Sunday, October 1, 2017

WILD BEAUTY ~Love Grows Such Strange Things~ {quote spotlight}

Hello! Today I have the pleasure of participating in the blog tour for Anna-Marie McLemore's gorgeous new novel, WILD BEAUTY! The writing and prose in this story is absolutely beguiling, and so today I'll be giving you just a little taste of that through a few enticing quotes!

(this first one may be best viewed if you click on it for full size 😉  )

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What did I tell you? Seriously, like poetry. This one comes out tomorrow, folks---go forth and enjoy! ;)


by Anna-Marie McLemore
♦publisher: Fiewel & Friends (Macmillan)
♦release date: October 3rd, 2017
♦hardcover, 320 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
Love grows such strange things.

For nearly a century, the Nomeolvides women have tended the grounds of La Pradera, the lush estate gardens that enchant guests from around the world. They’ve also hidden a tragic legacy: if they fall in love too deeply, their lovers vanish. But then, after generations of vanishings, a strange boy appears in the gardens.

The boy is a mystery to Estrella, the Nomeolvides girl who finds him, and to her family, but he’s even more a mystery to himself; he knows nothing more about who he is or where he came from than his first name. As Estrella tries to help Fel piece together his unknown past, La Pradera leads them to secrets as dangerous as they are magical in this stunning exploration of love, loss, and family.


Anna-Marie McLemore was born in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, raised in the same town as the world's largest wisteria vine, and taught by her family to hear la llorona in the Santa Ana winds. Her debut novel THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS was a Junior Library Guild Selection, a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults book, and a finalist for the William C. Morris Debut Award. Her second novel, WHEN THE MOON WAS OURS, was longlisted for the National Book Award in Young People's Literature, and was a 2017 Stonewall Honor Book. 


Purchase the book:  Indiebound  •  BookDepository  •  Amazon

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It lets us all gush about what soon-to-be released books we are jumping-up-and-down excited for.

by Teri Bailey Black

hitting shelves August 7th, 2018
from Tor Teen
 A mother hanged for murder.
A daughter left behind in a crumbling estate.
Can she clear her family’s name if it
means facing her own dark past?

When murder strikes in a small New England town in the early 1800s, rumors of witchcraft swirl, and Valentine Deluca must find the killer on her own before she's arrested and hanged like her mother.

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 "A searing Gothic story of love and murder that will burn in readers' hearts and minds long after reading."
- #1 NYT Bestselling Author Kerri Maniscalco

Kept me up late at night with its non-stop secrets, twists, and scandals. An entertaining homage to classic Gothic romances that will keep readers guessing until the very last chapter."
- Cat Winters
Morris nominated author of ODD & TRUE

My thoughts: SO there's not much out on this one yet, but it does look amazing---and it has been blurbed by two of my favorite authors so I thought I'd include that so that you can all get as excited for this one as I am!!  ;) I mean, doesn't this sound amazing? The 1800s setting, the witchcraft (or not?), and a high-stakes murder mystery. It's soooo far away, but I have a feeling this one will be worth the wait!

What book are you eagerly anticipating this week?

A Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess {review}

Poison Dark and Drowning
by Jessica Cluess
♦publisher: Random House BFYR
♦release date: September 19th, 2017
♦hardcover, 432 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦series: Kingdom of Fire, book 2 
♦source: ARC from publisher for honest review

Henrietta doesn't need a prophecy to know that she's in danger. She came to London to be named the chosen one, the first female sorcerer in centuries, the one who would defeat the Ancients. Instead, she discovered a city ruled by secrets. And the biggest secret of all: Henrietta is not the chosen one.

Still, she must play the role in order to keep herself and Rook, her best friend and childhood love, safe. But can she truly save him? The poison in Rook's system is transforming him into something monstrous as he begins to master dark powers of his own. So when Henrietta finds a clue to the Ancients past that could turn the tide of the war, she persuades Blackwood, the mysterious Earl of Sorrow-Fell, to travel up the coast to seek out strange new weapons. And Magnus, the brave, reckless flirt who wants to win back her favor, is assigned to their mission. Together, they will face monsters, meet powerful new allies, and uncover the most devastating weapon of all: the truth.

