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Blogger Book Review: Afterlife by Claudia Gray

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 12, 2011

Good morning, inkpoppers! A lazy Sunday is never complete without a good book in hand; thus, today we bring you a review of Evernight – the concluding book in the Evernight series by Claudia Gray – from Precious of Fragments of Life.

Stop by Fragments of Life to read more reviews from Precious; at this very moment, savor the romance and suspense of Afterlife!

“In the fourth book, the starcrossed lovers Bianca and Lucas encounter another reason that set them apart from each other. After his transformation, Lucas awoke as a bloodthirsty vampire – craving more blood than the usual newborns. He hated himself for feeling what his enemies feel. Without her body, Bianca could only help him minimally. She faced her own struggles with being as wraith. When she was in Evernight Academy, wraiths have attacked her but now that she was one of them, she struggles to understand their intentions. With the help of Maxie, Bianca goes to Christopher in the world of lost things to search for answers and explanations.

“As always, I loved the pace and the unpredictability of Gray’s last installment. I have grown to like Bianca’s narrative. It was familiar and soothing despite the obstacles and problems that she and Lucas encountered. They seek the protection and guidance for Lucas in Evernight Academy, the territory of Mrs. Bethany – the headmistress who wants nothing more than revenge against the wraiths for the havoc they wrecked.

“I love that the characters have grown. They have learned to conquer their fears and to deal with the challenges of life or afterlife in some cases. The twists and turns made everything better. I was constantly surprised with the turn of events. I got to know the other side of some of the characters that I normally would not pay attention to.

“This was a great end to the ‘Evernight’ series. Gray sustained the drama, suspense and action. She never failed in delivering the best to her readers. ‘Afterlife’ is the shocking, heart pounding, tragic and romantic conclusion to Lucas and Bianca’s struggle with their love and lives.”

Thanks to Precious of Fragments of Life for stopping by to discuss Afterlife with us.

Over to you…have you read Afterlife? If so, what did you think of it? If not, will you be picking this book up during your next trip to the bookstore and/or library?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in Blogger Book Review, inkpop 2.0, inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Blogger Book Review: Hereafter by Tara Hudson

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 11, 2011

Rise and shine, inkpoppers! Today we bring you a review of author Tara Hudson’s hauntingly beautiful debut Hereafter from Tina of Fantastic Book Review.

Stop by Fantastic Book Review to read more of Tina’s reviews. For now, prepare to be swept up in Hereafter!

“Breathtaking and eerie in its telling, ‘Hereafter’ sheds beauty on the entangled existence of life and death. The story is unique and enthralling; I was immersed into its pages completely. A world beyond the living, the Hereafter dug its claws into me and never let up.

“From the first thoughts of Amelia’s nightmarish retellings, I was immediately captivated. Her voice is eerie but mesmerizing at the same time, I felt compelled to follow along as she told her story. ‘Hereafter’ ended up being a ghostly page turner. There was not one thing in this book that I did not like. It felt effortless as I read the pages while lively images sprouted into my head. Hudson’s writing flowed beautifully and captured the light and dark elements of the Hereafter.

“With a cast of unforgettable characters, I can only imagine what’s in store for Amelia and Joshua next. With all the secrets surrounding High Bridge Road, nothing is as it seems. This paranormal debut will ensnare you into its world with its eerie beauty.”

Thank you to Tina of Fantastic Book Review for chatting with us about Hereafter.

Over to you…have you read Hereafter? If so, what did you think of it? If not, will you be picking this book up during your next trip to the bookstore and/or library?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in Blogger Book Review, inkpop 2.0, inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

inkpop Fundamentals: June 7, 2011

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 7, 2011

‘Mortal Instruments’ author Cassandra Clare gives two thumbs up for the casting of Jamie Campbell Bower as Shadowhunter Jace Wayland! Though many have been up in arms since the official casting announcement of actor Jamie Campbell Bower as Shadowhunter Jace Wayland in the big screen adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s The Mortal Instruments series – some cheering and others expressing concern that the actor doesn’t embody Jace the way that Alex Pettyfer (the original name linked with the role in question) does – one individual who is thrilled about the casting is the author herself. Cassandra recently sat down with MTV to discuss the intricacies of casting, why Bower is such a perfect fit for Jace, fan reactions (to which she has stated “When they see him on the cover of a magazine, dressed up as Jace, with the runes, with the hair, with the build, they’re going to be pleasantly shocked and surprised and happy.”), and much more. Check out the full-length interview here. MTV.

