Cover Reveal: Antipodes


I’m back at it with another cover reveal. I love that this one is landscape based, you don’t see a lot of that in YA contemporary! Meet the beautiful Antipodes by Michele Bacon!

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Book Stats:
Genres: Young adult, contemporary
Publication Date: April 3rd, 2018
Purchase: Amazon – Barnes & Noble

When Erin Cerise steps off her plane in Christchurch, New Zealand, she is focused intently on her mission: do something unique that will erase the mess she made of her life days before her 17th birthday. She’s already lost her swim team captainship, her boyfriend Ben, and her reputation. Her mother is certain studying abroad will regain Erin’s chances of a good future. Once Erin sees her uninspiring host family and city, though, Erin’s not so sure.

Before Christchurch, Erin wasn’t always intense and focused. A mission used to sound like a fun adventure, and the only ivy she cared about was the stuff growing around her grandparents’ back porch at their peaceful Upper Peninsula home. When had her priorities gone upside down?

Now Erin balks at NZ’s scratchy school uniforms, cold houses, and her hosts’ utter inability to pronounce her name correctly. Christchurch does boast amazing rock climbing, gorgeous scenery, and at least one guy who could make her forget Ben if she lets him. With months ahead of her, Erin slowly begins to draw on the years behind her, one step back into her memories and then another, as she rebuilds her life from the other side of the world to find that when life turns your world upside down and you’re farthest from home, every way you move takes you closer to where you came from.

I need to read more contemporaries, so this one is definitely going on my TBR! I’m going to drown in all of them someday…

Also, the author is hosting a giveaway in honor of the reveal! They have 3 ARCs available, which should be sent out in January of next year! Giveaway available in the US only.

Below is an excerpt from the book for your reading pleasure!


Alone at lunch, Erin cracked her Italian book and read ahead. The clouds had burned off during her art experiments, but everything was still damp. She juggled her Italian book and lunch until Jade called her name.

“In here!” Jade pulled Erin into a gymnasium.

They sat on the floor, and Jade said, “How are you finding New Zealand?”

“Still jet lagged,” Erin said.

“True kiwi lunch here, want some?” Jade held out a plastic container of brown and grey food.

“Every time someone mentions kiwi, I picture fuzzy green fruit,” Erin said.

“Aye, we’ve got kiwi fruit, too. This is bangers and mash.”

“Funny, isn’t it? Last night, Felicity asked whether I liked—whether I fancied—kumara. An orange vegetable. Not a carrot. Soft in the middle when cooked, but not a squash. Then she served it and it was a sweet potato.”

“Kumara are my favorite in winter.”

“Yeah. My grampa used to make them with brown sugar and cinnamon. I love them, so you see how off-kilter I feel. Same cars, but yours are smaller. And slower. Everything is a little slower. We speak the same language, to an extent. But sometimes? I have no idea what people are saying. And sometimes, words have entirely different meanings. At home, biscuits are small, fluffy, buttery breakfast breads. What you call biscuits, we call cookies.”

“Sounds delicious, either way,” Jade said.

Outside, a circle of guys bunched up over the rugby ball, pushing hard but not moving in any particular direction. “Aren’t words funny?” she said. “I once met a girl at a resort in North Carolina—that’s actually in the southern part of America—and she and I realized when a Chicago native says she skis, she means skiing in snow. But we also go water skiing.

“In the south, though, where it’s warm, skiing means water. And they call the other kind snow skiing.”

“Here, of course, the North Island is the warm part, and we get the cold down here,” Jade said. “One of us is upside down.”

“Yeah. It’s definitely me.”

MicheleAbout the Author:
Michele Bacon was born in Trumbull County, the only square county in Ohio, where books were her favorite means of escaping an unhappy childhood. Writing was her transparent attempt to create the things she craved: big happy families, international adventures and unconditional friendship. From a young age, she was drawn to people’s stories, and she still wants to know how you met your best friend or fell in love with your partner.

In high school, she embraced her inner geek and wrote her first novel. In college, there were short stories and still more novels. She graduated from The Ohio State University with a B.A. in English, with concentrations in critical theory and creative writing.

Full-time work sapped her creative brain for several years, but her professional life was one of reinvention. In state government, business management consulting, and nonprofit fundraising, she adapted easily and absorbed the languages of different professions. Her last paying job was as an independent fundraising consultant for nonprofit organizations. That was seven years ago.

Since then, she has been writing and traveling (and, let’s be honest, chasing down small people who don’t like to wear clothes). She’s traveled to all 50 states and dozens of other countries, always collecting pieces of characters and ideas for stories. She recently spent a year on sabbatical in Christchurch, New Zealand, where she may have left her heart at Ilam School. Now that she’s settled back in the States, she’s writing for adults and young adults, exploring the Pacific Northwest, and baking like a fiend. (You’d thinking baking would be the same everywhere, but it’s not. Something is different about kiwi butter.)

