Monday, April 30, 2012

This or That? with Charles Benoit



Please welcome Charles Benoit, author of the new book Fall From Grace. Chances are you might have heard his name in 2010 when his wildly popular YA book You came out! Let me give you a peek at what you can look forward to.

Grace always has a plan. There’s her plan to get famous, her plan to get rich, and—above all—her plan to have fun.

Sawyer has plenty of plans too. Plans made for him by his mother, his father, his girlfriend. Maybe they aren’t his plans, but they are plans.

When Sawyer meets Grace, he wonders if he should come up with a few plans himself. Plans about what he actually wants to be, plans to speak his own mind for a change, plans to maybe help Grace with a little art theft.

Wait a minute—plans to what?

My review of Fall From Grace is coming up in the next few weeks! In the meantime, Charles Benoit was kind enough to answer a few questions in another session of This or That? Enjoy!


Date night at home or out? Date night. Always. My wife and I are semi-reformed party animals and a night out together at a crowded, over-priced club with an out-of-tune band and watered-down drinks is far better than a rented DVD and hot coco.

Ebooks or print books? Tough one. A year ago I would have said print, but I’m reading more on my Nook now and like it. That said, I like writing notes in the margins, and while I know there’s a way to do it with an E-reader, I prefer writing them in on the page.

Watch the movie or read the book? The book—but really, it depends on my mood. When I want a pizza, the best steak in the world won’t taste right, and vise versa. When I want a book, I read a book, and when I want a movie, I watch a movie.

Comedies or Romances? Comedies. My favorite all time is Animal Crackers staring the Marx Brothers. It’s black & white (gasp!) and it’s old (double-gasp!), but it is brilliant. Favorite modern movie would be The Hangover.

Cooking or baking? Ordering out.

Shoes or bare feet? Shoes. Fancy ones, too.

Walk or run? Saunter. It’s walking with style and no purpose.

Chocolate or fruit candy? Fruit candy? What freak of nature thing is that? Dark chocolate, please.

Classics or Best sellers? Neither. I tend to read obscure books from little-know modern authors. Right now I’m reading Monstress, a collection of short stories by Lysley Tenorio. It’s wonderful.

Watch a tv show in real time, or wait until the whole season is out? There’s only two shows I’m obsessed with, Wipeout (real time) and Mad Men (we don’t have cable so we buy it on itunes the day after it airs). By the way, if you (or a parent) are a producer on either show, give me a call—I’m so available!


When he's not traveling around the globe in the search of exotic, tax-deductible settings for his mysteries, Charles Benoit spends his days pumping out subliminal-laced advertising.
Nominated for an Edgar and a Barry, Relative Danger won the Franklin award and was the darling of fans and critics alike. Out of Order (2006) is set in modern India while Noble Lies (September 2007) takes place in Thailand.


Sunday, April 29, 2012

Win a copy of HELL'S GAME!



If you missed it earlier, Teresa Lo is the focus of my blog today! Hell's Game is her first book and she was kind enough to do an interview with me. Check it out, it just so happens to be an extra entry in the giveaway that she has offered up!



Up for grabs is one digital copy of Hell's Game, to be delivered via Amazon.

This of course means that the giveaway is open internationally!

Fill out the Rafflecopter form below to enter, and good luck.

An Interview with Teresa Lo, author of HELL'S GAME!


On the blog today, a book that I'm particularly excited to check out! Featured today is Teresa Lo, author of Hell's Game. If you know me at all, you know I'm a huge fan of horror. There's something about that shivery feeling you get when you read a particularly good one...oooh.

Amazon / Goodreads
On Halloween night in Deer Creek, Kansas, Jake Victor, Ashley and Ashton Gemini, and Kristin Grace convince Ronnie Smalls to meet them at the town cemetery, which local folklore has always rumored to be the Gateway to Hell. Their intention was only to scare him, but soon the wicked prank becomes actual horror as the group learns the Gateway is all too real. After demons snatch Ronnie and drag him to Hell, the terrified foursome vow to keep what they had seen a secret.

Two years later, the group receives a mysterious letter, an invite to play a high-stakes game in Hell. If they win, they release Ronnie’s soul as well as their own from eternal damnation. If they lose, they are stuck in Hell forever. Choosing to play, they face nightmare after nightmare as each level escalates in intensity and forces them to face the seven deadly sins.

Inspired by the legends of the Gateway to Hell in Stull, Kansas, Hell’s Game explores the cruelty that teenagers can inflict upon each other as well as the horrors that exist amongst mankind. It is a dark, action-packed young adult novel that will both scare its readers and make them question the true meaning of evil. 

Teresa Lo was kind enough to agree to an interview, so without further ado I give you her amazing answers!


1) Since Hell's Game has a horror aspect to it, let's talk horror movies! Are you a fan? If so, what are some of your favorites? 
I love movies, and I’m a film reviewer for the website, Just Seen It www.justseenit.com, so I’m really glad you asked me about my favorite horror flicks! I tend to avoid gore and slasher pictures, but I really like psychological horror like Rosemary’s Baby, The Silence of the Lambs, or Frailty. Most recently, I saw and loved The Grey, and I was surprised that it took a clever twist on the tired trope of slasher movies, which tend to always be the cliché of teens picked off by a random serial killer. Essentially, it was the story of a group of plane survivors who were getting picked off one by one by either the elements or wolves. The Grey really had a clever twist to an old genre! 


2) Hell's Game is being made into a movie, what does the tagline on the poster say? 
I have a background in screenwriting, so the question “What if this were made into a movie?” is always in the back of my mind. I imagine the poster being the group of characters standing in front of the haunted church with the tagline, “Are you ready to play Hell’s Game?”


3) What is your favorite part about being a writer? 
I like being inspired by every day things. A magazine article. A day at the park. A song on the radio. Anything can inspire a story, and coming up with ideas and talking about those ideas are always fun. It’s the execution of the idea that’s hard, but even then, it’s cool to see the results.


