Thursday, February 28, 2013

Midnight Spell Blog Tour + Giveaway

Title: The Midnight Spell
Authors: Rhiannon Frater & Kody      Boye
Published: Feb. 26th, 2013
Genre: YA/Paranormal
Blurb: Adam and Christy have been best friends since kindergarten. Always the perpetual outsiders in their small town in Texas, they’ve always had to deal with nasty comments from their classmates. Adam is called “gay” while Christy is called “witch.”

On both counts the bullies are right.

Their junior year in high school seems destined to be the same old same old until Christy decides to cast a love spell for Adam at the midnight hour. The next day an alluring and mysterious new boy enrolls at school and sets hearts a flutter, including Adam’s. Meanwhile, Christy’s mad crush on the handsome Ian seems to be going nowhere fast. Struggling to capture the heart of Ian while trying to come into her full witch powers is tough enough, but when a great evil arrives in town that threatens everything they hold dear, she realizes that finding a boyfriend is the least of her and Adam’s worries.

Soon Adam, Christy, their potential love interests, and their good friends Drifter and Olivia, will have to battle a force of darkness that has killed in their town before and will again.

Add it to your TBR Shelf on Goodreads
Purchase this book on Amazon
Read my review on Parajunkee
Check out the other awesome tour stops Here

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Review and Promo Ashes & Ice

Title: Ashes & Ice
Author: Rochelle Maya Callen
Source: Author Provided Copy
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Buy this book:Ashes and Ice
Blurb: She is desperate to remember. He is aching to forget. Together, they are not broken. But together, one may not survive.​Jade wakes up with no memory of her past and blood on her hands.Plagued by wicked thoughts, she searches for answers. Instead, she finds a boy who doesn't offer her answers, but hope. But sometimes, when nightmares turn into reality and death follows you everywhere, hope is not enough.LUST. LOVE. LOSS. Sometimes, all that is left are Ashes and Ice.

Lori's Thoughts:

4.5 stars. Jade is a girl who feels empty. She doesn't remember who she is, or where she came from. She has no hopes and dreams. She has no heart. All she has is blackouts and a strange thing pulling her forward. 
Connor is invisible. His dad recently passed. His dad was his hero, and his friend. He feels empty too. He wants to hide. He has no hope. Until Jade comes into his life. She gives him something to glow about. But there is more to Jade then her pretty looks. Can Connor handle what's inside of her?

When a Lady Amber posted about a book tour for this book on facebook I immediately jumped on board. Despite the fact that I had sworn of blog tours and review books. I just don't have enough time to do them anymore. To be honest this cover just drew me in. Then I read the blurb, and I was like; "Yup, gotta read this one!" I was not disappointed. The characters really brought me into the story. I always identify with outcasts. Maybe because I am one, but either way I related to both the male and female lead in this book. I understand what it's like to feel like you aren't good enough, although in Jade's case, well, let's just say my problems where never as big as hers.Or even Connor's. But the pain they both feel is very real and intense.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Review: The Awakening of Leeowyn Blake

The Awakening of Leeowyn Blake (The Kahl'Nar Saga, #1)
The Awakening of Leeowyn Blake (The Kahl'Nar Saga, #1)
by Mary Parker

I'm a normal teenager. I have a normal teenage life with normal teenage problems. The summer is my heaven. I live with my mom during the summer months. We stay in her tiny condo in Jacksonville, Florida. My parents split up when I was little. I'm not sure why. My mom never talks about it. Whatever it was, it was bad enough to make my mom pack me up in the middle of the night when I was four years old and run to my Gran's condo. My mom got the condo after Gran died. From that time on all I had known my entire life was beach life. Until four years ago. Until my uncle found me.

Synopsis from Goodreads

This ended up being a pretty good read, with promise for a great series. I just wish it had started off as strongly as it ended. The first quarter of the book has an entirely different feel to it, full of unrealistic dialogue and bizarre stereotypes (like homeschoolers being dressed in denim jumpers and owning goats?)

