For YA & Adult Readers!

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First Look: Forbidden Promises by Katee Robert, Plus a Giveaway

Meet Jude and Sloan in the next O'Malleys Story!
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Blog Tour Event: Daring the Pilot by Jeannie Moon

Keely and Jonah drop everything to fight for what matters, including each other.
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Blog Tour: After the Dark by Cynthia Eden, Now Available!

In New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Eden's gripping new series, a disgraced FBI profiler must save her reputation by stopping a sadistic killer she knows all too well.
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Blog Tour: Hard Justice by Lori Foster, Now Available!

NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Lori Foster returns with the second installment in her explosive new series featuring sexy bodyguards who’ll do anything to protect the ones they love.
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Sneak Peak of Second Circle Tattoos Spinoff: Jordan Reclaimed!

Preview Scarlett Cole's latest novel.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: PANIC by Sharon Draper

Hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine

Wow, I've just realized how long it's been since I've done a weekly meme! I've been wanting to do Waiting on Wednesday again for a while  but I hadn't had time until now. So without further ado my pick for this week...

PANIC

Expected Pub Date: March 12, 2013
Atheneum Books for Young Readers 


This gripping and chillingly realistic novel from New York Times bestselling author Sharon Draper shows that all it takes is one bad decision for everything to change.

Diamond knows not to get into a car with a stranger.

But what if the stranger is well-dressed and handsome? On his way to meet his wife and daughter? And casting a movie that very night—a movie in need of a star dancer? What then?

Then Diamond might make the wrong decision.

It’s a nightmare come true: Diamond Landers has been kidnapped. She was at the mall with a friend, alone for only a few brief minutes—and now she’s being held captive, forced to endure horrors beyond what she ever could have dreamed, while her family and friends experience their own torments and wait desperately for any bit of news.

From New York Times bestselling author Sharon Draper, this is a riveting exploration of power: how quickly we can lose it—and how we can take it back.

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

{Blog Tour} Review: Masquerade by Nicole Flockton

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MASQUERADE

by Nicole Flockton
Publication Date: October 22, 2012
Publisher: Crimson Romance
Pages/Format: 161; Ebook
Source: eARC

After being humiliated by her fiancée, Sophie Franklyn has decided that getting involved with work colleagues and men in general isn’t for her. Now her focus is going to be on her career and her recent promotion. That is until at a New Year’s Eve masquerade ball, she meets a man that tempts her to question her choices.

Alex Scavoni is extremely dedicated to his job, so dedicated that his first marriage crumbled under the pressure of his dedication. Now he’s happily single, with a new job he’s excited to start. When he meets a masked Sophie at the ball, she fires desires in him he thought long dead. He spends a wonderful night with her, but wakes up alone.

The next time the two meet, it’s in the high pressure world of Emergency Room medicine where they must work side by side. While they deal with the stresses of the Emergency ward, they endeavor to keep their feelings for each other on a professional nature. When the desire that pushed them together that one night flares to life again, can they ignore them or will their one night together have consequences neither of them planned on?
Purchase: Amazon
Masquerade lives up to its title as Nicole Flockton gives readers a taste of secrecy and disguise at the very opening of the novel. Sophie attends a work function with a masked New Years celebration theme. The formally engaged emergency nurse is determined to use the brief anonymity to begin anew. Her plan comes together as Alex Scavoni steps up to be her 'Mr. Right Now'. Her carefree night of passion comes with consequences, though, as Alex turns out to be her boss, and Sophie's already broken her vow to never again get involved with a coworker.

Sophie is a fun character that surprises throughout the story. Even though Sophie comes from a wealthy family she makes sure to dwell more on her accomplishments that contradict with the average socialite. Her high-pressure job as a nursing unit manager showcases her strengths and keeps us on our toes as she expresses her doubts in being able to handle the job this time around. Flockton goes between Sophie and Alex in third person perspective to give readers a taste of their motives and secrets. Alex and Sophie both have pasts that continue to haunt them. Alex's first marriage that ended in disaster and Sophie's struggle to remain independent while trying to forget a failed relationship brings the two together and also creates reasons for them to remain apart. 

Each characters' struggle to remain uninvolved with a coworker was handled differently, but I think the characters gave in too easily to each other. On one hand, I'm proud of Sophie and Alex for going after what makes them happy, it's a romance novel after all. On the other hand, I feel like Sophie doesn't wholeheartedly resist Alex to stay true to the promises she made herself. Sometimes she came across as lacking conviction, which is insane because Sophie is a very determined character. Alex's deep dark secret is a touch overplayed, or less drastic that he made it seem, before all was revealed. I think the romance aspect of the story would have made an even bigger impact if one of the characters had experienced a more tragic loss; I couldn't really care too much if Alex and Sophie got together in the end because they seemed alright as they were before meeting each other. They weren't too broken and seemed like strong enough characters to eventually pull themselves together.

Masquerade's plot will take you through emotions that range from gloomy to elated, and everything in between, but overall Flockton rounds the story into one that doesn't head where you might expect. This contemporary romance is definitely one worth picking up and giving a chance!
*eARC provided in exchange for an honest review and blog tour purposes*

Add MASQUERADE on Goodreads
Connect with Nicole: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nicole is an Australian living in Houston Tx when she’s not chasing the kids or the dog, she is writing romances where she can escape to a world she can control. She writes contemporary romances where you could find yourself in the chaos of a hospital emergency ward or in the high powered boardroom of a powerful, yet sexy, executive. You can find out more about her at www.nicoleflockton.com. You can follow her on twitter https://twitter.com/#!/NicoleFlockton or on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/NicoleFlockton

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Sunday, October 28, 2012

Ambuzzador: Intro - The Paladin Prophecy

Recently I was chosen as a Random Buzzer Ambuzzador. For the Fall 2012 season my team of Ambuzzadors have been tasked with buzzing about Mark Frost's first young adult release, THE PALADIN PROPHECY!

