Monday, July 29, 2013

Blog Tour: WHITE CHALK by Pavarti K. Tyler [Playlist, Excerpt + Giveaway]

WHITE CHALK

Literary Fiction/Coming of Age Novel with a brave look at teenage life, containing some strong adult themes to generate honest and frank conversation.


Publisher: Evolved Publishing
Publication Date: July 22, 2013
Genre: Literary Fiction
SubGenre: Coming of Age
Audience: Adult
Pages: 250


Chelle isn't a typical 13-year-old girl—she doesn't laugh with friends, play sports, or hang out at the mall after school. Instead, she navigates a world well beyond her years.

Life in Dawson, ND spins on as she grasps at people, pleading for someone to save her—to return her to the simple childhood of unicorns on her bedroom wall and stories on her father’s knee.

When Troy Christiansen walks into her life, Chelle is desperate to believe his arrival will be her salvation. So much so, she forgets to save herself. After experiencing a tragedy at school, her world begins to crack, causing a deeper scar in her already fragile psyche.

Follow Chelle’s twisted tale of modern adolescence, as she travels down the rabbit hole into a reality none of us wants to admit actually exists.
ADD WHITE CHALK TO GOODREADS




Playlist

I’m definitely a music writer.  
Every book has it’s own playlist and my amazing friend Mosno actually even wrote an original tune for my book Shadow on the Wall (link: https://soundcloud.com/mosno/moonless-planet-exclusive).  
So, when I was asked for a music post about White Chalk, I was rearing to go.  Oh yes, I have music for this one:

White Chalk by Pavarti K Tyler on Grooveshark

If you only listen to one song, definitely make it the first one.   I’ll talk about all of them in a moment, but Volcano by Damian Rice knocks my socks off EVERY time I hear it.


Volcano by Damien Rice – There are a number of lines in this song that make me think of White Chalk, but it’s the only song I’ve ever heard that captures the longing, the dissatisfaction and the dysfunction of Chelle’s life.  No matter what happens, she is unfulfilled and always longing for more.  Give me mountains and I’ll ask for the sea.  But more than any of that, it’s the repeated line at the end “She’s still too young” that wallops the death punch.  It’s surprising, doesn’t have anything to do with the rest of the song and still so painfully beautiful.  For me it ties in the relationship with Mr. Harris perfectly.  It’s not secondary, it’s not even a sub-plot but it is a secret.  The line in the music, much like the relationship runs through the song with a subtlety that taints everything it touches with its meaning.


Cold Cold Night by The White Stripes – Chelle longs to be older, to be something special, something someone would want.  In this song, the lyrics mirror this desire.  She’s the pursuer, she’s the one keeping the momentum going for the hidden relationship.  Much like Chelle and Mr. Harris, she made the first move, she loves what she sees as being in the power position in their relationship.


A Martyr for My Love For You by The White Stripes – This song always makes me think of Troy.  He’s such an idiot.  He’s a 17 year old boy!  Of course he’s an idiot.  And I love him for that.  His thought process is so fundamentally flawed. In his blur of hormones and loyalties, he can’t see what’s right in front of him and doesn’t have the capacity to try.


Does your mama know by ABBA This was the first song I ever heard about a man being attracted to a younger woman.  I loved it as a kid, not really understanding why, but I just knew there was something dirty about it…


Just Breathe by Pearl Jam – The lyrics to this are just so lovely.  It covers Chelles absolute adoration of Troy and how she sees him with wonder and awe.  And then there’s the pain of reality: “Yeah, I don't wanna hurt, there's so much in this world to make me bleed.”


I Say Nothing by Voice of the Beehive I Say Nothing is a deceptive song.  It’s so perky and upbeat and happy, until you really listen to the lyrics.  While the plot of the song doesn’t match White Chalk, it does address the issue of abuse and keeping a secret.  Just a different kind.  The juxtaposition of poppy happy sing-song lyrics and the devastating lyrics also speak to me.  I think it’s because of how hard Chelle works to keep everything in it’s place.  You can see it at the beginning of the book in how she cleans the house and tries to just keep the peace.


