June 23, 2010

Amy & Roger's Epic Detour

Amy & Roger's Epic Detour
By: Morgan Matson
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Date: May 4, 2010
Pages: 352
Ages: 12 and Up

Synopsis -

Amy Curry thinks her life sucks. Her mom decides to move from California to Connecticut to start anew—just in time for Amy's senior year. Her dad recently died in a car accident. So Amy embarks on a road trip to escape from it all, driving cross-country from the home she's always known toward her new life. Joining Amy on the road trip is Roger, the son of Amy's mother's old friend. Amy hasn’t seen him in years, and she is less than thrilled to be driving across the country with a guy she barely knows. So she's surprised to find that she is developing a crush on him. At the same time, she’s coming to terms with her father’s death and how to put her own life back together after the accident. Told in traditional narrative as well as scraps from the road—diner napkins, motel receipts, postcards—this is the story of one girl's journey to find herself.

My Thoughts -

When a tragic car accident takes Amy's father and her mom decide's to start a new life on the East Coast instead of the West just in time for senior year Amy doesn't think life can get much worse. Then she finds out she'll be spending four days driving across country in a car with Roger, a friend of Amy's mother's son. Amy isn't happy about doing this to say the least. Until the car pulls up and she actually starts to think -- What if he's cute -- and he is! It wasn't long before Amy's mother's carefully planned trip complete itinerary and hotel reservations were soon all thrown away.  There were no rules, new boundaries were crossed, because that's what you do when you're teenagers. alone, and suddenly find yourself with a little crush situation that you don't know what to do with, but you're having the time of you're life!

Roger has the away of making Amy do things that she probably wouldn't do on her own. He takes her out of her shell so to speak and she shows off her unique side. They have the best time together and there is a little bit of everything mixed in this ride. My best advice? Buckle up and enjoy the ride because believe me, it doesn't last long enough! I wished that their trip lasted much longer than four days!

This story is sweet, endearing and one that I will never forget! I cried with Amy, and I laughed as well. I couldn't help but feel for her so many times as she felt the blame for the loss of her father. Every teenage girl dreams of a guy like Roger, and Amy was lucky enough to find him. You'll find romance, heartbreak and maybe a whole bunch of small pieces that take you back to your teens as well.

The best part of a road trip is always souvenirs and I think that's especially true for someone like Amy that's never really traveled without her parents or even beyond her state. This book is full of receipts, real pictures, drawings, play lists, notes about each state, things they've done and little scrapbook pages which made me feel like the journey was actually happening and I was a part of it. 

Debut novels are amazing because finding a new author to love is a great treasure! You better believe that I will be looking for more books by Morgan Matson! This book is not just a light, easy read. It's deep with meaning and it's filled with feeling that touched my heart. I really sat back and let the wind blow through my hair as I savored this book from cover to cover. My only complaint, the ride wasn't long enough.

Five Tiaras ALL THE WAY! 

Read the First Chapter HERE!

About the Author -

Morgan Matson received her MFA in Writing for Children from the New School. A road-trip veteran, she has driven cross-country three times...so far. She currently lives in Venice, California. Follow Morgan on Twitter at @morgan_m.
Learn more about Amy & Roger's Epic Detour!

This is one you don't want to miss!  Go out and pick this one up today!


June 8, 2010

Pretty Little Liars - Secret Keepers Game!

This was a Huge Honor for me and I can't tell you just how hard it's been to keep this a secret for me! Although, by now, I'm sure you all know about The Secret Keepers Game that's going on, which is being sponsored by ABC Family! I wanted to post this as close to the premiere date as I could and well, I couldn't get any closer! Tonight, at 8/7c the very highly-anticipated PRETTY LITTLE LIARS television show will be on! This show is based on the amazingly popular novels of the same name by author Sara Shepard!  I know I will be glued infront of infront of my television because I've been waiting for this for SO LONG!

OK... So, back to ABC Family and ME getting the most amazing letter in my inbox on May 18th!  The letter basically said that I was chosen to be one of the "SECRET KEEPERS" by ABC Family and that if I accepted, I would be able to take part in a three week game PRETTY LITTLE LIAR - style from a mobile phone and a Facebook Page! It also said that we would be getting a package to keep and a sneak peek into the world of PRETTY LITTLE LIARS!  We had to respond to a separate website by the 19th, be able to play for the three weeks and give a valid address where we could receive a package.  The rest we would find out when it arrived.  Well, I was just too excited for words! I have LOVED ABC Family since I was a little girl and The PRETTY LITTLE LIAR Novels are one of this girls favorite series! ABC Family encourages the players to speak from their own experience during the game and in NO WAY wants us to SAY that we like the show or ABC just because we are taking part in this game. 

What do *I* have to say so far? That ABC certainly does know their ABC's of marketing and I am LOVING this game! I am playing Spencer Hastings.  I had no idea until the box arrived and because of my situation, I didn't get to open it right away! I'll let you know a little bit more about Spencer in a moment! I got the basic idea on how to show off the Spencer character (not exact, but close enough to give her credit) from Kristi at The Story Siren.  She did a wonderful Job.  I have pictures of MY Box and what was in it, but, I am not going to show my secret item yet! But, I will tell you that ABC Family in the letter told us we would receive a "Smart Phone" to keep which would be deactivated after the game and if we wanted, we could reactivate it in our own name.  Below is the character I'm playing and a little bio about what I'm like! Meet Spencer Hastings!

