Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Guest Post: Top Ten Thing I'd Do in New York City {Indigo's version}

Hello everyone! I'm so happy to have this post today in my blog: TOP TEN THINGS I WOULD DO IN NEW YORK {Indigo's version}. This is a guest post from the perspective of Indigo, a ballet prodigy in a new Young Adult book by Grier Cooper. The book, Wish, has the MOST BEAUTIFUL cover ever (and I'm not even exaggerating). You can read more about the book when you scroll down! :)

Without further ado, here's top ten things to do in new york from Indigo!

Top 10 Things to do in New York: a WISH Guide

Ballet hopeful Indigo Stevens, the star of my young adult novel WISH, wants nothing more than get accepted into the New York School of Ballet and start her real life. NYSB students not only study at the top ballet school in the country, they live in one of the most dynamic and exciting cities on the planet. Here's a list of the top 10 Things Indigo would love to do in New York.


The BEAST! Imagine riding this wild animal! ;) (source)
1.      The Beast. Circle Line's speedboat tour promises thrills and spills while you tour the skyline in a New York minute. Never mind those boring slow-paced sightseeing cruises–this speedboat is the fastest jet-powered speedboat operating in the city. Take in skyline panoramas and up-close views of the Statue of Liberty while listening to the high-energy music onboard. Be prepared to get drenched—if the splash from New York Harbor doesn't get you, the playful yet unmerciful onboard guides, equipped with water guns, surely will.

2.      Tour the Empire State Building at night. The views from the Empire State are some of the best in the city, but they're a million times more magical at night. There's nothing like a twinkling skyline from the nighest heights

(empire state building! I need to go on a date here).

3.      Window shop at Bloomingdale's followed by lunch at Serendipity3. The window displays at Bloomingdale's are world-famous, as is the frozen hot chocolate at Serendipity 3. Every dancer likes an occasional over-the-top treat.

4.      Tour Lincoln Center. Any dancer or dance fan on the planet knows a trip to new York isn't complete without seeing Lincoln Center, the home of New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theater, and the Joffrey Ballet. The gorgeous glass buildings look like crystal palaces at night, particularly and lights dance through the spray of the central fountain.

5.      Take in some shows. Indigo wants to see any and every ballet company she can while she's in New York, but her top pick is New York City Ballet, where she hopes to dance once day. New York is also the home of top notch musical theater, so she'll be sure to catch a Broadway show or two as well.

oh look, another perfect date spot place to relax! (source)
6.      Brunch at the Boathouse, followed by exploring Central Park. The Loeb Boathouse , with its sweeping lakeside views, is one of the most picturesque places to have brunch. After a delicious meal it's time to play and explore: from horse-drawn carriage rides, to a carousel, ice skating (in the winter months), to row boating (in the warmer months) and model boat sailing–even a zoo–this 843-acre, iconic park promises a plethora of fun.

Would love to visit this place! (source)
7.      See art classics at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art. On floor five of the Met there's a stellar lineup, starting in the late 1800's with Van Gogh's Starry Night, Henri Rousseau's LSleeping Gypsy and works by Picasso, Chagall, Magritte, Klimpt, and more. Another must see is the Temple of Dendur, an ancient (15 BC) Egyptian Temple dedicated to Isis and Osiris, housed in a glass hall at the Met. (anyone ever read From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler? I LOVE THAT BOOK AND HOW IT'S SET IN THIS MUSEUM.)

8.      Tour a TV station. Rockefeller Center is home to Radio City Music Hall and NBC Studios, both of which offer tours. The NBC Studio Tour is especially appealing because of popular TV shows such as Saturday Night Live. 
Also in the running is watching a taping of Good Morning America or the Today Show.

9.      Visit the free Fashion Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Anyone who loves fashion knows that this school is where many top designers get their start. View cutting–edge fashion–for free? Yes, please!

10.  Take in a Philharmonic concert. If you're a classical music fan like Indigo then this is a must because classical music doesn't get better than this. Here you'll hear the crème de la crème, world-famous musicians such as Yo-Yo Ma and the acoustics are superb. (wow I get chill from the possibility of bumping against guy who knows classical music)

East Village. Picture perfect! *splash* (source)
11.  (extra activity!) Ride the subway downtown; explore the East Village and Soho.  Everyone knows the subway is the best (and fastest) way to get around town. It's easy to spend an entire day poking along cobblestone streets, grabbing something tasty at a funky cafe, and checking out the fancy galleries and boutiques.

