Mundie Moms

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Tracked by Jenny Martin; Blog Tour: Author Interview & Enter To WIN!

Hello and welcome to today's TRACKED blog tour stop. I am so thrilled to have debut author, a fellow Texan, and a friend of mine, Jenny Martin on the blog today! She's stopped by to chat with me about her book, TRACKED. After you read through our interview together, be sure to enter to win! 

Hi Jenny! Welcome to Mundie Moms. I love having friends stop by. I'm going to take a moment and say CONGRATULATIONS on your debut! I am so excited for you and your book. I love the title of it, TRACKED. How did you come up with the title? Was it something you came up with before writing the story, or during your writing process?

Hmm…good question, and honestly, I can’t remember exactly when I first picked Tracked as the title. But I can tell you that by the time I finished the first draft, I’d chosen it, and interestingly enough, it never changed, from first page to final copyedit! It’s a bit of a play on the racing theme (Phee’s forced onto the circuit track)…and if you read the whole book, it may even ring with deeper meaning. It’ll be fun to watch as readers catch on. ;)

I know your husband has done some amazing things with your book trailer. Did you have an input in your cover design as well?

Thanks! My husband is so creative and talented. You should see the steel emblems he’s working on. I can’t wait to show them off!

To answer your question…actually, I had minimal input. Originally, my editor asked me to put together some thoughts and I created a Pinterest inspiration board, but ultimately, the final design was up to the designers. I will say that I love the logo on the cover, and had always hoped Phee’s racing symbol would make it onto the jacket, so seeing it there is a dream come true. We’ve had a lot of fun using it on bookmarks, bags and t-shirts. I think the logo’s really sharp. 

What was one of your favorite scenes to write? You can totally keep this spoiler free, and just tell us your favorite chapter if you'd like.

I’ve mentioned how much I loved drafting the races, and also, a really tender, heartbreaking scene in chapter twenty-seven, but another favorite is a scorching hot scene between Phee and Cash. Two words: Emerald Suite. Two more words: Ohhhhh Cash.

Do you have a favorite line from your book?

I sure do. This line, delivered by Cash, is my favorite, and I think it speaks to the heart and soul of the book—which to me, is about never giving up hope, even in the darkest hour:
He lets go. “I guess that’s the difference between you and me. I don’t want to live without that ache. I have to believe in impossible things.”

I also love asking this question, if you could write one of your favorite literary characters into you book, who would you write and why? This can also be tv or movie character too.
Oooh, great question! And while there are a lot of literary characters I’d love to put in Phee’s path, I think I’m going to have to go with Matt Murdoch/Daredevil, from Netflix’s new series. I love how this run has characterized this classic superhero. Here is a man who’s flawed and vulnerable, headstrong and human. I think he has a lot of fight, and I think there’s a lot he could teach my spitfire girl. I’d love to see Matt Murdoch partner up with Phee. Together, they’d be pretty awesome at taking down power-hunger villains like Wilson Fisk and Charles Benroyal. 

Looking back from when you first started writing Tracked, to now, what is something you feel your writing this book has taught you?

Oh my, this book has taught me so, so much. I’ve learned how to dig deeper into characters, and how to handle pacing. It’s taught me the difference between tinkering and truly revising, and that it takes courage to do the latter! But most all, writing Tracked has taught me to have confidence in myself and push past a lifetime of fear and self-doubt. As Phee evolved, from smart-mouth to hero, I evolved from timidity to self-acceptance. I still wrestle with fears and worries, but now I face them. It probably sounds ridiculous, but in a way, Phee’s the one who taught me how to do that. Writing her was good for my spirit. 

If you were a character in your book, which character would you be friends with? Why?

I think I’d be friends with Bear. I love this guy so much. I’ve talked a lot about how fierce Phee is, but there’s another kind of fearlessness…a quiet, unassuming courage that never fails. For me, that’s Bear. He will never stop caring for his family, never stop protecting those who need him, and never stop fighting for those he loves. He’s my very own Captain America, and while I adore Cash just as much, I hope Bear gets his due. I hope readers come to love him, too. 

