Team Gryffindor Welcome Post! (Plus my sign-up Post)

 

HELLO and WELCOME my fellow Team Gryffindors! (If you are not team Gryffindor, that is ok! Welcome to you as well!) As Head Girl of the Gryffindor house for this challenge I want to take a moment to let you know I am here for any questions you may have, concerns that pop up, or if you just want a fellow Harry Potter fan to chat with! Also as Head Girl, I will be the Gryffindor’s host to turn in all points to on November 12th!

If you are interested  and have not yet signed up, feel free to head over to my other post and get all the info! Here is a link.

JUST A LITTLE ABOUT ME:

My name is Lauren. *waves* I am a book dragon, coffee drinker, somewhat artist, photographer, sometimes gamer, all time dreamer, hopeful writer, and Harry Potter fanatic! I mainly read Fantasy, but will read pretty much anything. I’m beyond excited to have everyone join us for this reading challenge! When Alex told me this idea in September, I knew it was going to be amazing! We are lucky to have Kelsey and Erica join us! This is my first time co-hosting a reading challenge, and I can’t think of a better challenge to start with! If you ever want to chat, you can find me on Twitter: @Betweendpages or Instagram: Between_D_Pages.

HOUSE CUP CHALLENGE:

I may be a co-host and Head Girl, but I can’t pass up on this fun! So to join in I’m going to add my sign-up post here!

Name: Lauren @BetweenDpages
Hogwarts House: Gryffindor!
Wand Type: Laurel Wood and Dragon Heartstring
Pet: I wish I could take my dog Luna (yes, she is named after Luna Lovegood!) But apparently witches never seem to have dogs, and I’m allergic to cats so I’m going with OWL!
Favorite Subject: Transfiguration! (I actually had a hard time picking between Trans and Charms! But Transfiguration seems like it would be a little more fun to learn!)
Favorite Professor: Professor McGonagall. (It was between her and Lupin! I love them both so much, but McGonagall’s sass won over Lupin’s sweetness!)

ACCIO BOOKS!

Coming up with a TBR for anything is actually kind of hard for me. I am a big mood reader, so picking books in advance can be tricky. I also added an additional challenge to myself by trying to only pick books I owned.  BUT I DID IT!! To try and give myself a little room to work with I picked books for the main challenge, plus a book for every bonus challenge! I seriously doubt I will get them all read during this challenge, but at least I have a plan!

I don’t have these in any order, so I’m just going to list the 7 books I picked for my main challenge:

Year One-Year Seven:

-Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets: Illustrated Edition
-Dead House
-The Girl Who Drank The Moon
-The Darkest Part of the Forest
-Heart of Betrayal
-Anna and the French Kiss
-This Song Will Save Your Life

Bonus Challenges:

Gryffindor: Read a book with an epic hero/heroine (HP and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Hufflepuff: Read a book that contains a strong friendship (HP and the Goblet of Fire)
Ravenclaw: Read a book that revolves around a mystery (The Killing Jar)
Slytherin: Read a book set in a dystopian world (Never Fade)
AstronomyClass: Read a book set in outer space (These Broken Stars)
Care of Magical Creatures: Read a book that features an animal or magical/mythical creature (The Coldest Girl in Coldtown)
Tri-Wizard Tournament: Read a book that includes a competition (Caraval)
Occlumency: Read a book about a character with magical abilities or superpowers (Fate of Flames)
Death Eater: Read a book told from the POV of a villain (Vicious)
Platform 9 3/4: Read a book that features travel (Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour)
Time Turner: Read a book set in the future or past (Ready, Player, One)
Fantastic Beasts: Read a spin-off to a beloved series (Fairest)
Dumbledore’s Army: Buddy-read a book with a friend or group (The Girl Who Chased the Moon, and Uprooted)
A LITTLE STUCK?
Picking books can be a little difficult so here are a few I would recommend if you have not already read them!
-Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
-A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray
-Fear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh
-The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows
-My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand
-The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken
-Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
-Air Awakens by Elise Kova
-Hounded by Devin Hearne
-When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandy Menon
There is also a list on Bustle for Gryffindor reads. They also have the other houses which might give you ideas. You can go here for that list!
Just a reminder:
Sign-ups close Saturday night, October 14th. Make sure to have your post linked with one of the host before Saturday night! If you are not a blogger, please be sure to complete your sign-up Twitter post, Instagram post, or Youtube video!
There will be a kick-off Twitter chat Sunday, October 15th @8:00p.m. EST! Please try to join us if you can! This is a great time to meet fellow challengers and get to know everyone who is participating! The hosts will also be taking time during the chat to answer questions you may have!
We are excited to have you and hope to see you all at the chat Sunday!
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Reading Challenge Sign Up!

