Friday, January 10, 2014

~Kindle Fire HDX Giveaway~

January Kindle   Win a Kindle Fire HDX, Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash ($229 value)   This is a joint AUTHOR & BLOGGER GIVEAWAY EVENT! Bloggers & Authors have joined together and each chipped in a little money towards a Kindle Fire HDX 7".
The winner will have the option of receiving a 7" Kindle Fire HDX (US Only - $229 Value)
  Or $229 Amazon.com Gift Card (International)
  Or $229 in Paypal Cash (International)
      January Sponsors
  1. I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
  2. Feed Your Reader
  3. The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Something Year Old Girl
  4. Author Kimber Leigh Wheaton
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  6. NESSAROX
  7. Author Carol Davis Luce
  8. The Reporter and the Girl
  9. Author David Pandolfe
  10. Bella Street Writes
  11. Author Bonnie Blythe
  12. Author Elizabeth Seckman
  13. MyLadyWeb: Women's History and Women Authors
  14. Just One More Chapter
  15. Author Donna Fasano
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  17. Author Linda S. Prather
  18. Author Heather McCoubrey
  19. Author M.A. Comley
  20. Jessica Loves Books
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  22. Author Cidney Swanson
  23. Lori's Reading Corner
  24. Author Jennifer Laurens
  25. Allergic to Life
  26. ~Owl Always Be Reading
  27. Author J.L. Weil
  28. Buku-Buku Didi
  29. Barb's Wire - eBooks & More
  30. Author Jennifer Gilby Roberts
  31. Another Head Full of Fantasy
  32. Fairiechick's Fantasy Book Reader
  33. Author Kim Cresswell
  34. Mother Daughter Book Reviews
  35. Buried Under Romance
  36. Jenna Does Books
  37. Laurie Here
  38. The Bunny's Review
  39. Bea's Book Nook
  40. Fabulously Girly Book Blog
  41. The Loopy Librarian
  42. Bound4Escape
  43. Michael SciFan
  44. Chapter by Chapter
  45. Author Helen Smith
  46. Button-the-Push Books and Giveaways
  47. Author S.M. Blooding
  48. Back Off My Books
  49. Author Brinda Berry
  50. Author Christie Anderson
  51. Author Leslie A. Susskind
  52. More Than A Review
  53. Author Heather Gray
  54. Paige Ryan
  55. Fire and Ice
  56. Author Bryna Butler
Sign up to sponsor the next Kindle Fire Giveaway: http://www.iamareader.com/category/kindle-giveaway-sign-ups   Giveaway Details 1 winner will receive their choice of an all new Kindle Fire 7" HDX (US Only - $229 value), $229 Amazon Gift Card or $229 in Paypal Cash (International). There is a second separate giveaway for bloggers who post this giveaway on their blog. See details in the rafflecopter on how to enter to win the 2nd Kindle Fire HDX 7". Ends 2/9/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the participating authors & bloggers. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. a Rafflecopter giveaway Copyright © 2014 I Am A Reader, Not A Writer, All rights reserved.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

~Blog Tour Book Review and Giveaway: Starseed~

Tour Schedule



Starseed
Author: Liz Gruder
ISBN: 978-1937178291
Publisher: WiDo Publishing
Published: February 2013

SUMMARY


*************************
Starseed concerns a sixteen-year-old girl who falls in love with a starseed boy who reveals that she, too, is half extraterrestrial, and is forced to choose her allegiance between Earth and her star family.
*************************


Kaila Guidry has always known she is different. When she meets Jordyn Stryker at school, she finds out just how different.

Jordyn was born and raised far from Earth, a starseed, one of six new students sent to Louisiana's Bush High to learn human ways. But Jordyn didn't count on meeting someone like Kaila.

When Kaila is pushed to her limit by high school bullying and cruelty, Jordyn awakens her to a new reality—and to love. But to prove herself, Kaila must look the other way as the real purposes of the starseeds unfold.

As the horrific plan behind the starseed visit to Earth moves inexorably forward, Kaila and Jordan, caught in an impossible love, must determine where their true loyalties lie.

MY REVIEW:

Kaila Guidry has always been different from other kids.  She has always been home schooled and her mother is too overprotective for her liking.  Now she is finally getting the chance to go to a real high school.  Kaila can't wait to make new friends.  She just wants to fit in with the rest of the teenagers.  The first kids she meets are Jordyn Stryker and his crew.  She feels an instant connection to him and  he holds a key to her past.  Kaila must ask herself who and what is most important in her life.

