Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Unbreakable Blog Tour: Interview, Mini-Review + Giveaway


Today I'm positively giddy to be a part of the promotional tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours for Elizabeth Norris's outstanding young adult sci-fi novel, Unbreakable (releases today!). I couldn't have loved book one, Unraveling, any more if I'd tried, so I was a little nervous entering into this sequel that it wouldn't live up to the extraordinarily high bar set by its predecessor. I shouldn't have worried in the least though, as Unbreakable is every bit as epic as Unraveling was, and I'm thrilled to welcome Elizabeth Norris back to the blog today to answer a few questions!

When traveling to another universe, it’s entirely possible to run into your own double – someone who could simply look exactly like you but not share any of your personality traits, or they could be nearly identical to you in every way. What’s one trait or quirk you possess that would instantly tip your family and friends off that your double wasn’t the real you should they not have it? 

I have a couple things that I say quite often. They’re not quite catch phrases but they’re definitely me. One is “shocking!” which I say sarcastically when I am most definitely not shocked. (Yeah, so that piece of Janelle is completely me). I also am incredibly shy in front of people I don’t know, but really outgoing with my friends and family. But actually the dead giveaway, I think, would be my dogs. I have a lab mix—or a brown dog, as we refer to her—and I found her when she was just a few weeks old. I even fed her a bottle the first few weeks I had her, and she’s insanely attached to me (she lies by the door when I’m gone and waits for me to come back, even if I’m gone for a week or more). I think somehow she would just know that my double wasn’t me.

If you were to come face to face with one of your doubles, what’s the first question you would ask them? 

I would want to know everything about them, but specifically everything about their family. My family went through a lot of struggles when I was growing up, some of them tougher than others, and I spent a lot of time (especially as a teenager) wishing little things had been different. I’m not close with my dad, and that’s something that I’ve struggled with. I would want to know how my double’s childhood had taken shape, what her relationship with her dad was like and then I’d try to figure out if she made different choices that resulted in a different outcome.

You’re helping Cecily to organize movie night. What are your top two choices for the showing? 

Pride and Prejudice because it’s one of those movies I can watch over and over again, and The Perks of Being a Wallflower because I just got it on Blu Ray.

A portal is opening next to you right this second and you decide to be adventurous and step through despite not knowing the destination. Describe what you hope to find when you emerge on the other side. 

Right this second, I’d be hoping to end up somewhere warm, where people are friendly and I can get really good food. In fact, in my idea portal jumping experience, I’d end up here.

Janelle is loyal, fiercely determined, and extraordinarily strong emotionally. What has writing her character taught you about yourself? 

She definitely gets her loyalty and fierce determination from me. I’m not that tough emotionally—or at least I didn’t think I was when I started writing. So Janelle was tough when I couldn’t be. While I was writing Unraveling and Unbreakable, I was diagnosed with a (thankfully) very treatable form of cancer. (I’m totally healthy now). Writing Janelle and forcing her to be strong while saving the world, helped me become a stronger person in a way.

Given Unbreakable is written from Janelle’s point of view, we get to see the various ways she envisions her reunion with Ben going, but we don’t have that same access to him. During the months of their separation, what did Ben dream the first words out of his mouth would be when he saw her again? 

In his heart, Ben always knew he’d see her again. He knew he would get back to her somehow. Even though he didn’t know exactly how he’d manage that, there were never any doubts that he’d make it happen. Because he was a little more in control of the situation, he missed her, but he wasn’t quite as stressed. Because he’s a guy, he didn’t really think about the specifics of what he’d say—more that he’d just pull her into his arms. If things had played out differently in Unbreakable (as in, less stressful), he would have kissed her first and then said, “Hi, I’m back.”

• • • • • • • • • •

UNBREAKABLE
Unraveling #2
Elizabeth Norris
Young Adult/Sci Fi
496 pages
Balzer + Bray
Releases Today!
Received from publisher for review

THE STORY
Four months after Ben disappeared through the portal to his home universe, Janelle believes she’ll never see him again. Her world is still devastated, but life is finally starting to resume some kind of normalcy. Until Interverse Agent Taylor Barclay shows up. Somebody from an alternate universe is running a human trafficking ring, kidnapping people and selling them on different Earths—and Ben is the prime suspect. Now his family has been imprisoned and will be executed if Ben doesn’t turn himself over within five days.

And when Janelle learns that someone she cares about—someone from her own world—has become one of the missing, she knows that she has to help Barclay, regardless of the danger. Now Janelle has five days to track down the real culprit. Five days to locate the missing people before they’re lost forever. Five days to reunite with the boy who stole her heart. But as the clues begin to add up, Janelle realizes that she’s in way over her head—and that she may not have known Ben as well as she thought.

