Saturday, June 29, 2013

Book Blast (Giveaway): The Ixeos Trilogy by Jennings Wright

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The McClellands are enjoying a lazy summer vacation at the beach when they are lured from our world into Ixeos, an alternate Earth. Finding themselves lost in a maze of tunnels under Paris and surrounded by strangers, they discover that they have been brought to Ixeos for one purpose: to take the planet back from humanoid aliens who have claimed it. With the aid of the tunnels and a mysterious man named Landon, the teens travel the world seeking the key that will allow them to free Darian, the long-imprisoned rebel leader. But the aliens aren't the only problem on Ixeos -- the McClellands have to deal with brutal gangs, desperate junkies, and a world without power, where all the technology is owned by the aliens, and where most of the population has been killed or enslaved. The worst part? There's no way home.

Buy Links
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

With rebel leader Darian free at last, the humans and outsiders on Ixeos must find a way to join forces and defeat the Firsts. The problem? All slaves are tracked with GPS, the Firsts are the only ones with power, and roving gangs hate the rebels just as much as they hate the aliens. As Darian and the outsiders from Earth travel the globe through the mysterious tunnels in Paris, they learn that the Firsts are preparing to launch another wave of biological warfare. With a transporter that will allow the aliens to target any city, anywhere on the planet, the rebels know they must stop them at all costs. As things get more dangerous on Ixeos, the outsiders find that they're pushed to their limit. Will they fight for freedom, no matter the price?

Buy Links

Friday, June 28, 2013

Review: After Eden by Helen Douglas

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Title: After Eden
Helen Douglas
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Acquired Via: Around the World ARC Tours
Release Date: November 5, 2013

The day Eden met Ryan changed her world forever. Actually, not just her world. Ryan has time traveled from the future to save the world. In a few weeks, Eden’s best friend Connor will discover a new planet—one where human life is possible. The discovery will make him famous. It will also ruin the world as we know it. When Ryan asks Eden for help, she must choose between saving the world and saving her best friend’s greatest achievement. And a crush on Ryan complicates things more than she could have imagined. Because Connor is due to make the discovery after the girl he loves breaks his heart. That girl is Eden.

Grounded in a realistic teen world with fascinating sci-fi elements,
After Eden is a heart-pounding love triangle that’s perfect for dystopian fans looking for something new to devour.

My Review

First things first, I want to make sure that you are aware that this review is based on an ARC (advance reading copy) of the book, so there may be changes in the final edition. So, in four and a half months, there may be a completely different book released in the world. I doubt it, but still. On to the review!

After Eden by Helen Douglas is a YA science fiction novel that reads like a contemporary and is Douglas' debut novel. It is set in England, focusing on Eden's last year in school. (I can't remember what it's called over there. Shall we pretend it's high school?) Anywho, the prologue starts us off with Eden shutting down her best friend Connor at the British equivalent of prom. Then chapter one starts three months before the cataclysmic (yes, this is the appropriate word) dance.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Blog Tour (Interview): The Reluctant Goddess by A.F. Firebird

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Tour Schedule

Title: The Reluctant Goddess
A.F. Firebird
Publisher: POSE
Genre: Metaphysical Fiction
Release Date: March 2012

Ellena Ripley is a bookshop owner from a rural town in the south of England - or so she thinks. But lately, she has a growing sense that life is not as it seems. At night, she dreams of a serene man who appears to be trying to tell her something; In the day, she can't shake a feeling of expectation. But of what?

Meanwhile Hector, servant of LIFE and the man from Ellena's dreams, has a dilemma. How do you tell someone they are a goddess? His previous attempts have met with disaster so he must be cautious, particularly when his new trainee, Boudica, formerly Queen of the Iceni tries to help. The question is can they succeed before it is too late?


A.F Firebird author of The Reluctant Goddess talks about her new novel and metaphysical fiction.

You describe your new novel as metaphysical fiction, what is metaphysical fiction?

