Friday, June 7, 2013

Jocelyn Adams on Saying Goodbye to a Series

Rise of the Magi


I’m sure I’m not alone in saying that the characters I create become as real to me as the flesh and blood ones I interact with every day. To non-authors it might sound silly, but it’s none-theless true. Lila Gray holds a special place in my heart because she was the first character I shared with the world, and she was so much of me I felt as though I was sharing myself, too.

The series came out of the blue, beginning with a dream of the Glass Man himself. Most of my stories start with the villain for some reason, as I have a little thing for a good bad guy. All I needed to get going was a setting and a kickass heroine to go against him. 

After that fateful day, it took me only six weeks to crank out The Glass Man. I was already totally invested in Lila, Liam, Parthalan and the other supporting characters. I wasn’t sure where I was going with the series, only that I knew I couldn’t leave them just yet. Writing book two was a struggle for me, leading on from book one and setting up for book three, but I was really happy with the result and even more alive in their world.

Book three, Rise of the Magi, was a serious hardship for me to write. I knew that once I wrote THE END on that one, that was it for Lila Gray. It would be the last time I gave her life on the page, to be mean to her and make it up to her. It would be the last time I got to watch her walls come down and let in the people who would love her if only she’d let them. I bet I went through about three boxes of tissues when I finally made myself write the ending. Even more during the editing. It was right, though. It was time to move on as other characters were begging for my attention.

Lila Gray’s story might be over for me, but I might visit her world again some day. There are a few other characters who need to step up and have their lives lived. For now, though, I say goodbye to Iress and the fae living on within my imagination even if I don’t share it with my readers.

RISE OF THE MAGI
Lila Gray #3

In a battle of wills, who is strongest? The one who hates or the one who loves? In a test of faith, who will fight the hardest? The one who has everything to lose or the one who believes only in herself? For Lila Gray, the answer is both. For the Magi, the questions are pointless since they can’t lose, and they’ve been waiting since before Lila’s birth for this one moment. Lila only needs to find them to understand her entire purpose in life. This time, though, instead of protecting her people, Lila may be leading them all, including her unborn child and the man she loves, to their deaths — and not by accident. In the ultimate trial of heart and soul, and the conclusion to the Lila Gray series, Lila will learn that the greatest weapon of war is herself, with one ultimate unknown. For which side will she fight?
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Monday, May 20, 2013

Release Day Blitz *Review + Excerpt*: TRAGIC by J.A. Huss




Rook Walsh is TRAGIC

Because life so far – just sucks. Some girls get parents. Rook got the foster care system. Some girls get Prince Charming. Rook got an abusive frog. Some girls get lucky…

Rook got a second chance.

And she took it. Because when fate throws you a bone – you grab it with both hands and run.

Antoine Chaput knows the minute he spies Rook in his photography studio that she’s got The Look. The dark and desperate look he must have to land the exclusive TRAGIC media contract.

Rook is paired up with top model, Ronin, and he’s everything her abusive ex-boyfriend wasn’t. Patient, gentle, happy, attentive, and sexy! He knows exactly what to do to make Rook blush for Antoine’s camera.

Rook’s luck changes in an instant and suddenly she’s the darling of the modeling world. It’s a dream job to go with a dream guy and all she has to do is look pretty and follow directions. But there’s always a price to pay – and Rook is about to get the bill.
I have always considered J.A. Huss a brilliant author, but with her latest release, Tragic, I believe she's more than brilliant! From her action-packed science fiction series, I Am Just Junco, to her steamy New Adult contemporary series following Rook and Ronin, Huss is showing her talent for entertaining readers no matter the subject.

Rook is at her lowest in life: living in a shelter and recently finding herself unemployed. A chance encounter with models in a coffee shop lead her to photographer Antoine and his upcoming TRAGIC campaign. She lands the role that turns her life around for the better despite finding herself out of her comfort zone and modeling exotic shoots with charming Ronin.

I'm usually not a fan of New Adult stories with both a hero and heroine's point of view, but Huss doesn't upset the balance by keeping Ronin's thoughts to a minimum and focusing more on Rook. Their connection is spot on because they have different upbringings but a mutual understanding of each other. The first of the Rook and Ronin series is emotional and filled with reality. I can't wait to see how their story continues to unfold. I know that with Huss' style it'll be an unpredictable but entertaining experience!
*eARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review*

Rook & Ronin #1
May 2013, ebook




 EXCERPT:

Antoine's camera is on Ronin's left, so Ronin's left hand begins to caress my foot with small circles, a touch so light it actually makes me squirm because my feet are totally ticklish. He takes the hint and slowly sweeps up my calf, which is just about the most sensual feeling I've ever experienced. I moan out a little and his bruising kisses are back, crushing against my mouth.

Just as Antoine takes his attention to our lips Ronin's right hand also begins at my foot, swirling his fingertips around the soft pad of my arch. I laugh into his mouth and he pulls me close, my hair hiding our faces for a moment, and says, "Shhhh, now. Be good, Gidge." And then his right hand sweeps up my leg and under my dress, caressing the same small circles along my inner thigh.


"Oh, shit," I whimper as I bury myself in his neck. Just a few more inches and I'm going to come undone. My neck tilts back as the sensations all crash together and he takes his kisses to my plunging neckline, his left hand, the one still out in the open, slips up to my breast just as the hidden hand drops down a little farther, just a flutter of a touch against my crease.


