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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday [24]

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine. It's so we can show what pre-published books we're anticipating! So what title am I featuring this week...

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Teaser Tuesday [31]

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, October 29, 2012

[Review] Confessions of an Angry Girl (Confessions, #1) by Louise Rozett

Title: Confessions of an Angry Girl
Series: Confessions, #1
Author: Louise Rozett
Pages: 272 (Paperback)
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: August 28, 2012
I received an ARC from NetGalley.

Rose Zarelli, self-proclaimed word geek and angry girl, has some confessions to make…1. I'm livid all the time. Why? My dad died. My mom barely talks. My brother abandoned us. I think I'm allowed to be irate, don't you?

2. I make people furious regularly. Want an example? I kissed Jamie Forta, a badass guy who might be dating a cheerleader. She is now enraged and out for blood. Mine.

3. High school might as well be Mars. My best friend has been replaced by an alien, and I see red all the time. (Mars is red and "seeing red" means being angry—get it?)

Here are some other vocab words that describe my life: Inadequate. Insufferable. Intolerable.

(Don't know what they mean? Look them up yourself.)

(Sorry. That was rude.)

This book does read fairly young since the main character, Rose, is only 14, but I found that I really enjoyed her narrative. Rose's life is currently a mess due to some real issues and superficial ones. Her father just died in a horrific way, her brother moved away, her mom is distant, her best friend is obsessed with the idea of losing her virginity, she's starting high school where she's somewhat of an outcast, and she has a crush on a Junior with an evil cheerleading girlfriend. I'd definitely say she's justified in her anger at life!

Rose isn't as outwardly angry as I'd assume based on the title. She mostly holds it in and makes plenty of remarks about her surroundings to herself, with the occasional outburst. She's a smart girl (I love how the chapter titles are big words plus their definition), but she's having trouble navigating being a teenager. I think this is something that everyone can identify with, even if their situation isn't quite like Rose's. I started high school at 12, so I definitely know what feeling like a freak is like!

There were times when I felt like Rose acted a little too young for her age. Not necessarily being immature, although she does have those moments, but sometimes her reactions made her seem closer to 10 years old than 14. Especially when it came to sex. I'm not saying she should be all for going all the way if she's not ready, but her thought on the subject was basically "icky." I don't know, she just seemed too sheltered on the subject, I guess. Sex does have a prominent role in this book, so just be aware of that. I liked how it was shown in a positive light though, and not just preaching "don't have sex, 'cause you will get pregnant, and die!"

Anyway, the story ended up taking a darker, more serious road than I was expecting. Sure, Rose's freshman year is packed full of awkward moments, but there's plenty of emotional ups and downs too. The ended was completely unexpected though, and Regina must be one of nastiest teen villains ever! Overall, this was a very enjoyable read. I was hooked from the very beginning, and I can't wait to see what sophomore year brings for Rose.

Favorite Quotes

I figure if I throw in the F-word, it'll sound better, but of course, since I'm not really practiced at throwing in the F-word, it just sounds stupid. (13% eARC)

I have a lot to learn about high school boys as a species. (44% eARC)

I usually get stressed out about birthday wishes -- choosing the right thing is so much pressure. Too many wishes come into my head at once, and I try to prioritize them and decide which would be the smartest thing to ask for, and then I become totally paralyzed. (87% eARC)

Was this review helpful? If so, please vote yes on Amazon.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Showcase Sunday [49]

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea to show off our newest books and book related goods!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

[Review] Phantom by Laura DeLuca

Title: Phantom
Author: Laura DeLuca
Pages: 262 (Paperback)
Publisher: Pagan Writers Press
Release Date: March 30, 2012

The “Phantom” was a musical phenomenon that Rebecca had always found enchanting. She had no idea that her life was about to mirror the play that was her obsession. When her high school drama club chooses “Phantom” as their annual production, Rebecca finds herself in the middle of an unlikely love triangle and the target of a sadistic stalker who uses the lines from the play as their calling card.

Rebecca lands the lead role of Christine, the opera diva, and like her character, she is torn between her two co-stars—Tom the surfer and basketball star who plays the lovable hero, and Justyn, the strangely appealing Goth who is more than realistic in the role of the tortured artist.

Almost immediately after casting, strange things start to happen both on and off the stage. Curtains fall. Mirrors are shattered. People are hurt in true phantom style. They all seem like accidents until Rebecca receives notes and phone calls that hint at something more sinister. Is Justyn bringing to life the twisted character of the phantom? Or in real life are the roles of the hero and the villain reversed? Rebecca doesn’t know who to trust, but she knows she’s running out of time as she gets closer and closer to opening night. Only when the mask is stripped away, will the twenty first century phantom finally be revealed.

I was really surprised by Phantom! I figured that I would enjoy it, since I absolutely LOVE The Phantom of the Opera, but I didn't expect to like it as much as I did. The beginning was a little stiff so I was worried. It seemd to be bogged down by explanations of the original story, which I'm sure was for the benefit of those not familiar with it. For me though, I just wanted to get on with the mystery! However, once it got going, I was hooked.

