Saturday, June 15, 2013

Buffy, Bacon, and Shiny Things, OH MY!! (Season 1, Episode 3 - Come to the Shark Side)

So, today is my birthday!!! That's right, bitches, the day I was born!!! (And, this post is scheduled to post at 3:27AM, because I was born at 6:27AM on the East Coast, and am now writing this from the Seventh Ring of Hell - ahem, Arizona...where we're three hours off in the summer, and only two in the winter, just to keep it non-confusing) o.O And, for my birthday, here's a little present for you...


The K-E-L-L-Y Song from Cheers (A link in case the video doesn't come up)

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah, I just wanted to write a short post, because today is not only my birthday, but it is also (non-coincidentally) Shark Bait's birthday!!! Shark Bait was released one year ago today, and I can't believe that it has been a year already!!! (I'm sure Jenn feels the same way.) SO, in honor of this momentous occasion, I thought that I would reveal a little known fact about the early drafts of Shark Bait (actually, this is something I'm hoping to turn into a semi-regular feature of my blog posts...but we'll see).

So, I went to go back through my email to find actual quotes from the beginning of all of this, and either I wasn't an email hoarder back then, or Gmail decided not to keep my emails back that far. Anyway, I could only get back to July of 2010, and by that time, Jenn and I were well into discussions on Book 2 (I know, right! 3 whole freaking years ago!!) However, clearly long before that, probably in January or March or I don't know when...way back when Jenn was first writing, things were a little different. See, ORIGINALLY, there were 3 Ramsey girls, Camie, Jillian, and Kimberly (I think that was her name). Yep, that's right, there was another child, and at some point in the draft process, Jenn decided that there wasn't really enough action to keep all three kids around for the entire series, so she proceeded to kill off, er, edit out #3. So there you have it. Author doesn't like you? BOOM, you're out of the book. Just like that...Shark Bait fun fact for the day.

And, as this wouldn't be a birthday episode without both some Buffy...


Happy Birthday, Buffy

And some Bacon...mmmm, that cake looks amazing! :)


Until next time, Bitches!
-- Kelly

Feature Contributor:

Kelly, Queen of Random Shit
Twitter | Blog | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads

GYP in the Blogosphere - Birthday Special: Happy Birthday Shark Bait & Kelly!!!!



 

Today we have a VERY special GYP in the Blogosphere post because well...IT'S SHARK BAIT'S BIRTHDAY! Yes, the glorious creation that is Shark Bait was released 1 year ago today. And a little birdie also told me that Shark Bait shares its day with our very own Kelly! :)

Was this accident? Fate? 7 Degrees of Kevin Bacon? No, it wasn't merely coincidental - this is what Jenn has to say about the shared birthday...

"Yep! I planned it for that date specifically b/c it's [Kelly's] b-day & w/o her, it prolly wouldn't exist. And it would suck."


So it would appear ladies & gents that not only should we be wishing our dear Kelly a happy birthday but also giving her a wild round of applause for being instrumental in what is the greatness of Shark Bait! HAPPY BIRTHDAY KELLY!!!!!!!!



So here's a few things to honor not only Shark Bait, but also Kelly...and not to mention the evil genius herself, Jenn.

A buffy cake...


"Tristan"


...always come prepared!

Totally unrelated to GYP but awesome because I just found out Kelly is a Whovian:


So yeah, I don't have anything else to add except to give a big, huge, ginormous CONGRATULATIONS to Jenn on her one year anniversary of being a published author and another Happy Birthday shout to Shark Bait and Kelly!

Feature Contributor:
Allura, Unapologetic Twitter Whore

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Featured Grab Your Pole Review #2


This week's feature review(s) come from Jac at For Love & Books! I honestly couldn't decide between her original review and her re-review so I'm including both! I don't even know how to sum up how awesome these reviews are or how much they make me giggle without sitting here staring at the computer screen like an incompetent idiot so yeah...I'll just paste these babies in. Also, be sure to check out the reviews here: Original & Re-Review and leave some love! Oh and for Bacon's sake her husband bought her JAKE RYAN'S CAR. Yeah, just keep reading right along...

