Thursday, March 28, 2013

Blog Tour: The Kings of Charleston

Title: The Kings of Charleston
Author: Kat H. Clayton
Series: The Kings of Charleston (Book #1)
Publisher- Kat H. Clayton
Published- July 10th, 2012
Format- ebook
Pages- 272
Source- Xpresso Book Tours
Casper Whitley is forced to move to Charleston, South Carolina where she’ll be the new kid her senior year of high school. Casper’s upset about the move until she meets the Roman family’s gorgeous son, Cal, but there’s a problem. A mystery surrounds him which can be summed up in one word…Kythera. Never heard of it? Neither has Casper until she finds the word tattooed on cars, paintings and all her new friends. After Casper’s life is threatened, someone is forced to tell the truth about her parents, the Romans and Kythera’s motives for her being in Charleston. Once the truth is revealed, she must decide whether to protect her family and Kythera’s secrets or walk away from everything she has ever known.

Casper's life takes a complete turn when she is forced to move to Charleston, a town with its share of secrets. Everywhere she goes there is the word "Kythera" - on cars, on people and people become frightened when they see it. No one's telling her anything even Cal who has an immediate interest in her. Obviously she's going to have to figure out the mystery of this town but that doesn't mean she will like the answer.

Many times I thought this book was going too fast. Too fast into the mystery or Casper and Cal's relationship. Since it's a mystery/suspense book it makes sense but for me it wasn't working. I did like how Casper instantly knew something was going on. She wasn't naive or gullible. She didn't even let the cute guy that starts hanging around her - Cal. I really didn't see anything with Cal but I saw the mystery that came with him. From the beginning you could tell he was hiding something or was watching her. He popped up way too many times for it to be considered coincidence.

I think the mystery in the beginning was what this book had going for it. Some moments I didn't like choices that Casper made but for the majority I thought she was a great main character. To be honest I did like this book but I don't know if I would continue the series. I think based on what I read it does have potential to be even better than this first book was but you never know. So I do like this book I just think that some things could have been different. It's perfect for people who like fast paced reads and some romance in there too. I think the mystery will win you over the most.

To purchase The Kings of Charleston go to:

About the Author


Kat has been a writer her entire life, but never pursued a writing career until the characters from a short story she wrote in high school refused to go away. Finally, she sat down and wrote their story which would became The Kings of Charleston series.



Kat has been an avid reader her entire life. She enjoys all genres, but particularly Mystery and Young Adult. Mary Higgins Clark is one of her favorite authors who inspired her love of mysteries. 

When she isn't writing, Kat loves to travel, try out new recipes and hang out with her husband. She is originally from Kentucky, but currently resides in South Georgia with her husband, a cat named Frank and a dog named Lil.

For more info about Kat H. Clayton and her books go to:



Giveaway!



Thanks to the author & Xpresso Book Tours for this giveaway!


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Blog Tour: Shattered Soul by Jennifer Snyder

Title: Shattered Soul
Author: Jennifer Snyder
Standalone
Format- ebook
Publisher- CreateSpace
Published- May 14th, 2011
Pages- 298
Source- CBL Book Tours

Hellish Nightmare...

If seventeen-year-old Seth Bradson were to describe his life in two words, those would be the two he’d choose. Seth prefers to cope with his crappy existence by spending his days in a drug-induced haze. But when Ali Carson steps into his life, Seth finds something he’s subconsciously been seeking—a new drug, one that consumes his mind unlike any other. 

Love.

In a moment of unforgivable weakness, Seth allows Ali to try crystal meth, his most addictive temptation. This single event begins the unraveling of both their lives and forces Seth to learn the definition of regret the hard way.


Seth isn't the type of person you would want to introduce to your parents. He’s a pill popper and a drug smoker who hangs around with other pill poppers and drug smokers. His only family is his mother and brother. His mother is an alcoholic who can’t support him and his brother because of her alcohol addiction. There are moments where Seth and you as a reader must conclude that she doesn't even care to support them. His brother like his mother can’t hold a job so he goes into dealing drugs. He likes to not only assert his power on the girls he gets hooked but on him. Seth doesn't dare get on his brother’s bad side because he knows with defiance comes a beating.

In walks Ali, a cute blond who just moved into town. She’s the most beautiful girl he’s laid eyes on. He can’t believe when she starts talking to a guy like him. Soon they are hanging out and smoking together. Ali seems so innocent and sweet but really there is another side to her entirely. The addiction side that begins to fester in her soul. An insatiable hunger that makes her grow distant and makes Seth become a better person. This isn't really a love story. It’s a story of addiction and feeling like you can’t change your fate.

This was a pretty messed up book. I don’t know when was the last time I read a book where drugs was the central theme. This book makes me think of Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson. It’s not about drugs but it has this sad feeling that comes with the pain with dealing with some parts of life. By the end of it, it really got me down. The thing is it's always good when a book can make you feel a certain way. I wouldn't read or love to read so much if I didn't get anything out of it. This is one of those books that show you realities in life that most of us don't necessarily face day-to-day or don't really think about often.