I read this book in one day!  A really good Sci-Fi is hard to find but this is definitely one of them.  The characters are well thought out.  This is one book that you will not want to put down.  Good from the first paragraph to the last sentence.  Liz Gruder is an author that I am going to keep my eye on.



Praise


"After reading Starseed, my faith in YA sci-fi has been restored! ... I didn't want to put it down ... it had enough mystery and suspense to keep me going, page after page. Superb job 4.5 out of 5!"
-- The Forbidden Library Book Reviews

"I would recommend this book to all sci-fi lovers and, to those who aren't into it, take a chance. Who knows? You may love this book just as much as I did! Liz Gruder is definitely an author you should keep a look out for as she has great talent in writing and a huge imagination. Starseed was a wonderful read and very different from other books I've read. It was a very nice change from what I usually read and kept me enticed all the way."
--Starlight Book Reviews

"Interesting read. A lot like Roswell, but different. Gruder does a great job building the dark mystery of what the aliens are really up to on earth."
--Charity Bradford, sci-fi author, "The Magic Wakes"

“The story caught me off guard and won me over after the first chapter. The main conflict is a personal one for Kalia. Will she embrace her alien side or continue life as a human?”
--Pixie Dust Book Reviews

Starseed is a fun sci-fi read with romance. It brings light to the cliques of high school, and challenges the main character, Kaila, to be herself, instead of how others expect her to be.
--Kerri Cuevas, YA Author "Deadly Kisses"

"Liz Gruder's characters come alive through youthful, spunky narrative, and her headstrong heroine, Kaila Guidry, elicits a reader's encouragement from the first page. Fans of P.C. Cast will find themselves similarly transported into Gruder's exploration of the dark sides of faith, love, higher dimensions, and, of course, high school."
-- Jadie Jones, YA author "Moonlit"



Purchase



Author Liz Gruder

As a youth, Liz Gruder saw a series of UFOs with her best friend while riding bikes. Ever since, she’s held a fascination for the stars. An avid reader, she used to hide under her covers and read with a flashlight. She has degrees in English and Psychology from Tulane University, a nursing license and a yoga certification. After going through Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Liz realized how short life is and is now slowly fulfilling her bucket list: she’s been to the Egyptian pyramids (totally awesome and thought provoking) and is now teaching yoga and writing speculative fiction. Starseed is her debut novel.









Blog Tour Giveaway
$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 4/10/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the authors. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



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Thursday, March 14, 2013

~Book Blast and Giveaway: Matt Archer: Blade's Edge~

Matt Archer: Blade's Edge

When Matt Archer was fourteen, he discovered monsters are real. As if that wasn’t enough to go on for a few decades, Matt also found out that he’d been chosen to hunt those monsters--with a sentient, supernatural knife. Now fifteen, Matt has spent the last year working with a clandestine military unit, trying to rid the world of monsters, demons and other vicious creatures, all while keeping it a secret from nearly everyone he knows back home in Billings.

Including his mom.

Add in a new girlfriend, family secrets, sibling drama and enough homework to sink an aircraft carrier, and Matt’s life has become more complicated than he ever imagined. Worse, the knife has developed some very definite opinions about Matt’s personal life and it interferes in his business whenever it wants. More and more, Matt’s coming to realize that sharing brain-space with a spirit kind of sucks.

When stories of decimated towns and hordes of zombies start pouring into the Pentagon from Afghanistan, Matt knows he’ll be called up soon. Between the new mission and the knife’s increasing control over his mind, Matt wonders if he’ll survive long enough to take his driver’s exam.


Review Quotes for Matt Archer: Blade’s Edge

“Blade's Edge is an exciting continuation of the Matt Archer series. Kendra Highley did not fall victim to the sophomore funk. She has written an emotional and power story about Matt's horrific journey to rid the world of monsters.” –Kinx’s Book Nook (Amazon)

“I enjoyed Matt Archer: Monster Hunter to the point I was picking it up every time I had spare moments (which are few in my home), but MA: Blade's Edge has blown me away! Ms. Highley has crafted a story that comes to life with vivid images, exciting adventures, and thrilling mishaps that add a touch of humor (driving test, anyone?)” –Kelly C. (Amazon)

“"Matt Archer Blade's Edge" more than delivers what a reader wants from a sequel. The tension and action are taken up a level, as are the mysteries and plot developments.
Best of all, you feel the time passing from book to book and see the characters really grow and change.” –Picky Reviewer (Amazon)

“The Matt Archer books are the best young adult books I've read since I was a young adult! Think Supernatural for a younger audience, but better. I'll be ordering paper copies for my Favorites shelf. Not to be missed!” Sarah G. (Amazon)


Buy Links for Blade’s Edge:




Matt Archer: Monster Hunter

Fourteen-year-old Matt Archer spends his days studying Algebra, hanging out with his best friend and crushing on the Goddess of Greenhill High, Ella Mitchell. To be honest, he thinks his life is pretty lame until he discovers something terrifying on a weekend camping trip at the local state park.

