Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Crossroads Saga Blog Tour - Review and Giveaway of Between and Interview with Mary Ting


Happy Tuesday!

I am so excited today, because I am part of the Crossroads Saga Blog Tour, which is organized by my good friend Michele from Insane About Books and by the author Mary Ting.



Welcome to my stop! My stop includes a lot! Firstly, you will find a review of Between, which is the second book in the Crossroads Saga. After the review you will find a long interview with the author Mary Ting and last, but not least, there is a giveaway! Besides that you will find information about the author and both books in the series.

Before we start, here is a small introduction video to the blog tour




Author: Mary Ting
Title: Between
Series: Crossroads Saga (Book #2)
Release date: 12th of January 2012
Published by: World Castle Publishing
Reading level: FICTION – YA: Paranormal Romance, Mystery
URL: http://www.marytingbooks.blogspot.com/
Pages: 330 pages in ebook copy
Source: Book provided by the author for reviewing

Summary:


As the alkins head back to Crossroads, Claudia leads her normal life; but not for long. Having a special soul, Claudia attracts danger, and she soon finds out who Gamma asked to watch over her. The Twelve, known as Divine Elders on Earth, are very much involved when they find out that Aliah, one of the God’s first angels, escaped from the Abyss when the gates were opened by Aden. Needing Claudia’s soul to escape the only place Aliah can reside–a place between Heaven and Earth–he sends his demons in search of all Claudia Emersons on Earth. Taking her soul will enable him to be released from Between and cross over to Crossroads, which would give him immense power. As more secrets are revealed Claudia learns about the venators—nephilim, demon hunters. Now two opposing forces must work together in order to save Claudia and humanity from the most dangerous angel ever created. But along the way, trust becomes a big issue. Will love be enough to keep Claudia and Michael together? Who will make the ultimate sacrifice? Who will betray them all?

My review:

Between by Mary Ting is a second book in The Crossroads Saga and it starts out where Crossroads ends. I was delighted by Crossroads and was very happy that I could continue reading Between right after finishing Crossroads. It’s always interesting to see, how the author is developing the story and if the author is capable of living up to the expectations. My expectations were very high because I really loved Crossroads.

Mary Ting met my expectations and I would even say that with Between she exceeded my expectations. Between was not only a very good book, it was also very emotional reading for me. Between is a book about friendship, love, betrayal, making difficult choices – things what most of the people have experienced. Mary gave all these words an uplifted and emotional meaning. I laughed, I cried - I felt everything what she wrote with raw emotions and that means in my book that Between was written with the author’s heart and soul. It was written with feelings.

Regarding the plot:

After the fallen and evil was destroyed in the first book, Claudia starts to explore her powers and is frustrated about feeling so week amongst her friends from the Crossroads. Her friends from Crossroads are coming to visit her again and she sees Michael again.

After Patty’s birthday, something unexpected happens and Claudia is kidnapped by Austin. She is surprised to find out who Austin really is and what his connection to Gamma is. She finds herself on the Island of Eden, where Austin lives together with other venators – demon killers. Austin is following the orders of Divine Elders and is appointed to be Claudia’s guardian angel instead of Michael.

The Royal Council has decided that they will use Claudia as bait to get to Aliah – one the first angels who is fallen and needs Claudia’s soul to regain his powers. Aliah is old, strong and very dangerous.

The relationship between Michael and Claudia is getting more complicated when Austin shows his interest in Claudia and a woman in Michael’s part is brought into the Austin’s team. Michael and Claudia need to learn how to trust each other.

I have to say, that the plot was brilliant. The ending of the book was very emotional for me to read. It was unfair, sad, and I felt heartbroken. I wanted to change it, I wanted to scream! At the same time the author built up tension for the next book, and left a lot of hope to the readers and that made the ending of the book bearable for me. The author knew exactly what she was doing and that’s the pure beauty of it. There were lots of loose ends and questions which remained unanswered. I am sure, that the answers will come in the sequel.

