100 Days of Sunlight Blog Tour || (in which I cry a lot) || Book Review + Author Interview + GIVEAWAY!

Saturday, August 10, 2019


Let the celebrating commence, because one of my favorite humans in the entire world has released HER DEBUT NOVEL!!!

You guys have heard me rave many times about the supernova that is Abbie Emmons, but Abbie is a person who's worth celebrating every single day. When she first walked into my life four years ago, I had no idea how much sunlight, encouragement, and love she would bring with her. Abbie is one of my absolute truest friends. She is thoughtful and loving and kind, and I am eternally grateful to know her. (If only Vermont wasn't so darn far away!!)

When she told me that she would be releasing her debut novel this summer, I could not have been more excited or proud. Getting to see one of my best friends realize a dream that she's held so close to her heart for so long gives me ALL THE EMOTIONS. (she posted this video on her launch day and I bawled. it's fine. please watch it and cry with me.) So today, we are CELEBRATING!!! Celebrating this amazing friend of mine, and her incredible debut novel. Abbie, I hope you know how incredibly proud we all are of you. You do so much for so many people, and I have loved seeing the blogging community get to come together to celebrate you and your art. I don't know of a single soul who deserves it more than you. Love you infinitely. ♥

(Also, can I just mention that 100 Days of Sunlight is currently the #1 new release in its category on Amazon?!?!? Oh look I'M CRYING AGAIN.)

So TODAY, we're having a big 100 Days of Sunlight party here on Totally Graced! Read on for my full review of the book, an interview with Abbie herself, and A GIVEAWAY!! (Because who doesn't like a good giveaway?) 

LET'S JUMP INTO IT!

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100 Days of Sunlight tells the story of teenage blogger Tessa Dickenson. After Tessa is involved in a car accident, she finds herself completely blind. Doctors have hope that her sight will return in a little over three months, but for the time being, Tessa is trapped in a world of darkness. She's bitter and doesn't know how to cope with this new way of life. She's no longer able to write, and she doesn't see how life can hold any beauty for her any longer. 

Enter Weston Ludovico. When Tessa's grandparents place an ad for someone to come and help Tessa maintain her poetry blog while she is without her sight, amputee Weston decides that he just might be the right person for the job. He gets what Tessa is going through even when she feels like no one does, and thinks that he can help her. His one condition? Tessa can't know that he lost his legs. 

Slowly, Weston coaxes Tessa out of the darkness she's trapped herself in, far darker than any blindness. But when Tessa's sight slowly begins to return, is Weston ready to be seen?

Going into this book, I had a pretty good idea that I was going to be a fan. My love for Abbie aside, it sounded right up my alley. However, there really aren't words for just how much I fell head over heels in love with 100 Days of Sunlight. 

This book is unlike anything I've ever read before. It was everything I could want in a book and more. From the characters to the setting to the plot to the themes to the aesthetic of it all, I was obsessed. Like, come on. It's a book with a precious hate to love couple that takes place in a small town and involves waffles and poetry and finding hope in the darkness. What on earth is there for me not to fall in love with here? I can quite literally say after reading it that 100 Days of Sunlight is Abbie's soul on the page. There is so much of her within this book, and maybe that's why I love it so. It's so genuine and truthful and real.

Abbie did such a brilliant job with this book. One of my favorite parts is that this book is told in five parts, with each part titled as one of the five senses. It was such a small detail that wove everything together so well. (You'll understand when you read it. Which you have to do. Just trust me.)

Every single one of the characters grabs your heart. Tessa isn't necessarily always likeable, but you feel for her. You understand why she's lashing out even when it's not pretty, and you just want her to get back up on her feet again. Weston is singlehandedly one of the most precious characters I have ever read. If we all had a little more of Weston in us, the world would be such a better place. He's a fighter with a smile that lights up any darkness, and he's filled with more hope and optimism than one would ever think possible. He hasn't had the easiest road, but his strength will both break your heart and warm it, all at once.

