Top Ten…Character-Driven YA Contemporaries

Not gonna lie, I had to Google the term “character-driven novels” before I started in on this post! I mean, I had an idea of what character-driven means, but I just wanted to make sure I was on-track with my choices. I found that character-driven novels tend to focus on the internal development of a character or characters such as changing of attitudes or some sort of personal discovery. Turns out my choices this week are PERFECT and that I should never have doubted myself. See…that experience right there would make a perfect character-driven novel…orrrrr short story…maybe? Maybe not?

Source: The Broke and The Bookish

Source: The Broke and The Bookish

The books and authors listed below basically read as a master class of YA contemporary novels. They are why I fell in love with YA and, wouldn’t ya know, they all fall into the category of character-driven novels! Pretty great how that worked out huh?

cover source: goodreads

cover source: goodreads

Eleanor & Park and Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour and Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson
My Life Next Door and What I Thought Was True by Huntley Fitzpatrick

The two authors I’ve featured below released their debut novels in 2014 and, thankfully for us, they have novels releasing in 2o15! I’ve been fortunate enough to read both of their 2015 releases (THANK YOU ANDI!!) and I can say with 100% confidence that they are even better than the debut novels that came before them. I honestly didn’t think that was possible!

cover source: goodreads

cover source: goodreads

Something Real and I’ll Meet You There (releases February 2015) by Heather Demetrios
cover source: goodreads

cover source: goodreads

Open Road Summer and The Start of Me and You (releases March 2105) by Emery Lord

Have you read any of the books listed above? Would you agree that they are character-driven novels? Let me know what you think in the comments section below!

Advertisements

Mini Review & Giveaway: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Today is a good day! No, make that a FANTASTIC day! Why, you ask, is September 10, 2014 such a special day? Well, it was one year ago on this day that one of my very favorite books was released!

Fangirl Header

I belatedly discovered Fangirl this past April after I fell head over heels in love with Eleanor and Park. I knew I just needed more Rainbow Rowell in my life and the synopsis and amazing cover of Fangirl totally drew me in. Little did I know (although I should have totally seen it coming) that I would love it even more than Eleanor and Park. I honestly didn’t think that was possible, but the story of Cath and her first year of college resonated with me so deeply and I found such a personal connection to the character that I knew almost from the get go that it would be a new favorite of mine.

source: pandanemar.tumblr.com

source: pandanemar.tumblr.com

Everything about this book is just utter perfection for me! From the relationship Cather has with her sister (albeit strained at times) and her father (I really connected with this one) to her personal struggle of trying to discover who she is and what that means, I found so much of myself in her character. So many of the lines from this book, like the one’s I’ve featured in this post from Pandanemar’s Blog, had me exclaiming YES!! There have been so many times in my life where I’ve though  it would be so much easier to give up when things get too hard, that all the new situations I have been dealt with were more trouble than they are worth. But like Cath, I have been blessed to be surrounded by amazing family and friends who have pushed me outside of my comfort zone and helped me to realize that I am capable of so much more than I could have imagined!

source: pandanemar.tumblr.com

source: pandanemar.tumblr.com

And then we have Levi! Ohhhh Levi! Just to give you a small taste of my adoration for him, here’s a short excerpt from my YA Prom post where I gush…

There were so many moments in Fangirl that made me sigh out loud. If I were in a cartoon there would have been little hearts and birds floating over my head while I was reading. I was so smitten with Levi from the very beginning and as I continued to read, I just swooned harder and harder. How could you not fall in love with Levi when he says stuff like this…

quoteI mean, seriously? This guy is amazing! I adored Levi from the moment I met him and by the end of the book I just down-right loved him for the kindness, patience and generosity of spirit he showed to Cath. Whenever someone mentions book boyfriends I always chime in with Levi. To me, he is perfect!

GIVEAWAY ALERT!!!

