Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tribute Books Blog Tour Review: Best Seller by Timothy B. Sagges

Thirty-five year old fiction writer, Richard Rossi would do just about anything to get his manuscript published. However, months of rejection and unanswered prayers have strained his capacity to hope.

Alone in New York City, he teeters on the brink of alcoholism, as his hope erodes into desperation. His prayers are finally answered when a simple misdirected piece of mail spawns a chance encounter with an extraordinary man, Seth Volos, Publisher. And while their unholy alliance thrusts Richard to the top of every Best Seller list in America, the horrifying outcome for the book's legions of fans is anything but a happy ending.

Publication Date: February 13, 2011
Genre: Adult Fiction, Thriller
Source: Thanks so much to Tribute Books for letting me be a part of this blog tour!

I think this book pretty much covers the question 'How far would you go to be a famous author?'. A chilling premise with an ending that holds true to every other page in the book. I would say more, but I don't want to give anything away.

The story centers around Richard Rossi. This guy's life dream has been to publish one of his books. He achieves that through the creepsville Mr. Volos. Volos has a presence that hangs over the story the entire time. Richard felt like a guy just treading water, trying to keep his head from going under. He briefly experiences success, and then realizes he needs to step up and do something. That was when his true mettle showed through.

The writing was filled with tension and made it easy to read the book really fast. I saw a few of the plot points coming, but the ultimate ending was definitely not something I expected :) Overall, Best Seller is a great Thriller and an interesting commentary on the things we value and what's really important.

To find out more about the book, author or publisher please check out these links:

Best Seller web site:http://www.bestseller-book.com/

Timothy B. Sagges' Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=1069144965

Timothy B. Sagges' Twitter:https://twitter.com/#!/TimSagges

Tribute Books Blog Tours Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tribute-Books-Blog-Tours/242431245775186

Best Seller blog tour site:http://bestsellerblogtour.blogspot.com/

Available for purchase here:

Amazon buy link http://www.amazon.com/dp/1456478192?tag=tributebooks-20

Barnes&Noble.com buy linkhttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=dcSBhG3Rj8w&offerid=239662.9781456478193&type=2&subid=0

Bestseller-book.com buy linkhttps://www.createspace.com/3532558

Monday, March 26, 2012

Spring Cleaning Giveaway Hop - Winner!

The winning winner is. . .

Entry #216 Kylie Carlson

The winner has been notified by e-mail of their prize of a box of YA books :) My over-crowded shelves are thanking me already!

Thank you so much to all that participated! More giveaways coming soon!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Review: A Hint of Frost by Hailey Edwards

When the head of the Araneidae clan is found poisoned in her nest, her eldest daughter, Lourdes, becomes their clan’s new maven. If her clan is to survive, she has but one choice: she must marry before her nest is seized. All she needs is a warrior fierce enough to protect her city and safeguard her clansmen. Such a male is Rhys the Cold.

Born the youngest son of an impoverished maven, the only things Rhys has to his name are his sword and his mercenary reputation. His clan is starving, but their fondness for the flesh of fellow Araneaeans makes them unwelcome dinner guests. Torn between loyalty to his clan and fascination with his future bride, Rhys’s first taste of Lourdes threatens to melt the cold encasing his heart.

Amid the chaos of battle, Lourdes’s sister disappears and is feared captured. Lourdes and Rhys pursue their enemies into the southlands, where they discover an odd plague ravaging southern clans as it travels north, to Erania. Determined to survive, Lourdes will discover whether she’s worth her silk or if she’s spun the thread by which her clan will hang.

Product Warnings
This book contains one mercenary hero with a biting fetish, one determined heroine who gets nibbled, and an answer to the age-old question, “What does dragon taste like?” Matricide and sibling rivalry are available upon request. The house special is revenge, best served cold.

Publication Date: April 17, 2012
Genre: Romance, Fantasy, Adult
Source: Thanks so much to the author Hailey Edwards for my review copy!