Please don't let the first few chapters set the mood, however, since it very quickly turns into an intriguing paranormal tale. Despite all the details that I'm picking up along the way, I still feel that there is so much to learn about the world Parker has built. Or should I say worlds? Seven, to be exact, and we haven't even had the pleasure of traveling to any of them yet. It really piques my interest to everything the sequels have in store.

Same goes for the characters. The plot is simply too huge, and there are too many of them, for me to have had a chance to get to know them all. Leeowyn, aka Lee, is our heroine, though at this point she hasn't yet done anything heroic. I admit that I'm not a huge fan of hers, but towards the end of the book she begins to show some potential. I love a girl with a backbone, and it was nice to see her growing one.
Alex is a potential love interest, though not a lot of heat to be found here. I don't feel any chemistry between Alex and Lee, but I have high hopes.
Peach (Perennial) is a mystery. She has been Lee's best friend for four years, but it seems she has been keeping secrets. They've been keeping Lee in the dark about who, or what, she is.
Throw in Lee's uncle Cyle (the spelling of which got under my nerves, because my eyes kept seeing it as Clyde), her tutor who refuses to teach, her grandmother whom we rarely see, plus a handful of emissaries from other realms, and you've got a very full cast. Simply not enough time to flush them all out.

The entire time reading this I kept feeling like my heart was being clenched, because I knew there was no possible way that everything would get wrapped up. There is no conclusion, and the climax feels more like a pretense for all that is to come. I'm left wondering how long until the next book comes out.

A quick, fun read, safe for child consumption.

A copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Review: Beautiful Creatures

Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles, #1)
Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles #1)
Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.

Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town's oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.

In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.

Synopsis from Goodreads.

So, I jumped on the bandwagon at last! This is one of those books that actually lived up to the hype. For me, anyway. It has received it's fair share of negative reviews, and I can see how this book is not for everybody. At least it was a perfect fit for me.

First impressions are important. We all know it, or else why would be dress your best for a job interview? In this case, the book's shiny jacket lured me in from the first. It's dark and mysterious, and whispers to me about shadows and magic. Yup, I freely admit to judging the book by its cover. Don't try to tell me you've never done it.

It's a good thing I had decided that I was going to love it, based purely on the cover, or else I may have let my judgement sway at the beginning of the book. It has a weak first few chapters, where I had a really hard time connecting with the characters. Maybe it had to do with the fact that the MC was a boy. This ended up actually gaining a little of my respect for the authors. Most YA books written by female authors would have a teen girl as the protagonist. Choosing Ethan's POV is such a brave choice, and in this case, the best one they could have made. Lena's voice would have made for a very different story, no doubt.

Ethan started out as one-dimensional, and unrealistic. He's having recurring dreams about a mystery girl, and wakes up with his bed full of dirt. But that doesn't seem to bother him. Shortly after meeting Lena, he starts hearing her voice inside his head. He barely blinks. Luckily, the writing was excellent, so I kept going and the book seems to hit its stride after a hundred pages or so. From then on, the characters dug themselves in for the long haul. There was no possible way I was putting the book down.

There is a HUGE cast of secondary characters that will keep you reeling. Between the bullying cliques at school, and the zany extended family of both Lena and Ethan, I was amazed that I never actually had trouble remembering who any of them were. A sign of a great writer (or two, in this case). I found that I really wanted to see more of Amma, Ethan's pseudo mom, and of Macon, Lena's uncle. There is so much back story going on that I never had the chance to figure out. And, of course, there is this mysterious evil they keep dropping hints about. This evil is so removed from the story that when it finally rears its head, I wasn't the least bit creeped. I'm hoping the sequel will bring me answers, and uber evil.

What? A sequel....? Not just one, but four more books? And they are all just as thick as this one? I almost wish that there weren't any more books in the series. This would have been a powerful standalone novel, but now I feel obligated to read the rest. I don't see how they can possibly live up to this one, but I will at the very least give them a shot. My arms will be massive from all that weight lifting! Who says reading can't be exercise?

