Tessa's Blog

My two best friends and I are extreme book nerds. Especially for YA books. Since we are viewed as weird in the real world, we decided to go to the Internet, where everyone is weird. It has been going pretty well. Our original blog is Crazy for YA

YALit Giveaway Blitz

YALit Giveaway Event!
A bunch of authors who got together to bring you a YA Big Box of Paperbacks Giveaway! One lucky winner is going to win 50 Young Adult Paperback Books! How’s that for an epic Book-Lover’s Prize?!
The giveaway is valued at over $500, yet it still open worldwide! Our first giveaway went to a winner in ROMANIA–and yes, we’re willing to pay the insane shipping on this oversized, overweight package to get the prize to WHOEVER wins!

Some of my personal favorites are included in the giveaway, like Adorkable by Cookie O'Gorman, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard, and even Wicked Lovely by Marissa Marr. You would definitely be able to find some new favorites in the line-up.

Today, I am sharing some exclusive excerpts from authors who organized and sponsored this amazing giveaway along with the giveaway.
Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2017/02/yalit-giveaway-blitz-2017.html

The Feels of a Five Star Book | Queen of Chaos by Kat Ross

Queen of Chaos (The Fourth Element Book 3) - Kat Ross

I am notorious for not finishing series. Despite my fangirl nature, I never have the guts and emotional stability to finish a journey with characters. Most of the time, I view the final book in a series as a funeral for the story and its beloved characters. The dread overwhelms my excitement and creates a paradox where I want to finish a series, but I am afraid of leaving a world behind. 

Thankfully, I felt the opposite going into Queen of Chaos. Ross expertly finished Blood of the Prophet with a cliffhanger that even a person who loathes endings could not resist. Of course, I was devastated because the end one of my favorite series was nigh, but my heart was comforted by the insurance that Ross would not let me down. 

And let me tell you, she did not disappoint. There are five-star books, and then there are five-star books. The books that leave you without breath, holding back tears and smiling at the same time. Books that carry you so far into its world that you take a piece of it when you leave. There are five-star books and there are books that make you feel something. Queen of Chaos is both to me. Books this heart-wrenching and phenomenal remind why I continue to read. Even though I can read a dozen one-star books in a row, the hope of reading another book like Queen of Chaos keeps me going. The mixture of pure satisfaction, hope, and longing that I felt after finishing this book cemented it as not only a five-star book but a five-star series.

This series is not something that you can read and forget. I will always have a piece of Nazafareen's stubbornness and unfailing heroism with me. I will remember Darius and his struggle to love himself and others. I will keep Tijah's feistiness and Myrri's quiet strength. 

Speaking of characters, none of Ross's creations could really be called flat, in my opinion. Even stock characters without a lot of screentime are thoroughly explored. My emotions were twisted and manipulated so that I never knew who was the real antagonist. I was kept on my toes throughout the storyline. Better yet, there was no useless filler to take up words. Ross made every character, every chapter, and every word count. In a mere 300 pages, my heart was shattered, tramped on, and put back together with the power of this world. 

All of the gushing aside, this is a series that all fantasy fans can enjoy. The world is unique with a brilliant magic system that I have never seen before. I felt as if I was plucked from my mundane suburban home and dropped in an exciting adventure in the deserts of magical Persia.

One of my favorite parts of this series is the shift in perspectives. Every character gets their own voice, and I was interested in pretty much all of them equally. Even though I have a little bit more of a tender spot for Darius and Nazafareen, all of the characters' stories spoke to me in different ways. Queen of Chaos gives readers the unique experience to see a story from every single perspective, which is not seen in every novel. 

Anyone looking for a unique and mind-blowing fantasy novel should give this series a shot. The action-packed plot is perfectly accentuated with complex perspectives, cultivated diversity, and a healthy dose of romance. Ross's series has earned a coveted spot on my shelf alongside the rest of my favorite series. 

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2017/01/the-feels-of-five-star-book-queen-of.html

Waiting on Wednesday | February 2017


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme (or monthly in my case), hosted by the amazing Jill at Breaking the Spine.

Since I am a rebellious blogger, I am not following the traditional Waiting on Wednesday rules. Instead of posting the meme weekly, I am going to do it monthly (work smarter, not harder). Plus, my WOW will only include books that will be releasing (or have already been released) in the same month, so you don't have to wait forever to get these beauties. 

