Category Archives: Girly Books

Christmas Books Giveaway Hop with Author Heather Vogel Frederick

christmas books hopIt’s that time of year again folks! I’m not going to lie…I love Christmas. I always have and having a three year old now who is literally obsessed with Christmas has only made it more special. One of my favorite things about Christmas has also always been that extra reading time and if I am lucky bookstore gift cards coming my way or even that one special book under the tree on Christmas morning. So to celebrate I am participating in the Christmas Book Giveaway Hop hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer & Laurie Here. This great giveaway hop has over 120 blogs participating and giving away one or more Christmas themed tomes. Make sure to check out the participating blog list here.

This holiday season I decided to team up with the always lovely, talented and extremely generous Heather Vogel Frederick so we could provide some very lucky reader with copies of her fifth installment in the fabulous Mother- Daughter Book Club series:  Home for the Holidays. It’s the perfect read for Mom or Daughter…or even better Mom and Daughter together. It would also make a fantastic Christmas present and I know Heather would be more than happy to sign it to that special someone if you’d like. She’s just that kind of person. A true gem of an author indeed. I have honestly enjoyed every book in this series and each can be read alone or in order so don’t worry if you’re not all caught up!

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To enter to win just comment below and let us know your favorite book to read during this time of year…it doesn’t have to be Holiday related whatsoever. For instance I often re-read my favorite classics this time of year simply because I have the time. This year I am re-reading Les Miserables by Victor Hugo in preparation for the release of the movie musical. So…as you sip hot cocoa, sit by the fire and maybe just maybe…watch it snow ( who am I kidding…I live in Georgia)…what book will you have in hand?

Three lucky winners will be chosen here at Stiletto Storytime to win their own copy of Home for the Holidays by Heather Vogel Frederick. This Giveaway Hop will end on December 9, 2012 at midnight EST. This giveaway is open to US/CAN addresses only. Winners will be chosen by random number generator and notified by e-mail.

Want extra entries? You can get an extra entry by doing any of the following:

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime

Be/Become a Follower Stiletto Storytime on Twitter

Check out Heather Vogel Frederick’s Website & Share Something You Learned/Found Interesting

Tweet or Blog about this Giveaway at Stiletto Storytime (Please leave link in comments)

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Filed under Book Blogs, Contests, Girly Books, Heather Vogel Frederick, Middle Grade, New Books, Reading Fun, Young Adult Books

Blog Tour & Author Guest Post with Ali McNamara of From Notting Hill with Love…Actually

“Scarlett O’Brien, utterly addicted to romantic films, has found her leading man. She’s convinced Sean is Mr Right, but the day-to-day reality of a relationship isn’t quite like the movies. With Sean constantly away on business, Scarlett and her new best friend Oscar decide to head to New York for the holiday of a lifetime. From one famous landmark to the next, Scarlett and Oscar make many new friends during their adventure – including sailors in town for Fleet Week, a famous film star, and Jamie & Max, a TV reporter and cameraman. Scarlett finds herself strangely drawn to Jamie, they appear to have much in common: a love of films and Jamie’s search for a parent he never knew. But Scarlett has to ask herself why she is reacting like this to another man when she’s so in love with Sean . . “

I know I am not the only lover of British romantic comedies out there and even more so a lover of the books that these films often issue forth from. For instance take one of my absolute favorite films Bridget Jone’s Diary which of course was based upon the novel of the same name written by the fabulously clever Helen Fielding and stars my own personal vision of Mr. Darcy personified: the Colin Firth. It was from Jane Austen herself that Ms. Fielding found her inspiration in the ultimate classic Pride and Prejudice which just may be perhaps the very first and most beloved romantic comedy of all.

As soon as I saw the title to this book I knew I not only wanted to read it and be a part of the blog tour but I also had to know a little bit more about Ms. McNamara’s inspiration. The two films mentioned in the title are two of the most well known and loved contemporary British romantic comedies of modern times in my opinion..but what lay behind the films for this writer personally and ultimately led to the inspiration to put pen to paper? Well, who better to ask than the author herself….so without further ado:

Where did and do  your literary inspirations usually derive from Ms. McNamara?

Guest Post by Author Ali McNamara

“My inspirations come from all over. I got the idea for From Notting Hill with Love…Actually when I was watching one of the music channels on TV one day.  It was a countdown of the Top 50 best movie songs of all time. I just thought wouldn’t it be fantastic if you could feature as many of those movies as possible in one story, and the idea began to develop from there.

The idea for my second novel Breakfast at Darcy’s came when I was on a touring holiday of Ireland. My husband and myself were parked in our car one day overlooking the island of Great Blasket in County Kerry. We began to talk about how you would go about living on an island such as that, and how easy or difficult it would be. My initial spark of an idea began to turn into a plot for a fully formed novel, when we later went over and visited the island.

