Posted in 2016, Book Tours, February

Blog Tour: Wintersong By S. Jae-Jones w/Excerpt


WintersongWintersong by S. Jae-Jones

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ugh! This book!!! The Feels!!

I have to say that my body went through every emotion while reading this book! I started off as nervous and by the end, I was crying!

I really loved this story line! Elisabeth is the oldest daughter of a poor family whom always is looking out for everyone else but herself. She helped her brother become a violin prodigy and basically gave up on the one person whom she had always had an attraction to her sister to marry. She feels lonely and like the ugly duckling of her family. One day she meets The Goblin King and she still fights to save her sister. But he is not all that he appears to be.

My favorite character was Constanze, Elisabeth’s crazy grandmother! She always talked in riddles and the family just entertained her craziness as long as it was convenient. She was a hoot!

The ending…ugh! Get your tissues ready cuz this one will leave you crying:-( I felt for Elisabeth and Aric. I am not sure if this is a stand alone but I am really hoping that we will get to see more of these characters in the future!!

Thanks to the publisher for the review copy! It was superb! Definitely 5 stars!!

View all my reviews

Excerpt

Overture

      Once there was a little girl who played her music for a little boy in the wood. She was small and dark, he was tall and fair, and the two of them made a fancy pair as they danced together, dancing to the music the little girl heard in her head.
     Her grand mother had told her to beware the wolves that prowled in the wood, but the little girl knew the little boy was not dangerous, even if he was the king of the goblins.
     Will you marry me, Elisabeth? the little boy asked, and the little girl did not won der at how he knew her name.
     Oh, she replied, but I am too young to marry.
     Then I will wait, the little boy said. I will wait as long as you remember.
     And the little girl laughed as she danced with the Goblin King, the little boy who was always just a little older, a little out of reach.
     As the seasons turned and the years passed, the little girl grew older but the Goblin King remained the same. She washed the dishes, cleaned the floors, brushed her sister’s hair, yet still ran to the forest to meet her old friend in the grove. Their games were different now, truth and forfeit and challenges and dares.
     Will you marry me, Elisabeth? the little boy asked, and the little girl did not yet understand his question was not part of a game.
     Oh, she replied, but you have not yet won my hand.
     Then I will win, the little boy said. I will win until you surrender.
     And the little girl laughed as she played against the Goblin King, losing every hand and every round.
     Winter turned to spring, spring to summer, summer into autumn, autumn back into winter, but each turning of the year grew harder and harder as the little girl grew up while the Goblin King remained the same. She washed the dishes, cleaned the floors, brushed her sister’s hair, soothed her brother’s fears, hid her father’s purse, counted the coins, and no longer went into the woods to see her old friend.
     Will you marry me, Elisabeth? the Goblin King asked.
     But the little girl did not reply.
wintersong_glossary_final
heather
Posted in 2016, Book Tours, September

Blog Tour: The Possibility of Somewhere by Julia Day


The Possibility of SomewhereThe Possibility of Somewhere by Julia Day

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book reminded me a whole lot of Eleanor & Parke by Rainbow Rowell. I really did not enjoy that particular one but this book definitely was more enjoyable for me. If you are a Rainbow fan than you should pick this one up!

What I loved:

The Characters!
I really enjoyed Eden’s snark and the way she did not care what anyone thought of her. Also, the fact that she tried to take care of her family and worked so hard to get a head in life so that she wouldn’t have to struggle later. She is definitely an awesome character!

Ash was pretty awesome himself too! He was kind of straight forward with Eden and told her just how it is. He also worked very hard and is a boy that others should admire.

My favorite character would have to be Mundy. She could totally fit in with the popular girls but chooses to befriend Eden whom is an outcast. I really enjoyed how she was “take charge” and made Eden come out of her shell.

The Crush
I really enjoyed that Eden and Ash were kind of enemies in the beginning and how that had shifted somewhere throughout time. Both were able to pin point exactly when their relationship changed and it was so sweet that they were able to be open and honest with each other from the get go!

What I didn’t like:

Eden’s Dad
He wanted to keep her home and was trying hard to hold her back from college for his own selfish reasons and used her for his own personal gain with his boss.

Heather
I also am not crazy about Eden’s bio Mom, Heather. I mean who just up and leaves their kid without an explanation?

Trailer Park
The fact that just because Eden lived in a trailer park that meant she was trash. I am glad that some were able to see past the label!

Would I recommend?


YES!!!

Thanks to the publisher for the review copy!

View all my reviews

Excerpt

✦ 1 ✦
An Exercise in Probabilities

My normal dress code was designed to keep me invisible, but today I made an exception. I wore a teal shirt (stolen
from my dad) over jeans that had only been owned by me. I fin- ished off with my best sneakers, freshly bleached.
After yanking my hair into a ponytail, I grabbed my back- pack, charged out of my bedroom, and screeched to a halt in the den. The trailer smelled like toast and bacon. Why?
I crossed to the table and stared down at the plate of food wait- ing there.
My stepmom came out of the kitchen, holding two mugs of coffee. She offered one to me.
I took it as my backpack slid to the floor with a thud. “You made me breakfast?”
She laughed. “I’ve done this before.”
“When I was nine, maybe.” The bacon looked like it had been fried to crispy perfection. I parked my butt on the chair and snagged a slice. “What’s the occasion?”

Her smile wobbled. “It’s the first day of your last year of high school.”
Oh, damn. She was going to get emotional on me. This day must remind her that I’d be gone in a few months. It wouldn’t be a good idea to act all happy about escaping town soon. Better change the mood fast. “Breakfast is amazing. You can repeat it whenever you want.”
“I’ll keep that in mind.” She set her mug on the table and pointed at my ponytail. “Can I do something special with your hair?”
Clearly she wanted to, so sure. “That’d be great.”
While I finished my toast, she twisted my hair into a thick French braid. It took only a couple of minutes before she pressed a kiss to the top of my head. “There you are, sweetie. Now go on, or you’ll miss the bus.”
“Okay.” I stood, gave her a quick hug, and slung my backpack over one shoulder. “Thanks, Marnie. For everything.”
The bus dropped us off fifteen minutes early, something that would never happen again. I went straight to my first-period class. AP English Lit with my favorite teacher.
“Morning, Ms. Barrie,” I said.
She didn’t look up from her computer. “Hello, Eden.”
I slipped into a desk in the back row and watched as my class- mates trickled in.
My next class would be statistics, although it had been a re- cent change. I’d realized in middle school that college was my best route out of Heron, and I wouldn’t get to college without serious scholarships. So I’d mapped out my high school curriculum in
seventh grade, picking each course to maximize my GPA. Every- thing had gone according to plan until three weeks ago, when I’d switched to a different math class and elective. The decision had seemed bold at the time. Now, it felt crazy.
After English, I dropped by my locker and arrived late for second period. With nervous anticipation, I smiled at my statis- tics teacher and turned toward the back.
“Wait, Eden. Sit there.” Mrs. Menzies gestured at an empty seat on the front row.
I paused, looking from the desk to her. She eyed me steadily, a challenge in her expression.
Did she expect me to argue with her? I certainly wanted to. Swallowing hard, I took my seat.
“All right, everyone. I’m glad that you’ve chosen to take Advanced Placement Statistics . . .”
I tuned out what she said, too annoyed to listen to whatever welcoming remarks she had for us. They would be on her sylla- bus anyway. I was consumed with shrugging off how much it bothered me to sit in the front with a dozen pairs of eyes behind me. Were they watching me? Probably not, but I didn’t like that it was a possibility.
Even deep breaths betrayed me, because they filled my head with the soapy-clean, spicy-cologne scent of Ash Gupta. Why did Mrs. Menzies have me sitting next to him?
“. . . you’ll have one group project and one individual assign- ment due each week . . .”
I glanced at her. Group projects already? Was that why we had assigned seats?
“. . . that’s it for now. Form into your teams. I’ll hand out your first project.”