As my way of celebrating the one year anniversary of Fangirl’s publication, I’m giving away special UK Collector’s Edition of the book PLUS an amazing tote custom designed by Becca at Pivot Book Reviews! You should definitely check out her shop on Etsy! I’m pretty psyched about this giveaway and if I get over 1,000 entries I’ll throw in a Barnes & Noble Exclusive Edition of Eleanor & Park, the book that started my Rainbow Rowell obsession! Good luck to everyone who enters! US entries only and winner must respond within 48 hours to claim prize. Contest ends September 17th at midnight.

BREAKING NEWS…the contest reached 1,000 entries so I’ll be adding in a Barnes & Noble Exclusive Edition of Eleanor & Park! It just keeps getting better!

Prizes

***

source: goodreads

source: goodreads

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Published: 9/10/13 by St. Martin’s Press
Pages: 445 | Format: Hard Cover
Source: Purchased
Purchase this book

In Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl, Cath is a Simon Snow fan. Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan, but for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words . . . And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind? Source 

Fangirl Friday: Book Boyfriend Edition

Waaa-hoooo it’s Friday ya’ll!! There’s nothing better than the end of the week and a whole two days of freedom ahead of you. I had a ton of fun with today’s Fangirl post. I’m thinking I was a little inspired by how much fun I had with my first ever Top 10 Tuesday post, so I decided to put together another Top 10 list for you today. THIS list is filled with pretty boys so hopefully it will put a smile on your face.

I couldn’t call myself a YA book blogger if I didn’t have a list of my favorite book boyfriends, and I certainly couldn’t call myself a fangirl if I didn’t imagine what these guys would look like. The list below reflects MY vision of my all-time favorite book boyfriends. Now, I know we all have our ideas of what these guys may look like, so I’m sure you might disagree with some of my picks but I hope you have as much fun reading as I did writing!

eye-candy-hunter-parrish-22

original photo source

I think by now, we all know how much I adore Levi from Fangirl. I actually casted him as Ryan Gosling for YA Prom, but when I saw this photo of Hunter Parish I immediately saw Levi. I’m thinking Ryan is too old anyways, so I’m officially declaring Hunter as my Levi! Can’t you just see him snuggling up and reading with you in bed? Orrr….is that just me? Wishful thinking?

“I like your glasses,” he said. “I like your Simon Snow T-shirts. I like that you don’t smile at everyone, because then, when you smile at me.… Cather.” He kissed her mouth. “Look at me.” She did. “I choose you over everyone.” 
― Rainbow RowellFangirl

***

Gaspard-Ulliel-gaspard-ulliel-10804113-413-500

original photo source

Ohhhh Mal….I loved you from the very beginning. You’re quite and brooding, but still waters run deep and when you let yourself open up it made me love you even more. I’d never heard of Gaspard Ulliel before but when I saw this photo it felt like I was seeing the Mal I envisioned in my mind come to life!

“I’ve risked my life for you. I’ve walked half the length of Ravka for you, and I’d do it again and again and again just to be with you, just to starve with you and freeze with you and hear you complain about hard cheese every day. So don’t tell me why we don’t belong together,” he said fiercely.”
Leigh Bardugo, Shadow and Bone

***

tom-mison-1024

original photo source

From the moment I met Chaol in the opening pages of Throne of Glass, I immediately pictured Tom Mison from Sleepy Hollow. Choal is a natural leader who focuses intensely on his duties, but we also find out that he is a sensitive man, fiercely protective of Celaena. Tom Minson captures this dual personality perfectly; a dude who looks like he means business but behind those eyes is a big old softie.

“I worry because I care. Gods help me, I know I shouldn’t, but I do. So I willalways tell you to be careful, because I will always care what happens.” 
― Sarah J. MaasCrown of Midnight

***

f5f85b4d2f5cea2f60a79d325d459be6

original photo source

OK….so I TOTALLY cheated on this one. As I was doing my research for this post, I came across a blog post in which Emery Lord mentioned that she would cast Matt Lauria as Matt Finch. I don’t watch Parenthood so I had to go ahead and Google him, and when I did I was SOLD! Why have I never heard of this hottie before? Thank you Emery for introducing me to this fine specimen of a man.