Life has become slightly hectic since my appointment, but I've finally managed to schedule the time to talk about The Paladin Prophecy. Over the next few weeks I'd like to share my thoughts on the novel as I continue to read it, and hopefully I'll entice you to go pick it up for yourselves! I may drop in with random posts that relate to the novel, but I will have a special giveaway for anyone who takes the time to check out my Ambuzzador related posts and comments! (Hint: Be on the lookout for weekly posts that begin with Ambuzzador!)

So, to gear you all up for the next few weeks of The Paladin Prophecy talk, check out the book summary, trailer, and author bio! I'll make sure to share a picture of some of the cool goodies I'll be giving away on the next post. :)

THE PALADIN PROPHECY

by Mark Frost

Will West is careful to live life under the radar. At his parents' insistence, he's made sure to get mediocre grades and to stay in the middle of the pack on his cross-country team. Then Will slips up, accidentally scoring off the charts on a nationwide exam.

Now Will is being courted by an exclusive prep school . . . and is being followed by men driving black sedans. When Will suddenly loses his parents, he must flee to the school. There he begins to explore all that he's capable of--physical and mental feats that should be impossible--and learns that his abilities are connected to a struggle between titanic forces that has lasted for millennia.

Co-creator of the groundbreaking television series Twin Peaks, Mark Frost brings his unique vision to this sophisticated adventure, which combines mystery, heart-pounding action, and the supernatural.

Book Trailer:



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
MARK FROST studied directing and playwriting at Carnegie Mellon University. He partnered with David Lynch to create and executive produce the groundbreaking television series Twin Peaks. Frost cowrote the screenplays for the films Fantastic Four and Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. He is also the New York Times bestselling author of eight previous books, including The List of Seven, The Second Objective, The Greatest Game Ever Played, and The Match.

In fall of 2012 Frost will launch his ninth book, a novel titled The Paladin Prophecy – the first of a fantasy sci-fi trilogy for the young adult audience – for Random House in both the US, UK and many other countries around the world.
He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and son.
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Saturday, October 27, 2012

{Review} SAGA, VOL 1 by Brian K. Vaughan

SAGA

Volume #1
by Brian K. Vaughan
Artist: Fiona Staples
Publication Date: October 23, 2012
Publisher: Image Comics
Pages/Format: 160; Paperback
Source: Netgalley

When two soldiers from opposite sides of a never-ending galactic war fall in love, they risk everything to bring a fragile new life into a dangerous old universe.

From New York Times bestselling writer Brian K. Vaughan (Y: The Last Man, Ex Machina) and critically acclaimed artist Fiona Staples (Mystery Society, North 40), Saga is the sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the worlds. Fantasy and science fiction are wed like never before in this sexy, subversive drama for adults. This specially priced volume collects the first six issues of the smash-hit series The Onion A.V. Club calls "the emotional epic Hollywood wishes it could make."
Purchase: Amazon | B&N
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Friday, October 26, 2012

Cover Reveal: Blood Bound by Keshia Swaim

BLOOD BOUND

by Keshia Swaim
Publication Date: September 10, 2013
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Format: Paperback, e-book
Genre: Young Adult | Fantasy
Add to Goodreads

ABOUT:

Starting college a year early is hard. Starting fae college and learning to protect the world from the Unseelie is harder.

Brielle Reed has always been an over-achiever, but this time she may have bitten off more than she can chew. Between her crash course in fae politics, struggles to control her new mind-reading ability, training sessions with the demanding Dr. Schwartz, and discoveries about the father who is still a mystery to her, Brielle finds herself longing for a chance at a normal life.

But she may not get that chance. Or chance at a life at all, for that matter.

Read on and VOTE for your favorite cover!!

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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

{Review} ANGEL ARIAS by Marianne de Pierres

ANGEL ARIAS

Night Creatures Series #2
by Marianne de Pierres
Publication Date: October 3, 2011
Publisher: Random House Australia
Pages/Format: 270; Paperback, ebook
Source: Won from Author

Retra - now called Naif - has escaped from Ixion, the island of ever-night. She doesn't know if her friends on the island survived the battle between the Ripers and the rebels. But she does know that she must return home, behind the sealed walls of Grave, to find out why the Ripers have been seen there talking to the councillors. What links the two worlds?

First she must convince Ruzalia to help her. The fierce pirate captain saves those who face terrible fates on Ixion, but that doesn't guarantee their gratitude. Instead, she faces a revolt - and Naif is caught in the middle. Naif will need all her courage to survive. For Lenoir, who wants to keep her safe, for her friends Suki and Rollo, if they live, for Markes, who has secrets of his own, and for the new friends she will make on this journey.