Thank you Jenny for stopping by today!Thank you so much for the interview, and for having me on Mundie Moms!! xoxo


Published by: Dial
To Be Released on: 5/5/15
Pre-Order from: Amazon | B&N
Add it to Goodreads

The Fast and the Furious gets a sci-fi twist in this action-packed debut.

On corporately controlled Castra, rally racing is a high stakes game that seventeen-year-old Phoebe Van Zant knows all too well. Phee’s legendary racer father disappeared mysteriously, but that hasn't stopped her from speeding headlong into trouble. When she and her best friend, Bear, attract the attention of Charles Benroyal, they are blackmailed into racing for Benroyal Corp, a company that represents everything Phee detests. Worse, Phee risks losing Bear as she falls for Cash, her daring new teammate. But when she discovers that Benroyal is controlling more than a corporation, Phee realizes she has a much bigger role in Castra’s future than she could ever have imagined. It's up to Phee to take Benroyal down. But even with the help of her team, can a street-rat destroy an empire?

About The Author
Jenny Martin is an author and librarian. Her first novel, Tracked, will be released on May 5th, 2015 by Dial, an imprint of Penguin Random-House. Jenny is also an experienced speaker, panelist and presenter who’s appeared at many state and regional conferences, events and festivals. She lives in Dallas, with her husband and son, where she hoards books and writes fiction. And yes, she’s still on a quest for the perfect pancake.

Find Jenny via Website  | Blog | Twitter  | Facebook | Pinterest | TumblrInstagram | Goodreads

Watch The Trailer

Enter To Win
5 winners will receive a finished copy of TRACKED and an awesome swag pack! US Only.
5 winners will receive a finished copy of TRACKED! US Only.
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HUNTED by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki; Blog Tour: Book Review & Enter To WIN!

Hello & welcome to today's HUNTED blog tour! I'm so thrilled to be apart of this tour, and share my review for the second book in Abi & Missy's Sinners Series. After you check out my review, be sure to enter to WIN!

By: Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki
Published by: Month9Books
Released on: 4/28/15
Series: Sinners series #2
Purchase from: Month9Books Store| Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books A Million | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Chapters Indigo
Add it to Goodreads

HUNTED is the electrifying sequel to the bestselling debut BRANDED, A Sinners Series, by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki.

It’s been three months since the revolt against the Commander’s fifty-year-old regime failed.

Under a new ruler, things were supposed to change. Get better.

But can anyone really be trusted?

Lexi and Cole soon find out, as life takes an unexpected turn for the worse.

In this ever-changing world, you must hunt or be hunted.

Lives will be lost.

Dreams will be crushed.

Fears will be realized.

Secrets will be exposed.

When Cole is once again faced with losing Lexi at the hands of a monster, one encounter will change everything.


Connect with BRANDED fans on Instagram at:
A fast paced, action packed sequel! If you thought Abi and Missy left you hanging at the end of Branded, wait till you get to the end of this book. You'll wish you already had Liberated in your hands. Just be prepared for one crazy, thrill ride of a read. Abi an Missy don't gently ease fans back into their dark and twisted world. You better buckle up and prepare for the fast paced, dangerous world of Hunted.

Abi and Missy pick up the story right where they left fans hanging in Branded. From the first page, readers are thrust right back into Lexi and Cole's troubled world. Not to be out done by their debut, this sequel is one heck of a thrill ride. With nonstop action, heart pounding moments, the right amount of sizzling chemistry, and swoon worthy scenes (yep, I said swoon worthy, because I don't know how else to describe them), fans will find it hard to look away from this book for even a moment. I imagine if this book played out on the big screen, I'd walk out of the theater with my adeline running, and my stomach hurting for sitting on the edge of my seat, and holding my breathe so much. There's so much happening in this book, that from beginning to end, this book reads quickly.