Monsters are real. And living in his backyard.

But that's not the half of it. After Matt is forced to kill a strange creature to save his uncle, he finds out that the weird knife he took from his uncle's bag has a secret, one that will change Matt's life. The knife was designed with one purpose: to hunt monsters. And it's chosen Matt as its wielder.

Now Matt's part of a world he didn't know existed, working with a covert military unit dedicated to eliminating walking nightmares. Faced with a prophecy about a looming dark war, Matt soon realizes his upcoming Algebra test is the least of his worries.

His new double life leaves Matt wondering which is tougher: hunting monsters or asking Ella Mitchell for a date?



Review quotes for Matt Archer: Monster Hunter:

“Terrific page turner; I stayed up half the night reading it, and now I can't wait for the next installment.”  --Amelia Anne (Goodreads)

“The action is quick-paced, abundant and so much fun!!! I can't get over just how awesome of a read this book is; I can't wait for more!!!” --Danielle S. (Goodreads)

“I can't remember the last time I had this much fun reading a book. The eponymous narrator is a very likable and believable hero, the world is rich and detailed….
It has been a long time since I was a teenager, but I'm pretty sure that this book would appeal to an audience of all ages.” -- Misha B. (Goodreads)

“The action doesn't stop. Seriously! I was up until after 1am because I couldn't put it down!” --Riamachia (Amazon)

“It's funny - I thought I was too old for YA stories, and then I realised that I was just looking for the right kind of stories to hold my interest. This is one of those. If you're looking for vampires or angels or similar things that tend to make up YA novels at the moment, you won't find that here - you will, however, find something a bit more awesome.” –Sweartoad (Amazon)


Buy Links for Matt Archer: Monster Hunter:



Author Kendra C. Highley

Kendra C. Highley lives in north Texas with her husband and two children. She also serves as staff to two self-important and high-powered cats. This, according to the cats, is her most important job. She believes chocolate is a basic human right, running a 10k is harder than it sounds, and that everyone should learn to drive a stick-shift. She loves monsters, vacations, baking and listening to bad electronica.







Book Blast Giveaway
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 3/2413

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the authors. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

~Book Review and Giveaway: Aura~

Tour Schedule


Aura

"I half-turned to her and shrugged, still processing what I'd seen, or at least what I thought I'd seen, in Ms. Neal's eyes—like they weren't hers. Obviously, they were her eyes, but it looked like she'd plucked them from someone else's head. A dead someone else's head."

In the fight between good and evil, Light is your only weapon.

Crystal Scott finally feels like a normal teenager. She has a lead in the high school play, a best friend, and a gorgeous boyfriend. With prom only a few days away, Crystal’s ordinary life seems perfect.

Endowed with great Light because of her virtuous choices and her inherent gifts, Crystal’s aura has become visible to those with the ability to see auras. Unfortunately, her power has also attracted the attention of demons intent on destroying all Light.

When Vincent Crandall, the human host for a powerful demon, discovers that Crystal’s Light is strong enough to disrupt the connection between demons and their hosts, he realizes she may be able to sever the connection altogether. Determined to stop her from interfering with his plans to rule the world, he sends operatives to neutralize her Light.

After the operatives fail to disable Crystal, Vincent decides he must harness her power for himself. He kidnaps her parents, and Crystal is thrust into battle against a demon army she didn’t even know existed. With the help of a mysterious young man and his mother, Crystal must learn to use the power within her before Vincent kills her parents and exploits her Light.



Goodreads * Amazon

MY REVIEW
Crystal has spent most of her life moving from one place to another with her parents.  It is finally her senior year in high school and everything has fallen into place.  For the first time in her life she has a best friend, a hot boyfriend and the lead in the senior play.  Things start getting strange the weekend of the Prom.  The only one of her friends to have a curfew, Crystal's friends try to pressure her to be disobedient.  Crystal has strong values and has always obeyed her parents and has chosen to remain a virgin until marriage.  No one can compromise her beliefs.  With her best friend, boyfriend and even teachers acting strange, Crystal has no idea what is going on.  When something happens to her parents, the most important people in her life, she finally must use her Light in order to save them and defeat evil.