Overall: Awesome writing skillz, flush characters, with a promise for more evil.
Would I recommend it? Hellz yeah! (But only to the right person)
Will I read the sequel? Indubitably.
Will I watch the movie? Front row, center. (This is just a saying. The front row, in actuality, is just about the crappiest place you could possibly sit. I'll probably be found in the middle somewhere)


Friday, February 22, 2013

Tainted Grace by M. Lauryl Lewis

4 Stars: ~ Kami's Review

For me this book was a step up from the 1st novel in this series. The writing and dialogue are better, and just overall a better book. I think the author has grown since her last book, and it shows in this book.

We get the more mature Zoe in this book. She is struggling with her new life and circumstances all while dealing with those wacky pregnancy hormones. She is scared about having a baby in this zombie infested world.

I love how the group functions. Everyone has different roles, and they all work together to make the best of the life they have. Zoe comments on how maybe people will look down on the girls since they have taken on the roles of keeping house and cooking, while the guys take on the more manly tasks like hunting and keeping everyone safe. I think that with technology taken out of the picture, most of society would fall back to these general roles.

I wanted to cry along with Zoe when their house burnt down. They had all worked so hard to fortify that house and had made a nice little home for themselves, it was heartbreaking to see it go.

As far as relationships go, I for one was taken completely by surprise by this turn of events. I was not expecting that at all. I wont spoil it for anyone, but wow are we in for some drama in the next book!

Will I read the next book in the series? Absolutly!
Will I recommend this book? Yes, it is a nice quick read!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Review: Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

Warm Bodies (Warm Bodies, #1)
Warm Bodies
Isaac Marion

A zombie who yearns for a better life ends up falling in love—with a human—in this astonishingly original debut novel.

R is a zombie. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse, but he has dreams. He doesn’t enjoy killing people; he enjoys riding escalators and listening to Frank Sinatra. He is a little different from his fellow Dead.

Not just another zombie novel, Warm Bodies is funny, scary, and deeply moving.

Synopsis from Goodreads

Let me start off by saying that this was exactly what I was expecting. Exactly. No surprises here. It's well written and kind of witty, but also cheesy with obvious metaphors. Good thing I like cheese, especially with a nice Cabernet Sauvignon.

The book's narrator, R, is a zombie. Sort of. They are not what you would typically imagine zombies to be. Yes, they're dead, and yes, they eat the Living. But they also have limited speech and thought. And they even have sex. Yikes! It's a good thing this section of the book was heavy on the sarcastic humor, because this was pretty much the grossest visual I've ever had from a book. "Their eyes seemed to ask each other, 'Who the hell are you?' as they jiggled and jerked like meat marionettes." I think I just about lost it when they were compared to raw chicken in a packing plant. ICK! And quite frankly, a little off putting in its moments of tenderness. "...since she's already half naked I imagine her without skin. I know from grim experience that there is a beauty to her inner layers, too. Marvels of symmetry and craftsmanship sealed away inside her like the jewelled movements of a timepiece, fine works of art never meant to be seen." Hmmm. Love at first sight?

So R meets Julia, and by meet I mean eats her boyfriend and abducts saves her. How romantic! I have a hard time getting into the romance in the book. Yes, R is different, changing. But, personally, I would have a hard time getting past his smile. Is that a piece of my boyfriend stuck between your teeth? Regardless, I really liked the characters. R is sweet and thoughtful, in his necrotic way. Julia is as forgiving as they come. Even R's best friend, M, is a pretty good guy, once you get past the necrophilia.

Okay, all jokes aside. The writing style was great, and the premise is definitely unique. There are blatant metaphors, lightly veiling a pretty obvious message, but it's a good one. I would have hated to see the important message being overlooked because it was too deeply buried by blood and guts. The whole book rings with bitter irony. 

Do I recommend it? Sure.
Will I watch the movie? Definitely.
Will I read the sequel? Without a doubt.