Cole and Lexi have had to deal with a lot, and things are about to get a lot crazier. Both characters have a lot to deal with, not just because of all the craziness going on around them, but because of their own demons. Even though some of the things are predictable about what's to come, I still found myself emotionally wrapped up into the things the characters, like Cole & Lexi (cough, cough) experience, and are trying to deal with. I liked that we get to see some old friends and characters we previously met in Branded, back in Hunted, and the roles they played with Cole and Lexi's return to a certain place that will not be named.  

Abi and Missy do a great job with describing the world, and events that each of the characters are going through. I wasn't excepting to be so caught up into the story like I was. Let's face it, if you're read Branded, then you know this book's setting is essentially what I imagine hell on earth would be like. Okay, sort of. Minus the brimstone and all that. Though I'm pretty sure if I asked the characters, they would all agree it's hell. As Cole and Lexi know, not all things always go as plan. That includes running away to the very thing Cole and Lexi have been running from. These two find themselves right back at the place that started it all. Only this time, things are a different. These two are driven by the very things that haunt them from the first book.

I like that Hunted has that good mix of attitude, action, humor, and romance. It's all intertwine perfectly. I like that even in the bleakest of times, there's either something humorous to laugh at or something to fan yourself over, because of the swoon factor. The thing is, these moments are moments that are very much apart of the relationships in this book, and I liked that even with all that's going on, these stolen moments were crucial for the characters. They felt realistic. With all the bad going on, these little moments between the various characters were moments of hope, or a moment to forget about the daunting tasks that lay ahead or the hurt that's driven them to this point. These moments were my favorite part of the book.

Over all, I liked Hunted. It's not often that I feel like a sequel lives up to the debut or surpasses it, but I feel like this book does. I'd recommend this book to both YA and NA readers. Hunted is one of those books that is great for readers that are looking for something that crosses over from YA to NA, and fits in perfectly with either place on the shelf. It's an edgier, darker read, with plenty of action, violence, some language and sexual references/scenes. If you like Branded, you'll like the direction that Hunted takes the story in, and you'll be wishing Liberated was already in your hands.

What Fans Are Saying

HUNTED is the electrifying sequel to the bestselling debut BRANDED, A Sinners Series, by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki.
What readers are saying about BRANDED…
"Branded was a riveting and exciting dystopian read that will have you at the edge of your seat. I could not put it down and was entranced by this dark and unique world!" -Ben Alderson, Booktuber at BenjaminofTomes
"Fast paced and fun, BRANDED has something everyone will love. Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki have created a unique dystopian romance that's sure to stand out in today's market!" -Lindsay Cummings, Author of The Murder Complex
"Branded is a fast paced, heart pounding and swoon worthy read that will make you fall in love with this dark and twisted world." -Sasha Alsberg, Booktuber at ABookUtopia

Connect with BRANDED fans on Instagram at: 

About Abi and Missy

Abi and Missy met in the summer of 1999 at college orientation and have been best friends ever since. After college, they added jobs, husbands and kids to their lives, but they still found time for their friendship. Instead of hanging out on weekends, they went to dinner once a month and reviewed books. What started out as an enjoyable hobby has now become an incredible adventure.

(1) Sinners Series T-Shirt US only.
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Wednesday, April 29, 2015

THE GIRL AT MIDNIGHT by Melissa Grey; Blog Tour: Book Review & Giveaway

Hello & welcome to today's blog tour stop for THE GIRL AT MIDNIGHT by Melissa Grey. Check out my review for Melissa's book, and don't forget to enter to win!!