The sounds of dragging chairs and laughing voices filled the room. I checked around. Was I the only one who didn’t know what to do?
Ash was looking at me, pained resignation on his face. “You’re with us, Eden.”
I dragged my desk into the circle beside him. There were five of us in the group. Upala and Dev were Ash’s friends. A built-in alliance. They would vote as a bloc even if I could get the last guy on my side.
The next few minutes blurred into the rhythms of a project team pretending to become cohesive. I didn’t join in, listening instead to Ash control the discussion and watching as Mrs. Men- zies went from group to group, dropping off a large bag of M&Ms, several paper bowls, and the project sheet. When she finally arrived at our circle, she described what she wanted and then gave me a hard stare.
“I want collaboration from everyone.”
Message received—although it was unnecessary. I participated when it mattered. Reaching for the M&M bag, I filled a bowl and began separating the candies by color. An exercise in probabilities. “Before we go any further,” Ash was saying, “we should pick
a leader for the team. How do we want to choose?”
“Might as well cut the bullshit, Ash,” I said without looking up. “You want the job. No one’s going to fight you. Just take it by acclamation.”
Silence greeted my speech. I glanced at him. His gaze held mine for a second before he frowned at his notebook, picked up a pen, and began drawing tiny perfect squares, one after the other. I looked at the rest of the team. Upala and Dev glared at me but didn’t disagree with my suggestion. Probably hated that it had come from me, though.

About Julia Day

JULIA DAY lives in North Carolina, halfway between the beaches and the mountains. She 320375has two twenty-something

daughters and one geeky old husband. When she’s not writing software or stories, Julia enjoys traveling with her family,

watching dance reality shows on TV, and dreaming about which restaurant ought to get her business that night.

 

Until next time…

XOXO, Heather

Posted in 2015, Book Tours, July

Dr. Seuss Classic Tour!!!


Dr Seuss Tour Banner

I am so excited to be a part of this tour!!!

How The Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss113946

First Published October 12, 1957

64 Pages

“The Grinch hated Christmas! The whole Christmas season! / Now, please don’t ask why. No one quite knows the reason.” Dr. Seuss’s small-hearted Grinch ranks right up there with Scrooge when it comes to the crankiest, scowling holiday grumps of all time. For 53 years, the Grinch has lived in a cave on the side of a mountain, looming above the Whos in Whoville. The noisy holiday preparations and infernal singing of the happy little citizens below annoy him to no end. The Grinch decides this frivolous merriment must stop. His “wonderful, awful” idea is to don a Santa outfit, strap heavy antlers on his poor, quivering dog Max, construct a makeshift sleigh, head down to Whoville, and strip the chafingly cheerful Whos of their Yuletide glee once and for all.Looking quite out of place and very disturbing in his makeshift Santa get-up, the Grinch slithers down chimneys with empty bags and stealing the Whos’ presents, their food, even the logs from their humble Who-fires. He takes the ramshackle sleigh to Mt. Crumpit to dump it and waits to hear the sobs of the Whos when they wake up and discover the trappings of Christmas have disappeared. Imagine the Whos’ dismay when they discover the evil-doings of Grinch in his anti-Santa guise. But what is that sound? It’s not sobbing, but singing! Children simultaneously adore and fear this triumphant, twisted Seussian testimonial to the undaunted cheerfulness of the Whos, the transcendent nature of joy, and of course, the growth potential of a heart that’s two sizes too small. This holiday classic is perfect for reading aloud to your favorite little Whos. (Ages 4 to 8)

My Thoughts

I really have never actually sat down and read this book! Can you believe it??? Nope! Not until the day I received it in the mail for this tour! Now though, I understand why so many people are fascinated with the Grinch:0

I really enjoyed the story of Mr. Grinch trying his best to take Christmas away from the residents of Whoville. His crazy antics of even stealing the food left me with quite a few giggles! BUT, my favorite character of the book has got to be little Cindy-Lou Who. She is just so little and cute!

I also enjoyed the whole lesson behind the book that Christmas is to be more than just presents and food. The fact that in the end, Mr. Grinch ended up celebrating himself was a wonderful ending to this fantastic children’s tale!

5 star rating

About Dr. Seuss

Theodor “Seuss” Geisel is one of the most beloved children’s book authors of all time. His long list of awards includes TSG_Credit--Courtesy of Dr. Seuss EnterprisesCaldecott Honors for McElligot’s Pool, If I Ran the Zoo, and Bartholomew and the Oobleck, the Pulitzer Prize, and eight honorary doctorates. Works based on his original stories have won three Oscars, three Emmys, three Grammys and a Peabody. Geisel wrote and illustrated 45 books during his lifetime, and his books have sold more than 650 million copies worldwide. Though Theodor Geisel died on September 24, 1991, Dr. Seuss lives on, inspiring generations of children of all ages to explore the joys of reading. For more information about Dr. Seuss and his works, visit Seussville.com.

About What Pet Should I Get?

In the Fall of 2013, an original manuscript with accompanying sketches by Dr. Seuss, aka Ted Geisel, was discovered in the La Jolla, California home of the late beloved children’s author. That complete manuscript was for the picture book, 24968109
WHAT PET SHOULD I GET?
, and will be published by Random House Children’s Books on July 28, 2015. It is the first original new Dr. Seuss book since the publication of the last book of Dr. Seuss’s career, Oh, the Places You’ll Go! in 1990. WHAT PET SHOULD I GET? captures the excitement of a classic childhood moment—choosing a pet—and features the brother and sister characters that Dr. Seuss drew in One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish.

Follow the Tour!!

  1. And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, 1937 – The Young Folks.com
  2. The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins, 1938 – Bookish Antics
  3. The Seven Lady Godivas, 1939 – The Eater of Books
  4. The King’s Stilts, 1939 – On Starships and Dragonwings
  5. Horton Hatches the Egg, 1940 – The Book Cellar
  6. McElligot’s Pool, 1947 – Media Mikes
  7. Thidwick the Big-Hearted Moose, 1948 –Mommie of 2
  8. Bartholomew and the Oobleck, 1949 – Nonperfect Parenting
  9. If I Ran the Zoo, 1950 – Live to Read
  10. Scrambled Eggs Super! 1953 – Word Spelunking
  11. Horton Hears a Who! 1954 – Bookiemoji
  12. On Beyond Zebra! 1955 – Jessabella Reads
  13. If I Ran the Circus, 1956 – Book Hounds
  14. The Cat in the Hat, 1957 – The Bookbag
  15. How the Grinch Stole Christmas! 1957 – Nightly Reading
  16. The Cat in the Hat Comes Back, 1958 – Winter Haven Books
  17. Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories, 1958 – Alice Marvels
  18. Happy Birthday to You! 1959 – Chapter by Chapter
  19. Green Eggs and Ham, 1960 – Poland Bananas
  20. One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, 1960 – Once Upon a Twilight
  21. The Sneetches and Other Stories, 1961 – The Mod Podge Bookshelf
  22. Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book, 1962 – Good Books and Good Wine
  23. Dr. Seuss’s ABC, 1963 – The Irish Banana
  24. Hop on Pop, 1963 – Mundie Moms
  25. Fox in Socks, 1965 – Page Turners
  26. I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew, 1965 – Book Rock Betty
  27. The Cat in the Hat Songbook, 1967 – Giveaway Train
  28. The Foot Book, 1968 – I Am A Reader
  29. I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today! And Other Stories, 1969 – Cuddlebuggery
  30. I Can Draw It Myself, 1970 – The Children’s Book Review
  31. Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? 1970 – Curling Up with a Good Book
  32. The Lorax, 1971 – Elizziebooks
  33. Marvin K. Mooney Will You Please Go Now! 1972 – Reading with ABC
  34. Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are? 1973 – Me, Myshelf, and I
  35. The Shape of Me and Other Stuff, 1973 – Paperback Princess
  36. There’s a Wocket in My Pocket! 1974 – Presenting Lenore
  37. Oh, the Thinks You Can Think! 1975 – YA Books Central
  38. The Cat’s Quizzer, 1976 – Lille Punkin’
  39. I Can Read with My Eyes Shut! 1978 – Confessions Of A Vi3tbabe
  40. Oh Say Can You Say? 1979 – Ex Libris
  41. Hunches in Bunches, 1982 – No BS Book Reviews
  42. The Butter Battle Book, 1984 – Novel Novice
  43. You’re Only Old Once! 1986 – Dad of Divas
  44. Oh, the Places You’ll Go! 1990  – Jesse the Reader

Thanks to Random House Children’s Books for the review copy and inviting me on this awesome tour!!

Heather

Posted in April, Book Tours

Graduation Day by Joelle Charbonneau Blog Tour!!


GraduationDay (1)18222699

Title: GRADUATION DAY (The Testing #3)

Author: Joelle Charbonneau

Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers

Pub. Date: June 17, 2014

Pages: 304 Find it: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads

In book three of the Testing series, the United Commonwealth wants to eliminate the rebel alliance fighting to destroy The Testing for good. Cia is ready to lead the charge, but will her lethal classmates follow her into battle?

