Summer of the Sequel Giveaway! (and apologies)

July 11, 2013 2013, blogger perspectives, giveaway, jessica spotswood, Wendy 83

Dear Friends,

I’m getting on a plane in a few hours, but before I go, I have to apologize for being so absent lately. Aside from all three of us being pretty busy this month, I’ve also dealt with a scraped eye (ow!), houseguests, and some rather time-consuming family issues. I’m sorry to say that I’m behind on answering emails, choosing prize winners, and shipping out books–but I promise those will be tackled as soon as I’m back! July has turned out to be a huge time-suck, and I apologize profusely for being so behind.

I have to confess that I’ve also been going through one of those phases where I’m just feeling generally burned out by blogging in general. Between an unpleasant anniversary earlier this summer, watching more reviewers getting attacked, dealing with trolls, and working through some general frustrations and disillusionment in general, I honestly haven’t been feeling as wildly enthusiastic lately. While I’m happy with how we’ve grown here at The Midnight Garden, I think I need to re-evaluate how I personally blog, as well as how I allocate my time and resources. I’m spending too much time on things other than reading and reviewing, which is the whole reason I started the blog in the first place. Hopefully this will mean positive changes down the road for the blog, and for our readers.

But onto happier topics. My July has been generally unproductive, but there’s no reason why you should have to suffer! I’m sitting on a bunch of reviews and books to give away, but in the meantime I thought it’d be nice to spread the love with some recently released and upcoming sequels that I know many of our readers are excited about.

The seven books include:

Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood
The Red Plague Affair by Lilith Saintcrow
Natural Born Angel by Scott Speer
Alex Rider: Russian Roulette by Anthony Horowitz
Impostor by Jill Hathaway
The Uprising by Lisa M. Stasse
Before the Fall by Francis Knight

All of them are ARCs except for The Uprising, which is a beautiful finished copy. The links take you to GoodReads, which has synopses and more information about the books. We’ve got witches, angels, dystopia, mysteries, and more, with books released April – October 2013! A pretty sweet deal all-around.

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Contest Rules

We’re going to skip Rafflecopter this time and keep this one pretty simple, but this contest does adhere to our general contest rules.

All winners will be hand-picked from the comments by Wendy. (Take that, unfeeling Rafflecopter gods!) One international winner will be chosen, who will get his or her chosen book. All other books will be divided up among our U.S. readers–it could be 7 different winners total, or some of you may be so persuasive that you might get more than one book!

In order to win, all you have to do is:

Leave a thoughtful comment below telling us
— which book(s) you’d like to read and WHY
— where you live
— an email address where you may be reached.

Preference is definitely given to those make a good case for why they are interested in the books, as well as the readers that we hear from often–and not just on contest entries. Honestly, I’d also prefer to send several books to one place to save on shipping, so don’t be shy about expressing genuine interest in multiple titles.

Extra entries may also be earned by tweeting about the contest once a day until the contest ends on July 31st. Just leave us a link in the comments with the URL for your tweet daily. Suggested copy: Hey series lovers! The Midnight Garden’s giving away SEVEN new & upcoming sequels: http://bit.ly/1adhgpu Open internationally through 7/31.

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Thanks, as always, for being loyal readers of our blog, and for bearing with us. I know Tonya and K are both posting fun stuff soon, and I’ll be back more regularly soon as well.

Our gratitude also goes out to our friends at Penguin, Orbit, Balzer + Bray, and Simon Teen for providing the prizes for this contest.

83 Responses to “Summer of the Sequel Giveaway! (and apologies)”

  1. Sharon ObsessionwithBooks

    Oh my, a scraped eye? ouch! I hope you are ok <3 I can completely relate with lack of blogging motivation; for me it's balancing a few life changes; I hope things start to look up soon x

    Sharon – Obsession with Books

    PS. I am not entering the giveaway, I need to play catch-up on the first books in the series (not enough reading hours in the day).

