Mundie Moms

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

BLACK WIDOW: FOREVER RED by Margaret Stohl / Book Tour: Author Interview / Giveaway!

Hello and welcome to today's BLACK WIDOW blog tour stop! I'm so thrilled to have one of my all time favorites on the blog today, Margaret Stohl! She's here to talk about her upcoming release. First, here's a little bit about the book. 


By: Margaret Stohl
Published by: Disney / Marvel Press
To Be Released on: October 13th, 2015
Pre-Order from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks
Add it to Goodreads 

Enter the world of the Avengers' iconic master spy

Natasha Romanoff is one of the world's most lethal assassins. Trained from a young age in the arts of death and deception, Natasha was given the title of Black Widow by Ivan Somodorov, her brutal teacher at the Red Room, Moscow's infamous academy for operatives. 

Ava Orlova is just trying to fit in as an average Brooklyn teenager, but her life has been anything but average. The daughter of a missing Russian quantum physicist, Ava was once subjected to a series of ruthless military experiments-until she was rescued by Black Widow and placed under S.H.I.E.L.D. protection. Ava has always longed to reconnect with her mysterious savior, but Black Widow isn't really the big sister type. 

Until now. 

When children all over Eastern Europe begin to go missing, and rumors of smuggled Red Room tech light up the dark net, Natasha suspects her old teacher has returned-and that Ava Orlova might be the only one who can stop him. To defeat the madman who threatens their future, Natasha and Ava must unravel their pasts. Only then will they discover the truth about the dark-eyed boy with an hourglass tattoo who haunts Ava's dreams. . . . 

Black Widow: Forever Red features all the heart-pounding adventure readers expect from Marvel, written by #1 New York Times best-selling author Margaret Stohl. Uncover a new side of the Marvel Universe that will thrill loyal fans and newcomers alike, as Stohl reveals the untold story of Black Widow for the very first time.


Welcome back to Mundie Moms Margaret!! Huge congratulations on the honor of writing a story for Marvel for BLACK WIDOW!
Thank you! So great to be able to do this interview with you your site has been so supportive ever since Kami and I first launched Beautiful Creatures!
Aside from Captain America, she's one of my all time favorites! I'm so excited about this never before story for Black Widow. I love her Marvel character. She's empowering. What attracted you to telling this particular story?
Ive always loved Marvel comics, and Ive worked with Marvel in the past, when I made videogames. I love the Avengers and Iron Man and Captain America movies as much as anyone else. But probably my biggest inspiration for tackling Natasha Romanoffs story is my incredible fourteen-year-old Avenger of a daughter. She knows the importance of speaking her mind and standing up for what she believes is right, and I actually have learned from her example. Black Widow has the same spirit. Shes always her own person, whether or not shes saying what you want to hear. Were at the start of a new era of female superheroesones that girls can and want to look up to, and Im so proud to have the honor of telling such a powerful characters story.  
Being that Black Widow is already a character that fans know and have loved for years, did you find that more challenging in writing her story or was it easier than creating a whole new character? 
Writing Natashas story was a privilege but also a responsibility. It wasnt easy! I had to stay true to her character and to deliver for her fan base, but I also wanted to be able to tell her story from a different perspectiveone that focused less on her relationships and more on who she is, the nature of her heart. Shes always been a mysterious figure, so I didnt want to lose that element of her character, either. It was a challenging balance to find, and Ive never worked so hard in my life, but I feel like I found it. Thank goodness!
I'm really looking forward to meeting Ava Orlova, and getting to see her interaction with Black Widow. It sounds like these two have a lot in common. Can you tell us a little bit about their relationship? 
Ava and Natasha have a shared moment in their past that resurfaces many years later, when a common enemy unites them. Its not easy to be united with either one of them; Natasha and Ava are equally stubborn, independent and strong-willed, and when they clash you dont want to get between them! But their relationship is more complicated than it seems, and it will ultimately evolve into something much bigger than either one of them could have anticipated. But no spoilers...!
What's one thing you admire about both Black Widow and Ava?
Their strength. They have both been through terrible hardships, and theyre both what you could call damaged -- but they keep fighting. They dont give in, and they never concede that they might be broken beyond repair. The things that they have been through would break most of us, but instead of letting themselves be victims of their situations, they use that pain to motivate them. Most importantly, they use it to motivate themselves to help other people.
If the Marvel superheroes had sidekicks, which character would you want to be a sidekick for, and why?
Black Widow, of course! But if we ruled her out, I think Id have to say Kamala Khan, the new Ms. Marvel created by G. Willow Wilson and Sana Amanat, my editor at Marvel. Shes only sixteen but shes an incredibly strong character. She struggles with her family and her Muslim-New Jersey-Superhero identity, and I love her for it. I also love every word out of her mouth, every awkward thing she does. Shes very real and relatable, but also someone who I feel lots of girls can look up to.
Inquiring minds have to know, will Black Widow or you know any of the Marvel characters, like Captain America or the Hulk *coughs*, be at your book release party? 
Im not sure about that, but you WILL be able to see tons of Marvel characters on my book tour since were inviting everyone to come IN COSPLAYeven me! Were giving prizes to the best costumes at every stop, and Im sure there will be a Hulk or two in the mix. Lots of my friends from the Women of Marvel and a few YA writer friends will be there too, so it will be super fun.
I'm patiently waiting for your book's release so I can read it. I know many fans are as well. I'm including your tour info below, so fans know where they can come see you. Will be getting more of Black Widow and Ava's story?
My lips are sealed! I wouldnt want Marvel to send a Widow after me!
Thank you Margie! Can't wait to see you when you're in Austin! 