Regarding the characters:

I was little frustrated about Claudia in this book. I truly like her character, but I was annoyed that she had a weakness for Austin. Besides that I wanted her to stand up for the Royal Council and put them to their place. I hope that she will eventually have the strength and powers to do that.

Michael was put into unbearable situation. I felt for him when he had to make a decision about Claudia. I do understand why he did that, but I wished that he would stand up for their love and their rights. I think that in the sequel he will do that when the time is right, he just has to.

I was devastated by the fact, that alkins couldn’t do anything to change the decision of The Royal Council. The only one of them, who expressed his thoughts and anger, was Davin. Davin is truly my hero in this book! I really enjoyed all the scenes with the alkins: Michael, Davin, Vivian and Caleb, but Davin was the only one who firstly spoke up about the unfairness of the situation and secondly supported Michael on his most difficult moments and what is even more important - gave him hope! I would love to have a friend like Davin. He is my favorite character in Between.

Austin is a mixed character for me. I have a love/hate relationship with him in Between. There are things what you can admire about him and then he can be so annoying you just want to kick him. At the end he does the right thing though. He is cocky, arrogant, and feisty - and then suddenly you realize, that he is not that bad after all.

Generally:

Between by Mary Ting was an awesome read and a very good sequel in the Crossroads Saga. Between blew me away, it took me to the Crossroads world where I forgot about everybody and everything and when I finished the book, I wanted more!

5 Flowers!
5 stars.


About the author:

Mary Ting resides in Southern California with her husband and two children. She enjoys oil painting and making jewelry. Writing Crossroads was a way to grieve the death of her beloved grandmother. It was inspired by a dream she once had as a young girl.

Twitter @maryting
www.marytingbooks.blogspot.com/
http://www.marytingcrossroads.com/



Mary agreed to give an interview to Me and Reading. Ladies and gentlemen, please give a warm welcome to one of my new 2012 favorite authors, Mary Ting!



As you can see below the interview is divided it into several sections. First section is about Mary, second section is about her books, writing them, about characters etc, third part is about her favorites.


Part I

MR: Please describe yourself with few sentences. Who are you?

MT: I’m married with 2 kids. I’ve been teaching for almost 20 years.

MR: What inspired you to want to become writer?

MT: It just happened one day. I decided to write from a dream I had in high school.

MR: Who did you want to become when you were a kid?

MT: I wanted to be Wonder Woman…lol! I also loved watching superman movies. He was my first movie boyfriend..lol!!

MR: What brought you to writing?

MT: I started writing when my grandmother passed away. It was a way for me to heal the loss of her. I also decided to write from a dream I had in high school. It was just for fun and I didn’t think I had much to say. Boy was I wrong…lol!!!

MR: What do you do when you are not writing? Do you have any hobbies?

MT: Besides shopping…right? I enjoy making jewelries and oil painting. My friends and I have a website http://www.inspiredbytwilight.com/

MR: What is the most difficult aspect of being a writer for you?

MT: I would have to say…writer’s block. I want to make it the best that it can be and sometimes I think too much so I get stuck.

MR:  If you wouldn’t be a writer, what would you be and do?

MT: I’m currently a kindergarten teacher. I love working with the little ones so I guess I would have to say a teacher :)

MR: Did you ever experience writer’s block when the writing process just wasn’t moving ahead?

MT: I seem to experience writer’s block when I’m half way done. I stop writing and do other things I enjoy. After about a week or two, I miss it. That break away helps me think and clear my thoughts. Sometime I talk about it to my author friends. This helps me.

Part II

Let’s talk about your books!

MR: Would you briefly give us an overview what are Crossroads and Between about?

MT: Claudia goes to a place called Crossroads in her dream, a place between Heaven and Earth. There she meets a group of angels called the alkins. She is assigned a guardian angel named Michael. They fall in love, but it is forbidden. Later, they found out she is special and demons and fallens are after her. In the sequel, Between, the Twelve and other angels called venators play bigger roles. You also find out who Austin is. Alkins and venators must work together to keep Claudia safe. Claudia discovers her powers and finds out sometimes love is just not enough.

MR: What went through your mind when the first book you wrote – Crossroads - was published? How did you react?

