Blog Tour | Armada by Ernest Cline – Excerpt

Hey guys! Today I’m excited to be sharing an excerpt from ARMADA by Ernest Cline to celebrate the paperback release. Check it out and then enter to win a signed copy of Ernest Cline’s debut READY PLAYER ONE, a signed ARMADA poster, and a paperback copy of the book.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Armada Paperback CoverBroadway Books // April 12, 2016

In 2011, writer Ernest Cline penned his wildly original, genre-busting debut novel, Ready Player One. Packed with irresistible ’80s nostalgia, this cinematic novel was immediately embraced by readers, bloggers, geeks, gamers, booksellers, and John Hughes fans everywhere. From the New York Times and Entertainment Weekly to Boing Boing and Wired, the novel received rave reviews across the board, sold over a million copies in the U.S., and has been published in 40 countries. The book is now being made into a film by Warner Brothers and legendary director Steven Spielberg, set to debut in theaters in March of 2018.

Since Ready Player One’s publication, Cline’s fans were anxiously awaiting his next endeavor—and he delivered another inventive, heartwarming, and completely nerdtastic adventure with ARMADA (Broadway Books; April 12, 2016), his second New York Times bestseller, which is now in paperback.

ARMADA opens as high-school student Zack Lightman glances out his classroom window and spots a UFO. At first he thinks he’s going crazy. A minute later he’s sure of it, because the ship he’s staring at is straight out of the videogame he plays every night, a hugely popular online flight simulator called Armada—in which gamers just happen to be protecting Earth from alien invaders.

Zack is sure he’s lost his mind. But what he’s seeing is all too real, and his skills—as well as those of millions of gamers across the world—are going to be needed to save Earth from what’s about to befall it. Yet even as he and his new comrades scramble to prepare for the alien onslaught, Zack can’t help thinking of all the science-fiction books, TV shows, and movies he grew up reading and watching, and wonder: Doesn’t something about this scenario seem a little too . . . familiar?

Called a “must-read summer blockbuster novel” by Mashable and a “a thrilling coming-of-agestory” by Entertainment Weekly, ARMADA is at once an adrenaline-fueled, surprising thriller, a classic teenage adventure, and an alien-invasion tale like nothing you’ve ever read before—one whose every page is infused with Cline’s trademark pop-culture savvy. The book is already being adapted into a film by Universal Studios, with the author himself writing the screenplay.

THE EXCERPT

I didn’t remember unzipping my backpack, or taking out the tire iron, but I must have, because now I had the cold steel rod clenched in my hand, and I was raising it to strike.

All three of my opponents stood frozen for a moment, their eyes wide. The Lennys threw up their hands and started backing away. Knotcher’s eyes flicked over to them, and I saw him registering that his simian pals had bowed out of the fight. He started moving backward too.

I looked at the curb a few feet behind him, had a nasty thought, and followed through on it by lunging at Knotcher with the tire iron. He lurched backward and—just as I’d hoped—caught a heel on the concrete rise and landed flat on his back.

And then I was standing over him, looking down at the tire iron clutched in my hands.

Off to my left, someone screamed. My head snapped around and I saw that an audience had gathered— a handful of students on their way in to first period. Among them one girl, too young and deer-in-the-headlights to be anything but a freshman, slapped a hand over her mouth and flinched backward as I looked her way. As if she was terrified that I—Zack the school psycho—would choose her as my next target.

I glanced back at the Lennys, who were now standing among the students who had gathered to watch the fight. All of the onlookers seemed to be wearing the same expression of horrified anticipation, as if they believed they might be seconds away from witnessing their first homicide.

A wave of cold shame washed over me as the intensity of my rage faded away. I looked down at the tire iron clutched in my hands and let it clatter to the pavement. I heard a chorus of nervous laughter behind me, along with more than one relieved sigh.

I stepped away from Knotcher. He slowly got to his feet. We stared at each other for a moment, and he looked as if he was about to say something when his gaze shot upward, focused on something in the sky behind me.