It is a form of speculative fiction which explores ideas prevalent in metaphysics through the medium of story and characters. This type of fiction strips away religious rhetoric and new age language, so that the reader can contemplate the ideas presented in a simpler and hopefully more accessible way.

Give me an example of the type of ideas explored in the book.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Release Party (Excerpt & Giveaway): Voodoo Moon by June Stevens


Title: Voodoo Moon (Paranorm World #1)
Author: June Stevens
Publisher: Classy Scribe Publications
Release Date: June 24, 2013

Zombies aren’t supposed to exist, yet they are turning up all over Nash City. As a member of the Elite Black Blade Guard, Fiona Moon is tasked with hunting down the most dangerous Paranorm criminals. Now she must find out who is kidnapping mages and sucking the life energy from their bodies. To make matters worse, she has to work with the one man that embodies everything she despises.

Ian Barroes is the rich founder and head of the Necromancers Guild and a professor of Necromantic Studies at the Academy of Science and Magic. There is one thing he wants more than anything else in the world… Fiona.

They each hold secrets that could destroy them but could also be the key to destroying the evil Voodoo priest, Bokor. They must learn to trust each other track down Bokor before more innocents are taken, and murdered. To make matters worse, when Fiona becomes a target of the evil madman she is lured into his trap. Now she and Ian have to fight for survival and their very souls.


Fiona laughed derisively. “And I’m betting the second she saw it was likely related to the strange dead body case, she handed it over gladly. The thing about career making cases. They can break them too. No one wants to be stuck with a case so bizarre they have no hopes of solving it. So goody for us, we get to take charge of the weird, unsolvable case.”

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Book Blast (Giveaway): Love Vindicated by Lila Munro

1 comment:

Main Blast Page

In 1980, Kyle Montgomery’s life was seemingly perfect. Heavily recruited by Force Recon fresh from the Naval Academy, he’d been working black ops for the Marine Corps for six years and was on the cusp of being promoted to Major. He was on the fast track to bigger and better things, had all the right people vetting him, and he'd married the woman of his dreams and was exploring a lifestyle which could have ended his career. With the Iranian embassy under siege and the Middle East in turmoil, Kyle was sent on a mission which would change the course of his life forever.

Returning home after three months of being invisible, Kyle finds his wife has been murdered by the very people he'd been sent to protect. And instead of the government retaliating, they hand him his walking papers with the agreement they’ll never speak of the events again. It's like Kyle never existed. His wife never existed. And the people who maimed and tortured her never existed.

Resigned to never again walk that path, Kyle opens the first Steele Image club with the thought of providing a safe haven for others like him, those who were invisible to the public and most of the government. Those who had eclectic sexual tastes. Those who would later become his allies. And his enemies. And both will drive him back to the place he’d thought he’d let go of forever to vindicate his love…

Buy Links
Amazon | All Romance Books

About the Author

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Book Blitz (Excerpt & Giveaway): Triangles by Kimberly Ann Miller

1 comment:

Title: Triangles
Author: Kimberly Ann Miller
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Blitz Organizer: YA Bound Book Tours
Release Date: June 18, 2013

A cruise ship. A beautiful island. Two sexy guys. What could possibly go wrong?

In the Bermuda Triangle—a lot.

Hoping to leave behind the reminders of her crappy life--her father's death years ago, her mother's medical problems, and the loser who’s practically stalking her--seventeen-year-old Autumn Taylor hops on a ship with her sister for a little distraction. When she wakes up in the Bermuda Triangle, she fears she's gone nuts for more than one reason: that loser’s suddenly claiming they're a happy couple... a hot guy is wrapping his arms around her and saying "Happy Anniversary"... and suddenly, she’s full of bruises, losing her hair, and getting IV medication. Autumn visits the ship's doctor, hoping for a pill or a shot to make the craziness go away. Instead, she's warned that these "alternate realities" could become permanent.

She just has to ask herself one question—how the hell is she going to get out of this mess?


“Are you all right, honey?”

