Saturday, June 30, 2012

The All Male Review Challenge Giveaway Hop!

Welcome to the All Male Review Challenge Blog Hop!
This kick starts the challenge event. What is great about the blog hop is that you get to see all the books that are available out there to read in this specific genre. All are YA, written by a male or have a male protagonist at it's core. Enjoy and enter to win some great books!

What do I have for you here? Oh these are some great books I had reviewed before and Entangled Publishing is gracious enough to also share with you! For one winner... you will get 2 ebooks! So, yes my peeps... it's international! WHEE!

What is up for grabs:

Ward Against Death by Melanie Card
Twenty-year-old Ward de’Ath expected this to be a simple job—bring a nobleman’s daughter back from the dead for fifteen minutes, let her family say good-bye, and launch his fledgling career as a necromancer. Goddess knows he can’t be a surgeon—the Quayestri already branded him a criminal for trying—so bringing people back from the dead it is. 
But when Ward wakes the beautiful Celia Carlyle, he gets more than he bargained for. Insistent that she’s been murdered, Celia begs Ward to keep her alive and help her find justice. By the time she drags him out her bedroom window and into the sewers, Ward can’t bring himself to break his damned physician’s Oath and desert her. 
However, nothing is as it seems—including Celia. One second, she’s treating Ward like sewage, the next she’s kissing him. And for a nobleman’s daughter, she sure has a lot of enemies. If he could just convince his heart to give up on the infuriating beauty, he might get out of this alive…
The Marked Son by Shea Berkley
Seventeen-year-old Dylan Kennedy always knew something was different about him, but until his mother abandoned him in the middle of Oregon with grandparents he's never met, he had no idea what.When Dylan sees a girl in white in the woods behind his grandparents' farm, he knows he's seen her his dreams. He's felt her fear. Heard her insistence that only he can save her world from an evil lord who uses magic and fear to feed his greed for power.Unable to shake the unearthly pull to Kera, Dylan takes her hand. Either he's completely insane or he's about to have the adventure of his life, because where they're going is full of creatures he's only read about in horror stories. Worse, the human blood in his veins has Dylan marked for death...

Both of these books are fun and are perfect for the challenge ahead. So, how to enter? Just fill out the rafflecopter form below:

Friday, June 29, 2012

Author Blog Post by B. R. Kingsolver and Giveaway!

I was asked recently what inspired me to write The Succubus Gift, and by extension the Telepathic Clans series, since the second book, Succubus Unleashed, will soon be published. It’s a rather complicated answer.

I’ve long had a problem with the morality in our country and in Western European history. A patriarchal society with women as chattels absolutely repulses me. It’s very evident that women have the same intelligence as men. Women are senators, astronauts, and leaders of countries (though not in the U.S., which is one of the few countries which has never had a female head of state).

But until recently, women were considered property – either of their fathers or of their husbands. An unmarried woman is looked on with pity, as though she was defective. An assertive, ambitious woman is called a lot of things, but few of them are complimentary.

I think that’s a large part of what drew me initially to urban fantasy books. The genre is full of assertive, strong, kick-ass women who stood on their own and didn’t apologize for being who they are.

Another thing I found in urban fantasy was sexual women. Historically, women in literature are either wives, old maids, or harlots. Sometimes they were sorceresses or queens, but again they fit into the old pigeon holes. Richelle Mead’s Georgina Kincaid breaks that mold, as do some other characters, but it still bothered me that for a woman to be blatantly sexual, she had to be working for the devil.

Men in literature can be studs and leave a trail of broken hearts in their wake, and as long as they eventually settle down, it’s fine. A woman gets raped once and her reputation is besmirched forever.

I’ve been a science fiction and fantasy fan since a teacher gave me one of Andre Norton’s books in 7th grade. I’ve always thought the idea of telepathy was the neatest thing I could imagine. So when I started thinking about what kind of character could be strong, kick-ass, and blatantly sexual while still being one of the good guys, I thought about the idea of a telepath who could drain a man’s life energy, but wasn’t aligned with the devil, and didn’t do him permanent harm.

From there the idea started to grow. I envisioned a matriarchal society, worshipping a Goddess, with Telepathic Gifts where the women are as strong as the men -- a society of equals. And in an equal society, women and men are free to express their sexual identities.

But I didn’t want to write erotica. I wanted fantasy stories like the ones I like to read. The Succubus Gift has been well received and the reviews have been far better than I dared to hope. My beta readers tell me Succubus Unleashed is even better, which is nice to hear. The third book in the series, tentatively titled In Succubus we Trust, is finished and needs editing and revision.

After that, I plan on two paranormal mysteries set in the same world but with mostly different characters. I’ve written the first six chapters of the first of those and hope to have it finished before Christmas.

I also have an idea for a paranormal romance set in a completely different world. That one would be sort of between YA and adult, but suitable for younger readers. The main character is a 19-year-old college sophomore who is a virgin and plans to stay that way. After all, sexual freedom includes the choice to not have sex.


Locations to buy the book: 

Thanks for coming on the blog. I think I feel the same way as you do about women in society. I think that is why a lot of women love a kick @ss woman who does not apologize for her sexuality. Plus judging by AimeeKay's review... I think you achieved it! (side note: AimeeKay's review of the second book will appear on the blog at a later date!)