There were some times where I saw this reality for the way it was and the way the author intended it to be. But other moments I felt like it wasn't as raw or dramatic as I would have liked. I'm pretty sure it's due to Ali and the distance I felt she conveyed right from the beginning. She was at first unattainable, just a dream to Seth. Later she was his but was still a mystery. In the end she was distant, just a stranger to Seth and me. I really didn't like how I wasn't able to relate to her.

I feel like her distance and the parent's non-involvement with their kids could go either way with you. With the parent's involvement or lack thereof issue I saw how the main character felt he couldn't trust an adult to help him so it makes sense that he didn't seek any help when it got bad. On the other side I really just wanted Seth to say something to her parents. I was dying inside a little waiting for him to say something to someone. He let it go on for so long! Overall I really got into what this book was about BUT I have mixed feelings on how everything was handled by the main character. I can say this was a solid read.

To purchase Shattered Soul go to:

About the Author


Jennifer Snyder lives in North Carolina were she spends most of her time writing young adult fiction, reading, and struggling to stay on top of housework. She is an instant coffee lover with an obsession for spiral bound notebooks and smooth writing pens. Jennifer lives with her husband and two children, who endure listening to songs that spur inspiration on repeat and tolerate her love for all paranormal, teenage-targeted TV shows.

For more info about Jennifer Snyder and her books go to:


Giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks to the author & CBL Book Tours for this giveaway!

CBL Book Tours


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Blog Tour: The Boys of Summer by C.J. Duggan

Title: The Boys of Summer
Author: C.J. Duggan
Series: Summer (Book #1)
Format- ebook
Publisher- C.J. Duggan
Published- December 17th, 2012
Pages- 408
Source- YA Bound

It seemed only natural to nickname them the ‘Onslow Boys’. Every time they swaggered in the front door of the Onslow Hotel after a hard week’s work, their laughter was loud and genuine as they settled onto their bar stools. I peeked through the restaurant partition, a flimsy divider between my world and theirs. I couldn’t help but smile whenever I saw them, saw him ... Toby Morrison.

Quiet seventeen-year-old Tess doesn’t relish the thought of a summertime job. She wants nothing more than to forget the past haunts of high school and have fun with her best friends before the dreaded Year Twelve begins. To Tess, summer is when everything happens: riding bikes down to the lake, watching the fireworks at the Onslow Show and water bomb fights at the sweltering Sunday markets.

How did she let her friends talk her into working?

After first-shift disasters, rude, wealthy tourists and a taunting ex-boyfriend, Tess is convinced nothing good can come of working her summer away. However, Tess finds unlikely allies in a group of locals dubbed ‘The Onslow Boys’, who are old enough to drive cars, drink beer and not worry about curfews. Tess’s summer of working expands her world with a series of first times with new friends, forbidden love and heartbreaking chaos.

All with the one boy she has never been able to forget. 

It will be a summer she will always remember.

Tess is teased relentlessly by her ex-boyfriend and his posse. Luckily where she lacks in confidence in telling her ex off, her best friends more than make up in having her back. There is Ellie, the boy crazy, over-excitable, and confidant best friend. And then there is Adam the everybody-loves-him, somewhat silly, and ever sweet best friend. That ever sweet best friend got into her the job from hell that she and all of them have to work on the weekends during summer. Or so she thought. Enter Toby Morrison, her crush since forever, a boy five years older her and wouldn't even see her if she tried. But then he does and her crushing years come rushing back.

Toby is a part of the Onslow Boys group. They are the "elite" boys who were once pretty big in the Onslow community. They were revered and admired. All the girls want to be with them none more than Toby. That's why it isn't strange that Toby is taken by one of the most beautiful girls in their small town. But do the laughs, wide smiles, and glimpses that she gives him being returned or is she just being too much of a day dreamer? Even if they are not returned her summer with the Onslow Boys bring her confidence nevertheless. She is now saying and doing things she never would have before. The only thing that could make this summer even better would be if Toby Morrison was hers.

I'm actually pretty impressed with how well this book went. I don't know what I thought but I didn't think I would like this book so much. At first I was a bit worried about how the book was going in the beginning but just a little more into it and I saw who the characters were. I really liked that the book didn't start in the summer like I expected. There was background on the characters and the story. I didn't see why she was made fun of though. I understood the whole jerk of a boyfriend but the main character, Tess, had the wit and playful humor throughout the book. I guess she faded behind that shadow of her friend for a while but I saw how awesome she was even from the beginning.

I really just loved Tess. There were some little parts where she wasn't behaving very properly by lying about something pretty important and having sex prematurely. I always feel like that makes me sound like such a prude but she hardly spent time with a guy and she was in bed with him. It wasn't as bad as it sounds actually. I just hope that not all teenagers are as reckless as she was. Now I sound like a mother... Anyways I liked the way she was and her attitude for the majority of the book. I really just loved her as a person. I could connect with the story so much better because she was there.

Now Toby was a nice guy but I liked one of the Onslow Boys so much better. Sean? Now I would be crushing on him. I love that he will be one of the main characters in the second book. I can't wait to hear about Sean the Prince Charming (in my eyes). So Toby was really a nice guy but he was taken most of the book. When he got closer to her he wasn't around as much as I would have liked. He matched her silly humor and wit. I really loved all of the good characters banter. It was relaxing in a way. I could feel the new beginning and new bright feeling that Tess was feeling. It just felt... perfect in a way like these new friends with the old were home. Seriously a worthwhile book to read. I am so beyond excited about Sean! I can't wait for him to find the girl who will be his.

