Saturday, April 30, 2016

April Thanks

This has been a really great month on the blog and I would like to thank a few authors who have made it so special. 

I know this was last month but I would like to thank Shaan Ranae for sharing an excerpt from her new book A Minor Happy Ending.

I'd like to thank Michelle Areaux the author of Wicked Cries for the giveaway contest and a great interview! We'll be announcing the winner very soon.

I'd like to thank India R Adams for doing a Q&A with me as well as sharing her books Blue Waters and My Wolf and Me with me to read for review.

I'd like to thank Heidi Fralick a children's book author for doing a guest post sharing some great advice for parents. I will be posting my reviews of her books the Fruitable Friends "Love Your Body" and "Are You a Good Listener?" soon.

I'd like to thank Jack Kearney for sharing the inspiration for his novel Inside Out.

I'd also like to thank Deek Rhew and Erin Rhew for visiting the blog on their book tour. I hope everyone enjoyed the writing tips they shared, the giveaway contest and the spotlights of their novels 122 Rules and The Prophecy.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

New Novel: Runaway by Michelle Areaux

Exciting news! Today, Apr. 28, 2016 the novel Runaway by Michelle Areaux is being released. Below is a sneak peak of this new novel.

Excerpt provided by the author, Michelle Areaux of "Runaway"

My life ended when I was seventeen years old with four simple words:  “Do you trust me?”

Those four words compiled together still send my mind into an instant craze. It was those four words that violently took me away from my comfortable known existence and into a life of hiding.  What was I to do? I was only seventeen years old and had no other way out than to trust him. But could I trust him? Sure, Jackson was my best friend. He was the undeniably gorgeous boy who I had spent my entire life with, the one person I trusted more than anyone else. 

 “Do you trust me?”  Jackson asked again, this time with a slight hint of frustration in his normally smooth voice. His sparkling hazel eyes smothered me as he kept his anxious gaze on my bewildered face. Everything around me seemed to spin, as if I were spiraling into some strange world. The world around me became a blur as I became paralyzed by fear.

Nodding, I found myself unable to open my mouth and utter a single word. He pushed away the loose strands of hair that had fallen over his eyes revealing a slight wrinkle over his brow. He was as scared as I was, but he was too stubborn to admit it. Knowing Jackson, he would rather scream on the inside than tell me he was unsure of what he was about to do.

Let me back up for just a minute. My name is Hallie Romano and I am now a seventeen year old runaway. This sudden change of occupation, for lack of a better term, was totally not my choice. I swear. I mean, I had a very, very comfortable life back home in New York City. It’s not that I am angry and am trying to make some insane and bold statement. No, it’s not that I am some rebel or poverty stricken mess. Actually, it’s the complete opposite. As the daughter of the CEO of the nation’s largest Insurance ‘giant,’ I was feared and envied; something I absolutely loved. Mine and Jackson’s lives were like something out of Gatsby or a Kardashian episode. We parties, shopped, and gossiped without any cares. We had money, lots of money, and we didn’t care where it came from. All we knew was that we were the elite of our upscale New York City prep school. 

But last night something happened to me and my friend Jackson that I cannot explain just yet. This event was so major, so completely and totally twisted that I had no other choice than to allow Jackson to take me into his care.

I was given the choice: take my own life or allow them to take it for me. So, I decided to fight and use every ounce of strength I could find in my body.  As I closed my eyes, the events replayed in my mind like a terrifying nightmare I couldn’t escape from…

Link to purchase Runaway
or purchase the Paperback on Amazon

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

My Wolf and Me - Release Announcement and Review

My Wolf and Me

Today, Apr. 26, 2016 I am excited to announce the release of this great Novel, "My Wolf and Me." I feel very lucky to have met India R Adams and been given the chance to read her absolutely wonderful books. I got an early copy of this novel which has given me the chance to share my review of it with you on its release day! If you missed my interview with India R Adams, I'll share it again here that you can get Blue Waters free from her website, and if you review that book you can get Black Waters for free as well! Check it out and see for yourself what I have been saying about her writing! Now on to the review:

Author:  India R Adams
Category: YA Supernatural Romance
Suitable for: Teens+
My Rating: 5 Stars
Format Read for Review: Kindle
Pages: 220

Description: This is a beautiful story about a little girl who befriends a wolf. They grow up together and in adulthood his secret puts them in danger.

