Friday, May 25, 2012

Short hiatus

Hello my lovelies! I'm taking a very short break from blogging due to some personal reasons. Nothing serious, I just need to study a little. It won't be long, just until the end of this month. I'll still be available on email, so if you need anything I will try to  respond pretty quickly. Until next week, stay safe!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Blog Tour Review: Dancing Naked in Dixie by Lauren Clark





Dancing Naked in Dixie


Author: Lauren Clark
My Rating: 5 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)


Travel writer Julia Sullivan lives life in fast-forward. She jet sets to Europe and the Caribbean with barely a moment to blink or sleep. But too many mishaps and missed deadlines have Julia on the verge of being fired.

With a stern warning, and unemployment looming, she's offered one last chance to rescue her career. Julia embarks on an unlikely journey to the ‘Heart of Dixie’—Eufaula, Alabama—home to magnificent mansions, sweet tea, and the annual Pilgrimage.

Julia arrives, soon charmed by the lovely city and her handsome host, but her stay is marred by a shocking discovery. Can Julia's story save her career, Eufaula, and the annual Pilgrimage?

This is the first Lauren Clark book I've read and I know for sure I'm going to add her on my auto-buy list. It's been a while since I had this much fun reading a book. I love chick lit and Dancing Naked in Dixie reminded me of why I fell in love with this genre in the first place. You get humor, romance, sad moments, happy moments, some really strong characters and some life lessons if you pay extra attention, all in one package. I really think this book had these and more.

There were some very funny moments where I laughed out loud (actually, I tried to muffle the giggles because it was really late and every sane person was asleep, but that's another story). The point is you will laugh a lot while reading this book!

But more than a humorous story, you get to read a story about self discovery. You get to see Julia, used to traveling the world, going to all these cool places like Bermuda, Spain, Italy, Belize, Hawaii, (but she's not actually seeing those places), discover herself and discover the little things in life that are amazing. And she  does that in a very small town, Eufaula, Alabama, a town so rich with history.

Speaking of history. I loved those parts of the book, where you get to learn about the town and how if was built and when. I also loved the fact that it wasn't like a history lesson, boring and full of unnecessary details. On the contrary, it was fun and I was looking forward to learning more about the town.

I also loved the characters. You meet some interesting people in this book and I enjoyed getting to meet each and everyone of them.

I couldn't put this book down. It was one of those "I hope the world goes away until I finish reading" books. If you love chick lit and contemporary romance, do check this book out. You won't be disappointed!




Dirty Little Secret (10)



Dirty Little Secret is a weekly meme hosted by Under The Covers.

The rules are simple:

1. Be a follower of Under the Covers.
2. Create a post in your blog taking the meme image and copy instructions.
3. Answer the weekly question.

For more information and for signing up, go to the Under The Covers blog.


This week's question:




What's the sexiest item of clothing a hero can wear in a novel?



Ooooh, I know. Picture a hot guy that just finished taking a shower and he's just wearing a towel. JUST a towel!

Also, a black leather biker jacket is so hawt and sexy! Ummm...Jeans too. 

But my personal favorite has got to be a man dressed in a suit. (I am a fan of How I Met Your Mother, yes, but I've loved guys in suits before that :D ). There's just something extremely sexy about a man in a suit and it makes me want to grab him by the tie and have my way with him *giggle*

What about you? 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Cover Reveal: Soul Weaver by Hailey Edwards

I'm so excited to share this brand new cover. It's for Soul Weaver, one of Hailey Edward's upcoming releases. Here it is: *drum roll, please*





*swoons* Isn't that a HOT cover? This book is the first from the Wicked Kin paranormal romance series. Here's the official blurb:

Since the accident that nearly took her life, Chloe suffers from acute agoraphobia. Living alone above her family’s bookstore, she spends restless nights terrified by strange visions . . . until a mysterious stranger appears and offers her salvation. Chloe is drawn to the ethereal, gorgeous Nathaniel—but her haunted soul warns her there is more to him than meets the eye.

An archangel who roams Earth collecting souls of the newly departed, Nathanial is the sole witness to the accident that should have taken Chloe’s life. Seduced by the purity of her soul, he defies Providence by saving her life. But his attempt at kindness marks Chloe for damnation, and makes her an unwitting pawn in a game of unholy ambition. Now together they must fight the demons of Hell itself—for a love that defies the boundaries of Heaven and Earth.

If there's something sexier than vampires and werewolves, it's got to be archangels. Not angels, their bosses. *dreamy sigh* It seems only natural that we have to wait until August (*gasp**whimper*) to read this book.

Anyway, if you want to learn more about this book or other books by Hailey Edwards, check out her website: http://haileyedwards.net/

You can pre-order Soul Weaver at B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/soul-weaver-hailey-edwards/1109890576?ean=9781455523467

And at iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/wicked-kin/id514087029?mt=11

Monday, May 21, 2012

Cover Love (16)




Rabid Reads - Cover Love


This feature is hosted by Carmel @ Rabid Reads. The rules are very simple. Choose a cover (or two, or three), preferably new-ish, and share what you like about it. Grab the graphic or don't just so long as you link back.


