Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Blog Tour: ONE, TWO, THREE by ELODIE NOWODAZKIJ


Title: One, Two, Three… 
Author: Elodie Nowodazkij 
Series: One, Two, Three #1
Publication date: June 26th 2014
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: Contemporary Romance


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When seventeen-year-old Natalya’s dreams of being a ballerina are killed in a car accident along with her father, she must choose: shut down—like her mother—or open up to love.
Last year, Natalya was attending the School of Performing Arts in New York City. Last year, she was well on her way to becoming a professional ballerina. Last year, her father was still alive.
But a car crash changed all that—and Natalya can’t stop blaming herself. Now, she goes to a regular high school in New Jersey; lives with her onetime prima ballerina, now alcoholic mother; and has no hope of a dance career.
At her new school, however, sexy soccer player Antonio sees a brighter future for Natalya, or at least a more pleasant present, and his patient charms eventually draw her out of her shell.
But when upsetting secrets come to light and Tonio’s own problems draw her in, Natalya shuts down again, this time turning to alcohol herself.
Can Natalya learn to trust Antonio before she loses him—and destroys herself?

Purchase: Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo

Review
One, Two, Three could have been just a run of the mill YA contemporary romance, but instead Elodie Nowodazkij has created a sensitive and poignant story, which asks the reader to look at events and the character's mistakes with compassion.
Since childhood Natalya has the goal to become a prima ballerina, sacrificing a social life and friendships to train, but following the car accident which killed her Papa and left both her knees smashed, she is left grieving for everything she has lost. Natalya is not badass or even entirely streetwise and at times her vulnerability can be mistaken for naivety, but she is dedicated and caring.
As her Mama chooses to find comfort in a vodka bottle, Natalya struggles to deal with her own memories and helping her Mama heal. Natalya knows there are secrets being kept from her and Elodie Nowodazkij reveals these to her reader simultaneously with Natalya's discovery, meaning our shock is equal to hers.
The connection between Natalya and Tonio is immediately obvious, but they bring each other happiness and considering their personal difficulties this is well deserved. They share a tangible physical and emotional dynamic which adds to the intensity of the story.
Elodie Nowodazkij's story encompasses a multi-cultural society and she adds to its authenticity by using Spanish and Russian, which is not always translated.
One, Two, Three is a novel about truth, finding release and relationships. Elodie Nowodazkij's writing flows gracefully, like the ballet motif she uses and I would rush to read more of her books.
A full 5 hearts from me and a definite recommendation!
Rating:
 

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About the Author


Elodie Nowodazkij was raised in a tiny village in France, where she could always be found a book in hand. At nineteen, she moved to the US, where she learned she'd never lose her French accent. She graduated with a bachelor's degree in Modern Language & Linguistics, and later earned master's degrees in German Cultural Studies and European Studies. Unbeknownst to her professors, she sometimes drafted stories in class. Now she lives in Germany with her husband and their cat (who doesn't seem to realize he's not human), and uses her commuting time to write the stories swirling in her head. She's also a serial smiley user.

Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Newsletter


Monday, 15 September 2014

*ADULT* Cover Reveal: HANSEL by ELLA JAMES


Title: Hansel
Author: Ella James
Release Date: 20th October 2014
Age Group: Adult
Genre: Erotic Romance


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My name is Gretel. I’m the dish-washer. The kitchen girl. I’m not one of Mother’s pets. I’m just a storybook girl no one sees. Until that night. When I find him again, and all my dreams come to life.
He’s mine—the one called Hansel. I’ve come here to claim him.

I’m Hansel, a crazy woman’s toy. It’s taken years, but I’ve finally forgotten everything outside my life here in The House. I live for sex and nothing more. Until I see her. Gretel.
I remember her. I need her. She is mine.

