Notice for Review Requests

I have been receiving some review requests over the past few months. However, I have been quite busy with my personal and school life to continue actively reviewing novels. I do read every request that has been sent but I apologize in advance that I do not reply to them all. I have accumulated a pile I have yet to go through and I try to work with what I have instead rather than taking on more.

If I do take on a request, I will forewarn that it may take a couple of months before I get around to it.

In the meantime, Stop, Drop, and Read! serves as an archive book review blog. Once in awhile when I have time, a new review will go up.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Author Guest Post: Yasmin Shiraz on Date Rape and What to Do

Yasmin Shiraz is the author of the Retaliation series and Accused is the second novel in the series that just has been released. It's about a serial rapist that has been attacking girls across the Georgia Atlantic University campus. One of the characters is falsely accused. Here's the synopsis:

An easier and more peaceful life seemed to be destined for Ahmed and Tashera when they left Washington, DC and entered Georgia Atlantic University. But when Ahmed is accused of a crime that he didn't commit and begins to be tried in the media, his popularity plummets, his self-esteem suffers, and his dreams of playing college basketball disappear. 

Meanwhile, there is a serial rapist on campus who has been attacking freshman girls at record numbers and forcing them to keep silent. As Tashera learns about the girls, she begins to close in on the rapist. But is the attacker too crafty to be caught? Will the state prosecutor ignore key evidence to instead focus on the fame that comes with convicting a high profile basketball star? 


 Tashera is beyond stressed as she divides her time between trying to find enough evidence to clear Ahmed while at the same time stopping the rapist who roams the campus of Georgia Atlantic. Ahmed and Tashera's journey into a new life away from home is more challenging than they ever thought that it would be.


I have the pleasure of hosting a guest post from Yasmin on date rape and what to do if you or a loved one has been affected. If you would like to know more about Yasmin and her novels, please check out her website at www.yasminshiraz.net.

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Date Rape--What Do I Do Now?

by Yasmin Shiraz, Author of Accused


The White House recently released a report that stated 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted at college. At colleges and universities across the US, the date rape drug is often at the center of these sexual assaults. Knowing that so many women were being assaulted motivated me to write my book, Accused.

But, what do you do if you feel that you've been sexually assaulted while under the influence of a date rape drug? And, how do friends or family members help a person who has been sexually assaulted?

If you believe that you've been sexually assaulted, go to the hospital emergency room. If possible, have a friend take you. Don't bathe, douche, urinate, wash your hands, change clothes, eat or drink before you go to the emergency room. There may be evidence on your body and/or on your clothing. The evidence must be preserved as much as possible. Once you're at the hospital, call the police. Tell the police everything that you remember. The police are there to find the perpetrator not to judge you. So, be honest about all of your activities. Telling the truth will be most helpful in finding the perpetrator.

Many victims of sexual assault feel guilty for going to a party, for drinking alcohol, for dancing with strangers, but nothing that you do --including drinking alcohol or doing drugs--can justify rape. The feeling of being violated is often difficult to overcome. But, there are hotline counselors as well as campus counselors to help you process your feelings. The National Sexual Assault Hotline is 24 hours to speak with victims at 800-656-HOPE.

Friends and family members should be supportive but many of us don't know how. Here are some tips:
  1. Listening when and if the victim wants to talk. You don't have to ask them specific questions, but be willing to be a non-judgmental good listener.
  2. Let your loved one know that you don't blame them for what happened. Many victims feel guilty even though being raped wasn't their fault. 
  3. Be patient. Your loved one may take a while to feel better or get back to "normal." Give them time to heal. 
  4. Offer to accompany them to a support group. Sometimes it's intimidating to go to a new place by yourself. But, when a friend or family member is willing to go with you, it encourages you. 
  5. Let your loved one know that you believe in them. It seems like a simple thing but many victims begin to feel badly about themselves after being raped. Let your loved one know that you support them, love them and believe in them. 
Please share this article with anyone that you feel could use this information. Many victims suffer in silence. I'd love your comments and feedback. Feel free to email me yshiraz AT yasminshiraz dot net or on twitter @yasminshiraz.
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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Giveaway: Obstacles by Christopher Michael Reardon

Hey everyone! I've decided to host a giveaway by request of the debut author, Chris Reardon. His novel Obstacles is a YA urban fantasy/paranormal genre. 

If you are interested in possibly winning a copy, you can enter below! Your choice of paperback or E-book. Open worldwide and ends on March 1st. 

Title: Obstacles
Author: Christopher Michael Reardon
Description: A child will die. You're afraid to live. Would you go to all lengths to save him? Darkness knows no bounds, as Alcott, an African American doctor sees all too well. The man is petrified by death. His fragile existence rests at the mercy of the universe. This fact is far too much for him to handle. From unyielding nightmares to elevator terrors, he's lost in paranoia. 

Assigned to look after an ill child, Alcott's horrors only heighten. Gari is a nine-year-old boy with a fatal disease. He will surely pass on within the year. Alcott bonds with him more and more each day. Part of him knows this grim fate just isn't right. 

