Monday, July 30, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (82)

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, is a bookish meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books, where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It’s a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list. So hop on over to Journey and join in...and leave a comment here so I can check out what you are reading.

You may have noticed I didn't post a Monday post last week, and that was because I was way too tired. :P That means this week's post is for the last two weeks...so that's why there are more than usual. :P Plus, the books I just couldn't not tell you about a couple of the books from the week before last, they were too good! :D

Books I Read The Last 2 Weeks:
  • May B. by Caroline Starr Rose
This one had a bit of a slow start for me, but soon I was wrapped up in May's world, and she totally had me hanging on her every word. May is such a strong character, and I was seriously impressed by her and by this book. :)
Oh my GOODNESS!!! I LOVED THIS ONE! Yes, I loved it so much it warrants capital letters!!! This is definitely my favourite book of this series so far, and it leaves me extremely excited for the next one! The Rise of Nine was so full of action, and I love that we're getting to meet more of the characters! I also loved that this one had Six's POV! She's my favourite! :D

I'm totally kicking myself for not reading this one sooner! I absolutely loved this one! :D It was amazing, and I love how Edgar Allan Poe's The Masque of The Red Death fit in with it. I'm especially glad that I made sure to read Poe's short story before this one (although to be honest, I've been meaning to read most of Poe's work for a long time, and one day I will read it ALL haha ;D). I definitely can't wait for this one's sequel... and I'm going to be desperately waiting for it until it's out! :D

Well, this is definitely not a book for the faint of heart. It's pretty erotic, and it may be short, but this one is definitely not tame. I enjoyed it. It was a quick read, and it definitely seemed like quite the intro to a series. I've never read a series with three authors before though, so I'm definitely planning on looking into the following books. Also, as I mentioned this is an introduction to the series, and you can find it for free on Amazon. (That's a link right there by the way. ;D)

Oh my! I loved this one! :D It was a pretty quick read (only 112 pages on ebook according to Goodreads), but the characters were amazing! I absolutely adored Caden and Makenna, and I definitely enjoyed their chemistry! I also don't think I've ever gotten so attached to characters after such a short time. I guess having two characters get stuck in an elevator and reveal things about themselves is a great way for them to get to know each other, and for the reader to get attached to them, too. ;) I only wish this one had been longer, just so I could have more! :P I definitely plan to reread it in the future. :D

I really liked this one. :) It was a cute story. Not my favourite Jennifer Echols book...no that would be either Going to Far or Forget You...those two were amazing! But, I still really enjoyed this one. I thought Max and Gemma were fantastic, but I just didn't click with it as much as the other two. :P I still really liked it though. :)

  • Team Human by Justine Larbalestier, and Sarah Rees Brennan
This book was a so-so read for me. I liked it, but I definitely didn't love it like I thought I would. I actually took a break from reading it for a while, and that helped me enjoy it more, but I still couldn't really get past what I didn't like in the first part. I honestly just could not stand the main character, Mel, for a big chunk of the beginning of this book. She was just so mean, and so rude...but was trying to pass it off as being funny. I understood she was trying to protect her friend, but I just needed a break from her for a while. Once I picked the book up, I really enjoyed it. Mel also was a lot better in the 2/3rds of the book that I still had left too, so that really helped. By the end of the book I actually liked her, but I still just didn't like her in the beginning, so overall I just liked this one, but there are supposed to be sequels, and I do plan on reading them because I definitely enjoyed the last 2/3rds of the book. So, if you start this one and don't like Mel at first either, just take a break from her about 1/3rd of the book in..trust me, she grows on you. ;)

Reading Now:
I'm just starting this one, but so far I think it's pretty interesting. :) It's not in the point of view that I was expecting, but so far I really like how it's going. I'm looking forward to reading more! :D

I like this one, but I haven't gotten hooked yet. I think it's that there are five different narrators. I do like the variety, but it makes it kind of hard to connect to them all. I love the verse as always though, and I like how each character has a poem at the start of each of their sections. It's a nice touch. :)


Books I Want to Read This Week:
Zombies! I am so excited for this book, so hopefully I can read it this week. :D

And what are you reading???
Feel free to leave a link to your Monday post in the comments. :)

Check out One Person's Journey Through a World of Books to see what other people are reading. :)

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Stacking the Shelves (8)

Stacking the Shelves is Tynga's Reviews' version of In My Mailbox (from The Story Siren and inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie).

Stacking the Shelves is a way to share the books that you're adding to your physical and virtual bookshelves. It's easy to participate. You just make your own post, and link it to the main post over at Tynga's Reviews. Also, in case you're curious, Tynga's post for it goes up on Saturdays, but you can post it any day that you like. :) You can find out more about participating by reading the Stacking the Shelves Launch post.

Okay, so last week I told you guys I was too tired to post my StS, and that extended to my Monday post, so this week's StS is from the past two weeks. :)

For Review:

 Every Day by David Leviathan (Netgalley and Publisher)
  Eve and Adam by Katherine Applegate and Michael Grant (Macmillan through Raincoast Books)
 Stormdancer (The Lotus War #1) by Jay Kristoff (Netgalley and Publisher)
 Big Sky Mountain (Swoon-Worthy Cowboys #2) by Linda Lael Miller (Media Muscle and Harlequin)
 A Midsummer's Nightmare by Kody Keplinger (Hachette Book Group Canada)
 Purity by Jackson Pearce (Hachette Book Group Canada)
 The Wishing Spell (The Land of Stories #1) by Chris Colfer (Hachette Book Group Canada)
 The Iron Wyrm Affair (Bannon and Clare #1) by Lilith Saintcrow (Hachette Book Group Canada)

I received some AMAZING books over the last two weeks! :D I definitely can't wait to read all of these!! :D I'm not even sure which one I want to read first...I just can't choose! haha Any suggestions for which one I should read first???

