Audiobook Review: Partials by Dan Wells

This book was suggested to me by Audible based on my past purchases. The blurb seemed compelling and I hadn’t listened to a YA dystopian in a little while, so I decided to give it a whirl. As I got into it, I found the premise to be interesting, and I liked that the story stayed deeply rooted in the science fiction aspect of things.

The writing contained vivid descriptions that made it easy for me to visualize the world Kira was living in. In the beginning, I thought her plan to cure the virus was over-optimistic, but I gave it a pass. This is YA after all, and a young character always has more to learn, so I shrugged it off and kept on listening. Kira does experience a series of hiccups and a number of difficult challenges which kept me wanting to know what happens next.

There’s a plot twist that I kind of anticipated, but I wasn’t sure how the author was going to pull it off. I thought it was nicely done, and the action continued to build up until the end.

This was another story narrated by Julia Whelan. She did a great job as usual. I suspect one of the reasons Audible recommended the book to me is because I’ve liked a lot of her other work.

I would sum this up as a solid story with good narration. I give it four out of five stars. I’m curious about where the series is headed, and I plan to put book number two on my TBR list.

Cover Reveal: One Summer with Autumn by Julie Reece with Giveaway

SR-Cover-Reveal-BannerNEW

 

Welcome to the Cover Reveal for

One Summer with Autumn
by Julie Reece

Be on the look out for this upcoming release from
Swoon Romance!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

 

one-summer-with-autumn1

 

Seventeen-year-old Autumn Teslow arrives at her father’s job fair knowing she’ll never measure up to the perfect image of daddy’s little girl—her twin sister.

Wearing anger management issues like a second skin won’t help Autumn win her dad’s approval for the big trip she’s been planning—or meet his condition that she successfully complete a summer internship for college.

Autumn’s cool unravels when her sister lectures against disappointing the family again. And when a young, bearded guy steps through the crowd to settle the growing argument between siblings, Autumn lashes out, dubbing him a “Duck Dynasty wannabe.”

At Nineteen, Caden Behr is clueless as to why his man parts are threatened by the fearsome girl before him. He’d only come to find an intern for his recreational equipment company, not break up a girl-fight between two sisters.

Unfortunately, the only candidate left is the girl who just told him off. Without her, he’ll never prove to his CEO mother that he’s ready for more responsibility.

Autumn and Caden agree that if they can keep from killing one another, they can use one another to get what they want and then never have to see each other again. Which is what they want.

Until it isn’t.

Because despite her best efforts to scare him off, and his fading desire to push her into the lake, they’re beginning to enjoy the time they spend together. But pride is a hard habit to break. And if neither will admit their changing feelings, they could lose a whole lot more than one summer.

add to goodreads

One Summer with Autumn
by Julie Reece
Publisher: October 18, 2016
Publisher: Swoon Romance

Available for Purchase:
Amazon

 

About-the-Author2

Julie_Reece_Image_3-253x300

 

As a child, Julie’s summers were about horseback riding and fishing, while winter brought sledding and ice-skating on frozen ponds. Most of life was magical, but not all. She struggled with multiple learning disabilities, and spent much of her time gazing out windows and daydreaming. In the fourth grade (with the help of one very nice teacher) she fought dyslexia for her right to read and won.

Afterward, she invented stories where powerful heroines kicked bad-guy butt to win the hearts charismatic heroes. And then she wrote one down…

Writing ever since, Julie weaves southern gothic, contemporary, fantasy, and young adult romances. She enjoys sweeping tales of mystery and epic adventure… which must include a really hot guy. Her writing is proof a dream and some hard work can overcome any obstacle.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest |Tumbr | Instagram | Goodreads

 

giveaway2

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Chapter-by-Chapter-blog-tour-button

 

Say what?? Another Goodreads Giveaway for Collide!

Happy Monday, peeps! Last month, I gave away a signed copy of Collide on Goodreads. I enjoyed it so much, I’ve decided to have another go around.

Enter for your chance to win a signed copy of Collide between Aug 29th and Sept 9th. Click on the link below. Good luck!

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Collide by Melissa J. Crispin

Collide

by Melissa J. Crispin

Giveaway ends September 09, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Audiobook Review: All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

For my next audiobook listen, I was still looking for YA, but decided to go for a contemporary story. All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven was recommended to me by Audible, and I thought, why not? Sounds interesting.