When I turned around, I saw a strange-looking aircraft approaching from the east, moving at an incredible speed. The closer it got, the more familiar it looked. My brain still refused to accept what my eyes were seeing—until a few seconds later, when the craft braked to a dead stop and hovered directly over us, close enough for me to make out the Earth Defense Alliance crest stenciled on the side of its armored hull.

“No way,” I heard someone whisper. A second later, I realized it was me.

It was an ATS-31 Aerospace Troop Shuttle, one of the ships used by the Earth Defense Alliance in both Armada and Terra Firma. And it was about to land in front of my high school.

I definitely wasn’t hallucinating this time: Dozens of other people were staring up at the shuttle in amazement, too. And I could hear the rumble of the shuttle’s fusion engines and feel the heat from their exhaust buffeting my face. It was really up there.

As the shuttle began to descend, everyone in my vicinity scattered like roaches, heading for the safety of the school.

I just stood there like a statue, unable to look away. The ship was identical to the troop shuttles I’d piloted while playing Armada, right down to the EDA crest and identification bar code stamped on the underside of its hull.

The Earth Defense Alliance can’t be real, Zack, I assured myself. And neither can that shuttle you think you’re looking at right now. You are hallucinating again, only it’s much worse this time. This time, you’re having a full-on psychotic break.

Reprinted from Armada Copyright © 2015 by Dark All Day, Inc. Published by Broadway Books, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC.

ABOUT ERNEST CLINE

Ernest ClineERNEST CLINE is a novelist, screenwriter, father, and full-time geek. His two novels, Armada and Ready Player One, were both New York Times and USA Today bestsellers, and Ready Player One is currently being adapted into a film by Warner Brothers and director Steven Spielberg. Ernest lives in Austin, Texas, with his family, a time-traveling DeLorean, and a large collection of classic videogames. You can find him online at www.ernestcline.com, on Twitter @erniecline, and on Facebook at Ernest Cline.

THE GIVEAWAY

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Waiting on Wednesday: Frannie and Tru by Kate Hattrup

Frannie and TruWaiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we share a book that we are eagerly anticipating!

Publisher: HarperTeen

Author: Karen Hattrup

Release date: May 31, 2016

Synopsis from Goodreads:

When Frannie Little eavesdrops on her parents fighting she discovers that her cousin Truman is gay, and his parents are so upset they are sending him to live with her family for the summer. At least, that’s what she thinks the story is. . . When he arrives, shy Frannie befriends this older boy, who is everything that she’s not–rich, confident, cynical, sophisticated. Together, they embark on a magical summer marked by slowly unraveling secrets.

Why I’m excited: I think this sounds so lovely. Sad, quiet, complicated, imperfect. I’ve been hearing so many wonderful things about FRANNIE AND TRU by people I truly trust, so I’m really looking forward to reading it. It sounds like a new take on the coming of age story and definitely something I want to check out.

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Delights

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. Today’s theme was:

Top Ten Bookworm Delights

Sitting out on the porch with a good book: Is there really anything better than sitting outside on a beautiful day with a good book (and maybe a cup of coffee…or three)? It gets even better when you get to lie in a hammock and swing in the wind. Yeah, if you couldn’t guess, that’s really where I wish I was right now.

Book events: Being surrounded by other bookish people at an event all about books is a book nerd’s paradise.

Reading an entire book in one lazy Saturday: I just recently did this on Saturday with THE RAVEN KING and it was glorious and exactly what I needed.

The feeling you get when you hold a book in your hands that you’ve been waiting months and months for: Um. Again with THE RAVEN KING. I waited over a year and a half for this book, waiting to see if the things I thought were going to happen actually happened, waiting to see what happened to Gansey, waiting to see how one of my absolute favorite series EVER ended. And when I drove out to the bookstore, walked back to the teen section, and found the book on the shelf, I could’ve cried. I literally hugged it to my chest as I walked to the register. It’s such a good feeling.

