Author of Middle Grade novels about friendship, family, and figuring out where you fit in.

Friday, September 20, 2013

THOSE WHO TRESPASS Paperback Release & Interview!

Today's a happy, happy day, folks! It's the paperback release of THOSE WHO TRESPASS by Melody Valadez! The e-book released on 8/27, and I've read it and totally adore it! If you like realistic, flawed characters, suspense and plot twists that make you gasp, and an adorably fun romance, you will love this book!

Here's the cover:

Awesome, isn't it? And here's the premise:

Seventeen-year-old Jenn Alistor is a murderer.

For months, she and her brother, Jake, have stayed one step ahead of the FBI. Now Jake is missing, maybe even kidnapped, and Jenn's last hope is a risky deal with the feds: if they'll help her find her brother, she'll turn herself in. But their so-called help comes in the form of 21-year-old Clayton Ford—brother of the guy she killed.

Lives aren't the only thing at stake any more. This is Jenn's one shot at forgiveness. But she has to choose.

Time is running out.

Publisher's Weekly even called it "an adrenaline rush in book form." Wow!!

To celebrate this exciting day, I interviewed Melody Valadez with some unique, THOSE-WHO-TRESPASS-related questions!

Interview with Melody Valadez

Shelley Sly: Hi there, Melody! Great to have you here.

In the story, Jenn Alistor has a very specific style. Black and white, nothing colorful, but she used to accent with red until recently. If you had to wear the same outfit nearly every day, what would it look like?

Melody Valadez: Well, my first answer was a skirt, because they make me feel pretty. But then I realized how utterly impractical and cumbersome that would be, to wear a skirt for the rest of my life. Thus, the answer is skinny jeans. :) With brown boots {Katniss boots, not cowboy}, brown shirts, brown scarves, and brown fingerless gloves. I, uh, like brown. It is, after all, the color of chocolate, creamed coffee...and chocolate with cream in coffee: mochas.

SS: I agree that a skirt would be a bit impractical, but I love the idea of an almost all-brown outfit!

Okay, so Jenn notes the differences between Jake's and Clayton's gum flavor preferences (lime vs. cinnamon). What's your favorite gum flavor?

MV: Nothing beats tropical/citrus.

SS: I'm currently going through a mango gum phase, so it's all about the fruit-flavored gum for me. :)

If you had to make a fairly quick and discreet Target run, what key items would you buy?

MV: Oooh, that's hard... Target has so many useful things! A booklight, for reading whatever book was in my bag when I went on the run...and for finding my way through dark alleys. Advil, for headaches and the occasional gunshot wound. {My headaches aren't nearly as long-lasting as yours, and they're probably not half as bad, either, since Advil *usually* takes care of them, but I don't fancy the idea of criss-crossing the state with a throbbing head.} And chocolate, because this is most likely a high-stress venture, and stress demands chocolate.

SS: Oh yeah, I hear ya about headache meds. Gotta be prepared. And those pesky gunshot wounds... *shakes head*

So, if you were in the library with someone else while he was doing some really interesting-sounding research, but you were ordered to ignore him and read for 2-3 hours, which books would keep you occupied?

MV: If this guy is as good looking at Clayton, he's a bit hard to ignore, but I would *attempt* it by grabbing one of Megan Whalen Turner's Queen's Thief series...can't read those too often!

SS: I'll have to check those out. :)

Jenn is well-known for being a murderer, famous enough that she makes the news. What (besides being an author) would you be well-known for that you'd make the news? (Can be something good, not necessarily a crime!)

MV: It's surprisingly hard to imagine myself being that famous! Since I'm also a physics major and {about to be} involved in some research, I'm tempted to say that we'd {they'd} make a scientific breakthrough important enough to merit a couple of minutes on CNN. Not that I'm holding my breath. Physicists don't get particularly famous in the real world, and major breakthroughs come around about once every fifty years {feels like}. And we thought the publishing industry was a lot of work with little to show for it, haha

SS: A scientific breakthrough? That's incredible! Fingers crossed that you'll be double famous as an author and a physicist!

Thanks for coming by and answering these questions, Melody! You are your book are both fabulous.

Check out the new paperback (and e-book) of THOSE WHO TRESPASS on Amazon!
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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Happy Release Day to A MISSING PEACE by Beth Fred!

I'm a couple of days late, since the official release was on Sunday (but I tweeted about it, if you follow me. If you don't follow me, I'm @ShellSly.)

Beth is hosting a Twitter release party for her YA novel, A MISSING PEACE, at 9PM EST. There will be a $10 gift card up for grabs, so don't miss it! Follow the hashtag #AMISSINGPEACE.

Here's some more about the book:

A turbulent, emotionally charged YA novel that breaks down barriers and challenges the status quo...

Angry, seventeen-year-old Iraqi war refugee Mirriam Yohanna hates her new life in Killeen, Texas, where the main attraction is a military base, populated with spoiled army brats like Caleb Miller.

Caleb has much to be angry about too, including Mirriam who turns him down flat in front of everyone. Eager for retribution, Caleb agrees to a dare that will see him take Mirriam to the prom and regain his pride.

But their relationship soon moves beyond high school antics. Mirriam and Caleb are bound together by more than location, and as they are forced to work closely together on a school assignment, they start to uncover an explosive story that has the potential to ruin lives — and both of their futures. One single truth changes everything and strengthens their bond.

When Mirriam's family discovers their relationship, they decide it's time to arrange her marriage to a proper Iraqi man. Caleb must convince Mirriam that he is in it for forever — or risk losing her for good. (Summary from

* * *

I'm a fan of sweet love stories, and this one sounds like a refreshing change from the "insta-love" that I often see in romance books. (I haven't read the entirety of A MISSING PEACE yet, so I'm just going by what I can tell. It's next on my list to read, though!) Sound like your kind of book? Buy it here!

Congratulations on your release, Beth!
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