Blind Spot Blog Tour (Review + Giveaway)

"It's a story about how sometimes we fail to see things that are right in front of us."

Since You've Been Gone (Review)

"fabulous, wonderful, endearing, amazing story"

Dissected by Megan Bostic (Blog Tour)

"Powerful & Thought Provoking"

In Honor by Jessi Kirby (Review)

"This is going on my favorites shelf and I will probably reread it again in the future."

Blog Tour: Hungry by H.A. Swain (Review + Giveaway)

"Hungry is a captivating and thought-provoking story set in a fascinating world."

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins (Review))

"All-in-all, a perfect summer read and you should totally pick up these books, if you haven't already!"

The Edge of Falling by Rebecca Serle (Review)

"The Edge of Falling is a beautifully told story, both in plot and writing."

Hexed by Michelle Krys (Review)

"Hexed was just the thing that I needed to get back into the reading world."

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Blog tour: Defy by Sara B. Larson (Interview + Giveaway)


Today I have the pleasure of welcoming author Sara B. Larson to the blog as part of a blog tour for her novel, Defy. We also have an awesome giveaway for you guys, so after reading the interview and checking out Defy be sure to scroll down and enter! 



1) Hi Sara! Welcome to Bookish! I'm so delighted to be able to chat with you about your YA Fantasy novel, DEFY! How would you describe DEFY to those who haven't heard of it yet?

I’m so happy to be here! Thanks for having me! 

For those who aren’t familiar with the premise for DEFY, here is the Goodreads summary: 

“A lush and gorgeously written debut, packed with action, intrigue, and a thrilling love triangle.

Alexa Hollen is a fighter. Forced to disguise herself as a boy and serve in the king's army, Alex uses her quick wit and fierce sword-fighting skills to earn a spot on the elite prince's guard. But when a powerful sorcerer sneaks into the palace in the dead of night, even Alex, who is virtually unbeatable, can't prevent him from abducting her, her fellow guard and friend Rylan, and Prince Damian, taking them through the treacherous wilds of the jungle and deep into enemy territory.

The longer Alex is held captive with both Rylan and the prince, the more she realizes that she is not the only one who has been keeping dangerous secrets. And suddenly, after her own secret is revealed, Alex finds herself confronted with two men vying for her heart: the safe and steady Rylan, who has always cared for her, and the dark, intriguing Damian. With hidden foes lurking around every corner, is Alex strong enough to save herself and the kingdom she's sworn to protect?”

2) Could you tell us a little bit about the inspiration behind it? 

DEFY came from a very difficult period in my life, when I lost someone I loved. I was so upset by his death that I couldn’t write anything, but a friend of mine told me to stop trying to write a book and just write what I was feeling. So that’s exactly what I did. I sat down and wrote a scene, not intending for it to go anywhere…but then I got curious about the characters. This whole fascinating world unraveled itself and I realized Alexa had a very intriguing, difficult, but ultimately amazing story that needed to be told. I threw myself into that writing and from there the story took on its own life. It became a story of survival and moving forward, a story of what true courage and strength is, and a story about the many different kinds of love, of hope (even in the most desperate of situations) and risking everything for the chance of a better future.

3) Did you have to do any research for your book? If so, what was the most interesting thing you've learned?  

I did do some research on jungles and a little bit with the terminology for the sword-fighting scenes. I got to go to Cancun with my husband after I wrote DEFY and it was amazing to wander through some landscapes that were kind of jungle-like and pretend I was Alexa. It was even pouring rain! I also had my son, who is in a Chinese immersion program, help me come up with some of the words and phrases for the language in Blevon (a neighboring kingdom in Alexa’s world) because I envisioned that kingdom as having an Asian influence. So he helped me come up with words and phrases that were based on Chinese for their language. 

3) Is there a specific character you identify with? 

Even though I’ve never had to disguise myself as a boy, I can definitely relate to Alexa in some ways—in her vulnerability that she has had to bury to keep up her disguise, in her confusion about who she truly is and in her struggle in dealing with grief and loss and still staying strong and moving forward. I also can relate to her stubbornness and determination to never give up, no matter what. I am also very stubborn and once I have a goal, I refuse to give up on it. 

4) What was the most fun part of writing DEFY?

Definitely the scenes with a lot of romantic tension or rapid-fire dialogue. I’m a sucker for romance and yes, the kissing. I know a lot of people hate writing kissing scenes, but I actually have a lot of fun writing them. I also enjoy trying to write dialogue in a way that is entertaining, with a lot of voice, and surprising bits of humor. Especially since there are a lot of tense situations in DEFY, those scenes are really enjoyable to create. There is a certain scene in a tent, when Alexa is literally stuck between two very attractive men that was way too much fun to write. 

5) Can you share with us a few of your favorite quotes from DEFY?