My picks this week:





Spell Bound (Hex Hall, #3)

*sigh* Now that I've read the book, I love the cover even more. Or maybe I should say Kaidan, but *shhh* Don't tell!

Seriously though, the book is amazing and it has a great cover too. Just look at that dress! It's a creepy-sexy cover if you ask me ;)














Aw, how can I not like this cover? I saw that all books in the Hex Hall series are like this. Half-student, half-something else. I like that. Sort of like "look beyond the surface and you'll be surprised of what you find". I also like the fact that the title and author's name are reflected in the purple-ish lake.

Also, LOVE the black cat!!









What's your pick this week?

Book Review: The Car Thief by Theodore Weesner

The Car Thief



Author:Theodore Wessner
Source: review copy offered by publisher (check it out here)
My Rating: 3 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)


It’s 1959. Sixteen year-old Alex Housman has just stolen his fourteenth car and frankly doesn’t know why. His divorced, working class father grinds out the night shift at the local Chevy Plant in Detroit, kept afloat by the flask in his glove compartment and the open bottles in his Flint, Michigan home.
Abandoned and alone, father and son struggle to express a deep love for each other, even as Alex fills his day juggling cheap thrills and a crushing depression. He cruises and steals, running from, and to, the police, compelled by reasons he frustratingly can’t put into words. And then there’s Irene Shaeffer, the pretty girl in school whose admiration Alex needs like a drug in order to get by. Broke and fighting to survive, Alex and his father face the realities of estrangement, incarceration, and even violence as their lives hurtle toward the climactic episode that a New York Times reviewer called “one of the most profoundly powerful in American fiction.”
In this rich, beautifully crafted story, Weesner accomplishes a rare feat: He’s written a transcendent piece of literature in deceptively plain language, painting a gripping portrait of a father and a son, otherwise invisible among the mundane, everyday details of life in blue collar America. A true and enduring American classic.


When I read the blurb my ears perked up a bit. I mean, really. A young boy, Alex, abandoned by his mother, his father was either working night shifts or drinking. So Alex starts skipping school, stealing cars, smoking. I thought it was really interesting.

And it was, don't get me wrong. It was an interesting story. The reader gets to see Alex grow up from a troubled teenager to a young man enlisted in the Army. And you get to see the struggles he overcomes. Stealing cars, getting arrested, being released from detention and going back to school where he's just as alone as before. You get to see all that.

I felt the pacing was a little too slow for me. The inner monologue at times dragged a little too much for my comfort.

Also, there where moments where I didn't connect at all with Alex. I mean, I understood his reasons for doing what he did. He wanted attention, he needed to fit in and he did whatever it took. But there were too many moments of "he didn't want to do this, but he kept doing it", "he didn't want to be here, but he didn't leave", "he didn't want to eat, but he kept eating" and other similar moments. It was in those moments that I couldn't help but think "well, if you don't want to..., don't". Those moments pulled me out of the story a few times.

It is possible that I had high expectations to begin with. My experience with coming-of-age stories isn't that big, so maybe that's a factor.

If you like coming-of-age stories, this could be the book for you.


Cover Reveal: Denied by Kinley Baker

I'm happy to share Kinley Baker's shiny new cover for her book Denied. It's the second book in her Shadowed Love series.

 


 BLURB:

When invaders brutally massacred the women and children of the Varner, Caleb witnessed loss and destruction on a scale few can comprehend. As the leader of a race on the brink of extinction, his only hope for survival is gaining acceptance into the Shadow Shifter Kingdom. Struggling with new customs, he meets Tabitha, a woman who challenges his limits.

Refused the right to join the king’s guard because of her gender, Tabitha must be stronger than the men to prove she deserves to be the first accepted female Warrior in the kingdom. She believes Caleb will help improve her abilities, until she learns her goals conflict with the foundation of his culture.

When the realm is attacked, Tabitha and Caleb must come together not only to fight, but to find the strength to win against an evil with the potential to destroy everything they revere most--including each other.



Add DENIED as To-Read on GoodReads!

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13646204-denied

www.kinleybaker.com

http://authorkinleybaker.blogspot.com

www.twitter.com/kinleybaker

www.facebook.com/kinleybaker

http://www.goodreads.com/kinleybaker

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Kinley-Baker/196649877015210


BIO:


Kinley Baker is the author of the fantasy romance novel, Ruined. She read her first romance at the age of thirteen and immediately fell in love with the hero and the genre. She lives with her husband and her dog, Joker, in the Pacific Northwest. As a firm supporter of all supernatural lifestyles, she writes fantasy romance, paranormal romance, and urban fantasy. You can find Kinley at www.kinleybaker.com

Friday, May 18, 2012

Dirty Little Secret (9)



Dirty Little Secret is a weekly meme hosted by Under The Covers.

