Monday, April 30, 2018

Review: The Elizas by Sara Shepard









The Elizas by Sara Shepard 
Publisher: Atria Books
Published: April 17th 2018
Format: E-ARC
Pages: 352 pages
Challenges: 2018 Bookish Resolutions
ISBN #: 1501162772



When debut novelist Eliza Fontaine is found at the bottom of a hotel pool, her family at first assumes that it’s just another failed suicide attempt. But Eliza swears she was pushed, and her rescuer is the only witness.
 
Desperate to find out who attacked her, Eliza takes it upon herself to investigate. But as the publication date for her novel draws closer, Eliza finds more questions than answers. Like why are her editor, agent, and family mixing up events from her novel with events from her life? Her novel is completely fictional—isn’t it?
 
The deeper Eliza goes into her investigation while struggling with memory loss, the closer her life starts to resemble her novel, until the line between reality and fiction starts to blur and she can no longer tell where her protagonist’s life ends and hers begins...









First off I want to thank the lovely publishing company for letting me be part of this tour. Normally this isn't my kind of read, but I did love Pretty Little Liars so I figured I would love this book too and of course I did. This author has a way of dragging you right into a story and this book did just that. Like directly into the story, so much so that at first I was blown away by what was happening.  At times while reading this book I wasn't sure what was going on, but at the same time I had to know what was going to happen next. 

That's the kind of author Sara Shepard is, one that pulls you in and you don't stop reading till she let's you go, which means the book is over and your still sitting there like what in the world just happened. I need more now! LOL. I can't wait to read the next book by this author and will of course do so as soon as her next one comes out. The twists and turns of both stories that went on in this book, one of course is Elizas and one is a character in the book she's writing are so similar, at some points I wondered if it was happening to Eliza and she was just writing about it. There was just so much to take in, but at the same time, again I wanted more. 

The characters of this story are just jaw dropping and the character development that this author has to have gone through to create these amazing characters is mind blowing. I honestly don't know how she kept up with everything while writing, but I'm so glad she did! This book is a slow burn triller and one that had me questing everything at every minute. It's also one that had me up all night reading it and I couldn't stop till I knew how it was going to end. 

There was only one part that really got on my nerves at first, but then I kind of understood it as well. Her family doesn't believe her at first and that killed me, but I got to think about it for a few minutes and I understood why. Still bothered me a bit though.  When you read the book, let me know in the comments below your thoughts about this..

If your looking for a book that you won't want to put down and one that will draw you in right away, then The Elizas is the perfect book for you, make sure you pick up your copy today!  Seriously the link to Amazon is above! I don't want to give too much away about this one, because you really need to just read it to understand how amazing this one is. If you loved Pretty Little Liars, you will LOVE this book! 




I'm giving The Elizas a Ali's Bookshelf...











Sara Shepard is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Pretty Little Liars series. She has also written other Young Adult series and novels, including The Lying Game, The Heiresses, and The Perfectionists. Sara now lives in Pittsburgh with her family. 




Here at Ali's Bookshelf we accept books in exchange for a honest review. The book above came from the publisher through Netgalley. We also use Amazon Affiliate links at times




 

Friday, April 27, 2018

Book Blogger Hop #39







Book Blogger Hop is another post I'm going to be trying out and this one has a topic each week, which is something I've been trying to bring to the blog.  I'm really excited about this one because I have a hard time coming up with something fresh to talk about and I'm hoping this helps.

If you would be interested in doing your own post, please CLICK HERE to learn more about this great hop! 








27th - May 3rd- Have you ever thought of writing a respectful, but angry letter to an author to ask them WHY they killed off one of your favorite characters in a novel? (submitted by Maria @ A Night's Dream of Books)
 
I've thought about it, but never really written a letter to the author, though I did ask Why in my review! I've actually done that a few times. It's the best way to say what you really want to say. 
 
 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Book Spotlight: Sweet Life by Dakota Star


Contemporary Romance (with erotica)
Published Date: April 3, 2018
Publisher: Limitless Publishing

 photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png

My job is everything to me, and climbing the corporate ladder is my one and only goal. Now that I’ve landed an important account for a popular dude ranch, I’m more determined than ever. There’s just one problem I didn’t count on…Mitch Johnson, the tall, hot-tempered, brown-eyed cowboy with the potential to bring my career crashing down around me. He’s a distraction I can’t afford—and a temptation I can’t ignore. But the real kicker? He also happens to be the ranch owner’s son, which means I’m about to saddle up more problems than I can handle.