WELCOME TO THE HOUSE CUP READING CHALLENGE!!! My fellow co-hosts, Alex of Book Daisy Reviews, Kelsey of Kelsey’s Cluttered Bookshelf, and Erica of Escape Under the Cover, are excited to invite our fellow book readers and Harry Potter fans on an adventure as we tackle our TBRs! Now let’s get to the fun part…

WHAT IS THE HOUSE CUP READING CHALLENGE?

The House Cup Reading Challenge runs from Sunday, October 15, to Sunday, November 12. During this challenge, you will progress from a first-year to seventh-year Hogwarts student by completing seven books on your TBR list. In addition to the main challenge, you will have opportunities to earn even more points by participating in the themed bonus challenges and tweeting with the challenge hashtag on Twitter. But more on that later!

HOW THE CHALLENGE WORKS

First, you’ll need to choose your Hogwarts house. During the challenge, you’ll not only be earning points for yourself but for your Hogwarts house as well. At the end of the challenge, each reader should report their points to their house’s Head Girl:
Gryffindor: Lauren @BetweenDPages
Hufflepuff: Kelsey @Kelsenator
Ravenclaw: Alex @booksydaisy
Slytherin: Erica @slychica08
Here’s how we’re determining the winners:
 4 Individual House Winners
One winner will be chosen from each of the four Hogwarts houses. The person who earns the most points for their house will receive:
$5 Starbucks gift card and some HP-themed goodies (stickers, bookmarks, etc.)
1 House Cup Grand Prize Winner
Here’s where the House Cup challenge really comes into play! At the end of the challenge, we will randomly select one grand prize winner from the Hogwarts houses with the most points overall. This lucky winner will receive:
A Harry Potter Funko Pop figure and a $25 giftcard to Barnes and Noble
**In the case of an international winner, that person will receive an e-gift card to The Book Depository.** 
**PLEASE NOTE: Because we will need winners to provide us with their addresses in order to send out the prizes, you must be 18 years or older to be eligible to win.**

Challenge Events

To kick off the challenge, we’ll be hosting a Twitter chat starting at 8:00 p.m. EST to give everybody a chance to introduce themselves, talk about the competition, and answer some Harry Potter trivia questions. Be sure to follow along with the #housecupreadingchallenge hashtag.
At the end of the challenge, we’ll also be hosting a watch-along of one of the Harry Potter movies (to be decided via Twitter poll). We’ll have more details about this as we get closer to the end of the challenge.

CHALLENGE CATAGORIES AND POINT BREAKDOWN

Main Challenge (20 points each)

Not everyone likes to be confined to a specific category, so we’ve decided that all books for the main challenge are reader’s choice. This means you can pick any book off your TBR list to count toward the main challenge!
First Year: reader’s choice
Second Year: reader’s choice
Third Year: reader’s choice
Fourth Year: reader’s choice
Fifth Year: reader’s choice
Sixth Year: reader’s choice
Seventh Year: reader’s choice

Bonus Challenges (10 points each)

For those who like categories to help narrow down their reading choices, here are thirteen bonus challenges to choose from. However, books you read for the bonus challenges cannot count toward the main challenge! For example,  if you pick The Hunger Games for the Slytherin bonus challenge (read a dystopian book), you cannot also count it toward your second-year challenge.
Gryffindor: Read a book with an epic hero/heroine
Hufflepuff: Read a book that contains a strong friendship
Ravenclaw: Read a book that revolves around a mystery
Slytherin: Read a book set in a dystopian world
AstronomyClass: Read a book set in outer space
Care of Magical Creatures: Read a book that features an animal or magical/mythical creature
Tri-Wizard Tournament: Read a book that includes a competition
Occlumency: Read a book about a character with magical abilities or superpowers
Death Eater: Read a book told from the POV of a villain
Platform 9 3/4: Read a book that features travel
Time Turner: Read a book set in the future or past
Fantastic Beasts: Read a spin-off to a beloved series
Dumbledore’s Army: Buddy-read a book with a friend or group
Social Media Bonus Points
Use the hashtag #housecupreadingchallenge on Twitter to earn 1 point per tweet (limited to 20 points total).

