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Book Review

10 Step Self-Publishing Boot Camp: The Survival Guide for Launching Your First Novel by S.K. Quinn

 

I read this book based on a recommendation from one of the Facebook groups I belong to, and before you ask- no I don’t remember which one. I’ve read a few other how-to books, but this one has been one of the best so far. Her casual style made me comfortable and I felt like we were talking over drinks. She was never condescending and I did not feel like she was bragging. I like that she talked about her personal stories, but she also included success stories from other people. I learned a ton in the couple of hours it took me to read this.

 

 

 

Launch Your Author Career!
Do you want to make a living with your books?
Do you see self-published authors succeeding and want to join them but are unsure how?
This 10 Step Boot Camp gives you everything you need to conquer your fears, target the market, and launch your first novel… and your career.
Veteran indie author Susan Kaye Quinn walks you step-by-step through the process, start to finish.
In BOOT CAMP, you will find:
• How to decide when to make the leap into self-publishing
• How to make a gorgeous cover, write a killer blurb, and select the right categories for your book… all the things you need to publish a book that will sell
• How to launch your novel, plus examples of successful book launches
• How to build your fanbase and market in a way that will get your book in front of the people who want to buy it
BOOT CAMP will start you on the career you really want. The one where your words will surprise and delight readers around the world.
BOOT CAMP will give you the insider tips and marketing tools that really work.
BOOT CAMP is the essential guide you need to start your author career.
Get started on your journey today!

 

GET A FREE QUICK START GUIDE TO SELF-PUBLISHING: http://smarturl.it/FLOMsubscribe

S.K. Quinn is a veteran indie author who’s published over 30 novels under Susan Kaye Quinn and another penname. She has been making a living with her fiction since 2011, and she wants you to live out your dreams as well. She’s a rocket scientist turned speculative fiction author who now uses her PhD to invent cool stuff in books. Her bestselling novels and short stories have been optioned for Virtual Reality, translated into German and French, and featured in several anthologies.

Join 2,500+ other indie authors in SKQ’s For Love or Money group on Facebook:
http://smarturl.it/FLOMgroup

 

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Topaz and Lace by Amber Laura

When I was a lot younger I used to spend time with my grandmother who loved to read Harlequin Romance books. I thought I was such a rebel when I would sneak one out of the house and read it. I loved them. Looking back now I see one of the best parts of these books was the simple plain plot with only one desired outcome- to tell a good love story. I thought about this while reading this book because it is just a simple good love story. That does not mean it’s a simple story. The plot is great and kept me turning the page because I just HAD to know what happened next.

I liked Cassie, the main character. I know I’ve walked in her shoes because Laura created her as a fully rounded character. In fact, she did an awesome job with all her characters. It was so easy to see them as real people. I often found myself sitting as a fly on the wall watching this story unfold. This is an HEA book, and I know some people get tired of those, but I love them. I want a nice escape when I read and this book certainly did that for me.

 

A temporary condition, she’d intended to be there only long enough to leave again. But then she met him.
Pursuing her dream of becoming a veterinarian, when Cassie Hastings took an externship in the tiny town of Pantula, Texas, she never planned on staying. For a girl staunchly opposed to change, moving some odd thousand miles away from home to a population boasting more heads of cattle than people and an apartment housed on top of an animal clinic, it promised to be a steep learning curve.
She would have handled it all better, (she would have!) if it hadn’t been for Brannt McDowell, one of the town’s most prosperous cattle ranchers—and her most stubborn client. He was moody, arrogant, infuriatingly witty…and altogether devastating. Pitted against the knowledge that her rotation lasted only eight, short weeks, and an ever-increasing attraction to one another, tempers soon flared and sparks ignited between the sparring partners.
Cassie had gone to Pantula to learn about large animal medicine; she’d gone there to glean independence in the wide open air; she’d gone there on a dare. Falling in love hadn’t been part of the plan. She did it anyway.
Now she’d have to choose between the place she’d always thought she’d be headed, and the home she suddenly didn’t want to leave.

