Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Blog Tour: Promo and Giveaway: Lailah by Nikki Kelly

Lailah (The Styclar Saga #1)
by Nikki Kelly
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Release Date: October 7th 2014
Read some chapters on Wattpad


The girl knows she’s different. She doesn’t age. She has no family. She has visions of a past life, but no clear clues as to what she is, or where she comes from. But there is a face in her dreams – a light that breaks through the darkness. She knows his name is Gabriel.

On her way home from work, the girl encounters an injured stranger whose name is Jonah. Soon, she will understand that Jonah belongs to a generation of Vampires that serve even darker forces. Jonah and the few like him, are fighting with help from an unlikely ally – a rogue Angel, named Gabriel.

In the crossfire between good and evil, love and hate, and life and death, the girl learns her name: Lailah. But when the lines between black and white begin to blur, where in the spectrum will she find her place? And with whom?

Gabriel and Jonah both want to protect her. But Lailah will have to fight her own battle to find out who she truly is.

My review will be up probably tomorrow. I will say if you have not read this series you are missing out. :) The writing is really pretty.

I had an interview spot actually, and I made a mess of it somehow. I'm extremely sorry for my stupid-ness.

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Follow the FFBC Lailah Blog Tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

I was born and raised only minutes away from the chocolately scent of Cadbury World in Birmingham, England. So it will probably come as no surprise that when I'm not dreaming in Vampires & Angels, I dream in chocolate! For the past ten years I have lived in West London with my hubby and two dogs, Alfie - the Pug & Goose - the Chihuahua.
LAILAH is my debut novel, and first launched in serial form to wattpad, a readers & writers community. Within just 6months, LAILAH had over a million reads and thousands of comments and votes.
Since then, The Styclar Saga has gone on to pick up a traditional deal with Feiwel & Friends, and LAILAH, the first book in the series is due for release on October 7th 2014.
These days I spend my time balancing my amazing job of writing fantasy fiction, with my other, very important role of Chocolate Connoisseur. I like to multitask and do the two together. It makes me happy.

Win (1) hardback of Lailah by Nikki Kelly (US Only)

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Write On: ACA project

I'm horrible when it comes to sitting down, and just writing. I have ideas, but my problem is putting those ideas into action. I can get as far as the outline for the story, and then everything else just comes to a stand still, I draw a blank. It sucks because I know if I can get pass this maybe it will become easier. These are stories I really believe in, and I want more than anything to finish them. Heck I'd even be happy if I could get half way.

Here is a little bit of what I started
It’s funny how when I was little I wanted to be anyone, but who I was, and now….well…… I wish I could just be me…night and day.

For someone who grew up an only child I find it difficult to share. I mean come on this shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. Only children are notorious for being brats right? So the moment I lost my parents to a “drunk driver”, and I got thrust into the system I lost that only child status. I mean technically I was alone, and an only, but I had brothers and sisters in each home I was put into. I tried not to get attached, I tried to be neutral, I tried to be distant, and I tried a whole lot of other things that pissed off my fosters, and in the end it’s those qualities among others that molded me into this person I am today.

I’m Fia, short for well...we will get to that a bit later. Just know that everything has a reason in my life. Sometimes it’s not always straightforward because that’d just be too damn easy. 

Friday, September 26, 2014

Blog Tour and Giveaway: Fave Villians: Tabula Rasa by Kristin Lippert-Martin

My Favorite Villains

They’re soooo misunderstood. 

Unless they’re not. 

Sometimes they’re understood just fine because they’re simply evil. 

But whoever they are and whatever they might have done—allegedly—most villains do have positive traits. First and foremost, intelligence. You’re not going to make it big in the villain game if you’re a 
moron. And certainly charisma is an absolute must for fledgling villains. After all, unless you were able to intern at your uncle’s secret death-ray laboratory, you’ve got to start from the ground up, which means convincing potential henchmen/women that they should follow you and swear undying loyalty to your diabolical cause. 

And then there’s that special “focus,” villains possess—that admirable clarity of purpose that is the hallmark of villainy. You’ve got to have your evil ducks in a row if you’re gonna hit the big time. A mastery of Excel spreadsheets probably wouldn’t hurt either.

Here’s a list of some of my favorite villains and why I admire them:

• Keyser Söze from The Usual Suspects: He’s the Way, Way Smarter Than You Villain. He’s twelve steps ahead of you at all times, even when it seems like he’s trapped, and the man can spin a yarn like nobody’s business. Also I think he may be one of the few examples of a villain who turns out to be the hero of the story. You may not root for him, but you admire his all-encompassing mastery of playing everyone for a fool. 

