Tune In Tuesday (93)

Tune In Tuesday Love Song Edition Button

Tune In Tuesday is a weekly feature in which bloggers get to showcase another one of their loves, music! This feature was originally created by Ginger over at GReads! but you can now find it here at Kate’s Tales of Books and Bands. If you would like to participate in this weekly feature, make a blog post showcasing a song (or a few!) and link up at the bottom of this post by clicking the cute blue guy! While you’re here make sure to check out all the other awesome blogs that have decided to participate!

I cannot believe it is already the last Tuesday of February thus ending our Love Song Edition of Tune In Tuesday! I have LOVED seeing everyone’s love song choices! Next week will start off our normal month of Tune In Tuesday but keep your eyes peeled for an announcement regarding Tune In Tuesday’s special edition for April (I’ll have that up within the next couple weeks)! I tried to narrow this week’s tunes down to five like all my previous posts but that was far too impossible (there are just SO MANY love songs out there!) So please be patient with me because I have LOTS of love songs to share!

Only Place I Call Home by Every Avenue

I can’t tell if this is supposed to be a break up song or an “I screwed up and this is goodbye for now but I still love you” song. Regardless, I love the idea of someone being your home <3

Just Like Heaven by The Cure

The Cure has a special way of making my bad moods incredibly better. This song is among one of my favorites by them; it is cute, it has a super fun beat, and it is just simply sweet!

Oath by Cher Lloyd featuring Becky G

As much as I adore all of these love songs, they also make me slightly depressed because I have no real relationships to relate them too (I do have plenty of bookish relationships though!) However, this is a love song to a best friend and that is most certainly something I can relate to!

Shady Lady by Oaklynn

Is this not one of the catchiest songs you’ve ever heard? It makes me grin like no other and I just want to dance around every time I hear it. I am a recent fan of Oaklynn but I love what I’ve heard so far!

Heart On Fire by Scars On 45

Goodness gracious, I could listen to this song ALL DAY LONG!

Because Of You by Sequoyah Prep School

I know this isn’t the best quality video but the song is full of awesome, I promise!

Promise The Stars by We The Kings

You guys didn’t seriously think I would miss out on an opportunity to share a We The Kings song did you???

Everywhere Everything by This Century

I love this song, that is all <3

Dead Sea by The Lumineers

I know, I cheated by having 2 Lumineer songs this month! This song is just too wonderful for words so I HAD to include it. Every line is beautiful and speaks of some wonderful love. “You’ll never sink when you are with me”…perfection!

Make You Feel My Love by Adele

One of my all-time favorite love songs. Adele’s version is simply amazing!

Well that is a wrap on Love Song Edition! I hope you all enjoyed it <3

Book Review: Calamity Jayne by Kathleen Bacus

Calamity Jayne

Title: Calamity Jayne (A Tressa Jayne Turner Mystery #1)

Author: Kathleen Bacus

Publisher: Leisure Books

Pages: 326 Paperback

My Rating: 4/5 Stars

Tressa Jayne Turner has had it up to here with the never-ending string of dumb-blonde jokes and her longtime nickname. Crowned “Calamity Jayne” by Iowa Department of Natural Resources officer Rick Townsend, Tressa’s out to gain a little hometown respect –or die trying. Unfortunately for Tressa, that may be the case. She’s just been handed the perfect opportunity to get “Ranger Rick,” the doubting Don Juan of the DNR, and a skeptical citizenry to finally take her seriously. How? By solving a murder no one else believes happened…No one, that is, except the killer.

Yup, Calamity Jayne is in it up to her hot pink snakeskin cowgirl boots and matching rhinestone belt. Tressa would tell you her momma never raised no dummies, but the jury’s still out on that one.

As I was browsing the tables at my local bargain bookstore a few weeks back, I came across a series of books that had adorable little covers. Okay, I’ll admit that the covers are what first drew me to the Tressa Jayne Turner Mystery series. The woman who worked at the bookstore gave it high praises so soon enough, my admiration for the covers morphed into curiosity, which then morphed into me purchasing the first three books of the series, which led to me smacking myself because seriously MORE BOOKS!?! However, I am so happy I listened to that lovely, little sales lady because Calamity Jayne turned out to be an adorable, funny, and yes ACTUALLY mysterious book and even though I am only one book into the series, I can already tell it is going to be so much fun reading all about Tressa Jayne Turner a.k.a Calamity Jayne!