The fate of worlds depends on it.
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Monday, October 22, 2012

{Review} Moonlight & Mechanicals by Cindy Spencer Pape

MOONLIGHT & MECHANICALS

Gaslight Chronicles #4
by Cindy Spencer Pape
Publication Date: October 22, 2012
Publisher: Carina Press
Pages/Format: 176; Ebook
Source: Netgalley

London, 1859 Engineer Winifred "Wink" Hadrian has been in love with Inspector Liam McCullough for years, but is beginning to lose hope when he swears to be a lifelong bachelor. Faced with a proposal from a Knight of the Round Table and one of her closest friends, Wink reluctantly agrees to consider him instead. Because of his dark werewolf past, Liam tries to keep his distance, but can't say no when Wink asks him to help find her friend's missing son. They soon discover that London's poorest are disappearing at an alarming rate, after encounters with mysterious "mechanical" men. Even more alarming is the connection the missing people may have with a conspiracy against the Queen. Fighting against time—and their escalating feelings for each other—Wink and Liam must work together to find the missing people and save the monarchy before it's too late...
Purchase: Amazon | B&N
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{Review}: The Athena Effect by Derrolyn Anderson + Giveaway

THE ATHENA EFFECT

by Derrolyn Anderson
Publication Date: August 2012
Pages/Format: 223; Ebook
Source: Author

Country girl Cali has been kept a secret her entire life, raised in isolation by two very troubled people. Despite her parent’s disturbing fits, Cal is perfectly content, living at one with the nature that surrounds her, and finding adventure inside the pages of her beloved books. When an awful tragedy tears her away from her remote cabin in the woods, nothing she’s ever read has prepared her for a world that she knows very little about.

Girls and motorcycles are what bad-boy Cal’s life is all about. Brought up in a raucous party house by his biker brother, he’s free to do as he pleases, going through the motions on his final days of high school. Aimless, Cal stopped thinking about his future a long time ago.

Attacked by a gang of thugs while running an errand for his brother, Cal is in serious trouble until a fierce girl appears out of nowhere to intervene. She chases off three grown men, sparing Cal a brutal beating before disappearing into the night like a spirit. He can’t stop thinking about his mysterious rescuer, and when she turns out to be the weird new girl at school who goes out of her way to avoid him, he can’t contain his curiosity.

He’s never met anyone like her before, and the more he learns about the unusual girl who shares his nickname, the more he wants to know. Cal can’t help falling for Cal, but can he keep her from falling victim to a dangerous enemy from her parent’s tragic past?
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Smashwords
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Saturday, October 20, 2012

{Review} LULLABY by Amanda Hocking + Book Trailer

LULLABY

Watersong Series #2
by Amanda Hocking
Publication Date: November 27, 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Pages/Format: 290; Hardcover, Ebook, Audio
Source: eARC

Harper only wanted a safe, normal life. But when her younger sister Gemma runs off with a dangerous clique of beautiful girls, Penn, Thea, and Lexi, everything changes. Vowing to get her sister back no matter what the cost, Harper must face dangers unlike any she's ever experienced. Fortunately, she has Daniel by her side, a gorgeous guy who's devoted to helping her find her sister—and who's immune to the girls' dark powers.

While Harper searches for her sister, Gemma struggles to adjust to her new life. Gemma's powers are growing by the day, and the longer she lives with her new "sisters," the harder it is to resist entering their magical world. It's a realm both dark and beautiful, and where she's plagued by strange hungers and unspeakable needs. Just as she's drifting far away from her old life, Harper and Daniel find her...but no one can deny how much she's changed. All she wants is to return to her family and the mortal world, but how can she do that when she's become something else entirely—and will they still love her once they learn the truth?

Prepare to fall under the spell of Lullaby, the second book in the Watersong series from New York Times bestselling author Amanda Hocking.
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Powell's
The Watersong Series began with a bang as Amanda Hocking’s first never-before published novel, Wake, hit stores. In Wake, Hocking introduces readers to the two sisters, Harper and Gemma, whose relationship is put to the test when Gemma is targeted, and forcefully recruited, by three strangers who appeared mysteriously in their small town. The story resumes in Lullaby as Harper deals with the aftermath of Gemma's running away with Penn, Lexi, and Thea. Her friendship with Daniel becomes strained as she pushes him aside to search for Gemma, researches who Penn, Lexi, and Thea might be, and why they lured Gemma away from their family. Meanwhile, Gemma is stuck with the sirens and hoping against all hope that she can reject their violent nature. Penn, Lexi, and Thea’s background story is lightened with a few more details, but it only serves to prove to Gemma that she doesn’t belong with them.

The progression of Lullaby is just as it was with Wake. Alex, Harper and Daniel struggle to make sense of the myths and legends they discover while they all feel the pressure of what danger lurks for Gemma, and them. The plot builds to what could’ve been an explosive conclusion. With only an advanced galley to go on I won’t go into too much detail, as scenes might change, but Wake offered readers a surprising twist and stronger taste of the paranormal as Harper faced down Penn, Lexi, and Thea before they stole off into the sea. Lullaby also comes down a tension filled Mexican standoff-like scene; this time Harper doesn’t stand alone against the sirens. It was slightly disappointing, to say the least, because it was just too easy after the novel built up so much tension and an aching for some hard-hitting action. However, my faith is not lost in this series as I believe Hocking may have some pretty big tricks hiding up her sleeves for the next installment, Tidal.

Different sides of the characters arise, as well. Alex is so clear about his feelings for Gemma, and Hocking expresses his feelings with few words to lend to his sincerity. When it comes to the romance in this series, it’s not cheesy exclamations or a spill of romantic clichés that make readers swoon, but the simple realness of the characters who know who and what they want. A softer, more insightful, side of Harper emerges as Daniel prods her to open up. Gemma, caught between her family and three evil girls, learns to stand up to Penn, Lexi, and Thea, to some degree, while fighting her new body to stay alive.

