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YA Author Rendezvous

Creativity Unleashed: Books for the young and the young at heart

Month

June 2016

Are You Genre-Phobic?

Young Adult Books Genre PhobicAre you genre-phobic, by T.D. Shields.

Are you a genre-phobe? Do you love to read fantasy but avoid romance like the plague?

Sci-fi flips your switch but horror makes you flip out?

I’m right there with you. Through the years I’ve had many genre phobias, but I notice that mine tend to shift over time.

When I was a teenager, I couldn’t get enough of romance novels. I loved to read about people older than me living exciting lives where I could picture myself as part of the adventure. Now that I am the older person, I love to read Young Adult fiction for stories about people younger than me living exciting lives while I imagine being part of the adventure.

I tend to avoid horror and zombie books because of the gore… yet a serial killer thriller is a must-read in spite of the gore. Inconsistent, I know.  But I branch out occasionally and recently I even read a few zombie stories that I really enjoyed. (Married With Zombies; Eat, Slay, Love; and The Zombie Whisperer by Jesse Peterson – with titles like that, you can see why I had to give them a try.)

I never used to want to read anything non-fiction because I was in it for the exciting escapism. Now I enjoy biographies, memoirs, and the occasional non-fiction explainer. Bill Bryson is fantastic for that sort of thing.

So I’ve learned to be a little less genre-phobic these days and try a lot of new authors and styles. Sometimes it’s a bust, but often I find a great new book.

How about you? What are your genre phobias? What books have you found that break through your genre lines?

Come over to Facebook and tell me all about it! (You know you want to be my friend! https://www.facebook.com/tdshields.author/)

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Author Spotlight: Korey Ward

korey ward - authorInterview by T.D. Shields

An Interview with Korey Ward.

Tell us about you! Where are you from? What’s your family like? We want to know it all!

Well, I grew up in the small town of Flatwoods Ky. I was raised by my grandparents on my mother’s side. They took sole custody of me when I was about six, because I was in a really bad place at that time in my life. My father took off shortly after I was born, and my mother is an alcoholic who likes to throw wild parties. I could literarily write a book on all the things I’ve seen and experienced just with in the first 5 years of existence. And perhaps I will one day. I owe my whole life to my grandparents because without them I probably wouldn’t have one.

When and why did you begin writing?

My writing, I believe, was a progression of little ideas before I ever even dreamed of writing an entire novel. My first experience with writing, that wasn’t part of my schooling, was in the form of little poems that would pop into my head from time to time. Then after high school I formed a rock band called Fates Tragedy. We were together for about 8 years, and were becoming quite successful locally before we all went our separate ways. I wrote the majority of the lyrics for the band, which I found easy transitioning from poetry to structured lyrics. It wasn’t until after my daughter Zoey, was about 8 years old that I even thought about writing a book.  We were rather poor at the time and we couldn’t even afford cable and it was well before streaming services such as Netflix, so we started to buy a book or two a month and I would read it to my daughter, and even act it out occasionally. After reading the likes of the Grey Griffins series by : J. S. Lewis, and Derek Benz, someone suggested to me that I should write my own stories to read to Zoey since I had a vivid imagination. That is when I began writing the first lines to what would later become Rise of the Shadow Seekers. It wasn’t until years later that I buckled down and finished the book, due to my wife’s constant encouragement.

What books do you have published and where can we buy them?

I have two books published at this time. The first Being Rise of the Shadow Seekers: The First Seeker. It was published on November 3rd 2015 under Korey L. Ward. The second book is Strawberry Sorbet: A Noir, published on Valentine’s Day 2016, under my pen name, Landon Wake. You can find all of my books on amazon, BAM online, and Barnes and Noble online.

What project are you working on now?

Right now I’m working on a psychological suspense thriller called G.P.S I can’t reveal any more details than that at this time, other than it will be published under my Landon Wake pen name. In case you were wondering, I use Korey L. Ward as my young adult/ kid friendly books, and Landon Wake as my more adult themed books.