I really enjoyed reading this book.  A perfect blend of YA Paranormal.  Crystal has the gift of Light and goodness but has never know it.  She must learn how to harvest it to defeat evil and save the ones she loves. This is the perfect book if you want to read a good, clean YA book for a change.  



Author Rebecca Lynn Talley

Rebecca Lynn Talley grew up in the gorgeous seaside city of Santa Barbara, CA. She met, and married, her husband, Del, while attending Brigham Young University. She graduated from BYU with a degree in Communications. She currently lives in rural Colorado on a small ranch with a dog, too many cats to count, and a herd of goats. She and Del are the proud parents of ten wildly-creative, multi-talented children.

Rebecca is the author of a children's picture book, Grasshopper Pie (WindRiver 2003), a children's chapter book, Gabby's Secret (DuBon Publishing 2011), four novels, Heaven Scent (CFI 2008), Altared Plans (CFI 2009), The Upside of Down (CFI 2011), and Aura (DuBon Publishing 2012). She has also authored numerous children's stories and articles for both print and online magazines.

When she isn’t writing, Rebecca loves to date her husband, play with her kids, swim in the ocean, and dance to disco music while she cleans the house. She has folded at least one million loads of laundry, baked hundreds of batches of chocolate chip cookies, and eaten 5,478 gallons of ice cream.





Reviews

This YA urban fantasy is fantastic! The story grabbed me from the start and kept me enthralled until the end! I love books that keep me thinking about the characters and events and possibilities even after putting them down...Aura is one of those books! Rebecca Lynn Talley has created characters you care about in a world begging for the special gifts they possess. I love the premise of Aura and imagine I'll be enjoying many more Light vs. Demon novels in the future....at least I hope there are more to come!
~KindleQueen

I loved the clasic good VS evil in Aura. I loved that Crystal made the conscious choice to be good inspite of feelings and doubts. I also loved the idea of demons posessing somone who had made dark choices, or greedy bargains. The book is clean and well handled inspite of the serious subject matter.Well done.
~C. Michelle Jefferies

This is one of those books that you hope will become widespread enough to make a positive impact in this world. Personally, I think this is a book every teenager should read and I will definitely be passing it along to my own kids. Thank you, Rebecca, for writing a beautiful story with a wonderful message! I hope you keep at it because now I want a sequel!
~Rachael Anderson

Aura sucked me in from the first page. The book is intense and well-written. I loved that Crystal is innocent and makes a conscious choice to stay that way in the face of intense pressure. I would recommend Aura to young adults on up.
~Cami Checketts

Wonderful, wonderful message. Probably the most solid moral message I’ve ever read in contemporary literature, but without being too heavy or feeling like a lecture. You could almost look at it like an allegory, I think, representing real life with fictional symbols. I’m trying to explain without giving anything away, and I think I’m doing a bad job. Anyway, I have four boys, but if I had a girl, I would definitely have her read it. The story is imaginative and creative, Crystal is a strong but believable heroine, caught up in high school cares and not realizing her own potential or the battle that is waged around and for her. I thought at times it was a bit predictable, and that the first half of the book drug a little. It probably could have been told quicker or perhaps made a little more interesting. But all in all, I enjoyed it. The story kept me going and the characters were sweet and compelling.
~May Abbey

Wow! I got this book for free and LOVED it! I can't wait to read any follow up books! (There WILL be follow up books, right?) In this story Crystal is full of light, thanks to making good choices, and she has to figure out how to keep the light in the midst of high school where temptation runs rampant and where she just wants to be an average girl! I like that things never went too far, and I felt like it was very well-written, with rounded out characters!
~Tamera Westhoff

Blog Tour Giveaway
$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 3.21.13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.


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~Book Blast and Giveaway: Starseed~


Starseed
Author: Liz Gruder
ISBN: 978-1937178291
Publisher: WiDo Publishing
Published: February 2013

SUMMARY

Kaila Guidry has always known she is different. When she meets Jordyn Stryker at school, she finds out just how different.

Jordyn was born and raised far from Earth, a starseed, one of six new students sent to Louisiana's Bush High to learn human ways. But Jordyn didn't count on meeting someone like Kaila.

When Kaila is pushed to her limit by high school bullying and cruelty, Jordyn awakens her to a new reality—and to love. But to prove herself, Kaila must look the other way as the real purposes of the starseeds unfold.

As the horrific plan behind the starseed visit to Earth moves inexorably forward, Kaila and Jordan, caught in an impossible love, must determine where their true loyalties lie.


