Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Released Today - Rain by India R Adams

(Stranger in the Woods book 1)

Description off Amazon: 

What if you knew you had just met the other part of your soul—the one who could take away all the pain and loneliness—but no one believes you because the rugged stranger from the woods is nowhere to be found? Would you search for him? Would you be strong enough to believe he exist somewhere out in the darkness where you he found you? And if you were to finally find the stranger from the woods and learn he is like no other tale that has ever been told… would you still have the courage to love him?

Rose has no time for romance because her father has passed away from an illness plaguing her small town, and now her mother has also contracted the illness, leaving Rose’s two younger siblings to be her responsibility. But when her best friend forces her to be young for a night and celebrate her twentieth birthday with a bonfire and friends, Rose meets a stranger from the woods, and Rose soon learns he is no stranger at all. In fact, this magical being is trying to keep her… alive.
Two bloods of one will bring down the shadows, to cast, no more...

I got my copy! Get your copy here and let's talk about the book! I'll be reading it for review soon.

My reviews of other books by India R Adams:
Steal Me
My Wolf and Me
Blue Waters

My interview with India R Adams

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Summer Binge Reading

Summer Binge Reading Suggestions!

Click any image to find more information about it on Amazon.

The Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning 

The Fever Series is an awesome book series by Karen Marie Moning about a young woman who travels to Ireland to investigate her sister's murder after the case goes cold. She discovers the world of fae and finds her own life threatened. I read this series many years ago but it left a big impact and I still remember it well. What I really loved about it was the wild personal development and growth of the protagonist. She goes from Barbie to Bad-ass as the series progresses. If you like shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer you will love this book series.

Speaking of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, do you ever wish it hadn't ended? Well you can read the graphic novels of Season 8, taking up right after the end of TV series.


Another great series that is a little more light-hearted is the Julius Romeros Extravaganza series. 

The Julius Romeros Extravaganza is a series I rated 5* overall about a baby girl born with a beard who grows up with a circus troupe. The series is heartwarming and funny. The ending was absolutely amazing and tied the whole series together. In just 3 fun books the protagonist goes from baby to adult and in the process we get to see her fantastical life. You can find my reviews for it here.

Stay hydrated, stay cool, and I hope you have a great summer! Happy reading!

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Steal Me by India R Adams (REVIEW)

Steal Me

(Haunted Roads Book 1)

Author:  India R Adams
Category: New Adult/Fiction/Drama/Romance
Suitable for: Adults
My Rating: 4 Stars
Format Read for Review: Kindle mobi provided by author
Pages: 313

Description: The story centers around a teenage boy named Maverick who recently lost his dad. His mother being unable to cope with the death of her husband turns to pills, leaving Maverick alone to raise his adorable little sister. Looking for a fresh start and an escape from their sadness, the family moves to a small town where Maverick makes new friends who have also recently experienced great loss and other heartaches. Together they heal and time passes but can they ever really escape the Haunted Roads?

In Short: This book is an emotional ride that shows you the darkest and lightest sides of the human experience. Like many of India's books it alternates between laughs and tears and hits you right in the feels relentlessly throughout the book. It talks a lot about loss, each character has experienced death. If you are looking for a beautiful drama look no further.

Pros: This book is very well written and well edited and effectively makes the reader feels so many emotions. The romance elements of the novel were perfection. It is a sort of blend of romance and erotica that avoids all of the stereotypical issues sometimes found in those genres. The sexual content is varied and creative, and the romance is sweet, well paced, realistic and at times a meaningful struggle. I loved the meaning behind the title 'steal me' and the creative, repeated use of it in the story, as well as the theme of the Haunted Roads. I thought India did a good job overall at writing male first person perspectives. I love the use of parallels. For example, there are three sets of big brothers who had to look after little sisters after they experienced a great loss. This created a powerful connection between the characters while also adding a artistic beauty to the story. The characters and the dialogue are amazing. There were times when I thought, "Wow, this is such a realistic relationship." When Maverick and Delilah went off to college and were struggling to balance their relationship with their new busy lives it was really realistic and created a great emotional conflict that was satisfying when it was resolved. I loved that this story contained real relationships that you don't always find in novels. The dialogue and banter often had me laughing. It is amazing how this book could have you crying one second and laughing the next. I don't usually read sad books, I prefer to just be happy all the time, but I made an exception for this at times painful book because from reading other books by India R Adams I knew there would be beauty and tender moments as well. I was not mistaken. There are countless touching scenes that make up for any heartache. Sometimes it is good to have a nice cry, this book reminds me of those sad movies that are perfect for that. It is impossible to accurately express how beautiful and touching I find this book and if you like the genre you will not be disappointed.