  2. Julie@My5monkeys

    totally understand the need and I am on a blogging break right now. It was so much needed and reading has become fun again. Hope that you feel better.
    xxxxx

  3. reader

    Hi! I am new here…so I really hope I am doing this right! All of them sound so interesting but I really want to read Natural Born Angel. It sounds awesome and I read the first book and loved it. I also have a huge crush on Jackson and that’s probably why I want to read it so badly…I am not ashamed!
    Imposter sounds really cool and different and I want to read that one too. I also want to read Star Cursed and Before the Fall…those are DEFINITELY going on my To-Reads on Goodreads!
    Anyways, thanks so much! I am kinda jealous of you because I wish I could go to comic-con (being only 14, my mom’s not exactly up for the idea) and I hope I win something! Thanks again!
    I live in Chicago, IL, home of the Bears!
    ashafqat12@gmail.com

  4. June Luu

    I really REALLY want to read THE UPRISING, I was hooked completely from the first book and have been DYING for the second ever since. I live in London, UK and my address is:

    DTL0201(at)gmail(dot)com

  5. rabbitsfortea

    I have no idea how on earth you got a scrapped eye but given that I’m typing this around 2-3 weeks later, I hope it’s all better!

    Also, considering the amount of crap that has been going around the book blogosphere and GR these days, it’s no wonder that you are suffering from a blogging burnout. Take time to recuperate and hopefully the motivation will come back soon enough. Afterall, your readers aren’t going anywhere :P

  6. starryeyedjen

    I think the whole of the blogosphere is undergoing a period of “meh”. Everywhere I turn, another blogger is upset that this thing they once felt so passionate about no longer brings them the joy it once did…yours truly, included. I’ve still been blogging, but I’ve been too lax on visiting everyone else, just kind of keeping to myself for a bit. And reading a ton for a change. But as you can see, I came out of my little hole to say hi today, and I remember that it’s not all about me. We’re kind of a family…a strange, book-obsessed family, but it is what it is. ;) You are one of my favorite bloggers and bookish people in general, and I’ve missed you around here, but I know that we all need a little time for reflection. I hope to see you around more soon…I have soooo many books to discuss with you! :D

  7. Gavin Chua

    I would like to read Before the Fall by Francis Knight. This book looks interesting to read by just reading the plot and the ratings in Goodreads are good.
    I am from the Philippines and my email address is silvermagicr@yahoo.com

  8. Ariel Smith

    The only book I have read from above was Born Wicked, and I absolutely loved it. I’m a huge fan of paranormal/fantasy so when I found it at the library I knew I just had to get it! And I definitely was not disappointed by the content. I loved the characters personality’s so much, especially Finn! I haven’t read Star Cursed yet, so I would love to win my own copy. Thank you so much for this giveaway!
    I live in Dayton, Ohio and this is my email address: puppy.lover2417@yahoo.com

  9. Stephanie Bishop

    I have just stumbled upon this amazing site in which I have just discovered I can enter to win free books! I am truly excited right now. Not only is this site amazing for that reason, it showcases books that are right up my ally. I would like to officially enter to win a copy of the book titled Before the Fall. It looks like a great sequel and the reviews are making me eager to read it. I live in Pine Mountain Club, CA and can be reached at
    sbishop1979@aol.com

  10. Molli Moran

    This is me giving you a hug, Wendy! I’ve missed you, but I TOTALLY understand what you mean. I’ve been having to spend more time taking care of life-type things, and I haven’t felt as motivated to blog. I’ve cut way back on my blog recently for that reason, and am playing with keeping a more laid-back schedule come fall. I don’t want to lose my love of blogging.

    You’re so generous. I’m not entering, but thank you for being YOU. <3

    Molli

    • Wendy Darling

      Judging by the comments here and the notes I’ve gotten elsewhere, it seems as though we’re not alone in the lack of blogging motivation, Molli. I think we all just have to try to do what’s best for us, otherwise all the joy gets sucked out of it.

      Thank YOU for being such a doll. I appreciate your taking the time to leave such a lovely comment.

  11. Tandie Martinez

    I popped over because I haven’t heard from you for a while. I miss you & totally understand about life getting crazy busy. I’m still feeling celebratory because baseball is finally over! The giveaways are fun, but if they’re too much of a time suck, I say just send them in big shipments to other bloggers or something when you’re done reading them. What I’m really here for are your lovely reviews and funny back & forth banter! To prove that I’m not just being a brown-noser, I’m not even entering the giveaway! See?