A member of the Ecology Club and an obsessive Phantom of the Opera fan? Is Rebecca me?! Of course not, but I liked her right away because of these two things, despite her being the usual low self-esteemed and clumsy heroine. She definitely grows in confidence as the book goes along though. I also adored Justyn! He's dark and mysterious on the outside, but he's such an sweet and interesting guy, with plenty of surprises to keep you on your toes!

There's a mystery to be solved at the school, complete with strange objects appearing in lockers and a creepy janitor! Yes, the awesomely cliched, creepy janitor! The ultimate red herring, or is it? At first it seems like a harmless prank until the bodies start piling up! I had fun trying to guess the murderer. I was disappointed when my Suspect #1 got killed, but was excited to find that my Suspect #2 was the perpetrator! However, I was entirely wrong about their motive. That one was definitely unexpected!

Phantom was quite a fun read, even though it definitely had it's dark moments (lots of death). I also rolled my eyes at a few scenes, because there's just no way they would ever happen in real life: a teacher allowing a student to just walk out after falling 15 feet, with a bleeding head, and possible broken bones? School newspaper article about a student/faculty affair, with no administrative or parental intervention? No way! But I was able to look past these things for the sake of the larger picture.

Favorite Quotes

"I like who I am, Becca. Why should I change for people who don't take the time to look past outward appearances and preconceptions?" (pg 62)

"I won't kiss you, Becca. Not until you've made your choice. Not until I know I have you completely, body, and soul." (pg 145)

If her life were a B-rated horror movie, this would be the part where everyone in the audience would be screaming at the television set for the stupid girl to run the other way. But those people didn't understand the full power of morbid fascination, a thing Rebecca had become overly familiar with in recent weeks. They didn't understand the driving force of the need to know. To know why. To know who. (pg 221)

Friday, October 26, 2012

Feature & Follow [14]

Q: What writing device or trick most irritates you when reading a book?

Alternating between first and third person narratives! Just do not do it! I love multiple POVs, but only if they're in the same narrative type. It's hard for me to stay focused when all of a sudden I'm in a character's head then the next page I'm an observer. It's frustrating.

Two culprits:

[Excerpt] The Forbidden Forest (The Legends of Regia, #1) by Tenaya Jane

Title: The Forbidden Forest
Series: The Legends of Regia, #1
Author: Tenaya Jayne
Pages: 236
Release Date: October 13, 2012

Born in shame. Cast from society. Shape Shifter/Elf hybrid, Forest must fight for any respect she can get. Targeted in her youth by a vampire noble who placed an illegal slave mark on her, she is forced to obey him, no matter what.

Slipping the grip of her master and abandoning the prejudice of Regia, her native world, Forest takes a job on Earth, guarding the portal, using her skills as a warrior to enforce Regia's laws. Now, called home for a black ops mission, Forest must put aside her own prejudice to transport the vampire prince, Syrus, through enemy territory in a time of war.

Prince Syrus, mage and master of the Blood Kata, wants Forest more than he's ever wanted anything. In spite of their mutual mistrust, their attraction cannot be denied. Through the danger of their mission, and the secrets they both keep, it doesn't matter what they feel. Forest is forbidden.


Forest pressed her back against the cool concrete wall, wanting to remain aloof from the entity of the crowd. She chose her position in the shadows, out of the paths of the roving, multi-colored spotlights. She closed her eyes and enjoyed the feeling of the undulating human pheromones flying around on the air. At the beginning of every shift, she allowed herself a few minutes of this alien/human experience, though she didn't fully comprehend the combination of dancing, drinking, and ear-breaking sound waves. They loved it, however, and never seemed to deviate from the recipe.

These were the people she was sworn to protect. She had developed a light affection for the human race and considered them a benign, if not slightly silly, bunch of creatures. Her religious passion for her job was rooted in hatred of that which harmed the humans, not a superhero tendency to protect the weak.

Forest opened her eyes and focused all her senses to sniff out the illegal suckers that tried to sneak through the portal. She was in the zone tonight, and not for the first time did she feel that hers was the best job in existence. It was a shame she couldn’t legally kill suckers in her native world.

Over the next two hours, Forest didn’t move from the wall. She monitored the light traffic through the portal: two shifters and one elf, each of which nodded to her respectfully as they passed. Yawn. The shifters left the club to enjoy the delights of Austin’s nightlife elsewhere.

The elf would have been breaking Regia’s law had he left the club, but he dutifully seated himself at the bar and ordered a fuzzy navel. He wore a plaid, porkpie hat, pulled down over the tops of his pointed ears. Forest didn’t know him personally, but she had seen him in here before. The bartender surveyed him with narrowed eyes as the elf nervously tugged his hat down further and ordered a few more girly cocktails.

Intent on making sure that not one sucker was able to sneak past her, Forest was blindsided by the drunk bubba who had been trying to catch her eye for the last twenty minutes. He had finally decided to stagger over to hit on her.

“Hey babe, you’re too beautiful to look so lonely. How’s ‘bout I buy you a drink?”

“How’s ‘bout I call you a cab instead?” Forest mimicked his drawl.

“Only if you share it with me, Darlin.” He leaned in closer, and Forest’s throat began to sting from the noxious fume of booze mixed with his natural musk.

“While I appreciate the offer, Jethro, It seems only right to inform you that I’m not actually attractive at all. If you leaned in a little closer, you’d see that you’ve fallen victim to the effect of beer goggles. A hag like me can’t take advantage of a stud like you.”