4) Is there a fun fact about yourself that you'd like to share with us? 
Years ago, I went on a meeting with a Hollywood production company to discuss my writing, and it was one of my first meetings like that ever. A few days before, I had bought a Bump-It on clearance from Target, and for some reason, I decided to wear the Bump-It to the meeting. My hair was very Amy Winehouse-style, and I looked ridiculous. The person who I met with acted as if she didn’t notice, but I could tell she thought I was weird!


5) Are there any new books in the works that you'd like to give us a peek at?
At the moment, I’m brewing some ideas, but nothing fleshed out yet. Before Hell’s Game, I published two collections of short stories, Realities and The Other Side, and I’d be really interested in doing something like that again.


Teresa Lo was born and raised in Coffeyville, Kansas, population of 10,000 and home of the Interstate Fair and Rodeo and the legendary Dalton Gang. Her Chinese-American family was one of three Asian families in their conservative, Midwest town, and they ran the popular China Garden restaurant, which Teresa worked at from ages twelve to eighteen.

To learn more about Teresa, visit her website!
 
YOU CAN ALSO ENTER TO WIN A COPY!!!

 

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Book Review: Altered

Media Type: Ebook
Title: Altered
Author: Aubrey Coletti
Publisher: Escape Artist Press
Pages: Paperback; 272
Release Date: August 19, 2011
Source: Author / Lightning Book Promotions
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Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Violence, Harsh Language
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HDB Rating: 3 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers looking for an adventure with dark twists and turns, but are okay with some grittier content.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
When Toni, Joseph and Charlie arrive at their new boarding school, they are glad to leave their families — and respective problems — behind. Isolated as boarders, they meet a handsome senior with a personality like iced snake’s blood, teachers with a penchant for physical punishment, and four other outcasts who reveal that their being brought to the Academy wasn’t random at all. When the arrivals discover that their new school is engaged in “behavior modification” through electric shocks, isolation, restraints, and an ever-evolving set of methods to “fix” them, they declare war on their Academy. During their campaign of sabotage, they fight, hate, scorn, love, and begin to uncover the reasons why they were brought to the school. But as their war against the school escalates beyond their control, will they become the very things the Academy believes they are: dangerous, delinquent — and mad?

The story opens by introducing the reader to the Academy. This is a school that takes in all kinds, but one things remains the same. Every boarder at this school is there because no other school wanted them. Starting out like that makes Altered very intriguing. Especially once it is discovered that all the characters have a common link. There is something different about them all. Something unnatural. These are characters who are very easy to relate with, even if you don't always understand what motivates them.

One thing I can say about Altered is that the dialogue is very realistic, albeit confusing sometimes with the slang that the kids use. The language that the adults use towards the characters is probably the most accurate I've seen in a long time. However the balance between dialogue and forward movement in this story is fairly askew. There is a lot of talking, and not too much doing. I liked that I was able to get into the heads of the characters. I didn't like that it slowed down the plot a lot.

In fact, the first half of the book moves really quickly. From the moment that the reader finds out what is really going on with these kids, things take off at a rapid pace. Then, towards the end, the story started to slow down and almost stagnate. It was a bit of a battle for me to finish Altered, and I did it mostly because I wanted to see where Coletti would take this next. I'm not sure if I'll be reading the next in the series, but the end does leave a nice opening for another story. 

At the end of the day, I am glad that I read Altered. It was a refreshing read after so many in a row that were similar. There is a lot to mull over in this story. The treatment of the students, the way that they interacted, and even the animalistic tendencies that surface. I see a lot of potential in Aubrey Coletti's writing. As I said, I'm not sure if I'll be reading the next in the series, but I'm sure I'll be keeping an eye on future projects.




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Pre-Order FATED and receive a gift!



Hello my dear readers! It's me again, back to share with another fabulous promotion. I'm always excited when I hear about these. After all, if you're already going to buy an amazing book, why not do it early and get an extra gift in the process?  


St. Martin's Press is having a pre-order promotion for Fated (Soul Seeker #1) by Alyson Noel!

The first 3,000 readers who pre-order Fated in any format (ebooks count too), and submit their receipt, will receive a free pair of earrings!

I'll even make it easier for you:
Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N

Get all the details on how to submit your receipt HERE.

The promotion ends May 21, 2012 and is open to U.S. residents only. If you want to know more about Fated, you can read an excerpt & a special bonus scene on the Fated Facebook page. Or read the synopsis below.


Lately strange things have been happening to Daire Santos. Animals follow her, crows mock her, and glowing people appear out of nowhere. Worried that Daire is having a nervous breakdown, her mother packs her off to stay in the dusty plains of Enchantment, New Mexico with a grandmother she’s never met.

There she crosses paths with Dace, a gorgeous guy with unearthly blue eyes who she’s encountered before...but only in her dreams. And she’ll get to know her grandmother—a woman who recognizes Daire’s bizarre episodes for what they are. A call to her true destiny as a Soul Seeker, one who can navigate between the worlds of the living and the dead. Her grandmother immediately begins teaching her to harness her powers—but it’s an art that must be mastered quickly. Because Dace’s brother is an evil shape-shifter who’s out to steal her powers. Now Daire must embrace her fate as a Soul Seeker and find out if Dace is one guy she’s meant to be with...or if he’s allied with the enemy she’s destined to destroy.


So what do you think? Will you be pre-ordering Fated


 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Book Review: The Immortal Rules

Media Type: Print Book (ARC)
Title: The Immortal Rules
Author: Julie Kagawa
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Pages: Hardcover; 485
Release Date: April 24, 2012
Source: Publisher / Media Masters Publicity
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Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Violence, Mild Language
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HDB Rating: 5 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers who love a good vampire story, complete with a feisty heroine!

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity.

Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten.

Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them. The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die… or become one of the monsters.

Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad.

Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike.

But it isn't easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for.

Whoa. I'm starting out with the last word that escaped my mouth as I read the end of The Immortal Rules. I was so blown away by the entire package that Julie Kagawa presented, that I couldn't even form a coherent thought upon finishing. Let's be honest, I'm a vampire lover. Always have been, always will be. Allison's story hooked me instantly. The gritty, dystopian and vampire-run world that she introduced me to felt so real. I didn't read this book, I devoured it.

