Monday, June 30, 2014

Blog Tour: Rain (The Paper Gods #2) by Amanda Sun @Amanda_Sun @HarlequinTEEN

Rain banner photo RAINBlogTour_zps68f51776.png

Welcome to The Cover Contessa's stop on the Rain (The Paper Gods #2) blog tour!


Rain (Paper Gods #2) photo 18134013_zpsc98e7091.jpgAmerican Katie Green has decided to stay in Japan. She's started to build a life in the city of Shizuoka, and she can't imagine leaving behind her friends, her aunt and especially Tomohiro, the guy she's fallen in love with. But her return is not as simple as she thought. She's flunking out of Japanese school and committing cultural faux pas wherever she goes. Tomohiro is also struggling—as a Kami, his connection to the ancient gods of Japan and his power to bring drawings to life have begun to spiral out of control.

When Tomo decides to stop drawing, the ink finds other ways to seep into his life—blackouts, threatening messages and the appearance of unexplained sketches. Unsure how to help Tomo, Katie turns to an unexpected source for help—Jun, her former friend and a Kami with an agenda of his own. But is Jun really the ally he claims to be? In order to save themselves, Katie and Tomohiro must unravel the truth about Tomo's dark ancestry, as well as Katie's, and confront one of the darkest gods in Japanese legend.


TITLE: Rain (The Paper Gods #2)
AUTHOR: Amanda Sun
PUBLISHER: Harlequin Teen
PUBLICATION DATE: June 24, 2014


Today, we welcome Amanda for a guest post! We've asked Amanda to describe to us some of the places she uses in her books! Wait until you read what she has in store for you!

Describing Japan is an attempt at translating a vivid world into hopefully as vivid words. While I try to incorporate into RAIN the feelings I have while traveling in Japan, I always wish I could share the inspiration behind the words. Today I have the opportunity to take a closer look at some of the locations where events in RAIN take place.

Abekawa Fireworks photo Abekawa_zps6c18555c.jpg

Abekawa Fireworks (picture credit Tam Tam, link: https://flic.kr/p/3C9BM )
RAIN opens with a summer festival in Shizuoka, and there’s no better way to get a feel for a Japanese summer. The crowds, the foods, the music, and of course, the fireworks. Abekawa, Abe River, is a great place to watch the fireworks from while getting your fill of the whole Natsu Matsuri scene.

Nihondaria photo Nihondaira_zps16d39354.jpg
Nihondaira (picture credit Yoshizumi Endo, link: https://flic.kr/p/ec6Ssf)
Nihondaira offers an incredible view of Suruga Bay, with Mt Fuji in the distance. Surrounding the picturesque spot are strawberry farms and tea fields, and even the Nihondaira Zoo. In RAIN, Tomo bring Katie to this special place to sketch, but a far more sinister event awaits them here later in the book.

Kunozan Toshogu Shrine photo KunozanShrine_zps6f2cce17.jpg
Kunozan Toshogu Shrine (picture credit FV69, link: https://flic.kr/p/8GJXPA)
If you take the ropeway (gondola car) from Nihondaira across to Mt Kuno, you come to a very important shrine, both in our world and in RAIN. Kunozan Toshogu Shrine is the burial site of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the first shogun of the Tokugawa shogunate back in the year 1600. The principal kami worshipped at this shrine is the deified version of Tokugawa himself. Does he have connections to the ink in RAIN? You’ll have to see what happens when Katie and Tomo come to this mysterious shrine.

Sengen Shrine photo SengenShrine_zps84f5f883.jpg
Sengen Shrine (picture credit Jpellgen, link: https://flic.kr/p/dAPDTn)
Located near Sunpu Park and Castle, and near Katie’s school, lies one of the most impressive shrines in Shizuoka City, Sengen. It’s actually made up of three shrines combined into one sprawling site. Linked to Tokugawa Ieyasu like Kunozan, Sengen was actually rebuilt by Tokugawa while he lived in Sunpu Castle, now the meeting place of Jun and his Kami supporters. In the background of this photo, you can see the shrine maidens in white tops and red hakama skirts.
In RAIN, Katie visits Sengen with Yuki, Tanaka, and Niichan, Yuki’s brother Sousuke. An important revelation is made here, a dark and dangerous idea that spreads with an ink-like darkness as Katie realizes the horrible truth about Tomo and his ancestry.

I hope you enjoyed this peek at some of the upcoming locations in RAIN. Maybe someday if you find yourself in Shizuoka, you may visit these beautiful places that I’ve tried so hard to capture within the pages of RAIN. ^_^

Thanks so much for being here today, Amanda. What a fabulous post!

As a bonus, I have included my review of Rain:
I want to thank Harlequin Teen for providing me with an early copy of this book to read for an honest review. Receiving this book for free has in no way altered my opinion or review.

When I received Ink at BEA last year, I wasn't sure what I would think about it. So I just jumped right in and hoped it would be something I would enjoy. And I'm so glad I did. So you can imagine I've been waiting for this book to be in my hands for a while. I was so excited when I was able to get a copy to read because while the first book did not end in a cliff hanger that had me chomping at the bit, I really needed to know what happened next in the story.

