Friday, September 30, 2016

Review #23 "Bossy Flossy" by Paulette Bogan

Bossy Flossy
by Paulette Bogan
Publish Date: July 19, 2016
Published By: Henry Holt and Co.
Age Group: 4-8
Source: author in exchange for review / iRead tour

How Many Stars? 4

My Scribbles: Even though this book is a little bit above Little Boy's age level (he's only 2, going on 3), we really enjoyed it. Flossy was so bossy to everyone and then she meets someone who's even bossier than she is! It was adorable! I loved the illustrations, too. They were different than most kids books we read and it was refreshing in a way! This is such a great book for kids of all ages!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Review #22 "Rhodi's Light" by Megan Linski

Rhodi's Light
(The Rhodi Saga #1)
by Megan Linski
Publish Date: September 4, 2016
Published by: Gryfyn Publishing
Genre: Dystopian Fantasy
Pre-order: Amazon
Source: author in exchange for honest review

How Many Stars? 5

Synopsis: Flight. Hyperspeed. Clairvoyance. 

These are some of the powers gifted to the Rhodi, an ancient sect of assassins who defend Crescentia, a dystopian world with a dying hope. 

Dyliana Fairsson is one of them. After losing her parents to a suspicious accident, she and her twin brother, Devin, join the Rhodi to avoid starvation. Under the direction of her master, Dylan struggles to learn the strength of her magic . . . as well as hide the growing scars on her wrists. Can Dylan become the warrior, the hero, she's destined to be? Or is she fated to fall from the light into the darkness? 

My Scribbles: This book was something completely new for me. When I first started it, I thought I was reading a straight-up fantasy novel, with the intense world-building and the characters. It all seemed very fantasy-ish to me (like something out of Game of Thrones or a similar world). But then you add in cars and cell phones and it turns into this dystopian world, but still keeping many of the fantasy aspects. It's a combination I haven't seen before and, though I wasn't sure it would work in the beginning, I very quickly got sucked down Linski's rabbit hole and found myself lost in the world of Crescentia, not wanting it to end. At the same time, though, I was flying through the pages, eager to see how it eventually wold end, and how it leads into the next book. The ending, I will admit, wasn't what I was hoping would happen with the main characters but it should make for a very exciting book 2. 

A lot of what I loved about this book was the characters. At first, I really wasn't fond of Dylan. She was whiny. Not my kind of character. But she grew out of that (thankfully!) and I loved watching the bonds form between students and masters. 

I originally gave this book 4 out of 5 stars when I reviewed it on Goodreads but have since changed that. It was more because I was still upset with the ending. What can I say . . . I'm an emotional reader! 

If you love dystopian and fantasy books, you should definitely check this one out when it comes out in September! I loved it! 

Monday, September 5, 2016

Release Day Launch - "Unthinkable" by Nina Croft

Unthinkable BT Ban 2
Today we have the release day launch of Unthinkable by Nina Croft! Grab your copy of this fantastic scifi romance today, and check out Nina’s blog tour! 
About Unthinkable: Unthinkable  

 Jake Callahan, leader of the Tribe, has always believed he’s one of the good guys. Now, hunted by the government he used to work for, he’s taking a crash course in being bad. What he desperately needs is a bargaining tool, and that’s unfortunate for Christa Winters, daughter of Jake’s former boss. Christa is a scientist, a total geek, and a good girl with a secret hankering for bad boys. Which turns out to be embarrassingly inconvenient when she’s kidnapped by a stunningly gorgeous—but obviously bad-to-the-bone—man intent on using her against the father she loves. A man with a seemingly uncanny ability to know exactly when she’s thinking about kissing him—which is most of the time. But people are dying, and it becomes clear that the stakes are much higher than Jake ever imagined. Someone is out to obliterate the Tribe and everyone associated with it, including Christa. Only by working together to uncover the secrets behind the past, can they ever hope to have a future. 