He reaches over, not with the hidden hand, and picks up a glass of wine and hands it to me.


My fingertips barely understand what to do with the glass because the only thing on my mind is where his other hand is. We each take a sip and then he bites into a cherry, taking half of it in his mouth, and spits out the pit.


Antoine barks something harsh in French and Ronin laughs. "It's a fucking pit, Antoine, it's not litter." He rolls his eyes at me. "Sit still now, Rook, and keep your mouth closed for a moment."


My mind is still on his fingers as they caress my inner thigh, but I do my best not to squirm.


He brings the cherry to my lips and I keep my mouth closed. This makes him smile and then he traces my lips, dripping juice as he paints them. I'm just about to let my tongue dart out and get the juice when Ronin's mouth reaches up and licks it off, stopping to suck on my bottom lip, and then gives it a little nibble that makes me cry out.


He bites into another cherry and again, to Antoine's disgust, woofs out the pit into the grass. Spitting is a skill only boys really acquire. They are so good at it. It might gross out Antoine, but not me. I think just about everything Ronin is doing with his mouth is astonishing right now. The secret hand under my dress appears again. He lifts my left hand and paints each fingertip pad with cherry juice, then sucks it off, nibbling them one by one, just like he did my lips.


I just stare at him and his eyes never leave mine. "What?" he finally asks.


"You—" I say.


He raises his eyebrows.


"—are bad."


He laughs. "If you were naked right now I'd drip this juice all down your belly and let my tongue—"


"OK, that's enough," Antoine says. "Excellent job, Rook."


Fucking Antoine.


I bite my lip as Ronin licks my fingertips one more time and then grins up at me like an idiot. "Want to come over and watch a movie, Gidget?"


I nod enthusiastically as Elise helps me up, and then Ronin bounces to his feet and puts his arm around me protectively. "You fell asleep pretty quick last time, are you sure you're up for a movie?"


I'm not sure if a movie is the code word for sex or not right now, but either way, I'm definitely up for it.
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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Tour Review: Girl Three by Tracy March



Dr. Jessica Croft has avoided the players, the power, and the passions of Washington, DC. But when her estranged sister’s suspicious death is classified as natural, Jessie resolves to expose the murderer. As she pursues elite suspects who’d kill to keep their secrets buried, she encounters sexy security consultant Michael Gillette, who knows more about her sister than he’ll admit.

Michael has a vested interest in Jessie’s plight. Her sister died on his watch—while he wasn’t watching. His plan to find her murderer becomes complicated when Jessie’s father hires him to protect Jessie, and his interest turns from professional…to romantic.

Jessie and Michael must unravel a mystery rife with political agendas, deceit, and betrayal. When confidential papers reveal a fertility scandal surrounding the enigmatic Girl Three, the two realize the danger of exposing the truth. Who is Girl Three? And will the murderer kill again to keep a secret?
 Tracy March's romantic thriller is an exciting novel full of suspense and surprise. Every step of the plot is unexpected but perfect to make Girl Three a fascinating read.

When Jessie discovers that her sister's death may not have been an accident she puts herself in the danger zone. The people that her sister surrounded herself with are immediately cast in suspicion. The politics involved their world is littered with deceit and greed making Jessie task that much harder. March doesn't simply hand Jessie the answers, though someone is giving her a trail of crumbs to follow. The killer is sneaky, obviously rich with connections and out to keep the truth under wrap.

At times the story felt drawn out, like Jessie was getting no where closer to the truth and that her eventual ally, Michael, was never going to get past his own grief and be of some actual use. I found that Michael's side of Girl Three, as a behind the scenes security guard first for Jessie's sister, then herself, wasn't quite so interesting. It did provide a strong conflict between Jessie, Michael and her father that helped with the overall suspenseful tone of the novel.

There's really no in-between with this story, you either love it or hate it. Tracy March is a writer who knows how to get the wheels turning in her readers' minds and keep them coming back for more!

April 2013, Entangled Publishing, 352pp
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Monday, May 13, 2013

Tour Review: To Katie With Love by Erica Lucke Dean


Banker Katie James has a serious thing for romance novels. She’d almost rather settle for a fictional boyfriend than risk her heart on a flesh-and-blood man. Besides, the only real guy she’s remotely interested in is her rich, unattainable client, the mysterious Cooper Maxwell.

Looking less like the ultra-conservative man she knows and more like a drop-dead sexy character from one of her books, Cooper crashes Katie’s 29th birthday party. But one too many drinks lands Katie in uncharted territory… Cooper’s bedroom!

Drunk on love, Katie dives headfirst into the relationship only to discover that Cooper is keeping secrets… dangerous ones. As if things couldn’t get worse, her meddling mother makes a surprise visit, digging up a whole new set of problems.

Who would have guessed having an assassin for a boyfriend would be the least of her worries?
Katie James, romantic at heart and in life, is a heroine women of all walks of life will love to read about. Erica Lucke Dean debuts her romantic comedy, To Katie With Love, with enough sass and humor to make anyone's day!

Katie wishes her life was like the romance novels she reads almost obsessively. She wishes that the man of her dreams would walk in a sweep her off her feet. Instead, she works as a full-time banker with an imaginary cat, trying to keep her friends and mother from hounding her about her loveless life.