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7 Fun Facts about Amber Laura:

1. If there’s creamer, I’m drinking coffee. And when I edit, there’s always creamer.
2. I do my best daydreaming on long car rides.
3. Some of my favorite stories came as follow up answers to the question: “What if…”
4. I’m the mother of a darling (if slightly overweight), 15-year-old cat. She’s kind of my mascot.
5. One of my favorite parts of writing is inventing new places—or traveling to spaces where I’ve not actually been. It’s magical and never disappointing.
6. Writing may be a solitary process, but then the characters always keep me company.
7. I’ve never quite figured out if I like to write by plot or the seat of my pants.
8. (Because I write, I don’t math.) When a scene isn’t coming together on a piece of writing, or a string of dialogue is falling flat, I like to close my eyes and picture the whole thing as though it were being acted out on a movie screen—and forty minutes later, I usually wake up!

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**I received a copy of this book in exchange for a review, but then I bought the book**

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**

The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman

I discovered Alice Hoffman years after the movie Practical Magic came out. This movie is one of my all time favorites. I almost felt embarrassed when I realized there was a book. It was a for sure DUH! moment. Well, if I thought the movie was great the book was AMAZING. I read it in one afternoon. Then last year I was approved to read another book by Alice Hoffman, Faithful and I loved it just as much.  So when I was contacted to review the ARC of The Rules of Magic I agreed even before I read the synopsis. I was way jazzed when I realized it is a prequel to Practical Magic.

I enjoyed reading this book because I found a little bit of myself in each one of the characters. The three siblings from the cursed Owens family find their way through life as teenagers. They have to face some heavy duty issues such as death, isolation, and all the normal teenage stuff. In this book, Hoffman introduces a male witch from the family. This was a nice twist. If you have not seen or read Practical Magic, the Owens family are all witches who are cursed. Anyone who falls in love with an Owens witch dies, somehow.  This book takes place many years before Practical Magic and I liked how Hoffman adds in some historic references to enhance the plot. I also like the way she writes the witchcraft angle. It is not a fantasy book with witches who do all kinds of unique and crazy stuff. A lot of the things these characters do that is considered witchcraft are things my grandma did for years. And she was considered a witch for completely different reasons. It’s a moving story that challenges the reader to acknowledge who they really are and challenges all of us to do whatever we need to for love. The last point I want to make about this book has to deal with the ending. I won’t say anything about it because I don’t want to give any spoilers, but it was a perfect transition.

I really want more from Hoffman about these characters. Honestly, I need to go back and read more of her books.

From beloved author Alice Hoffman comes the spellbinding prequel to her bestseller, Practical Magic.
Find your magic.
For the Owens family, love is a curse that began in 1620, when Maria Owens was charged with witchery for loving the wrong man.
Hundreds of years later, in New York City at the cusp of the sixties, when the whole world is about to change, Susanna Owens knows that her three children are dangerously unique. Difficult Franny, with skin as pale as milk and blood red hair, shy and beautiful Jet, who can read other people’s thoughts, and charismatic Vincent, who began looking for trouble on the day he could walk.
From the start Susanna sets down rules for her children: No walking in the moonlight, no red shoes, no wearing black, no cats, no crows, no candles, no books about magic. And most importantly, never, ever, fall in love. But when her children visit their Aunt Isabelle, in the small Massachusetts town where the Owens family has been blamed for everything that has ever gone wrong, they uncover family secrets and begin to understand the truth of who they are. Back in New York City each begins a risky journey as they try to escape the family curse.
The Owens children cannot escape love even if they try, just as they cannot escape the pains of the human heart. The two beautiful sisters will grow up to be the revered, and sometimes feared, aunts in Practical Magic, while Vincent, their beloved brother, will leave an unexpected legacy. Thrilling and exquisite, real and fantastical, The Rules of Magic is a story about the power of love reminding us that the only remedy for being human is to be true to yourself.

** This book will be out in October**

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Alice Hoffman was born in New York City on March 16, 1952 and grew up on Long Island. After graduating from high school in 1969, she attended Adelphi University, from which she received a BA, and then received a Mirrellees Fellowship to the Stanford University Creative Writing Center, which she attended in 1973 and 74, receiving an MA in creative writing. She currently lives in Boston and New York.

Hoffman’s first novel, Property Of, was written at the age of twenty-one, while she was studying at Stanford, and published shortly thereafter by Farrar Straus and Giroux. She credits her mentor, professor and writer Albert J. Guerard, and his wife, the writer Maclin Bocock Guerard, for helping her to publish her first short story in the magazine Fiction. Editor Ted Solotaroff then contacted her to ask if she had a novel, at which point she quickly began to write what was to become Property Of, a section of which was published in Mr. Solotaroff’s magazine, American Review.

