Book Review: Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

Book Cover
Book Cover


Laurie Halse Anderson

Published October 1999 by Square Fish

YA Fiction


Barnes and Noble



Melinda is a friendless outcast at Merryweather High. She busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops, and now nobody will talk to her, let alone listen to her. As time passes, she becomes increasingly isolated and practically stops talking altogether. It is through her work on an art project that she is finally able to face what really happened at that terrible party: she was raped by an upperclassman, a guy who still attends Merryweather and who is still a threat to her. It will take another violent encounter with him to make Melinda fight back. This time she refuses to be silent.

My Thoughts

Speak was not an easy novel for me to get through. Laurie Halse Anderson’s language was viscerally powerful and her metaphors gave me pause countless times. The main character, Melinda Sordino, is a tragically sympathetic character. My heart almost-literally bled for her throughout the whole book. Anderson did a great job of tackling such a triggering subject matter as rape in a piercingly artistic fashion. I was literally seeing the world through Melinda’s eyes, and her story was emotionally tasking to read. I became emotionally invested in her character, and by the time I got to the end, I wept. I wept because Anderson had taken me on an emotional roller coaster ride with Melinda and I didn’t know how to feel when it ended.’

The ostracized Melinda let me in to her inner thoughts with an unceasingly witty internal commentary. She grappled with not speaking, something I could definitely relate with. She closed herself off from the world. Yet, she also grappled with her art project throughout the novel, and by the end, the reader could definitely feel fulfilled that Melinda had found her voice: both literally and artistically.

If there was one thing I took away from this book, it was this: If we don’t express ourselves, we kill ourselves little by little, slowly by slowly, everyday.

Favorite Quotes:

If people don’t express themselves, they die one piece at a time. – Melinda

I just want to sleep. A coma would be nice. Or amnesia. Anything, just to get rid of this, these thoughts, whispers in my mind. Did he rape my head, too? – Melinda

He says a million things without saying a word. I have never heard a more eloquent silence. – Melinda

It wasn’t my fault. He hurt me. It wasn’t my fault. And I’m not going to let it kill me. I can grow. – Melinda

download5 starsimagesKele


Blog Tour: Savor by Kate Evangelista


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!



“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.


5 E-Copies of Taste by Kate Evangelista

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h. Lee


Blog Tour: Wunder by AR Von

wunderWunder by AR VON

Published October 1, 2013 by Dream Z Dragon Publishing

174 Pages


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

Promo Post: RecruitZ by Karice Bolton

18588895RecruitZ by Karice Bolton

amazon button

Scientists are the new rock stars. The infection has been contained for nearly three months, and the world is celebrating. But humans are still dying. Rebekah Taylor has seen it firsthand. Her husband was killed right in front of her by the very creatures that humans were told they no longer had to fear.

Rebekah is determined to find out who is responsible for the death of her husband and the obvious cover-up. Fueled with revenge, she begins to find answers that lead to one frightening conclusion. The apocalypse might be over, but the battles are just beginning.

Flash sale at Amazon during the event…only 0.99!


I sat in the passenger seat horrified, but I didn’t dare drag my gaze away. The world had been told zombies no longer threatened human existence. Yet I was staring at an onslaught of them taking slow, deliberate steps toward our vehicle. We had barely pulled into our driveway when the horde descended out of nowhere.

I managed to slide my fingers along the door to the electric lock. I didn’t know why I thought that would save us. The undead had never let a lock deter them before. I looked around our house and it looked untouched. These creatures were only in our yard, coming for us at a most vulnerable time.

Gavin attempted to take the car out of auto-drive, pressing the buttons frantically and commanding it with voice controls. The car only responded with words. We didn’t control it. The car controlled us.

“Pedestrians within minimum safe distance,” the car said, acknowledging Gavin’s attempts to drive us out of danger.

No shit! We want to run the pedestrians over.

Tiny beads of sweat began forming at my hairline as I watched Gavin repeatedly engage and disengage various controls. Nothing would let us override the car’s safety features.

Gavin’s foot pressed on the accelerator trying to override the computer system, but the car still refused to budge. His foot slid off the pedal, and he quickly replaced it.

Damn these self-driving cars!

The engine red-lined with each attempt from Gavin’s override, but the brain of the car overruled Gavin’s actions with every rev of the motor. Gavin kept shaking his head as his finger slid up and down the dashboard. He glanced at me, his green eyes connecting with mine. I didn’t want to believe what I saw behind them so I turned to look out the window.

I gripped the console as I watched the twitches and spasms of the zombies’ movements closing in on us. They were everywhere…the grass, the sidewalk, the driveway. There was no mistaking the rotting, grey flesh that exposed the muscle

and bone of the undead. They were something I’d run from countless times, but this time we had nowhere to run. The undead had us trapped. They would rip us to shreds in an instant.