Allison Sekemoto is, in a word, fierce. Living in a world where she must fight to survive, Allison isn't afraid to stand up for herself. I fell in love with her sarcasm and wit. Even before she is turned you quickly find out that this is not a girl that you want to mess with. What really drew me in though was Allison's constant internal battle over becoming a vampire. She chooses her path willingly, and yet refuses to fall headfirst into the world that she hated so blatantly beforehand. Watching Allison fight her inner demons is fascinating, and it makes her that much more likable.

In case you are worrying about the rest of the characters though, I can assure you that they are all just as vivid and well fleshed out as Allison! This I loved. Hands down, Kanin was my favorite. I won't spoil at all, but let's just say that I was eager for more of him. I know that this is the first in the series, and his time is coming. Coming in a close second was Zeke, who becomes a very important part of Allison's existence. This is a boy who totally stole my heart. It's hard not to fall for the chemistry between these two. However it was also so refreshing to see that Allison could keep her own identity at the same time. Thank you so much Julie Kagawa for giving us a girl who can be in love, but still take care of herself!

I could honestly go on for pages about how much I truly enjoyed this book. The Immortal Rules just proves to me that Julie Kagawa can write anything she sets her mind to. Her storytelling is fantastic. Her characters are vivid and wonderful. Even the setting comes to life on its own. I cannot say enough about how amazing it all is. This book is over 400 pages, but it is an effortless read. The story blends into such seamless chapters that you'll find yourself having read well past where you meant to stop. Long story short, I am putting this book on my favorites list for the year! Definitely give this one a read.




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Book Review: Silver and Stone

Media Type: Ebook
Title: Silver and Stone
   * Series: Bloodlines Series #1
Author: J.D. Thompson
Publisher: Self-published
Pages: Paperback; 142
Release Date: August 3, 2011
Source: Author
-------------------------------------
Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Mild Language
--------------------------------------
HDB Rating: 4 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers who enjoy star-crossed lovers and a good amount of suspense.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
Welcome to high school high society hell, where last season’s slingbacks can warrant a lunch table demotion, the wrong date will knock you off the it-list and behind every pair of oversized Chanel sunglasses lies a secret people are dying to keep.

As if senior year at Weatherford Preparatory School wasn’t hard enough, sixteen year old Alexis Bardolph had to add school outcast to the curriculum.

A new found notoriety following a family scandal, her lacrosse star boy-friend dumping her for a former BFF and a string of perpetually bad hair days were among the many things going wrong in her already turbulent teenage life.

But when the haunting nightmares that have plagued her since childhood begin to take an eerily tangible form and several Holler Creek residents are reported missing, Alexis can’t help but wonder if there isn’t more to her hellish dreams than meets the eye.

The unexpected arrival of a mysterious and dangerously handsome new student ultimately leads Alexis to troubling truths that not even her wildest imagination could have conjured.

First off, let's talk characters. I really enjoyed all the characters in Silver and Stone right off the bat. Alexis, the main character, is strong and easy to relate to. Lucas, the love interest, is just the right amount of sexy and mysterious mixed together. When you bring these two together, things get interesting. I loved their dynamic relationship, and the other characters nicely round out the overall story. It doesn't matter how much they are actually in the plot, J.D. Thompson shows an equal amount of descriptive love to all her characters.

The story moves at a really nice pace, just quickly enough to keep you on the edge of your seat while you read. There were never really any parts that dragged. The best part though was the suspense that is peppered in throughout everything else. This is an author who knows how to hold out to the last minute, and then throw a twist in right at the perfect moment. Plus, Silver and Stone intrigues by bringing together two very different paranormal creatures. No spoilers here, but I will say that they are both amazing! I knew something was coming around the bend, the suspense was there, and then it hits. You find out why Alexis' life just seems to be getting crazier by the minute.

There is a lot of Romeo and Juliet type love in this story. Star-crossed lovers. Conflict that seems to have no end. It's done really nicely though, and doesn't overshadow the rest of the story. As I mentioned above, the relationship between Alexis and Luke is sweet all on its own. Everything else just adds that extra bit of mystery. J.D. Thompson's writing is on par as well. Perfectly descriptive without overdoing it, and very easy to get into.

This looks like it will be a fun series, and I cannot wait for more! I definitely recommend this to readers who love a good twisted romance. Between the writing and the characters, Thompson has something great brewing here. Further proof that self-published can be just as fabulous as traditionally published. Go ahead, give Silver and Stone a shot!

Ms. K did the reading.
Jessica turned it into a review.















FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Book Review: Wanted

Media Type: Print Book (ARC)
Title: Wanted
Author: Heidi Ayarbe
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Pages: Hardcover; 400
Release Date: May 1, 2012
Source: Publisher / Teen Book Scene
-----------------------------------------
Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Violence, Mild Language
------------------------------------------
HDB Rating: 4 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers looking for a different type of contemporary that is gritty and honest.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
A one-word text message: That's all Michal "Mike" Garcia needs to gather a crowd. Mike is a seventeen-year-old bookie, and Sanctuary is where she takes bets for anyone at Carson High with enough cash. Her only rule: Never participate, never place a bet for herself.

Then Josh Ellison moves to town. He pushes Mike to live her life, to feel a rush of something -- play the game, he urgest, stop being a spectator.
So Mike breaks her one rule. She places a bet, feels the rush.
And loses.

In an act of desperation, she and Josh -- who has a sordid past of his own -- concoct a plan: The pair will steal from Carson City's elite to pay back Mike's debt. Then they'll give the rest of their haul to those who need it most. How can burglary be wrong if they are making things right?

WANTED will thrust readers into the gritty underbelly of Carson City, where worth is determined by a score, power is derived from threat, and the greatest feat is surviving it all.

Let me start by saying that Wanted turned out to be so different from everything else that I've read this year, that I was simply blown away from the start. As soon as I was introduced to Michal, a young girl turned bookie, there was no turning back. I'm not very familiar with the betting world, but Ayarbe makes it easy to understand the life that Michal has placed herself in. Her honest voice sucked me in, and her inability to see how important she was kept me coming back for more. I was rooting for her.