By: Melissa Grey
Published by: Delacorte Books
Released on: April 28th, 2015
Source: book from publisher to review in exchange for my honest review
Purchase it from: AmazonBarnes & NobleKobo, Indiebound, Powell’s
Add it to: Goodreads
For readers of Cassandra Clare’s City of Bones and Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone, The Girl at Midnight is the story of a modern girl caught in an ancient war.
Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. All but one. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she’s ever known.
Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but above all else she’s fiercely loyal. So when a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it’s time to act.
Legend has it that there is a way to end the conflict once and for all: find the Firebird, a mythical entity believed to possess power the likes of which the world has never seen. It will be no easy task, but if life as a thief has taught Echo anything, it’s how to hunt down what she wants … and how to take it.
But some jobs aren’t as straightforward as they seem. And this one might just set the world on fire.
An epic debut! Melissa Grey's writing is awesome. She delivered on everything I look for in an epic fantasy. A strong, witty protagnoist who has the right amount of snark, secondary characters whom I loved just as much as the main character, a rich mythology and equally rich legend, a great character quest, action mixed with the right amount of romance, and a world that along with it's characters, is so beautifully and vividly described, it felt like I was part of their story.

The characters
These characters are so well written. I love it when characters within a story, no matter how big or little their role is, have a purpose for being in the story. Each of the characters in this story, both good and bad, where so well described and developed. They all brought so much to the story itself. I felt like I got to know each character individually. I really enjoyed getting to know our main character Echo. She is one fiery character. I admired her strength, I loved her snark, and I really enjoyed watching her growth on her journey. She is one heck of protagonist. She's right up there with a few of my favorites.

The world. 
This world is so well crafted. I love reading books that include a world that exists within our own world. The Girl of Midnight's world is just that. The characters are able to move about their world, as well as ours. I love the element of magic that is within this story that allows that happen. This leads me to my next favorite thing about this book, the legend and mythology. Normally I'm not a fan when a book is marketed and compared to other hugely popular books, like Cassandra Clare, and Leigh Barudgo's books. These are two authors I absolutely love. Now I can see why The Girl at Midnight is compared to their books. Melissa Grey's writing is similar to theirs, and her story telling is very much in the same league as the these two powerhouse story tellers.

The Writing, Legend & the Mythology
I love how rich and enticing Grey's writing is. Her mythology and legend in this book are richly crafted. Here's the thing, when it comes to a fantasy story, if you've failed to create a mythology and legend that make up the heart of your story, which this one does, than you've lost me with your story. Grey not only created a legend and mythology that drove her story, it was one of my favorite things about the story. It tells of the history of the two groups of characters who make up the story. It's the heart of what the story is about for these characters. I really enjoyed getting to understand the two sides of the story, and the troubled history between the two races. There are the Avicen, Echo's people whom are birds, and the Drakhairn, the dragons.

Read This Book. Finally, The Girl At Midnight surpassed my reading expectations. It was everything I had hoped it would have been and so much. This is one fantastic fantasy that just very well may end up on my top ten list at the end of this year. Yes, it was that good. At that cover, it is such a perfect match for the story. If you're looking for an epic read with incredible story telling, awesome characters, and a beautifully written, hard to put down read, pick this one up! It's a story you'll want to read more of. I can not wait for it's sequel!

"Grey’s energetic debut offers a strong protagonist…[and the] well-built world, vivid characters, and perfect blend of action and amour should have readers eagerly seeking the sequel." — Kirkus Reviews, Starred
 "Sparks fly...This first novel will please fans of Cassandra Clare and Game of Thrones watchers with its remarkable world building; richly developed characters...[and] a breathtaking climax that...cannot come soon enough!""—Booklist starred review
"Inventive, gorgeous, and epic—Grey dazzles in her debut." — Danielle Paige, New York Times bestselling author of Dorothy Must Die
“A stunning debut. Equal parts atmosphere and adventure … positively divine.” – Victoria Schwab, author of A Darker Shade of Magic

About Melissa
Melissa Grey was born and raised in New York City. She wrote her first short story at the age of twelve and hasn't stopped writing since. After earning a degree in fine arts at Yale University, she traveled the world, then returned to New York City where she currently works as a freelance journalist. To learn more about Melissa, visit and follow @meligrey on Twitter.