About the Author


C.J Duggan is an Australian author who lives with her husband in a rural border town of New South Wales, Australia. The Boys of Summer is Book One in her Mature Young Adult Romance Series.

For more info about C.J. Duggan and her book go to:

Buy Links:
 photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg  photo 111AD205-AA04-4F9E-A0F4-C1264C4E9F30-1855-000001A1E8CEB6D7_zps9b730b94.jpg


Giveaway!

Enter below to win one of 5 e-book copies of The Boys of Summer, open Internationally!


Thanks to the author and YA Bound for this giveaway!


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Blog Tour: Fraction of Stone

Title: Fraction of Stone
Author: Kelley Lynn
Series: Fraction (Book #1)
Format- ebook
Publisher- Sapphire Star Publishing
Published- March 21st, 2013
Pages- 269
Source- Xpresso Book Tours

Wind tunnels, torrential rains and earthquakes tear apart Casden. The cause of the world’s imbalance is unknown, but the mounting occurrences suggest there’s little time before life ceases to exist.

Rydan Gale and Akara Nazreth are the only humans with the ability to wield magic. The tattoo on their necks and the discovery of an ancient book, dictate they are the key to the world’s survival.

But the greatest obstacle for saving mankind isn’t the bizarre creatures, extreme betrayals and magic-fearing men hunting them.

It’s that Akara doesn’t believe the world is worth saving.

One boy, one girl, two very different lives, and a choice that will shape the world. Akara has been forced to kill for the side of Liasam. She's not respected or loved for what she does but hated and feared for what she can do. She will never forgive them for what they have made her do and the way she's been treated. Rydan fights for the Tarmack's who promise glory and pleasure. His life is drastically different from Akara. He's been able to be taught by his good friend Phemedes so he has more control of his powers than Akara. Now the war is over and Akara will meet a deadly fate which welcomes but then Rydan is there saving her. Answers are revealed to her and Rydan now the only thing standing in the way of saving the world is for Akara to find at least one person worth saving the whole world for.

Akara's life is just completely messed up. She's very cold to the world. All she sees is evil. It's no wonder why she doesn't want to save the world. Everyone has always treated her like she was lower than dirt, like she wasn't worth saving. It was easier for me to see Akara's side because I felt her sorrow. Her life has been completely horrible up till now and now she's expected to save it. If I were her I would find a way to learn to control my power and when I have done so I would kill all those who have hurt me. 

The story is written with Akara and Ryden as the two POV's. I felt even though Ryden was one POV Akara was the star of the story. I was rooting for her more than anything. I would cringe when I saw life bringing her down or more appropriately the men who came after them. She was the character that I liked the most. I liked her perspective on the world (not saying I agree with her) because it realistic while Ryden just saw all that he was given. I was surprised that he didn't notice that Akara's life was so unlike his before he officially found out. It was pretty obvious but it's because of this tunnel vision he had that I preferred Akara's side of the story. She saw the reality of what people can do while Ryden saw nothing.

Ryden was still a nice character in that he cared for Akara and what happened to the world. I don't know if his intentions to save the world was just because of the goodness of his heart but I do think he's a generally good person who saw the positive side of the world. I felt bad for him because once it was revealed that everything wasn't sunshine and rainbows the way he saw the world changed. The whole story by the way is about these two people whose people are destroyed leaving only them and a couple others left. They're the only ones that can wield magic. Magic is important to save the world. There is a stone called the Gia Stone that was split into four and that needs to be put back together before the world destroys itself. It needs magic to be fed to it for it to work. What I don't understand about this is why right now the world suddenly has come to a climax where in a couple of days it needs to be saved. You would think that the other people who know about this impending doom would have been more prepared.

Overall I enjoyed the journey, the different personalities, and the different perspectives. I liked the old feeling of the time in which they lived in. I don't like how it ended but I realize it is a series so it makes sense how it ended but still. Basically I'm complaining that I couldn't find out how it finished so that's more of a compliment than a complaint. I felt that there was something lacking with the story that couldn't quite get me to love this book. I can't really pinpoint what it is but there was something missing for me. I did generally like it and I want to know what happens next which are all good signs that this was a good read.

To purchase Fraction of Stone go to: 

About the Author


"During Kelley Lynn’s last year at the University of Wisconsin – Madison, while pursuing her degree in Chemical Engineering, the voices in her head got the best of her. Surprisingly, they didn’t want to talk about process flow diagrams and heat capacity. They preferred the fantastical. So instead of turning to her Thermodynamics book, Kelley brought up a blank page on her computer screen and wrote.

Come graduation, not only did Kelley have a diploma and, thankfully, a wonderful job, but she had a new obsession as well. Amidst the order and exactness that came with the nine to five, Kelley found a way to create; to determine the rules of a world and take her characters to the limits of what was possible. Perhaps she has a slight control complex.

The first in the series, Fraction of Stone, was born on an airplane and took ten days to write. It probes the question, should the world be saved if there’s no one in it worth saving? 