Then you have each and every side character, from Tessa's grandparents to Weston's family to Rudy, Weston's beyond loveable best friend. Rudy and Weston's relationship was actually one of my favorite parts of the book. They've grown up together, and they're such BOYS, but they have a really special friendship that I loved seeing the dynamics of.

I also feel the need to mention that there are a few scenes in the book involving Tessa's blogger tribe that quite literally made me cry. You'll see why when you read the book, but Abbie, I love you endlessly for doing that. You have my heart always. ♥

Tessa and Weston's relationship is so simple and pure and wonderful. Seeing them slowly learn to trust each other as they begin to fall in love is the most beautiful thing. Their growth and individual character arcs were stunning, and their relationship along made me never want the book to end. Because the book revolved around their story, it wasn't very fast-paced, but I quite literally never put it down. I read it cover to cover in the span of an afternoon, totally obsessed. It was two seventeen-year-olds falling in love in the most natural, beautiful way, and I couldn't get enough.

It was also incredible to me how much detail Abbie went into regarding Tessa and Weston's disabilities. It's clear that she did a ton of research, and it paid off. It was so interesting to learn more about what it would be like to be blind, or to be an amputee. I know that making sure that those situations are accurately represented is super super important, and I was so impressed with how it was all written.

Beyond all of this, though - beyond the characters, and the plot, and the research, and the aesthetics of the book, 100 Days of Sunlight is a book about hope. At its very core, it is a book about hope and light and falling but getting back up again. It's about strength and about sunlight, and about realizing that your only real limitation in life is yourself. I can honestly say that I've never read a book as hopeful as 100 Days of Sunlight, and that is without a doubt my favorite thing about it. If you're in a place right now where you feel like you're running out of options, or that things are never going to get better, or that you don't know how to pick yourself back up - this is the book for you. So Abbie, thank you. Thank you for reminding us all that there is still hope. Even when "obnoxious optimism" doesn't feel like it will ever be a reality, this book is a reminder to keep fighting.

I couldn't possibly love it more.

RATING - ⭑⭑⭑⭑ 
(Is more than five stars an option??)

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I had the pleasure of getting to ask Abbie all about this beautiful debut of hers! It was so much fun to get to talk with her about her writing - I always love hearing from this beautiful soul. Take it away, Abbie!


Where did you get the idea to write 100 Days of Sunlight?

One day I was thinking about my own lifestyle and how much I use my sense of sight for everything I do: blogging, writing, making videos, reading, everything -- and then I thought how different all that would be if, for some reason, I suddenly went blind. I pondered this thought for a few hours, and then the idea struck me: blogger girl loses her eyesight, meets a boy with no legs (unbeknownst to her) and he helps her overcome her struggles. That was all I had at the start, but it was enough to totally steal my heart and make me want to write the book IMMEDIATELY.


I know that you've written a lot of different novels over the years - what was your favorite part of writing this one, and what made you decide that it would be your debut?

I knew 100 Days of Sunlight would be my debut novel before I even finished writing it. There’s just something special about it that completely captured my heart. I consider it to be my best work and I just COULD NOT WAIT to share it with the world!! I don’t even know if I can pinpoint a favorite part of writing this book… I felt so inspired while writing the whole thing, it was just a pleasure from beginning to end.


Since this is your first time going through the process of taking a novel from an idea to publication, is there anything that you would do differently?

I would spend extra time editing my manuscript myself before I sent it to my editor. As it happened, I ended up adding a few scenes post-editor and then corresponding back and forth with her about the bits I added. She graciously edited the new pieces and gave me feedback whenever I sent them to her, but it would have all gone much smoother if I had added those bits before sending her the manuscript. Ah well. We live and learn!


Who was your favorite character to write?

Both my protagonists Tessa and Weston were super fun to write, but I would have to say my favorite to write was Weston. I just love him so much! He is my precious darling. I loved writing his backstory and his journey, both internal and external. Also, his sense of humor. Comedy is one of my favorite things to write, and Weston always brought a touch of humor to every scene that needed it.


100 Days of Sunlight involves several physical disabilities. What was it like doing all of the medical research and making sure that you portrayed those issues accurately?