Dakota Star likes worn-in cowboy boots, a well-trained horse, a cold beverage, and trails to ride in the woods. She lives in Connecticut with her husband and two daughters. Both her daughters have finished college and moved away so her dogs, cats, and retired horse now keep her busy. When not outside hiking or horseback riding, she loves to read and travel.




Contact Links



Purchase Links

RABT Book Tours & PR

Teaser Tuesday #134





Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Books and a Beat. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser



"They could meet in a bookstore." "Been done." "What about a park?" "Been done." "Coffee shop?" "Seriously?" With a weary sigh, Britt removed her glasses and rubbed her tired eyes.











This is an adorable book so far! 


Monday, April 23, 2018

Ali's Blogging To Do List #7




I'm not sure if my blogger friends out there are like me, but I am a lister! I have to know in advance which posts are going to go up when and I have a running to do list for my blog. With all of that, I really want to make it a bit simpliar and start a weekly post called Ali's Blogging To Do List! Yep, I know real original, but I figured keeping it simple would work easier. This is actually based on a post that I tried a few times in the past called Task it Tuesday, but sadly from what I'm seeing the blogger that started it is no longer doing that post. CLICK Here to go to her blog.  Which really makes me sad, because honestly I would have just latched on the meme and started posting it instead.  They have no brought it back, but it's over at Bloggiesta!


Anyway, my plan is to bi-weekly, I'm going to make a post on Monday's with a few items I want to get done on my blog that week or by two weeks. I will go back and mark off items once they're finished. I'm hoping this will help me get back into the groove of blogging and help me get some tasks done that I've been wanting to mark off my list for awhile now.






This post is going to be a bit longer than normal. I'm thinking of actually listing everything out that I need to do this week, instead of just a few items. So let's see how this works out. 


  • Start working on my Reading Journal
  • Print out all the images I'm going to need to start that 
  • Make a list of books on my shelves and my Netgalley's inside the reading journal
  • Edit and schedule my review of Thunderhead and Down Among the Sticks and Bones 
  • Write up a discussion post for this month 
  • Write up and edit my April in Review post 
  • Write my review, edit and schedule the review of The Eliza's
  • Post to Instagram every day and try to have at least one to two more stories this week 
  • Set up post schedule for next month 




My ongoing task is going to change just a bit because I'm moving all the Netgally's and books into my new reading journal. So my new ongoing task is going to be spring cleaning on the blog. Fixing a few older posts that are now messed up because the images are missing. This might take me a few weeks to finish.




 I'm loving this post, keeping myself organized is a huge thing for me. If I don't then I tend to be all over the place. This has helped me so much. 


Friday, April 20, 2018

Book Blogger Hop #38







Book Blogger Hop is another post I'm going to be trying out and this one has a topic each week, which is something I've been trying to bring to the blog.  I'm really excited about this one because I have a hard time coming up with something fresh to talk about and I'm hoping this helps.

If you would be interested in doing your own post, please CLICK HERE to learn more about this great hop! 








20th - 26th - How do you organize your books for review? Does it work for you or have you had to change it? (submitted by Elizabeth @ Silver's Reviews)
Right now I'm trying to figure out a new way, mainly because the old way I was doing so isn't working at all. If you know a good way, please share it in the comments below. Right now all I have is a tbr shelf and like I said it's really not working. 
 

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Take a Break Watch a Vid




Take a Break Watch this Vid is a post that I host here on Ali's Bookshelf from time to time.  It showcases a lot of book trailers or movie trailers that I'm excited to see/read. Today is no different, I'm so excited to share this with you all.








I'm so crazy excited about this book and can't wait to read it. It's available now in stores and hopefully soon I'll be reading and reviewing here on the blog. 

What do you all think about this trailer? Have you read the book yet? If so no spoilers, but how was it? 

 

 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Teaser Tuesday #133







Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Books and a Beat. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser

Interviewer: How did you make it out?

 Kady Grant: I'm a lateral thinker.

Interviewer: Meaning you used your comput-

Kady Grant: Meaning I broke a window.










I'm actually listening and reading this one. Love the full cast audio book and following along with the actual book is fun too. Loving this book! 


Monday, April 16, 2018

Spotlight Tour and Giveaway: Now A Major Motion Picture



Now a Major Motion Picture

By Cori McCarthy

April 3, 2018; Hardcover, ISBN: 9781492652380







Title: Now a Major Motion Picture
Author: Cori McCarthy
ISBN: 9781492652380
Release Date: April 3, 2018
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Their fantasy is her reality in this bright and uplifting contemporary coming-of-age novel by the acclaimed author of Breaking Sky and You Were Here.