As he leaned in, Forest instantly enlarged her nose, pockmarked her skin, evaporated her front teeth, and added a large black mole with a long hair sprouting from it for good measure.

“You’re no hag, baby! You’re the sexiest little thing in…I…uh… ” He stumbled backward. “Good grief! Sorry, sorry…” he stammered, retreating. “I’ve gotta quit drinking,” he mumbled as he turned away.

Forest chuckled to herself once he absorbed back into the crowd. Being a shape shifter sometimes had unusual perks.


Hello. My name's Tenaya and I'm an addict. I mean author. When I was growing up, writing was just something I played at from time to time. I knew I wanted to be a writer, but I was one of those people who could never finish anything. When my eldest son was diagnosed with Autism, I began to write seriously. Writing became a necessity for me in the midst of my heartbreak. It was either that or take up drinking. I 'm thankful I chose writing as my escape because I discovered it truly is my thing. I want to be swept away when I read. That's what I want my books to do for you.The main goal of my writing is to entertain you. I want to help you escape everyday life for a little while. I hope you enjoy my stories as much as I enjoy sharing them with you!

I have a wonderful husband and two beautiful sons. I'm an advocate for Autism awareness, and women trapped in abusive relationships. I try to always look on the bright side and help others do so too. I've lived many places but I currently reside in Missouri. I love reading, indie and foreign films, gardening, and moody music.


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Thursday, October 25, 2012

[Review] Shadows (Lux, #0.5) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Shadows
Series: Lux, #0.5
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Pages: 180 (Kindle edition)
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Release Date: February 21, 2012

The last thing Dawson Black expected was Bethany Williams. As a Luxen, an alien life form on Earth, human girls are…well, fun. But since the Luxen have to keep their true identities a secret, falling for one would be insane. Dangerous. Tempting. Undeniable.

Bethany can’t deny the immediate connection between her and Dawson. And even though boys aren’t a complication she wants, she can’t stay away from him. Still, whenever they lock eyes, she’s drawn in. Captivated. Lured. Loved.

Dawson is keeping a secret that will change her existence…and put her life in jeopardy. But even he can’t stop risking everything for one human girl. Or from a fate that is as unavoidable as love itself.

I've been reading nothing but good reviews for this series, and I was definitely excited to get started on it. I was expecting Shadows to be a short story, but really it's a rather long novella, so that was a pleasant surprise. It's a great appetizer for the series, since it did make me hungry for more! There's a lot of background information for the series which I really liked. It's always a little disorienting to start a new series, since there's often an overload of new characters, places, species, ect. I'm glad I did read this one first.

I love the Luxen. I've only read one alien book before, but this one is so much better. They're an interesting race, and I liked all of the tid bits we got about them in this story. We're also introduced to their enemy, the Arum. The triplets are also great! Dee is so funny and spunky, and Dawson is such a sweet heart. Daemon seems a bit angry, but I am eager to read more about him in the following books.

My one complaint is that there was too much outdated slang at the beginning, and too many similes! I just found myself rolling my eyes at quite a few statements, but it didn't really hinder my enjoyment of this. It ended up being not what I was expecting at all. The end is absolutely heartbreaking, but makes me eager to read more.

Favorite Quotes

Obsessions always started with painting someone's face, didn't they? (16%)

Hey, honey, I'm alien and apparently I just doused you with some radioactive loving! (42%)

Dee pulled out the fork and spoon in one and smiled. "I've never seen one of these! Ha. This is so handy." She looked over at Daemon, eyes dancing. "We could get rid of over half of our silverware and get like ten of these and we'd be set for life." (64%)

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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Wishlist Wednesday [13]

Wishlist Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Pen to Paper. It's where we get to share books that have been on our wishlists forever or are newly added. I'll be alternating this with Waiting on Wednesday. My Amazon Wishlist is overflowing, so what title am I featuring this week...

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Teaser Tuesday [30]

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, October 22, 2012

[Review] Lucifer Rising (The 13 Gothic Memoirs, #3) by Rebekah Armusik

Title: Lucifer Rising
Series: The 13 Gothic Memoirs, #3
Author: Rebekah Armusik
Pages: 468 (Kindle edition)
Publisher: Lady Noir
Release Date: May 3, 2012

Lucifer Rising, the third novel of the Gothic Memoirs series, reopens the epic tale with startling revelations about the past that leave Nadija staggering. Some of the long-suppressed secrets leave her disappointed and resentful of those she once thought were loyal to her and her throne.

Though disappointed, Nadija continues to secretly plot to rearrange council and assist the Vlkolak in their rise to power. In a series of strategic and surprising political moves, Nadjia begins to unravel the secrets that could potentially keep the Vlkolak king from taking back his throne.

I'm not sure where to start this review. I didn't enjoy the story as much in this third installment of the series, and there wasn't much that jumps out to me to say. Although the characters were certainly more interesting this time around. That awful Countess is back and she is certainly causing a ton of trouble in Nadija's family. Even though I don't like her, I can't help but be fascinated by her awfulness. We also learn alot more about Jozef, and it's not good at all. I loved reading the interactions between Nadija and James especially.