‘Sweet Valley High’ spin-off on its way to the ‘net Since the return of Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield – the towheaded twins from Sweet Valley, CA – in Francine Pascal’s Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later, which found itself on multiple bestseller’s lists in April of 2011, many have been unable to quell their desire to read more about the twins that they know and love from childhood – and now they won’t have to. Last week, St. Martin’s Press revealed that they will be releasing a follow-up to the bestseller – though it won’t be available in stores. “The new follow-up, tentatively titled The Sweet Life, will be published as a digital-only serial beginning next spring. It will be released in monthly installments published online, mimicking the original cliff-hanger form of the original series. St. Martin’s expects that the installments, which will run approximately 20,000 words each, will especially be read on mobile phones.” New York Times.

‘The Hunger Games’…four films instead of three? The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, Mockingjay. There are three titles in Suzanne Collins’ bestselling The Hunger Games trilogy; but now that the series is being adapted into a feature film franchise, those three books may be adapted into four films a la the adaptations of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn. Though nothing is set in stone yet, as Lionsgate has only signed up to produce one film thus far, chances are that the entire series will be picked up upon release of the first installment, and the additional three will hit theaters soon thereafter. “As for how the trilogy will be turned into four films, it’ll go much the way that ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘Twilight Saga’ did. The first two books will be the first two films. The last book will be split in half. The final installment, ‘Mockingjay’, is logistically ambitious and can be scaled up comfortably to cover two films.” Deadline.

Over to you…now that you’ve read author Cassandra Clare’s thoughts on Jamie Campbell Bower playing the role of Shadowhunter Jace Wayland, has your opinion changed? Are you excited to see him take on the role? Are you excited to see a sequel to Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later? What are your thoughts on digital-only serials – yay or nay? Would you read an entire book on your mobile phone – why or why not? Do you like the idea of adapting Mockingjay into two films instead of one, or would you rather see it as a single movie?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Fundamentals, inkpop News, Pop Culture, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

inkpopper of the Week: Jennii

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 6, 2011

“Hmm… about me… well, I have a thing for grammar. It’s the only reason I’m passing English because, quite frankly, I don’t like freshman English; perhaps it’s the only thing I’m capable of despising besides laws that aren’t constitutional and breaches of freedom of speech (I heart the First Amendment).

“I’m a bit of a headbanger. Corey Taylor of Slipknot and Stone Sour fame and Otep Shamaya of… well, of Otep, are my musical idols. Concerts are my weekend activities when I have the cash to buy tickets and there’s a good band playing locally. But don’t let that fool you. I’m on the youth leader council for my youth group and have been going to church for somewhere around a decade. I have a love/hate relationship with my DSLR.

“As for the trivial things, I am a southern California resident. I live in a boring suburb that doesn’t even qualify as a small town because every inch of space has a house crammed in there. I hope to go to college at Trinity in Dublin, Ireland because I like European history, Trinity has a good English department, and Ireland is gorgeous. I have a three-legged dog who is made of awesome. I am a nerdfighter (DFTBA). I read a lot and it disrupts my sleep habits, but it’s not as if I don’t write until I’m hunched over the keyboard with my eyes half-open on a regular basis. Speaking of which, I like writing. Just thought I’d throw that in there.”

It’s a good thing that Jenni (aka Jennii) likes writing, because the people of inkpop? Well, to put it bluntly, they love her work – as evident by the Gold Star her project Stake My Heart earned in February 2011, and the rapid pace at which her new project, Things Unseen, is climbing the charts.

