Happy Wednesday... we are almost to the end of the week and the holiday break. I have something super fun to share with you all! I am so excited to welcome author Jennifer Estep here today. For those of you just meeting Jennifer, she is behind the YA Mythos Academy Series, Elemental Assassin Series and The Bigtime Super Hero Series. She is a busy and talented lady. I adore her Mythos Academy Books, they are a guilty pleasure of mine. I am endeavoring to delve into her Elemental Assassin Books next year! Jennifer is here to answer a few interview questions, and of course, she is bringing a holiday giveaway for you all.
Here is Jennifer's bio:
Jennifer Estep is a New York Times bestselling author, prowling the streets of her imagination in search of her next fantasy idea. Jennifer writes the Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series for Kensington. The books focus on Gwen Frost, a 17-year-old Gypsy girl who has the gift of psychometry, or the ability to know an object’s history just by touching it. After a serious freak-out with her magic, Gwen is shipped off to Mythos Academy, a school for the descendants of ancient warriors like Spartans, Valkyries, Amazons, and more.Books in the series are Touch of Frost, Kiss of Frost, and Dark Frost. Crimson Frost, the fourth book, is set to be published on Dec. 24, 2012. Midnight Frost, the fifth book, is tentatively set to be released in August 2013. Jennifer also writes the Elemental Assassin urban fantasy series for Pocket, and she is the author of the Bigtime superhero paranormal romance series. Visit Jennifer on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.
Here is my interview with Jennifer:
JE: Well, it’s a lot of work writing two series at once, but I love what I’m
doing so that helps. So far, the books have been spaced out so that I’m writing a Mythos Academy book, then an Elemental Assassin book, then it’s back to Mythos. So I like being able to go back and forth between the two series and have a little break from each world while I’m writing in the other series.
Organization is also key for me. There are so many other things that authors do besides write – guest blogs, social media, promotion, etc. It’s a lot to keep track of, so I just try to be as organized as possible.
2. Do you find it easier to write YA fiction as opposed to Adult fiction?
JE: I think they are both challenging in their own right. It’s always tough to write a book, no matter what genre you’re writing in. I like being able to write something dark and gritty with my Elemental Assassin adult urban fantasy series. But then, it’s also nice to write something a little lighter and tell more of a coming-of-age story with my Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series. So far, I’ve been having a lot of fun writing in both genres.
3. I love Gwen's power: psychometry. Why did you choose to give her this unique gift?
JE: I thought it would be an interesting power to write about, the idea that you can know, see, and feel an object’s history just by touching it. Gwen always says that she can touch stuff and see things, thanks to her psychometry. But as the books have gone along, she’s discovered that there’s more to her power than just getting memories from objects or even people. One of the things I enjoy as a writer is showing how my heroine’s magic grows and progresses as she grows as a character. So hopefully, folks will enjoy learning more about Gwen’s power as the series continues.
4. Grandma Frost is one of my favorite characters, I am always hungry for the delicious treats she is making for Gwen. Does Grandma Frost have a favorite Christmas recipe to share?
JE: Some of Gwen and Grandma Frost’s favorite holiday treats are chocolate cake, cranberry sauce, and turkey and dressing.
5. Loki is certainly a vicious villain. Is it difficult to write such a vile character?
JE: I actually enjoy writing villains. They always seem to have so much more fun than the poor heroines do. One things that I enjoy as a writer is coming up with a really strong, powerful villain and then figuring out how my heroine can use her wits and her magic to defeat him.
6. What can we expect next from you?
7. How many books are planned in the Mythos Academy series?
8. For fans of the Mythos Academy (that would be me) tell us why we should try Elemental Assassin.
JE: My Elemental Assassin series has a lot of the same elements that my Mythos Academy series does: a strong, sassy heroine, lots of action, magic/world building, and a little romance. So if you like my voice in the Mythos Academy series, you might enjoy my Elemental Assassin series too.
9. Since you are from the South, tell me your favorite thing about living in the South.
JE: One of my favorite things about living in the South is the food. Fried chicken, buttermilk biscuits, mac and cheese, mashed potatoes with butter and sour cream … it’s not exactly health food, but it sure is good.
10. With Christmas coming soon, what is on your holiday wish list?
As you all can see, Jennifer is an incredibly busy and talented lady and I am grateful that she so graciously took the time to answer my questions. Jennifer also comes bearing a gift for you lucky readers. She is offering a copy of Crimson Frost to one lucky winner. This is open to U.S. Residents only. You don't want to miss this series! Fill out the Rafflecopter to enter after reading Contest Policies. Good Luck!a Rafflecopter giveaway
Here is my review:
Crimson Frost (Mythos Academy #4) by Jennifer Estep
For a moment, a face flashed before my eyes—the most hideous face I’d ever seen. No matter how hard I tried to forget what had happened, I saw him everywhere I went. It was Loki—the evil god that I’d helped set free against my will.
I should have known that my first official date with Logan Quinn was destined to end in disaster. If we’d gotten into a swordfight, or been ambushed by Reapers, I’d have been more prepared. But getting arrested mid-sip at the local coffee hangout? I didn’t see that one coming.