(Picture and Bio Taken from Official ABC Pretty Little Liars Site)

A classic overachiever, Spencer Hastings balances school, a high-powered internship, charity work, the field hockey team and maintaining uber-popularity status -- all without breaking a sweat. This is the girl who could stand up to Alison when no one else would. But when she and her friends begin receiving mysterious messages from "A," even the calm, cool and collected Spencer starts to show a little strain. And when she develops a forbidden crush on her sister's fiancé you have to wonder if Spencer can keep it together.


Inside my box, there was a gorgeous Pretty Black Collector's Box that said "PRETTY LITTLE LIARS"  Wrapped in plastic! Once I saw it, I didn't want to even open it, it was *THAT* pretty! Then I opened the box and  there was a piece of  plastic that said "SOME SECRETS YOU HAVE TO DIG FOR" - A and if you've read the novels and you get something from "-A" you always know to be VERY AFRAID! So when I lifted the plastic there was potting soil! Yes, an entire box of dirt in my gorgeous box! I did just what it said and I started digging! I found my secret object (which each of us got), and then I found a plastic bag that was sealed and it had a card that said PRETTY LITTLE LIARS blocking what was in it. So, I put that aside and then I found one more plastic bag and it had a charger, and headphones and a manual.  On the lid of the box is the cast who is playing Hanna, Spencer, Aria, and Emily and it's such a beautiful picture! It's the one I posted below!

Once I cleaned up and opend the package with the card, that's when I found out that I was playing Spencer, I had my password and website to go to!  Thanks SO much to Alea of Pop Culture Junkie for helping me! She's on MY team as Hanna and has been nothing but the biggest help ever! It also said to go ahead and look through the phone. When I ever looked down and saw that I had a new iPhone to play with I couldn't believe it! Was it worth sifting through the dirt? You betcha'!

This game has been SO much fun and I want to personally thank ABC Family for having me remain a part of their family! Their marketing skills have definitely gotten MY attention and I hope they've gotten yours! There are four teams playing with four girls on each team! We are given missions to do each day some easy and some very hard! If you do it wrong "-A" reveals a secret about YOU to the whole team! You have to try to get the most challenges correct without making any mistakes. Each day she sends us our missions through a text on the phone! We post on our FaceBook and also on our private FaceBook pages! You may follow me by requesting me over to the left on my FB button! This game runs until June 18th, which is three days after my birthday! Happy Birthday to me...I feel a contest in the air!!

Believe me, there are missions where I may need you to go over to the boards and post about me so that I don't get any secrets revealed and I hope that I can count on my friends to help me! :)

Dont forget to watch PRETTY LITTLE LIARS tonight! In the mean time you can visit them on their Official Website which houses the boards that I was talking about! But I will post a separate link for that! Speaking of links -- Here's the link for the sneak peak of tonight's episode! Happy Watching!

Have fun tonight!! I know I will!

Oh, I know I have some prizes coming up! This does *not have to do with ABC Family or PRETTY LITTLE LIARS! But, since I've almost reached 1,000 followers, I just wanted to say I've got some great things coming up! Including a Nook! So Stay tuned!


June 3, 2010

Pretty Little Liars Novels - To Soon Be A Television Show!

I know that I've got a lot of chatching up to do and I've got some really BIG things in store for all of you! But, recently, in my email box and my regualar mailbox, I've gotten some pretty amazing news.  I'm sure that most of you already know that  Sara Shepard's PRETTY LITTLE LIARS novels are going to be made into a televsion show which will premiere on Tuesday, June 8th on ABC Family! I  for one have stayed up into the wee hours reading the Pretty Little Liar series.  It's so addictive and one of my very favorite guilty pleasures!

I'm already counting down the days until Tuesday just to see what happens.  Oh... and as for what I got in my email box, I'll be more than happy to share them with all of you.  Just because your my friends.  And remember, I mean...   "Never trust a pretty girl with an ugly secret -A"

As for what I got in my mailbox, it's good and there will be more on that later.  But, I wanted to get this out to you as quickly as I could.  After you watch the below, if you want to know all about everything PRETTY LITTLE LIARS (and who wouldn't)? You can visit their Official Site.  They also have a Twitter Page so tweet it up and please don't forget to definitely like them on Facebook! That should keep you up to date and in the loop for all things Pretty Little Liars!  Are you ready to see what I got and FINALLY figured out how to share with you?

Here you go -- If this doesn't get you totally excited, I don't know what will!  Ohhh maybe my next post about this...

I am too excited! I read the novels and now, I can't see how it all unfolds on TV! How many of you have read Pretty Little Liars? Or even if you haven't read them think you might now to compare them to the show? Do you think you might skip the novels all together and just watch? (No! Don't do that! I'm telling you! They're SO Good!)
As for what I've been sent in the actual mail, I need to take some photos and explain it all to you. I'd also like to take a moment to thank you all for all of your help and best wishes, I'm still not fully done, but getting better by the day.  Thank you all! Wait until you see how excited I am to open my mail and I put it off because the show is still almost a week away!