HOW TO SIGN UP

Think you’re ready to take on the House Cup Reading Challenge? Awesome! To sign up, grab your house badge below, create a sign-up post on your blog with your challenge TBR list and, if you want, your answers to the questionnaire below. Once you’ve made your post, be sure to link it back to us using the Inlinkz widget below (or on any of my fellow co-hosts’ blogs). We await your owl no later than October 14! 😉 Happy reading!

HOGWARTS STUDENT QUESTIONNAIRE

Name:
Hogwarts House:
Wand Type:
Pet:
Favorite Subject:
Favorite Professor:

HOUSE BADGES

 

 

We can’t wait to see you on October 15 at 8:00 p.m. EST for the challenge kick-off Twitter chat!


Waiting on Wednesday: Empress of a Thousand Skies

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The book pick for this week’s wow sounds amazing! I know I can’t wait to read it and luckily it’s not that far away!

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Title: Empress of a Thousand Skies

Author: Rhoda Belleza

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Science Fiction

Page Count: 344

Release Date: February 7th, 2017

Summary:

Empress
Rhee, also known as Crown Princess Rhiannon Ta’an, is the sole surviving heir to a powerful dynasty. She’ll stop at nothing to avenge her family and claim her throne.

Fugitive
Aly has risen above his war refugee origins to find fame as the dashing star of a DroneVision show. But when he’s falsely accused of killing Rhee, he’s forced to prove his innocence to save his reputation – and his life.

Madman
With planets on the brink of war, Rhee and Aly are thrown together to confront a ruthless evil that threatens the fate of the entire galaxy.

A saga of vengeance, warfare, and the true meaning of legacy.

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About the Author:

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Rhoda Belleza was raised in Los Angeles, where she grew up writing XFiles fanfiction and stuffing her face with avocados. When she’s not writing, Rhoda obsesses over nail art tutorials, watches kung fu movies, and sews together crooked things that pass for clothes. She’s a children’s editor at a publishing house and writes from a sunny Brooklyn apartment stuffed far too many bikes and far too many shoes. Empress of a Thousand Skies is her debut novel.

Waiting on Wednesday: Wait for Me

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Nothing like waiting patiently for that next new book to come out! This week the book we are waiting for is:

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Title: Wait for Me

Author: Caroline Leech

Genre: YA, Historical

Page Count: 384

Release Date: January 31st, 2017

Summary:

The perfect blend of sweet romance and historical flavor, Wait for Me, from debut author Caroline Leech, brings a fresh new voice to a much-loved genre.

It’s 1945, and Lorna Anderson’s life on her father’s farm in Scotland consists of endless chores and rationing, knitting Red Cross scarves, and praying for an Allied victory. So when Paul Vogel, a German prisoner of war, is assigned as the new farmhand, Lorna is appalled. How can she possibly work alongside the enemy when her own brothers are risking their lives for their country?

But as Lorna reluctantly spends time with Paul, she feels herself changing. The more she learns about him—from his time in the war to his life back home in Germany—the more she sees the boy behind the soldier. Soon Lorna is battling her own warring heart. Loving Paul could mean losing her family and the life she’s always known. With tensions rising all around them, Lorna must decide how much she’s willing to sacrifice before the end of the war determines their fate.

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Waiting on Wednesday: Poison’s Kiss

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The first WoW post of 2017!!! So many great books are coming out, but this week we are going to talk about:

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Title: Poison’s Kiss (Poison’s Kiss, #1)

Author: Breeana Shields

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Page Count: 304

Release Date: January 10th, 2017

Summary:

A teenage assassin kills with a single kiss until she is ordered to kill the one boy she loves. This commercial YA fantasy is romantic and addictive like– a poison kiss– and will thrill fans of Sarah J. Maas and Victoria Aveyard.

