Thursday, February 27, 2014

Dovetailed by Rashelle Workman

   The Immortal Essence series continues in Dovetailed.  Venus is a new goddess and still doesn't understand all of her powers and her real parents, Ith and Aetha (gods as well), left the planet.  It was now her job to take care of Kelari.  One of her new powers includes putting souls back into their bodies if they have not already left to where souls normally go.  And she is newly married to Michael, the halfling.  He is an all new breed, one that has never been seen before, and has powers all his own.  Unfortunately he is the only one who can get what is needed to help defeat the huge monsters about to invade Kelari.  King Antyon is determined to become supreme ruler over Kelari and then Earth.  But he is not the type of ruler they want and will destroy Kelari to get what he wants.  The beasts being set loose can even kill the immortal Kelvieri.  Amberlee, the fifteen-year-old girl that Venus thought was her younger sister until now, is being queened before she even goes through becoming a Kelvieri and immortal.  With both of her parents dead, due mostly to her betrayal of them, she is now the natural heir.  However, she was never groomed for this position because her parents had spent all of their energy on Venus.  Amberlee still struggles with jealousy of Venus as well as the guilt of her betrayal.  Now she must get her people to believe in her and do what she can to help them.  The rebellious teenage girl must become a leader.  Then there is her boyfriend, Palmo.  He is King Antyon's son and not to be trusted.  Instead of just explaining that to her, Venus lets Amberlee figure it out on her own.

   I love reading this series by Rashelle Workman!  It is all about immortals, huge scary beasts, deceit, love, and betrayal.  Amberlee must go through her own people trying to reject her because of her betrayal of them to King Antyon.  And her boyfriend is not who she thought he was.  Going from rogue princess to the queen and leader of her people is quite the journey for her.  Venus goes through the stresses of early marriage to Michael and the constant danger everyone around her is in now that they are under attack.  Michael learns of the powers he has and how they can help him save everything he loves and cares about.  Check out book one: Exiled

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Apocalyptic Moon by Eva Gordon

   Dr. Dora Adler loved what she did.  She enjoyed helping people.  In fact, she was pretty much married to her work.  No time for relationships and men.  Not when she worked constantly and her shifts could be any time of the day and night.  Then the dreaded Z-Phage struck, turning tons of people into zombies.  When it does, Dora is stuck diagnosing those with the early stages of the virus.  She has a particular gift at being able to discern who has it in the early stages when others cannot.  Everything changes when she is bitten by one of the zombies inside of the hospital.  When she doesn't turn, she's taken to a facility to run tests on her to try and find a cure.  Their tests are more like torture to Dora than anything else.  She had endured countless bites to see if she would ever turn.  While there, she meets the very hot Dirk Gunderson.  He is definitely hotter than any romance novel she has ever read.  Until he tells her he is a werewolf.  Then she starts doubting his sanity.  After he tells Dora she's a witch, she's sure he is deranged.  Proof of what he is seems easy enough, but it scares her.  And after having to come to terms with what Dirk is, it's not so far fetched to think she is a witch with her strange abilities.  Like her ability to sense the virus on anyone before symptoms really present themselves.  Oh and the mind talk thing she can do with Dirk.  Mr. Bad Boy/Playboy likes Dora too.  Maybe too much.  He has never been tied down and never wanted to be until Dora came into the picture.  But first they must escape.  There will be tons of trials ahead of them.  But they are both determined to get back to their families and to safety.  On the way they'll fight countless zombies, other lycans, and even their own growing feelings for each other.  As much as he wants to mark her as his mate, if he does, Dirk could start a huge pack war.  Being an Alpha and next in line, certain things are expected of him.  Mating with a powerful witch and having offspring that could do who-knows-what is not one of them.  Marking her could be more dangerous than the hordes of zombies they face on a daily basis.  Still, Dirk isn't sure just how long he can hold out before making Dora his.

   This book is zombies, werewolves, witches, and romance wrapped all in one!  It packs all of your hideous zombie movies in with some serious Wolverine-type werewolf action while throwing in some definite steaminess to it!  Besides it overplaying Star Trek quotes a little too much, it is a great read for those of you into the paranormal and sci-fi books!  Who doesn't like a little forbidden love?  Dirk and his kind are dangerous, very dangerous, but he is the only chance of Dora finding her brother and niece.  He is also the only way to find out more about what she really is.  Watching their struggles to survive along with the struggle with their feelings is one rather exciting adventure!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Flesh Market by Richard Wright