Praise

"You know from the opening paragraph that something very strange is going on… We see Kaila try to live the life of a normal teen, and we see her "otherness" pull her back into an increasingly tangled web of questions, deceit, and hidden intentions. Liz really shines as a writer, lining the closets and drawers of everyday life with spine-chilling suspense that springs out at you when you least expect it. Starseed is an entertaining read. I highly recommend."
--Patricia B. Smith. Author “What the Animals Tell Me” and “Fifty Shades of Santa” (clean romance fiction)

"Liz Gruder’s characters come alive through youthful, spunky narrative, and her headstrong heroine, Kaila Guidry, elicits a reader’s encouragement from the first page. Fans of Amanda Hocking will find themselves similarly transported into Gruder’s exploration of the dark sides of faith, love, higher dimensions, and, of course, high school." --Jadie Jones, young-adult fantasy author


Purchase



Author Liz Gruder

As a youth, Liz Gruder saw a series of UFOs with her best friend while riding bikes. Ever since, she’s held a fascination for the stars. An avid reader, she used to hide under her covers and read with a flashlight. She has degrees in English and Psychology from Tulane University, a nursing license and a yoga certification. After going through Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Liz realized how short life is and is now slowly fulfilling her bucket list: she’s been to the Egyptian pyramids (totally awesome and thought provoking) and is now teaching yoga and writing speculative fiction. Starseed is her debut novel.









Tour Schedule




Book Blast Giveaway
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 4/7/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the authors. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

~Promo and Giveaway: Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud~

Tour Schedule


Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud

Max has anger management issues. But she has a secret, too. She can make things happen. Like magic. She almost killed a loser skate punk and nearly used it on her stuck up older sister. The question is, can she do anything other than blow things up? Can she learn to control it? And is it really possible that an obscure teenage girl is the key to keeping all of humanity safe?

Philip just got his ring back. He got it taken away for messing with his teacher’s mind so he can cheat on a test. Now that he has his ring, he thinks he should be able to use his power to make his life better. A lot better. The problem is that people want him to be responsible. But if you could do magic, wouldn’t you use it to escape work in any way possible?

Aaron wants to be a soldier. He knows there are lots of people who would try to take over, and he’s determined to stop them. The problem is that there’s this new girl. And she might be not be on the right side of things. She’s really talented and pretty, but she might be able to destroy everything he believes in. Whatever the case, he knows he needs to learn to be world class with the magic sword while he figures out what to do.

Brynn never gets out. Her grandfather won’t permit it. Her only access to the outside world are high fashion magazines, so she has an unusual idea what she should wear. She’s dying to get out and travel. And adopt animals. Any kind of animal. Is she a lonely future granny with cats or are her ridiculous clothes actually the next fashion craze? What possible role could she play in the destiny of the world?

Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud is a fast-paced fantasy adventure for all ages (10 and up) and is the first of a planned trilogy. Fans of magic, swordplay, secret agents, and conspiracies set in a modern everyday world will not be able to put the book down. Jon Thomason is a debut author and paints a vivid world of magic right under our noses and delivers rapid-fire action that keeps the pages turning.

Purchase

Praise

"Impressively inventive and enjoyable...vivid storytelling and exceptional characterization...Max's personality is layered and complex...conveyed flawlessly...keeping readers intrigued and engaged...writing style is smooth, and a subtle sense of humor comes through...narrative tension builds at a good pace and easily flows toward a satisfying and exciting conclusion...parents are likely to both approve of the story and enjoy reading it themselves...talented writer...sure to find an appreciative audience that will eagerly anticipate the next book in the series." -- ForeWord Clarion Review