Where to begin on this one? I was so impressed by this book! It's a wonderful fantasy type Romance. I didn't have to read very far into it to realize I was going to love it.

The relationship between Lourdes and Rhys is super steamy from the beginning, but it's not crude. It's all about the tension between them. He is one of my favorite fictional male types: muscley, manly and possessive of his girl. I realize that's not everyone's favorite, but it's done in such a sweet and yummy way in this one. And a guy that has fangs and venom (but isn't a vampire)? I mean, come on. Yes, please :)

The world building is fantastic too! There is a whole world, history and different clans within them and it's flawless. It's all easily understood from the beginning, but there is so much depth behind it. Plus, it stands out without crushing the actual story with all these explanations and blah-blah kind of stuff like some books do. Does that make sense? Like it's there but it doesn't take you out of the story. My only negative would be a few parts towards the end seemed a little rushed. It was more than made up for at the very end though :)

As I was reading I was very excited to have another steamy series to add to my shelf. I'm also wondering if maybe we'll see Rhys's brother Vaughn in a spin-off side novel type thing. Something like what Jeaniene Frost does? :D I'll definitely be checking out this author's other books as well. You Romance lovers out there should give this one a go!

To find out more about the author check her out on Goodreads , Facebook, Twitter and  her Website.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Winner of Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop!

And the winner is...

Kristin Adams

Yay! The prize is $15 for a book of her choice from The Book Depository.  I've sent an e-mail to notify the winner of her winning entry.

Thanks so much to everyone that participated! I'll have another TBD giveaway before very long and maybe your luck will change ;)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Netgalley Review: The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda

Gene is different from everyone else around him. He can’t run with lightning speed, sunlight doesn’t hurt him and he doesn’t have an unquenchable lust for blood. Gene is a human, and he knows the rules. Keep the truth a secret. It’s the only way to stay alive in a world of night—a world where humans are considered a delicacy and hunted for their blood.

When he’s chosen for a once in a lifetime opportunity to hunt the last remaining humans, Gene’s carefully constructed life begins to crumble around him. He’s thrust into the path of a girl who makes him feel things he never thought possible—and into a ruthless pack of hunters whose suspicions about his true nature are growing. Now that Gene has finally found something worth fighting for, his need to survive is stronger than ever—but is it worth the cost of his humanity?

Publication Date: May 8, 2012
Genre: Vampire, Paranormal, Dystopian, Young Adult
Source: Thanks so much to St. Martin's Griffin for making this title available on Netgalley!

The Hunt got off to a semi-slow start for me, and I was worried I just wouldn't like it. I do have to write some of that off to what I call 'book transitioning' which can make the first 20 or so pages difficult to get into. And from about that 20-ish page point in the story I was hooked.

The story starts with Gene explaining how he has managed to stay alive as a 'heper' or human in a world filled with vampires. His whole life he was trained and he's pretty darned good at it...obviously, or he'd be dead :) It builds a very cool image in your mind about how the world works and what it feels like to hide within it, danger at every turn. This is our world conquered and dominated by some ferocious vampires. On the flip side, Gene has lived side by side with them his whole life, going to school and doing other 'normal' things. It's a very cool mixture of danger and normalcy.

The real tension begins once Gene is picked to participate in The Heper Hunt (oh, the irony!) and he is sent to The Institue to prepare. That was when I just flew through the pages, needing to find out how everything would play out. The imagery is fantastic and I'd love to see this as a movie at some point :D Also, I must say that when Gene was practically dying of thirst and couldn't find water I had to walk my butt to the kitchen and get a glass for myself!

I was really impressed by this new take on vampires. I am very wary of vampire stories, not because I don't like them (I do!) but because they are widely written about and sometimes it just gets stale. This one is fresh and exciting. And the author's abilit to tell the story shouldn't be overlooked either. The tension is felt throughout and makes it hard to find a stopping point until you've finished.

