Category

Audiobook

Greatshadow by James Maxey

About the Audiobook

Author: James Maxey

Narrator: Jake Urry

Length: 13 hours 20 minutes

Publisher: James Maxey⎮2017

Genre: Epic Fantasy

Series: Dragon Apocalypse, Book One

Release date: May 29, 2017

 

Complicated plot lines always intrigue me because it challenges my brain to remember everything. And when done right, it’s awesome. The story line for this book was done right. It was an intense action pack story about dragons and warriors. Right now, I’m on a dragon kick, so this book came along at the right time. The author’s world building is well-developed and it was easy to see the story unfold as if I was watching a movie. I think listening to the story helped with that because the narrator gave the story and even more intense level. I enjoyed the characters and the narrator did an outstanding job making each one of them unique. I was not expecting some of the twists this author wrote since my first impression was this book was going to lean heavily on testosterone. The female lead was just as strong and I am always very impressed when a male narrator does a great job with a female character. Overall the marriage of this story and the audiobook worked well and I still think about it even though it’s been weeks since I finished it. Books like this continue to challenge my writing ability and inspire me to be a better writer.

 

Greatshadow is the primal dragon of fire, an elemental evil whose malign intelligence spies upon mankind through every candle flame, waiting to devour any careless victim he can claim.
The Church of the Book has assembled a team of twelve battle-hardened adventurers to slay the dragon once and for all. But tensions run high between the leaders of the team who view the mission as a holy duty and the super-powered mercenaries who add power to their ranks, who view the mission primarily as a chance to claim Greatshadow’s vast treasure trove. If the warriors fail to slay the beast, will they doom mankind to death by fire?

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About the Author: James Maxey

James Maxey’s mother warned him if he read too many comic books, they would warp his mind. She was right. Now an adult who can’t stop daydreaming, James is unsuited for decent work and ekes out a pittance writing down demented fantasies about masked women, fiery dragons, and monkeys. Oh god, so many monkeys.

In an effort to figure out how Superman could fly, James read a lot of science, books by Carl Sagan and Stephen Jay Gould and Stephen Hawking. Turns out, Superman probably wasn’t based on any factual information. Who would have guessed? Realizing it was possible to write science fiction without being constrained by the actual rules of science proved liberating for James, and led to the psuedo-science fiction of the Bitterwood series, superhero novels like Nobody Gets the Girl, and the steam-punk visions of Bad Wizard.

In 2015, James was honored as the Piedmont Laureate by the United Arts Councils representing Orange County, Durham County, and Wake County. This is almost certainly a sign of the ongoing cultural decay gripping the nation.

James lives in Hillsborough, North Carolina with his lovely and patient wife Cheryl and too many cats.

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About the Narrator: Jake Urry

Jake Urry has been narrating and producing Audiobooks since February 2016, and in that time has released 17 titles, including The Cryptic Lines by Richard Storry, White is the Coldest Colour by John Nicholl, and the PI Harlan Ulrich series by Ambrose Ibsen. His narration work is often dark and suspenseful, and he developing a reputation for Mysteries, Thrillers and Horrors. In 2017 Jake will be working on more work by John Nicholl and Richard Storry, along with a sprinkling of Fantasy adventures.

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**I received a free audio copy of this book in exchange for a review**

Aranya by Marc Secchia~ Interview & Giveaway

About the Audiobook

Author: Marc Secchia

Narrator: Siromi Arserio

Length: 14 hours 33 minutes

Publisher: Marc Secchia⎮2015

Genre: Fantasy

Series: Shapeshifter Dragons, Book 1

Release date: April 05, 2015

I love dragons, but I haven’t read many books with dragons. When I saw this one I knew it was a book I would enjoy. Yes, I know we shouldn’t judge books based on covers, but look at the cover! It’s beautiful. This story is as beautiful as the cover. The author created a completely new world with such detailed description I wanted to book a vacation to this mysterious land. His combination of Victorian, steampunk, and fantasy images brought the setting alive to the reader. The action was developed in such a way that sometimes I felt like I was watching a movie and not listening to a book.

One of the things that impressed me was his description of Dragon Aranya. I think of dragons as being very masculine. Secchia created a fierce dragon that was very feminine but just as strong as any warrior.  All of his characters were such real people I wanted to meet them.

The narrator does a fantastic job with the various voices. Each character had a unique voice and it was always easy to determine the different people. I think her interpretations only added to the richness of this great story. She even did a good job with the sound of arrows and fires.