No matter where you go in New York it's hard to go wrong. Even better, the city is ready to share its secrets with you 24-7. In the “city that never sleeps”, you might be so busy having fun that you miss out on some sleep yourself.


Whew!I'm not sure I can do all the things in the list since I'm such a lazy bummer sometimes but Indigo's list definitely has something for everyone! :) Now that you know what to do if you ever visit New York City (or maybe you even live there ah lucky you *slanted eyes*), you won't have to worry what to do tomorrow anymore! ;)


Learn more about the book!

Title: Wish (Indigo Dreams #1)
Author: Grier Cooper
Publication date: December 2nd 2014
From Goodreads:
For Indigo Stevens, ballet classes at Miss Roberta’s ballet studio offer the stability and structure that are missing from her crazy home life. At almost 16, she hopes this is the year she will be accepted into the New York School of Ballet. First she must prove she’s ready, and that means ignoring Jesse Sanders – the cute boy with dimples who is definitely at the top of Miss Roberta’s List of Forbidden Things for Dancers.
But Jesse is the least of Indigo’s concerns. When she discovers her mom is an alcoholic, it simultaneously explains everything and heaps more worry on Indigo’s shoulders. As her mom’s behavior becomes increasingly erratic, Indigo fights to maintain balance, protect her younger brothers from abuse, and keep her mother from going over the edge. When the violence at home escalates, Indigo realizes she can no longer dance around the issue. At the risk of losing everything, she must take matters into her own hands before it’s too late.

About the author:

Grier began ballet lessons at age five and left home at fourteen to study at the School of

Her work has been praised as “poignant and honest” with “emotional hooks that penetrate deeply.” She writes and blogs about dance in the San Francisco Bay Area and has interviewed and photographed a diverse collection dancers and performers including Clive Owen, Nicole Kidman, Glen Allen Sims and Jessica Sutta. She is the author of Build a Ballerina Body and The Daily Book of Photography.
American Ballet in New York. She has performed on three out of seven continents with companies such as San Francisco Ballet, Miami City Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet, totaling more than thirty years of experience as a dancer, teacher and performer.

And the giveaway! Squeee!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you for reading today's post! I'll try to post more in the future. *sobs* Have a good day, everyone! :)

This post is part of blog tour hosted by Xpresso Book Tours.
Thanks for letting me joining the fun! :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Book Blitz: Adrenaline Crush by Laurie Boyle Crompton

Hello everyone!

I'm sorry for disappearing for one week. It's midterm week so yeah. I hope I can come back next week, hopefully with reviews of books I've recently read! *hint* Openly Straight *hint*

Today I'm going to share a book I'm dying to read: Adrenaline Crush by Laurie Boyle Crompton!

Title: Adrenaline Crush
Author: Laurie Boyle Crompton
Publication date: September 2014
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository

From Goodreads:
When a daredevil teen pushes herself too far, she must choose between two boys: the one who wants to keep her safe, and the one who dares her to return to her old self.

Seventeen-year-old Dyna comes from a family of risk takers and is an avid thrill-seeker herself, until the day she splinters her ankle in a terrible fall. Her whole life goes from mountain biking and rock climbing to sitting at home and attending group sessions at the bizarre alternative healing center that her hippie mother found. The boy who witnessed Dyna’s accident believes her injury is a wakeup call and he encourages her mild new lifestyle, but a young Afghanistan War veteran she meets at the healing center pushes her to start taking chances again. Forced to face the consequences of her daredevil impulses, Dyna finds herself in danger of risking the one thing she’s always treated with caution—her heart.

About the Author:

Laurie Boyle Crompton is the YA author of BLAZE (or Love in the Time of Supervillains) and

When she’s not writing Laurie enjoys hiking, cycling, reading, cross-country skiing, running, going to the movies and drinking tea by the gallon. She lives near NYC, but loves to escape to the mountains in New Paltz, NY where she and her family can often be found climbing over rocks or tromping through the forest. She is represented by Ammi-Joan Paquette of the Erin Murphy Agency
THE REAL PROM QUEENS OF WESTFIELD HIGH (Sourcebooks, 2013 & 2014) as well as the upcoming ADRENALINE CRUSH from Farrar Straus Giroux. Laurie graduated first in her class from St. John’s University with a major in English and minor in Journalism. She’s written for national magazines like ALLURE as well as numerous trade publications and has appeared on Good Day New York several times as a Toy Expert. Yes, that is an actual thing that people sometimes get to be.