Life takes a happy turn at Katie's birthday party when the man of her dreams indeed sweeps her off her feet and she wakes up hung over in his bed. Cooper Maxwell, Katie's client for the last year, charms her and surprises her at every turn as they manage their whirlwind romance. As they become closer, Katie realizes that certain aspects of Cooper's life he keeps close to the chest providing her with plenty of opportunities to let her imagination run wild. I have to say that Dean keeps readers on their toes even during this chick-lit novel with more cuteness than suspense. To Katie With Love is indeed a fun read with an unexpected ending that will endear readers to this author immediately!

April 2013, Red Adept Publishing, 274pp

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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Tour Review: Born & Raised Chris Ross



Chris Ross's work is both insightful and big-hearted, and he opens the door to his beloved Indiana like a gracious host who knows the skeletons have already tumbled out of the closet, but he's throwing the party anyway. Ross illuminates the lives of his characters with a vision and voice guided by empathy and humor. He captures the poignant resiliency and spirit found in Indiana's small towns where the factories have closed, yet the people still play baseball in the industry league, even though the industry no longer exists.

Parked in a small southern Indiana town, Born & Raised is set where hope and defeat stain two sides of the same coin – a coin tossed to the kid working the night games at the men’s industrial softball league even though all industry moved on years ago. It is the coming of age story of Sean Yokam, a reluctant nineteen year-old trucker, fighting not to come apart. As Sean sifts through the two summers he believes have brought him to where he’s now stuck, he starts to realize that the bad things happening are just the things people do to one another in order to survive.

The summer of ’84 delivers Sean the first chill of neglect as his father, Roy, and his sister, Billie, desperately try to fill in the void left by Sean’s mother. Roy, turning every success into a failure, roams the used car lots, flips through the pages of International Male catalog and soaks up whatever there is to be found at the singles’ scene, while Billie, like an animal chasing after its own tail, does the best she can on the fate of scratch off-lottery tickets and the pre-set radio stations of a Dodge Dynasty whose seats are draped in beach towels that reek of Little Kings beer and suntan lotion.

The summer of ’90 finds them, six years later, in one way or another, living up to the Yokam family code of shit in one hand, wish in the other, see which fills up first. Sean, a high school graduate, finds himself setting out on his own – not to escape, but to find a way back. Back to what or where, he’s not sure, but as life unfolds for him, it’s becoming painfully clear that love, in the end, is blind – but only to those who aren’t looking for it.
Chris Ross keeps it real in Born & Raised as he relates life in the summer of 1984 for Sean Yoakam. With a mother who walked out on her family and a not so affectionate older sister and father, Sean's coming of age story makes you want to better appreciate the blessings and good family life you may have.

Ross' storytelling paints the picture of what Sean's life is like very vividly. It easy to envision yourself growing up in Sean's shoes no matter how tough or unusual, the writing style is that expressive and honest. I wasn't too crazy about the narration style with no quotation marks around speech, though it made the story sound conversational and more like Sean's speaking directly to the reader, I had a hard time keeping up each character's speech. I wouldn't say that this detracted from the enjoyment of the story, but it did occasionally trip me up during some scenes.

Ross doesn't completely depress readers, but shows the possible reality that could be anyone's life. I would recommend Born & Raised, especially because it is a story that will capture readers who love to see someone young make it through rough situations.

February 2013, Tell Me Press, 224pp, Paperback

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Thursday, April 25, 2013

Tour Review: Seduced by Power by Kimberly Kinrade

Forbidden passions.
Deadly secrets.
A love that will stand against it all.

In Seduced by Power, the final book in Rose's Trilogy, Rose and Derek face the greatest threat to their love, and lives, as they are forced to make painful choices to save those they love the most.

They give everything they have to end the battle against Rose's mother and retrieve that which was stolen from them. But will it be enough to save them?
I would say that the third installment in Kimberly Kinrade's Seduced series is surely explosive! The action continues to steadily pick up as Rose learns startling truths about her powers and she travels to the darkest depths to save her love.

Kinrade's writing style is just as expressive as ever and it will give reader so much to look forward to when reading Seduced by Power. The emotions are so tangible: the passion, fear, anger, and desperation all glue minds to the story. I do have to admit that I thought some of the plot lines were ended rather too easily or just too unimpressive. Some scenes did make me wonder how well they meshed with the story as a whole, but the overall enjoyment of the story still remains on a high level.
*Ebook provided in exchange for an honest review*

Seduced #3
March 2013, Daring Books

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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Christian Schoon on Zenn Scarlett's Exoveterinarian Dream!

Welcome to the Zenn Scarlett blog tour stop on Lovey Dovey Books! Please enjoy Christian Schoon's awesome post on Zenn and her dream to become an exoveterinarian. Learn what's involved in this out-of-this world job and why Zenn wants to get up close and personal with alien animals!!
 
Zenn grew up behind the mud-brick walls of the Ciscan Cloister Exovet Clinic and Training Facility. So, from the very start, she was surrounded by alien animals. Mostly big, often dangerous but always intriguing. She followed her mother, Dr. Mai Scarlett and her Uncle Otha, the clinic’s medical director, as they made the rounds of the clinic’s exotic patients, treating their illnesses, healing their injuries, fulfilling their varied dietary needs and generally caring for them. So, for Zenn, alien animals weren’t at all “alien,” they were familiar friends and acquaintances, with distinct personalities and fascinating behaviors. Like 200-foot-long Tanduan swamp sloos that use their sticky, 30-foot tongues to lick giant insectoid prey out of their subterranean hives. Or Zenn’s little pet rikkaset, Katie, who is able to communicate with Zenn using sign language, and whose refractive fur allows her to “blend” with her environment and vanish from sight.