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Bought:

 
 Unbreak My Heart by Melissa C. Walker (Kobo Bookstore)
 Easy by Tammara Webber (Kobo Bookstore)
 Hearts in Darkness by Laura Kaye (Amazon Kindle Store)
 Spell Bound (Hex Hall #3) by Rachel Hawkins (Kobo Bookstore)
 Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson (Book Depository)
 The Last Guardian (Artemis Fowl #8) by Eoin Colfer (Book Depository)
 Article 5 (Article 5 #1) by Kristen Simmons (Book Depository)

I had some Kobo coupons so I picked out a few from their bookstore. I'm excited for them all! I've heard amazing things about Easy, and I've been meaning to read Spell Bound for a while now...so I'm pretty psyched about it! :D I've just started Tiger Lily and I like it so far. :D I'm also really excited for The Last Guardian! It's the last Artemis Fowl book!!! :D Eeek! Oh, and I already read Hearts in Darkness, it was a quick read, but the character development was amazing! Seriously, especially for it not being a very long book. I was kind of said when I finished it because I wanted more! ;D

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So, those are the books I've gotten in the last two weeks.
What about you?
What was your mailbox or book haul like this week
(or like myself, over the last two weeks :P)?

Feel free to leave a link in the comments and I'll come take a look. :)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Review: Crux by Julie Reece

 Source: Received an ebook from publisher for an honest review.
Release Date: Already Released.
Visit its page on the publisher website: Crux

Description:
 She should have run. Now, she’ll have to fight.

Eighteen year old Birdie may be homeless, but she’s surviving, that is until a mysterious guy throws money in the air like a crazy game show host, and she grabs some with the idea she’ll be able to buy dinner that night.

In that singular moment, unassuming Birdie becomes the girl in everyone’s viewfinder. Thugs want to kill her. Money-guy wants to recruit her. The very hot, very rich, and very out of her league Grey Mathews wants to save her.

Birdie, though, wants nothing to do with any of them, until she realizes fate didn’t bring them all together.

Her heritage did.

Now, with only twenty-one days left, she’s got to decide whether to follow in the footsteps of those before her or risk her life for people she’s only just met.



I've mentioned in past reviews how much I love mythology, but before Crux, I'd never actually read anything to do with the Nordic variety, but that didn't keep me from loving it. :D It wasn't just the Nordic mythology that made me love this story...no there were plenty of things! :D The characters, the plot, the intricacy of this story, and the writing itself were all things that kept me reading until the last page, the very last word...and then kept me hoping that there just may be more to come (psst...after I interviewed Julie Reece for Crux's blog tour, she said she's considering expanding Crux into a series, so yay!! YAY! :D I really really really hope she does!...okay, I've calmed down a bit now and can continue. :P). :D

First, I just have to say that the characters were amazing! I'm a pretty character-driven reader, and Crux had amazing characters throughout! :D I just have to say that I absolutely loved Birdie. I wasn't sure about her nickname, but as I read more of the story, it definitely suited her, and it really grew on me. I also loved her strength, her compassion, and her kindness. She'd been through so much, and yet she never let her past bring her down. She still thought it was important to help others. She was a bit closed off because she tried to keep her distance from others to protect herself and them, and I could totally understand why she did it. Birdie had an extremely difficult childhood, not the worst (as she points out herself), but definitely one that was hard, and when even more crazy stuff started happening in her life...that reluctance to connect with others seemed pretty reasonable. That being said, I was extremely glad when she opened up and let people in...especially Grey. I'm extremely happy about Grey. *dreamy sigh*

Now that I've mentioned Grey, it's the perfect segue to mention him all on his own. First, love, love...LOVE his name! :D I've never thought of Grey as a first name before, but I absolutely love it...and I won't lie, it's pretty sexy. Not only does he have a sexy name, but he's smart, funny, kind, persistent (and thank goodness for that! ;D), and so much more! The boy sounds absolutely gorgeous too, which seriously doesn't hurt...and he can sing! I'm a bit of a sucker for singers...I tend to swoon if I like a guy's voice...and I can tell that Grey would totally make me swoon. All in all, Grey is amazing! Seriously, he's amazing, and I loved him with Birdie! They're an amazing pair, as friends, as partners...and as much, much more. You'll seriously love their banter, chemistry, and the tension...these two have some serious tension; delicious tension that is. ;)

Okay, so I've totally talked up Birdie and Grey, but I haven't really talked about the story much, have I? Well, I will now. :P Crux was amazing! That's as straightforward as it gets. Julie Reece has written a captivating story that will draw you in, and will keep you trying to put the pieces all together. There's a lot of mystery surrounding the story because Birdie's past is pretty much unknown, even to her. She has no family, and knows nothing of her heritage, so when she ends up with a necklace that leads to her uncovering a twisted history tracing back to her ancestors, she's a bit skeptical at first. With the help of a few other characters though, Birdie learns about her destiny, and the dark legacy her ancestors left behind. Will she be able to achieve what countless ancestors before her have failed to do? Well...I'm obviously not going to tell you if she does, nor am I going to tell you what it is that she has to do, but I will tell you that it is an amazing journey to follow her on, and you'll enjoy every single moment. :)

Have any of you been lucky enough to read Crux yet?
If you have, what did you think? If you haven't, does it sound good?
And, now this is the most important question...doesn't Grey sound yummy? ;)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Dreaming Anastasia Deleted Scenes Tour (Haunted Scene)!