 

Chained to a rock and tossed off a cliff by her boyfriend, Aranya is executed for high treason against the Sylakian Empire. Falling a league into the deadly Cloudlands is not a fate she ever envisaged. But what if she did not die? What if she could spread her wings and fly?
Long ago, Dragons ruled the Island-World above the Cloudlands. But their Human slaves cast off the chains of Dragonish tyranny. Humans spread across the Islands in their flying Dragonships, colonising, building and warring. Now, the all-conquering Sylakians have defeated the last bastion of freedom–the Island-Kingdom of Immadia.
Evil has a new enemy. Aranya, Princess of Immadia. Dragon Shapeshifter.

 

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About the Author: Marc Secchia

Marc is a South African-born dragon masquerading as an author, who loves writing about dragons and Africa, preferably both at the same time. He lives and works in Ethiopia with his wife and 4 children, 2 dogs and a variable number of marabou storks that roost on the acacia trees out back. On a good night there are also hyenas patrolling the back fence.

He’s the author of 21 fantasy books in 3 languages (2 more languages coming this year – watch this space!), including 8 rip-roaring dragon fantasy bestsellers. Dragonfriend won a Gold Award for Fantasy in the 2016 IPPY Book Awards. Look out for Whisper Alive, his latest release. The 4th tale in the Dragonfriend series, Dragonstar, is coming soon!

When he’s not writing about Africa or dragons Marc can be found travelling to remote locations. He thinks there’s nothing better than standing on a mountaintop wondering what lies over the next horizon.

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About the Narrator: Shiromi Arserio

A native of London, England, Shiromi Arserio is a stage actor, voice talent and audiobook narrator. She holds a B.A. in Theatre from Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance. In addition to narrating dozens of audiobooks, her voice can be heard in documentaries, e-learning projects and video games such as Nancy Drew: The Shattered Medallion. Shiromi currently resides in the Seattle area with her husband and her two furbabies.

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Giveaway: $50 Amazon Gift Card
Runs Aug. 9th-16th⎮Open internationally
Aranya Giveaway: $50 Amazon Gift Card

Author Interview:

 

I’ve read about your background on your blog, but can you please tell my readers about living in Africa and why you chose the myths and legends from here to be the background of your stories?

I think there’s a generation of readers and fans who have grown up with Euro-centric and Tolkeinesque paradigms in fantasy. That’s all well and fine, and some truly excellent work has been produced. But I also feel those tropes are now somewhat overused and under-represent the diversity (to pick one example) of the world around us. I choose to draw from African traditions, mores and values because firstly I connect with those best, but also because there’s a great unexplored world out there that I’d love to draw readers into. I think there’s something beautiful about the African values of humanity and community which I would love to communicate and celebrate.

For myself, I grew up in Cape Town near the ocean and now live and work in Ethiopia. I resonate with the richness and diversity of the African histories and societies which surround me, and I deliberately chose to come back (from the UK) to work in Africa because I wanted to give more or give back to the continent where I grew up. Africa has a magical quality which gets under your skin. Yes, there is poverty, but there is also an extraordinary opportunity if people would give Africa and Africans a chance.

Addis Ababa, where I live, is a city of some 5-6 million persons, always growing and thriving and bubbling from dawn to dusk. Early in the morning you’ll hear the Orthodox churches worshipping and dogs barking and the night is thick and velvety. During the day, the city explodes with busyness. There are people everywhere. Cars dodging donkeys. Sheep. Street vendors. Sights and smells to take in. It’s a joyous, vibrant place where you cannot walk down a street without being greeted or even invited to share a meal, no matter how small. That’s what I love about Ethiopia – much hospitality, and many smiles.

You obviously spent a lot of time world building for your series. How did you get started, what did you use for reference, and is this world static or is changing when you need to add something new?

I love landscapes and situations that play into and shape a story and the characters that move within that world. Also, I think fantasy fans enjoy the unusual. I started worldbuilding when I was in my teens, misspending English lessons dreaming up fantasy worlds – but usually it starts with concept, say, what about a world above the clouds? How would that work?

I tend to draw up broad principles before I start but then allow my imagination loose in the world and adapt and add details as I go along. I try hard to stick within the bounds of physics (for  example, how high can a dragon fly before falling over from hypoxia?) but if those need to be stretched a little then so be it. So we have supersonic dragon flight, for example, space-faring whales and a world that is comprised entirely of canyons beneath a scorching surface.

Describe your writing process.

I have a story idea or I dream a story – I’ve always found this the easy part, as I’ve far more ideas than time to write them. I write a synopsis, just a few lines or words about what will happen, right the way through to the ending (that’s so I don’t meander). Then I separate it out roughly into chapters and scenes to form a framework, before fleshing out that framework starting from the top. I’ll separately brainstorm the characters to build in a few quirks and think about how they’ll interact. Each character gets a brief sketch beforehand but I like to throw them into the story and see what happens.

If I’m uncertain about a writing idea I’ll file it for later. But generally speaking, that’s the process – I try to write 3 – 5,000 words per day, usually mornings from early (5am).