“I think some of ‘em are new,” I said, turning my attention back to Gavin.

There were some clean-looking zombies staggering toward us, their flesh mostly intact. That made no sense. The outbreak had been contained for months. There should be no freshly infected roaming around. Everyone had been vaccinated. The only stragglers evading capture had been around awhile, so their bodies were beat up badly by the time they were caught. Not these.

“Let’s hope not,” he murmured, not bothering to look out the window to confirm nor deny my suspicions.

“We can’t run. They’d totally get us before we got away,” I said, hoping he’d correct me, tell me that we had a chance.

He didn’t.

He slammed his fist into the steering wheel and looked over at me. When the outbreak happened, we never looked back. We were always on the move, running from the disease that took our families and friends. That was the key to survival. Never stay in one place. Always stay on the move. Now we had nowhere to move. I glanced over at Gavin and saw the fear in his eyes. Even with everything we’d encountered, his eyes had never held this amount of terror.

“Babe, whatever happens…”

“Knock it off,” I said.

“We have nothing to fight them with, and a horde this size needs a distraction.”

“Don’t you dare,” I hissed, shaking my head. The fear was pulsing through me at an unstoppable rate. “We didn’t live through the outbreak to die now.”

About The Author

Karice lives in Washington with her wonderful husband, who also happens to be her high school sweetheart and their two cute English bulldogs! She enjoys reading, 5240334baking, and trying to be crafty on her off-hours. She’s also a coffee, tea, and snow addict. If she could live somewhere that had the white stuff year-round, she probably would. She also loves chatting with her readers on Facebook!

Her books include:

The Witch Avenue Series (Lonely Souls, Altered Souls, Released Souls, and Shattered Souls)

Beyond Love Series (Beyond Control, Beyond Doubt, Beyond Reason)

Watchers Trilogy (Taken, Awakening, Legions, Cataclysm)

Afterworld Series (RecruitZ)

The Camp

 Find her on:







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h. Lee

Go check out my video review of The Camp by Karice Bolton:



Throwback Thursday!

Throwback Thursday505304The Poky Little Puppy by Janette Sebring LowreyGustaf Tenggren (Illustrator)

First published in 1942 by Golden Books

24 pages

One of the original 12 Little Golden Books, The Poky Little Puppy has sold nearly 15 million copies since 1942, making it one of the most popular children’s books of all time. Now this curious little puppy is ready to win the hearts and minds of a new generation of kids.

I absolutely adored this book as a child, not even sure why? But, it does have very cute illustrations. It is basically about a puppy and his family of siblings/mother. “Poky” puppy is always lagging behind and finding lots of mischief while his siblings are much faster than him, although, I do not believe that they learn the valuable lessons that “Poky” does:)

I read a lot of the reviews on Goodreads before writing this post and I was appalled at the low star ratings for this book. Come on people! This book was published in 1942! Of course back then, we didn’t know that chocolate could kill a dog! Many have purchased and read this book to their little ones over the years and all is well!

puppies photo: Puppies golden-retriever-puppies.jpg

All in all, this book is adorable and definitely worth checking out!!!!

Let me know if it was one of your favorites too!!!

h. Lee

Blog Tour: Guardians Book 1: The Girl


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

Published 2012

312 Pages


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.


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…


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.


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!!!



The Author


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


Review: The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd

themadmansdaughterThe Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd

Published on January 29, 2013 by Balzer & Bray

420 Pages

Source: Purchased


2bdf5-amIn the darkest places, even love is deadly.

Sixteen-year-old Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself in London—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father’s gruesome experiments. But when she learns he is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations are true.

Accompanied by her father’s handsome young assistant, Montgomery, and an enigmatic castaway, Edward—both of whom she is deeply drawn to—Juliet travels to the island, only to discover the depths of her father’s madness: He has experimented on animals so that they resemble, speak, and behave as humans. And worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island’s inhabitants. Torn between horror and scientific curiosity, Juliet knows she must end her father’s dangerous experiments and escape her jungle prison before it’s too late. Yet as the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father’s genius—and madness—in her own blood.

Inspired by H. G. Wells’s classic The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Madman’s Daughter is a dark and breathless Gothic thriller about the secrets we’ll do anything to know and the truths we’ll go to any lengths to protect.

My Thoughts

“Oh, and Juliet,” he said. I turned back. Half of his face was thrown in deep shadow, while the whites of his teeth gleamed in the distant lights from the salon. “I’ll be working in the laboratory late tonight. I’ve a good start on the new specimens. Don’t be alarmed if you’re awoken. The animals – they scream, you know. An unfortunate effect of vivisection. It keeps the whole household up.”

