Friday, March 29, 2013

Black Hole Sun

By David Macinnis Gill

Before I start my review, let me say that this is the first sci-fi book I have read that is set in space–although the setting is actually on Mars. Generally that is not my favorite genre, but Gill’s book has opened my eyes to the amazing stories that I have been missing.

With that in mind, Black Hole Sun is a very fresh, original story. It is a tale of one adventure/escapade that the main character, Durango, and his crew go on. Durango is a Regulator which is like soldier that anyone can hire, sort of. He is hired by some miners and assembles a crew. The result is a story about their fast-paced, action-packed mission.

Throughout the story David Macinnis Gill introduces readers to a new set of vocabulary/lingo. Because Mars was settled by Earthlings, words and phrases from various languages are used. Although that was enjoyable, readers who aren’t near the internet or other reference materials to translate the words/phrases, miss out on the meaning. That’s why the ability to use context clues is a must in this book. Gill doesn’t explain what all of the words/phrases mean after he uses them, so it can seem pure gibberish to some readers. Readers might can figure out a word or two from context clues, but might not understand entire phrases.

All in all, this book was very enjoyable and I look forward to Gill’s second book in the series, Invisible Sun. If you enjoy military strategy mixed with interesting battles and you want an adventure that is “out of this world,” then you will enjoy this book!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The False Prince

By Jennifer Nielsen

The False Prince is the first book in the Ascendance trilogy. I picked up the audiobook to listen to as I traveled for work. Narrators can help or hurt an author’s story, and luckily this narrator did a wonderful job bringing Jennifer Nielsen’s characters to life. He enhanced an already great story.

After the royal family is killed, a nobleman, Connor, creates a plan to find the king’s long lost son to prevent civil war in the kingdom. Instead of finding the real prince who everyone assumes is dead, he recruits four orphan boys who are trained and who must compete for the chance to impersonate the prince. One boy, Sage, is defiant and constantly rebels against Connor’s wishes. He knows that Connor only wants to control the fake prince. Sage doesn’t want to be a puppet, but his other option is to be killed. In Connor’s world everyone has secrets, but one secret will change everything Connor has worked toward.

Nielsen does a wonderful job setting up Connor’s false prince plan. She does an even better job using Sage to point out any flaws in the plan. It seems Sage is always one move ahead in every aspect of the story. He’s a character that knows the rules of the game, but chooses to play by his own rules.

The story line isn’t exactly sequential. Nielsen leaves gaps in the storyline and later goes back and fills them in. At first it was a little jarring. I wondered why she didn’t let readers in on information while it was occurring (examples: sword, knife, rock), but later in the story Nielsen reveals more background information about certain characters and her reasoning falls into place.

Nielsen’s writing is both simple and complex at the same time. Her style is very natural and easy, but her plot line is more intricate. She peels back the layers of Sage’s personality and life a little at a time and allows readers to better understand Sage. She also patiently sets up the story for her plot twist. Will some readers figure it out, yes, but others will be caught way off guard.

At times I loved and hated Sage. His arrogance and indifference were a bit off putting. Thankfully he has several redeeming qualities. He has a compassionate heart and honors his promises. He doesn’t take kindly to cruelty. Readers will be rooting for him to win and become the prince.

The False Prince is a wonderful family story that kids and adult can enjoy. It is a brilliantly written story filled with deceit, action, and danger. Readers who liked The Beyonders series by Brandon Mull will definitely want to read The False Prince.

I definitely want to check out the sequel, The Runaway King, when it comes out March 2013.

Check out the book trailer!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Demon Derby Cover Reveal


Author: Carrie Harris

Publisher: Random House

Genre: Paranormal

Age Group: Young Adult

Expected release: March 2014


Book description

Casey kicked cancer’s ass. Now a demon wants to kick hers. . . .

Casey hates being known as the girl who survived cancer. She wants people to treat her like her old self, fearless and strong. And after a creepy encounter with a crazy guy in an alley, Casey is all about reclaiming her power.