Your project Stake My Heart is incredibly popular on inkpop, and received a gold star in the February 2011 Top Picks. How did it feel to see it garner so much success; and receive such a fantastic review? Is Stake My Heart a project that you are still working on, or have you shelved it for the time being to devote time to something new?

Jennii: It felt a little bit… odd? I’d written a few novels already, but I never let anyone see those. Then, I sign up to this site, write this novel that I only wrote because I wanted to write about a metal band, and suddenly I have people telling me they love Michael and that the band reminds them of this one band I used to be into, Black Veil Brides (that was certainly an ironic comment, as I’d just interviewed the guitarist). The review was nice.

In relation to the next question, it kind of made me annoyed with the fact that Stake My Heart has been discontinued. Especially since starting Things Unseen and having people respond to it even better, I just don’t have any interest in SMH. Not to mention, I read over the last ten or so chapters that I crammed in just to finish. It’s weird to see my own improvement that’s happened in just the past year—and I thank God that I improved.

Your most recent project, Things Unseen, has only been on the site since March 31, 2011, yet it is already ranked as # 138 on the charts, and climbs higher with each passing day. How does it feel to know that you are quickly on your way to making it into the Top 5? What is currently going through your mind? Since you have already made it into the Top 5 in the past, do you feel differently about it this time?

Jennii: Well, this is the first time I’ve seen the rank in a few weeks, so I’m not sure how to feel. I’ve actually paid no attention to where it’s been. I don’t scroll down my page to see it, and I cover the part of the screen when I’m updating. It’s nice to know that it’s still climbing, though (thanks, Zoey and whoever else has been promoting).

As for what’s going through my mind… I need to work on chapter twenty-one, I need to edit sixteen, seventeen, and maybe another one before Zoey spams me, and I need to go back and fix up some little things that I keep forgetting to fix up. If it gets into the top five, it will come as a surprise to me the day I log in, seeing as I’m not looking at the rank. I’d be honored, but it starts to feel anti-climactic, in all honesty. I forgot about SMH’s review for a couple weeks after February ended, then one of the other February top fivers messaged me, asking if I was anxious. It felt odd. All I want is the input; numbers really aren’t my thing.

Both of your projects fall into the Horror / Paranormal / Romance genre. Would you say that this is your favorite genre to write? Would you ever consider writing something completely different from these genres? If so, which one and why?

Jennii: I’d say that it’s what I’m most familiar with. I’ve been reading it for years now. Romance is generally a mainstay in whatever I read; I’m a terrible romantic, despite not liking to date. Paranormal and horror are nice, but that’s just where most of my ideas fall in most instances. I’ve got two ideas that I’ve been playing with that are both different. One is a general fiction idea that I’ll probably never write simply because it’s straight-up romance (think mass-market paperbacks by one of those middle-age women who can pump out nine books every five years). The other is in the outlining stages until I finish Things Unseen and will be a dystopian romance, although it may tip-toe the line of horror as some of my other projects have done.

Obviously, what with Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight and other vampires in pop culture, people are incredibly opinionated when it comes to them. Seeing as how vampires are a focal point in Stake My Heart, what are your thoughts on them, and how they are represented in the entertainment industry (books/movies/TV)? How do you feel your vampires compare?

Jennii: I feel that they’re fictional beings with roots in ancient superstition. Every culture has its vampires. I’ve done research into it for my last three books, and it’s really made me aware of the fact that they differ so much. It’s ridiculous how people bicker over them. There really is no “real” vampire. The one we know best is the one that’s due to uneducated, superstitious people digging up bodies and seeing the natural states of composition (bloating, skin pulling back from fingers and toes to make nails appear to be still growing, etc.) and assuming their dead Great Uncle Bernard has been chomping on the villagers. Other cultures believe in demons that feed on the psyches of their victims. There’s a whole culture today where people call themselves “psy-vamps” and “feed” on the emotions of others.

I think that it’s great that writers are creating their own idea of the vampire, but some variety is nice. That’s what I like about my vampires; they stick to tradition. I love writing the hero that’s just plain Michael/Aidan/Keir/etc. or just plain Aria/Haven/Belle/etc. They have their weaknesses, and there’s just about nothing they can do to be more than human. When the monster’s got the best cards in the deck, the hero and heroine have more room to grow stronger; they have to work hard to win, and that lets them develop more.

