Recent Reviews...

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Release & Review! Home is Where You Are by Tessa Marie + Teasers Galore!

Home is Where You Are by Tessa Marie
Genre: Young Adult (Contemporary Romance)
Date Published: September 30, 2014
Publisher: Self

Anna’s life reads like a check list. 
Straight A’s (Check)
Editor of the school paper (Check)
Volunteering time at the local soup kitchen (Check)
Ivy League (So close she can taste it) 
Falling in love with a homeless boy (Not on the list) 

Dean has a plan too. Survive. After being subjected to his foster father’s violent attacks, Dean made the hard choice to leave. Now he lives on the streets doing everything he can to get by, refusing to let people help him. But when he meets Anna, he realizes not everyone is out to hurt him. 

Slowly, Anna and Dean let each other in, blending their two worlds into one. But when a series of events brings Dean’s world into perspective, he pushes Anna away. Not willing to accept the line that divides them, Anna sets out to bring Dean back to her. Her determination and faith in their future puts her on the tracks of danger, and he is the only one who can save her.

Home is Where You Are by Tessa Marie is a story of love. Not just romantic love, but all the types of love. The love of family, the love of friendship, the love of helping a stranger, and yes, of course romantic love too. This seemed very believable to me. I would imagine a homeless teenager would have to survive many of the dangers Dean fought. Though Dean and Anna are opposite ends of the spectrum, they fit together perfectly. They each had certain prejudices and expectations of the other based on appearance and situation, but they learned from each other and grew stronger because of it. Home is Where You Are is a beautiful love story filled with friendship and hope for a new beginning. I enjoyed it quite a bit.

The ARC of Home is Where You Are by Tessa Marie was kindly provided to me by Mark My Words Book Publicity for review. The opinions are my own.

I'm a YA/NA author who doesn't want to admit I'm no longer a teen. Repped by Brittany Booker. Look for my NA novel (NEVER)AGAIN this fall with Berkley (Penguin)

To learn more about Tessa Marie and her books, visit her website.You can also find her on Goodreads, Facebook, and Twitter.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Tour!! A Review of The Donor (Part 3) by Nikki Rae

The Donor (Part 3) by Nikki Rae
Genre: New Adult (Paranormal)
Date Published: September 30, 2014
Publisher: Self

Casey may have not known what was in store for her when she met Jonah Black on, but now that she’s with him, life has become even more unexpected. She's discovered someone else in the picture and now she cannot figure out how she fits into the puzzle.

Convinced that he doesn’t need her, Casey is torn between giving up and doing whatever it takes to help her family. But Jonah, it turns out, needs her more than she knows.

Time is something neither of them have.
Can they hold each other together as the clock runs out?

The Donor part three is the final installment in this serial novel by Nikki Rae. I've enjoyed Casey and Jonah's story up until now. I saw pretty fast where it was all headed in this final part, but I was really hoping for something different.. right up until the very end... I kept hoping. I'm still hoping. I know this was the last book, but is it really? Does it have to be??

The Donor (Part 3) by Nikki Rae was kindly provided to me by the author for review. The opinions are my own.

Check out my reviews of the books in this trilogy!

Have you read Nikki Rae's other books?

Nikki Rae is a student and writer who lives in New Jersey. When she is not writing, thinking, or reading, she is most likely hanging out with her gecko, Neil Gaiman, drawing in a quiet corner, or drinking tea by the gallon. Sunshine is her first book.

To learn more about Nikki Rae and her books, visit her blog.You can also find her on GoodreadsFacebook, and Twitter.

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Friday, September 26, 2014

Review of Wonderfully Wicked by C.J. Burright + Author Guest Post!

Wonderfully Wicked (The Dreamcaster Series #1) by C.J. Burright 
Genre: Adult (Paranormal Romance)
Date Published: May 13, 2014
Publisher: Swoon Romance

A dreamcaster with the ability to channel creatures from her nightmares, headstrong and cynical Kalila Montgomery longs for a peaceful, picket-fence life… until the man literally of her dreams kidnaps her. 

Survival quickly becomes her number one goal, yet a growing attraction to the man in her nightmares is impossible to ignore. While she fears he will kill her, other, more terrifying enemies surround her, and Kalila succumbs to his scheme to escape. She may be his one hope for freedom…

A deadly combination of power, cunning, and cold-hearted charm, Lydon v'al Endrian fears nothing. Feels nothing. Chained to a brotherhood of men with the supernatural ability to invade dreams, he hunts dreamcasters to be harvested for their dreams and killed. His target: Kalila Montgomery. But Kalila awakens an undeniable dark desire and a longing for a freedom long-lost. 

To gain everything he craves, Lydon must seduce Kalila before his plot is discovered… a hopeless challenge which, if failed, will earn him a death-sentence. Caught up in a dangerous world of secrets and obsession, doubt and betrayal, Kalila and Lydon face the nightmare of their lives, where love will either deliver them—or destroy them both.

Wonderfully Wicked is the first book in The Dreamcaster Series by C.J. Burright. This book had me so completely entranced, it was crazy. I loved every bit of it. Dreamcasters are used and ultimately killed by the V'alkara. Lydon and Kalila were snarky and sarcastic. They're bantering was fun and witty. I couldn't get enough. They are both so headstrong and stubborn. Kalila is a strong character anyway. She doesn't take crap from anyone, and that's just what Lydon needs. He needs someone to put him in his place. The more I got to know these two, the more I fell in love with them. I laughed, yelled, and cried while reading this book. I hate books that make me cry, but there's no way I could hate this book. Quite the opposite!