 My characters usually come from my own imagination, but my latest book, out in the UK in November, has a couple of characters that are based on real people I met when I was in New York doing research. Luckily they both agreed, and are quite happy about me basing two characters on them, I haven’t had to pretend or try to conceal anything!

 But I’m always thinking and never find myself stuck for inspiration, and even thought I’m currently writing my fourth book at the moment, I currently have ideas for at least 2-3 more books after that!”

~ Ali McNamara

 Thanks so much to the very stylish Ali McNamara for stopping by Stiletto Storytime today and sharing her novel that has just recently hopped over the pond to us lucky Americans. If you enjoy a good romantic comedy…especially one of British origins, then From Notting Hill with Love…Actually is perfect for you. And if we’re lucky soon the sequel From Notting Hill to New York…Actually which releases this November in Britain will also make it’s way over as well. Another of Ali’s books Breakfast at Darcy’s can be gotten through UK means as well if you become hooked…and that’s a very real possibility.

So in the spirit of the celebration of romantic comedies of both the film and literary type…what’s your favorite? Personally I will have to admit to being a “You’ve Got Mail” girl all the way. I watch it all the time and especially when I am feeling under the weather. It’s got everything…a cute, quirky heroine, a bookstore, Jane Austen references and the all important bad guy love interest turned Mr. Right. So which one is your favorite and why? I would love know…more to add to both my reading and viewing list. So enjoy and Happy Reading to All.

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Filed under Adult Books, Author Interviews & Posts, Blog Tour, Girly Books, Jane Austen, New Books

Tween Tuesdays With Jordin

Today at Stiletto Storytime we debut a new feature and a new guest reviewer. In fact not only is she my first ever guest reviewer in almost six years of blogging here at Stiletto Storytime but she also just happens to be my little sister as well. You see in our family reading has always been a family affair so it only felt right to let my tween sister review some books written for her age in mind.

An adult can review books for all ages but one often likes to get the actual intended reader’s opinion. As a children’s librarian I am pretty good at knowing what’s good and will be well received and what won’t for a variety of ages. But why not get the point of view of a reader at the age for whom the book was written? So without further ado here is Jordin and her review of Famous for Thirty Seconds by P.G. Kain. This book is the first in the Commercial Breaks series for tweens which means it was written for kids roughly between the ages of 9-12. So please give a warm welcome for Jordin here at Stiletto Storytime.

“You know me. You don’t know how, but you’ve definitely know me.”

            This was true about a thirteen year old actress, Brittany Rush. She has been on the cover of just about everything since she was in diapers. All of that came to a sudden stop when she and her family moved to Hong Kong for a year. When Brittany returned to New York City, she expected to find her old life of call-backs, go-sees, and auditions. Instead she came to find that her spotlight had been given to Phoebe Marks. The girl who before Brittany left, rarely ever got call-backs.

I thought that this was a great book because it has stuff about fashion, romance, and a good rivalry. You should really read this book because not only was it fun but it was also exciting enough to make me want to read the next book in the series too! Book two in the series Picture Perfect is available now and Book three Dramatic Pause will be released on November 27, 2012.

    Need another summer read or how about an option intended more for the boys? Check out Scary School by Derek the Ghost and Scott Fischer. You can also check out the second book in the series Monsters on the March. Here’s a little about the book from it’s description:

“You think your school’s scary? Get a load of these teachers: Ms. Fang, an 850-year-old vampire, Dr. Dragonbreath, who just might eat you before recess, Mr. Snakeskin—science class is so much more fun when it’s taught by someone who’s half zombie and Mrs. T—break the rules and spend your detention with a hungry Tyrannosaurus rex! Plus gargoyles, goblins, and Frankenstein’s monster on the loose The world’s most frighteningly delicious school lunch and the narrator’s an eleven-year-old ghost!

 Join Charles “New Kid” Nukid as he makes some very Scary friends—including Petunia, Johnny, and Peter the Wolf—and figures out that Scary School can be just as funny as it is spooky!”

Sound like some good reads for either yourself or someone you know? Perhaps they may be perfect for your classroom or school library? Do you like having a tween’s point of view on newly released books here at Stiletto Storytime? Would you like to see more reviews by Jordin on Tween Tuesdays or do you have a book you’d like Jordin to review? Just let us know. We love feedback and comments are always not only accepted but truly appreciated as well.

Thanks to Jordin for taking the time to review for Stiletto Storytime and thanks to my readers for allowing her a chance to share some great new tween books with you, your kids or even your grandkids. And as always Happy Reading for All Ages!