Beautiful by Joydrop Ahh, if I were beautiful like you…  The crux of every piece of teenage girl jealousy.  It’s not that we dislike the pretty girl in the center of the room, it’s that we wish we were beautiful like her.  And the worst part is, they never know how beautiful they are and are saying the same thing about some other girl.  Being a teenage girl is a ring of hell.  Chelle sees Xiu through the filter of this song.


This Is What It Is by Nina Nastasia – To quote Dr. Horrible, “Destroying the status quo because the status is not… quo.” This song is about the stagnantation of our existence, about the lethargy and apathy that set in when we do nothing to change our circumstance.  It reminds me of Chelle’s father and of the mentality of those in Chelle’s life.  Things can’t change, so why try.  If only someone would try…


Breathe Me by Sia – A song about self harm.  There aren’t many of them and this one is gorgeous.  Chelle is a cutter, but it’s a self-harm mentality in general because she also scratches and burns herself.  It’s a topic talked about more these days than in the past, but people still don’t really understand it.  This song offers a unique insight into the cry for help that is self harm. Check out her striking video.





The Cave by Mumford & Sons – Chelles parents don’t see what’s going on.  It’s not as conscious as the refusal to help in this song.  Somehow that makes it worse for me.  The cycle of poverty and abuse just keeps on spinning, leaving Chelle out in the cold.


It's You by PJ Harvey – A song for Chelle’s mother.  What she’s been taught, what she’s done and what she’s teaching Chelle about life and love. 


Hawaii by Meiko I’ve always been struck by how sad this song is.  How can singing about something like running away to a beautiful place be so sad?  Because she’s really talking about the longing.  The longing to be free.  Not the freedom itself.  The sorrow comes from knowing, you’re never really going to go.  It’s also the song that makes me think of Cat.  She holds out hope for Chelle, offers her a safe place, a friend, someone who won’t judge her.  She is Hawaii.  But will Chelle take the life line?  Read White Chalk to find out.




EXCERPT

After a spell of silence, I slipped back inside and slid out of my shoes to avoid tracking rain through the house. In the kitchen, I grabbed a waffle from the freezer and stuck it in the toaster oven before sneaking downstairs to the utility room.

My father’s toolbox sat in the back, next to the water heater. His knife rested on the top right side of the inner shelf. As chaotic as he behaved in every other part of his life, he practically had OCD when it came to his tools. Next to the knife sat a box of razor blades. I slid two out and dropped them in my pocket before closing the box.
Upstairs, I buttered and drenched my waffle in syrup, grabbed a soda, took them back to my room, and locked the door.

My parents had gone silent. Dad probably passed out. I could not bear to think about what Ma was doing. Maybe plotting his death.

I’ll get the Draino, you get the Bleach—let’s take that fucker out!

I popped in the ear buds of my Nano and turned to the playlist full of thrashing music Cat gave me. After annihilating my waffle and draining the soda, I fished the blades out of my pocket. My arms were almost healed—soft pink skin puckered in a few spots—but soon even that would be invisible.

Instead, I pulled up my pant leg and laid my ankle across the opposite knee. A burn on the inside of my calf was healing, the scab still moist and tender. With precision, I pressed the corner of the blade into my flesh. The moment it broke the skin, a flush of joy spread across my chest and I restrained myself from digging it further into the muscle. I sliced across the scab, exposing the wound and raw flesh beneath, and pulled it across my skin, creating a three-inch incision. Blood, honey thick, bubbled to the surface before flowing together, drawn close like mercury.


My mind sparkled with light—no sound, no pain, only the perfect feeling of blade against skin, knife within flesh. Once again, the darkness within me abated and I felt free.