Their relationship is getting quite complicated as they grow closer. There's no doubt that they love each other, but at times it seems like James wants more from Dija. I do admire for Dija for not giving in to temptation and remaining faithful to Alexei, but I do feel sad for James. He's a good man, and he needs someone who can return his feelings. I also think he'll make the perfect king, so I hope he gets his chance.

Even though the story was a bit dragging for me, I'm still fully enjoying this series. I love the author's writing style, and she's given Nadija a very clear, strong voice. There was a surprise at the end which I wasn't expecting, but it definitely makes perfect sense. I can't wait to see what Nadija does with her new found knowledge in the next book!

Favorite Quotes

"Dija, this is what happens when people walk the line; nothing good comes from compromise. I have grown to believe that in the act of compromising something important always suffers." (8%)

And what was truth, really? It all seemed relative. Perhaps the truth was what we clung to the most...what we put all our faith in, whether blindly or with a strong level of assurance--it's personal. (55%)

"I believe in free will. We have the power to change our lives. We are responsible for our choices." (68%)

Was this review helpful? If so, please vote yes on Amazon.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Showcase Sunday [48]

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea to show off our newest books and book related goods!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

[Review] Audrey's Guide to Witchcraft (Audrey's Guides, #1) by Jody Gehrman

Title: Audrey's Guide to Witchcraft
Series: Audrey's Guides, #1
Author: Jody Gehrman
Pages: 306 (Kindle edition)
Publisher: Magic Genie Books
Release Date: June 29, 2012

Falling in love, baking a magical cake, fighting an evil necromancer—it’s all in a day’s work for Audrey Oliver, seventeen-year-old witch-in-training. When her mother goes missing and her mysterious "cousin" shows up out of the blue, Audrey knows something’s gone horribly, dangerously wrong. Now it’s up to her to get her own magical powers up to speed before everyone she loves is destroyed by the sorcerer intricately connected to her mother’s secret past.

It all starts with a man's face in the custard and the appearance of a long lost, quite eccentric, "cousin". Then 17 year old Audrey's life as she knows it is changed forever. It turns out she's a witch, who just happened to blossom a little later than usual. It comes as a shock to Audrey, but it's also a pleasant surprise since she's always been in her younger sister's, Meg, shadow. Meg is a major pain, by the way!

I really loved all of the magical aspects in the book! It was like I was learning magic along side Audrey, which was fun. The scene of her attempting levitation while "sky clad" was hilarious! Sadie, the mysterious "cousin," was such a great character. She's 21, a witch, and trying to teach Audrey how to use her magic without really understanding it herself. She might be not much older than Audrey and Meg, but she has an air of authority around her. Of course, Audrey is a very likeable character, too. She has her "woe is me" moments from lack of self confidence, but I do think most readers will like her.

Let's talk about the romance for just a second. It's not a huge part of the story, but there's some elements to it that stood out to me. For one, it's electric! Literally. There's some kind of electric current between Audrey and Julian. I can't say more, or I'll spoil it. The other thing is something I didn't like at all. The inevitable relationship conflict that keeps our two love birds temporarily apart is really lame. It's unique, but it definitely felt forced and random. Other than that, this is your typical paranormal plus human romance, minus the proclamations of everlasting love.

The one other thing that I think could have been better was the bad guy. He definitely had a creepy presence throughout the entire book, but once Audrey actually comes face to face with him, well, he's super cheesy and lame. He reveals too much about his evil plans, which of course Audrey can use against him. He was just too goofy to be a believable villain.

Audrey's Guide to Witchcraft is another super fun, cute, entertaining, smile inducing read by Jody Gehrman. It has a bit of a darker edge than I was expecting, with the black magic and mentions of blood sacrifices, but overall this is still a nice, light read. Fans of quirky paranormal books will certainly enjoy this one, too.

Favorite Quotes

Mainstream anything was definitely frowned upon, but if you tried too hard to be quirky or ironic that was suspect, too. The ideal seemed to be striking some note that was wildly original but sort of on accident, like Wow, I just woke up today and decided to wear a corset with cheesy 80s snakeskin pants. Of course, that strategy could go horribly askew, too. (9%)

"When embarking on a new, potentially dangerous adventure, never hurts to have an overly protective boa constrictor on your team." (45%)

"These are messages from the depths, Audrey, not Twitter. You have to take what you can get." (78%)

Was this review helpful? If so, please vote yes on Amazon.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Feature & Follow [13]

Q: When you step out of your USUAL genre what do you like to read? Best books in that genre?

I don't really have a "usual genre." I read just about everything, and what I don't read is stuff I probably have no interest in reading. I guess if I had to choose something it would be Scientific Non-Fiction. I do read that from time to time and my all time favorite book is from that genre.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

[Review] Defy the Stars by Stephanie Parent

Title: Defy the Stars
Author: Stephanie Parent
Pages: 596 (Kindle edition)
Publisher: Stephanie Parent
Release Date: July 30, 2012

Julia Cape: A dedicated classical piano student just trying to get through her last semester of high school while waiting to hear from music conservatories.

Reed MacAllister: A slacker more likely to be found by the stoners’ tree than in class.

