A Bright and Lovely Sunday: Jennifer Niven in Manila!

If there’s one day I’d like to relive, it would be May 29, 2016 — Jennifer Niven’s signing in Manila. It was so colorful and bright and all the lovely things combined! ❤

Q&A with Jennifer

Q&A with Jennifer Niven

My fellow book bloggers and I attended a special Q&A with Jennifer where she talked about writing and her wonderful books. Jennifer’s sincere and soft-spoken nature was very admirable! I loved listening to her speak! ❤

Here are some interesting bits I’ve gathered from the Q&A:

*On adapting All the Bright Places into a screenplay, Jennifer said it was scary at first.

*Jennifer has a graduate degree in screenwriting.

*According to her, film doesn’t have as much space unlike in books.

*Readers are always the important thing for Jennifer.

*The All the Bright Places movie will start shooting in the Fall!

*For Jennifer, it’s important to have balance. When she’s on a writing break, she loves to dance, hike, go outside, read, and binge watch television. It’s recharging for her.

*Jennifer said that every book wants to be written differently.

*Writing Jack and Libby (in Holding Up the Universe) was a challenge.

*She creates a playlist for each of the characters.

*Jennifer kept surprising herself while writing Holding Up the Universe. Both she and her characters try to do the unexpected.

For more fascinating information, you may listen to the audio recording of the Q&A here.

Following the Q&A was the book signing! We all lined up to have our books signed. I felt everybody’s excitement as I waited to reach the front of the line!

Jennifer signing books

When my turn came, Jennifer smiled at me, and I couldn’t believe that I was face to face with THE Jennifer Niven — New York Times Bestselling Author and a friend I made online in 2014 who I’ve wished to meet!

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Jennifer signing my copy of All the Bright Places!

Pictures with Jen

She is all the colors in one, at full brightness. ❤

After I had a picture taken with Jennifer, I hugged her tightly and told her that she’s amazing. Then Jen surprised me with a gift! An ARC of Holding Up the Universe! Squeee!!! *flails* Oh and guess what, I have a cameo in Holding Up the Universe! Thank you, Jen, for making my dream of becoming a character in a book come true! 🙂

Holding Up the Universe

Jen’s gift!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

While our fellow bloggers are still having their books signed, the Hardest Selfie Ever crew grabbed the opportunity to take selfies! These selfies were not really difficult to take as we’ve gotten better at squeezing ourselves into the frame as the years go by. The hardest selfies we’ve ever taken are still at Gayle Forman’s and Jenny Han’s book signings! Haha! 😀

Hardest Selfie Ever 15.0

The Hardest Selfie Ever 15.0 with Kate of The Bookaholic Blurbs, Lyra of Defiantly Deviant, and Louisse of The Soul Sisters!

A bookish event wouldn’t be complete without a group picture! So here it is:

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PH YA Book Bloggers with Jennifer Niven 🙂

After the event, I went up to Jen and thanked her for visiting the Philippines and for being an inspiration to me. I couldn’t stop saying thank you because my heart was overflowing with gratitude, happiness, and all kinds of feels. When I hugged Jennifer, she shared her brightness with me, and infused a sense of hope that the coming days are going to be better and brighter. Jennifer IS all the colors in one, at full brightness. I will never ever forget this day! 🙂

Convo with Jen

Convo with Jen

Jen wearing the bracelet

Jen wearing the bracelets I gave her! 🙂

The public signing was held at the Mega Atrium of SM Megamall at 2PM. From what I’ve seen in pictures, there were so many people who attended! Hooray!!!

 

Thank you National Book Store for bringing Jennifer Niven to the Philippines! You guys are rock stars! So much love for you! 🙂

To Jennifer, thank you very much for visiting the Philippines. You have no idea how happy I am that I got to meet you in person! We became friends on Twitter in late 2014 and after a year, we finally saw each other in real life! This time, I got to really hug you, and not just send you virtual hugs! I am also grateful for your writing advices and for constantly encouraging me to keep on writing. You make me bright and lovely! One day when I finish my book, you’ll be the first to know. ❤ I love you and I hope to see you again in the future! *hugs*

Signed books

Signed books ❤

GIVEAWAY TIME!