Marinda has kissed dozens of boys. They all die afterward. It s a miserable life, but being a visha kanya a poison maiden is what she was created to do. Marinda serves the Raja by dispatching his enemies with only her lips as a weapon.

Until now, the men she was ordered to kiss have been strangers, enemies of the kingdom. Then she receives orders to kiss Deven, a boy she knows too well to be convinced he needs to die. She begins to question who she s really working for. And that is a thread that, once pulled, will unravel more than she can afford to lose.

This rich, surprising, and accessible debut is based in Indian folklore and delivers a story that will keep readers on the edge of their seats.

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About the Author:

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Breeana Shields graduated from Brigham Young University with a BA in English. Her debut young adult fantasy, POISON’S KISS, will be released from Random House in 2017, with a sequel to follow in 2018. When she’s not writing, Breeana loves reading, playing board games and spending time with her husband, three children and an extremely spoiled miniature poodle. She lives in the Pacific Northwest, where it drizzles, rains or pours nine months of the year, but then transforms into paradise during the other three. She’s willing to make the trade-off.

Waiting on Wednesday: Frostblood

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Can you believe this is the last Waiting on Wednesday post for 2016? Where did this year go?? As we look to January Live, Love, Read has picked the following book as our pick:

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Title: Frostblood (Frostblood Saga, #1)

Author: Elly Blake

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Page Count: 384

Release Date: January 10th, 2017

Summary:

Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby’s powers are unpredictable, and she’s not sure she’s willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon.

All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to take part in the king’s tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love.

Fast-paced and compelling, Frostblood is the first in a page-turning new young adult three-book series about a world where flame and ice are mortal enemies—but together create a power that could change everything.

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About the Author:

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Elly Blake loves fairy tales, old houses, and owls. After earning a BA in English literature, she held a series of seemingly random jobs, including project manager, customs clerk, graphic designer, reporter for a local business magazine, and library assistant. She lives in Southwestern Ontario with her husband, kids and a Siberian Husky mix who definitely shows Frostblood tendencies.

Waiting on Wednesday: The Secret of a Heart Note

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Christmas is almost here, and so is another week of waiting on a book that is soon to hit the shelves! This week the book we are looking forward to is:

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Title:The Secret of a Heart Note

Author: Stacey Lee

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Contemporary

Page Count: 384

Release Date: December 27th, 2016

Summary:

An evocative novel about a teen aroma expert who uses her extrasensitive sense of smell to mix perfumes that help others fall in love while protecting her own heart at all costs

Sometimes love is right under your nose. As one of only two aromateurs left on the planet, sixteen-year-old Mimosa knows what her future holds: a lifetime of weeding, mixing love elixirs, and matchmaking—all while remaining incurably alone. For Mim, the rules are clear: falling in love would render her nose useless, taking away her one great talent. Still, Mimosa doesn’t want to spend her life elbow-deep in soil and begonias. She dreams of a normal high school experience with friends, sports practices, debate club, and even a boyfriend. But when she accidentally gives an elixir to the wrong woman and has to rely on the lovesick woman’s son, the school soccer star, to help fix the situation, Mim quickly begins to realize that falling in love isn’t always a choice you can make.

At once hopeful, funny, and romantic, Stacey Lee’s The Secret of a Heart Note is a richly evocative coming-of-age story that gives a fresh perspective on falling in love and finding one’s place in the world.

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About the Author:

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Stacey Lee is a fourth generation Chinese-American whose people came to California during the heydays of the cowboys. She believes she still has a bit of cowboy dust in her soul. A native of southern California, she graduated from UCLA then got her law degree at UC Davis King Hall. After practicing law in the Silicon Valley for several years, she finally took up the pen because she wanted the perks of being able to nap during the day, and it was easier than moving to Spain. She plays classical piano, raises children, and writes YA fiction.

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Waiting on Wednesday: The Alchemist of Loom

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So many books to wait impatiently for! Some books help continue a story we started before, while others begin a new adventure for us! This week’s pick for WoW is a new series starter and it sounds AMAZING!

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Title: The Alchemists of Loom (Loom Saga, #1)

Author: Elise Kova

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Steampunk

Page Count: 380

Release Date: January 10th, 2017

Summary:

Her vengeance. His vision.

