Category Archives: free

FREE Books Spotlight! Hidden Realms Collection

 

Title: Hidden Realms
Subtitle: A Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy Bundle
Authors: Dean Murray, Skye Malone, Sarra Cannon, Christie Rich, Heather Hildenbrand, Stormy Smith, Desni Dantone, Melissa Wright, Sara C. Roethle, Nancy Straight
Genre: Young adult paranormal romance
Publication Date: October 2, 2016
Publisher: Fir’Shan Publishing
Cover Artist: Christie Rich

Strong, independent heroines join together with mysterious, dangerous heroes in explosive conflicts that are as much external as they are internal.

Hidden Realms has all of this along with mermaids, shape shifters, demigods, fae, demons and half-breeds with even darker inheritances. There’s love, both forbidden and true, and there’s all the sacrifice it takes to keep it. Regardless of what your preferred flavor of paranormal romance or urban fantasy actually is, there is something in this collection of 10 novels that will knock your socks off.

Hidden Realms contains multiple books that are otherwise only available for $2.99 or more, and it’s available for FREE—but only for a limited time!

Torn by Dean Murray
Shape shifter Alec Graves has spent nearly a decade trying to keep his family from being drawn into open warfare with a larger pack. The new girl at school she seems to know things she shouldn’t about his shadowy world, and the more he gets to know her, the more mysterious she becomes.
Is she an unfortunate victim or bait designed to draw him into a fatal misstep?

Awaken by Skye Malone
Chloe had never been to the ocean, and now one simple vacation has altered her life forever. Her body is changing in bizarre ways, a mysterious boy is following her, and she’s become the target of killers too. Ancient and deadly secrets surround her and it’s going to take everything she has to discover the truth.

Beautiful Demons by Sarra Cannon
Harper moves to Peachville hoping for a fresh start, but when evidence ties her to the gruesome murder of a Demons cheerleader, she discovers this small town has a big secret.

Five by Christie Rich
Rayla Tate dreams of escaping her ordinary world for a bright future in the art world. Throw in an overbearing aunt who is keeping major secrets, a disgruntled best friend tagging along to college, and a bunch of fae warriors waiting in the wings to claim her the minute she leaves her sleepy little town, and Rayla’s dreams are about to shatter.

Bitterroot by Heather Hildenbrand
Charlie and Regan Vuk have secretly always wanted a sister. Now, they finally found each other, only to be forced into a head to head contest for pack alpha. A competition that threatens to destroy their new bond and 1 sister’s chance for true love. Bitterroot is a 3-part Young Adult Paranormal novella series with a dose of sibling rivalry… Who will you root for?

Bound by Duty by Stormy Smith
Amelia Bradbury is the last living Elder. She has power she can’t control, a prophecy dictating her fate, a betrothal she can’t stop and a heart lost to a human.

Ignited by Desni Dantone
When evil forces come for Kris Young, she is forced to go on the run with the young man she has long considered her guardian angel. As they search for the truth behind her role in the long-running battle between good and evil, they discover that nothing is as it seems, and nothing, least of all their hearts, are safe.

King of Ash and Bone by Melissa Wright
When monsters break through the veil between worlds, Mackenzie Scott devises a plan to stop them, whatever the cost. She finds an injured stranger who just might hold the key, but he’s not the helpless boy he appears to be. He’s one of them, and he’s got plans of his own.

Xoe by Sara C. Roethle
Xoe never thought she’d be the type of girl to contemplate murder. Of course, she never thought she’d be dealing with werewolves on top of her own strange, budding powers. Everything comes crashing down at once when her best friend’s life is put in peril, and Xoe will do whatever it takes to save her, even if it involves trusting a tall, handsome vampire with an infuriating attitude.

Meeting Destiny by Nancy Straight
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.

Let this Friday the 13th be your LUCKY day! Download the box set now to get TEN free ebooks!
 
*Hidden Realms is free for a limited time, and was free at the time of this posting*

Celebrate the Holiday Season with Hillsong: Let Hope Rise and Greater

It’s the holiday season, and I, like most people, have an extra fuzzy feeling during this time of year.  I cannot and don’t really want to pinpoint the reason why; it’s many things–the satisfaction of choosing that perfect gift for my kids, spending time with family we haven’t seen all year long, or just something as simple as seeing all the houses and businesses in town decorated so beautifully.  I definitely get a good dose of Christmas spirit when I attend church during this season. Advent and Christmas are perfect times for reflecting on the true reason for the season, and thinking about ways my family and I can spread the love and cheer.