Cover Reveal: Ashen Winter (Ashfall #2) by Mike Mullen

I was just browsing around Goodreads and noticed that Ashen Winter now had a cover!! An amazing cover!

Ashfall was one of my first Netgalley reads and an all around awesome book.  I've been waiting eagerly for Ashen Winter's release which is listed as October 8, 2012 on Goodreads.

If you haven't read the first one, give it a chance and catch up before Ashen Winter comes out. You won't regret it!

What do you guys think of the cover? Are you excited for this one too?

Addition to original post: I just saw today that Kathy from I Am a Reader Not a Writer has an ARC giveaway for Ashen Winter (holy cruds!!) so you know I entered it. Click the link for her blog if you'd like to try to win too :D

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Review: Aftereffects - Zombie Therapy (From the Case Files of Dr. Victor Frenzel) by Zane Bradey

One day you are an average citizen, carrying on with everyday mundane tasks, the next, you are a fiendish zombie looking to tear off, and eat the flesh of every family member, friend, neighbor, and stranger you come in contact with. That's where your story ends, right? You're destined to live out your remaining days as a blood-thirsty zombie until deprivation or some un-infected vigilante lays you to rest?

Wrong. The government creates a cure for your cannibalistic condition. Unfortunately, you remember every gory detail of your killing sprees. Can you cope with the fact that you ingested your fellow human beings? Good news: psychiatrist Dr. Victor Frenzel has devoted himself to treating the psychological aspects of living life after being a flesh-eating zombie. He's accepting new clients and wants to help you get on with your life. Unless, he suspects that you are one of the infected cannibalistic fiends who ate his lovely young wife, Barbara. In that case you might be a particularly prime candidate for one of his more cutting-edge treatments. Either way you will be cured...

Publication Date: February 26, 2012
Genre: Zombie, Horror, Adult Fiction
Source: My own Tower of Books

I found this book via Twitter and decided it sounded pretty awesome and worth a shot for the small price of $.99. How could I possibly resist?

This is a little gem of a zombie book that must be read! The premise is that the masses are infected and zombies are roaming and eating whoever they can lay hands on . . . BUT then a cure is administered and these individuals are 'cured' and sent on their merry way. We learn the stories of a few of these people as they are going to zombie therapy with Dr. Victor Frenzel. But this is no ordinary therapist and he's got his own agenda while 'helping' his patients. Each individual story that we hear from Dr. Frenzel's patients will pull you in and make your heart race and maybe make you go 'Eww' at some point too. I read it in one sitting and couldn't put it down.

Aftereffects was a gorey, thought-provoking, zombie-y, heart-pounding adrenaline rush. And pure genius. I loved it from start to finish. It's not a very long read and that would be my only complaint. This first book ends with the door wide open for a sequel which will hopefully be out sometime this year. You zombie fans should give this one a try!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Spring Cleaning Giveaway Hop

Another great Giveaway Hop hosted by Kathy at I Am a Reader Not a Writer's blog! I love this one because it is fun giving things away PLUS I need to clean up my bookshelves. And when I say 'book shelves' what I really mean is 'floor space'. My shelves are overflowing :)

This Giveaway Hop runs from March 20-25 and is open to US entrants only (sorry, shipping is killer on this many books)

What you could win: One winner will get a box of books containing the following titles (and possibly a few extras thrown in):

Bruiser by Neal Shusterman

 Rock On: A story of guitars, gigs, girls and a brother (not necessarily in that order) by Denise Vega
 BZRK by Michael Grant
 The Boy Project: Notes and Observations of Kara McAllister by Kami Kinard
 Beneath a Meth Moon by Jacqueline Woodson
 The International Kissing Club by Ivy Adams
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews

Thank you all for helping my books find a nice, new home :) Good luck!!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop

This lucky little Giveaway Hop is being hosted by Kathy at I'm a Reader Not a Writer's blog.  There are a ton of blogs with some great giveaways so click the link and enter those too :)

What could you get if you win? A book of your choice up to $15 from The Book Depository. That means this is an international giveaway!
(Check HERE to see if TBD ships to your address)

This hop runs from March 17-22

Good luck, everyone!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Fangirl Review (that's a lie . . . it's not a review): The Walking Dead Volume 1

Like I said, this really isn't a review. I'm just singing praises.

