Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Book Blast - Emma G. Loves Boyz: A True Love Journal, By Taro Meyer




Emma G. Loves Boyz: A True Love Journal
Author: Taro Meyer
GENRE: YA/Middle Grade

BLURB:

Emma G. is CRAZY about Aaron, lead singer of Boyz3000. Of course, she doesn’t actually know him, but so what? Feelings are feelings. That is until Josh appears… and he’s soooooo CUTE. Navigating her two crushes and her middle school life, especially with eighth-grade hater Renee around, is a challenge. And oh yeah, she’s got to earn money for an AWESOME trip to the Bahamas to see the band of her dreams. Hello???? How much can one thirteen-year-old take???

EXCERPT:

“You know that thousands of girls like Aaron,” she said. “Right?”

“So??”

“So it’s statistically almost impossible that a pop star boy will date a fan.”
I should have known she’d say something like that. I wanted to say, “Okay, just forget it.” But instead I said, “Whatever! I mean I just love his singing and his writing. That’s all.”
But that’s not all. How do you change what you feel just because some stupid statistics say you don’t have a chance? An article in Tigerbeat said Aaron had dated a girl from his high school for three months! And she wasn’t a star! So who knows what can happen? When you feel something, you have to believe! Your feelings are totally crucial to your life! When I look at Aaron’s face I get those stomach flutters! And feelings CANNOT BE IGNORED.
I started thinking about stomach flutters instead of the essay and wondering why they happen with just one particular boy. Why can one boy make your stomach go CRAZY????
I called my cousin Elyse to ask what she thought because she’s older and experienced.
“No one really knows,” she said. “That feeling just hits you. But you want to make sure that the boy you like, likes you back.”
“How can you tell?”
“Well,” she said after thinking for a minute, “sometimes boys don’t want you to know they like you. So they look at you like they are trying to look like they aren’t looking at you or liking you, but really, they are.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Taro Meyer is a Grammy, Parents’ Choice, and Audie Award winning Audio Producer who has been producing and directing YA audiobooks for over 20 years, including The Princess Diaries Series starring Anne Hathaway, the All American Girl Series starring Ari Meyers, The Inheritance Cycle (Eragon, Eldest, Brisngr) and Judy Blume’s The Pain and the Great One, Here’s to You Rachel Robinson and Tiger Eyes among others.
 

She co-produced two touring companies of Trans-Siberian Orchestra's smash rock show Christmas Eve and Other Stories and their TV special The Ghosts of Christmas Eve, receiving Gold and Platinum Albums for her work with the team. She was associate producer of the award winning anti-bullying movie, “The Contest,” and co-produced the premier showcase of off-Broadway’s Little Willie.

As an actress and singer, she starred on Broadway in the musical Zorba, in numerous regional and off-Broadway shows, and on TV’s All My Children, Another World (for which she also composed music) and the mini-series Memories of Midnight, amongst others.

Meyer wrote and produced the upcoming children’s album: Mighty Musical Fairy Tales, starring international artist Patti Austin; an updated, joyous musical version of Classic Fairy tales, accompanied by an illustrated book, The Ugly Duckling.


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Thursday, September 8, 2016

Book Review - Fairly Safe, By Deborah Ann Davis



We're happy to have Deborah Ann Davis, author of the new adult novel, Fairly Safe, here with us today! Please leave a comment to let her know you stopped by!

About the Book:


Title: FAIRLY SAFE
Author: Deborah Ann Davis
Publisher: D&D Universe
Pages: 356
Genre: New Adult

When Mistaken Identity collides with Secret Identity, who wins?

JACOB HAS COME A LONG WAY FOR AN ORPHANED FOSTER KID. He has a mentor, a great job, and has finally fallen in love. Granted, she mistook him for a stalker when they met, but every relationship has its little problems. Unfortunately, for the past few years, as the object of his affection pops in and out of his life, she has refused to share any personal info, like where she’s from, or her real name. Regardless, Jacob is ready to take their relationship to the next level. Now, if only he can locate her so he can tell her.

