Tag Archives: Book Scents

Blog Tour: Spark by Holly Schindler | Author Interview

Blog Tour: Spark by Holly Schindler | Author Interview

Welcome to the blog tour for
SPARK by Holly Schindler

Today I’m sharing my blog post for SPARK by Holly Schindler as a part of the blog tour! Thanks to Harper Teen and Hannah from Irish Banana Blog Tours for having me be a part of this one! I’m really excited to share a Q&A session with author Holly Schindler!

Before we jump into the tour, let’s take a second to check out some details about the book:

Blog Tour: Spark by Holly Schindler | Author InterviewTitle: Spark by Holly Schindler
Publishing Info: May 17, 2016 by HarperCollins
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: March 18, 2016

The local Avery Theater was just a run-down building to Quin—until her mother told her the tragic love story of Nick and Emma that played out on the theater’s stage all those years ago. Quin is convinced it’s the perfect story to rewrite for her drama class, but when she goes searching for more information, she makes a startling discovery—the Avery is rapidly regaining its former splendor and setting the stage for her classmates Dylan and Cass to relive Nick and Emma’s romance. Quin can see the spark between them, but it’s up to her to make sure her friends—and the Avery—can both be saved this time around.


LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Indiebound | iBooks | The Book Depository

ABOUT HOLLY SCHINDLER

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Holly Schindler’s work has received starred reviews in Booklist and Publishers Weekly, has won silver and gold medals in ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year and the IPPY Awards, respectively, has been featured on Booklist’s Best First Novels for Youth and School Library Journal’s What’s Hot in YA, and has been a PW Pick of the Week. She is owned by a Pekingese named Jake, and can be found working on her next book in her hometown of Springfield, Missouri. She can also be found at hollyschindler.com.

LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: HOLLY SCHINDLER

The Avery theater is like a character itself, playing a huge role in Verona’s past and also turns out to be an important part of its present/future. Was it difficult to bring a place to life like that?

Just the opposite—it was a delight! I really love books or TV series or movies in which settings or buildings are characters. Love the idea of a place being alive. So many places in our own lives feel that way—maybe because of what we bring to them. I also just love the phrase “the magic of the theater.” Nothing feels more alive or vibrant than a theater. I was so excited to finally come upon a storyline of my own in which I could create a physical place that functioned as a main character.

The book starts off with a quote from As You Like It and there also seems to be a nod to Shakespeare by naming the town Verona.  Would you say that Shakespeare was a big influence or inspiration for SPARK?

Absolutely! You can’t do a piece on the theater without being influenced by or referencing Shakespeare. There’s also an obvious ROMEO AND JULIET element, with the idea of star-crossed lovers. I loved the idea of “uncrossing” star-crossed lovers—being able to save the fated couple. I got to do that in SPARK.

I always love hearing how authors get that spark (*wink*) of inspiration for their books! Was there any specific incident or moment that popped in your head that led you to SPARK’s inception?

This one came in waves. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to focus on two flawed people that weren’t flawed in each other’s eyes (Cass and Dylan). And where do two people transform themselves more powerfully than on the stage of a theater? That was really the initial piece. The rest began to filter itself in along the way.

I thought it was neat how Quin, the main character, is actually not involved in the main romance and the “spark” is between her two classmates, Cass and Dylan. Was this always how Quin’s story was planned to go?

Actually, Quin was a later addition. Initially, I tried to write the romance between Cass and Dylan, told from their points of view. Previously, I’d written a YA love story (PLAYING HURT) that followed that format. But this time, it wasn’t working. I needed a narrator—but I knew it couldn’t be an authorial voice. I needed someone involved with these characters. So my writer (and my protagonist), Quin, was born.

The theater seems to be more prevalent in pop culture nowadays with huge fan bases in shows like Hamilton, Wicked, and so many other plays/musicals being adapted to the big screen. Do you feel like theater might be making a resurgence?

I hope so! There are so many powerful stories that take place on the stage. SPARK was written before HAMILTON exploded—but I really do hope young people are coming to the theater in a new way.