And, while Zenn occasionally had visitors her own age from the nearby town of Arsia, she basically grew up as the only child within the sprawling cloister compound. This too caused her attention to be focused on the animals at the clinic, as opposed to an “average” child’s interaction with peers.

From an early age, Zenn was able to appreciate that her mother and uncle held the clinic’s animals in high regard. She also directly witnessed the process of how Mai and Otha brought sick animals to a healthy state, how they reduced or prevented an animal’s suffering, and how these animals then responded to the human beings who were so intent on healing them. For a young girl in this situation, it was a natural progression for her to go from affection for these animals to a desire to help them the way she’d seen her mother and uncle do. In fact, from the time that Zenn was old enough to understand that there was such a thing as an exoveterinarian, she was determined that one day she would become an exovet like her mother. This determination went beyond being a dream for Zenn, and became a firm expectation.

Added to this is the attitude of others toward the exoveterinarian profession in general. While it’s true that most Martian colonists, and almost all Earthers, are deeply suspicious of alien races and their animals, even the most xenophobic person understood that an exovet endured rigorous medical training to reach the status of a fully licensed exoveterinarian master, and in most people, this engendered at least a grudging level of respect.  Even a young girl would appreciate the sort of status accorded to an exovet.

As for what’s involved in exovet training at the Ciscan Cloister, it’s somewhat similar to schooling that the more familiar Earther-animal veterinarian schools provide, but with a few… interesting additions.   Besides the standard core-curriculum of courses in alien animal biology, anatomy, neuroscience, pathology, clinical examinations, anesthesia, surgery and other requirements, Zenn’s exovet training would involve in-depth courses in the planetary ecologies on the dozen inhabited worlds of the Local Systems Accord. Understanding the diverse environments in which various alien animals evolved is a vital part of any exovet’s schooling and provides the foundation for any further specialization in treating the life forms of a specific planet. Then there are the species-specific tools of the exovet profession. Like the in-soma pod, for instance. Roughly seven feet long and three feet wide, and streamlined for ease of passage, the in-soma pod is a diagnostic vehicle that the exovet pilots through the interiors of the largest alien species. These species would include the swamp sloo mentioned above, and other mega-fauna such as the 700-foot-long Lithohippus indra, or Stonehorse. Once inside the animal’s digestive tract or certain fluid-filled body cavities or ventricles, the exovet is then able to deploy the in-soma pod’s various outboard manipulator arms and other tools to diagnose ailments or injuries and to conduct therapeutic procedures, all without the need for surgical interventions conducted from the outside.

So, as noted above, that Zenn would commence her novice year of exovet training at the Ciscan Cloister was, for her, predetermined. There was simply no other path she could envision her life taking. The fact that her mother Mai had been lost during an in-soma pod insertion into an ailing indra when Zenn was young only reinforced this passion, and in fact most likely contributed to Zenn’s near obsession with ascending to the position of a  full master exovet.

Of course, the initial year of exovet training is considered the most difficult of all the years that follow.  As Zenn begins her own novice year of school at the cloister, it’s safe to say she’ll find herself tested in ways she cannot even begin to imagine.

About the author:
Born in the American Midwest, Christian started his writing career in earnest as an in-house writer at the Walt Disney Company in Burbank, California. He then became a freelance writer working for various film, home video and animation studios in Los Angeles. After moving from LA to a farmstead in Iowa several years ago, he continues to freelance and also now helps re-hab wildlife and foster abused/neglected horses.  He acquired his amateur-vet knowledge, and much of his inspiration for the Zenn Scarlett series of novels, as he learned about - and received an education from - these remarkable animals and the awesome veterinarians who care so deeply for them. (Website)

About Zenn Scarlett:

When you're studying to be exoveterinarian specializing in exotic, alien life forms, school... is a different kind of animal.

Zenn Scarlett is a resourceful, determined 17-year-old girl working hard to make it through her novice year of exovet training. That means she's learning to care for alien creatures that are mostly large, generally dangerous and profoundly fascinating. Zenn’s all-important end-of-term tests at the Ciscan Cloister Exovet Clinic on Mars are coming up, and, she's feeling confident of acing the exams. But when a series of inexplicable animal escapes and other disturbing events hit the school, Zenn finds herself being blamed for the problems. As if this isn't enough to deal with, her absent father has abruptly stopped communicating with her; Liam Tucker, a local towner boy, is acting unusually, annoyingly friendly; and, strangest of all: Zenn is worried she's started sharing the thoughts of the creatures around her. Which is impossible, of course. Nonetheless, she can't deny what she's feeling.

Now, with the help of Liam and Hamish, an eight-foot sentient insectoid also training at the clinic, Zenn must learn what's happened to her father, solve the mystery of who, if anyone, is sabotaging the cloister, and determine if she's actually sensing the consciousness of her alien patients... or just losing her mind. All without failing her novice year....


May 7, 2013, Strange Chemistry Books
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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tour Review: Games of Fate by Kris Austen Radcliffe



Rysa Torres misses information. Loses concentration. Her attention problems randomize her life but she pushes forward anyway, doing the best she can—until monsters activate a part of her she didn’t know she had.