A copy of this book was provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Review: Last Bastion of the Living by Rhiannon Frater

The Last Bastion of the Living: A Futuristic Zombie Novel
Last Bastion of the Living
Rhiannon Frater

The Bastion was humanity’s last hope against the fearsome undead creatures known as the Inferi Scourge. A fortified city with a high wall, surrounded by lush land rich with all the resources needed to survive, protected by high mountain summits, and a massive gate to secure the only pass into the valley, the Bastion became the last stronghold of the living on earth. But one fateful day, the gate failed and the Inferi Scourge destroyed the human settlements outside the walls and trapped the survivors inside the city. Now decades later, the last remaining humans are struggling to survive in a dying city as resources and hope dwindle.

Vanguard Maria Martinez has lived her whole life within the towering walls of steel. She yearns for a life away from the overcrowded streets, rolling blackouts, and food shortages, but there is no hope for anyone as long as the Inferi Scourge howl outside the high walls. Her only refuge from the daily grind is in the arms of her lover, Dwayne Reichardt, an officer in the Bastion Constabulary. Both are highly-decorated veterans of the last disastrous push against the Inferi Scourge. Their secret affair is her only happiness.

Then one day Maria is summoned to meet with a mysterious representative from the Science Warfare Division and is offered the opportunity to finally destroy the Inferi Scourge in the valley and close the gate. The rewards of success are great, but she will have to sacrifice everything, possibly even her life, to accomplish the ultimate goal of securing the future of humanity and saving it from extinction.

Synopsis from Goodreads

4.5 stars - but darn close enough to five for me to round it up!

Rhiannon Frater, you spin a good yarn! I seriously read for hours today, not even moving when my ass fell asleep, because I couldn't bear the thought of putting this book down. Bravo!

I will be dreaming of these characters tonight, and probably every other night for a very long time to come. Maria Martinez is strong enough for me to follow, but damaged enough for me to want to protect her. She earns the loyalty of her friends, and of her (slightly) older and dedicated man, Dwayne. I often have a problem with romance in books, because I find it's hard to duplicate a realistic relationship between two fictional characters. But Frater has definitely convinced me! Besides, Dwayne is a man I can definitely fall for! No more of these boys who have barely reached puberty, trying to save the world. Dwayne takes just one day at a time, and lets Maria do most of the saving.

Normally, when I am writing a review for a book, I take notes while reading. But I kinda got distracted by the story and didn't write any notes. And now that I've finished, I've forgotten all the amazing, earth-shattering thoughts I had while reading. I did notice that it was a little on the long side, but I think that's excusable when the thrill is taken right to the last page. I looked down at the progress bar and was surprised to see there was suddenly only 4% left. How in the Hell is this going to wrap up in only 4%?!

But, it did wrap up. Sort of. I won't say anything about the ending, but I can definitely see how people want a sequel. I would jump on the sequel bandwagon if it existed, but I can respect Frater's decision to leave it as is.

Highly, HIGHLY recommend!

A HUGE thank you to Rhiannon Frater for providing a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Cover Reveal: Fairyvision by JL Bryan

JL Bryan's Fairy Metal Thunder is FREE as is the first book in his bestselling Jenny Pox series! 

*Cover by PhatPuppy Art*

Fairyvision (Songs of Magic #5) by JL Bryan 
Expected Pub: February 2013 by J.L. Bryan

Jason, Erin, and the other Zebras go on a world tour with their enchanted instruments, only to encounter the mysterious supernatural Folk of India and the Far East.  While they tangle with their record company, Erin tries to avoid dealing with the secrets she's learned about herself.
In Faerie, Aoide the Lutist and her troupe finally return home from their long adventure.  They're struggling to get new gigs, but Aoide senses opportunity in the form of special new magic mirrors that can broadcast concerts, plays, and other entertainment all over Faerie...

Friday, February 15, 2013

Controlling the Dead Cover Reveal

With the help of her new companions, the path Kansas follows leads to more knowledge of the ever adapting famished.

The team finds help in unlikely places, meeting more survivors, and discovers the possibility of a new beginning.

When the team experiences a devastating loss, Kansas struggles to keep her humanity from fading and distorting like that of the surviving society around her. It begins with knowing who to trust and who to leave behind. First, she must trust herself – she won't make the same mistakes twice.