   The Cadaver Riots began in Edinburgh in the early 1800's.  Why were they named so?  Because of the mob of cadavers that swarmed the city, tearing at and eating people wherever they found them.  Many were wounded and died from the attack.  And many more were to have nightmares about that night replay over and over in their heads for a very long time.  The poor population was what had been affected the most.  No one knew where the bodies came from or why they came back to life.  Dr. Knox is hell bent on finding the answers they need, although it is illegal to harbor a revenant (one of the undead).  He teaches medical students about the anatomy of the body and must have cadavers on hand for practicing on.  Some would say that his business was shady because he bought bodies that had passed on.  At that time in history, it was looked down on, but robbing graves was much worse than buying the bodies.  He and his few assistants begin taking in revenants and start cutting them up to find out why they are coming back to life.  The answers seem to evade them and when revenants come in that they recognize, questions are raised about the ethics of what they were doing as well as where the bodies were coming from.
   Bill and Nelly came to Edinburgh a year after the riots had happened and neither had ever seen one until they had moved here.  A friend of theirs had offered cheap lodging for them, but because things were tight, Bill and Nelly felt like they needed to "help" Maggie, the friend and owner of their current lodgings.  Maggie is willing to go to great lengths to get money, and her new (and very young) husband, William, is willing to go even further.  There is evil surrounding him that everyone seems to sense.  The selling of the revenant that came back to life in Maggie and William's lodge house to Dr. Knox is just the beginning of the slope Bill and William slip quickly down.  It doesn't take long for them to start murdering people and waiting for them to turn.  Funny thing is that they always do, and even in his almost constant drunken stupor, Bill starts to suspect that William knows how to turn them.  Bill had long suspected William of being a very dangerous man, and the further into the story you get, the more you can see why.

   Gruesome and fascinating.  A true terrors-of-the-night type of thriller.  Horror fans, this is the book for you!  Although written in a somewhat older style, to match the times no doubt, it is very in depth and many issues and thoughts come from what is really right and wrong in situations such as this.  How far would one go to find answers?  And how far would others go for money?  Bill Burke is pulled into William Hare's world of evil rather quickly.  To douse his conscience, he stays drunk most of the time.  He cannot handle what he is partaking of without it.  And unfortunately, Bill feels stuck in his position.  He knows William will come after he and Nelly.  And he has to keep Nelly safe.
   The most interesting thing about this novel is how it was based on real events.  While the Cadaver Riots (and undead in general) were a fabricated part of the story, the Burke and Hare murders were not.  It was very real.  These two men did start murdering people and selling their corpses to a Dr. Knox.  There were several victims of these two Irishmen.  If you would like to know a little about these murders check out the link below:

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Check out my post on Ender's Game

For those of you interested in the movie Ender's Game, check out a few of my thoughts on it in this post from my other blog!  Loved the movie so much more than I thought!

The Soulkeepers (Book 1) by GP Ching

   In a very different novel about angels, good and evil, and the fall of Satan, GP Ching unravels a new story about a 15-year-old boy named Jacob who has just lived the worst nightmare possible.  The problem is that he still thinks it's a dream; some horrific nightmare his mind has made up because of what he has been through.  His mother is missing and he is in the hospital injured.  They found him in his mom's car, behind the wheel, while the only sign of his mom being at the scene was her blood.  Jacob's uncle John, whom he didn't know existed, shows up at the hospital to tell him that Jacob has to come home with him.  Having no other choice, he moves to the tiny town that John lives in.  Everyone knows everyone and they all have family roots in this town.  Most of their families had been there for generations.  All except for Malini and her family.  She becomes Jacob's only friend.  Although John tries, he has a hard time getting close to Jacob.  Jacob's Aunt and cousin both seriously dislike him and it shows.  He's treated as an outsider everywhere he goes.  It all comes to a head one day when he goes off on his cousin for calling him names.  In a fit of rage, he bashes her prized dolls that are worth lots of money.  One of the heads happen to fly into the stained glass window of the neighbor across from their house.  To pay off his debt, Jacob has to start working for the strange Dr. Silva.  He helps her with gardening and it is tough work.  While working for Dr. Silva, he also discovers her secret garden full of exotic and scary plants, along with Oswald, the tree that can transport you to different places in the world.  To make everything extra strange, Jacob discovers that he has abilities when it comes to water.  In light of all that has happened, Dr. Silva admits she is here to be his Helper and he is a Soulkeeper.  He keeps souls safe from the evil ones, the fallen angels.  Even though he doesn't even believe in God, Jacob has his part to play in the war of good vs. evil.  But his main concern right now?  Find his mom.

   The weird in this book is off the wall.  Most of the things about this book are strange at best.  But that is what makes it so intriguing.  Who wouldn't be interested in a creepy transporting tree that grew from Dr. Silva's dead husband's burial plot?  Not to mention flowers that like blood, the secret of who Dr. Silva really is, where Jacob's mother really is, and more.  
   One thing we don't find out much about is exactly what part Malini plays in all of this.  Yes we know she is his one and only friend and that during the book their relationship becomes more than friendship, but Malini has her own secrets which you will find out more about in the second book.  Which you should check out if you read the first!

*image via GP Ching

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Saving Quinton by Jessica Sorensen

 Saving Quinton is the book following Breaking Nova, and it isn't the last in a line about Quinton and Nova and their very complicated lives.  At this point Nova has gotten herself out of the pit she was in almost a year ago.  She had been doing some drugs and drinking.  Quinton had been doing the same.  They were both running from things in their past that they just couldn't seem to deal with at the time.  Nova had found the help that she needed and was now in college and working at a suicide hotline.  When she decides to go back and get Quinton out of the mess he is in, her mom and best aren't so sure about it.  When she finally finds him in Vegas, she sees just how bad it has really gotten.  He hardly eats or drinks anything, just living for the high that he's getting off of the heavy drugs he is on.  Everyone living in the run down apartment with him is on some type of heavy drug.  Gone were the days of just drinking and smoking pot.  Things have escalated farther than Nova could ever have imagined.  And upon reconnecting with Quinton, her feelings come back for him as well.  It is almost killing her seeing him like that, but trying to get him out has taken a far bigger toll on her emotionally than she could begin to comprehend.  Her mother comes and gets her before Nova can fall back into that dark place that she was.  Nova does all that she can to save Quinton from that awful place, but even she starts wondering if it will be enough.

  This book was almost too dark for even me.  Dark because of the depth to which Quinton had gotten into drugs and the contemplation of death and its release.  His demons are never far away and the drugs keep them at bay.  But he never forgot Nova.  In fact, he draws her a lot still.  But then he feels guilty, like he is betraying his dead girlfriend and so he tries to drown out his pain and his memories.  Quinton  never feels like he is good enough or deserving of anything.  If he doesn't get help, he will slowly die from his lifestyle.  Nova, on the other hand, had her life all in control again.  She had goals and was working towards them.  She was trying to help other people.  But when it came to Quinton, he was a much harder case than anticipated and she would need all of the help she can get.  Every time she is around him she remembers how easy it was to forget everything.  All of her troubles had been much easier a year ago, and it would be so easy to slip back into that lifestyle.  Still, she is determined to do what she can for Quinton, even if it comes at a great cost.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Love's First Bite Boxed Set

 There is a new boxed set out that you can get for a little Valentine's Day romance that is only .99 for right now!!  It has six books in it by Cynthia Eden, Vivi Anna, Michele Hauf, Patrice Michelle, Erica Stevens, and Jordan Summers.  A sweet deal on this set!

If you are looking for some vampire or paranormal romance, then here is the book set for you!  (not recommended for anyone under age 18 due to graphic content in some of the books)

The Wolf Within by Cynthia Eden
-Werewolves and vampires, and a paranormal unit that specifically works crimes happening due to rogue vamps and weres.  There are some real surprises in this one!

The Vampire Affair by Vivi Anna
-A reporter who will go to unknown lengths to get her story, including doing some naughty acts with a businessman/vampire she is trying to get the scoop on.  This one is more "gettin it on" and in some very public places more than it is a well rounded story.  But if you are looking for something hot and heavy then this is it!

The Dark's Mistress by Michele Hauf
-A super dark tale about a girl that  is under the Devil himself's coercion.  She is a vampire and any mortal she bites, she takes their soul, holding it in her heart for the Devil.  Then she meets this hot rocker and wants him to try to save her from the evil one.

A Taste for Passion by Patrice Michelle
-Another very hot and heavy book!  Girl meets vampire.  Vampire thinks that she is his long lost, reincarnated fiance'.  And Mr. Hot Vampire gets all in her dreams, interrupting them so that all she can think about is him!  A few twists in this one as well!

Captured by Erica Stevens
-A world where vampires rule and humans have become the subservient, the slaves, or just outright on the run from them.  They have taken over and some humans are captured and just drained while others become blood slaves.  One girl is captured and becomes the blind prince's blood slave.  His treatment of her is different though and he has secrets of his own!  A true romance!

Paris After Dark by Jordan Summers
-I have not personally read this one yet because of time constraints, but with more detectives and vampires, it's got to be good as well!!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Recommended Valentine's Day Books

Valentine's Day is tomorrow and for those of you who want recommendations for good books to read, here are a few!  These are romance novels!