I opened my eyes. An attractive young woman with red hair and brilliant green eyes was looking at me. What I thought was salt water from the ocean must have been tears because my face was the only one nearby that was wet. I glanced at her concerned expression and smiled. “Yes, thank you. I’m fine.” I swiped away a tear with my finger. “Just… everything’s fine.”

She stepped closer and lowered her voice. “This cruise will change your life. Nothing will be the same when it’s over, but it will be worth it. You’ll see.” Her emerald eyes twinkled, and she nodded her head once.

I forced a laugh to be polite. “Thanks. Enjoy your cruise.”

Monday, June 17, 2013

Review: PODs by Michelle K. Pickett


Title: PODs
Michelle K. Pickett
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Acquired Via: Around the World ARC Tours
Release Date: June 4, 2013

Seventeen-year-old Eva is a chosen one. Chosen to live, while others meet a swift and painful death from an incurable virus so lethal, a person is dead within days of symptoms emerging. In the POD system, a series of underground habitats built by the government, she waits with the other chosen for the deadly virus to claim those above. Separated from family and friends, it's in the PODs she meets David. And while true love might not conquer all, it's a balm for the broken soul.

After a year, scientists believe the population has died, and without living hosts, so has the virus. That's the theory, anyway. But when the PODs are opened, survivors find the surface holds a vicious secret. The virus mutated, infecting those left top-side and creating... monsters.

Eva and David hide from the infected in the abandoned PODs. Together they try to build a life--a new beginning. But the infected follow and are relentless in their attacks. Leaving Eva and David to fight for survival, and pray for a cure.

My Review*

Once upon a time there was a book that should have turned me off completely after fifty pages. Its name was PODs. PODs was an interesting little book with teenage naïveté, superviruses, questionable government policy, awful roommates, young love, action, zombies, and cringe-worthy science. Despite the strange formula, I still fell in love with the book.

The main character, Evangeline aka Eva, isn't the perfect character, but she's one that I connected with and cared about though I can't exactly pinpoint why. I shouldn't have liked her, per my inconsistent taste. She was the embodiment of that aforementioned teenage naïveté. Her parents sprung a family game night with no electronics on her when she saw them worrying over something they were watching on television, and she went along with it, despite never having one before. That was her general behavior in the book, but it read more as "go with the flow" than a mindless sheep routine. What I really had trouble with was her treatment of her BFF, Bridget, at the start of the book. It wasn't godawful, but it lingered.

Cover Reveal: Darkest Day by Emi Gayle

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Title: Darkest Day (The 19th Year #3)
Emi Gayle
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy
Target Audience: Young Adult
Publisher: J. Taylor Publishing
Release Date: January 6, 2014

Mac Thorne’s time as a Changeling is coming to an end.

It may have taken eighteen years, but Mac did finally manage to do what the Council wanted: she chose a teacher and renounced the in-between.

There’s just one last step. She must say goodbye to her human. Forever.

After being challenged in every way possible, Mac leaves what she thought would be the easiest task for the last possible moment. As midnight on July fourth draws near, though, she hasn’t found a way to give up Winn Thomas.

Nor does she want to.

With time running out, Mac stands at a literal crossroads.

Choose Winn, and she’ll be stripped of the only family she’s ever known—vampires, dragons, and her favorite demon. Even her own mother. Accept her position on the Council and rule as an equal to her twelve peers, and she’ll forget Winn ever existed.

Independence and freedom have never before been so limiting.

In this final chapter of the 19th Year Trilogy, it’s time for Mac to decide.

Responsibility? Or Love?

About the Author

Emi Gayle just wants to be young again. She lives vicariously through her youthful characters, while simultaneously acting as chief-Mom to her teenaged son and searching for a way to keep her two daughters from ever reaching the dreaded teen years.

Ironically, those years were some of Emi's favorite times. She met the man of her dreams at 14, was engaged to him at 19, married him at 20 and she's still in love with him to this day. She'll never forget what it was like to fall in love at such a young age — emotions she wants everyone to feel.