She wants to put an end to the Testing
In a scarred and brutal future, The United Commonwealth teeters on the brink of all-out civil war. The rebel resistance plots against a government that rules with cruelty and cunning. Gifted student and Testing survivor, Cia Vale, vows to fight.

But she can’t do it alone.
This is the chance to lead that Cia has trained for – but who will follow? Plunging through layers of danger and deception, Cia must risk the lives of those she loves–and gamble on the loyalty of her lethal classmates.

Who can Cia trust?
The stakes are higher than ever-lives of promise cut short or fulfilled; a future ruled by fear or hope–in the electrifying conclusion to Joelle Charbonneau’s epic Testing trilogy. Ready or not…it’s Graduation Day.

The Final Test is the Deadliest!

My Review

The first two books in this series were awesome and I could not wait to get my hands on this third installment! GD was masterfully crafted and this has become one of my favorite series of all time!!

Cia faces her toughest test yet in GD. We all thought the others were tough but they have nothing on this one. She knows that she needs help this time around but is frightful that she will choose the wrong person to trust.

I love Cia! She is tough as nails and an all around great heroine! She is not your typical teenager and really thinks things through before acting on them.

This book had so many twists and turns that it felt like a roller coaster ride and I enjoyed every minute of it! I would say that this was probably one of the best finale books that I have read and I encourage all of you to pick up this series if you have not already!

5-stars

About the Author

Ever since I can remember I loved telling stories. As I grew up, I started performing thoseJoelleCharbonneau_Publicity_Photo-264x300 stories on the stage. Creating vivid characters and singing wonderfully complex songs were my passion. I graduated from Millikin University with a Bachelors Degree in Vocal Performance and then continued onto DePaul

University for my Masters Degree in Opera Performance. From there I went onto perform across the Chicagoland area in a variety of Operas, Operettas and Musicals. I also started teaching acting classes and private voice lessons to pass my passion along to the next generation.

Not exactly the path you’d expect a writer to take.

I’d never dreamed of writing a novel. But I loved to read. Then one day I had an idea and I started to write. I found my passion for creating characters lived on the page as well as the stage. It is my hope that the characters I’ve created resonate with you and make you smile.

I still teach voice lessons and sing for the occasional professional event. But the rest of my time is spent with my husband and son while dreaming up new and interesting stories. I hope that someday I hear yours. Website/Twitter/Facebook/Goodreads/Pinterest

Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the Tour:

Week One: 6

/9/2014- NightlyReading- Review

6/10/2014- The Book Cellar- Guest Post

6/11/2014- Curling Up With A Good Book- Review

6/12/2014- Fiktshun- Interview

6/13/2014- Manga Maniac Café- Review

 

Week Two:

6/16/2014- Magical Urban Fantasy Reads- Guest Post

6/17/2014- K-books- Review

6/18/2014- Tales of the Ravenous Reader- Interview

6/19/2014- Parajunkee’s View- Review

6/20/2014- Two Chicks on Books- Guest Post

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Posted in 2014, April, Book Tours

Release Tour: Camp Payback by J.K. Rock


 

RELEASE

CAMP PAYBACK

By J.K. Rock

Camp Payback cover

Camp Boyfriend #2

Young Adult Contemporary Romance

Released April 29, 2014

Published by Spencer Hill

Amazon | Barnes and Noble

 

Alex has big plans for camp this year, starting with making it the best summer ever. Having fun and breaking some rules will get her the payback she wants against her parents and her ex-boyfriend. Because of his disgusting texts, she’s headed to a super strict all-girls school in the fall. Then she meets Javier and revenge doesn’t seem nearly as important as getting to know the troubled loner determined to keep a low profile at camp. But Alex’s trouble-magnet personality and Javier’s need to stay in the background don’t mix nearly as well as their irresistible chemistry. With her home life eroding under her feet and her last year of summer camp speeding to a close, Alex wants to make her mark on the world and squeeze every bit of fun out of her time with Javier. Too bad her old plans for revenge turn back on her just in time to ruin everything. Will she lose Javier too?

 

About the Author

J. K. Rock is the pseudonym for YA writing partners – and sisters-in-law – Joanne & Karen Rock. Although they started out sharing an annual shopping trip, they ended up discussing their favorite films and books, joining the same book club and talking about writing… a lot. Their debut novel, Camp Boyfriend, is the first in a three-book series plotted during family pool parties.Their

creative partnership is unique in that they enjoy passing a book back and forth, each adding a chapter and fine-tuning the chapter before. Years of friendship has yielded a shared voice and vision for their work that makes writing a pleasure. Learn more about Karen and Joanne at http://jkrock.net

Author Website

Goodreads

Tumblr

Pinterest

Google +

You Tube

Facebook

 

 

Also in the Camp Boyfriend Series

Camp Boyfriend cover

Camp Boyfriend #1

Amazon | Barnes and Noble

 

The summer of her dreams is about to get a reality check.

They said it couldn’t be done, but geeky sophomore Lauren Carlson transformed herself into a popular girl after moving to a new school halfway across the country. Amazing what losing her braces and going out for cheerleading will do. Only trouble is, the popular crowd is wearing on Lauren’s nerves and she can’t wait to return to summer camp where she’s valued for her brain instead of her handsprings. She misses her old friends and most of all, her long time camp-only boyfriend, Seth. This year she intends to upgrade their relationship to year-round status once she’s broken up with her new, jock boyfriend, Matt. He doesn’t even begin to know the real her, a girl fascinated by the night sky who dreams of discovering new planets and galaxies.

But Matt isn’t giving her up without a fight. As he makes his case to stay together, Lauren begins to realize his feelings run deeper than she ever would have guessed. What if the guy she thought she was meant to be with forever isn’t really The One? Returning to Camp Juniper Point was supposed to ground her uprooted life, but she’s more adrift than ever. Everything feels different and soon Lauren’s friends are turning on her and both guys question what she really wants. As summer tensions escalate, Lauren wonders if she’s changed more than she thought. Will her first big discovery be herself?

 

 photo AToMRPRomotionslogo_zps2b315b86.png

 

 Giveaway:

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h. Lee

Posted in 2014, Book Tours, Giveaways!, March

Blog Tour: Glitch by Brenda Pandos


Glitch by Brenda Pandos

Genre: New Adult Dystopian

Perfect World. Lies. Blue eyes.


When a mysterious guy from the forbidden zone sneaks an illegal slip of paper to a beautiful young girl from Brighton, she must decide if she should turn him in or follow what the note says. 


Eighteen-year-old Abby has no trouble following Brighton’s rules. For one, she’s OCD about checking her Date of Death clock, making sure her decisions never shorten her timeline, and two, she enjoys the peace Brighton has to offer. In no way would she bring on another attack that destroyed earth’s inhabitants like her predecessors. But when her best friend returns from her Advice Meeting–a glimpse into the future–shell shocked and won’t tell Abby what’s happened, she’s worried what awaits her Advice Meeting in a few days. The stranger with blue-eyes knows something, but does Abby dare enter the forbidden zone to get answers? It’s infested with zombies, or so the Elected Agency says, yet there hasn’t been sightings in years…. Those who enjoyed Divergent, Hunger Games, Time Travelers Wife and Walking Dead, will love Glitch.

Check out the Excerpt and enter to win a signed copy!

GRAB GLITCH TODAY AT THESE RETAILERS!

amazon   bn   kobobutton

(iTunes and the Paperback will appear shortly)

“So much happens in this book that you are just hooked and can’t stop reading.” -Adriana

“This is a zombie story with a difference.” -Claire

“Recommend for all age fans of paranormal, zombies, dystopia and time travel!” -MS

 

EXCERPT:

 

Keeping my eyes on the ball, I tripped on something hard and round.

My ankle twisted, tipping me over, and I fell directly into the foliage. I

half-expected to land on solid ground beneath my butt, but all that was there

was air. Then I thudded onto the rocks and continued sliding down a sharp

decline. Tumbling over, I slid head first into the dry creek bed with an oomph.

Once the momentum stopped my body and the racing of my brain

lessened, pain ricocheted everywhere. I bit back a wail and tears trickled down

my cheeks. Beyond the stars flickering over my vision, birds jostled the leaves

of the trees, taking flight in the bright sky. With my head spinning, I lay

still, afraid to get up. Thoughts of a trip to the hospital and a cast from

ankle to thigh rocked through me. Just my luck to break something right

before my Advice Meeting.

“You okay?”

I startled at the male’s voice and gasped, struggling to right

myself. Something other than pain jolted down my side as cool, blue eyes under

a shock of dark hair met mine. My breath caught and I forced down a swallow.