Convincing one of my teens at the library to read one of my favorite books and they text me constantly about it: This is such a good feeling. My teens trust me and my tastes so much that they come into the library (or text me) just to ask me what they should read next. And when they come back in after they’ve read it to rave about how much they loved it, it makes me feel so good. Or when they text me the entire time they’re reading it with updates, I love it.

Deckled pages: I don’t really have a reason for this other than the fact that deckled pages are so freaking beautiful. And they feel really cool too.

Meeting one of your favorite authors: Being able to meet a person who wrote a book that made you feel all the feels, a person who created a world that you lived in for a little while (or that you wish you could still live in), a person that you might’ve even interacted with on Twitter and just adore is SO FREAKING COOL.

Picking up your pull-list at your local comic book shop: This one is delightful because of just how fun it is. I usually go to my comic book shop once a month, so by the time I come in, I have a decent sized stack to pick up. When I walk in the shop, they know who I am (sometimes you want to go where everybody knows you name. Lol), and they take my pull out of the box and I just love it.

Book mail: Checking the mail and finding a book waiting for you can completely change how a day has gone. It can make a day that was really horrible a whole lot better.

Book-inspired art: Whether this is a print or a coffee mug or a really awesomely designed quote, book-inspired art can brighten up your walls, your computer background, and your life. Here’s one of my favorite bookish mugs and a print from Oliver Jeffers.

What are your favorite bookish delights?

 

Blog Tour | Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here

ScarlettEpstein-BlogTour

Hey guys! Today I’m really excited to be part of the blog tour for Anna Breslaw’s hilarious, nerdy, and super fun debut SCARLETT EPSTEIN HATES IT HERE. I’m going to be sharing Anna’s dream cast for the book, but first, let me tell you a little bit about this debut.

Scarlett Epstein Hates It HereScarlett Epstein Hates It Here by Anna Breslaw

Razorbill // April 19, 2016

Meet Scarlett Epstein, BNF (Big Name Fan) in her online community of fanfiction writers, world-class nobody at Melville High. Her best (read: only) IRL friends are Avery, a painfully shy and annoyingly attractive bookworm, and Ruth, her weed-smoking, possibly insane seventy-three-year-old neighbor.

When Scarlett’s beloved TV show is canceled and her longtime crush, Gideon, is sucked out of her orbit and into the dark and distant world of Populars, Scarlett turns to the fanfic message boards for comfort. This time, though, her subjects aren’t the swoon-worthy stars of her fave series—they’re the real-life kids from her high school. And if they ever find out what Scarlett truly thinks about them, she’ll be thrust into a situation far more dramatic than anything she’s ever seen on TV…

Anna’s Dream Cast

Scarlett: Maude Apatow

Maude Apatow

Gideon: Tye Sheridan

Tye Sheridan

Avery: Bella Thorne

Bella Thorne

Ashley: Bella Thorne with a blowout and more makeup

Bella Thorne 2

Dawn: Natasha Lyonne

Natasha Lyonne

Ruth: Lily Tomlin

Lily Tomlin

Lily Tomlin is totally who I pictured as Ruth when reading, so I LOVE that’s who Anna chose! You guys should definitely check out SCARLETT EPSTEIN HATES IT HERE! 

ABOUT ANNA BRESLAW

Anna BreslawI’m a New York-based freelance writer and author who mostly writes funny things, or things about women, or both at once.

Previously, I was a staff writer at Cosmo and a sex & relationships editor at Cosmopolitan.com. I’ve also been a contributing writer for Jezebel and Glamour.com. My writing’s appeared in print outlets like The New York Times, New York Magazine, Paper, and Glamour; and web outlets like The Cut, GQ.com, NewYorker.com, The New Inquiry and elsewhere. Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here is my first book but I hope to write more.

Website | Twitter | Tumblr | Instagram

In Which I Wish I Was on the Road (YA Road Trip Novels)

Hey guys! So I’m sure you know by now how much I LOVE traveling and being on the road to somewhere, anywhere. I love seeing new places and meeting new people and just driving. But sometimes you just can’t go and you have to see those new places in books, which, sometimes, is totally cool with me. I love living vicariously through the characters in the novels I’m reading, especially if they are on a road trip.