In Short: This wonderfully written book takes you an on emotional ride that ends in a beautifully satisfying ending. It is a creative work of art with realistic characters and new ideas on old lore. I think people of all ages who like romance novels will love this story.   

Pros: This book is powerfully emotional. It made me laugh several times and even cry. This book is fast paced and a quick read that I was able to eagerly devour in one sitting. This is the most genuine love story I have ever read. India R Adams' novels are full of depth. She achieves so much character development and a strong dramatic story in so few pages. This story starts around a cast of children, you then watch them grow up, watch them fall in love, endure heartbreak and fight for their survival. This book is a strong stand alone story but I fell in love with the characters to the point that I would be thrilled if a sequel was added!

Parent's Guide:  Minor swearing. Sexual content is implied and not graphic.    

I was given a free copy of this book in return for my honest review.

Monday, April 25, 2016

The Iron Web - Discovery (REVIEW)

The Iron Web - Discovery

Author:  Kristin Ravelle
Category: YA/NA Paranormal
Suitable for: Young teens+
My Rating: 4 Stars
Format Read for Review: Kindle
Pages: 165

Description: Bryn is a 21 year old woman who lives in Penrith England. She is a very inquisitive person who doesn't go with the mainstream and instead questions the OED that controls all adult's lives. Her questions lead her into ancient texts, hidden passages in old British buildings and eventually to the horrible truth about the OED's activities. Using her control of light she must battle her way to safety.

In Short: This quick to read novella has some really great, fresh ideas. The characters use old magic in unique ways. I would describe it as Earth Magic vs. Sci-Fi. Set in a futuristic, technologically advanced world the characters use ancient knowledge and power to conspire against the regime. This first novella in the series focuses on showing us this unique world and the cast of characters.

Pros: This is a truly unique idea and blend of genres. The main character is written to be very relatable which makes it easy to become one with her story. The blossoming love story is exciting. The pacing of the novel is fast and fun. The technologies and magics are very unique and creative ideas. I really like the way the protagonist uses "light magic" and how she explains it works. The "talking through trees" magic is really interesting as well. The character development is good, especially for a novella. This book does kick off the series well, making me curious to see what will happen in the next stage of their journey. If you like the idea of a paranormal ya series set in a dystopian UK definitely check this one out.

Cons: My only tiny little issue was where it had ended. I wish the characters would have arrived at their first stop, not gone in, but just arrived at the gate before it ended. I know in the next book they will arrive and their adventure will really kick off and I would definitely like to read that. Like many novellas this book only has Act 1 and 2. Exposition and a call to adventure with the major climax and resolution occurring in a later book in the series.

Parent's Guide: This book is pretty clean. No violence, no sex. The language is mild.

I was given a free copy of this book in return for my honest review. 

Sunday, April 24, 2016

The Kasari Nexus (REVIEW)

The Kasari Nexus

(The Rho Agenda Assimilation Book 1)

Author:  Richard Phillips
Category: Science Fiction, Sci-Fi Thriller
Suitable for: Adults
My Rating: 4 Stars
Format Read for Review: Kindle
Pages: 386

Description: This story takes off after the end of the third Rho Agenda book, "Wormhole." We are now seeing how the events in that story changed the world, politics, and our protagonists' lives. In this installment we watch the heroes struggling to stay alive.

In Short: The Rho Agenda series is really a top notch science fiction series. The technology is truly spectacular. This series on the whole is a really amazing one and should definitely be read in order and without gaps for the full effect.   