Cons: At times it was hard to remember these characters are teenagers because they often act so wise and mature. The most noticeable is Maverick's knowledge of how a woman experiences sex and that being unlikely for a 16 year old boy. Not having the same equipment means it would be difficult for men of any age to know what it feels like for women at any specific point during sex. On the plus side it portrays Maverick as a skilled and generous lover (a perk for fans of romance/erotica). I was thrown off by the perspective switching in the middle of the book. It happened right after a mysterious and shocking little hint of something big occurring. As I was dying to get back to the timeline I was previously on, and find out what happened to our star character I had to time travel back and reread (many repeated scenes) from another character's point of view. This added more back-story for some of the other characters and also revealed the things Maverick didn't see from his point of view. But I thought much of it was redundant or implied the first time through and I was just really anxious to return to Maverick's story and find out what had happened after that little 'cliff hanger' the whole time. It was satisfying when it did bounce back at the end and I did enjoy the ending.

Parent's Guide & Trigger Warnings: This book contains potential triggers for rape and abuse. There is swearing, graphic sexual content, violence, alcohol use and prescription drug addiction.

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

If you are looking for a book equally beautiful but with less adult themes check out my review of My Wolf and Me and Blue Waters

Read my interview with India R Adams

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

The Wisdom of Books - Glynis Astie (GUEST POST)

Today I am delighted to welcome author Glynis Astie to the blog for a guest post! She is the author of the recently released Romantic Comedy: Gamer Girl as well as the French Twist series. Below she shares a wonderful article about life lessons you can find in books.

The Wisdom of Books

Do you remember the poem All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum? It was published over twenty-five years ago and spawned a whole movement of copycats and parodies (as well as a wonderful book by the author himself), but his original idea always stuck with me. Many important life lessons are so simple and can be taken to heart at a very early age. In my case, I have drawn my most valuable lessons from the pages of some truly incredible books—books which were given to me by my most insightful mother.

Though I lost my mother ten years ago, I still have the original books she gave me in my youth. When I’m having a hard time figuring out how the world works, I pick up one of these amazing tomes, read the inscription she wrote to me and cast my mind back to the lively discussions we used to have about the title at hand.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Besides learning about good old-fashioned romance, there are deeper teachings at play. We all know the importance of pride—taking pride in your work, in your appearance, in yourself as a whole—but we often forget how easily pride can go awry. Not to mention the danger of prejudice. How easy is it to take our preconceived ideas and believe them to be true, when there is actually no basis in fact? (I think of it as a misguided mental shortcut. We have so much thinking to do, it’s natural to want to cut corners somewhere.) Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth were both rather impressive—and amusing—in their delivery of these faults, but thankfully they found some sense in the end.

(That’s my mom as a little girl!)

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

My mother introduced me to Anne’s adventures at an early age. I was mesmerized by her bravery, her dedication and her cherished belief that each day brought a fresh start. (Fun fact: I used to think I needed red hair to evince these characteristics. For nearly the entirety of the eight book series, if you must know.) I was pretty shy as a kid, so when I was faced with tackling an obstacle, I would do my best to channel my inner Anne. I may not have reached new heights in terms of being fearless, but I was able to explore many things outside of my comfort zone—which was good enough for me. Thank you, Anne!

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

When I first read this brilliant work, I thought my mother had lost her mind. Why would she give me a story filled with so much pain and emotional turmoil? What was the lesson in all this chaos? I may have needed a little guidance to understand her reasoning, but in the end, I was able to appreciate the endurance Jane exhibited throughout her challenging life. To have gone through so much difficulty with such strength and grace is something to be celebrated. And definitely something to aspire to in your own life.

Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin

My mother fell in love with San Francisco the late 60s, when she was lucky enough to spend a few years soaking up the sunshine and the beautiful scenery. After stumbling upon the start of Armistead Maupin’s famed series, she was instantly drawn to the world of Michael Tolliver and Mary Ann Singleton—laughing as Michael tried to guide Mary Ann out of her closely-guarded shell and as Mary Ann tried to keep Michael from eradicating his completely. She always had an appreciation for different cultures, beliefs and lifestyles and she reveled in the idea that everyone could get along, teaching each other as they went. Our shared love of this series left me with a courageous heart, an open mind and the will to chase my own dreams to California.