Since that remarkable beginning, Alice Hoffman has become one of our most distinguished novelists. She has published a total of eighteen novels, two books of short fiction, and eight books for children and young adults. Her novel, Here on Earth, an Oprah Book Club choice, was a modern reworking of some of the themes of Emily Bronte’s masterpiece Wuthering Heights. Practical Magic was made into a Warner film starring Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman. Her novel, At Risk, which concerns a family dealing with AIDS, can be found on the reading lists of many universities, colleges and secondary schools. Her advance from Local Girls, a collection of inter-related fictions about love and loss on Long Island, was donated to help create the Hoffman (Women’s Cancer) Center at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, MA. Blackbird House is a book of stories centering around an old farm on Cape Cod. Hoffman’s recent books include Aquamarine and Indigo, novels for pre-teens, and The New York Times bestsellers The River King, Blue Diary, The Probable Future, and The Ice Queen. Green Angel, a post-apocalyptic fairy tale about loss and love, was published by Scholastic and The Foretelling, a book about an Amazon girl in the Bronze Age, was published by Little Brown. In 2007 Little Brown published the teen novel Incantation, a story about hidden Jews during the Spanish Inquisition, which Publishers Weekly has chosen as one of the best books of the year. In January 2007, Skylight Confessions, a novel about one family’s secret history, was released on the 30th anniversary of the publication of Her first novel. Her most recent novel is The Story Sisters (2009), published by Shaye Areheart Books.

Hoffman’s work has been published in more than twenty translations and more than one hundred foreign editions. Her novels have received mention as notable books of the year by The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, Library Journal, and People Magazine. She has also worked as a screenwriter and is the author of the original screenplay “Independence Day” a film starring Kathleen Quinlan and Diane Wiest. Her short fiction and non-fiction have appeared in The New York Times, The Boston Globe Magazine, Kenyon Review, Redbook, Architectural Digest, Gourmet, Self, and other magazines. Her teen novel Aquamarine was recently made into a film starring Emma Roberts.

**I received a copy of the book from NetGalley in exchange for a review**

The End of the World Running Club

This is not the kind of book I normally read. When I first started this blog I decided to not focus on only one genre. That would be easy. So I have read many non-fantasy books. Some have been worth it, and some haven’t. I don’t like post- apocalyptic literature mostly because of zombie. I hate zombies. I am happy to report that this book has NO zombies.

The title of this book caught my attention. My husband is a runner and so many of our dinner-time conversations involve running and all things running. I’m glad I read this book because overall I liked it and I think it is well written. Edgar, the main character, is faced with an almost impossible situation. His town and most of the Northern Hemisphere has been destroyed by asteroids. He is separated from his family.  In order to join them, he has to, you guessed it, run.

The twist with this book is the main character is NOT a runner. He is just an ordinary man who feels stuck in his life and is trying to figure it all out. He has two young kids and he struggles with fatherhood. I’m not a father, but the doubts he shares hit home. I’ve been there, done that.  That part, along with all the other insights the author shares are spot on and totally well-developed. The other characters are just as deep.

What I didn’t like about this book was the lack of dialog. I like people and I like dialog. There were long passages of narrative that dragged on at times. I also do not like ambiguous endings. Here was this good story, written well enough to overlook the parts I didn’t like, and then I get to the ending. I was not a happy camper. I admit this is my preference though and others may not be bothered by it.

Perfect for fans of The Martian, this powerful post-apocalyptic thriller pits reluctant father Edgar Hill in a race against time to get back to his wife and children. When the sky begins to fall and he finds himself alone, his best hope is to run – or risk losing what he loves forever.

When the world ends and you find yourself forsaken, every second counts.

No one knows this more than Edgar Hill. Stranded on the other side of the country from his wife and children, Ed must push himself across a devastated wasteland to get back to them. With the clock ticking and hundreds of miles between them, his best hope is to run — or risk losing what he loves forever.

____________________

Adrian J Walker was born in the bush suburbs of Sydney, Australia in the mid ’70s. After his father found a camper van in a ditch, he moved his family back to the UK, where Adrian was raised.

His second novel, The End of the World Running Club, is a post-apocalyptic running fable about hope, love and endurance. It is being published by Del Rey UK, in May 2016.

His third novel, Colours, is the first part in a dystopian sci-fi trilogy and is available now.