When briefly managing to quiet the voices, Kelley participates in softball, soccer and volleyball. (You probably don’t want her on your volleyball team. Unless you want to laugh.) She lives with her sister and her dog who can attest to the chair that has Kelley’s butt print permanently pressed into it. Depending on the weekend, you might be able to hear Kelley sing for an area classic rock band.

Kelley Lynn is a member of the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators."

For more info about Kelley Lynn and her books go to:

Giveaway!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey

Title: Jasper Jones
Author: Craig Silvey
Stand Alone
Format- Hardcover
Publisher- Knopf Books for Young Readers
Published- April 5th, 2011
Pages- 310
Source- Library

Late on a hot summer night in 1965, Charlie Bucktin, a precocious and bookish boy of thirteen, is startled by an urgent knock on the window of his sleep-out. His visitor is Jasper Jones, an outcast in the regional mining town of Corrigan. Rebellious, mixed-race and solitary, Jasper is a distant figure of danger and intrigue for Charlie. So when Jasper begs for his help, Charlie eagerly steals into the night by his side, terribly afraid but desperate to impress. Jasper takes him to his secret glade in the bush, and it's here that Charlie bears witness to Jasper's horrible discovery. With his secret like a brick in his belly, Charlie is pushed and pulled by a town closing in on itself in fear and suspicion as he locks horns with his tempestuous mother; falls nervously in love and battles to keep a lid on his zealous best friend, Jeffrey Lu. And in vainly attempting to restore the parts that have been shaken loose, Charlie learns to discern the truth from the myth, and why white lies creep like a curse. In the simmering summer where everything changes, Charlie learns why the truth of things is so hard to know, and even harder to hold in his heart.

Jasper Jones is the person you blame whenever you want to get out of trouble. If your parents ask you if you were with Jasper Jones when you did your wrongdoing you better say yes. Jasper Jones is a thief, a troublemaker, and a legend. He is talked about like he's not even a real person - more like he's a windstorm, passing through the minds of Corrigan's citizens and leaving rumors and chaos in his wake. Charlie, an average boy of thirteen, is about to discover the legend in the flesh and he's not going to like what he discovers.

Jasper Jones is an enigma. He's treated like he's dirt and is seen as the sum of all the problems in the world. When seen through Charlie's eyes I can recognize a sort of awe and an invisible line separating the town and Jasper Jones. You only get to know Jasper Jones so much. You do learn some interesting facts about him along the way but most of the book he is not really seen as a person but something else. The thing about him is that he can be bad but he doesn't really involve anyone else in his troubles except Charlie. He smokes and drinks but he's not really a bad guy. It's the 60's and he's mixed race. He's basically homeless but no parent seems to care. I think he just got a bad rap in life and tries to do the best with what he's got. I felt sorry for him. I wanted to see more of his vulnerable side because he doesn't have a great life. I wanted to see a little more that he cared about what happened after the initial discovery.

This story isn't really about Jasper Jones. It's about Charlie seeing different sides of the world and figuring out his own truth with what he sees. I must warn you. This is a very boy book and some things scream a man wrote this book. It's good and it's bad. There are just some instances where it was just gross and unnecessary but that literally was like three moments so don't let that dissuade you. Anyways Charlie is the main character in this story who has this big secret thrust upon him. It's a really big deal especially since he has to keep it from the girl he likes.

I liked getting into Charlie's head and conversations. This book was comprised of a lot of everyday conversations. He and his best friend, Jeffrey, had an epic one on who's the best superhero. They insult each other all the time and act like regular kids. The author shows another instance where race has to do with how the citizens of Corrigan treated people that are different from them. I'm pretty sure he's Vietnamese and during that time it was the Vietnam War so you can imagine. It brought some tension to the story and that added on to the secret the people of Corrigan had to deal with you can say they were very "aware" of what was going on around them. With the discrimination of race they were ignorant and bigots but what do you expect?

It's not really a secret about what Charlie discovers because you find out right away but I don't want to give it away. You realize how really messed up it is towards the end. I don't think there was that much time spent on it. It was there but it wasn't pursued that much by the characters like I thought it should have. This book could be somewhat crude in the way the characters spoke. Again it's a very "boy" book. I kind of feel like I missed something towards the end but most of the book I enjoyed. The characters were very the same because they were all outsiders. You could tell they were different from what the rest of the Corrigan's were like which wasn't a bad thing because who wants to be a racist?

This story also had to deal with Charlie's family. His mother was very bitter and I could see her anger. You know when you get angry you get this face. It's not a very pretty face because well you are angry. I could see that ugliness on her face. A lot of the story felt like it was about Charlie, his family, his friend, and what he was feeling about what he discovered. I was pleased with this story and where it went. It left me thinking about racism back when the majority of people were very ignorant about that subject. It made me think of justice too and what constitutes justice. It had some flaws but when it all said and done I am happy I was able to discover Charlie and read his story.