In honour of Anastasia Forever(the last book in the Dreaming Anastasia Trilogy)'s upcoming August 1st release, Sourcebooks organized two amazing tours! One with awesome deleted scenes, and the other designated specifically towards Anastasia Forever. This is the first one, and the latter one will be starting very soon! :D So, today I have an awesome deleted scene for you. The one that I'm sharing is from the second book, Haunted. :)


Here is a bit of background on the scene from the author, Joy Preble:

“The Haunted scene takes place after the Cub's game. Anne and Ethan go to eat and then see Viktor but before then I had envisioned this sexual tension/comic but serious scene where Anne is angry at Ethan for having turned her life upside down but she doesn't want to say it and he doesn't want to say he loves her since he's come back to find Ben in the picture. So instead, Anne eats. And eats. And it wasn't really working for me, but it's funny.”


Now, onto the Deleted scene from the second book, Haunted:

Thursday, 4:30 PM, Ethan
                “Are you going to finish that?” I point to the remains of the enormous pile of onion rings that Anne has consumed along with the cheese and sausage pizza we just split at the little hole in the wall pizza place so close to the El that you can feel the trains rumbling by overhead as you eat. We’re in Evanston where I’ve rented an apartment. But taking Anne there felt like a mistake. A restaurant seemed safer. Pizza seemed safer.
I just had no idea that she ate like this.
                “Well, yeah. You need to try some, Ethan.” She plucks one off the plate, shoves it into my hand, then passes me the bowl of ranch dressing. “And dip them in this. It’s killer.”
                I try it. It’s not half bad.
                We both chew some more, both pretending that this isn’t awkward and that we don’t both remember being chased by Baba Yaga and Viktor and Dimitri to these very El tracks not that long ago. Or that it was on one of those trains that Anne figured out how to work the magic lacquer box that let us access Baba Yaga’s forest and open the door to her hut so we could save Anastasia. It doesn’t take much for me to remember how Anne looked when Viktor almost killed her that day.
Or how I felt realizing what a fool I’d been to trust him.
                It’s easier to eat pizza and onion rings and talk about what I’m going to study now that I’m back. Of course we both know that’s not really why I’m back. But neither of us has worked up to the truth.
                “See. I knew you’d like it.” She dips another ring in the bowl of ranch, opens her mouth, pops it in, then closes and chews.
                “Remember when you made me tea? You still do that? The whole loose tea, tea pot thing?” she asks me around her mouth of onion ring.
                “Yes.”
                “Well that’s good to know.”
                “We need to talk, Anne.”
                “We are talking, Ethan.”
                I frown at her.
                “I’m being difficult, right? That’s what you’re thinking. Anne’s being difficult.”
                “Possibly.”
                “That’s what Tess keeps telling me, too. Well, maybe she doesn’t use that specific word. But that’s what she means.”
                “Anne.”
                “Ethan.”
                I signal the waitress for a check. This is going nowhere. I need to find out what’s really been going on with her. I need to tell her what I’ve seen. What I suspect. Everything I’ve kept from her in hopes that maybe I could keep it from coming. I am, it seems, no less foolish than ever.
                “You know they make great cannoli here,” Anne says as she stabs her fork into the last onion ring and dunks it in the bowl of dressing.
                I fish some bills from my pocket and hand them to the waitress who’s returned with the check.  “You’re all set,” I tell her. I stand, pull Anne from her chair while she’s still chewing and guide her from the restaurant. Another train barrels by overhead.
                “Let’s go out by the lake,” I say. “We’ll walk. I’ll talk. You’ll listen. And we’re going to figure this out, okay. Really. We are.”
                “Ben loves me, Ethan. Did you know that?”
                Her face is suddenly serious. Somewhere all this onion ring eating has been about this.
                “Does he?”
                “Yeah, he does.”
                She pauses, clearly on the verge of saying something more. It occurs to me, certainly not for the first time, how very young she still is.
                “I’m sorry that he’s been dragged into this, Anne.”
                “He has, hasn’t he?” She swallows. I catch a glimpse of the Anne I really know – as much as I can say I know her. The one who’s smart and funny and brave. The one I kissed a number of times before I left for Europe and who is now seeing a boy named Ben she says loves her.
                “Sucks to be him, huh?” she adds.
                Actually, I think, it doesn’t.



  The Dreaming Anastasia Trilogy (with Goodreads Links):
Book 2: Haunted

Have you read this series yet?

If you have, what do you think of it? 

And if you haven't, do you want to read it? 

I haven't read it yet myself, but I absolutely want to! 
It sounds amazing...plus, I've always loved Anastasia stories!! :D 
 Any other Anastasia Romanov junkies out there?

