Weekly Fangirl Round-Up!

Nerd Girl News

Doctor Who, look Series 8 has a premiere date AND a teasing teasing teasing teaser trailer!

The first chapter of Marie Lu’s new book, The Young Elites, has been revealed!

Debut novel, Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira, has been optioned for film!

Stephanie Leigh Schlund, Cashmere in Catching Fire, confirmed that she joined the cast of Insurgent, as a yet to be revealed member of Amity.

Alfonso Cuaron has been confirmed as NOT directing Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

More promotional images for The Maze Runner have been shared!

Mockingjay Filming continues in Berlin, check out some photos!

Two More People have Been Cast for Insurgent!

More Dragons are coming our way! Netflix confirms a How to Train your Dragon spin-off TV series!

Watch the new trailer for Daniel Radcliffe’s rom com, What If!

Pixar’s 2015 film “Inside Out” has an official synopsis.

Some news of True Detective, season 2, has been revealed: it will have THREE main characters.

Emma Watson, queen bee, and our Hermione Granger, has graduated from Brown University!

One Direction fan fiction “After” has officially gotten a publishing deal.

Robbie Amell, my future boyfriend, has been cast in a role in the movie adaptation of The DUFF.

Secrets about the could-have-been season 2 of Starcrossed were revealed.

Posts and Vlogs

Happy 2nd Blog Birthday What A Nerd Girl Says and HUGE HUGE Giveaway! (One more week to enter!)

Monday Missions Vlog

City of Heavenly Fire Vlog Review (Spoilers!)

Book Review: City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare (No Spoilers!)

Book Review: All Lined Up by Cora Carmack

Ontario Teen Book Fest Recap!

Why The Mortal Instruments is Important to Me!

Book Review: Broken Hearts, Fences and Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn

Young Adult Lit Authors at San Diego Comic Con!

Hey guys :D

So I know that I’m not usually a “newsy” type of blog, buy but I thought I would share this because my blog is so primarily on young adult literature. There are a TON of YA authors heading out to San Diego CC next weekend and I wanted to share all the different panels and autograph signings that would be going on so that those of you who are going can check it out!

I’m going to try and do these with other big events as well, prostate big conventions or book festivals, even if they are NOT in California.

I just…I get to go to these events all the time, and meet authors and I know that not everyone else gets that chance. So I figured if I can help in any way, even if its just to make the information availalble to you guys so you know that it is going on, well then I might as well.

So here we go, all the authors at Comic Con, what panels they’ll be in and when they’ll be signing :) You’re welcome!

Be warned: the panels/autograph signings that I am sharing are ONLY for YA books, movies and related! You need to visit comic-con.org for FULL schedules!

Thursday:

10:30 AM: Panel and Autographs: Paranormal Passion: Room 24ABC

This panel features authors Lauren Kate (Fallen series), Christine Feehan (Dark Series), Claudia Gray (Spellcaster), Aprilynne Pike (Earthbound), Kendare Blake (Antigoddess) and Magnus Flyte (City of Dark Magic).

AUTOGRAPHS: 12 pm: Salls Pavilion

3:50 PM: Panel and Autographs: Ender’s Game and Divergent: Hall H

This panel, of course, is the behind the scenes for the YA books Ender’s Game and Divergent’s movie adaptations.

Guests for these panels are: Harrison Ford, Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfield, Abigail Breslin, producer Roberto Orci, and director Gavin Wood for Enders Game. For Divergent, author Veronica Roth will be in attendance, as well as Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Miles Teller, Maggie Q, Ansel Elgort, Ben Lamb, Mekhi Phifer, Ben Lloyd-Hughes and Christian Madsen.

AUTOGRAPHS: ENDER’S GAME: Line Drawing at 9 am!

AUTOGRAPHS: DIVERGENT: Line Drawing at 9 am!

7:00 PM: Panel: The Scoop at Simon and Schuster: Room 9

Get the inside word on Simon and Schuster’s upcoming books and the chance to win exclusive prizes! Lucille Rettino (vice president, director of marketing), Carolyn Swerdloff (marketing manager), Chrissy Noh (associate marketing director), Mara Anastas (vice president, deputy publisher), and Anna McKean (publicity manager) will give you the scoop on upcoming books from exciting authors, including Scott Westerfeld, Cassandra Clare, Orson Scott Card, Tony DiTerlizzi, and Brandon Mull. Hear what is going on with S&S’s hot properties and get a chance to win exclusive giveaways. All attendees will receive a limited edition T-shirt for the upcoming The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones movie.