During this time of year, my family and I like to give back in many ways.  We donate clothing, food, and toys to our local church and pantry.  My older son loves when his class visits nursing homes, and he also likes caroling.  We also try to give to programs for our veterans and those in our family serving overseas.  To us, Christmas means remembering why we celebrate, and making our joy so huge it can positively affect others.

divider

This year, I’d like to share two films that you and your family will love. Both films highlight the perseverance people can have when they lean on their faith and when they do that – God enables them to do extraordinary things in life.

HILLSONG – LET HOPE RISE was a phenomenon when it came out in theaters this past September and you can continue the worship experience with everyone this holiday season.

Capturing the on-stage energy and off-stage hearts of the Australia-based band Hillsong UNITED, HILLSONG–LET HOPE RISE is a new motion-picture genre—the theatrical worship experience. The film explores Hillsong’s humble beginnings and astonishing rise to prominence as an international church whose songs are sung every Sunday by more than 50 million people worldwide.

The second is GREATER, a film about an unlikely young man who had all the odds stacked up against him when he tried out to play football at one of the most prestigious football programs in the country.

Brandon Burlsworth is perhaps the greatest walk-on in the history of college football. Brandon dreamed of playing for the Arkansas Razorbacks, but was told he wasn’t good enough to play Division I ball. Undeterred, Brandon took a risk and walked on in 1994. Written off by fellow teammates and coaches, Brandon displayed dogged determination in the face of staggering odds. The awkward kid who once was an embarrassment to his teammates and an annoyance to his coaches, ended up becoming the most respected player in the history of the program, changing the lives of all he touched.

sshgiveaway

I would love to share these faith based films with you and your family this Christmas!  In conjunction with Grace Hill Media, I am giving away a DVD copy of each film.  To win, simply leave a comment below letting me know what Christmas means to you.  I will choose a winner on 12/29 to receive both movies.

Happy Holidays from my family to yours, and thanks for being a part of Sweet Southern Home.

9

Two for Thursday Book Blitz: The Night House by Rachel Tafoya and The Emissary by Kristal Shaff with Giveaway #T4T

T4T-Banner

 

Welcome to this week’s Two for Thursday Book Blitz #T4T
presented by Month9books/Tantrum Books!

Today, we will be showcasing two titles that may tickle your fancy,
and we’ll share what readers have to say about these titles!

You just might find your next read!

This week, #T4T presents to you:

The Night House by Rachel Tafoya and
The Emissary by Kristal Shaff!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

 

The Night House_Final

Bianca St. Germain works at a Night House, a place where vampires like the aristocratic Jeremiah Archer, pay to feed on humans, and she doesn’t much care what others think of her. The money is good, and at least there, she’s safe. Bianca also doesn’t care that the Night House is killing her. All she cares about is: nauth, the highly addictive poison in vampire bites that brings a euphoria like no drug ever could.

But when Bianca meets James, a reclusive empath who feels everything she does, for the first time, she considers a life outside of the Night House and a someone worth living for. But Jeremiah has decided to keep Bianca for himself; he won’t allow her to walk away.

As she allows her feelings for James to grow, she struggles to contain nauth’s strong hold on her life. If they are to have a future, James must make her see what she’s worth, what she means to him, before Jeremiah and nauth claim her for good.

add to goodreads

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Chapters Indigo! | TBD | IndieBound | Google Play | BAM | iBooks

 

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:

 

“This is not your usual vampire book. The inceptions and the mystery messed with my head and I loved every moment of it.  ”Paula, Her Book Thoughts

 

“Rachel Tafoya brought vampires back to life for me, made them mysterious and intriguing again.”Jaime, The Best Books Ever

 

“I found Rachel Tafoya’s debut to be an entertaining read with a unique plot, super interesting world, and great character development! I found myself thoroughly immersed in the world of The Night House.” – Jessica, Jessabella Reads

about-the-author

Rachel Tafoya studied creative writing while at Solebury School and was published in their student run literary magazine, SLAM. She attended a writing program for teens at both Susquehanna University and Denison University, and the Experimental Writing for Teens class and Novels for Young Writers program, both run by NY Times bestselling author, Jonathan Maberry. Rachel is the daughter crime author Dennis Tafoya.

