Posts in the Young Adult genre

Guest Post

Guest Post: Cindi Madsen on Her Very First OTP

Operation Prom Date Cindi Madsen

In my new release, Operation Prom Date, my heroine Kate is all about fandoms and shipping and OTPs (One True Pairing, if you’re not sure what that is). It’s basically the couple that you read about or watch on TV, and you start yelling at the characters to kiss already. The couple that makes you a little crazy, to the point where if someone disagrees with you or tries to say they should be with someone else, it might get ugly.

Here’s a small excerpt from when they first talk about ships:

“I ship Olicity the hardest.”

“‘Ship’ them?”

“I want them in a relationship. Like I’d put them in a ship together so they’d be forced to see they’re perfect for each other, bribe the writers to get them together, ship them. Partnership, friendship, please-God-put-them-in-a-relationship-already ship them.”

“Oh-kay.”

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Essential Beginnings Kennedy Layne
Guest Post

Guest Post: “Nice Guys Shouldn’t Finish Last” by Amber Mitchell

Garden of Thorns Amber Mitchell

There’s something undeniably steamy about a bad boy in fiction. He’s aloof, always keeps you on your toes, but usually deep down, he’s got a heart of gold. And while I love me some bad boys in books, today I want to talk about another archetype because while the hero in my debut YA fantasy Garden of Thorns is definitely steamy, he is not a bad boy. In fact, he’s actually a good guy and sadly, nice guys usually finish last, even in fiction.

Good guys tend to get pushed to the side in narratives. True, there are plenty of novels with the friends-to-lovers trope but oftentimes, when that mysterious new guy strolls onto the page, the reliable guy friend gets shelved because predictability doesn’t always make for great tension. But I was determined.

When I sat down to create Rayce, I wanted him to be a good guy. While I love the romantic tension of opposites attracting, I wanted him to be undeniably likable and knew he would have to be in order for my heroine, Rose, to give him a chance. Since she had spent so many years as a slave in a burlesque show, under the tyrannical rule of a man, Rayce had to be kind, caring, and unwavering in his belief that he can help the world. What I needed was a healer.

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Q&A

Q&A: Merrie Destefano of LOST GIRLS

Lost Girls Merrie Destefano

Guys, we’re not sure what to do with ourselves! This Q&A with Merrie Destefano has left us absolutely charmed! Treat yourself before you run off for President’s Day weekend.


FIVE MOVIES

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

While You Were Sleeping, The Time Machine, Romancing The Stone, The Last of the Mohicans, Pride and Prejudice

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

While You Were Sleeping: The scene where Bill Pullman demonstrates what leaning is to Sandra Bullock. So adorable!

The Time Machine: When Samantha Mumba takes Guy Pearce to read the Stone Language. During their conversation, he gives her a vulnerable, heart-broken look and she instantly knows that he has lost a woman he loved. My heart melts every time I watch that scene.

Romancing The Stone: When Kathleen Turner finally comes out of her shy shell and starts cutting the way through the jungle, ultimately leading Michael Douglas and herself to safety. A beautiful analogy of a how a writer comes to life while digging into the complicated plot of her story.

The Last of the Mohicans: When Daniel Day-Lewis takes Madeleine Stowe by the hand and leads her through the fort. All around them a war is exploding. Inside them is another kind of explosion—that of falling in love. Sigh.

Pride and Prejudice: The dance scene. The look on Colin Firth’s face. The music. The realization that he does care about her, but has put his foot in his mouth and she isn’t going to forget it. I could watch that dance scene ALL DAY LONG.

You’ve Got Mail: The end, where Meg Ryan goes to meet her secret email pal, hoping it’s Tom Hanks. And then Tom comes walking over the bridge. It’s a heart-warming conclusion to what began as a bitter work-related feud.

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Sisters in Love Melissa Foster
Guest Post

Guest Post: “Five Romantic Dates to Go On in The Mystik World” by Brenda Drake

Going on dates is the fun part of a budding relationship. But going on dates in the Library Jumpers’ Mystik world holds so much wonder and beauty, I thought it would be fun to give Arik some ideas on where to take Gia on their first date.