    • Wendy Darling

      You are so good for me. I can’t even tell you how your cheery notes lift my spirits, and how much I enjoy talking to you about books! Thank you so much for always being so wonderful, and for leaving such happy-making comments whether there’s a giveaway going on (or whether I’m being at ALL entertaining) or not. <3

      I think I’m going to try to find an intern to handle some of the housekeeping/giveaway details. We’ve had so many this summer that it really did start to feel overwhelming, and I was spending more time chasing people down and verifying entries than doing anything else.

  12. A Canadian Girl

    So that’why I haven’t seen you online as much! I think there are a lot people in the same boat as you, Wendy; I know a lot of bloggers, including myself, seem to be really busy this summer or suffering from burnout lately. I’m not entering this giveaway as I haven’t read any of the previous books but I did want to say that I hope the rest of your July and August is better.

    • Wendy Darling

      It’s sad to hear so many friends are feeling burned out as well. :( It’s true that summer does seem busier life-wise for everyone, though, so hopefully everyone will get motivated and excited again as we head into fall. Thanks so much for stopping by! Love to you.

  13. Kim

    I haven’t read any of the firsts in these series, so I’m not going to participate in the giveaway — but thank you for hosting one :)

    I just wanted to say it’s completely understandable when life gets in the way of blogging. Sometimes it’s hard to stay enthusiastic, even about things you love. And a scraped eye?! Ouch! I’m sorry. Hope you feel better soon! Safe travels :)

    • Wendy Darling

      You read so much, Kim, I’m surprised that you haven’t started any of these series! Heh.

      And thanks for understanding–I do love talking to people about books, but to be honest, I have had a love/hate relationship with blogging for awhile now. I need to figure out some sort of balance, or come to some sort of compromise so that I can blog and still stay happy.

  14. Rachel

    Oh wow, Wendy! A scraped eye?!! Jeez, sorry! That’s got hurt. I totally understand your plight. Everyday life is consuming and our family and friends need us,too! Blogging should be fun and not completely taking up our time, but I know how easily this happens. I have to set limits now.

    It’s so very nice you’re doing the giveaway, but don’t consider me. I have way too many books to read at the moment and I’d be thrilled if someone else won this lovely package! Plus, I haven’t read any of the firsts in this stack. Take care! :)

    • Wendy Darling

      Yeah, I brilliantly somehow scraped my eye. Much to my husband’s disappointment, I didn not have to wear an eyepatch, however. :P

      I need to set more limits with blogging, too. It should definitely be fun, and not feel like a chore or risky undertaking.

      Will be by to visit you and Jasprit soon, though!

  15. Lyn Kaye

    Wendy, I do miss the stuffings out of you. I can also understand the disenchantment of the book blogging world. I am starting to find my own bitterness as well.

    I hope we still see you floating in from time to time. Maybe things will pick up. Maybe you can be the head honcho and do some reviews, but overall, I want you happy. Your own well-being is the most important thing, above all.

    • Wendy Darling

      Ah. It’s hard for most people to understand the disenchantment until they blog themselves, and then beyond that (not to sound dismissive, but it’s true), also blogging with a certain level of visibility. I am tired of feeling scrutinized and hunted down, and a lot of times this summer I haven’t felt like I’ve gotten enough out of it for all I put in, if you know what I mean.

      And yeah…I think we’re going to be looking for at least one new contributing writer, as well as an intern. Goal being that we still have at least a couple of posts a week, so that if I’m going through a crisis or someone’s busy, there’s still regular activity on the blog.

      Anyway, thanks so much for being so supportive and lovely, as always. <3

  16. Julia :)

    Wait. THERE’S A NEW ALEX RIDER BOOK?!?! How on earth did I miss out on this?! HOW?!?! *goes to Goodreads page* So Scorpia Rising wasn’t the last Alex Rider book, this one is? And it’s all about Yassen Gregorovich? YES. HECK YES. I want to win this one because, well I’m a huge Alex Rider/Anthony Horowitz fan and just the thought of finding out the backstory of Yassen is making me all giddy. He’s one of the best characters of the series and I love when authors go out of their way to go even further with character development. :D

    I would also love to win The Uprising. I read The Forsaken, and while it wasn’t my favorite I still enjoyed it and I definitely want to know what happens next in the story. Plus, I am IN LOVE with The Forsaken and The Uprising’s book covers. They are definitely my favorite series cover designs. I’d love to be able to add The Uprising to my collection!