Catch Margaret at a book store near you! Check out her book tour signing below. *click image to enlarge*

About Margaret
Margaret Stohl is the #1 New York Times Bestselling co-author of the BEAUTIFUL CREATURES Novels and DANGEROUS CREATURES novels, as well as the author of BLACK WIDOW: FOREVER RED forthcoming from Marvel Press (Marvel YA), and the ICONS Novels.

She is the USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Los Angeles Times, Indie-Bound, Wall Street Journal and Internationally Bestselling author of nine YA novels, and has been published in 37 languages and 48 countries. BEAUTIFUL CREATURES was adapted into a film (2013) by Warner Brothers and Alcon Entertainment, and was an ALA William C. Morris YA Debut Award finalist in 2010, as well as a SCIBA award finalist, a NYPL Book for the Teen Age, and a YALSA Teen Top Ten Pick. Beautiful Creatures was named the #1 Teen Pick from Amazon in 2009, and the #5 Editors Pick, Overall. 

Prior to becoming an author, Margaret worked in the video game industry as a writer and lead designer for sixteen years, eventually co-founding 7 Studios game developer with her husband, Lewis Peterson. She is also the co-founder of YALLFEST (Charleston, SC) and YALLWEST (Santa Monica, CA), two of the biggest kid/teen book festivals in the country. An alumnus of Amherst College, Stanford University, and Yale University, Margaret lives in Santa Monica with her family, two rescue cats, and two bad beagles.

Find Margaret via: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram


3 winners will receive a finished copy of BLACK WIDOW: FORVER RED. US Only.


Week One:
10/5/2015- Caught Read Handed- Review
10/6/2015- Mundie MomsInterview
10/7/2015- Novel NoviceReview
10/8/2015- IceyBooksGuest Post
10/9/2015- Word SpelunkingReview

Week Two:
10/12/2015- FangirlishInterview
10/13/2015- Wishful EndingsReview
10/14/2015- NerdophilesGuest Post
10/15/2015- Chapter by ChapterReview
10/16/2015- The Reading Nook ReviewsInterview

ICE LIKE FIRE by Sara Raasch / Blog Tour: Excerpt & Giveaway!

Hello and welcome to today's stop in the ICE LIKE FIRE blog tour! I'm so thrilled to be apart of the tour. I LOVED Sara's debut, Snow Like Ashes (read my review here), and I LOVE her sequel, Ice Like Fire. Today's post features an excerpt from her upcoming release, and a giveaway! First, here's a little bit about the book.


By: Sara Raasch
Published by: Balzer & Bray
Released on: 10.13.15
Series: Snow Likes Ashes #2
Pre-Order From: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks
Add It To: Goodreads

It’s been three months since the Winterians were freed and Spring’s king, Angra, disappeared—thanks largely to the help of Cordell.
Meira just wants her people to be safe. When Cordellan debt forces the Winterians to dig their mines for payment, they unearth something powerful and possibly dangerous: Primoria’s lost chasm of magic. Theron sees this find as an opportunity—with this much magic, the world can finally stand against threats like Angra. But Meira fears the danger the chasm poses—the last time the world had access to so much magic, it spawned the Decay. So when the king of Cordell orders the two on a mission across the kingdoms of Primoria to discover the chasm’s secrets, Meira plans to use the trip to garner support to keep the chasm shut and Winter safe—even if it means clashing with Theron. But can she do so without endangering the people she loves?
Mather just wants to be free. The horrors inflicted on the Winterians hang fresh and raw in Januari—leaving Winter vulnerable to Cordell’s growing oppression. When Meira leaves to search for allies, he decides to take Winter’s security into his own hands. Can he rebuild his broken kingdom and protect them from new threats?
As the web of power and deception weaves tighter, Theron fights for magic, Mather fights for freedom—and Meira starts to wonder if she should be fighting not just for Winter, but for the world.

