Thursday, April 28, 2016

Out of Play by Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry

Title: Out of Play
Author: Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance
Length: 320 Pages
Publisher: Entangled: Teen
Release Date: August 6, 2013
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Rock star drummer Bishop Riley just needs a few months to relax and detox before his band's next tour. But the last place he expected to do it is in Seldon, Alaska. And the last person he wants to do it with is Penny Jones.
Fiery, headstrong Penny has zero in common with the cocky, too-hot-for-his-own-good Bishop, and she'd like to keep it that way. But the more Bishop gets under her skin, the more she wants to let him in. And the more Penny lets him see, the more Bishop wants to know this stubborn girl with the killer body and soulful eyes.
The simmering heat between them won't go away, no matter how hard either of them tries. Their time together in Alaska may be running out—but so is their resolve for not taking a chance on love.
Penny is amazing. She is a high school hockey player - on the boy's team. While that is suitably impressive, she doesn't loose her femininity. She's still a teenage girl looking to her future and wondering what it may hold - school, sports, family......and of course boys. But being on the hockey team has made just another teammate to most of the ones she knows. She's pretty down to eartch and watching her help take care of Gramps really showed how much home and family meant to her.

Enter Bishop - rockstar drummer with a drug problem. Here to detox and get his crap together. I think the author handled his drug problem in a really great way. We got to see the denial, the partial recovery, the relapse and the affect it had on him both mentally and physically. Most people would have never guessed he had a problem. But he is a strong person with a great network of support, that now includes a hot hockey player named Penny.

But - yes the big but - she doesn't know who he is or why he's really there. It bothers the heck out of me when people hide behind lies and deciet, but I sort of got it this time - him being famous an all. There were some times that things seemed to ramble on a bit and I wondered when the story was going to get moving again. The side characters really helped make this story pop - especiall Gramps - he was just amazing.

This was a great twist on the more traditional sports romance, and I love the more new adultish themes that weave their way through the young adult romance (college, family, career). Great book!

*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*

Monday, April 25, 2016

Hero by Alethea Kontis ~ Review

Title: Hero (Books of Arriland #2)
Author: Alethea Kontis
Genre: Young Adult, Fairy Tale Re-Telling
Length: 304 Pages
Publisher: Harcourt Books
Release Date: October 1, 2013
Source: Goodreads Giveaway
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Rough and tumble Saturday Woodcutter thinks she's the only one of her sisters without any magic—until the day she accidentally conjures an ocean in the backyard. With her sword in tow, Saturday sets sail on a pirate ship, only to find herself kidnapped and whisked off to the top of the world. Is Saturday powerful enough to kill the mountain witch who holds her captive and save the world from sure destruction? And, as she wonders grumpily, "Did romance have to be part of the adventure?" As in Enchanted, readers will revel in the fragments of fairy tales that embellish this action-packed story of adventure and, yes, romance.

Returning to Arriland and the Woodcutter family was a lot of fun. Saturday is a great character - wishing she could be the her, and never wanting to be the princess. Convinced that she is the abnormally normal sister of the bunch, she has decided to find her way as a hired sword. But things never work out the way the sisters think they will.

When the world explodes and strange seas suddenly appear, Saturday finds herself in the heart of her very own adventure. We visit the top of the world where she finds some strange creatures and an unusual "damsel" in distress. This was a very fun adventure. Saturday is a riot and I really enjoyed her excitement and bewilderment as she discovered more about herself.

*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*

Books of Arriland

Monday, April 18, 2016

Morning Star by Pierce Brown ~ Review

Title: Morning Star (Red Rising #3)
Author: Pierce Brown
Length: 524 Pages
Publisher: Del Ray
Release Date: February 9, 2016
Source: Self-Purchased
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Darrow would have lived in peace, but his enemies brought him war. The Gold overlords demanded his obedience, hanged his wife, and enslaved his people. But Darrow is determined to fight back. Risking everything to transform himself and breach Gold society, Darrow has battled to survive the cutthroat rivalries that breed Society's mightiest warriors, climbed the ranks, and waited patiently to unleash the revolution that will tear the hierarchy apart from within.

Finally, the time has come.

But devotion to honor and hunger for vengeance run deep on both sides. Darrow and his comrades-in-arms face powerful enemies without scruple or mercy. Among them are some Darrow once considered friends. To win, Darrow will need to inspire those shackled in darkness to break their chains, unmake the world their cruel masters have built, and claim a destiny too long denied - and too glorious to surrender.

A very exciting conclusion to the Red Rising Trilogy - with lots of surprises. I wasn't sure how Pierce Brown was going to find a way out of the ending to Golden Son, but find a way he did. Darrow is back and so are the Sons, but neither of them is the same. Things are quickly escalating out of control and plans need to be made to finish this fight.