So when she has a chance to try out for the Apocalypsies roller derby team, she jumps on it. Being a derby girl would prove that she doesn’t need anybody’s pity. It doesn’t hurt that Michael, the team manager, is almost unnaturally hot. Which makes sense when Casey finds out that he’s not even human.

Michael’s got a secret: he trains demon hunters. That crazy guy in the alley? Demon. And the fact that Casey went head to head with evil and lived makes her a threat to demonkind. Casey thought she’d already fought and won the battle of her lifetime. But it’s only beginning. . . .

From Carrie Harris, author of Bad Taste in Boys and Bad Hair Day, comes a knockout new read for anyone facing their own demons—inside and out.

About Author Carrie Harris

Carrie Harris is the author of BAD TASTE IN BOYS and BAD HAIR DAY. Her husband is a cancer survivor and a ninja doctor, and her three kids are already in training to fight evil someday. She collects monster-themed clothing, is physically incapable of being serious for more than five minutes at a time, and isn’t a derby girl…yet.

Carrie Harris | Twitter | Facebook

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Summoning the Night

By Jenn Bennett

I received this book from the publisher. This is the second book in the Arcadia Bell series, and I’m really glad I was introduced to this series. In the first book readers are introduced to Arcadia “Cady” Bell and her paranormal world. This second book picks up a few weeks after the first one left off. Cady’s relationship with Lon is becoming somewhat serious and Lon’s son Jupiter, “Jupe”, is thoroughly enjoying having Cady around.

In Summoning the Night, Cady’s struggles with her moonchild abilities and Jupe’s “knack” or talent begins to manifest. Both character’s talents, along with Lon’s empath ability, help Lon and Cady find information about the Snatcher–someone who is taking the Hellfire Club members’ kids. Summoning the Night is a well thought out story with a mix of humor, mystery and suspense. Readers get introduced to the characters in the first book, but this second book is where readers will really start to connect and love the characters.

The ending is satisfying but it leaves enough strings undone that readers will definitely be picking up the next installment to find out what happens and what are the consequences of actions that have occurred. Jenn Bennett has done an amazing job with her Arcadia Bell series. It seems as if she is a seasoned pro at writing her books even though this is only her second one. I will definitely pick up the third book.

Readers who enjoy Kelley Armstrong’s books such as Dime Store Magic and Industrial Magic should definitely give Jenn Bennett’s series a try!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Death, Doom and Detention (Darklight #2)

By Darynda Jones

The normal part of Lorelei MacAlister’s life didn’t just slip away quietly the day Jared Kovach came to town. Nope. The normal part of her life shattered. It exploded. It burst into a gazillion shards of fleeting light.

It went out with a bang.

Goodbye normal.

Hello dark and eerie.

While her best friend, Brooklyn, is focusing all of her energy on helping Lorelei hone her abilities, Lorelei is dealing with the reality that Satan’s second in command has taken up residence inside her body. Oh, and the fact that she has a crush on the Angel of Death. But what a beautiful death it is. If those weren’t bad enough, something sinister has come to town and it wants nothing more than to hear Lorelei’s dying breath as it strangles it out of her. Thank goodness the gang has a supernatural champion. But what happens when the only being who can save them switches sides midstream? How can a group of misfits capture one of the most powerful beings ever created? And will they find out how to bring Jared back to them before it’s too late?


A lot of time the second book in a trilogy can be a let down. The first book introduces readers to the characters and the world while the third book contains the climax of the series. Second books tend to be transition books and a bit of a let down.  Luckily Darynda Jones didn't follow suit. Instead she adds momentum while continuing to build the plot for the third book. Basically, this is the delicious appetizer before the main course!

Though this is the second book in the series, readers can enjoy it without the first book. It can be a stand alone story, but why enjoy one slice of cake when you can eat the whole thing! Jones continually fills in the gaps if the characters reference something from the first book. If you want the whole back story, then definitely check out book one, Death and the Girl Next Door. Scratch that. Check out book one whether or not you want the back story. I doubt you will be disappointed, and best of all, no calories will need to be consumed!