I cannot even express in words how much I was in awe of this book! I have never heard of the Island of Dr. Moreau but the blurb for TMD absolutely piqued my interest. I love me a gory story and this is exactly what I got! There was gore, love and loss. All elements of a fantastic read!

The Storyline

So Juliet is basically an orphan. Her father was a prominent member of the community and the best surgeon in the country until the “scandal” happened. He disappeared and Juliet thought he was dead. Her mother tried to keep them a float financially until her illness took her also. Juliet was left alone and had to fend for herself by taking a cleaning job at the university just to keep a small livable space for herself.

Juliet finds herself at a party one evening with a few local medical students. A dare turns out to be the start of her unraveling. From there, she is on a mission to find her father because now she has proof that he still may be alive. But what she finds is much worse than anything she had expected!

Juliet is one tough cookie

She recalls lying in bed at night and hearing the animal screams coming from the lab while her father worked on his experiments. That alone is enough to make me cringe. But, she keeps on going. She is determined to find out if her father is the madman everyone claims he is or the wonderful father that would hoist her in his lap and read to her. Everyone looks at her like she is so fragile but underneath her perfect exterior lies a lot of venom. She often wonders if she could have inherited her father’s madman gene?

I enjoyed her character. I thought she was tough and a written to be a really strong person. Sure, there are a few times that she cries her eyes out but, she was put through so much in her 16 years, that anyone would have had a breakdown at this point.

The Boys

Well, I honestly cannot decide which one I love more. They both have their flaws and I was with Edward right up until the end but then that kind of deflated:(

Edward is a rescue. He was found clinging to a buoy in the middle of the ocean. He feels an instant connection to Juliet and was trying to be really honest with her. I enjoyed their friendship and like I said, up until the end, he is the one that I would have chosen!

Now Montgomery is all kinds of hot! But, he had kept things hidden from Juliet. He was her mother’s maid’s son and so they literally grew up together. She recalls that he was always there for her and she feels an instant connection to him upon seeing him again.

I know where Juliet’s heart lies but honestly, I think she needs to ditch both guys and go off and find herself another. If that was me, I would have swum off the island just to get away or gone crazy!

The ending

The ending was heartbreaking for Juliet. I knew that there would have to be some kind of twist and right at the very end, the writer throws it at us…BAM! Knocked me for a loop because I never suspected it!

All in all this book was a fantastic read and it kept me on my toes. I literally read the whole thing in one day and would recommend it to anyone! If you are not a fan of a little gore or suspense, then it may not be for you.

I have an ARC of the sequel, Her Dark Curiosity, and I am ready to just jump in and devour it!! I am hoping that it will live up to this one!

“How did you survive?” I asked. My question caught him off guard, and his hand curled around the dice. He gave a cautious shrug. “The grace of God, I suppose.”


h. Lee


J. Taylor Publishing is giving away 5 ARC Copies!!!

J. Taylor Publishing are giving away FIVE ARCs of Beasts of Burdin by Alexander Nader!

Check it out!

Demon hunter Ty Burdin hung up his guns, knife, trench coat and fedora a year ago. Bags packed, hands washed of all demon politics, he’s done. Forever.

In fact, to get far far away, he dragged Nora, his rockabilly secretary, from Miami to the Tennessee mountains where he’s lived a life of peace—if peace can be defined as drowning in scotch and taking private eye jobs to keep the lights on. Jobs for real people. Not demons.

No demons.

He’s retired from that. Remember?

Demon hunters aren’t a dime a dozen, though, and when Ty’s brother asks him for a favor—just one—what’s a brother to do? Agreeing to take down one hillbilly demon shouldn’t take that long. In. Decapitate. Out. Favor complete. Back to the office where Nora and his bottle of whiskey are waiting.

Unfortunately for Ty, staying retired doesn’t seem to be in the cards, and an avalanche of bad luck draws him right back to an agency he despises and the career that nearly cost him his sanity.

This time, Ty has no way out and will have to face his own demons just to survive.

BEASTS OF BURDIN is the first installment in an exciting and witty new urban fantasy series, featuring Ty Burdin, a retired demon hunter turned private eye. And J. Taylor Publishing is giving away FIVE ARC copies.


You don’t even have to be a book blogger!

Nope, so long as you are willing to leave an honest review between the dates January 27th – February 10th 2014, you are eligible to enter.


Then just fill out the form and keep your fingers crossed.

You have until midnight of January 26th to enter.

Continue reading “J. Taylor Publishing is giving away 5 ARC Copies!!!”

