Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Guest Post: Favorite books of all time by Tracy Clark of MIRAGE+GIVEAWAY

Hi everyone! Today we have Tracy Clark, author of The Light Key Trilogy, to share us a few of her favorite books of all time and how they get in the count. Also as a part of the book blog tour for her upcoming new YA book, we're all giving away 3 finished copy of MIRAGE to everyone! Also don't forget to check out other posts from the tour. So, without further ado I present Tracy Clark and her favorite books of all time...

A list of my favorite books of all time

Ask any author to make a list of favorite books and then sit back for the inevitable head-pop. It’s a hard question! We are lovers of words; lovers of stories, and words and stories take up too many forms and carry too many meanings to have absolute favorites. A book might become a favorite because it got me through heartbreak. I might latch onto a book for the inspiration it provided. Some books stay in my heart and head because they made me think. Others I love just because they made me feel. I’m certain I’ll regret this post as soon as I send it because I’ll realize I’ve forgotten a couple of crucial favorites. Ask me in a month, and I might even have additions. It’s an eclectic list, but tells a lot about me.

Here goes:

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho – This book was recommended to me by a dear friend; the kind of cosmic friend who always recommends the perfect book when I need it. If you’ve ever heard the phrase “when the student is ready, the teacher will appear” then you get the idea. When the student is ready, the book will appear. The Alchemist is a universal story, a parable, about the quest for true happiness and fulfillment.  

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak – This book is so incredibly inventive but has deep emotional heart as well. I sobbed the first time I read it. I sobbed the second time. I’ve read it multiple times and it never fails to move me. I’m impressed both as a reader and as a writer.

Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling – How can this series NOT be on everyone’s favorites list? I started writing YA when this series was about three books in. Her storytelling is vivid and thorough and amazing. The world is a better place because she shared her stories with us.

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz – In other interviews I’ve said that this book should be required reading for humans—ALL HUMANS. Are you a human? Then read it! I wish so badly I’d have had it as a teenager. It might have saved me so much grief! I’m guilty of forgetting to live by the agreements at times, but I consider them so wise and important that they are as holy as commandments.

Counting Kisses by Karen Katz – Reading this book to my kids when they were little is one of my most cherished memories. It combines counting, sleepy-time, affection, and sweet interactive kisses when you read it to a wee one. I give it as a gift to every single new parent I know.

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou – This is the book that made me really want to be a writer. Maya Angelou’s writing can pluck you from your chair and put you right into her scenes. She shares her history, her truth, and her heart with unflinching candor. Reading this book began my love affair with the author and all of her works. One of the bright moments of my life was hearing her speak in person and reading “Phenomenal Woman” in that commanding, self-possessed, saucy way she had. I wish for the talent to write as powerfully.

Walt Disney’s Cinderella (1974) – The story goes that my mother went to my kindergarten parent/teacher conference and the teacher congratulated my mom on teaching me how to read. My mom said, “I thought YOU taught her!” The truth was that when I was four years old, I taught myself using this book and a follow along record that made a tinker-bell chime sound when it was time to turn the pages. Magic of reading!

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky – Welcome to YA fiction that punches you in the heart with its moments of shattering truth. While reading this book, I had a few instants where I stopped and just stared, speechless and touched, pondering the absolute truth of a sentence.

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson – The First YA I read as an adult that really made me see that teens need authors and stories that aren’t afraid to touch on awful realities. I knew when I read it that the reason I write for young adults is because I needed books like Speak when I was a teen and that teens now need to be respected enough to have authors write books that help them process some of the uglier truths of their lives. We don’t glorify the darkness by writing about it. We illuminate it.

by Tracy Clark
Pub. Date: July 5, 2016
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Pages: 272
Format: Hardcover, eBook
Find it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Goodreads
Seventeen-year-old Ryan Poitier Sharpe is a gutsy, outgoing girl who spends her summer days hurling herself out of planes at her parents’ skydiving center in the Mojave Desert. Fiercely independent and willing to take risks, she challenges those around her to live life fully. But after a brush with death, Ryan is severely altered—she’s not the same thrill-seeking girl she once was and seems to be teetering on the edge of psychosis. As her relationships crumble and her life unravels, Ryan must fight the girl she’s become—or lose herself forever—in this eerie and atmospheric thriller.

 About the Author  
Tracy Clark is a young-adult writer because she believes teens deserve to know how much they matter and that regardless of what they’re going through, they aren’t alone. In other words, she writes books for her teen self.
She grew up a “Valley Girl” in Southern California but now lives in her home state of Nevada, in a small town at the base of the Sierra Foothills. Her two children teach her the art of distraction and are a continuous source of great dialogue.
Tracy was the recipient of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Work in Progress Grant. A two-time participant in the prestigious Nevada SCBWI Mentor Program. Tracy is a private pilot, an irredeemable dreamer, and a spicy-chocolate connoisseur.

Connect with Tracy on social media:

3 winners will receive a finished copy of MIRAGE, US Only.

Tour Schedule:

Week One:
6/27/2016- The Oracle and The Muse- Interview
6/28/2016- Seeing Double In NeverlandReview
6/29/2016- Teen Readers' DiaryGuest Post
6/30/2016- BookcrushinReview
7/1/2016- The Cover Contessa- Interview

Week Two:
7/4/2016- A Dream Within A DreamReview
7/5/2016- Ohana ReadsGuest Post
7/6/2016- Book-KeepingReview
7/7/2016- Curling Up With A Good BookInterview
7/8/2016- Here's to Happy EndingsReview

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