Enter to Win
1 winner will receive a signed Hardcover of THE GIRL AT MIDNIGHT! US Only

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Tour Schedule
Week One
4/20/2015- Novel SoundsGuest Post
4/21/2015- CuddlebuggeryReview
4/22/2015- ParajunkeeInterview
4/23/2015- FiktshunReview
4/24/2015- Dahlia AdlerGuest Post
Week Two
4/27/2015- Paperback PrincessReview
4/28/2015- Bookish BroadsInterview
4/29/2015- Mundie MomsReview
4/30/2015- Two Chicks on BooksGuest Post
5/1/2015- Icey BooksReview

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

An Ember In The Ashes by Sabaa Tahir; Release Day Blitz: Read A Letter from Sabaa & Enter To Win!

I am so excited that AN EMBER IN THE ASHES by Sabaa Tahir releases today and that I get to share the news, along with a special introduction from Sabaa herself!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Sabaa Tahir, be sure to check out all the details below.
This blitz also includes a giveaway for a signed copies of the book and some of those awesome sword letter openers we’ve seen around courtesy of Sabaa, Penguin Teen, and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

A letter from Sabaa Tahir.

Dear Readers,

Today, my “baby” AN EMBER IN THE ASHES is finally out in the world! From inception to pub date, this journey took eight years. And what a journey it was: writing, rewriting, revising, editing, querying, submitting; Meeting other debuts, bloggers, booksellers and librarians, and hearing their thoughts on EMBER. There aren’t enough superlatives to describe the radness.

And now, the book is here! I am so excited to see it in the hands of readers. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. To celebrate release day, I’m giving away two signed, first-edition hardcovers of the book. Details below!

All my best,


Author: Sabaa Tahir
Pub. Date: April 28, 2015
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 464
Set in a terrifyingly brutal Rome-like world, An Ember in the Ashes is an epic fantasy debut about an orphan fighting for her family and a soldier fighting for his freedom. It’s a story that’s literally burning to be told.

LAIA is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire’s greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution.

ELIAS is the academy’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he’s ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor.

When Laia and Elias’s paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself.

Check out the book trailer!

About Sabaa:
Sabaa Tahir grew up in California’s Mojave Desert at her family’s 18-room motel. There, she spent her time devouring fantasy novels, raiding her brother’s comic book stash and playing guitar badly. She began writing An Ember in the Ashes while working nights as a newspaper editor. She likes thunderous indie rock, garish socks and all things nerd. Sabaa currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family.

Giveaway Details:

2 winners will receive a signed hardcover of AN EMBER IN THE ASHES. US Only.

3 winners will receive a hardcover of AN EMBER IN THE ASHES and a Sword Letter Opener! US Only.

Ends on May 9th at Midnight EST!

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The Secrets of Attraction by Robin Constantine; Read A Deleted Scene; Author Guest Post

Happy Release Day to Robin Constantine's The Secrets of Attraction! Today I'm thrilled to have Robin on Mundie Moms. Robin's treating blog readers to a deleted scene from The Secrets of Attraction.

A book goes through a lot of changes in the editing process and sometimes you are forced to cut a favorite scene.  The scene below did not make the finished copy of The Secrets of Attraction. While I was disappointed to get rid of it, it made sense because the scene doesn’t move the story forward. 

I loved it because I thought it showed how nervous Jesse was before he picked up Madison for their road trip.  It also involved “Bart – the guy who could make Darth Vader and Yoda in foam” and I have to say, I loved this guy.  Sometimes a character just pops into your head fully formed, and that was Bart.  I’m not sure why I was so fascinated with him – he’s not even a secondary character, just one of the background players, but I loved his interaction with Jesse. 

So, for your reading pleasure, here is a section from the original beginning of Chapter Sixteen in The Secrets of Attraction. It begins as Jesse walks into Mugshot to pick up some provisions for his road trip with Madison. Enjoy!