Signed chapter sampler

As I have posted on the @JenniferNivenPH Twitter page, I’m giving away a signed Holding Up the Universe chapter sampler to one (1) lucky reader!

Just answer this question on the comment section below:

How did All the Bright Places change your life?

I’ll choose the best answer!!! 🙂

*Giveaway is open to Philippine residents ONLY (I’m sorry, international readers! 😦 )

and will run until Sunday, June 5, 2016 at 5 PM

xoxo,

Jesselle

 

Check out the recaps of my friends!

Kai of Amaterasu Reads

Dianne of Oops! I Read A Book Again

Salve of Cuckoo for Books

 

 

Event Recap: Sarah J. Maas in PH!

I’m writing this post fresh from the fantabulous book signing event today which is #SarahJMaasinPH! Oh my goodness, I’m still on cloud nine from all the fangirling and happy, exciting things that happened earlier at the Q&A that I attended with my blogger friends! ❤ Sarah J. Maas is hands down super amazing. Her beauty inside and out shines bright like a diamond! Everybody squealed in delight upon seeing Sarah enter the Q&A venue!

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All hail Queen Sarah!

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Q&A with Sarah

Here are some fascinating bits I got from the Q&A:

*With every book, Sarah learns something new about herself, not only as a writer but also as a person. She also gets to know her characters well.

*Sarah sets deadlines for herself and wants to keep pushing herself.

*She’s working on the 5th Throne of Glass book, Empire of Storms.

*She loves fairy tales and folklore.

*She wants to write a retelling of the Russian folklore, “Vasilisa the Beautiful”.

*According to Sarah, she is a hybrid of pantser and plotter.

*She wants to know how to start and how she’ll end a story.

*She lets her characters speak to her.

*Her husband is her first and last boyfriend. (Awwww! <3)

*The Night Court in the ACOTAR series is a place with layers of secrets.

*A Court of Mist and Fury is a book where readers will see more of the world of Prythian!

*Sarah likes to think that there’s strength in quietness.

*Sarah wants to write strong female characters that represent different kinds of strength.

*She listens to music on repeat until she gets in her characters’ mindsets.

*Sarah has to feel what her characters are feeling.

*She opened herself up in ways she’s never done before in Heir of Fire.

*She calls Heir of Fire the “migraine book” because she cried a lot while writing it.

*It’s amazing to her that the fandom (for her books) has grown.

 

You may listen to the full audio recording of the Q&A here.

Sarah signing my books

Sarah signing my copy of A Court of Thorns and Roses!

Sarah signing my book

Sarah to me: “Your hair is so beautiful!” Me: “Thank you! Your hair is so beautiful, too!” Really guys, her hair is amazing! 🙂

With Sarah J. Maas!

With the remarkable Sarah J. Maas!

Hugging Sarah

I got to hug Sarah! ❤ ❤ ❤

PH YA Book Bloggers with SJ Maas

PH YA Book Bloggers with Sarah and her husband! 🙂

Hardest Sefie Ever 14.0 with SJMaas

Hardest Selfie Ever 14.0 with Sarah! ❤

After the Q&A, my blogger friends and I had lunch at our usual hang-out. Our topic of conversation was of course, BOOKS. 🙂 After lunch, I dropped by the public signing at National Book Store Glorietta 1 with Sab of Sab The Book Eater and Dani of Book Whales. I felt the excitement of everyone upon entering the venue! There were a lot of bookworms who camped out as early as yesterday! WOW. You guys are awesome! I salute every single one of you. 🙂

Public signing2

Public signing1

So there you have it! Another phenomenal book signing event made possible by the one and only National Book Store! Thank you very much NBS for bringing Sarah J. Maas here in the Philippines! You guys rock! 🙂

Signed ACOTAR

My signed copy of ACOTAR ❤

How about you, guys? Did you attend Sarah J. Maas’ book signing? Share your experience in the comment section below!