The rules are simple:

1. Be a follower of Under the Covers.
2. Create a post in your blog taking the meme image and copy instructions.
3. Answer the weekly question.

For more information and for signing up, go to the Under The Covers blog.


This week's question:


If you could read one book again for the first time, which one would you pick and why?


Harry Potter and Queen Of The Damned by Anne Rice. Harry Potter because it was an amazing book, one that taught me that reading was fun and cool.

Queen Of The Damned because it was my favorite book of the series The Vampire Chronicles. Well, so far at least, because I haven't gotten around finishing it. But out of the 6 books I read, this one was my favorite :)


What about you?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Book Review: Dead End Deal by Allen Wyler

Dead End Deal


Author: Allen Wyler
Source: review copy offered by publisher (check it out here)
My Rating: 3.5 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)


World renowned neurosurgeon Jon Ritter is on the verge of a medical breakthrough that will change the world. His groundbreaking surgical treatment, using transplanted non-human stem cells, is set to eradicate the scourge of Alzheimer’s disease and give hope to millions. But when the procedure is slated for testing, it all comes to an abrupt and terrifying halt. Ritter’s colleague is gunned down and Ritter himself is threatened by a radical anti-abortion group that not only claims responsibility, but promises more of the same.
Faced with a dangerous reality but determined to succeed, Ritter turns to his long-time colleague, corporate biotech CEO Richard Stillman, for help. Together, they conspire to conduct a clandestine clinical trial in Seoul, Korea. But the danger is more determined, and more lethal, than Ritter could have imagined.
After successful surgical trials, Ritter and his allies are thrown into a horrifying nightmare scenario: The trial patients have been murdered and Ritter is the number one suspect. Aided by his beautiful lab assistant, Yeonhee, Ritter flees the country, now the target of an international manhunt involving Interpol, the FBI, zealous fanatics and a coldly efficient assassin named Fiest.

What worked for me:


  • Medical thriller -  I liked the idea of a neurosurgeon finding the cure for Alzheimer's disease. And the idea of using stem cells was brilliant. It was a new, fresh idea. I also enjoyed the fact that the reader gets to learn some history on stem cells. My knowledge on that subject is limited, so it was very interesting finding out more about the subject.
  • Multiple POVs - Like I said in the past, multiple characters and their POV make me see the big picture and to see the plots in a lot more detail than usually. So I loved that every major character in this boom got to "share" his side of the story.
  • Pacing - This book is really fast-paced. I didn't get bored reading it, there wasn't a moment where the plot stopped developing or where the action wasn't moving forward. It's not too fast that you lose some important detail, it's just the right kind of fast, if that makes sense. 
What didn't work for me:

  • Because there were multiple POVs, you know from the very start who, why, when and how is trying to intimidate Jon Ritter. That made the suspense sort of fade for me. It made me anticipate more than I felt comfortable. I would've wanted more mystery surrounding the person who tried to make Jon Ritter not continue with his research. 


I liked this book and I'm sure I would've liked it even more had it not been for the fact that we find out from the very start who is doing what. Even so, the story was great and it kept me reading and it kept me wanting to know how the book ended. So if you're a thriller fan, you should check this book out :)


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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Guest Post and Giveaway: Allie Jean

Please welcome Allie Jean, the author of Legacy Of A Dreamer (read my review here).

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Purchase Book OneLegacy of a Dreamer was spawned from an idea I've had in my head since I was very little. I must have been somewhat disturbed as a child, because I'd have horrible, violent nightmares that had so much vivid detail to them, it felt like I was stuck in a horror film. No, I didn't have any major trauma when I was young, but my mother attributes my unnatrual fear and creative imagination to Michael Jackson, oddly enough.

When I was three years old, my parents allowed me to watch Thriller for the first time, and let me tell you, I still remember the spine curdling fear I'd experienced when his eyes turned yellow at the end, followed by that horribly creepy laugh. Lord, I thought the devil himself was going to pop out of the that TV and come get me. My mother laughs to this day, retelling the look in my eyes when the music video had finished. She could tell right away that allowing me to watch that may have not been the best idea.

And yes, that is when the nightmares began. It was also around that time that I had an imaginary friend who was a werewolf, but I digress.

The premise of my book is about a girl who suffers from debilitating, terrifying nightmares since she was very young. She doesn't remember much about her past, only having a small recollection of being dragged away from her childhood home only to be put into foster care. She attributes the nightmares to something that happened in her past, something so terrifying, her mind has chosen her sleeping hours to play it out in the most twisted ways.

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Giveaway Time!!





I have one ebook copy of Legacy Of A Dreamer to give away. All you have to do is fill out the form below. Comments are welcome, but you have to fill the form to enter the contest.You have until Thursday (May 31)* to enter. I will announce the lucky winner on Friday, June 1st. Be sure to check back here to see if you won. I will be emailing the winner as soon as possible to let him/her know how to claim the prize.