Do you have a favorite theatrical production? Has it influenced any of your books?

I’m an old literature major—and as I said, you can definitely see the influences of Shakespeare in SPARK. I also reference a few musicals in the book like THE FANTASTICKS. I grew up going to Tent Theater (the drama department at MSU puts on productions all summer long underneath a tent on campus)—I saw everything from BELLS ARE RINGING to BAREFOOT IN THE PARK. I also got to catch all sorts of touring theatrical productions—LES MISERABLES, CATS…I think that often, the theater seems somewhat out of reach—it can be pricey if you live in NY, and it can seem like something that only takes place hundreds of miles away if you live in the Midwest. I hope SPARK inspires some teens to go to the theater if they never have before—see a production playing in their hometown, enter the Hamilton lottery. It truly is a magical experience…

Thanks so much to Holly Schindler for this great interview!! 

Holly Schindler Bio: I’m a hybrid author of critically acclaimed traditionally published and Amazon bestselling independently published works for readers of all ages. My previous YAs (A BLUE SO DARK, PLAYING HURT, and FERAL) have received starred reviews from Booklist and Publishers Weekly, won silver and gold medals from ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year and the IPPY Awards, respectively, been featured on Booklist’s First Novels for Youth, School Library Journal’s “What’s Hot in YA,” and been selected as a PW Pick.

Going hybrid means that I’ve been able to explore all sorts of new avenues—short fiction, sequels, I’m even going to be branching out into doing some illustrative work. Throughout 2016, I’m releasing one short story a month in the Forever Finley Short Story Cycle. The cycle begins with “Come December”: http://amzn.to/1oPioN5

Also, in honor of SPARK’s release, I’m holding a sale on PLAY IT AGAIN, the sequel to my YA romance, PLAYING HURT. For a limited time, PLAY IT AGAIN is $.99: http://amzn.to/1qCNVCe

Order Spark: Amazon | IndieBound

Don’t miss the rest of SPARK blog tour stops!

Week 1:
5/16: That Artsy Reader Girl – Guest Post
5/17: Novel Ink – Review
5/18: A Backwards Story – Character Interview
5/19: Pondering the Prose – Review
5/20: Such a Novel Idea – Playlist

Week 2:
5/23: The Book Addict’s Guide – Q&A
5/24: The Irish Banana Review – Review
5/25: YA Bookmark – Top 10
5/26: Bookwyrming Thoughts – Review
5/27: In Wonderland – Guest Post

GIVEAWAY

Three lucky winners will receive a finished copy of SPARK! Enter through the Rafflecopter form below and good luck!! (US only)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blog Tour: The Last Time We Were Us by Leah Konen | Book Scents

Blog Tour: The Last Time We Were Us by Leah Konen | Book Scents

Welcome to the blog tour for
THE LAST TIME WE WERE US by Leah Konen

Today I’m sharing my blog post for THE LAST TIME WE WERE US blog tour! Thanks to Harper Teen and Hannah from Irish Banana Blog Tours for having me be a part of this one! I’m really excited to share a new post for me but one that really fits in with my interests and hobbies… Book Scents!

Before we jump into the tour, let’s take a second to check out some details about the book:

Blog Tour: The Last Time We Were Us by Leah Konen | Book ScentsTitle: The Last Time We Were Us by Leah Konen
Publishing Info: May 10, 2016 by HarperCollins
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: March 18, 2016
Related Posts: The Last Time We Were Us

Liz Grant is about to have the summer of her life. She and her friend MacKenzie are getting invited to all the best parties, and with any luck, Innis Taylor, the most gorgeous guy in Bonneville, will be her boyfriend before the Fourth of July.
Local teen convict released early.
Jason Sullivan wasn’t supposed to come back from juvie. A million years ago, he was her best friend, but that was before he ditched her for a different crowd. Before he attacked Innis’s older brother, leaving Skip’s face burned and their town in shock.
“Everything is not what you think.”
Liz always found it hard to believe what they said about Jason, but all of Bonneville thinks he’s dangerous. If word gets out she’s seeing him, she could lose everything. But what if there’s more to that horrible night than she knows? And how many more people will get hurt when the truth finally comes out?
“You’re the one person who believes in me.”
Leah Konen’s southern romance swelters with passion as it explores the devastating crush of lies, the delicate balance of power and perception, and one girl’s journey to find herself while uncovering the secrets of so many others.