    Finally, I’d love to win Impostor. Slide was a really unique read and Impostor sounds even better! Vee’s situation getting weirder? Blacking out and waking up in random places? Revenge? OHHHH THE PLOT THICKENS!

    Thanks for the opportunity to win these titles! I hope my insane fangirlness came through without me being too scary… Hehe. :P And if I don’t win then congrats to whoever does! :D

    I live in the US.

    a_hobbit_of_the_shire(at)yahoo(dot)com

  17. Mary Preston

    I hope all is well with you soon.

    I’d love to read STAR CURSED thank you. I read BORN WICKED and just loved it. This is a series I’d love to have up on my book-shelf – for real.

    Witches and magic are very cool.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

  18. LisaFicTalk

    Right there with you, Wendy. This is why I’m taking August off. I need a break from it all.

    *hugs* xoxo

    ~Lisa ;)

    • Wendy Darling

      Ohh. I hope you get some rest and can enjoy relaxing with a book without any of the pressures associated with reviewing, Lisa. I expect many Instagram photos, but blog-wise, I’ll catch you on the flipside!

  19. Nikki Vanderhoof

    That seriously sucks about your eye Wendy. I’ve got contacts and so I know how painful it can be when you scratch your eye. It’s even worse when you’re trying to read or type on a computer all day so I hope you get feeling better soon! Anything that takes you away from reading (when it’s something you truly enjoy) is a shame. Hopefully things get better for you and you can find your renewed joy in blogging and sharing the reading experience with all of us.

    As far as the books; I haven’t really felt strongly towards any of these series save Imposter, Before the Fall and The Red Plague Affair. These types of stories are right up my alley considering I read more sci-fi and mystery/thriller than anything else. Finding a good young adult book that fits into those genres is harder than I anticipated so when I find those I enjoy I hang on for dear life and then only slightly stalk the author to make sure I get my hands on every tiny morsel they’ve had their hands on ;)

    Salt Lake City, UT nikki.vanderhoof@zionsbank.com

    • Wendy Darling

      Thanks for your lovely comment, Nikki–it’s much appreciated. :)

      I normally read mostly scifi/thrillers as well, but this summer I’ve been reading a lot of contemporaries for some reason. I do exactly the same thing you do, though–pounce on authors I love and cling tightly!

  20. Tanja - Tanychy

    Wendy I really hope that all the troubles about mean people and trolls are behind you and that your eye is better. I hope you’ll get some free time to just sit down and read! I need that too. :)

    • Wendy Darling

      It just never seems to end, Tanja. Sometimes it affects me directly, and sometimes it happens to people I know, and sometimes it happens to complete strangers and I get upset over all of it. I feel like I need to be a responsible blogger and stay on top of knowing about issues that affect our community, and yet so much of that is weighing me down.

      I need to figure it all out. Because like you said, we all just need time to enjoy what we’re reading. I hope you’re getting the opportunity to do so!

  21. Christina (Christinareadsya)

    I’m not entering the giveaway, as I still have to finish the books I won from your March giveaway. Soon – Monday & Friday of next week – I hope. I wanted to comment about that, and to say that I’m sorry you’re feeling disillusioned and for whatever else it is you’re dealing with :(. The scraped eye especially sounds painful. I’ve missed y’all as bloggers – you have such wonderful posts, so I truly hope that you’ll be able to work out something, something that will allow you the time you need & to help you return with fresh enthusiasm for reading & reviewing. Have a wonderful day and sending y’all the book shimmies :)!

    • Wendy Darling

      Hey Christina–thanks so much. I’m going through a tough period with the whole blogging thing at the moment, but I hope we’ll be rebounding soon. As you intimated, part of it is just figuring out something that works for us and allows us to stay sane.