I'll admit that I personally connected with Michal instantly. For me, it was based on the fact that both she and I are stuck in the middle of two very different worlds. For Michal, her Mexican heritage is something that was stripped away from her long ago. I won't spoil anything, but this makes things very interesting for her during her high school life. Ayarbe tackles some ideas in this book that will be sure to make some readers squirm a bit. Illegal immigrants, unfair health care, gang violence and so much more are all addressed in black and white.

However there is so much more in Wanted than just messages about equality and humanity. At its core, this is a story about looking for the purpose in your life. Michal, Josh, all the students at the high school, are just trapped in the roles that society has set out for them. Stereotypes and labels hold them in one spot, unable to find their true potential. There are characters in this story that you just can't help cheering for. Despite how messed up they might seem, or the choices they make, you know there is some good under that tough exterior.

Wanted has a last chapter that tore my heart out. I'll warn you now. However the ending was so perfect that it is still hard for me to wrap my mind around. I guarantee you'll be thinking about this book well past finishing it. If you are a fan of Heidi Ayarbe's books, this is one you won't want to miss. If you're just entering her world of fantastic writing, welcome. Wanted is great place to start.




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Monday, April 23, 2012

And...Discuss! To Finish, Or Not To Finish?


It's about that time again! Time for me to choose a topic, ramble about it for a bit, and then open the floor to your opinions. I just want to shout out a huge thank you to everyone who takes part in these discussions! I think they are a ton of fun, and I look forward to them.


This time the topic is....

To Finish, Or Not To Finish?

I will be the first to admit that I sometimes don't finish books. There are just some books out there that I pick up, start to read, and can't get into at all. Once in a while I'll set them aside for a later date. Especially if I feel like I've had an overload of one genre for too long. Sometimes though....I look like this....


It might be the plot, or choppy writing, or flat characters, but whatever it is I just can't wrap my ahead around the overall concept of the book. So with a heavy heart, I put that it aside and move on. My motto? There is too much to read in the world to spend time trying to finish a book I'm not loving.

Still, I always feel guilty. Especially when that book was given to me for review. I've more than once powered through a book just to get to the end, only to realize I didn't really want to review it anyway because I didn't know what to say. 


So what about you, readers?

Do you finish a book you're not feeling? Or do you set it aside in favor of something else?



Sunday, April 22, 2012

Book Review: White Horse



Media Type: Print Book (ARC)
Title: White Horse
Author: Alex Adams
Publisher: Atria / Emily Bestler Books
Pages: Hardcover; 292
Release Date: April 17, 2012
Source: Publisher
------------------------------------------
Genre: Science Fiction / Dystopian

HDB Rating: 5 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Readers who enjoy a dark story, with plenty of humanity and hope thrown in.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
Thirty-year-old Zoe leads an ordinary life until the end of the world arrives. She is cleaning cages and floors at Pope Pharmaceuticals when the President of the United States announces that human beings are no longer a viable species. When Zoe realizes that everyone she loves is disappearing, she starts running. Scared and alone in a shockingly changed world, she embarks on a remarkable journey of survival and redemption. Along the way, Zoe comes to see that humans are not defined by their genetic code, but rather by their actions and choices. White Horse offers hope for a broken world, where love can lead to the most unexpected places.

How to review White Horse? In all honesty it's one of the best books I've read this year, and yet anything I type here seems inadequate as to explain why I loved it so much. What is really striking about Alex Adams' story is how beautifully it walks the line between light and dark. The populace is dying. Everything that people once believed made them human is now gone, taken from them by a disease. Still, there is a glimmer of hope underneath it all. In Zoe I found one woman who, despite everything else, had the will to survive. Her hope radiates out, and helps light the way through this otherwise bleak story.

White Horse follows Zoe through chapters from "Then" and "Now". Although I normally dislike books that switch between past and present tense, it fits in White Horse perfectly. Zoe has gone from a simple custodian, to a nomad. Her past life and her present life are shown in stark contrast to one another, until they slowly merge closer and closer together. Seeking only to find her lost lover and hold on to what makes her human. Wandering through the dead cities, glimpsing the sad remains of humanity. Zoe's story is dark and dangerous. The story telling in White Horse is done in gorgeous prose, but it hardly masks the atrocities the world is suffering. Trust me, this isn't a story for the faint of heart.

The other characters in this story are just as well done as Zoe. Out of all of these, I feel like the one who needs the most introduction is "The Swiss". The exact opposite of everything that Zoe strives to hold on to, this is a villain who will make you want to tear the pages out of the book. You won't do it of course, because that would mean ruining the story, but you'll want to. Hope plays a big part in this story. Each time that Zoe makes it over an obstacle in her path, three more take their place. Yet, she never stops hoping. 

White Horse ate me up inside. I read fervently, cringing at the descriptions of what the world had become, and yet ever hopeful that Zoe would accomplish what she set out to do. The last few chapters blew me away with their twists. The last few pages broke my heart. Alex Adams has written something that fits in the dystopian genre, and yet is infinitely better. I loved this book, and I'll be happy to admit that I am excited to see where this trilogy goes next.



FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Obumbrate Cover!



I know I've been scarce this week my reader friends, and I apologize for that. It's kind of been a crazy week of transitions.Shiny new job awaits!

Anyway back on the blog I have the focus today on my awesome author friend Alivia Anders! Her newest book in the The Illumine Series has a cover, and it's wonderful!




Here is the synopsis:
Essallie Hanley just wishes her life could go back to normal. But what's normal when you carry the burden of knowing you're a half-angel created for war, that the only person who can help you is a demon still waiting to kill you, and that your only chance for salvation rested in a boy who died in front of you?

If Essallie had turned her back on everything she'd learned, she could have made the most of her fractured life. That is, until Kayden told her that she's a ticking time-bomb; that at any given moment her blood could betray her, her veins burning her alive from the inside out until nothing but ash remains.