Friday

12:00 PM: Panel and Autographs: Drawing Stories: What’s New in YA Graphic Novels: Room 25ABC

Vera Brosgol (Anya’s Ghost), Gris Grimly (Frankenstein), Faith Erin Hicks (Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong), Hope Larson (Who is AC?), and Paul Pope (Battling Boy) – five of the hottest YA graphic novel creators in the industry-discuss their current books, what’s involved in creating graphic novels for young adults, and why words and pictures go so well together in books for teens.

AUTOGRAPHS: 1:30 PM-Salls Pavilion

2:00 PM: From Idea To Buzz: The Team Behind a Literary Blockbuster 

Join author Marie Lu (Legend series, optioned by CBS Film), literary agent Sara Megibow (Nelson Literary Agency), and publicist Marisa Russell (Penguin Group) in a conversation moderated by literary agent Kate Schafer Testerman (kt literary) about the contribution of various members of a publishing team to the crafting, sale, and launch of a critically-acclaimed book series.

2:30 PM: Epic Fantasy: Room 24ABC

Dragons, elves, and magic-epic fantasy transports us to another world. Colleen Lindsay and some of the genre’s biggest authors discuss the worlds of their own creation and what fantasy has to say about our own world: Robin Hobb (Blood of Dragons), Raymond Feist (Magician’s End), Django Wexler (The Thousand Names),Brandon Sanderson (Mistborn and the Wheel of Time series), Melissa de la Cruz(Frozen), Christopher Paolini (the Inheritance cycle), and Daniel Abraham (The Tyrant’s Law).

AUTOGRAPHS: 4PM: Salls Pavilion

4:05 PM: Sony Screen Gems: Hall H

This panel highlights the movies being previewed by Sony, including Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, Robocop and The Amazing Spiderman 2.

However, its main attraction (I think) is The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones part of the pane which features guests: author Cassandra Clare, director Harald Zwart and stars Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower, Robert Sheehan and Kevin Zegers.

AUTOGRAPHS: CITY OF BONES: Line Drawing at 9 am!

7:00 PM: What’s Up with Penguin: Room 9

Anne Sowards (executive editor, Ace/Roc), Richard Johnson (InkLit), and Mia Garcia (young readers marketing) give you the dish on forthcoming books from our exciting authors and licensed properties, such as Charlaine Harris, Patricia Briggs, Jim Butcher, S. M. Stirling, Rachel Caine, Richelle Mead, Melissa de la Cruz, D. J. MacHale, Marie Lu, Adventure Time, and many more. You can expect lots of giveaways you won’t see anywhere else at the convention, including free advance reading copies!

Saturday

11:00 AM: When Girls Fall In Love: Room 23ABC

From The Hunger Games’ Katniss to Divergent’s Tris, no one knows how to give a solid ass-kicking like a YA novel heroine. But when these young ladies aren’t saving the world, overthrowing powerful regimes, or slaying everything from zombies to dragons, they still find time for romance. Cassandra Clare (The Mortal Instruments),Ally Condie (Matched), Veronica Roth (Divergent), Holly Black (The Coldest Girl in Coldtown), Marissa Meyer (Scarlet), Lissa Price (Starters), and Veronica Wolff (The Watchers) discuss the delicate balance between killing and kissing, and what it takes to properly woo a YA heroine. Moderated by Sherri Smith (Orleans)

AUTOGRAPHS: 12:30 PM-Salls Pavilion

12:oo PM: Twilight Fan Fiction Panel: Room 29A

Writers Lyricalkris(My Biggest Mistake), Audryii_fic (The Definition of Want),Abstractway (Dodge and Burn), Plummy (The Babysitter), TheFicChick (Departures),FarDareisMai2 (Finger Painting), and moderator Kimpy0464 (The Nightingale Journals) are on hand for laughs and fun at the Twilight Fan Fiction group. They’ll answer questions about the challenges and joys of writing derivative fiction in theTwilight fandom and how to keep it fun.

1:35 PM: Lionsgate featuring I, Frankenstein and Hunger Games: Catching Fire: Hall H

I, Frankenstein stars Aaron Eckhart and Yvonne Strahovski appear with film director/writer Stuart Beattie and graphic novel author/writer Kevin Grevioux. Plus, the cast of the highly anticipated second installment of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire comes to Hall H for the first time. Panel moderated by Fandango chief correspondent Dave Karger. Never-before-seen footage is showcased from both films. Includes Q&A opportunity.

