Friday, March 27, 2015

Early Book Review: Sisters of Blood and Spirit by Kady Cross

Author: Kady Cross
Series: Sisters of Blood and Spirit #1
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: March 31st 2015
My Rating: 5 cups
Source: Netgalley
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Wren Noble is dead—she was born that way. Vibrant, unlike other dead things, she craves those rare moments when her twin sister allows her to step inside her body and experience the world of the living.

Lark Noble is alive but often feels she belongs in the muted Shadow Lands—the realm of the dead. Known as the crazy girl who talks to her dead sister, she doesn't exactly fit in with the living, though a recent suicide attempt and time in a psych ward have proved to her she's not ready to join her sister in the afterlife.

Now the guy who saved Lark's life needs her to repay the favor. He and his friends have been marked for death by the malevolent spirit of a vicious and long-dead serial killer, and the twins—who should know better than to mess with the dead—may be their only hope of staying alive.

First of all, thank you Netgalley and Harlequin Teen for the chance to read this book in advance.

I absolutely adored this book! I can't even tell you how much I loved the book, but I loved it a lot.

This was a slightly creepy book. The pacing was good and the suspense...WOW! It's been a while since a book had me so freaked out, my heart was beating wildly in my chest. And some of the details were actually kinda scary. I loved that. I also loved the dual POV. It gave the story much more depth and it made the characters seem more realistic.

I loved the twins. They were so, so entertaining. At the same time, my heart broke for both of them. There were moments when I thought Lark was a little bit too snarky with people. I did understand why though, so it wasn't a huge deal, but I would've wanted to see her be a little bit more nice to people. I liked that in the end she discovered that she did have friends and that, although not exactly perfect, they did make the perfect group for her. I also enjoyed seeing her be honest about her feelings, at least with herself. I liked that she was realistic and that although she acted tough, she knew that there was a chance things might end up bad. And I liked that she was willing to do anything to keep her sister safe.

Speaking of Wren, she was awesome. I liked how sometimes American expressions were a bit hard for her to understand and that made it even clearer that she wasn't like her sister at all, what with her being dead and all. She seems so lonely in certain scenes in this book and that really broke my heart. I am hoping that in the next book she'll get to meet other good ghosts, because I felt like she needed to spend a little bit more time with her kind.

I am anxious to see what happens next, especially with a few interesting details Wren and Lark found out about their family. There's also a bit of a mystery surrounding the girls and what they can do. I hope that this will get to be explored more in the next book.

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Monday, March 23, 2015

Book Highlight: Touch Me by Skye Malone

Title: Touch Me #1
Series: Touch Me
Author: Skye Malone
Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Wildflower Isle
Publication Date: February 18, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-940617-30-5
Cover Designer: Karri Klawiter

Caitlin Faire was only expecting a simple night out to celebrate her best friend’s twenty-first birthday. But enter one gorgeous and mysterious guy, and inexplicable visions that can’t possibly be real, and you have an evening that becomes anything but simple.

Suddenly, she’s seeing visions everywhere. Being overwhelmed by strange impulses she can’t control. She thinks she’s going insane.

Until she almost kills the first man she touches.


Dark eyes meet mine.
Everything slows, like the world melts into molasses and in it, I’m stuck. A guy stands in front of me, his body only inches away, and suddenly, he’s the only one in the room. The dancers fade into shadows and mist. The music is the low thrum that underscores the world. And there’s just him. Black skin, dark as I’ve ever seen. Sculpted arms hinting at a strong body, as if everything of him is muscle and sinew. He’s about my age, at least six-foot-two, and easily the most gorgeous man I’ve ever laid eyes on. And he smiles like he knows me. Like he’s saying hello.
His hand reaches out. Brushes a shadow, a girl, and shimmering mist ghosts away from her to caress his arm like a lover. His smile broadens.
The mist absorbs into his skin.
He nods to me, still friendly. Still like we’re acquaintances who’ve simply run into one another on the street. And then he’s gone into the shadows and the crowd comes rushing back again.
I gasp. Bodies buffet me on all sides, crushing me, and my exhilaration is shattered. The music is too loud. The lights spin like deranged kaleidoscopes, blinding me. I’m hot, covered in sweat, and the emerald green dress is glued to my skin. My pulse is flying but my body keeps moving like it can’t help itself, like it’s lost to the rush of swirling lasers, pounding music, and fog.
Fog that’s pouring into me.
My eyes go wide. Flecked with sparks of color and light, clouds of it rise from the dancers like mist over a pond. Tendrils stream away from those nearest to me, moving like charmed snakes to coil around my body, slipping over my dress, my skin, and then vanishing inside me.
It’s so not a fog machine. Not this. Sweet God, what’s happening?