This month features a lot of diverse books, which could not have been timed better. This year, I vowed to read and blog about more diverse and inclusive novels. With such a suffocating atmosphere in the real world, I want to be able to spotlight books that offer a more diverse, accepting, and open-minded approach to the world. Books really do have power; the power to increase knowledge, open minds, and create understanding, but only if you pick up the right ones. So, I hope that I can guide you in the right direction with my picks this month.


Click the link to see my most anticipated reads of February!

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2017/02/waiting-on-wednesday-february-2017.html


Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2017/01/excuse-my-excuses-story-of-blogger.html

Staying Together and Running Apart | An Ode to 2016


2016 was a year of contradictions. 

We said goodbye to many artists who made the world a better place, including but not limited to Prince, Carrie Fisher, George Michael, and Alan Rickman. 

We said hello to great movies and entertainment, like Stranger Things, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and Moana. Also, Hamilton the Musical continued its streak into fame. 

We got an American Authors album that rocked my mind. 

We got a president-elect who is pushing the boundaries of our nation. 

The book blogging universe exploded several times from scandal, fraud, and dishonesty. Racism and poor representation burned through social media. The call for diverse books, authors, readers, and editors was met with strong disagreements. 

The book blogging universe exploded with support for one another. Events like DiversityDecBingo and Loveathon shared the blogger love. Countless bloggers campaigned for diversity and representation on every platform available. 

The highs and lows were reflected in every area of life, especially in my reading goals and accomplishments.


Click the link to see my bookish reflection on 2016 and my goals for 2017.

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/12/being-together-and-running-apart-ode-to.html

Genetically Engineered Humans, What Could Go Wrong? | The Ones by Daniel Sweren-Becker

The Ones - Daniel Sweren-Becker

Sometimes you have a really good idea in the shower. Like you are just scrubbing shampoo in your hair, then WHAM, it hits you. Maybe it is an invention that the world just needs to have or a song that has to be written, but whatever it is, it is pure genius. Although it might seem like a great idea while the steam is fogging your brain, when you get out you realize there are many holes in the idea. The shower is a good place to start ideas, but they have to be finished on dry land. 

I feel like The Ones is a book that was born and raised in the steam of a too-hot shower. The beginning of the book was great, like that AHA moment you have in the shower. There was a twist in the beginning that had my mind reeling. The beginning of the book was really realistic and I felt as if it could actually happen sometime in the future. I have to applaud Sweren-Becker for tackling such a complex issue. Whether or not you want to think about it, genetic engineering is happening right now. Eventually, humans will have to decide how far we are willing to go, which he deeply explores in his debut novel. 

In the beginning, everything was great. The characters were solid. The setting, including the popular opinions and social environments of the time, complemented the conflict well. Even the different perspectives added a personal touch to each narrative. 

Unfortunately, the rest of the novel was cloudy, like the steam in a shower that should have been done hours ago.

The characters changed from relatable teenagers into rebels with a cause like in so many other dystopian novels. Instead of standing out from the crowd, the characters made themselves into stereotypical, self-righteous teenagers. They ran headfirst into the "action" before considering consequences, like pretty much every other teenager stuck in a dystopian future. While the action moved along the plot and gave the characters something to do, it caused a rapid decrease in the reality of the situation along with my interest.

They fell into bad situations that I could see were traps from 10 miles away. Frankly, at that point in the novel, the characters kind of deserved what they got. The only character I ended up rooting for was James. His character remained constant throughout the novel, even though Cody changed so much that I started rooting against her. 

In contrast to the amazing beginning of the novel, the later twists stopped being surprising and the ending was more frustrating that suspenseful. The potential that started so high in the beginning crash-landed at the end without any way to recover. I believe that the novel would have been five stars if it was so soggy from spending too much time in the shower. 

The Ones is not the unique dystopian novel I thought it was going to be. Although the beginning was strong, the rest of the novel crumbled under pressure. If you like the idea of genetically engineered humans, then give it a shot but don't expect anything different from the rest of the genre.