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Filed under Books for Girls, Children's Literature, Girly Books, Middle Grade, Reading Fun

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Mothership by Martin Leicht and Isla Neal

Mothership is the first installment in a new trilogy from Martin Leicht & Isla Neal that has been described as Juno meets Pretty In Pink…but in space.”

Pregnant. In space. Yeah, things are really looking up.

 It’s 2074 and Elvie’s unplanned pregnancy (with Cole Archer, who bolted out of town half a millisecond after hearing the news, not that Elvie’s bitter about it or anything) forces her to leave her best bud back on Earth and spend her junior year aboard a corny old space cruiser with forty-five other hormonal teen girls (one of whom just happens to be her arch-nemesis).  Getting shipped off to the Hanover School for Expecting Teen Mothers was not how Elvie imagined spending her junior year, but she can go with the flow. That is, until a team of hot commandos hijacks the ship—and one of them turns out to be Cole.
Quirky, humorous and quite frankly- out of this world would be the perfect description of Mothership. It’s the kind of read where you simply never know what will happen next. You couldn’t guess or imagine the plot line even if you tried and there’s a lot to be said for that. And when the action begins…it’s out of this world literally….the fast paced story is set in actual space after all. Elvie herself presents as an interesting leading heroine in the character of an everyday futuristic teen girl with a pretty logical outlook on life, she’s always the ever resourceful back-up and much more mature than most of the teenagers around her. And her out of this world crush and Baby Daddy: Cole Archer, well he is the ultimate heartthrob. And well written example of that one boy in high school that just sent your hurt a flutter. Only he carries an immense secret that will have major implications on both Elvie and the life of her unborn child. This leads to an interesting quest for truth and a fantastic ride and fight for survival.

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Filed under Blog Tour, Chick Lit, Fantasy, Girly Books, New Books, Young Adult Books

Review: The Selection by Kiera Cass

    America Singer is in love. It’s that deep, hopelessly romantic kind of love that invades every fiber of your being every moment of every day that you live and draw breath. It’s all she can think about. At this point in her life America may only be a  teenager but she truly believes she has found the man of her dreams right in her own backyard.

After all who wouldn’t love Aspen Leger with his dark looks and giving heart. He’d do anything to make America happy. But then again he has to do many things to make many people happy because of his caste. You see Aspen is a six, destined to live his life working hard and earning little. Hunger is a constant for him and always likely will be for those he loves except for America that is.

America is a five and so she lives easier, eats a bit better and has somewhat  of a choice in her career in entertainment. These luxuries will remain unless she chooses to marry someone below her caste level.  But despite these obstacles America is about to face she is convinced she will be Aspen’s wife someday. That is until the selection letter arrives on the doorstep of every eligible young girl in the kingdom.

The selection changes everything. Thirty-five girls will be chosen to vie for the attention of Prince Maxon but only one can be his wife, only one will be true royalty.  Girls are chosen from all the castes; the highest ones to lowliest eights but only thirty-five will go on to live in the palace and compete against one another to possibly become a Princess of Illea.

America would give anything not to be one of those chosen girls. However with the prestige of the selection will come food and money for her family and both Aspen and her loved ones insist she must enter her name or they could never forgive themselves for her missing the opportunity of a lifetime. It would change the life of her and her family forever, by just being selected in the first group of girls America would become a three.  A whole new world would open up before her.

As the names are announced it becomes clear that America Singer will miss out on nothing. She is a chosen one, shipped off to the palace to compete for the heart of a Prince while her own heart lies broken into pieces in a tiny tree house in her own backyard.

As the days go by in this “The Bachelor” meets Hunger Games dystopian romance, America does her best to stay as close to the Prince as possible in order to help her family to survive but she also strives to keep her mending heart locked up tight from his princely charms.  Even as rebel forces attack the palace, Prince Maxon seems to have his sight set on America as much more than the confidante she has tried to be. Could she love him? Is it possible that her true love was not Aspen but a man belonging to a world she could once only dream of?

As the citizens of Illea watch a romance begin everyone can’t help but wonder just who is falling in love? And for American and Maxon what could be the consequences if an old flame appears?

In a perfectly timed novel that will feed the desire for dystopian love and cutthroat societies, The Selection is sure to be a hit as each novel in the trilogy unfolds for eager readers of all ages. Smart, creative and dazzling it will delight and captivate a new generation of teens who are now finding more and more of their chosen entertainment surprisingly in a book.  However don’t count out this series for the small or big screen anytime in the near future. It simply sparkles with possibility.

Just like it’s cover which is a show stopper as far as shelf appeal is concerned. Don’t you agree?