I love that Lorelei has guts. Sure she has people around her (two hot guys in particular) that try to protect her, but she doesn't just accept that. Lorelei is a modern teenage girl and wants her independence. She doesn't want to cower, but rather she wants to stand up and defend herself (or run) from danger. She doesn't want to hide and let the bad guys come to her. She wants to go out and bait them and then let her super-powered boy toys handle the rest.  Many teen novels have girls that become useless when they like a boy, so this one really stands out. I love the girl power!

Jones does a good job bringing the sarcasm and wit that's found in her Charley Davidson series to her new Young Adult audience. I love some of the statements Lorelei made throughout the book.  Some of them even had me laughing out loud. This helps readers to better connect with her characters and makes them seem very realistic.

If you enjoy paranormal action along with mystery and a touch of romance, then you are really going to enjoy  Death, Doom and Detention. And don't forget to checkout book three Death, and the Girl He Loves when it comes out October 8, 2013.

PURCHASE DD&D: Amazon Barnes & Noble and Audible

Check out the contest below to win a copy of the book!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Want More?  Check out this excerpt from the book


“Is this class ever going to end?”

My best friend, Brooklyn, draped her upper body across her
desk in a dramatic reenactment of Desdemona’s death in Othello.
She buried her face in a tangle of arms and long black hair for
effect. It was quite moving. And while I appreciated her freedom
to express her misgivings about the most boring class since
multi-celled organisms first crawled onto dry land, I wondered
about her timing.

“Miss Prather,” our Government teacher, Mr. Gonzales, said,
his voice like a sharp crack in the silence of study time.

Brooklyn jerked upright in surprise. She glanced around as
our classmates snickered, either politely into their hands or more
rudely outright.

“Is there something you’d like to share with the class?”

She turned toward Mr. Gonzales and asked, “Did I say that
out loud?”

The class erupted in laughter as Mr. G’s mouth formed a long
narrow line across his face. As though a miracle from heaven,
the bell rang and Brooklyn couldn’t scramble out of her seat fast
enough. She practically sprinted from the room. I followed at a
slower pace, smiling meekly as I walked past Mr. G’s desk.
Brooklyn stood waiting for me in the hall, her face still frozen
in surprise.

“That was funny,” I said, tugging her alongside me. She fell
in line as we wound through the crush of students, fighting our
way to PE. I wasn’t sure why. I didn’t particularly enjoy having
my many faults and numerous shortcomings put on display for
all to see, so why I would fight to get there was beyond me.

“No, really.” She tucked an arm through mine. “I didn’t mean
to say that out loud.”

I couldn’t help but smile despite the weight on my chest, a
weight that seemed to be endless. “Which is why that was funny.”
I did that a lot lately. Smiled. It was easier than explaining
why I wasn’t.

“You don’t get it,” she said. “This is exactly what I’ve been
talking about. Everything is weird ever since . . . you know.”

I did know. Ever since Jared Kovach came to town. Ever
since he’d saved my life after a huge green delivery truck
slammed into me. Ever since we’d found out he was the Angel
of Death and he had been sent not to save my life but to take it.
To tweak the timing. To take me sooner than nature— or a huge
green delivery truck— had intended.

And ever since I found out I’d been possessed by a demon
when I was six years old.

Still, that wasn’t the worst part of that day all those years ago.
The worst part was the fact that my parents were gone. Vanished
in a whirlwind when some guy— we still had no idea who—
opened the gates of hell. And I’d led them straight to it. The fact
that a demon—Malak-Tuke, to be exact, Lucifer’s second in command—
escaped from his fiery pit and decided to crash at my
place was just the icing on the cake. But I didn’t know any of
this until two months ago.

I’d been living with my grandparents since the disappearance,
but my semi- normal existence changed forever when I was
knocked into the street by a skateboarder and hit by that truck.
That near- death experience taught me a valuable lesson:
Never get hit by a huge green delivery truck if I can help it. But
if I hadn’t, if my life hadn’t almost ended that day, then Jared
Kovach would not have been sent. And oddly enough, Jared Kovach
was definitely worth the risk.

