Never After: The Thirteenth Fairy Tour – Review & Giveaway

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About the Book

TITLE: The Thirteenth Fairy (Never After, #1)
AUTHOR: Melissa de la Cruz
PUBLISHER: Roaring Book Press
RELEASE DATE: December 1st, 2020
GENRE(S): Middle Grade Fiction–Fantasy

Real life and fairy tales collide in Never After: The Thirteenth Fairy, book one in the new middle-grade Never After series from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Descendants series, Melissa de la Cruz.

Nothing ever happens in Filomena Jefferson-Cho’s sleepy little suburban town of North Pasadena. The sun shines every day, the grass is always a perfect green, and while her progressive school swears there’s no such thing as bullying, she still feels bummed out. But one day, when Filomena is walking home on her own, something strange happens.

Filomena is being followed by Jack Stalker, one of the heroes in the Thirteenth Fairy, a series of books she loves about a brave girl and her ragtag group of friends who save their world from an evil enchantress. She must be dreaming, or still reading a book. But Jack is insistent–he’s real, the stories are real, and Filomena must come with him at once!

Soon, Filomena is thrust into the world of evil fairies and beautiful princesses, sorcerers and slayers, where an evil queen drives her ruthless armies to destroy what is left of the Fairy tribes. To save herself and the kingdom of Westphalia, Filomena must find the truth behind the fairytales and set the world back to rights before the cycle of sleep and destruction begins once more.

Review

I have been a huge fan of Melissa de la Cruz for an incredibly long time, but when I picked this book up I realized that I have never actually read any of her middle grade books. And I’m glad it was this one that I picked up first because, well, fairies, but also it was incredibly funny and still felt like de la Cruz to me. Plus it has so many odes to classic fairy tales and nursery rhymes that I couldn’t help but fall in love with what I was reading.

There’s just so much to love with this one. We’ve got some diversity with our main characters, you’ll find yourself chuckling throughout, and there are classic story elements you know and love made fresh. Plus the overarching fairy tale this one is based off of is Sleeping Beauty. And if you know me you know that’s my favorite (naps, all I have to say). So I always get excited when I see a reworking of this story because it’s not the same “tale as old as time” as we much more frequently see in books.

But I am digressing with this review, so to wrap it up: there is plenty of adventure and fantasy throughout this one that you won’t be able to much else other than furiously flip through the pages. And it’s just a really well written and well done middle grade book that will have appeal for middle schoolers and adults alike.

About the Author

Melissa de la Cruz is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of many critically acclaimed and award-winning novels for teens including The Au Pairs series, the Blue Bloods series, the Ashleys series, the Angels on Sunset Boulevard series and the semi-autobiographical novel Fresh off the Boat.

Her books for adults include the novel Cat’s Meow, the anthology Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys and the tongue-in-chic handbooks How to Become Famous in Two Weeks or Less and The Fashionista Files: Adventures in Four-inch heels and Faux-Pas.

She has worked as a fashion and beauty editor and has written for many publications including The New York Times, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Allure, The San Francisco Chronicle, McSweeney’s, Teen Vogue, CosmoGirl! and Seventeen. She has also appeared as an expert on fashion, trends and fame for CNN, E! and FoxNews.

Melissa grew up in Manila and moved to San Francisco with her family, where she graduated high school salutatorian from The Convent of the Sacred Heart. She majored in art history and English at Columbia University (and minored in nightclubs and shopping!).

She now divides her time between New York and Los Angeles, where she lives in the Hollywood Hills with her husband and daughter.

Tour Schedule

March 1st

Turn the Page Tours – Welcome Post
The Writer’s Alley – Review

March 2nd

Leann Reads Books – Review & Author Interview
sparkfromtheinfinite – Review
Musing of Souls – Review

March 3rd

The Bookwyrm’s Den – Review
Books by Maeve – Review
Ya It’s Lit – Review

March 4th

Book Butterfly in Dreamland – Review
Melancholic Blithe – Guest Post & Review
The Momma Spot – Review

March 5th

The Tattooed Librarian – Review
The Book Blog Around the Corner – Review

March 6th

WhimsicalyMe – Review
She Reads Again – Review

March 7th

The World of Celia McMahon – Review
WhimsicalBlessings – Review & Author Interview

Giveaway

Up for grabs, we have ONE (1) physical copy of The Thirteenth Fairy (Never After, #1) by Melissa de la Cruz. This giveaway will run from March 1st to March 8th at 11:59 PM CST and is open to US residents only.