As the answers to her questions are revealed, Kansas begins to understand the knowledge comes with a heavy price and great responsibility of controlling the dead.

In a trilogy plot thick with twists and turns, this adult dark fantasy is as emotional as it is horrifyingly gripping.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Betrayal's of Spring Release Day

The smell of rain vastly approaches as we are lying on the ground in a sea of flowers. They surround our bodies while the fresh Spring wind caresses our skin with its soft, gentle touch. Combined as one, we stare into each other’s eyes as we bask in the pleasure of our love and OUR land.

The Land of the Fae has flourished bringing a new beginning and a new court, the Fall Court. Five years have passed since then along with the dreaded day that Meliantha, Summer Court Princess and one of the powerful Four, was betrayed and broken-hearted by the sexy and alluring Winter Prince, Kalen. Spurned by the man she loves, Meliantha has turned and fallen into the arms of the fierce and handsome warrior, Finn, who understands she can never love him, but wants more than anything to mend her broken heart.
The Winter Solstice Ball is approaching, meaning Meliantha will have to face the Winter Prince and make it out of there with her heart intact. But what does she do when Prince Kalen acts as if nothing ever happened and seems more in love with her than ever before?

The dark sorcerer has planned his twisted game of lies and deceit well, and has enjoyed making himself a player without anyone’s knowledge. The game is almost over and the players are exactly where they are needed to be. Will Meliantha figure out his twisted game and save all the players? Or will the dark sorcerer once again obtain the power of the Four and take everything away from her…..even her one true love?

Review: Dualed by Elsie Chapman

Dualed (Dualed, #1)
by Elsie Chapman
Release Date: February 26, 2013

You or your Alt? Only one will survive.

The city of Kersh is a safe haven, but the price of safety is high. Everyone has a genetic Alternate—a twin raised by another family—and citizens must prove their worth by eliminating their Alts before their twentieth birthday. Survival means advanced schooling, a good job, marriage—life.

Fifteen-year-old West Grayer has trained as a fighter, preparing for the day when her assignment arrives and she will have one month to hunt down and kill her Alt. But then a tragic misstep shakes West’s confidence. Stricken with grief and guilt, she’s no longer certain that she’s the best version of herself, the version worthy of a future. If she is to have any chance of winning, she must stop running not only from her Alt, but also from love . . . though both have the power to destroy her.

Elsie Chapman's suspenseful YA debut weaves unexpected romance into a novel full of fast-paced action and thought-provoking philosophy. When the story ends, discussions will begin about this future society where every adult is a murderer and every child knows there is another out there who just might be better.

Synopsis from Goodreads.

I almost feel guilty for loving this book. Guilty in the same way as reading Hunger Games, or watching Battle Royale makes me feel. Kids killing kids shouldn't be entertaining. Seriously. But seriously this book is the shiz! Big bad government forcing kids into an impossible situation, in order to prove their worth. 

I do my best to avoid any and all reviews before reading a book. I don't want my opinion to be swayed, one way or another. After finishing this book, though, I spent a little time checking out what other people thought about it. I was surprised to see that the star rating wasn't nearly as high as I thought it would be. I mean... there's blood and violence, intrigue, a little romance. How can you go wrong? Well, apparently people felt that the MC, West, isn't likeable. I only have one thing to say to that: Do you want your MC to be perfect? Of course not! That would result in the most boring book ever written! You have to have a character who is flawed in some way, or there wouldn't be enough conflict. Give them time and space to learn! And believe me when I say that West has a lot of room to grow! She spends so much time avoiding making decisions that she ends up making some life altering bad decisions by default. Her motives and actions may be somewhat mysterious, but I found myself being pulled along with West on her attempts at a solitary, and violent, existence.

I did find one big, giant, gaping hole with the story. Why on earth do they live this way? Why do the people accept the government's reasons for being forced to kill their Alt? I mean, this is the government that is able to manipulate genetics, to create cloned twins. Why aren't they just creating better fighters, stronger, faster? Maybe it's to keep everyone occupied so they don't start a revolution? Make them appreciate whatever life they have, no matter how crappy it is? After coming up with all these questions about the motives, I finally threw my hands up in the air and said, "Meh. It's fiction." Whatever. It's fun.