Cute—so cute. I couldn’t form anything coherent for a second, other than

zombies didn’t talk.

“I—I’m fine.”

He quirked his head, scanning the length of my body. “I doubt that.”

Warmth rushed through me while under the gaze of this mysterious guy

and my brain filed through all the faces of my potential mates online. His was

one I’d definitely remember, especially with those eyes, and yet this was the

first time I’d seen him. How did he escape my stalking? Was he on the

unapproved list because of his blue eyes? From another province perhaps? One

thing was for sure: he most definitely wasn’t a zombie.

“Here.” He reached for me and clasped my hand. His grip was strong

and warm as he pulled me to my feet. But there was something between our palms,

something flat, yet stiff with pointed edges.

He squeezed my hand hard and leveled me with a convicted look. I felt

a rush of blood hit my cheeks when he held on a little too long.

“What is this?” I peered into his anxious eyes. Did he expect that I

should know him? What was between our hands?

“Shhh—” he said, cautiously. “I just—need to tell you—”

He looked around nervously, then dropped my hand when the shouts of

my teammates called from the ridge.

“Abby?” I heard Elle scream above the rest. “Are you okay?”

“I’m fine,” I called while my heart revved to a sprint. I fingered

the thing he’d given me, trapping the evidence inside my palm, as my chest

filled with terror. My mouth opened and shut, then I scanned the trees for

hidden cameras. If I was caught with what I’d suspected he’d given me, we’d be

arrested, no questions asked.

The strange, cute guy moved backward into the trees, blending in with

his grey and black clothing. I wanted to ask him where he was going. The only

thing echoing in my head was the Civilian Handbook.

Rule 6.1: Paper is illegal. To not make, manufacture, or use paper in

any way. Report all violations of this law, or suffer a year in prison.

The sweat in my palm softened the pointed edges of the note. If I

kept my hand closed, the EA wouldn’t see. But then how could I read what it

said?

“Abby?” Elle screamed again. “Where are you?”

I moved away from the guy and back toward a trail leading up the side

of the ravine to the field in a rush, panicked over the paper, panicked over

everything.

“I’m coming.” I warred with a weird sense of being torn. My numb feet

stumbled forward, knowing the correct response would be to run and report him.

Another part of me wanted to help him. He wore vintage clothing from the

pre-zombie era and black Converse shoes I’d kill for and had only seen in the

museums. Where in the heck did he get his hands on paper? And why would he

trust me with it? One quick glance at his wrist—no DOD watch. I wanted to ask

him, but then I knew the EA was listening. Time ticked on slowly as we looked

questioningly, into one another’s eyes.

When I looked up the trail once again, my teammates’ feet were

rushing toward me, stirring up dirt everywhere. I turned back to the guy one

last time, but the blue eyed stranger was gone.

His note, though, burned in my palm. And then, as the girls rushed

down the trail toward me, terror flooded me. If I were caught, I’d be detained

for who knows how long. I moved to the tall grass, stooped over to pick up my

glove and stuffed the note under a shiny black rock, praying no one would

notice.

CHAPTER TWO

Careful to remain under the cloak of darkness, I sucked in the

precious air and pulled the black hoody tight around my face. Feeling naked

without my Date of Death watch on, I quickly scanned the softball field for signs of

life. If anyone caught me here, I’d have a lot of explaining to do. That was if

the undead didn’t get me first. I shuddered and pushed away the thought.

I’m safe. There’s

been no sightings in years, I reminded myself. Besides, I had to go. I had

to know what the note said.

Sneaking along the edge of the field, I darted stealthily in the

shadows, fighting the cold. The chilly February night was in direct opposition

to the unseasonably warm day we’d had earlier, yet I couldn’t get Blue Eyes out

of my mind—his clothes, his shoes, his eyes, his illegal paper. And no matter

how hard I tried or as stupid as breaking curfew and sneaking out was, I knew I

wouldn’t be able to fall asleep until I knew what the note had said.

Across the street, Elle’s brother Landon’s bedroom light beamed from

the swanky remodeled apartments, perks of being a top security monitor for the

EA. Courage burned through my veins as something he’d said replayed in my mind.

The reason the EA insisted on everyone wearing their watches at all times was

because cameras had difficulty deciphering people’s faces in the dark. He’d

know, with all the sneaking and breaking of rules that he did. I never broke

the law, ever. One, for fear of getting caught, and two, for having the stress

take years off my life.

There was something in the way Blue Eyes looked at me that I couldn’t

shake. The huge risk he took to transfer this information to me, one the EA

couldn’t intercept and why paper was illegal in the first place, drove me mad

with curiosity. Giant computers in the EA shrines held all interactions between

people, conversations recorded by DOD and messages off people’s flat screens,

and only through a warrant were those private interactions allowed to become

known. Of course Landon said that was bullshit, which is why I’d removed my

watch before sneaking out.

My heart thumped as I looked over my shoulder toward the street.

Landon’s apartment overlooked the field and if he spotted and reported me, or

my mother found my unattended watch next to my flat screen, playing a recording

of me sleeping in the background, I’d be dead. Though we lived in a crime-free

society, she’d send everyone on a hunt to find me. I’d be arrested and forced

to talk. Then they’d implant a DOD band on me—one I couldn’t take off, ever. I

would be branded a criminal.

Bands of light from the security tower tried to penetrate the dense

trees and the proof of what I’d destroyed with my fly ball came into view. Wow.

I’d knocked the container off its hinges. But where was the gun? Had I knocked

that off, too? And why hadn’t anyone come to repair it?

I stepped into the tree line, feeling a cold rush of bitter wind

cycle through the grasses and around my ankles. Hugging my arms to myself, I

traversed the path from earlier, my feet stumbling in the darkness. My mind

began to wander. What if a zombie could sneak over the wall now that there

wasn’t a functioning gun? Were they smart enough to climb? I inhaled, sniffing

for rotted flesh, and trudged down the path quickly. The dank dust flooded into

my nostrils as my heart raced harder. A rustle in the leaves made me freeze.

With wide eyes, I choked down the bile and held my breath, anticipating a feral

groan. The walking dead, according to the survival manual, only reacted when

they saw living flesh or smelled blood, but you weren’t to tempt fate.

Rule 21.2: If you’re in need of help, press your emergency button and

call for backup immediately, especially in an attack with the undead.

Of course, without my watch on, that wasn’t a possibility for me.

I waited, and after hearing nothing else, I continued down to the end

of the trail. Zombies didn’t know to hide or be quiet, but I didn’t want to

bring attention to myself with a flashlight. Barely able to see the path, let

alone a miniscule slip of illegal paper, I knelt down with a wish and a prayer.

Brushing my hands through the grass, hoping spiders and bugs kept far

away from me, I searched. My thigh throbbed in pain from the fall earlier, as I

scoured helplessly for the rock. It had to be here.

Where is it?

Out of the corner of my eye, I spotted the gleam of black in the

moonlight. I reached for it, counting my blessings, when something large

scuttled through the brush behind me. I squeaked, snagged the rock and slip of

paper, and straightened my legs. Holding my breath, I stared to the other side

of the dry creek bed toward an illusive dark shape standing at the base of the

giant stone wall. I cocked my arm back, ready to pelt whatever it was with the

rock. A breeze blew in from the spot, bending back the grasses toward me,

revealing it wasn’t a person, but a hole in the rock wall. Then a flash of

white scooted past on the other side.

A grunt followed.

My heart leapt into my throat and I sprinted up the trail before I

could think. The moan of what had to be a zombie filled my ears. Quelling a

scream, I ran to the field, still staying out of the light. I cleared the fence

and turned, my chest heaving. The nighttime noises took a backseat to the blood

pulsing heavily in my ears. I scanned back and forth, but nothing came out of

the trees. I waited to be sure as guilt snaked through me. The most responsible

thing would be to report a sighting, but that would mean admitting I was

breaking curfew. Maybe I’d just imagined what I’d heard.

Unsure what to do, I ran to the street to find an overhead light. I

unfolded the damp note sticking to my palm.

Scrawled in charcoal, I read, “Don’t meet your future self tomorrow.

Please.”

My Thoughts

I was under the impression that this book dealt solely with zombies and it would just be another zombie apocolypse story. Boy was I wrong! IT WAS SO MUCH MORE!!!

I really enjoyed the storyline and thought it was unique and creative. Ms. Pandos has outdone herself with this book and I really cannot wait to see where this story is headed!