When an idea strikes, she scrawls sweeping plot outlines, character idiosyncrasies, and ideas for scenes on the nearest blank spot of paper. Her current manuscript was born of those torn slips of paper, used envelopes, lollipop wrappers, fuel receipts and–once–that little paper bit that keeps a nursing pad sticky until it’s time to use it. Her manuscripts are better than the quality of papers where they began. Promise.

Outside of writing, she is a tabletop game enthusiast, passionate skier, and lover of prime numbers. She also is a mentor at the Moving Words Writing Clinic, and a freelance copyeditor.

She lives in Seattle with her husband and three growing children.


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Book Blitz: Premonition by Leigh Walker


So friends, if you are into government secrets, boarding school, and some serious butt-kicking, I think I might’ve found the book for you. Today I have a feature on Premonition by Leigh Walker. I just downloaded this one to my Kindle (it’s free for Kindle Unlimited subscribers, by the way) and I’m super excited to get into it!
 Prem
Book Stats:
Genres: Romance, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Publication date: July 19th 2017
Purchase: Amazon
When Riley heads off to boarding school for a summer work-study program, she knows it’ll be demanding. What she doesn’t expect? To be thrust into an intense physical training program described as special, exclusive and worst of all–top-secret. She signed up for tuition assistance, not to be held in a secret government facility for boot camp…’

Welcome to The Division, the government agency that’s so classified, most United States senators have never heard of it.

The Division wants Riley bad, but she can’t figure out why. Skeptical of what she’s being told, Riley’s determined to uncover the truth. Boot camp is intense, physically and mentally draining. The upside? One of her new teammates is the cutest boy ever. Watching Finn hit the gym wearing a tank top doesn’t suck–although sometimes his brooding attitude does. But when training forces Riley to confront her tragic past, even Finn’s big biceps aren’t enough to make her want to stay…

Beware: The Division isn’t something you just walk away from. You better run.

Riley realizes her capabilities and strengths are greater than she’d ever imagined. But she also learns she wasn’t just chosen for this special program…

She was made for it.

I love sci-fi and it’s been a while since I read some, so I can’t wait to get back into the genre. There is also a giveaway going on for a $25 Amazon gift card which you can find at the link below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I also have an interview from the author to give you some insight into her work with the Division series!

Tell us about “The Division” – it’s a bunch of teenagers with psychic powers, right? How did you get inspired?
Everyone on the team has psychic powers, yes. I was watching “Stranger Things” on Netflix and I WAS SO PSYCHED they were testing poor Eleven for psychic powers. But I was also like, YEEHAW! Because I LOVE psychic powers, and I can’t remember the last time I saw or read something that included them. I’ve always been obsessed by the concept, and there’s so many variations of powers, so many incarnations it can take… Anyway, after watching that show and having that reaction, I thought, other people must love this stuff, too, I can’t be the only one. So I wanted to give us all more!

Tell us about the main character, Riley Payne.
Riley is a ‘normal’ girl dealing with a lot. Her father and sister died in a car accident and her mother started drinking heavily after it happened. She just wants to get out of her house and go to boarding school, but she gets more than she bargained for when she abruptly gets recruited into a secret agency…

The ‘secret agency’ is The Division, correct?
Yes. It’s a secret cell of teenagers who were genetically engineered with psychic gifts. They work for the American government to combat domestic terrorism. Riley thinks they’re nuts, of course. Until she unlocks her powers, then she’s blown away by what she can do.

As the series goes on, you get into genetic engineering, fated love, eco-terrorism, loyalty, isolation, human nature, climate change…some pretty heavy themes. But would you describe the series as a difficult read?
I don’t think so, but certainly some parts were hard to write – like about Riley missing her dad and her sister. I still cry when I read those parts. And in the second book, an eco-terrorist is introduced, and some terrible things happen in the book. So yeah, there’s definitely a heaviness to some of what the characters are dealing with. But they’re teenagers, and their youth is sort of a tonic against everything they’re dealing with. They still care about their friends. They still want to hang out, tell stories, joke around. They are still very interested in falling in love. I think my writing style is naturally light and breezy, so it’s sort of a counterpoint to the storyline.

What’s your favorite part of this series?
Riley and Finn’s relationship. They have so much on their plates, and they’re so young, but they genuinely care for each other in a way that makes me ache.

What do you do when you’re not writing?
I have three large, unruly boys who like to play every sport and eat as much food as possible. When I’m not at my computer, I’m busy carting them around and grocery shopping. But I also love to relax with a great book or television show – I am currently completely obsessed with Riverdale!

Also, if you’re interested in more inspiration for this series, here is a playlist of songs curated just for the Division series by the author herself!

https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/1266271265/playlist/0LZwiiLF5aEyyFN3Co0QGI


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Skillshare is an online community full of amazing classes and brilliant teachers. Try out two free months with my code here!