New to You (15): Margaret Reviews I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

Welcome to New to You!

This idea came along last year when I was supporting Lauren Miller’s newest book All Things New and I asked Kelsey to read and review Parallel, a book I have read more than once. I didn’t really get it going until December when I offered people the chance to sign up to read and review a book that has been a favorite of mine that they have never read. I got a great response and I’m happy to tell you (minus January) you will see a New to You post twice a month.

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Next up for New to You is Margaret and she’ll be reviewing I’ll Meet You There. Margaret mentioned to me that Bad Romance was a top read for her last year so I had no choice but to give her a book I have read twice just this year. There is something about I’ll Meet You There that makes me constantly come back for more and I’m excited to have someone new read it. Let’s see what she had to say about it.

New to You (15): Margaret Reviews I’ll Meet You There by Heather DemetriosI'll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios
Published by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
on February 3, 2015
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If Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing separating Skylar from art school is three months of summer…until Skylar’s mother loses her job, and Skylar realizes her dreams may be slipping out of reach.

Josh had a different escape route: the Marines. But after losing his leg in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be.

What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and, soon, something deeper.

Compelling and ultimately hopeful, this is a powerful examination of love, loss, and resilience.

 

“And maybe some people are like collages – no matter how broken or useless we felt, we were an essential part of the whole. We mattered.”
― Heather Demetrios, I’ll Meet You There

 

I’m a longtime fan of Heather Demetrios. I normally read fantasy, so I started with her YA fantasy trilogy (loved), eventually gave her contemporary Bad Romance a try (loved), and then delayed far too long in reading I’ll Meet You There (loved).

Do you notice a trend here?

I love everything Heather writes, even the things that I wouldn’t normally pick up.

I’ll Meet You There falls solidly into that camp. Being set in a small town, far from anything interesting, surrounded by clones of the same people, doing the same things they’ve always done…reminds me far too much of where I come from, and not in a good way. But I trusted Heather and I trusted Andi, knowing neither of them would steer me wrong.

So I wasn’t surprised I couldn’t put this book down. There’s something about Heather’s books that sucks you in, the incredible prose she uses to bring their worlds to life, it holds on to you. I spent days with the phrase “party decay” echoing in my mind, amazed at how it perfectly describes the downhill turn of partygoers that have stayed too long and drunk too much.

But most of all, Heather makes you FEEL things. She makes you squirm with embarrassment or brings tears to your eyes. She shows you the broken pieces of the boy come home from war and the desperation of the girl who wants to escape a hard home life, she puts them on the page in a way that feels real and true.

I related to the characters in this story more than I wanted to, but in the end, I loved every second of it. I fell in love with Josh and Skylar.

To be honest, I’m already reading I’ll Meet You There for the second time.

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Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on August 23, 2018. It is US ONLY!

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Thanks Margaret for signing up for New to You! I honestly can’t tell you what this book means to me so I’m truly happy you loved it too.

If you would like to follow Margaret on Twitter you can do so HERE.

My review of I’ll Meet You There. Also my styling of Skylar from the book.

Have you read I’ll Meet You There or is this your first time hearing about it?

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The Book Outlet

We all have those books, the ones that we are excited to read, that are coming out and we swear we are going to buy them, and then we don’t. Sometimes it is money, sometimes it is laziness, sometimes we just forget. I have done this more times than I can count and for all of these reasons. I have also read a book on my Kindle or that I have borrowed or is an ARC and I’ve loved it and swear I will by a physical copy and yet I never get around to it. This is when the Book Outlet comes in for me.

Once or twice a month I go and peruse the site and look to see what new books there are or if any books I need to finish a collection or wanted to read have popped up. Last year I even planned out my giveaways for New to You and bought the books I could from Book Outlet. Sure it took time to be planning those things that far in advance, but in the long run it was worth it. Recently I was able to order a book I need for a signing I knew was coming up which was perfect.