 

Event Recap: Victoria Aveyard Manila Book Signing

Last March 6, 2016, New York Times Bestselling Author Victoria Aveyard visited Manila for a book signing tour! My fellow book bloggers and I had a privilege to attend a Q&A with the author, and as always, it was a lot of fun! While waiting for Victoria, my friends and I chatted about the latest books and what we’ve been up to. It was really great to see them again after months of not seeing each other. Soon, Victoria arrived and everyone welcomed her with smiles and cheers.

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The Q&A was wonderful! Victoria answered our questions with gusto and so much insight. I enjoyed listening to her talk about writing and the things she loves! You may listen to the full audio recording of the Q&A here. Special thanks to Kai of Amaterasu Reads for sharing the link of the audio recording! I have my own, but unfortunately, my laptop failed to recognize my phone. Boo! 😦

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With the lovely Victoria Aveyard!

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A display of Victoria Aveyard’s books

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PH YA Book Bloggers with Victoria! Photo grabbed from Kate of The Bookaholic Blurbs. 🙂

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Hardest Selfie Ever 13.0 with Kate of The Bookaholic Blurbs, Lyra of Defiantly Deviant, and Louisse of The Soul Sisters!

I wasn’t able to drop by at the public signing because I had somewhere important to go to after the Q&A. But I was glad to hear that a huge number of fans showed up! Woohoo! *happy dance*

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My signed copy of Red Queen! 🙂

Thank you very much National Book Store for this remarkable event! Can’t wait for the next one! 🙂

 

Victoria Aveyard in PH!

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Victoria Aveyard Book Signing Tour

ONLY BOOKS PURCHASED FROM NATIONAL BOOK STORE, NATIONAL BOOK STORE EXPRESS OR POWERBOOKS WILL BE ACCOMMODATED.

Book Signing Mechanics
1. Registration will start at 10:00 a.m. First come, first served.
• March 5 at The Gallery, Ayala Center Cebu
• March 6 at National Book Store Glorietta 1

2. Each participant is allowed to have a maximum of three (3) books to be signed (1 personalized and 2 with signatures only). The books must be presented upon registration. Only copies of Victoria Aveyard books bought at any National Book Store, NBS Express, and Powerbooks branches will be allowed. The book must have its official receipt or price tag.

3. A participant can register only once. Each participant will be given the following:
• Numbered Signing Pass
• Stamp mark on the hand to indicate your registration

4. NBS will take every effort to get as many books signed as possible. However, should there be an excessive number of guests, NBS reserves the right to limit the number of copies per guest or limit the number of guests in line.

5. There will be an official photographer from NBS who will take your photo with the author. However, we strictly allow only one photo per person.

Frequently Asked Questions

When and where are the book signings?
March 5, 1:00 p.m., at The Gallery, Ayala Center Cebu
March 6, 2:00 p.m., at National Book Store, Glorietta 1

Is there a registration fee?
No. There is no registration fee.

When will the registration be?
Registration opens at 10:00 a.m. on March 5 at The Gallery, Ayala Center Cebu, and 10:00 a.m. on March 6 at National Bok Store, Glorietta 1. Each guest will be asked to fill out the registration form upon arrival. First come, first served. Guests must present their book to get a numbered Signing Pass. The book must have either of the following as proof of purchase: Price Tag or Official Receipt from National Book Store, National Book Store Express or Powerbooks.

How many books can I have signed? Is there a limit as to how many people can have their books signed?
Each participant is allowed to have a maximum of three (3) books to be signed (1 personalized and 2 with signatures only). The books must be presented upon registration. We do not have any preset limit as to the number of people.

However, should there be an excessive number of guests, NBS reserves the right to limit the number of guests in line. First come, first served.

Can I bring old books or other editions of the books?
Yes, as long as the books were purchased from National Book Store, National Book Store Express or Powerbooks. The books must have either the price tag or official receipt.

Do I need to buy on-site?
No. You can buy books before or during the event.

Can I have other items signed?
No. Only books will be allowed to be signed by the author.

Can we have our photo taken with the author?
Yes. There will be an official photographer from NBS who will take your photo with the author. However, we strictly allow only one photo per person.