Review: After reading and adoring A Shadow Bright and Burning last year, I eagerly jumped back into Henrietta Howel's enchanting and exciting story.

This time around, things take a little darker turn as Henrietta and Blackwood set off to find a way to defeat the Ancients in the oncoming war. They are some great new additions to the cast. With such a predominately testosterone-heavy group that Henrietta has had to deal with thus far, it was great to see the development of a strong friendship between Henrietta and Maria, a new witch that joins their group. Plus this girl is feisty, mysterious, and clever as can be in all her Scottish, ax-wielding glory! 

The focus on this new friendship was a welcome departure as the confusing and sometimes frustratingly fickle love triangle Henrietta has going continues to be undecided (some would call it a love “square” but honestly, to me, even though she professes her undying love to Rook, he always seems too out of sight, out of mind to really be in the running lol). There's some slightly off-putting personality development with a character that was one of my favorites the first time around, so I'm wary to see how that will all end up in book 3. 

Still, it all plays out secondary to the adventure as they come across new challenges and creatures, some exciting twists and astonishing discoveries. A great follow up that left me eager for the finale!  


Jessica Cluess is a writer, a graduate of Northwestern University, and an unapologetic nerd. After college, she moved to Los Angeles, where she served coffee to the rich and famous while working on her first novel. When she’s not writing books, she’s an instructor at Writopia Lab, helping kids and teens tell their own stories.


Purchase the book:  Indiebound  •  BookDepository  •  Amazon

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Odd & True by Cat Winters {blog tour + guest post + giveaway!}

It's an exciting day! I'm always happy to host one of my absolutely favorite authors, Cat Winters, and her newest YA supernatural novel,

Read on below to find out more about the book, learn more about sisters Odd & True and what they have in common with Cat and her own sister, and of course, don't forget to enter the tour-wide giveaway of three copies of the book!


by Cat Winters
♦publisher: Amulet Books
♦release date: September 12, 2017
♦hardcover, 368 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
Trudchen grew up hearing Odette’s stories of their monster-slaying mother and a magician’s curse. But now that Tru’s older, she’s starting to wonder if her older sister’s tales were just comforting lies, especially because there’s nothing fantastic about her own life—permanently disabled and in constant pain from childhood polio.

In 1909, after a two-year absence, Od reappears with a suitcase supposedly full of weapons and a promise to rescue Tru from the monsters on their way to attack her. But it’s Od who seems haunted by something. And when the sisters’ search for their mother leads them to a face-off with the Leeds Devil, a nightmarish beast that’s wreaking havoc in the Mid-Atlantic states, Tru discovers the peculiar possibility that she and her sister—despite their dark pasts and ordinary appearances—might, indeed, have magic after all.

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Guest post with Cat Winters
5 Ways Odd & True are like Cat and Her Sister

ODD & TRUE was very much inspired by my relationship with my own sister, Carrie, who’s three years younger than me. It’s a work of fiction that’s not meant to be considered autobiographical, but my two protagonists, Odette and Trudchen, do, admittedly, share several things in common with Carrie and me.

Here are five examples:

1. Older sister Odette (Od) teaches younger sister Tudchen (Tru) how to read the future in tea leaves. Tea leaf readings and scenes of the sisters drinking tea appear throughout Odd & True. In real life, Carrie and I love visiting tearooms for special events, a pastime we’ve been enjoying since we found a tearoom tucked away in an antique shop in Escondido, California. In the opening chapter of ODD & TRUE, look for a nod to Escondido (which means “hidden” in Spanish) in the words of a magic spell.

2. Od has been telling Tru fairytales and legends since the week Tru was born, and she talks her sister into joining her in pretend adventures, even into their teenage years. I did the same thing with my sister when we were little, although I didn’t do so to hide the pain of our family’s secrets like Od. Thankfully, Carrie and I had a far less traumatic childhood than what my two protagonists endure, but I’ve always used stories as an escape from reality and a means of keeping us entertained.