4:30 PM: The Vampire Diaries Special Video Presentation and Q & A: Ballroom 20

Making their fang-tastic fifth appearance at Comic-Con, the cast and creative team behind The Vampire Diaries vamp it up in San Diego! Series stars Nina Dobrev(Degrassi: The Next Generation), Paul Wesley (Roll Bounce), Ian Somerhalder (Lost),Candice Accola (Juno), and Kat Graham (Honey 2) join executive producers/writersJulie Plec (The Originals, Kyle XY) and Caroline Dries (Melrose Place) on stage for a video screening and Q&A session. The CW’s #1 series returns in the fall for its fifth season, promising twists, turns and-of course-(love) triangles in this new chapter for our heroes, post-graduation. From Bonanza Productions Inc., Outerbanks Entertainment, and Alloy Entertainment in association with Warner Bros. Television and CBS Television Studios, The Vampire Diaries airs Thursdays at 8/7c on The CW, and The Vampire Diaries: The Complete Fourth Season will be released on Blu-ray combo pack, DVD and UltraViolet in September.

Sunday

11:oo AM: What’s Hot in Young Adult Fiction: Room 23A

Strong protagonists, engrossing romance, humor, action, and angst! Join authors for a Q&A session and chat about the hottest new titles and trends in YA fiction. Moderated by Nathan Bransford (Jacob Wonderbar and the Interstellar Time Warp) and featuring Rachel Cohn (Beta), Mark Frost (The Paladin Prophecy), Rachel Hawkins (Hex Hall Series), Tahereh Mafi (Unravel Me), Chelsea Pitcher (The S Word), Ransom Riggs (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children), Veronica Rossi (Through the Ever Night), Rainbow Rowell (Eleanor and Park), and Emma Trevayne (Coda).

AUTOGRAPHS: 12:30 PM-Salls Pavilion

2:oo PM: Witches and Fey, Monsters and Mortals: Room 24ABC

That vamp’s a tramp; this witch is a real bitch. Pixies will pinch, and the fey go beyond fairly frightening. The ghouls are ghastly, and we mere mortals are growing testy. Oh, and that creepy-looking fella is sprouting fur from his feet, and who knows “were” else! Jeanne Stein (the Anna Strong series) encourages S. M. Wheeler (Sea Change),Leigh Bardugo (The Grisha Trilogy), Brom (Krampus), Morgan Rhodes (Falling Kingdoms), Amber Benson (The Calliope Reaper-Jones series), Seanan McGuire(The October Daye series), Rachel Caine (the Morganville Vampires series), and C. Robert Cargill (Dreams and Shadows) to provide perspective on the monsters of myth.

AUTOGRAPHS: 3:30 PM-Salls Pavilion

2:30 PM: Safety Not Guaranteed: 23ABC

Dystopian societies, postapocalyptic scenarios, enhanced (and deadly) abilities, and mysterious government branches make the future a not-so-safe place to be. Moderator Anna Jarzab (Tandem) joins authors Marie Lu (the Legend series), Gen Albin (Crewel), Brandon Sanderson (Steelheart), Margaret Stohl (Icons), Amy Tintera (Reboot), and Michael Johnston (Frozen) as they discuss what it takes to survive in the future worlds they’ve created.

AUTOGRAPHS: 4:00 PM-Salls Pavilion

*     *     *     *     *

There could be more panels/autograph signings/etc. at Comic Con for YA authors but this is as far as I know, based on the Comic Con Schedule. Other authors I know have said they will be there but are probably doing signings at private booths.

I will update this list if I find out more information!

And everyone have fun at Comic Con!

Handmade Fandom Merch!

One thing that is really awesome about books and fandoms and all that is the stuff that comes out of that: fan art, this fan fiction, information pills fan merch, all of it. I love the creativity that pours out of people when they read these books or watch these shows. I seriously admire it. I just tend to drool over fictional characters, and curl up in a ball and cry when the authors torture us with sad parts and cliffhangers.

But, really, I admire so much the amount of awesome that comes from fans. I think its fantastic and I love to admire things like that and I love to BUY things from all these cool people.

And I know a few people, personally, who are part of this, and a couple people who I don’t know personally but I want to talk about anyway.

So I’m going to talk a bit about some shops where you can buy some really cool, handmade things, based on some of the fandoms we love!

*    *    *    *    *

Ellie’s Quirky Creations

The first person that I am going to feature is my own mother, Ellie, who runs Ellie’s Quirky Creations. 

Ellie’s Quirky Creations mostly focuses on custom made dolls, of various people in different fandoms. She has made several Harry Potter characters, the 10th and 11th Doctors, and more. She does custom orders, of course, and I’ll let you in on a secret: She’s working on some TMI dolls! Check out some pictures!

532225_413175008789969_1031784045_n

Amy Pond and the 11th Doctor

554091_399416206832516_634516380_n

Severus Snape

534393_398784626895674_1136806018_n

Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and Severus Snape.

She takes custom orders, and ships internationally and her dolls are absolutely awesome. They are made with sturdy fabrics and are super durable. I have a Luna Lovegood, Amy Pond and 11th Doctor and they are constantly on my bed, being tossed around and they are in perfect condition.