 

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**I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for a review**

The Vessel Trilogy by Juliette Cross

Book One Sealed in Sin:
Who doesn’t love a chick who can fight and a hot protector and if that doesn’t sound great throw in an ancient prophecy between good and evil? That’s a good start for a series and for an urban fantasy reader like me that is Nirvana. However, I would like to see a new twist on this trope. This series did not do that. The author even starts the story in a dance club, just like a lot of books. The author has a great idea for this book and the rest of the trilogy, but I just felt like the story lacked depth. Everything seemed to flow without too many hitches and the conflicts that did arise ended too fast. I would like to have seen a little more inner turmoil with Genevieve as she struggles with her new powers and destiny.
I finished this book because I agreed to review it. The story and characters were ok and I liked it enough to read the next story. The author created enough groundwork for the rest of this trilogy that I am curious enough to see what happens next.

One demon prince may be festering in the bowels of hell, but Genevieve’s troubles are far from over. Prince Bamal, demon lord of New York City, still wants her. But this time, he wants her alive. All signs point to the lost prophecy and his desire for her inherent power as a Vessel of Light.

While Jude Delacroix spends his days and nights searching for the prophecy, another protector steps in to take his place. Thomas, a guardian angel, claims Genevieve is his to protect if the demon hunter does not. As threats against her life escalate, he offers her the power to sift. Knowing the transfer of power comes through a kiss, she hesitates. While Gen’s love for Jude is true, Thomas stirs a desire where there should be none. Thomas also knows Jude’s darkest secret and plans to use it, if necessary, to win Genevieve for his own.

Book Two Forged in Fire:
I’m glad I continued reading this series because book two was better than book one and I would rate it a 3.5 if I could. In this book, the characters seem to have a little more depth and the plot is driven by the characters and not the need to just tell the story. It is easier to see the inner conflict that I did not see in book one, but the author still relies more on cliches instead of creating a new story. The prophecy still drives Genevieve to develop her powers as a vessel and Jude continues to protect her and oversee her development. The ultimate battle is coming soon and sides will be chosen by all. I do like the connections the author makes to mythology and literature through the names of her characters and settings.
This one was easier to read than the first one and I think the author did an even better job with the cliffhanger at the end.

Genevieve Drake has never been the helpless kind of girl, has never needed to be rescued. That is, not until her twentieth birthday when some dude nearly chokes her to death in an alley and a hot stranger splits the guy in half, rips a monster from inside, and incinerates it into ash.

The hot guy? Jude Delacroix—Dominus Daemonum, Master of Demons. Now her guardian, whether she likes it or not.

But she’s seriously beginning to like it.

The dude choking her? One of many demons from the underworld trying to abduct or kill Genevieve. As the prime target of the demon prince, Danté, she has no problem accepting Jude’s protection.

Why Genevieve? She’s a Vessel, one born to serve the Light but can be corrupted and used as a weapon for darkness. She had no idea this world even existed. Now, she just wants to survive it.

Book Three:  (one minor spoiler)
The biggest issue I have had with this series is the lack of character depth. I think because so much of the focus is on Genevieve in this book, it is easier to really see who she is and how she has developed throughout this series. This is my favorite of the three books. I also think because Gen and Jude were not so focused on sex they had the chance to develop a deeper relationship we saw a stronger connection between them.
The biggest issue I’ve had with this series is the lack of elaboration is some of the scenes. Things just always seem to go in Gen’s favor without much effort. The final battle is a good example. It just seemed to happen and yes, Gen was attacked but there wasn’t much of a fight to win and I think the twist at the end would have been better if the author alluded to it before just throwing it out there.

Genevieve Drake is on a dangerous mission—to find the soul collector, Lethe, and enter the deepest, darkest level of the underworld, where no one has ever gone into and returned. But nothing can prevent her from going after the precious treasure Lethe stole from her.

Genevieve endures challenge after challenge against demon spawn and foul creatures while there, and each triumph strengthens her Vessel power, leading toward full awakening, at which time she will become invincible against the hosts of darkness. But when an old enemy makes a surprising appearance, she is tested to the point of breaking and risks remaining in this dark abyss forever.

When Prince Bamal finally reveals their secret weapon, will Genevieve have the strength to survive? Even more, when her guardian angel, Thomas, reveals his sinister secret, will she finally fall into darkness and forsake the fate of the world for her broken heart.