Find Emi Online
Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Jack the Giant Slayer Blu-ray Giveaway

Warner Bros. is proud to announce the arrival of Jack the Giant Slayer!
Released on DVD & Blu-ray on June 18!

Unleashed on the Earth for the first time in centuries, the giants strive to reclaim the land they once lost, forcing Jack (Nicholas Hoult), into the battle of this life to stop them. Fighting for a kingdom and its people, and the love of a brave princess, he comes face to face with the unstoppable warriors he thought only existed in legend... and gets the chance to become a legend himself! Directed by Brian Singer (X-Men, Superman Returns).

Starring: Nicholas Hoult (About a Boy), Ewan McGregor (Star Wars, Moulin Rouge!), and Stanley Tucci (The Lovely Bones).

Jack the Giant Slayer App

Celebrate this classic story with NEW content exclusive to the Jack The Giant Slayer Blog App!

You have the power! Control the moving GIFs and power the action in the movie with a swipe of your mouse! The Giant Soundboard lets you compose your own mashup of sounds from Jack The Giant Slayer, which your kids will enjoy for hours! Test your bravery and take the How Brave Are You? QUIZ to see if you are as brave as our hero Jack.

Friday, June 14, 2013

June New Release Giveaway Hop


Welcome to my stop on the June New Release Giveaway Hop! As always, it is being hosted by the magnificent O'Dell at Book Twirps and the glorious Dani at Refracted Light Reviews. They exude awesomeness to an extent that I am sure is contagious.

What You Can Win

I'm going back to giving you a variety of choices this month, but I am definitely going to recommend The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau if you have not read it yet. You are, however, free to completely disregard anything I say. (Most people do.) Here are my June releases that you may be interested in (and choose from):

If you would prefer a prize that is not shown above, you can choose another June new release that costs $15US or less.

The Giveaway

Cover Reveal: Jenny's Blue Velvet by Angela Carlie

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Title: Jenny's Blue Velvet
Angela Carlie
Cover Design: Steven Novak
Romantic Thriller
Age Group: Adult
Cover Reveal Organizer: Xpresso Book Tours

Jenny's stuck.

She's tried just about every occupation she can think of and will be digging out of student debt for a very long time, but has nothing to show for it. Her everyday routine feels like a prison. And her marriage? Well, let's just say it's been a little one-sided lately and the money she threw down on the toys from Lover's Erotic Store was well worth it and then some.

Jenny decides her next big step is to become a romance writer. Romance books are flying off the virtual shelves, after all. This will be her big break, her escape from the prison, and a way to freedom. Self-publishing is all the rage these days. She'll be a best seller in no time.

When Jenny makes friends with a woman named Cassandra from the gym, she instantly decides that her new friend will make a perfect main character in her upcoming book. After the first chapter, real life begins to resemble the fiction she's writing. Her friendship blossoms, sex with her husband turns into a daily feast, and her job gets more interesting with each chapter written.

Out of the blue, a person who is a close friend with her husband and who is dating Cassandra disappears. As the mystery behind the missing person unfolds, Jenny wonders if she might be responsible for his possible death. And if she is, what will be the consequence? What has this writing business gotten her into?

Facts about Angela Carlie

I write fiction. I work hard. I play often.

When I'm not pushing a mouse around at a desk job, which is boring, or writing, which is fun, I enjoy hanging out with my fourteen-year-old son and husband, reading, hiking, kayaking, traveling, and running.

Hawaii and Washington are my two favorite states.

I believe that if everyone ate a whole-food plant based diet, cancer cases would be a minimum, heart disease a thing of the past, and hunger something found in history books.

One of my favorite documentaries is Forks Over Knives.

I love hearing about people reading my books, so if you enjoyed one of my stories, please let me know by leaving a review on Amazon or Goodreads.