What is your favorite snack while writing?

I don’t snack a whole lot while writing, but if I do, it would be to pause for a Ferrero Rocher chocolate. Coffee is my morning addiction.

What is it about dragons that fascinate you?

Dragons are Fantasy’s most majestic creatures. I like my dragons served up awesome, magical and as full of character as any person you’d wish to meet, the kind of person you’re almost compelled to spend time with or watch. I’m a fan of Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern as well as her other writings. It was her viewpoint of fully-formed dragon characters, the telepathic communication between Dragon and Rider, and the possibilities of Human-Dragon interaction which shaped my early fascination with dragons as creatures and characters.

Dragons can fly anywhere. They spread their wings and soar into the realms of the possible. That’s why they’re so rewarding to write.

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I’ve always wanted to become a writer. I was the kid who when we were asked to produce a haiku, I’d write an epic haiku series in 16 parts. I know because when I write and create, something in me comes alive.

It took 8 books to find any kind of success in writing. For me, while success wasn’t the point, it was a watershed moment when I thought, ‘I love this, but I could also do this for a living’. There’s something awesome and humbling about realising that you could make art for a living. What a privilege.

What are your writing plans for the future?

Firstly, finish all these series I’ve started. I’ve made great headway but there’s a ways to go yet. I’d love to sell a film deal. Back in real life, I’ve many other ideas that I’d like to bring alive. As long as the love of reading and writing is there, I think I’ll continue.

I will take you and any author or character of your choice out to lunch. Who’s coming with us?

Goodness, you do like your tough questions don’t you? Ok, I’m going to pick a certain Mister Tolkien because he is my all-time favourite author, and the breadth and depth of his imagination are simply dazzling.

 

What are you currently reading or have recently finished?

 

Mike Shelton, The Dragon Orb – read it!

https://www.amazon.com/Dragon-Orb-Alaris-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B01N4LI376

 

 

You can have only five books on your bookshelf, what are they?

AAAARRRGGH! How could you? Ok, now that I have that off my chest:

  1. The bestselling book of all time, the Bible
  2. LOTR – does a box set count as one?
  3. Something by Anne McCaffrey – probably her Crystal Singer Omnibus
  4. Roget’s Thesaurus, a very well-thumbed one
  5. A space for that next book to obsess over. Something unexpected. It’s calling to me, just waiting to be found …

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**I received a copy of this audiobook in exchange for a review**

Wynter’s Journey by Jennifer DeCuir

About the Audiobook

Author: Jennifer DeCuir

Narrator: Gabrielle de Cuir

Length: 6 hours 55 minutes

Publisher: Blackstone Audio⎮2017

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Series: Scallop Shores, Book 3

Release date: January 28, 2017

 

Tragedy tore Wynter and Sam apart before he could tell her how he felt about her. Twelve years later, fate dropped her off on his doorstep, widowed, desperately broke, and very pregnant. Sam has spent his entire adult life trying to forget Wynter, and here she was, ready to collect on a promise he’d made when he was young and in love. His sense of honor dictated that he take her in when she needed him most. It was only temporary, after all. But living under the same roof quickly led to old feelings resurfacing. Now the one person he’d wanted to leave behind is the one person he can’t let go.
She knew seeing her reminded Sam of everything he’d lost, but Wynter had no choice. If she were going to make it back to Scallop Shores to raise her baby, she needed his help. Only she hadn’t counted on the long winter nights, getting reacquainted with a childhood friend she’d loved like a brother, a friend who’d grown into a man she found herself wanting to get to know on a whole different level.
Delivering Wynter’s baby at home during a fierce snow storm forces Sam to fill in as temporary dad. It’s a role he’d gladly make permanent. Too bad the one place Wynter is determined to raise her daughter is the one place Sam swore he’d never step foot in again. Had he gotten a second chance to tell her he loved her only to lose her again? Or is this time for keeps?

 

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About the Author: Jennifer DeCuir

Jennifer DeCuir is the author of the Scallop Shores series, set on the coast of Maine, where she grew up. Now living on the opposite side of the country, she’s busy raising two kids and a husband. Her life resembles a sitcom, but that means endless story ideas. Coffee and chocolate keep her productive. Wine keeps her sane.

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About the Narrator: Gabrielle de Cuir

Gabrielle has narrated over 150 titles specializing in fantasy, humor, and audiobooks requiring extensive foreign language and accent skills.  Her “velvet touch” as an actors’ director has earned her a special place in the audiobook world as the foremost choice for authors and celebrities. She grew up in London and Rome with her wildly cinematic Oscar-winning father. She is the creator of two successful Kickstarter campaigns for audiobooks this past year. For the past 3 years running, she has had finalists in the Audie EXCELLENCE IN PRODUCTION category. She is co-founder of Audie, Grammy and Hugo winning Skyboat Media located in L.A.