AUTHOR’S NOTE: This story is not panty-melting. Your panties won’t have time to melt, because they will fuc*ing evaporate. Poof! But let me level with you: It is crazy. It is dark. You have to trust me. You will find both Gretel and Hansel to be completely fuc- lovable. You have my word. 
P.S. It’s not fantasy. It’s contemporary erotica. 
P.S.S. No one in this fairy tale is related.

About the Author
Ella James is a Colorado author who writes teen and adult romance. She is happily married to a man who knows how to wield a red pen, and together they are raising a feisty two-year-old who will probably grow up believing everyone’s parents go to war over the placement of a comma.
Ella’s books have been listed on numerous Amazon bestseller lists, including the Movers & Shakers list and the Amazon Top 100; two were listed among Amazon’s Top 100 Young Adult Ebooks of 2012.


Thoughts about the cover??? I'm thinking I would love to live in a fairytale world if they all look like Hansel :-) . . .is this a book you would read??

Review: MARY HADES by SARAH DALTON


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Title: Mary Hades
Author: Sarah Dalton
Series: Mary Hades #1
Release Date: May 4th 2014
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Horror

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Not many seventeen year old girls have a best friend who’s a ghost, but then Mary Hades isn’t your average teenager. 
Scarred physically and mentally from a fire, her parents decide a holiday to an idyllic village in North Yorkshire will help her recover. Nestled in the middle of five moors, Mary expects to have a boring week stuck in a caravan with her parents. Little does she know, evil lurks in the campsite…
Seth Lockwood—a local fairground worker with a dark secret—might be the key to uncovering the murky history that has blighted Nettleby. But Mary is drawn to him in a way that has her questioning her judgement. 
Helped by her dead best friend and a quirky gay Goth couple, Mary must stop the unusual deaths occurring in Nettleby. But can she prevent her heart from being broken?
The first in a series of dark YA novels, Mary Hades follows on from the bestselling Kindle Single 'My Daylight Monsters'. A spine-tingling tale with romance, readers will be shocked and entertained in equal measure.

Purchase: Amazon | B&N

Review
I started Mary Hades immediately after reading its prequel, My Daylight Monsters. Although this is not a necessary step I feel that reading the books in this order gave me a valuable insight into Mary's life, her friendship with Lacey and her gifts.
In this book Mary's parents have arranged a caravan holiday to help Mary recover from the painful events which occurred during her time in psychiatric hospital. Unknown to them, Mary is accompanied by her best friend Lacey, who is a ghost!
In the quiet Yorkshire town of Nettleby, Mary meets Seth, a local, but after a bizarre occurrence which puts their lives in danger, Seth is forced to reveal a secret he has kept for years. This news means that Mary, Lacey and their group of friends are forced to become ghost-hunters, for the angry and vengeful Amy.
Sarah Dalton uses this story to explore the unconventional friendship between Lacey and Mary as Amy's presence means Lacey considers her future as a ghost and whether she can leave Mary to 'move on'. Lacey remains a mischievous character, but her mood is more variable than in the prequel.
Mary frequently refers to previous events in My Daylight Monsters, affirming the lasting affect they had upon her body and her psyche, only now she appears stronger and less dismissive of her paranormal talents.
Sarah Dalton adds elements of romance, horror and drama to create another bewitching story, which both shocks and touches its reader. 
Rating:
 


Review: MY DAYLIGHT MONSTERS by SARAH DALTON


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Title: My Daylight Monsters
Author: Sarah Dalton
Series: Mary Hades #0.5
Release Date: October 2013
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: Paranormal/Gothic horror

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I always thought my demons came out in the day, rather than at night. I’ve never been scared of the dark. I’ve only ever been scared of real things: getting ill, having injections, physical pain… death. Those are my monsters, not ghosts or vampires or whatever else can hide under your bed at night. 
I was wrong.
The dark makes everything worse. 