CASEY’S FAMILY IS IN THE WITNESS PROTECTION PROGRAM. Safety has to be their only priority. Their cover has been blown before, so Casey knows at any given time they could be forced to disappear again. Obviously, a shy young man with hopeful eyes cannot possibly be added to the mix. You cannot build a relationship like that. Now, if only she can stop thinking about him.

JACOB’S AND CASEY’S WORLDS UNEXPECTEDLY COLLIDE when Jacob inadvertently helps hide her family. Exposed to their 24-7 vigilance, Jacob realizes he must come up with a plan to keep them out of harm’s way, because this time if Casey disappears, she will be taking with her Jacob’s heart, and his hopes of finally having a family of his own.

For More Information :
Fairly Safe is available at Amazon.
Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

Review:

I personally love reading books about people who grew up a foster child and have come a long way.  Jacob was one of those children.  He has done so much with his life and seems to have a strong, happy life now. And yet he keeps searching for that one girl who is always at the fair with him and William.

He finds the girl he wants in his life and yet can't seem to keep his hands on her.  That can't be easy but he finds that he can't live without her.  This book delivers it's readers with a great spark of romance that grows as you read it.  Throw in the thrill of a threat to his love interest and her family and the book is great.

This book keeps the readers enraptured and you will want to keep reading until that last page.  And yet you will feel fulfilled once you do get to the end.  You are not left with that nagging feeling that there is something missing. I highly recommend this book!

Stars:



Book Excerpt
Wipeout!

Jacob Kent stepped out of his car as he scanned the fair on the other side of the parking lot, his heart pounding. As with many country fairs, the parking lot was no more than an abused pasture. This one was about the size of two football fields. Fair employees decked in bright yellow directed the early trickle of cars to their temporary berths. Jacob ignored them, choosing instead a parking spot near the exit. Anticipating the possible need for a quick getaway outweighed a pimply teen’s futile attempts to redirect him.

He regarded the rides twirling and spinning above and around the strolling families. Despite the morning sun, the lights flashed merrily, beckoning to all. At 11 a.m. it wasn’t crowded, but he knew that would soon change. Locking his car, he slowly picked his way through the beaten grass, combing all directions for a clue the girls were there. As the unmistakable sound of carnival music floated toward him on the warm summer breeze, he reviewed his plan.

First, he would walk through the fair to familiarize himself with the layout they had printed out. Then he would adjust their escape route to where he parked the car. After assessing the grounds, he would plant himself somewhere along the concourse, and watch the crowd. That’s how he had always found Casey in the past, and that’s how he was going to find her again.

A voice came over the loudspeaker, momentarily dimming the carnival noise. “Would the owner of a red ford truck, license plate AIP537, please return to your vehicle? Your lights are on.”

Jacob tensed. Was that some kind of clue? He looked over the parking lot. No, he could see the lights of the red truck from here. He smiled ruefully to himself.

Get a grip, Kent, he thought as he watched a portly balding man march exasperatedly toward the truck.

He sighed. Intellectually, he had to acknowledge they might have pieced together a bunch of randomly forgotten items into a fantastical story, but emotionally, he couldn’t help but believe the items served an ultimate purpose. If The Herd was here, he was going to find them. He also knew if he wasn’t careful, he could spend the entire day jumping at shadows and following dead ends.

Like that little commotion over by the edge of the fair. To his over-active imagination, that game of tag could look like a child trying to escape from the evil clutches of—

“HAHAHAHAHAHAHA, WIPEOUT!” sang out over the loudspeaker.

His head jerked up. As the pounding drums from the familiar song drowned out the carnival music, all doubt was erased. The loudspeaker was sending out a warning. His eyes darted back toward the commotion he had noticed. That was no game of tag. That was a child trying to escape a man in hot pursuit. Jacob couldn’t be positive at this distance, but it sure looked like Robin.

With his heart in his throat, he broke into a run, zigzagging between cars, trying to intercept the fleeing child as it headed toward the side of the parking lot. In this surreal moment, the same song they had used for obstacle course training was being piped out like background music to a scene in a movie. But this scene was real, where a real menace was gaining. Caught in his own nightmare, Jacob was watching Robin run for her life, and he was not close enough to help.