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Let’s Chat with Jess the Audiobookworm

Before we begin, I have to thank Terri (my fellow “Carolina girl”) for the opportunity to be featured on #CarolinaReads!

First and foremost I have to ask why audiobooks? What draws you to this format?

Primarily, the convenience. I grew up with a voracious appetite for reading, but as I got older, it dwindled. Life got in the way. I became busier and began to accept that reading was a luxury I didn’t have time for anymore. I’m sure this is something a lot of folks can relate to.

My seemingly incidental introduction to audiobooks re-opened a door I thought had been shut forever. I’m not being dramatic, I genuinely thought that part of becoming an adult meant that I wouldn’t have time for a luxury such as reading. Audiobooks not only allow me to fit reading into my schedule but now I’m able to consume more books than ever!

Do you think every book lends itself to the audio format? Why or why not?

No, I don’t. Most do, but some still translate better than others. That’s not to say, however, that I don’t think all books should be translated into audiobooks. Every book deserves an audiobook!

But a lot of times, audiobooks are afterthoughts for authors. Something they don’t even think about until the book is well underway, if not already finished. That’s completely understandable because writing a book and getting published are hard.

Sometimes, a book is written in a manner that’s just meant to work best on paper.

Two popular examples come to mind: Rainbow Rowell’s Attachments and Taherah Mafi’s Shatter Me. Both are excellent novels but seem (to me) to work better when visualized rather than heard. Attachments is written as a series of emails between coworkers. The novel was formatted in a very unique way to resemble email attachments. In audio, the novelty of this formatting doesn’t come across as well as it should. In Shatter Me,  the protagonist constantly strikes through her words as she writes journal entries. Again, I love this idea, but the only way to convey it in audio was to use a scratching sound effect to mimic the protagonist’s writing utensil striking through a word. It took me a good portion of the novel to understand what was happening there.

How do you fit listening to audiobooks into your schedule?

Listening has become a habit to me now.  I always have an audiobook playing.  Luckily, I work from home, so I’m able to listen continuously and at whatever volume I want!

There are so many daily opportunities to listen. Think about all the times you have music playing.  That’s when I play an audiobook.  

  • In the car
  • Exercising
  • Working in the yard
  • Falling asleep at night
  • Doing housework
  • At the beach or swimming pool

Anytime I’m performing a mindless task (something that doesn’t require a lot of concentration), I listen to an audiobook.

When I listen to a book, I find it even easier to picture the whole story in my head. How does listening to the story enhance the experience for you?

Oh, absolutely. I love relaxing in bed at night when listening to an audiobook.  I can close my eyes and see the story play out in my mind. It’s effortless.

It’s also fun to create mental images of the characters.  I love casting the characters of the audiobooks I hear. I ask myself  “If this story were being made into a movie or television series, who would I want to play the parts?”. That takes the visualization to another level.

Tell us a little about your company. How did it start? What services do you offer?

It all happened in a very kismet sort of way.  I began looking for blog tour companies to work with as an audiobook blogger.  After applying to several of them, I was politely told that there likely wouldn’t be many opportunities for me to participate because audiobook blog tours weren’t very popular.

I thought that was odd because I was getting several review requests a week from authors, narrators, and publishers. Why weren’t these people approaching tour companies about promoting audiobooks? This felt like a gap in the book marketing world that needed to be filled.

Shortly after that,  I was approached by an author about coordinating an audiobook blog tour for his audiobook that I had previously reviewed. My first instinct was to say “No, I can’t do that.”,  but then I thought “Hey, maybe I could do that…” , which eventually turned into “ I can do that!”.

A little over a month later,  Audiobookworm Promotions was born. I explicitly cater to the audiobook community, of which I am proud to be a part. I believe that, with a little creativity, audiobooks can be marketed just as effectively as traditional books.

Audiobookworm  Promotions seemed like a natural progression from The Audiobookworm.  I’m excited to be unveiling a new website for Audiobookworm  Promotions in a couple of weeks. I’ll also be gradually expanding my services. Right now,  I offer blog tours, review tours, graphic design and web design services, as well as a number of other brand management and marketing services.

I  organize virtual tours for all genres and I’m always looking for tour hosts. Anyone interested can sign up here! There are also a number of audiobooks available for “adoption” on my Adopt-An-Audiobook page.

What is the first book you remember reading?

That’s tough because I’ve been reading from a very young age. Like most of my generation, Harry Potter was my childhood.

It’s much easier to recall my first audiobook.  The first audiobook I heard was Stephen King’s 9/22/63 and it remains my favorite to this day.

What are you listening to right now?

I’ve gotten to the point now where I can’t just listen to one audiobook at a time. Maybe it’s a commitment thing. I like having several options available to me because of my listening mood changes with the wind.