Thank you for spending time with my stories. We don't have much of it, and I appreciate that you find my work worthy of your time.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Cover Thoughts

Blue is my favorite color, so I tend to be partial of books that use it. As for this particular book cover, I can't stop staring at the damn thing. It is so beautiful and well done. I love the hair, background, eye make-up, EVERYTHING! I think Jenny's Blue Velvet just might be the prettiest cover that I've seen this week.

Would I buy it?

Tempting, but no. I would have to read some reviews of the book before I picked Jenny's Blue Velvet up. I don't read a lot of romantic thrillers, and since I'm trying to curtail my book spending, I try to avoid buying a book for the cover alone.

What do you think of the cover? Would you read the book?

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Cover Reveal (Giveaway): The Sound of Letting Go by Stasia Ward Kehoe

1 comment:

Title: The Sound of Letting Go
Stasia Ward Kehoe
Publisher: Viking/Penguin
Release Date: February 1, 2013

For sixteen years, Daisy has been good. A good daughter, helping out with her autistic younger brother uncomplainingly. A good friend, even when her best friend makes her feel like a third wheel. When her parents announce they’re sending her brother to an institution—without consulting her—Daisy’s furious, and decides the best way to be a good sister is to start being bad. She quits jazz band and orchestra, slacks in school, and falls for bad-boy Dave.

But one person won’t let Daisy forget who she used to be: Irish exchange student and brilliant musician Cal. Does she want the bad boy or the prodigy? Should she side with her parents or protect her brother? How do you know when to hold on and when—and how—to let go?

About the Author

Monday, June 10, 2013

Blog Tour (Interview & Giveaway): Act Like You Love Me by Cindi Madsen


All’s fair in acting and amore...

Brynn McAdams isn’t the awkward drama geek she was in high school—she’s grown up and confident, or at least she likes to think so. But when her old crush, the impossibly handsome and impossibly unattainable Sawyer Raines, comes back to town to direct her community play, Brynn finds herself determined to be someone other than the girl he doesn’t even recognize. Good thing she’s an excellent actress.

After his bad breakup in NYC, the last thing Sawyer wants is to get involved with another actress. But the glamorous and beautiful Brynn draws him in, even though as her director, he knows she’s off-limits. There’s just something about the woman that feels…familiar. Like home.

As Brynn’s lies start to snowball, she struggles to stop acting and come clean. But what if Sawyer is already falling for the fake Brynn, not the Brynn she truly is?

Title: Act Like You Love Me
Cindi Madsen
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group:
Publisher: Bliss (Entangled Publishing)
Expected Release Date: June 10, 2013


Hi, Cindi! I’m so happy that I get to interview you here on my blog to promote the release of your new book, Act Like You Love Me! Since I like you so well, I’ll try to keep this as non-boring as possible. When we first met, I had a writing/humor sort of blog that faded out. What did you consider to be your first writing adventure?

Yay, I’m so happy, too! You were one of my very first twitter peeps! As for my first writing adventure, it was probably the first novel I wrote. It was about a girl who meets a movie star at a baseball game. She tumbles over the seats trying to catch a fly ball and lands in his lap. Now I can see all the errors in it, of course, but I’ll always love it because it was what got me addicted to writing.

So far, your published novels have been Young Adult, and the sweet, clean romances like Act Like You Love Me. What draws you to writing the clean reads?

Friday, June 7, 2013

Review: A Shot in the Dark by K.A. Stewart

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Title: A Shot in the Dark (Jesse James Dawson #2)
Author: K.A. Stewart
Release Date: July 5, 2011
Acquired Via:
Personal Collection


Jesse James Dawson is a Champion, putting his life on the line for those foolish enough to bargain with demons and fighting to save their souls. But even a Champion needs some downtime, so Jesse takes his annual camping trip to Colorado for some male bonding over friendly games of paintball.

Unfortunately, the fun and war games are interrupted by a pack of creatures summoned up from the very depths of hell by an entity Jesse prayed he'd never see again. With the lives of his friends and a teenager's soul on the line, Jesse's only hope may lie with an even more dangerous enemy--his personal demon, Axel...