Connect with the Author:  Tumbler | Twitter Facebook | Goodreads

 

The Emissary

For hundreds of years, dark clouds covered the skies of Adamah, and an ageless king ruled. Those who emerged with one of six extraordinary Shay powers were forced into the king’s army, an unmatched force with inhuman Strength, Speed, Accuracy, Perception, Empathy, and Healing. With the army at his side, the king—a man who wields all six abilities—was invincible and unquestioned in his rule. To most, serving the king was an honor. And for some, it was a fate worse than death.

When seventeen-year-old Nolan Trividar witnesses the transformation of his brother from kind to cruel after entering the king’s army, he vows never to follow the same path. So when his own power—the Shay of Accuracy—comes upon him at the Tournament of Awakening, Nolan conceals his emergence instead of joining the king’s ranks. For years, he traitorously hides his power, pretending to be a gifted scribe. But when Nolan comes face-to-face with a deserter, the man discovers his secret. To evade detection and a death sentence, Nolan escapes with the deserter and flees into a night filled with dark creatures who steal both powers and souls.

Nolan joins a resistance, a village hidden deep in the forest, filled with others who secretly wield a Shay. But his peace is short lived when they discover that the dark clouds, the undead creatures, their own decreasing powers, and even the king, are all connected.

add to goodreads

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Chapters Indigo! | TBD | IndieBound | Google Play | BAM | iBooks

 

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:

 

If you like super powers/magic, character development, and reading on the edge of your seat then I highly recommend this book to you!” – Aisazia, Originique Quanimity

 

“It’s a great YA fantasy book with all the things that make for a memorable high fantasy.”Ashley, The A P Book Club

 

“Between the magical elements, the rebellion against a psychotically evil king, the group of rebels who band together to become a family of sorts who fight and sacrifice for each other, amazing fighting scenes, truly creepy zombie-like creatures who add even more danger to the game, and even a bit of romance, this definitely goes on my “must read” list – I highly recommend!” – Michelle McLean, Author

 

about-the-author

 

Kristal Shaff

 

Kristal Shaff grew up with books (and used to drive her mom crazy when she wouldn’t leave the library); her first job was even shelving books at the library. She loves anything creative, and you can often find her exploring strange and fantastical worlds in her choices of movies and fantasy fiction. Kristal resides in Iowa with her farmer husband, numerous pets, and 3 awesome  kids (plus one more on the way though the journey of adoption). When she isn’t writing, she is a professional face painter who enjoys making children smile.

 Author Links:  Website  | Twitter Facebook | Goodreads

 

Giveaway

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

 

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

Chapter-by-Chapter-blog-tour-button

 

Two for Thursday Book Blitz & Giveaway: Shadows Fall Away by Kit Forbes and Last Siege of Haven (The Undertakers #4) by Ty Drago #T4T

T4T-Banner

 

Welcome to this week’s Two for Thursday Book Blitz #T4T
presented by Month9books/Tantrum Books!

Today, we will be showcasing two titles that may tickle your fancy,
and we’ll share what readers have to say about these titles!

You just might find your next read!

This week, #T4T presents to you:

Shadows Fall Away by Kit Forbes and
Last Siege of Haven (The Undertakers #4) by Ty Drago

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

 

Shadows-Fall-Away-Cover

Mark Stewart is one incident away from becoming a juvenile delinquent, and his parents have had enough. They ship Mark off to London, England, to stay with his eccentric aunt Agatha who is obsessed with all things Jack the Ripper. After a strange twist of luck, Mark is struck by lightning, and he wakes to find himself in 1888 Victorian London. His interest in a string of murders Scotland Yard has yet to solve make him a likely suspect. After all, why would a young boy like Mark know so much about the murders? Could he be the ripper they’ve been searching for? Convinced the only way to get back home is to solve the murders, Mark dives headfirst into uncovering the truth. Mark’s only distraction comes in the form of the beautiful Genie Trembly, a girl who is totally out of his league and who may have already caught the attention of the infamous ripper. To save her, he’ll endanger both their lives, and risk being trapped in the past forever.

add to goodreads

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | TBD | iBooks | Google Play | BAM | Chapters | IndieBound