The Spanish haven of Santara with its lush, green grounds and beautiful flowers and sweet fruits is my first pick for Arik and Gia’s date. The castle was built into the side of a mountain. Arik and Gia could hike the long, winding trail that leads to the top of the mountain. At the crest, they could view all of Santara while enjoy a picnic of empanadas filled with meats and fruits. Afterward, they could fly down the mountain

Mantello Haven in Italy is where Gia’s great-grandfather is from. The castle is stately and the village is quaint with winding roads and many shops. There are festivals, wine making, and a unique bookstore. Arik and Gia could have fun eating bake goods while strolling through the many shops. They could sit at one of the outdoor cafes to eat and watch the many plays and puppet shows performed on the street.

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Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Q&A

Q&A: Kendra C. Highley of THE BAD BOY BARGAIN

The Bad Boy Bargain Kendra C. Highley

We high five with the amazing Kendra C. Highley yet again over perfect taste in movies (you could build world peace around Princess Bride if you tried) and talk a little bit about her favorites! Her latest book, The Bad Boy Bargain is out right now!


What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

The Princess Bride, Pride and Prejudice (A&E version FTW!), Beauty and the Beast,  Four Weddings and a Funeral, and Sense and Sensibility.

 

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

Princess Bride: The scene at Miracle Max’s and the whole debate about “true love.”

P&P: The pond scene! The look on Lizzie’s face when Mr. Darcy comes across the grass in a wet shirt? ::fans self::

Beauty and the Beast: When the Beast has to let Belle go…and she comes back.

Four Weddings: When Charles admits—at his wedding to another woman—that’s he’s in love with Carrie, then asks Carrie not to marry him.

Sense and Sensibility: Am I on a Hugh Grant roll here? Yes, and Edward’s scene at the end with Elanor is sweet and lovely, but it’s Alan Rickman’s Colonel Brandon bringing Kate Winslet’s Marianne in out of a rain storm then asking for a job when she’s ill that demonstrated the love he had for her. SWOON! (Plus the happy bride with her dashing husband being watched by the lover who jilted her watching from a distance is a fitting ending).

 

Did you have any of these scenes in mind when writing scenes from your latest release?

No, but I made a lot of Princess Bride references in my previous book, Defying Gravity.

 


FIVE BOOKS

 

If you could only read five books for the rest of your life, what five books would they be, and why?

Pride and Prejudice—because Jane Austen is AWESOME.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy (I’m cheating) by Laini Taylor…the writing is so beautiful and the story is great.

The Red Rising Triology (Still cheating) by Pierce Brown. Visceral, violent, but so compelling I have a hard time putting it down.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns trilogy (yep, I’m a cheater) by Rae Carson. The heroine is unique, self-sufficient, and strong, and the love story is outstanding.

The Lord of the Rings trilogy (I know, I know) because…J.R.R Tolkien, elves, Aragon, and a great story. That Arwen/Aragorn love story is one of my favorites.


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Q&A

Q&A: Erin Fletcher of ALL LACED UP

All Laced Up Erin Fletcher

It’s election day, which means things are going to be tense for the next few hours. We’re unwinding with this awesome Q&A with the lovely Erin Fletcher, author of All Laced Up!


What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

Love Actually, 17 Again, 10 Things I Hate About You, The Notebook, How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days

 

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

Love ActuallyThe signs / “to me you are perfect” scene gets me every time!

17 Again The “You’re the best decision I ever made, I just forgot” scene is my favorite. Plus, it has Zac Efron AND Matthew Perry in the same scene!

10 Things I Hate About YouThe poem! Always the poem.

The NotebookThe rowboat / kissing in the rain scene is my favorite for obvious reasons.

How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days I love the “that’s how it’s done” scene when they both think they’re playing the other. So adorably naïve!

