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review 2018-06-24 19:21
Damsels and Damsels Mermaids
Damsels Volume 1 Tp - Aneke,Leah Moore,John Reppion
Damsels Mermaids - Matt Sturges,Jean-Paul Deshong
Damsels Vol 2 - Leah Moore

The Damsels series, both the straight forward series by Leah Moore and the sequel series about the Littler Mermaid are at once good and leave you wanting more.  They are wonderful and frustrating.  It’s good but there is a sense that it can be much more.

 

                In part both series, in particular the first by Moore, explore the idea of storytelling as how it effects those in the story.   Are you living your life or simply a narrative?  In Moore’s Damsels this is carried though to the end of the series, but that ending feels rushed.

 

                Damsels Vol 1 and Vol2 follow the adventures of Rapa and her associates.  The story starts in meds rex.  You do not have a very strong sense of a what is going on, but that is because Rapa doesn’t, she is after all missing her memory.  It is then revealed that she is hunted; she is one of the missing princesses, for the witches have taken revenge.  Hence, we have a combination of Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast, the Little Mermaid, and Red Riding Hood, among others. 

 

                The character design is wonderful and Moore keeps to the harsher, more extreme version.  So, the Beast is cursed because he doesn’t want to have sex with an older woman, Sleeping Beauty is named Talia.  Though the stories are not quite as dark – Rapa doesn’t seem to have given birth to twins in the desert, among other things.  Yet the small details are quite amazing.  Rapa’s hair, for instance, is wonderfully rendered, and the comment from Talia about always being the spotlight and forced to be perfect are a wonderfully rebuke to the media and its portrayal of princess.

 

                The combination of various stories works quite well.    But the ending is sudden.  It works for the ending tells into the idea of storytelling well as well as the power of belief, but it also hits too fast and too many plot points are either hastily tied up or forgotten.  Perhaps this because the series was canceled, but I’m not sure.

 

                The Mermaids series which runs five issues chronicles the adventures of the Little Mermaid, seemingly before the start of the Damsels series.  The pacing is better, though I give the original series an edge in terms of art (though this is a totally subjective view).  The story is also somewhat darker, though there is a wonderful conversation between the mermaid and a selkie that sets the story going.

 

                There is a bit more humor in the Mermaid series as well, in particular during the fight scenes.  Like the original series, it is also concerned with the idea of kingship, love, and ruling.  It is also more of a woman in a man’s world story as well.

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review 2018-06-22 15:42
Good
Damsels Volume 1 Tp - Aneke,Leah Moore,John Reppion

If you can stand being dropped into a middle of mystery, this book rewards you in spades.  It takes well known fairy tales - Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty, the Little Mermiad, Beauty and the Beast among others  - and plays with the idea of story telling and revenge, and love.  It's actually quite beautiful LGTB friendly, including a few hits towards how social media treats famous women.

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text 2018-06-07 08:10
Blog Tour - Just One Of The Royals
 
 
Just One of the Royals
(The Chicago Falcons #2)
by Leah Rooper and Kate Rooper
Publication Date: June 2018
Publisher: Entangled Teen: Crush
 
 

Star hockey player Daniel Sacachelli wants only two things: 1) for the Falcons
to win next season, and 2) for his secret — the fact he’s actually the prince of Eldonia — to never make its way to Chicago. But if Daniel keeps avoiding his crown, their family will lose their kingdom forever.

Madison Myong can’t believe that her will-they-or-won’t-they best friend Daniel is
really a prince! He’s always seemed more rebel than royal. But now, he needs to clean up his image, fast. Posing as his long-time girlfriend, Madison accompanies him back to Eldonia, intending to give Daniel a makeover fit for a king.

Only, the more royal Daniel becomes, the more Madison misses her best friend. And if she does her job right, she’ll lose him forever...

 

Purchase Links:


Link to Tour Schedule:

http://www.chapter-by-chapter.com/tour-schedule-just-one-of-the-royals-by-leah-rooper-and-kate-rooper/

Goodreads:





ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Leah and Kate Rooper are sisters from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Growing up beside the Pacific Ocean and inside a temperate rainforest fed their sense of adventure as children, and nourished a curiosity for strange and distant lands. They fed this curiosity with books - lots and lots of books. After experiencing the magic of Middle-earth, they began creating their own worlds. When they're not writing, Leah and Kate spend their time blogging and vlogging about their travel adventures and their writing journey.



Kitty's Book Spot!- Guest post
 
KBS:  I would love a Guest Post about music. Whether the author(s) listen to it as they write, or make playlists for their books?
 
 
LKR:  We are so excited to write a post about music! Music plays a huge role in the way we write. We use music differently in the various stages of writing, so we thought we would break those down.

Brainstorming

This is where the story is just starting to take form in our minds. We’ll often create a joint Spotify playlist and add songs that inspire us. Usually, the songs we add correspond to a certain scene in the book. For example, we listened to “Nice and Airy” by Patrick Doyle from the Cinderella soundtrack to help inspire the sprawling green hills and quaint feel of Eldonia. We’ll often listen to the playlist together while we’re cooking or doing dishes and talk about ideas or what each song means.

Outlining


Once we finish our outline on paper, we’ll go back into Spotify and create a playlist that follows the order of the book. This playlist often includes a mix of scores and songs with lyrics. Each scene of the book has its own song (or two). Our parents live almost two hours away, so we’ll listen to this playlist on the drive to visit them and flesh out the plot.