 

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:

 

“If you enjoy YA time-travel mysteries, I think you’ll like this fast-paced novel.”Kimber Leigh Wheaton, Author

 

“I found Shadows Fall Away to be extremely engrossing. It’s the type of book you want to start and finish in one day because you can’t put it down.”Jennifer Bardsley, Author

 

“’Shadows Fall Away’ is a gripping and imaginative young adult novel that mixes time travel, historical fiction, and mystery to keep readers on the edge of their seats.” – Stephanie, A Dream Within A Dream

 

about-the-author

Kit Forbes

Kit Forbes has  been a lover of books, history, and all things paranormal for as long as she can remember. She lives in Western Pennsylvania with her youngest daughter and an assortment of cats who give new meaning to the world bizarre.

 Author Links:  Website | Twitter Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest

 

Undertakers-4-cover

While away on an undercover mission, Undertaker Will Ritter has made an unthinkable alliance…with a Corpse! But though Robert Dillin (aka ‘The Zombie Prince’) is indeed one of those alien invaders who animate and possess the bodies of the dead — unlike the rest of his kind, Dillin isn’t evil. In fact, he wants to help. And Will needs that help, because the Queen of the Dead has learned the location of Haven, the Undertakers’ secret HQ, and is planning a massive and deadly assault.

With the last day of the Corpse War finally upon them, Will and his friends find themselves in a desperate race to close the Rift between worlds and forever kill the Corpses. But can they do before Haven is overrun?

For that matter, can they do it at all?

add to goodreads

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks | Google Play | BAM | Chapters | IndieBound

 

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:

 

Over all I really liked the book. It was literally nonstop action and I read most of it on one night because it was so great.” – Monomaniacal Middle Grade Reviewer

 

“Ty Drago, an extremely talented author, has once again proven the adult mind can be as creative and intuitive as a child’s.”Ryan – Amazon Reviewer

 

“Fantastic conclusion to the series! Has us on the edge of our seats, and by the end, cheering and crying at the same time.” – Felicia, Amazon Reviewer

 

about-the-author

Ty Drago

Ty Drago does his writing just across the river from Philadelphia, where the Undertakers novels take place.  In addition to The Undertakers: Rise of the Corpses,The Undertakers: Queen of the Dead, and The Undertakers: Secret of the Corpse Eater, he is the author of The Franklin Affair and Phobos, as well as short stories and articles that have appeared in numerous publications, including Writer’s Digest.  He currently lives in southern New Jersey with his wife and best friend, the real Helene Drago née Boettcher.

 Author Links:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

 

Giveaway

ENTER HERE

Chapter-by-Chapter-blog-tour-button

 

TWO FOR THURSDAY: The Pretty Dark Nothing Series by Heather L. Reid

 

Welcome to this week’s Two for Thursday Book Blitz #T4T
presented by Month9books/Tantrum Books!

Today, we will be showcasing two titles that may tickle your fancy,
and we’ll share what readers have to say about these titles!

You just might find your next read!

This week, #T4T presents to you:

The Pretty Dark Nothing series by Heather L. Reid!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

 

 

Pretty-Dark-Nothing-cover

 

It’s been twenty three days since Quinn has slept for more than minutes at a time. Demons have invaded her dreams, stalking her, and whispering of her death. The lack of sleep and crippling fear are ruining her life. Energy drinks and caffeine pills don’t make a dent. When Quinn dozes off in the school hallway, Aaron, an amnesiac with a psychic ability, accidentally enters her nightmare. The demons are determined to keep them apart, and Aaron from discovering the secret locked away in his memory. Together, they could banish the darkness back to the underworld for good. That is, unless the demons kill them first.

add to goodreads

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | Chapters | BAM | Indiebound | TBD | Google Play

 

 

What Readers are Saying:

 

“This is a surprisingly very psychologically draining book and reminded me of the first season American Horror Story and Stephen King’s Carrie.” – Syahira – Requiem for More Books

 

“The characters, the world building, the plot… I really think the author had great control over her craft.”Alyssa – Eater of Books

 

“This is a thrilling story that will keep you up at night!” Katie – Curse of the Bibliophile

 

 

Pretty-Dark-Sacrifice-Cover

 

It’s been five weeks, two days, and eight hours since the demons forced Quinn to throw herself into the raging river, since Aaron sacrificed himself to save her, since his body disappeared without a trace.