How much are the books?
Red Queen (Hardcover – P649)
Red Queen (Trade Paperback – P435)
Cruel Crown (Trade Paperback – P359)
Glass Sword (Hardcover – P699) – Available starting February 9
Glass Sword (Trade Paperback – P435) – Available starting February 9

Details from National Book Store Facebook page

See you there! 🙂

Event Recap: Kiera Cass in PH!

New York Times Bestselling author Kiera Cass is in the Philippines again for a book signing tour! How cool is that? 🙂 My fellow bloggers and I attended a Q&A with Kiera this morning and it was a lot of fun!

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Q&A with Kiera Cass

Here are a few awesome bits I got:

*Once her books are out in the world, Kiera doesn’t read them again.

*The Siren is currently a standalone.

*The first draft of the 5th (and final) book in The Selection series is done!

*There’ll be more kissing in the 5th book!

*Book 5 is slated to come out in May 2016.

*Besides The Selection series and The Siren, Kiera has a contract for two more books with HarperCollins.

You may listen to the full audio recording of the Q&A here.

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With the lovely Kiera Cass!

Kiera is still as effervescent and wonderful as she was when I first met her in 2013. It was such a delight to see her in person the second time around! 🙂

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PH YA Book Bloggers with Kiera!

Aside from the Q&A, I also had a great time bonding with my blogger friends! We talked about books and planned for an upcoming special event that you’d definitely love! 🙂

Signed books

Signed books! Yay! 🙂

Thank you very much National Book Store for bringing Kiera Cass again in the Philippines! 🙂 Till next bookish event!

The Great NBS Warehouse Sale!

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Find great bargains and great finds at National Book Store’s “The Great Warehouse Sale” in Quezon Avenue. Get up to 90% off on books, supplies, and gift items from August 13 to 18, 2015, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., only at the 4th Floor National Book Store, Quezon Avenue cor. Sct. Borromeo and Panay Avenue. Hurry, 6 days only! Make your pre-Christmas shopping sprint at the #NBSGreatWarehouseSale. Per DTI-FTEB SPD Permit No. 10219, Series of 2015.

Shop online and buy eBooks at nationalbookstore.com. Follow National Book Store on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@nbsalert).

Awesome news, right? 🙂

KMR in PH! [Recap + Giveaway]

My contemporary fangirl heart exploded with joy when National Book Store announced that Katie Cotugno, Melissa Kantor, and Robyn Schneider were coming to the Philippines for a book signing event. Charged with excitement, my blogger friends and I attended a special Q&A with the authors last July 5th.

Book signing stage

As we waited for Katie, Melissa, and Robyn to arrive, we mingled and caught up with each other, talking about books and anything under the sun. The three authors soon entered the venue, and we all went into serious fangirl mode. My heart drummed with elation when I saw Robyn Schneider! She’s like the brightest sunshine ever–so bubbly and adorable. 🙂

Q&A_collage

The Q&A was a lot of fun! Here are some interesting bits that I have gathered:

*Melissa would love to do historical fiction.

*Katie started How to Love at the age of 16.

*Katie kind of fell into young adult.

*Melissa said that it’s important to figure out a process that works for you.

*All of Robyn’s leading guys are portraits of herself.

*Melissa loves writing romance.

*Writing contemporary helps Katie to understand the world.

*Robyn loves writing pop culture references.

*Katie’s 3rd book is an untitled tragic romance coming out in Spring 2016. It’s a a pop star book set in the 1990s and has a star-crossed romance!

*Robyn tries to be honest. She writes normal.

*Robyn hates hash tags. #IHateHashTags

You may listen to full audio recording of the Q&A here.

With authors_collage

KMR! 🙂

Katie, Melissa, and Robyn were all wonderful! I enjoyed chatting with them as they signed my books. Robyn was so delighted to see my well-loved copy of The Beginning of Everything with sticky notes of my favorite quotes and my thoughts about the story. She also gave me writing advice, which I will forever keep in mind. Here it goes: “Write the book you want to send to your sixteen year-old self.” I was completely blown away with it! Words like that mean so much to me, and I’m beyond grateful that I have met (and hugged!) Robyn Schneider in person. She is truly an inspiration!