Bart, the guy who could make Darth Vader and Yoda in foam, was sweeping the floor when I stormed through the front door. He stopped mid-stroke.
“Dude, what are you doing in so early? I have the morning shift.”
The place was empty, the first readers and walkers and neighborhood regulars not even out yet. Bart had the roaster going and the smell of coffee was strong and smooth, filling the café.
“I’m not on today, just came by to get some drinks. Road trippin’.”
“Awesome, where?”
“Um, Pennsylvania. Kind of a birthday picnic sort of situation.” Behind the counter I could not for the life of me remember how to start a Mexican hot chocolate. Or should I make her a chai? My hands shook. I wasn’t even with her and my hands were freaking shaking. Jess, for real?
He looked blank. “Picnic?”
“This girl is—”
“Say no more. I get it.” He leaned on his broom and smiled. I stood in front of the cappuccino maker, hands in my hair.
“What are you trying to do?”
“Mexican hot chocolate, her favorite. Or chai? Can’t decide.”
“Cold, crisp morning . . . go for the chocolate . . . elixir of the Mayan gods . . . you can’t go wrong.”
“Okay.” I grabbed the milk. Bart put the broom aside and shuffled next to me, holding out his hand for the steaming container.
“Jess, let me. Breathe, dude.”
“It’s that obvious?”
“Nah, what else are you putting together in this breakfast . . . picnic . . . thing.”
“What have we got?”
I looked in the bakery case. We had the usual—three types of muffins with healthy-sounding names, croissants made with a stick of butter, and an array of pastries that could induce a sugar coma five minutes after being consumed. Not that I was looking for healthy, just . . . I had no clue what Madison liked to eat.
“What kind of bagels do we have today?”
“No, you are not eating a bagel with this drink. You need something . . . delicate.”
I almost laughed, but he was serious. I’d rarely worked with the dude, but he never struck me as someone who would have opinions either way on what sort of food was delicate or not. Watching him make the hot chocolates with the same care and concentration I used to tune my guitar, made me think otherwise.
“Ohhkay, what’s delicate? Croissant?” I said, taking some wax paper and getting ready to grab one.
“Nah, too prosaic. I’d say beignets, but they’re best when they’re hot. With this? I’d go with . . . the brioche. Plain. Simple. Perfect.”
I grabbed two brioche, and a croissant just in case. Then I grabbed some of the to-go containers with crackers, cheese cubes, and grapes.
“What do you think of these?” I asked, holding them up.
“Add a bottle of San Pellegrino and you are in like Flynn.”
“Um, what?”
“The girl will love it,” he said.
I packed up the baked goods and the containers into a paper bag and grabbed a drink tray. I started tallying it up on the register. Bart stopped me.
“Dude, that’s about thirty bucks’ worth of stuff.”
He smiled. “I got it. Just go. Enjoy the day.”
“Thanks, I owe you.”


Set in the same world as The Promise of Amazing, this smart, surprising, and romantic follow-up to Robin Constantine's debut novel follows two New Jersey teens as they become friends and fall in love. Perfect for fans of Stephanie Perkins, Sarah Mlynowski, and Jennifer E. Smith.Madison Pryce thinks she's got everything figured out—she's working on a portfolio for a summer art program and hanging with her friends. Plus she has her hot boyfriend, Zach. But then a visit from a family friend turns Maddie's life upside down.

Jesse McMann is still reeling from a breakup that shattered his heart and his band. Then pride (and some goading from his bass player and fellow barista) forces him to find a new drummer—and the inspiration to write music again.

Kismet arrives in the unlikely form of Grayson Barrett, who tries out for Jesse's band, and whose girlfriend is BFFs with the cute girl who orders a chai latte after yoga every Thursday: Maddie. What Jesse and Maddie thought they knew about the secrets of attraction and the rules of romance changes once they start falling for each other.

You can purchase The Secrets of Attraction from B&NAmazonIndieBound.

Enter to win a SIGNED copy of The Secrets of Attraction here.

About The Author

Robin Constantine is a born-and-raised Jersey girl who moved south so she could wear flip-flops year-round. She spends her days dreaming up stories where love conquers all, eventually, but not without a lot of peril, angst, and the occasional kissing scene.  Visit her at and on Twitter: @RConstantine14.