One winner will receive 2 ebooks (any format):

The Succubus Gift 
The history of the Clans, called the Sidhe by the Irish, stretches back to antiquity. The Goddess blesses Her people with 25 Telepathic Gifts. In addition to Telepathy, the Gifts include command over Air and Fire, Telekinesis and Teleportation. In over 2,500 years, She has never bestowed more than 15 Gifts on a single person. 
Brenna Morgan was orphaned at eight when her parents were killed in a plane crash. Through one foster home after another, she carried the ornate, carved wooden box her mother had left with her, keeping it always a secret. Then one night she stumbles over a man who claims her as family. 
Brenna’s life isn’t the same after she discovers her unusual and mysterious heritage. In addition to being a telepath, Brenna learns she has the Succubus Gift.

That’s just the beginning of her problems. Someone is stalking her. Then there’s the tall, dangerous woman who shadows her and hints a Goddess has linked them. And what is she going to do with a handsome, charismatic, womanizing man she knows she should avoid?

Some days a girl just wants to pull the covers over her head and stay in bed -- with a willing young man of course.
 Succubus Unleashed
It's not easy being a succubus. 
Brenna O'Donnell and Rebecca Healy continue their integration into the Clan. Learning more about their Gifts and always seeking someone who will love them. After a crash course in learning about her genetic heritage, Brenna O'Donnell has discovered what it really means to be a succubus and has learned to embrace her strange Gift. Her major concern is whether Collin will accept her for what she is. As she adjusts to telepathic society, others in the Clan have plans that will strip the last of her freedom.

The social season is around the corner, including events that Brenna never imagined in her wildest dreams. The succubi, representatives of the Goddess on earth, are at the center of an ancient worship. And if a girl is going to be the center of attention, then obviously she needs a new dress.
Between the romance and glistening balls of the Clan's social events, Brenna and Rebecca discover life is not secure. Telepaths from other Clans are kidnapping young girls and selling them into slavery.
How to enter? Just fill out the rafflecopter form below:

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Married with Zombies Read a Long (with book review)... Last Week!

Last one!
This week questions come from: Missie @ The Unread Reader

Questions for Chapters 21-26 

1. In Chapter 21, David and Sarah venture into a grocery store to try to find some essentials. Show us a picture of the top three items you consider your essentials when you go shopping.
click to see larger
2. Sarah and David travel quite a distance to “visit” a family member. Show us a picture of your most recent family vacation. Who did you visit and where did you go?

Um... vacay? What's that? When I travel to visit family I usually go to Denver.

3. Sarah refers to David’s sister as the Martha Stewart type because she likes to make things from scratch. Show us a picture a hobby or home project you get enthusiastic about making/doing.

I'm not Martha like (as I don't need everything perfect) but I love to make things. Usually it's stuff I know I can't afford, but think I can make on my own. It's different things at different times. Right now it's jewelry:
Sorry for the not so great photos. I didn't have the best camera at the time and I was being lazy and picking pictures that I already had available. These are 2 pieces I had fun coming up with and then my mom stole them. :) I'm glad she liked them so much to take them! :) Also, what I like about doing this, is if I decide I don't like it, I can take it apart and do something else with it.

4. David and Sarah decide to start up their own Zombie exterminators business, and even come up with a name and slogan for it, “S and D Zombie Extermination. We take care of your undead issues.” If you opened up your own zombie killing business, what would you call it, and what would your slogan be?

My zombie business would be:


tag line:
Let us take a bite out of zombies before they take a bite out of you!

Of course I'd use my pups as the mascots... ;)

5. What were your favorite/least favorite parts of Married with Zombies? Aside from David and Sarah, who was your favorite/least favorite character?

The cult couple were my least fave character. They were scary. Fave? I guess it was Conrad. He was a hoot... for a short time... :)

6. What do you think is coming up next for David and Sarah? Which do you think has a better chance of survival, their marriage or their humanity? Will you continue reading this series, and if so, what do you hope to see happen in the next book?

Well, I think they won't try marriage counseling again. Although now I think their marriage stands a better chance than humanity. I do plan on continuing the series and I hope that they connect to Sarah's father. He sounds interesting.

My full Review:

A heartwarming tale of terror in the middle of the zombie apocalypse. 
Meet Sarah and David. 
Once upon a time they met and fell in love. But now they're on the verge of divorce and going to couples' counseling. On a routine trip to their counselor, they notice a few odd things - the lack of cars on the highway, the missing security guard, and the fact that their counselor, Dr. Kelly, is ripping out her previous client's throat. 
Meet the Zombies. 
Now, Sarah and David are fighting for survival in the middle of the zombie apocalypse. But, just because there are zombies, doesn't mean your other problems go away. If the zombies don't eat their brains, they might just kill each other.
Tired of the same old zombie theme? Wanna see a bit more humor than you are used to getting with this genre? Well, look no further... this book has all of that and gore as well! It's a book for couples as well as those who are still single looking for that unaffected partner.

Okay, commercial over. I really did enjoy this book. It does have the gore, zombie killings and even tugs at your heart strings. You also laugh a lot. And although Sarah and David's bickering does get old quickly, it really fits the story and they don't bicker for long. I guess the moral of the story is, is if you need to fix your marriage quick don't go to a marriage counselor... go find a zombie apocalypse to survive. Your marriage will thank you.