This book hit me with all the feels. The blurb hinted at it being a heavy book, and well, it delivered as expected. I especially connected with Violet and her feeling of loss. The way that she grieved and retreated into herself was believable and so very sad. Finch took a little longer to win me over, but he eventually did, making the ending an emotional one. It’s just that, in the beginning, his personality was a little over the top and took a little getting used to on my part.

I really try to avoid spoilers in my reviews. This one is hard to talk about without giving too much away. If you like YA books that deal with hard issues real people deal with every day, then read this. If you like your stories to end with everything neat and tied up with a pretty bow wrapped around it, you might want to skip it.

I love stories that allow readers to experience a range of emotions. This one made me laugh and also had me choked up at times. I give it four stars.

Audiobook Review: The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall

As I searched Audible for my next book, the cover for The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall caught my eye and the blurb sounded like something that would interest me so I decided to give it a try.

This book is narrated by Julia Whelan. I have listened to other books read by her, and I’ve never been disappointed with the way that she portrays the different characters. Her performance reminded me of the Die for Me series by Amy Plum, since this book also has scenes in Paris, and the accents were very well done.

I liked that this book had a different take on history, with the premise involving a secret society known as the Circle who control much of what goes on in the world. The book is filled with action and many of the scenes play out in intriguing spots in Paris and Istanbul.

I found The Conspiracy of Us to be entertaining. While I liked it, I didn’t love it. I would give this 3.5 out of 5 stars, mainly because I didn’t connect with Avery as much as I wanted to. Stellan was my favorite character by far. At some point, I will probably check out book 2 in this series, primarily because I want to learn more about him. It seems he would be more heavily involved based on the way things ended. I’ll leave it at that to avoid a spoiler.

Audiobook Review: November 9 by Colleen Hoover

For this audiobook, there were two different narrators for each main character. I liked that it was done this way.

When I heard the opening of the story, it seemed a little far fetched. I was uncertain if I was going to like it, but once I got past Ben and Fallon’s initial meeting, I easily got sucked in to the story. As the story progressed, and plot twists were revealed along the way, the beginning made more sense and I was happy that I had stuck with it.

I don’t like to do spoilers, so I won’t give any specifics, but there are parts of this book that brought me to tears. There is one particular part that just tore at my heart. I love books that make me feel, and this one most certainly did just that.

If you enjoy books that tug on the heart strings, I think you would really enjoy this one.

Release Day Celebration: The Paladins (The Artisans #2) by Julie Reece with Giveaway

PaladinsRDC

 

Happy Release Day to

The Paladins (The Artisans #2)

by Julie Reece!

Join us in celebrating this new release from Month9Books!

Enter the giveaway found at the end of the post.

Happy Book Birthday, Julie!

 

The Paladins Cover

 

The Artisan curse is broken. Souls trapped in a mysterious otherworld called The Void are finally released. Now, Raven Weathersby, Gideon Maddox, and Cole Wynter can finally move on with their lives…or so they thought. If the ancient magic is truly dead, then why are mystical fires plaguing Gideon at every turn? What accounts for Raven’s frightening visions of her dead mother? And who is the beautiful, tortured girl haunting Cole’s dreams?

Last year, a group of lonely teens sacrificed secrets, battled the supernatural, and faced their own demons to set one another free. Yet six months later, the heart of evil still beats within The Void. And the trio is forced to face the horrific truth: that their only way out is to go back in.

The Paladins completes this eerie YA Southern Gothic where loyalties are tested, love is challenged, and evil seeks them on the ultimate battlegrounds—in their minds, their souls, and their hearts.

add to goodreads

The Paladins (The Artisans #2) by Julie Reece

Publication Date: May 3, 2016

Publisher: Month9Books

Google Play | BAM | Chapters | Indies | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks

excerpt

Gideon’s arms slide around my waist as I stand at the kitchen sink with my snack. I’m trying to work up the courage to tell him what happened in my room this morning. All day I’ve avoided delivering the news that may derail our careful plans for fall semester.

Warm breath lingers on the back of my head sending delicious chills though my body. His fingers gently brush the skin on my stomach beneath my blouse, and I fight the urge to turn and leap into his arms. The guy emits more dangerous energy than a leaky power plant. Still, I hold back.

I was the one who wanted to go slowly. Like, first gear slow. Maybe just idle. Call me old fashioned, but I always dreamed that my first time sleeping with a guy would be with my husband on our honeymoon. I still want that, and him, but I just turned eighteen.