 

Did you have any of these scenes in mind when writing scenes from your latest release?

Not really…while I love watching these scenes, I try not to borrow too much from them! The movie closest to All Laced Up is probably The Cutting Edge, but I intentionally did not watch that while writing the book. (It is a great movie, though…toe pick!)


FIVE BOOKS

If you could only read five books for the rest of your life, what five books would they be, and why?

That’s such a tough question, and the answer changes fairly often! But here are today’s five…

  1. Every Day by David Levithan – I love the premise, and it makes me think differently about people and the world, in a good way.
  2. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins – I’d choose this one because it just makes me happy.
  3. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver – Both the story and the writing style are fantastic. I could easily read this one over and over again.
  4. The Perks of Being a Wallflower – It’s a classic for good reason.
  5. The Bible – It’s a book that’s important to me.

BOOK BOYFRIENDS

Who are your book boyfriends? (list a maximum of five) What do you like about them? What characteristics do they share with the hero from your latest release?

Since I read and write young adult novels, but am not a young adult myself, these would be my book boyfriends if I were still in high school: Etienne St. Clair (Anna and the French Kiss), Four (Divergent), and Wes (The Truth About Forever).

I like them all for different reasons – Etienne because he’s sweet and gorgeous, Four because he’s smart and strong, and Wes because he’s swoony and mysterious. These guys are similar to Pierce from All Laced Up, because he’s gorgeous, strong, a little bit mysterious, and a lot swoony!


FIRST ROMANCE (AKA My First Time):

What was the first romance novel you read?

I think the first “romance” I read was A Walk to Remember.

 

What do you remember about it?

I read it when the movie came out back in college (yeah, I’m old), so I remember reading it on my bunk bed in my dorm room while my roommate studied organic chemistry. I remember wanting guys like Landon to exist in real life.

 

What did you like most about it?

The thing I like most about reading it was escaping from the college world and into Jamie and Landon’s world. I liked pulling for the two of them to end up together.

 

What did you like least about it?

It was sappy and predictable, but still made me cry like a baby.

 

Have you ever reread it? If you did, how do you feel about it now?

I don’t think I have reread it! It would definitely bring back a lot of memories from college.


SNAPPY CHAT

Darcy or Wentworth?

Darcy

 

Christian or Gideon?

I don’t know either of these!

 

Rochester or Heathcliff?

Team Rochester!

 

Spock or Kirk?

I’ve never seen an episode of Star Trek.

 

Sunrise or sunset?

Both! I’m a sucker for sunrises and sunsets. But if I had to choose one, I guess it would be sunrise, because I’m a morning person.

 

Angst or humor?

Depends on my mood, but probably humor most of the time.

 

Tea or coffee?

Both! But coffee more often than tea.

 

Wine or beer?

Neither. Liquor or water for me.

 

Cake or pie?

Cake!

 

Scruff, beard, or clean-shaven?

A little bit of scruff.

 

Blue-collar or white collar?

White Collar! (Probably only picking that one because I love the show…)

 

Jeans or a suit?

Jeans

 

Car or motorcycle?

Car

 

 

Guest Post

Guest Post: “I Always Go Back to Romance” by Shannon Greenland

Shadow of a Girl Shannon Greenland

I was never a reader. In fact, if a teacher told me I had to read, it was almost painful. It wasn’t that I couldn’t read. I just didn’t like it.

Then one day when I was twenty-five years old, a friend of mine brought me a stack of historical romance novels and said, “Here. Read. You’ll like these.”

With a roll of my eyes, I reluctantly picked one up, flipped a few pages, flipped a few more, and before I knew it, I had read my very first novel, and I had enjoyed it! It was Shanna by Kathleen Woodiwiss.

After that, I was hooked. I read every historical romance my friend had brought me, and then I headed over to the library. At twenty-five, I had my very first library card. And boy did I use it! I made my way through every historical romance I could find, and then moved onto contemporary romance and then landed in romantic suspense. Which is where I fell completely in love. To this day The Troubleshooter series by Suzanne Brockmann is still my favorite.