Julia and Reed might have graduated high school without ever speaking to each other…until, during a class discussion of Romeo and Juliet, Julia scoffs at the play’s theme of love at first sight, and Reed responds by arguing that feelings don’t always have to make sense. Julia tries to shake off Reed’s comment and forget about this boy who hangs with the stoner crowd—and who happens to have breathtaking blue eyes—but fate seems to bring the two together again and again. After they share an impulsive, passionate kiss, neither one can deny the chemistry between them. Yet as Julia gets closer to Reed, she also finds herself drawn into his dark world of drugs and violence. Then a horrific tragedy forces Julia’s and Reed’s families even farther apart…and Julia must decide whether she’s willing to give up everything for love.

Defy the Stars is written in an edgy free-verse style that will appeal to fans of Ellen Hopkins and Lisa Schroeder; however, the writing is accessible enough to speak to non-verse fans as well. The novel’s combination of steamy romance and raw emotion will appeal to fans of Gayle Forman, Simone Elkeles, Jennifer Echols, and Tammara Webber. With a story, language and form that both pay homage to and subvert Shakespeare’s play, Defy the Stars is much more than just another Romeo and Juliet story.

When the author offered me a copy for review, I knew I had to read this one! I've been wanting to read more novels in verse, and Romeo & Juliet is one of my favorite stories, so this book was definitely something I thought I'd love. The story follows Julia: a senior who is more comfortable sitting at her piano than joining the social scene. And Reed: a stoner with surprising insight caught in a bad situation. Of course these two are our starcrossed lovers from different sides of the tracks.

I practically flew through this book! Not just because it's a verse novel and therefore less wordy by nature, but because the story completely grabbed my attention, so I couldn't put it down! Julia has her life in order, but then things start slowly spinning out of control. She finally talks to Reed and starts secretly seeing him which leads to lies, sneaking around, not being able to focus, and eventually getting into drugs.

The author tackles some huge issues in this book. She presents them realistically, which at times is scary. Drugs are not something to take lightly, as Julia does in the beginning. She doesn't think about the consequences of the drugs, but only about how it gives her that extra boost she needs. It throws out some twists and turns that she could never imagine, and that I wasn't expecting.

There's only one thing that keeps this from being a 5 Star read for me: I wish we had gotten to know Reed a bit more. At times he felt like he was just the love interest rather than an actual character. Other than that, Defy the Stars is definitely one of the best self-published books I've read. It doesn't suffer from the ailments that tend to put people off of self-published books, like major typos and a general lack of editing. It's highly polished, well written, and the story is beautifully told. If you're a fan of retellings, verse novels, new adult novels, issues novels, or love stories, do not miss out on this one!

Was this review helpful? If so, please vote yes on Amazon.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday [23]

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine. It's so we can show what pre-published books we're anticipating! So what title am I featuring this week...

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

[Excerpt] Rise of the Demons by Willow Cross

Title: Rise of the Demons
Series: Oceans of Red, #1
Author: Willow Cross
Pages: 67
Publisher: Willow Cross

By 2015 the streets of Los Angeles have been transformed from a thriving metropolis to a hostile world ravaged by demons bent on assimilating the human race. Standing between this total apocalypse of humanity and their chance for survival is 19 year old Remy Martin.

A warrior in her own right, trained to think on her feet and kill if the situation requires, she is flanked by her older brother and younger sister. Together, they devise a plan to take back the streets. Against the wishes of their father, who commands the resistance forces, they venture into unknown realms of the supernatural in a race against time with the fate of the entire world in their young hands.

Join them on their mission into darkness where death lies around every corner, it is virtually impossible to distinguish your enemies from your allies, and a single mistake could result in the annihilation of everyone you've ever known and loved.


Eight sets of red glittered in the darkness. Remy slowly brought the sword around in an arc above her head. “Four. You copy?”
A voice answered from the tiny earpiece, “Copy that. We need one, Rem. Think you can handle that?”
Her neck popped as she rolled her head. First to the left, and then to the right. Pushing her shoulders back, she released the last bit of pent up tension in her muscles. The only sound breaching the unnatural silence, filling the dark city streets, was the rasp of her leather jumpsuit as she repositioned her body. Knees slightly bent and sword ready, her eyes remained focused on the approaching men. “Again?”
“Sorry, boss says we need more intel.”
“Just freaking wonderful.”
A dark parking lot wasn’t the best place to fight demons. Too many vehicles to hide behind. Her head jerked to the left as one blurred and separated from the others. His movement so fast, she nearly missed it. “Think I found the leader. He might take off before I can kill the other three.”
“Copy that. Do what you can. Go for Kangaroo Alpha.”
A smiled appeared on her lips. Her father had the weirdest sense of humor.




Willow Cross resides in Arkansas with her husband, two children still young enough to live at home, an enormous cat named Bitsy, and a neurotic dog named Tank. Her home has been known to host the occasional ghost and several of her friends profess to be witches. Although she dearly loves Vampires and Werewolves, they are never invited for dinner.

