Friday, March 20, 2015

Cover Reveal: The Rearranged Life by Annika Sharma

Sometimes you have to Rearrange Your Planned Life

I'm very excited about this book. Annika is my literary agency sister and publisher sister. So she's my sister-sister! More importantly, the story she's written is my type of tale. Sometimes the life you think you're supposed to have isn't the one that presents itself.


The Rearranged Life by Annika Sharma
Published by: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication date: May 15th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance

Nithya, a vivacious, intelligent and driven college senior has always known what she's wanted: a successful career in medicine and the love of her family. She's even come to terms with the idea of an arranged marriage, a tradition her conservative Indian family has held up for thousands of years.

When a night of partying puts her on a collision course with danger, Nithya's entire life changes. Enter James St. Clair, the smart, challenging and heartbreakingly handsome American. As Nithya and James fall in love, she questions the future she and her parents have always planned. To make matters worse, Nishanth, the son of newly reunited family friends is the perfect match for her in the eyes of her loved ones.

Now, Nithya has a choice to make: become a doctor and a good Indian bride, or step away from her family and centuries of culture to forge her own path. The decision she comes to takes her on a journey that transforms how she sees her future, her relationships with loved ones, and how she learns to put herself back together when even her best-laid plans fall apart.

Pre-order Now: Amazon US 

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Exclusive Excerpt

There it is again. That electric charge. It’s as if the air between us has solidified into a molten mass, white-hot and pulling us together like magnets. My heart pounds so hard, I’m afraid it’ll break the stone we are sitting on. His eyes stare into mine, and I am engulfed by their vibrant green sheen. James crosses his legs and straightens his back from the way he was leaning. He’s closer to me now. I can see the shade of stubble on his chin and exactly where his jaw flexes. There’s a scar on his forehead near his eyebrow, and I wonder distractedly where he got it.
“You can really see the stars out tonight.” He tilts his head. I turn around, taken aback by the change of subject. The shadows of the mountains in the distance are huge waves of dark blue on the horizon. The green grass in the fields behind the pavilion appears teal in the night. There are no lights there, while the other side of the arboretum is lit by campus streetlights. The stars are brilliant, glittering specks against a dark background. Suddenly, one jets across the sky, trailing faint white light behind it. It travels so quickly, my eyes can hardly keep up.
“Hey!” James and I cry out, pointing to the shooting star. The second it disappears into the universe, I close my eyes.
“What’re you doing?” James whispers. I hold up a finger to make a wish, willing it to happen with all of my heart and soul. I wish this night would never end.
“I had to make my wish.” I whisper back. I’m not sure why, but after the fleeting glimpse of the meteor, it feels appropriate.
“What did you wish for?” He has shifted his weight again, his position mirroring mine perfectly.
“I can’t tell or it won’t come true. Did you wish for anything?”
He shakes his head, smiling.
“It’s not too late. You still have time. Give it a shot.”
He closes his eyes, and the vision of him with his eyes serenely closed, cross-legged on the stone floor inches away from me, is seared into my mind. He looks so peaceful, like a child. A wistful smile lingers on his lips—until his eyes flutter open, and his smile turns playful.
“Are you going to tell me what you wished for?” I repeat his question.
“It won’t come true.” He echoes my response.
We are inches from each other. Our faces tilt toward one another, our images reflecting in each other’s eyes.
“I really want to kiss you right now,” he whispers.
“I really want you to,” I reply, breathlessly.
He moves in closer, taking his time. The world has stopped. There are no passing cars, no breezes blowing through the trees, no ties binding us to anyone but each other. When his lips finally touch mine, it is as if a fire bursts to roaring, glorious life inside me—it is flaming, reaching for any way to free itself from my body. Though I’ve never done this before, I have no worries. I am a lost soul, and he is my lifeline.
“You taste like chocolate,” he whispers to me, grinning.
“Is that a racial reference?” I ask him, smiling.
He laughs softly, his forehead pressed against mine, his hand still grazing my cheek, fingers entwined in my hair. “I guess I got what I wished for.”
“You wasted a wish. I would have kissed you anyway.” I tell him, playfully.
“I didn’t want to take any chances,” he murmurs and kisses me again.
I am in heaven, and there is nowhere I would rather be.


Annika Sharma was born in India and moved to the United States (Pennsylvania!) when she was a baby. Annika was a daydreamer from day one, always coming up with stories and games of pretend that seemed real. She was a serious journal-writer from fifth grade to college and wrote dramatic scenes for stories often, inspired by soap operas she watched in summers off from school.