What is the hardest thing about writing?

The hardest thing about writing for me is the stick-to-itiveness. With life and work and family and just not being in the mood, gets in the way sometimes, but you just have to push through it.

What is the best thing about writing?

The best thing about writing to me, is that feeling of completion, and knowing that others will get the chance to hopefully enjoy the labor of my love.

Just for fun… If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?

If I were a superhero, I would have the power to heal all diseases. If you really want to save someone I think that is the best place to start. Superman could catch a person falling from a tall building, wouldn’t be able to save that person from the cancer that will take their life next week.

What book are you reading now?

I’m reading Intensity by Dean Koontz right now.

Who are your favorite authors?

My favorite authors are the king himself Stephen King. Dean Koontz, Joe Hill, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. J. S Lewis, and Derek Benz.

Where can readers find you to say hello and keep up with your latest news and new releases?

You can find me at koreylward.com, Facebook, Twitter, and other various social media.

And finally, anything specific that you would like to say to our readers?

Yes, of course. I would love to thank you all for giving me a chance. I strive to entertain you all and poor my heart and soul into all of my books. I also have to give you props for actually reading to the end of this whole thing, Ha! Check you later.

Korey, out.

What does ‘Young Adult’ mean?

What does Young Adult MeanWritten by Michelle Lynn

An age old question – you’ll get my pun in a moment – about the Young Adult genre has had people baffled for years. What does Young Adult mean? Does it describe the age of the readers? The age of the characters? Or something else entirely? The genre takes on many forms and different people describe it differently. Some people include middle grade fiction and even down to children’s fiction in this category. Others don’t.

I am one of the latter. I read a ton of YA books – dystopian, contemporary, paranormal – you name it. I also write YA – dystopian. I’m no expert. We all have our own way of looking at the genre. But I am opinionated – boy, am I opinionated. So, bear with me while I talk about what I think as if it’s fact (I tend to do that a lot).

In YA, the characters are young adults. There, simple enough for you? They’re teenagers or early twenty somethings. YA carries the stigma with it that it is literature for teenagers. Books like Twilight perpetuated the stereotype while books like The Hunger Games broke it. The HG brought us an uber-popular YA book that was now being read by all ages. I am twenty-seven which some people say is past the target for YA. Well, I say bull shit (pardon my French).

It may be a little strange when I’m crushing on these teenage boys (I have a habit of falling in love with the men of the books I read) and wanting to be friends with the strong female leads that YA seems to get right over every other genre, but I don’t care anymore.

If you are one of those people who refuse to read Young Adult books because they are “too young” for you, then I’m sorry. You are missing out. No other genre exhibits the heart and soul of YA. We get to see characters grow and change and become who they are meant to be. We see first loves and new experiences. We see people overcome all the odds to save the world – or even just save the ones they love.

Reading is like nothing else. It’s an amazing experience that lets you see the world differently. Reading YA is even better. It lets you feel the world differently.

My name is Michelle Lynn. I read Young Adult. I write Young Adult. I am not a Young Adult.

May – July New Releases

by Patrick Hodges

Several great books to tell you about this month!

 

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5/22 – The Legend of the White Peacock (Legends from Around the World Book 1) by Kristen Iten 

white peacockEnter the jungle with a young Indian girl, as she braves the night in search of a magical bird of legend. It will take all of her courage to break with tradition, and realize her secret wish.

Sometimes the best things in life are not free, but who will pay the price? Find out in this story of compassion and sacrifice.

If you are a fan of Disney style artistry, you will fall in love with the illustrations in this book! Inspired by traditional Indian art, the illustrations in “The Legend of the White Peacock” will take your breath away. This book is sure to be enjoyed by your intermediate reader, as well as the entire family!