MT: I was so excited that I felt like I was floating on clouds. I couldn’t believe something I wrote just for fun was now published. Though it sounds strange, I feel like Crossroads was a gift from my grandmother.

MR: How do you write? Do you sketch a plot first, create characters first and then starting to write?

MT: I wrote Crossroads from a dream I had in high school so I started from there. I wrote from chapter to chapter. I had a general idea, but I didn’t plot. With Between, I did plot a little.

MR: What do you think is the most important thing while writing?

MT: The most important thing while writing is to write with your heart.

MR: How do you create characters?

MT: Many of my characters are based on friends or people I’ve come acrossed…hehe!

MR: Which character can you mostly relate to in Crossroads? In Between? Why?

MT: I have to say Claudia because when I wrote Crossroads, I based her experiences around me…. first job, first car, first camping experience….

MR: How many books have you planned in Crossroads Saga? When will the third installment be released?

MT: I planned 3 for sure. The third installment will be released late summer or early fall.

MR:  Even though the second book in the series, Between, was just released, I must ask you about the third book in the series. What will happen to Claudia and Michael? Anything you can tell us already?

MT:  Hmmm….hehe! This is hard to say without any spoilers. The characters stay true to themselves. What is meant to be, will be. No matter what obstacles lay ahead, when you truly love with all your heart and soul, nothing can get in the way. Discovery, passion, friendship, loyalty and death, be prepared!

Part III – Favorites

Who is your favorite author? I have many favorite authors, but the one who inspired me to write my book is Stephenie Meyer. She based Twilight from her dreams so I did the same, base Crossroads from my dreams.
What is your favorite book or series? Twilight
What is your favorite song? I love to sing and listen to music. Right now my favorite song is Good life by One Republic.
What is your favorite season? Spring…not to hot and not to cold.
What is your favorite food? I love all kinds of food, but I love spicy food.
What is your favorite car? Porsche
What is your favorite color? It depends on the mood…lol! Red, pink, purple and black
What is your favorite movie? I love super hero movies. I have to say Superman.
What is your favorite time of the day? Late at night.
What is your favorite weather? Winter. As much as I like spring, I like to wear boots and scarves.

Thank you Inga for this wonderful opportunity.

I took on a journey not knowing how rewarding it would be for me. I’ve meet so many wonderful people around the world through facebook, goodreads and blog sites. I’ve made everlasting friendships where friendships know no boundaries. And I have to thank my grandmother who continues to watch over me from Heaven. Hugs!!!

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Mary, I can't thank you enough for the wonderful books in Crossroads Saga. I loved both Crossroads and Between and I cannot wait until I meet Claudia and Michael again! Thanks for taking your time for the interview!



Mary has agreed, that Me and Reading can give away 1 e-copy of Between. The giveaway is international and it runs 8 - 21 May.

Good luck!



a Rafflecopter giveaway Useful links:

www.facebook.com/crossroadsbook

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11283685-crossroads
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Crossroads-ebook/dp/B005F768GI/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/Crossroads-by-mary-ting?store=ALLPRODUCTS&keyword=Crossroads+by+mary+ting
Crossroads book trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEIfaQdh_nk
Between book trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01dbTNLcYzA&feature=related



Crossroads Tour Schedule..


May 7th Insane About Books
May 8th Me and Reading
May 9th I Love Teen Books
May 10th Some Like it Paranormal
May 11th Books Complete Me
May 12th Jean Book Nerd
May 13th Amethyst Daydreams
May 14th Totally Bookalicious
May 15th I am Wolf
May 16th In Between
May 17th Stuck in Books
May 18th Putting Pen to Page
May 19th Sassy Book Lovers
May 20th Delphina Reads Too Much
May 21 Insane About Books and I Love Teen Books


Happy reading!

 

2 comments:

  1. Thank you Inga for such an incredible interview and POST!!!!

    I'm so glad that you loved Mary's story as much as I do!!

    Thanks for all your hard work!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Very beautiful interview and thank you for the giveaway!

    ReplyDelete

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