The events that followed were both terrifying and life changing.
I learned that there really was a heaven and a hell. That
there really were angels and demons. That I was a prophet, the
last prophet in a long line of incredible women, descended from
a powerful woman named Arabeth. And I’d learned that I had a
demon inside me, that I’d had him inside me for years.

Even Jared had never seen anything like it. Most people possessed
by evil spirits were lucky to survive. People possessed by
demons— a rarity, from what I’d been told— never survived more
than a month. Ever. And yet here I stood. As possessed as a girl
with a demon inside her could be.

And, yes, things had been weird.

About Author Darynda Jones:

NYTimes and USA Today Bestselling Author Darynda Jones has won numerous awards for her work, including a prestigious Golden Heart®, a Rebecca, two Hold Medallions, a RITA ®, and a Daphne du Maurier, and she has received stellar reviews from dozens of publications including starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly, Booklist, and the Library Journal. As a born storyteller, Darynda grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, annoying man and beast alike, and she is ever so grateful for the opportunity to carry on that tradition. She currently has two series with St. Martin’s Press: The Charley Davidson Series and the Darklight Trilogy. She lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband of almost 30 years and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys. She can be found at


Friday, March 1, 2013

Silver-White (The Great North Woods Pack #1)

Hey everyone.  Interested in something new to read? Check out Silver-White by Shawn Underhill.  Right now it is 99 cent on Amazon.  Check out what it is about below!

“The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep.”
~ Robert Frost

*Evie’s family has been holding out on her …

Big time.

On an unexpected visit to her grandparents’ house in New Hampshire’s secluded North Woods, the sixteen-year-old literally runs into the truth of the long-hidden family secrets, and finds herself thrust without warning into the clandestine world of the Great North Pack—a wild and exhilarating world of rugged beauty, heart-pounding adventures, and long nights running under a sea of stars … but as she’s set to discover, a world also fraught with potential dangers lurking in the shadows.

About the author Shawn Underhill:
Shawn is a part-time writer from New Hampshire, where he spends his free time hiking in the mountains, camping, racing dirt bikes, or anything else that keeps him outdoors. Dogs are his very favorite people. He is also the author of the novel All Things Different.

Twitter: shawnunder

There is a $75.00 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway.  Click the Rafflecopter link below. 

Want a sneak peak?  Check out this except from the book!
Her head was turned up to the sky, her ears pricked, waiting for the next lines. But instead of the next line of a melancholy song, she heard next a sound far too close for comfort. From directly behind her a sudden swishing sound sent her spinning on her heels. As she whirled and faced the house, a bright shape flashed into her line of sight. It was her grandfather, robed in white, suddenly standing just this side of the glass door.

“It’s time,” he said in a low, serious tone.

“N—now?” Evie stuttered. He had appeared so quickly, and her nerves were so on edge, that he had startled her.

“Now,” he answered coolly. “Do you understand how young birds learn to fly?”

“What?” she gasped.

“Do as I say.”

“Do what?” Evie began, but before she could form the words her grandfather was gone.

In one fluid motion he had stepped from his robe, dropped in height, lightened in color, spread in width, and in a blink transformed into a massive white wolf; Evie felt his great weight creaking the deck boards. Slightly smaller than the wolf of her dream, this wolf too had eyes that absorbed all of the night’s small light and reflected it in stormy pools of green. With sides swelling from his first deep breaths of the night, he stared into her with those piercing eyes. A deep rumble started low in his belly.

Praise for Silver-White 
"Simply put, this book was amazing. I've read more fantasy novels than I can count, but this one is certainly one of the best. The emotions portrayed throughout the book manifest in the reader, and the imagery is beautiful. The heroine isn't some wishy-washy pansy that screams at everything, and the focus of the story isn't on some unbelievably beautiful teenage girl who suddenly becomes the biggest, baddest member of her species falling in love with some big, bad, sexy member of her newfound species. It's about a girl becoming something she never knew existed, finding her place within the pack family she values more than ever before, and an age-old feud that threatens everything she loves. The story is fast-paced and gripping, and the purely wild emotions the heroine feels when with her pack come up off the pages and make the reader smile."
-Morgan-Leigh, Amazon reviewer