Meet the Author:

Juliette calls lush, moss-laden Louisiana home where she lives with her husband, four children, and black lab named Kona. She is the multi-published author of paranormal and fantasy romance. She has a B.A. in creative writing from Louisiana State University, a M.Ed. in gifted education, and was privileged to study under the award-winning author Ernest J. Gaines in grad school. From the moment she read JANE EYRE as a teenager, she fell in love with the Gothic romance–brooding characters, mysterious settings, persevering heroines, and dark, sexy heroes. Even then, she not only longed to read more novels set in Gothic worlds, she wanted to create her own

Way Down Below (Way Down Below Series Book 1) by Nicole Thorn & Sarah Hall

This was a fun book to read. For the most part, the characters read like they were supposed to; meaning they acted, talked, and lived like new adults do in real life. They weren’t looking for any real deep meaning in life. There was no intense save-the-world-prophecy they needed to fulfill. They were just kids, acting like kids. This book is like any YA/NA book with kids who must stand up to oppressive adults, however, these authors added a fun twist by creating three of the characters to be the children of Satan and two of the characters to be daughters of ultra-conservative religious families. I think the authors did a good job presenting the battle of church vs. evil without banging it over the reader’s head.

The fast paced plot drew me in from the beginning and pushed me to see how it ended. I liked the dialog and character development of all the characters, both major and minor. If I had any complaints about the book it would be the final battle ended way too fast.

 

Shiloh Whittaker has spent the last twenty years living under her family’s strict rule. She’s always chafed under their beliefs, and found little ways to break their rules. Now, with her family’s reins tightening, she’s met her match in Luc Bishop.
Luc’s outrageous behavior, wicked smile, and fiery amber eyes draw Shiloh in immediately. Her little rebellions, and desire to break free attract Luc’s attention, but he has secrets that could hurt Shiloh. Luc’s father isn’t human, but the original Fallen Angel, Lucifer, and Luc’s brother was murdered.
The more time Shiloh spends with Luc, the stricter her family’s rules become. To make matters worse, the man who murdered Luc’s brother sets his sights on Shiloh. With danger closing in all sides, Shiloh feels more caged than ever.

 

Nicole “Cappie” Thorn was born in California but, after a stint in Kansas, moved to a suburb of Phoenix. She spends a lot of her free time knitting and reading from her massive book collection. Her eclectic tastes, like Disneyland, Buffy and all things London, carry into her writing. She started writing in her early twenties and finds it wonderfully addictive.
Twitter: @NicoleThorn
Instagram: @CappieThorn
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NicoleThornAuthor/
Tumblr: Nicolethorn
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/NdThorn
Website: nicolethornbooks.wordpress.com

 

Sarah Hall has been writing since her early teens and plans to continue long past her death, via robot body. She spends her days daydreaming about conversations between fictional characters, and ignoring the condescending looks she gets from her cats when she does so. During her day in the unforgiving Arizona heat, she juggles her pets, writing, and her neurotic sometimes writing partner. She has no problems with said juggling, as the Force is with her.

Twitter: @sarahmhall33

Facebook: www.facebook.com/SarahHallAuthor

 

 

 

 

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

This post originally appeared here

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The Sin of Choice- Part 1: The Confession by Paul Rudiak

I read a lot of fiction and romance books. These books read fast making them easy to finish. So when I come across a book that feels more literary and deeper I have a love/hate relationship with that book. I hate that it slows me down, but I love immersing myself in the words, phrases, and imagery. These books remind me of the power a book can really have. Rudiak’s book is one of those books. His vivid word choices create an in-depth picture of the struggles one family faces as the father dies from cancer. The core of this story centers around a deep secret the father holds and his need to confess his sins before he dies. It is obvious that the author took the time to create a story with substance that feels real. He creates scene after scene with well-rounded settings and action. At first, I didn’t like Peter, the main character because he is nothing like me. Then I liked him and found him more relatable. Then I didn’t like him again. Then I did. (I think you get the idea). I look forward to reading the next part of this story.

 

Peter Thornton is a man in his early fifties with two problems: one professional and the other medical. He is a lawyer, and some of his clients are prominent members of the Manchester underworld. The diagnosis of a brain tumour turns his world upside down and forces him to confront matters from his past that he would rather have kept hidden.
His daughter has never liked what he does for a living, and she has always wanted to find out how much dirt is on his hands. She is surprised to find there is blood in the dirt, and that her father is only half to blame. His confession tempts her to search for the other party involved, which will lead her into the path of people who like to keep their business away from prying eyes.
Peter has kept his professional and private lives separate for over twenty years, but now his daughter’s overconfidence will undo all that effort and force him to face his past, and thus acknowledge what fractured his family while he was too busy to notice.