Ari lost everything she once loved when the Five Guilds’ resistance fell to the Dragon King. Now, she uses her unparalleled gift for clockwork machinery in tandem with notoriously unscrupulous morals to contribute to a thriving underground organ market. There isn’t a place on Loom that is secure from the engineer turned thief, and her magical talents are sold to the highest bidder as long as the job defies their Dragon oppressors.

Cvareh would do anything to see his sister usurp the Dragon King and sit on the throne. His family’s house has endured the shame of being the lowest rung in the Dragons’ society for far too long. The Alchemist Guild, down on Loom, may just hold the key to putting his kin in power, if Cvareh can get to them before the Dragon King’s assassins.

When Ari stumbles upon a wounded Cvareh, she sees an opportunity to slaughter an enemy and make a profit off his corpse. But the Dragon sees an opportunity to navigate Loom with the best person to get him where he wants to go.

He offers her the one thing Ari can’t refuse: A wish of her greatest desire, if she brings him to the Alchemists of Loom.

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About the Author:

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Elise Kova has always had a profound love of fantastical worlds. Somehow, she managed to focus on the real world long enough to graduate with a Master’s in Business Administration before crawling back under her favorite writing blanket to conceptualize her next magic system. She currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and when she is not writing can be found playing video games, watching anime, or talking with readers on social media.

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Waiting on Wednesday: Black Moon

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There is nothing much like the feeling of waiting on a book! For this week’s pick we decided on:

***** SPOILER WARNING AHEAD! This is the third book in a series. If you have not read the other two books the summary may contain spoilers for you****

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Title: Black Moon (Zodiac, #3)

Author: Romina Russell

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Page Count: 320

Release Date: December 6th, 2016

Summary:

Book 3 in the breathtaking sci-fi space saga inspired by astrology that will stun fans of the Illuminae Files and Starbound series.

One final secret stands between Rho and the enemy. But will the devastating truth be enough to destroy her first?

Rho, the courageous visionary from House Cancer, lost nearly everything when she exposed and fought against the Marad, a mysterious terrorist group bent on destroying balance in the Zodiac Galaxy. Now, the Marad has disappeared without a trace, and an uneasy peace has been declared.

But Rho is suspicious. She believes the Master is still out there in some other form. And looming over all are the eerie visions of her mother, who died many years ago, but is now appearing to Rho in the stars.

When news of a stylish new political party supported by her best friend, Nishi, sends Rho on another journey across the galaxy, she uses it as an opportunity to hunt the hidden master and seek out information about her mother. And what she uncovers sheds light on the truth–but casts darkness upon the entire Zodiac world.

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About the Author:

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Romina Russell (aka Romina Garber) is a Los Angeles based author who originally hails from Buenos Aires, Argentina. As a teen, Romina landed her first writing gig—College She Wrote, a weekly Sunday column for the Miami Herald that was later picked up for national syndication—and she hasn’t stopped writing since. When she’s not working on ZODIAC, Romina can be found producing movie trailers, taking photographs, or daydreaming about buying a new drum set. She is a graduate of Harvard College and a Virgo to the core.

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Waiting on Wednesday: Of Fire and Stars

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Are you waiting on book this week? There always seems to be a few books coming out that we just can’t wait to get our hands on! This week’s book is…

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Title: Of Fire and Stars

Author: Audrey Coulthurst

Genre: YA, Fantasy, GLBT

Page Count: 400

Release Date: November 22, 2016

Summary:

Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile lands. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a kingdom where magic is forbidden.

Now, Denna must learn the ways of her new home while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses before her coronation—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine (called Mare), sister of her betrothed.

When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two work together, each discovers there’s more to the other than she thought. Mare is surprised by Denna’s intelligence and bravery, while Denna is drawn to Mare’s independent streak. Soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.

But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other.

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About the Author:

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Audrey Coulthurst writes YA books that tend to involve magic, horses, and kissing the wrong people. Her debut novel, Of Fire and Stars, will be published on November 22, 2016 by Balzer+Bray/HarperCollins. When she’s not dreaming up new stories, she can usually be found painting, singing, or on the back of a horse.

Audrey has a Master’s in Writing from Portland State University, is a member of SCBWI, and studied with Malinda Lo as a 2013 Lambda Literary Foundation Fellow. She lives in Santa Monica, California.

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