Get your copy today: Amazon | Barnes & Noble   

 About Nina Croft: Growing up in the cold, wet, north of England, Nina Croft spent a lot of time dreaming of faraway sunnier places and ponies. When she discovered both, along with a whole load of other things, could be found between the covers of a book, her life changed forever. Later, she headed south, picked up the perfect husband along the way, and together they volunteered to work in Africa. There they discovered a love of exotic places and a dislike of 9-5 work. Afterward they spent a number of years travelling (whenever possible) intermingled with working (whenever necessary.) Eventually they stumbled upon a remote area in the mountains of southern Spain and the small almond farm they now call home. Nina spends her days reading, writing and riding her mare, Gencianna, under the blue Spanish skies—sunshine and ponies. She reckons this is proof that dreams really can come true if you want them enough. 

Connect with Nina: Author Website: www.ninacroft.com 

Enter Nina’s Giveaway: a Rafflecopter giveaway   



Sunday, September 4, 2016

Author Interview #5 - Megan Linski

Let's welcome our next visiting author, Megan Linksi! Recently, I had the opportunity to review one of Megan's books, Rhodi's Light, and I loved it! You can check out my review here but for now, let's get on to the interview, shall we?

Megan, why did you want to become an author? Did you always know it was your "calling" or is there a certain moment you can think of that put you on this path? 
I still struggle today with being certain that this is my calling. Every day, I still wonder if I'd be better off doing something else, if I chose the right path. But I think one of the things about life is that you don't choose your calling, it chooses you. I couldn't stop writing even if I wanted to (and believe me, I have tried). I realized recently that writing is literally the best thing I can do and nobody can quite write a book like I can. I sometimes think I should be doing something different. But I don't want to do anything different. Every time I've tried to run away from what I am, it always creates a situation I regret. So I do this partly because I have no choice, and partly because I would have no idea who I was without writing. I don't think anybody else would know either.

Great answer! Let's talk a little bit about Rhodi's Light. The main character, Dylan, struggles with mental illness, mainly depression, throughout the book. What made you want to add such an issue into your writing? 
My entire life, I've been surrounded by mental illness. There literally isn't one person I know who hasn't been affected by it, and it hurts more than the people diagnosed with it. When someone has depression, it's such a terrible illness that it reaches out and infects the lives of those who care about that person. It hurts so many people, and so often it just gets swept under the rug. There's such a stigma about being mentally ill, like there's something wrong with you. I want to tell all those people that they aren't broken, they're normal and this is something you can conquer.

The most important message The Rhodi Saga has is that mental illness doesn't have to define who you are. It's a part of you, but it doesn't have to become you, and you can defeat it. Dylan has depression, but depression doesn't have her for long. She learns that even though it's there, she can endure the consequences of it and still go on to live a fulfilling life. Another part I love is that her friends and family are always there for her, to support her through it. So many people don't get support from their families when they're mentally ill. It's like something they have to hide. Dylan can be open and honest about what's happening to her, and her family still doesn't see her as anyone different at the end of the day. That's how it should be.

Okay, this is a silly question but why twins? 
I used to be obsessed with twins. When I started writing Rhodi's Light, I really wanted to have twins as my own children, through birth or adoption. I'm a big fan of adoption, which is a huge theme of the series.

Do you have a particular place you like to write? Somewhere that makes the inspiration "flow"? Also...computer or pen and paper? 
I love writing outside and in nature. Anywhere outdoors is my favorite writing place, particularly if it's in a forest. However, I do my best writing when I'm trapped in unusual places. My best work has come from places like dingy, bleak offices, the back of classrooms or dingy bedrooms, even Burger King! I find being in these particularly normal surroundings pushes me to find the magic even in the most mundane. I also find I write well when I'm in some sort of emotional chaos. That pushes me to find an escape and create good from wretched situations.

Computer. Pen and paper makes my hand hurt way too much. Though typing isn't much better . . . I have to wrap my wrists and hands now with athletic tape when I write and ice my fingers at night. My old high school teacher once told me I write too much. She was write.

