Jul 31

Book Highlight: Echoes of Memories by Samantha LaFantasie

Book Blitz 0

Title: Echoes of Memories

Author: Samantha LaFantasie

Series: Nepherium Series #2

Genre: Adult, Fantasy

Traitor. Liar. That’s what they call me. No one believes me. Not even my team. I know it’s up to me to get the answers. To stop the corruption and unlock my memories. I’ll do anything to get them back. Even if my hands will be covered in blood.

Elsa’s every move is scrutinized. She’s labeled a traitor by those she sought for protection, and kept from her family and team. Regaining memories has been a slow process. Too slow for the Council’s liking, taking matters into their own hands.

The new captain has history with Elsa and operates with a hidden agenda. Even Elsa’s team reacts differently toward her. If only she could unlock her memories. Everything is playing right into Alexander’s hand, even amassing an army with unconventional methods, designed to annihilate the Nepherium—starting with Noah. Elsa will do anything to stop Alexander … even kill.

 

Purchase
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About Samantha
 
A Kansas native, Samantha LaFantasie spends her free time with her husband and three kids. Writing has always been a passion of hers, forgoing all other desires to devote to this one obsession, even though she often finds herself arguing with her characters through much of the process. She’s primarily a fantasy writer but often feels pulled to genres such as sci-fi, romance, and others.
Among her writing credentials, a member of the Kansas Writer’s Association and has authored works such as Heart Song (her debut novel) and Made to Forget.
Samantha loves to take time to enjoy other activities such as photography and playing her favorite game of all time, Guild Wars 2.
Want more from Samantha? Keep up with her at any of her digital hangouts.
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Tour Schedule
August 1st
A Little Slice of Romance
August 4th
Nocturnal Predators Reviews
August 5th
Diane’s Book Blog
August 6th
Avid Reader Musings
August 7th
Curling Up With A Good Book
August 8th
MeganLentz.com
August 11th
The Wonderings of One Person
August 12th
WS Momma Readers Nook
August 13th
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August 14th
Good Choice Reading
August 15th
Dalene’s Book Reviews
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Jul 30

Review: Time of Ruin (Ash and Ruin #2) by Shauna Granger

5 Stars, Dystopia, Review, Reviewed by Brittany, YA, Young Adult 1

Review: Time of Ruin (Ash and Ruin #2) by Shauna GrangerTime of Ruin Genres: Dystopian, Paranormal, YA
on July 22nd, 2014
Goodreads
The world has ended, and hope is the most dangerous thing left.

Battered and bruised after barely escaping San Francisco with their lives, Kat, Dylan, and Blue press north – desperate to reach the possibility of a new home. 

But strange, monstrous ravens are tracking the remaining survivors, food is becoming scarce, gasoline is running short, and people are becoming suicidal, making survival almost impossible. 

And the Pestas are growing bolder. Somehow, their numbers are growing.

The further north they go, the harder it becomes to ignore the signs that they’ve made a fatal mistake. Kat must face the impossible truth that there is no escape, there is no safe haven, and their worst nightmares don’t come close to their new reality.

Pestas, Pestas, Pestas, PESTAS….. these things scare me and they are back with a vengeance in this book.

At first look Kat is not usually a character that I would love, however, the end of the world has changed her into a relatable and great character.  I also have a soft spot for dogs, so I find myself more worried about Blue than the humans in the book.  Dylan is easy to be smitten over because he is a lovable character.   The first book left off with Kat, Blue, and Dylan venturing north.  However, the north brings a lot more scary news than they were planning.  This book follows their journey up north and their shocking discoveries.  The pestas are still scary and their numbers are growing.  Book two also provides some information about why the Pestas are around and what happened to the world.    I was on the edge of my seat for a good portion of the book but was very satisfied with the ending, I mean if you are alright with impending doom.