Summary of my thoughts on The Walking Dead: Volume 1:
This is probably more for people that 1. Love graphic novels  2. Love The Walking Dead tv series or
3. Kind of like both of those things.

I've read a few comics here and there throughout my life - I am married to a nerd after all - but I've never really felt any sort of investment in them. Now, if you know me personally in any way then you probably know how hard I fangirl over The Walking Dead on AMC.  I could give lists of the reasons why, but I can sum it up by saying that I feel emotionally invested in the show, the story and the characters.

So it stands to reason that I would want to check out the comics that the show is based off of.  I kept hearing how different the show is from the graphic novels, and I finally just had to see for myself.  The show has one episode left to air (on Sunday!!) in the second season and I read the first Volume which contains the first 6 actual comics.  There are a TON of things that are different but all in all the show holds true to the spirit and story in the comic.  They have switched up quite a bit, but I think that just makes it more enjoyable for people that were fans of the comics before the show ever aired.  Even they don't really know what's going to happen.

My main thoughts coming away from Volume 1 of The Walking Dead was that I really do like graphic novels as long as they aren't about super heroes (sorry to people that like super hero stories) and that the writer of the comic and the tv show are true geniuses.

Any other Walking Dead fans out there waiting with bated breath for Sunday's episode? Have you read the comics? Do you think you will at some point?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Tribute Books Blog Tour Review: Shore Excursion by Marie Moore

Synopsis:Travel agents may be a vanishing breed, but Sidney Marsh, a New York transplant from Mississippi, is holding her ground-- at least on land. She is the tour leader on a cruise through Scandinavia to Russia for a group of eccentric senior citizens who call themselves the High Steppers. Sidney expects her days to be filled with long meals, shopping expeditions and visits to museums, churches and fjords. But this cruise is anything but routine. THere is a killer on board, targeting the High Steppers and quite possibly herself.

Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Adult Fiction
Source: Thanks to Tribute Books for letting me be a part of this Book Tour

I haven't read a good mystery in awhile and this was a nice, entertaining read.  I was left guessing throughout most of the book as to who the culprit was. I was pretty much dead wrong once everything was revealed.  There were a lot of twists and turns along the way.

Sidney Marsh is the lovely protagonist in the book and she is a likeable character aside from her poor decision-making skills when it comes to men :) But we've all been there, right? She's a travel agent for the High Steppers who are a varied and quirky group of (mostly) senior citizens.  She has taken them on quite a few world vacations over the years and all has been fine until this particular cruise.  It's not long before one of the High Steppers turns up dead and that is just the beginning.

This was a satifsying mystery novel.  The plot unfolds smoothly and I loved the varied cast of characters.  I do wish there had been a little more romance thrown in.  There were the beginnings of some romantic-y situations, but I would have liked them to be fleshed out a bit more.  That being said, I enjoyed the book and am curious where Sidney's next mystery/adventure will take her :)

For more info:

Marie Moore's web site:http://www.mariemooremysteries.com/

Tribute Books Blog Tours Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tribute-Books-Blog-Tours/242431245775186

Shore Excursion blog tour site:http://shoreexcursion.blogspot.com/

*Check out the book on Amazon or B&N.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Review: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story. . .

Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.

So did his father before him, until his gruesome murder by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father's mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. Together they follow legends and local lore, trying to keep up with the murderous dead—keeping pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

When they arrive in a new town in search of a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas doesn't expect anything outside of the ordinary: move, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he's never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, but now stained red and dripping blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.

And she, for whatever reason, spares his life.