Teaser Tuesday [29]

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, October 15, 2012

[Review] Mariposa (The 13 Gothic Memoirs, #2) by Rebekah Armusik

Title: Mariposa
Series: The 13 Gothic Memoirs, #2
Author: Rebekah Armusik
Pages: 484 (Kindle edition)
Publisher: Lady Noir
Release Date: October 31, 2011

At the closing of Memoirs of a Gothic Soul, Nadija Fey underwent a transformation to save her life. That ending of her mortal life is just the beginning in Mariposa, Book 2 of the Gothic Memoirs series.

Though immortal, Nadija is no less of an enigma to those around her. She is the first Guardian to accept the gift of immortality, leaving the celestial council panicked and on edge. Some fear her new gifts may threaten the already-tilting balance, while others, like her Guardian sisters, find her transformation promising. One thing is for certain-her ascension to the position of queen has great significance, but she will have to stay true to being the Nadija that everyone loves her for.

Mariposa goes deeper into the epic story and unravels all you know about legends, theology, and history, blending them all into a cohesive map of the delicate balance Nadija is now responsible for maintaining. There are darker secrets, mysterious creatures, and evil surrounds her at every turn. Never has an author taken you through such a range of emotions with such passion and intrigue... Mariposa will challenge all you know about good and evil.

If the first book was brimming with emotion, this one is overflowing! From the very first page we're hit with some rough scenes as Nadija completes her transition into her new life. There's also a ton of secrets being hidden. Everyone's got them, but some will be more damaging than others when they eventually come out. Nadija's definitely got a lot on her plate in Mariposa.

It's not secret that I'm a vampiraholic. I love pretty much all things vampire, so I was excited to watch Dija adjust to her new life as one of the undead. I absolutely love the vampires that the author has created. Their needs and urges are frightening, yet sexy. Dija has pretty good control since she already had magical abilities, but it was still interesting being in her head as she deals with these new feelings. I especially liked her new relationship with James. He's a very interesting character, and I'm definitely looking forward to more of him.

This book has A LOT of new information. Dija is getting settled into her new role as Guardian queen, and as the first hybrid, so naturally we have a lot to learn about these things. However, there's also a lot of history regarding vampires, Guardians, and God. While interesting, this unfortunately comes as rather lenghy info-dumps, typically in the form of Olga telling Dija a story.

I did enjoy this one more than the first book, and that ending definitely confirmed my gut feeling that something huge is coming. I wonder how Nadija is going to keep it together to handle this new situation.

Favorite Quotes

I was a metaphorical butterfly. I was the beauty that emerged out of all the ugliness and pain. I was a mariposa transformation. (2%)

I was expecting an old, frail priest with wire-rimmed glasses. This man was tall, strong, and a vampire. (40%)

"So what does one wear to a castle full of vampires?"
I shrugged. "Garlic." (47%)

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[Cover Reveal] The Paparazzi Project by Kristina Springer

Title: The Paparazzi Project
Author: Kristina Springer
Expected Publication: December 15, 2012

Livvie Peterson thought taking Interpersonal Communications her junior year would be an easy A. But when the first assignment is given, her world flips upside down. Here’s the deal: the class is assigned a six-week project and is split into three groups— Paparazzi, Tabloid, and Celebrities. The Paparazzi follow around the Celebrities taking pictures and grabbing any kind of quotes they can. The Celebrities try to navigate being tailed on a daily basis. And the Tabloid receives all the information collected by the Paparazzi and decides what makes the weekly summary report. Sounds harmless…and it’s all just pretend anyway, right?

Livvie is assigned as Paparazzi and when she is matched up with the ├╝ber-cute Chas Montgomery as her Tabloid boss she’s pretty sure things couldn’t get much better. Livvie’s uncanny ability to capture the Celebrities in compromising photos matched with Chas’s skill of exaggerating captions and editing the photos make them an unstoppable team. And the long hours working side by side with Chas aren’t a bad bonus.

Livvie simultaneously launches an anonymous blog, leaking the class’ photos and stories on the Internet. Her rising follower number quickly becomes addicting and she possibly spills too much information online. Once she finds her own celebrity will she be able to give it back? And will Chas be gone before she ever has the chance to find out?

Author Bio:

Kristina Springer is the author of THE ESPRESSOLOGIST, MY FAKE BOYFRIEND IS BETTER THAN YOURS, JUST YOUR AVERAGE PRINCESS, and the forthcoming THE PAPARAZZI PROJECT (12/15/12). She has a Masters in Writing from DePaul University and she resides in a suburb of Chicago with her husband and children.

Author Links:


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Showcase Sunday [47]

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea to show off our newest books and book related goods!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

[Review] Temptation (Temptation, #1) by Karen Ann Hopkins

Title: Temptation
Series: Temptation, #1
Author: Karen Ann Hopkins
Pages: 383 (Paperback)
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: June 26, 2012
I received an ARC from NetGalley.

Your heart misleads you. That's what my friends and family say.

But I love Noah. And he loves me.

We met and fell in love in the sleepy farming community of Meadowview, while we rode our horses together through the grassy fields and in those moments in each other's arms.

It should be ROSE & NOAH forever, easy. But it won't be. Because he's Amish. And I'm not.

I was drawn to this book because I was always fascinated by Amish culture, and the idea of a non-Amish girl and an Amish boy falling in love is absolutely amazing sounding! I love tales of forbidden romance, and Rose and Noah's relationship is truly forbidden. I initially assumed that Rose and Noah met during his Rumspringa, but that's not the case. I actually liked how Noah was completely in his community when he and Rose are together, since it added to the tension.