As visions of the future whip inside her head, Rysa realizes the truth: She’s a Fate.

And she will set fire to the world.

All her options explode. Her family ripped away, what little control she had destroyed, Rysa is left with one choice: Will she die to stop the coming flames, or will she allow the man and the dragon she loves to die in her place?
Kris Austen Radcliffe took me by surprise with the first novel of her Fate, Fire, Shifter, Dragon series. Games of Fate has such an interesting plot line that I found myself not wanting to stop reading for anything much other than sleep. 

The first noticeable aspect of the story line was how Rysa's ADHD ties in to her past-present-future seeing ability. Even though further along in the story Radcliffe makes it seem as though her newly emerging powers mirror her ADHD condition, I don't think translated well enough. The imagery didn't always give me that impression. On the other hand, Rysa's bond with Dragon and Ladon was pretty sweet and I loved that sign language was a bonding point for them. It really made up for some of the confusion stemming from the writing style as it opened the way for understanding in certain scenes and in the story as a whole.

The fantasy aspect is very imaginative but the execution could have been a little less focused on imagery and language and more on plot progression and characterization. By the end of the story I didn't feel so connected to the characters as people. The bits and pieces of their life before all the non-stop action didn't paint such a stable picture for me. I also didn't feel that this novel was really 'new adult'. With all the drawn out scenes of running and fighting, readers do not see a woman transitioning from teen to adult. Just because a character is college age does not mean the story should be labeled new adult. I didn't feel a connection to this story because Rysa's in the same age group as me, I just really wanted to understand her unexpected powers as much as she wanted to.

I can see myself diving back into this world, especially because I can tell that there's so much left untold. I would recommend this novel because Radcliffe brings something new to the fantasy genre, but I would just hope the writing is more condensed and  more to the point.
*eARC provided in exchange for an honest review*

Fate, Fire, Shifter, Dragon Series #1
February 2013, Six Talon Sign Media, LLC

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Friday, April 19, 2013

Range & The Magpie Bridge by JA Huss: Excerpts & Giveaway


Read my reviews of Clutch, Fledge, Flight, Range, & The Magpie Bridge!
 

 
Two years have passed since Inanna stole Junco away from Lucan. Two years of unimaginable pain. Two years of isolation, mutilation and torture. Two years of fear and loneliness in a morph tank. And that's not something you just get over, even if you are psycho-assassin, Junco Coot. Now Junco has to learn to live with the consequences. Her Siblings are suspicious and angry, half her team is dead, Tier is wreaking death and destruction, Lucan is holding his secrets close, and she is spiraling out of control. There is only one partnership that matters anymore - only one person she will trust and take direction from - and only one way out of the Hell she's been sentenced to. Junco is tired of fighting and death. She's had enough and this time she means to end it - once and for all. Junco is tired of fighting and death. She's had enough and this time she means to end it - once and for all.
This is an excerpt from Range, I Am Just/Not Junco #4. It's the beginning to one of my favorite scenes. The tension and high emotions running through it will send you clicking to an online bookstore for your own copy! Enjoy!!

I gulp some air and pace, getting very nervous again. The trembling starts and I count my own heartbeats.

Tier appears in front of me and his hands are on my shoulders. I swat them off and push past him. "Take me back! Please, just take me back to Gideon. I don't want to be here." He simply stares as I point to the drawer that contains the demon Bible. "Is that who you guys worship? Some vampire thing with metal claws?"

Tier's laugh startles me and I step back so fast I trip over the edge of the bed and fall backwards. His dark imposing figure hovers over me, wings lifted and extended slightly, as his eyes glow green with—something. He grabs my arms and slides me towards the center of the bed, then crawls up, his knees on either side of my legs, until he's poised above me.

"Worship him? Darlin', he is High Order—he is coming to kill us. We don't worship him. We flee from him. We take flight like starlings. And if you're quite done stomping around like a baby, I'm going to enlighten you about exactly who I am and what we're doing here and then maybe—unlikely, but maybe—you'll stop your incessant whining and pouting and screaming and think of someone other than yerself for once."

He stops, maybe to see if I'll object to his insults, but I don't. Not because I agree with him, but because I just can't think of anything to say. He's wiped my mind of everything but his body, which at this very moment is lowering down on top of me. His uniform shirt rides up a little and I catch a glimpse of skin. It takes every molecule of willpower to pull my gaze back up to his eyes.

"Because this is not a fucking game I'm playing." His weight settles across my stomach, his face coming closer and closer until he's a breath away. His words come out as a whisper. "We're done playing, Junco." His hands are on either side of my head now, leaning on the bed, forming little impressions in the mattress so that the palms are brushing alongside my cheeks. I try to watch his eyes but all that registers is how with each passing fraction he is closing the distance between us. "We're gonna set it straight, right now." His mouth dips down and caresses mine.

My eyes close as I respond, but he pulls back almost immediately.
I lie there. Waiting to see what he'll do next, not even caring that he just blamed that whole fight on me, because this man is heating me up in a way that makes me powerless to resist.

Purchase the entire I Am Just/Not Junco Series online today!!