Iris Thorne wants to blaze her own path. That’s easier said than done when you’re the granddaughter of M. E. Thorne, famous author of the Elementia series, hailed as the feminist response to J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. And with a major motion picture adaptation of her grandmother’s books in the works, Iris can say goodbye to her dream of making her own way in the music industry.

So when Iris and her brother get invited to the film set in Ireland, she’s pretty sure the trip will be a nightmare. Except Iris can’t deny the rugged beauty of the Irish countryside. And brushing shoulders with the hot, young cast isn’t awful, especially the infuriatingly charming lead, Eamon O’Brien. Iris even finds the impassioned female director inspiring. But when the filming falls into jeopardy, everything Iris thought she knew about Elementia—and herself—is in question. Will making a film for the big screen help Iris to see the big picture?













CORI MCCARTHY studied poetry and screenwriting before falling in love with writing for teens at Vermont College of Fine Arts. From a military family, Cori was born on Guam and lived a little bit of everywhere before she landed in Michigan. Learn more about her books at CoriMcCarthy.com.
 
 
Social Media Links:
 
Twitter: @CoriMcCarthy
Instagram: @cori_mccarthy












I Don’t Want to Alarm Anyone, but There’s an Elf at Baggage Claim
 
 
The guy was probably a painter. Possibly a drummer.
College age and wearing all black, he’d been the unique focus of my thousand-hour red-eye. My inflight boyfriend. It was a torrid, imaginary romance. We’d gone on at least a dozen dates and told adorable anecdotes to our future children about how their parents met a few miles in the air.
Now we were no longer separated by two Aer Lingus seats. We were shoulder to shoulder, dazedly watching the baggage belt spin. Just say hi. Ask him something.
I hugged the neck of my guitar case. “Do you know the time?”
He checked a large, silver watch. “Half twelve.”
“What?” I blurted. The bags began to emerge, and I was suddenly under new pressure to break the ice before we parted ways. After all, an entire transatlantic daydream depended on it. “Is that six? Eleven thirty? I’m so jet-lagged it could be either.”
“Twelve thirty.” His Irish accent made his words feel like lyrics to a decent song.
“Yeah, that doesn’t make sense. Half of twelve is six.” I smiled.
“Americans,” he muttered with a snicker.
And he continued snickering as he reached for a suitcase, leaving me with the unparalleled awkwardness of being embarrassed by and disappointed in a complete stranger. I’d mentally dumped him four exotic ways—my favorite involving a baseball stadium video screen—by the time my little brother came running back from the bathroom.
“Iris!” Ryder yelled. “I peed for like two whole minutes. I should’ve timed it!”
The baggage claim crowd parted for him—people tend to do that when someone’s yelling about their urine. Now I really felt like a gross American. Thanks, Ireland. We’re off to a great start.
“Eleven days,” I murmured. “Only eleven days.”
Ryder showed no sign of jet lag. He wrestled a foam fantasy axe out of his backpack, spilling weapons everywhere. He then engaged imaginary opponents in fierce battle while the people from our flight continued to back away. My ex-in-flight boyfriend even gave him a dirty look—before giving me a dirtier look.
“I’m not his mom, you know,” I said as I collected Ryder’s weapons off the floor.
A well-meaning Irish granny stepped up. “Is this your first time in Ireland?” she asked Ryder, placing a steadying hand on his shoulder. My brother nodded and squirmed. I checked my desire to tell her that, in America, we don’t touch kids we don’t know, but I didn’t want to call more attention to our swiftly amassing cultural differences. “Are you going to see the Giant’s Causeway? Or the Cliffs of Moher?”
“No,” Ryder said, breaking free from her hold. “We get to meet famous people and help out on set and probably even get bit roles.”
“No bit roles, Ry. You know that,” I said.
McGranny looked to me for an explanation. I zipped up Ryder’s backpack and said it fast. “He means the adaptation for Elementia. They’re filming here for the next two weeks. We’ve been invited to…” What were we supposed to do? “Watch, I guess.”
“Our grandma wrote that book!” Ryder said so loud we now had an even larger audience. Everyone who’d been groggily waiting to claim their luggage had tuned in.
“Excuse me?” My ex-love was back in the picture, not snickering this time. “Did you say your grandmother was the author M. E. Thorne?” The spark in his eyes seemed desperate to rekindle our imaginary flame.