The thing about the Book Outlet that I love is the price and the authors that can easily be found there. I did a little search this morning and I found some of my faves (prices and available stock are subject to change):

Kasie West

Pivot Point ($4.29) || On the Fence ($3.79) || The Distance Between Us ($4.29)

Jodi Meadows

The Orphan Queen ($3.19) ||  Incarnate ($4.29) || My Lady Jane ($3.19)

Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Wings and Ruin ($5.39) || Empire of Storms ($4.79) || Tower of Dawn ($5.89)

Sarah Ockler

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids ($3.19) || The Book of Broken Hearts ($2.19) || Fixing Delilah ($.59)

Suzanne Young

All in Pieces ($3.79) || The Program & The Treatment ($7.49) || Just Like Fate ($5.39)

Trish Doller

Something Like Normal ($4.79) || Where the Stars Still Shine ($6.99) || In a Perfect World ($6.39)

Heather Demetrios

I’ll Meet You There ($4.29) || Something Real ($4.29) || Bad Romance ($6.39)

Have you found any good gems on Book Outlet? Do you shop there? Tell me your thoughts below. Let me know if you plan to buy any of these. Remember shipping is free in the US for orders over $35. With these prices, think of how many books you can get for that amount!

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On My Radar – June Releases (11)

Summer weather is slowly starting to show up all over the country. In Boston is has been 90+ the past couple of days (it will be back to normal this weekend). With summer around the corner it means summer months are going to be starting which means new releases.

Currently there are 15 books I am excited for in June. Some I have already read and others I’m excited to check out. With June a week and a half away I thought I would highlight a few of the books I’m really excited to either read or see out in the wild

On My Radar – June Releases (11)Here Lies Daniel Tate by Cristin Terrill
Published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
on June 6th 2017
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A young, street-savvy runaway looking for a place to call home realized he might have conned his way into the wrong family in this fast-paced and thrilling novel from award-winning author Cristin Terrill.

When ten-year-old Daniel Tate went missing from one of California's most elite communities, he left no trace. He simply vanished.

Six years later, when he resurfaces on a snowy street in Vancouver, he's no longer the same boy. His sandy hair is darker, the freckles are gone, and he's initially too traumatized to speak, but he's alive. His overjoyed family brings him home to a world of luxury and comfort he can barely remember. In time, they assure him, he'll recover his memories; all that matters now is they're together again.

It's perfect. A miracle. Except for one thing.

He isn't Daniel Tate.

He's a petty con artist who accidentally stumbled into the scam of a lifetime, and he soon learns he's not the only one in the Tate household with something to hide. The family has as many secrets as they have millions in the bank, and one of them might be ready to kill to keep the worst one buried.

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On My Radar – June Releases (11)Once and for All by Sarah Dessen
Published by Viking Books for Young Readers
on June 6th 2017
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As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen's thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine.

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that's why she's cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm's length. But Ambrose isn't about to be discouraged, now that he's met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

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On My Radar – June Releases (11)The Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber
Published by Thomas Nelson
on June 6th 2017
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Ever since the Delonese ice-planet arrived eleven years ago, Sofi's dreams have been vivid. Alien. In a system where Earth's corporations rule in place of governments and the humanoid race orbiting the moon are allies, her only constant has been her younger brother, Shilo. As an online gamer, Sofi battles behind the scenes of Earth's Fantasy Fighting arena where Shilo is forced to compete in a mix of real and virtual blood sport. But when a bomb takes out a quarter of the arena, Sofi's the only one who believes Shilo survived. She has dreams of him. And she's convinced he's been taken to the ice-planet.

Except no one but ambassadors are allowed there.

For Miguel--Earth's charming young playboy--the games are of a different sort. As Ambassador to the Delonese, his career has been built on trading secrets and seduction. Until the Fantasy Fight's bomb goes off. Now the tables have turned and he's a target for blackmail. The game is simple: Help the blackmailers, or lose more than anyone can fathom, or Earth can afford.

From the award-winning author of the Storm Siren Trilogy, step into a diverse cast of characters spanning from the electric metropolises of earth to the chilling alien planet above, in a story of re-finding yourself in the midst of losing the one thing you love. Before it all evaporates.

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On My Radar – June Releases (11)Bad Romance by Heather Demetrios
Published by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
on June 13th 2017
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Grace wants out. Out of her house, where her stepfather wields fear like a weapon and her mother makes her scrub imaginary dirt off the floors. Out of her California town, too small to contain her big city dreams. Out of her life, and into the role of Parisian artist, New York director—anything but scared and alone.