I would recommend this series to all paranormal and dystopain lovers.  It is the best combination of elements with one of the scariest creatures in a dystopian world.  Pestas are even scarier than zombies.  :)

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Jul 30

Strange and Ever After (Something Strange & Deadly #3) by Susan Dennard Book Blitz

Uncategorized 4

 
IFB is hosting the promo tour for the third and final book in Susan Dennard’s steampunk, zombie trilogy. Continue below for a sample and a cool giveaway.
 
17902141Series: Something Strange & Deadly #3
Release date: July 22nd 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen
Purchase: Amazon | B&N
 
Synopsis via Goodreads:
In the conclusion to the trilogy that Publishers Weekly called “a roaring—and addictive—gothic world,” Eleanor Fitt must control her growing power, face her feelings for Daniel, and confront the evil necromancer Marcus…all before it’s too late.
 
He took her brother, he took her mother, and now, Marcus has taken her good friend Jie. With more determination than ever to bring this sinister man to justice, Eleanor heads to the hot desert streets of nineteenth-century Egypt in hopes of ending this nightmare. But in addition to her increasingly tense relationships with Daniel, Joseph, and her demon, Oliver, Eleanor must also deal with her former friend, Allison, who has curiously entangled herself in Eleanor’s mission.
 
With the rising dead chomping at her every move and Jie’s life hanging in the balance, Eleanor is convinced that her black magic will see her through to the bitter end. But there will be a price. Though she and the Spirit Hunters have weathered every battle thus far, there will be consequences to suffer this time—the effects of which will be irreversible. And when it’s over, only some will be able to live a strange and ever after.
 
Susan Dennard will leave readers breathless and forever changed in the concluding pages of this riveting ride.
 
Susan DennardAbout the Author
Susan Dennard is a writer turned marine biologist turned writer again. Strange and Ever After is the conclusion to her trilogy, which includes A Darkness Strange and Lovely and Something Strange and Deadly. Among the traits she shares with her heroine Eleanor are a weakness for Shakespeare quotes, a healthy appetite for baked goods, and an insatiable curiosity. Sadly, Susan does not get to wear a corset or wave a parasol on a daily basis.
 
 
The Complete Series
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a-dawn-most-wicked-a-something-strange-and-deadly-novella something-strange-and-deadly a-darkness-strange-and-lovely strange-and-ever-after
 

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Jul 28

Bout of Books 11 Read-a-thon

Uncategorized 2

I am going to participate in Bout of Books this time around! I have been wanting to participate for a long time and I love Amanda @ On a Book Bender, we go way back.  :) 

Here is what it is: The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 18th and runs through Sunday, August 24th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional.

For all Bout of Books 11 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team.

Sign up on the Bout of Books blog!

Bout of Books

 

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Jul 27

Review: Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell

3.5 Stars, Review, Reviewed by Brittany, YA, Young Adult 1 ★★★½

Review: Dear Killer by Katherine EwellDear Killer Format: eARC
Genres: Fiction, YA, Young Adult
on April 1st, 2014
Goodreads
three-half-stars
Rule One—Nothing is right, nothing is wrong.
Rule Two—Be careful.
Rule Three—Fight using your legs whenever possible, because they’re the strongest part of your body. Your arms are the weakest.
Rule Four—Hit to kill. The first blow should be the last, if at all possible.
Rule Five—The letters are the law.

Kit takes her role as London’s notorious “Perfect Killer” seriously. The letters and cash that come to her via a secret mailbox are not a game; choosing who to kill is not an impulse decision. Every letter she receives begins with “Dear Killer,” and every time Kit murders, she leaves a letter with the dead body. Her moral nihilism and thus her murders are a way of life—the only way of life she has ever known.

But when a letter appears in the mailbox that will have the power to topple Kit’s convictions as perfectly as she commits her murders, she must make a decision: follow the only rules she has ever known, or challenge Rule One, and go from there.

Katherine Ewell’s Dear Killer is a sinister psychological thriller that explores the thin line between good and evil, and the messiness of that inevitable moment when life contradicts everything you believe.