Skye Malone is a fantasy and paranormal romance author, which means she spends most of her time not-quite-convinced that the things she imagines couldn’t actually exist.

Born and raised in central Illinois, she hopes someday to travel the world — though in the meantime she’ll take any story that whisks her off to a place where the fantastic lives inside the everyday. She loves strong and passionate characters, complex villains, and satisfying endings that stay with you long after the book is closed. An inveterate writer, she can’t go a day without getting her hands on a keyboard, and can usually be found typing away while she listens to all the adventures unfolding in her head.

Skye also writes YA urban fantasy as Megan Joel Peterson and is the author of The Children and the Blood trilogy.

First Prize: Kindle Paperwhite (US Only)
Second Prize: $25 Amazon Gift Card (International)

Click HERE to enter or click the image below!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Release Blitz & Giveaway: Perfect Game by Collette West

Title: Perfect Game
Author: Collette West
Genre: Contemporary/Sports Romance

For New York Kings' first baseman Scott Harper, scoring women is easy. He's ready to get naked anytime, anywhere. But when a hacker leaks his nude selfies, he's unprepared for the scrutiny his full-frontals receive.

Carrie McKenzie has a love-hate relationship with her body. No longer the fat chick guys can ignore, she wins the job as the Kings' clubhouse reporter. With her svelte new figure, she nabs an exclusive interview with Scott to get his take on the scandal.

However, the two are already on a first-name basis after Scott came on to her in the hotel bar, and she woke up in his arms. The problem is that Scott doesn't do relationships and Carrie doesn't date jocks, yet the way they burn up the sheets is deserving of more than just a one-night stand.

Scott shows Carrie that he has a sweet, caring side beneath all the swagger. But can she really trust her heart to the biggest player in the game? 



I turn around, and my eyes zero in on the door. My heart starts hammering in my chest because Scott is standing there looking absolutely incredible in a crisp, white shirt and tight, black pants.

"Oh my God, he came alone,” I mumble, hardly believing it to be true as my heart skips a beat. I thought for sure he’d want to show me up by draping some rail-thin model on his arm. “Damn it. Why does he always have to look so amazing?”

"'Cause he's Scott Harper,” Grey chuckles. 

Chase is waving Grey over, and she gives me a wry grin. 

“Poor Jake never stood a chance, did he?" She gives my hand a quick squeeze before moving through the crowd to join her husband.

I turn my back to the revelry and face the wall, trying to collect myself. This is going to suck so bad. Yeah, I accepted Jake’s offer just to piss Scott off because I'd thought he’d bring one of his past flames in a surefire tit-for-tat move, but he didn’t. Now, I feel like an idiot. I thought Scott didn’t want to be seen with me in front of his teammates because I don’t quite measure up to the standard he’s used to. But this is a couple’s party, and he flouted the rules and came here stag, willing to be the odd man out, just because of me. 

He'd asked me to go with him and I'd said no, but he hadn’t asked anyone else either. He'd been serious. He hadn't just offered me some secondhand invitation because his friend had beat him to it. He really wanted to go with me, and I messed it all up by coming with Jake. 

Damn it.

I feel myself start to shake, but then a familiar hand grazes the exposed skin on my back, making me shiver.

"Hey, Care Bear.”

I glance over my shoulder, and Scott’s face is so close that I can almost taste the velvety softness of his lips. I’m lost in the moment as I find myself turning into his strong, hard frame, loving how his hand never leaves my body. Instead, his fingers skim the curve of my waist, following my every movement. His gray eyes are stormy with desire when we finally come face to face. He wasted no time in coming over to me, and my heart flutters at the thought. He’s sending a clear message: He’s here because of me, and he doesn’t care who knows it. 


About Collette

Collette West grew up as somewhat of a jock-nerd hybrid. Entering the world three weeks premature, her dad nearly missed her birth because he had seats behind the dugout for a sold-out, highly-anticipated match-up between two of baseball's biggest rivals. Not to be outdone, her book-loving mom taught her how to read by the time she was three. A love of the game coupled with an appreciation for the written word were instilled in Collette's impressionable brain from a young age. No wonder her characters believe in the philosophy: sports + romance = a little slice of heaven.

Splitting her time between the Pocono Mountains and Manhattan, Collette indulges her inner fangirl by going to as many games as she can from hockey to baseball and downloading every sports romance novel in existence onto her iPad. When she's not clicking away on her laptop, she enjoys walking her dog in Central Park, satisfying her caffeine craving at the Starbucks on Broadway and keeping an eye out for Mr. Right. But above all, she loves dishing with her readers. Email her at

She is the author of NIGHT GAMES, GAME CHANGER and GAME ON.

