Meet The Authors February: Elly Blake, author of Frostblood - Interview + Giveaway


As I said last month during my Meet The Authors January Wrap-Up, Meet The Authors is going to be a monthly feature on A Thousand Words A Million Books, featuring 5-7 authors  during the last week of each month!

For the first February author, I have with me the AMAZING Elly Blake, whose debut novel, Frostblood, MADE THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER LIST. I am SO BEYOND excited for Elly!

Frostblood is a Young Adult fantasy that I JUST started reading and it is ALREADY awesome! Say hi to Elly and enter her amazing giveaway below!
 We'd Love To Get To Know More About You:

If you could bring one fictional character to life, who would it be?

Many would thank me if I magically conjured Mr. Thornton into existence (from North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell.)
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If you were going to plan a heist, choose five young adult characters you'd want on your crew:

Kat from the Heist Society series, Kaz from Six of Crows, Kestrel from the Winner’s trilogy, Eugenides from The Thief, and Julep from Trust Me, I’m Lying.

And Now, Moving Onto Your Masterpiece:

Where did you get the inspiration for Frostblood?

The idea for the story came from a dream of a girl with power over fire and a king with an icy heart. I woke up and knew the girl’s name was Ruby, and that I wanted to focus on fire and frost. I spun story ideas from there. I’d seen Avatar: the Last Airbender a few months before, which inspired the way elemental magic is used in Frostblood.

If Frostblood got turned into a movie, who would your choice for cast be?

Image result for frostblood quotesThis is really hard because I’m so behind on movies! For Brother Thistle, Avery Brooks comes to mind. He played the commander on DS9. (Did I mention I love Star Trek?) He has that amazing voice and he’s a phenomenal actor.

I was watching Marco Polo on Netflix, and the character Khutulun, played by Claudia Kim, had a Ruby-ish quality to me. I asked some writer friends for more possibilities (my friends who know Ruby well!) and they suggested Auli'i Cravalho, Phillipa Soo, Camila Mendes, Nina Dobrev, or Frieda Pinto. And I’m told Dane Dehaan would be a perfect Rasmus. I have so much to watch and catch up on!

As for Arcus, I have no idea! It would have to be someone pretty special. J

If you could give one piece of advice to your main characters, what would it be?

I’d tell them they’re stronger than they realize. And to trust each other and themselves. Or I’d just tell Ruby to be more like Arcus, and Arcus to be more like Ruby.
Elly Blake loves fairy tales, old houses, and owls. After earning a BA in English literature, she held a series of random occupations before landing her current dream jobs as library assistant and writer. The Frostblood Saga is her YA fantasy debut. (FROSTBLOOD, Jan, 2017. FIREBLOOD, Sept, 2017. DARKBLOOD, 2018)

Elly Blake loves fairy tales, old houses, and owls. After earning a BA in English literature, she held a series of random occupations before landing her dream jobs as library assistant and writer. Frostblood is her YA fantasy debut.

You can find Elly on: Website || Twitter || Facebook || Tumblr || Pinterest || Instagram
Title: Frostblood (Frostblood Saga#1)
Author: Elly Blake
Publication Date: January 10th 2017
Publisher: Little, Brown Books For Young Readers
Part of a Series?: Yes, Book 1/3 of the Frostblood Saga
Frostblood (Frostblood Saga, #1)Blurb Description: Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby's powers are unpredictable, and she's not sure she's willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon.
All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to take part in the king's tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love.
Fast-paced and compelling, Frostblood is the first in a page-turning new young adult three-book series about a world where flame and ice are mortal enemies—but together create a power that could change everything.

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BLOG TOUR: Beautiful Broken Girls by Kim Savage - Review + Giveaway

EEEK! I'm SO EXCITED to welcome all of you to my stop on the Beautiful Broken Girls tour! I ADORED Kim Savage's debut novel, After The Woods and I knew I HAD TO READ and be a part of this blog tour as well. 

You can read my interview with Kim as a part of my 2nd Blogaversary here.
Here's my review of Kim's first book, After The Woods, that you HAVE to check out!

Title: Beautiful Broken Girls
Author: Kim Savage
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Release Date: February 21st 2017
I Got A Copy Through: The Publisher via NetGalley
Part of A Series?: No, A Standalone!
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Contemporary
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Synopsis: Mira and Francesca Cillo—beautiful, overprotected, odd—seemed untouchable. But Ben touched seven parts of Mira: her palm, hair, chest, cheek, lips, throat, and heart. After the sisters drown themselves in the quarry lake, a post-mortem letter from Mira sends Ben on a quest to find notes in the seven places where they touched. Note by note, Ben discovers the mystical secret at the heart of Mira and Francesca's world, and that some things are better left untouched.
I'm currently finding it very difficult to review this book because 
a) It was harrowing, deep and REALLY REALLY pulled you into the small town setting where two girls went into a lake and never came out. 
And also b) While the writing in this book was deep and disturbing and EVERYTHING, I'm just not sure how I feel about the way the story ended. 

Mira and Francesca Cillo are sisters. They are girls whose blood runs thicker than anything. What happens to one of them, happens to them both. Boys, Power and even Death. 

Ben is the boy next door, and for the longest time, he's been in love with the younger Cillo sister. 

A month after her death, he gets a letter addressed to him, a letter from a girl who jumped off a cliff with her sister and never flew up. It tells him to go to the seven places he touched here, the seven places where they hid what they were from prying eyes if he wants to know why. 

If he wants to know why two beautiful girls with their whole lives ahead of them took their own lives. 