• Tom Ripley from The Talented Mr. Ripley: He’s the Pragmatic Villain, just doing what he has to do to get ahead. You know how it goes, one day you’re mastering the art of fitting in with the rich folks, maybe dabbling in forgery or what have you, and then the next day, you’ve got to cover up an accidental killing of a guy who totally had it coming. Before you realize it, you’re committing the cold-blooded murder of your lover just to cover your tracks. Hey, the guy certainly knows how to up his game whenever it’s called for.

• That Alien Monster Queen: If you look at it from her point of view, she’s the Not Actually a
Villain At All Villain. Listen, it’s not her fault she needs to gestate her young inside your chest cavity. Sheesh. Girl’s just trying to propagate her species. Nothing personal until you made it personal, busting into her nursery with your flamethrower, Ripley.

• Jabba the Hutt: He’s the perfect example of the Hubristic Villain. I chose Jabba rather than Darth Vader because of Jabba’s low-flying brothel hoverboat thing. That is one sweet ride. Jabba was the original gangsta. He’s got the dancing girls and all the people groveling and hanging on his every word. Plus he’s got the best evil laugh in the game. Alas, it’s his need for drama and gloating that ultimately does him in. Why do villains never learn this? No need to stage a dramatic death ritual over the mouth of a desert beast that will digest your nemesis for a thousand years when simply shooting the guy works perfectly well.

• Voldemort: The Bad Seed Villain. Sure, we learn about his sad past as an orphan, but what does that ultimately tell us about why he is the way he is? Nothing. Dude’s a bad apple down to his core. Some people just are. Of course, what really motivates him to kill Harry is his anxiety disorder. The guy’s an over-planner who can’t tolerate any potential disruptions on the road to world domination. If he’d just heard that prophecy and said, “Eh, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it” instead of going looking for trouble, he wouldn’t have ended up a disembodied spirit in the Albanian hinterlands for ten years. 

• Hans Gruber: The Professional Villain. He’s jaded, snarky, clever, elegant. If I were hiring a bunch a guys to steal bearer bonds for me, hell yeah, I’d hired Hans to lead the assault. I’ll bet his J.D. Power & Associates Villain Ranking is way up there. He is the silkiest guy around and he figured out all the angles. That plan of his would have worked too. Gosh, that’s got to be so irritating when one little thing messes things up for you.

• The Wicked Witch of the West: The Vengeful Villain. I have great sympathy for this green-skinned lady. Thwarted—that’s what she was. She had power within her grasp and dammit, she’s not gonna let some kid from Godric’s Hollow screw it up. Whoops! I meant to say “that farm girl from Kansas.” (Someone needs to check the Slytherin family tree and see if there was some random cousin who moved to America.) Again, maybe her single-minded pursuit of the prize she was denied is a little much but hey, you can’t argue that she’s got a point. If someone stole my dead sister’s shoes right off her feet—I’m talking about the superfly heirloom magic 
ones—you can be sure I’d do a whole lot worse than make them fall asleep in a field of poppies. 
I’d pop a cap in them.

• Ursula the Sea Witch: She’s the Caveat Emptor Villain—she’s totally misunderstood. Yeah, misunderstood in the sense that she is clearly, obviously, and unapologetically EVIL. I mean, come on. Did you not see that sign out in front of her lair that says, “Offering you help/power in exchange for your soul since 1947”? Why didn’t you bother reading that? Caveat Emptor, Ariel. Let the buyer beware. It’s not Ursula’s fault you didn’t read the fine print on that contract you signed. 

Any others you’d put on this list? I’d love to hear who your favorites villains are and why! (Oh, and 
by the way, I deliberately left off Hannibal Lechter because ... ew. I don’t care if he is a genius. To me, cannibalism cancels out whatever redeeming traits you might have. No exceptions.)

Tour Stops
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Q&A and giveaway
Guest post and giveaway
Thursday, September 18, 2014
Review and giveaway
Rreview and giveaway
Q&A and giveaway
Friday, September 19, 2014
Review and giveaway
Q&A and giveaway
Guest post and giveaway
Saturday, September 20, 2014
Review and Giveaway
Guest post and giveaway
Sunday, September 21, 2014
Q&A and giveaway
Monday, September 22, 2014
Review and giveaway
One question round-up and giveaway
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Guest post and giveaway
Review and giveaway
Review and giveaways
Thursday, September 25, 2014
Review and giveaway
Guest post and giveaway
Friday, September 26, 2014
Guest post and giveaway
Saturday, September 27, 2014
One question round-up
Q&A and giveaway
Sunday, September 28, 2014
Review and giveaway
Q&A and giveaway
Monday, September 29, 2014
Q&A and giveaway
Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Guest post and giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