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Filed under Dystopian, Girly Books, New Books, Young Adult Books

2nd Annual Holiday Read-a-Thon

It’s that time of year again. Time for the second annual Holiday Read-a-thon! So cozy up with a nice big pile of your favorite reads and let’s get going! And while diving into your very own favorite books might seem like a holiday treat in and of itself…make sure to check out the all the details and the awesome mini-challenges that Liza at WhoRuBlog has put together including one from moi! That’s right a fantastic mini-challenge and prize pack giveaway from one of my favorite authors who just happens to be a spectacular person as well. And don’t fret…it’s not too late to enter.

Stiletto Storytime Mini-Challenge

What better way to celebrate holiday reading than with a great holiday book. Enter the latest addition to The Mother Daughter Book Club Series titled Home for the Holidays where the girls get introduced to none of than the Betsy-Tacy books! So for this mini-challenge what better prize than to win your very own autographed copy of Home for the Holidays, the newly released Betsy-Tacy Treasury, the first two Betsy-Tacy High School Books and a special Betsy-Tacy tote bag! What a haul! Big thanks to the always generous Heather Vogel Frederick for making this giveaway not only possible but wonderful as well.

So what’ the challenge? It’s really easy- just share your favorite holiday read? It doesn’t have to be a classic or even holiday related…just let us know in the comments below what you enjoying reading this time of year and most importantly why? It can be from a cherished childhood memory, a yearly personal tradition or just your own preference…just let us know why it’s important to you. That’s all it takes. Simple right?

 Giveaway ends midnight EST December 5th 2011. This giveaway is open US/Canada shipping addresses only. Winner will be chosen by random.org and notified by e-mail address or Twitter. Good Luck to all and Happy Reading!

Want extra entries? You can get an extra entry by doing any of the following:

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime

Be/Become a Follower Stiletto Storytime on Twitter (Leave Name)

Be/Become a Follower of Liza of WhoRuBlog on Twitter (Leave Name)

Like the new “Mother Daughter Book Club Page” on Facebook (Leave Name)

Tweet or Blog about this Giveaway (Please leave link in comments)

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Filed under Books for Girls, Challenges, Children's Literature, Girly Books, Heather Vogel Frederick, Middle Grade, New Books, Reading Challenge, Young Adult Books

Blog Tour: J’adore New York by Isabelle Lafleche

     “When Catherine Lambert, an effortlessly chic Parisian lawyer, receives an offer to transfer to the New York office of her prestigious firm, she unhesitatingly accepts. A dedicated follower of fashion and everything stylish, she is determined to conquer the high-flying world of Manhattan law — and love. Catherine’s dreams of glamour fizzle quickly, however, when she is faced with the hard realities of her profession. The pressure of billable hours, the incessant demands of her impossible bosses, the conspiracies of two malicious secretaries and the advances of the lecherous client prompt her to question her career choice. But then she meets Jeffrey Richardson, a powerful client, and her New York life takes on the romance she’d hoped it would — until an unexpected request forces Catherine to re-evaluate the exclusive world she’s chosen for herself.

With its insider’s perspective on the dirty deals and intrigue that have darkened Wall Street’s reputation, J’adore New York is a bright and funny take on the lives and laws of New York’s most powerful players.”

Fashion, New York and a dash of France…I was extremely excited to read J’adore New York. I mean look at the stunning cover- it simply screamed Stiletto Storytime (can’t you see the great pair she would be wearing with that ensemble?). However I have to admit to being a bit disappointed. The novel felt a bit disjointed at times due to the main character and her somewhat conflicting wants vs. actions. While at first I could relate to Catherine…soon she was doing things that simply did not make sense when put in line with what her priorities supposedly were. There was also a bit too much legalese for my taste. Every other page seemed to be full of legal jargon in great amounts with no real contribution to the novel. There was also a bit of predictability about the plot that while I didn’t mind it, left me feeling like I knew the ending at the beginning.

However despite these flaws I did enjoy the book. It was a good read, maybe just not the best. I loved how fashion played into the work and how Catherine and her french origins were interwoven seamlessly into the novel…perhaps I even wish there had been a bit more of that. (I would think a Paris to New York transition might be a bit more complex and not so automatic.)We are also given no details of Catherine’s past or background. We just know she is from Paris…end of story-she’s French.  I did enjoy the romances and the male lead characters…even if they were a bit predictable as I mentioned before.

In the end….if you like fashion and are a bit of a Francophile…you might enjoy J’adore New York. However it may not suit many that are drawn to the chick lit genre or seduced by what the cover seems to offer.

 J’adore New York will be released in the United States on October 4, 2011.

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Filed under Adult Books, Blog Tour, Chick Lit, Girly Books, New Books