This giveaway is open internationally!

NOTE! Winner must respond to my email in 72 hours, or a new winner will be chosen.

Please read the Giveaway/Contest Policy before entering.

*UPDATE: due to personal reasons, I extended the period of this giveaway. 





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About the Author
Allie Jean was born with an overactive imagination. At a very early age, a child, her days were spent inventing stories, directing her sisters in made-up plays or telling elaborate ghost stories. Her mind never took breaks, or shutdown, even when she slept. When her eyes shut at night, she would have vivid dreams complete with extensive, elaborate plot lines, and good overcoming evil villains.

She was encouraged by her parents, even at a young age, to write down her tales, and it has remained a somewhat secret hobby. It became a means to escape from the drama of real life into one of the many worlds she created.

Now, living in California with her husband of ten years, her love of storytelling had taken a back seat with the arrival of their four children. Though, she always found time to write down her thoughts on whatever was handy, including a stray diaper or two while rocking a sleeping child in the middle of the night when her character's begged for attention as well.

As a busy wife, mother and working full-time outside the home, somehow she has been able to write down her relentless character's story. Her once secret hobby and private world, is now released for other's to enjoy. Nothing would make Allie happier that to continue writing and spend more time at home with her family on a more full-time basis.

Blog Tour Book Review: The Legacy Of A Dreamer by Allie Jean



Author: Allie Jean
Series: The Legacy #1
My Rating: 4 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)


Chantal Breelan is a ward of the state, living under the care of a woman who is cold and heartless. Her past is a mystery, and her future is even more uncertain. She can’t recall why she had been taken from her parents and so she’s left with nothing but an empty hole where her childhood should have been. When she awakens from her nightmares, she’s left with terrible, violent images, as well as a boy whose face is oddly familiar, yet can’t be placed.
Scared and alone, Chantal begins to confide in an imaginary friend – a shadow in the shape of a man who stands in the corner of her room. She is comforted when she believes he listens to her.
On her eighteenth birthday, Chantal is forced to leave her foster home. She moves to New York City, but the start of her new life doesn’t begin as smoothly as she’d hoped. In this environment, she faces a whole new set of challenges.
One night at a subway station, Chantal meets a young boy who runs away from her, and she’s compelled to follow him down into the tunnels. But this Rabbit Hole reveals a world where reality is a nightmare. Her dreams are clues to her future, and her life becomes twisted and dangerous when she learns that things that go bump in the night are not just in fairy tales and childhood stories.

When I started reading this book I didn't know what to expect. I haven't read many books with characters tormented by awful nightmares before. And the nightmares were awful.

Speaking of nightmares, one of the things I loved about this book was how they were presented. They were very detailed and for me that was new. When I read dream sequences they are rarely this detailed and this vivid. Also, I know for sure that if I had dreams like that, I'd be scared of falling asleep.

Chantal surprised me. A lot I might say. At first I had a very different opinion of who and what she was and why she was like that. I certainly didn't expect her to be related to the fallen angels. But I liked her from the very start. Maybe because she seemed like she needed a break, a new life, a fresh start. And how cool was it that she had an imaginary (well, not actually, but you'll see ;) ) friend made of a shadow? The last time I heard of something similar was in Peter Pan and I liked that idea so much. Also, she named him Nick, which is one of my favorite names :D

Speaking of Nick. I liked him. I thought he was such a sweetheart. He's the knight in shining armor type of guy and I'm so glad that Chantal gets to meet him. After her childhood, she really needed him. He's a warrior also, one that would give his own life to protect Chantal. And he loves her.

The one thing that I loved above all else were the evil creatures in this book and I hope we get to see more in the upcoming books. You know how much I love sexy vampires, but it's been a while since they've been portrayed like the evil creatures they were first knows as. I think it's probably the first time since I read that in a book.

This book is filled with suspense and, while it starts a little slow, once the action starts, it doesn't stop until the very end. There's also a little bit of horror, a little romance, some funny moments. So I say read it.

Now to wait for the second book :)

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Friday, May 11, 2012

Book Review: Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins

Sweet Evil



Author: Wendy Higgins
Series: The Sweet Trilogy #1
My Rating: 5 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)


What if there were teens whose lives depended on being bad influences?
This is the reality for sons and daughters of fallen angels in Sweet Evil.
Tenderhearted Southern girl, Anna Whitt, was born with the sixth sense to see and feel emotions of other people. She’s aware of a struggle within herself, an inexplicable pull toward danger, but it isn’t until she turns sixteen and meets the alluring Kaidan Rowe that she discovers her terrifying heritage, and her will-power is put to the test. He’s the boy your daddy warned you about. If only someone had warned Anna.
Forced to face her destiny, will Anna embrace her halo or her horns?

To quote Anna, wowza! You know, when I decided to read this book yesterday I wasn't expecting to like it as much as I did, nor did I expect to read it this fast. But I did. Boy, did I love this book.