Everyone wants Quinn to move on, but she can’t, not after a spirit appears to her at Aaron’s memorial, convincing her he’s still alive.

When a mysterious box materializes on the very spot Aaron disappeared, Quinn finds she’s at the center of an ancient prophesy of betrayal, revenge, and sacrifice that takes her to the depths of the underworld to face Lilith—Adam’s first wife.

If Quinn can stop Lilith from unleashing the demon horde Eve, trapped inside the box during the Battle of Eden millennia ago, she will save the human realm and free Aaron from an eternity in torment.

All it will cost is her blood.

add to goodreads

BAM | Chapters | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks | Google Play

 

 

What Readers are Saying:

 


“A love story that lasts for eternity.”
Sherry, Fundinmental

 

  “This book was engrossing and engaging, and functioned well as a sequel novel.”Alyssa – Eater of Books

 

 “…I definitely recommend giving this series a try if you’re looking for a refreshing take on demons or like paranormal romance.” – Analee – Book Snacks

 

 

about-the-author

 

 

Heather

 

Heather L. Reid is both American and British and has called six different cities in three different countries, home. Her strong sense of wanderlust and craving for a new adventure mean you might find her wandering the moors of her beloved Scotland, exploring haunted castles, or hiking through a magical forest in search of fairies and sprites. When she’s not venturing into the unknown in her real life, she loves getting lost in the worlds of video games or curling up by the fire with good story. For now, this native Texan is back in the Lone Star State, settling down with her Scottish husband and writing new tales of fantasy and horror.

Connect with the Author:  

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Tumblr | Pinterest | Instagram

 

Giveaway

 

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win copies of the series!

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!!

 


Chapter-by-Chapter-blog-tour-button

 

TWO FOR THURSDAY: The Dragonrider Chronicles by Nicole Conway

T4T-Banner

Welcome to this week’s Two for Thursday Book Blitz #T4T
presented by Month9books/Tantrum Books!

Today, we will be showcasing two titles that may tickle your fancy,
and we’ll share what readers have to say about these titles!

You just might find your next read!

This week, #T4T presents to you:

The Dragonrider Chronicles by Nicole Conway!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

Fledgling cover

Can one boy stand between two kingdoms at war?

Jaevid Broadfeather has grown up as a wartime refugee, hiding from the world because of his mixed racial heritage. He feels his future is hopeless, until a chance encounter with a wild dragon lands him in Blybrig Academy—a place usually forbidden to anyone but the rich and royal. But Jaevid’s case is special; no dragon has voluntarily chosen a rider in decades, so the proud riders of Blybrig must begrudgingly let him join their brotherhood despite his bloodline. Lieutenant Sile Derrick, a sternly tempered man with a mysterious past, becomes his instructor and immediately takes a peculiar interest in Jaevid’s future.

While struggling through the rigorous physical demands of training, things begin to go awry. Jaevid witnesses the king’s private guards kidnapping Sile in the dead of night. When none of the elder riders are willing to help him, Jaevid begins a dangerous adventure to save his instructor.

Everything Jaevid learned at the academy will now be put to the ultimate test.


add to goodreads

AMAZON | B&N | KOBO | INDIEBOUND | TBD | GOOGLE PLAY | BAM | CHAPTERS | iBOOKS

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:

 

“The author has taken the dragon concept putting her own unique spin and creating a captivating new series that spark the imagination.” – MandyThe Reading Diaries

“Nicole Conway does a fantastic job creating her world and describing it in a way that the images fill my head while reading.” – Cassandra – Lost in Books

“It was a nice, fast read and I’m really hoping that we learn more about the Grey Elves, the war and the Dragons in future books because this series has the potential to be really great.” – Natalie – Book Lovers Life

Avian-Cover

What kind of power is lurking inside him? After a year of training to become a dragonrider, Jaevid Broadfeather has been sent home to rest during a three-month interlude. But when he returns to find the king drake has chosen Beckah Derrick as his new rider, Jaevid realizes something big is about to happen. Every fiber of his being is pushed to the breaking point as Jaevid battles through his avian year, preparing for the final graduation test of the battle scenario. But there is more standing in his way than a few pushups and fancy sword moves. Jaevid must face a new fear as he is tormented by a gruesome nightmare of a mysterious gray elf warrior murdering the royal family of Maldobar. It seems obvious to him that this is some kind of message about how the war started long ago—until Felix assures him the king is very much alive. With his strange powers growing stronger by the day, and that violent dream replaying in his mind every night, Jaevid no longer wonders if he will pass his avian year or not—he wonders if he will even survive it. The truth will soon be set loose.