“When his eyes land on me, something about his expression changes—like he recognizes me from somewhere, too. I look back, appraising him quickly. He’s kind of beautiful, in an understated, comfortable-looking way—the kind of guy who doesn’t mind seeing a rom-com with you and gives you his hoodie when you’re cold.” 
― Emery LordOpen Road Summer

***

diane-kruger-jake-abel-the-host-cast-portraits-exclusive-03

original photo source

Ohhhh Jase Garrett, how you make me swoon! You’re a family man, you take care of those you love and you know exactly what to say and do to make everything better. Seriously, your sexy one-liners (as seen below) are made of awesome! Jake Abel totally fits the bill for me, tall, brownish-blonde hair and always with sexy little smirk on his face.

“Um. So … Are we going to study?” Jase slides his thumbs behind my ears, rubbing the hollow at their base. He’s only inches from my face, still looking into my eyes. “You bet. I’m studying you.” 

― Huntley FitzpatrickMy Life Next Door

***

d60a0bb8fb10f251fcc3a9b5830d44a7

original photo source

OK, this one made me a little sad because I was so devastated when he passed, but the moment I saw this picture all I could think of was Patrick Sheldon. As Heather Demetrios would say, “He looks like the kind of boy who would jump trains, strum a guitar, and pass a joint.”  Ummmm yup, River is the perfect not so bad boy….looks like he could get you in a lot of trouble but he’s really just a sweet and thoughtful guy underneath it all.

“That boy has forever written all over his face when he looks at you.”
― Heather Demetrios, Something Real

***

3be085335ff0021f2a7bc340f1eeb554

original photo source

For some reason, this pick makes me the most nervous. I know Etienne fangirls are HARD CORE and I don’t want to piss anyone off. But looking at this photo of Aaron Johnson, I totally see Etienne. He’s got that messy hair, the big brown eyes and all I want to do is stroll the banks of The Seine at night with him.

“Because I was right. For the two of us, home isn’t a place. It’s a person.
And we’re finally home.” 
― Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss

***

USE

original photo source

This is another one I can’t really explain why but when we first meet Willem in Just One Day, I pictured Dave Franco right away. I know he doesn’t have the blonde hair of Willem, but he definitely has the look of a guy who’s been around the world and seen a lot of things. He’s got those intense eyes that tells me he’s got a few good stories to tell.

“He looks at one of the pictures for a long time. Then he looks at me. “I’ll keep you up here.” He taps his temple. “Where you can’t get lost.”
― Gayle FormanJust One Day

***

AlmanzoLrg

original photo source

This one is pretty cool, so I had to sneak it in here! The photo above is the real life Almanzo Wilder from the Little House series. Kind of easy to see why Laura Ingalls fell madly in love with him! Dude is smoking hot right?!

***

476c4015fdbc85a5deb249592c398764

original photo source

Last but not least we have the ultimate book boyfriend, Gilbert Blythe. He was the one that started it all for me! From the book to the movies…I couldn’t get enough of Gil. I would like to commend whoever cast Jonathan Crombie as Gilbert Blythe because that person KILLED it! He’s absolutely perfect in the role! Gil is everything you want in a book boyfriend, confident but quiet, patient, romantic and selfless. I mean, the guy gave up his teaching job in Avonlea so Anne could stay close to home with Marilla. What a stud!

Anne, I’ve loved you as long as I can remember. I need you. 
Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

***

Now it’s your turn! Who’s your ultimate book boyfriend? What do you think of my picks? Is there one I got totally right or totally wrong. Share your thoughts in the comments below.