I give this book 4 stars and will be reading further in this series. I can't wait to see what else kind of trouble these two get themselves into and out!

The Succubus Gift (Telepathic Clans #1) by B. R. Kingsolver: Review by AimeeKay

The history of the Clans, called the Sidhe by the Irish, stretches back to antiquity. The Goddess blesses Her people with 25 Telepathic Gifts. In addition to Telepathy, the Gifts include command over Air and Fire, Telekinesis and Teleportation. In over 2,500 years, She has never bestowed more than 15 Gifts on a single person. 
Brenna Morgan was orphaned at eight when her parents were killed in a plane crash. Through one foster home after another, she carried the ornate, carved wooden box her mother had left with her, keeping it always a secret. Then one night she stumbles over a man who claims her as family. 
Brenna’s life isn’t the same after she discovers her unusual and mysterious heritage. In addition to being a telepath, Brenna learns she has the Succubus Gift.

That’s just the beginning of her problems. Someone is stalking her. Then there’s the tall, dangerous woman who shadows her and hints a Goddess has linked them. And what is she going to do with a handsome, charismatic, womanizing man she knows she should avoid?

Some days a girl just wants to pull the covers over her head and stay in bed -- with a willing young man of course.
Urban Fantasy with a dash of romance. The Succubus Gift is a completely different take on the succubus myth. Beautiful women and hot men in a world with a hidden telepathic subculture.

So I just finished The Succubus Gift. I wasn't too sure about this one in the beginning. The story just seemed really rushed in the beginning. But the story's pace seemed to even out and I really got into it.

Things I loved about this book:

Kingsolver did an amazing job at creating this world. I love the detail they put not only into the characters, but into the clans and the abilities as well. The author didn't just wave away how the telepathy and the different abilities worked. There is even a little addition at the end of the novel that names the talents and what they are supposed to do.
While I still had some unanswered questions at the end of the book, I think they were mainly unanswered because this is the first book in the series. Hopefully in the following books the questions I had and the loose ends will be resolved. But the questions weren't so hugely nagging that they took away from my enjoyment of the story itself. They felt like more teasers for the next novel, and I can't wait to get my hands on it!

I also loved the strong female characters. While the majority of them were dazzlingly beautiful, they were far from perfect inside. While they had issues with their flaws they didn't use them as an excuse to be wishy-washy and whiny. Also, while I have my suspicions about love triangles in the future books, Brenna is a succubus after all, I liked the way the writer handled Brenna's love life and the people involved in it.

Things I didn't love about this book:

As I said before the initial pacing at the start of the novel kind of annoyed me. I guess I've gotten used to more of a back story at the beginning of the novel. But by the end I had a pretty good idea of where Brenna was coming from, as well as some of the other characters. There were a few I would have liked to have learned more about, but again, I am blaming on not finding out all their information on the fact that it possibly will be revealed in the next book.

Honestly I should say things I didn't like, not didn't love, since by the end of the book I really was enthralled and my biggest peeve was that I didn't have the second book on hand to read. (And no it's not a cliffie!!! OMG! I was shocked too. Yes it is set up for the next novel but not a cliffie.)

If you're looking for a new author or series to pick up for the summer, I definitely recommend this one. I just found out the next book in the series, Succubus Unleashed, is being released REALLY SOON!!! YAY!!!

Thanks Melissa for letting me read this one!! 
'Til next time!

Bloggy note: Come back Friday for a blog post by the author and a giveaway!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Spider's Lullaby by James R. Tuck

He lives to kill monsters. He keeps his city safe. And his silver hollow-points and back-from-the-dead abilities take out any kind of unnatural threat. But between this bad-ass bounty hunter and rescuing the most helpless of victims stands the one evil he can't defeat... 
For Deacon Chalk, loyalty is worth dying for. And now that something has taken were-spider Charlotte's un-hatched children and one of his closest friends, he'll tear up the human and supernatural underworlds to find them. But with his allies stripped away by an invincible Yakuza hit man and time running out, Deacon must face down the most ancient of demonic entities. And his last hope means surrendering to the inner darkness waiting hungrily to consume him ...



*deep breath*

Okay, I think I can start this one now. This book takes place after Blood and Bullets. I got the first since UF is not usually a genre you can read out of order. Plus, it might make a few of you faint. ;) In this case although I was glad I read that first book, I need not have worried. You can read this one as a stand a lone and still know what is going on. Plus, what is also good about this novella is that it is the perfect length for this story. I think that is because the adventure has only a limited time to either work or destroy lots of people.

We met Charlotte, the were spider in the first book and we find that she is pregnant with lots of baby spiders. She must bond with them or humanity has one huge problem on their hands... and feet... and faces... *shivers* A Yakuza sorcerer wants them for himself so he can be the best assassin around. Oh and the eggs are hours from hatching. Time is not on their side.

