Thursday, March 29, 2012

Spellcaster by Cara Lynn Schultz (ARC)

Spellcaster
Cara Lynn Schultz
Pub:March 27, 2012

Synopsis: Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...Finding your eternal soulmate - easy. Stopping a true-love-hungry evil - not so much…

After breaking a centuries-old romantic curse, Emma Connor is (almost) glad to get back to normal problems. Although...it's not easy dealing with the jealous cliques and gossip that rule her exclusive Upper East Side prep, even for a sixteen-year-old newbie witch. Having the most-wanted boy in school as her eternal soul mate sure helps ease the pain-especially since wealthy, rocker-hot Brendan Salinger is very good at staying irresistibly close....

But something dark and hungry is using Emma and Brendan's deepest fears to reveal damaging secrets and destroy their trust in each other. And Emma's crash course in über-spells may not be enough to keep them safe…or to stop an inhuman force bent on making their unsuspected power its own.

Spellcaster picks up a few months after Spellbound and Emma and Brendan's scandal is still talk of the town. They try to go about their merry way but it doesn't take long for trouble to find them again. The fact that both of them had something stolen from them should have raised a red flag (it certainly did for me - even after the first thing was stolen). Turns out the two have ticked off a really nasty witch hellbent on draining and using their 'true love' blood to make her uber-powerful, and she has zero scruples over the things she'll do to them to get it. Sucks to be them...

For the most part I enjoyed Spellcaster more than its predecessor Spellbound. I felt a little disappointed but that's mostly because I'm used to reading novels that have more than just one type of supernatural being in it. I had hopes that this series would develop into than a girl coming into magical powers, but all its really done is increase the number of witches present. Still, my disappointment is due to personal preferences, not necessarily the novel. Spellcaster was still a good novel and worth checking out.

 

ARC provided by publisher via NetGalley.

Monday, March 26, 2012

eBooks Now Available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Smashwords

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...As some of you already know, my ebooks have been exclusively on Amazon for the last few months. As of today they are available on other sites, like Barnes and Noble and Smashwords. Below are the links for you. Thanks for being so patient!


Paperbacks available on Amazon US, UK, DE and FR, and my E-Store.

eBooks available on Kindle US, UK, DE, FR, IT and ES, Nook and Smashwords.




Paperbacks available on Amazon US and my E-store.

eBooks available on Kindle US, UK, DE, FR, IT and ES, Nook and Smashwords.



Paperbacks available on Amazon US and my E-store.

eBooks available on Kindle US, UK, DE, FR, IT and ES, Nook and Smashwords(coming soon).

Friday, March 16, 2012

Interview and Giveaway with Augusta Blythe, Author of Winterborne and Ravenstoke



Today I have with me the adorable Augusta Blythe. Indie writer. Lover of clown fish and sea urchins. Addicted to Dr. Pepper and Lindt's dark chocolate and sea salt. And she prefers Underworld to Twilight [*cough* -  me too! If Selene and Edward were to scrap, my money's totally on Selene. :) ]

Let's take a few minutes to get to know this sweet chic.



What was your favorite book as a kid? Just like I didn't have one favorite toy, I didn't have one favorite book. I loved Anne of Green Gables, Greek myths, and Little House on the Prairie.

What is your favorite genre to read and what makes it so awesome? I love magical realism. I love magic in stories that seems as though it could really happen or has really happened. 



Tell us your favorite author. Which book is your total fave from that author? Margaret Atwood is my modern favorite. I own Blind Assassin in hardcover and paperback. I may get one for my Kindle just to have my bases covered. Jane Austen is my dead favorite. Sense & Sensibility is actually my favorite of hers, even though it isn't her most popular book. I need a little disappointment in my stories and Willoughbey provides that.

Any pet peeves you'd be willing to share? You don't want to go there. I am the queen of 'if I ruled the world' statements...

If you could meet any dead person, who would you choose? Any particular reason why? Charles Darwin, but not as a zombie. He had a brilliant mind and I'd love to get his thoughts on evolution based on current data.

If the Earth suddenly became uninhabital, would you rather live under the sea or in space? Either way I lose out on oxygen so I'd go with under the sea.

When you were little, what did you think you'd be when you grew up? A writer, go figure. I used to fold over packets of paper and design my own covers, write out the table of contents and do chapters. Not much different from what I'm doing now.