If you haven't read Ink, then stop! This review may contain spoilers. So you've been forewarned!

The story picks up pretty much where Ink left off. Katie is supposed to leave and go back to Canada to live with her grandparents, but she changes her mind and decides Japan is where she needs to be. I'm glad she decided to stay. I needed to see what would happen if she continued to be around Tomor, how the Ink would react, and how he would react to it.

Katie continues to be a strong character. I love that she just can't keep away from Tomo, no matter how much she knows he may be a danger to her. Her bond to him is too strong to break. But that doesn't mean she's not somewhat scared of him. She's very curious about her own link to the Ink, though, and Tomo seems to be her connection to that. And Katie has so much more on her plate, now. She's been through so much with the Kami. And every thing she does in Rain puts her in more and more danger. But she is determined to get to the bottom of her connection with the Ink.

Tomo, he's so broken and hopeless. He knows he is Kami and there is nothing he can do about it. He knows he is not good for Katie, but he can't keep himself from loving her and wanting to be with her. No matter how much he pushes her away, they always end up back together. But the ink is taking over and he's becoming more and more erratic. He's also losing himself to it and it's affecting his relationship with everyone around him. He can't decide if he should draw or not draw, which would help him counter his reaction to the ink?

Enter Jun, who obviously has his own thing for Katie. But she is not sure if she should trust him with her secrets, even though he seems to be genuine about his concern for her and Tomo. Honestly, I didn't now whether or not to trust him and I still don't! He seems to have a good heart, with good intentions, but there's something missing in the way he goes about interacting with Katie.

Finally we have Shiori. I can honestly say I'm just not a fan. And I'm sure Sun meant for me to feel that way. She's very selfish and obviously in love with Tomo. He does everything to help her feel wanted, but he is honest in telling her that he doesn't want anymore with her. But she can't accept this and taunts Katie with the fact that she believes she's not good for Tomo, that she can't give Tomo what he needs because she is American and doesn't understand him culturally. I wanted to slap her most of the book (even though she's pregnant) and had absolutely NO sympathy for her whatsoever.

As with Ink, Sun's writing is, well, WOW. I really enjoyed how she was able to describe Japan. I've never been there, but I can really picture the places she describes in my mind. And the romantic moments and action moments and all other moments in the book had me running right along with the characters. I could feel their emotions: their fear, their love, their confusion.

I think my favorite part of the book was Jun's development. You see so much more of him in this book. And the twist you learn about his character makes you understand all his actions during the first and the second books. Some people who read this did not like the re-introduction of the love triangle we saw in the first book. Personally, I saw it as a necessary evil. When Jun's intentions are finally revealed in the end, it makes sense that Sun needed to have him close to Kate.

Like Ink, I really enjoyed this book. I have to say that the beginning was fast but it did have a dip of action and slowing down of pace in the middle. This didn't take away from my enjoyment of the book, though. Sun is able to infuse Japanese culture in a way that makes you understand it and doesn't overwhelm you. The romance is nice as it's not overdone. The interactions between Katie and Tomo are real and genuine. The paranormal element, like in Ink, is so different than any other paranormal you might read. Overall a great sequel to the story which left me wanting more!


Amanda Sun photo 4649677-1_zpsc5fa78ee.jpgI’m a YA author and proud Nerdfighter. I was born in Deep River, Canada, a very small town without traffic lights or buses, and where stranger safety is comprised of what to do if you see a bear—or skunk. I started reading fantasy novels at 4 and writing as soon as I could hold a pencil. Hopefully my work’s improved since then.

​In university I took English, Linguistics, and Asian History, before settling into Archaeology, because I loved learning about the cultures and stories of ancient people. Of course, I didn’t actually become an archaeologist—I have an intense fear of spiders. I prefer unearthing fascinating stories in the safety of my living room.

​The Paper Gods is inspired by my time living in Osaka and travelling throughout Japan. That and watching far too many J-Dramas. I currently live in Toronto with my husband and daughter. When I’m not writing, I’m devouring YA books, knitting nerdy things like Companion Cubes and Triforce mitts, and making elaborate cosplays for anime cons.


The tour schedule is as follows:
June 24 - Ohana Reads http://ohanareads.blogspot.ca/
June 26 - The Lifelong Bookworm http://jessellelovesbooks.wordpress.com/
June 27 - Fragments of Life http://shusky20.blogspot.ca/
June 28 - Platypire http://www.platypire.com

June 30 - The Cover Contessa http://www.thecovercontessa.com/

July 1 - Amaterasu Reads http://amaterasureads.blogspot.ca/

July 2 - Bookaholic Blurbs http://thebookaholicblurbs.blogspot.ca/

3 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Aren't they? Makes me want to really go visit!

      Delete
  2. I stumbled upon Ink in a local bookstore and was hooked! Thankfully, I found it only a few days before Rain came out so I didn't have to wait long. I recommend to anyone!

    ReplyDelete

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