First of all, angels and demons, how can that be a bad plot? Right? I mean, it's nice to see other creatures getting attention. Plus, demons are HOTT. Yes, it needed that extra T :P I liked the mythology and how it was  used. I liked the idea of guardian angels and whisperers and demon lords (or Dukes) and all that. And while you might think it's clichĂ© that a half-angel, half-demon girl falls for the demon boy, it's such a good story, it doesn't even bother you. Or it didn't bother me.

Speaking of love stories, if I had to pick the best love story I've read so far this year, this would be the one. I loved Kaidan so much. He was a smart-ass some of the times, a jerk a few times, but I realized he REALLY liked Anna and he cared for her. I do hope they end up together, because they have such a sweet connection.  Also, Kaidan was hot :D

I liked Anna. She is an easy girl to like and I was sad and angry for her a few times. There was this one scene where I literally wanted to jump into the scene and punch a guy. Not Kaidan, another guy. Kaidan was good with her ;)

Oh, I hope we see more of Anna's father. I liked him a lot. And the way he bonded with Anna and how he cared for her was really special and it's one of those rare father-daughter relationships, one that I haven't found very often in books. So I was glad to see that in a book. I do hope the relationship between them will grow stronger and stronger.

You basically have anything you can think of in this book: humor, suspense, drama, romance, the usual teenage angst, fantasy, you name it. The only thing I can think of that would've made this book even better would be if we had gotten to see things from Kaidan's perspective. Since it's told in 1st person from Anna's view, we don't exactly get to see what Kaidan really thinks or feels. You know I prefer multiple POVs, so maybe that's why I wanted Kaidan's POV also. Other than that, the book was great and I highly recommend it to anyone. Seriously. Go read it! I'm now going to bite my nails for the second book in this trilogy :)



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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Dirty Little Secret (8)



Dirty Little Secret is a weekly meme hosted by Under The Covers.

The rules are simple:

1. Be a follower of Under the Covers.
2. Create a post in your blog taking the meme image and copy instructions.
3. Answer the weekly question.

For more information and for signing up, go to the Under The Covers blog.


This week's question:


We've heard a rumor that Ryan Seacrest is using Fifty Shades of Grey as a manual in the bedroom.
What book would you give a guy to study up on?


Excuse me a little while I laugh... Ok *draws in breath* I'm done. Well, I still giggle at the rumor, but I'll try to stop it for a little while.
I wouldn't give him a book. Look, maybe it's my weird brain but if I can't trust him enough to tell him what I want, how can I trust him to pick my favorite parts from a book? I would give him my Cherise Sinclair books to read, though I'd watch him like a hawk, making sure my babies...err...my books are safe and sound. (I just hate it when someone makes even the tinniest mark on my books *shrugs*) Maybe it's not the best answer you've heard, but it is what it is :P

What about you? What book would you give a guy to study up on?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Interview: Amber Garr




Please welcome Amber Garr. She stopped by to talk about her amazing book, Promises (read my review here).

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*Hello Amber! Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Hi and thanks for having me! Let’s see…I work as a research marine biologist during the day, and at night I’m either dancing or writing. I grew up in the Pennsylvania mountains and have lived in Florida for the past ten years. My house is full of one husband, one dog, two cats, and six fish. I recently completed my Ph.D., and although I will continue with my career, I still look forward to sitting down and writing all of the stories in my head.


*When did you start writing?

I did a little journaling as a kind (nothing major), but I really started focusing on my fiction writing about two years ago. I had an injury and couldn’t dance for a while, so I suddenly found that I had some free time. I started with flash fiction and short stories and those quickly turned into full novels and a series! I do a lot of technical writing for my job, so this was something that quickly became a new hobby of mine and I really enjoyed the freedom and creativity it brought.


*Are you a plotter or a panster?

Definitely a plotter. I make lists reminding me to make lists. I don’t have a detailed outline, but I do plot out each chapter in the book before writing. Smaller plot points will change or appear along the way, but the major scenes and characters are usually planned. I have a special zombie journal for all of my writing notes!


*What was the inspiration for writing Promises?

Well, of course I always wished that I could be a mermaid so I often wondered what that life would be like. Would I live in the ocean or walk amongst the humans? And what kind of responsibility would that entail. So the story kind of developed from there…a secret society of mermaids and a girl who feels like the she has the weight of the world on her shoulders. Because, who hasn’t felt that way at least once in their life? The first chapter was originally one of my short stories, and after a few months, I decided to add more to it...and that quickly turned into a three book series! I loved the selkie folklore and knew that I needed to weave that into the story as well as creatures that may be lurking underneath the ocean but we never see.


*The covers for your Syrenka books are stunning! Did you have an idea of how the covers should look like while writing the books?