If you could live anywhere in the world you'd like, where would that be and why? New Zealand. It's absolutely gorgeous there and the people are so nice. If only it weren't so far from my family, I'd be there. England is far enough.

Do you have a secret obsession you'd be willing to share? <wink, wink> The Kardashians. I love 'em. I want them to adopt me. I don't care what anyone says about them (and if you check out Yahoo comments on occasion like I do, you will see the stream of venom directed toward them). I am fully aware of the reasons I should find them distasteful, but for some reason, I don't.

What food/drink would absolutely devastate you if they stopped production on? Dr. Pepper and Arby's cheddar and roast beef sandwich. I have them once a year, in the summer when I visit the US. That's pretty much the only time I drink soda and eat unhealthily so I really look forward to it.

Which is your favorite fairytale? I prefer myths to fairytales, but I guess I would go with the Hans Christian Andersen version of The Little Mermaid. The one with the deeply unhappy ending. Like I said, I like a bit of disappointment in my stories. Although I admit, when I read this version to my 4-year-old daughter, I skip over the ending. One day I'll stop doing that.

Underworld or Twilight. Probably a deeply unpopular response, but Underworld. It's so dark and Kate Beckinsale kicks serious lycan butt.
Original or Remake. Original, always.
Sweet or Salty. Both. My current fave is Lindt's dark chocolate with sea salt.
Drama or Comedy. Any good story has both.
Fantasy or Romance. Fantasy.
Spring or Autumn. Autumn.
Michael Jackson or Whitney Houston. Yikes. So soon? Whitney is from NJ so I've gotta go with her.
Walter Mathau or Jack Lemmon. Matthau.
Dirty Dancing or Footloose. Dirty Dancing. Always preferred Patrick Swayze to Kevin Bacon.
American Idol or X-Factor or The Voice. Idol. It was the first.
Movie Theatre or Loveseat. Theatre as long as no one's cell phone rings.
Tea or Coffee. Tea.
Rain or Sunshine. I live in England. Clearly, it's sunshine all the way.
Skiing or Surfing. Surfing. I don't do cold weather outdoor activities.
Treehouse or Man Cave. Treehouse


Check out Augusta and her books here:
Blog
Facebook
Twitter
GoodReads





Refresh if you don't see books.

Now on to the giveaway! What's up for grabs? Copies of Winterborne and Ravenstoke. I've already read and reviewed both and they were super dreamy. [Winterborne and Ravenstoke]. Just fill in the rafflecopter below. If the rafflecopter acts up on you and doesn't offer the line to put in any required information, just put it in a comment below with your entry name (email not necessary)


Ravenstoke by Augusta Blythe

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...Ravenstoke
Universe Unbound #2
Augusta Blythe

Synopsis: In Winterborne, Loie and Mia's seventeenth birthdays brought more drama and surprises than they ever expected. Now, in Ravenstoke, they are adjusting to the aftermath and struggling to keep those newfound powers in check. When Andreas is called away to England under mysterious circumstances, a new guy is sent to Salcey Ridge in his place. Cian is smarmy and cocksure and Loie wants nothing more than to unleash a hellhound on him. Unfortunately, Cian isn't the only complication in their lives as the girls must also contend with the reappearance of Mr. Winterborne himself and Loie's most dreaded fear of all - a part in the school musical. Can the girls survive the rest of junior year unscathed?

Um...can I just say that I love Cian! If I didn't know Loie could seriously kick my butt I'd totally scrap for him...and that's saying a lot cause I don't scrap. :) (Sorry, I just had to throw that out there)

Ravenstoke picks up right where Winterborne left off. Powers ascended. Boy drama. Messed up family dynamic that surprisingly seems to work. Ancients ticked off that Loie and Mia are still alive.

Loie's training is put on hold when Andreas leaves for a secret mission in merry ol' London, England. Tough luck for Loie cause she spent all of her free time with him learning to use all these wicked new powers, which are infinite and completely untapped. Enter the sly, cool and sometimes brooding Cian come to take Andreas' place while he's away. I know Loie was a little bummed over losing Andreas to Mia, but I've gotta say, I think she won in the end cause as sweet as Andreas is, the bad boy is always more fun. And Cian actually allows Loie to try things Andreas wasn't ready to, like transfiguring into animals and dancing across rapids turning water into ice with each step.  Yum!