First Draft


When writing the first draft, we’ll usually put our headphones on and listen to the song that most inspires the scene we're writing. It’s not uncommon for us to listen to the same song on repeat for an hour while writing a scene.


Editing


We don’t listen to as much music while editing. We find we really need to concentrate on the words and sentence structure. We’ll often put on relaxing background music or a "rain sounds" video from YouTube. Video game music is great for this — the Breath of the Wild and Animal Crossing soundtracks are two of our favs!

Thanks for taking the time to read about our music process! As a bonus, we’ve included some of our favourite songs from the “Just One of the Royals” playlist!

  • Chelsea Dagger by The Fratellis: This is the song the Chicago Blackhawks (our favourite NHL team) play when they score a goal...so obviously we imagine it as the goal song for our Chicago Falcons :) 
  • Almost There from Princess and the Frog: We love Disney music, and although the lyrics aren’t perfect, this song embodies Madison in a lot of ways. Madison does so much for other people and tries to accomplish so many things that she doesn’t have time to be a normal teenager.
  • Bella Notte from Lady and the Tramp: Daniel Sacachelli is very proud of his Italian heritage and besides being an amazing hockey player, he’s also a talented cook. His signature dish is spaghetti, so obviously the most famous spaghetti-eating song of all time had to make it on our playlist. 
  • Who is She by Patrick Doyle: We listened to the Cinderella soundtrack A LOT when writing this book. Of course, being set in a castle we needed lots of grand ballroom songs.
  • Dive by Ed Sheeran: This song really struck us as Daniel and Madison, two people who care so much about each other, but there’s so many things keeping them apart.




Giveaway Details:

$20 Amazon Gift Card (INT)
 
 

Direct Link to Giveaway:
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/c08c9e8e694/?





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review 2018-06-06 00:44
What You Don't Know About Charlie Outlaw by Leah Stewart
What You Don't Know About Charlie Outlaw - Leah Stewart

Charlie Outlaw is a celebrity. His rise to fame has been an enjoyable one despite the attendant problems of becoming famous and never being able to go anywhere every again, but unfortunately his rising star coincides with the fall in fortunes of his girlfriend Josie Lamar. She was the star of a cult tv-series, but has failed to match that in the years since the show's end. At the start of the novel this has caused them to break up and after some ill-chosen words during what should have been a puff-piece interview, Charlie is on the run to 'find himself'.

Charlie picks an obscure island nation and tells no one where he is going and ends up kidnapped. Meanwhile Josie is doing some soul-searching of her own and discovers that she needs to find Charlie, little knowing what she is going to find out. Both of them will be severely tested before they get through their ordeals. Stewart builds up a microcosm of Hollywood and creates empathetic and strong characters in Charlie and Josie. Almost eight months later, much of the book has faded from memory, but while it was happening it was hard to put down.

Is this chick lit? If so, I might be in favor of more of this.

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review 2018-05-24 03:31
Leah on the Offbeat (Creekwood #2)
Leah on the Offbeat - Becky Albertalli

Wow, I don't even know where to start with how awful this book is.

 

Terrible bi rep? Check.

Terrible girl rep? Check

Terrible fat girl rep? Check.

 

I loved Simon Vs The Homo-Sapiens Agenda and fell in love with all the characters (well, not Martin) and I felt especially drawn to Leah. So when I found out there was going to be another book, centered on Leah, I got excited. Then the blurb mentioned that she's suddenly bisexual, and I got concerned because there was zero indication or hint of that in the first book. But it couldn't be that bad, right?

 

Other reviewers have said it better: this story felt like fanfic. And not even good fanfic. It felt like the really bad fanfic that you don't admit to reading. The AU kind where everyone's gay and acts so out of character as to be unrecognizable in order to force together the writer's OTP that makes zero sense in canon but dammit they're going to make it work no matter what. 

 

On top of that, there's no plot. It's just a string of scenes that are connected only be the fact they happen chronologically (aside from a couple of flashbacks). Leah exists just to be awful and condescending and rude to everyone, yet for some reason everyone still loves her.

 

There's also no heart. We never learn why Leah acts the way she does because there's zero reflection on her actions or feelings, and so she never learns or develops. She's the exact same awful person at the end of the book as she is at the start of it, and she's taken everyone else down with her. This is just Leah referring to herself as a bitch for 300 pages because isn't it hilarious when girls call themselves slur words? There's no reason to care about Leah, so there's no reason to care about anything that's going on around her.

 

There's a really awkward attempt at addressing racism that feels more like it was written as an overhanded after-school special message than an actual examination of racism and all of its nuances. It's there solely to give Leah one shining moment of being not completely sucky. 

 

In a word, this book is superficial.

 

The first half dragged because nothing happened aside from Leah being rude, not knowing how to express herself, and constantly having brain freeze, stopped heart and flipping stomach, because that's what hormones do to seventeen-year old girls. And apparently being bisexual means you develop crushes on everyone. I couldn't take the plodding pace of non-action, so I did skim most of the second half starting around 60%. Thankfully, not much happened in that section beyond prom, Leah and her girlfriend being selfish and awful to everyone at prom, and the writer leaving a bunch of dangling threads.

 

This was a huge disappointment and read like the Ms. Albertalli just phoned it in.

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