My research process involved lots and lots and lots of reading; it was a super fascinating and educational journey that I really enjoyed. I read tons of blog posts, first-hand accounts, articles, more blog posts, watched vlogs and videos, asked questions, and read some more. The most interesting thing I learned is that every person’s experience is very different. This allowed me to give my characters a unique experience with the disabilities they faced, while still staying true to what I had learned of real-life experiences. Also, my editor had worked as a sighted guide at a center for the blind, so she was able to give some great input on Tessa’s condition and experiences.


You and I have talked quite a bit about our love for MBTI typing our characters - what were the character's personality types in 100 Days of Sunlight? For the readers who don't obsessively type their characters (*nervous laughter*), how do you go about typing? Do you pick types for them, or do you get a picture of the characters in your head and take the test as they would?

Yes!! MBTI typing characters is one of my favorite parts of the writing process! In 100 Days of Sunlight, Tessa is an INFJ and Weston is an ENFP. Being an INFJ, it was pretty easy for me to write Tessa’s voice. But Weston was definitely a bit of a challenge, what with all his “reckless spontaneity” (what’s ‘spontaneity’, again? lol)

How I usually type my characters is by first figuring out what general personality they’re going to have (ie: bold hero, quiet loyal friend, snarky comic relief, etc.) based on their role in the story. From there, I narrow it down further by choosing an MBTI type for them. I know so much about all the types now, I rarely use the test. But I do use this infographic which is super helpful! Okay I have to stop there – I could talk about MBTI types ALL DAY.


Do you have a favorite scene in the novel?

Oh my gosh this is such a hard question!! I have too many favorite scenes in this book. But if I had to choose, I would pick the scene where Rudy visits Weston in the hospital. I got very emotional writing this part because I loved the dynamic of Weston and Rudy’s relationship – how they beat each other up and act like tough guys, but underneath all that, they are really two softies who love each other more than either of them would admit. In this scene, I feel like they both let their guard down and it was very sad but adorable to write.


As someone who has the pleasure of knowing you (crying that I have a friend this incredible it's fine), it was so beautiful to see so many pieces of you and your heart in this book. How epic was it to get to write a book about blogging and waffles???

I’m crying too omg!!! It’s so amazing that we met through blogging – that’s part of the reason why I wanted to include blogging in the book. It has connected me with so many amazing people all over the world, and I’m forever grateful for that opportunity. Also, WAFFLES. Of course! How could I not write a book without waffles in it? And waffles on the front cover? I loved sprinkling little pieces of myself into this novel and I’m so thrilled that you appreciated that!


Between your iconic blog, your epic YouTube channel, and now this beautiful book, you're gaining quite the invested fan base! (That I know is always dying for new Abbie content.) What do you have up your sleeve in the near future?

Many good things!! My next book will be another standalone in the same sort of genre, but I can’t reveal anything else about it yet! I’m also working on some big projects in the realm of my YouTube channel, but that is also a secret for now! Stay tuned, world. ;)


How does it feel to be A PUBLISHED AUTHOR???

AMAZING!! And a little scary, too. But mostly amazing.


And, the most important question of all - what do you like on your waffles?

A very important question indeed!! Waffle toppings must include but are certainly not limited to: real maple syrup, cinnamon, confectioner’s sugar, blueberries, strawberries, and whipped cream!

Thank you so much for having me on your beautiful blog today, Grace Anne! It was an absolute pleasure to chat with you about all things writing! :D

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a Rafflecopter giveaway
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The giveaway is now CLOSED!! Congratulations to Grace, Hannah Smith, and Caroline Breidenbach! You'll receive your ebook copies shortly!

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AND, in honor of the debut, enter to win an ebook copy of 100 Days of Sunlight! Open now through August 21st. Enter now!!

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Anyone who says she's not the cutest human
they've ever seen is lying.
Abbie Emmons has been writing stories ever since she could hold a pencil.

What started out as an intrinsic love for storytelling has turned into her lifelong passion. There’s nothing she likes better than writing (and reading) stories that are both heartrending and humorous, with a touch of cute romance and a poignant streak of truth running through them.