"Thomason shines in his heroine's characterization...magical" --blueink Review


Excerpt


Max was assaulted with the smell of scorched food as soon as she opened the door. Her spirits fell. Not only would the shower have to wait, she’d be forced to deal with her sister. On cue, her mother’s voice drifted from the kitchen. “Max, is that you? It’s dinner time.”
Max looked forward to dinner and time with her sister about as much as she looked forward to a trip to the dentist. Maybe less. At least after going there, her teeth would feel clean! Spending time cooking was incompatible with her mother’s busy social calendar. Dinner was usually a frozen entrĂ©e superheated by an oven as hot as a blast furnace. Her mother seemed to think that the fiery temperature would make up for the meal not being homemade.
Then she heard an oh-so-perfect laugh from her oh-so-perfect sister. Max wasn’t sure she could handle the confrontation after everything that had happened that day. Even worse, her father was out of town, so she’d have to face her sister with no mediator. She knew she should probably skip dinner and slink away to her room, but the smell, bad as it was, had triggered a fierce animal hunger in her. And she would not give her sister the satisfaction of scaring her away, so she continued on into the kitchen.
Perfectly coiffed, blond, and beautiful, 16-year-old Alexandra was the spitting image of her mother, that is, minus the age-weathering and the plasticky attempts to reverse it. Max became aware of the squishing sound her sopping shoes were making just as she locked eyes with her sister. There was no mistaking Alexandra’s disgust at having her mommy time interrupted—and her contempt of her unworthy younger sister in general. The fight started before Max even made it to her chair. “Whathave you been doing, Maxine? Mud wrestling?”
Alexandra’s smirk, and artful toss of her golden hair relit Max’s rage. She threw herself into her chair, nearly knocking it over. “I borrowed your makeup, Alex, to try to look like you, but I must not have put enough on.” Alexandra liked being called Alex even less than Max liked being called Maxine.
“Stay out of my stuff, you filthy brat! And Mom, look at the mess she’s making all over.”
“I wouldn’t touch your toxic waste!”
“Girls, please try the lasagna,” pleaded their mother. Max stuffed a bite into her mouth. It was so hot that tears came to her eyes. The food came right back out and onto her plate.
“Eeew, you’re such a disgusting pig!” Alexandra said. “You must have been adopted. There’s no way you’re related to me!”
Max’s mouth hurt too much to respond. Her anger flared. With it, a fire built inside her. It was hot, but did not burn. It built in intensity and pressure, and itched for release. It was the most natural thing in the world to focus it on Alexandra, but then she remembered the explosion and the moans.Blood and glass. Max stood and screamed in rage and fear, her chair falling backwards with a loud clatter. She was only dimly aware of the shocked look on Alexandra’s face as she ran sobbing to her room.
What had she almost done to her sister?



Author Jon Thomason


Jon Thomason lives with his family in San Diego, after many years living in the beautiful Seattle area. He has a successful career in high tech where he's been fortunate enough to participate in many big-name industry releases.

Storytelling permeates everything he does. In the moments when Jon is not helping build the story of the tech world, he can almost always be found working on a project: writing, photography, videography, graphics design, or 3D art.

And he's always careful to conceal his jinni magic abilities, though perhaps might slip one day and be discovered...



Links



Blog Tour Giveaway
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash plus a copy of Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud
Print copy to US only, Ebook Internationally
Ends 3/31/13


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Friday, March 8, 2013

~Book Review and Giveaway: Baked Alaska~

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Baked Alaska by Josi S. Kilpack

An Alaskan cruise is the setting for amateur detective Sadie Hoffmillers latest adventure. Sadie plans to spend time relaxing with her two grown children, Breanna and Shawn, and her boyfriend, Pete, while enjoying the luxury and cuisine of an elegant cruise ship and helping to plan her daughters upcoming wedding. But even as the crew prepares to leave port, Sadie has suspicions about the voyage ahead and the relationship between her normally easygoing son and a mysterious female passenger he obviously knows but refuses to discuss. When the woman is discovered unconscious during the second night at sea, Sadies apprehension escalates. Over the last few years, Sadie has developed an extreme dislike for secrets and it would seem her son is keeping one from her. *Includes eight new mouthwatering recipes, tested and approved by the official bakers of Sadies Virtual Test Kitchen.




Praise for Baked Alaska
Josi Kilpack has done it again. You would think that all these events that occur in Sadie's life wouldn't be natural, but Josi Kilpack has a way of making you believe that it just "happens" and it is normal. I have grown to love Sadie's character, even if she is a busybody, you can't help but cheer for her as she attempts to solve a mystery or crime. One of my favorite series. :)
~Goodreads Reviewer Lacey McNeill









Author Josi S. Kilpack

Josi S. Kilpack grew up hating to read until she was thirteen and her mother handed her a copy of The Witch of Blackbird Pond. From that day forward, she read everything she could get her hands on and credits her writing “education” to the many novels she has “studied” since then. She began her first novel in 1998 and hasn’t stopped since. Her seventh novel, Sheep’s Clothing, won the 2007 Whitney Award for Mystery/Suspense, and Lemon Tart, her ninth novel, was a 2009 Whitney Award Finalist. Josi was the Best in State winner in literature for 2012 and currently has two books (Banana Split and Tres Leches Cupcakes) as finalists in the 2012 Whitney awards.

Josi currently lives in Willard, Utah, with her family.



MY REVIEW:
In Baked Alaska, Sadie is taking a much needed cruise to Alaska with her wonderful boyfriend Pete.  Joining them is Sadie's son Shawn and daughter Breanna.  What is supposed to be fun and relaxating quickly turns ugly.  Shawn is arguing with a lady that Sadie has never seen before.  What in the world has gotten into her son?  Breanna is in her own little world trying to plan her dream wedding with the help of an overbearing future mother in law.  At least she still has Pete to lean on.  When an untimely death happens aboard the ship, Sadie will use her detective skills to help solve the mystery.  Things are not always what they seem and hopefully Sadie will find the culprit before it is to late.