Lullaby wasn’t the action-packed sequel I’d been expecting, but it still does wonders for the series. The characters come more to life and forge a greater bond between readers. Amanda Hocking’s Watersong series is only at its beginning, but readers are wise to not miss out on what is sure to be a fantastic series!
*eARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review*

See my review of WAKE & interview with Amanda Hocking!

Read an excerpt of Lullaby!
Add LULLABY to Goodreads
Connect with Amanda: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

~BOOK TRAILER~

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Friday, October 19, 2012

{Review} Heart of the Dragon's Realm by Karalynn Lee

HEART OF THE DRAGON'S REALM

by Karalynn Lee
Publication Date: October 29, 2012
Publisher: Carina Press
Pages/Format: 142; Ebook
Source: Netgalley

Princess Kimri is used to betrayal. Her brother sold her to a king in exchange for swords to defend his lands. King Tathan's reputation is as fierce as that of his mountain kingdom—where dragons are said to guard the castle walls—but the realms are unstable enough without angering the mountain-king, so Kimri reluctantly agrees to the union.

When she arrives in Helsmont, the king promises her a year of courtship before marrying—or parting ways. Before long, Kimri thinks she may find comfort, and perhaps eventually love, with the stoic king.

But the realms are more unsettled than Kimri realizes, and she soon finds herself caught in the middle of a war between the kingdoms. Can she count on her betrothed to take her side? Or will his loyalty to his kingdom come before his loyalty to her?
Purchase: Amazon | B&N
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Thursday, October 18, 2012

{Review} Katya's World by Jonathan L. Howard

KATYA'S WORLD

Katya Kuriakova #1
by Jonathan L. Howard
Publication Date: November 6, 2012
Publisher: Strange Chemistry (Angry Robot)
Pages/Format: 339; Paperback, Ebook
Source: Netgalley

The distant and unloved colony world of Russalka has no land, only the raging sea. No clear skies, only the endless storm clouds. Beneath the waves, the people live in pressurised environments and take what they need from the boundless ocean. It is a hard life, but it is theirs and they fought a war against Earth to protect it. But wars leave wounds that never quite heal, and secrets that never quite lie silent. Katya Kuriakova doesn't care much about ancient history like that, though. She is making her first submarine voyage as crew; the first nice, simple journey of what she expects to be a nice, simple career. There is nothing nice and simple about the deep black waters of Russalka, however; soon she will encounter pirates and war criminals, see death and tragedy at first hand, and realise that her world's future lies on the narrowest of knife edges. For in the crushing depths lies a sleeping monster, an abomination of unknown origin, and when it wakes, it will seek out and kill every single person on the planet.
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Powell's
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Book Blast: FLIGHT by J.A. Huss

This Book Blast was organized by SupaGurl Tours!

Here, folks, is the conclusion to J.A. Huss' action-packed sci-fi series: I AM JUST JUNCO!

FLIGHT

Publication Date: October 1, 2012
Publisher: Science Future Press
Pages/Format: 370;Paperback, ebook
Add FLIGHT to Goodreads

You don’t want to owe that Luck bastard anything. It always asks for something in return.There’s a new twist on an old prophecy and this one brings the End of Days. Junco must make a choice – human or avian? Only one race can survive. Lucan has secrets and the lies are flowing like a mountain river during spring thaw. But he needs Junco to cooperate just a little bit longer or it all falls apart. The Siblings on Earth are waiting for the Seventh to return and pull their clutch together. But Earth has secrets too – secrets that change everything. Junco has survived against impossible odds, but the cost of survival is higher than she ever imagined. Luck is about to catch up with Junco Coot and her debt must be paid.

CONTENT WARNING - You know the drill...this is Junco we're talking about, right? Bad language, no qualms about killing.
Purchase: Amazon

Read on for the FLIGHT book trailer!!

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

{Blog Tour} Review: The Sun, The Moon, and Maybe the Trains by Rodney Jones

See the full schedule for The Maybe Trains Tour!

THE SUN, THE MOON, AND MAYBE THE TRAINS

by Rodney Jones
Publication Date: October 2, 2012
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing
Pages/Format: 252; Paperback, ebook
Source: eARC

What would it take to convince you that the woods you just left is a hundred and forty-four years distant from the one you entered? Ten years have passed since the Civil War broke up John Bartley’s family. Living with his aunt and uncle in the tiny village of Greendale, Vermont, isn’t filled with excitement for a seventeen-year-old. Until John walks into the woods one day and stumbles into 2009…

Fortunately, he chances upon the outspoken Tess McKinnon. To earn her trust, he must first convince her that he is neither a lunatic nor a liar. The proof he needs is buried at the end of a mountain road, where the ruins of Greendale lie just beneath a layer of dead leaves and moss. What became of his home? Why is there no record of its existence?
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Smashwords
Rodney Jones gives readers a taste of 1875 in Vermont. John Bartley lives with his aunt and uncle in the small town of Greendale, where children mind their elders and everyone has a place and responsibility. A routine to Rutland goes awry when on John’s way home the scenery evolves and he finds himself in 2009 Vermont. The Sun, the Moon, and Maybe the Trains is a light genre mix of science and historical fiction that readers will quickly enjoy. There’s even a hint of romance to keep readers engaged.