I currently have about 30 minutes left in Night Broken, the 8th installment in Patricia Briggs’  Mercy Thompson series. That series is a must-listen for paranormal fans.  Lorelei King (the narrator) is doing an amazing job.  

I’m also listening to  Mary Roach’s  Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers and it’s every bit of what it sounds. Although, I’m having to hear it in stages and never while eating.

Why did you choose that story?

I started the Mercy Thompson series after it was recommended by too many people to ignore. I love the paranormal genre and this series (as well as its spinoff) has become one of my all-time favorites.

Whenever I’m in a listening slump,  I temporarily switch over to podcasts for a day or so. That’s how I came across Mary Roach’s TED Talk, which sparked my interest in her writing. I highly recommend her work (and her TED Talk), but not to those with weak stomachs!

Who is an author or book character you would like to meet one day and why?

I feel like Stephen King and George R.R. Martin are the obvious answers here, but they’re also pretty far-fetched (probably). Now that I’m thinking about it, I’d love to have a conversation with Mary Roach. After hearing her TED Talk, I immediately searched for more of her interviews because I found her work so fascinating. She seems very down-to-earth and to have a great sense of humor,  which is evident in her writing. Dinner with her would be fun and informative, although we’d probably have to set some parameters about what could be discussed at the table (for my sake!).

You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What would they be and why?

I believe you can tell a lot about a person by what’s on their bookshelf. Physical book are pretty scarce around my house,  but I have hung on to a few:

What Is My Cat Thinking? This is probably my most referenced book (unfortunately). I have three cats and anyone who follows me on Instagram knows which one of them makes me pour over these pages.

The Lady of the Rivers– It’s about Jacquetta of Luxembourg (my 18th-great grandmother). I love doing genealogy and having such a popular book written about one of my ancestors excites me. This will be neat to pass down a future generation one day!

The Everything Dreams Book: What Your Dreams Mean And How They Affect Your Everyday Life– I’ve had this since I was 12. It may be the oldest book I own.

Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Ed.– From my grad school days. I still reference it occasionally and it’s handy to have around.

Gone with the Wind– I read this every summer between 8th and 12th grade. Even though time has significantly changed my view of the story, I can’t bear to give up my tattered copy.

 

Heartborn by Terry Maggert

I read Mr. Maggert’s series, Halfway Witchy. I couldn’t read those books fast enough. This series has a completely different type of characters so I wanted to see if he could do it again. I was not disappointed. This book deals with a heavenly war between the angels. That alone fascinated me. He created an angelic world which felt like a complete universe inhabited by ancient beings. So many stories I read with angles create an illusion of differentness. I really liked that these angles felt like people capable of a wide range of emotions and very human actions. Just as in his other series, the plot drew me in fast and I couldn’t get through the book fast enough. Unlike the other series, this book switches back and forth between points of view. Well, not really pov more like it switches back and forth between realities. His reason for doing this makes complete sense by the end of the book. My only complaint is he destroys the stereotypical happily ever after ending. I’m a huge sucker for those. It makes sense, and I don’t want to give away any of this great story, but I’m having a hard time being patient for book two. Moonborn will be out at the end of June. 

The narrator of this book absolutely nailed it. She was so easy to understand and did a fantastic job going back and forth between the characters.

About the Audiobook 

Author: Terry Maggert

Narrator: Julia Whelan

Length: 6 hours 20 minutes

Publisher: Terry Maggert⎮2016

Genre: Fantasy

Series: Heartborn, Book One

Release date: Oct. 3, 2016

Synopsis: Her guardian angel was pushed.
Keiron was never meant to be anything other than a hero. Born high above in a place of war and deception, he is Heartborn, a being of purity and goodness in a place where violence and deceit are just around every corner.
His disappearance will spark a war he cannot see, for Keiron has pierced the light of days to save a girl he has never met, for reasons he cannot understand. Livvy Foster is seventeen, brave, and broken. With half a heart, she bears the scars of a lifetime of pain and little hope of survival.
Until Keiron arrives.
In the middle of a brewing war and Livvy’s failing heart, Keiron will risk everything for Livvy, because a Heartborn’s life can only end in one way: Sacrifice.
Fall with Livvy and Keiron as they seek the truth about her heart, and his power, and what it means to love someone who will give their very life to save you.

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About the Author: Terry Maggert

Born in 1968, I discovered fishing shortly after walking, a boon, considering I lived in South Florida. After a brief move to Kentucky, my family trekked back to the Sunshine State. I had the good fortune to attend high school in idyllic upstate New York, where I learned about a mythical substance known as “Seasons”. After two or three failed attempts at college, I bought a bar. That was fun because I love beer, but, then, I eventually met someone smarter than me (a common event), and, in this case, she married me and convinced me to go back to school–which I did, with enthusiasm. I earned a Master’s Degree in History and rediscovered my love for writing. My novels explore dark fantasy, immortality, and the nature of love as we know it. I live near Nashville, Tennessee, with the aforementioned wife, son, and herd, and, when I’m not writing, I teach history, grow wildly enthusiastic tomato plants, and restore my 1967 Mustang.