Just a word of warning: DO NOT read the preface! I read an ARC, so I'm not sure if the preface made it in the finished copies, but if it did, DO NOT read it! I was so mad when I read the preface, because it spoils a major turning point in the book! I don't usually mind when there's an intro that actually takes place late in the story, but I do mind when it reveals something that huge!

"That was the problem with English girls -- they did what they wanted. But then again, maybe that was one of things that made Rose so intriguing...and dangerous to me (7% eARC)."

I absolutely loved Noah's chapters! I really enjoyed learning more about the Amish way of life and their beliefs. It was interesting how behaviors I wouldn't even think twice about are considered inappropriate for Amish women, but those same behaviors from Rose caught Noah's attention. I almost wish the entire book was from his perspective, since it is so different than my own. Also, I sometimes find myself annoyed with Rose. Some of her reactions to the Amish community are ones that I'd imagine myself having, but then there are times when she acts like she never knew there were people different from her in the world. Occasionally her thoughts were down right rude.

Of course, Noah isn't without his faults, but he's been raised in a totally different manner, so I could understand his occasional sexist statements. Sometimes I would cringe when he was thinking about his future with Rose, but I don't think he honestly could see what was wrong with some of his ideas. Those moments just made me want to keep reading though, to see how Rose would react when he eventually told her of his plans.

Overall, I loved this book. It did get a little repetitive at times, since Rose and Noah would sneak off together, then have to ignore each other, then Noah would find a way for them to sneak off together again, rinse and repeat. But it was also sweet, frustrating and heartbreaking. After that ending I'm so glad to realize that this is a series! I'm eager to learn more about Noah's community!

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Friday, October 12, 2012

Freebie Friday [14]

So, what freebie would I like to share with you today...

[Release Day Blitz] The Modified by C.A. Kunz

What would you sacrifice to save the one’s you love? To save the one who holds your heart? To save the world?

Kenley Grayson is all too familiar with these questions.

After Earth is thrust into its first intergalactic war with an unknown race called the Bringers, our military forces begin to suffer heavy losses. Desperate for a solution, the Allied Federation issues a worldwide draft for every able seventeen-year-old to enlist. As Kenley turns seventeen, she finds herself thrown into the very war that took her older brother’s life.

This year’s draft is a little different than in the past though. A new program, known as the Magnus Project, has been introduced, and only the best and brightest qualify. Kenley is amongst a select few whom are chosen to join this elite group of soldiers, and as a part of this project, undergoes a modification procedure that leaves her and her peers endowed with powers beyond their wildest dreams.

As Earth continues in its struggle against the Bringers, Kenley is transported to a high-tech training facility, the Magnus Academy, to prepare for the major battle that lies ahead. It’s here that she meets the California heartthrob, and son of a legendary war hero, Landon Shaw. As unexpected feelings toward Landon begin to develop, Kenley wonders if this is the right time or place for romance to bloom, especially when those feelings start to interfere with her training.

With the weight of the world on her shoulders, Kenley is constantly reminded of how important she and the rest of the Magnus cadets are to the fate of humanity. She is one of the Modified, Earth’s last line of defense against utter destruction.


This giveaway will be International and includes - 1 ebook or paperback copy of The Modified, 1 signed swag pack, 1 foam core mounted poster of the book's cover, and either a $25.00Amazon gift card or $25.00 Barnes and Noble gift card (winner's choice).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About C.A. Kunz

The mom and son author duo, C.A. Kunz, thoroughly enjoys writing about things that go bump in the night and futuristic action-packed romances while drinking massive amounts of English breakfast tea and Starbucks coffee. To find out more about this duo and their books visit their blog, or find them on Facebook and Twitter!

Purchase links:

Barnes and Noble

Our Links:

C.A. Kunz’s Blog
C.A. Kunz’s Facebook Page
C.A. Kunz's Twitter Page

Thursday, October 11, 2012

[Mini Review] Destroy Me (Shatter Me, #1.5) by Tahereh Mafi

Title: Destroy Me
Series: Shatter Me, #1.5
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Pages: 50 (Kindle edition)
Publisher: HarperCollins
Release Date: October 2, 2012

In Tahereh Mafi’s Shatter Me, Juliette escaped from The Reestablishment by seducing Warner—and then putting a bullet in his shoulder. But as she’ll learn in Destroy Me, Warner is not that easy to get rid of....

Back at the base and recovering from his near-fatal wound, Warner must do everything in his power to keep his soldiers in check and suppress any mention of a rebellion in the sector. Still as obsessed with Juliette as ever, his first priority is to find her, bring her back, and dispose of Adam and Kenji, the two traitors who helped her escape. But when Warner’s father, The Supreme Commander of The Reestablishment, arrives to correct his son’s mistakes, it’s clear that he has much different plans for Juliette. Plans Warner simply cannot allow.

Set after Shatter Me and before its forthcoming sequel, Unravel Me, Destroy Me is a novella told from the perspective of Warner, the ruthless leader of Sector 45.