The main character of Abby is considered a good girl. She follows all rules and has never broken a law in her life. But when the mysterious blue eyed boy leaves her a note, she has to find out what it says. So she sneaks off after curfew and goes by the wall to retrieve it. The message has her a little baffled considering the mystery man obviously is from outside the wall. What could he possibly know about her life?

Now no book would be complete without a few swoony boys and this one has a gaggle of them:) We get a sense of whom Abby feels a connection with but there are a couple of others that she had affections for also and it leads me to believe that there may be quite more boy trouble on the horizon.

There were actually some zombies, but the book is not focused on this fact and the story has to do more with the survival of the people and Abby being a major component. My favorite part was the fact that each person upon their eighteenth birthday gets to meet their future self and ask them questions. This is so that they can possibly learn from their future mistakes. Can you imagine a world where this actually happens? One would think that this would make our world a perfect place but, this really causes alot of problems with these characters.

I kinow this is the first book in the series and we were left on a bit of a cliffhanger. I am hoping to have the next book in my hands soon!! Thank you to Brenda for the review copy and allowing me to be on this tour:)

4 stars

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Posted in 2014, Book Tours

Blog Tour: Masked by Janelle Stalder & Divergent Read-A-Long Update Week 3!


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Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000039_00005]Masked by Janelle Stalder

Expected Publication: February 25, 2014

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Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it.

New Berlin, 2040. Rebels prepare to fight against the New World Order, bent on bringing down the world’s greatest tyrant. One girl wanted nothing to do with it, content to keep her head down and make the best of this new world. That is, until she has no choice but to work with the rebels and infiltrate the NWO headquarters. Every moment she spends there puts her in danger, especially when one man, the second in command to the New World leader, continues to make his way into her every thought. She must stay focused and protect not just her mind and body, but also her heart. Will she be able to complete her task without being unmasked? Or will the one man standing in her way ruin it all?

My Thoughts

After finishing the first book in this series, Switch, I knew that this would be another brilliant read from Ms. Stalder! To read my review of Switch, please go HERE!

Let’s first talk about the covers for this series. They are uh-mazing, am I right? This is a cover that just jumps out at you and says

read me photo: Read Me readme-8.png

I love the color of the cover model’s eyes. They are like ocean blue! I wish mine were that color:(

So, enough about my obsession with the cover, now onto the good stuff….

The book starts off with an awesome prologue. We get a glimpse at Bridgette’s POV from the beginning when the New World Order had killed her mother and taken Charlotte. I loved seeing her side and how it was so easily mistaken that Charlotte was dead.

We then jump to exactly the point where we left off. Bridgette is with the New World leaders pretending to be Charlotte. This was scary for me and I cringed with every word and every action crossing my fingers that she wouldn’t get caught. Her attraction for Roman was phenomenal! She was able to pretty much keep her composure around him even if he knew something was different. And oh, is Bridgette different. Bridgette is light-hearted where Charlotte has a tough exterior. Charlotte can be quite the smart ass and Bridgette is kind and caring.

I enjoyed getting Roman’s POV and actually fell quite head over heels for him in this book! The guilt that he carries for bringing Charlotte into this world is enormous. We also get more to his story and background and find out how he ended up as a New World Leader in the first place. His soft side shows through and I guarentee that if you did not like him before, you will in this installment! Not to mention the fact that his emotions are all jumbled up inside because he starts to feel things for Dinah that he had never before. He had only looked at her like a sister and now his feelings are changing and he just can’t put his finger on it.

We also get to see more of Pete and Charlotte. Their love for each other is endless and I find it amusing that Pete is always trying to protect Charlotte when she really could be the one protecting him!

There is an onslaught of new characters that is more ladies! Woot Woot! And boy are they something! We get small glimpses of each of the new characters and from what I have seen already, they are awesome and the kind of woman that I could see myself hanging with and having a few! I do feel that there will be more “hook ups” coming in the next book and I am super stoked to see where all these new characters lead.

In conclusion, if you enjoyed the first book in the series, (how could you not?) then this is a must read and you need to gobble it up upon it’s release. The ending, of course, leaves us on quite the cliffhanger, so you will go through agony while waiting for the next book. But, it’s so worth it!

Excerpt

Chapter One

5 years later…

New Berlin, 2040

Bridgette pressed her back against the door, her breath quick, heart pounding. Smooth, Bridge. Real smooth, she thought. Footsteps stopped just outside the door. She could hear his breathing through the wood. Bridgette bit her lip beneath the mask she now wore, waiting for what would happen next.

“Lottey?” he called out. There was a small thump from the other side, and when he spoke again his voice sounded closer and slightly muffled, like he was resting his forehead against the door. “Look, I know you’re mad at me, and you have every right to be,” he started.

Charlotte was mad at him? A sliver of hope spread through her chest. If her sister was mad at him, it would make Bridgette’s job a heck of a lot easier. Roman Adamson was not only the second in command of the New World order, but he also happened to be the sexiest man Bridgette had ever seen. It made coherent thought difficult around him, and right now she needed all her wits on full alert. If she was going to pull off this disguise of her younger sister, Charlotte, who she had discovered was still alive, she couldn’t afford to make any mistakes. Especially around the man standing outside her room. Well, Charlotte’s room, but for now it was hers.

What I have gotten myself into? She asked herself for the millionth time since she’d agreed to do this. If it hadn’t been for the fact that her evil, sadistic father was holding her sister captive, there was no way Bridgette would have been doing anything to help the rebels. She’d long ago decided to make the best out of the new life she’d been forced to live, and that meant no involvement with the group of men set on destroying the new government. Considering her father was their leader, she definitely hadn’t wanted any part in this. But once again life had thrown her a curveball in the form of her sister, and she was forced to play along. At least until she planted the bomb.

Her back felt sticky with sweat beneath the fabric of the uniform she wore. All she wanted to do was strip out of it, pull off the mask her sister had been wearing for the last five years – how Charlotte had stood it, she had no idea – and take off the boots that were a size too small and pinching the crap out of her toes. Instead she had to deal with Roman, who had caught her in the hall. And of course, Bridgette had done the first thing that had come to mind, which happened to be to turn and run like an idiot, locking herself inside this room.

Again, real smooth, Bridge. Shut up, she told herself. What else could she have done? Stood there and had a conversation with him? Sure, eventually she’d have no choice. She just wasn’t expecting to have to do it within her first ten minutes of being in the headquarters.

“I know you’ll probably never forgive me,” Roman was saying. Forgive him for what? She wondered. What had he done to her sister? Anger simmered inside her. No one hurt her sister. “Just, please know that I truly am sorry if I’ve messed things up for you. It’s the last thing I would ever want.”

Her entire body stilled at the remorse she heard in his voice. Did Roman have feelings for Charlotte? Why did that make her feel sick just thinking about it? No, there was no way. Charlotte was in love with Bridgette’s best friend, Pete McKay. She hadn’t said as much, but you’d have to be blind not to see it when they looked at each other. She had no doubt Pete was working to find Charlotte even now. At least, she hoped he was. The longer Charlotte stayed with their dad, the greater the chance she’d get hurt. Her sister did not know how to shut her mouth, and their father had zero patience.

Bridgette shuddered at the thought of how her sister had looked the last time she had seen her – beaten and bloody, their father standing to the side watching it all. She needed to accomplish what she was here to do – fast. Then she needed to get back to her sister and away from all of this.

“Look, I know you don’t want to see me right now,” Roman said, jarring her back to the situation at hand, “but Ludwig’s been looking for us both. I told him you weren’t feeling well, but I can’t put him off any longer. I need you to come with me to his office.”

Crap. Crap, crap, crap. Roman was bad enough, but Ludwig? That was just a disaster waiting to happen. Bridgette was terrified of the New World leader, who was responsible for destroying more than half the world’s population with his bombs and war. What if he saw through her right away? Charlotte had been in their camp for five years. Long enough for them to recognize all her little quirks and know if things seemed “off”. Bridgette needed to bring her A-game, and she wasn’t quite sure if she even had one.

Taking a deep breath, she stepped back from the door, wincing at the pain in her feet. The first thing she was going to do tomorrow was demand new boots. She didn’t care if it looked odd that her feet had gone up a size overnight, there was no way she was walking around in these boots for the next couple of weeks. She was there to plant a bomb when the arms dealers came to visit, which meant she’d have to play Charlotte for quite a while yet. Her feet were not going to survive.