 

Genre: Children/Geography & Cultures

Available for Order on Amazon HERE

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5/23 – War of the Networks (The Network Series Book 4) by Katie Cross

war of the networksNever Underestimate the Power of a Desperate Witch

With the Central Network entrenched in war and teetering on the brink of destruction, eighteen-year-old Bianca Monroe is determined to defeat Mabel’s powerful Almorran magic by finding the Book of Light.

During an attempt to save a burning orphanage, Bianca finds herself caught in a trap. Mabel kidnaps her, taking her to the hot sands of the Western Network where things are not as they seem. Mabel is more dangerous—and unhinged—than she’s ever been before.

War of the Networks is the fourth and final book in the thrilling fantasy collection The Network Series. It’s a gripping tale about compassion, forgiveness, and surviving against all odds.

Genre: YA/Fantasy

Available for Order on Amazon HERE

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5/31 – Magic in Clearview (Xavier #4) by E.M. Cooper

magic in clearviewAs the final battle draws closer, Xavier seeks the beekeeper of Clearview and guidance from the ledger. From Griswold College to every corner of Clanarde, the threat from demons and the Darklaw grows.

In the back of Xavier’s mind, Father Augustine’s final warning causes him to doubt and question all the angels he has ever encountered. At the same time Xavier’s closest friends face stunning revelations about their heritages, while another must come to terms with a devastating experience.

 

Genre: YA/Fantasy

Available for Order on Amazon HERE

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6/1 – The Last Nine Winters of Cade Finley: A Sirens of Falkeld Novella by Julie Tuovi

last nine wintersAidan Finley dreamed of marrying the girl with the red hair who stole his heart as a lad. He dreamed of a family and growing old together in a cottage atop Muireall’s wind-swept cliffs.

But Aidan didn’t know what swam beneath the island’s dark, fathomless waves.

He never realized what fragile things dreams can be.

After a storm ravishes the island one summer day, he finds a creature caught beneath a rock in a cave. His choice to save her will alter his world forever—for even dreams aren’t safe from the siren’s song.

Genre: YA/Fantasy

Available for Order on Amazon HERE

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6/24 – Woven Peril (The Aylosian Chronicles Book 2) by Jeffrey Collyer

woven perilThe Guardian’s forces may have left the forest, but they haven’t departed from Michael’s mind as he struggles to learn what his enemy will do next. Torn between feelings of guilt and love, he must now push ahead to find mythical halls deep in the earth, where secrets from the distant past are spoken of, and new riddles unearthed.

Entering dark paths, Michael must learn to use his growing power if he is to discover that which will save the land, at the same time as trying to protect those now under his care from new and deadly monsters sent to hunt him.

And all while he struggles to understand mysteries surrounding his mother.

Woven Peril is the thrilling second book in the Aylosian Chronicles, and continues the epic tale in a world of unusual magic and unique creatures. If you enjoy stories with a combination of action, tenderness and thoughtful wisdom, the Aylosian Chronicles is sure to be a series you’ll enjoy.

Genre: YA/Fantasy

Available for Pre-order on Amazon HERE

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7/1 – Gather the Sentient (The Sevens Prophecy Book 2) by Amalie Jahn

gather the sentientWhat if a group of psychic strangers came together to save the world?

There will come a day when seven psychic children of the light and seven psychic children of the dark will be born. From the moment of their birth, strong powers will be in place to bring the seven light together and the seven dark together to form two separate but equally powerful groups. The first seven to gather all in one place will seal the fate of the world – dark for hell, light for heaven. At that point the seven deadly sins will take over the world or cease to exist.

After Mia is rescued from the trafficking ring’s basement brothel, she and Thomas begin putting both their lives and the pieces of the Sevens Prophecy together, but quickly discover there may be little hope for the light psychics.

Little do they know that the powerful forces alluded to in the prophecy are already working to bring the light psychics together. Unfortunately, they’re bringing the dark psychics together as well.