Dear Killer is the book form of Dexter, except the killer is a young teenage girl.  I think some readers may really like this book and I also think some people will HATE this book.  I was able to watch a few seasons of Dexter and then had to stop because I couldn’t deal with all of the deceit and lies.   I had a very similar experience with this book, I could handle the idea of her killing people that sounded like bad people.  However, I really started to get nervous with the lines began blurring for Kit.

Likes:

1) I enjoy seeing into that human psyche of a killer….don’t mean to sound creepy.  :)

2) I also liked that Kit’s convictions were tested, it made a really great plot twist in the book.

3) It raises a lot of really interesting psyche questions  with the underlying good vs evil question.

Dislikes:

1) She got away with murder far too easily and was able to take down grown adults with no ninja skills.

2) The ending, I wanted to throw my book across the room and then find it and stomp on it.

3) I was disgusted by some of the letters and why they were asking for specific people to be killed.  I think this is more a dislike of humans that are bad than the book.

If you like Dexter, then I bet you will really like this book.  If you don’t mind a protagonist who is a killer then this book might also be a book for you.

three-half-stars

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Jul 24

Review: The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mathieu

3.5 Stars, Contemporary, Review, Reviewed by Brittany, YA, YA Appeal, Young Adult 0 ★★★½

Review: The Truth About Alice by Jennifer MathieuThe Truth About Alice Genres: Coming of Age, Contemporary, YA, Young Adult
on June 3rd, 2014
Goodreads
three-half-stars
Everyone has a lot to say about Alice Franklin, and it’s stopped mattering whether it’s true. The rumors started at a party when Alice supposedly had sex with two guys in one night. When school starts everyone almost forgets about Alice until one of those guys, super-popular Brandon, dies in a car wreck that was allegedly all Alice’s fault. Now the only friend she has is a boy who may be the only other person who knows the truth, but is too afraid to admit it. Told from the perspectives of popular girl Elaine, football star Josh, former outcast Kelsie, and shy genius Kurt, we see how everyone has a motive to bring – and keep – Alice down.

I can honestly say that I have never been sucked into a realistic YA fiction like I was for The Truth About Alice.  As a high school teacher,  I have definitely heard of a few horror stories that have dealt with bullying and how fast gossip can spread with social media.  I also grew up in a small town where gossip spread at an alarming rate before the days of social media.   The Truth About Alice is told from multiple POV’s and jumps a bit in the beginning  but by the middle of the book, I had all the characters figured out.

The rumor is that Alice slept with two guys in one night and making matters even worse one of the guys, who is a beloved football star, dies in a car crash not too long after.  AND to make matters even worse, everyone thinks Alice killed him.  The story follows several characters and their accounts of what really happened and their truth’s about Alice.  I was absolutely horrified to read other people’s side of story but I couldn’t help but to keep reading and to find out what the truth was.  All too often I see that teens believe what they hear and do no second guess the rumors.  This is very easy to see in this story.

Overall, does this book make you have feels, no definitely not.  But the topic is intriguing enough to make you keep reading and the actual truth about Alice isn’t necessarily something I saw coming.

 

three-half-stars

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Jul 22

Time of Ruin (Ash and Ruin #2) by Shauna Granger Book Blitz

Book Blitz 0

Genres: Dystopian
Time of Ruin (Ash and Ruin #2)
Release Date: 07/22/14
Summary from Goodreads:
The world has ended, and hope is the most dangerous thing left.
Battered and bruised after barely escaping San Francisco with their lives, Kat, Dylan, and Blue press north – desperate to reach the possibility of a new home.

But strange, monstrous ravens are tracking the remaining survivors, food is becoming scarce, gasoline is running short, and people are becoming suicidal, making survival almost impossible.

And the Pestas are growing bolder. Somehow, their numbers are growing.

The further north they go, the harder it becomes to ignore the signs that they’ve made a fatal mistake. Kat must face the impossible truth that there is no escape, there is no safe haven, and their worst nightmares don’t come close to their new reality.