Bonus: Jasper Jones Cake! from Silvey's Facebook

For more info about Craig Silvey and his books go to:

Monday, March 18, 2013

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? #15

This meme is hosted by Book Journey

Last week was just so relaxing. It was a really great week but school's starting now so I've got to get in the swing of things again. So how many books did I read last week? Let's see:



Less than I expected but I did really enjoy them. With Brotherhood being so long and this other book that I almost finished (500/800 pages) I didn't have time on those days to read that much. During that time I had a marathon of Veronica Mars episodes because of the Veronica Mars Movie which on Kickstarter is currently at 3.6 million. I also finally got faster internet and t.v. with more than five shows I can watch. I have a feeling I'm going to be watching a lot of movies. I reviewed First Visions out of this list. Silver Linings Playbook the movie is awesome by the way!

Currently Reading


A gorgeous debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another.

"One thing my mother never knew, and would disapprove of most of all, was that I watched the Garretts. All the time.”

The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, numerous, messy, affectionate. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen-year-old Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love, Jase's family makes Samantha one of their own. Then in an instant, the bottom drops out of her world and she is suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

A dreamy summer read, full of characters who stay with you long after the story is over.


Giveaway!


A giveaway is going on for an ebook copy of Remembrance.

Book Discoveries

Tumble & Fall by Alexandra Coutts
A novel about the end of days full of surprising beginnings 
 
The world is living in the shadow of oncoming disaster. An asteroid is set to strike the earth in just one week’s time; catastrophe is unavoidable. The question isn’t how to save the world—the question is, what to do with the time that's left? Against this stark backdrop, three island teens wrestle with intertwining stories of love, friendship and family—all with the ultimate stakes at hand. 
 
Alexandra Coutts's TUMBLE & FALL is a powerful story of courage, love, and hope at the end of the world.


Save Yourself by Kelly Braffet
SAVE YOURSELF has the narrative flair of Gillian Flynn and Adam Ross, the scruffy appeal of Donald Ray Pollock, and the addictiveness of Breaking Bad.

Patrick Cusimano is in a bad way. His father is in jail, he works the midnight shift at a grubby convenience store, and his brother's girlfriend, Caro, has taken their friendship to an uncomfortable new level. On top of all that, he can't quite shake the attentions of Layla Elshere, a goth teenager who befriends Patrick for reasons he doesn't understand and doesn't fully trust. The temptations these two women offer are pushing him to his breaking point.

Meanwhile, Layla's little sister, Verna, is suffering through her first year of high school. She's become a prime target for her cruel classmates, not just because of her strange name and her fundamentalist parents: Layla's bad-girl rep proves to be too huge a shadow for Verna, so she falls in with her sister's circle of outcasts and misfits whose world is far darker than she ever imagined.

Kelly Braffet's characters, indelibly portrayed and richly varied, are all on their own twisted paths to finding peace. The result is a novel of unnerving power-darkly compelling, addictively written, and shockingly honest.

What are you reading this week?

Friday, March 15, 2013

Transcend Time Blitz + Giveaway

You may remember that I read and reviewed Remembrance a while ago. When I discovered there was going to be a blog blitz and giveaway for Remembrance I jumped on this chance! Hopefully one of you reading this right now will be able to discover Lizzie's world.


Lizzie Davenport has been reincarnated from Regency Era, England ... but she doesn't know it yet. Then Drew Carmichael transfers into Lizzie's high school at the beginning of the year, and she feels a connection to him, almost like she knows him. She can't stop thinking about him, but whenever she tries talking with him about the mysteries behind her feelings, he makes it clear that he wants nothing to do with her. Reaching him is even more difficult because she has a boyfriend, Jeremy, who has started to become full of himself after being elected co-captain of the varsity soccer team, and her flirtatious best friend Chelsea starts dating Drew soon after his arrival. So why can't she get him out of her mind? Even though Lizzie knows she should let go of her fascination with Drew, fighting fate isn't going to be easy.

To purchase Remembrance go to:
Amazon/Barnes & Noble/Kobo/iBookstore
Only 99 cents!


How far would you go to get revenge?
When Chelsea Givens discovered that her ex-boyfriend Drew dumped her to be with her former best friend Lizzie, she'd never felt so betrayed in her life. Then her new friend Shannon tells her she can help set things right. Chelsea's willing to listen, but what Shannon wants her to believe -- that she shared a past life with Drew -- is impossible. And what she wants her to do to get him back … well, it's downright crazy. Could Shannon be telling the truth? And if she is, what lengths will Chelsea go if it means making Lizzie pay?*Vengeance is the short story that bridges the events in Remembrance and the final novel in the Saga.

To purchase Vengeance go to:
Amazon/Barnes & Noble/Kobo/iBookstore


IT'S A RACE AGAINST TIME.
In Remembrance, Lizzie and Drew changed the course of fate so they could be together. In Vengeance, Chelsea set fate back on its original, deadly path. Now, strange things keep happening to Lizzie. Things that are omens of darkness to come. A curse has doomed her to die an early death, just as she did in her past life. To make matters worse, even if she can figure out who cast the curse, it's irreversible. There's only one option left for her to save herself. It's crazier than anything she's heard yet, and to do it, she'll need Drew and Chelsea's help. Because to make things right, they must go back to when it all began ... and Lizzie discovers that the final events in her past life were more sinister than she ever imagined.