Author hug_Robyn

With Robyn!

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PH YA Book Bloggers with Katie Cotugno, Melissa Kantor, and Robyn Schneider! Photo courtesy of National Book Store. 🙂

With the authors

With Katie, Melissa, and Robyn. ❤

The public signing followed at 2 p.m. at the Grand Atrium in Shangri-La Plaza. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go there because I had tasks to do at home. But based on the pictures I saw on Twitter and Instagram, it was evident that everyone enjoyed!

Signed books_collage

Signed books!

 

Ezra quote

My favorite quote from The Beginning of Everything. ❤

Thank you very much to the fantastic National Book Store for bringing Katie Cotugno, Melissa Kantor, and Robyn Schneider to the Philippines! I had an amazing time at the signing! To Katie, Melissa, and Robyn, I hope you ladies would visit the country again one day. 🙂

GIVEAWAY!!!

I’m giving away three (3) bookmarks signed by Katie Cotugno, Melissa Kantor, and Robyn Schneider to one (1) lucky bookworm!

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The giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY. 🙂

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Event Recap: Leigh Bardugo in PH!

June 21st was fantastic for bookworms in Manila as it was the day of New York Times Bestselling Author Leigh Bardugo’s book signing! Many wished for Leigh to visit the Philippines and of course, the wonderful National Book Store made it come true! 🙂

Leigh Bardugo Q&A

Q&A with Leigh Bardugo

My fellow bloggers and I attended a Q&A and I’d love to share with you the information I’ve gathered from the event. Here it is:

*Leigh would love to write with Laini Taylor and JK Rowling.

*Leigh has a horror story in the anthology, Slasher Girls & Monster Boys that is coming out in August.

*Leigh enjoys stories set in our world with a fantasy element.

*Leigh would never cut a steamy scene!

*Leigh is a huge Game of Thrones fan!

*Russia felt like a good fit for her world.

*The setting of Six of Crows existed in Leigh’s mind before she wrote it.

*Shadow and Bone is a very classic “chosen one” story.

*Leigh hopes we like Six of Crows!

*Leigh might write a story about Sturmhond. According to her, it won’t happen on a few years.

*Leigh used to be a makeup and special effects artist.

*Leigh realized that no matter how old you get, no matter how smart you think you are, the fear of the dark never really goes away.

*She meant for the Darkling to be sexy. 🙂

*The Darkling is a main love interest.

*Leigh set out to write characters, not love interests.

*There’s a possibility for a novella about Alina’s origins!

*Leigh created a language to suit the moment of the world.

*Leigh wanted the language to be accessible to the reader.

*Leigh has gotten braver in her world-building.

*She literally has her dream job now.

If you wish to listen to the audio recording of the Q&A, you may access it here.

With Leigh Bardugo

With the wonderful Leigh Bardugo! 🙂

After the Q&A, we bloggers had the opportunity to meet Leigh personally at the book signing. Leigh was so kind and friendly! She asked me who my favorite character is in the Grisha Trilogy and I honestly told her that I haven’t read her books yet. I wanted to vanish into thin air as soon as I said those words! But you know what? Leigh was totally cool with it! I said I’ll read her books soon and she responded, “I hope you like them!” in a cheerful manner that made me more excited to read the Grisha Trilogy.

PH Bloggers group photo

PH YA Bloggers with Leigh Bardugo

Leigh’s agent, Joanna Volpe, was also present at the event. I got to chat with her for a while and she gave some helpful writing tips! Thank you, Joanna! Will keep those in mind. 🙂

With Joanna Volpe

With the lovely Joanna Volpe! 🙂

Aside from meeting Leigh and Joanna, I was super happy to see my blogger friends again after two months! I missed everyone very much! It was really good to catch up with them. Of course, a signing wouldn’t be complete without selfies! I didn’t get a chance to take selfies with everyone (BOO!), but here’s a collage of the very few I took with Kevin of Tomebound, Salve of Cuckoo for Books, Sab from Sab the Book Eater, and Hazel of Stay Bookish.

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Bloggers unite!