Thank you so much! Although, I can’t really take the credit for them other than making the decision to hire Claudia at PhatPuppyArt (http://phatpuppyart.com ). I didn’t know exactly what I wanted when we worked on the first cover (Promises). I debated over showing a tail or not, but we decided to keep that part mysterious. I wanted to emulate how “trapped” Eviana felt in the cover of the second book (Betrayal). And the third cover (Arise) evolved as I was writing. As you will see, it will be very fitting for the development of Eviana’s character by the end of the series. Claudia is simply amazing and I wish that I had time to write a story for each one of her pieces.


*What’s your favourite and least favourite part of writing?

I absolutely love creating new worlds and having characters do things that I would never have the guts (or personality) to do. My least favourite part is not having enough time to dedicate to writing. These past few months have been so busy for me that I’m dying to have my nights free to finish Arise and work on the other books in progress.


*What is your favourite book?

I can’t really pick a favourite. But I’d have to say that anything written by Kelley Armstrong, Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris, or Richelle Mead has been read at least three or four times!


*If you could be any character from your books, who would you be and why?

I think I’d pick a water sprite. It would be cool to be able to change forms and travel anywhere water flows. I’m just not too sure about the having to eat humans part. I’m a very picky eater.


*Do you have anything planned after the Syrenka series? Will you keep writing YA?

Yes, I have two adult novels that I like to publish and I’ve been toying with a new idea for a standalone YA novel. There are also a few back stories and situations with characters from The Syrenka Series that I may write up and put together in a novella. We’ll see! I really love writing and the response to my books has been encouraging. Now I just have to find the time.


*What do you like to do besides writing in your free time?

I am involved with a local dance and fitness studio where I teach ballet/contemporary classes, perform, and choreograph. And when I’m not doing all of those things, I like going out on the water with my husband in our little boat and enjoying nature!


*If Promises were made into a movie, which actors would you choose to play the main characters?

I have thought about this so many times and the only person I’ve been sold on since the beginning is Kain…and that would be Alex Pettyfer for sure! Although I recently saw a move with a rather unknown actress (Sarah Gadon – The Moth Diaries) who may fit my ideal for Eviana. Brendan’s been tough. Perhaps Logan Lerman (Percy Jackson) with some green contacts…but I don’t know. I would love to hear some suggestions!


Thank you for stopping by!


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About the Author

Amber Garr spends her days conducting scientific experiments and wondering if her next door neighbor is secretly a vampire. Born in Pennsylvania, she lives in Florida with her husband and their furry kids. Her childhood imaginary friend was a witch, Halloween is sacred, and she is certain that she has a supernatural sense of smell. She writes both adult and young adult urban fantasies and when not obsessing over the unknown, she can be found dancing, reading, or enjoying a good movie.




Social Contact

Website: http://www.ambergarr.com

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Blog Tour Book Review: Promises by Amber Garr

Promises


Author: Amber Garr
Series: Syrenka #1
My Rating: 5 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)


Sometimes following your heart can end up destroying the ones you love.
When seventeen-year-old Eviana Dumahl is faced with the responsibility of an arranged marriage and clan leadership, she is forced to choose between the life required of a mermaid and one of a teenage girl simply infatuated with the wrong guy. Kain, her devoted fiancĂ© would make a wonderful husband except that she’s been in love with Brendan, a shape-shifting selkie, ever since they were kids. Choosing to abandon her family, her clan, and her life with Kain will have dire consequences far beyond anything she could have imagined.
A war is brewing amongst the clans and Eviana unwittingly becomes a pawn in the intricate schemes of a twisted mastermind. With Brendan’s life on the line, she has no choice but to involve those who she once considered friends. Amidst encountering senseless tragedies and immense loss, Eviana discovers that she is more valuable as a clan leader than anyone ever suspected. Her survival is not only dependent upon the loyalty of her friends, but also on her acceptance of a life that she had so adamantly tried to escape.
Promises is the first book of The Syrenka Series trilogy following Eviana and her friends through the perils of growing up in a discrete world that inherently threatens human society.


I'm so, so happy I got to read this book. First, I haven't read a book with mermaids before (unless you count  The Little Mermaid, but that was ages ago), so this was new territory for me. Second, it's fantasy, so I knew for sure that I was going to love this book.

What I loved about this book is that you get to see each and every character both as a sea creatures and as humans. That was very interesting. And I loved the fact that mermaids are presented as being on top of the food chain. It was fun to see other creatures besides vampires that could be rulers of all races.

There were also mythological references about mermaids and how they created and when. Then there are the selkie references and I was so happy about that. If I didn't met many mermaids in my books, I hear a lot of stories about selkies and I was excited to see them included in the fantasy world, because I believe they are very interesting creatures. Plus, it's fresh. I mean, how many creatures get to shift into an animal dressing in the skin of said animal?

Besides the fact that she's a mermaid, Eviana seemed like a normal teenager to me. A girl that's stubborn, strong willed, brave. She's in love with a selkie shifter, but she's been promised to another boy since she was a little girl. You can call it a love triangle and you wouldn't be mistaken. She loves Brendan, even though everyone is against their relationship, and she chooses to run away with him. She has a sense of right and wrong, more than I expected. Yes, part of why she ran away was because of her rebelliousness, but it was also because the idea of being married to one guy and being in love with another was wrong. She's also very naive, but that is mostly due to her mother, who never thought of sharing details of the things she was supposed to expect once Eviana became a clan leader. I didn't really like her mom very much because of that.

