Sexy time!

Yallfest Part Two

So my first panel at Yallfest was the “Fangs among friends” which Andrea Cremer took part of. Normally I am the one that picks out the books between us, but Tessa occasionally finds some really good books too. One example of that is Andrea Cremer’s Nightshade. A few weeks ago she put on her twitter that she had signed books at the Mall of America B&N while I was at work. I called my parents and had them call up there to see if they had one and I was really lucky because my parents were able to get one and have it shipped to Tennessee only downside is I can’t read it until Christmas. The second book is called Wolfbane and the third, which comes out early next year, is Bloodrose.

My sister and I panicked a little bit at first because her name was missing from the table. She had no nameplate! We thought that she had to cancel and wasn’t going to be able to come. Then just before the event started she walked in and was like “Hey! Where is my name plate!” at least that’s what I imagine she said, I actually could not hear her. Then the nameplate magically appeared before the panel started.

So, the thing I remember most about the panel was “sexy time”. I was kind of amazed at how often that I came up and I felt myself wanted to shield the ears of the few little kids in the room. It was really amazing how all of the authors really got along and my sister, who has only been to one other book signing, was really shocked (and won’t stop talking about) how they all really got along with each other.

Andrea Cremer talked about how she wanted to describe a different kind of werewolves in her books. We see a lot of stories where werewolves are infected or bitten and that are evil and just kill people. Well in her book she wanted to create a place where they were not people with infections but people with the ability to turn into wolves. Not werewolves but the animal wolves. Like these:

wolf2
Courtesy of National Geographic

After the panel my sister and I ran down the street to the tent to get in line for the signing. I was no disappointed when I met Andrea Cremer. She is so nice you guys! I didn’t even ramble on to her I was so proud of myself. Ha.

That’s it for this post! More to come! You can follow Andrea Cremer on twitter @andreacremer and remember as always you can also follow me @Hannah_TBV

Hannah

The Great Cake Pop Hunt

YallFest Part One: Cake Pops

This weekend Charleston, South Carolina played host to 26 authors and fans from all over the country. My sister and I arrived Friday night from Tennessee and after checking into our hotel we headed downtown to see if anything was going on. It was late in the evening when we arrived and we decided not to pay for parking (I hate paying to park) we just drove around the city.

I was super excited when we passed Blue Bicycle Books, who played host to us, and their storefront window was decorated for Yallfest. However, I was not excited to have to go off the road for all the emergency vehicles. I am not sure what was going on that night but they were everywhere, I am not kidding, there were five in less than half an hour that zoomed past us. I think they were doing drills that night.

The next morning, after having woken up five times that night just to double check that I didn’t miss my alarm, we both got up put on our The Book Vortex shirts and headed to downtown Charleston. Then, we got lost. We missed out exit had to take another exit, then it took forever to get to street we needed to be at, and then we could not find a place to park. We drove around for fifteen minutes, getting confused with all the one-way streets before we finally found a parking spot.

We went to Blue Bicycle Books and I bought copies of the books I didn’t have, or in my case I couldn’t find. Remember how I said I just moved, well just my luck before we left I could not find the box that held the books that I needed. So once that was done we had an hour to kill before out first panel. This is where I began my own personal mission.

In August I was very lucky to be able to travel to Nashville for the last stop in the Ash2Nash tour and I got to meet six very amazing, very cool authors. One of them goes by the name Victoria Schwab (The Near Witch). I follow her on twitter, as you all should also, and she spoke often about these things called cake pops. She spoke about them so often and casually that I felt like an idiot for having no idea what they were and then she posted a video. She put a video on her blog and explained how to make them.

It became my mission while we were there to find her cake pops. I had to thank her for many things after all, being awesome and signing my book at Ash2Nash and giving great advice, for always answering and responding to my stupid tweets online, and one more really important thing that I can’t tell you guys about yet. So anyway I thought (and I guess I will admit that my mom was the one who suggested it) that as a thank you for being awesome I would bring her cake pops. Problem was I had never seen a cake pop before, and I wasn’t sure where to get them.

A bakery would be an obvious choice but there was not one by out hotel was so I had given up hope of getting one. Then when we were downtown on the day of Yallfest with an hour to kill I walked out of Blue Bicycle Books and there it was.

Staring me down in the face from across the street was this:

There it was. A bakery. So my sister and I scurried across the street and into the bakery, which was super cute!

There I timidly went up to the girls behind the counter and asked them if they had such a thing as a cake pop, unsure if they would have them, and then the girl looks at me and says
“Of course, what kind do you want?”
I looked at my sister and we shared the same look “There are different kinds?”
The girl behind the counter then rattled off what kinds they had and I picked out six to give to Victoria Schwab and then one for Tessa and I, in case we didn’t like these mysterious deserts. After we paid we sat down to try our chocolate cake pops.

We stared at each other for a moment before trying to cake pops. Oh. My. Gosh. They are the most amazing things that I have ever had. When I was finished I picked up the camera to take a few pictures an when I turned back to Tessa she was trying to crack open Victoria Schwab’s box to get another. They were that good. I yelled at her them promptly went back to the really nice girls at the counter and got two more.

To anyone who has never heard of or tried a cake pop before you really need to! They are so good!

I have to give a thank you to the Cupcake in downtown Charleston for providing us with our first delicious cake pops.

You can follow them both on twitter Cupcake @freshcupcakes and Victoria Schwab @veschwab

I have also changed my name on twitter. I used to have a separate account for the book vortex but I am combining it with my personal one so now you all can follow me @Hannah_TBV

Another post on the rest of the festival and what happened when I gave away the cake pops coming up next.