Friday, July 20, 2012

Crux Blog Tour: Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!


Me: Hi, Julie! It’s wonderful to have you here. How about you tell us a bit about yourself? 

Julie Reece: Thank you for having me. I’m thrilled to be here! 

I grew up with learning disabilities and assumed I could never do anything like write a book. I only discovered writing about three years ago. That’s the time when, as my family fondly explains, ‘the age of obsession’ set in! LOL I don’t think it will pass, either. I live in Metro-Atlanta with my husband, two daughters and a small zoo (not really but it feels that way sometimes). 

I was incredibly fascinated with all the mythology woven into Crux, why did you choose to focus on Norse mythology? 

I wanted to write the story I couldn’t find. I’ve always loved Thor (one of my favorite comics as a kid) and the influence Norse mythology had on J.R.R. Tolkien’s work. Another story I love is Michael Crichton’s ‘Eaters of the Dead’, later made into the movie, ‘The Thirteenth Warrior’ with Antonio Banderas. Vikings seemed a subject largely ignored so far by YA writers so it was a perfect fit for me. :) I’m planning more with this theme. 

I absolutely loved Birdie and Grey, and pretty much all of your other characters (with the exception of Isabel...but I don’t think I was supposed to really like her :P), so I was just wondering, how do you go about crafting your characters? Are they completely fictional and crafted within your mind, or do you prefer to draw a bit on the people that you know and care about? Feel free to talk about Grey all you want too. ;) 

You’re right, Izzy is supposed to be fairly horrible. :) 

I’m afraid this will sound lame, but this bunch of characters sort of wrote themselves. I must be influenced by people I know, I think we all are, but I also make these folks up as I go along. I write characteristics of people I wish I could meet, dream I could be like, would be afraid to encounter or that make life more interesting. 

As for Grey … 

Crux is the third full length novel I’ve written. The first is horrible and unreadable and the hero was a ‘nice’ guy. Ugh. The second (you may yet read) is in editing right now. The hero is a huge alpha-arrogant-bad-boy (not a jerk) but he’s definitely full of himself. :) With Grey, from my third novel, I wanted to write a completely different hero—someone strong, sexy, seductive, and self-assured but flawed with some growing up to do. I hope I accomplished that. 

I’m a big dog fan, so of course I loved Fenris...but he’s not your typical dog. What kind of stories or myths did you draw on for Fenris’s character? 

Well, the legend of Fenris comes from Norse mythology where he is termed Fenrir— the father of the wolves. However, I took a lot of liberties with him in my story. Birdie grew up alone and animals can be such a comfort. I wanted to give her a special ally and friend, yet avoid the traditional idea of a werewolf. I remember thinking, dude, what if someone powerful and terrifying like that were on your side! Then I went a step further and added some humor into their relationship. 

At the very end, I pretty much had a crush on Fenris and decided to throw all caution to the wind and make him half human. Even though I wrote this as a stand-alone, in the back of my mind, I wanted to leave an opening for a sequel. If Grey needs a little competition, Fenris might be just the guy… or not… stay tuned. :) 

The whole mythology behind Birdie’s amulet, Alarr, was amazing, especially the parts involving the Wielder, the Guardian, Haddr, and Thorolf. How did you think of it? 

That’s a tougher question, and the simple answer is I don’t know. That idea grew from my weird imagination. As I said, I loved comics as a kid and am enthralled with the idea of super powers. I wanted to give a homeless kid with a sad past a shot at a different future, make a seemingly weak girl powerful and see what she could do given a chance. I thought about being homeless, and in a fantasy world, what I would want to happen to me if that were my life. Throw in some Viking folklore, mix well and serve. 

You’ve heard all writers are a little bit crazy, right? It’s true! 

I couldn’t get enough of Crux, and I won’t lie, I wasn’t ready for it to end! Do you have any sequels planned, or is it firmly a standalone? And if you don’t have any sequels planned, what can we expect from you next? 

Thank you! You’re making me smile pretty big right now. Truthfully? I wrote it as a stand-alone because I’m a chicken. I was scared to death people wouldn’t ‘get it’ so I didn’t want to leave you (the reader) hanging and assume you’d want any more. How’s that for honest? 

I am considering expanding Crux into a series. I’m busting with ideas for it even now :) but I have three other novels in various stages of completion. My favorite is a YA historical paranormal romance that is finished and in editing right now. It’s heavier on the romance part … cough… (steamy) … and less, how do I put it, odd than Crux. LOL! Still plenty of action and adventure, though. 

Finally, how do you feel now that people are reading your book? Are you reading all the reviews or avoiding them like the plague? ;D 

I’m equal parts excited and nervous. I really want people to like it, of course, but I realize not everyone will. Writing is a dream I never knew I had, and now that I’ve discovered it, I’d write even if the only ones listening were my cats! I think every story teller hopes to move, inspire or entertain their readers. It’s my goal to improve with every story and grow as an author. 

I’ve read some reviews and am thrilled (overwhelmed) with the response so far. Releasing a book, for me, was/is a very ‘heart-in-my-throat’ type experience. At some point, though, I realized it’s important to set my ‘peep-hole gawking’ at the reviews aside (authors are so insecure) and get busy with what I love most—writing more stories. That’s my focus right now. 