Publication Date: August 30, 2011
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Source: My own Tower of books :)

Anna Dressed in Blood is creepy and great. That pretty much sums it up for me :) I've seen some reviews that it wasn't as scary as some people thought it would be, but I don't think it's meant to be a Horror novel. AND I can say in all confidence that if you are up reading in your dark, quiet house at 12:25am . . . it's pretty eff-ing creepy.

On to Cas. He's the ghost-killing hero in this book. He has some swoon-worthy moments throughout, but it wouldn't fit into the whole plot of him having to kill Anna if he was all professing his undying (no pun intended) love for her the whole time. He's actually very conflicted because his life's purpose is to kill unruly ghosts . . . and seeing as Anna is highly murderous and rips people to shreds, he needs to get rid of her. Believe it or not their budding feelings for each other are pretty sweet :)

All the other characters in the book serve a purpose and hold their weight in the story. I really liked bumbling, nerdy Thomas and wished there was a little more of him in the story. Preppy and popular Carmel is pretty good too, but she took a little longer to grow on me as she became more involved in the strange goings-on of Cas and Thomas.

I've been meaning to read this one for awhile now, and I think it's one of the most unique ghosty-creepy-romancey stories that I've read. Oh! And I should mention that the words in the book are actually printed in a deep, maroon red. Just that one detail adds a little something to the experience of reading this one.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Review: Flat Spin by David Freed

Based in sunnyrancho Bonita - "California's Monaco" as the city's moneyed minions like to call it - Cordell Logan is a literate, sardonic flight instructor and aspiring Buddhist with dwindling savings and a shadowy past. When his beautiful ex-wife, Savannah, shows up out of the blue to tell him that her husband has been murdered in Los Angeles, Logan is quietly pleased. Savannah's late husband, after all, is Arlo echevarria, the man she left Logan for.

Logan and Echevarria were once comrades-in-arms assigned to a top-secret military assasination team known as "Alpha." The onu problem is, the LAPD can find no record of Echevarria ever having toiled for Uncle Sam. Savannah wants Logan to tell the police what he knows. At first he refuses, but then, relying on his small, aging airplane, the "Ruptured Duck," and the skills he honed working for Alpha, Logan doggedly hunts Echevarria's killer.

His trail takes him for the glitzy Las Vegas Strip to the most dangerous ghettos of inner-city Oakland, from darkened, Russian mafia haunts in West Los Angeles to the deserts of arizona. But that's the least of his problems. It is his love-hate relationship with Savannah, a woman Logan continues to pine for in spite of himself, that threatens to consume him.

Publication Date: April 2012
Genre: Adult Fiction, Thriller, Mystery
Source: Thanks so much to the Author, David Freed, for my review copy!

Alright, here's another good Mystery novel!  I'm not very good at solving the mystery in any book (or in Scooby Doo for that matter...) and this one was no different :)

The main thing that I found immensely appealing was Cordell Logan himself.   His interactions are all dead-on and entertaining to read. His sharp wit and sarcasm permeate the dialogue and tone of the book. Logan is this ex-special-ops kind of guy, but he lives this minimalistic bachelor lifestyle.  He doesn't flaunt his many physical and mental skills unless he needs to and exudes a 'kiss-my-ass' kind of attitude whenever humanly possible.  What's great is that a lot of that is just an front he puts on to make sure he doesn't get hurt...again.  His wife left him for his buddy-in-arms, Arlo, from Alpha and he's been trying to lay low and move on ever since.  Of course this is not to be when Arlo turns up dead and ex-wifey wants Logan to talk to the police and gets tangled up in everything.

I thought this was a great read.  It made me reminisce about reading Dirk Pitt books.  I can see Cordell Logan going off on myriad different adventures and getting himself into some sticky situations. A great start to what will hopefully be a series of novels.

You can find out more about this book and the author on David Freed's Website.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

eARC Review: Pieces of Us by Margie Gelbwasser

Two families. Four teens.
A summer full of secrets.

Every summer, hidden away in a lakeside community in upstate New York, four teens leave behind their old identities…and escape from their everyday lives.