Oh the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss

I have always been a big fan of Dr. Seuss—the rhyming, the addictive rhythm of the words, the delightful illustrations and the heartfelt messages. This book is a pure work of genius in my opinion. How scary can a journey be if Dr. Seuss is giving you a pep talk along the way? All the basics are outlined nicely—you’ll have a lot of choices, you’ll have to work hard, you might get scared, but think of all the amazing things you can do! And most importantly: don’t give up. I’m sure it won’t shock you to learn that I still pull out my battered copy and read through it when I’m thinking of doing something which just happens to scare the crap out of me. Guess what? After my heart-to-heart with the good doctor, I’m all set. Every. Single. Time. (Incidentally, my book seems to have had places to go itself, since I couldn’t locate it for the photo shoot.)

I could go on and on (and on!) about lessons I have learned from a collection of truly exceptional books, but I thought you might appreciate the condensed version—after all, you have your own places to go. (Ha!) Plus, I would really like to hear about your life lessons, straight from the pages of your favorite books. Please fill me in below!

Thank you for joining us today Glynis Astie! You've definitely given me a new appreciation for these wonderful books. 

Books by Glynis Astie:
These books are free with Kindle Unlimited!
Click the images to find out more about them on Amazon.

French Twist (Book 1 of the French Twist Series) Only $0.99 or free with Kindle Unlimited. Description off Amazon:

Sydney Bennett had spent her life in pursuit of perfection. She planned, weighed her options and made careful choices based on calculated outcomes. Through all of her efforts, she had come pretty close to perfection, if she didn’t say so herself. She had fled the cold winters in New York for sunny California, found a job that she loved and lived in the same town as her sister, and best friend, Kate. The one area of perfection that had always eluded her was her love life. No matter how hard she tried, she always ended up with a broken heart. After a particularly traumatic breakup, Sydney vowed that she was done with love. 

Just as Sydney threw herself into her new plan to forget about men, a handsome Frenchman tossed all of her intentions out the window as he swept her off of her feet. Louis Durand had lived a life filled with excitement and adventure. He was impetuous, intelligent and incredibly charming. So naturally, he scared Sydney half to death. From the moment they met, Louis and Sydney’s romance progressed at warp speed. Sydney did her best not to run, but her deep rooted relationship anxiety threatened to provide an easy exit. When Louis mentioned marriage before Sydney even knew his favorite color, she was more than tempted to reach for her running shoes. Will she be able to put her fears aside to follow her heart? The one thing that Sydney will learn is that sometimes perfection comes with a twist...

I will be reading Gamer Girl for review! Check out the synopsis:

Struck by tragedy at an early age, Meri Palmer escaped into the only world she understood. Within the virtual realm of online gaming, she lived a life filled with mythical creatures and thrilling adventures, where she was strong, powerful, clever, and beautiful—everything she believed she wasn't in real life. As the years went by, her desire to cling to her cherished fantasyland only grew stronger.

But when Meri meets Morgan, equal parts gorgeous and goofball, she begins to wonder if the time has finally come to rejoin the so-called real world. Channeling the bravery of her fairy warrior alter ego, Meri slowly lets Morgan beyond the protective walls she’s built around her heart. Just as she finds a comfortable groove in an uncertain world, Morgan succumbs to insecurities of his own, leaving her lost and confused. Through her battle to regain her equilibrium, Meri will discover that even in reality, things aren’t always what they seem. 

Will Meri win the battle raging in her heart and summon the will to rescue her knight in shining armor? Or will she give in to the fear and find her game over?

Glynis Astie on Twitter

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Put Away Your Phone - Illustrated Children's Book (REVIEW)

Put Away Your Phone!

Author:  Tracy Bryan
Illustrated by: David Barrow
Category: Illustrated Children's Book
Suitable for: All ages
My Rating: 5 Stars
Format Read for Review: Kindle book from the author/publisher.
Pages: 38

Description: This book is about a young girl named Emma who is frustrated that adults spend way too much time looking at their smart phones. Her family goes to the zoo and her frustration grows making her distracted until she ends up getting lost. She gets an employee to use their phone to help her find her parents, in the process realizing the positive safety potential of phones. In the end she signs a treaty with her parents getting them to agree to give her the attention she deserves, and in return she'll work on her frustration.        

In Short: This is a super cute children's book that teaches both children and adults, the importance of giving your family your time and your undivided attention. Emma just wanted her parents to pay attention during her ballet classes and when on family outings, but they were always on their phones!