Calamity Jayne was New Adult before New Adult was even a thing and that sort of really rocks my socks off! Tressa entered adulthood with a thump, and up until this point, she has remained in a slump that she can’t seem to get herself out of. College didn’t work out for her. Several attempts at jobs around her area didn’t work out for her. And quite honestly, the few jobs she was actually able to snag (and keep!) aren’t working out for her all that well. I love that this book introduces us to Tressa at one of her low points, a point that ALL of us go through during early adulthood, that moment in life when you question every decision you’ve made up until that point. She is confused about who exactly she is, has not a single clue as to what she wants to do for the rest of her life, and no matter how hard she tries, she can’t seem to shake that “Calamity Jayne” nickname that she’s been branded with.

Regardless of her many problems in life, Tressa proved to be an absolutely wonderful character! She was so determined to make something of herself, prove everyone wrong about her and I think that made Tressa a kick-butt main character! She was so sick of everyone thinking she would just make a mess out of everything she attempted and how they just assumed she couldn’t handle anything. Everyone’s lack of faith in Tressa pushed me to root for her even more! Another thing I love about our dear Tress? She was really sort of awkward in a hilarious way and you all should know that I love me some fellow awkward people! This girl can get herself into some CRAZY situations add that to her constant rambling & odd thoughts, and you’ve got yourself some major giggles from yours truly. Sometimes her quirky personality had my head spinning a bit but I found myself totally loving this girl throughout the book!

Tressa is joined by an equally entertaining set of characters! Since this book is set in a small town, you get that small-town feeling by getting to know everyone! Tressa’s family didn’t make as big of an appearance as I would have liked to see but from what I did catch, they were supportive of her in a tough love sort of way. However, Tressa’s grandmother does stand out because she is one heck of a spit-fire! She had such a sassy personality and I could see how Tressa took after her. Along the way we also get to meet Joe Townsend who is the grandfather to the one and only Rick Townsend, Tressa’s nemesis and the (hopefully) future love interest to our main character! Joe Townsend was so much fun! Sure he was old, but he was hilarious and he was the PERFECT side-kick to our mystery-solving main character! Rick Townsend is slowly but surely growing on me. Sometimes his comments were rude, but he also had some good jokes thrown in there and before long, I was laughing at the way he and Tressa interacted. You can tell there is a not-so-pleasant past with him and Tressa (he is after all, the one that came up with the name “Calamity Jayne”) but you can also see how much he cares for her. He was always there for Tressa, sometimes willingly, most time not-so-much, and I cannot wait to see where the rest of the series takes them!

On top of having a superbly fun cast of characters, I also love that this book was truly a mystery! Tressa finds herself in a not-so-hot situation when she discovers a dead body in the trunk of her car. But naturally, as with the case of most discovered dead bodies, it disappears before anyone else can see it (haha!) This is what sends Tressa on that all-important journey of self-discovery while simultaneously solving the murder that no one believes even occurred. Tressa uses this opportunity to really prove herself to her small town and while I would go a less dangerous approach, I commend Tressa for kicking some crime-solving butt.  I like that while this was at times a really creepy situation, it was always laced with humor to help make it less freaky for those of us who may or may not be giant whimps. But don’t let the fact that humor was included fool you! This book kept me on my toes and constantly guessing the ENTIRE time! Just when I thought I’d have the murder figured out, something would happen to completely change my mind!

I really was pleasantly surprised by Calamity Jayne! Not only is the cover super adorable (and also, can I say tasty? I mean, look at the ice cream!), but the inside of the book proved to be equal parts fun, entertaining, mysterious, and quirky. I suggest this for anyone looking for a light-hearted, quick, mysterious, and entertaining read!

The 2013 Book Blogger Love-A-Thon Closing Post

2013 Book Blogger Love-A-Thon

You guys, the end is here! *cries* We have made it through another successful round of the Book Blogger Love-A-Thon. This year not only surpassed the amount of awesomeness that occurred last year, but it exceeded my wildest expectations for the event as a whole. Now before I get on to all the good stuff, there are a few thank you’s I’d like to get out-of-the-way!

First and foremost is a GIANT THANK YOU to Alexa! I don’t know what I would have done without her for this Love-A-Thon. She brought forth such a positive personality and she put up with my uber late emails, texts concerning the event, and general craziness. It takes a saint to deal with the madness I have likely put her through but regardless she has been and absolute doll to co-host with. I couldn’t ask for anyone better!

Second, thank you to all of YOU! You were so patient while Alexa and I tried to work the kinks out of the schedule, you got up at the butt-crack of dawn to begin commenting on blogs, you all brought forth such an effort to help spread blogger love all throughout the blogosphere, and you helped to make today an unforgettable event. As the day progressed I saw so many messages of support and positivity being spread among bloggers, I saw more and more people joining in, and you want to know what happened on Twitter? We got #LoveAThon trending like crazy! I can’t say if it was this for sure (it is quite possible the lack of sleep made me overly emotional) but honestly people, it made me cry like a little baby. We were able to reach SO MANY PEOPLE with the Love-A-Thon today, and introduce each other to the many, many AMAZING blogs out there, and that is all I really ask of the event. So thank you from the bottom of my heart, for making today fan-freaking-tastic!