Pros: This book has the most amazing alien technology and physics. We also get to see alien worlds and even meet alien characters, which was really exciting. My favorite parts of this book were the ones about Jennifer and Raul who escaped on a spaceship and are now lost in space. Trekkies will really appreciate their journey. This book is very intelligently written, it makes the alien science and characters seem so believable. The books in this series have a ton of detail and an overwhelming cast of characters that make it a very rich story line. I look forward to seeing what exciting events will happen in the next book.

Cons: This book felt longer than it actually is. I think this is partially due to the perspective jumping around to not only key players but less important characters. One short scene is repeated twice from the perspective of two people next to each other, which was redundant. There are no real resolutions and in the end everything is still up in the air. Even in series books I like to see each book have a strong story and even though a lot happened I didn't feel like much was accomplished. Instead the story was more of just an ongoing struggle for the characters but I'm sure we will see them make and achieve more objectives in the next installment.

Parent's Guide:  Trigger Warnings: violence, torture, murder, gore, combat with guns and blades. 

I was given a free copy of this book in return for my honest review. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

Guest Post by Erin Rhew - Tips for Aspiring Authors, Book Tour, and Giveaway!

Thanks too much to O & D for hosting me today, and a big HELLO to their readers! <waves>

I'm here as part of the Rhew 2 Rhew tour! My husband, Deek Rhew, wrote an amazing thriller called 122 Rules, published by Pandamoon on April 5! In addition, my publisher chose the month of April to feature my trilogy, so Deek and I decided to make a thing of it. And the Rhew 2 Rhew Tour was born! ;) Stay tuned because there's an opportunity for you to enter a Rafflecopter drawing for a chance at a $50 Amazon gift card!

O said a lot of the readers at her blog are aspiring writers who'd like to read about bookish things. So, I'm here to rely that information. LOL! 

Since I'm the Operations Manager at a small press as well as a published author, I get to see both sides of the industry. Let me tell you, I've learned a lot, and would like to share some of that knowledge with you.

1) Here's my biggest, top piece of advice. Edit, edit, edit. And when you think you're done, edit some more (because I said that, I know this post will contain errors--LOL!). You only get one chance to make a first impression, so make sure it's a good one. I'm a grammar nerd of the highest order, and when I read submissions with grammatical errors, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Even if you're not a grammar whiz, find someone who is--be it a friend or someone you hire. Show agents and publishers you care by taking the time to make your piece the best it can be.

2) Develop tough skin. This business is brutal. Agents and publisher are pressed for time. They read thousands of submissions, and they are looking for something great. You'll get rejections. You'll get form rejections, mean rejections, and some nice ones. Even if you get picked up, you'll have editors come at your manuscript with the red pen of doom. And you can't let any of that get you down. But you also can't go all Xena Warrior Princess either. Remember, these people are professionals, and they're experts in their field. 99.999% of the time, they're completely right about the changes that need to take place in your manuscript. Allow them to make you and your writing better. No one and no piece is perfect from the start. We can always be better.

3) Utilize beta readers and critique partners. While writing itself is a solitary process, the road to publication is not. And your beta readers and critique partners should be your first stop along the path. Put on your thick skin and listen to what these people have to say. They'll point out flaws in your logic, holes in your plot, and words you repeat without realizing it. Listen to them. They'll make you better. And trust me, you'd rather hear the truth from people who know and care about you than the harsh reality from the mouth of a stranger. At the same time, and almost in a contradictory fashion, stick to your story. If your beta readers and critique partners are off base, it's ok to not go with something. But if you get the same critiques over and over, it warrants a serious look.

And who knows, you may end up marrying one of your critique partners. I did! ;) 

4) Learn your craft. Storytellers are born, not created, but the actual craft of writing can be taught. Learn it. Read a lot, go to writing conferences, talk to other writers. Immerse yourself in the writing world. Know what terms like ".mobi," "Oxford comma," and "ARC" mean. It's like getting a new job. You must become familiar with your surroundings and get acclimated before you can excel.