Award winning author of multi-cultural and transgressive literature, Pavarti K Tyler is an artist, wife, mother and number cruncher.


 She graduated Smith College in 1999 with a degree in Theatre.


After graduation, she moved to New York, where she worked as a Dramaturge, Assistant Director and Production Manager on productions both on and off Broadway. 

Later, Pavarti went to work in the finance industry several international law firms. She now lives with her husband, two daughters and one very large, very terrible dog. 


She keeps busy working with fabulous authors as the Director of Marketing at Novel Publicity and penning her next genre bending novel.



Find her around the web:




Evolved pub press release

White Chalk (Evolved Publishing) marks Tyler’s third full length novel and promises readers familiar with her work the same mind bending experience.  Her other projects include Shadow on the Wall (Fighting Monkey Press) and Two Moons of Sera (Fighting Monkey Press).  



Shadow on the Wall has been received many awards: Winner of the General Fiction/Novel Category of the 2012 Next Generation Indie Book Awards, Winner in the Fiction: Multicultural category for The 2012 USA Best Book Awards, and Finalist in the Multicultural Fiction category for the 2012 International Book Awards.


White Chalk has been hailed as “brave”, “raw”, and “destroyingly beautiful”.  In line with novels such as White Oleander, Thirteen Reasons Why and Gemma, White Chalk invites you to witness one girl’s heartrending story of confusion and desperation.



Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide: The mission of the Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide is to reduce the number of youth suicides and attempted suicides by encouraging overall public awareness through the development and promotion of educational training programs for teens, parents and educators.


The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Since its inception, the Lifeline has engaged in a variety of initiatives to improve crisis services and advance suicide prevention.


S.A.F.E. ALTERNATIVES®: Our philosophy begins with the assumption that, although temporarily helpful, self-injurious behavior is ultimately a dangerous and futile coping strategy which interferes with intimacy, productivity and happiness. There is no “safe” or “healthy” amount of self-injury. We also believe that self-injury is not an addiction over which one is powerless for a lifetime, people can and do stop injuring, with the right kinds of help and support. Self-injury can be transformed from a seemingly uncontrollable compulsion to a choice.


Self Injury Outreach and Support: As part of a collaboration between the University of Guelph and McGill University, we are a non-profit outreach initiative providing information and resources about self-injury to those who self-injure, those who have recovered, and those who want to help.


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Friday, July 26, 2013

Cover Reveal: BROKEN by CJ Lyons + Author Interview



For Scarlet Killian, every day is a game of Russian roulette—she has a 1 in 5 chance of dying…


Broken

By: CJ Lyons
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Expected Pub Date: November 2013
ISBN: 9-781-4022-8545-5  
Hard Cover $16.99
Ages 12+


AddGR..

New York Times bestselling author CJ Lyons makes her YA debut with a fast-paced thriller sure to keep readers guessing to the very last page.


Fifteen-year-old Scarlet Killian has one chance for a normal life. Only problem? It just might kill her. Diagnosed with a rare and untreatable heart condition, Scarlet has never taken the school bus. Or giggled with friends during lunch. Or spied on a crush out of the corner of her eye. Scarlet has come to terms with the fact that despite the best efforts of her doctors and parents, she's going to die. Literally of a broken heart.  So when her parents offer her a week to prove she can survive high school, Scarlet knows her time is now... or never.



Scarlet can feel her heart beating out of control with every slammed locker and every sideways glance in the hallway. But for the first time in her life she makes real friends. She also makes new discoveries about the truth behind her illness... a truth that might just kill her before her heart does 



Q:Is Long QT a real disease?


CJ: Yes. As a pediatrician I diagnosed my niece with Long QT Syndrome when she was born. Her heart specialists believe she's the youngest person in the world diagnosed with Long QT. She's had to take medicine every day of her life and can't ever skip a day. So far that's added up to over ten thousand pills taken.