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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Book Review: The Duff by Kody Keplinger

Author: Kody Keplinger
Publisher: Poppy
Release Date: January 1st 2010
My Rating: 5 cups
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn’t think she’s the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her “Duffy,” she throws her Coke in his face.

But things aren’t so great at home right now. Desperate for a distraction, Bianca ends up kissing Wesley. And likes it. Eager for escape, she throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with Wesley.

Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out that Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone.

I'm sitting here trying to figure out a way to adequately express how much I enjoyed reading this book. I loved it, actually. The DUFF is one of those books that surprised me, because I did not expect to like it this much.

The first thing that stood out while I was reading this book was how real the entire thing seemed. I felt like I myself was back in high school (thank God I wasn't!). The dynamics were all there, the relationships were there, everything that I remember high school to be was in this book. It might have to do with Keplinger's age while she was writing the book, but still, she had an amazing ability to capture all of that and put it on paper and make it seem genuine.

I adored Bianca and Wesley. Bianca is the type of girl that has a mildly bad time in high school. She's not the popular one or the pretty one. She doesn't fall for every line guys her age through at her, which I personally thought was awesome. She seems like the girl you'd deem "the crazy one", until you actually get to know her and understand her. I was so sad because of her family situation.

Wesley is a difficult guy to like at first. I didn't quite understand him in the beginning, but then certain scenes made me realize he is so not the guy I thought he was.Yes, he was always chasing girls, but what teenage boy doesn't? I liked how he respected Bianca's wishes and how he didn't try to push her to open up about what was bothering her. And eventually, like Bianca, I ended up liking him a lot.

There are so many good themes in this book: sex, alcohol abuse, bullying. And they are presented not in a preachy way, but in a natural, "shit happens sometimes" kind of way. However, the most important thing in my opinion, is when Bianca is shown that everybody has self esteem issues and that everyone has that something they don't like about themselves. That I think was the best lesson Bianca got in this book and that is why I loved The Duff so much.

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Monday, March 9, 2015

Obsessed With Covers #18: A Thousand Pieces Of You, Wicked Luck & Endless

Y'all know how much I love a pretty cover. I think about...40% of the books that end up on my shelves (be they physical or digital) do so because of the covers. Call me shallow but you have to admit that a pretty, shiny cover will catch your eye faster than a dull, boring one. Two, simple rules that I'll follow:

  • 1, 2 or 3 (no more than 3, though) covers per week;
  • books should be new-ish; no more than 2 years old.
Oh, before I share the covers that made me drool or want to stare at them for hours and hours, I have to say something. This is a semi-original idea. Why semi? Because almost every book blogger has something similar. The only thing I came up with was the title. If by any chance there's another blogger with a similar feature with the same title, I assure you I'm not stealing your idea. I'm just THAT bad with titles. Believe me, I'd love to be smarter and have a witty name for this feature, but I don't. So, no copyright infringement/theft/steal or anything of the sort was desired. All I can say is sorry :P


I've seen so many gorgeous covers this week, I don't even know where to start or which ones to pick!

The watercolor background effect is gorgeous. And I love the night vs day, dark vs sunny contrast. Not only that, but there's a sort of irony in the cover, too. There's the dark, rainy half, that somehow gives me a sense of life, crowds, of stuff happening, while the sunny, shiny part gives me the impression of solitude and of still life. I absolutely adore this cover and the artist really did a great job.

Where to start? The skull covered in flowers is pretty awesome, but I also love the flower "frame" too (I'm going to assume they're roses, though I have no clue *hangs head in shame*). I recently developed a think for dark purple, so that is also another reason why I adore this cover. And the eye sockets are "staring" straight at you, sort of daring you to pick the book up. Interesting choice of cover art, given the title.

Wicked Luck - Shannon L. Maynard

This is such a simple, yet pretty cover. The thing that caught my attention is that the girl is hiding her face. And the way she's sitting makes me think that she's either really sad or she's trying to hide something. I wonder what. Then there's the awesome swirly design around the title. It's just so pretty to look at.

Endless - Amanda Grey

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Reading Blogs & Eating Popcorn #8

Reading Blogs & Eating Popcorn is a weekly feature here at Ruby's Books, in which I share some of the posts written by other fellow book bloggers over the last week, posts that I loved so much I have to share. 

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I hope you enjoy these posts as much as I did. Did you read any good posts that you think everyone else should?

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