YA Prom: Where all your YA dreams come true

Screen Shot 2014-06-22 at 4.12.16 PM

Was everyone as excited as I was when Gaby and Alexa announced that they would be hosting a YA Prom? I mean – who doesn’t love getting all dressed up and dancing the night away with the perfect guy. I immediately knew who my date would be…the one and only Levi from Fangirl as played by Ryan Gosling. Levi is described as a tall, blonde-haired and blue-eyed farm boy with a smile that just won’t quit. Since Ryan Gosling is my celeb crush (I know…I’m soooo 2012) it wasn’t hard for me to make the connection to Levi.

FINAL Gosling collage

There were so many moments in Fangirl that made me sigh out loud. If I were in a cartoon there would have been little hearts and birds floating over my head while I was reading. I was so smitten with Levi from the very beginning and as I continued to read, I just swooned harder and harder. How could you not fall in love with Levi when he says stuff like this…

quote

As for my dress, I knew I’d have to wear something that would color-coordinate with the Fangirl cover. Natch! I discovered this gorgeous Badgley Mischka mint gown with gold lace cap sleeves on Rent The Runway and I knew it was the one! I had a tough time deciding on accessories for my ensemble…there were so many amazing choices. I finally settled on a stunning pair of crystal drop earrings from Slate and Willow and  the most amazing pair of Jimmy Choo heels in gold of course…I have a slight obsession with gold!

Dress & Earrings: Renttherunway.com / Shoes: JimmyChoo.com

To match the look of the flowy, romantic dress I wanted to keep hair and makeup soft and simple; Jessica Alba’s loosely pinned up-do, Carrie Underwood’s smokey eye/pale lip combo and the fun nail art all add up to the perfect look!

beauty

Thanks again to Alexa and Gabby for hosting…I truly had a blast pulling this post together. My real-life prom wasn’t the best experience, but this time, with Levi as my date, a stunning couture gown and some pretty bad ass accessories…this YA Prom is sure to be a dream come true!

UPDATED to add this totally 1990’s photo of my father and I before I left for the prom. He was the cutest!

Miss you papa...

Miss you papa…

Fangirl Friday: YALit Fan Art

I had a few fun ideas rattling around in my head for this installment of Fangirl Friday, but when I came up with the idea of featuring fan art based on some of my favorite books I knew I had a winner! It was so much fun pulling this post together…there are some seriously talented people out there. For someone who can barely draw a straight line I was freaking amazed at how gorgeous some of the fan art that’s out there is. For each book I’m featuring my four favorite pieces of fan art but I could have chosen soooo many more. If you’re looking to kill some time and want to be blown away just google your favorite book(s) along with “fan art” and prepare to be amazed! Fair warning: there’s some pretty bad (and weird) fan art out there too. Very amusing!

I’m kicking off with Grisha Trilogy fan art to celebrate the release of the final book in  Leigh Bardugo’s epic adventure! Enjoy…oh and be sure to click on the source link to see the original full-size image.

The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo

Grisha Collage

Clockwise from top left: FrozenAntlers / Fictograph / Bottom two images: The Fandom’s GeekGirl

Publisher Summary

The Shadow Fold, a swathe of impenetrable darkness, crawling with monsters that feast on human flesh, is slowly destroying the once-great nation of Ravka.

Alina, a pale, lonely orphan, discovers a unique power that thrusts her into the lavish world of the kingdom’s magical elite—the Grisha. Could she be the key to unravelling the dark fabric of the Shadow Fold and setting Ravka free?

The Darkling, a creature of seductive charm and terrifying power, leader of the Grisha. If Alina is to fulfill her destiny, she must discover how to unlock her gift and face up to her dangerous attraction to him.

But what of Mal, Alina’s childhood best friend? As Alina contemplates her dazzling new future, why can’t she ever quite forget him?

Glorious. Epic. Irresistible. Romance

Visit Goodreads for more information

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Fangirl Collage

 Clockwise from top left: Esquisse / Simini Blocker Illustration / Yasminwithane / Andiree

Publisher Summary

From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & Park.

A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love. 