For Love and Books

Original Review:
My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

A few days before reading Shark Bait, I was tweeting about another book and got into a conversation with Jenn Cooksey (which may have involved Peanut Butter Fudge Ice Cream!) and from there? She asked if I’d be interested in participating in her blog hop, so of course I said yes!! And immediately downloaded her book, Shark Bait.
From there? There was no turning back. None. I was in love. I have ZERO hesitation in saying that this is the best YA book I’ve read this year and has firmly grasped a spot on my top ten favorite books of all time!! And, if I could possibly? I would love to read it again for the first time. From page one, I was sucked in – I had absolutely nothing in common with Camie, the main character and fell on the other end of the spectrum in high school. (Re: I was so NOT innocent and trying to stay that way!) But I loved her, I found her endearing. And I felt so sorry for her starting school in the middle of the term in a new place, especially since her Mom’s cancer diagnosis flipped her life upside down.
And the rest of the cast? I could gush on and on for pages, but I’ll make it quick! (Because really, you NEED to read this book yourself.) Tristan? The boy-toy? Holy cow, every page he was on transported me back to high school and the bright blue lockers and the 2 years older than me hunk, Eric. (I’m sorry, I know Jenn said Taylor Kitsch, but in my mind? Tristan was totally Eric from my high school days.) And new best friend Kate? I loved how she pulled Camie out of her shell, loved ever scene with her! But my favorite supporting role? Definitely, hands down? Goes to Jillian, the little sister who has me wishing I could trade in my kid sister!!
Now, characters aside? This book is fabulous. Beginning to end. Jenn Cooksey captures the hell that is high school in a way that is so true, yet has you wishing you could go back and do it all again! And she leaves nothing out of the experience – so many YA books skirt around the party life of high schoolers, but not this one! (And from my experience? It was pretty accurate, not that I’m admitting to anything, I mean – my mom reads my blog!)
Jenn’s writing is fabulous, but what I possibly loved more? The many MANY references to John Hughes films and other 80′s phenomena that made me think maybe the 80s weren’t so bad after all! This book had me grinning like a fool and then laughing like a hyena the whole time, I can NOT wait until the next book comes out! (So far? Jenn has mentioned 4 books in the Grab Your Pole series! FOUR GLORIOUS BOOKS!)
I’ll quit gushing, and leave you with this. If you can remotely tolerate Contemporary YA? This book will turn you into a fan!! If you love Contemp YA? Then this book will keep you turning pages all night long! So go, pick it up! You NEED to read this book.
Re-Review:
In anticipation for ‘s release, I decided to re-read Shark Bait. It was easily my favorite read of 2012 – see my gushing review!  (Seriously – according to Amazon I purchased 5 copies! Yes, 5. Because I thought EVERYONE needed to read it – so I kept gifting copies. And I’m sure I’ll do more in the near future. )
So, I’ve anxiously been awaiting TOFitS and my good friend DeAnna (Mommy’s Reading Break) agreed to a read-a-long with me of both Shark Bait and TOFitS!!  Now, before I go further in this review I need to confess something. I don’t re-read books. Ever. (Shark Bait is only the third book I’ve ever re-read. The other two being The Stand and Anna and the French Kiss. My other two favorite books.) But this is my third pass of Shark Bait and I’m still falling more and more in love with each of the characters.
I have to tell you, Jenn Cooksey is a genius. (Seriously, not only is she hugely fun to tweet with – but she is one hell of a writer!) I love books that I can get lost in the characters – it’s why we all read, isn’t it?? Well… Jenn paints these fabulous pictures with her words. The Grab Your Pole gang has firmly planted itself in my heart, and they are so incredibly real to me in ways that I’ve never known characters to be before. Shark Bait is a truly magical book in that way.
If you haven’t read the book, let me sum it up quickly for you. Shark Bait is a love story. A real, gritty, honest to God love story. There are moments that hurt. Jenn literally rips your heart out and stomps on it. (And if I’m being honest, because Camie encourages it to Tristan in some of my favorite scenes, then I have to tell you I see so much of myself and my husband in Camie and Tristan. Right down to there knock out, drag down fights.) But then? (At least if you’re a child of the 80′s like I am…) She makes you fall in love all over again. (Ok, let’s be honest. I want my life to be a John Hughes film. I don’t hide that. So Tristan, aside from looking like Taylor Kitsch, is my perfect man because of his John Hughes references. AND his ability to quote Buffy. Because – once again? I grew up in the 80′s and early 90′s. And let’s face it… Buffy and Angel kick Bella and Edward’s ass any day!
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But beyond the love story? This is about friendship. And family. And finding yourself. And a million other insightful things, with a few F-Bombs, some weed (YAY Colorado!) and a pair of really cute kittens thrown in!
So if you haven’t read Shark Bait?? Do it. I don’t care if YA is your thing or not. Do it!!
(And just to prove how deep my love for John Hughes goes? My husband bought me Jake Ryan’s car…)
Feature Contributor:
Allura, Unapologetic Twitter Whore

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Buffy, Bacon, and Shiny Things, OH MY! (Season 1, Episode 2 - Where the Random Things Are)