Desperate to find answers, and possibly find her only chance for survival, Essallie heads back for New York City, back to the place where it all began. With every answer comes a price, and with every price the risks and rewards become greater. But when Essallie soon finds herself the target of an unknown hunter determined to have her, all appears to be at wits' end. Until Ari, a man claiming to be Nephilim, steps in. Charming, gentle, and boldly brave, he seems to be exactly what Essallie needs.

Could Ari be the missing piece of her puzzle, or is he the promise of her demise?

*happy sigh*
It's just lovely!

Anyway just a bit of news! I'll be back to my crazy, obsessive posting self very soon. In the meantime get out there and start reading Illumine!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Book Review: The Dragonfly Prophecy

Media Type: Print Book
Title: The Dragonfly Prophecy
Author: Jacquelyn Castle
Publisher: Class Act Books
Pages: Paperback; 290
Release Date: July 15, 2011
Source: Author
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Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Mild Violence
----------------------------------
HDB Rating: 3 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers who are looking for a clean, fun read with a twist.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
Seventeen-year-old Lexi Blane believed she was the creator of her own destiny. With a brilliant mind, a flawless boyfriend, and parents who would stop the earth from spinning for her, all was going according to plan.

But when her perfect world unravels into one she doesn’t know, it reveals the painful truth of her love, trust, and entire being. In the struggle to find her true self, Lexi learns she didn’t create her destiny – it created her.
I'm going to be honest. There is absolutely no way for me to review this book if I don't give you a little bit of spoilers. Apologies in advance guys! I'll keep them a minimum, and make sure to leave plenty for you to uncover when you dive into this book.

The Dragonfly Prophecy is an interesting book hybrid. On the one hand, it's a contemporary story about Lexis' life and the struggles that she faces as a teen. On the other hand, Lexi isn't your normal teenager at all. She has powers. Interesting and potentially deadly powers if used incorrectly. While reading I was drawn in by the balance between these two parts of her existence. Lexi isn't just a girl, she isn't just a possible hero, she's a little bit of both. She has romantic feelings, exudes sadness at times, and even doubts herself. At her core she just a girl. On the surface, she is so much more. So yes, I did enjoy Lexi's character. She also happens to be pretty sarcastic at times, which I loved.

Unfortunately the confusion I had in the first part of the book really made this a tough read for me. Again, it's tough to explain without spoiling. Let's just say that Lexi doesn't just have one reality. Jacquelyn Castle worked very hard to make the two halves of Lexi's life work well together. Still, it made for some confusing transitions at times. The first 40 or so pages were confusing enough that I had to re-read them just to make sure that I wasn't missing anything important. Once things even out, and you find out why the beginning is written like that, things get much better. So a word to the wise, don't put this down. Keep reading. It gets better!

Indeed, it was the second half of the book that really did it for me, and why I had to read straight through to the end. Lexi's story picks up pace, we meet the rest of the characters who will be a part of her story, and we find out why she is so special. If this part of the book is indicative of Castle's writing, then I see huge potential in the second book! I was so enamored with Lexi and her interactions with others, that I was actually sad when the book ended.

I know this review is rambling. Like I said, it's extremely tough to review something that you don't want to give away! My hope is that you'll have your interest peaked and head off to get your own copy of The Dragonfly Prophecy.




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Take a copy of Blue Asylum home!



Courtesy of the lovely people at TLC Book Tours, I have one copy of Blue Asylum to share! If you missed my review yesterday, you can find it here

I am generally not a big fan of Historical Fiction, but this story truly blew me away. Thus why I am so excited to share it with you!

To enter, please make sure you have a mailing address in the U.S. or Canada. Then fill out the Rafflecopter form below. Best of luck! A winner will be chosen on April 22, 2012.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Book Review: Blue Asylum



Media Type: Print Book (ARC)
Title: Blue Asylum
Author: Kathy Hepinstall
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Pages: Hardcover; 288
Release Date: April 10, 2012
Source: Publisher / TLC Book Tours
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Genre: Historical Fiction

HDB Rating: 4 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Readers who enjoy light historical fiction with a great storyline.


Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
Amid the mayhem of the Civil War, Virginia plantation wife Iris Dunleavy is put on trial and convicted of madness. It is the only reasonable explanation the court can see for her willful behavior, so she is sent away to Sanibel Asylum to be restored to a good, compliant woman. Iris knows, though, that her husband is the true criminal; she is no lunatic, only guilty of disagreeing with him on notions of justice, cruelty, and property.

On this remote Florida island, cut off by swamps and seas and military blockades, Iris meets a wonderful collection of residents--- some seemingly sane, some wrongly convinced they are crazy, some charmingly odd, some dangerously unstable. Which of these is Ambrose Weller, the war-haunted Confederate soldier whose memories terrorize him into wild fits that can only be calmed by the color blue, but whose gentleness and dark eyes beckon to Iris?

The institution calls itself modern, but Iris is skeptical of its methods, particularly the dreaded "water treatment." She must escape, but she has found new hope and love with Ambrose. Can she take him with her? If they make it out, will the war have left anything for them to make a life from, back home?

Blue Asylum is a vibrant, beautifully-imagined, absorbing story of the lines we all cross between sanity and madness. It is also the tale of a spirited woman, a wounded soldier, their impossible love, and the undeniable call of freedom.

Blue Asylum is a story about standing up for yourself, and being punished for it. Iris Dunleavy is a woman who simply wants to speak her mind. The wife of a plantation owner, she finds herself aghast at the treatment of the slaves. In a mad attempt to do something to help, poor Iris finds herself in a "modern" asylum. What Kathy Hepinstall has created here is a heart wrenching story about a misunderstood woman, who just wants to be heard.

The characters in this story are colorful, vivid and very enjoyable to follow. Iris especially is one witty and wonderful woman. Her views on the world are strong and well thought out. As her story unfolded, I began to wonder precisely why she was in the asylum at all. Hepinstall paces the story beautifully though, and bread crumbs are laid out to show the past that is haunting Iris' existence. However it isn't only Iris who shines off the page. Each inhabitant of the asylum has their own quirks, their own personality, and I found myself intrigued by them. It makes for a very immersing read.

Blue Asylum is all about healing, misunderstandings, and, underneath everything else, blind hope. It is easy to see how women were mistreated during this time period. Still, the more I read the more I felt myself feeling just like Iris. There are moments when the line between sanity and madness really does blur. What I can definitely say is that this is a piece of historical fiction that is well done. It drew me in, and before I knew it I was turning the last page.

At the end I was still left with some pressing questions, which I'll admit irked me a bit. Overall though Blue Asylum was a very enjoyable and quick read. Fans of Historical Fiction will find a lot to love between these pages. The vivid characters themselves are enough to draw the reader in, and keep them there until the end. If there is more out there from Kathy Hepinstall, I'd love to read it! This may be my new favorite genre.


FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Book Review: Silver Knight

Media Type: Print Book
Title: Silver Knight
Author: Caron Rider
Publisher: Self-published
Pages: Paperback; 278
Release Date: February 24, 2012
Source: Author / Lightning Book Promotions
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Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Mild Violence
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HDB Rating: 4 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers looking for a well-written and well paced read, with twists and turns galore.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon
When seventeen-year-old Diana recognizes an elderly priest in a video on YouTube, she realizes that reincarnation is real and that she’s been alive before! Every night in her dreams, she relives her past learning that it’s kill or be killed. Now a bishop at the Vatican whom she saved in another life calls on her once more. She is needed to help defeat evil within the catacombs of Rome. But when she arrives in Rome, she meets Alexander – the man of her dreams! Through the centuries she has loved him…betrayed him...been killed by him. Will she give him another chance or this time will she strike first?

Silver Knight is a fast-paced and amazing romp through a set of past lives. It's the type of book that draws you in, and even though a few different genres are mixed it works well! Caron Rider has managed to mix together modern high school life, with a girl who has shades of her past lives peppered in. What you'll find in this book is nothing short of fantastic! I honestly read through each page breathlessly to the end.

Our first-person narrator Diana is quite a girl. She is very much an old soul, which I totally related to her. What's nice about that is the book never really has too deep of a sense of a teenager persona. Of course Diana is actually one, but the breadth of what she has experienced really comes through in her character. The best part about her is that she is so vivid in her descriptions of things. When Diana is in a room she doesn't just see it, she experiences it. Caron Rider did an excellent job with this, and it is so easy to simply place yourself in the story. It makes it very immersive.

As I mentioned above, the story line is quick moving and well-written. I liked how well the two parts blended together. The one thing that made me a little sad was the lack of depth in certain aspects of the story. What I mean is, there are a lot of times where something is mentioned, or touched on, but never fully explored. My hope is that, because this is a series, there is a lot more to come! I will give the story this much, because of what was missing I'm eager to dive into the next installment! I want my questions answered.

I'd recommend this book to older young adult readers, mostly because of Diana's overall voice. She is a very pleasant narrator to follow (and she loves books so that is a huge plus!) but sometimes her lack of teen vibe makes her feel a little older. I for one loved it, but it might turn some younger readers off. Overall, I thought that Silver Knight was extremely well done! Kudos to Caron Rider. I'm in for the long haul!




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Audio Book Review: The Graveyard Book

Media Type: Audio Book
Title: The Graveyard Book
Author: Neil Gaiman
Narrator: Neil Gaiman
Publisher: Harper Children's Audio
Format: Digital MP3
Duration: 7 hours 47 minutes
Source: Purchased on Audible
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Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Mild Violence
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HDB Rating: 5 Keys to My Heart

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn't live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod's family...

Narrator Review:
Come now, is there even a question? If you haven't heard Neil Gaiman's voice, then you might not know how wonderful it really and truly is. He has the ability to change his speaking pattern just enough to show different characters, but you still get the deep and rich voice that you'll fall in love with. The pacing is just perfect, and varies depending on what is happening at any given moment.  He remains one of my favorite narrators!

Audio Book Rating: 5/5 - Definitely pick this one up!

**********

Book Review:
This book is gorgeous. Wonderful. Stupendous. I'm not sure how many other words I can come up with to describe it, but the fact remains that it was one of the best stories I've had the pleasure to dive into this  year. To those of you who might not have read Neil Gaiman's work before, it is always very layered. Enjoyable at any age, but the older you are the more you can see the hidden story line beneath everything else. This story is no different. The Graveyard Book is a story about humanity, friendship, and the age old battle of growing up.

Nobody Owens (Bod for short), looses his family in a grisly murder. Sad, I know. However what happens next is magic. Taken in by the inhabitants of the graveyard that he wanders into, Bod soon learns so much more than he ever imagined. I loved the way that Gaiman shows Bod's different stages of life. At a young age, Bod is smart and curious. As he grows, his questions turn from simple curiosity, to actual life lessons that he is trying to learn. Each of the graveyard members is unique and vibrant. From long dead war heroes, to simple folk who keep to themselves, the graveyard is a bustling place for a young boy to grow up.

What will really draw you into The Graveyard Book though is the writing. Neil Gaiman's writing is one of the reasons I fell in love with his books in the first place. Every page is filled with gorgeous prose, vivid descriptions, and witty observations. Bod's story, in particular, has a lovely mix of mischief, magic and horror. There were portions of this book that had me shivering in my boots. Well, shoes. Anyhow, it is really the ability to get so wholly lost in this story that really makes it a great read. You'll find yourself in the graveyard, and chances are you won't want to leave.

I'm not sure how else to implore you to read this book. The writing, the characters, the whole entire vibe is just pure ambrosia. There are moments that will break your heart, and others that will startle you with their sudden appearance. Whether this is your first foray into Gaiman's brilliantly woven worlds, or you're an avid fan, this is a book that is sure to delight. 

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Book Review: Delta Legend

Media Type: Ebook
Title: Delta Legend
Author: Kelan O'Connell
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: November 8, 2011
Source: Author
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Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Mild Violence
--------------------------------------
HDB Rating: 3 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers looking for a mix of mythology and magic, with a YA twist.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
When 16-year-old Oakland California teenager, Calvin Pierce, makes a bad decision and winds up getting arrested, his mother is quick to take action. Determined not to lose a second son to the drug and gang violence of the inner city, she sends Calvin to spend the summer working for his great uncle in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

There in the predominately-white region of agriculture and recreational boating, Calvin’s a fish out of water with a chip on his shoulder. But when severed body parts start floating to the surface, his summer of proving himself takes on new meaning.

Something deadly is lurking in the deep, murky waterways of the Delta. Now the daunting task of containing the living incarnation of a mythical creature falls to Calvin and his ragtag posse of oddball characters.

When I first saw Delta Legend, the thing that jumped out at me was that this book takes place in an area that I've actually been. It's always really fascinating to read a story, fiction or not, where you can actually place the characters in the location in your mind. That being said, I actually learned quite a lot about the delta, and the history surrounding it. It's always nice to come away knowing something new. Especially if you are being entertained at the same time.

To be honest though, the first big thing I noticed when I started reading was how descriptive everything is. Not just the setting, but even the characters and plot points. Normally I'd be right on board with this. It's great to get a really good idea of who you'll be following into a story and where they are headed. Unfortunately in this case, I felt like it was a bit on the overkill side. Even characters that weren't essential to the overall story had lengthy descriptions. It made the book a bit hard to follow at times, and really slowed down the plot.

That's not to say that the characters aren't great! They truly are. If I had only had a few paragraphs to meet them, I would have still enjoyed them. Calvin especially was really fun and feisty, and the (reluctant) romance between him and another character was a nice addition. In fact, every character has their own wonderful personality. As I said, if the descriptions meeting them had just been cut down, it probably would have increased my enjoyment of the book. Too much information isn't always a good thing, especially when you have to filter through it to get to the meat of the story line.

What shines in Kelan O'Connell's story is definitely the mixture of mythology and magic. There is a Chinese legend that is blended perfectly into everything else, and it keeps you guessing until the very last minute. People do indeed die in this story and, although it isn't anything too graphic, you should be warned that there is violence. However it doesn't take away from anything, in fact it keeps the book moving. There's a lot going on in Delta Legend, but if you can grasp onto the main story I can guarantee you'll find an interesting read.









FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Book Review: Medusa the Mean (Goddess Girls #8)

Media Type: Print Book
Title: Medusa the Mean
   *Series: Goddess Girls #8
Author: Joan Holub, Suzanne Williams
Publisher: Aladdin
Pages: Paperback; 256
Release Date: April 3, 2012
Source: Author / Teen Book Scene
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Intended Reading Group: Middle Grade
Content Screening: Nothing of note!
--------------------------------------------
HDB Rating: 4 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Young readers who love a good adventure, and are interested in Greek Mythology.

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari /Amazon / B&N
Medusa is the ultimate mean girl in this series that blends modern drama with ancient myths.Well researched and true to the original myths, each volume in the Goddess Girls series addresses contemporary issues, like friendships and relationships, from a classically accurate—and entertaining—perspective.

In Medusa the Mean, Medusa is sick and tired of being the only mortal at Mount Olympus Academy. Not only is she surrounded by beautiful, powerful, immortal classmates, but she also has snakes for hair and a reputation for being mean. Immortality, she thinks, will solve everything. So when she finds out about a necklace that promises just that, she’s sure it will help her get the two things she covets most: to be as popular as the four Goddess Girls and to have her supercrush, Poseidon, finally notice her. But when the necklace brings about popularity in the totally wrong way, things go from bad to worse. Can Medusa overcome her “meanie” status and prove that there’s more to her that meets the eye?

If you haven't yet discovered The Goddess Girls Series, allow me to introduce you. This wonderful set of books is all about mixing classic mythology with modern day girls and guys. Trust me, it's a ton of fun to read! Although these books are slated for Middle Graders, I see no reason why older aged readers wouldn't like them as well. After all, I'm almost 30, and I love them still!

In this particular installment, we get to see a lot further into Medusa's past and why she earned the title "Queen of Mean". The thing is, Medusa isn't really all that bad! Sadly she's just been told her whole life that she isn't special, and that she shouldn't try. Now here is why I love Medusa as a character. Despite everything else, this girl has dreams! She works hard for them and I see her as a way to teach young readers that if you work hard for something, chances are you can achieve it.

What's really sweet about Medusa the Mean is that you get to see her blossom. Making new friends, realizing that sometimes you have to trust others, and even finally seeing how her "supercrush" really is on the inside. The story line in this book is so fun! It's quick moving, there are silly jokes, and the way that the characters interact is perfect. I loved the fact that in this book Medusa is no longer just the "mean girl" character. She really comes into her own, and it's fabulous!

Long story short, this is a great series and Medusa the Mean is no exception to that rule! If you have a young reader at home, put this book into their hands. These work great as standalone novels, or you can go back to beginning and let them experience the whole series. Either way, these are sure to be a hit in your home!




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Book Review: The Comet's Curse

Media Type: Print Book
Title: The Comet's Curse
   *Series: Galahad #1
Author: Dom Testa
Publisher: Tor Teen
Pages: Paperback; 240
Release Date: March 2, 2010
Source: Publisher
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Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Mild Violence
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HDB Rating: 5 Keys to My Heart
Recommended to: Readers who love science fiction; reluctant readers

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
When the tail of the comet Bhaktul flicks through the Earth’s atmosphere, deadly particles are left in its wake. Suddenly, mankind is confronted with a virus that devastates the adult population. Only those under the age of eighteen seem to be immune. Desperate to save humanity, a renowned scientist proposes a bold plan: to create a ship that will carry a crew of 251 teenagers to a home in a distant solar system. Two years later, the Galahad and its crew—none over the age of sixteen—is launched.

Two years of training have prepared the crew for the challenges of space travel. But soon after departing Earth, they discover that a saboteur is hiding on the Galahad! Faced with escalating acts of vandalism and terrorized by threatening messages, sixteen-year-old Triana Martell and her council soon realize that the stowaway will do anything to ensure that the Galahad never reaches its destination. The teens must find a way to neutralize their enemy. For if their mission fails, it will mean the end of the human race….

I feel the need to have a slight fan girl moment. I've always been a big fan of the science fiction genre. The sad part is that it's tough to find younger aged science fiction that is appropriate but doesn't speak down to its fans. This, my friends, is great young adult science fiction. It is young adult science fiction that is engaging, unique, and so well written! I had only just picked up The Comet's Curse to skim the first page, and I found myself completely enthralled. A little over an hour later I set the book down and finally had a chance to breathe. Let me tell you, Dom Testa has my heart now.

Now that I have that out of my system, let's talk about the book. The Comet's Curse shows us a world that is suffering in the aftermath of a deadly virus. What's different about this story is that no human engineered this virus, nor was it a result of animals. No, it is a simple comet that has brought about the end of mankind. As the story opens, scientists are scurrying to find a way to preserve what is left of the population (the teenagers) before they too meet an untimely end. If that isn't a great way to start a book that will keep your interest, I don't know what is. Unless of course you add in the fact that the plan is to send these teens into space. Now do I have your attention?

What I loved most about this book, truly, was the characters. Each one of them was so real and deep. Dom Testa allows his characters minds of their own and, love them or hate them, the characters in this book act and think like real teens would. Triana (Tree) was without a doubt my favorite. Without any adult interaction, it falls to Tree to be the sound of reason during the mission. I just couldn't fathom having that much responsibility, no matter how smart she really was. I loved her resilience, her honesty, and most of all the way she sometimes just felt lost. I don't know how you could be millions of miles away from your planet and not feel that way. It's real, and it's wonderful.

As I was falling in love with the characters, I was also introduced to life aboard the ship. The descriptions are vivid, and there were points where I felt like I was actually there. When things took a turn for the creepy, I was pulled right on in. Personally I just adored being able to close my eyes and envision the setting. There is also a lot of room for the reader to think really heavily about what they would do in the situation that these characters are in. Sure, there is a certain amount of improbability to some of the story, but I think to enjoy science fiction you have to let go of reality and just get lost.

I'm rambling I know. I could go on for days about the cute romance that doesn't at all overshadow the story line. Or about the awesome technology that is created. I could even tell you about Roc, the coolest computer ever. However I'll leave that to you to find out when you pick up a copy of The Comet's Curse. Suffice it to say that this is a series that I know I'm going to love! Lucky for me I already have the next book in the series handy, because I'll be diving back in as soon as I can.




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Top 10's with Griffin Hayes



Please welcome Griffin Hayes to the blog today ladies and gentlemen! Author of Malice, he is out in the blogosphere touring up a storm. Can I please say I both love and am scared of this cover in equal measures?

When a series of shocking suicides rock the small town of Millingham, Massachusetts, the authorities are left with a single burning question. Why are all the victims gouging their eyes out?

Only seventeen-year-old Lysander Shore knows these aren't suicides at all. There's a serial killer stalking the people of Millingham. One that murders at will and never leaves a trace.

Soon, the long trail of bodies leads Lysander to a dark secret. One that traces back to a witch's trial and execution 350 years ago. The deeper he digs, the more he realizes the victims aren't nearly as random as they seem. In fact, the killer has a list and Lysander is next.


Intrigued? I have to say that I definitely was once I saw that synopsis! My review of this book will up very soon! In the meantime, I've asked Griffin Hayes to sate our need to know random information about the authors we read. In an act of awesome, he not only answered one of my post options, but BOTH! Please enjoy.


Top 10 Snack Foods

10 Pizza
9 Barbeque chips
8 Pop Tarts
7 Corn dogs
6 Chocolate chip cookies
5 Oreo cookies
4 Powdered donuts
3 Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cereal
2 Reese’s Pieces
1 Ice cream


Top 10 Movie Quotes

10 “They call me Mister Tibbs!” (In the Heat of the Night)
9 “I see dead people.” (The Sixth Sense)
8 “I'll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too!” (The Wizard of Oz)
7 “I'm walking here! I'm walking here!” (Midnight Cowboy)
6 “I love the smell of napalm in the morning.” (Apocalypse Now)
5 “Say 'hello' to my little friend!” (Scarface)
4 “You’re gonna need a bigger boat.” (Jaws)
3 “Get to the chopper!” (Predator)
2 “Here's Johnny!” (The Shining)
1 “What do you tell a man with two black eyes? Nothing, he's already been told twice.” (Be Cool)


A huge thank you for all this wonderful content! I'm going to have to agree on all (yes ALL) the snack food choices. Now I'm hungry...

Monday, April 9, 2012

Illumine's Wish: An Epic Whirlwind Giveaway!



This lovely person right here is Alivia Anders. She's pretty much the coolest author type person that you'll ever have the pleasure to meet. Her sense of humor is fabulous. She likes zombies. And chocolate. Oh, and she promises not to eat your brains. As long as they don't resemble scrambled eggs.

She's just spiffy.

THIS is Alivia's book, Ilumine.

As her debut novel, she has high hopes for where this book will go. I read it. I enjoyed it. Now I am eagerly awaiting the rest of the story! That's why I am happy to help spread the Illumine love.


Now what, you ask, are you babbling on about Jessica? Get to the point already! 
You got it. This post is all about helping Illumine get the love it deserves, and helping Alivia fulfill her birthday wish of sharing it with the masses. Lucky for you, instead of asking for presents, Alivia is giving some away to YOU!

Up for grabs in this wonderful giveaway are three prize packs:

#1 - The Swag Pack
Winner will receive an Illumine signed bookmark and an Obumbrate (the sequel) special edition bookmark!

#2 - Book and Swag
Winner will receive an Illumine signed bookmark, an Obumbrate special edition bookmark and a signed paperback copy of Illumine!

#3 - THE JEWELRY
Winner will receive a one-of-a-kind, gorgeous Illumine pendant! (So excited about this one!) Plus an Illumine bookmark to sweeten the deal.


EXCITED? YOU SHOULD BE!

But wait, there's more! You can also enter to win ARC copies of Obumbrate, the second book in the series! Just scurry on over to Alivia's blog, and work your magic. Remember, this is a whirlwind tour. You only have a few short days to enter, so hurry!

To enter to win one of the three lovely prize packs above, just fill out the Rafflecopter form below. This giveaway is open to EVERYONE, so please spread the word!

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