I love a good, clean mystery and this book is the complete package.  A mystery aboard a cruise ship and delicious recipes that actually look like they would be fun to try.  It makes me want to dust off my passport and go on my own cruise.  I have not read any mystery books in a while and this is so good.  I will be reading more books by  Josi S. Kilpack.



Blog Tour Giveaway
$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 3/20/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.


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Thursday, March 7, 2013

~Book Blast and Giveaway: Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud~


Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud

Max has anger management issues. But she has a secret, too. She can make things happen. Like magic. She almost killed a loser skate punk and nearly used it on her stuck up older sister. The question is, can she do anything other than blow things up? Can she learn to control it? And is it really possible that an obscure teenage girl is the key to keeping all of humanity safe?

Philip just got his ring back. He got it taken away for messing with his teacher’s mind so he can cheat on a test. Now that he has his ring, he thinks he should be able to use his power to make his life better. A lot better. The problem is that people want him to be responsible. But if you could do magic, wouldn’t you use it to escape work in any way possible?

Aaron wants to be a soldier. He knows there are lots of people who would try to take over, and he’s determined to stop them. The problem is that there’s this new girl. And she might be not be on the right side of things. She’s really talented and pretty, but she might be able to destroy everything he believes in. Whatever the case, he knows he needs to learn to be world class with the magic sword while he figures out what to do.

Brynn never gets out. Her grandfather won’t permit it. Her only access to the outside world are high fashion magazines, so she has an unusual idea what she should wear. She’s dying to get out and travel. And adopt animals. Any kind of animal. Is she a lonely future granny with cats or are her ridiculous clothes actually the next fashion craze? What possible role could she play in the destiny of the world?

Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud is a fast-paced fantasy adventure for all ages (10 and up) and is the first of a planned trilogy. Fans of magic, swordplay, secret agents, and conspiracies set in a modern everyday world will not be able to put the book down. Jon Thomason is a debut author and paints a vivid world of magic right under our noses and delivers rapid-fire action that keeps the pages turning.

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Praise

"Impressively inventive and enjoyable...vivid storytelling and exceptional characterization...Max's personality is layered and complex...conveyed flawlessly...keeping readers intrigued and engaged...writing style is smooth, and a subtle sense of humor comes through...narrative tension builds at a good pace and easily flows toward a satisfying and exciting conclusion...parents are likely to both approve of the story and enjoy reading it themselves...talented writer...sure to find an appreciative audience that will eagerly anticipate the next book in the series." -- ForeWord Clarion Review

"Thomason shines in his heroine's characterization...magical" --blueink Review



Download a FREE Copy!
Max Xylander and the Island of Zumuruud is FREE from March 7th to 11th on AMAZON.


Author Jon Thomason


Jon Thomason lives with his family in San Diego, after many years living in the beautiful Seattle area. He has a successful career in high tech where he's been fortunate enough to participate in many big-name industry releases.

Storytelling permeates everything he does. In the moments when Jon is not helping build the story of the tech world, he can almost always be found working on a project: writing, photography, videography, graphics design, or 3D art.

And he's always careful to conceal his jinni magic abilities, though perhaps might slip one day and be discovered...



Links


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Book Blast Giveaway
$75 Amazon.com Gift Card or Paypal Cash (International)
Apple EarPods (US only)






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Monday, March 4, 2013

~Blog Tour With Review and Giveaway: The Grimm Chronicles~

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The Grimm Chronicles

200 years ago, the Brothers Grimm unleashed their stories upon the world. Literally. Now the characters of the Grimms' stories walk among us. With every day that passes, they grow more evil. They are the Corrupted, and only a hero can stop them.

For 18-year-old Alice Goodenough, that means taking precious time off from her summer vacation. In addition to volunteering at the local library, Alice must stop the Corrupted who are now actively hunting her down. With the help of her magic pen and her trusty rabbit friend, the world has suddenly gotten a lot more complex. The Corrupted are everywhere, and only Alice can see them for what they truly are.




This book contains the first 3 episodes of the critically acclaimed series
Episode 1: Prince Charming Must Die!
Episode 2: Happily Never After
Episode 3: Revenge of the Castle Cats

Additional features for this special edition:
- An introduction
- Two special "Lost Diaries"
- A behind-the-scenes interview
- A collection of original Grimms' Fairy Tales

The Grimm Chronicles is intended for Young Adults aged 13 and up. The goal is to provide Young Adult readers with a strong, charismatic young woman in the role of the hero and provide readers with a positive protagonist who uses her brain to overcome obstacles life throws in her way.