She also dabbles in other crafts as well, such as handmade wreaths (her Angels one is to DIE for), and cosplay costumes as well!

Check out her Facebook page for more pictures and how to order!

*    *    *     *

FanGirlFeeels Fangirl Design

The next person I am featuring is Sylvia from FanGirlFeels, who just started her own shop, FanGirlFeels on Etsy!

So far, Sylvia is working on over the shoulder bags, with fandom symbols, but she hopes to expand to more, because she is incredibly talented. Check out some of the Divergent bags she has already worked on!

il_fullxfull.474074305_qqqc

Dauntless bag

il_fullxfull.474017180_8s0c

Amity bag. My personal favorite but I could be COMPLETELY biased because I’m Amity ;)

il_fullxfull.474072549_7bqt

Erudite, Candor, Amity and Dauntless. She also has Abnegation bags available as well.

All of these are handpainted and handsewn and are WONDERFUL. I can’t wait to get my hands on them. Each one is individually made, and super sturdy and can hold a good amount of stuff! She also ships internationally as well!

You can check out Sylvia’s Etsy Store, and look out for more things from this creative girl coming soon!

*     *     *     *     *    *

Bittersweet Stories Designs

Next, I am featuring Natasha and Delilah of Bittersweet Stories Designs!

Natasha and Delilah are BIG fangirls, with some serious creative awesomeness. They mostly are working Mortal Instruments bags, with custom fabric, as well as custom Divergent fabric as well. I know they also are working on blankets and all sorts of super cool things. Check out some pictures!

4046065_orig

Handmade TMI bag, featured on their site. (Photo credit to Bittersweet Stories Designs)

1784923

Divergent fabric (credit/photo to Bittersweet Stories Designs)

8675069_orig

my good friend Victoria from Novel Reality, with her handmade bag.

282858_592170477472818_1814298144_n

myself with my handmade TMI bag (photo credit to Bittersweet Stories Designs)

These girls are fantastic, and their bags and some seriously high quality. They are a little pricier than others you may find, but they are unique and they are worth it. I can tell this bag is going to last a VERY long time. I also love that they take the time to design each bag individually, that they send “proofs” of the design before making it, and all of that. They are amazing!

Check out their website here, and also their Facebook page! Don’t be afraid to contact these awesome ladies for their custom designs! They even gave some of their custom work to Cassandra Clare, Jamie Campbell Bower, Lily Collins and Kevin Zegers!

*    *    *    *    *

SugarDukes Magical Sweets

The next person I am going to feature is my friend Suzanne, and her company is Sugardukes Magical Sweets!

Suzanne gets her inspiration from the Harry Potter series and makes her way across the country, building up her business and coming up with new products all the time! She has the traditional Chocolate Frogs, Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans, Sugar Quills, but also fun ones like Dill Pickle Barrels (like root beer barrels; they’re delicious!), Sugar Plums and Ticklish Pears. Check it out!

il_fullxfull.454037219_s3bn

Sugar Quills

il_fullxfull.454020570_5d21

Sugar Plums. THESE ARE SO GOOD! I love these!

il_fullxfull.454018700_lnve

Ticklish Pears! Also super delicious!

She makes appearances often at Los Angeles Dumbledores Army events, and at the various Harry Potter conventions, like Misti-Con and this weekend’s Leaky Con!

You can check her out on Facebook and Etsy!

*     *     *     *     *

Hebel Design

The next person being profiled is Viviane Hebel of Hebel Design.

Vivi might be very familiar to you, especially if you are a fan of The Mortal Instruments/Infernal Devices series, The Lux Series, the Grisha trilogy, the Lynberg Legacy, The Syrena Legacy and more. She works with jewelry mostly, but also bookmarks, keychains and more. Its hard to choose what photos to share but here you go!

13427141952031101618412

Faerie ear cuffs for the Modern Faerie series by Holly Black

1316992745169-809694109

Customizable bookmarks :) Mortal Instruments is shown

1351280152116-330782567

Quote bracelet featuring a quote from the Lux series

526914_348183621969173_781386661_n

My own personal Clockwork Princess pendant that was given to me by Cassandra Clare :)

There is SOOOO much more on that website. Vivi does absolutely beautiful work and each piece is made so well. Her stuff is absolutely gorgeous, I can’t even begin to describe it. Her stuff is a little pricey but I’m telling you, its worth it, definitely. Her stuff is made super sturdy and for long wear. I wear mine quite often.

Definitely check out her site for more pictures, because you want to get your hands on some of this awesome work.