What do you feel influences your writing and why?

Jennii: Random little things. Like I said, Stake My Heart came about because I wanted to write about a metal band. I fronted a metal band, so I guess that’s where the idea first stemmed from. The watch on the cover of Things Unseen actually belongs to me. It’s a 108-year-old Ingersol Junior from my great-grandfather. I was holding it one day and just thinking about all the history that’s in it. The thing is so damaged inside, it’s got to have seen a lot. It felt almost magical because I adore history, and that watch has been through almost the entire twentieth century. Things Unseen spawned from that and a bunch of little notes about the idea.

I also tend to get ideas from little things I see, but that’s usually for little bits and pieces of scenes. It’s fun to imagine the stories behind certain people, and that sometimes creates a new story or scene in my head.

Who was your favorite childhood author and why?

Jennii: I have no idea who wrote the Magic Treehouse series, but those were my first chapter books. I stayed up reading them until one, much to my parents’ chagrin. I also loved my books on Greek mythology, bugs, and dinosaurs, but I’ve got the same plight there. R.L. Stine held my attention fairly well. I only read some of the Goosebumps books, but they were enough to feed my little mind.

Pop, Pop, Pop! Rapid Fire Questions:

Favorite song? Palace in Flames or Fetish for the Finite by Fearless Vampire Killers (Look them up; they’re amazing and need a bigger American fan base.)
What’s on your iPod? Fearless Vampire Killers, Slipknot, Casting Crowns, Otep, HorrorPops, Rise Against.
Hidden talent? I can lick my elbow, but people are more surprised that I can sing.
Twilight or Harry Potter? Harry Potter.
Book you could read over and over again? None. My mind retains things for two years, at the least. If it’s gone sooner, it’s not worth rereading.

Over to you…who do you think should be the next inkpopper of the Week?

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Interviews, inkpopper of the Week, Teen Talent | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Blogger Book Review: Compulsion by Heidi Ayarbe

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 5, 2011

Happy, Happy Sunday, inkpoppers! Today we bring you a fascinating peek at Obsessive Compulsive Disorder via a review of Heidi Ayarbe’s Compulsion straight from Sherry of Flipping Pages for All Ages.

To read more reviews from Sherry, stop by Flipping Pages for All aGes; for now, settle in with Compulsion.

“I’ll start off this review by telling you all that this has got to be one of the most unique books I have ever read. Reading about a topic that you have no familiarity with is quite a different experience but possibly more enjoyable than books that repeat the same ideas over and over again. I don’t suffer with OCD, or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and I don’t know anyone that does. I have also never read anything about it, so I have nothing really to compare this to. I imagine that what the author has written is pretty close to how this disorder actually is for some people.

“Jake Martin is a star soccer player that also suffers with OCD. In his mind, he is constantly using math on different sets of numbers(i.e the time) in hopes of getting a prime number. Times when primes aren’t found, find Jake getting anxious and sick. Everything in his life is related to these numbers (at least that is how he feels). His continous winning on the soccer field, and especially, his family’s safety.

“While the book was good, parts of it were definitely confusing and at times, seemed irrational, but to people with OCD, it’s not irrational at all. That’s how everyday life is for them. It’s actually quite amazing to get a glimpse into a persons life who suffers from it. That said, it was kind of distracting to constantly read about the numbers. I know that’s what the book is about, but I felt like everytime I had to stop and read about adding this and subtracting this and so on that when it got back to the story I had to think back to where I was before everything went all mathematical.

“I did enjoy how the story went into the family dynamics. We get to see the relationships with his parents (his mom is also Obsessive Compulsive) and his younger sister. There is also a really strong relationship throughout the book with Jake’s best friend Luc.

“Overall, this is something I recommend to anyone. People who have never had any experience with OCD, it will be eye-opening(it was for me), of for those of you who do, it might be interesting to escape into somebody elses OCD.”