Pros: I love the artwork, it is really awesome. The moral of the book is great. The moral may seem a little more geared toward parents than the kids the book is intended for, however it is good to start teaching kids at a young age how to be respectful and how to not hurt people's feelings when they reach the age where they have their own smart phones. This new digital age has created a new need to learn some social skills regarding when it is and isn't appropriate to be messing around on your phone. Even without a phone it is still important for kids to remember to pay attention to others when they are trying to spend time or communicate with them. It is also important for families to spend quality time together and show they care by giving proper attention. I loved how the book ended. Emma set some boundaries for her parents and got them to see how upset it made her that they were always preoccupied with their phones. If you have a friend who has children and also an addiction to their smartphone this could be a funny and maybe even eye-opening gift for them! It is also great for any child to help them have good social skills. 

Cons: I have no issues with this book.   

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

You may also be interested in: #BabyLove My Toddler Life

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

You Belong to Me - Illustrated Children's Book (REVIEW)

You Belong to Me

Author: Mamoru Suzuki
Category: Illustrated Children's Book
Suitable for: All ages, ideal for 3-5
My Rating: 5 Stars
Format Read for Review: E-book from author/publisher.
Pages: 32

Description: This book is about love. It depicts many different animals showing love, affection, comfort and protection to a human child. The basic messages the child will take away from this book are: like the title, "you belong to me" and also "I love you," a message shared by all the animals throughout the book.

In Short: I love this book, it is super sweet. The theme is unconditional love. I think this book is a must have for a child of any age who has been adopted and maybe feels abandoned by their birth parents or has any fear of their adoptive parents not fully loving them. Because of how this book stresses these ideas: "I love you" and "you belong to me." This book is also great for younger children (in my opinion ages as young as 2 and old as 6) as a soothing bedtime story.

Pros: I love the art. It is incredibly cute with soft and sweet colors. The book certainly has a soothing feel to it. I think the author achieved their goal of making it a comforting bedtime story. Both parent and child will enjoy the lovely artwork. The words are all simple and easy for very young children to understand. The pages all have positive messages that are perfect for bedtime and sweet dreams. 

Cons: I have no issues with this book.

This book will be released Aug. 1, 2016. Find it on Amazon by clicking here.

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

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Warship Jolly Roger (REVIEW)

Warship Jolly Roger 

Author:  Sylvain Runberg, 
Artist: Miquel Montlló
Category: Graphic Novel, Science Fiction, Adventure
Suitable for: 17+
My Rating: 4.5 Stars
Format Read for Review: E-book from the author/publisher
Pages: 120

Description: This book begins in medias res at a riot at a prison. As the story unfolds you get to know the 4 unique characters who escape the prison together and go on the run. You also see bits of back-story explaining the politics of the world and the extended relationships of the characters. It is a dark, action packed tale full of violence, death and some tragic plot twists.      

In Short: If you like graphic novels in the science fiction genre and don't mind violence you will really enjoy this book. The story is very deep, there is a lot going on and it is a wonderful setup for what I'm sure will be an exciting series. There is a ton of action as the characters fight for freedom and revenge and the ending leaves you wanting to see what will happen next in the next stage of their journey.

Pros: Absolutely exceptional quality artwork. The book looks beautiful and every panel clearly displays the actions taking place. The beautiful use of color adds mood to the pages. I've read a lot of graphic novels in black and white and reading this in full color was an extra special treat. There are intriguing characters that you get to know, along with their secrets through dramatic irony. I love how much depth this book's story has. There were endless hidden secrets that were being revealed. This book is set in a dystopian futuristic universe with tons of sci-fi elements and even mutants and telepaths. The story is fast paced, dark and mysterious and I read it quickly, eager to see what would happen next.

Cons: The flash backs were a bit confusing at times because I kept forgetting what "year" it was. If I would have known there would be so many of them I would have kept better track of the timeline. The dates were displayed too small for me to realize their importance at first. It was still easy enough to follow the story but it did throw me off a little bit. Also, even though there were tragic events I didn't really feel them. The tragedies were set up, then executed. It felt more shocking than painful. There seemed to be no delay, or chance for the characters to change the events that were unfolding. The lack of feeling or suspense is probably just because so much information is being packed into so few pages. Overall it is a great book and these personal experiences I had were minor.

Parent's Guide:  Violence, gore/blood, some profanity, partial nudity (no sexual content).

This book will be release Aug. 9th. Find it on Amazon here.

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