The public signing was held at National Book Store Glorietta 1. I wasn’t able to stay long because I had stuff to do in the afternoon. Anyway, from what I’ve seen in pictures shared on social media, it seems like everybody had a great time! Hooray!

Public signing

Public signing at National Book Store

Thank you so much National Book Store for making #LeighBardugoinPH possible! Meeting Leigh was an amazing experience. I’m looking forward to the next book signing event! 🙂

Signed copies of SB and SS

Signed books! Yay!

Six of Crows

Signed Six of Crows ARC! 🙂

How about you, guys? Did you attend any of Leigh Bardugo’s signing in the Philippines? Share your experience in the comment section below!

 

Bookish Birthday Bash: Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone [Guest post + Playlist]

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Hi! Welcome to Day 3 of Bookish Birthday Bash! The amazing Tamara Ireland Stone takes over the blog today for a very special guest post and a swoon-worthy playlist that will melt your hearts in no time.

Have a great reading and listening time! 🙂

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23341894Synopsis:

If you could read my mind, you wouldn’t be smiling.

Samantha McAllister looks just like the rest of the popular girls in her junior class. But hidden beneath the straightened hair and expertly applied makeup is a secret that her friends would never understand: Sam has Purely-Obsessional OCD and is consumed by a stream of dark thoughts and worries that she can’t turn off.

Second-guessing every move, thought, and word makes daily life a struggle, and it doesn’t help that her lifelong friends will turn toxic at the first sign of a wrong outfit, wrong lunch, or wrong crush. Yet Sam knows she’d be truly crazy to leave the protection of the most popular girls in school. So when Sam meets Caroline, she has to keep her new friend with a refreshing sense of humor and no style a secret, right up there with Sam’s weekly visits to her psychiatrist.

Caroline introduces Sam to Poet’s Corner, a hidden room and a tight-knit group of misfits who have been ignored by the school at large. Sam is drawn to them immediately, especially a guitar-playing guy with a talent for verse, and starts to discover a whole new side of herself. Slowly, she begins to feel more “normal” than she ever has as part of the popular crowd . . . until she finds a new reason to question her sanity and all she holds dear.

*Photo and synopsis from Goodreads

Every Last Word is out on June 16, 2015 from Disney-Hyperion.

Purchase the book: Purchase the book: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository / Fully Booked

 

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tamarairelandstone TAMARA IRELAND STONE
is the author of Time After Time and Time Between Us, which has been published in over twenty countries to widespread acclaim, and hailed as “an exciting debut novel” by Booklist and “a warm, time bending romance” by Publishers Weekly. It has been optioned for film by CBS Films.

Her next novel, Every Last Word, is about a teen girl with OCD who’s hiding part of herself from the world, until she discovers a secret poetry club that changes her in unexpected ways. Every Last Word releases on June 16, 2015.

A former Silicon Valley marketing executive, Tamara enjoys skiing, hiking, and spending time with her husband and two children. She lives just outside of San Francisco. For more information, visit her website at http://www.TamaraIrelandStone.com.

*Author bio and photo from the author’s website

 

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Happy Birthday, Jesselle! I wish I could be there in person to chat nonstop with you about books, music, and swoon-worthy fictional boys. Hopefully this post with a healthy dose of all three will suffice.

Thank you for including me in your birthday bash, and for offering to unveil the second of my four playlists!

My new novel, Every Last Word, hits shelves on next Tuesday, June 16. It’s a story about a girl named Samantha who looks perfect on the outside but feels broken on the inside, until an underground poetry club and its misfit members help her see herself in a whole new light.

This story is special to me for two big reasons:

(1) It was inspired by a family friend who was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), when she was 12. She’s someone I greatly admire, and even though this is a work of fiction, her strength, attitude, and sense of humor are firmly embedded in my main character.

(2) It’s personal, especially around the theme of the healing power of words. Even though I never let anyone else read my stories, poems, and journal entries when I was a teen, my notebooks were always my safe place. In writing this novel, I got to create a character and watch her fall in love with words. It was an unforgettable experience.