As the predator and prey crossed the area between the fair and the parking lot, the longer legs of the adult closed the gap between them, but once they reached the cars, the advantage became hers. Robin’s small size and training put some distance between them as she dodged around vehicles. However, her constant change of direction made it difficult for Jacob to maintain a course of interception.

Watching Robin’s progress, Jacob realized she was trying to head back toward the fair. Silently applauding Robin’s decision to get closer to other people who could help her, Jacob altered his course accordingly.

So did Robin’s pursuer.

Suddenly, her stalker eliminated the space between them by clambering up and over two pickup trucks, and landing an arm’s length away. Skidding, Robin veered around another vehicle with the man on her tail. As Jacob frantically tried to reach her, a brunette Sam suddenly popped out from behind a car and neatly took the man out with one magnificent sweep of a skateboard to the head.

Where did she come from? A stunned Jacob skidded to a stop, gasping for breath, his chest burning.

With a quick high-five, the sisters raced back to the fair. Jacob tried in vain to get their attention, but he hadn’t quite recovered enough breath to formulate sounds louder than gasps. He shook his head as he tried to calm the burning in his lungs. He was a wreck, but they were able to run off.

And I was going to save them? He weakly chuckled. What was I thinking?

Sobering, he trotted over to the man who was staggering to his feet. With rage marshalling all of his strength, Jacob drew back and smashed his fist into the man’s face. The unexpected pain in his fist was nothing compared to the satisfaction of watching Robin’s former threat drop like an anchor.

Shaking the pain out of his hand, Jacob aimed a vindictive kick at the ribs of his girls’ attacker. Any qualms he might ordinarily have about hitting a man when he’s down were nonexistent when it came to someone threatening his family.

Satisfied the man was no longer a danger, he took off in the direction he had seen his girls disappear, trying to calm the fear rising in his chest. He doubted this man had come alone. The girls probably knew that, too, and would be hiding. How was he going to find them before their pursuers did?

The light glinting off the speaker perched atop a telephone pole caught his eye. Jacob skidded to a stop and stared at it. Of course. When Robin had been trying to escape, that speaker had been blasting out Wipe Out, but now he only heard carnival music. With a grin, Jacob decided it was time to stop believing in coincidences. Someone at the fair must be helping them. If he found that person, he’d be able to find the fugitives.

About the Author
 

DEBORAH ANN DAVIS has been writing since she was assigned to keep a Journal in her 5th grade English class. She began to look around for writing inspiration. Lo and behold, she found her world was full of funny stories just waiting to be told. As she grew older, occasionally she could manipulate one into some school assignment, but it never occurred to her to pursue writing, not even when she discovered her flare for telling stories at college parties.

After a string of college majors, she realized she could have a captive audience EVERY DAY in the public school system. As it turns out, teenagers love to laugh, and what could be more entertaining than Biology, Earth Science, and Environmental Science? Then there's the added bonus that once kids know you like to laugh, they want to make you laugh.


Go figure.
 

In addition to Writing, she is also an Educational Speaker and a Certified Personal Trainer. She taught for 25+ years, although somewhere in the middle of all that educating, she stepped out of teaching for 6 years to do the Mommy Thing, and run the office for their family construction company.

Even though they had followed separate paths, Deborah reunited with, and married her childhood sweetheart, twelve years after their first kiss. Together they coached their daughter’s AAU Basketball Team, which swept States two years in a row. (Yay!) Then, for several years their daughter and their money went to college.

They currently reside on a lovely lake in Connecticut. She enjoys dabbling with living a sustainable life, writing novels for her Love of Fairs series, dancing, playing outside, and laughing really hard every day. She promotes increasing the amount of movement throughout your day via Wiggle Writer posts on Merry Meddling, her blog at www.DeborahAnnDavis.com. Follow her @DeborahAnnDavis.

Remember, you can do anything if you set your mind to it— including becoming an author at any age— but it’s way more fun if you are grinning back when the Universe smiles down on you.

For More Information:
Visit Deborah Ann Davis’ website.
Connect with Deborah on Facebook and Twitter.
Find out more about Deborah at Goodreads.


Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Book Reviews - The Rhodi Saga, By Megan Linski







Rhodi's Light (The Rhodi Saga #1)
by Megan Linski
Release Date: September 4th 2016
Gryfyn Publishing

Summary:

Flight. Hyperspeed. Clairvoyance.

These are some of the powers gifted to the Rhodi, an ancient sect of assassins who defend Crescentia, a dystopian world with a dying hope.

Dyliana Fairsson is one of them. After losing her parents to a suspicious accident, she and her twin brother, Devin, join the Rhodi to avoid starvation. Under the direction of her master, Dylan struggles to learn the strength of her magic …as well as hide the growing scars on her wrists. Can Dylan become the warrior, the hero, she’s destined to be? Or is she fated to fall from the light into the darkness?

The first installment in the epic fantasy series by bestselling author Megan Linski, Rhodi’s Light is an action-packed thrill ride that will leave readers begging for more.


Review:
I have to say that I love when I get to read a great start to a new series. This book is just that, a great start to a new series.  I was drawn in from the get go and loved that about the book. This was one of those books that once I was reading it, I couldn't put it down.  I just love when a book can do that to me.

This book gives you emotions, great characters and keeps you reading.  You get to see the main character evolve.  It is hard when you can't watch a character change in a book.  You never want flat characters.  The characters in this book are far from flat.

I love fantasy books.  When an author can draw me in, keep me in their world and almost make me want to be a part of that world, so I can be with the characters, that is something special. I love this world that was created for us in this book.

This author has a way with words, she can tell you a story without having to make it all drawn out.  She can describe something without making it too much for you to read.

Over all I highly recommend this book!!

Stars:


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Buy Link: Amazon


Rhodi's Rising (The Rhodi Saga #2)
by Megan Linski
Release Date: September 4th 2016
Gryfyn Publishing

Summary:

Forced into hiding.
Desperate to find their masters.

In the past few months since the attack on their home, twin assassins Dylan and Devin have grown restless. With the Rhodi facing extinction, they search for their masters Talidin and Tavana, only to discover they’ve gone missing. With nowhere to turn, the twins seek help from a pair of mysterious spies, only to find the trail gone cold, marked by hints of torture and destruction.

Dylan and Devin piece together the events that led to the disappearance of their fellow Rhodi. As their enemies close in for the kill, Dylan discovers that some things are impossible for a Rhodi…but not for a tigress.

The stakes and romance are heightened in this epic dystopian sequel to Rhodi’s Light. Bestselling author Megan Linski brings readers a young adult fantasy with magic, mystery, and an epic adventure that races quickly to a breathless conclusion. 


Review:
And on with book two.  This book brings us right back into the world that Megan created for us in her first book in this series. You have the characters back with us, pushing through and trying to get to their home again. We see the characters with real issues.  I love when characters, even in a fantasy world, can be like real people.  They make the book more relate-able.  

The book again pulled me in and held me as I was turning the pages.  I love when I feel like I need to keep reading, like I need to know what is going to happen next before I put the book down.  It is a great thing when a book can pull me in like that.  It just makes me want to keep reading, and when it's a series that means I will keep getting the books so that I can.

We really can see the author developing and growing the world and the characters with each page.  She is making a world I would love to be a part of, even if the life would be nothing like I am facing in my own world now.

This book is highly recommended!

Stars:
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Buy Link: Amazon


Rhodi's Lullaby (The Rhodi Saga #3)
by Megan Linski
Release Date: September 4th 2016
Gryfyn Publishing

Summary:

Cities burn.
Governments fall.
Lives are lost in a desperate war...one the Rhodi are losing.

The world has been devastated by the tyranny of the Red Huntress. To save Crescentia, Dylan and Devin attempt to decipher the mystery of the ancient letter their ancestors left behind, the only hope of salvation for their kind. Dylan continues to fight foes both on the battlefield and within her own mind, all while wrestling with the confused feelings she has for Enfys, the alluring spy who has become devoted to her cause.

In the epic conclusion to the thrilling Rhodi Saga, one brave warrior will stand in the way of corruption, to take place before her destiny…or her death.