add to goodreads

AMAZON | B&N | KOBO | INDIEBOUND | TBD | GOOGLE PLAY | BAM | CHAPTERS | iBOOKS

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:

 

“I highly recommend this series to fans of Eragon and Lord of the Rings because those movies jump to mind a lot when I’m reading this series.” – Cassandra –Lost in Books

“This was a very exciting book two that kept me turning the pages as fast as I could to see what would happen next.” – Jasmyn – Bitten by Romance

“This is a sequel of pure perfection!” – Nay – Nay’s Pink Bookshelf

about-the-author

NicoleConwayPhoto

Nicole is the author of the children’s fantasy series, THE DRAGONRIDER CHRONICLES, about a young boy’s journey into manhood as he trains to become a dragonrider. She has completed the first two books in the series, and is now working on the third and final book.

Originally from a small town in North Alabama, Nicole moves frequently due to her husband’s career as a pilot for the United States Air Force. She received a B.A. in English with a concentration in Classics from Auburn University, and will soon attend graduate school.

She has previously worked as a freelance and graphic artist for promotional companies, but has now embraced writing as a full-time occupation.

Nicole enjoys hiking, camping, shopping, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. She also loves watching children’s movies and collecting books. She lives at home with her husband, two cats, and dog.

 

Author Links:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Giveaway


Two winners will each receive a digital copy of the books!

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

 

 Chapter-by-Chapter-blog-tour-button

BOOK TOUR SPOTLIGHT & GIVEAWAY: Twisted by Holly Hook

Twisted

 by Holly Hook 

The Deathwind Trilogy, Book One

Book Description

Sixteen-year-old Allie isn’t like other girls. Instead of spending her summer break sitting around on the beach, she takes the epic vacation of a lifetime.

Tornado chasing.

And she’s not disappointed. Just a few miles from the town of Evansburg, Nebraska, Allie meets her dream of seeing a tornado. In person. She can’t wait to tell her friends back home. Never mind that her parents are going to kill her.

But her dream soon turns into a nightmare, and a strange event leaves her shocked. Confused. When she returns home to Wisconsin, something’s…different. Allie now bears a curse so awful, it could destroy everyone and everything she’s ever known.

With her best friend, Tommy, Allie must return to the plains to find a way to reverse it. She enters a world that she had never imagined, where she becomes a pawn in a fight to save the people of Evansburg from her fate…or to destroy them.

About the Author

Holly Hook is the author of the Destroyers Series, which consists of five young adult books about teens who are walking disasters…literally. She is also the author of the Rita Morse series, a young adult fantasy series still in progress, and After These Messages, a short ya comedy. Currently she is writing Twisted, a spin-off of the Destroyers Series due out in December. When not writing, she enjoys reading books for teens, especially ya fantasy and paranormal series with a unique twist.
Author links:

divider

sshgiveaway

Tour-wide giveaway (INTL)

Signed copy of Twisted by Holly Hook

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

Xpresso Book Tours

BOOK TOUR REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: The Wonder of All Things by Jason Mott

The Wonder of All Things

by Jason Mott

Literary Fiction

Book Description

On an ordinary day, at an air show like that in any small town across the country, a plane crashes into a crowd of spectators. After the dust clears, a thirteen-year-old girl named Ava is found huddled beneath a pocket of rubble with her best friend, Wash. He is injured and bleeding, and when Ava places her hands over him, his wounds disappear.

Ava has an unusual gift: she can heal others of their physical ailments. Until the air show tragedy, her gift was a secret. Now the whole world knows, and suddenly people from all over the globe begin flocking to her small town, looking for healing and eager to catch a glimpse of The Miracle Child. But Ava’s unique ability comes at a great cost, and as she grows weaker with each healing, she soon finds herself having to decide just how much she’s willing to give up in order to save the ones she loves most.