Yet back in Philadelphia during the school year, Alex cannot suppress his anger at his father (who killed himself), his mother (whom he blames for it), and the girls who give it up too easily. His younger brother, Kyle, is angry too—at his abusive brother, and at their mother who doesn’t seem to care. Meanwhile, in suburban New Jersey, Katie plays the role of Miss Perfect while trying to forget the nightmare that changed her life. But Julie, her younger sister, sees Katie only as everything she’s not. And their mother will never let Julie forget it.

Up at the lake, they can be anything, anyone. Free. But then Katie’s secret gets out, forcing each of them to face reality—before it tears them to pieces

Publication Date: March 8, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Contemporary
Source: Thanks to Flux for making this book available through Netgalley!

The title of this book is so fitting for what is contained within its pages.  It's all about the pieces.  The pieces coming together.  The pieces falling apart, getting broken.  The pieces of ourselves that we show the world and the ones we keep hidden. This is one that has lingered in my mind and will continue to for some time.  I thought it was all brilliant.  Especially the way the pieces all fall into place (please forgive me. I'll stop saying it :-).  And there is this shift, this moment, on the very last page that is just amazing.

And speaking of 'shifting', the characters seem to be in constant emotional movement. The growth, positive or negative, of Julie, Katie, Kyle and Alex throughout the book is phenomenally well-done.  And this may be one of the best novels for giving each one of those characters their own distinctive tone.

As I'm looking back at the synopsis of the book it tells you exactly what the book is about, but it feels like it doesn't say enough once you've finished it.  Do you know what I mean?  These characters are all deep and flawed and beautiful and horrible.  I'm still psycho-analyzing them all :)

I do have to mention that there is a ton of mature content as far as younger readers are concerned.  This doesn't bother me personally, but I know it's not for everybody.  If that is not a deterrent for you, then I highly recommend reading Pieces of Us!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Review: Patient Zero by Jim Beck

Bob has a brain tumor.

Not to worry, though. He's the prime subject for a new procedure involving nanotechnology. Microscopic robots are introduced into his body and effectively destroy the tumor. Job well done.

But there's a catch. A virus lying dormant for years inside him is manipulated by the tiny machines and causes Bob to die and then be brought back to life as a zombie.

His transformation into one of the living dead is slow, first appearing as a skin rash and advanced arthritis. And if that wasn't bad enough, the virus has mutated and Bob is slowly losing control. Now, no one is safe -- not the neighborhood pets, his co-workers, even his son.

Told from the point of view of the zombie virus itself, this story of a single father, his son, and a zombie outbreak is a cautionary tale of advanced medical science and where it might lead us.

First off, let me just say . . . Read this book . . . Read it! If you like zombie books, you will love it.  If you hate zombie books, you will see why everybody else likes zombie books and why you should too :) Seriously though, it approaches the matter of 'could it really happen?' in a way that will convince even you skeptics out there *aggressively points at people that are skeptical . . . of zombie fiction*

The idea of writing it from the virus's point of view is genius.  It is such a new way to approach the whole zombie thing.  And seriously, the virus is telling you how this all happened in a scientific (and entertaining) way that is totally believable.  I loved it from start to finish.  And speaking of the end of the book, it is brilliant.  My mouth was hanging open :)

As far as the writing goes, it's engaging and entertaining.  It deals with the gruesome aspects in an almost light-hearted way.  Probably because the virus is feeling pretty proud of his successful endeavor.  There are some pop-culture references thrown in that fit perfectly with the tone of the writing (and kind of reminds me of another horror writer that seamlessly throws those into his own well-known novels).

Catch the fever.  Zombie fiction fever, that is :) Check this one out!

Publication Date:
Genre: Adult, Fiction, Zombie, Apocalypse
Source: Thanks to the author Jim Beck for my review copy.

You can find out more about Jim and his book Patient Zero on his Website or Author Page.
Also, find his book on Amazon and Smashwords