Review: The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan

The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan

May 14, 2013 Delacorte Books for Young Readers

341 Pages


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Synopsis: After a bizarre accident, Ingrid Waverly is forced to leave London with her mother and younger sister, Gabby, trading a world full of fancy dresses and society events for the unfamiliar city of Paris.

In Paris there are no grand balls or glittering parties, and, disturbingly, the house Ingrid’s twin brother, Grayson, found for them isn’t a house at all. It’s an abandoned abbey, its roof lined with stone gargoyles that could almost be mistaken for living, breathing creatures.

And Grayson has gone missing.

No one seems to know of his whereabouts but Luc, a devastatingly handsome servant at their new home.

Ingrid is sure her twin isn’t dead—she can feel it deep in her soul—but she knows he’s in grave danger. It will be up to her and Gabby to navigate the twisted path to Grayson, a path that will lead Ingrid on a discovery of dark secrets and otherworldly truths. And she’ll learn that once they are uncovered, they can never again be buried.

My Thoughts:

This book contained an interesting plot; the gargoyles and the setting reminded me of The Hunchback of Notre Dame and some parts also reminded me of Beauty and the Beast. This story takes place in Paris where Ingrid and Gabby have just moved from London. Their mother has always wanted to set up an art exhibition and so they have come to Paris and live in a dilapidated  abbey that their brother was living in (Grayson-twin to Ingrid). However Grayson has now gone missing and no one knows where he is (or do they?). Luc, one of their new servants in their home has a secret (read this book and you will know what I am talking about). Just a heads up that this book also has a minor love triangle in it (and also forbidden love between Ingrid and another character beneath her status).

There is a lot of action in this book and Ingrid and Gabby are desperate to find out what where Grayson was taken. To me, I got annoyed with Ingrid because I felt like she was too trusting of people who she cared about. No one wants to believe that what someone close to them is a monster (hint hint). Ingrid took way to long to figure out some of the most obvious points in this book and I wished that she was more open to some things that happened (read this book and you will understand what I am talking about). If I ever say anything like read this book… it means that I don’t want to spoil anything for you (readers).

Overall, I thought that this was an okay book. The next book in this series doesn’t come out until May 13, 2014 and I hope that it is better than this one was.

3 stars


Bringing Dirty Back with Heather Hildenbrand!


Have you read Heather Hildenbrand’s Dirty Blood series yet????


Well then, you have got to get right on it!!! I LOVE this series:) I would like to share my favorite book of the series with all of you:

Dirty Blood (Dirty Blood # 1) by Heather Hildenbrand


“How old are you?” I asked, my head cocked to one side.


“And how long have you been nineteen?”

He looked at me like I had a screw loose. “Since I haven‟t been eighteen?”

“So, you‟ve been on this planet for nineteen years?”

“That‟s usually what an age implies.”

Title: Dirty Blood

Author: Heather Hildenbrand

Publisher: Accendo Press

Publish Date: April 2011

Purchase: Amazon    Smashwords

I cannot put into words how amazing this book is. I was on a camping trip with my family and decided to start reading it, a mistake, because while my family was crowded around the campfire roasting marshmallows, I was sitting at the table reading. I could not stop until I reached the end and read the whole book in one day.

Tara is seventeen. She lives with her mother, her father passed away when she was a baby. Tara and her boyfriend, George, had been having a lot of trouble with their relationship lately. George is working on a football career and has been busy with his agent and interviews. This leaves Tara alone most of the time and constantly waiting on George.  One particular night, Tara can take no more waiting. She is tired of being stood up. While out at the pool hall, she confronts George and tells him that it’s over and tells him to leave. There goes her ride home and after checking all other alternatives, Tara is left to taking the bus.

On her way to the bus stop, she notices a strange girl standing in the alley. Tara yells to her to see if she needs help and with that, the girl “explodes”. That is the only way that Tara can describe what was happening. The girl attacks and Tara ends up killing the girl. She is in shock and horror at what she has done when a strange guy shows up and keeps telling her to trust him, he will not hurt her.

Tara’s whole life is about to change as she learns about her past and her future.

I just could not put this book down. I fell in love with Wes immediately. *SWOON* I also loved Sam, whom is one of Tara’s BFF’s. She was so funny. I am VERY looking forward to a sequel to see where the road leads for Tara & Wes. Heather wrote a wonderful storyline and a great book that I believe will leave the readers wanting more!


Celeb Pick

I am lucky to show all of you Heather’s celeb pick of Derrick, one of the character’s from DB. Whom is Derrick you may ask? READ THE BOOK!

Tyler Hoechlin as Derek

Hot right?


Heather is giving away a signed paperback of Blood Rule (Dirty Blood $ 4) and some swag.

Click on the rafflecopter link to enter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

h. Lee