Within the story Deacon Chalk works hard to keep those he considers friends and family safe. It has become his life. So, this sorcerer will have to work hard to defeat him. I should also mention that Deacon is VERY male in his descriptions of the female anatomy. It wasn't rude and disrespectful, just VERY male. LOL So, it's good that his partners in this throw in some estrogen in the mix. All of them are female. :)

I give this book with the cover I can't look at too long 3 1/2 stars. Like the first, it is a great book to get those males in your life to start reading UF. You can read this one quickly and really get a sense of the world Deacon Chalk and his friends inhabit. Also for those that have arachnophobia (I know what I'm talking about...) you can read this one without nightmares. Charlotte is aptly named. ;) This book is on sale now. The ebook is $1.99 at Amazon and B&N.
I received this eARC from Kensington Publisher and the author and no compensation for my review was given.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Blood and Bullets by James R. Tuck

He lives to kill monsters. He keeps his city safe. And his silver hollow-points and back-from-the-dead abilities help him take out any kind of supernatural threat. But now an immortal evil has this bad-ass bounty hunter dead in its sights. . .

Ever since a monster murdered his family, Deacon Chalk hunts any creature that preys on the innocent. So when a pretty vampire girl "hires" him to eliminate a fellow slayer, Deacon goes to warn him--and barely escapes a vampire ambush. Now he's got a way-inexperienced newbie hunter to protect and everything from bloodsuckers to cursed immortals on his trail. There's also a malevolent force controlling the living and the undead, hellbent on turning Deacon's greatest loss into the one weapon that could destroy him...
 This book is a gritty urban fantasy. As the title suggests, it does not skimp on the blood or the bullets either. There is gore, but a lot less than most zombie books. Most of the vamps go "poof" when they are killed like in the Buffy tv show. So I see a lot of vacuuming in the future of these characters. ;) Sorry, but my brain goes there when they keep talking about the dust the vamps leave behind.

It is told in a long narrative reminiscent of those old detective stories. I don't love this style as it always seems to keep me at arms distance from the character. However, I didn't hate it either. The book also has a raw edge to it I think a lot of males would appreciate. I think this would be a great book for those trying to get the males in their lives to read a bit more. And even though I see this appealing to males a bit more, the main character, Deacon Chalk is not without emotive capabilities. In fact he is quite emotional and it is to the character's benefit. It brings a lot of humanity to his character.

I should also mention a bit about the secondary characters. I knew that I would like Kat and Father Mulchy his "partners" in vampire hunting, but I was surprised that I really liked Larson and Tiffany. Two characters that had the earmarks of being annoying, but ended up being anything but that. There is also a werespider. Yep... spider. The only one in existence that I could deal with but at the same time never be in a room with (sorry... phobia *points at self*). I couldn't believe I really liked her. :)

I give this book 3 1/2 stars. It's a nice introduction to the series that really does put you at the edge of your seat especially toward the end. I can really see Deacon's character get more complex as the series evolves. Oh and those who love the genre of vampires will love a few sentences giving homage to characters you will recognize. Yep, this author did his homework. :)

Right now this ebook is on sale for $2.99 at Amazon.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Tarnished (The St. Croix Chronicles #1) by Karina Cooper

My name is Cherry St. Croix. Society would claim that I am a well-heeled miss with an unfortunate familial reputation. They've no idea of the truth of it. In my secret world, I hunt down vagrants, thieves... and now, a murderer. For a monster stalks London's streets, leaving a trail of mystery and murder below the fog. 
Eager for coin to fuel my infatuations, I must decide where my attentions will turn: to my daylight world, where my scientific mind sets me apart from respectable Society, or to the compelling domain of London below. Each has a man who has claimed my time as his--for good or for ill. Though as the corpses pile, and the treacherous waters of Society gossip churn, I am learning that each also has its dangers. One choice will see me cast from polite company... the other might just see me dead.
This is an interesting steampunk novel that gives you quite the mystery and intrigue. The setting is creative and appropriately dark. So well crafted you can feel the air about you and the movement of the shadows as you cavort with Cherry in the dark underground of London. The character of Cherry and her staff are well crafted and you get to know all of them quite well through this tale. You also get introduced to several of the "circus", or the menagerie people in a club filled with alchemy and magic. Two things Cherry opposes since it goes against her scientific mind. Those people, who dabble in the more erotic arts, are decidedly mysterious but we see that they seem to have a good heart even if we cannot trust them fully.

Ah, but therein lies my problem with the book...

Hawke, or Cage, is someone who intrigues Cherry and anyone who reads his character. And while I do see why the author kept him shrouded in mystery, I still demanded a bit more from this character. In some ways he seemed out of place in the story as much as he was central to it. And while the smexy scene he participated was hot, it also seemed a bit out of joint to the story as whole. However, despite this criticism, I would have been more upset if there wasn't a character like Hawke in it. I suspect much of the mystery will clear slowly throughout the series. I just hope it's not too slow as I really want to know this character much better.

I give this story 3 1/2 stars. It is a very fast paced and interesting start to this series. I really want to read the next one to find out more about all these characters. I recommend this one to people who love suspense and steampunk. This book goes on sale tomorrow!
I received this eARC from Edelweiss and Avon Books and no compensation for my review was given.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The All Male Review Challenge Coming Soon...

Ever feel like you don’t read enough young adult novels by male authors or featuring male protagonists? Then we have the reading challenge for you!
Yes, that's right, The All Male Review Challenge is back by popular demand. And this year's challenge is bigger and better than ever because we are kicking off this month long event with a giveaway hop! But there's more... Beginning on JULY 1st and running until JULY 31st, any YA book you read and review by a male author or containing a male protagonist is eligible to be entered into our Linky collection. At the end of the month, winners will be chosen for our Mega Hot Prize Packs of books! Plus, throughout the there will be special spotlights on authors who give us the best of boys in books, and each guest post will include a mini-giveaway!!!