And now on to the fun part: The Giveaways!

1) First things first, if you participated in the Mini Challenges, you were eligible to win an awesome prize! Here’s how it works:

I picked one random winner from each list of participants for each Mini Challenge (that’s 5 winners). I have them listed below and will be sending them an email shortly notifying them of the win. They will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. If the winner is outside of the US, he or she will receive a book of their choice from The Book Depository ($10 or less). If the winner is from the US, they will receive a book from our prize bin. The first to respond to the email gets first pick on their book, the second to respond gets second pick, and so on. Now, on to the winners!

Challenge #1- Liz @ Along For The Read

Challenge #2- Cayce @ Fighting Dreamer

Challenge #3- Diana @ Little Miss Drama Queen

Challenge #4- Jess @ Gone With The Words

Challenge #5-Betty @ Book Rock Betty

Congrats to you all!

2) If you helped to make the Love-A-Thon more special by hosting your own form of a giveaway, please link it here so everyone else can go enter to win!

3) If you participated in the Love-A-Thon, you can win a giant mystery box of goodies from Alexa and I! All that we ask in order to be entered into the giveaway is that you fill out the survey below. We want to know what you thought about the Love-A-Thon this year and what we can do to make it even more fun next year! Unfortunately our wallets cannot afford international shipping for this particular giveaway (I am truly sorry for any international bloggers! We appreciate your participation in the Love-A-Thon just as much, there’s just no way we could ship a giant box of goodies right now)

Again , a big thank you to you all for being such awesome Love-A-Thon supporters throughout the day!

Book Blogger Love-A-Thon: Mini Challenge #5

2013 Book Blogger Love-A-Thon

I cannot believe the time has come to have our very last Mini Challenge! I am still making my way through some of the previous ones (don’t worry, your comments are coming!) but I have seriously LOVED looking through your guys’ posts all day. You are such a wonderful, kind, talented, super awesome group of people and I am honored to have been able to “meet” you through today’s events.

For this very last challenge we ask that you write about your top blogging moments so far. It can be actual book events or personal things that have happened with you and your blog. Whatever the case may be, write up a post listing them off then come back here to link up. Please take a chance to go around to fellow Love-A-Thon participants to check out some of their favorite moments as well!

So the past two and a half years of blogging have been phenomenal! I have been truly blessed to stumble into such an awesome community of bloggers, authors, publishers, and other fantastic bookish people. It is truly those of you that have made each milestone, stumble, and accomplishment so very worth it. While blogging has not only introduced me to awesome people in the blogging community by it has also given me the opportunity to meet some incredible authors!

Author events, book signings, the RT Conference, etc. have all given me the opportunity to meet some truly incredible writers. And guys, being a book nerd it is like HOLY FREAKING AMAZEBALLS, I GET TO MEET AN AUTHOR each and every time!

Me and Leah Clifford

Me and Charlotte Bennardo

Me and Carrie Harris

Dark Days

Me and Stacey Kade

Me and Kimberly Derting

Me and Stephanie Perkins

On top of that, I have had the pleasure to meet some pretty spectacular bloggers in person! While this has been more limited because let’s face it, Michigan houses not too many bloggers (there are a few though and they rock), so it makes this part a bit harder. Regardless, I enjoy the time that I have with these bloggers in real life every time!

RT Bloggers

Me and Alexa

But as incredible as all of these opportunities have been (and trust me, they have been AMAZING), it is nothing compared to the day-to-day conversations, amounts of support, and incredible kindness I see coming from the blogging community. I thought about the Love-A-Thon 2 years ago on Valentines Day. At that time I just suggested people try to comment on 5 blogs to “help spread the love”. And then last year’s Love-A-Thon proved to be a success with bloggers signing up to help spread blogger love all over. BUT today blew all of that away and I owe that to my lovely co-host Alexa and all of you! I choose today as my favorite moment because you have all been so freaking amazing. Honestly, I cannot say that enough. It has been a true honor to host this event because you guys are amazeballs. Thank you, thank you, thank you for making today not only so incredible but also so full of love, support, and a sense of community around the blogosphere!

Love A Thon

Book Blogger Love-A-Thon: Flash Challenge With Alysia!