New Adult AddictionNew Adult Addiction

New Adult AddictionNew Adult Addiction


Raubtier Aves, 039-1, a.k.a TIER Son of Lucan Ranking Officer of the Avian military Powerful Ruthless And devoted to Junco, no matter what
Tier was left with one specific order and he's not about to screw it up. He might lose all his allies, his brothers, his shot at defeating the High Order, and his own Eternal Salvation - but he's willing to risk it all to keep one small girl alive. Tier reveals his part in the epic tale of The Seven Siblings, spilling secrets and motivations that will leave you breathless and wanting more. The Magpie Bridge paves the way for the final installment in the new adult Series, I Am Just Junco. The final book in the Junco Epic, RETURN, will be released on December 2, 2013.
This excerpt from The Magpie Bridge is partly why I loved this novella so much. Tier's point-of-view in any story would be excellent, but this one took the cake! Hope it makes you smile as much as it made me. :)

"I'm hun-gry!"

Ash and I wince together as we help each other up off the floor.

"Who is that?" Lucan asks.

"Junco's HOUSE."

"Hmmm. She does not look like a house, Ashur."

"I'm a girl!" she squeals. That little voice—incessantly asking for things like food, and drinks, and trips to the beach—is really grating on my nerves.

"What are you doing with her, Raubtier?"

"Babysitting for Junco," Ashur answers.

"Would you shut the fuck up? I've had enough of you. I made a promise to get her out of Peaks before the earthquakes."

"What earthquakes?"

"Exactly," Ash answers.

"I'm hun-gry!"

Lucan walks over to her and bends down. "You are not hungry, you're an AI. I'm quite versed in AI engineering and maintenance, and they do not require food. So, why don't you keep quiet over here and watch something stupid on the screen so we don't have to listen to your mouth as it flaps up and down and spews things we do not care about?"

Ash smiles at me. "He's got a way with kids, right? Brings back all those awesome memories of being little in Lucan's house."

"Was he an asshole?" the little voice says.

I turn on my heel, fuming and pointing. "I already warned ya once, girl!"

"Junco never cared if I said asshole."
"Say it again," I growl down at her. "I dare ya."

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR J. A. Huss likes to write new adult books that make you think and keep you guessing. Her favorite genre to read is space opera, but since practically no one reads those books, she writes new adult science fiction, paranormal romance, contemporary romance, urban fantasy, and books about Junco (who refuses to be saddled with a label). She has an undergraduate degree in horses, (yes, really-Thank you, Colorado State University) and a master's degree in forensic toxicology from the University of Florida. She used to have a job driving around Colorado doing pretty much nothing but shooting the breeze with farmers, but now she just writes, runs the New Adult Addiction and Clean Teen Reads Book Blogs, and runs an online science classroom for homeschoolers.
                   




























New Adult Addiction New Adult Addiction New Adult Addiction New Adult Addiction
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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Tour Review: The Baby Bargain by Jennifer Apodaca



Seeing Adam Waters is the last thing veterinarian Megan Young expects. Ex-Marine. Ex-boyfriend. And still extremely dangerous territory. But Adam doesn’t know the secret Megan has been keeping from him. The secret that was created three years ago, after their last night together...

Adam returns to Raven’s Cove to sell his home in a final break with the town and memories that haunt him. The problem is that his attraction to Megan is as blazing hot as it ever was. But when a vicious smear campaign against Megan turns ugly, Adam learns the truth he never knew—he has a son.

Now the only way Megan can protect her child is to strike a bargain with Adam. And it’s a bargain that looks a lot like blackmail...
The Baby Bargain is an awesome romance of a determined mother who will do whatever it takes to do right by her child. According to Jennifer Apodaca, even if doing whatever it takes involves Megan Young, a successful young veterinarian, telling her son's ex-Marine, and absolutely against commitment, father that he has a son, well then...she'll do it.

This Once A Marine novel may be set in the small town of Raven's Cove, but it's packed with a variety of characters and touching experiences. Apodaca makes it so easy to feel involved in both Adam and Megan's lives, their choices and consequences of their actions. The hint of suspense that threads through the plot enhances the emotional aspect and draws us further into their story.

I can't imagine someone reading The Baby Bargain and just completely hating it. It has a mildly heated romance and a relatable theme. With its cozy feel, I recommend it for a rainy summer day when you can just curl up inside and take your time reading it. It's an absorbing read that will definitely take you away!
*eARC provided via publisher in exchange for an honest review*

Once a Marine Series #1
March 2013, Indulgence (Entangled Publishing), 184pp, ebook

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tuff Girl Legion Presents Astarte's Wrath by Trisha Wolfe (Review/Giveaway/Excerpt)

A tragic love story.

Two thousand years before Dez Harkly developed her secret powers, Guardian Astarte was vowed to protect by the binds enslaving her to the Egyptian pharaohs. Discover the prophecy that originated from a very different time, and spans generations to link two very different girls.

This is the beginning.

Set against the backdrop of the Battle of Actium, in the city of Alexandria, Star struggles with her guardian duties as her feelings for the newly named pharaoh of Egypt grow deeper. Not only is Caesarion her duty, he’s the son of Cleopatra, and he’s human. All of which makes their love forbidden.

But when a conspiracy linked to Caesar creeps into Alexandria, Star must choose between helping her fellow Kythan free themselves of their servitude, and protecting her charge—the last pharaoh—while Egypt burns around her.
Astarte's Wrath started out as a full blast of tension: war, fear, uncertainty. However, Trisha Wolfe lightens the story with a beautiful romance like no other, filled with hope and strength.