*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*

Jo & Laurie Tour – Review, Favorite Quotes, & Giveaway

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About the Book

Jo & Laurie
by Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Release Date: June 2nd 2020
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Romance, Retellings

‘What it’s like to be tormented by having a writer of books in your family. What it’s like to be tortured by having a scamp in your tutelage.’

‘Well, that surely took hours.’

Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz

Bestselling authors Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz bring us a romantic retelling of Little Women starring Jo March and her best friend, the boy next door, Theodore “Laurie” Laurence.

Remember who you are. She would not let herself be pampered

Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz

1869, Concord, Massachusetts: After the publication of her first novel, Jo March is shocked to discover her book of scribbles has become a bestseller, and her publisher and fans demand a sequel. While pressured into coming up with a story, she goes to New York with her dear friend Laurie for a week of inspiration—museums, operas, and even a once-in-a-lifetime reading by Charles Dickens himself!

But Laurie has romance on his mind, and despite her growing feelings, Jo’s desire to remain independent leads her to turn down his heartfelt marriage proposal and sends the poor boy off to college heartbroken. When Laurie returns to Concord with a sophisticated new girlfriend, will Jo finally communicate her true heart’s desire or lose the love of her life forever?

Everything past was prologue, including the fact that both of them had loved, and been rejected by, other people. Only the future mattered now.

Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz

Review

Perhaps one of the most known (and argued about) “romances” is the one between Jo March and Theodore Laurence. Growing up I was obsessed with Little Women and because of the chemistry between Christian Bale and Winona Ryder I thought that Jo and Laurie had to be endgame and refused to believe anything else, even if the book said so. HOWEVER, when I went to see the new Little Women film, and promptly reread the novel afterwards, I found myself rethinking my resolute belief that Jo and Laurie should be together. However, regardless of my currently wavering beliefs in this timeless love triangle, you best believe I was beyond excited when I found out about this book. For Jo & Laurie poses the question of: what would happen if these two star-crossed lovers actually did end up together?

What was happening was alternately dull and frightening.

Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz

Ok, so I realize that this book is going to be VERY dividing. I can understand why some people would be upset about this retelling, since Jo was meant to be an independent woman, but I was still overly excited for this book and am just taking it as an exciting “what if” instead of a slight on an epic work of literature. But I most definitely thought of the Winona and Christian Jo and Laurie while reading this book.

This family.

Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz

This book was like a walk down memory lane (even though I just reread Little Women this year). It was such an endearing take on beloved characters and I truly enjoyed reading the reimagined version of such a well known and discussed story. And that’s what this story was, it was about the characters and their relationships. But it is important to remember that while these are the characters we know and love, they’re also the authors’ take on these beloved characters. So they are both the same and different and new. So go into this book expecting a new story that reminisces the original.

About the Authors

She is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of many critically acclaimed and award-winning novels for teens including The Au Pairs series, the Blue Bloods series, the Ashleys series, the Angels on Sunset Boulevard series and the semi-autobiographical novel Fresh off the Boat.

Her books for adults include the novel Cat’s Meow, the anthology Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys and the tongue-in-chic handbooks How to Become Famous in Two Weeks or Less and The Fashionista Files: Adventures in Four-inch heels and Faux-Pas.

She has worked as a fashion and beauty editor and has written for many publications including The New York Times, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Allure, The San Francisco Chronicle, McSweeney’s, Teen Vogue, CosmoGirl! and Seventeen. She has also appeared as an expert on fashion, trends and fame for CNN, E! and FoxNews.

Melissa grew up in Manila and moved to San Francisco with her family, where she graduated high school salutatorian from The Convent of the Sacred Heart. She majored in art history and English at Columbia University (and minored in nightclubs and shopping!).

She now divides her time between New York and Los Angeles, where she lives in the Hollywood Hills with her husband and daughter.

She is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling

Margaret Stohl is a #1 New York Times bestselling nerd, world-builder, video game creator, comic book writer and festival founder.

As an award-winning young adult author, she has been published in fifty countries and thirty-two languages and has sold more than ten million books worldwide. Beautiful Creatures debuted as the Amazon #1 Teen book of the year; seven of Margaret’s books have reached bestseller lists around the world.

She has published fifteen novels and graphic novels, as well as contributed to several games and countless comics since her debut. Her last book, Cats Vs Robots: This is War, was a family affair, illustrated by her child, the artist Kay Peterson, and co-written with her husband, Lewis Peterson. It also starred three of her family’s five cats.