*     *      *     *     *

Karen Hallion

The last person I am going to feature is my favorite fan artist, Karen Hallion.

Karen Hallion’s claim to fame tends to be her Disney/Doctor Who mash-ups, but she also does a lot of Disney, Doctor Who and other fandom in Art Nouveau style. She does prints, paintings, cards, stationary, stickers, and you can get her shirts on various sites like TeeFury, etc, if you pay attention. Here are some examples of her art.

il_fullxfull.466804792_qof7

Art Nouveau of Elizabeth from Bioshock Infinite

il_fullxfull.396272473_822c

Note card with a Doctor Who and Nightmare Before Christmas mash-up

il_fullxfull.308315932

Art Nouveau bookmark of The Princess Bride characters, Buttecup and Wesley

il_fullxfull.364443437_dcmg

One of the MANY Disney Princess and Doctor Who mash-ups, this one featuring Cinderella. My favorites are the ones featuring Belle and Rapunzel!

You can check out her Facebook page here, and her Etsy page here. She also travels a lot to various different conventions so look out for her :) Also! If you check Day of the Shirt daily, you can catch her designs on various sites, if you look carefully as well!

*     *     *     *     *

I hope you enjoyed checking out all this super cool, handmade fandom merchandise. All of these are super fantastic, made well, and are super creative and beautiful. I hope you all are able to buy some of these!

If you, or someone you know, has their own shop set up, please contact me, send them my way! I would love to feature them, and I’d probably love to buy their stuff too!

Meeting Lauren Oliver

Okay, stuff before I say anything about the actual event, advice I have to say two things:

One thing is that…meeting authors is always an awesome thing for me. Authors are such rock stars to me. I mean, patient don’t get me wrong: I love me some actual rock stars and I love my actors and actresses and stuff but authors…authors are the most underrated rock stars out there. Books are the most amazing gift that anyone can give and authors are the people that give us those gifts. When I read a good book, and I set it down and I feel like I’ve been transported to a different world, or become a different person, or if I feel like my life has been changed…that’s the mark of a good author. So meeting authors…its an honor for me.

Secondly, young adult literature truly is an amazing thing. The outpour of young adult literature these days is just astonishing and if there’s one good thing (and I think there are several) that has come out of this outpouring, it is that it has encouraged more and more teens to read. The amount of young girls that were in that room…I was amazed and seriously happy about it. There were girls around my age, but there were also girls in high school, middle school…maybe even younger. (I’m really bad with guessing ages…like, really really bad). I reveled in that awesomeness for a bit.

But moving on…

Today I met Lauren Oliver!

It was an awesome, awesome thing to do. I have to send a lot of props to the Mission Viejo library and their teen services librarian, Allison. I’ve gone to two events put on by her before…I met Meg Cabot there about three or four years ago, and I met Cassandra Clare a couple years ago. Now she’s put on this awesome Lauren Oliver event, and another Cassandra Clare event in a couple weeks (and you know I’ll be there!) Also, much thanks needs to go out to A Whale of a Tale Bookstore in Irvine for sponsoring these events as well. If you’re around Southern California at all, definitely check this place out. Its exactly what a bookstore should be, and its run by a fantastic lady, and they help to put on these awesome events.

First off…the room that the event was in? Super awesome.

IMG_4132

And I know its super random to even remark upon the room but the room was really neat! Most events I go to are in big ‘ol rooms to accomodate a ton of people (which is probably what is going to occur when I attend the Cassandra Clare in about a week) but this one was in this cute little storytime room that is probably used for children’s events at the library and it was adorable. I kept finding new things to look at. I love libraries that have these kind of rooms because it just plays into the imaginations of kids and its just wonderful. So yeah, A+ on the room choice, guys. Plus it made the event super intimate. Lauren Oliver is already well known, and a best seller, but once her book becomes a hit TV show (more on that later), she’s going to blow up even more so it was nice to meet her in this capacity.

And she was soooo incredibly nice and awesome!

IMG_4136

She was really sweet and really personable. She mostly talked about the sort of journey she had gone through as a writer. She’s the daughter of two literature professors so she grew up with a love of books and proclaims herself a book addict (now where have I heard that term before…). She said she really began writing when she wrote fan fiction for the novels she liked, though ‘fan fiction’ wasn’t really a term yet. As she grew older, she began to write more and more, especially cheesy stories for her best friend, Jackie, which usually involved outlandish stories that involved them and cute boys that they were crushing on.