Thank you to Sherry of Flipping Pages for All Ages for sharing her views on Compulsion with us.

Over to you…have you read Compulsion? If so, what did you think of it? If not, will you be picking this book up during your next trip to the bookstore and/or library?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in Blogger Book Review, inkpop 2.0, inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Blogger Book Review: Kitty Kitty by Michele Jaffe

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 4, 2011

Welcome to the weekend, inkpoppers! On this first Saturday of June we bring you a review of a fun piece of fiction to kick off your summer the right way – Michele Jaffe’s Kitty Kitty from Sara of the blog The Hiding Spot.

Of herself Sara says, “I’m a college student and ex-aspiring novelist. Maybe someday I’ll write something, but for now I stick to reading and spreading the word about great books!” Visit The Hiding Spot to read more reviews from Sara; for now brace yourself for Kitty Kitty!

“Michele Jaffe’s books totally rock my socks off! I don’t know how she comes up with such great plot lines and hilarious dialogue, I just hope she never stops!

“‘Kitty Kitty’ is the the continuation of Jas’ story that began in Jaffe’s first YA novel, ‘Bad Kitty’. While readers will most likely be able to follow Jas’ story if they begin with ‘Kitty Kitty’, I recommend reading ‘Bad Kitty’ first. Not only will you have a better idea of who the characters are and how they came to be in Venice, you’ll also laugh your head off.

“One of my favorite things about reading Jaffe’s YA novels is the fact that when I’m reading, I constantly feel the need to find someone to read passages aloud to! These books are so funny that I ‘must’ share them!

“There isn’t a lot of YA mystery out there – which is another reason to pick up Jaffe’s books. She is a seasoned mystery author, as she writes adult romantic mysteries as well. I’ve read her adult novels and was pleasantly surprised to see that she wrote YA as well. The YA novels are completely different than the adult novels, but just as good: Jaffe’s diverse writing talent astounds me!

“Those of you who have read ‘Bad Kitty’ will be happy to see all your favorite characters return for ‘Kitty Kitty’. Those of you who haven’t read ‘Bad Kitty’… hurry up and read it: there are some characters you need to meet!”

Thank you to Sara of The Hiding Spot for sharing her thoughts regarding Kitty Kitty with us.

Over to you…have you read Kitty Kitty? If so, what did you think of it? If not, will you be picking this book up during your next trip to the bookstore and/or library?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in Blogger Book Review, inkpop 2.0, inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

May 2011 Top Picks!

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 1, 2011

The official start of summer is almost upon us, inkpoppers! But before we can usher in a new season, we must usher out a handful of new projects – selected by YOU – which are already on their way to the desk of the HarperCollins Editorial Board for review!

So what five (5) projects were voted most popular for May 2011? Find out below!

inkpop May 2011 Top Picks:

Mercury Books by Ms.Marauder (Book – General Fiction / Humor / Romance)

Plastic Rings by Colleen Dorothy Marie O’Reilly (Book – General Fiction / Romance)

Silence by Hannah H (Book – Adventure / Science Fiction / Fantasy / Romance / Paranormal)

Windswept by wildgreenskittle (Book – Science Fiction / Fantasy / Romance)

The Wishing Well by MariellaHunt (Book – General Fiction / Romance / Paranormal / Mystery)

Congratulations to the May 2011 Top Pick authors! Once the Editorial Board has had the chance to review your project, you will receive a critique and feedback from a HarperCollins Editor.

In the meantime…five slots now stand empty. Does your project have what it takes to be a June 2011 Top Pick?