My Review

Jesse James Dawson. Husband. Father. Badass. Champion. The one man you want in your corner if you happen to be stupid enough to sell your soul to a demon.

Demons are out there, even if you can’t see them. Ready to offer deals. To give you what you desire, for the measly price of... YOUR SOOOOOUL! And if you make the deal, you’re screwed. Literally, figuratively and any other kind of -ally you can think of. Go ahead and get a thesaurus; I’ll wait. *fools around on phone*

Ok. Appreciate how deep in it you are? Well, do not despair! Ok, do despair a little. But don’t lose all hope! Champions are here to save your sorry ass. A secret society of people devoted to help those desperate or stupid enough to sell their souls. Some sell their souls for cars, or money. Others do it to save sick sons or a dying mother. It doesn’t matter. If you sold your soul, the Champions will help you.

Cover Reveal (Excerpt): Of Darkness and Crowns by Trisha Wolfe

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Title: Of Darkness and Crowns (Goddess Wars #2)
Author: Trisha Wolfe
New Adult Dark Fantasy
Cover Designer: Steven Novak
Reveal Organizer: YA Bound Book Tours
Release Date: September 1, 2013


The moon goddess has taken up residency within Prince Caben, darkening his mind and soul. Now he hunts the very women he sacrificed his life to save, his conflicting desires for love and power raging a battle within him. Kaliope possesses the key to setting Bale free, and Caben will stop at nothing to see his goddess restored. Even if that means destroying the kingdom he’s sworn to protect, and the infuriating woman who torments his thoughts.

Kaliope, now the leader to the newly formed Nactue Guard, has vowed to save Caben. But with a traitor lurking among her people, and powers she’s unable to fully control, Kaliope’s mission becomes shrouded with doubt. Her new role as watcher over Caben’s kingdom brings a burden she’s unable to bear alone, and appointing the right person in charge of the prince’s affairs has turned a kingdom against the Nactue leader. Saving her stubborn, willful prince from the darkness overtaking him will be the battle of her life, and she needs people she can trust by her side. But bad blood between members of the Nactue obscure Kaliope’s journey, while her feelings for Caben cloud her judgment.

When the time comes to do what she must to destroy the goddess of chaos, will she be able to if it means losing Caben forever?

Book two of the Goddess Wars is told in dual point of view from Kaliope and Caben. New Adult Dark Fantasy, intended for readers 17 years of age and older.


The Crusher grinds to a halt. I’m propelled forward, and my head smacks the low-hanging ceiling of the front compartment.

“Damn, you fool!” I palm my throbbing forehead, eyeing the driver of the Crusher—the machines I now call by their Otherworlder name.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Promo (Giveaway): The Purge Movie - Out June 7th!


Universal Pictures presents The Purge in theaters everywhere on June 7!

Would You #SurviveTheNight? The Purge is coming!

If, on one night every year, you could commit any crime without facing consequences, what would you do?

In an America wracked with crime and overcrowded prisons, the government has sanctioned an annual 12-hour period in which any and all criminal activity--including murder--becomes legal. The police can't be called. Hospitals suspend help. It's twelve hours when the citizenry regulates itself without thought of punishment. On this particular night in 2022, plagued by violence and an epidemic of crime, one family wrestles with the decision of who they will become when a stranger comes knocking.

When an intruder breaks into James Sandin’s (Ethan Hawke) gated community during the yearly lockdown, he begins a sequence of events that threatens to tear his family apart. Now, it is up to James, his wife, Mary (Lena Headey), and their kids to make it through the night without turning into the monsters from whom they hide.

The question is... Would You #SurviveTheNight? Take the quiz to find out! Warn your friends The Purge is coming!

Blog Tour (Review): The Girl Who Married an Eagle by Tamar Myers

1 comment:
Based on actual events in Tamar Myers’s life, The Girl Who Married an Eagle is a beautiful addition to her Belgian Congo mystery series.

When Julia Elaine Newton, a young, pretty Ohio girl, volunteered to go on a mission to the Belgian Congo, she knew it was going to be a huge change. But she never expected to wind up teaching at an all-girls boarding school that consisted mostly of runaway child brides!