LINKS:
Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Indiebound | iBooks | The Book Depository

ABOUT LEAH KONEN

Leah Konen

Leah Konen grew up in a two-stoplight farming town in Washington State before moving to suburban North Carolina, where there were many more stoplights and lots of sweet tea. After studying journalism at the University of North Carolina, she headed to New York City to pursue her dream of becoming a writer. When she’s not working on novels and articles or writing for fashion brands, she enjoys devouring new books, spoiling her dog, Farley, biking around Brooklyn, checking out live music, and binge-watching TV. Find her online at leahkonen.com.
LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

BOOK SCENTS: THE LAST TIME WE WERE US

Ever since I started making candles, I’ve been so much more in tune with the sensory notes in the books that I read. I feel like aromas in a book are easily skipped over and forgotten once a reader has finished because noticing and committing a smell to memory is such a unique experience that it’s harder hang onto if you haven’t experienced it first hand. I know at least for me, when a book draws on a familiar smell, I’m instantly hit with memories and nostalgia that have the potential to tie me to a book more than any other scenic description so I feel like those smells that add to the atmosphere are not to be overlooked!

Drawing upon my newly heightened awareness, I’ve started keeping tracking of specific scents described in book and how they really paint an even more vivid picture for a reader! Today on Book Scents, I’m sharing some of my favorite aromas from THE LAST TIME WE WERE US! They immediately had me thinking back on what fragrances I would use to mimic each experience and I’ve included each one below. (Now how do we make these posts scratch and sniff?)

Innis shuts it behind him, and in seconds, we’re kissing again. He smells like Downy and cologne and faint cigarettes. His lips are salty with summer sweat.

Inspiration: Clean laundry, cologne, cigarettes
Fragrances: Clean cotton, cool clear water, tobacco

She fiddles with the strings of her half apron. “I thought it would be nice if we had lunch out on the porch. It’s only eighty-two out, and there’s a breeze.”

She looks at me like a lost puppy, waiting for an answer. This funny thing happens to moms, right about when you turn fifteen. They start trying to be your friend.

“Sure.”

“Great. Grab a plate. I’ll pour the tea.”

“Half and half, please.” During the summer, our house always has two pitchers of tea in the fridge. One sweet and syrupy for Mom—the kind that’s led many a Southerner into the throes of obesity—one unsweet for Dad. I like a little of both.

I fill my plate with a slice of ham, lots of cucumbers, and a dollop of Mom’s neighborhood-famous potato salad, and head out front, taking a seat on a wicker bench covered with floral pillows. It took Mom four solid months to find pillows in a pattern she liked that you could keep outside. I kick up my feet on the ottoman and pop a cucumber into my mouth, watching as the bugs collect on the wraparound screen, looking for food or a long drink.

Inspiration: Iced tea, cucumbers, summer air
Fragrances: Tea, lemon, cucumber mint, fresh outdoors

I sidestep the rest of the way down, between dogwood bushes and wildflowers and weeds that are too pretty to even be called weeds, and then finally we reach the clearing, a grassy circle surrounded by trees and climbing ivy. There’s a mass of crumbling bricks on one end that used to be one of those huge barbecues no one makes or uses anymore. I look up, and all I see is sky, a blue, clear ceiling. I look back down, and there’s Jason, looking at me.

