Friday, January 11, 2019

Pretty in Punxsutawney by Laurie Boyle Crompton-- Author Interview & Giveaway

Pretty In Punxsutawney by Laurie Boyle Crompton
Publisher: BLINK
Release Date: January 15, 2019
Genre: Young Adult - Contemporary, Romance

A mashup of Groundhog Day and Pretty in Pink, the book stars a senior who is forced to relive the first day at her new school in an endless loop. Andie is convinced she needs true love's kiss to break the curse, but instead discovers how a high school filled with cliques and misfits can find common ground despite everyone's differences. Publication is set for January 2019.

  • I am so excited to have Laurie Boyle Crompton here today to answer some of my Q's!!  I've been a fan of this author ever since I read BLAZE many years ago.  The fact that her books are mostly set in the area around where I live (Western PA) is a major bonus!!  I can't wait to dive into PRETTY IN PUNXSUTAWNEY-- not only do I LOVE Groundhog's Day stories, but Pretty in Pink is also a fave!!  I can't wait to see how these 2 stories blend!
  • Now, on the the interview:

If you could go back and tell your YA self one thing, what would it be? 

I would say to embrace the weird and awkward parts of yourself! It can be tempting to try to fit in and feel ‘normal,’ but there’s nothing extraordinary in striving to be ordinary! The fact that you crave alone time doesn’t make you a freak, it makes you an introvert and that will help you fulfill your dream of becoming an author. Oh, and also, your writing is your superpower!
(I actually wrote an extended letter to my teen self, archived on my old blog here: )

Are there any specific days in your life that you’d like to live again (maybe just because it was awesome!!  Or because you’d like a re-do)? 

I like the idea of having a re-do opportunity! What a fun idea! The very first date I went on with my husband was a series of small errors which ultimately led to his keys locked in his car and us taking a taxi-ride to his house to get the spare key. Since my curfew was approaching, the taxi driver dropped me off at home on the way back to unlock the car and we awkwardly said goodbye to each other in front of the cab driver. I told my friends the next day that if the guy ever called me again it would be a miracle. Of course, he did, and now twenty-five years of marriage later, I guess I wouldn’t redo a single thing about that night!! So I guess I’d pick reliving the stressful/wonderful day that I sold my first book.

What were your favorite books in elementary/middle school? 

I was a Judy Blume fan all the way, but I also fell in love with Stephen King’s books at an inappropriately young age. JB would convince me that I wasn’t alone in feeling like an outcast and growing up, and SK would convince me I wasn’t alone period and needed to sleep with the lights on all night! Seriously, Pet Semetary had me checking under my bed for months and I didn’t actually find clowns creepy at all before reading It. I read one of King’s short stories aloud to my class as an assignment for speech class one day and will never forget how much I shocked everyone.

I live about 20 miles from Punxsy— did you visit the town in order to write this book?  Also, I noticed BLAZE lived in Butler— do you have ties to Western Pennsylvania (and are you a Steeler fan????) 

I grew up in Butler, PA which is about an hour north of Pittsburgh and so in other words, OF COURSE I’m a terrible-towel-waving Steeler fan to the core! My step-father had season tickets to the Penguins and our high school band played during intermission at a Pirate game once, so I’m black and gold through and through. Growing up in Western Pennsylvania, I couldn’t wait to run off to start a new life in New York, and now here I am all these years later writing books that take place in Western PA. Ha! I love rural settings and while New York has been my home longer then Butler ever was, I need to get myself into the woods from time to time in order to reconnect with my true self.

Do you have any favorite Groundhog’s Day-type books or movies? (I read 2 books this past year that had characters reliving the same day over and over— and they’re definitely making my 2018 favorites list). 

For me the gold-standard of Groundhog’s Day-type stories is the original Groundhog’s Day movie starring Bill Murray. It’s just so perfect! Murray’s Phil has the most gorgeous character arc with him growing from a full-on jerk to the sweet, thoughtful and well-rounded guy he becomes in the end. It is a testimony to his loveable charm that we willingly invest ourselves in the story of a guy who is so selfish and terrible to the people around him at the start of the movie! Of course, the humor hooks us in and it isn’t long before we’re all rooting for him to wake up, change his ways and win the girl!

What are your 3 favorite books that you read in the past year? 

Danny Gregory’s book The Creative License
The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas
And She Was by Jessica Verdi

Laurie Boyle Crompton is the YA author of the upcoming PRETTY IN PUNXSUTAWNEY (Blink/HarperCollins 2019) as well as ADRENALINE CRUSH (Macmillan/2014, Square Fish/2016), BLAZE (or Love in the Time of Supervillains), THE REAL PROM QUEENS OF WESTFIELD HIGH and LOVE AND VANDALISM (Sourcebooks/2013, 2014, 2017). Growing up in ‘Pennsyltucky’ in the 1980s, Laurie couldn't wait to escape rural life. After saving up her tips from waitressing at a local greasy spoon at 18 she packed up her acid wash jeans and moved to NY. Where everyone else had stopped wearing acid wash.

She graduated first in her class from St. John’s University with a BA in English and Journalism. Since then she’s written for national magazines like ALLURE, survived a teaching stint at an all-boy high school, and appeared on Good Day New York several times as a Toy Expert. And yes, ‘toy expert’ is an actual profession. Really.

She has lived in places like Orlando, Florida where she and her husband spent all of their spare time and money visiting theme parks before moving to the Cotswolds in England for six months, which was every bit as cool as that sounds. The Cromptons are now back in New York where their two children resent never going to Disney.

Laurie occasionally enjoys hanging out in fields of blooming flowers
and also refering to herself in the third person.

  • 5 finished copies of PRETTY IN PUNXSUTAWNEY by Laurie Boyle Crompton
  • US Only
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Thursday, January 10, 2019

My 2018 Best of Books

Thanks to Jamie, I've made another list of my faves (and not so faves) of the year.  Yeah, I'm 10 days late-- but I can't move on to 2019 until I wrap up 2018!  Head over to The Perpetual Page-Turner if you want to do your own wrap-up and link up!


Number Of Books You Read: 43
Number of Re-Reads: Hmmm, I think besides Fear Street, I didnt reread anything
Genre You Read The Most From: YA Contemporary

1. Best Book You Read In 2018?

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

  • Truly, Devious by Maureen Johnson- I thought I was going to LOVE this book, but with the try-hard characters and the lack of any resolutions, it didn't live up.
  • A Room Away From the Wolves by Nova Ren Suma- Ughh. This one hurts.  Nova is one of my forever fave authors, but I just did not get this book.

3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  

  • Confessions of a High School Disaster by Emma Chastain- I wasn't expecting to meet a new Ruby Oliver or Jessica Darling this year-- but in came Chloe Snow and I was so happy surprised that I've been smiling ever since.

4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

  • The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White- I didn't LOVE love this book, but I still told a lot of people to give it a chance.  It's super short, so I feel like it's little risk for a possible big reward.
  • Finding Felicity by Stacey Kade- I will push any COLLEGE YA book that is written as well as this.

5. Best series you started in 2018? Best Sequel of 2018? Best Series Ender of 2018?

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2018?

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

 9. Book You Read In 2018 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

  • Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl- Oh I need to revisit this one again and see if there are things I missed the first go-round.
  • Sadie by Courtney Summers- This is just worth rereading.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2018?

11. Most memorable character of 2018?

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2018?

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2018?

  • Sadie by Courtney Summers- this book had me thinking too many thoughts about things that I prefer not to think about-- and I kind of love it for that?

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2018 to finally read? 

  • Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty- I got this book YEARS ago and it just sat here until I watched the TV show.
  • All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda- This is one of my fave authors and it's one of her best books-- what was I waiting for?
  • A Week of the Mondays by Jessica Brody- I love Groundhog's Day books and I love Jessica Brody.  I should've read this the minute it came out.

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2018?

  • "And in that moment I wonder if Lovelorn wasn't so special after all.  Maybe everyone has a make-believe place.  Make-believe worlds where they play make-believe people." ~Broken Things by Lauren Oliver

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2018?

17. Book That Shocked You The Most
(Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.)

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2018 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

  • Sadie by Courtney Summers

21. Best Book You Read In 2018 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.:

  • Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl- Thanks to Cassi, otherwise I never would have read this awesome book!

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2018?

23. Best 2018 debut you read?

  • Always Forever Maybe by Anica Mrose Rissi- I didn't think this was perfect, but I related so hard to the subject of this book & I really liked how the strong friendship was an important part of the main character's salvation.  I am looking forward to what else this author writes.

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

  • Murdertrending by Gretchen McNeil- Alactraz 2.0 was an amazing setting.  I'm not sure I 100% bought that it could have happened, but I liked the concept.
  • Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero- This book was very descriptive and I think that was the strong point of it.  Blyton Hills came alive for me.
  • The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager- A creepy summer camp??? Sign me up.  I loved Camp Nightingale as the setting of a mystery!

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
  • A Week of the Mondays by Jessica Brody- I can't believe this is the longest book I read this year because it was pure joy to turn every page.

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2018?
  • Sadie by Courtney Summers- This book was just so beautifully sad and horrific at times.
  • The Unwritten Rule by Elizabeth Scott- This book reminded me that it's not all robot in my heart.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?
  • Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl- I've barely heard anything about this book and I think that needs to change.  READ THIS BOOK!!

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?
  • The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty- That ending.  I just had so many feelings and questions and ughhh.
  • Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent- Wow.  This book really had nothing good in it, but I could not stop reading it.

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2018?
  • All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda- This is a mystery told backwards.  I don't know how the author made this work, but she did!

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

  • This Darkness Mine by Mindy McGinnis- Just whyyyyyyy.  I was on board until the heart ripping out episode... and then I was firmly off.
  • Truly, Devious by Maureen Johnson- I was mad I didn't get a payoff after 400+ pages.
  • All of This is True by Lygia Day Penaflor- Don't even get me started on this book because I could go on for a WHILE.  If you've read this, I think you'll know where my anger stems from.

1. New favorite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2018?

  • I have a terrible memory and when I find a blog I love, I always seem to think I've been following them forever!
  • I'm not sure if I discovered these blogs this year, but they are ones I've discovered more recently in my blogging life:
  • Vicky Who Reads
  • Drizzle and Hurricane Books
  • Book Loaner

2. Favorite post you wrote in 2018?

3. Favorite bookish related photo you took in 2018?

  •  I seriously slacked on Bookstagram this year.  I'm going to pick this as my fave:

4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events,  etc.)?

  • I gotta say ALA in New Orleans (although I also met Jesse Andrews at a local event and that was super exciting)

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2018?
  • Meeting Courtney Summers
  • Bringing Jana in to help run the blog tour company

6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

  • Balancing life and Bookstagram and Blogging and running the FFBC

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

  •  I always wish reviews would get more love-- I think THIS one was my fave.

9. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?

  • I don't know if this qualifies as "bookish", but I was really happy with my purchase of a light box like THIS one.  It's brightened up my Bookstagram pics immensely.  It's also turned my spare room into a room with a giant light box in it, but sometimes hobbies make you sacrifice.

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

  • If I'm not failing a reading challenge, what is life??  I read 43 books and my goal was 60.

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2018 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2019?

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2019 (non-debut)?
  • Come Find Me by Megan Miranda- I am REALLY in the mood for a Megan Miranda book.

3. 2019 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2019?

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2019?
  • I definitely want to go back to ALA in June.  I also hope to read more, Bookstagram more, be a better tour company partner, be a better bookish friend, and go to local bookish events when they happen.

6. A 2019 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable):
  • Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus- It's the only one I've read so far, but I did really like it!!

That's my 2019 reading year!!  What books did you read in 2019 that ended up as your faves?  Do we have any books in common??  Let's chat!