After Beautiful Creatures was released as a feature film from Warner Brothers and Alcon Entertainment, Margaret began working with Marvel on her bestselling Black Widow: Forever Red duology; in 2017 she began writing the ongoing Mighty Captain Marvel comic, followed by the acclaimed Life of Captain Marvel miniseries, where she established a new origin story for Carol Danvers in preparation for the theatrical debut of Brie Larson as “Captain Marvel” for the MCU. 

When not roaming the halls of Seattle game developer Bungie – where she oversees the creation of new global IPs – Margaret can often be seen at a Comicon or at one of the teen and youth book festivals she co-founded, YALLFEST (Charleston, SC) and YALLWEST (Santa Monica, CA), the largest in the country. Wherever she goes, you can find out more about her (and invariably her cats) at @mstohl on twitter or margaret_stohl on instagram or margaret_stohl on snapchat or at mstohl.com.

Excerpt

Before You Begin . . .

The story that we now think of as Little Women was originally published as two separate volumes written by Louisa May Alcott in 1868 and 1869.

In those pages, Jo March—one of young adult literature’s most beloved writers and sisters—writes and publishes the story of her life with her family at Orchard House.

Our own reimagined story takes place between the two volumes, after the success of the first, as Jo struggles to write the second.

Just as we expect “Lu” did.

—MS & MdlC

Prologue

Little Women

The Offices of Roberts Brothers, Publishers and Bookbinders

Washington Street, Boston, Massachusetts

1868

“Little Women? That’s the title?” The author looked concerned. Above her light brown eyes and beneath her threadbare linen cap, the chestnut curls that framed her face were shaking. Miss Josephine March was all of seventeen years old, and though her girlish curves were slight, her spirit was immense.

There was nothing little about her, or her characters.

Or so she had thought.

The book in question—a volume of domestic stories, loosely inspired by her own family—was one she hadn’t wanted to write, had in fact steadfastly refused to write, until her editor had offered a notably unrefusable royalty, instead of the usual piffling advance. Only then had she dashed off a dozen chapters in a fit of pique. To her dismay, he’d loved them, and she’d had no choice but to finish the final chapters, which she’d come to deliver now.

And lo—insult beyond injury—it would be called Little Women.

“Isn’t it perfect?” Mr. Thomas Niles beamed at her over his spectacles. Her editor at Boston’s (moderately) respected and (moderately) solvent Roberts Brothers Press, Niles felt he had developed some (moderate) expertise in the publishing industry. His authors, at times, disagreed.

This was one of those times.

“Far from it!” Jo drew a worn cambric handkerchief square from her pinafore pocket and dabbed dramatically at the corner of her left eye, although both author and editor knew there was no actual tear to be wiped away.

Only fury, and there’s not a cambric square big enough in the world for that—

“It’s dismissive!” Jo seethed. “It’s pap!”

“Oh?” Niles pushed his spectacles back up the bridge of his bulbous red nose. “How so?”

“It’s . . . trite!” Jo dropped the handkerchief upon the bundled pages in front of her. They were tied with string, the requested final chapters, as painstakingly inked as the others before them. Her hands hovered, as always, just above the parcel; it was never easy, letting go of the fruit of so many stolen hours in her damp writing garret under the attic eaves, where she’d burnt her last saved stumps of candle-wax—as well as her fingers—and ruined her eyes in the service of one of these so-called little stories. The nerve!

Niles sighed.

“Trivial!” Jo huffed.

“When you say trivial,” Niles began, “do you mean—?”

“For starters, that’s not a title, it’s a literal restatement of the very essence of the plot,” Jo interrupted.

He eyed the parcel hungrily. “Yes, and I’m told it’s charming.

Jo’s head-shake was very nearly violent. “It’s not charming. I’m not charming.” After making a living writing her customary blood-and-thunder tales—or so she thought of them—this business of feminine tradition and treacle was all very unfamiliar. To be fair, with the exception of her sisters, Jo knew and liked hardly any girls at all.

“You’re very charming, Miss March. Nearly as charming as your book,” Niles said, looking amused. “And a tribute to little women everywhere.” He pulled a tin from his outer vest pocket. “Peppermint?”

Buying time with sweets, again. Niles offered them up only when he found himself in a tough conversational crossroads, Jo knew.

So that’s it, then.

There really is no changing the title.