Rhodi’s Lullaby is the third installment in the suspenseful young adult dystopian series fans and critics are calling an original masterpiece in the epic fantasy genre.

Rhodi’s Light and Rhodi Rising are also available. Catch up on the entire series today! 


Review:
And now we get to the last book in the series.  The author continues to deliver a great story with the third book in the series.  We have strong characters, a great world we all want to be in, and a story we all wish we were a part of.  Megan Linski delivers a great series with the three books and makes sure the last book in the series delivers everything we need.

We get to see the characters at their best, and even get to see real issues that keep coming up throughout the books. It makes the characters more relate-able for me when I can see them doing things I do myself or did in the past.  No one wants the characters they are reading to have the perfect world, with no issues.  I can say that I like characters that are flawed more.  I was happy that I had that with these books.

It was great to see this as the final book, but I was almost sad when I got to the end.  I wanted to keep reading.  It is always great when an author can keep you that engaged.  I did not want this to be the last book in the series. I had every emotion while reading this book and I know it had to end, but that doesn't mean I wanted it to end.  I wanted to be a part of the character's lives forever.

Stars:
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Buy Link: Amazon





Rhodi Saga Playlist: https://open.spotify.com/user/12179397807/playlist/41pTZKXDVV4d9wFV1i5LEh


About the Author
Megan Linski is the owner of Gryfyn Publishing and has had a passion for writing ever since she completed her first (short) novel at the age of 6. Her specializations are romance, fantasy, and contemporary fiction for people aged 14-24. When not writing she enjoys ice skating, horse riding, theatre, archery, fishing, and being outdoors. She is a passionate advocate for mental health awareness and suicide prevention, and is an active fighter against common variable immune deficiency disorder. She lives in Michigan.


Author Links:
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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Book Review - Sovereign's Wake, By Lee LaCroix






Book Title: Sovereign's Wake
Author: Lee LaCroix
Publishing Date: November 9, 2015
Page/Word Count: 344 pages

BLURB:
A kingdom crumbles without its ruler. The people fall to misery and desperation in the shadow of an empty throne. A father does what he must to save his son and his homeland in the absence of kings. Enter Garreth, ranger and former royal bodyguard, who embarks from his woodland home after defending it from the encroaching loggers of the Blackwoods Company. "The King is dead!" they had screamed at Garreth and drove the man to the capital of Amatharsus to resolve the most troubling statement in Malquia's recent history. Together with his son, Novas, and daughter of a murdered blacksmith, Kayten, Garreth is hounded by bandits, cutthroats, and highwaymen, unleashed upon the countryside by the abolition of the Crown Aegis, defenders of the King, his land, and his people. Garreth unites with the remnants of the Crown Aegis to overcome the military, political, and economic oppression that the Blackwoods Company has imposed on Amatharsus and incites rebellion before the free people of Malquia succumb to crippling recession and the environmental destruction of their verdant nation. But can one man find the strength to challenge overwhelming odds when all hope is lost?

Review:

So I wanted to really like this book.  I loved the idea of it and that is why I wanted to review it.  Once I started reading it though it was a bit if a struggle for me.  I love people who actually can use formal writing, not just slang and text speak, but this book was almost too formal for me.  When I am reading a book I want to be able to think but not feel like I am going to be tested on what I am reading later.  

This book's structure reminded me of some of the books I had to read when I was in college.  It was very stiff. I think the author has a great eye for describing things, and I think he could tell a blind person exactly how something looks.  That being said, there is more to a book.  I think that he needs to let the characters tell some of that, let them be part of it more then just tell us. If that makes sense. 

The characters are strong, and the author did a great job with them.  But parts were harder for me to follow and I got confused with them.  Perhaps a little bit more about them, or more talk between them.  I am not sure what they need.  There is just something missing in this book.

I do think that it is a good dip into the fantasy genre, but I think that this book could stand a few little changes here and there.   With the right tweaks and a more flowing feel, this book could be the start of an epic, great series!

Stars:


  
Amazon Link: Buy It Here
Goodreads Link: Check it out here
Twitter Link:@Lee_LaCroix
Facebook Link: Author's Facebook
Webpage: Author's Page