And of course... THE GIVEAWAY! :)

PRIZEEEEEE!!! *squeal*

Opens international. Must be 13+ to enter! :)


What do you think of the book? I personally very like the cover (yellow flicker beat neon color is just WIN), and the blurb really intrigues me! I'm not much of adrenaline junkie, so it must be interesting to get into Dyna's head! Especially since she has to learn how to lead a fairly... calm life haha. Hoping to read it sometime soon!

Thank you for stopping by, everyone! <3 You can check out the rest of the blitz HERE. :)

This book blitz is hosted by:


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Review: Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto

Title: Kitchen
Author: Banana Yoshimoto
Publication date: March 1994 (first published January 1988)
Publisher: Washington Square Press
see other reviews on Goodreads |
buy from The Book Depository |
buy from AbeBooks

From Goodreads:
'Two stories, "Kitchen" and "Moonlight Shadow," told through the eyes of a pair of contemporary young Japanese women, deal with the themes of mothers, love, transsexuality, kitchens, and tragedy.

There are some books that you pick up and know that you’re going to love them. You don’t even read the summary on the book jacket or care what the book is about – you set your eyes on them and you know you need to read it. I was lucky enough to experience it with The Hunger Games, Just One Day, Poison Study, and now with Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto.

Kitchen consists of three stories: “Kitchen”, “Full Moon” (or “Kitchen”: part two), and “Moonlight Shadow”. The story of “Kitchen” deals with a girl’s loneliness after her grandmother’s death. Being left alone in the world, she finds solace in the form of kitchen and later, in the company of Tanabe family. I love the interactions between Mikage, the heroine, with the Tanabes. The Tanabes pick up Mikage as if she were a lost puppy, and they heal her heart like they water the plants in their apartment.

I loved the Tanabes’ sofa as much as I loved their kitchen. I came to crave sleeping on it. Listening to the quiet breathing of the plants, sensing the night view through the curtains, I slept like a baby. There wasn’t anything more I wanted. I was happy.

“Moonlight Shadow” is a story about a lover left alone after her boyfriend’s death. Her grief is so overwhelming she is almost drown in her sea of sadness. Satsuki, the main character, is coping by jogging in every dawn, while her boyfriend’s brother, Hiiragi, is coping of the loss of both her brother and her girlfriend by wearing his girlfriend’s uniform to school. The sadness is so profound in the story I almost felt I were the one experiencing it.

I love how Banana Yoshimoto-sensei seamlessly weaves tales of love, death, loss, and loneliness in her works but still manages to include threads of hope in the stories. I didn’t know it was possible to feel so attached to a character in 40 pages or so. I cared for them like they were my longtime friends, and I wished for their happiness in every page I flipped. Kitchen is so intimate, so beautiful. It was genuine sadness when the story was coming to end – why can’t it go longer? Like a real parting with friends, I don’t want to let them go yet. I even read the Afterword!

The gradual recovery of the characters is not rushed at all. It reminds me of plants, growing steadily with much love from sun and water. The writing might be deceptively simple, but it will touch your heart nonetheless. I guess there’s none of my words that can do justice in conveying the beauty of Kitchen. It’s the kind of book that you have to read yourself to find out. If you just immerse yourself in their world – you would understand why so many readers, including me, fall head over heels in love with Kitchen.

”With a cold”—she spoke evenly, lowering her eyes a little—“now is the hardest time. Maybe even harder than dying. But this is probably as bad as it can get. You might come to fear the next time you get a cold; it will be as bad as this, but if you just hold steady, it won’t be. For the rest of your life. That’s how it works. You could take the negative view and live in fear: Will it happen again? But it won’t hurt so much if you just accept it as a part of life.”

5 cups of tea!
I wish I could rewind the experience reading this over and over.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Book Blitz: Frost by Kate Avery Ellison

Hello everyone! Today I'm going to share a book that I have been wanting to read for a long time, but still haven't got the time yet! Frost by Kate Avery Ellison! Check out the blurb below:

Title: Frost
Author: Kate Avery Ellison
Publication date: April 2012
Publisher: CreateSpace
Purchase: Amazon | B&N