Eventually, when the time for college came around, Annika’s parents encouraged her to pursue journalism. Convinced she couldn’t make a living from writing, Annika disagreed. After five years, two degrees, two minors, working with children, being a dancer teacher, and creating a two-and-a-half page resume in college that had interests so all-over-the-place that even she couldn’t make sense of it, Annika finally decided her parents were right. Writing was where her heart was, all along.

In the month before graduate school, the idea Annika had in my mind for years finally poured out in the form of the novel, The Rearranged Life. Annika began editing in earnest after she finished her Master’s degree in Early Childhood Special Education, landing Stacey Donaghy of Donaghy Literary Group as an agent. Three months later, she had a book deal with Curiosity Quills.

In her spare time, Annika loves spending time with her family and friends, often indulging in the three S’s: Starbucks, shopping and superhero movies. As a chocolate lover and general all-around vegetarian foodie, Annika also adores cooking.

Author Links:

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Cover Reveal: ACROSS THE DISTANCE by Marie Meyer

Another Stunning Book Cover

May is shaping up to be a great reading month. Marie Meyer's debut new adult novel, ACROSS THE DISTANCE releases on May 5th from Grand Central/Forever Yours. I am honored that I am among the first to reveal this cover for a few reasons: (1) The author is a genuinely good person. (2) The book sounds fantastic, and (3) the cover. I mean. Look at the cover! Wait, I'm getting ahead of myself....

The Blurb...

There's a drawer I never open. It holds a picture I never look at. It reminds me of a day I hate to remember, but I'll never forget.

I'd give anything to be like the other girls on campus. Going to parties, flirting with boys, planning for a future. But that's not me. And hasn't been since the day my parents died. The only thing that got me through was Griffin. Even though I didn't have my family, I always had him. Only, now I'm not so sure I do.

It's not just the eleven hundred miles separating us now that I'm at college. Or his band finally taking off, and all the gigs and girls suddenly demanding his time. It's as if everything is different-the way we talk, the way we text . . . the way he looks at me and the way those looks make me feel. 

Griffin has been the only good thing in my life since that horrific day. But I can feel our friendship slipping away-and I'm terrified of what will be left in its place . . .

The Cover...

I love this cover. The streaking rainbow hues to the right gives it a unique touch, helping it stand out in a crowed space. If the goal of the cover is to call the potential reader to crack that spine and read a bit, this cover does that in bunches.

As mentioned earlier, ACROSS THE DISTANCE (Grand Central/Forever Yours) comes out on May 2015, followed by CAN'T GO BACK (Grand Central/Forever Yours) on August 2105.

How to stalk this author without going to jail...

Admit it, we all want to be best friends with authors.

You can start by visiting: Marie Meyer BooksFollow Marie on TwitterFacebook and Goodreads

Getting to know her...

Marie Meyer was a Language Arts teacher for fourteen years. She spends her days in the classroom and her nights writing heartfelt new adult romances that will leave readers clamoring for more. She is a member of RWA and the St. Louis Writers Guild. Marie's short fiction won honorable mentions from the St. Louis Writers Guild in 2010 and 2011. She is a proud mommy and enjoys helping her oldest daughter train for the Special Olympics, making up silly stories with her youngest daughter, and binging on weeks of DVR'd television shows with her husband.

You can pre-order now from both Amazon and Barnes and Noble

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Cover Reveal: RUN AWAY by Laura Salters

Is It May Yet?

May holds to be a promising month. There are three, count them three novels by debut new adult novelists that are on my radar. The first is RUN AWAY by Laura Salters which will release on May 19th from Harper Collins Impulse. I'm really excited about this one. The premise of the book is filled with intrigue, the blurb itself has a dark tone, and the cover... well, you'll be the judge. Clearly I think it's a perfect cover for this story. Enough blabbering, Ara!

The Blurb

Drenched in blood and sitting in the sweltering interview room of a Thai police station, Kayla Finch knows that Sam, the love of her life, is dead. It doesn't matter that there's no body. All that blood can only mean one thing.
It isn't the first time Kayla's had blood on her hands. After finding her brother dead by his own hand, she tried to outrun her grief by escaping to Thailand. Heart-broken, the last thing she expected was to find love on the smoggy streets of Bangkok. But everyone Kayla loves seems to wind up dead. 

Returning home to England, Kayla is left with a barely-functioning family, a string of gruesome nightmares and the niggling feeling that nothing is as it seems. And as she confronts her brother's suicide, she starts to suspect that something is very wrong.
Three months. Two tragedies. One connection: there's more to both cases than anyone is willing to admit. And Kayla’s determined to uncover the truth…no matter what the cost.