When Mary’s psychiatrist advises a short stay at a psychiatric unit, her worst nightmares are confirmed. How can she get better in a place that fills her with dread? When she meets the other patients, she begins to gather some hope, until she realises that the death toll in the hospital is rising without explanation. Something sinister stalks the corridors and maybe she is the only one who can stop it… 
Mary has to confront the Things that she sees if they are to stand a chance. But will she survive a confrontation with death itself?

Purchase: Amazon | B&N

Review
Sarah Dalton's prequel to Mary Hades is a haunting novella in which reality meets with the paranormal world of ghosts.
Mary has visions of frightening zombie-like creatures who often deliver written messages and which she feels warn her of dangerous events. After an 'incident' at school, revealed later in the story, she admits these visions to a psychiatrist and is admitted to Magdalena ward, the psych wing of the hospital.
Mary's roommate Lacey, is perhaps the warmest of the troubled teens, saying she is "kinda manic and socially awkward", which she attempts to cover up with her sarcastic wit. Along with Lacey, Mary meets Magdalena's other patients whose problems range from anorexia and binge-eating, to drug addiction and psychosis. It is with this group of people that Mary's first real friendships begin to form because ironically it is here that Mary can truly be herself, without fear of judgement. Although the mix of young people is eclectic they are accepting and genuine.
One her second day on Magdalena, Mary meets the mysterious Johnny, who appears and disappears at strange times and whose pessimistic comments force Mary to question herself.
After an unusual number of deaths begin to occur on the palliative care ward, next to Magdalena, Mary and her friends suspect foul play and a frightening mystery unravels, affecting everyone on the ward.
My Daylight Monsters is a heart-punding short story, very well told and it leads perfectly into Mary Hades book 1, but can also be read as a stand-alone.
Rating:
 




Sunday, 14 September 2014

Review: VAMPIRE SECRETS by RASHELLE WORKMAN


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Title: Vampire Secrets (Blood and Snow Season Two)
Author: RaShelle Workman
Series: Blood and Snow Season 2, #2
Release Date: September 14, 2014
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: Fractured Fairytale/Urban Fantasy

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A dream is a wish your heart makes... It's been a month since Jasmine agreed to the wish that would keep Laeddin safe. By all accounts she should be happy. She's attending high school, hanging out with friends, and spending time with Laeddin. but she isn't. Ever since the sorceress ripped away a part of her, she hasn't felt like herself. To make matters worse, the man with red eyes, the one that haunted her dreams, is appearing in real life. And demonic creatures keep showing up in Salem. The question on both counts is why? Jasmine must figure out who the man is and what the creatures want. Thankfully, she isn't alone. Laeddin, Peter, Zoe, and some friends from the mansion next door will help. And then there's the sorceress. she's using what she took from Jasmine to inflict havoc on the human realm as well as other realms.

Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Smashwords

Review
RaShelle Workman is the undisputable queen of the fractured fairytale genre and Vampire Secrets is no exception to this rule.
It is now one month since Jasmine's encounter with Maleficent, where she sacrificed a part of herself to save Laeddin. Jasmine is emotional and incomplete without her vampire abilities and black wings, which distinguished her from other vampires and she is still adjusting to life as a human.
Vampire Secrets is set after A Beauty So Beastly and the connection RaShelle Workman made between the two retellings is continued in this story, as we watch Troy struggling with the loss of Cole. His sadness bonds him to Jasmine and they form a comfortable friendship, which quickly develops into something more for them both. Although I relished every moment Troy and Jasmine share, I found Jasmine's indecision about her feelings disconcerting and was unsure about the 'love square' which followed. Laeddin has an indispensable role in Vampire Secrets and Christopher's appearance adds a dangerous sexual tension to the story, but I always prefer a vanilla romantic plot! However, this is a very personal choice and I think for most readers this element will add to the story's intrigue and excitement.
RaShelle Workman is able to build her urban fantasy/paranormal plot with the addition of new characters like the Akuma, who fit perfectly alongside the existing vampires, shapeshifters and other magical species. The Akuma and the threat they pose to Jasmine and her group of friends heightens the suspenseful atmosphere, making the story even more compelling.
Any fans of RaShelle Workman will adore Vampire Secrets, the ending of which leaves us gasping and breathless! For any new readers I suggest grabbing the first season of Blood and Snow quickly and catching up before Vampire Nights is released!
Rating:
 