I’ve been accused of purposely helping the Reapers free Loki from his prison—and the person leading the charge against me is Linus Quinn, Logan’s dad. The worst part is that pretty much everyone at Mythos Academy thinks I’m guilty. If I’m going to get out of this mess alive, I’ll have to do it myself…Paperback, 384 pagesExpected publication: December 24th 2012 by Kensington.
Four stars: This series gets better and better as the story grows darker and more dangerous....
Gwen is trying to shake the memories of the hideous events that ended up almost killing her and freeing the trickster god Loki. She is back at the Mythos Academy amongst her friends, ready to finally go on that date with the sexy Spartan Logan Quinn. The two are just settling into the trendy coffee shop with their overpriced hot beverages, when Gwen's nerves get the better of her and she manages to spill the drinks all over Logan. While Logan is in the bathroom, trouble stalks into the shop in the form of the Protectorate. Three of the Protectorate Elite, one of them being Logan's father, arrive to arrest Gwen on charges of conspiring to free Loki. This can't be happening... but it is. Soon Gwen is facing outrageous accusations and she is in a fight for her life. Can she somehow prove that she is not responsible for the release of Loki and prevent an impending chaos war with the Reapers?
What I Liked:
- I am having a hard time keeping up with all the Paranormal YA series out there. I am finding that more often than not, I read the first book and don't get around to the second. This is not the case for Ms. Estep's Mythos Academy Series. I have read each and every book in this series and loved them. I am pleased to report that the fourth book does not disappoint. It is an action packed, nail biting adventure that explodes with tension and danger in the first few pages. The drama continues throughout, and there is hardly a moment of reprieve. This is one of those books that you had better set aside some time for because once you plunge into the adventure you won't want to come up for air until the dramatic ending. If you are a looking for an exciting paranormal YA series that is a bit reminiscent of Harry Potter get The Mythos Academy.
- Gwen, how I have grown to love her character. She is growing in each installment. She is transforming into a strong, determined champion, and she has taken tremendous steps from the shy, reclusive, eccentric Gypsy girl with no friends. She is becoming more confident and capable with each and every challenge. She is even transforming into a formidable fighter with her talking sword Vic. Her magic is evolving as well. She is learning to transform her gift of psychometry and use it in new ways. I personally love her gift of psychometry: the ability to touch objects and receive images that show her everyone who has handled the object and their thoughts. I appreciate that Gwen is still scared and hesitant but determined.
- I really enjoy the cast of secondary characters. Aside from Gwen and her talking sword Vic (a favorite of mine), there is Daphne, Logan, Carson, Oliver and in this book we meet Alexei. Grandma Frost is terrific and she really shows some prowess in this one. Who doesn't like a granny that can strap on a sword and kick some butt? Her friends are all gifted with their own brand of magic, and they are fierce and funny and bent on helping Gwen. In this book, I particularly enjoyed the role that Morgan, the so called school slut, plays in helping Gwen fight the Reapers.
- I love that these books always keep me guessing and that they are packed full of surprises and twists. You never know who is going to be a Reaper, and Gwen has to adopt the mentality to trust few. I always like the unmasking of the Reapers and this book has another jaw dropping Reaper reveal.
- The villains in this series are tremendous. Vivian especially is someone you can't help but admire when you realize how depraved and cunning she is. I can't believe the depths that she stoops to ensure that evil erupts. She is one of those characters that makes me cringe every time she appears. If you love books with villains that elicit strong emotions, you will like this one.
- I especially love that this series does not have cruel cliffhangers or love triangles. Each volume wraps up neatly with plenty of story lines laid down for the next book. I also appreciate that these books release close together so my wait is not as long.
And The Not So Much:
- The romance in this one is driving me crazy. The first three books were a sizzling dance between Logan and Gwen. The reader is constantly wondering whether they will get it right and get together, and then in this book I finally thought I was going to enjoy the sparks and then... well I cannot go into details, but let me just say this... I am still frustrated and waiting for the romance to go into high burn.. On the other hand, the indecisiveness is what keeps me reading.
- I am just itching to know some of the secrets of the characters. Ms. Estep keeps dropping tantalizing hints, but she leaves me guessing. For instance, I am dying to know what the deal is with Raven... why does she always act so aloof and read gossip magazines? Grandma Frost with her cryptic visions of the future always drives me nuts as well. I know, I am impatient but I want to know already!
The Mythos Academy Series is a guilty pleasure of mine. I know that with each and every book, I will get an action packed read with plenty of magic and danger. Gwen continues to grow and change with each installment, and I cannot wait to see how she evolves. Ms. Estep manages to enthrall me with her books and I am planning on diving into her Elemental Assassin Series in 2013. If you want a fun, magical high octane read get this series.
"I know, but that's what family is for, right? To make you crazy."
"For a moment, I was lost---completely, utterly lost. The feel of Logan's lips on mine, the strong circle of his arms around me, the way he smelled, his long, lean body pressing against my own, the warmth of his feelings for me streaming into my own body. Everything about the Spartan overloaded my senses, forming a soft, dizzying rush that made me feel like I could float away, like I could soar through the air, like I could do absolutely anything, even touch the stars----."
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.