Meet the Author:

Many years ago I entertained the idea of writing a story about the ethical issues and moral dilemmas of euthanasia (or assisted dying, to use its alternative name). Such a project made no commercial sense, but the idea stayed with me and I wrote it out. The result is a longer story than I ever imagined, which I have published as three books.

The story is a family drama set in and around Manchester. The North-West of England is where I was born and raised, and where I still live.

I have written a blog about the story of my story, along with my opinions on writing and the ethical issues raised in my work. It can be found at paulrudiak.blog and should be read as a narrative from bottom to top.

 

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Slytherin Book Lady Chills With Us: Night School by CJ Daughtery

Title: Night School
Author: CJ Daugherty
Page count: 454
Genre: YA Fiction, Thriller
Published: January 1, 2012
Publisher: Bookouture
ISBN: 9781907411212
Format: E-book

Summary:

Allie Sheridan’s world is falling apart. Her brother’s run away from home. Her parents ignore her, and she’s just been arrested.
Again.
This time her parents have had enough. They cut her off from her friends and send her away to boarding school, far from her London friends. But at Cimmeria Academy, Allie is soon caught up in the strange activities of a secret group of elite students. When she’s attacked late one night the incident sets off a chain of increasingly violent events. As the school begins to seem like a very dangerous place, she finds out that nothing at Cimmeria is what it seems to be.
And that she is not who she thought she was.

Review:

This series of books along with the six episode web series that go along is possibly one of my favorite series to read. I love any boarding school series and have multiple series like this, but I think this one has to be my favorite. Although this book is about a love triangle and other things I think my favorite couple has to be Allie and Carter. I can almost relate to Allie when she first starts at Cimmeria and has almost none friends. She thinks her parents are unfair and she wonders just what is going on and why those she trusts aren’t telling her everything. This book, when I first read it I didn’t realize that it was a series. After reading it, I wondered why it left the ending open and then I found the next few in ebooks. I had checked the hardback out of my library. I will link the web series below so you guys can check that out as well. CJ Daugherty has become one of my favorite authors to read. The way she writes puts you into the books and makes you either want to scream and yell and throw the book out the window or you get that warm fuzzy feeling that everything is right with the world. Here is a link to all six web episodes of Night school. They kinda go along with the books. https://m.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYQG7VSe67bujG3RA4UgMInhHj_EQInzG

www.darrenbrade.com

About the Author:

International bestselling author Christi Daugherty is a former newspaper and crime writer. Her Night School series written as (CJ Daugherty) has been translated into 24 languages, and has been a bestseller in multiple countries.

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About me:

My name is Sierra or as some know The Slytherin Book Lady. I just graduated culinary school at the beginning of May and I read almost anything that I can get my hands on. I love animals and I have three dogs and one cat as pets. The cat is my book buddy and he’ll curl up with me no matter what I’m doing.

Secrets of the Slain by Lindsey Goddard

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review, but I liked it so much, I bought a copy too. This post originally appeared on Gothic Moms Reviews

So many things to like about this book, it is hard to know where to begin. The author hooks me in from the introduction. Perhaps it’s because I can relate when she mentions how busy her life is and she has to fit in writing when she can. I love her attitude. She writes short stories and poems because this is easier to feed her muse. Her short stories are strong and vivid, but her poetry is even more so. The emotions she uses to drive her stories are ones all readers can relate to. Two of the stories, “The Running” and “Old Man Stump” appear in this book for the first time anywhere. “The Running” is my favorite of the short stories. It presents a crazy other worldly situation, but the author presents in a great believable way. I felt what her characters felt when I read this story. If I had to pick another story I liked, it would be “Red Mask”. It’s an emotional heart-wrenching story with a dash of freaky sprinkled in for good measure.  I think “Freak” has the makings of a good series. I finished this in a little over an hour not just because it was shorter than most of the books I read, but because I HAD to keep reading to see how all the other stories ended.

 

A collection of poetry and short stories created to tantalize your senses and wreak havoc on your mind, each tale further challenging your perception of what reality is and what it is not. Be prepared to see inside of the soul of Lindsey Goddard and share in her “Secrets of the Slain”

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Lindsey Beth Goddard’s passion for storytelling started at an early age. At fifteen she was published in a small-press magazine, and–ever since–her work has sprinkled the horror genre, although her pen name has changed more than once. She resides in the suburbs of St. Louis, MO with her husband, three children and a daft feline companion.

 

 

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