Can she uncover the truth before everyone she cares about is killed?

MY THOUGHTS
Unbreakable is the literary equivalent of a roller coaster, the first chapter or so a slow build as we try and remember all the details of Unraveling, stomachs fluttering with nervous anticipation before we suddenly top the crest of the hill, hover briefly, and then plummet. From the minute Barclay shows back up in Janelle’s world we barely get a moment to breathe, hearts pounding and breaths coming out in shallow pants as our fear for Janelle’s safety is matched only by our desire to see her reunited with Ben, the two feelings combining to ensure our fingers fairly vibrate with the need to turn the pages faster.

Janelle is as capable and level-headed as we remember, never prone to bouts of dramatic behavior or great emotional fluctuations, instead she remains steadfast and strong, aware of her ultimate goal and willing to do whatever needs to be done in order to achieve it. Though Ben is absent for the first half of this book, we don’t feel any flashes of the frustration that sometimes arises when a couple is separated in a sequel (though we certainly want them together), a surprising reaction due in large part to the beauty of Janelle’s character. She doesn’t need Ben in order to function, nor is she incomplete without him, and while her love for him is a rich and palpable thing, we are content to spend our time simply with her because she is so comfortable in her own skin.

Ms. Norris delights yet again with Unbreakable, the action of Janelle’s desperate search for information to help clear Ben’s name perfectly balanced with quiet and deeply heartbreaking moments as she has no choice but to question the love she thought to be impervious to any doubt. I honestly can’t recommend this series highly enough.

Rating: 4.5/5


• • • • • • • • • •

ELIZABETH NORRIS


Elizabeth Norris briefly taught high school English and history before trading the southern California beaches and sunshine for Manhattan's recent snowpocalyptic winter. She harbors dangerous addictions to guacamole, red velvet cupcakes, sushi, and Argo Tea, fortunately not all together. Her first novel, UNRAVELING (Balzer+Bray, April 2012), is the story of one girl's fight to save her family, her world, and the one boy she never saw coming. Also the film rights to Unraveling have been optioned by MTV!



• • • • • • • • • • 

GIVEAWAY

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don't forget to check out the rest of the stops on this tour for more interviews, reviews and guest posts!

4/15/2013 - All Things Urban Fantasy

4/16/2013 - Two Chicks on Books

4/17/2013 - A Book and a Latte

4/18/2013 - Magical Urban Fantasy Reads

4/19/2013 - Shortie Says


4/22/2013 - Katie's Book Blog

4/23/2013 - Supernatural Snark

4/24/2013 - Justin's Book Blog

4/25/2013 - Tales of a Ravenous Reader

 4/26/2013 - Fiktshun

52 comments:

  1. OoOOo how much I freaking loved Unraveling!!! I cannot wait to get my hands on a copy of Unbreakable…

    As usual I just adore your questions Jenny!! Especially love the question about running into your double… uh.. *shocking.. * :))

    Jenny, did you know this is the last book of this seires?? Because I didn't and I was instantly sad ;(

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    1. I did know it's the last and I'm really bummed too! Still, it wraps up nicely so I can't complain, and I can't wait to see what Elizabeth writes next!

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  2. Well I would have to read book 1 first...I am so bad with buying YA, I wait for the library to get them ;)

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    1. This is such a brilliant series, I hope you're able to get them from the library soon!

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  3. I'm doing a blitz post for this one tomorrow. I've see plenty of reviews and I looks like I have to read it. Sounds awesome. Great review and interview Jenny :)

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    1. You definitely need to read it! One of my favorites of last year and this year:)

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  4. I have to check this out. I've heard this is good.

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    1. It's awesome:) LOVED both books!

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  5. I would certainly hope that my friends and family would be able to tell me and a double apart. But maybe not. I'm pretty quiet -- if that double just smiled enigmatically or nodded a lot, they might get away with it!

    Just downloaded the first in this series (EBOOK IS ON SALE!!) so I'll be on the Unraveling train soon.

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    1. Yesssss Mary! I hope you love Unraveling as much as I did!

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  6. I'm so excited for this to come out today, Jenny! I'm definitely getting a copy for myself. I loved the first book, so I'm sure this will be as awesome as that. I'm so happy to hear that Janelle is strong despite Ben not being there. I would have been mad if she would have acted like Bella in New Moon. Janelle is a really strong girl.
    Lovely review, Jenny!

    That was also a very fun interview to read. You always come up with great questions!

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    1. No Bella here Nick! I adore Janelle, she has impressed me in both books with the way she handles everything and I just can't say enough good things about her. Glad you enjoyed the interview too!

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  7. OMG! This review makes me laugh so hard. When I wrote my Reboot review last week I totally used a rollercoaster analogy like you did (though mine was admittedly much less positive!) LOL

    I haven't read the first book in this series but I really want to. I really like the covers and the premise sounds really cool.

    I love what she said about her dog being able to know that it wasn't her, that was very sweet and I am not even a dog person!

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    1. *high five for roller coaster analogies*

      I hope you find time to pick up Unraveling Jenni, it's just awesome in my opinion. And this second book is every bit as good. Winners all the way around:)

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  8. Great interview! I have no idea if I would want to travel to another universe, it seems like it would be slightly scary although, I am pretty curious so...yeah. I would probably do it!

    You know, I wasn't planning on reading this one but your review is like the third glowing review I have read so far so I think I will have to suck it up and get this one.
    Great review!

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    1. YOU MUST READ THIS SERIES! All caps mean serious business ;-)

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  9. I don't think I would want to. Just leave me where I am at.

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    1. I'd be super curious to see another universe/another me, but ultimately I'd probably just want to stick with my life as is:)

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  10. I just had to mention that I am not a fan of that banner. Ok, that aside, how do you always manage to do rocking interviews? It's insane. INSANE! And holy smoke! I didn't know Liz was diagnosed with (treatable) cancer. Thank god she's okay O_O *phew* Now I understand where Janelle's kick-ass personality and strength come from. As for your review, I love when people in a relationship/marriage are still their own persons. Like you said, she doesn't need Ben to function and that's spot on, girl! I just adore these two and since you rated it almost 5 stars, you HEA-freak, then I take that as a hint on a HEA (or as much as it could be one in Liz's novel) ;-) I CAN'T WAIT TO READ IT ALREADY! Win that it's out today!!!!!!!!!!!

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    1. Hehe, you know me so well Siiri! I am an HEA freak all the way, so it's probably not difficult to guess how this one wraps up:) Can't wait to see what you think my friend!

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  11. I would travel to another dimension ...as long as everyone there looked like Channing Tatum....;)

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    1. Or Chris Hemsworth? I'd be good if everyone looked like him as well. WIN.

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  12. Oh yeah! I can't believe it is out. I have been waiting a year to read this. I love that line about Ben kissing her and saying "I'm Back." Not exactly the big speeches just short and simple. An emotional roller coaster. Yikes! Is this the end of the series already?

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  13. It sounds like this was a wonderfully solid series from beginning to end!

    I loved that you ran into your double LOL

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  14. I want a portal to somewhere warm and exoic and... fruity.. lol.
    This duology was such an emotional rollercoaster for me, I loved every second of it, and I enjoyed the second book even more because I got to see Ben's side of things in Undone. It just changed the way I saw some things.
    My tour stop (same book, different tour) is this Friday and I'm super excited about sharing Liz's playlist. :)

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  15. I still haven't read that first book, but you really make the second book sound so good... I need to move that first one up on the wishlist. Hm... I like a level headed heroine in a rollercoaster type of book. :)

    Oh and I don't think my dogs would recognize my double. They would be "it's all good" as long as they got treats. Those traitors! ;)

    Would I visit a parallel universe? Only if I can easily come back any time I want. Sure, why not? :)

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  16. Although I never finished the first book in this series, I really enjoyed this interview and I've heard great things about this one. I really must try to re-visit this because it seems like I'm truly missing out!

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  17. Unless I'm with the doctor, I think I would pass on traveling to parallel dimensions.

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  18. I'm excited to read this one. Which did you think was better - Unraveling or Unbreakable?

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  19. Ooh I want to be invited to movie night, great choices! :-) So glad to hear you loved this one, Jenny! I am such a fan of this series, and just get completely swept up in these books. Amazing interview!

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  20. Oooh, I can't wait to read Unbreakable! I loved Unraveling!

    I, however, would not want to go to a parallel universe. I would be leaving to much behind. And I couldn't leave my book collection. No siree

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  21. I picked up Unraveling on sale on my Kindle because you had such great things to say about it. I know this one is just as good with a rating like that.

    It pains me, really, at how good an interviewer you are!
    I try to channel you as I make up my questions, however, you are still the Goddess of Interviews and I am in awe of your abilities. Reading the interview makes me want to whip out my Kindle and read it right now! I know I'll probably buy the actual book as well.

    Is this the last book in the series? It seems like parallel universe books are on the rise. I hope I can understand them, but I am dying to read this one, because of the interview and your review. I am following the author in all ways possible! I want to be in the know about this series.

    Thanks for your thoughtful review and your excitement for the series!