The All Male Review Challenge Schedule:


July 2nd: Welcome/Review Link up post

July 3rd: Interview with author Katie McGarry and giveaway of Pushing the Limits hosted by The Unread Reader

July 9th: Male authors roundtable and signed books giveaway hosted by Danny of Bewitched Bookworms

July 16th: Lish McBride guest post and giveaway of Hold Me Closer, Necromancer hosted by Melissa of Books and Things

July 23rd: Interview with author Veronica Rossi and giveaway of Under the Never Sky hosted by Jenny of Supernatural Snark

July 30th: Interview with author Mike Mullin and giveaway of Ashfall hosted by Jen of In the Closet with a Bibliophile

August 3rd: Announcement of Grand Prize Winners We are still pulling together the grand prize packs, but so far...
Prize Pack 1 Partials by Dan Wells The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater Zombie Blondes by Brian James Jenna & Jonah's Fauxmance by Brendan Halpin and Emily Franklin
Prize Pack 2 Magisterium by Jeff Hirsch The Last Domino by Adam Meyer Future Imperfect by K. Ryer Breese
Prize Pack 3 Ashen Winter (Ashfall, #2) by Mike Mullin Magisterium by Jeff Hirsch Doing It by Melvin Burgess
International Prize Pack Streamline by Jennifer Lane (e-book. Thanks to Omnific Publishing) Destiny's Fire by Trisha Wolfe ( (e-book. Thanks to Omnific Publishing) Ember by Carol Oates (e-book. Thanks to Omnific Publishing) Breaking Point by Jess Bowen (e-book. Thanks to Omnific Publishing)
Are you excited? I know I am! More details are coming soon, but we wanted to give you time to get your reading list together for July. Remember, only YOUNG ADULT books featuring MALE protagonists or written by male authors will count for this challenge. Books with alternating narrators (POVs) also count as long as one of the main characters is male. And there is still time to participate in The All Male Review Giveaway Hop! Come on! Giveaway your favorite book boyfriend, you know you want to. Help us get the word out. Grab our button!


The winner for


Don't forget that there is still a little time to join:
Click on pic to get the deets!

That giveaway is coming up shortly here!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Married with Zombies Read a Long, Week 4

To join in on the fun... click the pic above to go to the sign up page.
This weeks questions come from Tina @Tina's Book Reviews

1. In chapter 16 David and Sarah are attacked by freezer zombies in chef attire. Despite its rotten food and disgusting kitchen, lets think about what it could of been before the attack, give me a picture of your dream kitchen or a pic of you cooking your favorite food in your own kitchen... or both!!!

Okay, first.. me cooking? So NOT in my dream kitchen (or anyone else who has to eat my food either). So, I found my dream kitchen with ALL the accessories needed:
(picture half naked man in an apron...)

2. In Chapter 16, David winds up killing those freezer zombies with a machette show me your best one....and yes it must be yours!!!! 

I don't have a machette, but I do have:
This is mounted high up and I'm short. So, actually since I can't get to it, it makes a lousy weapon. LOL Btw, this one was used in farming, fyi.

3. In Chapter 17 David and Sarah find themselves with some cult like people and wind up trapped. How would you escape? Ropes? me your best.

I was thinking something rope-like that I wouldn't have to rely on my "not" knot tying skills...
It's called a "long lead" and I think this one is 20 ft. long. It's used to train dogs away from you, but you still have a tether to them. You can tie easy knots for hand holds and I could loop the handle around something sturdy without having to rely on my knots. :)
(note: hedgehog toy not included)

4. In Chapter 19 David and Sarah find a surprise in the car they the midst of crazy its a nice welcome. Now whip me up your favorite one and can include recipes!! 

Okay there was 3 things and since you mention recipes... I'm guessing you mean the alcohol. Hm... recipes... Well, this one was my fave:

Flaming Dr. Pepper from Hell
1/2 shot of Amaretto
1/2 shot of 151 proof Rum
glass of beer

Light shot and then place into the beer. Let it mix a bit and then drink. It should taste like Dr. Pepper. :) (note: I've actually never made it... and... yes, I've drank it... *innocent look*)

5. In chapter 20, Sarah gets to kill a zombie with a cash register, bringing back memories of her worst retail job tell me whats the worst job you've had......if you can include pictures in your uniform I will die laughing.....or a picture of the place you worked will be good too... :).

I actually never had a job where I had to wear a uniform. I've had lots of retail jobs from selling fireworks to music to clothes. However, my worst job wasn't even paid. My father made me get up at 5 am *grumble* on my summer vacay and travel for 3 hours to go volunteer at a VA hospital several days a week. Plus, I had to work on the most antiquated phone system in existence. It was a lot like this (although a LOT bigger):
Not EVEN kidding... I don't think they ever upgraded since it was always threatened with being shut down (it was closed down a few years ago). Wires got crossed easily and I even got yelled at when I accidentally disconnected someone. *sniff* Not my fault they didn't know what modern tech was! LOL Yea... thanks dad... :P

Next Weeks questions are from: Missie @ The Unread Reader (last one!)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Author Guest Post: Alma Katsu

Between Dark Shadows and Anne Rice: 
Author of The Taker Talks About Her Inspirations 

The Taker novels were influenced by my love of Gothic tales. Whether it was stories or movies or art, I have always loved the sinister, dark, slightly melodramatic and often baroque form known as Gothic.