Wow, that's what I call dedication! Thanks so much for taking time to chat with us! Is there anything else you would like to share with us? 
How about the Rhodi's Light trailer? https://youtu.be/rJHdTPbvRJk
Or a playlist for The Rhodi Saga? https://open.spotify.com/user/12179397807/playlist/41pTZKXDVV4d9wFV1i5LEh

Check out Rhodi's Light, Rhodi Rising, and Rhodi's Lullaby on Amazon! And don't forget to visit Megan's website, her Facebook page, and Gryfyn Publishing's Facebook page! You can also receive a free book if you sign up for Megan's VIP list! Everybody loves free books :)

Happy Release Day, Megan, and thanks again for chatting with us!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Book Blitz - "The Retreat" by Kelly St. Clare


The Retreat
Kelly St. Clare
(The After Trilogy, #1)
Publication date: August 30th 2016
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Earth is ruined. Humankind destroyed. And it’s old news.
Romy’s life is simple—for a genetically enhanced space soldier; pick up space junk with her four friends, and stave off the invaders fixated on stealing Planet Earth.
It isn’t much. But it’s temporary—only another 850 years to go, give or take.
When her crew tangles with a gulp-worthy alien mothership, Romy’s return to Earth is brought forwards at hurtling pace.
Strength comes from the unlikeliest of quarters.
As does leadership.
…As does betrayal.
EXCERPT:
Romy’s side of the battler must have torn away during landing. Only a few shredding battler walls remained. It was as though her side of the ship had been ripped off like a chunk of bread from a loaf.
The floor underneath her was gone, leaving her legs dangling. Romy herself was suspended by the harness, which dug into her torso. It was the only thing keeping her from falling three metres to the dry grass.
The bottom part of her battler segment had embedded itself into the ground on an angle. Romy’s end of the segment was immobilised in the air, forty-five degrees to the surface. She looked to have landed at the edge of a grassy clearing. Or maybe a forest, she amended, judging by the multitudes of trees before her.
Behind her, the ripped walls were flayed wide open, smoking, sparking, and hissing.
She took in the vast splash of colours before her with unseeing eyes. She was on Earth. Hanging above real ground.
Quite alone. And if her knot hadn’t . . . survived . . . she was quite possibly the only person, or being, on the planet. A numbness set in so deep that Romy could no longer feel the harness. Her head drooped as she struggled to regain her calm. She had to find her friends. That was an absolute. They were alive. She had to believe it was true.
She waited, willing her shaking hands to still until eventually they obeyed.
Inhaling sharply, Romy looked around once more.
The question was: How far did her section of the craft land from the others?
If it were a matter of hours, that would be okay, but anything more and she would require food and water. A post-global-warming Earth meant the food and water here wasn’t safe. The yellowed plant life confirmed that. The battler held supplies, but did she have any in her part? And how much oxygen was in her suit? Romy’s heart began to quicken once more, and she forced the unfamiliar fear away.
First priority was getting to the ground. Under normal conditions she would take the chance and jump the three metres, but the injury to her ankle and the extent of the damage to her head caused Romy to hesitate. If only she could take her suit helmet off . . . but the air conditions had to be terrible. She wouldn’t last five seconds.
No, she decided. She’d pull herself up onto the back of her seat and see if there was an easier way out from the back of the smoking wreckage.
She sighed in weary exhaustion, not sure she had the strength to move a single finger. But that wouldn’t help her friends.
Romy released one half of her harness. Holding tightly to the strap, she released the second half of the harness—
Something gave. Not the harness, but whatever it was attached to, or attached with. For a moment Romy thought she might be able to salvage the tatters of her plan and still climb up. Until, with a loud ripping, the harness tore free from the rest of the chair.