Thanks for stopping by my blog for this interview, Julie! It has been fantastic chatting with you! :D

Oh, no, thank you! I had an absolute ball. Your questions were great, and I love talking about writing. Can you tell? :)

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About Crux:
She should have run. Now, she’ll have to fight.

Eighteen year old Birdie may be homeless, but she’s surviving, that is until a mysterious guy throws money in the air like a crazy game show host, and she grabs some with the idea she’ll be able to buy dinner that night.

In that singular moment, unassuming Birdie becomes the girl in everyone’s viewfinder. Thugs want to kill her. Money-guy wants to recruit her. The very hot, very rich, and very out of her league Grey Mathews wants to save her.

Birdie, though, wants nothing to do with any of them, until she realizes fate didn’t bring them all together.

Her heritage did.

Now, with only twenty-one days left, she’s got to decide whether to follow in the footsteps of those before her or risk her life for people she’s only just met.

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About the author, Julie Reece:
Born in Ohio, I lived next to my grandfather’s horse farm until the fourth grade. Summers were about riding, fishing and make-believe, while winter brought sledding and ice-skating on frozen ponds. Most of life was magical, but not all.

I struggled with multiple learning disabilities, did not excel in school. I spent much of my time looking out windows and daydreaming. In the fourth grade (with the help of one very nice teacher) I fought dyslexia for my right to read, like a prince fights a dragon in order to free the princess locked in a tower, and I won.

Afterwards, I read like a fiend. I invented stories where I could be the princess... or a gifted heroine from another world who kicked bad guy butt to win the heart of a charismatic hero. Who wouldn't want to be a part of that? Later, I moved to Florida where I continued to fantasize about superpowers and monsters, fabricating stories (my mother called it lying) and sharing them with my friends.

Then I thought I’d write one down…

Hooked, I’ve been writing ever since. I write historical, contemporary, urban fantasy, adventure, and young adult romances. I love strong heroines, sweeping tales of mystery and epic adventure… which must include a really hot guy. My writing is proof you can work hard to overcome any obstacle. Don’t give up. I say, if you write, write on! 


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GIVEAWAY DETAILS:
- US/Canada Only
-1 Winner
-Giveaway ends August 3rd at 12:01 AM (EST).
-Winner will receive an ebook of Crux, a Crux waterbottle, and signed bookmarks
-Winner will be chosen using Rafflecopter
-The ebook has generously been donated by the publisher, and the author has generously donated the swag. :)

To enter just fill out the Rafflecopter below: 


So, what do you think? 
How does Crux sound, and did you think of my interview with Julie??

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Eternal Blog Tour: J. A. Belfield Guest Post and GIVEAWAY!


WHO’S THE DADDY? YOU’RE THE DADDY! 

Okay, so maybe ‘DADDY’ shoulda read ‘ALPHA’ but let’s not be pedantic over this.

Yes, this post is (more accurately) a discussion of Alpha’s.

Not just any ole Alpha’s.

Alpha werewolves.

There are a tonne of ‘em dotted about in literature. Some good. Some bad. Some downright cranky. And some downright crooked.

But one thing they all have in common?

They all have the potential to lead.

I guess the question is: Who would you follow?

Across the released titles of Holloway Pack Stories, readers meet a total of three Alpha’s for the pack.

Not all in one go, mind.

Nope. James is Alpha in Instinct. **ETERNAL SPOILER ALERT** Sean is Alpha in Eternal. And Nathan is Alpha in Darkness and Light and all other ‘present day’ Holloway Pack tales the reading public have been introduced to.

So, let’s take a look at the likely lineup:

James: Some might not like the way he rules his Pack. He’s harsh. He’s unforgiving. But we soon learn that his unyielding quality we thought was set in stone isn’t quite as rigid as he leads to believe. And maybe his attitude is there for a reason. After all, Alphahood was thrust upon him. As the eldest son to the previous Alpha, the death of his father left him no choice but to step up and accept the position, whether he was ready to or not.

Sean: Another one left with little choice but to accept Alphahood at an early age. He’s laid back. But he has a temper. And he keeps his wealth of vulnerability and self-doubts locked up tight in a box to which few have the key. Who knows? Maybe questioning one’s own abilities could go a long way to keeping one humble whilst ensuring they always strive to prove themselves. Each of his weakness could contribute to his strengths.

Nathan: He pretty much has every quality an Alpha should possess. Kindness, understanding, firmness, the ability to listen, and (perhaps more importantly) the ability to admit when he’s in the wrong, willingness to forgive, and his respect his earned by showing respect in return. But let’s not forget we only get to understand him from the point of view of another. Who knows what really goes on in that undoubtedly intelligent mind?

So what ARE the best qualities for an Alpha? If you had to pick one, who would you follow? Who’s your favourite fictional Alpha of all time? I know I have a few. :)

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About Eternal:


Goodreads Link
An unmarried woman living in a house of men breeds hearsay and lore. If only the villagers knew the truth.

It’s not Jem Stonehouse’s marital status that brings unwanted strangers to town. Rather, it’s that she is the only female werewolf in existence — a prize to any pack.

Sean Holloway, the love of Jem’s life, has gone to great lengths to protect her. As a new attack becomes imminent, Sean realizes he must take greater measures with Jem’s safety or risk losing her forever.

His first task must be to marry her, but a force greater than the largest werewolf stands in his way.

