

His chance to break free of Geneva—lost.

Heart-broken and desperate, Alasdair does the unthinkable: He brings Oliver back from the dead.

But putting back together a broken life is more difficult than mending bones and adding clockwork pieces. Oliver returns more monster than man, and Alasdair’s horror further damages the already troubled relationship.

Then comes the publication of Frankenstein and the city intensifies its search for Shadow Boys, aiming to discover the real life doctor and his monster. Alasdair finds refuge with his idol, the brilliant Dr. Geisler, who may offer him a way to escape the dangerous present and his guilt-ridden past, but at a horrible price only Oliver can pay…