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan…

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words… And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

Visit Goodreads for more information

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

DoSaB Collage

  Clockwise from top left:  leahbharlann / Calivel / Simini Blocker Illustration / Lelu’s Garden

Publisher Summary

Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”; she speaks many languages–not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When one of the strangers–beautiful, haunted Akiva–fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

Visit Goodreads for more information

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Anna Collage

All images but bottom left: leabharlann /  Bottom left: Simini Blocker Illustration

Publisher Summary

Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris–until she meets Étienne St. Clair. Smart, charming,beautiful, Étienne has it all…including a serious girlfriend. 

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?

Visit Goodreads for more information

 Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

TOG Collage

Clockwise from top left: Fan art by Susan Dennard / 143believeme / walkingnorth / leafette

Publisher Summary

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom. 

Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her… but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best. 

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another. 

Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

Visit Goodreads for more information

Armchair BEA 2014 – Author Interaction

Happy Tuesday friends…I don’t know about you but getting into the swing of things today has been a chore! Long weekends are THE.BEST, up until you have to drag your butt out of bed on Tuesday morning! Thankfully I had another day of Armchair BEA to look forward to and today’s topic is about author interaction! What a timely topic as I was JUST reading a new post by Ginger over at GReads! where she talked about her dream YA panel of authors. I was so inspired by her post and by the topic for today’s Armchair BEA posting that I thought I would create my own list of authors I would love to meet!

Design by Nina of Nina Reads

Design by Nina of Nina Reads

I want to start off this list by saying that although I have never been to an author signing or panel, I’ve still been lucky enough to have some fabulous author interactions on Twitter with many of the people I list below. I’ve found that Twitter is a great way to reach out to your favorite authors, as most of the time they are super responsive and SO friendly. As a matter of fact, the interactions I have had with authors via Twitter is one of the things that inspired me to start this blog. What they bring to the book blogging community with their interactions and friendships with readers is so heart warming and I totally wanted to join in the fun! If you haven’t done so already, I highly encourage you to reach out to your favorite author on their Twitter account. I guarantee it will be a great experience.

OK….now on to the authors I simply MUST meet someday. In no particular order…

fangirl

Sarah J. Maas
Do I really need to say anything besides the fact that this woman is responsible for Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight? I’d love to meet Sarah simply to thank her for writing such a strong female character who is brave and strong, but also naturally flawed. I sped through these books and could not put them down. Her next book, Heir of Fire, is the third book in this story and I’m not the only one eagerly anticipating its release this September. I have a feeling her appearance at BEA will be one of its most popular events of the expo.

Rainbow Rowell
I’ve only read Eleanor & Park and Fangirl but Rainbow is definitely an author I would love to meet someday. Both books were told with such real voices that really made me identify with each of the female leads. I mean, who hasn’t gone through a little bit of self-exploration and discovery. Rainbow manages to take some really heavy life moments and write them with such wit and humor that you can’t help but immediately relate. Plus – her Twitter feed is hilarious so I know she has a great sense of humor and would be a blast to have a quick chat with! Look for her newest release, Landline, releasing on July 8th.

Stephanie Perkins
When I first started getting in to the book blogging community I met a fantastic blogger named Andi of Andi’s ABCs! She’s what I like to call my book guru and one of the first books she recommended to me was Anna and the French Kiss. I immediately picked up a copy because I ALWAYS listen to Andi’s suggestions, and I fell in love. Right after finishing Anna, I started Lola and the Boy Next Door and my love for all things Stephanie Perkins continued! She really knows how to right swoony love stories that involve the swooniest of book boyfriends. I’d love to sit with Stephanie and talk to her about her inspiration for each book and how she manages to write such amazing characters. She has an upcoming release this summer, Isla and the Happily Ever After, that fans are rabidly waiting on! Myself included.

Emery Lord
I don’t even know where to start when it comes to this fabulously talented debut author! Her novel, Open Road Summer took the book community by storm this spring and SOOO many people are absolutely head over heels in love with this story about forever friendships and new love. Out of all the authors I interact with on Twitter I would say that Emery is the most engaging and always takes time out to respond to my fangirl tweets…even if they get borderline obsessive sometimes! All kidding aside, Emery has such a raw talent and I am so excited to see where her writing takes her. I’d love to meet up with her, give her a BIG hug and then ask her if she wants to take a road trip to Cali this summer.