After Andreas goes MIA for a bit, boy-lonely Mia gets the bright idea of them joining the drama club so they can tag along on the spring break trip to London to see Wicked, the play they're performing themselves come end of term. As if she wasn't miserable enough being in a play, unlucky Loie ends up having a Stephen King Carrie moment for all the audience to see. Anyways, Loie uses this time in London to track down Andreas in a location she never thought possible - Ravenstoke - and learns a few unsettling things about the new hottie in her life.

Since this is a sequel, I don't wanna give away too much. Ravenstoke didn't have as much action as Winterborne, but I think I actually liked this one better. Loie introduced us to Sanctuary, a hidden establishment for Universals only,  a few new supernatural characters debuted that weren't too fond of our gal (like a kelpie that apparently likes to drag you to your death underwater), and we finally got a paranormal romance that wasn't just being observed through the main character.

So why should you read Ravenstoke? Cool chic with supernatural abilities. Hotty of an interim trainer to swoon over. Creatures that want this cool chic dead. And ebooks are only $2.99 on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and iBooks so how could you go wrong?


Add it to your GoodReads and find it at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Copy provided by Author for honest review.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Winterborne by Augusta Blythe

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...Winterborne
(Universe Unbound #1)
Augusta Blythe

Synopsis: Sixteen-year old Mia Winterborne is destined to be special. Details are sketchy, though, as her dad disappeared with all the answers when she was five. Mia only knows that she'll inherit her kickass superpowers on her seventeenth birthday. Helping Mia prepare for her anticipated ascendancy is Loie Bryce, her best friend and eternal sidekick extraordinaire. The girls' intense friendship has never wavered until now, when Andreas arrives in Salcey Ridge. They both fall hard for the British hottie, who quickly becomes a fixture in their lives. When they discover that Andreas is not who he appears to be, the frightening reality of Mia's powers finally hits home. The nearer Mia's birthday draws, the more the danger escalates and long-buried lies are exposed, putting the girls on a path that they never expected.

Winterborne was unique in that for once we get to witness the action through the eyes of the supernatural's side-kick. Mia has always known that when she turned sixteen, she was going to inherit some pretty wicked supernatural powers. Her dad was a Universal, a human with extraordinary powers that helped keep the Ancients (pixies, leprechauns, hellhounds, etc) in line. As Mia nears her birthday, she and her side-kick Loie are practicing like mad during summer to see if her powers are leaking through yet. But the only thing really going on are all these weird occurrences happening around them, like a bunch of foreign birds trying to divebomb them and icky green slime around their home. I say 'their' home cbeause even though their just besties, Loie has a room of her own at the Winterborne manor. Hey, if your parents died when you were five and all you were left with was a drunk, angry grandmother that didn't care if you came home, you'd stay away too. Lucky for Loie, Mrs. Winterborne was really great friends with her mom and considered Loie her second daughter.

Anyways, summer's dragging on so enter the hottie from Britain that just moved to town. Turns out he's a Universal too, sent to watch over Mia. Ancients have apparently been trying and failing to attack Mia for awhile and now that she's close to ascension, they're desperate to kill her off. They're even willing to go after human Loie, so she gets protection by association. 

I wasn't particularly fond of Mia through most of the novel. It's not that she's cruel or uncaring, but she's quite selfish, always focusing on herself. She even got upset with Loie for kissing Andreas, whom they both liked, as if Loie didn't deserve a chance to be the center of his affections. And it doesn't help that Loie keeps Her Heiness on the throne by always doing what she wants and feeding her rapid-growing egotism. But luckily Mia gets smothered with a hefty dose of humility so I ended this novel with a smile on my face and a sense of justice for side-kicks everywhere!

Winterborne had plenty of action, mystery. and paranormal characters popping in to ruin their special moments. Some things were predictable but you probably won't hit it exactly on the mark like you think you will. I'm not ashamed to admit that I started the sequel Ravenstoke the moment I finished this novel because I really want to see where this is going. Now that the powers have ascended, I'm really anxious to see how Mia and Loie take to this new world and deal with the constant threat of Ancients hunting them down...and if we get to see what Sanctuary looks like where a lot of the Universals hide out at.


Add it to your GoodReads and find it at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Copy provided by Author for honest review.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Ordained Awarded 2012 Best Fantasy and Giveaway!