Author Bio:
When Kelly St Clare is not reading or writing, she is lost in her latest reverie. She can, quite literally, drift past a car accident while in the midst of her day dreams, despite the various police sirens and chaos.
Books have always been magical and mysterious to her. One day she decided to start unravelling this mystery and began writing. Her aim: To write stories she would want to read. As it turns out, this failed miserably. Do you know what it is like to read something you've written? Impossible, that's what. Not to mention, the ending is ruined before you've begun. Never-the-less, Kelly loves it and wishes she had more time to squeeze it in between her day job as a physiotherapist.
Fantasy of Frost, the first title in The Tainted Accords, is her debut novel. It's sequel, Fantasy of Flight, was released on May 24th, 2015. Fantasy of Fire is due for release January 2016!
A New Zealander in origin and in heart, Kelly currently resides in Australia with her soon-to-be husband, a great group of friends, and some huntsman spiders who love to come inside when it rains. Their love is not returned.
Fav quote: Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint on broken glass.
Fav Song: I believe in a thing called love - The Darkness

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Friday, September 2, 2016

Book Review #21 "Haven" by Katherine Bogle

Haven
(Chronicles of Warshard #1)
by Katherine Bogle
Publish Date: May 6, 2016
Published By: FriesenPress
Genre: Fantasy
Buy It: Amazon
Source: iRead Tours in exchange for honest review

How Many Stars? 3.5

My Scribbles: I liked and disliked this book at the same time. As a character, I really liked Haven. I did find it odd, however, that she is this really young, teenage, new Queen and every time there is a decision to be made in the group of royals, the older, more experienced kings leave it to her to solve all the problems. Also, I really did not like Kadia (the evil queen). She switches between absolutely psychotic and super happy like a little kid. It's hard to keep up with her moods and her child-like mood is actually pretty creepy. She tortures Haven and I can't say I was on board with that part of the book. Then you have Haven's PTSD after she escapes from Kadia. That's not the part I have a problem with. It's the fact that we go through the "don't touch me" over and over. Then she meets this sweet little girl with the amazing ability to help people with magic and bam! She's suddenly okay. I understand it's magic but that seemed a bit convenient to me.

My opinions of this book were not all critical. I enjoyed most of the characters and their relationships. I love the idea of the multiple kingdoms and could actually see Haven as a real person. I would have liked to get to know her a bit more but she didn't seem like a two-dimensional character so I was very pleased with that.  It was also nice to see a royal interacting with her guards other than as a Queen. She was a real person to them, a friend.

Will I continue the series? As of right now, I am undecided. When I finished the book, I wasn't certain I wanted to keep going but as I sit, I find myself drawn back to it, curious to see how the saga continues. I enjoyed the world that the author created and I would like to see more of it. So, I think I most likely will continue it.

Now, how about an interview with the author, herself? Let's welcome Katherine Bogle! 

In your novel, Haven, your protagonist is immortal. How did you come up with this idea? 
The idea to have an immortal protagonist came in the same dream that gave me the idea for Haven. Originally, I wasn't sure if I wanted to keep this idea or not, since having a main character who can't be killed kind of dulls the impact of fighting scenes. In the end, I kept Haven immortal because that's what her people need - a queen who cannot be killed. It also lends a heavy hand in Haven's character development, as she sees herself as cursed by immortality, instead of gifted.

How long have you been writing? 
I've been writing since I was in elementary school. From fan fiction, to roleplaying, I've done it all over the years! My true passion for writing came in high school when I wrote my first novel and discovered how amazing creating a world all your own could be.

Do you only write young adult fantasy? What other genres can we expect from you?
As much as I love YA fantasy, I adore science fiction as well! I'm also a huge fan of steampun.

Do you have another profession besides writing? 
By day I'm a photographer and YouTuber, by night I write!

What is your next project? 
I have a few coming projects, including a new adult superhero series, an adult sci-fi and an adult steampunk. If you want to know more about any of these works, check out my website: http://katherinebogle.com

It's always fun to have a little giveaway, too!

a Rafflecopter giveaway