Inspiration: Dogwood bushes, wildflowers, grass, ivy
Fragrances: Cotton tree, meadow, French market (light floral scent), four leaf clover

After Mom and Dad have gone to bed, after the TV turns from late-night hosts to infomercials, right around when the honeysuckle reaches the height of its dewy perfume, we talk. About the little things, the daily things, more than anything else. How often he ices his jaw. The games I play with Sadie and Mary Ryan. The oppressive heat, the way Dad skimps on the AC to be cheap, how his dad does the same

Inspiration: Honeysuckle, dew, summer heat
Fragrances: Honeysuckle, rain, fresh outdoors

I open the door to the truck, and the smell hits me immediately, sugar, flour, and pure nostalgic warmth. The polka-dot box sits on the dash.

“You didn’t.”

“I was driving to work, and I saw the light on,” he says. “I figured my boss wouldn’t kill me if I was a few minutes late, given that I’m recovering and all.”

He opens the lid, and the sweet smell is even stronger.

“Still your favorite?” he asks.

“Are you kidding?”

Your first time having a real Krispy Kreme doughnut is a rite of passage in North Carolina. It has to be the real deal, fresh from the shop when they have the HOT light flicked on.

Jason and I had ours together when we were five or six. I’d stayed over the night before, and Mrs. Sullivan slipped into his room superearly, got us out of our bunk beds and told us we were going to have the best doughnuts of our lives. She always said that fresh Krispy Kreme doughnuts were the only thing North Carolina had on New York, food-wise. When she handed them to us, they were still hot, and they melted in our mouths, just like she’d said they would.

Inspiration: Krispy Creme Donuts
Fragrances: Cake, pink sugar, vanilla

So what do you think?! Which scents do you think are the strongest sensory inspirations? Which are your favorites?


Don’t miss the rest of THE LAST TIME WE WERE US blog tour stops!

I’m closing out the tour but don’t miss the rest of the stops that came before me! Check out the rest of the tour info below:

GIVEAWAY

Three lucky winners will receive a finished copy of THE LAST TIME WE WERE US! Enter through the Rafflecopter form below and good luck!! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blog Tour: Summer of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider | Book Scents

Blog Tour: Summer of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider | Book Scents

Welcome to the blog tour for
SUMMER OF SLOANE by Erin L. Schneider

I am positively thrilled to be on the blog tour for SUMMER OF SLOANE today!!! Erin Schneider is an awesome person to interact with and of course, I also loved her book! Thanks to Scholastic and Hannah from Irish Banana Blog Tours for having me be a part of this one!! I’m really excited to share a new post for me but one that really fits in with my interests and hobbies… Book Scents!

Before we jump into the tour, let’s take a second to check out some details about the book:

Blog Tour: Summer of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider | Book ScentsTitle: Summer of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider
Publishing Info: May 3, 2016 by Disney Hyperion
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: April 1, 2016
Related Posts: Summer of Sloane

Warm Hawaiian sun. Lazy beach days. Flirty texts with her boyfriend back in Seattle.
These are the things seventeen-year-old Sloane McIntyre pictured when she imagined the summer she’d be spending at her mom’s home in Hawaii with her twin brother, Penn. Instead, after learning an unthinkable secret about her boyfriend, Tyler, and best friend, Mick, all she has is a fractured hand and a completely shattered heart.
Once she arrives in Honolulu, though, Sloane hopes that Hawaii might just be the escape she needs. With beach bonfires, old friends, exotic food, and the wonders of a waterproof cast, there’s no reason Sloane shouldn’t enjoy her summer. And when she meets Finn McAllister, the handsome son of a hotel magnate who doesn’t always play by the rules, she knows he’s the perfect distraction from everything that’s so wrong back home.
But it turns out a measly ocean isn’t nearly enough to stop all the emails, texts, and voicemails from her ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend, desperate to explain away their betrayal. And as her casual connection with Finn grows deeper, Sloane’s carefree summer might not be as easy to find as she’d hoped. Weighing years of history with Mick and Tyler against their deception, and the delicate possibility of new love, Sloane must decide when to forgive, and when to live for herself.


LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Indiebound | iBooks | The Book Depository

ABOUT ERIN L. SCHNEIDER

Erin L. Schneider is native to the Pacific Northwest, attended college in Honolulu, and – although Hawaiian – should never be allowed on a surfboard. Erin SchneiderWith more than twenty years in corporate merchandising, she’s now a full-time writer living in Seattle with her husband, Neal; their baby boy, Kellan; a rowdy German shepherd named Ronin; and two crazy cats, Ono and Poke. She’s a member of both the Pacific Northwest Writers Association and SCBWI, and is also co-founder of the YA Buccaneers.
SUMMER OF SLOANE is her debut novel, out May 3, 2016 from Disney-Hyperion. Visit Erin online at Erin L Schneider or on Twitter: @ErinLSchneider1.
Erin is represented by literary agent Lisa Grubka of Fletcher & Company.
LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

BOOK SCENTS: SUMMER OF SLOANE

Ever since I started making candles, I’ve been so much more in tune with the sensory notes in the books that I read. I feel like aromas in a book are easily skipped over and forgotten once a reader has finished because noticing and committing a smell to memory is such a unique experience that it’s harder hang onto if you haven’t experienced it first hand. I know at least for me, when a book draws on a familiar smell, I’m instantly hit with memories and nostalgia that have the potential to tie me to a book more than any other scenic description so I feel like those smells that add to the atmosphere are not to be overlooked!

Drawing upon my newly heightened awareness, I’ve started keeping tracking of specific scents described in book and how they really paint an even more vivid picture for a reader! Today on Book Scents, I’m sharing some of my favorite aromas from SUMMER OF SLOANE! They immediately had me thinking back on what fragrances I would use to mimic each experience and I’ve included each one below. (Now how do we make these posts scratch and sniff?)

I’m immediately hit with the welcoming scent of tropical flowers mixed with suntan lotion. A familiar smell that somehow makes everything better. And one that always reminds me of my mom.

Inspiration: Suntan lotion, tropical flowers
Fragrances: Rain forest, hibiscus, coconut

As soon as I walk though the double front doors, the first thing I see is the entire back wall — or lack thereof. It’s made of movable wood and glass panels that slide open, allowing every possible sense to tune in to the surroundings. The sound of waves crashing on the shore, the smell of sea salt that drifts along the warm current of air, and finally, the uninterrupted views of the beautiful ocean beyond.

Inspiration: Sea salt, wooden doors, warm air
Fragrances: Sea mist, ocean, rain, driftwood

Penn pulls the car into an open space, and I’m immediately hit with wafting curls of salty sea air infused with the rich scent of burning wood, and I inhale deeply.

Inspiration: Sea, burning wood
Fragrances: Sea mist, campfire, fresh outdoors

The expansive wall behind the check-in n counter is embedded with thousands of rocks. Water cascades over them, with a tranquil hum that’s mesmerizing. And the smell. It’s lavender with a hint of vanilla, and with one sniff, I feel like I’ve entered a spa.

Inspiration: Lavender with a hint of vanilla
Fragrances: Lavender, vanilla, rain

… And since I’m slight cold from being wet, an oversized gray hoodie that definitely belongs to Finn. It smells of sunshine and salt water.

Inspiration: Sunshine and salt water
Fragrances: Fresh outdoors, rain, sea mist, ocean

If you want to win the actual SUMMER OF SLOANE-inspired candle (designed by Erin L. Schneider!), don’t miss the giveaway below!


Don’t miss the rest of the SUMMER OF SLOANE  blog tour stops!

I’m closing out the tour but don’t miss the rest of the stops that came before me! Check out the rest of the tour info below:

TOUR GIVEAWAY

Three lucky winners will receive a finished copy of SUMMER OF SLOANE and the hardcover is just gorgeous! Enter through the Rafflecopter form below and good luck!! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

CANDLE GIVEAWAY

I’m also personally hosting a giveaway in conjunction with the SUMMER OF SLOANE blog tour and one lucky winner will receive a SUMMER OF SLOANE-inspired candle from my Etsy shop, Novelly Yours! The candle smells like pineapple, coconut, and a hint of the ocean. US entries only, please! Enter the Rafflecopter form below to enter! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway