Wednesday, February 10, 2016

The Winner's Kiss Blog Tour: The Winning Kiss

Today is a very exciting day everyone! Not only do I get to be a part of the promotional tour for The Winner's Kiss, the final book in Mariet Rutkoski's outstanding young adult series, but I also get to swoon and gush and wax poetic about fictional kisses and the couples who share them. *happy dance*

The enormously creative team at Fierce Reads has asked each participating blog on this tour to share the book in which our favorite literary kiss occurs along with a little explanation as to why that particular kiss is so special. KISSING FOR THE WIN! As all of you probably know by now, I'm a romance lover at heart and it's not often that I pick up a book, YA or adult, that doesn't have some kind of romantic relationship in it, so this is my kind of tour.

Okay, let's get to the good stuff! Juicy questions and answers coming right up:)


I think you can all probably guess that this was a very hard question for me to answer. Very. Hard. I decided to go with not necessarily my all time favorite kiss, but rather the kiss that kickstarted my love of romance. We'll call it the Kiss That Launched An Obsession, and it took place in a little book called Frostbite by Richelle Mead, the second book in her monstrously popular Vampire Academy series.


Rose and Dimitri. Of course! Instead of telling you all about it though, I thought I'd just let Ms. Mead do my talking for me and share a brief excerpt of the Kiss That Launched An Obsession:

The hand I'd hoped would touch my hair suddenly reached out and grabbed my pointing hand. He pinned it to the wall, and I was surprised to see a flare of emotion in his eyes. It wasn't exactly anger...but it was frustration of another kind.

"Don't tell me what I'm feeling," he growled.


I could see his labored breathing and knew his heart was beating as quickly as mine. And he wasn't pulling away. I knew this was wrong–knew all the logical reasons for us staying apart. But right then, I didn't care. I didn't want to control myself. I didn't want to be good.

Before he realized what was happening, I kissed him. Our lips met, and when I felt him kiss me back, I knew I was right. He pressed himself closer, trapping me between him and the wall. He kept holding my hand, but his other one snaked behind my head, sliding into my hair. The kiss was filled with so much intensity; it held anger, passion, release...

He was the one who broke it. He jerked away from me and took several steps back, looking shaken.

"Do not do that again, " he said stiffly.


I think what I love so much about this scene is that it shows a tiny crack in Dimitri's emotional armor. After the events of the first book it became clear to both Rose and Dimitri that a relationship between them posed so many challenges as to make it nearly impossible to be together, so in the build up to this moment they've both been angry and hurt, wanting what they can't have and taking that frustration out on one another. Dimitri is the more buttoned up of the two, holding his feelings close to his vest and hiding them so well that he makes not only Rose doubt his attraction to her, but us as well. This brief interaction is the perfect swoony reminder that despite all his strength and his legendary control, Dimitri is still flesh and blood. And struggling just as much as Rose to keep distance between them:)


If Kestrel and Arin aren't madly in love and together at the end of this book I will curl into the fetal position and start sobbing. I say this with absolutely no exaggeration:)

I'd love to know what book has your favorite kiss or couple, so please share in the comments! There's no such thing as too many romantic recommendations:)

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Releases March 29th

War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it with untrustworthy new allies and the empire as his enemy. Though he has convinced himself that he no longer loves Kestrel, Arin hasn’t forgotten her, or how she became exactly the kind of person he has always despised. She cared more for the empire than she did for the lives of innocent people—and certainly more than she did for him.

At least, that’s what he thinks.

In the frozen north, Kestrel is a prisoner in a brutal work camp. As she searches desperately for a way to escape, she wishes Arin could know what she sacrificed for him. She wishes she could make the empire pay for what they’ve done to her.

But no one gets what they want just by wishing.

As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover that the world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and they are caught in between. With so much to lose, can anybody really win?

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 


Marie Rutkoski is the author of The Kronos Chronicles, including The Cabinet of Wonders and The Celestial Globe. The Cabinet of Wonders, her debut novel, was named an Indie Next Kids’ List Great Read and a Bank Street Best Children’s Book of the Year, among other honors. Rutkoski grew up in Bolingbrook, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago), as the oldest of four children. She attended the University of Iowa, where she took Writers’ Workshop classes and studied with Pulitzer Prize-winner James Alan McPherson. After graduating, she lived in Moscow and Prague. Upon receiving her Ph.D. from Harvard University, she held dual appointments as a lecturer there in both English and American Literature and Language, and History and Literature. Rutkoski is currently a professor at Brooklyn College, where she teaches Renaissance Drama, children’s literature and creative writing. She lives in New York City with her husband and cat.


  1. I haven't read the Vampire Academy, but I love that kind of dynamic. It definitely makes those moments much hotter. I still need to read The Winner's Curse! Hope there's some good kissing in the series. :D

  2. I really loved this new book! A great conclusion! thanks for the post!

  3. Jenny oh my goodness! Rose & Dimitri are my OTP for life and this kiss!!! <3 <3 <3
    I've been wanting to re-read this series and I seriously need to.
    I can't wait to see what you thought of The Winner's Kiss! I'm so excited for that book. :)

  4. I still haven't read the VA series... *hides*

    And I agree with you, I need Kestrel and Arin kissing and happy together at the end of the book or I'll be in a puddle of tears!!

  5. I completely agree with you! Love, LOVE Rose and Dimitri. :)

  6. Love this and I so need to finish this series, I loved the first book! Thanks so much for sharing this Jenny!

  7. I'm sad that I couldn't get into VA at all. Oh well, such is life. It's so hard narrowing down the best kisses, but I guess the most memorable one was Qhuay in Phury's book, Lover Enshrined, because that single moment has been simmering since those two were introduced and it was a perfect, beautiful moment. *Sigh* I love those two.

  8. I've only read the first VA book and it was SO long ago I don't remember it at all. Right now I'm obsessed with the romances in WINTER by Marissa Meyer. To me these are the epic romances I love. Thorne is my favorite with Cress. Love it.

  9. Ahh yes, I remember that kiss. I loved that series, and I would have to say the kiss between Sydney and Adrian was just as good. I can't wait for the final book in The Winner's Kiss. Especially after that cliffhanger.

  10. I've only read that first book and LOVED it. I so need to get on this one and read the rest. I have so many couples I love I don't know if I could pick just one. Most of mine come from the UF series (like Kate Daniels, Elemental Assassin, Dark Huntress series, Charlie Davidson, Arcadia Bell... and on and on... ) :D

  11. I will NEVER EVER forget the cliffhanger for this book! I finished it at 4am and was like WHATTTTT??? and I went on my phone to download the next book only to find out that it wasn't gonna be out for another 10 months. Torture! I had a countdown on my phone for that date.

    Loooove this series and this book and this couple :)

  12. Oh, I did so love that one! VA is one of the books that sparked my love of reading, especially UF and paranormal. That was an epic kiss. Love this post idea!

  13. I agree with literally everything in this post. Rose and Dimitri are SO EPIC. Love them! And yes, if Arin and Kestrel don't get their crap together in The Winner's Kiss, I will very possibly throw the book at something. But something soft, like a pillow, so it doesn't damage the book.

    Jessica @ Ramblings on Readings