Alcott befriends a hospital patient. This lunatic forces him to lug home an ancient text on bringing back the dead. Despite the man's obvious dementia, Alcott attempts the scheme. Charging up a cliff, he recites the chant over ocean gusts. A god woman glides in from the horizon. She instructs Alcott on the trials to save Gari's life. These fearsome Obstacles require true strength. From battling sharks to wielding a flail, he must prove fortitude against genuine danger. Alcott decides his fate at this moment. 

Death's claws shall not grasp Gari's soul.



Sunday, January 26, 2014

Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton

Title: Humans of New York
Author: Brandon Stanton
Age Group: Youth +
# of Pages: 304
My Rating: 5/5

Ever since I stopped reviewing, I haven't had much desire to obtain new books. Reading for me became infrequent and at most, I would read manga online. This past year though, there was one book I wanted the most ever since it launched: Humans of New York. I was ecstatic when my cousin got it for me for Christmas. My boyfriend did as well but unfortunately had to return it since my cousin had beat him to it.  

If you aren't familiar, Humans of New York (HONY) is about a photographer who takes photos of people (sometimes pets!) in New York he finds interesting. This concept may seem very simple and unexciting, but Brandon does it beautifully. HONY is a collection of photos and the stories of the people in them.One paragraph can literally have you in tears. I don't know how Brandon does it, but he gets people to tell him about their fears, dreams, past, future, and everything in between. When going through the photos he posts online, you can't help but sympathize and understand the stranger in the photograph. The book is simply about being human. 

The book is a bit different from his latest works because he didn't start asking for stories until later on. So most of the photographs don't have a story to go with. Regardless, I cried the entire way through while reading it for the first time. It's not sad, but there is something nostalgic when you read it. If I could save only one book from my collection from a burning fire, it would be this one. I will never part with this book.

View HONY on Facebook: www.facebook.com/humansofnewyork
View HONY's website: www.humansofnewyork.com
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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Cover Reveal: Sacrifice by Jennifer Quintenz

Title: Sacrifice
Author: Jennifer Quintenz

For fans of Braedyn Murphy, the wait is almost over. “Sacrifice,” the third book in the Daughters of Lilith series, will be released on January 31, 2014.

"Sacrifice" (Daughters of Lilith: Book 3) 

Just when Braedyn Murphy thought she understood the danger descending on Puerto Escondido, a new threat arrives. A cult devoted to Lilith has taken up residence in the little town, and when Cassie gets tangled up its intrigue, Braedyn realizes she might have to chose between protecting her friends and stopping Lilith from reclaiming this earth.

With her duties to the Guard wearing on her, Braedyn turns to Lucas for solace. Together they wonder if now is the time to claim their one night together—knowing that one night is all they may ever have.

Darker forces have their own plans for Braedyn and the Guard. Braedyn knew this fight could be brutal—but how much can one girl be asked to sacrifice in order to save the world?

Check out the previous books in the series: Praise for "Thrall" (Daughters of Lilith: Book 1)

About the author: 

Jennifer Quintenz is an award-winning film and television writer, author, and graphic novelist. She has written for Twentieth Television, Intrepid Pictures, and Archaia Studios Press. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and son. 
  
JenniferQuintenz.com 
Jenn on Facebook 
Jenn on Twitter 
Jenn on Goodreads
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Saturday, December 14, 2013

Taking Audiobooks Review Requests/Recommendations!

Hello, hello! Long time no talk! So I want to do a quick update. Although I don't have the time to read like I once used to, I have plenty of time to listen to audio (I work part-time at a car assembly plant). I have about 16 hours of listening time a week. I only listen to a couple of podcasts (Runaway Thoughts and Dada Life) with so many songs I could just replay over and over on my iPod. Since my review blog has been dull for the past couple of years, I am willing to jumpstart by blog again with audiobook reviews. I am really new to the audiobook side of things so I would need some navigation.

I looked into Audible, however it seems like I have to input my credit card number, which is something I don't want to do. If anyone can recommend a great audiobook site where I can download my novels for free, let me know!

I am unsure how popular audiobooks are in the YA realm. Therefore, I will give flexibility with the genres of audiobooks I will take on (mystery, horror, etc). So yes, feel free to shoot me any audiobook requests (or recommendations!) starting now! :)
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Sunday, November 17, 2013

Author Interview: H. L. LeRoy

Terra Vonn is fighting to survive in a destroyed world,
surrounded by unspeakable horror . . .
and things are about to get much worse.