John Bartley has a unique voice, as do most of the characters, but his personality didn’t excite me or keep me interested in his thoughts or feelings. He’s such a consistent character in temperament and attitude that he seems too perfect and unreal. His story is no doubt interesting; finding himself in a familiar place at a different time has to be a confounding experience. I favored his time spent in 2009 because his reactions were humorous, especially when Tess is introduced into the story. If the story centered more on his experience in the modern version of Vermont, I would have enjoyed a big percentage more than I already did. Tess, a secondary character, actually becomes very essential to the plot. John and Tess’ friendship was very sweet to read about and readers will root for them in their adventure.

Jones gets you thinking about the possibilities of time travel. Usually, time travel raises thoughts about the implications of how every action could change the past or future, but here Jones answers the simple question of what would happen if time travel happened unexpectedly? After his trip to the future, there’s even a point where John must decide how to save his town from a disastrous outcome. I believe The Sun, the Moon, and Maybe the Trains is the kind of story that will give each reader something different to latch on to and contemplate, but overall will definitely enjoy.

The plot isn’t at all predictable and the buildup of tension leading to the conclusion of the story really incites great emotion. But the nervous flutters and racing heart won’t dim your appreciation as The Sun, the Moon, and Maybe the Trains ends on a note of good-naturedness and a surprise twist.
*eARC provided in exchange for an honest review and blog tour purposes*

Add The Sun, The Moon, and Maybe the Trains to Goodreads
Connect with Rodney: Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Monday, October 15, 2012

{Blog Tour} Review: Iridescent by Carol Oates

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IRIDESCENT

Ember Series #2
by Carol Oates
Publication Date: October 16, 2012
Publisher: Omnific Publishing
Pages/Format: 330; Paperback, ebook
Source: eARC

Candra Ember used to dream of saving the world one person at a time. She never expected to become an angelic weapon and the last hope in the battle against ultimate darkness. Falling for a Nephilim wasn’t part of Sebastian’s plan. Distraction is something he can’t afford when his rival, Draven, wants what Sebastian has. Lies, manipulation, and corruption are twisting the lives of the citizens in Acheron. The Arch is missing from Heaven, and a demon is intent on claiming the city. At a time they should be growing closer, grief and paranoia is driving Candra and Sebastian apart. If the price of restoring the Watchers to Heaven is a human soul, who deserves to be saved?
Purchase: Amazon | B&N
Carol Oates sends readers back to the world of Acheron. War is on the horizon and Candra still struggles with her special status as a Nephilim with a soul. While the angels behind Draven and Sebastian are under an uneasy alliance, the incoming threat is unknown and getting closer. Iridescent is a startling novel following the events of Ember. The novel begins within the same time frame as Candra describes the aftermath of her best friend’s death and the unity of the Tenebras and Nuhra angels.

Candra is a force of nature in Iridescent. Her presence fills the story so that it’s almost possible to forget about the impending danger and focus on her strength, resolve to fight for the Watchers, and take charge attitude. Candra is more aggressive when it comes to getting the answers she needs, whether it’s from Sebastian or Draven or the enemy. It’s a wonder that Oates gives Candra more courage, more spunk, and more understanding, yet she embodies the same personality we met in Ember. If it is a heroine of flesh and blood made passionate and brave from circumstances that you’re looking for, look no further because Candra is all of the above and then some.

Sebastian, with his quick-temper and fierce protective streak, steals the show in flashing moments of selflessness. He’s even more of an asset to this story, even when it seems as though he’s heading in the wrong direction. Sebastian and Candra’s relationship is so crucial that it feels as though they’re the real center of the plot, because they’re either working for each other or against each other’s wishes. The attraction that drew them together in Ember intensifies through tests and heartache in Iridescent.

Oates’ style is familiar and as detailed as ever. As action-packed as Iridescent is, her ability to write what readers are able to envision is helpful and keeps the story engaging. Every page read is more captivating than the last as the story pulls you in deeper and deeper. I can only count about two scenes that were just a touch too drawn out for any dramatic effect to truly be successful. Otherwise, Oates hit the nail on the head when it comes to making you feel something in any tough situation throughout the novel.

Iridescent is a wonderful sequel to Ember, and if possible, better. The ending is one you can almost say is expected, but Oates throws just enough of a twist in to conclude Iridescent with a bang. Whether readers should expect more novels in this series is irrelevant, because the next novel Carol Oates graces us with will no doubt entertain and endear to us in the same manner as the Ember series!
*eARC provided in exchange for an honest review and blog tour purposes*

Add IRIDESCENT to Goodreads
Connect with Carol: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

~Book Trailer~

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Sunday, October 14, 2012

{Review} Lovely, Dark, and Deep by Amy McNamara

LOVELY, DARK, AND DEEP

by Amy McNamara
Publication Date: October 16, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Pages/Format: 352; Hardcover, ebook
Source: ARC

A resonant debut novel about retreating from the world after losing everything—and the connections that force you to rejoin it. Since the night of the crash, Wren Wells has been running away. Though she lived through the accident that killed her boyfriend Patrick, the girl she used to be didn’t survive. Instead of heading off to college as planned, Wren retreats to her father’s studio in the far-north woods of Maine. Somehwere she can be alone.

Then she meets Cal Owen. Dealing with his own troubles, Cal’s hiding out too. When the chemistry between them threatens to pull Wren from her hard-won isolation, Wren has to choose: risk opening her broken heart to the world again, or join the ghosts who haunt her.
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Powell's
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Friday, October 12, 2012

{Blog Tour} Review: Thought I Knew You by Kate Moretti

See the full schedule for The Knew You Tour!

THOUGHT I KNEW YOU

by Kate Moretti
Publication Date: September 15, 2012
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing
Pages/Format: 276; Paperback & ebook
Source: Review copy for blog tour

Claire Barnes is shattered when her husband, Greg, goes on a business trip and never returns. Unwilling to just wait for the police to find him, Claire conducts her own investigation. Her best friend Drew helps her look for answers, but all she finds are troubling questions. With every clue, she discovers that Greg may not be the man she thought she married. While battling her growing feelings for Drew and raising her two young children, Claire must learn to live with the knowledge that the truth behind Greg’s disappearance may never be revealed.
Kate Moretti's debut is unbelievably intense. Thought I Knew You follows as a mother of two young girls questions the reality of being happy and having a successful marriage. Despite the mystery of Claire's husband's disappearance, and the what-ifs of their past and future, the story is supremely family-oriented. Claire's thoughts consistently revolve around how much her daughters' lives will change as the missing-person case takes its toll on their morale.

Even if rare, Claire's situation could happen to anyone, and Moretti took care to find ways for readers to relate and connect to the story. Claire's reaction to her husband's strange disappearance is real, understandable, and most definitely engrossing. She goes through the motions, grieves, battles with rage, but eventually puts her kids ahead of herself. Claire learns to be strong in a time of great uncertainty, but not without the support of her family and best friends, Drew and Sarah. Her change in attitude comes with the acceptance that her marriage to Greg wasn't perfect and she may never have closure, but all the same, it's encouraging and inspiring to witness her ability to deal and move on.

Thought I Knew You is such a full and satisfying read. The novel overall is consistently entertaining and will certainly leave readers eagerly waiting for another Kate Moretti novel!
*Review copy provided in exchange for an honest review and blog tour purposes*

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Connect with Kate: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Book Blast: FLEDGE by J.A. Huss

This Book Blast was organized by SupaGurl Tours!

Check out the next book in the I AM JUST JUNCO series!

FLEDGE

Publication Date: October 1, 2012
Publisher: Science Future Press
Pages/Format: 388; Paperback, ebook
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Well-trained soldier or genetically engineered monster? Junco Coot can’t even remember her trip off Earth; she was too busy being morphed into her new avian body. But reality hits her hard when she wakes up to find her new life is not what she expected. Not even close.

Tier is on trial for treason, the avian president wants her dead, her new military team is hostile, her body is being taken over by an illicit AI, and her only friend is a ten-year old throwaway boy.

In most places the avian Fledge ritual would be nothing more than mass murder, but here in the capital city of Amelia, it’s called growing up. Junco has two choices: fight to the death to prove her worth, or get sent back to Earth in the hands of her enemies. In a foreign culture and surrounded by people she can’t trust or count on, Junco must find a way to save herself and Tier without losing her immortal soul in the process.

CONTENT WARNING - Just like CLUTCH, Book Two has lots of bad language and extreme violence. You've been warned. This series is NOT YOUNG ADULT.
Purchase: Amazon
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Cover Reveal: VEER by Alyssa Rose Ivy + Giveaway

VEER

Clayton Falls #2
by Alyssa Rose Ivy
Publication Date: December 2012
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
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Only when you let go can you learn to live.

Between the death of her mother and pushing through law school without her best friend, it's been a tough year for Becca. Needing a break from Boston, she moves to a tiny coastal North Carolina town for a relaxing summer. After bumping heads repeatedly with a local cop, she realizes her summer will be anything but quiet.

Three years after a career ending injury ruins his chance to play Major League Baseball, Gavin has a distrust of northerners and lately girls in general. He wants nothing to do with a girl who is only in town for the summer.

When the two give in to their impossible attraction, they realize that they may just have found the key to freeing themselves from the ghosts of their pasts.

The Cover for VEER was designed by Once Upon A Time Covers!
Yowza! How HOTT is this cover?! If Veer's cover is any indication of the steamy romance in the story, I am so ready to read it! :) What do you all think?

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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

{Blog Tour} Review: The Color of Grace by Linda Kage + Guest Post on Gut Instinct

THE COLOR OF GRACE

by Linda Kage
Publication Date: September 15, 2012
Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
Pages/Format: 333; Paperback, ebook
Source: eARC

When my mother remarried after thirteen years of being a widow, I had to move to a new town and enroll in a new school. Suddenly thrust into an entirely different kind of life, I just wanted to go home. I didn’t want to meet new people, didn’t want to leave my old friends, didn’t want to become a third wheel to my mom and her husband…and I really didn’t want to see Ryder Yates again. Ugh, I still don’t know why I turned down that too-good-to-be-true boy who flirted with me when we were attending separate schools. But honestly, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. It was worse. Who knew becoming lost in a new life could help a girl find her true colors?
Purchase: Amazon | B&N
Linda Kage's The Color of Grace is fabulous! Kage's writing style flows easily and engages readers immediately. Grace is such an endearing character; it's so easy to become wrapped up in her life, her problems, and hopes. The Color of Grace walks readers through Grace's life just as she's about to begin a new one. Her mother just remarried and Grace must transfer to a new school nearby, which is also home to the player Grace embarrassed herself in front of at the last basketball game she attended: Ryder Yates.

Grace doesn't slide easily into her new life as it's filled with challenges, some every teen faces at one point, and others no teen should ever experience. Grace is used to being part of a small group of friends, but in her new school Grace is virtually alone before her tentative friendship with the popular crowd.  She learns that her new stepfather is known as the town's 'creep' and that Ryder Yates is more than a talented jock and the popular guy dating the head cheerleader. It seems as though the characters like Grace's mother, or Ryder, help shape Grace and give her the extra push she needs to see herself as she really is and who she can become. She's struggling to adjust to a new routine while the relationship with her mother is falling apart and she and Ryder are dancing a tango of attraction and misunderstandings.

The Color of Grace is not necessarily a quick read, but Kage knows exactly how to keep readers engaged and fighting sleep to read just one more page! It's possible to finish the book in the same day of beginning the novel. Grace is a humorous character and speaks a language that teens and adults will understand. I would love to see more characters like Grace who can have fun while keeping serious matters at heart and who can see past themselves to the realities of life. The Color of Grace hits the spot in an appetizing showcase of Linda Kage's down-to-earth writing style. My final verdict is to not miss out on this highly recommended novel!
*ebook provided by author in exchange for an honest review and blog tour purposes*

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Take a peek at the novel:

Excerpt:
“I’m Ryder.”

Startled because he hadn’t shrugged me off for a loser and left, I jolted and glanced up to take in his purple and white Southeast uniform. He was number forty-two. I had no idea why that detail stuck in my head but it seemed easier to focus on his jersey than to look back into his too-beautiful-for-his-Southeast-jersey green eyes.

He flashed his pearly whites with a knowing grin as if he realized exactly how awestruck I felt. “And you are…?” he prompted.

My mouth opened. Then closed. Then opened again. Not a word came out. My vocal chords had failed me. The most handsome boy I’d ever seen wanted to know my name.

As my brain wrapped around that fact, my thoughts fizzled and spurted out.

Run.

That was the only word to flash in bright neon lights through my head. I needed to get out of there before he realized I was a nobody.

“Not interested,” I blurted, more in a mummy trance than from actually thinking my answer through, because why, oh heavens, why I said not interested I still don’t know.
 

GUEST POST

Gut Instinct
by Linda Cage

“But there were signs, a certain intuition that he wasn’t as good as he made himself out to be. And I just ignored them. So now I’m convinced that if I only pay attention and listen to my gut, I’ll be able to judge people better.” –Quote from The Color of Grace

I don’t know why but my young adult stories always seem to have one of those underlying after-school-special, moral-of-the-story themes to them. They’re not in your face tacky (well, I hope not anyway!), but if you dig a little, you can find an ethical lesson under the plot.

In The Color of Grace, the biggest moral of the story would probably be for all teenage girls to trust her natural instincts.

You know not to enter the dark, creepy house with the broken-out windows and a shadow moving across the doorway.  You know better than to follow the horny guy with that slick, scheming look in his eyes into a quiet upstairs bedroom during a rave party. 

You know better.

You do.

Your gut is like the ultimate guard dog. When the threat of danger approaches, your nerves begin to tweak, your heart rate picks up, your palms grow a little moist. Your gut perks its ears and stares daggers at any kind of brewing mischief, maybe rumbles a warning growl under its breath (which probably feels a lot like indigestion).

It’s up to you to pay attention to your gut though. Sometimes the glimpse of excitement can rule out your instinct’s internal warning system.  And sometimes, things still end up okay when you go the risky route.  But sometimes…sometimes you listen to your gut, you take the safe path, and you avoid major trouble.

Back when my husband was a single young rebel, he used to go out partying with his buddies a lot. One night he decided he’d been overdoing it a bit and turned his friend down when invited to go barhopping. So while he stayed home and caught up on homework, his friend rolled his truck and lost a spleen. Listening to his gut instinct might’ve saved his life that night. Or maybe just his spleen. Who knows?

For the most part, my heroine Grace listens to her gut and avoids a couple huge catastrophes, and sometimes…well, sometimes she doesn’t listen so well and she finds herself in a heap of trouble.

Me, I’m one of those people who always (usually always) takes the safe path and I never do anything daring or risky.  It’s kind of lame and boring, yeah, but I haven’t found myself stuck in any major disasters either.

What about you? Do you listen to your all-knowing gut, or do you enter that creepy, old house just to find out what’s inside?  Have you ever regretted the decision you made by either listening to or ignoring your internal warning system?

Thanks for joining us today, Linda, and sharing your thoughts on gut instinct!

The Color of Grace Tour ButtonABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Linda grew up on a dairy farm in the Midwest as the youngest of eight children. Now she lives in Kansas with her husband, toddler daughter, and their nine cuckoo clocks. She works a day job in the acquisitions department of a university library and feels her life has been blessed with lots of people to learn from and love. Writing's always been a major part of her world, and she's thrilled to finally share some of her stories with other romance lovers. 

Connect with Linda: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Blog | Myspace | Google+ | Pinterest | Youtube

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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

{Blog Tour} Review: Until My Soul Gets It Right by Karen Wojcik Berner + Guest Post on Organizing a Classics Book Club

Tour organized by WOW-Women on Writing

UNTIL MY SOUL GETS IT RIGHT

The Bibliophiles #2
by Karen Wojcik Berner
Publication Date: May 23, 2012
Pages/Format: 294; Paperback, ebook
Source: Author

You can't run away from yourself.

Catherine Elbert has never been good at making decisions, whether it was choosing an ice cream flavor as a small child, or figuring out what she wanted to be when she grew up. The only thing Catherine knew for sure was there had to be more to life than being stuck on her family’s farm in Wisconsin.

While watching a PBS travel show, Catherine becomes entranced by Portland, Maine. The ocean. The lobsters. The rugged coast. Nothing could be more different from the flat, nondescript farmlands of Burkesville. Despite her parents threatening to disown her and her brothers taking bets on how many days until she comes home, Catherine settles on Peaks Island, off the coast of Portland.