To purchase Timeless go to:

Transcendence is free at Smashwords!
Includes: Sneak peak of Remembrance - Bonus scene for Remembrance - Deleted chapter from Timeless - Character extras for Lizzie, Drew, Chelsea, Jeremy, and Hannah - Author interviews - Essays written by Michelle Madow about the series 

What really made me want to read Remembrance was it being based upon Taylor Swift's song Love Story. I'm really happy this can be used as a promo:


HOW TAYLOR SWIFT’S “LOVE STORY” MUSIC VIDEO INSPIRED REMEMBRANCE

The “Love Story” music video premiered in the fall of 2008. The first time I watched it, I was entranced. Taylor sees a guy while walking through campus, and the moment their eyes connect, the scene flashes to the two of them dancing at a beautiful ball dressed in clothes that appear to be from around the year 1815. It’s magical to watch, and the video is so amazing that it gave me chills. I watched it over and over again, and a story started to piece together in my mind. A story about a girl reincarnated from Regency Era, England, who doesn’t realize it until her soul mate transfers into her school and triggers her memories to gradually return to her.
In that semester at school, I was taking a class called Intro to Creative Writing. One of our first big assignments in class was to write anything we wanted and bring it in to share with everyone. Since the characters and scenes that came to me while watching “Love Story” refused to leave my mind, I decided that for the project, I would write the first chapter of what I then called “The Story Inspired by ‘Love Story.’”
After completing the chapter, I stared at it for about an hour, worrying about what my classmates would think after reading it. I assumed everyone else would write about “normal” topics—not reincarnation and seeing your soulmate from the past for the first time! What if they thought what I wrote was weird? I nearly erased it in favor of turning something else in, but then I remembered something Taylor had said:
"If you’re lucky enough to be different from everyone else, don't change."
I listened to her advice. Yes, what I wrote was going to be way different from what everyone else in class wrote, but I was okay with that. And after I read the chapter aloud to the class, I was amazed to find out that everyone in my class, including my teacher, loved it. Actually, they more than loved it—they wanted to read more!
But I had never written a novel before, and the idea of making the plunge and going for it intimidated me. What if I failed and couldn’t finish it? That worried me, but again, I remembered something Taylor had said:
"To me, fearless isn't not having fears; it's not that you're not afraid of anything. I think that being fearless is having a lot of fears, but you jump anyway."
So I jumped.
And now, three years after I saw the “Love Story” music video for the first time, my debut novel Remembrance is finally available for everyone to read. I’m so happy to be able to share it with you. I can only hope that if you choose to read it, you end up enjoying it as much as I loved writing it!

Thank you for taking the time to read my story about how “Love Story” and Taylor Swift helped me get to where I am today! -Michelle Madow




Giveaway!


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Thanks to the author & Xpresso Book Tours for this giveaway!


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Stop Everything! There's Going to be a Veronica Mars Movie

Oh My God you guys! There's going to be a Veronica Mars movie. It's on Kickstarter and they almost made their 2 million goal on the first day. It'll probably happen by the time you read this. My life is just so wonderful right now. What are the odds that I would do a guest post at Forget About TV, Grab a Book (awesome blog by the way) about The Liar Society Trilogy and how I find it so similar to Veronica Mars? You must see this epic Kickstarter video. It makes me feel all warm and happy inside. Must watch ALL OF THE  EPISODES!


Kickstarter link here.

First Visions by Heather Topham Wood

Title: First Visions
Author: Heather Topham Wood
Series: Second Sight (Book #1)
Format- epub
Publisher- Createspace
Published- April 27th, 2012
Pages- 202
Source- Xpresso Book Tours

Two years ago, 21-year-old Kate Edwards became deathly ill and slipped into a coma. While unconscious, she crept into the mind of a missing boy and awoke with the knowledge of his location. Friends and family were skeptical and wary of her new ability to see into the minds of others. Their fears prompted Kate to keep her psychic powers a secret. Feeling alienated, she dropped out of college and spent most of her days holed up at her mother’s home. 

Now another child has been abducted. Police detective Jared Corbett seeks out Kate for her help in solving the case. Reluctantly, Kate agrees and they must work together to bring 8-year-old Cori Preston home to her family. Although attracted to one another, Jared has a girlfriend with ties to the abduction case and Kate is sarcastic and guarded since her coma. With visions she can’t control and an uncontrollable attraction to the detective, she wonders if she can leave the past behind and finally stop hiding from the world. Otherwise, Cori may be lost forever.

Kate's felt out of place for a long time. Ever since she came out of a coma two years ago she's been able to see visions of the past. The one that got her in trouble was about a little boy that was missing at the time. She was able to describe where he was which led to his rescue. After that people either thought she was a freak and left her or they thought they could find their missing loved ones with her help and wouldn't leave her alone. The problem is that even if she wanted to help those who asked her she couldn't turn her visions on and off like a switch. The visions just come to her. She has no control over them. She especially had no control of what it did to her life. It left her with an estrangement with her father, one final friend, and a feeling that she is in fact a freak.

It all comes down to the moment when a detective walks in asking for her help. She denies that she is a psychic. She's been denying it ever since that first vision because all it has brought her is pain. But, something about the little girl, Cori, tugs at her heart. It doesn't help that the detective, Jared, has smoldering good looks either. Her decision to help find Cori will be a turning point in her life when everything that she knew about herself and her ability changes.