Please welcome Alysia from My Little Pocket Books! She has been AWESOME to us by providing us with a flash challenge and a giveaway!
Here’s what the challenge is all about:
This challenge is based on a monthly post Alysia does at My Little Pocketbooks called “The Casting Couch“.
Did you just finish reading a book?  Did you have an image of the main character in your head the whole time?
With so many books being made into films you just might get to see that book on the big screen soon.
What’s the Challenge?
Take a book you just finished reading and cast the main character.
What does Alysia Need?
Book title and author
Character name and brief description
Actor name (pictures are great too)
Why you picked that actor
So, What is the Prize?
One winner will get a $5.00 Amazon Gift Card
You may leave all this info in the comments on this post or post this to your blog with a link in the rafflecopter.  Giveaway ends at 5pm 2/24/2013 (tomorrow).
(Click the image for a sample post)
Good Luck to you all!

The Book Blogger Love-A-Thon: Mini Challenge #4

2013 Book Blogger Love-A-Thon

Hello there everyone! I certainly hope you are enjoying the Love-A-Thon so far! Alexa and I have had a blast hosting it and it has been so awesome to see SO MUCH blogger love spread around. You guys seriously make my heart happy (I told you, I tend to get weepy & emotional with a lack of sleep so it’s not my fault!). Well before I start crying all over the place because you are all rocking my socks off so much, let’s start with our 4th mini challenge! For this mini challenge we ask that you write a letter to your younger blogger self and if you are a newer blogger, you will be writing a letter to your future self. What advice would you give? What secrets and tips would you tell the younger you? Let us know in a post and then come back here to link up! Feel free to spend the next hour or so jumping from blog to blog to see what everyone had to say!

Dear little Kate,

You are entering a very awkward stage of your life. Well actually, if I am being honest, your entire life up to this point has been awkward it just about to get a whole lot awkwarder. You will be recovering from dislocating your knee cap during the only tennis match you were ever winning. Honestly, what were we thinking with tennis anyway? You will become a homebody with no sense of a social life what-so-ever, and the only boyfriend you will see after high school is one of the many fictional boys you date while reading your favorite books.

But never fear young Kate! With all your free time (free of school, free of sports due to the leg, and free of anything fun to do at all) you will turn to books and your former teacher’s blog. One day, you will get the sudden urge to start your own blog. Now this is one of the BEST decisions you have ever made but I beg you to think it through first. Don’t come up with that lame blog name (Katelyn’s Blog…uhhh) with an even lamer URL (because seriously, it’s a pain in the butt to change in the future). Don’t just settle for the boring old theme that WordPress gives to you, and please for the love of all that is holy, DON”T START RAMBLING ABOUT PURE AND UTTER BORINGNESS THAT OCCURS IN YOUR LIFE! No matter how snarky and silly you try to make those first posts, they are lame and no one will read them…except you. I urge you to think this stuff out, come up with a catchy name, plan out what you want your blog to be about and what you want it to feature beforehand, just be prepared! But wee, little Kate, you have never been good at following directions so even if you were to receive this letter on time, it’d be next to no use.

But please, before you disregard all of what I have to say (remember, I am an older, wiser, more mature…okay so still immature but definitely wiser version of you) listen to this. Do what you want! Don’t worry about your blog being JUST LIKE all of those others. Sure they are awesomely amazing and their reviews kick butt, but every now and then you have something cool to say and it isn’t about books. And guess what…THAT’S OKAY! Talk about music, talk about the concerts you go to, talk about the crazy shenanigans you and Kati get into, talk about your crazy, infuriating, but still brilliant family. Talk about what you want, make your blog you.

And seriously, don’t stress. I am quite fond of the fact that I look like a 13-year-old 20-year-old so we want to prevent the risk of too many frown lines at such an early age. Relax because blogging becomes something amazing. You will never have posts Every. Single. Day. and you most certainly will have random spurts of reviews and non-reviews, but at the end of the day you’ve found yourself an incredible community to implant yourself in. So I guess my last piece of advice is, just enjoy it!


The still socially awkward but sort of cool older version of you

The Book Blogger Love-A-Thon: Mini Challenge #3 (late!)

2013 Book Blogger Love-A-Thon

I am so sorry this post is epically late but I promised it would be awesome so here it goes!

I get crazy over books and quite ecstatic over music. I get even more giddily insane when music is included in the book or when a book inspires songs for me. Either way, book playlists have become my FAVORITE thing! I thought I’d post a playlist for all of the ones I have gathered on Spotify so far! Some I’ve made up, some the authors have made up, but ALL are full of awesome songs! Check it out:

Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

Charade by Nyrae Dawn

Dizzy by Nyrae Dawn & Jolene Perry

Easy by Tammara Webber

Elder by Raine Thomas

In The Band by Jean Haus

Intered by Marilyn Almodovar

Just Remember To Breathe by Charles Sheehan-Miles

My Favorite Mistake by Chelsea M. Cameron

Phoenix: The Rising by Bette Maybee

Rule by Jay Crownover

Shrapnel by Stephanie Lawton

Slammed by Colleen Hoover

Something Like Normal by Trish Doller

The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg