Monthly Archives: April 2012

BOOK TOUR INTERVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Meeting Destiny by Nancy Straight

Today I am excited to host an interview the awesome Nancy Straight, author of Meeting Destiny!

Book Description

Lauren is visited in her dreams for years by a stranger claiming to be her destiny. Destiny becomes reality when paths cross during a failed robbery attempt. Lauren and the stranger experience chemistry like no other and now her doubt over her long time relationship with her high school sweetheart is not her only secret…someone else knows about her keen intuition and sixth sense.A mysterious clairvoyant seeks Lauren out and tells her not only of her life now but what the future may hold. Soon Lauren is in the middle of a murder investigation and a questionable friendship with the key suspect. Law enforcement, friends and family are concerned for Lauren but unfortunately they are unaware of the true danger…Sinister forces are at work and will stop at nothing to destroy Lauren’s abilities.

Nancy is on the right :)

MY INTERVIEW WITH NANCY STRAIGHT

1. Tell us a little about yourself.

Let’s see, I LOVE Starbucks White Mocha Latte and Mountain Dew. I have a lead foot so I set cruise control when I drive, even in 25 MPH zones. I almost never win when I play Angry Birds, but have my 7 year old close so he can clear the hard levels for me. I grew up on a farm and am opposed to eating fresh chicken. I am a huge fan of the show, Big Bang Theory, on CBS. I have a stray cat that I feed every night and morning but she’s never lets me get closer than within 3 feet of her. I share my life with two fantastic sons, three rotten dogs and a husband that I adore.
2. What made you want to become a writer?

I have always been a decent story teller, sometimes I feel like I’m a magnet for funny – I’m routinely looking for the hidden cameras. I woke up one morning and just decided I was going to write a novel. After I wrote it, I wasn’t completely sure what to do with it. I let a friend read it and she encouraged me to publish it. That was Meeting Destiny. After I wrote it, I realized that I truly enjoyed writing and decided to write Destiny’s Revenge then a few months later, Destiny’s Wrath.
3. Who or what gives you inspiration?

I’m sure every author gives the same answer to this question. The readers are my inspiration. I can’t tell you how excited I get when I read a great review, receive a message on Goodreads or a tweet from someone that just finished one of my books! It’s a real adrenaline rush to know that a story I made up, moved someone to tears, made them laugh out loud after their husband was already sleeping or kept them guessing on what would happen next into the wee hours of the morning.
4. Tell us about Meeting Destiny.

Lauren Davis is in her twenties and since high school has dreamed of the same man that claimed to be her destiny. Her dream becomes reality when her path crosses Max Meyer’s after she’s shot during a failed robbery attempt. Lauren has a kind of sixth sense for danger and she relies on this sense throughout the story. She meets a mysterious clairvoyant who shares with her what the future may hold. Lauren finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation and a questionable friendship with the key suspect. Law enforcement, friends and family are concerned for Lauren but unfortunately they are unaware of the true danger…Sinister forces are at work and will stop at nothing to destroy Lauren.
5. What’s the hardest part of being a writer?

I am technologically challenged and have the blog to prove it! (authnancystraight.blogspot.com) Writing is the easy part. Working with a graphic designer to find a cover can be tricky, but marketing is by far the hardest part of being a writer, for me. I love telling stories, inserting twists and turns into the stories, using words to elicit powerful emotions with readers – but I am sooooo intimidated when it comes to blogging. I use twitter and can tweet and message okay, but I am still clueless as to what to do with lists, how to maintain them and am envious when I see others have twitter lists hooked to their blogs. Like the true nerd that I am, I bought a book so hopefully I’ll improve in the coming months!
6. What do you need around you to write (special drink, lucky items, etc)?

I can write anywhere but I love to write in a chaise lounge in our family room with my dog, Flash, stretched out beside me. He’s got his own internal clock because at 10pm most nights he starts walking to the bedroom, in an effort to tell me to put my laptop away.
7. What are some of your favorite books?

I recently finished Rachel Higginson’s Star-crossed Series – I’m DEEPLY in love with it and will probably read it a second time very soon. Shelly Crane’s Significance Series, Charlotte Abel’s Channie Series and Shannon Dermott’s Beg for Mercy are all big favorites as well.
8. Are your characters based on anyone you know?

Not really. I’d like to think each of the characters has personality traits that are similar to close friends, but the characters aren’t based on any actual people.
9. What, if anything, are you working on right now?

I’m nearly done with the first draft of the first book in a new series. It’s another Paranormal romance but I haven’t titled any of the books yet. I’m thinking of running a contest and letting friends / readers submit possible titles.
10. Why do you love writing?

Writing is one of the few mediums that can bring pure joy to others. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good movie but I can’t ever remember hearing someone say, “Wow, the book was almost as good as the movie.” I think my love of writing is the way I can insert a single phrase or maybe a couple sentences that can actually result in a physical change in the reader (heart racing, tears, laughter, anger). Occasionally I’ll run into someone, in person, that has read my series and I’m always blown away by their reaction to the story and their willingness to share with me how it affected them.

And now for the giveaway!  You can win your own, SIGNED copy of Meeting Destiny.

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!!

Team DaeVision–Get Ready for the Daemon Invasion!

The #DaemonInvasion is going to start soon and it’s going to be EPIC!

Our tasks start on May 15th and we’d really appreciate all your support for Team DaeVision! Yes, that’s us.
For now, before I introduce you to the team, it’d be awesome if you guys could like our page on Facebook!

Without further delay, here’s Team DaeVision!

Anjana

Blog : Kindle and Me

Twitter : @anjanavasan

Vicky
Blog : Books, Biscuits and Tea
Twitter : @alouetteutte

Juhina
Blog : Maji Bookshelf
Twitter : @juhina_

Trajce
Blog : I Love Teen Books
Twitter : @Traj4ee

Adeeb
Blog : BookVille
Twitter : @Adeeb_PawsUp

Lisseth
Blog : Read-a-holicz
Twitter : @lizzy9rule

Priya
Blog : RavenFic Reviews
Twitter : @iFall2fly

Tanja
Blog : Ja Citam, a ti?
Twitter : @tannychy_rhcp

Zemira
Twitter : @Zemmy89

Carrie
Blog : Sweet Southern Home
Twitter : @celjla212

Lynn
Twitter : @kuro_rin01

That’s us, hope we get your support!

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway of Obsidian at Kindle and Me! If you haven’t read it yet, here’s your chance to win it!

BOOK TOUR REVIEW: ReVamped by Ada Adams

ReVamped (Angel Creek Series, Book 1)

By Ada Adams

Published: February 20th 2012

Format: Paperback or E-book

Book Description

A simple mission turned deadly.

Nineteen-year-old vampire Dawn has led a sheltered life within the confines of her father’s presidential headquarters. Upon being sent on a mission to revamp four goofy misfits into guardians of a peaceful little town of Angel Creek, Dawn believes that all her dreams have finally come true. What starts off as a simple task, turns into something unexpected, changing Dawn’s life forever and leading the action-loving, thrill-seeking vampire teen on a path of mystery, danger and intrigue.

When a human girl is kidnapped by a group of rogue vamps, Dawn discovers that there is more going on in Angel Creek than meets the eye. And it all connects to Ethan, the cute newcomer who seems too perfect to be true, Sebastian, the mysterious vampire with a turbulent past, and even Dawn herself. Dawn must not only succeed in revamping the troubled recruits, but must also prevent the vampire race from being overtaken by a malevolent villain who has a strange and obsessive fascination with her. As threat escalates, romance blooms, and ghosts from her past begin to surface, Dawn is sure of only one thing: her life will never be the same.

My thoughts:

5 out of 5 stars

I loved this book! I flew threw it in just several hours, reading way past my bedtime :) I think the thing I liked best about ReVamped was that it showed vampires as vulnerable, still almost human creatures. In most of vampire literature, we are accustomed to vamps as strong, smooth, undead warriors with no flaws. The vamps in ReVamped, however, are more like underdogs–none of them are really the alpha creatures we have seen before.

Dawn was a great narrator. I liked her as a person too, which is super important to me in a main character. Even though she has been a vamp her whole life, she still is not as cool and collected as one would expect–she often trips over her words and awkwardly blurts out what she is thinking. I loved her.

The rest of the characters were awesome too–each of the vampires in Dawn’s group has their own unique personality which I really enjoyed getting to know. I’d have to say my fave of the group is Brooke. She has hilarious moments in which she is an airhead, but when Dawn was in a moment of need, she was there for her.

The plot gradually rose to its’ climax, and the end did not disappoint. I also really loved the history behind the town and the characters. That was one of the best parts of the story for me, learning the truth about Sebastian, and Dawn. The ending was bittersweet and perfect, and though I’m not sure where the story will go from here, I will definitely be there to continue the ride!

About the Author

“Many people sing in the shower. I, on the other hand, write scenes in my head and act them out.”

At age five, Ada read her first chapter book – Pippi Longstocking. Ever since that moment, she developed an intense passion for the stories and characters found within the pages of literature.

In her career as an actress and a writer, Ada currently spends most of her days immersed in imaginary worlds. Much like the characters she enjoys playing and writing about, Ada is a martial artist with a Black Belt in Shotokan Karate. She is also a big proponent of lifelong learning, and has attained Bachelor of Arts in Psychology (it aids in creating characters with unique quirks!) as well as a Master’s of Science in Education.

Ada strives to bring a fresh voice and perspective to fiction. She has been writing creatively for many years. “ReVamped” is her debut novel.

She lives in Toronto, Canada, and enjoys adventurous nature hikes with her adorable puppies Cara and Oreo.

www.revampedbook.com

www.facebook.com/revampedbook

www.twitter.com/Ada_Adams

www.goodreads.com/book/show/13495198-revamped

BUY REVAMPED ON KINDLE ($2.99!!)

REVIEW: Glimmer by Phoebe Kitanidis

GlimmerGlimmer by Phoebe Kitanidis

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A girl and a guy wake up in a strange bed together…naked. And strangely, neither of them have any memory of who the other is or how they got there.

Eventually they find out they are Marshall and Elyse, and they are living in the strangely perfect town of Summer Falls. As they try to piece together their lives, they find something is definitely not right about the town. People randomly faint and wake up with no memory of the last few minutes, and nothing bad seems to happen…ever. So while Elyse and Marshall must find out more about themselves, they also have to solve the mystery of why the town is so different–and what they are going to do about it.

Well, let me first start of by saying that the first couple of chapters definitely caught my interest. Naked in bed with a stranger sounds quite salacious, but, it wasn’t like that in the text. The book started to fall apart for me after about the first half though.

I usually like books where the story is told from alternating points of view, and this was no exception. But man, I hated when I was reading Elyse’s chapters. I really did not like her as a character. I don’t understand how she could just wake up with no memory, but all of a sudden she is holier-than-thou and so judgmental and just hateful–even towards herself! Even though she can’t remember her life, she somehow knows that nothing in her life is good enough for her…her clothes, room, boyfriend, etc. I didn’t get it at all, and she was like this for the whole book.

Luckily, Marshall was a better character. I really felt for him in what he was going through with his father–and I was glad that he somehow knew to treat him with respect even though he had no memories. Marshall was likable and just a better character, and PERSON, overall.

I liked that the story was very original. The combination of elements such as ghosts, magic, etc. was unique but to me it felt like it was on the verge of a mishmash. The author somehow made it work though.

Finally, the ending…I just kind of feel like I missed something, but I’m not sure what. Even though events got wrapped up nicely, I just finished the book a few minutes ago and I’m still not sure if I understand everything.

I’d recommend this book to those who want a change from the paranormal “creature” books. The story is an interesting one, for sure.

View all my reviews

Thanks to Southern Book Bloggers for allowing me to review this book during an ARC tour.

Southern Book Bloggers ARC Tours

BOOK TOUR INTERVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Maple Express by Peter Brandt

I am happy to be hosting an interview with Peter Brandt, author of Maple Express today!  But first, a little about the book.

THE MAPLE EXPRESS

By
Peter Brandt

Book Description

Sara Maple has a comfortable life—the only child of a wealthy family—a best friend who does everything she asks—and the admiration of most of her schoolmates. Unfortunately, her temper and “indestructible” attitude quickly place her in a very precarious position.

“The Maple Express” is a powerful novel that captures the author’s take on the miracle of the human mind. “The Maple Express” delves into the actions and consequences of a young girl who has never had to take responsibility for her actions before. The story brings the reader into a world where Sara’s determination to find her way off the train sends her on an emotional trip that bonds her to her new friends and changes her life forever.

Both young and old readers will love the emotional journey Sara Maple takes them on as she deciphers the obstacles that confront her. Sara’s story ends with a surprise twist and leaves the reader with a sense of discovery about his or her own humanity.

My interview with Peter A. Brandt

1.  Tell us a little about yourself.

My name is Pete and I love to stay busy. I have been writing professionally as a Technical Writer since 1996 but it has only been in the last 7 years that I really began to write novels and non-fiction. After writing a couple of memoirs, a humorous look at my 20 years in the Armed Forces and my father’s account of being thrown into a prisoner-of-war camp at the age of 14, I have settled on writing young adult fiction. I don’t seem to be able to write on an adult level, preferring to look at life from a young person’s view.

I am a lead technical writer and during the day I write technical and project documentation.

2.  What made you want to become a writer?

I don‘t know for sure. I have always wanted to be an author, ever since I can remember, but I have had some self-esteem issues that kind of stifled it. I think if I would have had some real support as a kid I might have become a writer right out of school like I wanted. It is those dream stealing comments I really try to avoid with my own kids. No matter what they want to do, I am supportive. Who am I to tell them if it’s a good idea or not. They need to follow their own heart.

3.  Who or what gives you inspiration?

My family is my inspiration. I want them all to do what makes them happy in life and not just what pays the bills. What better way to show them than for me to do what makes me happy, and writing makes me happy.

4.  Tell us about The Maple Express.

Maple Express brings a young rich girl into a world she has never been in. Her life of privilege and getting her way are torn from her and Sara is stuck on a train ride to nowhere. Her four traveling companions are strange to say the least and have no interest of getting off the train. Sara must now learn to fend for herself and must learn some life skills. Without the others help, Sara is sure she will be stuck on this train forever. Sara must convince the others to follow her.

5.  What’s the hardest part of being a writer?

Wow, for me, this is going to sound silly, but I hate to be alone. I once had an office in a small bedroom at the end of the hall. When I sat behind the desk it really freaked me out. I actually had to replace the wood door with a glass door just so I could see down the hallway and my wife and kids coming and going. As well, I had my dog Kricket, a Yorkie, who used to sit by my feet and sleep while I wrote. He has since passed on, so I am back to listening to my music and taking many breaks to go out and visit my wife.

Another thing that drives me crazy is those cheap clacking keyboards. I have a nice quiet keyboard and I wear headphones and listen to music while I write so I don’t hear anything.

6.  What do you need around you to write (special drink, lucky items, etc)?

I am addicted to coffee (Tim Horton’s mainly) but I have had to cut back so that WAS my special drink.

I need an office that I really like hanging out in. I have posters, autographed photos and lots of color. As well, I have my musical instruments and a comfortable chair. I have always thought it would be cool if authors showed where they actually wrote their books, so at my blog you can actually see where I write. http://www.simplesimonpublishing.com/blog. This book, Maple Express was finished here at my desk in my office. I think it gives my readers a little something personal to have knowing where I sit and do all my work.

I also need music. I must wear headphones that I use to isolate me from the outside world. I need music to do my technical writing at work as well. I have a monstrous music collection but my favorite album to listen to when writing is “Grace” by Cory Tetford from Halifax Nova Scotia Canada.

7.  What are some of your favorite books?

“On Writing” by Stephen King has been a real help for me. I went into a real writer’s funk and couldn’t break out of it. I read On Writing and I realized that I was doing many of the things that Stephen did as he wrote. That really boosted my self-esteem and I got back to writing again.

I love comedy (reading and writing – Crown Prince from Texas by me for example) and I have a really weird thing for Lewis Black so all of his books are a real blast for me as well. “I’m Dreaming of a Black Christmas” is a real hoot. My wife thinks he’s a little dark but to me it’s that angry side that makes him so funny.

As for young adult fiction, I am a huge fan of JK Rowling and the whole Harry Potter series. She is a very wealthy woman because of Harry Potter and she deserves every bit of it. I am envious of her ability to stretch a story over 7 books that are so cohesively joined together, right down to the very ending. As a storyteller, she is a goddess.

8.  Are your characters based on anyone you know?

Most of my characters are based on me to some extent. I can write about their insecurities, their hopes and dreams as their basic needs because in many cases they mirror my own.

Sara on the other hand is the opposite of me. She is a bully and I was on the bullying end when I was growing up. I have a very low tolerance for bullies to this day. I do think that everyone has a ray of hope inside them and with the right attitude and direction people can change. I really want Sara to change, but no one can really be sure until the end.

9.  What, if anything, are you working on right now?

My next release, summer or fall 2012 is a throwback to the Hardy Boy and Nancy Drew series I grew up with. It is titled “Holly Alexander and the Mystery of the Courthouse Square” and is about a young girl who gets into a pack of trouble in her new town and it takes her cunning and the help of her friends to get out of it.

As well I am writing another science fiction type story about a young man by the name of Taylor who goes missing on his way to school and suddenly appears two months later wandering the Pacific Coast Highway in California. He has no idea where he was and who he is. Vivid dreams begin to permeate his sleep and until he finds out who the girl is and what she wants he knows he will not have any rest.

I just wrote a screenplay and we shot it as a movie last month and I even got to act in it. It was a short film for the film festival circuit and if it does well I might write a full length feature.

10.  Why do you love writing?

I find that I can express myself so much more on paper than I can verbally. As well, I love to make stuff up and my stories are really the core of me. I have never really grown up so my mind is always writing stories about young people who don’t think they have anything to offer the world and before they know it they are contributing more than they ever thought possible.

Thank you for the questions and I really appreciate that you hosted me today.

Peter’s Website

Peter’s Books

Buy Maple Express on Smashwords for $1.99!

Goddess Fish Partner

Peter has some original prizes he’s giving away at the end of his tour. Two winners will win a pint jug of Butternut Mountain Farm Vermont Pure Maple Syrup, Grade A Dark Amber, in honor of the main character of The Maple Express, Sara Maple, from the small town of Mapleton Vermont. One grand prize winner will win an awesome Bachmann Trains Pegasus Ready-to-Run HO Scale Train Set. Also, the blog host with the most comments will win a 2012 Canadian (1 oz) Silver Maple Leaf Coin in an “Air-Tite” Capsule.

All you have to do is comment on this post for a chance to win.  The more tour posts you comment on, the better your chances!  Click on the banner to follow the Maple Express Book Tour, and get a chance to win these prizes!

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY TO THE IMMORTAL RULES!!

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In the not so distant future, most of humankind has been wiped out by the Red Lung virus. The world is now made up of far apart cities run by powerful vampire overlords. Outside the walls of the cities, another kind of undead creature reign: zombies. Alison Sekemoto (Allie) barely scrapes by as an unregistered human on the outer limits of a vampire city. She hates the vampires so much, that she refuses to be monitored by them and have her blood taken in exchange for food.

Until one night, Allie is attacked and on the brink of death. She is saved by a mysterious vampires, who gives her the choice of becoming like him. She chooses to become a vampire, and a new chapter of her life begins.

Though Allie swears she will never become like the vicious bloodsuckers in the city she left behind, she cannot keep away the Hunger for blood. This becomes even more difficult when she meets up with a group of humans who desperately need saving. Allie must fight to retain what little humanity she has left.

I’m writing this review on a crappy hotel internet connection, so I’m gonna try my best not to make it too long.

First thoughts–this book was way too long. I am not sure what it is with authors and 500 page books lately, but I think it’s unnecessary. Parts of this story definitely dragged for me, and I think the book could have been cut by dozens of pages.

I like Allie. I liked her when she was human, and I don’t really think she changed that much when she became vampire. Either way, she puts in a tough front and tries to tell herself that she is the only person she cares about, but she lets people in whether she wants to or not. First with Stick, then with Zeke.

I really liked that the hints of romance in the story were not overdone. Allie is an undead creature, and before that she was an untrusting human. So to see her fall for someone was interesting to see play out. I sincerely hope Allie and Zeke can meet again in the future…but I’m not sure in what direction that can go as long as Zeke stays human.

My favorite parts of this story were the action scenes…I loved the idea of a badass lady vamp hacking up zombies with a katana. (But then I always have been a big Blade fan :P) Maybe the fight scenes were gory, but hey, that’s dystopian zombie lit for you.

I am definitely looking forward to going forward with Allie’s story. I would love more background on both Kanin and Jackal. I also hope to learn more about the vampire race itself. While I wouldn’t describe this book as an unputdownable read, I enjoyed it and loved the combination of supernatural elements.

View all my reviews

Thank you to Harlequin Teen and NetGalley for allowing me to review this book.

BOOK TOUR REVIEW: Rae of Hope (The Chronicles of Kerrigan) by Wanita May

Rae of Hope

Author: W. J. May
Publisher: Mitchell Morris Publishing, Inc
Genre: YA Fantasy

Book Description

How hard do you have to shake a family tree to find out the truth about the past?

Fifteen-year-old Rae Kerrigan never questioned her family’s history. That is until she accepted a scholarship to Guilder Boarding School in England. Guilder is an exclusive, gifted school. Rae has no idea what she is getting herself into or that her family’s past is going to come back and taunt her.

She learns she is part of an unparalleled group of individuals who become inked with a unique tattoo (tatu) on their sixteenth birthday. The tatu enables them to have supernatural powers particular to the shape of their ink-art. Both of her parents where inked, though Rae never knew, as they passed away when she was young. Learning about her family’s past, her evil father and sacrificial mother, Rae needs to decide if there is a ray of hope in her own life.

Book Trailer

My Thoughts:

Rae Kerrigan has been shipped off to England to complete her junior and senior years at a mysterious boarding school. Her Uncle, whom she has been living with for the past 10 years since the death of her parents, sends her off without offering a clue as to why.

It doesn’t take long for Rae to figure out that Guilder is not a normal school. The students here all have supernatural abilities, which manifest on their 16th birthdays–along with the appearance of a mystical tattoo.

As Rae learns more about why she is at the school, she also discovers the truth about who her parents were–and why everyone around her seems to know more about her life than she does. Rae must make some tough decisions about who to trust, and even then, things may not turn out as they seem.

As I was reading through the first few chapters of this book, it became VERY apparent to me that the author is a huge Harry Potter fan. Seriously, this book was like Harry Potter meets X-Men. I could draw so many parallels–orphaned kid living with aunt and uncle goes off to a magical school, everyone but the kid knows about the kid’s past, teachers don’t turn out to be who they seem…and much much more. I tried to judge the book on its’ own merits but the comparisons to HP were way too plentiful for me to ignore.

That’s not to say I didn’t like the book–I did, since I am a huge Harry Potter fan. The first half was a bit slow for me, but things really picked up once Rae came into her powers. Rae is actually quite a likeable girl–she puts on a tough face, but inside she has insecurities. She’s also incredibly naive.

There was a big twist at the end that I didn’t see coming, and I did enjoy the climax of the book–it just took a bit too long for it to get there, in my opinion. I did enjoy the ending of the book, and I would consider reading the next one in the series–if the author decides to go in that direction.

About the Author

Wanita May grew up in the fruit belt of Ontario – St.Catharines. Crazy-happy childhood, she always has had a vivid imagination and loads of energy.

The youngest of six — four older brothers, and sister — they taught her at a young age to be competitive in all aspects of life.

At sixteen, she began competing in athletics (track and field) and before she turned seventeen, she was representing Canada in high jump. She continued to compete, breaking Canada’s JR High Jump record (1.92m – 6′ 3 1/2″ for those metric-ly challenged). She attented University of Toronto, and Kansas State University – graduating with a BS degree in Kinesiology and beginning her Masters in Business.

She is currently married, and the mother of three adorable kids.

After her father passed away in 2009, from a six-year battle with cancer (which she still believes he won the fight against), she began to write again. A passion she’d loved for years, but realized life was too short to keep putting it off.

Her first book, Rae of Hope – from the Chronicles of Kerrigan – is available Nov 15, 2001 by Mitchell Morris Publishing. It is contracted as a four book series and available in print and ebook through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords and other online sites.

She is currently represented by Dawn Dowdle of Blue Ridge Literary Agency. Wanita is a writer of Young Adult, Fantasy Fiction and where ever else her little muses take her.

Blog: http://wanitajump.wordpress.com/

Author website: http://www.wanitamay.yolasite.com/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/wanitajump

 

REVIEW: Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris

BOOK DESCRIPTION

Two days before the start of her junior year, seventeen-year-old Janelle Tenner is hit by a pickup truck and killed—as in blinding light, scenes of her life flashing before her, and then nothing. Except the next thing she knows, she’s opening her eyes to find Ben Michaels, a loner from her high school whom Janelle has never talked to, leaning over her. And even though it isn’t possible, she knows—with every fiber of her being—that Ben has somehow brought her back to life.

But her revival, and Ben’s possible role in it, is only the first of the puzzles that Janelle must solve. While snooping in her FBI agent father’s files for clues about her accident, she uncovers a clock that seems to be counting down to something—but to what? And when someone close to Janelle is killed, she can no longer deny what’s right in front of her: Everything that’s happened—the accident, the murder, the countdown clock, Ben’s sudden appearance in her life—points to the end of life as she knows it. And as the clock ticks down, she realizes that if she wants to put a stop to the end of the world, she’s going to need to uncover Ben’s secrets—and keep from falling in love with him in the process.

From debut author Elizabeth Norris comes this shattering novel of one girl’s fight to save herself, her world, and the boy she never saw coming.

Unraveling

Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

First of all, let me say that I know there are many readers and reviewers out there who think that a rating and review should not be given for a book that was not finished. Well, guess what–I’m not one of those people. I read more than 250 pages of this book, and that was more than enough to get a feel on it, for me. So as you read this review, keep in mind that I DID NOT make it all the way to the end. So if something absolutely mind-bending and awesome happened there, well, I didn’t find out about it, cause I was not interested enough to get there.

From the first pages of the book, I absolutely HATED Janelle. And yes, even after reading about the things that happened to her and the obstacles in her life, my feelings did not change. I found her to be abrasive, bitchy, and holier than thou. She even lashes out at her younger brother, who’s never done a thing to her. There are ways to be a kickass chick without being an insufferable one, but unfortunately that is the way Janelle came off to me.

As far as plot–I felt like the author was trying to work too many storylines at once. And, like I mentioned, maybe they all come together in the end, but for the portion of the book that I read, I found myself many times thinking, “What the eff is even going on right now?”

Ben was a bit more tolerable than his friends and Janelle, but I still did not find myself engaging with him. I don’t know–he seemed like everything Janelle was doing was not a surprise to him. I’m not sure how to explain it, it was just one of those things.

At the point where I stopped, the sci-fi ish stuff was just coming up. And not that I’m stupid or anything, but once again I just found myself going, “What?” I do enjoy many sci fi shows and books, so it’s not like I’m unfamiliar with the genre. At least I give the author props for being original in the wide world of YA.

There were many other things that led me to not complete this book. I am not a book prude by ANY means, but most of the curse words in the book felt forced–like the characters were cursing just for the sake of cursing. I don’t know anyone who talks like that. I am 26 and I never say the F word like the kids in this book do. Another thing was Janelle’s little catchphrases: “I’m like that” or “He’s like that”, and talking about wanting to punch someone in the face all the time. IDK. Just one of many things that rubbed me the wrong way.

This book was my first real paperback ARC, and I am so grateful to Elizabeth and HarperTeen for sending it to me as such a new book blogger. Unfortunately, it was not for me. And yes, I do fully expect to get flack on this review–out of nearly 300 reviews, mine is the only 1 star with an actual text review written, and I might be the only one who couldn’t finish this book. Sorry, fellow reviewers–I just didn’t get it.

View all my reviews

Showers of Books Giveaway Hop

Welcome to my stop on the Showers of Books Giveaway Hop, hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer and One a Day YA.

I was recently lucky enough to win a signed copy of The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter, so I am giving away the copy I had before!

Click on the book cover if you need to know what this book is about–but you really should know by now!  This book got 4 stars from me.

My copy is in perfect condition–it was read once by me, and once by my husband (yes, he is awesome and loves YA just as much as I do :).

This giveaway is US only, and ends April 25.

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!!

Click on the little umbrella picture all the way at the top to keep on hoppin!!

BOOK TOUR PROMO: Kings & Queens by Courtney Vail

Book Description

Seventeen-year-old Majesty Alistair wants police to look further into her father’s fatal car wreck, hopes the baseball team she manages can reclaim the state crown, aches for Derek…or, no…maybe Alec…maybe. And she mostly wishes to retract the hateful words she said to her dad right before slamming the door in his face, only to never see him again.

All her desires get sidelined, though, when she overhears two fellow students planning a church massacre. She doubts cops will follow up on her tip since they’re sick of her coming around with notions of possible crimes-in-the-works. And it’s not like she cries wolf. Not really. They’d be freaked too, but they’re not the ones suffering from bloody dreams that hint at disaster like some crazy, street guy forecasting the Apocalypse.

So, she does what any habitual winner with zero cred would do…try to I.D. the nutjobs before they act. But, when their agenda turns out to be far bigger than she ever assumed, and even friends start looking suspect, the truth and her actions threaten to haunt her forever, especially since she’s left with blood on her hands, the blood of someone she loves.

Book Trailer

Book Excerpt

Finished with player updates, an article for the team site and most deliciously, the call, Majesty laughed, dropping her office phone into its cradle. Getting to gloat to the Wasps’ Athletic Director thrilled as a definite managerial perk. The Colts and Wasps usually faced off in the regionals, but the Dragons just scorched the lousy buzzers, 12-5.

But, every ounce of funny was suddenly slain by the unrelenting sting from nearly being taken out by Derek. Cornered in the brush, the last one standing, and ‘Time’s up!’ was what had saved her? Disgraceful.

She groaned at the sour taste of loserdom while tucking her hair under her cap, then snatched flavored water from her mini-fridge and kissed the school goodbye. Out in the back, she thought of Jase and prayed to the ears in the air that he’d find peace or something. She dashed around to the front and down the driveway and turned left toward the town center, and away from homes with yippy purse dogs and diamond-studded mail boxes.

A sprinkle of storefronts, a second-run cinema, St. Marks, one restaurant, one gas station and Spanky’s, a mini-golf/ice cream shop-gone-wild made up the entirety of Cedar Creeks hub.

Banners put up for the St. Paddy’s Day parade still hung on utility poles and she searched for surprise additions amongst the bunnies and flowers. No screwing dogs or puking rats yet? Boring, people. Get with it! These sugary spring-things always flapped in the wind beside mini American flags until the day after the Independence Day fireworks, which was not necessarily on the 4th … or even in July. She’d have to be on the lookout for the perfect demented treasure to tack up before then. Little sound was lovelier than a chorus of old lady shrieks and tsks.

She passed Fisher Price village and the lions guarding Markies cathedral and booked it into The Common, a fancy name for an ill-equipped park. Woods laced through town, but this strip behind The Common aroused whispers.

Three kids, holding hands and singing Ring around the Rosie, stopped and gawked.

One cried, “She’s goin in. Must not be ascared a the spooks.”

Traversing from grass for dirt, Majesty chuckled that Alec’s tale about the wood-dwelling people-creatures endured. “They grow more fierce each day, waiting for their kings and queens to come and lead them to overtake the area, the country and eventually, the world. “

Six years ago, a girl disappeared. Theories abounded, but most of the children believed, “The spooks got her. “

Crows griped about the invasion and the drooping sun spilled beams through the evergreen towers, creating an inky leviathan war deep in the thick. Majesty growled as anxiety resurged.

Near the tripod, where three towns converged, and a coven reportedly danced nude, she slowed to a stroll. Birds departed the treetops in a flurry of flapping wings, but one crow remained, voicing stern warnings to friends, or maybe her. She gulped her drink, enjoying its grape hint. When glitchy male voices found her ears, she froze with a bead of water dripping from her mouth.

“So, everything’s set?”

“Yep. Got the guns, supplies. It’s a go.”

Majesty searched. There . . . little over ten yards.

“Hope . . . doesn’t blow up in our faces. Thought we were gonna kill one. Those people won’t know what hit ‘em.”

People? . . . Can’t see anything! Imaginary ants tingled her neck and her legs wobbled with each step she took toward a concealing tree. She braced herself and peered around the trunk. Fatigues, bulky vests and face-engulfing Buffs, muffled and muddled all identifiers. Great!

That’s the beauty . . . They’ll learn how dead and buried their Jesus is when . . . doesn’t help . . . start shooting up the church. Haven’t. . . . how many I wanna off yet. Needs to be impressive . . . national coverage. Let’s snatch our gear . . . do this lame paintball thing, get back to our real deal.”

They headed for the even deader town of Megans Corner. No. Wait! Majesty leaned forward, shifting her weight. If I could just . . . A stick snapped underfoot. The taller one stopped and whacked his buddy’s arm. She cringed and jerked back.

“Shh. Hear somethin? They were likely debating the noise she’d stupidly made in the whispers she couldn’t make out, but the clatter of them moving through the woodland was deafening.

Sweat dripped from Majesty’s temples and frightened fairies fluttered beneath her skin. She stood motionless as the rustling drew much too close for her comfort. Shoved into flight, she took off like a sprinter at the shot. Water sloshed on her leg, awakening goose bumps with its chill. She chucked the bottle and cap into reaching shrubs.

Muddled threats nipped at her heels, but agility and swiftness aided her evasion, as well as knowing the woods, not well, but well enough.

Majesty bolted through the clearing, rounded a bend and deserted the path. Busting through brushwood as fast as she could, she spotted a hollow. She jumped into its bowl of dead foliage with way too much crunch, slid under a bush and clammed her mouth with her hands to prevent gasping. She swallowed to rid the tightness that was crawling up her throat.

“Some girl. See anything?”

“No.”

She tried to catch vocal distinctions, already smothered by a babbling stream. She swept a tickling spider off her arm, lifting freakin’ trumpet blasts into the air. Idiot! Her heartbeat drummed in her ears as she muscled her gaze through

“Gone.”

The watery white noise had proven a godsend for her foolish misstep and cranky stomach, now bellowing for food.

One of them kicked debris her way and a fleck of something hit her eye. She closed her aching eye and covered it with her fingers.

After a string of salty slurs, one said, “Hair was hidden . . . Colts shirt.”

“Good. One of our own. Should . . . find her.”

She shuddered. Agony seduced her to dislodge the foreign body with her knuckle. She couldn’t wait.

“But what if she . . .”

“No one can stop us, especially some girl. We’re in control. I’ll find her first . . . eradicate her.”

Their nerve-grating footfalls walked away, veering into silence.

Majesty finally allowed her lungs to yank air.

She’d never been so petrified . . . except for the time men in blue had come to her door . . . and she just knew.

 

About the Author

COURTNEY VAIL writes totally twisted YA and adult suspense. She enjoys braiding mystery, suspense & romance with some kind of weirdness. Her addictions to crazy coffee concoctions, Funny Bones, Ben & Jerry’s, and bacon keep her running and writing. She currently lives in New England with a comedian stud and a wild gang of kidlets.

Courtney’s Website

Courtney’s Blog

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