“Thank you, no.” Jo looked out the window as a horse and carriage clattered up Washington Street, spraying mud in every direction, including onto the glass of the (moderately) well-kept Roberts Brothers offices. She tried not to wring her hands in despair and failed. “I suppose it is what it is. Perhaps it doesn’t matter what you call it. I dashed the thing off in weeks, and for what?”

“Money,” Niles said. “The almighty dollar. Which you happen to need, not unlike the rest of us. Speaking of earning your wage, are those the chapters you owe me?” He reached for the bundled pages between them.

“It’s not about earning my wages,” Jo said, tightening her grip on the manuscript. “Not just about that.” She’d written it on assignment, because Niles was experimenting beyond the standard Continental Gothic that came flowing from Jo’s pen so easily.

And, yes, because of the money.

The result was a collection of domestic moments, sure, but it had surprised even her; it wasn’t just feminine drivel, even if the title might perhaps now doom it to be. She hadn’t expected it to come as quickly as it had, or as pleasantly. Not that she would admit that to her editor. “Money’s not a reason. Not a proper one, anyway.” Even if we are poor as rats.

“Many people—most—seem to think otherwise,” Niles said, yanking his handkerchief from his pocket and mopping his brow, which was beginning to perspire as they argued. He was never without a handkerchief; decades of sobbing authors, Jo suspected, had trained him thus.

“Not all people,” she sniffed.

“Certainly my investors do. You aren’t the only family with war debts, you know.”

Jo had no answer for that, for he was right. She supposed she would never be considered a real writer now, never be taken seriously by the public. Never invited to lecture at the Athenaeum with Ralph and Henry and . . . Who was that other chap? Perhaps this was what happened to feminine scribblers who aspired above their little place in the Concord world.

Strike another blow to the weaker sex—and all that rot.

“Charming,” she sighed.

“Ideally, you’ve written equally charming last chapters as well.” Niles eyed the stack hopefully. “Seeing as my typesetters have very nearly caught up with you.”

Jo snorted, which was a good indication of her feelings concerning the process that put her words on the page. Lottie Roberts, who manned the letterpress, had once changed “Christopher Columbus!”—Jo’s most oft-uttered oath—to “My Heavens!” and Jo had never forgiven her. This was, truthfully, not an isolated event; “Blazes!” had been mysteriously printed as “How sad!”—“Hell” as “The Down Below”—“Blow me down!” as “No!”—and “A French pox upon you, Adventuress!” had been eliminated altogether.

“Your typesetters go too far.” She glared, repeating the warning not to change a word of her text for the twentieth time.

“Yes, well.” He snapped shut his peppermint tin. “When women of polite society are allowed to speak like common sailors, you are welcome to terminate their employment yourself, Miss March.”

“And I look forward to the day, sir.” Jo pursed her lips.

“I am confident you shall meet it.” Niles smiled. For despite all indications to the contrary, the two were fond friends. Niles reminded Jo of her father, who had left Concord years earlier to join the Union army as a chaplain. Mr. March had come home only once in all that time—when the Union prevailed and the war was won, three years ago. Shortly thereafter, he’d left once more to volunteer in the Reconstruction efforts in the South, helping to build schools and churches for previously enslaved people. And though his letters usually came frequently, the March women felt his absence keenly.

But Jo still had Niles, and if they fought, they fought well, each considering the other the more harmless version of their species. (The dollar a story Niles paid to run Jo’s wild romantic adventures didn’t hurt, either. Neither did the fact that subscriptions to his circular, The Tall Taler, had gone up by forty-three since engaging her. Forty-three!)

“Call it what you will. No one will read it, anyway.” Jo tapped her fingers along the brown-paper-wrapped parcel. “I don’t know why you believed you could sell it.”

“Perhaps.” Niles nodded.

“I should have used a different name instead of my own,” she sighed. “Eustacia. Thomasina.”

“Possibly.” He nodded again. “Eustacia Emerson is lovely. I’m quite partial to Thomasina Thoreau, but Hildegarde Hawthorne could also do just fine.” He winked.

Hawthorne. That was his name, the other Athenaeum chap!

“Fine.” She picked at the string about the parcel. “Take my daft little book of scribbles and do with it as you will.”

“I’ve seen dafter. Trust me.”

“Trust you? You have no sense of anything, least of all publishing! Why, you couldn’t sell Romeo and Juliet if I wrote it for you.”