Then she talked about novels and how difficult it was in the beginning, because she felt like she just wasn’t really understanding how to write a novel. And that really hit home for a writer like me, because sometimes I feel like I’m the most awesome writer in the world, and sometimes I’m like, “I have no idea what I’m doing…”

i-have-no-idea-what-im-doing-dog

Yeah, like that. No, really, its nice to hear authors that you admire and worship talking about the difficulty of writing, because it IS difficult. Its difficult to figure out plot structure and character and setting and even just proper grammar. And it was nice to know that she didn’t just write Before I Fall, and that was that. It was her fourth or fifth novel that she’d actually ever even written and that gives me hope that I can write a novel that touches people and reaches out to people the way her books have to me.

I think that the best part of her presentation was that she talked about writing and her journey through writing and getting published and how it was difficult but well worth the effort. She talked about agents, and creative writing classes and all of that. She talked about books that influenced her (Roald Dahl, A Wrinkle in Time, J.K. Rowling, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, to name a few). She was funny, and witty and relatable. She was accessible to her fans.

It was also really awesome hearing about how she came up with the idea for Delirium, such a combination of things. First off, she said that Gabriel Garcia Marquez said all books are about love or death. Before I Fall is all about death so she thought she should write a book about love, not a romance novel, but love, itself. Combined with the fact that there was the swine flu outbreak at the time, she thought of love as a disease and a possible cure. She also briefly talked about how her fiancé/boyfriend of four years died in 2009, and how she would’ve said yes to something like the cure. Thus the Delirium idea was born. Its always really interesting how a story can come about; both from things going on around you and also things that are happening directly to you.

And of course, Lauren talked about the Delirium TV show on FOX! She sounds really excited about it; and that makes me really excited about it. Right now, casting is going on and hopefully they’ll film a pilot soon. As I’ve said before, Emma Roberts is playing Lena, Daren Kagasoff as Alex, Gregg Sulkin as Julian and Jeanine Mason as Hana. She’s read the script and has definitely approved of it and now I’m just hoping that they film it, that people love it and it gets optioned for an entire season. I think Delirium is a great book for television.

And meeting her was just fantastic. The line was kind of long and it was a warm day, but you barely even noticed. Everyone in line was talking books, either Lauren Oliver’s or Cassandra Clare‘s, as most of the people at this event are going to the Cassie event in a couple weeks. And when you did get to the front, it was totally worth the wait, and the bit of sweat. Ew.

IMG_4142

She was SO nice. The best part about this Lauren Oliver event is the time that she takes out of her day, and her life to meet with her fans. I’ve been to plenty of autograph signings and meet and greets where the celebrity signs your little thing, slides it across the table to you, and that’s that. Meg Cabot was not like that. Cassandra Clare and Holly Black were not like that…and Lauren Oliver is not like that. She takes the time to sit and talk to each and every person that comes through her line, and it really shows her appreciation for her fans. We show our appreciation by coming to this events, buying her books and all of that and she shows hers back by taking the time to talk to us. Its such a little thing but such a great one.

First thing she asked was if I was from around the area, and I said yes because I basically am. Everything in Southern California is basically just one big blob. But anyway, she remarked on how awesome our weather is, and how she has to go to yucky Texas tomorrow (though I’m sure she’s gonna love you all, Texans!!! And you guys have great food, or so I’ve heard!). Then she noticed my books.

Well, book. My copies of Delirium, Pandemonium, and Requiem are brand new. Requiem just released a few days ago, and I just bought Delirium and Pandemonium because I previously bought them on my Kindle and I couldn’t exactly have her sign my kindle….though I did think about it for a moment. No, the book I’m talking about is Before I Fall. It looks like one of MY books. What I mean by that is, it wouldn’t look out of place at a used bookstore but no one would buy it if it was sitting on the shelf of a Barnes and Noble. I show my books a lot of love; there’s always food stains, and creased pages, folded covers…sometimes just truly beat up covers. I show the books I love some seriously tough love and she noticed. Of course she did. Other readers will know what I’m talking about…and they notice it too.

Except you weird people who keep their books in perfect pristine condition and don’t fold the pages and all that. Weird people. (That was for my sister, who finds my book beatings astonishing haha).

But so we started talking about Before I Fall, which I think she liked. I think most people know of her Delirium trilogy and that she is proud of her Before I Fall novel. And its definitely my favorite. I remember reading it and absolutely hating Samantha Kingston. However, as you read the novel, your opinion changes. Samantha is forced to relive the last day of her life seven times and you’re just glued to the pages. Its a wonderful novel…and I knew that it had been optioned for a film but I hadn’t heard anything else.

Well, nerd girls (and guys, if you’re reading this), you heard it right here, from me, from Lauren: Before I Fall is still in the process of becoming a movie! It has a screenplay and it has a director. Right now, there are two actresses in mind for the role of Samantha, but according to Lauren, there’s a particular actress that they “need” to play her. Very intriguing. Of course, she couldn’t tell me, don’t be silly, dear readers, but I was really excited to hear that this movie was still a possibility because I truly believe that Before I Fall is Lauren’s greatest hit.