Road map

I found out that the first week of April was actually Read a Road Map Week (you know, one of those pointless, unnecessary “holidays” that are all over the place), and I thought it’d be fun to put together a list of some of my favorite road trip books. So here are five of my favorites as well as three I want to read. DEFINITELY recommend me road trip books if you know of any not on my list!

Mosquitoland by David Arnold

MOSQUITOLAND by David Arnold
Mississippi >>> Ohio

Let's Get Lost

LET’S GET LOST by Adi Alsaid
Louisiana >>> Alaska

Paper Towns

PAPER TOWNS by John Green
Florida >>> New York

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME by Mark Haddon
Swindon, England >>> London, England
(okay, this one is more of a train ride but any chance I have to mention this book, I will)

Don't Fail Me Now by Una LaMarche

DON’T FAIL ME NOW by Una LaMarche
Baltimore, Maryland >>> California

THREE ROAD TRIP NOVELS I WANT TO READ

OPEN ROAD SUMMER by Emery Lord
AMY & ROGER’S EPIC DETOUR by Morgan Matson
THE DISENCHANTMENTS by Nina LaCour

Waiting on Wednesday: Run by Kody Keplinger

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we share a book that we are eagerly anticipating!

Run newPublisher: Scholastic Press

Author: Kody Keplinger

Release date: June 28, 2016

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Bo Dickinson is a girl with a wild reputation, a deadbeat dad, and a mama who’s not exactly sober most of the time. Everyone in town knows the Dickinsons are a bad lot, but Bo doesn’t care what anyone thinks.

Agnes Atwood has never gone on a date, never even stayed out past ten, and never broken any of her parents’ overbearing rules. Rules that are meant to protect their legally blind daughter — protect her from what, Agnes isn’t quite sure.

Despite everything, Bo and Agnes become best friends. And it’s the sort of friendship that runs truer and deeper than anything else.

So when Bo shows up in the middle of the night, with police sirens wailing in the distance, desperate to get out of town, Agnes doesn’t hesitate to take off with her. But running away and not getting caught will require stealing a car, tracking down Bo’s dad, staying ahead of the authorities, and — worst of all — confronting some ugly secrets.

Why I’m excited: Dahlia Adler said on Goodreads: “This is totally a YA Thelma and Louise and even when it hurts it’s so much fun.” Which pretty much sold me right away. YA Thelma and Louise. I’m totally here for that. Plus the synopsis sounds like this one could be a lot of fun, and I’m a sucker for best friend stories. Can’t wait!

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Will Make You Laugh

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. Today’s theme was:

Ten Books That Will Make You Laugh (or at least chuckle)

YOUNG ADULT BOOKS

Denton Little’s Deathdate by Lance Rubin | My Review

Angus, Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison

Firecracker by David Iserson | My Review

The Alex Crow by Andrew Smith | My Review

Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan

 

ADULT BOOKS

The Humans by Matt Haig | My Review

John Dies at the End by David Wong | My Review

PICTURE BOOKS

A Hungry Lion, or A Dwindling Assortment of Animals by Lucy Ruth Cummins

The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak

The Day the Crayons Quit & The Day the Crayons Came Home by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Oliver Jeffers | My Review

What books make you laugh?

Bat Appreciation Day | Batman Comics

Hey guys! So according to Holiday Insights, today is Bat Appreciation Day. Now, they definitely meant it as a day to appreciate boring old, regular bats. BUT as soon as I saw it, I immediately thought of Batman (I mean, what else would I think about?). So I thought it’d be fun to share some of my favorite Batman comics/story lines/etc. with you. Definitely know that this list is NOT meant to represent ALL of the best Batman comics out there, because there are a ton of Batman comics. These are just 8 of my favorite Batman comics and graphic novels.