Get out of your own head, Iris.
“Yeah,” I managed.
“Have I got something to show you.” He started to take off his shirt.
“Oh, for the love of…” I whispered, staring down at my red Chucks.
“Look!” Ryder proclaimed. “Iris, look! He’s got the map of Elementia on his ribs!”
I had to peek. It was an awfully big map. Alas, my curiosity was rewarded by a rich paleness smattered in black chest hair.
He put his shirt back down and smiled, but I kept hearing the way he’d grumbled Americans. “So are you excited about the film adaptation?” he asked. “Are you having a hand in its development? How do you feel about them changing the ages of the characters?”
I braided my hair back and said nothing, reminded once again of my life’s golden rule. People usually treated me one of two ways. One: like I was M. E. Thorne’s granddaughter, gifted with an otherworldly glow. Two: no one. I’d give anything for a third option.
“This is all you talk about, isn’t it?” he continued. “You’ve probably been reading your grandma’s books since you were a kid. I discovered them a few years back. Then again, I bet you can’t say anything because of the movies. Top-secret insider information, right?”
I chewed on my response. The gristle of this fantasy talk would not go down. Everyone assumed I’d be over the moon about the adaptation, but it meant the story’s fandom would triple. Quadruple. Soon everyone would revise their interest in me, just like this guy.
“Ryder, see if that’s our bag,” I said, moving us to the other side of the carousel. When I had my back to everyone from our flight, I squeezed my eyes, a little scream coming up from deep inside.
“You okay, Iris?” Ryder put a hand on my shoulder. I opened my eyes. Not his hand—it was his foam dwarf axe. At least his little-kid expression was earnest.
“I’m fine.” I rested my forehead on the top of my guitar case. I knew better than to check out when I was on Ryder duty, but I couldn’t help it. One moment later, my brother was lunging for his luggage, and the next, he was on the carousel, disappearing through the plastic hanging strips and into the bowels of Shannon Airport. “Hey!” I yelled. “Ryder!” Fear slapped me awake, and I almost crawled through the plastic strips after him. “Hey!”
“Need some help, then?”
I turned toward a new Irish voice and almost fell over. “Oh no.”
The boy had elf ears. Honest to God, pointy and flexed into his hairline elf ears.
“Oh no?” he returned, his eyebrows sky-high.
“What’re you… What are you?”
“I’m an elf,” he said as casually as if he were telling me he was an art major. “I’m here to give you a lift.” He held up a printed sign that read Thorne.
“Put that down. These people are already too curious.” I grabbed the paper and balled it. “And if you’re here to help, solve that equation.” I pointed to the baggage exit. “One brother went in. No brothers are coming back out. He’s probably on the runway by now.”
“Ye of little faith,” Elf Ears said, crossing his arms. “He’ll pop back through in a moment.” He leaned over conspiratorially. “It’s a circle, you know.”
I couldn’t believe that a stranger with artificial ears was “ye of little faith”-ing me. “What if security catches him? In the United States, the TSA confiscates firstborns for this kind of thing.”
On cue, Ryder came back through the plastic strips, sitting on my duffel and wearing my sunglasses he’d pillaged from the outer pocket. He knew he was in trouble, and yet he grinned. Then he saw the guy beside me, and his mouth dropped open. Ryder jumped down and ran over, leaving me to fetch both of our bags from the carousel.
By the time I’d returned, Ryder’s face was a full moon of excitement. “Iris. This is Nolan. Nolan.”
Nolan held out his hand as though we hadn’t previously met, i.e., argued. “It’s Eamon. Eamon O’Brien.”
I dropped Ryder’s bag to shake Eamon’s hand. “What a name. Did you spring from the roots of Ireland itself?”
I had to hand it to him—he didn’t flinch.
“And you’re Iris Thorne. Nothing to slag there, right?”
Ryder pulled on my shirt, revealing way too much of my bra, while hissing, “It’s Nolan.”
I grabbed his hand and yanked up my neckline. “Stop it or I’ll snap your dwarf axe over my knee.” I plucked my sunglasses off Ryder’s face and put them on in time to catch quite possibly the dirtiest look an elf has ever given a human. “Oh, come on. I don’t really break his toys. And how come there are three of us, but I’m carrying all the bags?”
“It’s not a toy,” Ryder snipped. “It’s a costume replica.”