Like my other books, Time Between Us and Time After Time, music plays a big role in this story. There are actually four Every Last Word playlists: The main one—which is more like the soundtrack for the story—and three more that are mentioned in the book:

  • I recently shared my Every Last Word playlist/soundtrack, “Anything But Empty”, cover-art1here in Justine Magazine.
  • Today, I’m here at The Lifelong Bookworm to tell you all about “Song For You”, an all-acoustic guitar playlist Sam makes for AJ.
  • On Monday the 15th, I’ll be over at YA Indulgences to tell you all about “Right Beside You”, the playlist Sam makes for her friend Caroline.
  • And on Saturday, June 20, the 16-year-old who inspired Every Last Word will be sharing the playlist she created, “In The Deep.” She’ll be a guest on Gone With the Words to tell you why these songs are so special to her.

 

Every Last Word

Before I share the playlist, let me tell you a little bit about this story.

Samantha McAllister is stilled at keeping her OCD under wraps, especially from her closest friends. Sam has what’s called “Purely-Obsessional OCD” and is consumed by a stream of dark thoughts and worries she can’t turn off. Because the disorder takes place entirely in her mind, it’s relatively easy for Sam to keep it a secret. And it is, without question, her biggest secret.

Everything begins to change for Sam when she meets Caroline, a quirky girl a few lockers away who wears snarky tees and openly shares her opinions. She introduces Sam to Poet’s Corner and a group of people who are very different from her friends. They read poetry aloud, wear their hearts on their sleeves, and care very little about things like clothes and makeup. Sam is drawn to them immediately, especially an adorable guy named AJ with an acoustic guitar and a gift for verse.

But Sam and AJ have history. She doubts they’ll ever become friends—it would be crazy to think they could ever be more.

Still, Sam thinks about AJ. A lot. She turns to music and lyrics to help her sort things out, so one night, she starts making a playlist of acoustic guitar songs. She imagines AJ playing, singing each one, just for her.

Sam gives all of her playlists a three-word title lifted from the lyrics of one of the songs. This playlist is titled “Song for You”, named after this beautiful tune by Alexi Murdoch. I especially love these lines:

 

And I see you

hiding your face in your hands

Talking bout far-away lands
You think no one understands

Listen to my hands

 

(I think you’ll enjoy the scene when AJ figures out that Sam made this playlist for him. Warning: swoons ahead.)

Here are a few other songs I’m especially drawn to for their lyrical connection to Every Last Word:

 

The Thick and the Thin” by Imaginary Future

I’ll be knocking soon,

Open up your room.
Now I won’t assume you’re letting me in.
Show me how to prove I’m good enough for you.
That we can make it through the thick and the thin.

 

Three Rounds and a Sound” by Blind Pilot

I was swimming,

My eyes were dark ’til you woke me,

And told me that opening is just the start.

It was.

 

Gray or Blue” by Jaymay

I know the shape of your hands because I watch them when you talk.

And I know the shape of your body ’cause I watch it when you walk.

I want to know it all, but I’m giving you the lead.

So go on, go on and take it.

  

Bron-Yr-Aur” by Led Zeppelin

This song has no words at all, but it might be the most beautiful piece of music I’ve ever heard. I wrote every AJ scene with this song in my ears.

 

Are you ready to hear to the rest of “Song For You”? Here it is:

 

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CLICK HERE to listen to all four of my Every Last Word playlists.

Follow me on Spotify to hear these and more.

 

Happy birthday, Jesselle! Thanks again for spending part of it with Every Last Word and me.

 

Thank you so much for being a part of Bookish Birthday Bash, Tamara! ❤ *hugs*

I’d love to hear your thoughts about this post, guys! Share them on the comment section below. 🙂

Come back on June 15th for my birthday post and a PH giveaway! *flails*

 

 

 

 

 

Bookish Birthday Bash: The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi [Guest Post + Playlist]

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Hey there! Welcome to Day 2 of Bookish Birthday Bash! Today’s feature spotlights debut author Lauren Gibaldi and her beautiful novel, The Night We Said Yes. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the awesomeness! 🙂

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Untitled-4Synopsis:

A fun, romantic read, perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Susane Colasanti!