      And book shimmies are always welcome!

  22. Casey B.

    I would love to read Natural Born Angel by Scott Speer. I procrastinated for an embarrassingly long time before I picked up The Immortal City. Honestly, I picked it up out of pity because it looked quite sad sitting in the corner of my room. It turned out to be pretty freakin awesome and I regret not reading it sooner. I can’t wait to read the sequel but I just haven’t had time to look for a copy.

    Anyway, thanks for the giveaway!

    US resident – cjbergman1(at)gmail(dot)com

    • Wendy Darling

      *squishes Andrea*

      Thank you for your sweetness, as always.

      I have missed you! I am looking forward to seeing what you’ve been reading while I’ve been gone.

  23. readingdate

    Hugs Wendy! I think blogging is especially hard in the summer, and scraped eyes don’t help either. Ouchie! Hope you have a great trip, and you have tons of loyal readers that will be here when you get back :)

    • Wendy Darling

      It’s true, everyone gets busy with other things during the summer–it’s good to be reminded of that. :) Thanks so much, Lucy–I’ll be by for a reading date soon!

  24. Tiffany Drew

    I would love to get my hands on The Uprising. I loved The Forsaken, I read it in less than a day because it was just so good I couldn’t put it down. I had no idea the next book was due to come out so soon, I’m freakin’ excited! Thank you!

    I’m in the USA.
    jaidahsmommy(at)comcast(dot)net

  25. TayteH

    I can’t wait to read The Uprising. I have yet to finish The Forsaken, but what I’ve read so far is really good. I can’t wait to read The Uprising.
    Thank you!

    I live in the USA.
    thunter_5@yahoo.com

  26. Bonnie R

    I can definitely commiserate… I’ve been trying too hard to post daily and it’s becoming taxing. I’ve been feeling the need for a break so hopefully your break will do you some good. It’ll be good to see you more though, I miss seeing your face around! :) Have a lovely trip!

    • Wendy Darling

      Oh my goodness—posting daily is never going to happen around these parts, hah. We were being really great for awhile about posting a few times a week, but things sort of fell by the wayside in July. Summer’s always hard, though, I’m hoping that we’ll be back on track this month or next. I hope you get that break as well, even if it means I’ll miss you, too! xoxoxoxoo

      And some more xoxoxoxoxo for good measure. :)

  27. Amy

    I totally understand about being busy and having other things get in the way of blogging. The past month I have been way behind on reading. Some exciting things, and some not so awesome things have taken up a lot of my time, and even when not busy, my mind just wasn’t in it. As always, I will be here to read whatever you post, whenever you do. I will continue to be a loyal follower. :)

    As far as the books, the only one up there that I have read the first book of is Star Cursed. I absolutely loved Born Wicked. It’s actually been hard for me to find many witch book that I have enjoyed in the past few years, so I was so happy that Born Wicked was one that I did. I loved the romance, the setting, and the magic. :)

    booklovingme AT gmail DOT com

    • Wendy Darling

      I’m so behind on…everything, Amy. I feel somewhat overwhelmed by it all, but I am determined to tackle that in the next few days. Thanks so much for being so understanding, though, and for the encouragement.

      I’m glad to hear you liked Born Wicked! I think it’s hard to find good witch books, too. I wish there were more of them.

  28. May

    Star Cursed. I love the first book and thought that it was very romantic despite the premise….

    Canada
    maybe31 at yahoo.com

  29. Ashleigh Paige

    A scraped eye? I’m cringing on your behalf! Eye injuries are the worst. I get chills just reading about other people’s, like when a character in a book had a cornea wound that kept flipping open.

    I may not know the full details of your personal troubles and your disillusionment, but I understand that feeling a little bit. I’ve been feeling burned out lately too, but I’m going to be on hiatus all of August and that might help me get some of my energy back. Here’s hoping you can too! I and countless other readers would miss you.

    From the seven books, I’d like to win Star Cursed and Impostor. For the former, I’m in the middle of Born Wicked and enjoying it. I have the same complaints you did about it not moving very quickly and there not being enough witchy shenanigans, but the Cahill sisters keep me going. I love those girls! I’m glad I took my coblogger’s rec and started Born Wicked even if it’s slow going.