But what a fight it is. Stretching from the far reaches of occupied space, Earth, the moons, and on board the ships - the fighting is everywhere. Some of these battles are quite complex with multiple layers of attack - so make sure you pay attention. Every move is important. Every word has meaning. Every person has their fate (and I didn't like all of them). Darrow ingenuity and way of thinking will be very important and could either win or lose the war for them.

The ending was a bit of a surprise. While I had some suspicions it may head in a similar direction, it took quite an about-face at the last minute and left me quite surprised at the maturity of a small boy. I was sad to see the saga end - I have grown to love all the characters and will miss hearing of their adventures and schemes. But the ending was very satisfying as well.

Red Rising

Monday, April 11, 2016

The Haunted Stepsister by Medeia Sharif ~ Cover Reveal

Title: The Haunted Stepsister
Author:  Medeia Sharif
Publisher: Leap Books
Cover Reveal Posting Date: April 11, 2016
Release Date: May 9, 2016

Sixth grade isn’t easy for Jesenya Moradi, especially since her father’s recent remarriage and tension with her new stepsister, Kammy. After an incident at school that nearly destroyed Kammy's life, Jess has been desperate to get on Kammy’s good side. But a fateful trip to an allegedly haunted bathroom changes both girls’ lives forever.

The rumors about the bathroom are true, and now Jess is convinced a demon's possessing Kammy. Eerie things happen whenever she's around – flying objects, flickering lights, not to mention the fact that something, or someone, is making people into its puppets.

Worse, the demon seems fixated on making Jess confess her part in ruining Kammy's reputation. Sticking to her Muslim faith, Jess enlists the help of an imam to exorcise the demon from Kammy. But can they get rid of the demon before it destroys her new family?

About the Author:
Madeia Sharif was born in New York City and she presently calls Miami her home. She received my master’s degree in psychology from Florida Atlantic University. After becoming a voracious reader in high school and a relentless writer dabbling in many genres in college, she found her niche writing for young people. Today she’s a MG and YA writer published through various presses. In addition to being a writer, she is a public school teacher. Her memberships include MensaALAN, and SCBWI.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Defiance Rising by Amy Miles ~ Review

Title: Defiance Rising (Rising Trilogy #1)
Author: Amy Miles
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia
Length: 328 Pages
Publisher: Indie
Release Date: November 2012
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 2 Stars
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Illyria has never known a life without the Rebellion.



Nothing else matters…until she ventures out into unknown territory and is faced with an enemy that proves even more fierce and determined than she ever thought. 

Bastien is infuriating, dangerous and annoyingly gorgeous. Eamon is familiar, comforting and turning into a man before her eyes. Both want her heart...but she is torn between duty and desire. When her choice affects all of mankind, how can she allow herself to be selfish?

There is a power within her that can change everyone’s fate…but she underestimated the most potent force on Earth—love. Illyria must discover if she has the strength to sacrifice her heart to save mankind.

I generally love a good sci-fi dystopia, but this one fell a little flat for me. It got off to a great start, but I quickly stopped enjoying Illyria's sarcastic attitude that seemed to pervade every conversation she had. Her first trip to the city left me tons of questions - in a good way - it was very well done. But I disliked Bastian as well. He became far too brooding and moody for my tastes. Eamon, on the other hand, just never seemed to get it. There was no development, and I felt very little emotion from him.

The love triangle seems neverending. I don't mind a little hesitation or conflict between what is confortable and what is new and exciting, but Illyria seems to choose wrong every step of the way. And what's worse is she seems to know it! But just keeps going anyways! I really couldn't relate to her at all.

The world building was a lot of fun. I loved the conflict with the aliens and the history that we learn as the story continues. It was quite fascinating. It's just hard to enjoy a story when you can't seem to like the main characters.

*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Alight by Scott Sigler ~ Review

Title: Alight (The Generations Trilogy #2)
Author: Scott Sigler
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Length: 448 Pages
Publisher: Del Ray
Release Date: April 5, 2016
Source: Amazon Vine
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Alight reveals to readers the further adventures of Em, Spingate, O’Malley, Bishop, and the other young heroes introduced in Alive. In Alive, Em fought to assert herself as leader and her friends tried to comprehend their own mysterious identity; now she must wrestle not with the challenge of winning power but the grave responsibility of having assumed it, and she and her friends must contend with a grim fact: the revelation of their identity is not an answer but another question—and one with terrifying implications.

Out of the pot and into the over - Em and the children have escaped the adults and are heading towards the planet below. But they are not out of danger yet. The planet has it's own dangers they have yet to discover. And the ship is still up there...

Em and her crew do a lot of growing up in this book. They go from a bunch of kids trying stick together, to young adults trying to start a new civilization. There is such an interesting mix of technology and primitive that really helps make this such a great story. They may have arrived on a spaceship, but they continue to fight with spears, bones, and of course - words. The divide between the group is only growing and it is important to watch how this plays out. It's a brilliant part of the story and really drives the character's development.