4fleur

MY THOUGHTS: 3.75 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS

The Wonder of All Things by Jason Mott

From the moment a plane crashes at an air show and 13 year old Ava saves her best friend from death, her life is changed. She doesn’t even understand the “powers” she has, but others seems to think they do–and that it is Ava’s responsibility to heal the world. Nevermind the fact that each time she heals, her own health deteriorates. It’s up to her father, Macon, stepmom Carmen, and best friend Wash to try to help her cope and to keep her safe from a world that would take everything from her, no matter what the cost.

Unfortunately, all the adults in both Ava’s and Wash’s lives make some terrible decisions. Both kids are mature beyond their years because of tragedies they have had to endure, but it’s sad when 13 year olds seems to know how to take better care of themselves than their guardians do. As soon as the world realizes what Ava did, they are in her face asking her to heal them and their loved ones. Even Ava’s own stepmother inevitably asks Ava for something. Macon, who is not only Ava’s dad but the town’s sheriff, does a bad job at keeping his daughter away from those who want to test and exploit her. Every person in this novel is more than a little bit lost, and every person seems to be looking out for themselves first.

This made me very angry for Ava, from the beginning. It’s very unclear to me why Macon did not take the offensive and tell the world that his daughter was slowly dying each time she performed her “miracles.” Would the people have cared? It’s hard to say, but it would have shown that Macon took a hard stance on protecting his child, which is sometimes questionable when you consider his actions.

In spite of all these frustrations, I got this book finished very quickly. The relationship between Ava and Wash was very special, and it’s obvious from the beginning that they need each other. Since both kids have one parent dead and one that’s on a weird path, they are the only constants in each others’ lives. Every moment the kids spend together is extremely touching and your heart just aches for them because you have this feeling that not everything will turn out the way it should.

By the end, events were moving very quickly and chaotically, and still not everyone had found their head. I won’t spoil it here, but the end is very emotional and moving. I don’t think it will make everyone happy, it may leave them angry (as it did for me), and still others may find it a bit ambiguous. But that goes along with the theme of the entire book and Ava’s mysterious abilities. After all, this is a story about a child, which can be forgotten as you read along. At its’ heart, this novel brings up numerous questions to which there are no right answers.

View all my reviews

About the Author

JASON MOTT holds a BA in fiction and an MFA in poetry both from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and is the author of two poetry collections. His writing has appeared in numerous literary journals, and he was nominated for the 2009 Pushcart Prize. In addition to the rare achievement of receiving starred reviews from all four of the top publishing industry magazines—Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Booklist, and Kirkus Reviews—The Returned was named a “People Pick” by People magazine, and was featured in Essence, Entertainment Weekly, Washington Post, among others.  Mott also appeared on numerous broadcast programs including NPR’s All Things Considered and Tell Me MoreThe Travis Smiley Show, the nationally syndicated Tom Joyner Radio Show and many local television shows across the U.S. Mott lives in North Carolina.

Connect with Jason

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

sshgiveaway

One reader will win a copy of The Wonder of All Things! US/CAN only please.  Ends August 14, 2015.

To enter, please leave a comment telling me if you have read any of Jason Mott’s books or if you’ve seen the show based on The Returned!

BOOK TOUR REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Confessions of a Queen B* by Crista McHugh

Confessions of a Queen B*

by Crista McHugh

YA Contemporary

Book Description

Alexis Wyndham is the other type of Queen B—the Queen Bitch.

After years of being the subject of ridicule, she revels in her ability to make the in-crowd cower via the exposés on her blog, The Eastline Spy. Now that she’s carved out her place in the high school hierarchy, she uses her position to help the unpopular kids walking the hallways.

Saving a freshman from bullies? Check.
Swapping insults with the head cheerleader? Check.
Falling for the star quarterback? So not a part of her plan.

But when Brett offers to help her solve the mystery of who’s posting X-rated videos from the girls’ locker room, she’ll have to swallow her pride and learn to see past the high school stereotypes she’s never questioned—until now.

3 fleur

MY THOUGHTS: 3 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS

Confessions of a Queen B* by Crista McHugh

This short tale gets three stars, but just barely. To be honest, it’s full of stereotypical characters, decisions that make no sense, and predictable moments. But at its’ heart, it had a compelling theme that kept me reading until I finished it in one sitting.