Please don't look too deep into this story for a moral. There are no great lessons to be learned. No meaning of life. While the characters do at least grow enough to accept the consequences of their actions, they come out on the other side the same shade of grey as they were at the beginning. And yet, I'm okay with this. I went into reading this book expecting action, and that is exactly what I got. Total satisfaction achieved! And lucky for me, the ending wasn't an extreme cliffhanger, so I can contentedly wait for the second installment.

A copy of this book was provided by Netgalley. Thanks!


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Just Breathe Blog Tour Part 3 Review: Exhale

Rating: 5 stars *****
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy this book: Exhale (Just Breathe)
Blurb: Her dreams brought them together, but reality could tear them apart…
The man of Zoe Morgan’s dreams isn’t only real, he’s interested. In her. But her boss wants her too, and is leveraging his unsolicited advances with the threat of blocking the huge promotion she's after. When he places a spy on her research team, the intense stranger discovers more than he should, and Zoe fears hiding a relationship with Gavin Cassidy from her boss is the least of her worries. The whale she must protect has been marked for death, and Zoe's old enemy Scarlet is eager to deliver the killing blow. To both of them.
Australia’s Sentinels must find and lock the door into the Dreaming before Fyre Elementals launch another attack on innocent dreamers. But corruption and distrust abound, and Gavin believes someone on the Sentinel council is in league with the Fyres. As he reluctantly embraces his new role as council leader, Gavin must not only keep Zoe safe from Scarlet's vengeful clutches, but organize a Sentinel defense strong enough to prevent a full-blown Elemental war—with a traitor fighting by his side.
*This book contains graphic language, sex, and some violence. Not suitable for readers under the age of 18.**The author will donate all profits from the sale of the JUST BREATHE trilogy to programs that educate people about whales and the challenges they face.

Lori's Thoughts:

This book picks up right where book 1 stops. Zoe and Gavin are still fighting the fire, and resisting each other in the real world. Outside influences are doing their best to keep the pair apart as well. Gavin is torn for his new love/lust for Zoe and his job as a Sentinel. Zoe is torn between her feelings for Gavin, her love for the whales and protecting her heart. Each discovers new things about themselves as they find each other. 

Exhale is amazing. Period. The world building that Kendall has done for this series is awe inspiring. I love the quirky characters she brings to life. I meant to save some quotes for this review but I was so sucked into her world that I lost focus of reviewing the book and just read. And I enjoyed the hell out of the ride.

Zoe is such a strong woman. She knows her strengths and draws on them often. Sure she has moments of self doubt but she always conquers them and her enemies with grace and snark. Bahaha she's one randy lady. She cracks me up. She's got that wise ass wit that I admire and want in leading ladies.

Gavin is still his charming self. Sexy as hell, smouldering and he never fails to have trouble following on his heels. He literally brings it to his door. Poor man is reaping what he sowed when he got with Scarlett. Ugh Scarlett. She is gross, and a bad bad person that I love to hate.

The one character that really surprises me is Sinnder. We get to see a lot more of the man behind the fire. 

Jack Weaver is introduced in this book and he is just the right thing that makes this smart, sexy, fun series even more awesome. Let's just say that the Big Lebowski is one of my favorite movies and I see Jack as "The Dude" so easily, it's a perfect fit. This is exactly who Gavin needs to mentor him. He has the right dose of Chill the Fuck out that Gavin needs at times.

Just go out and buy this series and read it!!!!!!!!

Just Breathe Blog Tour Part 2 Review: Inhale

Rating: 4 Stars
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Download this book, it's FREE: Inhale (A Just Breathe Novel)  
Blurb: Strangers in reality, inseparable in dreams…
After years of suffocating under her boss’s scrutiny, whale biologist Zoe Morgan finally lands a job as director of a tagging project in Hervey Bay, Australia. Success Down Under all but guarantees her the promotion of a lifetime, and Zoe won’t let anything—or anyone—stand in her way. Not the whale voices she suddenly hears in her head, not the ex who won’t take no for an answer, and especially not the gorgeous figment of her imagination who keeps saving her from the fiery hell of her dreams.
Gavin Cassidy hasn’t been called to help a human Wyldling in over a year, which is fine by him. Still blaming himself for the death of his partner, he keeps the guilt at bay by indulging in every excess his rock star persona affords. That is, until he’s summoned to protect Zoe from hungry Fyre Elementals and learns his new charge is the key to restoring order in the dying Dreaming. He never expects to fall for the feisty Dr. Morgan…nor does he realize he may have to sacrifice the woman he loves to save an entire country.
*This book contains graphic language, sex, and some violence. Not suitable for readers under the age of 18.
**The author will donate all profits from the sale of the JUST BREATHE trilogy to programs that educate people about whales and the challenges they face.

Lori's Review:
Gavin and Zoe meet each other get to know one another in the land of Dreaming. There they form a bond, have hot sex and fight fire with water. 

Just Breathe Blog Tour Part 1 (18+ Dirty Dirty Words Used)

Buy this book: Just Breathe
When I discover books like this I feel like such a slacker! Like where in the hell was I and why have I never read this series before? Needless to say I am still catching up! I have finished Inhale (Book 1) and Exhale (Book 2) I cannot wait to see what happens next!!! 
For my part of the Blog Tour I asked the Characters how they felt about Sex on the First Date. Needless to say they had some very colorful and hilarious answers! 

Monday, February 11, 2013

Review: One Week Girlfriend by Monica Murphy (18+)

Title: One Week Girlfriend
Author: Monica Murphy

Rating: 5 Stars

Source: Purchase

Genre: NA/Contemp Romance

Buy this book: One Week Girlfriend

New Adult Contemporary Romance

**Mature situations and sexual content - recommended for ages 17+** Temporary. That one single word best describes my life these last few years. I’m working at a temporary job until I can finally break free. I’m my little brother’s temporary mother since our mom doesn’t give a crap about either of us. And I’m that temporary girl all the guys want to get with because I give it up so easily. According to the rumors, at least. But now I’m the temporary girlfriend of Drew Callahan, college football legend and all around golden guy. He’s beautiful, sweet—and he’s hiding way more secrets than I am. He’s brought me into this fake life where everyone seems to hate me. And everyone seems to want something from him. The only thing he seems to want though is… Me. I don’t know what to believe anymore. All I know is, I think Drew needs me. And I want to be there for him. Forever.

Lori's Thoughts:
Drew doesn't know Fable. He knows her rep. He knows he needs a girl, a girl like her. He needs her to weather the storm that is his home life. He just doesn't know that he needs her for real, not just for pretend. Fable lives life from moment to moment, feeling to feeling and paycheck to paycheck, so when Drew offers her a "crap ton of money" that she needs to keep her family afloat she can't say no. She doesn't realize that there is a lot more to Drew than a paycheck. She needs more than the money from him.

"Honestly, I don't quite know how we got to this point. I hated him on sight. I did this only for the money. I thought he was a fucked up mess. I still think he's a fucked up mess.
But so am I. And he's so beautiful, so thoughtful, so vulnerable."

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Review: Creep by John Arcudi

The Creep
The Creep
by John Arcudi
Release date: May 7, 2013

A young boy puts a gun in his mouth and pulls the trigger. The police don't care - not about his death or the death of his best friend two months earlier. The dead boy's mom seeks help from an old flame that's employed as a detective. What she doesn't know is that he suffers from a physical deformity that manifests at midlife. Will the detective's freakish appearance get in the way of uncovering the terrible secrets of these two teenagers? This collection features additional art by Frank Miller, Mike Mignola, Ryan Sook, and Tonci Zonjic.
Synopsis from Goodreads

Here I go again, reviewing yet another graphic novel. Yup. I'm a fan. And while I do like a lot of different comics, I am an especially huge Dark Horse fan! How can I not be?! The comics hold a certain dark mystery, and The Creep is no exception. 