Eamon continued to glare, proving his eyes weren’t blue but a crystal color that felt digitally enhanced. No wonder he’d been cast as the famous elf in Grandma Mae’s books. Nolan—Eamon—whatever his name was threw the strap of my huge duffel over his shoulder and tried to take my guitar.
“Don’t even think about it,” Ryder said for me. “She’s married to that thing.”
“Is that legal in America these days? Do you share health care?”
I stuck out my tongue, and Eamon grinned wildly, which encouraged me to put my tongue away and wonder how he’d reduced me to Ryder’s maturity level in a matter of minutes.
We passed under the green banner of Nothing to Declare, and I tried some light conversation. “So, if you’re one of the actors, why are you doing airport pickups?”
“I volunteered. I’m a huge fan.”
Good Lord.
“Hey, I read about you,” Ryder said. “This is your very first movie!”
I couldn’t help myself. “Then how’d you get the role?”
“That’s a fine story. I love Elementia. It’s in my blood. I first read it with my mam when I was, oh, about this high.” He held his hand to Ryder’s head, making my brother beam. “When they announced the movie and open casting, Mam and I decided to dream big. We made an audition video in a wooded bit on Saint Stephen’s Green.”
“Elijah Wood did that to become Frodo,” Ryder said.
“Right, right.” He knocked Ryder’s shoulder, best friends already. “I thought, if it worked for Elijah, why can’t it work with me?”
“Because Elijah Wood had an established film career before he did that,” I muttered.
“What was that?” Eamon asked.
“Nothing.” I knew where this story was going. Without a doubt, it would conclude with “then I met the grandchildren of M. E. Thorne and it was the most magical thing to ever happen to me.”
Eamon continued. “Lo and behold, I’m cast as Nolan. And today I’m getting fit for my ears when Cate Collins, wonder director, needs someone to pick up M. E. Thorne’s grandchildren. I volunteered, quick as light.” Eamon shifted the bag on his shoulder and glanced at me. “This is when I meet a tiny, axe-wielding hero and his mountain troll of a guardian.”
My guitar case slipped out of my hand, banging hollowly on the ground. “What the…”
Ryder’s smile was wider than both of the hands he used to cover it.
“Pardon that.” Eamon winked at me—the sassiest thing I’d ever seen a guy manage. “I’m prone to descriptive exaggeration, me springing outta the roots of Ireland and all.”
I blushed, an odd mixture of offended and ashamed.
“Iris Thorne!” an unfamiliar voice yelled from behind.
I turned, my pulse turning into a drum. Just like there were two ways people treated me, there were two kinds of Elementia fans: the ones who loved the trilogy—and the ones who’d reconstructed their lives for it. The latter group called themselves Thornians. They wrote letters to my family. They knew my birthday.
And one of them tried to abduct Ryder when he was six.
I was sort of relieved to see it was my ex-in-flight boyfriend, the newly redubbed Mr. Nerdy Torso Tattoo, jogging over. “How do you know my name?” I asked, my voice breaking a little as I put out an arm to keep him from getting too close to Ryder.
“Your brother was yelling it. I didn’t even know M. E. Thorne had young grandkids.”
I relaxed slightly. “I’m not that young.”
“I’m crossing my fingers you’re eighteen.” The guy leaned close with flirtatious wickedness, reminding me of what had drawn my attention to him during the flight. Lanky gorgeousness. The glasses. Blue eyes. Dark, tight swirls of hair. He rested a long-fingered hand on the top of my guitar case. Definitely musician’s fingers. Also, it was suddenly quite obvious that I’d been wrong; he was well beyond college age.
Earth to Iris. Walk away, Iris.
“I’m…seventeen.” I stepped back, oddly relieved to bump into Eamon. “Have to go.”
The guy pulled out his wallet and handed me a business card. “Shoot me a message around your birthday. I’ll take you out, and we can talk about the movie, or the books, if you prefer.”
Neither, thank you. “I live in LA.”
“I’ll make the trip.” He smiled at the person he thought was me. He walked away. And I hated M. E. Thorne more than usual, which, to be honest, was already a lot.
We walked toward the parking lot, and I kept my head down.
“You work fast, Lady Iris,” Eamon said, low enough that Ryder couldn’t hear.
“No way,” I muttered back. “That guy has the hots for my dead grandma.” He glanced at me, concerned. “I’m fine,” I added, hoping I looked annoyed—bold and unflappable—but from the way his expression fell, I think maybe my sad was showing.
  







 
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