She opened the door slowly, readying herself for the next step in this ridiculous plot. Her plan had been to practice her voice and mannerisms tonight, so she was ready tomorrow, but it looked like there wouldn’t be time for that. Thankfully Bridgette had a good ear for tone. It probably had a lot to do with her vocal training. She knew how Charlotte spoke. It was softer, smoother than her own voice. Bridgette always spoke a little huskier than her younger sister, but she had faith in herself that she’d be able to pull this off.

As soon as her eyes met Roman’s, all the breath left her. All thoughts of courage disappeared under his stare. He was just so handsome. His eyes were a deep blue, his skin a flawless bronze, dark hair flowed to his shoulders. Shoulders that were massive and intimidating, and yet she wanted to be snuggled into them with those thick arms wrapped around her.

Snap out of it! She scolded herself. Her eyes had been making their own journey down the front of him. She shot them back up to look at his face, thankful for the first time that she wore a mask to hide the flush on her cheeks. He was watching her too, closely enough to cause the flush to spread down the rest of her body.

He thinks you’re Charlotte, she reminded herself. Was his look one of lust, or concern for whatever he’d done to her? She couldn’t tell. Bridgette motioned with her head for him to lead the way, not trusting her voice just yet. The silent treatment – the most effective weapon of women to be used against men when they were pissed. She was going to use it to her full advantage.

He sighed loudly, his shoulders drooping a bit. Then he spun around and started down the hall. Bridgette hurried to keep up. She had no idea where Ludwig’s office was in this building, so she couldn’t afford to get left behind. They walked in silence, with her just a bit behind him. She tried her best, but her eyes kept looking to him, watching the way his body moved as he walked. Every step was controlled, purposeful. Every shift in his muscles screamed of strength and power. She’d never met a man quite like him. He demanded respect and attention. Well, he certainly had hers, and that wasn’t good.

Finally they came to a set of double doors. Roman opened them, standing back to let her enter first. She kept her gaze away from his as she walked by. The heat off his body had her swaying a bit, but she forced herself to keep going.

The room was dark, and clearly a man’s domain. There was nothing feminine about the deep, burgundy walls, leather chairs, and large, wooden desk. Standing in front of floor-to-ceiling windows was her biggest obstacle yet, Ludwig Tennebris. Crap, crap, crap. She stopped just inside, watching him as the prey watches a predator. Roman was scary, but Ludwig, he was terrifying. He didn’t give off the same sort of strength that Roman did. His was more an aura of unpredictability; a man who could and would do anything and everything at any moment. She didn’t like men like him. She liked to know what to expect, and she doubted that would ever be the case with the New World leader.

His eyes swung to hers, his blonde hair messy, probably from running his hands through it. She could tell he was agitated, which didn’t bode well for her.

“Finally,” he said, stepping closer to her. The desk remained between them, a fact she was thankful for. “How are you feeling, Di?”

Bridgette paused for a second. She had forgotten that most of the New World soldiers thought Charlotte’s name was Dinah. It made her wonder why Roman called her Lottey. It also

shocked her that Ludwig had asked how she was. If she was being honest, she wasn’t expecting that. From the look of him, she had thought he was going to start yelling, not look genuinely concerned for her.

“Better,” she answered.

He nodded, taking a seat behind his desk. “Good,” he said. “A lot has happened, or hasn’t happened would be more accurate,” he continued. Rubbing a hand down his face, he leaned back in his chair, his mouth set in a thin line. “Those rebels you’ve been watching, did they ever mention anything about a traitor in their ranks?”

Bridgette shook her head. “Not that I heard,” she said, changing her voice.

“Well someone tipped them off tonight. When my men got to that church, the whole place had been cleared out.”

Charlotte must have warned them, Bridgette thought. Ludwig didn’t seem to suspect her at all. How much did he trust her sister? Roman stepped forward so he was no longer in her peripheral vision.

“Could they have someone on the inside here?” Ludwig said.

Her heart rate kicked into high gear.

“I highly doubt it,” Roman said immediately. “Our men are loyal. Perhaps it was your inside man. Could he be playing both sides?”

Bridgette breathed a sigh of relief. Did Roman know about her sister’s relationship with McKay? His denial had come quickly; making her wonder if he was protecting Charlotte from Ludwig’s suspicion.

Ludwig rubbed his chin thoughtfully. “We’ll have to interrogate him and see, I suppose.” His head turned to her. “Have you had any contact from the rebels you’ve been watching?”

She shook her head. “They’re gone as well,” she said. At least she hoped they were. If McKay and the gang were smart, they would be far away from New Berlin. She had a pretty good intuition that Ludwig and his men were going to tear the eastern ghetto apart looking for them.

His lips pressed together. “Did you ever break through their walls?”

She shook her head again.

He let out a long breath. “I’m disappointed, but at least that means you can stop going out. I didn’t like you being in the lower’s section. Stay around headquarters until we figure out where they are. I’m worried they might have figured out who you were, and realized it was only a matter of time before I found them.”

They definitely knew who Charlotte was now, she thought wryly.

“We need to find these rats and get rid of them once and for all,” Ludwig continued. “I can’t have them running around out there causing trouble when our dealers are coming to town. We need this problem taken care of.” His eyes focused on Roman.

His second in command nodded in understanding. “We’ll find them,” Roman said.

“You’d better.” Ludwig’s eyes went back to Bridgette, dropping down the front of her body and up again. A small smile played on his lips as amusement danced in his eyes. “Have you gained weight, Di?”

Her whole body stiffened. This was exactly what she’d been afraid of. When people have been around each other for long periods of time, they would be more likely to notice slight changes. What the hell was she supposed to say now?

“You did not just say that,” Roman said. Bridgette turned to look at him. Bad idea. Looking at him just made maintaining her charade harder. She still remembered the last time they were together when she was still working at the Red Lounge. “Do I make you nervous, Bridgette?” he had asked. The answer was, then and now, a resounding yes. Having to hide that fact from him was probably going to be the hardest thing about this entire mission.

“What?” Ludwig said with a laugh. “I’m not saying it’s a bad thing. She’s just looking more – curvy. It must be that lower section diet. Pub food looks good on you.” He gave her a playful wink. She was being teased by Ludwig-friggin-Tennebris. This was surreal.

“Never talk about a lady’s weight,” Roman said. Bridgette glanced at him and saw that he was smiling too.

Time to play this right, she thought. From now on she was going to live by the code – W.W.C.D. What Would Charlotte Do. Bridgette flipped them both off, stopping herself from cringing at the rude gesture, and turned to leave, calling over her shoulder, “I’m going to bed,” and quickly walked out of the room. Their laughter followed her out.

About The Author

Janelle Stalder was born and raised in Brampton, Ontario. At an early age she developed a love for literature. Her debut novel, Eden, was the first book in a series of 312112_109441542597037_388696536_nfour, released in September of 2011. The second book, Eden-West, was released in July of 2012, and the third book, Eden-South was released in March of 2013. The fourth book of the Eden Series, Eden-East, will be release at the end of 2013. She is a strong supporter of other independent authors, and loves to interact with her readers. When she’s not writing, Janelle is at home with her husband, two children, Aiden and Elora, and her two furry children, Alice and Lily. She now resides in the small town in Ontario in her old, possibly haunted, century home.

5-stars

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Welcome to week 3, chapters 21-30!

Remember to leave a comment below with your take on this week’s questions and be sure to enter the giveaway!

Jumping right into it….

So, this week was full of all the action! How bad are we hating Peter now? And Al! WTH was that all about? Your thoughts?

I was really distraught when I read the part when Tris gets attacked. I cried, I know, I know, what a baby I am. When I realized it was Al though, my heart sank. I really did like Al and I thought that he kind of had a crush on Tris. That musn’t have been enough for him to not want to get rid of her though. And of course, this just makes me hate Peter even more. Maybe he will get killed of next week? Nah, wishful thinking:)

Were you surprised about Four’s fearscape?

I guess in the beginning I was surprised that he only had four, and some of them were a little strange. The scariest one was of his mother and him having to kill her. That is just freaky for anyone.

What did you think about Tris’s?

I honestly didn’t expect her to have so many. I figured that she would have like 2 to just one up Four. I was surprised about her last one  though. I wasn’t sure why her brother was included into the mix. She seemed to really get along with him?

Short one this week, I am too excited for the ending!

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h. Lee

Posted in 2014, Book Tours, Giveaways!, January

Blog Tour: Savor by Kate Evangelista


SAVOR_Large-Banner

17159305Savor (Vicious Feast) by Kate Evangelista

Published 2013 by Crescent Moon Press

Mature and explicit content. Not recommended for readers below 18-years-old. Yup, you’ve got to be that old to read my story. Consider yourself warned.