Enter Gavin: charming, talented, adored. Controlling. Dangerous. When Grace and Gavin fall in love, Grace is sure it's too good to be true. She has no idea their relationship will become a prison she's unable to escape.
Deeply affecting and unflinchingly honest, this is a story about spiraling into darkness—and emerging into the light again.

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On My Radar – June Releases (11)Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley
Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers
on June 6th 2017
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Years ago, Rachel had a crush on Henry Jones. The day before she moved away, she tucked a love letter into his favorite book in his family’s bookshop. She waited. But Henry never came.

Now Rachel has returned to the city—and to the bookshop—to work alongside the boy she’d rather not see, if at all possible, for the rest of her life. But Rachel needs the distraction. Her brother drowned months ago, and she can’t feel anything anymore.

As Henry and Rachel work side by side—surrounded by books, watching love stories unfold, exchanging letters between the pages—they find hope in each other. Because life may be uncontrollable, even unbearable sometimes. But it’s possible that words, and love, and second chances are enough.

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On My Radar – June Releases (11)Salvaged by Jay Crownover
Series: Saints of Denver #3
Published by William Morrow Paperbacks
on June 20th 2017
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Hudson Wheeler is a nice guy. Everyone knows it, including his fiancée who left him with a canceled wedding and a baby on the way. He’s tired of finishing last and is ready to start living in the moment with nights soaked in whiskey, fast cars, and even faster girls. He’s set to start living on the edge, but when he meets Poppy Cruz, her sad eyes in the most gorgeous face he’s ever seen hook him in right away. Wheeler can see Poppy’s pain and all he wants to do is take care of her and make her smile, whatever it takes.

Poppy can’t remember a time when she didn’t see strangers as the enemy. After a lifetime of being hurt from the men who swore to protect her, Poppy’s determined to keep herself safe by keeping everyone else at arm’s length. Wheeler’s sexy grin and rough hands from hours restoring classic cars shouldn’t captivate her, but every time she’s with him, she can’t help being pulled closer to him. Though she’s terrified to trust again, Poppy soon realizes it might hurt even more to shut Wheeler out—and the intense feelings pulsing through her are making it near impossible to resist him.

The only thing Poppy is sure of is that her heart is in need of some serious repair, and the more time she spends with Wheeler, the more she’s convinced he’s the only man with the tools to fix it.

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And I just realized most of these come out on June 6th. OOPS. Hope you are ready to get your read on.

If you are looking for other books on my radar you can check out my June shelf on Goodreads HERE.

What’s on your radar in June?

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Top Ten Tuesday – Authors I Want to Meet

I freely admit that I have been pretty lucky when it comes to meeting some of my favorite authors. Rainbow Rowell, Lauren Oliver, Morgan Matson, Miranda Kenneally; I was lucky enough to meet these lovely ladies and get my books signed by them. But there is still that elusive list that I would love to meet some day. I mean I have interacted with almost all of the 10 and have signed books from a few, but the meeting had yet to happen. I wonder what I can bribe them with to come to Boston. 😉 So which authors are you DYING to meet? stephkarenemeryjodiheathermelinasarahlaurensuzannetrish

Stephanie Perkins || Karen Akins || Emery Lord || Jodi Meadow ||Heather Demetrios || Melina Marchetta || Sarah Ockler || Lauren Miller || Suzanne Young || Trish Doller

*Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish
**Top Ten Tuesday photo made by me. If you would like to use it please give credit.

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Blog Tour: I’ll Meet You There Q and A with Heather Demetrios and a Giveaway

illmeet

Blog Tour: I’ll Meet You There Q and A with Heather Demetrios and a GiveawayI'll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios
Published by Macmillan
on February 3rd 2015
Buy on Amazon
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If seventeen-year-old Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing standing between straightedge Skylar and art school are three minimum-wage months of summer. Skylar can taste the freedom—that is, until her mother loses her job and everything starts coming apart. Torn between her dreams and the people she loves, Skylar realizes everything she’s ever worked for is on the line.Nineteen-year-old Josh Mitchell had a different ticket out of Creek View: the Marines. But after his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be. What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s dusty Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and soon, something deeper.