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About the Narrator: Julia Whelan

Julia Whelan is an actor, writer, and audiobook narrator. She is perhaps most well known for her acting work on ABC’s Once and Again and her award-winning narration of over 200 audiobooks (including Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl). Her debut novel is forthcoming.

After a healthy career as a child actor, Whelan attended Middlebury College and Oxford University, graduating with a degree in English and Creative Writing.

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**I received a copy of this audiobook in exchange for a review**

 

Red, White, and Blood by Christopher Farnsworth

I reviewed book two yesterday and this is book three from this series.

This has become one of those series where I could read fifty more. This was my favorite of the series. Sadly, there have been no more since 2012 when this one was published. The ending of this book left me with a “WTH” feeling. It was such a cliffhanger. I did not see it coming. What I liked the most about this book is Cade really seems to come to some kind of understanding that he is evil and always will be evil, but that is his role to play. He and only he can do do it. This was another audiobook and like with the other two Bronson Pinchot does a great job.

 

“This is not a man. In almost a hundred years, I have seen it shot, stabbed, drowned, burned, decapitated, dismembered, and buried. And in almost a hundred years, there’s only one thing that’s ever been able to kill it…Me.”

The campaign trail, 2012: A political operative of the incumbent president and a party volunteer are brutally murdered while in a compromising position. A message has been written in their blood…
“IT’S GOOD TO BE BACK”
A centuries-old horror has returned to taunt Nathaniel Cade, the President’s Vampire. Under constant threat of exposure—and with enemies old and new at every turn—he and his handler Zach must stop the one monster Cade has never been able to completely destroy. And they must do it before the creature known as the Boogeyman adds another victim to his long and bloody list: the President of the United States.

 

 

Christopher Farnsworth is a novelist, screenwriter, and journalist. He is the author of FLASHMOB, KILLFILE, THE ETERNAL WORLD, and the President’s Vampire series, as well as the comic book 24: LEGACY — RULES OF ENGAGEMENT. His books have been translated into nine languages, published in more than a dozen countries, and optioned for film and television. His writing has also been published by the Los Angeles Times, the New York Post, The Awl, and The New Republic. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and daughters. You can find out more at www.christopherfarnsworth.com.

The President’s Vampire by Christopher Farnsworth

This book is the second book in this series. Check here for a review of the first book.

If you like vampires that are heartthrobs and/or glittery. This is NOT the series for you. If however, you like hardcore vampires who understand what they are and accept their evilness, this is the series for you. Book two takes place about a year after book one. Zach and Cade continue to develop some kind of a working relationship. Even though they are complete opposites (in personality and species), they work well together. I like Zach as a foil character. He is just as strong and developed as Cade. I think the author does a great job developing all his characters even the minor ones. I will admit that when I first starting listening to this story, it seemed a little too out there, but it somehow all worked together.  Bronson Pinchot narrated this story like the other one and he does a phenomenal job. None of the characters sound alike. He brings the characters to life.

 

For 140 years, vampire Nathaniel Cade has been bound to protect and serve the United States of America. When an ancient evil is resurrected, the President’s Vampire and his human handler, Zach Barrows, must track down its source. The prime suspect is a shady private defense contractor who may be dealing with powers far deadlier than any mortal weapon. So it’s up to Cade and Zach to drag the forces of darkness into the light…

 

Christopher Farnsworth is a novelist, screenwriter, and journalist. He is the author of FLASHMOB, KILLFILE, THE ETERNAL WORLD, and the President’s Vampire series, as well as the comic book 24: LEGACY — RULES OF ENGAGEMENT. His books have been translated into nine languages, published in more than a dozen countries, and optioned for film and television. His writing has also been published by the Los Angeles Times, the New York Post, The Awl, and The New Republic. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and daughters. You can find out more at www.christopherfarnsworth.com.

The Glitch by Ramona Finn

**I received a copy of this audio in exchange for a review**

This is a unique book. First, it is written in present tense. Second, it is about artificial intelligence. Neither of these interests me, but I was very interested in the dystopian aspect of this story. I am so glad I decided to try it. It was an incredible whirlwind story. I had to keep listening and find out what happened. The characters are strong and the plot kept pulling me back to the story (my silly kids get in my way of listening to books). It is a unique story blending cyberpunk and dystopia.  It was very easy to see this story in my mind. I think the writing and use of first person only added to the strength of this story.