She is finally free. Or so she thought.
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Powell's
Until My Soul Gets It Right is just as compelling as the first novel of the Bibliophiles series, A Whisper to a Scream! Karen Wojcik focuses on Catherine Elbert this time around and chronicles the different stages of her life before she joins the Classics Book Club, and after as well. The style of this novel was slightly different as it opened almost immediately in Catherine past. This method of telling her story worked for this character, but it gave Until My Soul Gets It Right a disjointed feel in relation to the series as a whole. I appreciated reading the catalysts behind many of Cat's decisions, but I would've wanted to see more of her life after joining the Classics Book Club, which only came significantly into play during the last several chapters.

Berner's characters from the first novel, Annie and Sarah, had relatable stories, but Catherine's is one that could catch the attention of a wider audience. After a bittersweet parting from her hometown at a young age, Catherine loses sight of her wants. She has a general idea of how she wants her life to play out, but her travels change her and she struggles to fit in whatever new life she makes. The outcome of Catherine's story is a big difference from that of Annie and Sarah's, and I really appreciate how Berner doesn't allow her stories to follow the exact same pattern. This excellent addition to the series will endear readers to the Bibliophiles indefinitely!
*Copy provided in exchange for an honest review and blog tour purposes*

Add Until My Soul Gets It Right on Goodreads

GUEST POST

Anyone Up for a Book Club?
By Karen Wojcik Berner

Are you longing to revisit the classics you read back in school? Or, maybe you never read them, opting instead for Cliff’s Notes and now regret your most unfortunate decision? 

Well, fellow book lovers, now is the time to start your own Classics Book Club, and I am here to help.

Each book in my series, The Bibliophiles, will feature two pieces of classic literature that are guaranteed to spark some great conversations. Just follow the steps below, and you will be well on your way.

1. Gather friends who love books and love talking about them. Or just friends who love to talk. Or just friends who like to drink. Either way, it will be a lively book club meeting.

2. Set a date. 

3. Consult the handy party ideas and discussion questions below.

4. Read. Eat. Drink. Discuss.

5.  Repeat.

In my latest novel, “Until My Soul Gets It Right (The Bibliophiles: Book Two),” the book club members have just finished reading “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Other Tales” by Washington Irving. Here are a few suggestions for your meeting.

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Other Tales

Food and Beverages

Sleepy Hollow is a Dutch settlement, so how about Kaasstengels (Dutch cheese stems) with some Erwtensoep (traditional Dutch split pea soup)? Apple and/or pumpkin pie would be lovely for dessert. How about some Advocaat, which is similar to eggnog, to warm up the evening?

You can find the recipes at the following sites.


Discussion Questions

1.  Discuss the love triangle between Brom Bones, Katrina Van Tassel and Ichabod Crane. Who do you think Katrina fancies more?

2. The story illustrates the age-old conflict between brains versus brawn. Which do you prefer in a man?

3.  How does the actual story differ from the versions you have seen in the movies or on TV?

So far, my fictional Bibliophiles have also discussed James Joyce’s “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man” and William Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” in my first novel “A Whisper to a Scream (The Bibliophiles: Book One).”

If you are interested in more meeting tips and discussion questions for those classics, please visit the book club suggestions page on my website, www.karenberner.com.

Thanks for sharing your book club tips Karen! I'm definitely going to try out those recipes! :)

GIVEAWAY

Karen has a giveaway for 10 print or ebook copies of the first book in the Bibliophiles series going on that ends OCTOBER 12, 2012A Whisper to A Scream. Just click on the book title which will take you to her website for more giveaway details!




ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Karen Wojcik Berner lives a provincial life tucked away with her family in the Chicago suburbs. If it was good enough for Jane Austen, right? However, dear Miss Austen had the good fortune of being born amid the glorious English countryside, something Karen unabashedly covets, so much so that she majored in English and communications at Dominican University.

Like the magnificent Miss Austen, Karen could not help but write about the Society that surrounds her. A booklover since she could hold one in her chubby little toddler hands, Karen wanted to announce to the world just how much she loves the written word. She considered getting a bibliophile tattoo but instead decided to write about the lives of the members of a suburban Classics Book Club. The series is called, of course, The Bibliophiles. When she isn't reading, writing, or spending her time wishing she was Jane Austen, Karen spends her time can be found sipping tea or wine, whichever is more appropriate that day, and watching Tim Burtonmovies or "Chopped," her favorite foodie TV show.

Connect with Karen: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Monday, October 8, 2012

{Review} PARADISE by Joanna Nadin

PARADISE

by Joanna Nadin
Publication Date: October 9, 2012
Publisher: Candlewick
Pages/Format: 272; Hardcover, ebook
Source: Netgalley

A move to a small seaside town gives Billie a chance at a new lifand new love -- until the underof the past pulls her toward a shocking secret. When sixteen-year-old Billie Paradise unexpectedly inherits her grandmother's house, it couldn't come at a better time. With her stepdad abroad and her mom starting to lose it, moving from their cramped London apartment to an old house by the sea seems serendipitous. Maybe Billie, as she navigates the small-town social scene and falls for a certain intriguing older boy, can even find the father she never met. But her mom's remote childhood home, which she left in haste before Billie was born, harbors hints of suspicious long-ago deaths and family secrets. As Billie's story unfolds, flowing back and forth in time and through alternate points of view, it becomes clear that while people may die, the past lives forever.
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Powell's
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