Release Blitz with Giveaway: VAMPIRE SECRETS by RASHELLE WORKMAN


Title: Vampire Secrets (Blood and Snow Season Two)
Author: RaShelle Workman
Series: Blood and Snow Season 2, #2
Release Date: September 14, 2014
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: Fractured Fairytale/Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Polished Pen Press Corporation
Cover by  Andrea Garcia 



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A dream is a wish your heart makes... It's been a month since Jasmine agreed to the wish that would keep Laeddin safe. By all accounts she should be happy. She's attending high school, hanging out with friends, and spending time with Laeddin. but she isn't. Ever since the sorceress ripped away a part of her, she hasn't felt like herself. To make matters worse, the man with red eyes, the one that haunted her dreams, is appearing in real life. And demonic creatures keep showing up in Salem. The question on both counts is why? Jasmine must figure out who the man is and what the creatures want. Thankfully, she isn't alone. Laeddin, Peter, Zoe, and some friends from the mansion next door will help. And then there's the sorceress. she's using what she took from Jasmine to inflict havoc on the human realm as well as other realms.
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Smashwords


About the Author

RaShelle Workman is the author of the popular Blood and Snow series. She loves to reinvent fairy tales teens and adults can sink their teeth into. Her stories include kissing, vampires, werewolves, witches, aliens, and more kissing. Her books: Sleeping Roses, Exiled, Beguiled, and Dovetailed have foreign rights contracts with a Turkish publisher. RaShelle is also one of the co-founders of Indie Recon LIVE, a self publishing conference that will debut October 10-11, 2014 in Sandy, Utah.
Her books include:

Short stories:

Visit her website and sign up for RaShelle's EXCLUSIVE mailing list. You'll be automatically entered to win a Paperback copy of Blood and Snow volumes 1-4.
Links:  Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Website | Pinterest







Friday, 12 September 2014

Blog Tour with US Giveaway: THE REPLACEMENT and THE PRISONER by RACHAEL WADE


BOOK ONE
Title: The Replacement
Author: Rachael Wade
Series: The Replacement #1
Publication Date: January 27th 2014
Age Group: New Adult 
Genre: Contemporary


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*Contains sexually explicit content and mature subject matter, including language and elements of abuse.*

A gritty New Adult drama about a young woman’s self-destructive quest to find purpose, self-worth, and love in a broken world.
My name is Elise Duchamp. I’m twenty-three years old and I’m known as the town whore.
No, not the kind who exchanges sexual favors for money. The other kind. The kind who gives it all away for free, whenever and however she likes. I am that girl. The one everyone whispers about and the one none of the girls seem to like, because all of their boyfriends either want to sleep with me or already have. Promiscuity is my thing—the kind that slowly, violently turns my insides black, but gives me something I need.
All things considered, I’m not completely reckless. I’m safe, and contrary to popular opinion, I do have a heart. I live in a world of careless choices, and with those choices come careless people. I cannot judge them, because I am one of them. I too bow down to the altar of the self-serving. I am not a good friend. I am not and never could be anyone’s girlfriend. I’m convinced any goodness in me shriveled up and died long ago.
But I am a replacement. That is something I know how to be, and this is a story of the lengths I’d go to in order to keep it that way.
Purchase: Amazon | B&N