    Then for Impostor, I liked Slide, but its issues with female characters put me off. The idea of Vee being taken over is all that has me hooked for the sequel. I mean, come on! Being a forced accomplice to murder because the murderer takes control of your body? YES. There are probably gender politics and/or an allegory of consent issues in there somewhere, but I can’t examine them without reading it.

    I don’t know where you’re going on that plane, but I hope you enjoy yourself wherever you go!

    Oh yeah, the other thing. I live in the US and the email address to reach me at is theyakitten at gmail dot com.

    • Wendy Darling

      Ugh, yes–stupid eye scrapings are not conducive to either reading or reviewing.

      I hope your hiatus is helpful, Ashleigh Paige! It’s a somewhat dangerous thing for me, though–I’m afraid the longer I’m away from the blog, the more resistant I am to returning to it, and then I always feel weirdly hesitant when I jump back into it. But I hope you enjoy your break, and that you’ll come back with enthusiasm and full of bookish things to share.

      I’m glad to hear you enjoyed Born Wicked! I did like the girls despite my want for more witchcraft, and I’m a big fan of the author’s. :) Fingers crossed for you…

  30. Margot Wood

    Definitely know how you feel, and sometimes it’s good to get away from it all and recharge your batteries. Here’s to a better fall!

  31. Ashley

    While I have missed you, and I have. Sometimes a much needed break is that, a much needed break. So I completely understand.

  32. Savannah Bookswithbite

    I’m no going to enter the giveaway cause I have plenty to read but I feel you Wendy. I too sometimes feel burned out and think about whether I should continue or not. As much as I LOVE to read, its starting to become tiresome. I hate the feeling of being pressured to read, writing reviews,etc. Not to mention blogger attacks,author behaving badly, or blogs getting deleted for no reason. Even though personally I haven’t gone though this, I feel like my time is ticking down and one day something will happen.

    Anyways, whatever decisions you make, I will support.

    • Wendy Darling

      Ugh, Savy–I’ve been going through such angst the past couple of months, I can’t even tell you. It’s hard to understand the level of pressure unless you’re in our shoes, on top of all the other drama that sometimes hits our community, and I can’t help but get discouraged by stuff that doesn’t even directly involve me sometimes.

      I’m glad you haven’t directly experienced any of the worse scenarios, but I take some comfort in knowing I’m not alone in feeling burned out. These days I feel like it’s an ongoing struggle to stay happy.

      Miss you, Savy–I’ll be by to visit soon!

  33. Liviania

    I am interested in Natural Born Angel by Scott Speer because the first book was a surprise hit for me. It looked lame, but I took it on a road trip and discovered that I really enjoyed it. I’d love to see if the characters continue to develop in interesting ways in the sequel.

    I’d like to win Alex Rider: Russian Roulette by Anthony Horowitz because I am secretly a twelve-year-old boy. I eat this series up. It has spies! Plus, this one focuses on the series’ best character. (I love a well-done bad guy.)

    I also would like to win Impostor by Jill Hathaway. The first book has been sitting on my TBR for a year and I’m totally more likely to read it if the sequel is glaring at me and shaming me to read it too.

    I hope your eye feels better soon! Major ouch.

    inbedwithbooks AT yahoo DOT com

    • Wendy Darling

      I liked both the Jill Hathaway books–I had some quibbles, but overall, they were fun. I’m too scared to invest in a series as big as the Alex Rider series at this point, though!

    • Wendy Darling

      Isn’t The Uprising cover awesome? As good as Forsaken’s, I’d say. They’re so different from other YA covers out there.

  34. Sara @ Forever 17 Books

    I haven’t read any of these series yet (FAIL), so no need to enter me in any contest but I just wanted to say what a great asset you are to the blogging world but it definitely needs to be on your terms and making you happy. ((hugs)) Have a good and safe trip! :)

    • Wendy Darling

      You’re so right–it’s the “on my terms” part that I need to figure out. Thank you for the hugs, Sara! I am headed your way later this week to see what glorious YA book covers have been interpreted lately. ;)

  35. meg

    Hi Wendy, I’m glad you’re back! I’m sorry you’ve gotten so discouraged and just wanted to let you know that I, for one, hugely appreciate your blog and reviews. You’re one of the first people I go to for reviews and opinions when I’m considering buying a book. Your reviews are always thoughtful and analytical and we seem to have similar taste so I know if you liked a book it’s definitely worth considering :)
    So thank you for everything you do and I hope it starts making you happy again soon.

