Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Blog Tour and Giveaway: First We Were IV by Alexandra Sirowy

Happy Tuesday, friends! I hope you all are enjoying the wealth of new YA books published today. Today, I'll be introducing you to a July publication - First We Were IV by Alexandra Sirowy. Learn more about the history secret societies, and check out First We Were IV!

The History of Secret Societies

We've all heard of the Freemasons, the Illuminati, the Skull and Bones, right? Here's something you might not have thought about: where did secret societies originate? What was the first secret society?

Some of the most well-known secret societies are actually pretty recent, relatively speaking. The Rosicrucian Order dates back to the seventeenth century, and the Bilderberg Group was founded in the twentieth century.

Rosicrucian Order – 1607 (a brotherhood formed to find secret knowledge around the world)
Freemasons – 1717 (exclusive group of masons)
Illuminati – 1776 (atheist group opposing superstition and religion)
Skull and Bones – 1832 (Brotherhood of Death, founded by Yale undergraduates)
The Bilderberg Group – 1954 (formed based on the fear of the spread of Anti-Americanism)

(Source: The Richest)

But there are some really old secret societies that existed long before these renowned groups!

The Hashshashin (or Nizari) existed in the thirteenth century. This was a group of Muslim assassins in the Middle East. Their tactics included espionage, sabotage, and political assassination. Honestly? This group sounds AWESOME. (Unless you're one of their targets...)

The Knights Templar formed in the twelfth century. The organization formed to protect pilgrims traveling through the Holy Land, and it is said that they protected some of Christianity's sacred treasures. There is a modern group called the Knights Templar, which has no relation to this original, medieval group.

But perhaps the oldest secret society is Nine Unknown Men, formed by Emperor Ashoka of Indian around 270 BC. After being victorious in a war that cost hundreds of thousands of lives, Emperor Ashoka swore off violence. He didn't want to fight any more wars. He formed this group in order to develop and protect secret information and knowledge that would be too dangerous for "rebellious people" (and people in general) to have. Each of the Nine men had a specific secret book. Details about the nine books are known! Subject matter included alchemy, transmutation, cosmogony, and more.

So, tell me: which of these secret societies sounds like something you'd join? We know which one I would choose! 

About the Book:

First We Were IV by Alexandra Sirowy
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: July 25, 2017

Official Summary:

A group of friends start a secret society in this out-of-control thriller from the author of The Telling and The Creeping that examines the all-consuming love of lifelong friendship—and what someone is capable of when they’re afraid of losing it.

Izzie loves nothing more than her three best friends, Viv, Graham, and Harry, and the bond the four of them share. And she’s terrified of their friendship falling apart next year when they go off to college. To bind them together, she decides to create that will belong only to them, a special thing that they’ll always share between the four of them. And so they dream up the Order of IV, a secret society devoted to mischief that rights wrongs and pays back debts. At first, it works like a charm—but when the Order of IV’s escapades get recognition beyond their wildest expectations, other people start wanting in. And soon, what started as a game of friendship is spiraling into something dangerous and beyond their control—and before it’s over, they’ll pay the ultimate sacrifice.

About the Author:

Alexandra Sirowy is the author of the young adult thrillers THE CREEPING, the Bram Stoker Award® Nominated THE TELLING, and the upcoming FIRST WE WERE IV. Alexandra attended a women's college as an undergrad and received her graduate degree in International Studies. When she isn't writing, she loves to travel, read, eat, and get into mischief. She lives with her husband in Northern California.

The Giveaway:

One signed ARC of First We Were IV. Open internationally. 

Follow the Tour:

Week 1
March 27: Brittany's Book Rambles - Intro Post + Excerpt
March 28: YA and Wine - Most Mischievous YA Characters 
March 29: Rattle the Pages - Nail Art
March 30: Book Nerd Addict - Inventing A Secret Society
March 31: Fables Library - YA Books with Secret Societies

Week 2
April 3: Emily Reads Everything - Fancast 
April 4: The Eater of Books! - History of Secret Societies
April 5: It Starts At Midnight - Author Guest Post: FIRST WE WERE IV vs. Alexandra's Previous Books
April 6: BookCatPin - Mystery YA List
April 7: A Book and a Cup of Coffee - Moodboard

Week 3
April 10: The Book Buzz - YA Thrillers You Need to Know About
April 11: The Candid Cover - Bookworm Initiation Quiz
April 12: Girl in the Pages - Book Recs for First We Were IV Characters
April 13: Stories and Sweeties - Author Guest Post - Story Behind the Title
April 14: Little Lillie Reads - Playlist

Week 4
April 17: Literary Legionnaire - Favorite Quotes 
April 18: Chapter by Chapter - Author Guest Post: Secret Society Initiation Rituals
April 19: Tales of the Ravenous Reader - Secret Societies You Never Knew Existed
April 20: YA Book Central - Author Guest Post:  3 Favorite Books About Secret Societies
April 21: The Bookish Feels - Author's March Favorites

Week 5
April 24: Waiting For Wentworth - Author Guest Post: Secret Society Rules
April 25: The Reader and the Chef - Book Inspired-Recipe 
April 26: Forever Lost in Literature - Author Guest Post: What We Do For Friendship
April 27: Flying Through Fiction - Favorite YA Friendships
April 28: One Way or an Author - Phone Wallpapers


  1. I'm super intrigued with secret societies so I really like the sound of this book! :)

  2. Secret societies? Count me in! :)

  3. This book sounds really cool. I can't believe I haven't heard of it before.
    Great post Alyssa.

  4. I love the idea of secret societies! Great pick for a book tour! Are you reading this one?

  5. This sounds so cool! Also I love the title..it sounds so ominous...secret societies have so much potential in books!Thanks for sharing Alyssa :)

    Also quick blogger question. Ever since blogger brought in new templates the template/theme designer in my blog has been a little wonky O.o Just wanted to know if it was only me! in the template designer my sidebars don't show anymore... :/ sorry for any disturbance Alyssa! <3

  6. Such an amazing and interesting post! Thanks so much for sharing, and for being on the tour :D

    Brittany @ Brittany's Book Rambles

  7. This sounds like such an incredible concept! I'm not sure which secret society I would join -- perhaps the Nizari; I'm with you, that sounds pretty awesome. I love the sound of this! Thanks for putting this one on my radar and for sharing the awesome giveaway! :-)


  8. This sounds great! I did not know about all of these secret organizations. I have no idea which one I would like to join.

  9. OMG the comments on this post! *dies* Secret societies are absolutely fascinating - I've only read one book featuring them, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau Banks and I loved it. That one has a much lighter tone than First We Were IV from what I can tell, but I'm definitely intrigued!

  10. lol okay are the comments intentional? That was weird XD but the secret society do sound interesting.. as long as you arent on their bad side huh

  11. Looks like a good book! Thank you for the contest!

  12. I love the history of secret societies. Sounds like a great book. Thanks for the chance!

  13. Awesome and interesting blog tour post Alyssa :D Thank you for sharing about this one. <3 Most likely not a book for me, lol, but looks interesting :) I do like that cover.