“Admittedly a bit somber for my taste—I do prefer a happy ending to my sensation stories. So do our Tall Taler readers. Why couldn’t Romeo have married Juliet and settled down in a nice Tuscan villa? A sequel by any other name . . .”

The author bit her lip; it kept her from responding in a discourteous manner.

“Now give it here,” the editor said, sliding his fingers impatiently across the blotter atop his desk and taking the manuscript from her hands.

“Take it.” She scowled.

Manuscript obtained, Niles traded his peppermints for the bottle of peppermint schnapps he kept in the bottom of his drawer for special occasions.

“A toast!” he offered, pouring two thimblefuls into two cups.

Jo grudgingly accepted.

“To our Little Women!” her publisher cried. “And to the bright future of Jo March, Thomas Niles, and Roberts Brothers! May 1868 prove to be a banner year for us all!”

Jo clinked her glass against his. It seemed rude otherwise. With a final sigh and a shake of her curls, the author drank to her defeat. The editor drank to her success.

Little Women it was.

Excerpted from Jo & Laurie by Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz. Copyright © 2020 by Melissa de la Cruz and Margaret Stohl, Inc.. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Original link: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/594970/jo-and-laurie-by-margaret-stohl-and-melissa-de-la-cruz/

Audiobook Sample

Pre-Order Campaign

Win a tea tin when you pre-order JO & LAURIE (US ONLY)

Tour Schedule

May 27th

The Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club – Welcome Post

May 28th

Moonlight Rendezvous – Review + Favourite Quotes
Belle’s Archive – Review
Adventurous Bookworm – Review + Favourite Quotes
The Clever Reader – Review
Ya It’s Lit – Review + Favourite Quotes

May 29th

A Gingerly Review – Review
Happily, Hedy – Review + Favourite Quotes
Colbywilkens – Review
justicereads – Review + Favourite Quotes
Books Over Everything – Review

May 30th

L.M. Durand – Interview
Bookishly Nerdy – Review + Favourite Quotes
Gwendalyn’s Books – Review
Emelie’s Books – Review + Favourite Quotes
Jill’s Book Blog – Review

May 31st

The Shelf Life Chronicles – Review + Favourite Quotes
Book Briefs – Review
Kayla Reads and Reviews – Review + Favourite Quotes
ReadwithMiki – Review + Dream Cast + Favourite Quotes
Heidi Reads… – Review

June 1st

Biblioxytocin – Review + Favourite Quotes
@onemused – Review
Ohana Cascadia – Review + Favourite Quotes
Nose Stuck in a Book – Review
Paperbacks and Pen – Review + Favourite Quotes

June 2nd

Kait Plus Books – Interview
Odd and Bookish – Review
Sometimes Leelynn Reads – Review + Playlist + Dream Cast
Hauntedbybooks – Review + Favourite Quotes
Eating Between the Lines – Review

Giveaway

Prize: Win a copy of JO & LAURIE by Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz (US Only)

Starts: 27th May 2020
Ends: 10th June 2020

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*I received an arc in exchange for an honest review*

Gotham High Review

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About the Book

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Alex and Eliza and The Witches of East End comes a reimagining of Gotham for a new generation of readers. Before they became Batman, Catwoman, and The Joker, Bruce, Selina, and Jack were high schoolers who would do whatever it took–even destroy the ones they love–to satisfy their own motives.

After being kicked out of his boarding school, 16-year-old Bruce Wayne returns to Gotham City to find that nothing is as he left it. What once was his family home is now an empty husk, lonely but haunted by the memory of his parents’ murder. Selina Kyle, once the innocent girl next door, now rules over Gotham High School with a dangerous flair, aided by the class clown, Jack Napier.

When a kidnapping rattles the school, Bruce seeks answers as the dark and troubled knight–but is he actually the pawn? Nothing is ever as it seems, especially at Gotham High, where the parties and romances are of the highest stakes … and where everyone is a suspect.

With enchanting art by Thomas Pitilli, this new graphic novel is just as intoxicating as it is chilling, in which dearest friends turn into greatest enemies–all within the hallways of Gotham High!

Review

Happy book birthday! It’s been a long time since I’ve read a comic book, so I jumped at the bit to read Gotham High early! I mean it helps with my eagerness that I have always been a huge Batman fan! But I also love the illustrations in this comic and I mean, just look at that cover! The colors! The images! Just, perfection!