Speaking of Top Picks…what was your favorite May 2011 Top Pick? Did you fall under Cameron Quillen’s charming spell in Mercury Books? Were you inundated with dreams from your childhood after delving into the pages of Plastic Rings? Did Sage’s harrowing plight found within the pages of Silence leave you spellbound? Were you swept up in the beautiful prose found within Windswept? Did the mystery of The Wishing Well make you rethink your last wish?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in It Happened To Me on inkpop, Teen Talent, Teen Trends, Top Picks | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

inkpopper of the Week: Lithiawood

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on May 30, 2011

“Well, the name is Lithia, for starters. I was named after a park –– my mom’s favorite place in the world. I recently turned seventeen years old and I’m wrapping up my junior year of high school, as well as my cultural exchange program in France. That’s right, I’m an American in Paris the South of France. No worries though, I’ll be back on home turf July 11th. 😉

“My official pets: My cats, Cleopatra (Cleo), Hero (Coffee face), and Slyvia; and my dog, Desdemona (Dessie). They’re all named after Shakespearean characters because my mom is Shakespeare’s number one fangirl.

“My nonofficial pets: Ted, the possum who visits to munch on cat food every once in a while; the multitude of Ghost Cows who live in the woods around my bus stop; the hundreds of Peepers (tree frogs) who talk to me 24/7 all summer long; and Bob, a Stork who likes to drop by for sushi (my parents claim he’s a Heron but I know better –– how else would we get new little baby fishies each year?).

“I play the alto saxophone in my school’s band, marching band, and jazz band, and over the summer I play in a community band. I’ve been in love with it since I started, wayyyy back in the fourth grade.

“I also love theater –– I took my first drama class my freshman year and when it became an option, I immediately signed up to do the school musical (Crazy for You) too. That summer I went to a three week acting camp in Brooklyn, New York and had the best time of my life, and my sophomore year I took Advanced Drama and played the idiotic doctor in Oliver! Improv games and monologues are two of my favorite activities ever, I never get tired of ‘em.”

Another thing Lithia (aka Lithiawood) never gets tired of? Editing! Though the projects Lithia has posted here on inkpop show that she loves to put pen to paper to churn out short stories and poems; her one true love is actually editing the work of others.

According to your profile, on June 25, 2011, you will be posting a nonfiction project on inkpop about “writing mistakes you’re making, an educational self-helper based on the largest mistakes I’ve seen fellow teen writers making (and how to fix them, of course).” Is this something that inkpoppers have requested that you write, or was it something you decided to do on your own? Can you give us any extra information about this project?

Lithiawood: I first got the idea within a week of being on inkpop, just because I looked at the essay section and saw no one had done it before. One crazy fit of writing later and I had it posted. It got really positive reviews, so I’m excited to bring the new and improved version to inkpop and see how well it’s received this time. It’s something near and dear to me, mostly because I’m an editor at heart and I hate seeing new writers making the same silly mistakes. While it most certainly isn’t going to baby walk you through the process of creating a hit, it does outline easy things you can do to make your journey that much easier.

Your profile states that you love to edit people’s work…where did this passion come from?

Lithiawood: I guess it has to be in the genes. My dad’s side of the family consists almost entirely of professors and when I used to let him read over my essays for school he’d mark them up so much I’d have to re-write the entire thing. Three or four times. And my mother is a grammar freak like I am, so…there you go. Baby, I was born this way. XD

Currently, you have six projects posted on inkpop, all of which fall into the poem and/or short story category. Have you ever written a fiction book? If not, is this something you would contemplate doing in the future – why or why not?

Lithiawood: I have started writing several fiction books, but finished none. There’s one I’m working on right now, either called I’m Too Sane For That or just Sane, depending on what day you ask me, about a girl who decides to blame a crying binge in the school bathroom on her absent alcoholic mother. I also have a science fiction book running around in my head, based on my short story, [Erase], about a world where scientists perform experiments years long on brainwashed humans and then wipe their brains before they re-enter society.

You write, you edit…which do you feel embodies you more – writing fiction of your own or editing the work of others? Why?

Lithiawood: Now, don’t go calling me a cheat for not choosing, but I like to think of the two as my ying and yang. You know how people usually use their left brain or their right brain more? The creative and logical sides of a person. But I don’t think I use one more than the other; I’ve always been this balanced creative-and-yet-also-academic mixture. The fact that I am so engrossed in both the creative and technical aspects of writing embodies that.

What do you feel influences your writing and why?