I have to start out with our protagonist, Oxel Karnh, as he is not your typical detective. (I apologize if I'm getting the last name wrong here. It isn't used often in the story, and I only had a digital copy. The quality degrades when I try to zoom in and read it) I object a little to the synopsis describing him as having a "freakish appearance". He suffers from acromegaly, which is an excess of growth hormone. There are many manifestations of the deformity, but in this case, Oxel is large, and his face and hands are a different proportion than most people would be used to. Hardly what I would call "freakish", though Oxel's self esteem has clearly been affected by the public's treatment of him. Despite all of this, or maybe because of it, he has become a great detective. 

The plot is obviously dark, as Oxel investigates a suicide, with no apparent motive. Oxel gets a letter from an ex-girlfriend, beside herself with grief at the loss of her son.  She has nowhere else to turn, since the police don't think it warrants investigation. Oxel, however, decides to help. While the dialogue, itself, is solid, the plot contains a few holes. On the plus side, I wasn't aware of them at all while reading. I was completely drawn into the story, and it wasn't until afterwards that I started to question how the story was built.

The artwork is where I truly felt pulled forward. Jonathan Case presents some fabulous work, but there are also the individual issue covers by guest artists. First off, Case's work is pretty standard on the most part. What made it stand out were the past scenes, where the drawings felt more sketched. Here is where his true artistry was displayed. Although the lines were less defined, I felt like there was a clear emotion being conveyed. 

For the graphic novel aficionado, this volume contains a series of artwork at the back. I only wish I had my hands on a hard copy, so that I could bask in their glory. As it was, I am thankful to Netgalley for providing me with the digital copy. Certainly better than having to wait until the release date in May! 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Plagiarism: The new fad of 2013?

What is Plagiarism:

well according to it is this:


  [pley-juh-riz-uhm, -jee-uh-riz-] 
an act or instance of using or closely imitating the language and thoughts of another author withoutauthorization and the representation of that author's work as one's own, as by not crediting theoriginal author: It is said that he plagiarized Thoreau's plagiarism of a line written by Montaigne.appropriation, infringement, piracy, counterfeiting; theft, borrowing, cribbing, passing off.
a piece of writing or other work reflecting such unauthorized use or imitation: “These two manuscriptsare clearly plagiarisms,” the editor said, tossing them angrily on the floor.

If you follow Parajunkee and her bb101 and Dishing Junk features then you know that plagiarism has exploded this year. Or maybe we are getting smarter and more saavy about rooting it out. 

Stealing any writer whether they are a blogger or an author, or even if it's just your best friends term paper from last year, is just WRONG. It's dirty and skeezy. Someone has put hard work into what they have written. Authors agonize over word selection, and sentence structure. The same goes for bloggers. Now your friend might not have cared too much about any of that, but they did put in real work on researching. 

So when I find out another blogger, or even author has been stolen from it makes me MAD! If you don't have the time, or frankly the chops to write something yourself than find a new fucking hobby. 

Which brings me to why I am writing this post. I was just scrolling through my facebook feed when I stumbled upon a very upsetting post by one of my favorite authors. She has been plagiarized by someone on a critique/fan fic page. It's not a loose interpertation of her work. No. It's a word for word copy. Yes, I checked and, yes, I have screen shots to prove this. Fan fiction is a questionable thing in the book world. Some people think it's ok and some people think it is stealing. I've written fan fiction. Well kind of. I once wrote a short story based in the world of Emily Goodwin's Contagious. I had her permission and support. I didn't use any of her writing or even characters. It was fun. 

That's not what this instance is. Honestly, I have no idea what to even say anymore. Stealing someone else's work and calling it your own is wrong, and hurtful. If you don't have anything to say/write, then just don't say anything. You look a lot smarter at the end of the day

To all of those that have suffered from the grabby hands that have suddenly popped up this year. I'm sorry that people suck like this. I love you, and you have my full support however little comfort that brings you.