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/12/genetically-engineered-humans-what.html

The Best of Two Worlds | Alchemists of Loom by Elise Kova

The Alchemists of Loom - Elise Kova


I am very happy to present my stop on the Alchemists of Loom blog tour run by Xpresso Book Tours. I have been a fan of Elise Kova and her other series, Air Awakens, for a while now. So, I jumped on the chance to read this book, as you definitely should too. If you are a fan of fantasy, dragons, and dynamic heroes looking for revenge, then this is the perfect book for you.


Click the link to see my review and enter the giveaway!

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/12/the-best-of-two-worlds-alchemists-of.html

How to Make Your Wallet Cry | A Gift Guide for Bookworms


Sometimes it can be hard to find presents for the people that you love in your life. Sure, you can always stick a gift card or some cash in an envelope and call it a day, but where is the fun in that? I am of the mentality that every person is unique, so everyone should get a unique and personalized gift. 


Click the link to see my recommended gifts for bookworms!

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/12/how-to-make-your-wallet-cry-gift-guide.html

Sunday Street Team Review | Timekeeper by Tara Sim

Timekeeper - Tara Sim


The Sunday Street Team is a group of bloggers led by the marvelous Nori @ ReadWriteLove28 who aim to bring well-deserved attention to new and upcoming books and their authors. 


This month's post is featuring Tara Sim and her steampunk debut novel, Timekeeper. 


I would recommend Timekeeper to fans of historical fiction and steampunk, especially if you are looking for a new take on the genre. I would also recommend Danny's story to anyone looking for a diverse novel that does not shy away from the tough questions. Even though the middle was a little bit slow, anyone who enjoys a good steampunk will enjoy Timekeeper.


If you want to hear more of my thoughts about the book and enter in the giveaway, then click on the original link.

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/11/sunday-street-team-timekeeper-by-tara.html

Queen of Chaos by Kat Ross Cover Reveal

Over the past year, Kat Ross has become one of my favorite authors. I have devoured three of her books this year, including The Midnight Sea, Blood of the Prophet, and The Daemoniac. All three of them were 5 stars for me, which is incredibly rare for any author, especially one who is so underrated. Ross is my go-to recommendation for those looking for unique fantasy (and historical fiction) books. The Fourth Element series should be on every YA fantasy fan's TBR. 

Today, I have the pleasure of fangirling about The Fourth Element Series as well as revealing the breathtaking cover of Queen of Chaos, the last book in the series.


Click the link to see the cover!

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/11/queen-of-chaos-by-kat-ross-cover-reveal.html

I loved this quote from Spells and Sorcery by S. Usher Evans. If you want to read even more amazing quotes like this, enter my giveaway to win your own copy!

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/10/how-to-be-strong-independent-witch.html

The Unrealistic Expectations of Perfection | #CritYourFaves


This post is a part of the #CritYourFaves event Aentee from Read at Midnight.

(P.S. There will be spoilers for the Divergent series by Veronica Roth in this discussion. You have officially been warned.)

Perfection is abundant in YA, or at least at first glance, it seems so. There is always the stunningly handsome love interest who is somehow smart, funny, popular, and well, perfect. There is always the "flawed" main character who can ace her classes, fight monsters, all while still getting the boyfriend at the end. Perfection has become a standard in YA, and one of my favorite book series is a major culprit. 

Click the link to see what problems I had with one of my favorite YA books, Divergent, and how it is still one of my top series.

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/10/the-unrealistic-expectations-of.html

Giveaway of Spells and Sorcery by S. Usher Evans

Enter for your chance to win an ebook copy of Spells and Sorcery by S. Usher Evans! If you need to be convinced to read it, check out my glowing review!


Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/10/how-to-be-strong-independent-witch.html

I really love this quote from Nemesis by Anna Banks. You can see what I thought of the rest of the book in my review. 

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/09/nemesis-by-anna-banks-dont-judge-author.html

Diversity is not a bad word


I know a lot of bad words. Words that would make your grandmother blush and have your mother wash your mouth out with soap. Words that destroy, devastate, and hurt. Four letter words that cannot be said on television or public radios. Most of us know some, if not all, of these words. They are imbued in our society so that everyone recognizes these words of hatred and pain.

But in the plethora of curses, insults, and swears that exist in our cultures, diverse is not a bad word.