Lithiawood: Life influences me (what else could?). I draw a lot from my own life, or bigger issues in the world that bug me. The double-standards of homophobia inspired my poem, Gold, and my personal realization of the importance of religious tolerance is the basis for I’d Thought I Was Right, my other poem. The basic journalist dilemma inspired the moral crisis in [Erase], and aspects of my own life are where Sane’s plot comes from. I could go on and on…but I think you see the point. 😉

I think I write about those things because they’re the most important to me, and a lot of the time I need a good venue to get rid of excess frustration from me worrying so much about them. Writing is that venue; it’s brilliant therapy.

Do you hope to see your nonfiction project make it into the Top 5?

Lithiawood: I hope. Who knows if it will happen. But it would be amazing, yes. I’d love to see what an editor would make of it, not to mention that means a lot more people would read it. And my book can’t help people unless they read it!

If you were to sit down at this very moment, and write a fiction novel, what genre would it be and why?

Lithiawood: The genre would probably be humor, because I think that’s an under-appreciated genre at the moment. All these melodramatic paranormal epic prophecies and demons from hell and long, hard roads ahead…seriously authors, a good book can be one that makes people laugh too (if Akajar can do it so can you)! Oh, and it’d be science fiction as well, because I love social relations science fiction more than anything (can I hear an Ender’s Game woot woot?!).

As someone who has been bitten by the editing bug…what is your biggest pet peeve when it comes to writing? What will turn you off to a project immediately?

Lithiawood: My biggest pet peeve is when I see a project that has not undergone basic proofreading. If you haven’t run your story through a spell-checker or re-read it for silly typos, it’s really obvious, and it shows the reader you don’t respect them enough to at least try and present something…presentable. No, you do not have to catch every single mistake in your writing (the hard stuff is what inkie critics are there for), but you do have to take out some time to look it over and fix whatever glaring errors there are. That part at the very least is not my job. 😉

On a scale of 1 to 10, how helpful do you think your nonfiction project will be to inkies and why?

Lithiawood: It will vary person to person, but I think the key is that it should be able to help everyone with something. Say you know everything there is to know about writing a good plot, that just means that while the plot chapter might not help, maybe the grammar chapter will. Or maybe you know everything there is about writing –– you can help me out and let me know what I’ve missed (and I’m an inkie so that counts)!

Anything else you’d like to add?

Lithiawood: Six tidbits of randomness:

1 – The word for someone who critiques is a critic. The whole “critiquers” thing? No.
2 – (Lexie Pooh, don’t read this one) I’m going to see a legit bullfight in June. I’m excited. It should be cool. 🙂
3 – Guys, Lydia’s SPLENDIFEROUS WEEK OF UPDATES or something is coming up! Y’alls better be ready! Message Lydia Bloomfield for more details!
4 – Go listen to Hide and Seek by Imogen Heap. DO IT. *mind powers, enforces yoda*
5 – To be added to the updates list for Writing Mistakes You’re Making message meh.
6 – The reason my photos are all funky looking is because I’m obsessed with right now. 😛

Pop, Pop, Pop! Rapid Fire Questions:

Favorite TV show? Of all time? Gilmore Girls. Currently? Misfits.
What’s on your iPod? SO MANY! (*brain melt*) Classic Disney, OneRepublic, The Fray, Taylor Swift, Mika.
Lucky number? 9
The Hunger Games…Peeta or Gale? Peeta, bien sûr! Frosting + hot guy is always okay in my book. 😉
You’re stranded on a desert island, what five books do you take with you? The Ultimate Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Ulysses, The Neverending Story, The Hobbit, and How To Get Un-stranded On A Desert Island With Only Five Books To Keep You Company (or if that one’s unavailable, East).

Over to you…who do you think should be the next inkpopper of the Week?

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Interviews, inkpopper of the Week, Teen Talent | Tagged: , , , , , , | 11 Comments »

Blogger Book Review: Illusions by Aprilynne Pike

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on May 29, 2011

Good morning, inkpoppers! Just a few weeks ago many of you chatted with author Aprilynne Pike during our inpop Live Chat; and now we bring you a review of the New York Times Bestselling author’s latest book Illusions straight from Mel of the blog He Followed Me Home…Can I Keep Him?.