Her mother.
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PictureAbout the author, J.A. Belfield:

It all started with a daydream.

One of those daydreams where a character or scene pops into your head, and you start controlling the little people inside your imagination as though you are the puppet master and they your toys. Questions arise: What would happen if ...? How would they react if ....? Who would they meet if ...? And before you know it, a singular scene has become an entire movie. Those characters you control will begin to hold conversations. Their actions will reflect the personality you have bestowed upon them. Within no time, they have a life, an entire world in which they live, a lover, a foe, family ... they have Become. One day, I wrote my thoughts down. I've yet to stop.
Author bio and picture from the author's official website.
Link to Author's Goodreads page.  

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Also, in honour of Eternal's Blog Tour, Instinct, another novella in the Holloway Pack Series is on sale for $0.99(ish - It all depends on your country :P)! Here are a few links for you if you're interested: Amazon - US, Amazon - UK, and Barnes and Noble.

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GIVEAWAY DETAILS: 
- INTERNATIONAL
- 1 Winner will get an ebook of Eternal
- Ends August 1st at 12:01 am (EST)
- The winner will be drawn with Rafflecopter
- The winner will be emailed their ebook 
(make sure to check your junk folder, don't wanna miss it!)

To enter just fill out the Rafflecopter widget


Thanks for entering and be sure to let J.A. Belfield what you think of her guest post! :D

And if you want to check out the rest of the tour, here are all the stops:

July 1st – J.Taylor Publishing [Feature]
2nd – Known to Read [Character Interview + Giveaway]
5th – Machenwood Chronicles [Guest Post]
6th – Doctors Notes [Author Interview]
9th – LoveRomancePassion [Author Interview]
- Urban Girl Reader [Character Interview]
10th – Claire Gillian [Book Spotlight + Excerpt]
11th – Reviewing Shelf [Guest Post + Giveaway]
13th – Keri Lake [Character Interview]
16th – Scribblers Sojourn [Author Interview]
17th – Julie Reece [Book Spotlight]
18th – Burning Impossibly Bright [Guest Post + Giveaway]
20th – Jenny Keller Ford [Guest Post]
23rd – Aimee Laine [character interview]
25th – Kastil’s Cheeky Reviews [Pimp my Novel]
27th – My World [Author Interview]
31st – Emi Gayle [Dating 101: Werewolf]

Some aren't posted just yet, but be sure to keep your eyes open because some of these awesome posts are ones you won't want to miss! :D

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Review: Eternal (A Holloway Pack Story #0.5) by J.A. Belfield

 
 Source: Received an ebook from publisher for an honest review.
Release Date: Already Released.
Visit its page on the publisher website: Eternal

Description:
 An unmarried woman living in a house of men breeds hearsay and lore. If only the villagers knew the truth.

It’s not Jem Stonehouse’s marital status that brings unwanted strangers to town. Rather, it’s that she is the only female werewolf in existence — a prize to any pack.

Sean Holloway, the love of Jem’s life, has gone to great lengths to protect her. As a new attack becomes imminent, Sean realizes he must take greater measures with Jem’s safety or risk losing her forever.

His first task must be to marry her, but a force greater than the largest werewolf stands in his way.

Her mother.



It's no surprise that I absolutely love this series, and the characters in it, so I wasn't shocked when I finally picked up my Kindle and started my copy of Eternal and devoured it. :D It wasn't very long, but it was amazing. I loved seeing what happened to the first Sean and Jem after they met and fell in love in Instinct, and in this one you see how their lives become woven together and why their love will be bound together for eternity.

After reading Eternal, I feel like I understand the backstory behind Jem and Sean's love in Darkness and Light. We finally got to see the ceremony that bound them together, and see how the first Sean and Jem got to that place. Let me tell you it wasn't easy, and they had a mishap or two, but I love getting to experience their story and as always I thoroughly enjoyed Jem and Sean together. No matter what time period or how slightly different those two might be, I love their characters. They have amazing chemistry, and some fantastic banter. :D

Above all else, I loved Eternal, and it makes me even more excited for the second book in the Holloway Pack Series to come out, Blue Moon! :D As much as I love werewolves in the past pack, I definitely also love the current ones, so it'll be great to get to read one of their stories again. :D

I would recommend checking out Eternal if you've already read Instinct (but not before!), the first prequel and novella about the very first Sean and Jem, but I think you'd be okay reading both prequels before Darkness and Light if you choose to. :) As to who I recommend this series to, well I'd go with fans of Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld series, especially if they like the werewolf-centric stories-the Clay and Elena ones in particular, and I think werewolf fans in general would really enjoy how J.A. Belfield has made her own werewolf folklore within the Holloway pack, full of eternal love and reincarnations. :)

So, have you read Eternal yet, or any of the other fabulous stories in the Holloway Pack Series??
Are you a fan of werewolves?
Finally, what are your thoughts on the different werewolf stories out there? What kind do you like best? Do you have any that you don't like? Feel free to share your thoughts on the matter. :)

Monday, July 16, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (81)

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, is a bookish meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books, where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It’s a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list. So hop on over to Journey and join in...and leave a comment here so I can check out what you are reading.