There were a lot of surprises and a lot of twists and turns that I didn't expect. Also, I didn't expect to like Kain. I liked Brendan, the selkie, a lot, but I was expecting a dull Kain, not a hot, swoon-worthy Kain. I love the fact that both guys are really strong characters.

And, in case you didn't notice, this book has an AMAZING cover! I would stare at that cover over and over again, without getting tired. In fact, all covers in this series are amazing, gorgeous, beautiful.

I say you should definitely read this book. If you like fantasy and YA, you really should try it! And at the end of this book you'll find a sneak peak for the next book in the series, Betrayal.



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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #1


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme hosted by Book Journey and is a great way for others to find out what you are planning to read this week and, best of all, see what others are reading.

What I Read Last Week:

PromisesLowcountry Punch



It's been a slow week, what with me trying to catch up on studying and all. I really hate it when real life (bitch!) gets in the way of my reading, but there's nothing much I can do.

This week though I'm hoping to get more reading done, so here's my list:


The Car Thief  Dead End Deal  Stolen (Women of the Otherworld, #2)


*phew* That's a long list, but I'm hopeful, ya know? 

What about you? What do you plan on reading this week?

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Guest Post: Vanessa Morgan

Please welcome Vanessa Morgan, author of A Good Man.


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A Good Man 



A Good Man  by Vanessa Morgan



Blurb: Do you like Dexter and American Psycho? Then chances are you will love A Good Man. 


Louis Caron is a good man – he's a vegetarian, feeds homeless people, takes care of animals and is converned with the ecological well-being of the planet. But his altruism has a sinister edge – he's a vampire and local detective Taglioni becomes increasingly suspicious of him. Louis' attempt to escape the police will take him on a journey into his own private hell where he is not only forced to confront his worst fears, but where he will also destroy the lives of those he cares about.



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PLACES WHERE I HAVE WRITTEN A GOOD MAN


I often get asked during interviews if I have a favorite place to write. Usually, it's from the serenity of my home - at my desk, or, if it's freezing outside, in bed with my cat, a giant cup of hot tea, extra blankets and a radiator on maximum heat. I also write wherever or whenever I can: public transport, waiting room, etc. However, some places outside the house do lend themselves perfectly to write. Here are some of the places where I have written my latest release, A Good Man:


Airport

I live only a couple of minutes away from the airport of Zaventem, Belgium. Once 10 o'clock in the evening, there are no more departing flights and the departure hall is eerily empty. As Starbucks in Zaventem Airport stays open all night, it becomes the perfect place to work – soft jazzy sounds, cheesecake and hot chai tea create the perfect ambience to write for hours.

Zaventem Airport is also a good place to write during day-time, especially if you can get a spot in one of those restaurants with a panoramic view of the departing airplanes. Working can be really enjoyable when it's something you're passionate about and in a place you love.



Offscreen

I wrote the third act of A Good Man in the inviting cellar bar of Cinema Nova during the OffScreen film festival. For those who wouldn't know, OffScreen is a film festival in Brussels, Belgium, that specializes in cult films.The spooky decorations of the festival definitely add to its inspiring atmosphere.

For those of you who are interested in some other favorite writing spots of mine. Here's another post about my all-time favorite writing spots: http://vanessa-morgan.blogspot.com/2012/01/best-places-to-write.html


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About Vanessa Morgan


Screenwriter and novelist Vanessa Morgan is known as the 'female version of Stephen King'. You can find out more about Vanessa Morgan and her work by going to her personal blog http://vanessa-morgan.blogspot.com. If you like cats, you might also like the web comic about her cat Avalon at http://avalon-lion.blogspot.com.


Other books by Vanessa Morgan


The Strangers Outside

Two sisters, Jennifer and Louise, return to their remote holiday cottage after a day at the seaside. But little do they know they're being surrounded. Soon after their arrival, the girls will come face to face with the strangers outside. When the assailants make their intentions known, things take a shockingly terrible turn and an intense battle for survival will begin.



Drowned Sorrow

Megan Blackwood has just lost her son in a terrible accident. Now she has come to Moonlight Creek with her teenage daughter Jenna, hoping that a change of scenery might help to put her life back together. But something odd is going on in Moonlight Creek. When rain falls over the village, the inhabitants commit grisly murders, leaving the village deserted with the first rays of sunshine. Beneath the lake's surface, an eerie presence watches... and waits... Waits to reveal a tragic past drowned in mystery and fear. One that doesn't bode well for visitors. By the time Megan realizes that her daughter is in danger, it might already be too late.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Follow Friday (16)



Welcome to Follow Friday hosted this week by Parajunkee and Alison!
The main idea behind FF is just to go see a bunch of new blogs you may never have seen before, and follow the ones you like (and they’ll follow you back!) It’s a total win/win, so take a peek around!