She also talked briefly of her middle grade books, Liesl and Po, and The Spindlers. Liesl and Po is about a girl and a ghost and a box of magic, in the words of Lauren, and The Spindlers is about a girl who has to go to this subterranean world to recover her brother’s soul, stolen by these spider creatures called the splinders. Apparently she meets some crazy creatures, and it has a very Alice in Wonderland feel to it. I’ve never had the pleasure to read these books yet; in fact, I didn’t even know they existed. Now that I do, however, I’ll be checking them out soon. I may be way too old for them according to the age group on the back cover but reading knows no age.

Great news as well! Even though the Delirium trilogy is over (much sad face), we have a lot to look forward to in the future. She has another young adult novel coming out soon, called Panic, a realistic instead of dystopian, and also an adult novel planned as well, and unfortunately, I can’t remember the title. Forgive me :( But lots of things to look forward to!

So meeting Lauren Oliver was a super fun time, and an enjoyable one at that. I’m definitely going to be tracking her down again at next month’s Los Angeles Festival of Books to say hi to her again. If you haven’t had the chance to read her books, definitely do so, and try to catch her while she’s on tour. You can check out the dates here.

And before you leave, check out this video of Lauren reading a spoiler-free excerpt from her newest novel, Requiem.

* * * * * *

photo

Check out my signed books!!!!!

Book of the Week: Clockwork Prince

Hello all.

Hope you are all having a WONDERFUL week this week. I definitely am. I am mostly having a good week because everything has just been so good lately. There’s been a ton of awesome TMI and TID (Cassandra Clare) news, recipe with stills released from the City of Bones movie and the newly released book trailer for Clockwork Princess, viagra dosage the final Infernal Devices novel.

I recently went to Gallifrey One, look the Doctor Who convention, which was a ton of fun. My birthday is less than a week away, and that is insanely exciting. I was finally picked for World Book Night, where I hope I get to hand out either Percy Jackson or Looking for Alaska.

In the next few weeks, new books will be released by both Lauren Oliver and Cassandra Clare, and I’ll be meeting both very soon after. I will be seeing Andrew McMahon in concert, going to Anaheim for Wonder Con and watching brand new episodes of both Doctor Who and Game of Thrones.

So much excitement.

And because one of my favorite authors, Cassandra Clare, is releasing her final installment of the Infernal Devices series, Clockwork Prince, in less than three weeks, I decided it would make a fantastic Book of the Week to do the previous book, Clockwork Prince.

So here it is.

Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork-Prince-CVR

Genre:
young adult, romance, contemporary fantasy

You May Like if You Liked:
The Mortal Instruments series, Delirium by Lauren Oliver, Tithe by Holly Black

Plot Summary:

In Clockwork Princess, we meet Tessa Gray, a normal New York girl, coming to London to live with her brother, Nate. She ends up kidnapped and soon learns she has the power to shift herself, become an entirely different person, as long as she’s holding something of theirs. When she is rescued by Will Herondale, she is brought into the Shadowhunter world, where she learns of that world and that her brother isn’t all what it seems. She’s different, and she doesn’t fit into the normal classifications that the Shadowhunters know: demon, vampire, warlock, werewolf or fae. In fact, Tessa seems to be one of a kind. And she’s wanted, wanted desperately by a man by the name of Mortmain, going by the Magister. She is left with a ton of questions, about her life and her presents and who or what she really is. The Shadowhunters are left with a crazy mad man, equipped with strong automatons, ready to do whatever he can to take over London and to take Tessa back. She meets friends in the form of Shadowhunters Charlotte and Henry Branwell, Will Herondale, Jem Carstairs and Jessamine Lovelace, humans like Thomas, Agatha and Sophie Collins and warlocks like Magnus Bane.

In the sequel, Clockwork Prince, the Institute in London is left kind of in shambles. Two of their very loyal servants are left dead by Mortmain’s hands, Nate has been revealed as a spy and nothing seems to have been accomplished. To make matters worse, Benedict Lightwood is making a bid to take the Institute away from Charlotte Branwell and has made this demand: that she must find the Magister in a fortnight. Everyone is needed to pitch in and things are starting to be revealed: there’s another spy in the midst, Benedict Lightwood isn’t exactly what he’s made out to be…but his sons are a different story. We learn more of Will’s past and we see Jem and his sickness in a way we’ve never seen before. And we see Tessa struggle: struggle to come to terms with her brother’s hatred of her, her love for two incredible boys, and her determination to discover herself.