Diverse is a word that uplifts and gives voices to the quiet. It gives hope to the hopeless. It has the power to change the book publishing industry, and hopefully our world, for the better. A single word can make our community better and improve us as readers and people.  

There are so many ways that diversity improves our world, and I am not just talking about in literature. Films, music, and every field should be diversified to represent the real people. The world is not full of the same type of people, so why does our media suggest that? 

Diversity is a big and heated topic in our community and world right now, and one post and one opinion will not do it enough justice. I plan on writing many more posts to campaign for greater representation for all people in literature through a series of blog posts.

But for now, I have compiled some inspiring tweets, posts, and other resources to show that we are not alone in the fight for diversity.


Click the link to join in the discussion and see the social media compilation I made to bring awareness to the need for diverse books. 

Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/09/diverse-is-not-bad-word.html

Heir to the Sky by Amanda Sun | When adventure falls flat

Heir to the Sky - Amanda Sun
As heir to a kingdom of floating continents, Kali has spent her life bound by limits—by her duties as a member of the royal family, by a forced betrothal to the son of a nobleman, and by the edge of the only world she’s ever known—a small island hovering above a monster-ridden earth, long since uninhabited by humans. She is the Eternal Flame of Hope for what’s left of mankind, the wick and the wax burning in service for her people, and for their revered Phoenix, whose magic keeps them aloft.
When Kali falls off the edge of her kingdom and miraculously survives, she is shocked to discover there are still humans on the earth. Determined to get home, Kali entrusts a rugged monster-hunter named Griffin to guide her across a world overrun by chimera, storm dragons, basilisks, and other terrifying beasts. But the more time she spends on earth, the more dark truths she begins to uncover about her home in the sky, and the more resolute she is to start burning for herself.

For a book set in the sky with a promise of adventure and self-discovery, this novel fell flat. (Yes, that pun is intended.) Instead of focusing on the lush and unique world that Sun had at her fingertips, she diverted the story to a shallow portrayal of teenage love. 

The worldbuilding was right there for the taking. In the beginning, Sun excelled with describing the world she built. Kali's island in the sky was described beautifully and completely. If that kind of focus was constant throughout the novel, my rating would have been drastically higher. Unfortunately, I was majorly confused about the origin story of her world (and I never fully ended up understanding its mixture of fantasy and science) and the details about life on the decimated Earth.

I am also not quite sure how I feel about the mixture of dystopian and post-apocalyptic vibes with the fantasy components. A lot of the fantasy elements were absurd and just thrown in to create intrigue instead of developing the plot. 

While I expected a novel about a girl trying to survive on a dangerously exciting Earth, I got an heir to the sky who was more focused on making puppy eyes at one of the only guys left on earth. Griffin basically takes care of her the entire book, which rubbed me the wrong way since Kali was supposed to be this independent hero for her people.

The puppy love was annoying, but the repetition almost killed me. The story became so cyclical that I could predict pretty much everything that happened. Kali and Griffin would have a moment, and a monster would attack. Kali and Griffin would "have a breakthrough" and then a monster would attack. It seems like the monsters knew exactly when they were conversing and always decided to interrupt. The first attack or so was interesting, but the rest were not at all engaging or surprising. 

By the end of the book, I was also sick and tired of hearing the phrase "burn for yourself." Taking care of yourself and loving who you are is a great theme and I applaud Sun for tackling it, but I do not need the message shoved down my throat at the end of every chapter. 

The ending was unsatisfactory for me. I feel as if the novel was left very open without resolution. I am happy that Kali knows who she is now, but what about everyone else? The book had a very selfish ending, only focusing on Kali and Griffin while the fate of her people was mostly forgotten.

I would not recommend Heir to the Sky to readers who are looking for a fast-paced adventure mainly focused on survival. If too much romance and staring into each other's eyes in not your cup of tea, I would avoid this novel. But, if you like your fantasy books weird and stuffed with romance, you might want to give Kali's story a try.
Have you read Heir to the Sky? Do you like romance with your adventure/survival stories? Have you ever read any books that "fell flat"? Do you appreciate my self-restraint of only using one pun?
You can find this review and other bookish shenanigans on my original blog, Crazy for YA
Source: http://4evercrazyforya.blogspot.com/2016/10/heir-to-sky-by-amanda-sun-when.html