This conversation was cut from a VERY early draft of ICE LIKE FIRE (and therefore it is horrifically unpolished, MY APOLOGIES). It took place near the beginning of the story—Meira gets taken be surprise while looking for her chakram and hides, only to overhear this exchange between Noam and Theron.

“This kingdom’s rebirth was questionable to begin with,” Noam continues, his voice unhindered and growing stronger as he walks through the weapons tent. “But this child doesn’t know how to use the magic that has been bestowed on every other monarch. She is unworthy of this position, and I will not let her drag Cordell down too.”
“You don’t know what she’s capable of,” Theron growls and a wave of shame washes over me. I tighten my arms around my knees. I shouldn’t be spying. I should let them know I’m here.
“You made up your mind about her long ago,” I can feel the sparks leaping off Theron’s tongue, “and you’re blind to any of her qualities now. If you would set aside your prejudices and see this kingdom—”
Noam snorts. “Prejudices? You think I am narrow-minded enough to be persuaded by prejudices?”
I stifle a snort.
The two of them keep walking, pacing through the tent. They get to the end of one aisle and start down this one, and I pull myself deeper under the table.
“Season or Rhythm has nothing to do with it,” Noam says. “She is unfit to be queen. She is unfit to be your wife. This kingdom has potential, that much is true, but she will only lead it—and us, if we stay linked with her—to disaster.”
I dig my nails into my knees. He’s calling off the engagement. He’s done with being linked to Winter.
No. Not to Winter. To me.
Noam still wants Winter. He still wants what he’s always wanted, what every Rhythm has always wanted—the Klaryns. But he isn’t willing to marry his son to me anymore.
My heart twitches, realizing with a sudden burst of clarity that I don’t know how this makes me feel. Sad? Angry? Relieved? I do know one emotion with annoying certainty though—hatred. I hate that we need Noam and Cordell at all. I hate that we’re so broken that we have to depend on the greediness of a Rhythm to keep us afloat.
“You will leave,” Theron breaks through my thoughts. “But I’m staying.”
Noam growls, a throaty tear that echoes through the empty tent. “Excuse me?”
Theron stomps closer to him. “I. Won’t. Leave. Her.”
Shivers pull through my body as he eases each word out, and I can imagine the glare he’s giving to his father right now. A fiery kind of passion that suffocates me and fills me up all at once.
“This isn’t your kingdom. Your responsibilities lie in Cordell. Your future lies in Cordell.”
“But my heart lies here.”
“Damn your heart! You will return to Cordell when I will it. You will return to your duties when I will it. And you will leave that girl when I will it.”
Theron exhales. “You killed my mother this way, you know that?”

A pause, then the crack of a fist meeting flesh. I see everything happen as I move—the weapons rattling when I leap up and bump the table, Noam’s body hunching in the motion of punching his son, Theron dropping over the table from the force of being hit. And Noam turning to me, his fur-lined cloak swinging around him as he spins, his eyes wet, showing me the smallest flash of what he looks like unraveled.


By: Sara Raasch
Published by: Balzer & Bray
Released on: 10.14.14
Purchase it from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks
Add it to Goodreads

A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.
Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.
Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.
So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.


Sara Raasch has known she was destined for bookish things since the age of five, when her friends had a lemonade stand and she tagged along to sell her hand-drawn picture books too. Not much has changed since then — her friends still cock concerned eyebrows when she attempts to draw things and her enthusiasm for the written word still drives her to extreme measures. Her debut YA fantasy, SNOW LIKE ASHES, came out October 14, 2014 from Balzer + Bray, and the sequel, ICE LIKE FIRE, comes out October 13, 2015. Neither features her hand-drawn pictures.

Find Sara: Website | Twitter |Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest | Google+ | YouTube | Amazon | Reedsy | Wattpad


2 winners will receive sets of ICE LIKE FIRE Trading Cards/Miniature Bookmarks. International.


Week One:
10/5/2015- A Dream Within A DreamReview
10/6/2015- Mundie MomsExcerpt
10/7/2015- Such a Novel IdeaReview
10/8/2015- Dark Faerie TalesGuest Post
10/9/2015- The Whimsical MamaReview

Week Two:
10/12/2015- Two Chicks on Books- Interview
10/13/2015- Bookish LifestyleReview
10/14/2015- Supernatural SnarkGuest Post
10/15/2015- FiktshunReview
10/16/2015- Once Upon a TwilightInterview