Also Available Volume 2 of the Grimm Chronicles

Book 4: The Orphanage of Doom
Book 5: Blood and Thunder
Book 6: The Order of the Golden Dragon


Praise

“5 stars!” ~ Bookies Book Blog

"Highly recommended for all who love fairy tales and the YA genre." ~ My Cozie Corner

"All in all the books were excellent." ~ LilyElement

"If you love fairy tales and them being turned into modern day stories you will love these short stories." ~ Mom With a Kindle

5 stars (out of 5) ~ I Am, Indeed

“Isabella Fontaine and Ken Brosky’s incredible talent for storytelling takes the reader on an amazing action-packed ride fueled by endless creativity and limitless imagination. TGC is like a high-stakes version of Harold and the Purple Crayon meets a contemporary, above ground Alice in Wonderland. “ ~ Bookfetish

“I absolutely loved this book! No, let me rephrase that, I FREAKING LOVE THIS BOOK! Nope, that doesn't even do it justice. Vol. 1 has the first three stories from the 12 that will ultimately make up the chronicles.” ~ Jesse Kimmel-Freeman


MY REVIEW:
Alice is your typical teenage high school kid.  She has a normal life and the perfect boyfriend, Edward.  With nothing to do the summer before senior year, Alice plans on volunteering at the library and spending time with her friends.  Her very first day at the library things start to happen that she can't explain.  She meets Briar Rabbit, a huge white rabbit that only she can see.  Briar tells her a remarkable story about how the Grimm Brothers wrote their fairy tales and how some of them are not make believe.  Alice, with the help of her magic pen and rabbit friend must hunt them down and destroy them.  Will she be able to do this?  What happens when she must destroy someone close to her?

I love fairy tale retelling books and this is one of the best I have read in a long time.  I love the character of Alice.  She is a tough cookie and never backs down from a challenge.  She takes everything in stride since she is the chosen one.  Briar Rabbit did kind of creep me out a bit but he is a wonderful addition to this book.  This does have some gruesome parts so I would definitely recommend it for teens and older YA readers.  I will be reading and reviewing Volume 2 soon and I am looking forward to it.  A wonderful new twist on some old classics.


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About the Authors
Ken Brosky received his MFA in fiction writing from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He also teaches English at Madison College. This is his first Young Adult series.

Isabella Fontaine owns a farm in Wisconsin and enjoys reading weird books like House of Leaves. This is her first Young Adult series.

Website * Facebook

EXCERPT:


I remember ending up on a hospital bed. I remember a metallic taste in my mouth and the smell of disinfectant. I even remember the doctor’s faint voice, and the words “antibiotics,” and then some relieved sighs. But then everything went black.

The dream came on fast and vivid, more vivid than any of the dreams I’d had previously about any Corrupted. I was in the dark woods, moving between the trees with a terrifying swiftness. I could smell the pine and hear an owl calling out somewhere far above. I was following someone … no, something.
He was tall. He moved like some kind of ninja, darting from tree to tree. He breathed heavily, letting a low growl escape from his throat as he lifted his narrow snout in the air, sniffing.

There were lights far ahead coming from a building, but I couldn’t see well enough through the trees. I felt a strange unease come over me. Why had this dream come on so vividly? Was it the poison running through my body?

I moved closer to the creature. I could see its outline a little better now, and it looked strange, almost as if it had something on its back. A creature with a backpack? No, no … the shape wasn’t quite like that. The creature darted to the next tree, grabbing it with one hand-shaped paw. It bent over to sniff at the ground, and its back seemed to arch up. There were things on its back. Pointy things.

We reached the edge of the clearing. Now I could see the creature more clearly: he had a long, rat-like snout and beady black eyes and little pointed ears. On his back were long, pointy quills—hundreds of them, maybe thousands of them. The quills were black, except at the sharp tips where they were a pale white. He had the torso and arms of a strong man, with hands that were a mix between an animal’s paws and human fingers. Definitely an animal’s claws. One hand went to his furry brown belly, scratching absently as he examined his target.

A hospital.

I didn’t need a talking rabbit to help me put two and two together: I was somewhere in that hospital. He was coming for me, and I was fast asleep.

Wake up, Alice! my mind screamed.


Tour Giveaway
5 Kindle ebook copies of The Grimm Chronicles Volume 1
Ends 3/15/13


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