Before Matt, Ella had a plan. Get over a no-good ex-boyfriend. Graduate from high school without any more distractions. Move away from Orlando, Florida, where she’s lived her entire life.

But Matt—the cute, shy, bespectacled bass player who just moved to town—was never part of that plan.

And neither was attending a party that was crashed by the cops just minutes after they arrived. Or spending an entire night saying “yes” to every crazy, fun thing they could think of.

Then Matt abruptly left town, and he broke not only Ella’s heart but those of their best friends, too. So when he shows up a year later with a plan of his own—to relive the night that brought them together—Ella isn’t sure whether Matt’s worth a second chance. Or if re-creating the past can help them create a different future.

In alternating then and now chapters, debut author Lauren Gibaldi crafts a charming, romantic story of first loves, lifelong friendships, uncovered secrets, and, ultimately, finding out how to be brave.

*Photo and synopsis from Goodreads

The Night We Said Yes is out on June 16, 2015 from HarperTeen.

Purchase the book: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository / Fully Booked / National Book Store

 

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lgibaldi_authorphoto

Photo courtesy of Lauren Gibaldi

Lauren Gibaldi is a writer and public librarian. She’s been, among other things, a magazine editor, high school English teacher, bookseller, and circus aerialist (seriously). She has a BA in Literature and Master’s in Library and Information Studies, both from Florida State University. She currently live in Orlando, Florida with her husband and daughter. THE NIGHT WE SAID YES is her first novel.

*Author bio provided by Lauren Gibaldi

 

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For her guest post, the wonderful Lauren Gibaldi shares the story of a memorable night where she said YES. ❤ Here it goes:

It all started with a party.

I guess a lot of stories start that way, but mine never did. I didn’t go to a lot of parties in high school, and the ones I did were either a) tame birthday parties or b) tame drama club parties. I guess crazy things might have happened at them, but I was never part of that. I was a good girl.

But during my junior year I was invited to a party at a friend’s house where his band was going to play. Parents wouldn’t be home. Lots of people were going. To say I was excited was an understatement. It was the first time I actually bought an outfit for a party.

Before leaving, my best friend and I giggled about what the night might bring. Excitement! Danger! Boys! More importantly, a specific boy. A boy I liked. He was going to be there, and, you know, a girl could dream, right?

When writing THE NIGHT WE SAID YES, that night jumped into my mind. I remember the feeling like it was yesterday. I remember pulling up to the house with all the hope and fear and anticipation in the world. With all the belief that in one night, anything and everything could happen.

In my book, a lot of crazy things happen–cops come, dares are said, and rules are broken. At my party so many years ago, not so much. It was, once again, tame comparatively, but it was still my night. I remember listening to the band and loving it so much. I remember talking to, and giggling with, my crush. I remember standing next to my best friend and feeling like the best version of myself. I remember being there, in the middle of it all.

The night didn’t make my dreams come true, but it gave me the courage and push to work towards them.

A few years ago I said yes to writing a book about a group of friends who said yes to every idea they had for one night. It was a made up idea, something that popped in my mind that felt like me. It reminded me so much of that night, way back in high school, when I said yes to living.

 

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Presenting…

Lauren Gibaldi’s playlist for The Night We Said Yes! Happy listening! 🙂

  1. “Your Ex-Lover Is Dead” – Stars
  2. “The Night Starts Here” – Stars
  3. “Sometimes I Still Feel the Bruise” -Trembling Blue Stars
  4. “Should I Stay or Should I Go” – The Clash
  5. “We Are Young” – Fun. featuring. Janelle Monae
  6. “First Day of My Life” – Bright Eyes
  7. “It’ll Get You There” – Rilo Kley
  8. “I Wanna Get Better” – Bleachers
  9. “21 Guns” – Green Day
  10. “Shake It Out” – Florence and the Machine
  11. “Tonight the Streets are Ours” -Richard Hawley

 

So there you have it! What’s your favorite part of the feature? Share your thoughts on the comment section below!

Visit The Lifelong Bookworm again tomorrow for Day 3 of Bookish Birthday Bash with the lovely Tamara Ireland Stone and Every Last Word! 🙂