As both sides of the prophecy gather, which group will ultimately decide the fate of the world?

Genre: Mystery/Paranormal

Available for Pre-order on Amazon HERE

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7/8 – Audette of Brookraven (The Eldentimber Series Book 4) by Shari L. Tapscott

audetteThe Final Chapter in The Eldentimber Series

When Audette pictured her wedding day, she never imagined leaving her intended at the alter. And though Irving, a prince with a reputation for trouble, never cared to picture the grand event (and had rather hoped he could somehow avoid it altogether), he certainly wouldn’t have imagined being abandoned.

But when Audette receives a cry for help from the mysterious, secret order she leads, the princess doesn’t think twice about jilting Irving. With her brother and closest friend at her side, and her loyal order of knights anxiously awaiting her arrival, Audette travels to the distant island kingdom of Ptarma, not once expecting Irving to follow her.

But that’s exactly what he does.

Now, trapped together until the ships sail again in spring, Audette must learn to get along with the infuriating prince if she’s to track down the darkness that’s wreaking havoc in the night. For in the shadows, the dark beast of legend looms, and only together will they have a chance of defeating it…

Genre: YA/Fantasy

Available for Pre-0rder on Amazon HERE

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7/19 – Ignite (The Resistance Series Book 3) by Tracy Lawson

igniteThe Greatest Risk Is To Take No Risk At All

Nationwide food shortages have sparked civil unrest, and the Office of Civilian Safety and Defense’s hold on the people is slipping. The Resistance’s efforts to hasten the OCSD’s demise have resulted in disaster, with Tommy Bailey and Careen Catecher taking the blame for the ill-fated mission in Tommy’s home quadrant, OP-439.

Both teens struggle to survive the circumstances that force them into the national spotlight—and this time, they’re on opposite sides. On the run and exiled from his fellow Resistance members in remote BG-098, Tommy makes his way to a Resistance safe house in the capital. The OCSD is preparing to monitor all under-eighteens with the Cerberean Link, a device that protects them against hunger and sickness and can even locate them if they’re lost. Tommy’s now living in close quarters with Atari, an operative who has been assigned to sabotage the Link. But does Atari plan to use it for his own purposes?

Through it all, Tommy refuses to believe Careen’s loyalties have shifted away from the Resistance, and he’s willing to assume any risk to reconnect with her. Will they be able to trust each other when it matters most?

Genre: YA/Dystopian

Available for Pre-0rder on Amazon June 19

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7/27 – Kiss Me Goodnight in Rome (The Senior Semester Series Book 2) by Gina Azzi

kiss me goodnightWhy did Mia Petrellla ever make such a drastic life change? Spending the fall semester of her senior year in Rome is a huge leap outside of her comfort zone and she’s a nervous wreck. But then something unexpected happens.

During her first hours in Rome, she meets Lorenzo Barca, a charming Italian waiter with deep blue eyes and a devilish wink.  From their first encounter, Lorenzo catches Mia off-guard with his piercing gaze and friendly banter. Maybe her adventure abroad will be more surprising, and less nerve-wracking, then she thought?

Lorenzo Barca is fed up and done wasting his time waiting tables at his family’s restaurant when he could be living his life. The life he should be living. The life he wants to be living. And it doesn’t include serving loud American tourists espresso. Until one of those American tourists turns out to be a sweetheart with chocolate eyes and a beautiful smile.  Soon, Mia Petrella has Lorenzo not only showing up for work, but looking forward to it.

Mia and Lorenzo build a friendship that blossoms into love, but they both hold back as Mia’s departure date and the transition to a long-distance relationship is inevitable. When Lorenzo makes a series of shocking discoveries regarding his family, his future, and Mia, their bond threatens to snap, shaking them both to the core.

Can Mia and Lorenzo trust each other enough to build the future they both desire?

Genre: New Adult/Contemporary Romance

Available for Pre-order on Amazon HERE

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