Reader Views - Reviews by Readers, for Readers 


Reader Views just announced their Literary Award Winners for the 2011 writing competition. What is Reader Views? An organization that lets readers like you and me read and review the novels and determine their fate in the competition. Ordained was awarded First Place in the Fantasy category and given the Blazing Award for Best Fantasy Novel. Not quite sure why the award sticker says 2012 but I'll roll with it. :) I'm pleasantly surprised by this cause I had accidentally submitted pre-edited copies with some lingering grammatical mistakes, but luckily they forgave those errors and scored Ordained on its creative story content! So THANK YOU to all the readers that participated and took the time to read my novel.

And I've been awarded a book trailer for Ordained valued at $550. Looking forward to seeing what the professionals can produce (cause I really suck at making book trailers and I'm so excited to let someone else do it!!!)

To celebrate I'm going to run a giveaway! Besides the rafflecopter below, you can also enter to win a copy at GoodReads!



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
Ransom Riggs
Publication: June 7, 2011

Synopsis: A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of very curious photographs.

It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

Fresh, creepy and unique. All those crazy stories Jacob's grandfather used to tell him about going after the monsters could easily be explained by Nazi memories plaguing him, but who'd have thought the monsters his grandfather was referring to were actual monsters? Certainly not Jacob, who saw one in the woods the night his grandfather died and later haunted him in his dreams. Everyone kept telling Jacob that he was simply traumatized, but he began to wonder if there was something more to the stories his grandfather told him as a child about Miss Peregrine and the children that lived on an island off Wales. The peculiar ones that levitated, lifted heavy objects, were invisible, etc. He once thought the old photos had been manipulated, but once he saw a monster in the woods that night, he's not so sure anymore.

Jacob sets out to the little island of mystery, and once he finds the old mansion that was once bombed during the war, his world gets turned upside down as he learns more about his grandfather, the children he lived with at one time, and even the possibility of Jacob being a little 'peculiar' himself, and finds himself  in the middle of a war the real world doesn't even realize is going on around them.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect with this when I first started out...possibly something with a little more horror, but I was pleasantly surprised nonetheless. This novel had a little bit of everything - suspense, mystery, paranormal elements and even a smidgen of romance. Old, creepy photographs fill the pages within and offer visuals I'm not sure my imagination could have done any better creating. The approach this novel took was fresh and creative and I'm looking forward to the next installment!



Sunday, March 4, 2012

Prom and Prejudice by Elizabeth Eulberg

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...Prom and Prejudice
Elizabeth Eulberg
Publication: Jan 1, 2011

Synopsis: It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single girl of high standing at Longbourn Academy must be in want of a prom date. After winter break, the girls at the very prestigious Longbourn Academy become obsessed with the prom. Lizzie Bennet, who attends Longbourn on a scholarship, isn't interested in designer dresses and expensive shoes, but her best friend, Jane, might be - especially now that Charles Bingley is back from a semester in London. Lizzie is happy about her friend's burgeoning romance but less than impressed by Charles's friend, Will Darcy, who's snobby and pretentious. Darcy doesn't seem to like Lizzie either, but she assumes it's because her family doesn't have money. Clearly, Will Darcy is a pompous jerk - so why does Lizzie find herself drawn to him anyway?

Absolutely adorable!!! Any one that knows me knows that my all-time favorite book is Pride and Prejudice, so when I saw that Prom and Prejudice offered to retell that story through teenagers, I plucked that book from the bookshelf quicker than Caroline Bingley could snag a couture dress from the designer's hand.

Lizzie Bennet is one of two scholarship kids going to an all-girl school, and unfortunately on the wrong end of permanent hazing by her less than thrilled rich classmates. So it's not surprising that she has no interest in any of the guys attending the nearby school for prestigious young men - particularly the snobby Will Darcy. However, she does enjoy the company of his friend Charles Bingley and loves that her friendly roommate Jane has drawn his attention. At least Jane will be able to attend Prom with a decent guy.

Or so Lizzie thought. It doesn't take long for Charles' sister Caroline to ruin Jane's hopes for a prom date. While trying to help mend Jane's broken heart, Lizzie also has to fight the unwanted attention from Colin and the sudden stalking Will seems to be doing at the coffee shop she works at. Luckily her best friend, and fellow scholarship holder, Charlotte can steal young Colin's eyes, but that still leaves Jane to deal with one William Darcy, who she learns after several silent walks home together, doesn't seem to be too bad after all.

Prom and Prejudice was adorable. Sure, completely predictable, but no one really cares when you're reading a retelling of one of the best love stories ever. I flew through this in less than a day cause it was so light and easy to read. If you'd like a quick read that'll leave you smiling, Prom and Prejudice is for you!