8 Awesome Batman Comics

Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth by Grant Morrison, illustrated by Dave McKean

A Death in the Family by Jim Starlin, penciller: Jim Aparo, inker: Mike DeCarlo

The Long Halloween by Jeph Loeb, illustrated by Time Sale

The Killing Joke by Alan Moore, illustrated by Brian Bolland

Batman & Robin – Batman Reborn by Grant Morrison

AND Peter J. Tomasi’s run)

The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller

Batman: Eternal by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and more

So happy Bat Appreciation Day! Have you guys read any of these Batman comics? 

Thursday Thoughts: Books to Read if You Like Orphan Black

ORPHAN BLACK RETURNS TONIGHT, YOU GUYS. OMG. I am so excited to head back into this world and see where the story goes next. And, by the way, if you haven’t watched this show yet, WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE? Seriously, this show is awesome.

I thought it’d be super fun to give you guys some book recs based on the show – books I think you’d enjoy if you like Orphan Black. They’ve been chosen because they have clones in them or they are sci-fi (some heavy on the science, which I think OB is), they are full of the awesome, dark atmosphere similar to OB or they are suspenseful and mysterious. I think these books – like Orphan Black – feel a bit scary because of how close they are to our society. They talk about the importance of human life and the choices we, as humans, have or should make.

6 Books to Read if You Like Orphan Black

A Thousand Pieces of You

A THOUSAND PIECES OF YOU by Claudia Gray
While there are no clones present in this novel, I think the science and parallel universes will be of interest to Orphan Black fans.

The Handmaid's Tale

THE HANDMAID’S TALE by Margaret Atwood
This book is pretty much essential reading for not just OB fans but everyone. This one isn’t science fiction, but one of the best dystopian novels I’ve ever read. Like I mentioned earlier, this novel really makes you think about humanity and what it means to be human. Are clones (or Handmaids) worth less than others because of what they are?

Never Let Me Go

NEVER LET ME GO by Kazuo Ishiguro
Dark, sometimes confusing but always interesting sci-fi. Much like OB, it takes a bit to realize what’s happening, but once you do, WOAH. It’s intense, horrific, and so so good. Add in beautiful writing and you can’t go wrong.

Vitro

VITRO by Jessica Khoury
I think you can probably tell why I’m reccing this book just from the cover. Clones on the run for their lives. But on a remote island instead of Ontario, Canada. Yeah. Awesome.

Double Identity

DOUBLE IDENTITY by Margaret Peterson Haddix
You can’t really go wrong with Margaret Peterson Haddix. This is a great one for younger YA/MG-loving Orphan Black fans. Bethany’s family leaves her with an aunt she never knew in a town where everyone looks at her like they’ve seen a ghost.

The House of the Scorpion

THE HOUSE OF THE SCORPION by Nancy Farmer
A boy harvested from the DNA of the lord of a fictional country made to be a barrier between the US and Mexico. If that isn’t enough to intrigue you, this book has also won or been nominated for a ton of awards including the National Book Award (won), the Printz (nominated), and a Newbery Honor.

Have you guys read any of these? Do you have any other recommendations? ARE YOU EXCITED FOR SEASON FOUR OF ORPHAN BLACK?

Waiting on Wednesday: The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we share a book that we are eagerly anticipating!

The Unexpected EverythingPublisher: Simon & Schuster

Author: Morgan Matson

Release date: May 3, 2016

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Andie had it all planned out.

When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future.

Important internship? Check.

Amazing friends? Check.

Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks)

But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life.

Because here’s the thing – if everything’s planned out, you can never find the unexpected.

And where’s the fun in that?

Why I’m excited: How I know I’m going to love this one:

Morgan Matson? Check

Friendships? Check

Family feels? Check

Really looking forward to this one, and I’m so excited that I have an eARC to start soon! I love Morgan Matson’s writing, especially when it comes to friendships. Plus, add in some family and boy drama, and this one sounds like the perfect summer read. And look at that adorable cover!