Ok, I’m back for another fun-filled episode of Buffy, Bacon, and Shiny Things, OH MY!! (Or however many exclamation points that’s supposed to have…) Today, I bring you complete randomness, in the form of funny pics. These pics made me LOL. Literally. Yes, I actually laughed out loud. And I dare say, you will too…

So, here we go, item number one:
 There have been many a single-digit morning that I have felt this way…

But, never fear, because Bacon is here (oh, and if you haven’t figured it out yet, Bacon should ALWAYS be capitalized…always.)
So not sure how there’s anything left on that flyer, but who am I to judge? (Oh, who are we kidding…I’m totally judging…)

And, I promise not to have Twilight related stuff too often (I know, I know, we’re already way past that point), but when you’re researching Buffy stuff, sometimes it happens…
Oh, and also, this makes me think of Mickey Mouse…and now you’ll never be able to unsee that…

Finally, a little earworm for you this fine day, as I present you with:
Guaranteed you sang that. :)

Until next time, bitches! :)

- Kelly, Queen of Random Shit  (Question...do my initials (QoRS) spell out "curse"??? I need to know this...)


Feature Contributor:

Kelly, Queen of Random Shit
Twitter | Blog | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads

Saturday, June 1, 2013

June Street Team Member of the Month — Erin Westlund


Street Team Member of the Month

June: Erin Westlund
Erin Westlund, June Street Team Member of the Month

My name is Erin Westlund and I am an indeterminate age(ha.)
I came across Shark Bait when I was scouring through the bowels of Amazon in September of 2012 thinking that I finally read everything there is to be read on Amazon when I found Shark Bait. It caught my eye and I took a gander at it and thought it sounded interesting so I bought it. I instantly got hooked and I don't think I put my iPad down til I finished the book. I have read the book countless of times since then and plan on reading TOFitS many times before the next one comes out. I can't get enough of Camie, Tristan and the rest of the gang. :)

You can find me at:
http://www.mereadalot.com (our book blog)
http://www.chemicalscream.net (my "personal site" although I really only use it to post bad parking job pictures and whatever other photos I take on my iPhone. haha)

This feature's purpose is to introduce you to each other. Members are selected randomly and will be contacted via email for permission to be featured here. If you happen to be chosen, we'll ask for what info you'd like to share, any follow links you'd like us to include, and a picture of you. For all you anonymous types, participation in this feature is completely voluntary and we will not publish any information without your permission.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The First GYP in the Blogosphere Post!



Welcome to GYP in the Blogosphere! Basically, what these posts will include is me flailing around about some GYP related post from our fans! I am warning you NOW that I LOVE GYP (obviously or I wouldn't have basically signed my life away to Jenn, JUST KIDDING, I LOVE YOU!) and I'm especially fond of "Dear Jeff". I really do refer to him as Dear Jeff almost exclusively. So anyways, if you happen to post or see any fun posts that are GYP related/themed/whatever please, PLEASE either email them to the GYP Street Team email addy or tag us via Twitter! Jenn has nicknamed me the "Unapologetic Twitter Whore" because I literally live on Twitter. I spent all of the YA Crush Tourney nomination week switching between my own Twitter handle and the GYP handle - no joke, I literally checked the damn thing every half an hour (really, it was probably every five minutes). Anyways, back to the point. Please let me know of any GYP related posts! So onto this week's TWO features!


Our first features comes to us from Angela at Reading Angels

Angela put together an AWESOME GYP Survival Kit! I know, EPIC, right?! Here's the link to the entire post.

Here's the GYP specific part!



















SHARK BAIT
IN THE KIT: 
1. Buffy - It's time for another rewatch!! 
2. Notebook and Pen - you have to take notes to keep up with Kate
3. Chapstick - all that kissing may leave you in need of this item
4. Gum - TRUST ME ON THIS ONE! ;)



So as if that wasn't enough excitement, I have another GYP inspired post from Ginger-Read Reviews.
Honestly, I'm going to stop right here and give wild applause and flail around like an idiot because this post specifically highlights my FAVORITE GYP character, the dark goddess herself, Jillian Ramsey. HELL YEAH! I'm going to post a snippet and then you should click on the link below and see the WHOLE post! Okay GO!
Look at it, LOOK AT IT NOW!


Jillian Ramsey


Jillian has got to be one of the best characters ever written.  I think I described her in one review as part cat, part ninja, part super model and part...I don't even know...someone really smart. Einstein maybe.  But that really doesn't do her any justice. At all. Whatsoever. 


She's only twelve but has the intellect of, well, geniuses. She looks like a Barbie doll, dresses more like some sort of biker goth and moves like a freaking wraith.  Really.  You never know she is even there. But she is, she is everywhere and knows everything. Everything.

She is also hilarious, which just adds to her appeal.  As if she needed that on top of everything else.  

Her Facebook alias is Invisible Nightmare

Jillian comes off as nothing but smart and tough in Shark Bait but she shows a much more vulnerable and caring side in The Other Fish in The Sea.  Again, as if she needed more appeal...I dare anyone to not fall in love with this girl.  She is amazing. I don't even know what else to say.



SO that about wraps up our first GYP in the Blogosphere post! Again, please send any fun posts you see my way, and don't forget, you can also send your very own GYP posts to be featured!


Feature Contributor:

Allura, Unapologetic Twitter Whore

Twitter | Blog

Buffy, Bacon, & Shiny Things, OH MY! (Season 1 Pilot Episode)


Hey everyone, and welcome to the inaugural post of the GYP Street Team Blog, and the "Buffy, Bacon, and Shiny Things, OH MY!!" column. Every post I will bring you some fun, random information that may (or may not) pertain to GYP and the wonderful Jenn Cooksey. For starters, since you probably don't know me, you should check out the dedication and the acknowledgements from TOFitS (The Other Fish in the Sea, abbreviated to save space). And, if you still want to know more, send in questions (I'm sure we've got a way to do that…) and I'll do a viewer mail column sometime in the near future. Maybe. Anyway, on to the random fun!! 

So last week, May 20th to be exact, was the 10th anniversary of the final episode of the Best. Show. Ever. (Buffy the Vampire Slayer in case you were unaware, somehow…), and that prompted me to send Jenn a short video on some of the best of Buffy. And, I WAS going to post that video for you to enjoy, but then I stumbled on THIS gem instead…and it HAS to be shared, pure genius! (Also, I don't think Jenn's seen it yet, so bonus points) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZwM3GvaTRM.


So, in honor of the 10th anniversary of the finale of Buffy, I thought I'd put together some other randomly important dates:



I think that's about it for now, definitely enough to keep you entertained for at least 15 minutes. Until next time, bitches. :)
Feature Contributor:

Kelly, Queen of Random Shit
Twitter | Blog

Featured Grab Your Pole Book Review



This review of "The Other Fish in the Sea," book #2 in the Grab Your Pole series by Jenn Cooksey, comes to you from Amanda Hootie Clark at Globug & Hootie Need A Book (To visit and read the review on their blog, click *HERE* and when you're there, don't forget to give them some bloggy love!)

If you haven't read Shark Bait yet, you really shouldn't read further. Not only that, but be warned; Hootie definitely has a hilarious way with words, however most of what she writes probably shouldn't be read by the faint of heart. 

Two of our fave lines in this review are:  "...and for that I want to deep throat Jenn Cooksey!"  and "...discover something that made me sit up like a fucking Irish Setter or whatever that dog is that points at shit."
Didn't I tell you?! Hootie is inappropriately funny in the best of ways and her review of "The Other Fish in the Sea" shouldn't be missed, so here you go, GYP bitches!



My Take:
Jenn Cooksey is probably the only author who has made me simultaneously love and loathe my teenage years. That achingly sweet romance filled with first love, first kisses and that beautiful next step. But along with first love comes the sometimes inevitable first breakup. Picking up where Shark Bait left off Camie and Tristan are navigating a relationship that is new to both of them. Camie lived a sheltered life being home schooled and Tristan never found a girl he wanted to do anything with other than get in her taco pie. At first we follow Camie as she deals with a new issue in this book because she feels like she is ready to take their five month courtship into a whole new level but is afraid of her inadequacies in the bedroom because Tristan has so much experience. She seeks advice from her girlfriends throughout the book trying to gain knowledge of what to expect from Tristan also what she can expect from herself. In Shark Bait we saw the amazing chemistry between Tristan and Camie develop over time and they both faced a huge test in their relationship early on and survived. But the tests they face in this book push them both to their breaking point as their passion for each other threatens to tear them apart.

Childhood sweethearts Jeff and Kate, who have been together basically their whole lives are harboring a secret they haven't shared with any of their friends. We are given a small glimpse into Kate's POV in this book and find out exactly how strong the bond between her and Jeff really is as they navigate their solid connection and some tough circumstances.

Camie's friend Melissa also gets some much needed page time as we follow her through a tough choice and the consequences that follow a Delicious and spontaneous encounter with a sexy tattooed rocker! 