5) Know what's desirable but also write what you love. These two pieces of advice seem like opposites, but I don't really think they are. I encourage you to follow Twitter pitch contests like #PitMad to see just how similar most of the story lines and pitches are. When I'm on those contests looking for potential authors, I grow wary of certain themes. Your book is unlikely to stand out to people in the industry if it sounds the same as everyone else's. At the same time, write what you love. Vampires and dystopians are technically "out," but if that's your story, write it. Just know you'll have a tougher sell. But if you've been following pitch contests, you'll know what not to say in your tweets and how to make your particular story stand out amongst the crowd. Be unique!

Thanks for hosting me O & D! Now, I'd like to tell you a little bit about me, my husband, and our books!!

For those that don't know, Erin is a young adult fantasy author who is married to adult thriller author, Deek Rhew. Together, they are "the Rhews," and their street team is the Rhewination!

Deek and Erin-- Join the Rhewination! ;) 

The Prophecy (Fulfillment Series Book 1)

Title: The Prophecy
Author: Erin Rhew
Publisher: BookFish Books
Cover Design: Anita at Race-Point
Available Now! Amazon Buy Link 


Growing up on a small farm in the kingdom of Vanguard, seventeen-year-old Layla Givens lives a deceptively tranquil existence. But her carefully constructed life quickly falls apart when she's abducted by a religious zealot who proclaims her The Fulfillment of an ancient peace prophecy and whisks her away to marry her greatest enemy.

Wilhelm, Prince of the Ethereals, is reluctant to meet his new bride. He's grown up believing Vanguards are evil, an enemy to fight and fear...not love. Can he set aside his prejudices and work alongside Layla to bring lasting peace after centuries of war? 

Nash, a loner who has never fit in, carries a huge secret, one big enough to destroy both kingdoms. When he accidently meets Layla, he's no longer content to live in the shadows, but he must resist his growing attraction--for her safety and for the longevity of the two kingdoms. 

When Nash's secret is revealed, a firestorm sweeps through both realms, with Layla at the center. Now she must choose between duty and desire while the fate of two nations hangs in the balance.

The Outlanders (Fulfillment Series Book 2) 

Title: The Outlanders
Author: Erin Rhew
Publisher: BookFish Books
Cover Design: Anita at Race-Point
Available Now! Amazon Buy Link 

The Fulfillment (Fulfillment Series Book 3)

Title: The Fulfillment
Author: Erin Rhew
Publisher: BookFish Books
Cover Design: Anita at Race-Point
Available Now! Amazon Buy Link 

About Erin Rhew

Erin Rhew

Erin Rhew is an editor, a running coach, and the author of The Fulfillment Series. Since she picked up Morris the Moose Goes to School at age four, she has been infatuated with the written
word. She went on to work as a grammar and writing tutor in college and is still teased by her family and friends for being a member of the "Grammar Police."

A Southern girl by blood and birth, Erin now lives in a rainy pocket of the Pacific Northwest with the amazingly talented (and totally handsome) writer Deek Rhew and their “overly fluffy,” patient-as-a-saint writing assistant, a tabby cat named Trinity. She and Deek enjoy reading aloud to one another, running, lifting, boxing, eating chocolate, and writing side-by- side.

Connect with Erin Online!

For the latest and greatest, visit her web page:

About Deek Rhew

Deek Rhew
Deek lives in a rainy pocket in the Pacific Northwest with the stunning YA author bride, Erin Rhew, and their writing assistant, a fat tabby named Trinity. They enjoy lingering in the mornings, and often late into the night, caught up Erin’s fantastic fantasy worlds of noble princes and knights and entwined in Deek’s dark underworld of the FBI and drug lords.

He and Erin love to share books by reading aloud to one another. In addition, they enjoy spending time with friends, running, boxing, lifting weights, and exploring the little town--with antique shops and bakeries--they call home.

Connect with Deek Online!

For the latest and greatest, visit his web page:

Find Deek's Novels Online!

Random Fun With Deek and Erin

Always laughing together

Celebrating their anniversary in style! ;) 

Enjoying every moment!

Their cat and literary assistant, Trinity--leader of Rhewination!

Sharing every secret and every facet of life with each other! 

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