Our main character is Alexis, senior and resident gossip blogger at her high school. There apparently is enough going on at this school that Alexis has gained quite the rep: if you’re trying to hide something nefarious, she will find out, and it will be posted on her blog for the entire school to see!

It should come as no shock that Alexis doesn’t have many friends. Her besties are the outliers; a flamboyantly gay Asian kid, and a sex grazed Goth girl. Other than that, everyone else in school is pretty much scared of her. Except for one boy: quarterback and student body president Brett Pederson.

It just so happens that Brett and Alexis get paired up for a school project. Though Alexis does her bitchy best to repel him, Brett is immune and instead seems to want to get to know her better. Alexis must learn to let her guard down around him, which she never does with ANYONE.

As I said, the book is full of stereotypical characters–the gay boy that can only talk about penis (wtf, I know that’s not all he thinks about), the head cheerleader with fake boobs, the quarterback that is nothing but perfect. I saw another review that said if you can remember Freddie Prinze Jr’s character in She’s All That, then you’ve got Brett–and that is a SPOT ON observation. Even when it comes to his parents putting pressure on him about college. That is literally the only problem he has in his life. He is too good to be true, and that does not make a good YA character.

Alexis does have a bit more depth, and getting peeks into her true feelings is what kept me interested. Alexis cannot let anyone see her true self; I think she does not know how. She’s also concerned about losing her status at school, though she would never admit it. If she’s not the Queen Bitch, then what is she? Her struggles with her identity are a bit buried, but there if you are looking.

Apparently this book is the first in a series, but I’m not sure if I’ll be continuing. I might though, just to see what Alexis turns into once she breaks out of her high school mold.

View all my reviews

About the Author

Growing up in small town Alabama, Crista relied on story-telling as a natural way for her to pass the time and keep her two younger sisters entertained.

She currently lives in the Audi-filled suburbs of Seattle with her husband and two children, maintaining her alter ego of mild-mannered physician by day while she continues to pursue writing on nights and weekends.

Just for laughs, here are some of the jobs she’s had in the past to pay the bills: barista, bartender, sommelier, stagehand, actress, morgue attendant, and autopsy assistant.

And she’s also a recovering LARPer. (She blames it on her crazy college days)

For the latest updates, deleted scenes, and answers to any burning questions you have, please check out her webpage, www.CristaMcHugh.com.

Xpresso Book Tours

REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Get Safe Email for Kids at KidsEmail.org

logo_public

UPDATE 7/28/2015: We are still using and LOVING KidsEmail! When my son sees me checking my email, he immediately asks to go check his.  I signed him up for a few newsletters, such as those from Nick Jr. and some car magazines (his passion), and he loves seeing that he has new messages.  As he uses it more and more, I don’t even really need to show him where to click–he has got the hang of it!  I’m so glad we found this program.

sshgiveaway

KidsEmail is giving THREE readers  1 year of Kids Email (value of $38.95).

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

divider

As my son gets older, he is definitely wanting to do things more and more on his own, and wanting a bit of privacy. At 6 years old, he has already learned some computer skills in his Montessori kindergarten classroom.  I decided now was the perfect time to get him an email of his own.

KidsEmail.org is the perfect solution for kids who want the freedom of their own email address, and parents who want to be able to have some control over what their child sees.  Parents have the option to choose who their child can email and who can email them. You can block senders, filter language and attachments, and so much more!

On the kids’ side, they get to pick a fun login name and customize what their email screen will look like. There are many designs to choose from–here are a few examples.

kidsemail7

My son chose the “Racing Champion” template, as I knew he would. There are cool designs for both boys and girls, younger kids, tweens and teens.

Speaking of teens, with KidsEmail your child has the option to have his email grow along with him.  As your child feels they might be getting a little old to have a “kiddie” email address, their account can be changed to a KMail.org address–but still allowing parents that monitoring option.

All of these features are available at one low price, and you can even get your first 30 days free! Try out the KidsEmail service free for the first month, then choose from one of the low priced subscription plans–as low as $2.99 a month.

(Please ignore my perpetually cluttered desk!)

My child thought it was so cool that he could have an email of his very own, and I could tell that he was proud of it and felt so grown up.  It was very easy for him to understand the interface, and he got the hang of his inbox really quickly. He is already asking to check it every day!

If you’re looking for a safe, fun, highly customizable email for kids, look no farther than the award winning KidsEmail.org!

kidsemail3