I’m Dakota Collins, a tough talking, eye patch wearing, workaholic photography student. Why am I important? Well, maybe because I get to spend an entire month with Vicious, only the sickest indie rock band out there.

You see, I needed a subject for my Spring Showcase introspective in order to graduate. During a chance encounter at a club I’d been sent to cover for the Daily Gossip, our ironically named college paper, the features writer I usually teamed up with introduced me to the band—by accident, I might add. It involved a run in with a scary, bald bodyguard. Anyway, long story short, I signed a contract to take pictures of Vicious.

I should have known their handsome yet way too serious for his own good bassist, Luka Visraya, wouldn’t be able to keep his hands to himself. He’s gorgeous and all, but the way he smiles spelled trouble with a capital L. I’m in for a long month with him around.

Crazy shit happens and then some. So, if you want the skinny on Vicious and the events revolving around my stay at Lunar Manor, read my story.

Again, refer to the warning above.

My Thoughts

So every once in a while you sign up for a blog tour for a book that you really have never heard of, but decide you might enjoy. Then, the amazing happens and when you start to read that said book, you are blown away with emotions and find yourself staying up until the wee hours of morning devouring that book until you are left in awe and wishing you had the sequel in your hands like right this minute! So you can imagine what this book has done for my sleeping pattern!

The basics on the storyline are that young Dakota needs a subject for her final college project. She is sent to a local club to do a photo shoot for her school’s newspaper and finds herself drooling over the band’s bassist, Luka. But then the interesting happens, she finds herself infatuated with not only the bassist but the whole band. She has figured out whom she would like her subjects to be and sets out to make it happen. Little did she know all the obstacles she would have to cross while trying to actually get the photos.

I fully enjoyed every minute of this book. The author was able to pique my interest from just the first few paragraphs and held my suspicion through to the very end. The cast is full of some very intriguing characters and I adored Dakota.

Dakota pretty much lives for her photography. She has a few demons in her closet which would explain the eye patch but we do not get down to the whole truth about where or why. I am assuming that she was attacked and left for dead but like I said, that is my assumption. She is sassy and a straight shooter. She takes no crap and will not take any crap even if she literally is drooling over a guy. Sometimes, her heart takes over but her brain snaps her right back into place.

Luka is an odd creature. He can be moody, playful and even sometimes sweet. But, he can also be dramatic. The relationship between him and Dakota is a frustrating one that by the end of the book, I was screaming at the words on the pages. I enjoyed the tender moments that he shared with Dakota but found myself so frustrated by the end. Not sure if I like him anymore???

The rest of the band was interesting as well but each band member had their own style and their own little quirks.

So now I am left with quite the frustrating small cliffhanger and trying not to track down Ms. Evangelista’s home so that I can stalk/fan girl while waiting out the next book. KIDDING!!! Honestly, you all need to go purchase and let me know what you think! It is a paranormal read but this first book does not get into the whats or whys too much. I will just have to hope/pray that the next book is coming soon!

5-stars

Excerpt

“Dakota Collins!”

I lowered my camera. The use of my full name never came with good consequences. I blinked my vision back at her even if I wanted to spend the rest of the night taking his picture. Sweat rose over my upper lip. I may just have found my subject for the Spring Showcase.

The only problem?

I had to find a way to convince him to be in my project. Something told me this wouldn’t be easy. By the way my heart beat in my ears, drowning out the music and Silvia having a fit in front of me, I wanted it too much. I wanted him too much.

“This the guy you were saying?” I showed Silvia the picture I’d taken. This seemed to pacify her because she sidled closer, mesmerized like a moth to a flame.

“Luka Visraya,” she said with a moan like she’d just tasted the most luscious chocolate before taking a long gulp of her cocktail. The name didn’t register. Silvia must have noticed my blank expression because she continued. “He’s the bassist for Vicious.”

Still no pings of recognition in my head.

She slapped her thigh. “Where have you been? It’s weird that you haven’t heard of them. Their songs are on the radio like every second.”

Of course I hadn’t heard of them. I liked listening to country and I hardly kept up with current events.

“Name one?” Okay, I had a name. Luka. Exotic. A bassist. Part of a band I should know about. So he’s famous. I slowly felt my chances of asking him to be my subject slip from my grasp. If he was someone famous, fat chance he’d say yes to a graduating

photography student like me. I just about deflated when Silvia mentioned one of their songs. “Oh, I know that one!” By accident. It played in the radio of the cab I rode in to Sacrifice. I stared at the picture of him then lifted my gaze to where he sat. “He’s gone.”

“What?” Silvia whipped around in time to come face to face with a wall of man. “Whoa!” She pushed at him. “Watch it, buddy!”

“Give me the camera,” he said in a threatening tone.

Big. Beefy. Bald. The three Bs that made up the quintessential bodyguard.

I clutched my DSLR closer to my chest and looked up at him with my good eye. “And why would I do that?” The patch didn’t seem to intimidate him because he just reached out. So much for my Bond villain aspirations. I moved away from his grubby hand. No one touched my camera but me.

Despite her size, Silvia came between me and the mountain. “We’re here to cover Sacrifice for our college paper. You don’t have the right to take away my colleague’s camera.”

Yeah! You give it to him, Silvy.

Not that I couldn’t take care of myself. But if Silvia wanted to play hero, I wouldn’t stand in her way.

“What seems to be the problem here?” a soft, authoritative voice chimed in.

The bodyguard moved aside to reveal the Gothic Lolita. She stood at just about the same height as Silvia, but she possessed an older aura even if she seemed to be our age.

“She’s been taking pictures,” Baldy said.

Lolita’s kohl eyes landed on me then shifted to my camera.

“As I was saying to the big guy,” Silvia explained. “My colleague and I are

covering the opening of Sacrifice.”

“For what paper?” Lolita asked without taking her eyes off me. I clutched my camera like an extra appendage. In some ways it was. After losing half my sight, I relied on my camera like an extra eye, seeing the world through its lens. I would rather die than lose it.

“The Daily Gossip,” I said before Silvia could answer just to relieve some of the awkward tension building in me under her gaze. “We study at Wexler U.”

She tilted her head, crossing her arms.

“Okay,” I quickly stammered out. “I get that the name of our paper sounds like a tabloid, but the Daily Gossip is a cool campus paper.” The last part maybe only I believed since Silvia raised her eyebrow at me, but Lolita and the mountain didn’t have to know that.

No one spoke after that. Even in a noisy club, the silence in our group rang in my ears. Not waiting for the situation to get any more awkward, I plowed forward with my own selfish intensions.

“You know Luka.” I said it more as a statement, but it came out like a question.

Lolita nodded.

“I’m Dakota Collins and I’m graduating this spring. I was wondering if Luka would be interested in—”

“What would I be interested in?” a smooth voice joined our group.

The walls of my throat closed, chocking the rest of what I had to say. All eyes turned to Luka. Silvia dropped her empty glass. It bounced off the bodyguard’s shoe and landed in a clatter but didn’t break. Even with my height, I still had to look up at him.

“What are you doing here?” Lolita admonished. “You should be backstage.”

One side of his lips came up. God. Without the scowl, his face lit up. I had to stop the urge to lift my camera and start snapping away. And his eyes were piercing blue. The kind that stretched over my mother’s farm in the summer. Damn.

Seeing him up close, I knew I’d give any one of my kidneys for a chance to take his picture in a formal shoot.

“We have five minutes. Chill, Yana.” He tugged at one of her pigtails.

“Luka,” Silvia managed. “I’m a big fan. Will you sign my chest?”

Bypassing my petite colleague, Luka’s intensely blue gaze studied me. He reached out and I flinched back. His fingers almost grazed my patch. What the hell was the matter with him? Trying to touch my eye patch was tantamount to poking a bandage over a wound and asking the person if it hurts.

Gothic Lolita—Yana—yanked Luka’s arm down. “I’m so sorry!” Her whole aura changed. She went from all business to panicky. “My brother sometimes forgets his manners. He didn’t mean anything about touching your…” She bit her lower lip, maybe trying to keep herself from saying the wrong thing.

That little faux pas cleared my head of the Luka haze and spurred me into action. “Luka, will you let me take your picture for my final project?” I didn’t know where my courage came from, but I knew if I didn’t take this chance, I’d regret it. I had to have him as my subject.

Still not removing his gaze from my face, like my patch transfixed him, he tilted his head to one side very much like his sister did earlier.