For a shorter read for the hopeless romantic:

Forever by Kamery Solomon

For a romance novel with drama and action, set way back in the time of kings and castles:

           The King's Pleasure by Heather Graham (warning: graphic content)

For romance with some suspense:

Heir Untamed by Danielle Bourdon  (here is the link to check out my review of this book:

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Monday, February 10, 2014

Everblue (Mer Tales Book 1) by Brenda Pandos

 I have always loved stories about mermaids and mythical creatures, except the ones that talk about mermaids luring people to their deaths and looking like scary demons.  In Everblue you have mer people that are hardly ever around humans.  They don't mix except for basically one family.  Tatiana and Fin are mer twins that can mind speak to each other when they are in the water and have changed from their human form into mer people.  Most of the other mermaids and mermen live deep in the ocean in a city much like you would see on The Little Mermaid.  With gold and gems everywhere, what seems so beautiful is a prison for some.  Like the twins' family.  Something comes up and their parents have to relocate to the city under the ocean for a time.  Jack, their dad, has to leave on a mission and everyone else is left behind to deal with living in a city that they dislike being at.  Tatiana has the attention of the arrogant prince Azor, who wants her to be promised to him.  Once a mermaid or merman kisses someone (even if they're human) they are bonded to them.  They want to be with that person and not being together can eventually drive them both mad.  Being promised to the mer people is like being married.  In a bit of bad circumstances, Fin leaves back to his human home without permission and ends up saving his beautiful neighbor that he has liked for a long time.  The only thing is he was required to kiss her to save her life.  And now they are bonded.  Things turn for the worst when he is taken prisoner when he returns for disobeying the rules.  With his dad gone, he has no idea how he will get his family away from the city that has become a prison, and now all he wants is to be with Ashlyn, the human he is now promised to.  What's worse?  She has no idea what is going on!
  I was a little skeptical at first that the story would pull together like it did.  For a little while it seemed that you would never see how Ashlyn, Tatiana, and Fin's lives all will entwine.  But it  happens and it is a great weaving of a story together!  So if you decide to read this book, hang in there!  The story gets to be very intriguing and not the normal stuff you read about mer people!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Balancing Act by Heather Smith (Review)

 Broken.  Broken dreams.  Broken bones.  Broken relationships.  That was all Callie had dealt with for the past year since she had her accident.  Gymnastics had been her life until one fateful night.  Then everything was ruined.  While attempting to try a new move on the vault, without correct supervision, she severely broke her ankle.  She would never compete again.  And that was why everything was broken, including her.  The ankle had healed, but it had a metal plate in it and it caused her a lot of pain when it rained.  After that night, it seemed like her dreams were gone.  Gymnastics and sports were her passion.  And then there was Ty.  Their relationship was over too after everything that occurred.  At the present she was dating Scott, normal and non-athletic Scott.  He was safe and although she loves him in a way, she keeps running into Ty, and it complicates things.  It brings up old feelings that she would rather keep hidden.  Ty challenges her in a way that Scott never will.  Scott doesn't understand her passion for sports like Ty.
   Callie ends up getting a job at the gym doing janitorial work, but it doesn't take long for her to see that the coach cares nothing about the girls and doesn't know her job that well.  This infuriates Callie, but what can she do besides giving the girls some tips to help them when the coach isn't paying attention or there?  These tips get her into an assistant coach position that she reluctantly agrees to.  Its then that it all comes back to her, how much she wanted to be out on that floor.  Now she wants to help these girls become as good as they can be.  But with this new job brings new problems between she and Scott, along with her feelings for Ty resurfacing.  It really is a balancing act that Callie is performing.

   I can really relate to this book because I was in gymnastics for a short time, but it always stuck with me.  I loved it and would have loved to continue, but my parents didn't enroll me anymore.  The sport, when you know just how much it takes to get where these girls are, is amazing!  It takes tons of time to practice and become strong enough to handle the moves that they do.  It is physically grueling and can take a real toll if you don't take care of yourself.  But the book itself was a great read!  Seeing Callie try so hard to keep her feelings at bay was hard because we all know she still wants Ty.  But even Ty has his secrets that he hasn't shared with Callie.  And these secrets can cause a lot of damage.  Then there's Scott, who really cares for Callie, but doesn't understand her as much as he thinks.  He starts realizing that when she begins to work at the gym and hang out with Ty again.  To him this is a new side of her.  In reality it's just who she really is coming to the surface.  It is time for Callie to stop being the victim and become strong again.