Review
Elise Duchamp's mother always taught her daughter that "beauty is power" and this is the mantra by which Elise chooses to live her life. Elise enjoys sex and uses her beauty to fulfil her physical and emotional needs, regardless of the morality of the situation. If The Replacement's main character had been a promiscuous male we would never hear names like 'whore' and 'slut' spoken by the residents of Gig Harbour.
The Replacement is an emotional book which will provoke an individual response from a reader, depending on their personal circumstances. Elise is self-destructive, plagued by "daddy-issues" and a low self-esteem. We follow her journey, continually hoping that Elise will realise she is worth the love being offered to her, both romantic and familial.
There was a point in The Replacement when I felt that Ryder's attraction towards Elise was a flawed as Tim's, Christian's and Nate's. Yet the relationship between Ryder and Elise moves past its initial lust to a point where he is ready to accept her and her past, unconditionally.
The book's final chapter is perhaps the most intense, but in my opinion the unnecessary epilogue detracts from this, although it does close the curtain firmly on Elise's story.
I would recommend The Replacement, especially for its emotional quality and Rachael Wade's ability to force us to consider our attitudes towards those who make different life-choices than the majority.
Rating:
 


NOVELLA
Title: The Prisoner
Author: Rachael Wade
Series: The Replacement #1.5
Publication Date: July 24th 2014
Age Group: New Adult
Genre: Contemporary


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***THE PRISONER is a novella (approx. 25,000 words) intended to be read AFTER The Replacement. Contains explicit material and language.*** 
My name is Christian Walker, and Elise Duchamp is my drug of choice. 
No matter how hard I try to break the habit, it’s a lost cause. Okay, maybe I haven’t really tried to quit this particular habit. All I can think about is owning her. Making her mine. Can you really blame me? With that sinful body, luscious mouth, and wicked tongue, she’s every man’s dream, and she knows it. 
No one is immune to her charm, not even me, a man who has everything—a beautiful wife, an office with a view, and more money than most people can spend in one lifetime. Only I know how to make her toes curl. Only I know her body better than the other men she screws in her free time. None of them can compare to me. 
But the joke is on me. I’m the prisoner. 
The one who will never compare to him. The one man who makes me see red. His name is stored in her cell phone. It’s the first one she calls out to, the first one she cries for when all hell breaks loose. Ryder Jacobson. 
The name makes me cringe. 
She loves him, and I love her. In my own way, I always will. But the bad guy doesn’t always belong with the bad girl. Sometimes the bad girl needs a good man to believe in her, to give her that final push toward ultimate transformation. I wish I was that good man. That I could be her happily ever after. I guess that’s the thing about prisoners, though. They’re left alone with their torment, and in the end, they have no one to blame but themselves.

Purchase: Amazon | B&N
Review
"Love propels you to change, because love is evolution. Obsession shackles you into repeating the same pattern over and over, until it drives you both mad. Sometimes they go hand in hand, but at least this time I know the difference."

The Prisoner is an unusual book, Rachael Wade choosing to tell Christian's story, who had a secondary role in The Replacement as one of Elise's lovers. Although I would have preferred to read a novella concentrating on Ryder, Christian is an intriguing character whose addiction to Elise and their physical relationship, changes him in unexpected ways.
After reading The Replacement we know that Christian is married and in The Prisoner we see that Elise is not his only mistress. Christian is arrogant, rich and likes to dominate situations, but the more he meets with Elise, the deeper he becomes involved, handing her the control. By his own admission he wants to possess her entirely, but she refuses to engage in 'pillow talk', preferring to keep their relationship purely physical.
Christian's development is slow and his catalysts for this are Ryder and the events with his wife, which we witnessed during The Replacement, but he exhibits a potential 'nice guy' attitude towards the end of The Prisoner, leaving us with a satisfied smile. 
This novella is a must for any fan of The Replacement!
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About the Author


Rachael Wade is the Amazon bestselling author of The Preservation Series, The Resistance Trilogy, and the upcoming sci-fi series, The Keepers Trilogy. When she’s not writing, she’s busy learning French, watching too many movies, and learning how to protect animals and the environment.