My absolute favorite quote is too spoilery, but these are some others that don’t give too much away: 

“Have you ever heard of the theory that it is better for one man to die than an entire nation to suffer? Do you believe that to be true? Is it ever okay to take a life in hopes of saving others?”

“As I gripped the hilt of the sword, my mind calmed and my body filled with purpose. This is who I was—this was what I knew how to do. I was a fighter.”

6) What are some of your literary inspirations? Favorite books/autors? 

I have a wide range of literary heroes. J.K. Rowling is absolutely at the top of the list. What she created with HARRY POTTER is absolutely beyond amazing and I just stand in awe of her. No matter how many times I read those books, I just love them more and more. I also admire Leigh Bardugo’s work, Rae Carson and Kristin Cashore. They are all brilliant fantasy authors. Marie Lu’s LEGEND series was fantastic and it’s mindboggling that she wrote that series without an outline! As a teen my favorite books were THE POISONWOOD BIBLE and pretty much all of Jane Austen’s books and Jane Eyre. 

7) Are you working on a new book/series now? If so, when can we expect it? Can you share some juicy details to keep our appetites going?

I am currently in revisions with my amazing editor, Lisa Sandell, for the sequel to DEFY, currently scheduled for next year. Hmmm, not sure what hints I can give, except that in DEFY, we see a fairly narrow view of Alexa’s world, because it’s from her point of view, and she has a pretty limited knowledge of what’s going on. But in the sequel, that view begins to crack open, expanding and bringing in much more information about what’s really going on in Antion, Dansii, and Blevon (the three kingdoms in DEFY), and of course there’s even more fighting, twists, political intrigue—and yes, more kissing!—to hopefully keep you flipping pages!




5 Signed Copies of DEFY US ONLY
3 Audio book Downloads of DEFY US/Canada Only


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About the book:


Title: DEFY
Author: Sara B. Larson
Pub. Date: January 7, 2014
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Pages: 366
Find it: Goodreads |Amazon | Barnes & Noble
A lush and gorgeously written debut, packed with action, intrigue, and a thrilling love triangle.

Alexa Hollen is a fighter. Forced to disguise herself as a boy and serve in the king's army, Alex uses her quick wit and fierce sword-fighting skills to earn a spot on the elite prince's guard. But when a powerful sorcerer sneaks into the palace in the dead of night, even Alex, who is virtually unbeatable, can't prevent him from abducting her, her fellow guard and friend Rylan, and Prince Damian, taking them through the treacherous wilds of the jungle and deep into enemy territory.

The longer Alex is held captive with both Rylan and the prince, the more she realizes that she is not the only one who has been keeping dangerous secrets. And suddenly, after her own secret is revealed, Alex finds herself confronted with two men vying for her heart: the safe and steady Rylan, who has always cared for her, and the dark, intriguing Damian. With hidden foes lurking around every corner, is Alex strong enough to save herself and the kingdom she's sworn to protect?

About the author:


Website / Twitter / Facebook / Goodreads
Sara loves writing, reading, and dessert--but the order varies by the day. She wrote her first book in second grade about a woman who had a premature baby, complete with a "to scale" drawing of the baby's size--while her mom was pregnant. To say she was a bit precocious is putting it lightly. Now that she’s an adult, she writes books for teens that have magic and romance and kick-butt girls (and very few premature babies). She lives in Utah with her husband, two young sons and baby girl. She writes during naptime and the hours when most people are sleeping. Her husband claims that she should have a degree in "the art of multitasking." On occasion you will find her hiding in a bubble bath with a book and some Swedish Fish. she is represented by Josh Adams of Adams Literary and her YA debut DEFY is coming January '14 from Scholastic!

Blog tour schedule:


Week One:

12/30/2013- A Book and a Latte- Interview
12/30/2013- Book Nerd Canada- Review
12/31/2013- Primrose Musings- Review
12/31/2013- Fictitious Delicious- Guest Post
1/1/2014- Jessabella Reads- Review
1/1/2014- Dark Faerie Tales- Interview
1/2/2014- Curling Up With A Good Book- Review
1/2/2014- IceyBooks- Guest Post
1/3/2014- The Demon Librarian- Review
1/3/2014- Tales of the Ravenous Reader- Interview

Week Two:

1/6/2014- She Dreams in Fiction- Review
1/6/2014- Two Chicks on Books- Guest Post
1/7/2014- Bookish- Interview
1/7/2014- Hannah Reads Books- Review
1/8/2014- Fiktshun- Guest Post
1/8/2014- Crossroad Reviews- Review
1/9/2014- Fiction Freak- Interview
1/9/2014- In the Best Worlds- Review
1/10/2014- Reading and Writing Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, and Romance- Review
1/10/2014- The Cover Contessa- Guest Post
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