The Cover!!!

Murders. Thailand. England. A young woman in search of truth. That's why this cover is so appropriate.

The Author

Laura Salters is a YA/NA suspense author (represented by Suzie Townsend of New Leaf Literary & Media Inc) from the northernmost town in England. Her debut novel, RUN AWAY, will be published by HarperCollins (Witness Impulse) on 05/19/15. When Laura isn't writing, reading or thinking about writing or reading, she's a music lover (and terrible singer), pet cuddler, beach-goer, runner (*cough* jogger), passionate foodie, caffeine addict, tennis player, lipstick wearer, Harry Potter fangirl (yes, still), housework dodger and relentless chatterbox. 

You'll want to signup with her various social medial presences.

Oh and if you needed any more motivation here are three: She's British. She loves to watch tennis. She loves to Play tennis. What else do you need???

You can Pre-Order from Amazon US and Amazon UK now!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Missing Pieces by Meredith Tate

One Month Ago I Showed you the Cover...
Today, we Open the Kimono!

Hopefully that got your attention, because Missing Pieces is a gem in the vastly overcrowded world of dystopian novels.

First the book summary:

Your family is the most important part of your life. Your families are the people you love, and love is what separates us from scoundrels and criminals. It maintains order. Your parents, your sibling, and your Partner are
the ones you love. There should never, ever, be anyone else who comes close to that bond. You have only one best friend, and that is the person you’ll be marrying some day. We must learn to differentiate the relationships in our lives: the people we love, and the ones we don’t. It’s inappropriate, it’s foolish, and it’s forbidden to think otherwise.”

Trace Bailey’s mouth is her worst enemy—somehow it always gets her in trouble. Luckily, she has a partner in crime—her best friend and neighbor since age seven, Piren Allston. He can’t get enough of her crazy sense of humor, and she loves that he’s always up for another adventure.

They can’t be friends, though, not in their world. Trace and Piren were Assigned to other people at the age of six, and they’re supposed to marry their Partners when they turn twenty-four. Failure to comply leads to Banishment, a fate worse than death.

Worse still is the growing realization that their bond is stronger than just friendship.

In a world without freedom, there are still choices to be made. Following their hearts means losing their family, but following the law means losing each other.

Now MY review (as seen on Amazon):

If more dystopians were like MISSING PIECES, the genre would still thrive and no one would complain about too much dystopian. Because there’s no such thing as too much great storytelling. And Meredith Tate delivers a page turner of a story.

Let me be clear: debut author, Meredith Tate, remains true to fans of the genre while keeping it fresh and not relying on overused approaches. She has breathed life into a genre that has suffered in the last couple of years.

The protagonists, two best friends, Piren and Tracy, are natural. They remind you of the couple you knew in school who were so good with each other. And over the years you and your friends wondered when they’d wake up. Well, in the case of Piren and Tracy, it’s not about waking up and realizing that they are perfect for each other. Their feelings are illegal because they are not paired/assigned to each other. In this world (which feels eerily familiar) even a friendship is illegal. This is a relationship that can not be.

When they’re together they hum. Their dialogue flows with ease. Their chemistry is organic and beautiful. And although there were a couple of scenes where I wanted to strangle the guy, he is fundamentally a good guy. The perfect guy for her. As the name of the book implies, they are each other’s missing piece.

The writing is effortless and the storytelling compelling. By mid point, the book has hit a fast stride. So when twists happen, the derailment is profound and well executed. I may have grunted in pain a few times.

And can I say how nice it is that the story reaches a conclusion in this book? Maybe Tate will write a follow up, and I’d love to see how the world evolves, but it’s not required. Which makes this very atypical, but oh so welcome. I am so tired of artificially derived multi book series. Tate plays fair with her readers and delivers across the board.

A fantastic book and a beautiful cover. I look forward to more great stories from Meredith Tate.

Bottom Line:

A great book by a fantastic debut novelist. If you're into the genre, this is a no brainer. If you're not, read the sample pages on Amazon. You may find something in there that you'll like.

Social Media

To stalk follow the author, here are her favorite hang outs :)


About the Author:

A proud New Hampshire native, Meredith Tate lives in St. Louis with her husband. She loves reading
and writing in all genres, but has a soft spot for dark young adult and new adult speculative fiction. Meredith has a master's degree in social work from the University of New Hampshire. She is a contributor to the St. Louis Writer's Guild's "Write Pack Radio Show" every Sunday afternoon. When she’s not writing, Meredith enjoys traveling, playing the piano, befriending wild geese, and spending time with family and friends. Much like her characters, she’s always up for another adventure.

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