Read more book reviews from Mel by visiting He Followed Me Home…Can I Keep Him? For now, prepare yourself to be entranced by Illusions.

“The third book in the ‘Wings’ series, ‘Illusions’ starts of with Laurel back at high school in the human world and surprise, surprise, Tamani shows up as a foreign exchange student! Spells made me Team Tamani, so I was so curious how this was was going to play out. Although I enjoyed this book, I have to admit that partway I was getting tired of the David/Tam love triangle…both boys pining over Laurel but her being ignorant to David’s jealousy issues. With what was happening, it is fair to say that David had reasons to feel this way so Laurel annoyed me. I can justify Tamani’s undying love as part of his nature but come on David! A majority of this book deals with Laurels conflict over David/Tamani.

“Ms. Pike rounds out this storyline with the possibility of danger from the other foreign exchange student, Yuki, the mysterious Klea and disappearing Trolls. Not much is finalized here but hints at what is to come next. The ending is a major cliffhanger and I think we will get back to more action next year in what is supposed to be the last book in the series. Seeing the fae world in ‘Spells’ captivated me, I am crossing my fingers we get to see more of that too!”

Thank you to Mel of He Followed Me Home…Can I Keep Him? for discussing Aprilynne Pike’s Illusions with us.

Over to you…have you read Illusions? If so, what did you think of it? If not, will you be picking this book up during your next trip to the bookstore and/or library?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in Blogger Book Review, inkpop 2.0, inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Blogger Book Review: Emily the Strange: The Lost Days by Rob Reger and Jessica Gruner

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on May 28, 2011

Happy Saturday, inkpoppers! Today we have a strange treat for you…a review of Rob Reger and Jessica Gruner’s Emily the Strange: The Lost Days written by Mevurah of the blog The Heart of Dreams.

Of her blog Mevurah says, “The Heart of Dreams is a blog that focuses on my love for reading and books. Which is the meaning behind the name of this blog. Reading so many stories when I was a little girl, inspired me to want to be come a writer. Books and stories are the heart of that dream of mine.” Read more review from Mevurah at The Heart of Dreams. For now, tuck into the strange world of Emily the Strange: The Lost Days.

“I think there is only one word that could sum up this book: Strange. The first time that I heard of ‘Emily The Strange’ was during my sophomore year of High School. I noticed a couple of people at my school with stickers of Emily on their notebooks and binders. I thought she was a cool character. I then learned she was the logo of a clothing brand of the same name. Last year I found out that there were books about Emily! Of course I added them to my to-read list, hoping to stumble upon them some time in the near future.

“So imagine how surprised I got when I saw two ‘Emily The Strange books’ at the library! I was happy and excited to get a chance to read about the mysterious Emily! After reading this book, I must admit that it wasn’t what I expected it to be. It wasn’t a bad book but I thought it could have been a bit different. First off, I wasn’t expecting the diary format! Reading about Emily via first person was in fact a trip! My goodness, if there ever was a strange and interesting character, Emily is definitely one of them!

“In ‘The Lost Days’, the story begins with Emily trying to stay calm. She has just found herself sitting on a bench, with a few personal possessions next to her. To make things interesting, she can’t remember a single thing. Nothing! The only clues that she has to her identity is a journal that has a few pages ripped out. And so begins a weird and bizarre tale told by a 13 year old goth.

“The town where Emily stays as she tries to remember who she is was such a crazy place. The illustrations really brought the town and the various citizens of the place come to life. The black ink and blood red tone in the drawings against the glossy white pages were definitely eye popping. I would definitely recommend this book, if you’re in the mood for taking a bizarre getaway, Emily would definitely make the ultimate tour guide!”

Thank you to Mevurah of The Heart of Dreams for sharing her thoughts on Emily the Strange: The Lost Days with us.

Over to you…have you read Emily the Strange: The Lost Days? If so, what did you think of it? If not, will you be picking this book up during your next trip to the bookstore and/or library?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in Blogger Book Review, inkpop 2.0, inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »