Book Blogger Love-a-thon: Introduction/Questionnaire

February 21-22, 2015

  1. What’s your name? My real name is Lisa. Internet name is Dizneeee.
  2. Where in the world are you blogging from? North Carolina, USA!
  3. How did you get into blogging in the first place? I originally created my blog to keep up with book challenges I wanted to do. 
  4. How did you come up with your blog name? Dizneeee has been a name I've used online for things, even before blogging. Disney World is one of my favorite places on the planet. Books and Disney just kind of meshed to make the name!
  5. What genre do you read and review the most on your blog? It seems that YA Contemporary has taken over my life. It used to be more Paranormal and Fantasy.
  6. What other types of posts do you do on your blog, apart from reviews? I will do giveaways, occasionally. Other than that, I don't do any memes. Memes take a lot of time and dedication. I just don't have that time in me.
  7. Best blogging experience so far? Having the opportunity to meet and talk/interview Gayle Forman a couple of weeks ago. The email asking if I would like to do that left me speechless. Well, other than the repeating of, "OhmyGod. OhmyGod. OhmyGod. OhmyGod." You get the picture. :)
  8. Favorite thing about the blogging community? My favorite thing has to be the enthusiasm that everyone has. You can tell it's there in reviews and social media. I absolutely love to see tweets from people when they say that they have no way to word a review for a book. That's pure magic right there!
  9. Name the 5 books you’re most excited for this 2015! There are way too many to limit it to 5. Seriously. I'll give you some, though: Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen, The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West, The Cage by Megan Shepherd, The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boeker, The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh, An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir , The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler, More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera, and soooo many more!
  10. What’s an underrated book or series that you think everyone should read? J.K. Rock's Camp Boyfriend series should definitely have more fans! They are cute, contemporary, lots of cute boys at summer camp, and coming of age books.
  11. Which book boy or girl would be your book BFF? I would totally want to be BFFs with Hermoine Granger! Who wouldn't?!?
  12. Apart from reading, what are your other hobbies or interests? My niece and Disney are two of my main interests, apart from reading, of course. 
  13. Apart from book shopping, what else do you like shopping for? It seems that most of my "left over money" goes to clothes shopping...for my niece! Haha! She has so many clothes, but I can't help it. She looks so cute and is so fun to dress.
  14. At a party, the DJ suddenly changes the song – and it’s your song. What song would be playing? "Party in the USA" by Miley Cyrus. I am so not even ashamed to admit that!
  15. Pick out either a book you want turned into a film/TV show, or a film/TV show you want turned into a book. Even though only the first book has been released so far, I could honestly see Martina Boone's The Heirs of Watson Island (Compulsion, Persuasion) becoming a TV show. There were so many great details in Compulsion that I could picture them vividly! I would love to see it transferred to a television show, but it would have to be done well. No cheese. No bad actors. It could be amazing! 

That's me in a nutshell. Have any other questions? Do we have something in common? Leave any comments below and I'll gladly answer! Thank you for checking out more about me!

Romance is in the Air Giveaway Hop

Thanks to Kathy at I Am A Reader Not A Writer for hosting this event.

Romance. Love. Chocolate. Flowers. Valentine's Day. 
Happy February!

The idea of this giveaway is to feature YA Romance or clean Adult Romance. Nothing steamy or too adult-like. I'm going to keep this simple & fun for all and offer a gift card.
  • One (1) winner will receive a $25 gift card to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or bookstore of choice.
  • This is an International giveaway, so if I have an International winner, that person may choose a lovey-dovey clean romance book (or two!) up to $25 value from The Book Depository, as long as they ship to your location.

  • 1 round of entries per person.
  • Don't try to cheat. I will judge you. And delete your entries.
  • International giveaway, as long as The Book Depository ships to your location.
  • You must be at least 13 years old to enter.
  • Begins February 3 (because I'm a rebel!) and ends at 11:59PM on February 14.
  • Check out the rest of the blogs participating in the linky after the Rafflecopter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Check out the other blogs participating!

Author Interview & Review: Love, Lucy

Thank you to NOVL for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
by April Lindner
Publication Date: January 27, 2015
Published by Poppy
Pages: 304
Source: Publisher
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While backpacking through Florence, Italy, during the summer before she heads off to college, Lucy Sommersworth finds herself falling in love with the culture, the architecture, the food...and Jesse Palladino, a handsome street musician. After a whirlwind romance, Lucy returns home, determined to move on from her "vacation flirtation." But just because summer is over doesn't mean Lucy and Jesse are over, too.

In this coming-of-age romance, April Lindner perfectly captures the highs and lows of a summer love that might just be meant to last beyond the season.

Teenager. Europe. Cute boys. Promises. Cute boys. Living your dream. Compromise. Cute boys. :) These are thoughts that wrap up Love, Lucy for me. I have never wanted to be a carefree teenager so much [again] in my life than when I was reading this book!
I thoroughly enjoyed Love, Lucy. I was so involved and completely wrapped up in Lucy's travels and relationships. The relationships created in the story were so real. *We all agreed we could feel and understand the relationship between Lucy and her travel buddy, Charlene. We all also agreed we'd like to find a guy like Jesse while roaming around Europe!

April Lindner gives us a delicious taste of Florence and Rome. I particularly loved the scenes when Lucy would take off by herself and just walk. The descriptions of the storefronts, views, and everything in Florence were just amazing. When Lucy and Jesse hit it off and they began to site see together, AHHH! So fantastic!!!

Love, Lucy is split into two sections: Part 1 (Europe) and Part 2 (College). The pages of part 1 just flew by. They were rich with description. Then, we move to part 2. The part where beautiful Europe, and Jesse, have ended. This second part is so important to Lucy's story. It's a story of trust, believing in oneself, and also believing in others.

*I read this book with a small group of blogging friends who I met at YALLFest 2013. We each received a copy of this book at a blogger dinner while at YALLFest 2014.

If you love contemporary, retellings, books with beautiful scenes, sweet romance, or books that just fill you with wanderlust, then Love, Lucy is definitely for you!
1. Thank you for taking the time to answer some questions with me today. My book club recently read Love, Lucy and we had a great time discussing it and dreaming of taking a European excursion to see the sights and meet cute boys! We loved your retelling and spin of A Room With a View! What gave you the idea to write a new adventure for this particular story?

You’re welcome! I’m so glad you enjoyed the book. Like Lucy, I was given the chance to backpack through Europe when I was pretty young. Ever since, I have wanted to write a novel inspired by my backpacking experiences, and A Room With a View—Forster’s novel and also the glorious 1985 Merchant Ivory film version—is such a romantic, funny, beautiful expression of what it’s like for a young woman to be transformed by her travels through Florence. After writing Catherine, I was looking for another novel to retell, and A Room With a View seemed like the natural choice, especially since it gave me an excuse to revisit Italy and travel in Lucy’s shoes.

2. Your previous two books, Jane and Catherine, were also retellings. Both of those were based on the Brontë sisters’ works. Do you have a favorite retelling you've written?

I think of my Jane and Catherine and now Lucy as my three daughters. I love them all differently but equally. It wouldn't be right to pick a favorite!

3. Obviously, you enjoy retelling stories. Are you currently working on your next book? If so, what can you tell us about it?

I’ve been working for a while now on a retelling of Jane Austen’s Persuasion set on a high school study tour to Greece. Anne, my heroine, is too easily swayed by the opinions of a confident, sophisticated girl she wants to impress. She lets the study tour group’s popular clique get between her and the boy she likes, then struggles to undo the damage she’s done.

4. Do you think you'll stick to writing classic retellings, or do have other story ideas in mind?

I have a few ideas for novels that aren't riffs on existing books, but for the time being I've caught the retelling bug. Few things inspire me as much as the chance to move into someone else’s fictional world, rearrange the furniture, and make it my own. Each time I finish a retelling I promise myself I will write just one more…and, true to form, I've started drafting another one that may or may not turn out to be my last.

5. Are you a classic literature fan? Are these classic stories that you give new life to some of your favorite books? Who are some of your favorite authors and books?

Yes, I adore classic literature—big, thick novels that feel more vivid than the world itself. I was an English major in college, and when I got out of school I worked a series of temp jobs I hated. The thing that made those jobs bearable was spending my lunch hours with the Bronte sisters, E.M. Forster, Jane Austen, George Eliot, Tolstoy. I can’t tell you how many subway stops I accidentally rode through because I was so lost in whatever it was I was reading.

6. Have you traveled through Europe like Lucy and Charlene? You gave a great set up for the story and I felt as if we were there with the girls and seeing Italy with them.