    Heather

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  22. Noooo! It's the end? No! I'm SO SAD!

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  23. YAYAYAY I'm SO happy that you loved this one as much as I did, Jenny! I mean, how could we not? It was incredibly awesome, indeed. A rollercoaster is right! I love Janelle and I really love Janelle and Ben together - though I agree that Janelle not needing Ben to be strong character is good. Nicely reviewed, Jenny!

    I love LOVE parallel universe stories, and I especially love that they seem to be on the rise. It's just so fascinating to me to think about - how your other half lives and how you would be different with a different upbringing. So I loved Elizabeth's responses to the parallel universe questions. Very thoughtful! Ultimately, I don't think I ever would want to travel to an alternate universe and run into my double. It would be way too freaky! Best to be kept in the dark.

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  24. Jenny I was not aware of this series until recently when everyone was promoting it because of the release of Unbreakable. I participated in a Promo (Release Day) for Unbreakable and I cannot wait to read the series!

    I also wanted to say your Interview Q's are fantastic, well researched :D Thoroughly enjoyed reading both your Interview and your Review.

    New Follower!

    Angelica @ Paperback Princess

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  25. Awesome interview! Thanks so much for the giveaway!

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  26. I would travel to a parallel dimension to see the differences between our dimension and this new one, though I would probably take some one there with me in case I get stuck there. It is always better to be with some one you know.

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  27. As long as I can get back, then why not? Thanks for the giveaway! This book sounds great!
    mestith at gmail dot com

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  28. awesome giveaway and interview!!!

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  29. I could watch Pride and Prejudice over and over again, too. Or The Notebook. Or anything with Ryan Gosling in it, for that matter. ;) Brilliant interview! I'm waiting for my copy of Unbreakable to arrive, and then I am diving straight in.

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  30. I didn't know this was the last book in the series--I like that Elizabeth Norris isn't falling into the must-be-a-trilogy YA trend, but I will never get enough of these characters! Now when I read Unbreakable I'll be sure to savor every word!
    And I'm not sure if I'd travel to a parallel universe. There's no telling what you'll find on the other side--and after reading Unraveling and watching Fringe, I know there can be consequences to crossing over (haha). But if there was a guy like Ben on the other side, I think I'd have to go ;D

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  31. Aaahhhhh, you have no idea how much I loved these two books!!! Or, well, maybe you do, since it appears you did too :) I had the blessed good fortune (thanks to the amazing Stacee of Book Junkie, who offered to send me her ARC though she only knew me through Twitter!) of getting to read the ARC of UNBREAKABLE before it was released and just a few days after I'd finished reading UNRAVELING. (I'd wanted to read it for a while, but I'm slow and, hey, at least I got to it before book 2 was out!! Which is more than I can say for about a hundred other books I want to read :)) Anyway, I had so many emotions rolling around in me while reading both of these books...I was bawling LIKE A BABY twice in book 1 and once during book 2... and I absolutely positively LOVE JANELLE, she is such a strong, independent, smart young woman, and Liz pulled off the seemingly impossible feat of making me believe the love and passion she had with Ben WITHOUT making her into a simpering idiot as soon as she meets him!! Gah, I could go on for days, but I'll leave it at that. I knew this was a duology going in to reading book 1 last month, but even so, as soon as I finished reading book 2 I was going on to Liz about all the openings I felt were still there....I ABSOLUTELY think she could come back to the books and make it a longer series if she so desires in future...and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for that! Liz has a fangirl for life in me, and I will read anything she writes. ANYTHING!!

    Soooo, on to the actual question you asked... yes, I would definitely travel to a parallel universe to check it out - as long as I could control when I came back!! I wouldn't be able to leave my little one for very long :) But I'd love to see how different or similar a parallel universe could be to our own. Thanks for yet another awesome interview, Jenny!! I now must search your site to see what books, if any, you've actually given 5 stars to :)

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  32. YES! I want to see how different everything could be and yet still the same.
    I love this series so far and can't wait to read Unbreakable.

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  33. I would love to see what my life would be line in a parallel universe. The what ifs could possible be answered.

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  34. I don't think I would it would freak me out :)

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  35. You know how much I loved this one too, Jenny! My heart broke for both Ben and Janelle because of everything they went through. Elizabeth Norris pulls no punches. Ben's part of the story is revealed more by reading Undone, so I really felt for him! I'm surprised at how much ended up liking Barclay in this one too! *sniffs*! Thanks for the amazing giveaway! I'd loved a signed copy. :)

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  36. P.S. Lovely interview and I'm so happy to hear Elizabeth is well! :)

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  37. YES! It seems like an awesome adventure!

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