Excerpt: 

His words slip inside of me, rekindling the guilt that my anger had burned away. I bury my face into his chest and tighten my arms around him. The last few hours slam into me…and I struggle to keep from collapsing. A sob hiccups out of me as I squeeze my eyes as tight as possible to keep from crying.

“Hey,” Dylan whispers. He tries to pull away so he can look at me, but in his weakened state, I’m strong enough to stop him. “What is it?”

“I’m just so glad I found you,” I whisper against his soft flannel shirt.

“I found you,” he teases.

Instead of making me stop crying, that just makes it worse. I laugh weakly, a sob bursting out of me with it, and the first tears hit my cheeks. Dylan’s hand touches my chin, and I lift my face to look at him. He lowers his face, lips parted. My eyes close before his lips brush mine, and I give myself over to the moment. My body is weak and weary, but I’m strong enough for this.

Dylan leads me back to the car and opens the rear hatch with his good arm. He tells Blue to stay, and then we crawl inside. It’s cramped, smaller than the back of the Jeep, but in our rush, we don’t think to fold down the rear seats. It doesn’t matter; we’re so consumed in the moment that we could have been in a king-sized bed in a five-star hotel.

Book One:

(linked to Goodreads)

 

About the Author
Like so many other writers, Shauna grew up as an avid reader, but it was in high school that she realized she wanted to be a writer. Five years ago, Shauna started work on her Elemental Series. She released the first installment, Earth, on May 1, 2011 and has since released four sequels, with the series coming to an end with Spirit. She is currently hard at work on a new Urban Fantasy series, staring a spunky witch with a smush-faced cat named Artemis.
Author Links:
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GIVEAWAY:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Book Blitz Organized by:

 

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Jul 18

Cover Reveal: Eyes of the Woods by Eden Fierce

Uncategorized 1

We’re excited to share with you the cover for Debut Author Eden Fierce’s upcoming release, Eyes of the Woods! This cover is gorgeous! Let us know what you think!
 
Title: Eyes of the Woods
Author: Eden Fierce
Age Group: YA
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Cover Designer: Okay Creations, Sarah Hansen
Description:

Eris Helgren knew her life was about to end. A daughter of the Priory–a generations-old family who protected their territories from nightwalkers–Eris was strong and independent. But on her birthday, her father would announce her betrothal. A year later, she would be forced to marry.

What Eris didn’t know was that the very beings she hunted were watching her, and that being tamed wasn’t what would kill her after all.
In a land where the woods were forbidden and the laws meant life, Eris will have to make a decision that could bring peace between enemies, or war among friends.

Author Bio:

 

Eden Fierce was born on August 25, 1999 and lives in Enid, Oklahoma with her parents and two siblings. Eyes of the Woods is her debut novel, although it’s only one of nine novels she has completed. Eden enjoys writing, reading, and high school cheer and volleyball.
Connect with Eden:

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Jul 14

Review: Dark Days by Kate Ormand

3 Stars, Dystopia, Post Apocalyptic, Review, Reviewed by Brittany, YA, Young Adult 0

Review: Dark Days by Kate OrmandDark Days Genres: Dystopian, YA, Young Adult
on June 3rd, 2014
Goodreads
The future world has been divided into sectors--each the same as the other. Surrounded by thick steel fences, there is no way in and no way out. Yet a cyborg army penetrates each sector, picking off its citizens one by one, until no one is left. Behind the sectors' thick walls, the citizens wait to die. Few will be chosen to survive what's coming; the rest will be left behind to suffer. A new world has been created, and its rulers are incredibly selective on who will become a citizen. They want only those with important roles in society to help create a more perfect future. 

Sixteen-year-old Sia lives in one of the sectors as part of a family that is far too ordinary to be picked to live. According to the digital clock that towers high above her sector, she has only fifteen days to live. Sia has seen the reports and knows a horrific death is in store for her, but she is determined to make the most of her final days. Sia refuses to mourn her short life, instead promising herself that she'll stay strong, despite being suffocated by her depressed mother and her frightened best friend. Just when Sia feels more alone than ever, she meets Mace, a mysterious boy. There is something that draws Sia to him, despite his dangerousness, and together, they join a group of rebels and embark on an epic journey to destroy the new world and its machines, and to put an end to the slaughter of innocent people.