I think this love of Gothic has to do with the time in which I grew up. Gothic was very popular: as kids, we watched Dark Shadows on television in the afternoon. Saturdays were marathons of Hammer horror films. I think I read all of Edgar Allan Poe’s works by the time I was twelve. Then a friend gave me her paperback copy of Interview With The Vampire and I never looked back. By the time I was in my early twenties, I was writing horror short stories and getting published in small press and fanzines. It was during this time that that I wrote the short story where The Taker came to life.

I was inspired to write The Taker after a very spooky experience I had one night in the area around Concord, Massachusetts. I was driving home and had just passed an old Colonial-era farm when I thought I saw a man walking towards me on the side of the road. It was a foggy night and so I looked in the rearview mirror to make sure I'd passed him cleanly, only to see that he'd disappeared. Rather than become freaked out--which is what any sane person might do--being a writer, I started piecing together a story in my head. It became a tragic love story. I imagined the man as a ghost pinned forever to that place, which I envisioned as his childhood home. He was trapped because he'd broken the heart of a woman who loved him fiercely and refused to give him up, even to time.

That was the origin of The Taker. The story morphed and shifted a little in the ten years it took to write, but the essentials are still there: old New England, the supernatural, heartache and longing, and a love so strong that it transcends time. I wanted to create a story that would grab readers and not let go, and to make characters that would haunt you for days after you finish reading. And I’m gratified to hear that’s exactly what readers have experienced!

The second installation of the story, The Reckoning, is out now. I would say it’s more magical than the first book, and a little more romantic and suspenseful. Reviews have been great. Library Journal called it “beautiful and mesmerizing” while RT Bookreviews made it a top pick for June, calling it “utterly enchanting.” Barnes & Noble’s Book Club and Chapter/Indigo both called the series “stunning” and top recommendations. If you’re a fan of that blend of supernatural fantasy/historical fiction/horror that you see in early Anne Rice books, I hope you will check out my novels. More information can be found at

The Reckoning 
Lanore McIlvrae is the kind of woman who will to do anything for love. Including imprisoning the man who loves her behind a wall of brick and stone. 
She had no choice but to entomb Adair, her nemesis, to save Jonathan, the boy she grew up with in a remote Maine town in the early 1800s and the man she thought she would be with forever. But Adair had other plans for her. He used his mysterious, otherworldly powers to give her eternal life, but Lanore learned too late that there was a price for this gift: to spend eternity with him. And, though he is handsome and charming, behind Adair's seductive facade is the stuff of nightmares. He is a monster in the flesh, and he wants Lanore to love him for all time. 
Now, two hundred years after imprisoning Adair, Lanore is trying to atone for her sins. She has given away the treasures she's collected over her many lifetimes in order to purge her past and clear the way for a future with her new lover, Luke Findley. But, while viewing these items at an exhibit at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, Lanore suddenly is aware that the thing she's been dreading for two hundred years has caught up to her: Adair has escaped from his prison. He's free—and he will come looking for her. And she has no idea how she will save herself.
eBook (US): Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes
eBook (UK): Amazon UK

Thanks Alma for coming on the blog today! I love knowing what is behind all the creativity that goes into creating stories. 

Comments or Questions for Alma? Let her know!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Hunter and Fox by Philippa Ballantine

In a world that is in constant shifting, where mountains can change to plainsand then to lakes, Talyn is the Hunter for the Caisah, and a wreck of a once-proud person. She has lost her people, the Vaerli, and her soul working for the man who destroyed her people. All unknowing, she carries within her a Kindred, a chaos creature from the center of the earth that wants to help bring the Vaerli back to power. However, she has lost the ability to communicate with it. 
She must also deal with the machinations of Kelanim, the mistress of Caisah, who out of fear will do anything to bring Talyn down. 
Little does the Hunter know that salvation is looking for her, and it wears the face of gentleness and strength. Finn is a teller of tales who carries his own dreadful secret. He sets out to find answers to his path but ends up in the city of Perilous and Fair where he meets Talyn. He knows the danger and yet is drawn to her. Their fates are bound together.
Meanwhile, the Hunter's lost brother Byre is searching for his own solution to the terrible curse placed on the Vaerli. He sets forth on a treacherous journey of his own, which will intersect in the most unlikely place with that of Talyn and Finn.
The ramifications of this encounter will be felt by all the people in Conhaero, from the lost Vaerli to the Caisah on his throne.
Looking for a good fantasy read? Well... I found one for you, or rather it found me.

This book is filled with a wonderful and interesting world from the imaginative mind of Philippa Ballantine. It is a book filled with lots of curious and magical creatures and people and it will keep you enthralled throughout. Oh yes, I really loved the descriptions of the characters, their past, their torments, abilities, and adventures. The beasts within also hold a great intrest in me as well. All with a personality of their own. Yes, this book had me captivated from the beginning to the end.

I'd have to say that my favorite characters were the hunter and the fox, aka Talyn and Finn. When they shared the adventure in the book, I was entranced. When the book switched from their story to another simultaneous adventure, I felt a bit bereft and didn't want to move on. However, in the end I didn't mind since I became involved in the adventure put before me. Still, every time I left the Hunter and the Fox, I just didn't want to go.