Wow. I liked this book way more than I expected to. First of all Kate is this incredible character who is unbelievably hilarious. Her sarcastic humor had me laughing all the way through the story and when not laughing I was smiling to myself just so happy that I could read what she has to say. She has such a great personality with a mix of vulnerability to it. She's had to create these walls in front of her to keep her safe from heartbreak which is unfortunate because she really does care about the people who ask her for help. It's really not fair for her to have to feel bad about being who she is. She is more strong than vulnerable. She has this certain power in herself and the way she doesn't take anything from anybody. I envy that about her.

Needless to say Kate did wonders for this book. I was able to connect with her which in turn helped me connect with the story. I would love to hang out with her if I could. I would so defend her against anyone who ever gave her an attitude or dirty look. I mean she's psychic. Why wouldn't you want to be friends with her? I would have been so excited if I was her friend. I would have been jumping up and down saying "Are you serious!?" repeatedly and telling her how cool she is. I guess I could see why people would be so skeptical about her being a psychic but to think she had anything to do with the initial disappearance is ridiculous. She was in a coma. When did she have the time to orchestrate this supposed deception?

Romance in any story when done right makes me happy. It's done right here. Her and the detective's interactions were amusing to read about. She obviously was struck by him while he took a little while to warm up. There is a bit of a love triangle but it's not what you think. Jared's girlfriend is the person whose sister is missing. I said it. Girlfriend. Before you boo Jared he does nothing wrong and the girlfriend is a pain anyways so you don't care what happens to her. I really liked them together. It was obvious they had feelings for each other. It wasn't really slow but it wasn't like it was instalove or anything like that. The author just made it feel right.

Not all of this book was focused on romance. The book did have its slight mystery factor with who kidnapped Cori and where on earth is she. What really got me curious about Cori's kidnapping was Kate's feeling that it was personal. That it had something to do with the family. Then I couldn't shake the feeling that it had to have had something to do with one family member in particular. I was expecting something a little more sinister but everything about the kidnapping and how it went down in the end made me not care about that little if it was sinister enough. Things Go Down. A little too fast for me now that I think about it but otherwise it was a pretty great conclusion.

The visions were adapted well. The different POV's she could have were interesting to explore. It would have been nice to see the villain's point of view but oh well. Kate could see things from inside the mind of Cori. She was also able to have this out of body experience looking in to what was happening with Cori but not emotionally experiencing what Cori was feeling. Now that I'm thinking about this book more I think maybe there could have been even more focus on visions with her and a little less on the romance. Cori was gone for a long time which doesn't seem right. Don't get me wrong there was time spent on finding her but more would have been a little nice.

One last person I must mention is Kate's mother. She made a mistake of not supporting her daughter before but she more than made up for it in my eyes. The scenes with her were always great. She had such a motherly protectiveness for her daughter all the while chastising her for being her overly sarcastic self. I would want her in my corner. There was this moment where the author showed her POV and I simply loved that because you can see her own struggle of keeping her daughter from pain and helping her realize that she is special no matter what. With so many parents in books that are no good it was nice to see a mother that didn't have any flaws for me. She supported her daughter and that's what kids all really need from their parents at that age. All in all I really enjoyed this book and look forward to where the author takes Kate. I see a career in psychic consulting in her future! More than anything I hope to see Kate happy and getting herself into the just right amount of trouble.


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Blog Tour: First Visions Excerpt + Giveaway

"Two years ago, 21-year-old Kate Edwards became deathly ill and slipped into a coma. While unconscious, she crept into the mind of a missing boy and awoke with the knowledge of his location. Friends and family were skeptical and wary of her new ability to see into the minds of others. Their fears prompted Kate to keep her psychic powers a secret. Feeling alienated, she dropped out of college and spent most of her days holed up at her mother’s home. 

Now another child has been abducted. Police detective Jared Corbett seeks out Kate for her help in solving the case. Reluctantly, Kate agrees and they must work together to bring 8-year-old Cori Preston home to her family. Although attracted to one another, Jared has a girlfriend with ties to the abduction case and Kate is sarcastic and guarded since her coma. With visions she can’t control and an uncontrollable attraction to the detective, she wonders if she can leave the past behind and finally stop hiding from the world. Otherwise, Cori may be lost forever." -Goodreads Summary


*There was supposed to be a review with this post but unfortunately I won't be able to have that review up today. Come back tomorrow if you want to know what I thought of First Visions!*