Astarte is a Kythan guardian, charged with the protection of the Queen of Egypt's son, Caesarion. While Cleopatra is overseas fighting the King Octavian's Roman forces, Astarte wars within herself. Her race, along with the Naroclym, have been slaves to Pharaohs for centuries. It's in her blood to obey every command even when it comes from her best friend. As Astarte struggles with her forbidden feelings for Xarion and her determination to loyally protect and serve him, she learns of a new foe against Egypt.

As Astarte's Wrath continues in Wolfe's flowing and passionate writing style, the story comes alive with meaning and purpose. Though I have yet to read Destiny's Fire, another Kythan Guardians novel, I can feel that I won't be lost when I finally delve into it. The whole dynamic between Egypt and Rome, the Shythe, Narcolym and Kythan people becomes clearer as Astarte's story takes off. The intro was a very intriguing starting point to introduce one of the main concerns of the plot, but I felt so lost jumping into so much of the history of the story so quickly. I really didn't understand at first, but I loved that Wolfe kind of breaks down the situation further along so as to not keep readers confused.

Astarte and Xarion's romance was every bit of tragic, but I would not ask to have anything about it change. It had all the emotions of a classic forbidden love but with a twist stemming from the story's mythological set up. Do not hesitate to jump into the Kythan Guardians series at this point! I truly believe that readers will experience a world that will leave them begging for more!
* ebook provided via author in exchange for an honest review*

A Kythan Guardians Novel
March 2013, 179pp, ebook

Sneak Peek: Bath Scene from Xarion's POV
Star narrows her eyes at me, her full, bottom lip puckering out the way it does when she's in serious thought--and though I'm listening to her words, all I want to do is trap that bottom lip between my teeth. Nip it and caress it with my tongue.
“I knew you'd say that,” she says. “And that is precisely why I didn't want you to know.” She raises her hand from my chest and swipes the wet hair from my forehead. Her body subtly moves against me with this action, and it drives me wild. “A possible retaliation by the guardians is just one more weighted burden on top of the many you already carry. You don't need the added strain. Let me deal with Candra and the Kythan. They're my kindred. As long as I'm their equal--in both power and status--I can protect you.”
This woman--the woman I've loved my entire life--is my protector. She not only guards against physical threats, but watches over my mental wellbeing. But I cannot allow her to carry all my problems alone anymore. I want to be her guardian, to be the one to comfort her when she's fearful, and protect her against this world.
I tilt my head and suck in a deep breath. “This is why you won't be with me.” I want her to admit it. If she finally confesses that our titles and her battle with the right course of action have been the only reasons for her kept affections, then by Gods…help me from laying her out on this tile and taking her--making her mine. I won't stop.
She nods.
“This is the only reason.” She nods again, and that is all the conformation I need. “Then I refuse to let them keep us apart for one more moment.” I grasp her face between my hands and claim her lips with mine.
Her lips are soft and warm as I achingly coax them into a fevered kiss, unable to hold back my desire for her. I had planned for our first kiss many times, imagined it over and over. The way I would caress her lips slowly and lovingly, conveying my affections. But every emotion I have ever felt for Star rushes to the surface all at once, and I can't slow. I won't. I won't allow her a moment to question our actions, to reconsider us. I'm going to kiss her senseless--kiss the reason right out of her infuriatingly rational head.

Help Trisha and the Tuff Girl Legion get to 50 reviews on Amazon for the full scene release of the “Bath Scene” on Trisha's blog! You can bookmark the bonus material here!

Giveaway:
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Trisha Wolfe is the author of the YA Steampunk DESTINY'S FIRE (Omnific Publishing), the NA Historical/Supernatural ASTARTE'S WRATH, and the upcoming YA Utopian FIREBLOOD from Spencer Hill Press, October 2013. Her NA Dark Fantasy OF SILVER AND BEASTS available May 2013.

She's the creator of YA Bound, a promotional site for the Young Adult genre. Also a member of SCWW and The Apocalypsies. Check out www.TrishaWolfe.com for more on her books and bonus material. Follow Trisha on Twitter @TrishWolfe and like her Facebook page for updates. 

Review/Giveaway/Excerpt in conjunction with:
  
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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Review: The Survivor by DiAnn Mills

Kariss meets Dr. Amy Garrett, who survived a brutal childhood attack in which the assailant was never found. Now Dr. Garrett wants her story written in a novel. Kariss wishes she could seek the advice of Special Agent Tigo Harris, but she broke off the relationship a few months prior and seeing him again would be too painful. She interviews Amy and conducts her own research, stepping unaware into a viper’s pit of danger.
Tigo misses Kariss and wants her back, but he understands why she broke off their relationship. Instead, he concentrates on solving a car bombing and bringing the killer to justice. As Kariss’s new story attracts an onslaught of danger that she never expected, can Tigo save the woman he loves and find who wants her dead for writing about an unsolved cold-case?
The Survivor is a heartening suspense novel that will draw readers in with a quick snap. Those two qualities may surprise you at how well they work together, but DiAnn Mills perfectly meshes a hopeful romance with a daring mystery.

Kariss Walker, a best-selling mystery author, is approached by a survivor from a brutal attack from years ago who wants Kariss to write her story. Amy is a psychologist who counsels abused women while battling the fears of her unresolved case. She thinks Kariss is the key to successfully getting her story out there for abused women to find encouragement. When the story idea goes public, Kariss is victimized, once again. Tigo Harris, an FBI agent working on a case involving a family torn apart by a car bombing, jumps to Kariss's rescue. Especially when Amy's attacker begins stepping out of the shadows.