You know that feeling you get when you've run as hard and fast as you can and you stop but your heart keeps galloping along? And you wonder for a second if maybe it's not going to stop, but will keep galloping out of control? But then of course it settles back down. For people with Long QT, their heart doesn't change gears well, going from regular to galloping and back again. So they have to avoid anything that would make their heart race.

No sports or aerobic exercise. No horror films. No roller coaster rides. No jumping into cold water on a hot summer's day.

But that doesn't have to stop someone with Long QT like my niece from having a great life. Today she is a brilliant, active fourteen-year-old who gets straight A's, enjoys riding horses, archery, reading, breeding Rottweilers, and who wants to grow up to be either a fashion designer or President of the United States. Her main fashion accessory is her portable defibrillator, Phil, who goes with her everywhere, including camping, to the beach, and recently to her first Broadway show.

BROKEN is dedicated to her fearless approach to life where outwitting Death is simply part of her daily routine.


Q: What was it like working in an ER? Is it like on TV?


CJ: Definitely nothing like Grey's Anatomy, but the first few seasons of ER get it right. Working in the ER is basically about learning how to control (and live with) chaos, the art of listening, and how to quickly decide what's the most important thing you need to tackle next.

I worked three jobs to put myself through medical school and one of them was waitressing at a very busy family restaurant. Honestly, that was the best preparation I ever could have had for life in the ER.

 

Q: Why did you leave medicine to write books?


CJ: I've been a storyteller all my life—a fact that used to get me placed in time-out a lot as a kid. But writing stories has always been my way of making sense of the chaos that goes on in the world around us. I wrote my first novel in college and wrote two more science fiction novels in medical school.

Then, while I was an intern at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, one of my close friends was murdered. Dealing with that grief and trauma while still working seventy hours a week and trying to save lives—I wasn't prepared for that. So I turned to my writing and that's when I wrote my first thriller. I never thought about actually making a career of it until years later when friends who were published authors encouraged me to enter a national writing contest and I was a finalist. This led to several publishing contracts and I realized that as much as I loved being a doctor, here was a chance for a second dream come true: being a full time writer.

It was a huge leap of faith leaving my job (and my patients—I missed them, a lot!) but I've always believed that if you're going to dream, you should dream big, so I went for it. Since then I've published twenty books, hit #2 on the New York Times bestseller list, won awards for my writing, and most importantly, have had the chance to impact millions of people through my novels. Talk about a dream come true!

 

Q: What's your best advice for someone who wants to be a writer?


CJ: Never surrender, never give up. Writing is hard work, it takes years to master the craft, so you need to stick with it. And read, read, read…pay attention to what makes the books you like work as well as why the books you don't like fail. You never stop learning in this job, but that's also what makes it so much fun.




A New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of sixteen novels, former pediatric ER doctor CJ Lyons has lived the life she writes about in her cutting edge thrillers with heart.
 CJ has been called a "master within the genre" (Pittsburgh Magazine), and her work has been praised as "breathtakingly fast-paced" and "riveting" (Publishers Weekly) with "characters with beating hearts and three dimensions" (Newsday).


The author of thrillers such as the Lucy Guardino FBI series, she has sold over 1 million books in the last year.

When not writing, she can be found walking the beaches near her South Carolina Lowcountry home in Columbia, SC, listening to the voices in her head and plotting new and devious ways to create mayhem for her characters. To learn more about her Thrillers with Heart go to www.CJLyons.net.

Praise for Broken:

An intense page-turner. Readers will race to the end to see if Scarlet will uncover the truth about herself and those around her before it's too late.New York Times bestselling author April Henry

“Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak meets Kathy Reichs’ Virals.” —Jill Moore, Square Books, Jr.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Cover Reveal: DREAM GIRL by S.J. Lomas + Giveaway




DREAM GIRL

By: S.J. Lomas
Paperback
Expected publication: November 2013

Published by: Scribe Publishing


For Christine, dreams have never meant much.

Until she meets Gabriel.