“Luka, don’t!” Yana said, but from the consideration on Luka’s face, she was too late.

“You’re a photographer?”

“Yes.” I nodded, in case the word wasn’t enough.

“And you’d like me to be the subject of your project?”

God yes! This time, I could only nod. I didn’t want him to see how eager I was. And I couldn’t live with myself if I embarrassed myself further.

I waited with baited breath.

It seemed everyone in our group waited with baited breath for what the golden god had to say about my brazen request. I soon realized when Luka spoke, everyone listened. The way he pronounced every word precisely yet still spoke so smoothly, like butter on warm toast, captured everyone’s attention. To say he captivated us was an understatement. Something in me certainly wanted to hear him keep speaking. He could read from an accounting textbook in that voice and no one would get bored.

“I need to know that you’re good,” he finally said.

Something about his words seemed to hold a different meaning. I must have missed the alcohol in the soda Silvia had given me. Maybe I was drunk and this was all a blackout dream.

“What are you saying?” Yana faced Luka all the way now, her petite form all rigid.

He unleashed a full on megawatt smile my way. I almost had to cover my eye from it. At my side, Silvia gasped. Her long nails dug into my arm. Like staring at the sun, I couldn’t take my gaze away from him no matter how bad it was for me.

“We’re about to perform. I want you to take several pictures then send them to Yana. If she approves, we’ll see about your request.”

Then, like smoke, he disappeared into the crowd.

About the Author

When Kate Evangelista was told she had a knack for writing stories, she did the next best thing: entered medical school. After realizing she wasn’t going to be the next kateDoogie Howser, M.D., Kate wandered into the Literature department of her university and never looked back. Today, she is in possession of a piece of paper that says to the world she owns a Literature degree. To make matters worse, she took Master’s courses in creative writing. In the end, she realized to be a writer, none of what she had mattered. What really mattered? Writing. Plain and simple, honest to God, sitting in front of her computer, writing. Today she lives in the Philippines and writes full time.

Giveaway

5 E-Copies of Taste by Kate Evangelista

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h. Lee

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Posted in 2014, Book Tours, January

Blog Tour: Wunder by AR Von


wunderWunder by AR VON

Published October 1, 2013 by Dream Z Dragon Publishing

174 Pages

goodreads

Wunder isn’t your average girl in fact—she isn’t even an average human. In a world ravaged by Zombies, she was born amidst the chaos. She may have a normal life now…well as normal as a freak of nature could have. Part zombie while her job is to hunt bloodthirsty creatures to protect the innocent. It’s the dreams that haunt her and they aren’t nightmares. Wunder dreams of a man, a man made just for her. Is he real, can he be the one she‘s yearned for?
Wunder’s life has been far from perfect so far, secretly being part Zombie in a world devastated by the plague of the walking dead. Still, she knew there was something special awaiting her, someone out there who could change everything and she did find him. Pete is everything she dreamed of and more as she discovers passion and fulfillment for the first time in her life.
Pete has his own secrets to tell. His world is a lonely one as he wrestles with the reality of being part zombie. His hatred for the creatures that killed his parents drives him to patrol the streets and wipe them all out. His life would be stark, but for the dreams he’s been having; of a woman, so sensuous, so sexy. These alluring visions have become erotic and consuming. He feels as if he made her up to keep from going crazy. Is this life of hunting the walking dead, all there is? Or is she out there waiting—just for him?
Now—with the reunion; Wunder’s life turns into a journey of discoveries. Secrets from the past come full circle and her world is changed forever. In the coming chaos, can she keep her new found happiness and the man of her dreams?

(18+ only this edition contains the Wunder Prequel though book 2)

My Thoughts:

This book is all about the main character of Wunder . She is a half zombie. She keeps having these erotic dreams and decides for her birthday to actually act on them.

This brings me to Pete. He is having the same dreams as Wunder. They both think that they are just making up the other person in their head.

Although, I am normally a sucker for zombie stories, this one was just okay for me.

I felt disconnected with the characters. Maybe due to the fact that this is a short book comprised of a prequel through book 2 of only about 174 pages? There wasn’t enough time for me to “get to know” the cast on a deeper level than just sexual desires.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not a prude in any way and love a little romance in my books, but, I also like a solid story to go along with it and this one just fell a little flat for me.

There are a ton of Goodreads reviews for this book of four and five stars. Many have really enjoyed it and I encourage you to go check out those reviews as well.

This was only the first part of many to the story of these characters. Maybe I will continue and find that I enjoy the story with more “meat”? I didn’t want to give away too much of the story, hence the short review.

Thanks to Dark Scream Book Tours for the review copy for this tour.

3 stars

h. Lee

Posted in 2013, Book Tours, January

Blog Tour: Guardians Book 1: The Girl


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17346991Guardians Book 1: The Girl by Lola St.Vil

Published 2012

312 Pages

goodreads

amazon buttonThe prophecy says I will fall in love with team leader and Angel, Marcus Cane. The prophecy also says that our love will cause his mission to fail and end the world.

Whatever.

This human is not worried. Why?
Because I do not intend to fall in love with Marcus.

The truth is I hate him. I hate his warm brown eyes with flecks of gold, his chiseled face and broad shoulders.
I hate how over protective he is just because a few thousand demons are after me.

In fact, I couldn’t care less about Marcus or his perfect telekinetic girlfriend.
And when I see him holding her, I don’t die a little inside…

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My Thoughts

“Marcus, this is Emerson Baxter. She’s gonna help us save the world.” I looked at her quickly, then went back to the Muse. She was too short. Her hair was a tangled mess. Her T-shirt had a cartoon pig on it and was ugly and ill-fitted. I wanted her. I wanted to touch her.

I haven’t been joining many book tours lately due to trying to keep up with the review copies that I have been receiving but, when I read the synopsis for this little book, I knew that I had to jump right on! I was not dissappointed!

The Storyline

Basically you have this group of teen angels that are left with the task of finding the person that holds the key to saving the world. The angels are made up of teens that had died and were chosen to represent the guardians. They each possess a power that has to do with the way that they had died. One can blink from one place to another, someone else can sing to kill and so on.

This is where the main character of Emerson comes in. She holds the key to saving the world and the guardians task is to basically grill her to find out what that key might be. This makes for an interesting story because Em has some skeletons in her closet that she is not so quick to share with the group.

Emerson

I truly loved the storyline and Emerson was an interesting character. There were times that I loved her when she would stand up for herself or one of her friends and then there were times that I seriously wanted to slap the idiot right out of her! She tended to get a bit on the whiny side and her infactuation with one of the main characters made her brain “blink out”.

The love

The love story is kind of heart breaking! The two want to be together but there are just too many obstacles in the way. Then the writer threw in a litlle love triangle which really only lasted maybe for 2 chapters. In the end, it was pretty sad! If you are not a fan of love triangles, no need to worry! Like I said, it was very short and sweet.

In Conclusion

I really enjoyed this read and can’t wait to read the next book! With the ending like this one, you may want to have the next book ready to go! You are left on a little of a cliffhanger and wanting to really know what happens next!!!

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4-stars

The Author

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Lola was seven when she first came to this country from Port-au-Prince, Haiti. She attended Columbia College in Chicago, where her main focus was creative writing. In addition to plays, she also writes screenplays and short stories.

She has been commissioned to write for ABC, CBS and Princeton University. She won the NAACP award for her play “The Bones of Lesser Men”. In addition to being nominated for LA Weekly awards. Her work has also received positive reviews from The LA Times, Variety and LA Weekly. This is her first novel.

Website ~Goodreads ~Facebook

Where to find the book!

Guess what my lovely little readers! It’s your lucky day because this book is free on Amazon & Barnes and Noble!

Just click on your choice below to download!

Free on Amazon         Free on B&N 

Follow The Tour

January 20th-
The Girl Bookaholic
Shooting Stars Reviews
The Bookshelf

January 21st-
Never Judge a Book By It’s Movie
Deal Sharing Aunt
Wicca Witch 4 Book Blog
Night Owl Reads

January 22nd- 
Here is Some of What I Read
Works Of Fiction
Fi’s Fiery Reads

January 23rd-
Verna Loves Books
Nightly Reading
Books and Bindings
What’s Beyond Forks
Book Cracker Caroline

January 24th-
Indy Book Fairy
Dalene’s Book Reviews
Discover Words
Le’ Book Squirrel
Rose’s Book Blog
From The Bootheel Cotton Patch

Thanks to Mark My Words Tours for allowing me to be a part of this tour!!!

h. Lee