Six months after that reading binge I picked up a pencil and starting scribbling a novel. It was crap, but I was writing. I was writing! I joined Romance Writers of America, started going to meetings, met tons of other authors, and really began to understand the genre from a writing perspective.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Top 5 Forbidden YA Romances” by Melissa Chambers

The Summer Before Forever Melissa Chambers

My name is Melissa, and I’m addicted to YA romance. Make that a forbidden YA romance, and I’ll see you when I’m done reading. So, of course I had to write one.

In my new novel, The Summer Before Forever, Chloe goes to Florida to live with her estranged father who is getting married at the end of the summer. Her heart goes gooey when she sees her future stepbrother who’s hotter than a steering wheel on a hundred degree Florida day. Chloe intrigues Landon in ways he’s never known and seems to know just the right thing to say when he drops his guard and lets her in. But in addition to the fact that they shouldn’t be together because they are getting ready to be family, the two each hold secrets that will change the way the other sees them, and neither one thinks they can handle that.

So in honor of Chloe and Landon, I present you with my top five forbidden YA romances.


1 – Anna and St. Clair in Anna and the French Kiss: Hands down my favorite YA romance. St. Clair may be the best-written YA romance hero ever, and as someone who is 5’10, I adore the fact that he is shorter than Anna! They are forbidden because he has a girlfriend. Why St. Clair, when Anna is wonderful and beautiful and you have chemistry more explosive than a Die Hard movie?

2 – Simon and Blue in Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda: Oh, how I fell in love with this book and these two heroes. Both boys are closeted, but have found each other. Problem is, neither boy knows who the other one is! Their relationship grows through email (Blue is afraid to give Simon his phone number), and they fall deeply and passionately for each other before they ever even see what the other person looks like. It’s exciting and scary and so freaking sweet. Oh, and if you are going to read this one for the first time, be sure to have a package of Oreos handy. You’ll thank me later.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “How My HP Ship Fandom Inspired the YA Romances I Write” by Chris Cannon

Blackmail Boyfriend Chris Cannon

Hello, my name is Chris Cannon, and I have a Harry Potter Romance-Fandom confession. I desperately wanted Ginny Weasley and Draco Malfoy to end up together. Yes, I know Harry was the hero, but he could’ve married any number of girls. Draco was the spoiled rich brat who was raised believing his father was brilliant and that Ginny’s father was an eccentric fool. Her family was dirt poor, and it would have been beneath him to even consider dating a Weasley. Think of all the wonderful conflict that would’ve caused.

Ginny could’ve taught Draco that everything he’d been raised to believe was wrong. She could’ve redeemed him. She had six older brothers who hated him and everything his family believed. Six! He would’ve had to fight his way through all six and convince them that he loved their little sister. Draco and Ginny would have been a match made in hell, and it would have been awesome.

I think that’s where my fascination with the normal-girl-dating-the-wealthy-boy and the little-sister-dating-her-brother’s-enemy tropes started, and it’s why I’ve written two romantic comedies featuring these tropes.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “My Love for YA Romance” by Monica Murphy

Daring The Bad Boy Monica Murphy

The love started when I was a young adult (once upon a time). I’m going to totally age myself with the following: I remember going to the mall and visiting the B. Dalton bookstore (RIP). They had an end cap featuring various young adult romances, including those published by Silhouette. I started in on those books and fell head over heels, eventually devouring a TON of them. They set my young teen heart aflutter.

What’s funny is I read a bunch of them, but could never remember their titles, the authors, etc. Except for one. My absolute favorite book from that line was Love at First Sight by Elaine Harper. Oh, MAN I loved that book. It was so swoony and sweet and full of teen angst and featured the most popular boy in school. I eventually lost my original copy but a couple of years ago I found it on Amazon. I one clicked that sucker (I think I got it for around a dollar) and will cherish it forever. The cover is faded and it’s been abused but it reminds me of the one I owned, so it’s perfect.

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