When I was a lot closer to Lucy’s age, my parents gave me a wonderful gift—a two-month trip to Europe. None of my friends could go with me, so I travelled solo, and the experience was magical, life changing—going where I wanted to go, filling my days with art, gorgeous landscapes, new people, a new language to practice. I’ve been a travel junkie ever since.

Plus I’d grown up pretty sheltered, so it was freeing to realize I could find my own way around a strange city, getting lost and getting found again, basically feeling more competent than I ever had in my life. The best experience in the world was showing up at a train station, Eurail pass in hand, looking at the signs listing all the departing trains, picking one at random, and hopping on—starting the day in, say, Vienna, and knowing I could end it in Paris or Munich or Venice.

7. By the end of the story, we were so happy to see Lucy deciding her future for herself. Is this a main goal for you in your stories? Do you like to have strong, independent women who do what they believe in?

I try to make each novel I write a different kind of challenge than the last, but you could say that each of my novels so far is about a young women finding her way in the world—figuring out how to be true to herself. In Jane, my protagonist is quietly strong, a survivor who has to struggle against a lot of disadvantage and against the temptation to go against her own better judgment. Catherine, in my second novel, is headstrong from the start—confident, talented, sure of what she wants, and uncompromising in a way that gets her into trouble. And then there’s Lucy who just loves to please people—she lives for applause. She makes a promise she fully intends to keep, until she realizes that doing so would mean being untrue to herself, living someone else’s life.

8. If you could be any of your characters in your books, who would you choose? And why?

I would be Jane (from Jane, naturally), who falls in love with Nico Rathburn, a legendary rock star about to make his big comeback. Let’s just say there was a certain amount of wish fulfillment involved in writing about an ordinary girl who sweeps a rock star off his feet.

9. When you're not writing, what do you like to do with your free time?

I love to go on road trips to strange cities and wander around, popping into bookstores and coffee shops. And I’m crazy about live music, getting as close as possible to the stage, losing myself in the crowd. My other favorite thing is reading in bed with my dogs—a lab mix and a cockapoo, both shelter dogs—especially if it’s a cold rainy day outside.

10. Is there anything else you'd like to tell us? Any writing habits? How you get your ideas? Favorite genre to write? What other genre would you like to give a try? Dream story to re-tell? Anything!!!

I’ve always wanted to write the libretto for a rock opera. In high school I did write one—about the tragic love story of Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungeon—but I was too much of a goody two shoes to really pull that gritty subject matter off!

At the moment I’m collaborating with a friend on the libretto for an actual opera opera…something I never thought I’d do. It’s way too early in the project to say much about it, but I love the idea of seeing something I’ve written take physical shape on an actual stage with musicians and costumes and scenery—instead of just inside my own mind.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions! We honestly enjoyed the book and we're so happy to be doing a little mini-tour this week from our book club. Thank so much to NOVL for providing us with the books so we could all read and discuss it together! It truly meant a lot!

This was so much fun! Thanks for the great questions, and for being such a generous host.
Again, I want to thank NOVL for the advanced copy of Love, Lucy and the chance to interview April Lindner. We have honestly enjoyed this experience as a group!

Standalone Reading Challenge 2014 - November Sign-Ups

It's month eleven for the Standalone Reading Challenge, and this time, we've got five awesome prizes for one lucky participant.

WOW! Month ELEVEN! This year has gone by so quickly! There is only one more month of the challenge to go for this year!

The Standalone Reading Challenge is easy and fun - plus you'll get a chance to win some awesome prizes. Read more about the challenge and SIGN UP HERE. And be sure to grab a button for your sidebar too!

So what are you waiting for? Read a 2014 standalone - if you're not sure what counts, check out our list of Standalones here - write your review, link up, and get your name in the hat for November's prize pack!

Please note, prize pack contents are subject to change. Open to US Only.

So what are you waiting for? Read, Review, and Link up! Drop any questions in the comments :)
And if you still haven't signed up, do so HERE!

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop

Welcome to my stop for the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop, hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer!

Halloween is definitely my favorite holiday and I am very excited to be able to give one of you lucky readers a book! YAY!
Enter the Rafflecopter below and make sure to follow the rest of the hop! A lot of blogs are offering lots of creeptastic books! Happy haunting!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Click to view a complete list of the almost 300 blogs participating in this hop!