Honestly, for me the illustrations in a comic book make or break the story. If I don’t really like the style of illustration I find that I focus more on that versus the actual text. So, I was really excited when I saw these illustrations. Like REALLY really excited! Because they’re just so gorgeous!

The next thing I actually really liked was all of the culture diversity in this book! Each of the main characters are culturally diverse and while that differs from the traditional story, I think that the author kept enough of the classic elements to make the story still seem like a Batman story. This all leads me to the fact that the female was a villain. I know a lot of people are upset by this, but I actually don’t mind. I mean, not all women are nice and strong and amazing, some are manipulative and rude and villain-y (you can probably tell I like these types of characters more, gives them more depth). I also like that this story was modernized but not TOO modernized. For me it wouldn’t be a comic book if it didn’t have any of those cheesy vintage-y elements.

Trailer

About the Author

Melissa de la Cruz is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of many critically acclaimed and award-winning novels for teens including The Au Pairs series, the Blue Bloods series, the Ashleys series, the Angels on Sunset Boulevard series and the semi-autobiographical novel Fresh off the Boat.

Her books for adults include the novel Cat’s Meow, the anthology Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys and the tongue-in-chic handbooks How to Become Famous in Two Weeks or Less and The Fashionista Files: Adventures in Four-inch heels and Faux-Pas.

She has worked as a fashion and beauty editor and has written for many publications including The New York Times, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Allure, The San Francisco Chronicle, McSweeney’s, Teen Vogue, CosmoGirl! and Seventeen. She has also appeared as an expert on fashion, trends and fame for CNN, E! and FoxNews.

Melissa grew up in Manila and moved to San Francisco with her family, where she graduated high school salutatorian from The Convent of the Sacred Heart. She majored in art history and English at Columbia University (and minored in nightclubs and shopping!).

She now divides her time between New York and Los Angeles, where she lives in the Hollywood Hills with her husband and daughter.

About the Illustrator

Thomas Pitilli is an illustrator and comic book artist living in his hometown of Brooklyn, NY. His work has appeared in such publications as New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Entertainment Weekly, Playboy, Washington Post, Variety, Hollywood Reporter and more. He is artist on the comic series Riverdale from Archie Comics as well as an upcoming project with DC Comics. When not making art, Thomas enjoys music, museums and summertime in NYC. 

*I received a copy from DC in exchange for an honest review*

The Queen’s Assassin Tour – Review, Favorite Quotes, Dream Cast, & Giveaway

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About the Book

The Queen’s Assassin (Queen’s Secret #1)

by Melissa de la Cruz
Publisher: G. P. Putnam’s Sons
Release Date: February 4th 2020
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

What’s done is done.

Melissa de la Cruz

Perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Red Queen, this is the first novel in a sweeping YA fantasy-romance duet about a deadly assassin, his mysterious apprentice, and the country they are sworn to protect from #1 NYT bestselling author Melissa de la Cruz.

Caledon Holt is the Kingdom of Renovia’s deadliest weapon. No one alive can best him in brawn or brains, which is why he’s the Guild’s most dangerous member and the Queen’s one and only assassin. He’s also bound to the Queen by an impossible vow–to find the missing Deian Scrolls, the fount of all magical history and knowledge, stolen years ago by a nefarious sect called the Aphrasians.

It’s alarming, really, how quickly nice people become ravenous, bloodthirsty.

Melissa de la Cruz

Shadow has been training all her life to follow in the footsteps of her mother and aunts–to become skilled enough to join the ranks of the Guild. Though magic has been forbidden since the Aphrasian uprising, Shadow has been learning to control her powers in secret, hoping that one day she’ll become an assassin as feared and revered as Caledon Holt.

When a surprise attack brings Shadow and Cal together, they’re forced to team up as assassin and apprentice to hunt down a new sinister threat to Renovia. But as Cal and Shadow grow closer, they’ll uncover a shocking web of lies and secrets that may destroy everything they hold dear. With war on the horizon and true love at risk, they’ll stop at nothing to protect each other and their kingdom in this stunning first novel in the Queen’s Secret series.

All the answers you seek are there, but only if you are willing to hear them.

Melissa de la Cruz

Review

Ok, so this book is going to throw a lot at you at once. Just stick with it and slowly all of the places and names will start to make sense! There is a lot of world building thrown at you in the beginning, but if you’re like me you’ll love this aspect of the book (and probably be saying, “I need a map!”). I oftentimes love the first book in a series the most because it sets everything up, and The Queen’s Assassin does just that.