I give this fantasy adventure 4 1/2 stars. My biggest complaint was the end. You get a bit of a cliffie and I was upset I didn't have the next book in my hot little hands. I recommend this book to anyone who loves fantasy.
I received this book from the publisher, Pyr, and no compensation for my review was given.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Midsummer's Dream Fair

Oh yea! This blog is on the STAGE at JL Bryan's blog!
The giveaway is Day of Sacrifice complete series by Stacey Wallace Benefiel

*takes bow*

Go check it out as well as the other giveaways. Just click on the pic at the top of this post baby!

Also, don't forget that the current giveaway here is:

Just click pic to go to post to enter ↑ 3 books for 1 winner! US only

Please... no more applause! ;)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Claimed (Sin Hunters #2) by Caridad Piñero

Victoria Johnson loves her life. She's her own boss in a quaint beachside town, and has great friends who keep her grounded. If only they knew who she really is: an heiress to an ancient race who possesses astonishing superhuman powers. It's Victoria's duty to restore her clan of Light Hunters to their former glory by choosing the perfect mate. In Christopher Sombrosa, she just may have found him. Strong, smart, and successful, Christopher exudes a powerful energy. Their connection is sensual, irresistible-and forbidden.

A member of the Shadow Hunter clan, Christopher has defied his own father to lead his people away from affliction and violence. Yet he cannot ignore his duty to carry on his ancient bloodline. Stunningly beautiful and brimming with an erotic life force, Victoria is everything Christopher ever hoped for in a mate . . . but as a Light Hunter, she's his mortal enemy. Together, they could unite their warring tribes. But murderous factions on both sides don't want peace-and they'll stop at nothing to keep light and darkness apart forever...
I read and reviewed, The Lost (Sin Hunter's #1) by Caridad Piñero and really enjoyed that book. The sequel can be read as a stand a lone, but it is better to read them in order. You get a better feel for the world if you do.

In the last book we are briefly introduced the Christopher and Victoria. Claimed is their book. We find out if Christopher's intentions for good are true and what Victoria does with her life and love life now that her former betrothed is in love with another. The story and the romance between Christopher and Victoria creates a lot of tension. Their story is reminiscent of love stories such as Romeo and Juliet and the Hatfield and the McCoys. Both on opposite sides of a deadly feud, fall for each other. However questions rear themselves. Can they truly trust one another? Are they being honest with one another? Will their families ever see past the hate and come together? Can prejudices be put aside and harmony reign? Well, some of those questions will be answered, and some will linger onto the next installment in this series. We also get a hint of who is going to be the next romantic couple in the next book.

I have to say although I really enjoyed the ambiguity of Christopher (was he truly good? Bad? In-between?) though most of the book and the independence of Victoria, I also enjoyed the secondary characters with the exception of Rafael. He just didn't send the proper chills and thrills and I feel it was intended. However, he plays an important part in this story, but yet isn't their as much. I feel this is only a set up and I will feel properly chilled and thrilled in the coming books.

I give this book 4 stars. I enjoyed this hopeful coming together against all odds romance. I recommend it to people who love PNR with a side of action.
I received this book from the author and Pump Up Your Book Promotions and no compensation for my review was given.

Married with Zombies Read a Long, Week 3

To join in on the fun... click the pic above to go to the sign up page.
This weeks questions come from Loretta @ Between the Pages

Chapters 11-15 

1.) In Chapter 11 Sarah, Dave and Amanda were rushed by 4 zombies. At this time Sarah screams something (gun). SHOW ME YOURS!! Don't have one? That is ok, show me what you would grab outside to protect your self!!

What would I grab... and it's outside? Hm... How about...
Hedge Clippers!

2.) At the end of Chapter 12 they are saved by someone looking very "Underworld" awesome. Let me see your best "Slay em' Gear" Don't want to model your outfit? That is ok, lay it out.. don't forget to add your weapons!!

Okay, seriously? I would slay zombies in sweats. They allow full body range and are easily replaceable after that "goo" gets on you and won't wash out *bleh*. I don't even think I need to lay those out. Besides:
However, if I had her body, skills and looked like her, I would totally wear:
Hey! How did they get a pic of me?? ;D Okay, the movie wasn't that great but Hallie... uh, I mean me *cough* totally rocked that look. Aaaannnddd.... I'm positive the boy would not be modeling this one at all (the other doesn't like cats, so no need to even try her...). Plus, Catwoman WAS the weapon too (no matter which incarnation) which I think just rocked.

3.) Near the end of Chapter 13 Sarah finds something under the seat to help Dave, that she saved for whenever the need gave in. What was it? "Strike" your best pose!

Okay how's this?

Plus, you can't strike a proper pose without a little mood music... Have to have a rock ballad:
...and of course it should be classic hard rock, plus I think it might fit the story. LOL

4.) Nothing very "action pic" happens in Chapters 14 and 15. So this is where you can show me what car you would pic to ride around town, trying to survive. This can totally be a "Google" pic or you can go find one!! Think outside the box! 
What? *looks innocent* Well, you did say think outside of the box... ;D Of couse I'd have a seat for the puppers as well... Seriously... I want one!

5.) How are you enjoying the book so FAR?!!!