1. I was lucky enough to win a copy of I’ll Meet You There and read it back in the summer. It is one of those books that just stays with you (4 months later it still kills me in the best of ways!). You can 100% tell that you put your heart in soul into this book. The emotions just leap of the page. What was that like for you? How was the experience of writing it?

In some ways I feel like IMYT kind of ruined me—it’s raised the bar so high in terms of what the journey of writing a book can be. I literally started sobbing when I finished the last line of the first full draft, in part because it had been so hard to write the book and there were so many points when I thought I couldn’t do it, and also because I loved my characters so much and was able to guide them to where they needed to be. I’m really freaking proud of this book. There were so many highs and lows throughout the process, what with the research and interviews and stories I was being told. Mostly, I just wanted to write something worthy of the subject matter. I’ve talked before about how incredibly difficult it was to deal with such heavy topics as PTSD, death, the war in Afghanistan, poverty and how working on this book forced me to come to terms with my dad’s PTSD. I also wrote the bulk of this book in the months after my grandfather died. He was my main father figure all of my life, so it was hard. That was how I was able to enter into some of Sky’s feelings about losing her dad. I think the coolest thing about the book was how my writer’s group realized that Josh was such a huge character before I did. He was kind of buried in my subconscious and they held him up to the light. I’ll love them forever for that. Writing IMYT opened my mind and my heart and there are so many pieces of me in there that I honestly am not sure where reality stops and fiction begins.

 

2. Personally I fell in love with your writing when I read Something Real earlier this year. It was such a great story really relevant to everything in pop culture with great characters. I’ll Meet You There is definitely a different book but that is still very relevant to now. What was it like to explore too different parts relevant to today’s world?

I want to write books for my time and, hopefully, they will also stand the test of time. It’s so exciting to deal with relevant subject matter because it allows me to enter into the conversation about issues I care about. Knowing that I can shed light on things like trafficking or veterans issues or children’s rights through my work keeps me focused on what matters and gives me perspective. I believe we all have a responsibility to serve society in some way. As a writer, my goal is to give people hope, to let them know they’re not alone, and to open their eyes to groups of people or things in our world they weren’t aware of. I also, of course, want to entertain and give people a chance to escape, to be voyeurs. Because my books are also marketed to teens, I’m very aware of the opportunity I have to inspire them and get them thinking—but, of course, I want to do that for all my readers, regardless of their age! One of the best things about dealing with relevant topics is that I get to learn about those things in depth. I’m a better person because of the research I had to do for I’ll Meet You There and Something Real. Sadder, in some ways, but better for it.

 

3. There is no denying that Sky and Josh are very flawed characters. The two of them have been through a lot in their young lives. Even with their flaws they were relatable and likable. How was it getting into the head of these two amazing characters?

Everyone has flaws, Sky and Josh no more than anyone else. You know, my characters are complicated people who screw up and hurt others and themselves—just like we all do. I think readers will connect to Josh and Sky because they put it all out there—all the messy, ugly things we don’t want other people to see. If I had met Josh Mitchell on the street before writing this book, I would have had this whole preconceived notion of this jarhead guy, right? But because I had to get in his skin, it helped me to see how profoundly fascinating Marines and Soldiers are. There are lots of poets in those ranks, and people who are hurting and fighting wars on the inside just as much as on the outside.

To me, Sky and Josh are real. The level of intimacy I had to have with them in order to understand who they were—and particularly to understand Josh—required me to get in the trenches with them. Sky and I have several parallels, so I had to take a look at some things in my own life and find those places where I completely got her. But she’s very much her own person—she’s much tougher than I am. I wonder if I’ll ever, ever again have such a satisfying experience as I’ve had working on Josh. He taught me so much about what it means to have courage and loyalty and selflessness. It was really hard being in his head because it’s a scary place to be. And he’s such a guy’s guy—I had to rely on my research and my guts when it came to him.   