My aunts taught me that sometimes when the world is too much, when life starts to feel overwhelming, we must strip away what’s unnecessary, seek out the quiet, and listen to the dirt and trees.

Melissa de la Cruz

I have to have an honorable mention for the Aunts. They just made me giggle because I kept imagining them as the fairies from Sleeping Beauty mixed with the aunts from Practical Magic. Plus I applaud de la Cruz for casually dropping in that they are married. I wish more books made f/f, m/m, etc. relationships normal! The story alternates perspectives between Cal and Shadow, and honestly I think it’s one of the first times that I personally did not mind the perspective swapping. Typically I don’t like one of the character’s in the alternating perspectives but this time I liked them both (go me!).

For that, I am eternally in his dept. And he’s in desperate need of a friend right now.

Melissa de la Cruz

Melissa de la Cruz is a master at romance, so of course The Queen’s Assassin is no different. If you were a fan of her Blue Bloods series then I definitely think you will enjoy this read! It has all of those classic de la Cruz elements and is definitely written in her style, even if it is a bit more fantasy than some of her other books.

About the Author

Melissa de la Cruz is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of many critically acclaimed and award-winning novels for teens including The Au Pairs series, the Blue Bloods series, the Ashleys series, the Angels on Sunset Boulevard series and the semi-autobiographical novel Fresh off the Boat.

Her books for adults include the novel Cat’s Meow, the anthology Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys and the tongue-in-chic handbooks How to Become Famous in Two Weeks or Less and The Fashionista Files: Adventures in Four-inch heels and Faux-Pas.

She has worked as a fashion and beauty editor and has written for many publications including The New York Times, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Allure, The San Francisco Chronicle, McSweeney’s, Teen Vogue, CosmoGirl! and Seventeen. She has also appeared as an expert on fashion, trends and fame for CNN, E! and FoxNews.

Melissa grew up in Manila and moved to San Francisco with her family, where she graduated high school salutatorian from The Convent of the Sacred Heart. She majored in art history and English at Columbia University (and minored in nightclubs and shopping!).

She now divides her time between New York and Los Angeles, where she lives in the Hollywood Hills with her husband and daughter.

Dream Cast

Shadow needed to be tough but also a softie, so I went with Sofia Boutella.

I definitely immediately saw Caledon as my boy Dom.

Every time the aunts were mentioned, I couldn’t help but think of them as the aunts from Practical Magic…. mixed with the three fairies in Sleeping Beauty… The brain is a wondrous thing!

I struggled with the Queen, but I think I made a solid choice.

Tour Schedule

February 4th

The Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club – Welcome Post

February 5th

The Book Bratz – Review + Playlist + Favourite Quotes
Sometimes Leelynn Reads – Review + Playlist + Dream Cast
Ya It’s Lit  – Review + Dream Cast + Favourite Quotes
Fanna Wants The World To Read – Review
Shelf-Rated – Review + Favourite Quotes

February 6th

NovelKnight – Guest Post
Booked J – Review + Playlist + Favourite Quotes
Whispers & Wonder – Review
Foals, Fiction & Filigree – Review + Favourite Quotes
Beware Of The Reader – Review

February 7th

Wishful Endings – Interview
L.M. Durand – Review
Ideally Inspired Reviews – Review + Favourite Quotes
Gwendalyn’s Books – Review + Favourite Quotes
Cluttered Books – Review + Favourite Quotes

February 8th

Bookish Looks – Guest Post
Star-Crossed Book Blog – Review + Favourite Quotes
Morgan Vega – Review + Favourite Quotes
Inky Moments – Review
mabookyard – Review + Favourite Quotes
The.magicalpages – Review + Favourite Quotes

February 9th

Belle’s Archive – Review + Favourite Quotes
Shalini’s Books & Reviews – Review
Dazzled by Books – Review + Favourite Quotes
Pretty Little Bibliophile – Review + Favourite Quotes
dinipandareads – Review + Favourite Quotes

February 10th

Kait Plus Books – Interview
Library of a Book Witch – Review
The Reading Corner for All – Review + Favourite Quotes
Confessions of a YA Reader – Review + Favourite Quotes
The Shelf Life Chronicles – Review

Giveaway

Prize: Win a copy of THE QUEEN’S ASSASSIN by Melissa de la Cruz (US Only)
Starts: 4th February 2020
Ends: 18th February 2020