*image via Heather Smith

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Blog Tour- Balancing Act by Heather Smith

Balancing Act Blurb:

One year ago, Callie Harding was the star of the Redwood High gymnastics team. Now, she’s just trying to forget that her Olympic dreams were stolen from her in one failed landing. Most of all, she wants to forget her first love, Ty. That part of her life is over and she’s sure she has got something good with Scott… even if he doesn’t exactly understand her passion for sports.

But when Callie is persuaded to take on the position of assistant coach of the gymnastics team, Ty and Callie are thrown together almost nightly, and she’s forced to confront her memories of the night everything changed. As things get tense on and off the balancing beam, Callie must find a way to stay strong. But is forgetting her accident – and forgetting Ty – the best way to do that?

About the Author:

Heather Smith is a student of English and History at University of Washington in Seattle. She works as a senior editor at Entranced Publishing, with the Kissed and Entranced imprints. In her free time, Heather loves to ride horses and watch Disney movies. She would like to travel the world one day, and Europe would be her first stop.

Heather's first book "Balancing Act" will be published in 2014 by Entranced Publishing. You can find out more about Heather and what the future holds at the links below.

Blog: http://startingonthewritepage.blogspo...

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Email Interview with Caroline Swart

Here is an email interview I did with Caroline Swart, author of Liquid Gold and Aspen and the Dream Walkers!!  Thank you Caroline!

1. Please tell us a little about where you are from.
I'm from a sleepy coastal town in South Africa called Port Elizabeth in South Africa. I travel between America and Africa regularly and have lived in Atlanta and New Jersey before.
2. When did you publish your first book?  What was the title of the book?
My first book, Liquid Gold, was published in 2010 and it's about two college students in Idaho who are in the cross hairs of a giant oil cartel because of a family-kept bio-fuel secret. The book has plenty of action and there's a budding romance between the two main characters.
3. What hobbies do you enjoy in your free time?
I was a professional singer many years ago, and still sing in a band at the occasional function or pub night. Being an avid reader, you can always catch me with my nose in an e-reader, and I've been known to dabble with a paint brush at times.
4. Would you tell us a little about your next book in the Dream Walker Series?
 The Dream Walkers consist of four clans, Power, Water, Fire and Wind, so there's a lot of scope for new characters and books in the series. I wanted to write about Ruby and Caden next. Ruby had a good reason for making Aspen jealous and Caden, the handsome blond Water Walker, knows just how to fire up her temper. His family is against clan-mixing so there's going to be a lot of conflict and romantic tension between the two of them. She is such a beautiful character and so firey that I couldn't resist giving her a story of her own. The book is called Ruby and the Fire Walkers. Of course the tale wouldn't be complete without a villain. Lord Andreas, the leader of the chancellors in Lanta, survived the attack on his castle and is looking for revenge. Unfortunately Ruby decides to follow Caden when he goes after his missing twin brother in Muda, just as Andreas is looking for someone to punish...

5. The idea of the Dream Walker series is very intriguing.  Where did your inspiration for this series come from?
My niece, Aspen Swart, asked for a young adult book and I created the world of Lanta with the main character being named after her. Most of the characters in my books are named after friends and family - it's a fun way of involving them in my work. I decided to write about nightmares because kids hate them and I could picture evil creatures feeding on the fear they generate. Lavendula is loosely based on REM (Rapid eye movement), which is the stage when your brain dreams and nightmares happen. REM typically lasts for ten minutes a few times during the night while you sleep. That's why Lavendula is shorter than Lemona. Imagining clans of warriors who fight the nightmares and save children from bad dreams was the next step and I wanted them to be on another plane or world to make the story more exciting. I keep picturing new towns, new super powers and incredible characters in my head, so hopefully the stories will get richer and more interesting as they evolve.
6. Have your life experiences had an impact on your writing?
Absolutely. I worked at a Drive-In late at night in a deserted ticket office when I was a teenager. Every night I wondered what was waiting for me outside of the office door while the sounds of the movies echoed around me. That inspired a host of stories in my head. Couple that with the thousands of novels that I've read and also with being involved in the music industry - which is a fantasy in itself - on stage, on television and in casinos, and you'll understand where I get my inspiration from.
7. How long have you been writing?
Since junior school. I would entertain my friends with self-penned, short novels and wanted to hug my English teacher when he said I should consider a career in writing.

8. What is your favorite quote?
If you don't have a dream, how are you going to make a dream come true? (Oscar Hammerstein)
If I could create my own quote it would be as follows:
Opportunity is like a wave. When it's cresting, don't wait - grab your surfboard and ride it.
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