Synopsis via Goodreads:
In the icy, monster-plagued world of the Frost, compassion might get a person killed, and Lia Weaver knows this better than anyone. After the monsters kill her parents, she must keep the family farm running or risk losing her siblings to reassignment by the village Elders. With dangers on all sides, she can't afford to let her emotions lead her astray. But when her sister finds a fugitive bleeding to death in the forest, a young man from beyond the Frost named Gabe, Lia does the unthinkable. She saves his life. Giving shelter to the fugitive could get her in trouble. The Elders have always described the advanced society of people beyond the Frost, the "Farthers," as ruthless and cruel. Lia is startled to find that Gabe is empathetic and intelligent-and handsome. And she might even be falling for him. But time is running out. The monsters in the forest are growing bold and restless. The village leader is starting to ask questions. Farther soldiers are searching for Gabe. Is compassion-and love-worth the risk? Finally, when a startling discovery challenges everything she thought was true about her life, Lia realizes exactly what she must do.


I live in Georgia with my wonderful husband and two spoiled cats. When I'm not writing, I'm usually catching up on my extensive Netflix queue, reading a book, giggling at something funny online, or trying to convince my husband to give me just ONE bite of whatever he's eating.

Learn more about my writing and books at my blog (, find teasers for upcoming works on my Facebook page (, and subscribe to my new releases newsletter to be notified of new novels as soon as they hit stores (!


He came out of nowhere, hitting me hard from one side and knocking me over. We rolled together across the floor and he came out on top, his hands on either side of my head, holding my wrists down against the stones. His burning eyes bored into mine.

I couldn’t seem to find my breath. The whole world slowed down, and I realized with perfect clarity that he might kill me.

“Don’t scream,” he hissed.

I shook my head.

“How far is the village?” He whispered it, the words harsh and raspy in the air between us. I could see his mind working behind his eyes—was he calculating how long it would take him to try to struggle away on his own, how long before they found my lifeless body?

I was neither brave nor stupid. I told him what he wanted to know. “The village is less than a mile.”

He grimaced, and I realized he must be half-mad with the pain. Maybe if I moved suddenly, I could throw him off and get to the door...

He must have sensed my plan, for he pressed down harder on my wrists, keeping me pinned. “And the gate?”

“What gate? You mean the village gate?”

He didn’t explain. “The mountains, then.”

“The farm sits in its shadow,” I gasped. His hands were cutting off my circulation. “But killing me does nothing to help you. You are too weak to get far, and the Watchers fill the woods.”

His eyebrows drew together sharply, and he coughed. He was weakening—I could see it. “Kill you?”

His grip on my wrists slackened. I saw my chance, and I took advantage of it.

I slammed my elbow into his face. The Farther cried out, falling sideways like a puppet with its strings cut. I scrambled up for the door and yanked it open.


I turned. He was crumpled on the ground, his limbs shaking. I could see that he had no strength left.

“I’m sorry if I hurt you,” he gasped. “I just needed answers.”

I lingered, not running but not relaxing, either. “You would kill me for information, then?”

He pressed a hand against his side and wheezed a bewildered laugh. “I’m not a murderer of farm girls. Not even those who plan to harm me.”

“Harm you?” My words were sharp. “I’m sticking my neck out for you. I’m putting my family in danger for you. I’m sheltering and feeding you—and for what? It’s you who just tried to harm me.”

“I just needed information about my location,” he said, wincing at my words. He struggled up into a kneeling position and raised his dazzling blue eyes to mine. Blood colored his lip red. “I won’t try anything again, I promise, even though I know you want me dead.”

It was my turn to laugh, breathlessly. “You make no sense.” I grabbed the herbs from my pocket and brandished them at him. “I came to bring you these for your wound. I’m not going to kill you. I just want you gone before you can cause any more trouble.”

His expression turned inside out—the planes of his face softened in surprise, and his eyes widened slightly. But then they slitted shut, and I could tell he didn’t believe me. “You’re lying.”

“Why would I lie?” I snapped. “If I wanted to kill you, I’d have done it by now. I could have simply left you in the snow, or refused to clean your wounds, or refused to feed you.”

He was silent, considering this. Some of the wild terror on his face eased at the logic of what I’d said. “Why haven’t you? Left me to die, I mean?”

I didn’t answer that, because I didn’t know how to put my reasons into words. I didn’t even quite know what the reasons were.


Oh wow! That excerpt really gets me interested. Who is this mysterious guy? Why does Lia save him? Is it because he's impossibly handsome or maybe something bigger than that?

Raise your hand if you're planning to read this, because I sure do! ;)

Thanks for reading this, and I hope you're having a wonderful day! :)

 This book blitz is hosted by:


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