3. For fun during their childhood, Od and Tru travel to neighboring farms and collect folktales and stories of monster sightings, which they catalog in a notebook. Od does the writing in the book, and Tru creates the illustrations. They call the book Odd & True Tales and plan to one day publish it. In real life, I wrote stories and poems all the time as a kid, and my sister would illustrate them. Our parents were often the recipients of cards that featured our joint creations (which probably weren’t as good as we thought they were). We always talked about one day publishing a book that I would write and she would illustrate.

4. Od and Tru grow up in a Southern California canyon populated by rattlesnakes and coyotes. They believe their mother is a monster slayer who protects them from diabolical creatures that prowl around after dark. My sister and I grew up in the hills of a Southern California suburb, and we heard coyotes at night and found various types of snakes in our yard, including the occasional rattlesnake. Our mom didn’t slay monsters, but when I was eight, we witnessed her climbing up to our roof with a hose to protect our house from a raging brushfire. She also fought off the black widow spiders that lived under our eaves, and she once even captured a snake that had slithered into our house.

5. Od and Tru are fiercely protective of each other and would slay monsters for each other. If I could do the same for my sister, I most definitely would.

Cat (left) and Carrie (right).

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Seriously, how super cute are they???  Thank you so, so much, Cat, for sharing these stories and this adorable photo with us!!


Cat Winters’s critically acclaimed debut novel, In the Shadow of Blackbirds, was named a 2014 Morris Award Finalist, a 2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, a 2013 Bram Stoker Award Nominee, and a School Library Journal Best Book of 2013. Her upcoming novels include The Cure for Dreaming (Amulet Books/Oct. 2014) and The Uninvited (William Morrow/2015), and she’s a contributor to the 2015 YA horror anthology Slasher Girls & Monster Boys. She lives in Portland, Oregon.  


Purchase  ODD & TRUE:
 Indiebound   •  Amazon  •  Book Depository

And now for an amazing 


3 winners will receive a finished copy of ODD & TRUE, US & CAN Only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don't forget to check out the rest of the Rockstar Book Tour for ODD & TRUE!
Week One:
9/4/2017- Adventures of a Book JunkieInterview
9/5/2017- Here's to Happy EndingsReview
9/6/2017- YA and WineGuest Post
9/7/2017- Ex LibrisReview
9/8/2017- Novel NoviceGuest Post

Week Two:
9/11/2017- Take Me Away To A Great ReadReview
9/12/2017-Two Chicks on BooksInterview 
9/13/2017- Falling For YAReview
9/14/2017- Stories & SweetiesGuest Post
9/15/2017- Lisa Loves LiteratureReview

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It lets us all gush about what soon-to-be released books we are jumping-up-and-down excited for.

by Mariam McNamara

hitting shelves Feb 6th, 2018
from Sky Pony Press
There’s no place for a girl in Mary’s world. Not in the home of her mother, desperately drunk and poor. Not in the household of her wealthy aunt, where a girl could never be named an heir. And certainly not in the arms of Nat, her childhood love who never knew her for who she was. As a hired sailor aboard a Caribbean merchant ship, Mary’s profession―and her safety―depend on her ability to disguise the fact that she’s a girl.

Leastways, that’s what she thinks is true. But then pirates attack the ship, and right in the middle of the swashbuckling crowd of bloodthirsty pirates, Mary spots something she never could have imagined: a girl pirate. The sight of a girl standing unafraid upon the deck, gun and sword in hand, changes everything. In a split-second decision, Mary turns her gun on her own captain and earns herself a spot among the pirates’ crew.

For the first time, Mary has a shot at freedom. But imagining living life as her true self is easier, it seems, than actually doing it. And when Mary finds herself falling for the captain’s mistress, she risks everything―her childhood love, her place among the crew, and even her life.

My thoughts: Can I just say that whoever is designing covers at Sky Pony Press this year is just doing amazing things. :D  As for the story, this sounds awesome. I do love girl pirate stories---from Dust of 100 Dogs to Daughter of the Pirate King---it's always been a subject that just draws me to it.  So I'll definitely be checking this one out!

What book are you eagerly anticipating this week?

Friday, September 1, 2017

What's New: September YA Release List & Giveaway!