<a class="rcptr" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d9681b86455/" rel="nofollow" data-raflid="d9681b86455" data-theme="classic" data-template="" id="rcwidget_fp9eeh7n">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a>
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Instagram Schedule

February 4th

The FFBC Tours
TUABFC

February 5th

Sometimes Leelynn Reads
Ya It’s Lit
Shelf-Rated

February 6th

NovelKnight
Booked J
Whispers & Wonder
Foals, Fiction & Filigree

February 7th

Wishful Endings
L.M. Durand
Ideally Inspired Reviews
Gwendalyn’s Books

February 8th

Bookish Looks
Star-Crossed Book Blog
Morgan Vega
Inky Moments
mabookyard
The.magicalpages

February 9th

Belle’s Archive
Shalini’s Books & Reviews
Dazzled by Books
Pretty Little Bibliophile

February 10th

Kait Plus Books
Library of a Book Witch
The Reading Corner for All
Confessions of a YA Reader
The Shelf Life Chronicles

Instagram Giveaway

View this post on Instagram

🌼 g i v e a w a y 🌼 Ok, so this book is going to throw a lot at you at once. Just stick with it and slowly all of the places and names will start to make sense! There is a lot of world building thrown at you in the beginning, but if you're like me you'll love this aspect of the book (and probably be saying, "I need a map!"). I oftentimes love the first book in a series the most because it sets everything up, and The Queen's Assassin does just this. (Full review and extra giveaway entries on my blog, link in bio!) 🌼 QOTD | Would you be an assassin or assassinated? @prideandpamper code: YAITSLIT10 🌼 We are giving away 1 finished copy of THE QUEEN'S ASSASSIN by Melissa de la Cruz (US Only). The giveaway will start on FEBRUARY 4th 2020 and will ‪finish on FEBRUARY 18th 2020 (00:00 GMT+1‬). 🌼 Entries: ▪︎Follow @theffbc & @whatmakespatri ▪︎Follow the author @authormelissadelacruz ▪︎Follow the publishing house (@penguinteen) & the literary agent (@mbc_books). ▪︎Follow me (@ya.its.lit) ▪︎Answer the QOTD and tag @theffbc in your comment to register your entry! 🌼 Extra Entries: ▪︎Tag a friend (each friend will be an extra entry). ▪︎Share on your stories about the giveaway (remember to tag @ya.its.lit, @whatmakespatri and @theffbc) ▪︎Follow @michellesulk & @artsyreadergirl ▪︎Follow any other FFBC team member participating in the tour (let us know on the comment section who did you follow). Check everyone's Instagram handles in the comments! 🌼 #yabooks #yalit #yabookstagram #yaitslit #yareads #bookbloggerslife #bookreviewer #bookstagram #yafantasy #prideandpamper #bookreviewblog #booksharks #instabooklovers #yacommunity #bookishlove #hereforthebooks #bookstaunited #bookbloggersofig #readingislife #btabookfriends #bookphotography #bookstamisfits #bookishmerch #bookiehelper #bookstagramfeatures #readersofinsta #bookblogger #thequeensassassin #melissadelacruz #penguinteen

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For this particular giveaway, we have an exclusive Instagram. We are giving away 1 finished copy of THE QUEEN’S ASSASSIN by Melissa de la Cruz (US Only). The giveaway will start on FEBRUARY 4th 2020 and will finish on FEBRUARY 18th 2020 (00:00 GMT+1).  

Entries for the giveaway:

On Instagram:
▪︎Follow @theffbc & @whatmakespatri
▪︎Follow the author @authormelissadelacruz
▪︎Follow the publishing house (@penguinteen) & the literary agent (@mbc_books).
▪︎Follow me (@ya.its.lit)
▪︎Answer the QOTD and tag @theffbc in your comment to register your entry!

Extra entries:

On Instagram:
▪︎Tag a friend (each friend will be an extra entry).
▪︎Share on your stories about the giveaway (remember to tag @ya.its.lit, @whatmakespatri and @theffbc)
▪︎Follow @michellesulk & @artsyreadergirl
▪︎Follow any other FFBC team member participating in the tour (let us know on the comment section who did you follow). Check everyone’s Instagram handles on the Instagram tour schedule!

▪︎Giveaway ends on February 18th (00:00 GMT+1). 1 winner will be chosen on @theffbc.
▪︎Open to residents of US only

The winner will be announced after FEBRUARY 20TH 2020 on our Instagram stories. ONLY 1 WINNER. OPEN US ONLY. The winner will be contacted via Instagram.