 

4. Tell me about the setting! The hotel that a lot of the book takes place in is pretty awesome. How did you come up with the idea? Is it a kind of setting you have wanted to use for a while or something that just came to you?

The motel was the genesis of the story. I don’t remember exactly when it popped into my head, but as soon as I thought of it, I knew it would be such an intriguing setting for a book. Once I started creating Creek View, it took on a life of its own. Ray’s, the trailer park, the abandoned gas station…they really just appeared out of nowhere, like they were hiding in my bones. I also relied on memories of my many trips up and down the 99 and being a native Californian who went to high school in Central California. Then the town sort of ran with it. Originally, the motel was a really negative, crappy place, but I think my writer’s group pointed out that Marge, instead of being a terrible boss, could be a more positive person. And once I realized that I could go there, the Paradise became this really special haven for Sky and Josh. It was one of my writer friends’ ideas to have themed rooms. Then I just went to town! (The Tom Cruise room is my favorite, no contest. But the Viva Mexico room is a close second). As cliché as this sounds, it really did take a village to write this book. So many people supported me along the way.

 

5. Since I read I’ll Meet You There pretty early, okay, August of 2014 early, I’m kind of dying for your next contemporary. Anything kind of hint you can give us on that? Or even what you are currently working on?

I had one idea that I played with for most of last year that crashed and burned spectacularly and that left me feeling a little freaked out, to be honest. The whole time I was working on it, I had this niggling feeling that I didn’t love it. Right now, I’m working on my next fantasy series, which I’m keeping under wraps but will hopefully be able to shout from the rooftops about by summer. In terms of contemporary, I do have this one idea I’m really intrigued by, but it’s hard because it feels like nothing can compare to this experience of I’ll Meet You There. I know, I need to get back on the horse. Part of it, too, is that I just finished getting my MFA and I’ve got all these ideas swirling around in my head about being experimental and such. I don’t know. I have to say that whatever I write next must have a voice that grabs me, like Josh did, and won’t let me go. I’m kind of interested in some Jandy Nelson type magical realism, too. And love, of course. Whatever I write will have lots of that because, to me, that’s what this whole living thing is all about.

 

6. And I ask all interviews this question since my blog deals with clothes and accessories too. What is the one accessory or clothing item you personally could not live without?

Socks! I know that’s so boring, but being a native Californian who now lives in freezing cold Brooklyn, my feet are blocks of ice and when I’m cold I can’t write. I also have this gorgeous infinity scarf that my husband bought me at Anthropologie and it’s my favorite thing in the world to wear. I always feel like a jetsetter fashionista when I wear it.

A HUGE thank you to Heather and Macmillan for this amazing blog tour experience. You can read my review of I’ll Meet You There HERE.

If you would like to win a cop of I’ll Meet You There, please enter below. The giveaway is US/Canada ONLY and provided by the publisher. Winner will receive a hardcover copy of I’ll Meet You There.  Runs February 3rd at 12am to February 8th at 11:59pm EST.

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About Heather Demetrios

When she's not traipsing around the world or spending time in imaginary places, Heather Demetrios lives with her husband in New York City. Originally from Los Angeles, she now calls the East Coast home. Heather is a recipient of the PEN New England Susan P. Bloom Discovery Award for her debut novel, Something Real, which Publisher's Weekly calls “[An] addictive yet thoughtful debut” about reality TV stardom. She is the author of EXQUISITE CAPTIVE, a smoldering fantasy about jinn in Los Angeles and what Kirkus called in its starred review "an intoxicating, richly realized realm of magic, politics, spirituality and history" (#1 in the DARK CARAVAN CYCLE). She is also the author of the upcoming I’ll Meet You There (Winter 2015). I’ll Meet You There is a love story about a young combat veteran and a girl trapped in their small town, both struggling to escape the war at home. Heather is the founder of Live Your What, an organization dedicated to fostering passion in people of all ages and creating writing opportunities for underserved youth. She is proud to have an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. You can always find her on Twitter (@HDemetrios), ogling the military dogs she wants to adopt (but can’t because her NYC apartment is way too small). Find out more about Heather and her other books at wwww.heatherdemetrios.com and www.darkcaravancycle.com.

Blog tour stops can be found HERE.

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