The muscles under his golden skin flex as his arms tighten around me. How does he make me feel safe and nervous at the same time? His nose parts the hair above my ear. Steady breaths, finally drive me to place my cookie on the counter and face him. My hands slide around his neck, fingers playing with the silky curls at his nape. I love the spicy scent of black licorice that’s distinctly his.

He lowers his head, nose rubbing mine before he lets his lips drift over my mouth. Whisper soft, his hesitant touch is an excruciating tease. Always, there’s curiosity and the promise of more to come.

My fingers untangle at his neck and drop to the bulge in his biceps. I can’t help enjoying the way they bunch when he holds me. My legs lose strength, knees weaken. There’s every possibility the boy will kiss me into unconsciousness. Can that happen? He must know because he holds me so close I hardly have the air to speak.

 

OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES:

 

The Artisans

 

They say death can be beautiful. But after the death of her mother, seventeen-year-old Raven Weathersby gives up her dream of becoming a fashion designer, barely surviving life in the South Carolina lowlands.

To make ends meet, Raven works after school as a seamstress creating stunning works of fashion that often rival the great names of the day.

Instead of making things easier on the high school senior, her stepdad’s drinking leads to a run in with the highly reclusive heir to the Maddox family fortune, Gideon Maddox.

But Raven’s stepdad’s drying out and in no condition to attend the meeting with Maddox. So Raven volunteers to take his place and offers to repay the debt in order to keep the only father she’s ever known out of jail, or worse.

Gideon Maddox agrees, outlining an outrageous demand: Raven must live in his home for a year while she designs for Maddox Industries’ clothing line, signing over her creative rights.

Her handsome young captor is arrogant and infuriating to the nth degree, and Raven can’t imagine working for him, let alone sharing the same space for more than five minutes.

But nothing is ever as it seems. Is Gideon Maddox the monster the world believes him to be? And can he stand to let the young seamstress see him as he really is?

add to goodreads

Google Play | BAM | Chapters | Indies | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks

 

About-the-Author2

Julie_Reece_Image_3-253x300

 

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

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

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

Then I thought I’d write one down…

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

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest |Tumbr | Instagram | Goodreads

 

giveaway2

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Chapter-by-Chapter-blog-tour-button

 

Collide is now available!

Collide-Evernightpublishing-JayAheer2016-large1-3D-render

Collide-Evernightpublishing-JayAheer2016-large1-3D-render

It’s finally here. I’ve been working toward this day for a very long time, and I am so happy to announce that Collide is now available for purchase.

If you want to learn more about my debut novel, I give three reasons why you should read it on Sharon Struth’s blog today. Collide is also in the spotlight at Iris St. Clair’s blog today. I feel so lucky to be hosted by two wonderful authors. If you have a minute, I hope you click through and check out their sites.

For all that are interested in grabbing a copy, here are some links:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01CZ2WPHQ

Evernight Teen: http://www.evernightteen.com/collide-by-melissa-j-crispin

Also, if you would like to add Collide to your shelf on Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29413396-collide

A New Normal

I’ve been wanting to write this post for weeks, but it’s been hard to find the right words and I need to get them just right.

An hour after I published my announcement about Collide getting published with Evernight Teen, I received devastating news. News which two months later still breaks my heart, and will have a lasting effect forever.

My brother passed away unexpectedly in his sleep. At first, I thought what most people would in my shoes. No way. Not possible. There must be some kind of mistake. He was only forty-four, was not ill, and had no health issues that I was aware of. How could something like this happen? It’s not fair that he’s gone. It just isn’t.

My brother was a thoughtful, generous soul, one I wish I appreciated more when he was around. He knew that I loved him, but I regret not having done more for him and with him, and I’ll never get the chance to do that over. Not a day has passed where I haven’t thought of him, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon, if ever.

I miss him dearly. It’s odd to no longer get text messages from him, or to hear his voice on the other side of the phone.But, probably the weirdest thing of all is that I can almost deal with missing him. It’s knowing that he’s never coming back that really hurts.

What I’m about to say is totally cliché, but it’s never felt more true to me. Hug your loved ones. Tell them and show them how much they mean to you, because you never know which time will be the last.

When I started sharing the horrible news, I received encouraging words from a writing friend. She had lost her mother two years earlier right around the same time of year, and her insight had comforted me more than she probably knows. She encouraged me to grieve, and to not expect any sort of “normal” until a new normal finds its way past the pain. Thank you, Sharon, for reminding me that, at some point, things will feel okay again.

And, so I go on, searching for my new normal…