Mills keeps readers engrossed with the many plot lines, even at times when it seems like none of them add up. The tentative relationship between Tigo and Kariss is the sweet distraction readers will look forward to when it seems the special agents and Houston police forces get no closer to finding the violent culprit. Even when Kariss's life gets more dangerous than ever it's simply impossible to actually lose all hope for her future. Mills somehow mixes in so much encouragement and very faith-conscious characters who know how to add a few words here and there to keep readers uplifted.

The Survivor will no doubt draw back fans of the Crime Scene: Houston series and attract new ones!
*ARC provided by publisher via BookSneeze in exchange for an honest review*

Crime Scene: Houston
March 5, 2013, Zondervan, 384pp,Paperback, ebook, audio

I review for BookSneeze®

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Friday, April 12, 2013

Review: Rush Me by Allison Parr

Visit Allison Parr online!
When post-grad Rachael Hamilton accidentally gatecrashes a pro-athlete party, she ends up face-to-face with Ryan Carter, the NFL’s most beloved quarterback.

While most girls would be thrilled to meet the attractive young millionaire, Rachael would rather spend time with books than at sporting events, and she has more important things to worry about than romance. Like her parents pressuring her to leave her unpaid publishing internship for law school. Or her brother, who’s obliviously dating Rachael’s high school bully. Or that same high school’s upcoming reunion.

Still, when Ryan’s rookie teammate attaches himself to Rachael, she ends up cohosting Friday night dinners for half a dozen football players.

Over pancake brunches, charity galas, and Alexander the Great Rachael realizes all the judgments she’d made about Ryan are wrong. But how can a Midwestern Irish-Catholic jock with commitment problems and an artsy, gun-shy Jewish New Englander ever forge a partnership? Rachael must let down her barriers if she wants real love–even if that opens her up to pain that could send her back into her emotional shell forever.
Allison Parr's debut new adult romance is absolutely amazing! Rush Me is a refreshing contemporary novel that will have readers immediately wrapped up in the lives of its characters. Rachael is a saucy lead with a determined outlook on life. She wants to make it in the publishing industry and she has plans to stick with her unpaid internship until she finds her dream job. Ryan is is the misunderstood and underestimated pro football player that gets under Rachael's skin and will charm every reader.

I enjoyed every second of reading Rush Me. The plot is realistic and at the same time it's a storyline that will make you think it could only happen in dreams. Parr manages to bring Rachael and Ryan together even after their relationship started on rocky grounds. With a pacing smooth as butter and a high emotional drive, Parr has created a very engaging and entertaining story.

Between the characters with quirky characteristics and vulnerabilities and the fantastic romance, Parr will gain fans something to talk about. Many stories have been published under this newly popular genre but not all of them have that spark of connection, like Rush Me. It's officially one of my favorites so far and I'm also hoping to read more from Parr in whatever genre!
*eGalley provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

April 8, 2013, Carina Press, ebook
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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday: Shudder by Samantha Durante







 Release Date: June 15, 2013
It's only been three days, and already everything is different.

Paragon is behind her, but somehow Alessa's life may actually have gotten worse. In a wrenching twist of fate, she traded the safety and companionship of her sister for that of her true love, losing a vital partner she'd counted on for the ordeal ahead. Her comfortable university life is but a distant memory, as she faces the prospect of surviving a bleak winter on the meager remains of a ravaged world. And if she'd thought she'd tasted fear upon seeing a ghost, she was wrong; now she's discovering new depths of terror while being hunted by a deadly virus and a terrifying pack of superhuman creatures thirsting for blood.

And then there are the visions.

The memory-altering "stitch" unlocked something in Alessa's mind, and now she can't shake the constant flood of alien feelings ransacking her emotions. Haunting memories of an old flame are driving a deep and painful rift into her once-secure relationship. And a series of staggering revelations about the treacherous Engineers - and the bone-chilling deceit shrouding her world's sorry history - will soon leave Alessa reeling...

The second installment in the electrifying Stitch Trilogy, Shudder follows Samantha Durante's shocking and innovative debut with a heart-pounding, paranormal-dusted dystopian adventure sure to keep the pages turning.
In honor of the recent cover reveal for Shudder this month, Samantha Durante is hosting an awesome giveaway for 1 Print ARC of Shudder, open internationally!
Enter the Giveaway HERE!!!

Since there's still a couple of months until Shudder releases, I suggest checking out book one in the Stitch Trilogy, Stitch! See my review and get your copy ASAP!


Samantha Durante, Author of the Stitch Trilogy
Samantha Durante lives in Westchester County, New York with her husband, Sudeep, and her cat, Gio. Formerly an engineer at Microsoft, Samantha left the world of software in 2010 to pursue her entrepreneurial dreams and a lifelong love of writing. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Jerome Fisher Program in Management & Technology, Samantha is currently working full time for her company Medley Media Associates as a freelance business writer and communications consultant. The Stitch Trilogy is her debut series. Learn more about Samantha at www.samanthadurante.com.


Make sure you visit Samantha online:
LibraryThing: Stitch | Shudder | Author Samantha Durante
Twitter: @SamanthaDurante

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