After reading the synopsis for this book I was so intrigued.  I love post-apocalyptic, dystopian books.  I know some people are sick of them but I am definitely not!  The idea that the town only has a handful of days left and there is a countdown displayed so that everyone knows at all times was fascinating to me.  One of the things I love most about this sub-genre is character development.  I love reading what characters do in the face of all these challenges.  Let’s be honest, I know I wouldn’t last a day in a zombie apocalypse.  My asthma would have me dead in just a few seconds.

Anyways, the beginning of Dark Days and this impending doom piqued my curiosity until about the mid-way point.  The plot twists became predictable and the end of the story was pretty blah.  I know in dystopians there is always going to be a rebellion or a rebel group but I wanted something more creative.  Sia and Mace have an insta-love connection and while normally I can handle it, it just turned the story off for me even more.

However, I did think there were some really creative elements to this story and that made me want to finish.  I was just hoping for more out of the story line.  Maybe, I am becoming a dystopian snob?

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Jul 13

Student Review: The White Aura (White Aura #1) by Felicia Tatum

4 Stars, Review, Student Review 0 ★★★★

Student Review: The White Aura (White Aura #1) by Felicia TatumThe White Aura Genres: YA, Young Adult
on November 30th, 2012
Goodreads
four-stars
How do you live with the gut clenching truth that the one you love will die if you meet them? Twenty year old sorcerer Scott Tabors is learning how. After seeing seventeen year old Olivia Whitehead outside of a coffee shop, his heart will never be the same. He longs for her, he wants her, and he knows she will be his. They are heart mates. ...but due to a curse on his family, he can't meet her. Not yet. So for now, he visits her in her dreams. Her dreams where he can tell her everything but his name.

Olivia Whitehead is a typical junior in high school. She and her best friend are having the time of their lives, but she can't help but notice the changes happening to her. Especially the changes in her heart after she begins dreaming about a mysterious dark haired young man. But what will happen when the school heartthrob decides he wants Olivia? Will she realize the dream man is real or will she move on?

This was an enjoyable, quick read that kept me on the edge of my seat. The plot twists and characters kept me wanting more and the relationship between Scott and Olivia was definitely different. Having them communicating strictly through Olivia’s dreams was interesting and I felt like it developed a stronger relationship between the two, even though they had never met before. I really liked how it was written in a dual-perspective format so it was able to show both of their perspectives on their relationship and the events that occur in the story. The relationship between Olivia and Aiden was also weird and kind of awkward. She didn’t like him, but she didn’t hate him either; she was attracted to him and didn’t know why. As he got closer to her, it became creepier and more mysterious, which I enjoyed, even though I knew he wasn’t good for her.

I also liked how this was a story with magic in it. Scott and his family are sorcerers and the fight at the end is them against one of the strongest sorcerers in history, The Crimson Calamitous, a.k.a. Aiden. I really enjoyed the fight.  So much was going on at once and it was going by so fast that it was just a roller coaster to read about between the magic battle and the trouble with Olivia’s friend Juniper. And, even though we didn’t find out in this book what Olivia was, I liked how she also had a magical side to her that was yet to be discovered. The way that the characters interacted worked well for the story and I enjoyed having the theme of magic laced throughout.

However, there were some parts of the story that were a little confusing and I felt like they weren’t explained as well as they could have been. The history behind Scott’s sorcery and the previous generations was a little difficult to understand. As the story progressed, I was able to piece together what him and his grandmother talked about to understand it all. Also, the situation between Olivia and her parents. At first, I just assumed that her parents worked a lot and couldn’t be home very often, but as the story went on, I felt like there was something else going on with them. The way they responded to Olivia was weird and it pointed me in the direction of them having something to hide, and maybe they do.

Overall, I did like this book and I am looking forward to reading the next one!

four-stars

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