Books I Read Last Week:
This one was amazing! I'm still thinking about it after having finished it earlier in the week. It's one of those books that really makes you think, and it's also so beautifully written. It's not necessarily a happy story, but it is a fantastic book to read. If you haven't had the opportunity to read one of Ellen Hopkins' books yet, I fully recommend that you give them a shot. If you're unsure about poetic verse, you can find most of them at the library....I totally suggest that you do. I've already got another one, Tricks, waiting on my shelf from the library. ;D


These ones were an amazing deal on Amazon, so I couldn't resist, and I quickly finished this one. :) The characters great, and I loved it. :D

This is the sequel to Playing For Keeps, and I loved this one, too. I really love how the author writes her characters, and I like the way that the romances are developed. I'm definitely going to be reading the third one once it's released. :D


Reading Now:
  • May B. by Caroline Starr Rose
I'm not very far into this one yet, but it's okay so far. I'm hoping that I'll get caught up in it soon. :)


Books I Want to Read This Week:
I was accepted for an eARC of this one on Edelweiss and I can't wait to read it!!! :D Eeek! I'm gonna try and start it right away! :D


And what are you reading???

Check out One Person's Journey Through a World of Books to see what other people are reading. :)

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Stacking the Shelves (7)

Stacking the Shelves is Tynga's Reviews' version of In My Mailbox (from The Story Siren and inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie).

Stacking the Shelves is a way to share the books that you're adding to your physical and virtual bookshelves. It's easy to participate. You just make your own post, and link it to the main post over at Tynga's Reviews. Also, in case you're curious, Tynga's post for it goes up on Saturdays, but you can post it any day that you like. :) You can find out more about participating by reading the Stacking the Shelves Launch post.

So, here's what I got this week!

For Review: 

Beautifully Broken (Spellbound #1) by Sherry Soule (from the author)
Waking Storms (Lost Voices #2) by Sarah Porter (from Thomas Allen and Sons)
The Rise of Nine (Lorien Legacies #3) by Pittacus Lore (from Edelweiss and Harper Collins)

I'm really excited for these4 ones, especially The Rise of Nine! :D I've excited for this one ever since I read The Power of Six! :D I'm also excited for Beautifully Broken and Waking Storms, but I still need to read Lost Voices. Can't wait! :D

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Bought:

Wish (Wish #1) by Alexandra Bullen (Greenwoods' Bookshoppe)
Shift (Shade #2) by Jeri Smith-Ready (Greenwoods' Bookshoppe)
How to Keep a Boy as a Pet by Diane Messidoro (Greenwoods' Bookshoppe)
Fractured: Happily Never After? by Joanna Karaplis (Greenwoods' Bookshoppe)
Paper Towns by John Green (Greenwoods' Bookshoppe)
Roadside Assistance by Amy Clipston (Amazon Kindle Store)
Team Human by Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan (Book Depository)

I found some awesome books that were on sale at a local indie bookstore. :D I can't wait to read them! :D I'm especially excited for Team Human...I've been waiting for my pre-order to come, and it finally did! :D

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So, that's what I got this week! I'd like to thank Sherry Soule, Thomas Allen and Sons, Edelweiss and Harper Collins.

How about you? What did you get this week? Feel free to leave a link to your Stacking the Shelves, Book Haul, or Mailbox posts in the comments, and I'll try to stop by your blog and comment. :)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Serial Hottie Blog Tour: Serial Hottie Dream Cast @KellyOram

Serial Hottie Dream Cast.

I've never been one to “cast” the books I read. I always manage to make mental pictures of the characters, but I've never associated them with celebrities. However, for some reason I’ve always had a very specific person in mind to be my Seth since the day I thought up the idea for Serial Hottie. I couldn’t tell you why, but I just knew it was him…
Logan Lerman is my one and only Serial Hottie. He can be cute, charming, and likable... Plus he's just so gosh darn pretty. And let's face it--he could definitely do creepy psycho killer.

 


The rest of the cast was much harder. Especially Ellie. Do you know how hard it is to find “tomboy” type pictures of celebrities? Then add red hair to that, and limit yourself to teenagers? Plus you need the attitude as well. The only one I could think of was the really cute girl from the first Diary of a Wimpy Kid movie. I think Chloe Moretz is perfect for Ellie.

Cute right? I made my husband turn her hair red in photoshop for me. Hey, she could dye it for the role.


For Ellie's older sister Angela, I went with Bridgit Mendler. I love her! She can do hot and sassy and yet somehow still look nice. 


For some reason when I really had to think about Dave, Zeke from High School Musical kept coming to mind. He’s bulked up a bit since then, but it still works. Chris Warren Jr. could definitely play the cool, athletic, laid-back nice guy!


Travis was probably the easiest for me. Someone hot with muscles that could play that cocky, dumb-jock, scary, d-bag type. Paul Wesley seemed an obvious choice. I’ve never seen the Vampire Diaries and didn’t realize he was in them until I googled pictures of him. I was thinking of his role as Lucas Luther on Smallville.

So there you have it. Kelly's Serial Hottie dream cast. Now I'd LOVE to see all of your picks!