Much to her chagrin, Buakane was born beautiful. If only she’d been ugly, Chief Eagle would not have noticed her. Escaping from an arranged marriage, the scrappy young girl finds her way to Julia Newton and the school. But this time her jilted husband will not be denied. Now it’s up to Julia and Buakane to try to save the school as Congolese independence looms and Chief Eagle is set on revenge. With the help of Cripple, Cripple’s husband, and even Amanda Brown, these plucky women must learn to save themselves.

Title: The Who Married an Eagle: A Mystery
Tamar Myers
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Release Date: April 30, 2013
Acquired Via:
Author via TLC Book Tours

My Review

First things first, and anyone who has read this book can call me crazy, but The Girl Who Married an Eagle never read like a mystery for me, as it is said to be in the title. (I'm sure I may missed something along the way, but I don't think so.) Additionally, I think the synopsis is pretty misleading, though not entirely untrue. After reading the book and looking at it again, I must admit that I scratched my head. That being said and out of the way, it was a nice work of historical fiction that I enjoyed reading. There was a lot of Christianity involved in the novel, too, but I don't think this qualifies as Christian fiction. It was a part of the story, but I don't think the religion was the main focus of the book. The Girl Who Married an Eagle is all about the characters and the way they interacted with each other.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Internal Review: Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff

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The Shima Imperium verges on the brink of environmental collapse; an island nation once rich in tradition and myth, now decimated by clockwork industrialization and the machine-worshipers of the Lotus Guild. The skies are red as blood, the land is choked with toxic pollution, and the great spirit animals that once roamed its wilds have departed forever.


The hunters of Shima’s imperial court are charged by their Shōgun to capture a thunder tiger – a legendary creature, half-eagle, half-tiger. But any fool knows the beasts have been extinct for more than a century, and the price of failing the Shōgun is death.


Yukiko is a child of the Fox clan, possessed of a talent that if discovered, would see her executed by the Lotus Guild. Accompanying her father on the Shōgun’s hunt, she finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in Shima’s last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled thunder tiger for company. Even though she can hear his thoughts, even though she saved his life, all she knows for certain is he’d rather see her dead than help her.

But together, the pair will form an indomitable friendship, and rise to challenge the might of an empire.

Title: Stormdancer
Author: Jay Kristoff
Thomas Dunne Books
Acquired Via: Personal Collection
Release Date: September 18, 2012

My Review

Me: Well, well, well, you FINALLY read Stormdancer.

Myself: You knew that I would! I just had to get around to it.

Me: Oh, please, you're the biggest procrastinator ever!

Myself: Whatever, I read the book, marveled at the epic world-building, basked in my crush on Yukiko, and cried like a bitch at the end.

Blog Tour (Guest Post & Giveaway): The Birr Elixir by Jo Sparkes

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Tour Schedule

Construction of a Heroine
by Jo Sparkes

What makes a great heroine?

Oddly enough, it’s not a question I ask myself when I’m writing. But I do reflect on it while reading from time to time. And that’s never a good sign for a book, by the way.

A book offers the audience an amusement park ride, and the characters are the carts in which we travel. All good carts invite you in, make you want to sit, and then rivet you in place when the journey twists and turns.

A heroine must appeal. That doesn’t mean she needs to be beautiful, especially if her inner beauty shines through in the end. What’s important is that we identify with her – and oddly enough, that means we appreciate her flaws. A good story has an outer problem she must solve – but a great story also has an inner problem.

She must grow as a person, and we get to grow with her.

Yet in great literature, we don’t have to necessarily like everything about her. Only – a part of her.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Blog Tour (Review & Giveaway): The Wisdom of Hair by Kim Boykin


Tour Schedule

Life can be beautiful, but it takes a little work...