I'll be waiting anxiously for book three. While all the new problems are wrapped up nicely - some in a happy ending, and some not so much, there is a new problem lurking on the horizon that will test the group once again as they fight to survive and adapt.

*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*

The Generations Trilogy

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Braking for Bodies by Duffy Brown ~ Book Spotlight, Excerpt and Giveaway

We're thrilled to be hosting DuffyBrown's BRAKING FOR BODIES Book Blast today!  Pick up your copy!

Title: BRAKING FOR BODIES (Book 2 Cycle Path Mystery Series)
Author: Duffy Brown
Publisher: Penguin Berkley Prime Crime
Pages: 304:
Genre: Cozy Mystery

No one knows why Peephole Perry came all the way to Mackinac from LA, but when he winds up dead things are looking bad for Evie’s BFF who once worked for the jerk.  Now Evie has to gear up and get a grip on the truth if she wants to clear her friend and find a killer.

It’s murder and a mystery weekend on Mackinac Island for the rag reporter, his mistress and the wife who wants them both dead.

For More Information

Book Excerpt:

“What’s going on?” A guy called down from the porch above us. “Is somebody there? Did somebody fall?”

Sutter and I exchanged uh oh looks and a woman on the porch squealed. “Ohmygoodness! It’s a body! This is fantastic! I know what this is. It’s one of those murder mystery weekends right here at the Grand Hotel. The victim’s right there, I can see him all sprawled out on the ground. Oh this is so much fun.”

“Look, lady,” Sutter shot back. “This is no mystery weekend party this is a real crime scene here.”

“Of course it is,” she squealed again. “You all are great actors, this is amazing. What a fantastic surprise right here on Mackinac Island.”

About the Author

While others girls dreamed of dating Brad Pitt, Duffy Brown longed to take Sherlock Holmes to the prom. Today she is a National Bestselling author and conjures up who-done-it stories for Berkley Prime Crime. She has two series, the Consignment Shop mysteries set in Savannah and the Cycle Path Mysteries on Mackinac Island.

For More Information


Duffy is giving away 20 BRAKING FOR BODIES Cinch Totes & Notepads!

Terms & Conditions:

  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • Twenty winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one Braking for Bodies Cinch Tote & Notepad
  • This giveaway ends at midnight on April 3.
  • Winner will be contacted via email on April 4.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, April 1, 2016

Dreamfever by Karen Marie Moning ~ Review

Title: Dreamfever (Fever #4)
Author: Karen Marie Moning
Genre: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Length: 386 Pages
Release Date: August 18, 2009
Source: Self-purchased
Rating: 3
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

MacKayla Lane lies naked on the cold stone floor of a church, at the mercy of the erotic Fae master she once swore to kill. Far from home, unable to control her sexual hungers, MacKayla is now fully under the Lord Master’s spell.…In New York Times bestselling author Karen Marie Moning’s stunning new novel, the walls between human and Fae worlds have come crashing down. And as Mac fights for survival on Dublin’s battle-scarred streets, she will embark on the darkest—and most erotically charged—adventure of her life.

He has stolen her past, but MacKayla will never allow her sister’s murderer to take her future. Yet even the uniquely gifted sidhe-seer is no match for the Lord Master, who has unleashed an insatiable sexual craving that consumes Mac’s every thought—and thrusts her into the seductive realm of two very dangerous men, both of whom she desires but dares not trust. 

As the enigmatic Jericho Barrons and the sensual Fae prince V’lane vie for her body and soul, as cryptic entries from her sister’s diary mysteriously appear and the power of the Dark Book weaves its annihilating path through the city, Mac’s greatest enemy delivers a final challenge.…

It’s an invitation Mac cannot refuse, one that sends her racing home to Georgia, where an even darker threat awaits. With her parents missing and the lives of her loved ones under siege, Mac is about to come face-to-face with a soul-shattering truth—about herself and her sister, about Jericho Barrons…and about the world she thought she knew.

Quite an interesting turn of events for Mac in this one. In fact, we don't pick up from her point of view. Instead be get to see through the eyes of another sidhe-seer as Mac descends into madness. A good chunk of this book is Barrons trying to snap her out of it - but his methods are far from traditional. And while I applaud his originality and ability to stick with it for sooooo long, it was really soooooo long and I got a little sick of it. But that is just the first section of the book.

The walls are gone - no more - zip - nadda - gone, and both Seelie and Unseelie are roaming the world freely. This leads to some very big what the hell moments because things are seriously messed up. I really enjoyed seeing Mac explore this new world and adapt to it as things kept getting thrown her way.

This wasn't my favorite of the series - mostly because I want more fighting Mac and less, well, the Mac at the beginning of the book. 

The Fever Series