I have been beyond impatient waiting for this short story to be released! Warner has to be my favorite "villain" ever. I was fascinated by his obsession with Juliette in Shatter Me, so I could not wait to get into his head in Destroy Me. This takes place shortly after Juliette's escape, and follows Warner as he's immobilized by his injury and trying to find Juliette before his father does.

I absolutely loved getting to know him better! He's such an interesting character. We learn all sorts of little details about his life and personality, such as how much of a control freak he is and why he refuses caffeine. Above all, we learn the depths of his loneliness which explains his intense feelings for Juliette. His obsessions runs much deeper than I originally thought. He's definitely not what he seemed in Shatter Me. This was an amazing glimpse into Warner, and now my excitement for Unravel Me has grown exponentially!

Favorite Quotes

She searches me with those odd, blue-green eyes and I feel guilty so suddenly, without understanding why. But there's something about the way she looks at me that always makes me feel insignificant, as if she's the only one who's realized I'm entirely hollow inside. She's found the cracks in this cast I'm forced to wear every day, and it petrifies me. That this girl would know exactly how to shatter me. (21%)

Torture is not torture when there's any hope of relief. (25%)

I've developed a reputation as a cold, unfeeling monster who fears nothing and cares for less. But this is all very deceiving. Because the truth is, I am nothing but a coward. (54%)

[Excerpt] Dead Perfect by P.G. Shriver

Author P.G. Shriver has stopped by today with an excerpt for the Dead Perfect Blog Tour hosted by Young Adult Novel Reader.


We strolled around the block, talking, laughing, getting to know one another. I had waited a lifetime, and then some, for the girl to come around, and she squeezed my hand at that very moment. Her soft chocolate hair doused in strawberry scents drove me insane. When her eyes crinkled up at me in question, or smile, the urge to embrace her overwhelmed my senses. I had never felt this way before. Even feelings of Joanie, as I dreamt she was mine, were never this strong. I had waited and waited for this since the race, and now she was here. I couldn't wait to tell Franky… And I would have to let her go. How could I let her go? I just knew that when she discovered the truth, she would leave me. The thought ripped at my heart, creating a pain so intense, my eyes glistened and I winced.

Book Blurb:

MEL My lifelong dreams never included falling in love. Graduating top of the class, going to college somewhere far away and starting a life in a place where my alcoholic mother could never find me were the first three goals on my list. Then the unexpected auto accident with Mother, after her regular doses of vodka, altered all of that. With her gone, my life and my perspective changed forever. DAVIS Desperate to find Joanie so I could break free, I returned to my old school. The search led me to her, my Aphrodite, a familiar lost look in her soulful eyes. Fantasies of her forced reasoning from my mind. I had to meet her! Once fallen, would her love for me survive the ghostly secrets haunting us?

Author Links:

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Wishlist Wednesday [12: Birthday Edition!]

Wishlist Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Pen to Paper. It's where we get to share books that have been on our wishlists forever or are newly added. I'll be alternating this with Waiting on Wednesday. My Amazon Wishlist is overflowing, so what title am I featuring this week...

Since my birthday is next week, I'm going to share more than one wish, just because!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Teaser Tuesday [28]

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, October 8, 2012

[Review] Memoirs of a Gothic Soul (The 13 Gothic Memoirs, #1) by Rebekah Armusik

Title: Memoirs of a Gothic Soul
Series: The 13 Gothic Memoirs, #1
Author: Rebekah Armusik
Pages: 314 (Kindle edition)
Publisher: Lady Noir
Release Date: August 13, 2010

It’s not often that a writer presents a truly unique view of a traditional concept. Rebekah Armusik, Wilkes-Barre native and King’s College alum, has done just that with her first book, Memoirs of a Gothic Soul. Told through the eyes of Nadija, a young, American woman with strong Slavic roots whose life mirrors Armusik’s own, this book reinvents Gothic literature. Armusik presents a new twist on traditional Gothic themes, writing a truly unique story of vampires and their relationship with humans, God, and the Guardians who maintain the delicate balance.

Nadija has just finished her college degree, removed herself from an abusive relationship, and separated herself from drug addict friend. She's realizing that she needs to get out of her town and away from all of the unhealthy relationships surrounding her, including her unsupportive family. Her destination is Prague, where she can work on her vampire research. Dija has been fascinated by this supposedly mythical race for years, and she has a theory that they actually exist. Little does she know just how right she is.

This was my first experience with gothic fiction, and I was very impressed. I love how the writing was dark, romantic, and utterly captivating. Dija's narrative is very emotional, and we know everything she is thinking and feeling. She goes from being extremely closed off from others, to loving a man with all her soul (probably literally since they are "twin souls"). However, she's still holding onto a lot of anger which may either help or hinder her gifts and her ability to make decisions for the Council.

I really liked the imaginative twist on the tale of Adam and Eve and the origin of vampires. It's not one that I've heard before, and I thought it was well done. The vampires themselves are also enthralling and dangerous, but Dija has a place among them.

At times the story felt extremely slow, and like it wasn't going anywhere. There's no real identifiable over arching conflict until the end, which made it read more like a diary of Dija's self discovery. I still really enjoyed it and I'm happy that I have the next two books to see what comes next for Nadija and Alexei.

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Sunday, October 7, 2012

Showcase Sunday [46]

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea to show off our newest books and book related goods!