A.C. Gaughen
Ohhhh…A.C. Gaughen….do I have a bone to pick with you! I’m hoping we get to meet someday so I can scold you for breaking my heart into a billion little pieces! Just kidding….sort of! Her first two books Scarlet and Lady Thief are an exquisite re-telling of Robin Hood that left me crying my eyes out by the end of book two. My heart was broken…but in the best possible way. A.C. was actually sweet enough to sign her two books for me at a Boston-area author event that I wasn’t able to attend and for that I will be forever grateful. If I were ever to meet her I’d want to give her a big hug for being the sweetest and also bribe her for details on book three of her series so I can sleep at night!

Rae Carson
You guys…if you haven’t read the Girl of Fire and Thorns trilogy, I don’t think we can be friends! OK, not really but I’m seriously urging you to pick up these books and binge read them as soon as possible! The world building that Rae is capable of is nothing short of amazing and I MUST get inside that ridiculously talented head of hers to find out how she can write such fantastic stories. OH…and the rooooomance in this series is one of my most favorite in all of the swoon-worthy love stories out there (say it with me now…HECTOOOORRR!!) and I would personally like to thank her for giving me ALL the feels! Seriously…all of them!

Veronica Rossi
Another author who knows how to build some seriously amazing worlds in her Under the Never Sky series! You’ve got Dwellers vs Outsiders, Aether storms, Perry and Aria, and Roar…oh my sweet little Roar (heart-broken)! What I wouldn’t give to pick Veronica’s brain to find out how she came up with this epic journey of a story and also thank her for writing one of the best male/female friendships I’ve ever read in a book. The supportive and protective relationship between Aria and Roar was such a refreshing change of pace from the love triangle scenario we see in so many books. So, Veronica, if you ever come to Boston you know I’ll be there!

Gayle Forman
Speaking of swoon-worthy romances!!! Sigh…where do I begin? Willem and Allyson of Just One Day/Just One Year? Adam and Mia of If I Stay/Where She Went? PLEASE…don’t make me choose! Gayle’s stories make me weak in the knees! The drama, the passion…it all weaves together into these beautifully told love stories that will make your heart just ache! Gayle is another author who is so engaged with her readers on Twitter and I don’t know how she finds the time to respond to all of the love/questions/comments that she must get on a daily basis. When I do meet her (because I will) I definitely want to just let her know how much I appreciate the kindness she shows towards her fans.

Last but most certainly not least…

Laini Taylor
Just give me a minute while I hyper-ventilate into a bag! AHHHHHH…Laini Taylor!!! To quote an upcoming review I will be posting in June of Daughter of Smoke and Bone (sneak peek ya’ll!!)

“There are passages in this book, like the one above, that I would gladly crawl into and live there forever. Laini Taylor has a way of weaving her words and painting a picture on each page that makes you feel as though you are there…Just a few pages into this book and you’ll find yourself completely engulfed in the world that Taylor has built & you won’t want to leave any time soon.”

Or in other words….girlfriend can WRITE! I found myself reading and then immediately re-reading entire passages from the books because they were so freaking beautiful! I could not get over how intense her world building was and how she manages to write soooo beautifully about some really horrible things! The final installment of the series, Dreams of Gods and Monsters, was released in early April and I STILL haven’t managed to read my pre-ordered copy because I’m just not ready for the story to end. When the day finally comes for me to meet Laini Taylor I’ll probably lose my ability to speak and just stand their to bask in her glory!

There you have it..the authors that I fangirl over the most and really, really (fingers crossed) hope to meet one day! How about you? What authors are out there that you simply MUST meet! Do you have any favorite author interaction stories? Tips you can give me for not being completely star-struck when I finally do meet my favorite authors?