In this fast-paced but superficial sci-fi thriller, 16-year-old Sarah, who is half-Latina, is being held in a remote, snowy location in a facility where she is being systematically operated on to erase her memories and make her a Tabula Rasa—a blank slate. She has been told it's for her own good because it will redeem her juvenile delinquent past and get her back on track. After mercenaries attack the facility and kill the staff and patients, Sarah realizes that she's their main target, but has no idea why. The teen struggles to stay alive, helped by Thomas, a talented hacker who's broken into the facility for his own reasons. Gunmen relentlessly purse them throughout the damaged facility on orders by Hodges, a powerful woman whom Sarah instinctively hates. The story's plot is more like a video game or film screenplay—all action and little substance. With the exception of Sarah and Thomas, the characters are underdeveloped. Hodges is a caricature of an evil villain with rather nonsensical motives. The medical procedure Sarah's undergoing and the expected result is the most intriguing aspect of the book, but it's ancillary to the rest of the action, which will be a disappointment to readers hoping for a more complex tale.—Sharon Rawlins, New Jersey State Library, Trenton                                                                                                          | Amazon  | B & N Indiebound |

I’m a mom of four, a practicing geek, a holder of many opinions (which I’m more than happy to share with you—really, just ask). I earned my MFA from Columbia University. My debut YA thriller, Tabula Rasa (EgmontUSA), Fall 2014, is about a girl whose memory is forcibly stripped from her and so naturally she must kick everyone’s butt in retaliation. I live with my husband and merry band of misfits in Arlington, VA. | Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Youtube |

Book Review: The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone by Adele Griffin

AUTHOR: Adele Griffin
PAGES: 256
SOURCE: Arc from publishers

National Book Award-finalist Adele Griffin tells the fully illustrated story of a brilliant young artist, her mysterious death, and the fandom that won't let her go.

From the moment she stepped foot in NYC, Addison Stone’s subversive street art made her someone to watch, and her violent drowning left her fans and critics craving to know more. I conducted interviews with those who knew her best—including close friends, family, teachers, mentors, art dealers, boyfriends, and critics—and retraced the tumultuous path of Addison's life. I hope I can shed new light on what really happened the night of July 28.

Quick Thought (or not)
This review is not in the same format as my others mainly because the book was so different. When I say different it's totally a good thing. I will say at first when the opportunity came in my email for me to read this and be on the blog tour I looked past it because  I honestly thought it was a book about this real girls life. I'm not a fan of reading biographies and what have you, but when I went back and looked at the book, and did a little digging I realized that this was just a novel written as a biography, and then I jumped at the chance because it was something so different then anything I've tried. Sometimes I got so caught up in the story that I forgot it wasn't a  real story about this young artist who died mysteriously.

I Loved the way it was done in interviews with the people that Addison knew best. Then we get to see Addisons art, and pictures of her throughout her life.

I know this is a short review sorry!

So if I don't win, I guess I'll turn out the lights. p79
My brain is like a big echoing train station filled with announcements I can't hear, and I'm trying to decide which trains I should board, but I can't make any decisions because i's too noisy.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Book Promo: Balance Keepers by Lindsay Cummings

Normally, I don't do these kinds of post on my site, unless it's a book that has really caught my attention. I have a soft spot though for any authors who are Texas born since I too am from Texas so without further ado...

Publication 9-23-14
The first book in an epic middle grade fantasy adventure series that takes place in an underground society at the center of the earth. Packed with action, humor, magic, and mystery.

After following a mysterious map into the woods and then under the woods, eleven-year-old Albert Flynn learns he’s a Balance Keeper—someone with special magical skills for fixing problems in three underground Realms at the Core of the earth. His new job is important; if the realms fall out of balance, the world above could be in great danger.

Albert and his Balance Keeper teammates Birdie and Leroy arrive in the Core not a moment too soon. There’s an Imbalance in the Calderon Realm and it’s threatening to bury Albert’s hometown of New York City in a mountain of ash.

The three must train hard completing mental and physical challenges, but above all, they must harness the power of their Tiles—unique superpowers given to each Balance Keeper. So far, Albert’s mastered the art of not mastering his Tile....

With the situation in Calderon growing worse every day, can Albert, Leroy, and Birdie restore balance before New York is destroyed forever? Will Albert master his Tile before it’s too late?

Perfect for fans of Percy Jackson, The Unwanteds, and the classic Journey to the Center of the Earth.

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