The Good:

Though my heart always belongs to the Mortal Instrument series, the Infernal Devices were just written better. I am a TMI fan through and through, mostly because I discovered her books when I was going through a ridiculously hard time and those books were my saving grace. I grabbed on to them and held on, and fell in love with the characters and story. I still adore these books; they’ve done for me what a lot of books haven’t. I understand they are a version of a fan fiction that Cassandra did once upon a time, and that’s a whole ‘nother story. I honestly do not get why people give Clare such a hard time. I don’t think she copied the worlds of Harry Potter and such, like people say. I love this series.

But the Infernal Devices are a series all on their own. This is a work of her own imagination and you can see that. They are written very well and the story is captivating. There is something about Victorian England that captures your attention. You can’t help but be drawn in by the gentleman and lady lifestyle, the clothes, the behaviors, and all that sort of thing but you also see the beginning of the changes, with women fighting for their rights and the working class protesting their work conditions and that sort of thing. Clare chose a good era to produce these prequels to the Mortal Instruments series.

What I liked about this book was that it bounced back and forth between the different stories that were going on in this novel. Everyone has a story, everyone has an issue. Tessa is being hunted, and for reasons she still doesn’t understand. She hasn’t even begun to understand herself quite yet. Will is searching for a cure for his deepest and darkest secret. Jem is facing his mortality and his illness head on, as well as his love for Tessa. Charlotte has a huge weight on her shoulder, to find Mortmain before she loses the Institute. Jessamine doesn’t want to be a Shadowhunter; she wants a mundane life with a mundane love. The stories that are all going on at the same time weave together to make a fantastic novel.

I also like the strength of all the characters. I love that we get to see so many characters and their depth. I love that there are strong female characters, not only in just Tessa and Charlotte, but also in the servant girl, Sophie. I love that we learn more of all the characters in this book. We learn so much more of Will Herondale than we learned in the last book. I love a bad boy; I tend to go for the bad boys but Will almost seemed too bad. Jace Lightwood of the TMI series was sarcastic and biting but he wasn’t cruel. In Clockwork Prince, we learn much more of his past and why he acts this way and he won me over quickly.

I also like that Cassandra is really building up the anticipation of the ending. She gives you a second book that leaves you panting for more, if only because you want more sexy scenes like the one between Tessa and Will on the balcony. My god, I had to splash my face with cold water after that one. But you’re dying to know what happens to Jem and Will, you want to know that Charlotte and Henry’s baby is going to be okay, you want to know all about Tessa and what and who she is. You want to know what Mortmain’s grand plan is. Clare builds up suspense in the best way possible. She leaves you wanting more, wanting to know more about everything, and she spins a lovely romance in several characters. She leaves a ridiculous cliffhanger with the appearance of Will’s long lost sister, Cecily, who shows up at the Institute, wishing to be trained as a Shadowhunter.

The Bad:

I love Tessa Gray, I do. And I adore Jem Carstairs, for all his goodness, his sweetness and his maturity. And I am half mad in love with Will Herondale. But the one downturn of this book is the love triangle. I don’t like love triangles and I try to avoid books with them, but nowadays you’re hard pressed to find a book that doesn’t have one. So that kind of sucks.

One thing I can say is though, you have to kind of get over the fact that there are love triangles there as long as the story is okay without them. If you can remove the love triangle and still have a very strong story, then you’re in a good spot. While the love triangle drives me absolutely mad, there is an extremely well thought out and strong story in this novel and it makes up for it. Sure Tessa is being wooed (in very sexy ways) but she is also very focused on the problems at hand: Mortmain, his plans and his plans for her, and finding out more about herself. That is the most important thing at hand.

Also, at the end of Clockwork Prince, Tessa becomes engaged to one of the boys, which is a very strong move on her part. She has made a decision, or at least it seems so. I still feel the question of Will or Jem? will be present in the third installment but for all intents and purposes, Tessa has stood her ground and made a choice.

Rating?:

I give this book a 4 out of 5 Stars.

Recommended Or Not?

Definitely. Obviously, please please go pick up Clockwork Angel before you read this, but you won’t be disappointed. It has everything that a young adult fantasy needs: action, adventure, mystery, drama, strong male and female characters, romance, the works.

 Even if you’ve read the Mortal Instruments and weren’t a fan, I still encourage you to read this series. This series is her finest work, and I only hope that she continues to get better and better. You will not read this series and be disappointed, I can guarantee it.

The fact is, while the Mortal Instruments holds my heart, Infernal Devices is the diamond of Cassandra Clare’s writing. They are written very well and have a wonderful and new story. While people can claim that TMI is based on a fan fiction, Clockwork Angel and Clockwork Prince stand on their own and really help Cassandra Clare to stand out as a strong author.