“The problem with cutting your own hair is that once you start, you just keep cutting, trying to fix it, and the truth is, some things can never be fixed. The day of my daddy’s funeral, I cut my bangs until they were the length of those little paintbrushes that come with dime-store watercolor sets. I was nine years old. People asked me why I did it, but I was too young then to know I was changing my hair because I wanted to change my life.”

In 1983, on her nineteenth birthday, Zora Adams finally says goodbye to her alcoholic mother and their tiny town in the mountains of South Carolina. Living with a woman who dresses like Judy Garland and brings home a different man each night is not a pretty existence, and Zora is ready for life to be beautiful.

With the help of a beloved teacher, she moves to a coastal town and enrolls in the Davenport School of Beauty. Under the tutelage of Mrs. Cathcart, she learns the art of fixing hair, and becomes fast friends with the lively Sara Jane Farquhar, a natural hair stylist. She also falls hard for handsome young widower Winston Sawyer, who is drowning his grief in bourbon. She couldn’t save Mama, but maybe she can save him.

As Zora practices finger waves, updos, and spit curls, she also comes to learn that few things are permanent in this life—except real love, lasting friendship, and, ultimately… forgiveness.

Title: The Wisdom of Hair
Kim Boykin
Publisher: HarperTeen
Acquired Via: Book Nerd Tours
Release Date: May 14, 2013

My Review

The Wisdom of Hair is not what I expected. I thought I would be getting a saucy, witty novel about Southern women in a beauty shop. Instead a found an exploration of relationships between not just lovers, but family and friends that followed Zora Adams to her discovery of what love really is. That is not to say there were no saucy witty moments, but the actual beauty shop time was minimal.

Zora Adams grew up with a really crappy mom, so when she went out in the world, she wasn't the best equipped to make healthy relationships. Thankfully, Sara Jane Farquhar came bursting into her life, and they were instantly best friends. Sara Jane's parents were probably my favorite literary parents because they essentially adopted Zora and loved her unconditionally just because Sara Jane did. It made me all warm and tingly in my chest region whenever I read most of the scenes with any of the Farquhars, and I may have gotten a little jealous that they haven't taken me in yet, too.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Armchair BEA 2013: Day Five

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Design Credit: Nina @ Nina Reads

Keeping It Real

Today we're supposed to discuss how we "keep things real" on our blogs and how we keep people coming back for more. Honestly, I don't know how to answer that question. I haven't been a very good blogger over the past year, and nothing short of awesome sauce and loyalty have kept my readers coming back for more. Yes, there are occasional giveaways, but I don't think they are of such a magnitude that anyone would say "OMG, MOAR!!!"

I hope the small snatches of myself that I'm able to insert in my posts keep my readers interested in what I'm doing here on Bibliophilia, Please. I've cut down on blog tour obligations and filler posts quite a bit, and I hope to have more crazy coming straight out of my own brain for you guys. We shall see.

Children's/Young Adult Literature

I love children's literature, though I didn't stay with it long when I was a child myself. However, I do have a few favorites at my house that I would like to share, but I won't go through too much silly business of posting long love letters for them since you have many other posts to visit if you're an Armchair BEA participant.

Wheedle on the Needle by Stephen Cosgrove
A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip C. Stead
Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss
Zero the Hero by Joan Holub
Knuckleheads by Joan Holub
(In fact, anything by her!)

When it comes to YA, I'm at a bit of a loss. There is so much quality work out there, I don't even know where to begin to name favorites. I can honestly say that I wish there had been a greater selection when I was the target audience's age. I went straight from picture books to Tolkien, Piers Anthony, Anne McCaffrey, Stephen King, and the like. I'm not complaining at all about my reading material because I loved it wholeheartedly, but it would have been nice to have characters to connect with that were going through some of my same teen issues. Yes, there was Lurlene McDaniel, but that wasn't really an option. Christopher Pike and R.L. Stine had some YA, but you just got watch your favorite characters die brutally. So, if you're a teen and reading this post, please take a moment to realize how lucky you are to have the genre. We adults are incredibly jealous, and this is why so many of us keep stealing your books.