Excerpt

They drove for approximately five minutes before pulling into a park. It was one of the larger parks in town and covered over three hundred acres. It had two separate playground facilities, a large pond, tennis courts and dozens of trails. Kate gave him a questioning look.
“There’s a brown paper bag in the backseat, could you grab it?” Jared requested.
“Why? Did you take me to a drug deal?” she asked sarcastically reaching for the bag. 
Ignoring her sarcasm, he began to walk away. Obediently, she followed him while carrying the bag. He stopped at the edge of the pond a few yards away and held his hand out. Dutifully, she handed over the bag while sending him her best confounded look.
Reaching in, he removed a large chunk of bread. He broke off a piece and threw it into the water. A nearby group of ducks grew excited and began to glide over to the water where it had fallen. A cacophony of excited quacks filled the air. 
“You took me to feed the ducks?” she asked incredulously. Before he could answer, she persisted. “You know that it’s like totally illegal, right? I think there is even a sign warning of a huge fine if you’re caught. Since you’re a cop, doesn’t this set a bad example?”
“Shhh, you’re scaring the ducks away,” he said and handed her a piece of stale bread. 
“It’s also against the laws of nature. Feeding them affects how they migrate and also can pollute the water. You should be ashamed of yourself,” she admonished. 
“You’re ruining the Zen feeling of feeding the ducks,” he said. 
She rolled her eyes and launched a few small pieces into the pond. She smiled as one of the ducks caught a piece in its bill. 
His gray eyes gave her a sideways glance as he continued, “Whenever I feel stressed I come here, I guess it makes me feel like a kid again.” 
“And you brought me here because…” Kate prompted.
“I don’t know, you seem upset, thought communing with nature might help,” he said and gave an exaggerated shrug. “You can talk to me if something is bothering you.”
She blew out a long breath. “Thanks for the offer.” She stopped and turned to him. “You don’t have to be nice to me. It’s not a requirement or anything for me to help with Cori.”
“Are you always like this?”
“Always like what?”
“You’re defensive and combative. You seem to have a hard time trusting people,” he explained. 
“And what? I’m supposed to trust you?” she scoffed. She snatched the bag from his hand. Continuing to throw bread, she noticed the number of ducks coming over to them multiplied. “I don’t think I’ve trusted anyone completely since I became sick,” she admitted warily.
He nodded and sensed she didn’t want to elaborate on her trust issues. “You never told me why you were so sick. The paper said you had an infection?”
Kate shifted uncomfortably. “It was actually meningitis. The doctors guessed living in the college dorms was one of the reasons I got sick. You know, close quarters and all that. It happened sort of suddenly and I didn’t even feel very ill at first. Next thing I know, I’m in a hospital and a week of my life is gone.”
“Do you remember anything else from when you were unconscious? Besides the vision of Matt?” he probed.
“What, like a white light? An angel in a meadow meeting me?” Kate shook her head. “No, the rest is pretty much a blank. I kind of wish something like that did happen. Maybe I received some sort of explanation on why I see these images and I can’t remember.” Talking about when she almost died was difficult and it provoked her to change the subject quickly. “What’s with the casual attire? No work today?”
“I worked for a couple of hours this morning, ran some errands and got the car info I gave you at the library.”
“You look good in normal clothes, generally your work outfits look like JCPenney rejects,” she cracked. He was about to reply when something over her shoulder caught his eye. 
Kate clumsily leaped forward when a large honking sound came from behind her. She turned around and faced two large geese waddling straight towards her. Their eyes fixated on the bag in her hands and they came at her like they were out for blood. Kate shrieked and began a mad dash as they quickly made a beeline after her. They continued to chase her until she dropped the bag and took shelter in a nearby gazebo. With viciousness, the geese tore at the bag and devoured the contents inside. As she tried to calm her breathing, she looked around for Jared. He was bowled over in laughter. 
He made his way towards her. “That was classic,” he laughed and mimicked her wild hand gestures. “I wish I could of videoed it, I would have gotten at least a million hits on YouTube.”
“Ha-ha, very funny,” she drawled and socked his arm as he took a seat next to her on the bench in the gazebo. After catching her breath, she gave him a sideways glance. “Sorry about my strangeness, I did have a vision last night that bothered me.” 
He opened his mouth to interject, but Kate held up her hand to stop him. “It didn’t have anything to do with Cori and I really don’t want to talk about it.”
“Kate, I know you find it hard to believe, but I do want to be your friend. If these visions are bothering you, it might not hurt to talk about it.”
“I’m good, honestly. Anyway, it’s not like this is my first rodeo,” she said with a shrug.
She wrapped her arms across the front of her body and ran her hands up and down her arms. Her tank top and shorts didn’t conceal the goose pimples that erupted over her arms and legs. The sky was beginning to cloud over and the wind was steadily picking up. Kate didn’t know if the chill came from her past memories or the abrupt change in the weather.
“You mean seeing Matt Spencer? Or the other letters you received? What were those cases like?” he questioned while she tried to not focus on the feel of his leg against her. It was hard not to pay attention to the heat emanating from him against her bare leg.
Sitting in the gazebo suddenly made the conversation very intimate. It was making her feel sort of breathless and erasing her feelings of resentment towards him. She could not understand why she couldn’t just turn off this disastrous attraction.

About the Author


Heather Topham Wood’s obsession with novels began in childhood while growing up in a shore town in New Jersey. Writing since her teens, she recently returned to penning novels after a successful career as a freelance writer. In 2012, she published the first two novels in her Second Sight series: First Visions and New Revelations. 

Heather graduated from the College of New Jersey in 2005 and holds a bachelor's degree in English. Her freelance work has appeared in publications such as USA Today, Livestrong.com, Outlook by the Bay and Step in Style magazine. She resides in Trenton, New Jersey with her husband and two sons. Besides writing, Heather is a pop culture fanatic and has an obsession with supernatural novels and TV shows.

For more info about Heather Topham Wood's books go to:

To purchase First Visions go to:

Giveaway!


Thanks to Xpresso Book Tours & the author for this giveaway!