    • Wendy Darling

      Oh, Meg–you’re such a sweetheart! I want to hug you for being so understanding. I love talking to people about books, but sometimes all the other stuff just gets to me in ways that are hard to shake. I appreciate the encouragement, however, and the reminder of why this blog exists at all. Thank you again for your kindness.

  36. Mary @ BookSwarm

    Summer’s always difficult for me blogging-wise, too! I’m sorry about your bad anniversary, scraped eye and general craziness! I hope it all improves greatly for you. You all at The Midnight Garden are a fun, intelligent bunch and I look forward to seeing y’all back in action — I missed you! (I thought it was a Bloglovin’ update issue for a while!)

    (I’ll leave the contest to others — I don’t need any more books to read at the moment!)

    • Wendy Darling

      I think you’re right–summer does always seem to be slower online as people get busy with other things. It’s good to be reminded of that, I’ve been so out of the loop recently that it’s hard for me to gauge. I look forward to catching up to see what you’ve been reading, though! Thanks for the love, Miss Mary.

  37. ahz1

    Hey Wendy – I was wondering where you were – I think we all miss you and your thoughtful reviews and blog posts. You’re right about prioritizing your life – there’s often so much to do and so little time. Blogging is a hobby and hobbies need to be fun.

    Hmmm…the only book that I have read in the series above is the Lilith St-Crow one and that didn’t work out so well for me. I’d be interested in the Alex Rider book if I were to win anything. I have a teenage boy that just discovered reading (can you believe it? 17 and only now discovers books? ARGHHHH!) he might like it too.

    I’m in Canada, so I guess I’m considered international.

    • Wendy Darling

      Eh–you know how it is. Hobbies do need to be fun, and I need to figure out how to keep it fun. Thanks for your support as always, AH!

      I didn’t know your son was 17! And JUST discovering a love for books, with such a bookish mom? The mind boggles.

  38. Liz

    Hi Wendy, just wanted to drop in w/some warm encouragement and the hope that you soon feel refreshed and excited to be back! xo

  39. Shannelle C.

    I would love to join this, only I know none of the first books for all of those, so not entering. Just get well soon, and I hope you’re feeling in a better mood soon!

    • Wendy Darling

      Taking a bit of a break definitely helped to clear my head a bit. For some reason it’s always a little scary for me to come back, though, so we’ll see how this goes. Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment, Shannelle!

  40. Donna Smith

    I definitely understand needing to step back and re-evaluate and prioritize. For me, once blogging becomes more of an obligation, it definitely changes how I feel about it. Plus, sometimes life just throws curve balls and we have to deal with them. I look forward to reading more of your reviews when you come back, I don’t think you know how many of my book buying decisions are based on your reviews!
    I would love to win Horrowitz’s Alex Rider- Russian Roulette. I am collecting this series for my son who, in the past 2 years, has gone from reluctant reader to whizzing through his “Advanced Reader” books and at 11, reading at a high school level. He’s even written a couple reviews! This action adventure series is exactly the type of books he loves.

    I live in the US, heading back to NC at the beginning of August after a LONG year in PA. I’ll be so glad to get back to the sunshine and sandy beaches! My email is ahappybooker at gmail dot com and here’s my tweet url: https://twitter.com/Donna224/status/355258330077331456

    • Wendy Darling

      Hey Donna–I definitely feel the need to step back from all the craziness every once in awhile. All the noise just becomes too much, and I think if I’m going to continue to do this I just need to figure out a better way to manage my online interactions.

      I didn’t realize you had relocated for awhile! Coinciding with your own blog hiatus, I’m guessing? Either way, I’m glad you’re back home and also back online. I missed you while you were gone, in no small part because I enjoy your reviews and friendship as well. <3