I don't even have words to adequately describe the wonderfulness that is the Grab Your Pole series. I feel like a fucking idiot because EVERYTHING about this book is swirling in my head and I can't grab onto what I want to say about it. This book was just as good if not BETTER than it's predecessor and I fell so much harder in love with all these characters throughout the story. The chemistry between Camie and Tristan is hot and pulls you into their relationship and invests you in their happiness. Watching them grow and develop as a couple throughout this series has been so much fun. The main issue these two face is how and when to take the next step in their relationship. Camie being a virgin is intimidated by Tristan's extensive knowledge on the subject of sex that causes her to make some choices that anger Tristan and further complicates their relationship. They are the main characters but the way the book is written makes it feel as though everyone is the main character. The author leaves no one out when she writes and you become invested in everyone's story just as much as the MC's. 

While reading Shark Bait I wasn't instantly fond of Tristan but I slowly warmed up to him after a while. It was a completely different thing with him this time around because I fell 100% in love with him in this book. He was so much sweeter and more romantic to Camie and extremely PATIENT! The further they pushed the boundaries in their relationship with no completion the more I got scared thinking he would stray to find some easy tail like almost all men do! With him being the reformed man slut he is I kept waiting for Jenn to sucker punch us with a cheating storyline. Thankfully that was not the case and my love for Tristan aboundeth much henceforth.

We not only get to see what goes on between Camie and Tris but we get a look at Kate and Jeff (Who are my faves, don't throw shit at me please!). The fact that Kate and Jeff are childhood sweethearts and are STILL together after all this time makes me almost believe love like that exists. I adore everything about this couple, from their playful banter, to their serious loving moments  even their fights are endearing! These characters are written so well that you become them in a way as you read about them. It's almost like you are experiencing every single thing they go through and they go through some shit in this book! Not only are they dealing with a huge issue that will change both their lives, they also find out about a shocking link between their families that adds more intensity to their story. I was not expecting the drama to be so amped up but my pulse was red lining a few times freaking out about certain aspects. My heart broke for these two characters during a turning point in the book and I got really scared for a little while that things wouldn't work out between them but thankfully their bond is just as strong as it was when they first met, and for that I want to deep throat Jenn Cooksey!

I have to take a moment and give some props to one of THE best characters I have ever read from a book. Jillian Ramsey, Camie's younger sister. *Standing Ovation*! This girl is one of the most mysterious, and snarky and strong and unintentionally funny book characters! We learned in Shark Bait that Jillian is quirky and a little strange in that she is a Nazi spy! She moves like the wind and nobody ever notices when she comes and goes. In TOFITS we get a much too short  (IMO) glimpse into her life and discover something that made me sit up like a fucking Irish Setter or whatever that dog is that points at shit. Jillian has a mystery guy that has befriended her and seems to have a crush on her but Jillian being Jillian is aloof as always and keeps her cards close to the chest. It's not clear at first who this could be but by the end of the book I hope you will be as juiced up for this pairing as I am! Beyond her guarded demeanor though she has a somewhat softer side that we get to see a little more in this book. I loved that her and Camie seemed to grow a little closer as the story progressed. They have a heart to  heart moment that just shows there are so many different sides to Jillian that just makes her that much more endearing as a character. Plus it's fucking hilarious that basically EVERYONE in the book is scared of her! 

Drama, Romance, Heartache, Passion and Shenanigans fill the pages of this amazing book and I didn't even cover half of it! I can't imagine how much better the series will get as it continues but the way this book was left with a damn mini cliffhanger will make you anxious for the next installment. The Grab Your Pole series is a wonderful character driven story that has worked it's way into my favorite series-es list. In general it's just a really good story for people of all ages, no matter what station in life you're at be it a teen going through some of the same things or an adult who survived those years (Thank You Raptor Jesus!). I'm looking forward to many more books featuring the GYP gang!


FAVORITE QUOTES:
“I’ve never needed self-control to not take advantage of a girl before, Camie. Like what happens when we kiss and when we fight, I’ve only experienced that with you. Just you. Baby, you’re different… we’re different. It’s just another element of God’s warped version of Thunderdome.” eARC  30%

"Oh, uhhh...licorice, body shots and bungee cords happened. you don't wanna know any more than that." eARC 39%

I lost all thought completely when I felt his hot breath on the inside of my thighs and he let loose the pyromaniac that simmers just below the surface of his otherwise composed and self-possessed mien, igniting my entire body in an ardently fervent blaze. eARC 69 %





So! What did you guys think? Feel free to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section of this post. For all the links to places you can hit Hootie up, please visit her blog or just click the below picture (which will take you to her blog)! Thanks and we hope you enjoyed the review as much as we did!