I like the way the characters are working out their problems during the worst parts of the apocalypse... with humor mixed in. Also, the action is a lot more intense than I would have thought. I'm enjoying this book.

Next Weeks questions are from: Tina @Tina's Book Reviews

Bloggy PS: I was told that I should clarify that my pup is not in danger of any sharp objects. That is why you see one specific pup with them and not the other. I am being careful. He not only listens, he takes direction, so I could direct him to go around an object if needed. The other, not so much, so that is why she gets the easy stuff. ;)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Lovestruck Giveaway Hop

Ah love! So, for this giveaway I'm sending one lucky US winner (sorry, international peeps, I'm mailing this one out myself) or winner with a US snail addy:

 A Wedding Wager by Jane Feather
New York Times bestselling author Jane Feather again delights with her new book in this entrancing Georgian trilogy featuring three noble brothers who are offered a preposterous opportunity to restore their family’s mortgaged lands. An eccentric uncle promises a lavish inheritance, but only if each marries—thus redeeming—a fallen woman. And if even one brother fails to fulfill the old man’s decree, none will gain the windfall.Lady Serena Grantley was born to the nobility, but fortune's whim placed her in control of her gamester stepfather, who uses her beauty to lure young men to his gambling tables. Serena even dismissed her first love, the Honorable Sebastian Sullivan, at her stepfather's command. But when he attempts to force her into a liaison with a dissolute earl, Serena resolves to do his bidding no more. Sebastian is the only man who ever captured her heart, and it is to him she turns. . . .Torn between family loyalty and the woman he loves, Sebastian faces a devilish dilemma. His uncle is ailing, and time is running short. Desperate to find a solution, Sebastian conceives a dangerous plan—a wager that could bring him and Serena happiness at last . . . or separate them forever.
Scarlet Nights by Jude Deveraux
What if you learned that your fiancé was not who he claimed to be?Engaged to the charming and seductive Greg Anders, Sara Shaw is happily anticipating her wedding in Edilean, Virginia. The date has been set, the flowers ordered, even her heirloom dress is ready. But just three weeks before the wedding, Greg gets a telephone call during the night and leaves without explanation. Two days later, a man climbs up through a trapdoor in the floor of Sara’s apartment, claiming that he is the brother of her best friend and that he’s moving in. While Mike Newland is indeed telling the truth about his identity, his reason for being there reaches far deeper. He’s an undercover detective, and his assignment is to use Sara to track down a woman who is one of the most notorious criminals in the United States—and also happens to be the mother of the man Sara plans to marry. Mike thinks the job will be easy—if he can figure out how to make a “good” girl like Sara trust him, that is. But Mike has no idea what this mission has in store for him. He’s worked hard to keep private his connections to Edilean, which date back to his grandmother’s time there in 1941. But as Mike and Sara get to know each other, he can’t help but share secrets about himself that he’s told no one else. And in return, Sara opens up to Mike about things she could never reveal to Greg. As the pair work together to solve two mysteries, their growing love begins to heal each of them in ways they never could have imagined.
The Scent of Jasmine by Jude Deveraux
Would you risk your life—on the love of a lifetime? Charleston, 1799: A daughter of Southern gentility and a gifted painter, Catherine Edilean Harcourt has no lack of suitors at home in Virginia, waiting to fulfill her dream of marriage and family. But Cay’s adventurous spirit, fostered by growing up with her three brothers, is piqued while visiting her godfather in South Carolina. Bedridden with a broken leg, he asks Cay to fill in for him on an urgent task: on her way to a fancy dress ball, she must deliver a packed horse to an old friend’s son—who also happens to be an escaped convict charged with murdering his wife! Cay agrees to the plan, which doesn’t go at all as planned . . . whereupon she finds herself fleeing Alexander McDowell’s captors, riding blind into the night with the fugitive Scotsman. Though she should fear him, Cay finds herself overwhelmingly attracted to Alex, and drawn into his tale of misguided justice and his innocence as they seek refuge in the steamy Florida everglades. Will trusting him be the worst mistake of her life? Or will falling in love be the salvation both of them have been looking for? 
All 3 are MPB and all you have to do is have a US addy and fill out the rafflecopter form below to enter:

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

My Book Boyfriend... Film Noir edition

Meme hosted by the Unread Reader

Today's edition comes from the book, The Taken, by Vicki Pettersson. The book, which I reviewed yesterday, had a film noir feel to it. So, I had to go with the old film noir movies of old. So, I guess my man harem will now have a special section just for them. 

In this book, Griff was a straightforward kind of guy. He was a P.I.  in the 50s and even knew many of the not so legally minded men who ran Vegas at that time. He was and is an alpha male who ended up getting a second chance at life on earth. However, how he spends that time and what he does with it... well... you'll have to read the book to find out. Anyway, he is a gentleman who knows that there are times to not be gentle and who loves women, and does not treat them like property or objects.

Hm... so who to play him. I thought I'd do something different and pick from a real film noir. So, I looked and I kept coming across this picture of Robert Mitchum and Jane Greer in Out of the Past:

Pretty perfect... for both of them really, but sorry Jane, this is a boys only club. Well, those that get to stay there... since I'm the only female allowed to enjoy it. ;D
All pics are from the film, Out of the Past and are owned by Warner Brothers

I think grandma would be proud. ;)

So who is new in your harem this week?