That was Kelly's dream cast, and I'm seriously terrible at picking dream casts myself, but I'm going to try. :P Feel free to disagree. lol

I can totally agree with Logan Lerman...he would make an awesome Seth, and I think he'd be able to make some of Seth's more creepy moments (gotta love the boy, but he is captial "A" Awkward sometimes :P) a lot less creepy...plus, he's so adorable and cute that you'd kind of forgive him for his weirdness...just like you do with Seth in the book. :P

I didn't really picture Chloe as Ellie. I guess she is Kick@ss, as most of us probably know from the movie, but I pictured Ellie less tough, or at least not always so tough. Chloe does tough well, but I just don't really see her as someone who can kind of switch between the whole tough routine and the more girlie side, plus I just can't picture her with Logan Lerman at all. :P When I read it I pictured someone more like Annasophie Robb...with red hair of course, but I think she's proven that she's tough, and that she has serious acting chops, through roles like Soul Surfer, and yet I could picture her with Logan, and see her spending some sister time with Angela (when dragged into it of course :P).



I've never heard of Bridgit Mendler, but I could see her as Angela. I could also see either Aimee Teegarden or Ashley Benson as her, too. :)


I never really pictured Dave, but I loved Chris in HSM, so I'd be cool with him as Dave, and it'd be nice to see him in something else. He'd definitely be great at Dave's sense of humour. :)

Hmm, I definitely did not picture Paul Wesley as Travis. He's a little old for the role in my opinion...but the muscles are right. ;) haha I could see someone like Alexander Ludwig, especially after seeing him all buffed up and douche-bag-ish (shhh, it is so a word :P) in the Hunger Games, and he'd be more along the same age as the others. Plus, he's hot...but I could still totally see him playing creepy since he has before. :P


So, that's Kelly's dream cast, and a few of my own selections. 
Have you read Serial Hottie yet? 
If you have, do they fit or come close to who you pictured? 
And if they don't, who did you have in mind?

Kelly's also having several contests and giveaways for Serial Hottie, and you can find out about them here

Also, for a limited time, Serial Hottie is only $0.99 on Amazon and Barnes and Noble, so hurry up and get yourself a copy! ;D

Review: Serial Hottie by Kelly Oram

 Source: Received an ebook from the author to participate in the blog tour and for an honest review.
Publisher: Bluefields
Release Date: July 10, 2012
Number of Pages: 374 (Paperback)

Blurb from Goodreads:
Ellie’s sweet sixteen is a summer of firsts. First car. First kiss. First boyfriend. First serial-killing stalker?

Hockey-obsessed tomboy Eleanor Westley has never been the object of a guy’s affection before. So when the hottest boy she’s ever seen moves in across the street and starts treating her like she’s the center of his universe, naturally she’s going to be a little skeptical. But everything starts to make sense when girls who look just like Ellie start dying all around the city. Obviously the new guy is the killer, and of course he only likes her because he wants to slice her into tiny pieces. Right?

The more Ellie gets to know Seth the more she’s convinced he’s a psychopathic killer. The problem is he’s the sweetest psychopathic killer she’s ever met. Not to mention he’s brutally hot. No matter how hard she tries, she can’t help but fall for him. Will Ellie find true love, or will her summer of firsts turn out to be a summer of lasts?



I'm a huge fan of mysteries (as long as they aren't of the thriller variety ---that stuff is just too real for me :P), and Serial Hottie made me remember exactly why that is. I love to be enthralled in a story, and with mysteries, it's hard not to be. You're driven to figure out who's the killer; it keeps you on your toes, and it definitely keeps you reading. Serial Hottie definitely did that! Not only was it an amazing mystery, but the mystery was also perfectly balanced with romance and a touch of comedy. :D

Ellie was a fantastic main character. She was a tomboy, but throughout the book she came into herself. She realized that although she liked being friends with the boys and playing hockey and everything with them, she didn't have to let that stop her from being a bit more girly. It was incredibly interesting seeing Ellie go from a total tomboy to being finagled by her sister into dressing up to actually wanting to be more feminine...and when she found a balance that she was happy with, I was ecstatic for her. :) I also loved her developing relationship with her sister, and of course, her relationship with Seth...the neighbour across the street who she at one point believes is a serial killer. Now I won't tell you if she changes her mind, or when she convinces herself of all that, but I will tell you that hilarity ensues and so does some major awkward and awesomeness. :P

I loved the story itself. Kelly Oram did a fantastic job laying this whole story on the line. She unveils the mystery at a delectable pace, and keeps the reader guessing as to who the killer is. Is it actually Seth, the boy across the street? Or someone else entirely? Well...it's actually...come on? You didn't really think I'd tell you, did you? :P No, instead, I'm going to suggest that you get yourself a copy of Serial Hottie, and find out about the mystery yourself...and while you're trying to figure it out, you can enjoy Ellie's story. It's hilarious, at times very endearing...and most of all, it's endlessly entertaining and a thoroughly enjoyable read.

Once again, Kelly Oram has written a fantastic story, and just like I was with her first book, Being Jamie Baker, I was hooked on Serial Hottie, too. :) I'd recommend checking them both out if you like funny YA books with enjoyable main characters, and also if you like love interests that are unique and not at all typical. :)

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Also, for a limited time, Serial Hottie is on sale on Amazon for Kindle and Barnes and Noble for Nook! Only $0.99!!! Hurry up and get it while it's hot! ;D Below are a couple links in case you want to get yourself a copy...and trust me, it's awesome, so you definitely want one. ;)

Purchase Links:
Amazon: US / Canada
Barnes and Noble

Have you read Serial Hottie yet?
Are you planning on reading it?
And are any of you fans of Kelly Oram's first book, Being Jamie Baker?