 

Author: Ramona Finn

Narrator: Genevieve Kaplan

Length: 6 hours 28 minutes

Publisher: Relay Publishing⎮2017

Genre: Science Fiction

Series: The Glitches, Book One

Release date: Jan. 16, 2017

Synopsis: On the brink of extinction, being human means more than just surviving.
In Lib’s world, it’s dangerous to stray from the Norm. In fact, for someone who doesn’t live up to the AI’s standards, it’s practically a death sentence. Lib learns this the hard way when she wakes up with her memories erased in a barren wasteland, and only one thought lodged in her mind:
It’s all her fault.
Lib is a Glitch—an imperfect human component of the utopian Norm. Utterly alone, she’ll have to team up with her fellow Glitches Skye and Raj and the mysterious Rogue Wolf and his clan to survive. Wolf only cares about the survival of his group, but Raj thinks they can hack the AI and change the Norm for the better.

About the Author: Ramona Finn

Ramona Finn writes about courageous characters who fight to live in broken, dystopian worlds. She believes a person’s true characters is often revealed in times of crisis, and there is no greater crisis than the worlds that she drops her characters into!

She grew up sitting cross-legged on her town’s library floor–completely engrossed in science fiction books. It was always the futuristic world or the universe-on-the-brink-of-extinction plotlines that drew her in, but it was the brave characters who chose to fight back that kept her turning the pages.

Her books create deep, intricate worlds with bold characters determined to fight for their survival in their dystopian worlds–with a little help from their friends. And, of course, romance is never out of the question.

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About the Narrator: Genevieve Kaplan

For the past fifteen years I have received extensive training in lyric diction and classical voice. Various experience includes lead roles in multiple opera production through Santa Clara University with semi-professional recording obligations. For a minor in Lyric Diction at Santa Clara University I was required to take 6 units of Lyric Diction learning the correct pronunciation of languages including Italian, German and French (and of course English) as well as four years of private vocal training. Outside of musical endeavors I have experience with various characters and voices of my own creation included in my stand up comedy set.

 

Lucky Penny by Ellie Ashe ~~Giveaway~~ ~~Author Interview~~

 

**I received an audio copy in exchange for a review**

This is the third book in this series, and as I said in this post, I could read 50 more books in this series. This book continues Miranda Vaughn’s adventures as she recovers from her trouble with the law. Even though she was acquitted, people don’t see her as NOT GUILTY. One of the fun parts of reading a series is to see how the characters develop. It gives the reader a chance to truly fall in love with them. These characters are great. They are real. This author does a great job with showing us the story and letting it develop organically. She doesn’t beat us over the head with unnecessary details or treat us as incompetent readers who must be spoon-fed. Trust me when I say combine this cozy series with a poolside lounge chair and free drinks and you will have an excellent summer.

Author: Ellie Ashe

Narrator: Teri Schnaubelt

Length: 7 hours 17 minutes

Publisher: Ellie Ashe

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Release date:

Synopsis: A year after her acquittal on fraud charges, former financial analyst Miranda Vaughn is finally getting her life back. Not only does she have a chance for romance with her sexy neighbor, FBI Agent Jake Barnes, but she’s also got a new job…one that’s taking her to a vacation paradise!
Perched above the crystal blue waters of Lake Tahoe, the Whispering Pines Resort & Spa is a local landmark and a popular destination for the rich and famous who are stressed out from being rich and famous. And down on the water’s edge is the Lucky Penny Casino—an abandoned shell of a once-stylish casino. Max Emmerson, the owner of the Whispering Pines Resort, used to own the Lucky Penny, and he wants it back. Miranda’s job is to get Max’s finances in order so he can borrow the money to buy the casino, and make sure nothing jeopardizes his gaming license. Easy, right?
But the nice boring accounting job spirals out of control with the addition of a Hollywood film crew, an underground gambling ring, and Jake going undercover at the resort as a newlywed—with another woman. As Miranda and Jake each dive into their investigations, they can’t deny their growing feelings for each other. But it’s more important than ever that they keep their attraction hidden. Especially since someone at the resort is watching them very closely, and is willing to do just about anything to keep them from uncovering the truth.

About the Author: Ellie Ashe

USA Today best-selling author Ellie Ashe has always been drawn to jobs where she can tell stories—journalist, lawyer, and now writer. Writing quirky romantic mysteries is how she gets the “happily ever after” that so often is lacking in her day job.

When not writing, you can find her with her nose in a good book, watching far too much TV, or trying out new recipes on unsuspecting friends and family. She lives in Northern California with her husband and three cats, all of whom worry when she starts browsing the puppy listings on petfinder.com.

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About the Narrator: Teri Schnaubelt

Teri Schnaubelt is a Chicago-based actor, voice actor and audiobook narrator with over 100 titles, including NY Times Bestsellers.