Abbie is also a YouTuber, singer/songwriter, blogger, traveler, filmmaker, big dreamer, and professional waffle-eater. When she’s not writing or dreaming up new stories, you can find her road-tripping to national parks or binge-watching BBC Masterpiece dramas in her cozy Vermont home with a cup of tea and her fluffy white lap dog, Pearl.





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BUY 100 DAYS OF SUNLIGHT TODAY!

AMAZON   ||   BARNES AND NOBLE   ||   KOBO   ||   IBOOKS

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Have you read 100 Days of Sunlight yet? I need your thoughts! Send alllllll the fangirling my way in the comments. And if you haven't picked up your copy yet, what are you waiting for? You guys HAVE to read this book - it is an utter work of art in every way. 

30 comments:

  1. Ahh, Grace Anne!!! It was super special to read about your love both for this book and for Abbie :') thank you for sharing so beautifully!!!

    And yes - IT'S A BEAUTIFUL BOOK AND ABBIE ROCKS. GO TEAM WESTON!!!!

    Thank you again for this beautiful post :) ❤

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    1. She is just the light of my life :') I'M SO GLAD THAT YOU LOVE THIS BEAUTIFUL BOOK TOO!!

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  2. GRACE ANNE STOP
    I AM WEEPING

    Thank you so so much... I literally have NO WORDS to express how much you mean to me. I love you with EVERY FIBER OF MY BEING and your review made me cry and smile so hard my face literally hurts. I LOVE YOU SO MUCH KDDHASKFHDJKSH <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

    Thank you again for being a part of this blog tour!! And for being such a precious AMAZING friend!! You inspire me so freaking much and I want to literally drive to your house right now to hug you.
    i might just do that.

    LOVE YOU!!! <3
    xx Abbie

    ReplyDelete
  3. AHHHHHH can we scream and cry and flail together because 100 Days of Sunlight is just sO SO SO SO AMAZING!! I just finished reading it yesterday, after my lovely paperback copy arrived in the mail (ugh I still can't get over how GORGEOUS the cover is), and now my heart is filled with so much happiness I think it might BURST.

    I WISH that more than five stars was an option! AWESOME review, Grace Anne!!!! I really loved reading this post (your pictures are beautiful!). <3 <3 <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ISN'T IT JUST INCREDIBLE???? I cannot get over it. This book is the song of my heart. :')

      And thank you so much!! It's not hard to take good pictures when you have such a beautiful book. <3

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  4. 100 Days of Sunlight was such a great summery read! And I LOVE the cover! *throws confetti and waffles*
    -Brooklyne

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Isn't it wonderful?? And the cover is SO STUNNING I can'ttt.

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  5. My goodness, reading blog tour posts this morning has me SO EXCITED to read 100 Days (which I am probably the only person who *hasn’t* read it yet, but that will change very, very soon).
    Agree 100x with everything you said about Abbie. She’s da best.

    xxx
    k.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love her so much. Love YOU so much.

      Thank God for this little community. <3

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  6. YESSS! This post is also beautiful let me say that! This book is everything! <3

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  7. Amazing interview! Cannot wait to read this precious thing! Xoxo from Brazil ♡

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  8. Cool book, saw this one on her website, and the youtube video. Cheers

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  9. BEST FAN AWARD honestly. I love this review so much <333

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    Replies
    1. THANK YOU SO MUCH :') gotta do my type 6 hype-up best, y'know?

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  10. Oh my word, Grace Anne you are definitely an amazing person. I came over from exploring sites on the 100DOS blog tour and even though I've only just landed on your site, you're just so warm and sunshiney?? Keep being you :)

    ~Germaine

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    1. Oh Germaine, this is just the sweetest comment! Thank you so much! :') xx

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  11. I'M QUAKING RIGHT NOW. literally just binge reading all the reviews and interviews for this book and I am pulsing with jealousy (nothing against any of y'all, just you know...). Cannot WAIT to read this gem <3<3 just need to emotionally and physically prepare myself

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  12. This sounds interesting! I will keep an eye out for it. Thanks for sharing!

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  13. Wow! So much detail! I really like it. I'm excited to read more!!!

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