This week’s question is:



Q: What is one thing you wish you could tell your favorite author?


Well, I'd shamelessly beg Sherrilyn Kenyon for a Savitar book. And I'd beg for it to be released today. NOW. I know, I sound like Gollum, but I do love Savitar :D I'd also ask J.R. Ward for a Muhrder book. Hmm, I'm pretty sure that if I think about it long and hard, I'd have a think to tell (beg, bribe, whimper) to all my favorite authors.

What about you?

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Book Review: Lowcountry Punch by Boo Walker

Lowcountry Punch

Author: Boo Walker
Source: review copy from the author
My Rating: 5 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads):

After the worst Christmas Eve of his life, DEA Agent T.A. Reddick leaves Miami for the magical city of Charleston, South Carolina, hoping a return to his roots will heal a broken heart and the guilt of killing a friend. The sleepy and sultry town of Charleston is filled with echoes of the Old South: genteel playboys, society debutantes, and quiet cobblestone streets. But as Reddick will soon discover, there's danger lurking under her charming veneer. When a movie star's death shines a national spotlight on Charleston's underground cocaine trade, he must go undercover to find the main supplier and shut him down. As a hurricane bears down on the port city and the DEA gets ready to spring its trap, Reddick must contend with more than he ever could have imagined.

Brash and bold, TA Reddick is a hero you won’t soon forget. Lowcountry Punch is an action-packed novel that will have you on your knees begging for more.

This is one of those "don't judge a book by its cover" situations. Of course, now that I read the book I understand the cover more than I did before.

I'm glad I got to read this book. It made me stay glued to my e-reader and glare at anyone who dared to interrupt me (yes, I'm that type of reader). It was a very fast-paced mystery novel and I truly, truly loved it.

It's been a while since I've read a story that's told only from the hero's perspective. I forgot how fun it was to be inside a guy's head. TA Reddick is actually a fun character. I liked his sense of humor, the fact that he was brutally honest with everyone, the fact that he was able to admit his feelings without thinking he was less of a man for talking about them. I loved his sense of justice and the fact that he was able to do the right thing even if he didn't like it. I respected him for that a lot and that's probably why a lot of the people he worked with and people who knew him respected him. He was an incredible character, one of those that stick with you even after you've finished reading the book.

There were a lot of scenes full of suspense and those scenes kept me on the edge of my seat a lot. Also, there were moments that were very funny and tender moments and some sad ones. It had everything I could ask for from a mystery novel and I couldn't be happier.

I'm actually sitting here hoping there will be a second book with this character. It's easy to love him and I feel like I could spend a lot of time reading about his adventures and his cases. I think this is one of those "must-reads". Especially if you're a mystery thriller fan.



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April In Retrospect

April's gone. bringing us closer and closer to summer *happy dance* I can't wait to spend long, lazy days on the beach reading on my e-reader and swimming in the sea. I'll probably spend more time swimming than reading during those days at the beach, but that's a different story.

April was a better month than the others have been. I managed to read a lot more books than I expected and I discovered some must-read authors. Just when I think there can't possibly be another author out there to make me fall in love with their work, I find one that kills that idea quickly.

Here are the books I read in April:


  1. Behind Closed Doors by Sherri Hayes
  2. An Untimely Love by Tendai Huchu
  3. The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa
  4. The Binding by L. Filloon
  5. Social Punk by Monica Leonelle
  6. Dance With The Devil by Sherrilyn Kenyon
  7. Everlong by Hailey Edwards
  8. A Hint Of Frost by Hailey Edwards
  9. Fighting the Devil by Jeannie Walker
  10. Night Embrace by Sherrilyn Kenyon
I'm still behind with my reading or so Goodreads is telling me. Of course, I'm not counting the books I'm rereading in my 100 books goal this year. So I think May needs to be fuller. Darn real life, getting in the way of my reading :P

Anyway, here are the reviews I wrote this month:

  1. Behind Closed Doors - Sherri Hayes
  2. An Untimely Love - Tendai Huchu
  3. The Immortal Rules - Julie Kagawa
  4. The Binding - L. Filloon
  5. Socialpunk - Monica Leonelle
  6. Dance With The Devil - Sherrilyn Kenyon
  7. Everlong - Hailey Edwards
  8. Fighting the Devil - Jeannie Walker

In April I did my first interviews with authors Mary Parker and Sherri Hayes.

Reading Challenges Progress:


  1. New Author Challenge  15/25 
  2. 100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge 23/100
If you happen to hear a smacking sound, that's me slapping myself for forgetting about the Women Of The Otherworld challenge. Yes, for once I forgot to read a book o.O But anyway, I have time to make up for it :D 

All in all, I'm pretty proud of how I did this month. I hope I can do at least just as good in May. How did your April look like?
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