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Interview with author Ellie Ashe

When you worked as a lawyer, did you work with white collar crimes? Is that how you came to know so much or did you just research everything and learned as you wrote?

I did work on white-collar criminal cases, but I should stress that none of my cases even resembled Miranda’s story. I didn’t have to do quite as much research since I was familiar with the law, though I did have to come up with a financial crime. That was actually pretty fun.

What pushed you to write a book?

I’ve always wanted to write a book and attempted many times in the past. I have many half-finished manuscripts on my hard-drive, and on floppy disks (yikes, I’m old), and even old notebooks that should probably stay buried in my attic. The idea behind Chasing the Dollar came about because I wanted to tell a story from an angle we don’t see as often—that of the person accused of a crime—and after all the hype around the high-profile arrest has died down.

How much of you is in Miranda?

Not much, really. You can tell because she’s good at math, and ugh, math. Not my strength. If there’s any similarity, it’s that we’ll both willing to help people who are in trouble and often volunteer without thinking through the commitment. Though I haven’t found myself in quite the same situations as Miranda. Thank goodness.

Describe your writing process?

It changes a little for each book, but I usually have an outline—or at least enough of a plan that I know where I’m going. I write in bursts, when I have time, so that helps me when I get back to my project after a few days off. Sometimes, I’ll start writing and see where it goes, and once I’ve got some traction, I will plot out the next section. Also, I’ve recently started dictating and I really like it.

What is your dream project?

I have an idea and some sketchy plans for a mystery that spans a trilogy. I’m not sure how it will work, but I like to take it out and play around with the outline every few weeks. One day, I’ll figure out how to put this together… And find the time to tackle it!

Are we going to get more stories about Miranda? (I hope so)

Thank you! And yes! Yes! I’m really happy to be working on book 4 in the series, Running the Numbers. I wanted to return to the action-adventure feel of the first book, so this one is a wild ride.

Is writing something you’ve always wanted to do?

It is. When I was very young, I used to write stories out and staple the pages together to make a “book,” so I think is a lifelong ambition.

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?

Don’t pay attention to the market, just write the story you want to read. Most writers are also readers, so if you want to read it, someone else probably does, too.

You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?

Only 5? I don’t know if that’s possible. Can I have five Kindles, instead? I read a lot, and my current favorites change with what I’ve read recently, so I don’t know how I’d survive with only five books on my shelves. Though one would probably be To Kill a Mockingbird since that’s one I re-read frequently.

https://gleam.io/BmPpV/miranda-vaughn-mysteries-giveaway
Miranda Vaughn Mysteries Giveaway

Long Days of Small Things by Catherine McNeil

Author: Catherine McNiel

Narrator: Andrea Emmes

Length: 4 hours 44 minutes

Publisher: Two Words Publishing⎮2017

Genre: Parenting

Release date: Mar. 07, 2017

Synopsis: Rich, soul-inspiring practices for moms who have neither quiet nor time.
Dirty laundry, crayon-smeared bills, and smashed crackers . . . And there’s your Bible–buried under a pile of diapers. Bleary-eyed from lack of sleep, without a moment of peace and quiet, you wonder if the spiritual life you crave is even possible. But God sees you. He designed this parenting journey, after all. He understands the chaos of motherhood. And he joins you in everything–whether you’re scrubbing the floor, nursing a fussy newborn, or driving to soccer practice. Catherine McNiel invites you to connect with God right here, in the sacred mundane of every mothering moment.

Buy Links

Buy on Audible/AmazonTwo Words PublishingiTunesDownpour

About the Author: Catherine McNiel

Catherine McNiel writes to open eyes to the creative and redemptive work of God in each present moment. She serves alongside her husband in a community-based ministry, while caring for three kids, two jobs, and one enormous garden. Receiving each day of life as a gift, Catherine is striving to see beauty, learning to expand her perspective, and praying to keep her eyes and heart open.

Catherine’s works have been published as Bible studies, devotions, and articles for her church, and in publications including Christianity Today’s Her.menuetics and Plough Quarterly. She lives and serves near Wheaton, Illinois.

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About the Narrator: Andrea Emmes

Andrea Emmes started as an SAG-AFTRA, Equity Actor and has been performing for over 20 years on stage, TV and film.  An Audible Approved Narrator known as “The Girl with a Thousand Voices”, her wide range of character voices and dynamic/emotionally invested performances has reviewers and listeners alike commenting on how she effortlessly pulls listeners in, has versatility and charisma and is quite suited for YA.  LA Music Award winner for Best Contemporary Christian Artist for 2008 debut release album, “I’m On My Way”.  Andrea has two degrees: A.A. in Fine Arts and a B.S. in Game Art and Design and resides in Northern, California.

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