September is here!  Which means almost Fall, my favorite season. Halloween decorations are already hitting stores which is 100% fine with me, I've already spent some quality time in the spookier parts of Michaels myself. :D  Now if only someone would tell this 115 degree weather that it's almost Fall, yea, that'd be great. 😓 The great thing about September is that the Fall books starting popping up! Look at that list down there..eee! Prepare your wallets, booklovers! xD

So if you're new to Stories & Sweeties, here's a little run-down of this feature: at the start of each month, I do a little thing called the "What's New List & Giveaway" where you'll find a full list of the new releases in YA for the month, and entry to the international giveaway. At the end of each month, one lucky winner will get to choose any new release as their prize!

First things first! The winner of August's giveaway is Eileen!!  Congrats!    
September 2017 Releases:

 I've put a little lve by those books that I'm really excited for!

A Dangerous Magic by Donald Hounam
Girl with the Red Balloon by Katherine Locke 
Glow by Megan E. Bryant
Leia, Princess of Alderaan by Claudia Gray 


The Agony of Bun O'Keefe by Heather Smith
Apex by Mercedes Lackey
Black Bird of the Gallows by Meg Kassel 
The Border by Steve Schafer

Even the Darkest Stars by Heather Fawcett 
Feral Youth by Shaun David Huthinson & others
Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart
Girls Made of Snow and Glass by Melissa Bashardoust 
I Hate Everyone But You by Gaby Dunn & Allison Raskin
If There's No Tomorrow by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Light Years by Emily Ziff Griffin
The Lost Causes by Alyssa Schwartz & Jessica Etting
Nothing by Annie Barrows
Right Where You Left Me by Calla Devlin
Running Full Tilt by Michael Currinder
A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares by Krystal Sutherland 

She, Myself, and I by Emma Young
Spliced by Jon McGoran
The Thing With Feathers by McCall Hoyle
Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas
Uncanny by David Macinnis Gill 
Wild Bird by Wendelin Van Draanen

Moonrise by Sarah Crossan

All About Mia by Lisa Williamson
Autoboyography by Christina Lauren
Before She Ignites by Jodi Meadows 
The Date to Save by Stephanie Kate Strohm
The Equals by Daneil Sweren-Becker
Fireblood by Elly Blake
Game Change by Joseph Monninger
The Grave Keepers by Elizabeth Bryne 
Landscape with Invisible Hand by M.T. Anderson
Mean Girls by Tina Fey & Micol Ostow
Michael Vey: The Final Spark by Richard Paul Evans
Neighborhood Girls by Jessie Ann Foley
Night of Cake and Puppets by Laini Taylor & Jim Di Bartulo 
Nyxia by Scott Reintgen
Odd & True by Cat Winters 
Shadowhouse Fall by Daneil Jose Older
Submerge by Tobie Easton
Spinning by Tillie Walden
Too Shattered for Mending by Peter Brown Hoffmeister
Trell by Dick Lehr
Warcross by Marie Lu
Water in May by Ismee Williams
When I Cast Your Shadow by Sarah Porter
You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins

Rebel Seoul by Axie Oh

Book of Shadows by M. Verano
Finding You by Lydia Albano
Hunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco 
Jane, Unlimited by Kristin Cashore 
Kaleidoscope Song by Fox Benwell
The Lives of Desperate Girls by MacKenzie Common
Madness by Zac Brewer 
Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu
Murder, Magic, and What We Wore by Kelly Jones 
One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake 
A Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess 
Release by Patrick Ness
Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George 
The Victoria In My Head by Janelle Milanes

The Dark Assassin by Joseph Delaney
Disappeared by Francisco X. Stork
An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson 
Freefall by Joshua David Bellin 
House of Ash by Hope Cook
Invictus by Ryan Graudin 
The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo & Sara Kipin
Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman
There's Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins 

(All links go to Goodreads)
Please feel free to email me if you notice any YA titles missing! :)

Giveaway Details: 
One winner will win a YA September 2017 release of their choice! *see note below
• Contest ends 
September 30th, 2017 at 11:59 PM
• Must be 13 or older.
• Open internationally. *International winners will be required to choose a book that is available through or up to $20 value.
•Extra entries can be earned by commenting on 
any August  or September reviews, and can be done once per review. Come back throughout September whenever you comment on my reviews and get your extra points!
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