Hannah

Road trip to Yallfest!

Tomorrow is a huge day in the relationship of my sister and I. Tomorrow we embark on our first solo road trip! I’ve got on road trips with just myself and my friend (who happens to be one of the Guest Bloggers) many times before and we have gotten to go see a lot of really awesome things that I might even dedicate another post to. However, I have never gotten to go anywhere with just my sister.

So, what is our destination you might ask? Charleston, South Carolina to go to the Young Adult Book Festival or simply Yallfest. I really love that shortened name for it because anything with the word Yall in it makes me think it’s going to be really Southern. I moved to Tennessee from Michigan almost three years ago (cannot believe its been that long) and the novelty of anything that sounds remotely southern still hasn’t worn off yet.

What is Yallfest you ask? Well as the name of it says it’s a festival for young adult books. For those of you who are unfamiliar with me in my personal life (which I am hoping is at least some of you so not everyone on here is someone I know) I am a writer. I may not be published (yet) but that doesn’t make it any different. I am a young adult writer and to be going to Yallfest is extremely exciting for me

There are going to be tons of authors there that I am super excited to meet! One of them I have actually already met before (Victoria Schwab) but I am super excited to meet her again. She was super nice the first time and now that I have read her book I am very excited to have something to talk with her about besides saying “I promise I will read your book”.

I urge everyone to please check out the website and check out the other superb list of authors who are going to be in attendance. I promise to post pictures when I get back.

Here is the website:
Yallfest
http://yallfest.org/

Have a good night everyone =)

Hannah

The Iron Knight Review

The Iron Knight Review

Let me first start off by saying for those of you unfamiliar with this book it is the fourth and final installment in the Iron Fey Series by Julie Kagawa. There are four books in the series: Iron King, Iron Daughter, Iron Queen, and Iron Knight. There are also two novella’s out there entitled Winter’s Passage and Summer’s Crossing. My older sister was actually the one who stumbled upon the Iron King (the first book) a fact that she never lets me forget.

The series is centered on Meghan Chase, a teenage girl living with her mother, stepfather and little brother. In the Iron King her little brother vanishes and Meghan and her best friend Puck/Robin Goodfellow set off on an adventure into the Fairy world where the rivalry between Summer and Winter goes back thousands of year. Along the way Meghan meets Ash, the mysterious son of Queen Mab, which makes him an Unseelie Prince and therefore Meghans automatic enemy.

Throughout the other three books, all of which are narrated by Meghan, we see love blossom between Meghan and Ash, jealousy sprout up from Puck (Who Ash has made an oath to kill), and battles ragging in the land of fey. Oh and I forgot to mention that not only are there the Unseelie (Winter) and Seelie (Summer) Fey but also a new breed of fey called the Iron Fey.

So as you can all guess there is a lot of stuff that happens in the first three books, and probably one of the most heart wrenching moment takes place at the end of the Iron Queen, seriously though people there are moments in these book that feel like she is sticking a knife in your heart, but they are just so good!

!!!From this point on I will try and not give away spoilers but if you absolutely do not want to be spoiled at all read at your own risk!!!!

So the newest and final installment of the series came out in October and it’s called the Iron Knight. If you read the other books you know that Ash becomes Meghan’s knight, (another really great moment in the series) so that is immediately what I think of. Iron Knight is narrated by Ash and so I was immediately cautious about the book. I am completely Team Ash but there is another final book in another series that changes POV’s in the middle of the book and I strongly disliked that book but I was hoping it wouldn’t turn out with me in tears because I hated it. I was not disappointed.

Iron Knight is hands down the best book of its kind of the year (there is one other book that matches its awesomeness but it’s a different genre) and I have only been as satisfied with a final book in a series once before. So let me tell you all, if I say its amazing then you better believe it is.

!!!Okay here is where some spoilers might appear. Read with caution!!!

The story follows Ash and Puck’s journey through the NeverNever as Ash goes on a quest to become human! Yes! A quest to give up his immortality to live as a human, because as we all know from the Iron Queen there is no other way that he can be with Meghan. Readers get to meet a few new characters, (there are a lot but I am thinking of two in particular) which everyone will love! Let me also just say that one of them is going to blow you away! Not kidding, when a particular character was introduced my jaw hit the floor.
The journey Ash goes on will never leave you bored, it will make you think and it will make your heart hurt for the decisions that have to be made. There is also something that is at the end of the book (I’m really trying to not say too much here) that I think is absolutely brilliant! The author (I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned her yet) Julie Kagawa was a genius for what she did at the end, for what she put Ash through and I loved every single word.

Okay so I have to stop with what else is going to happen or else I will give it all away. Just take my advice everyone this book, and this series if you have not read the others, are not a waste of your time. These are great books, and the last one is amazing! Five stars!

Little note on the author: at the end of July I was on twitter and I heard her mention that she was going to be in Nashville, which was about 2.5 hours from where I lived. So I freaked out, because as a huge fan of these book wouldn’t it be amazing to get to meet the author! So I scoured the Internet (my skills really aren’t that great I found out) and I didn’t find anything! So in my depressed state I just happened to send a message to Julie Kagawa on twitter, and then, she replied! So my point is not only is she a really awesome and amazingly talented writer but also she is also so great to her fans and that makes her even better in my book.

My friend Erin(L) with Julie Kagawa(C) and me(R) at the signing in Nashville.