Like I said before, what REALLY pulled me into the book was the writing - Kim Savage REALLY upped her game from After The Woods, and her writing KEPT ME HOOKED. It was heart-wrenching, filled with pain and beauty and unfairness and the underlying concept that WE DIDN'T KNOW EVERYTHING. I LOVED every minute of it - and I've never felt this was about writing style before. Ever.

Beautiful Broken Girls alternates between Ben's narration in the present and Mira's or Francesca's in the past - explaining how Ben finds the notes that Mira left him and what he thinks while it flashes back to Mira and Francesca, filling in the blanks.

For the first five notes, I WAS IN LOVE. It was a definite five star read, but soon after, I pieced together the ending and it all seemed kind of... off to me? I can't explain it, lest it ruin the book for you, but suffice to say that I wish the ending was something else. 

Kim Savage is the author of AFTER THE WOODS, a debut psychological thriller for young adults coming on Feb 23, 2016 with Farrar, Straus and Giroux/Macmillan. Her second thriller for young adults comes from FSG is 2017. Before writing fiction, she worked as business journalist, pitching stories along the lines of “Stigmatized Properties: When Murder Kills Property Values”. You get the idea.

Comfort Books - Review 
Bibliobibuli YA - Q&A 
A Reading Nurse - Review 
Win 1 of 5 Copies of Beautiful Broken Girls
US/Canada only
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A Fast Paced Adventure // REVIEW: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Title: Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1)
Author: Susan Dennard
Publication Date: February 3rd 2016
Publisher: Tor Teen
Part of a Series?: Yes, Book 1/4 of The Witchlands Series
I Got A Copy Through: I Bought it!
Buy Links: Amazon IN || Flipkart || Infibeam || Snapdeal || Amazon US || Amazon UK || Barnes and Noble || The Book Depository || Wordery || Google Play Store || Kobo || 
Blurb Description: In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.
Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.
Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she's a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden - lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult's true powers are hidden even from herself.
In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls' heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
Long Story Short – the HYPE surrounding this book is SO SO TRUE.

I finished this book just yesterday, and, well, my thoughts are an incoherent mess except for one thing – I LOVED THIS BOOK!
“The holiest have the farthest to fall.”
Safiya fon Hasstrel and Iseult Midenzi and Threadsisters – they have strongest bond possible between two friends. They’re two halves of a whole – one impulsive and one careful, one initiator and one completer, one light and one dark.

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Safiya is a Truthwitch – a person whose entire being knows if another is lying or telling the truth. In a continent on the brink of war, she is a valuable weapon that all the Emperors are willing to fight for – and kill for.

Iseult is a Threadwitch. For every person she passes, she can see the Threads that bind them and the Threads that can break them. She can tell what everyone feels – everyone except other Threadwitches, herself, and the Carawen Monk, Aeduan.

Aeduan is a Bloodwitch. Once he smells your blood, it is a scent he can track across continents, and it is one he will never forget. He can scent everyone – except the Threadwitch Iseult, who gives off none.

Merik Nihar is the Prince and Admiral of a dying country. Desperate for a trade agreement, he makes a deal with Safi’s uncle, to take away his niece to his country to open a line of trade with his starving, falling apart country.

The Twenty Year Truce that help together the Witchlands is almost at an end. Armies are gathering, political espionage takes place behind every closed door and in a world where nothing is certain, a Truthwitch might be the most valuable player on the board.
“Those who win wars are those who write history.”

I loved the beginning – how is all started with a plan going wrong and we dove RIGHT INTO the story but after that first chapter, it got slightly confusing. There was SO MUCH BEING THROWN AT US. The different kind of witches, the empires, people, places and I just needed some sort of Truthwitch handbook that would help me navigate the world.

As I got used to the fact that there would always me new witches, people and places popping up, I TRULY began to enjoy the book.
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I LOVED the multiple points of view – Iseult, Safi, Merik and Aeduan. They were all such interesting characters with different points of view that rarely changed and I loved them.

The storyline was quite good as well. Despite the fact that it was set over JUST half a week, it progressed beautifully. I loved Merik’s country and the JOY that something was growing. I loved the banter between Safi and Merik. I loved Iseult’s narration of the Threads between people. I LOVED the underlying plots that I know would surface later in the series.

Most of all though, I loved Aeduan. I’m a sucker for a bookish bad boy – and one with powers and ruthlessness just MADE HIM SO MUCH BETTER.

My only problem was the STRING OF coincidences that brought everyone together. Safi ran toward a lighthouse, Iseult MAGICALLY found her there and OF COURSE Merik and his crew were RIGHT THERE to save all of them from the Monks.

It wasn’t even a big scene, but it did bother me.

Also, for the LIFE OF ME, I cannot imagine what a Cleaved looks like. OILY BLACK SKIN? HUH?

All in all, a fast paced adventure that is DEFINITELY worth your fangirling heart. 4 stars.
Susan DennardSusan Dennard has come a long way from small-town Georgia. With a masters degree in marine biology, she got to travel the world—six out of seven continents, to be exact (she’ll get to Asia one of these days!)—before she settled down as a full-time novelist and writing instructor.

She is the author of the Something Strange and Deadly series (from HarperTeen) as well as the forthcoming Witchlands Series (Tor, 2015). When not writing, she can be found hiking with her dogs, exploring tidal pools, or earning bruises at the dojo.

You can learn more about Susan on her websiteblognewsletterTwitter, or Pinterest.

Have you had the chance to dive into this series yet? Who is your favourite character? Your strongest ship? WHAT DID YOU THINK?
Leave me your links and I'll definitely hop on over to your lovely blogs.