Title: The Fountain of the Earth
Author: H. L. LeRoy
Description: The first in a planned series, The Fountain of the Earth is set on the West Coast following a catastrophic solar flare that has destroyed civilization, leaving only a few people struggling to survive. After witnessing the vicious murder of her mother, Terra Vonn (15) has a singular focus—exacting revenge on the killers. But before she can complete her plans, savagery intervenes and she is cast alone into a brutal post-apocalyptic world. As she trails the men south through a land filled with cannibalistic criminals, slave traders, and lunatics, the hunter becomes the hunted. Terra quickly learns that she is neither as tough nor as brave as she thinks she is. Worse, she may be the only one who stands between what little remains of civilization and destruction.

~~~

Hello my lovely readers! I have temporarily crawled out of my hole to present to you a new author interview with H. L. LeRoy of the dystopian novel, The Fountain of the Earth! As you probably know, updating this blog with YA novel reviews likely won't happen for another while. Possibly after I graduate university (next year...). However, if you would like to see more of my reviews (not books unfortunately) and are in Toronto (or planning to visit soon), you can check me out at The Toronto Cafe Blog and on Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheTorontoCafeBlog. Oh and my Twitter @torontocafeblog. :) 

Now, back to the interview. If you would like to learn more about H. L. LeRoy, The Fountain of the Earth or his other novels, you can visit at www.hlleroy.blogspot.com.


1. What inspired you to write The Fountain of the Earth?

I wrote a 250 word piece of flash fiction about a young girl alone in a post-apocalyptic world, entitled I Am Called Faith. Several who read it wanted to know more about the girl and the world. The Fountain of the Earth grew from there. The essence of I Am Called Faith can be found in chapter three.

2. What would you say is the easiest part of writing the novel? And the hardest part?

Creating the characters, and letting them run away with the story. The hardest was making sure that I never resorted to contrived solutions to problems. I wanted this novel to be plausible.

3. Describe The Fountain of the Earth in one sentence.

Fifteen-year-old Terra Vonn, cast alone into a brutal and savage post-apocalyptic world, is the only one who can save can save what remains of civilization from destruction.


4. Do you have any favourite authors and novels? If so, who and which novels?

Not in any particular order, Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach, House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski, Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk, Music for Torching by A.M. Homes, Hunger Games, Dystopia, The Mind Readers by Lori Brighton, Open Minds by Susan Kaye Quinn.

5. Finally, do you have any other novels in progress? If so, what are they going to be about?

I’m working on book two of the Fountain of the Earth series, tentatively titled The Heralds of Juno, as well as a mystery/thriller, Hollow Point, featuring Jillian Varela, a tough as nails female private eye.

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Friday, October 11, 2013

5th Annual YA Novel Discovery Contest

Serendipity Literary Agency in conjunction with Sourcebooks Inc. is hosting their fifth annual Young Adult Novel Discovery Competition.


No query? No pitch? No problem!

Have a young adult novel—or a YA novel idea—tucked away for a rainy day? Are you putting off pitching your idea simply because you’re not sure how to pitch an agent? No problem! All you have to do is submit the first 250 words of your novel and you can win exposure to editors and a review of your manuscript from one of New York’s TOP young adult literary agents, Regina Brooks.


NOVEMBER IS NaNoWriMo 

In honor of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo.org)—an international event where aspiring novelists are encouraged to write an entire novel in 30 days—this contest is meant to encourage the aspiring YA author to get started on that novel by offering an incentive for completing the first 250 words.

GREAT PRIZES 

The Grand Prize Winner will have the opportunity to submit an entire manuscript to YA literary agent Regina Brooks AND receive a free, 10-week writing course, courtesy of Gotham Writers' Workshop, plus a collection of gourmet teas from Possibiliteas.co! 

The Top Five Entrants (including the Grand Prize winner) will receive a 15-minute, one-on-one pitch session with Regina Brooks, one of New York’s premier literary agents for young adult books. They will also receive commentary on their submissions with editors from Scholastic, Feiwel and Friends, Random House, Little Brown, Kensington, Candlewick, Bloomsbury, Simon and Schuster, Penguin, and Sourcebooks. In addition, they will receive a year’s subscription to The Writer magazine!

First 50 Entrants will receive a copy of Writing Great Books for Young Adults by Regina Brooks.


HERE’S HOW IT WORKS: The rules of the contest are simple and entering is easy. Submit entries of ONLY the first 250 words of your manuscript and the title via the contest website at http://tinyurl.com/YAContest13


One entry per person; anyone age 14+ can apply. Open to the U.S. & Canada (void where prohibited). Entries for the YA Novel Discovery Contest will be accepted from 12:01am (ET) November 1st, 2013 until 11:59pm November 30th, 2013 (ET).


YA literary agent Regina Brooks and her team will read all of the entries and determine the top 20 submissions. These submissions will then be read by Deidre Jones Little Brown, Nicole Raymond Candlewick, Aubrey Poole Sourcebooks, Kendra Levin Viking Penguin, Mercedes Fernandez Kensington, Annie Nybo Simon and Schuster, Erica Finkel Abrams Books, Monica Jean Random House, Catherine Laudone Simon and Schuster, Stacey Friedberg Penguin Group, Paula Sadlet Random House, Laura Whitaker Bloomsbury, Anna Roberts Feiwel and Friends. These judges will whittle the top 20 down to five, and each of the five winners will be provided commentary on their submissions.

So enter now! http://tinyurl.com/YAContest13
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