Everyone thinks Christine should stay away from her new coworker at the library—thanks to his bad reputation—but when her dreams grow more vivid and she becomes entangled in a dangerous dream world with Gabriel every night, she can’t stay away. 
Soon it’s clear there is far more to dreams than Christine ever imagined, and now she’s on the path to making the biggest, and strangest, decision of her life. 



"An intriguing debut, DREAM GIRL introduces a world where simply falling asleep can bring you anywhere – including into danger. Readers will never think of dreams the same way again!" - Laura Ellen, author of BLIND SPOT




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Book Blast: GREEN RIVER (A Shifter Chronicle) by Elizabeth Loraine + Giveaway






Aidan watched the girls cower on the bed as their father, in a drunken rage, beat on the bedroom door.  

Drawn to the girls by some unknown power, he was irrevocably intertwined in their lives against both his tribe and his parents’ admonitions to “leave them to their own", but Aidan knew his mission was to safeguard Charlotte and Missy from the darkness that stalked them. 


In her new Shifter series, author Elizabeth Loraine draws you to the seamy underside of Seattle and to the lush forests of the Pacific Northwest as Characters Aidan, Charlotte and Missy explore their complex bond, the mysteries surrounding their separate cultures and a common enemy. 


I grew up in a small northern Minnesotan town married my high school sweetheart, had two beautiful children and as soon as we could we moved to a warmer climate. I have worked with my husband building and decorating custom homes for years.


After loving every kind of vampire book, movie and series since I was a child, I decided that I wanted to know more. I can write a book I thought, how hard can that be? Well....it wasn't as easy as I thought, but I stuck to it, and finished my first book Royal Blood Chronicles Book One in August 2009. I now have six books in the series and am about to release book two of my new series Phantom Lives.  

My parents always told me that I could do anything that I wanted, work hard, and do it right. I believe that, and live that every day.

I started writing this new vampire series for teens and their moms because I wanted something different to read. I was tired of all the modern versions of vampire books, there had to be more to these long lived beings. Where had they been, what had they seen? I wanted, no I NEEDED to know more, so Royal Blood Chronicles was born!  As in Royal Blood Chronicles, Phantom Lives features strong female characters and action and adventure mixed with romance, friendship and a historical backdrop. I hope you enjoy them.
Website |  Goodreads |  Facebook | Twitter 
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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Cover Reveal: SHELF LIFE by Stephanie Lawton + Giveaway



SHELF LIFE

Paperback
Expected publication: December 2013
Published by: IJP Press


It’s impossible to focus on college biology when your family believes doomsday is imminent and the government is out to get you.


All Pete Wilson’s ever wanted is to become a veterinarian, but those dreams are going up in flames. Commuting to an urban college and helping his parents with their apocalyptic prepper crap is more than he can handle.


Worse, Pete’s asshole neighbor is stirring up trouble, his family’s stockpile has been destroyed and farm animals are turning up dead.


Lindsey Linger is the tomboy sister of his best friend. Now a sexy spitfire, she and Pete are liable to set the barn ablaze as their romance finally heats up. But she’s hiding a terrible secret, and rural life isn’t all bonfires and hayloft romps. That becomes clear one icy winter night when the survival of everyone Pete loves hangs in the balance.

Can Pete be the hero they need, or will this be the end of the world as he knows it?







After collecting a couple English degrees in the Midwest and learning more about agriculture and farming than she ever wanted to know, Stephanie Lawton suddenly awoke in the deepest reaches of the Deep South. Culture shock inspired her to write about Mobile, Alabama, her adopted city, and all the ways Southern culture, history and attitudes seduce the unsuspecting.

A lover of all things gothic, she can often be spotted photographing old cemeteries, historic buildings and, ironically, the beautiful beaches of the Gulf Coast.


She also has a tendency to psychoanalyze people, which comes in handy when creating character profiles.

 


For a chance to win a SHELF LIFE T-SHIRT!




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