Wonderfully Wicked was dark, and seductive, and very unexpected. I loved it! I think I said that already, but I just had to reiterate that fact. The author couldn't have picked a more perfect name for this book, because Wonderfully Wicked is exactly what it is!

Wonderfully Wicked by C.J. Burright was kindly provided to me by the author for review. The opinions are my own.

I’m so excited to be on What’s Beyond Forks. Woo-hoo! Today, I’m talking about my top ten favorite books. Love this topic!

My parents instilled in me a love for reading, but it’s my dad who really nudged me into the genre of fantasy. He’d go on trips and return with boxed sets of books or buy me books for Christmas. We trade books we like, although that’s slowed down with the ebook explosion. Books have influenced me from a young age, so selecting ten favorites wasn’t easy. But these are the top ten titles I treasure most.

1. LOTR trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien. Yes, I know this is technically three books, but so are several of my other choices. This is my post and I’ll do what I want.  I grew up in the country, and I’d read LOTR and this yearning for adventure would overcome me. So my friends and I would take off on our horses and spend all day in the woods, chasing goblins and fleeing from imaginary dragons. Ah, the good ol’ days.   

2. Chronicles of Prydain by Sir Lloyd Alexander – while this is more than a few books, it covers all of Taran’s story, so I count it as one. I loved how a lowly, orphaned pig-herder matured into a king. It’s a story of hope. And Gurgi! Crunchings and munchings, anyone?

3. Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis. You don’t know how many times I longed to have a magical wardrobe to hide in and travel to a different world. I’m sure a lot of people have dreamed the same, to escape reality and go someplace where you’re recognized as special. I always hated it when they had to leave Narnia.

4. The Magic Garden by Gene Stratton-Porter. My grandparents lived in Nebraska and had this old, abandoned ranch house. Every time we visited them, we’d make at least one trip out to the ranch. It was on one of these trips that I discovered some old books of my grandmother’s. The Magic Garden was one of them. It is my most cherished book, partly because it was my grandmother’s, and partly because it’s one of those timeless stories you want to read over and over. It makes your heart hurt in so many different ways. It’s a sweet, pure heart-wrenching love story that makes me cry every freakin’ time. 

5. Where Dreams Begin by Lisa Kleypas. This is the book that got me hooked on romance, the gift from my BFF that sat on the shelf for years before I read it in a moment of desperation. Zachary Bronson. Sigh. He probably has a lot to do with my anti-hero love too.

6. From This Moment On by Lynn Kurland. Before this book, I had no idea there were stories out there that combined medieval life and romance (my early days of romance discovery, obviously). Add in Ms. Kurland’s sense of humor, and I was hooked. If I could emulate any author, it would be her.

7. The Black Jewels trilogy by Anne Bishop. I love these characters so much. They’re twisted and dark and broken, yet they still cling to hope, which are exactly the type of characters who make me feel. I wanted to see them happy, to overcome evil, to finally find some peace. How could you not love characters named Lucivar, Daemon, and Saetan? And they’re the good guys!

8. The Night Angel trilogy by Brent Weeks. Oh my. Watching Kylar Stern grow up into an assassin just killed me. I wanted to crawl into the pages and hug him so many times! I just love that boy. Despite his hardships and the life he was sucked into, he remained true and honorable. Honorable assassin. Sounds like an oxymoron, I know.

9. Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls.  Do I need to explain this one? I’m more of a cat person than a dog lover. Doesn’t matter. I still cry. 

10. Xanth series by Piers Anthony. My sister and I shared a room growing up, and we’d have insult contests, inspired by the Xanth books. Pure fantasy, adventure, and a whole lot of fun. 

So that’s my list of top ten favorite books. What books make your list?
Check out my review of the following books in this AMAZING series!

CJ blames her love for reading and all things Medieval on her father, who plied her often with fantasy novels ranging from Sir Lloyd Alexander to Piers Anthony. Her love for romance, however, lies completely at the feet of her best friend Michelle, who dared to give her a romance novel for her birthday. She smiled, politely said thank you, and tossed it in the corner, where it gathered dust. In a moment of desperation, when only the revolting romance remained in her almost-always toppling stack of awaiting books, she sucked it up and read the romance.

She started writing fantasy and paranormal romance for the cathartic experience, decided she liked it, and after two overlong, horribly written novels joined RWA and the Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal special interest chapter. Best classes and critique groups ever. Double doomed.

Now, writing is a necessity, not just a hobby.

In her spare time, when she’s not writing or reading or actually working, CJ might be found in the dojang (4th Dan Black Belt, baby), rooting on the Mariners (who will some day win the World Series), working out (P90X, anyone?), gardening (a little dirt never hurt anyone), or playing Music of the Night on the piano (without mask or cape). She lives in Oregon with her fabulous husband and daughter. Not to mention her minions, a herd of cats.

WONDERFULLY WICKED is CJ's Burright's first novel.

To learn more about C.J. Burright and her books, visit her website.You can also find her on GoodreadsFacebook, and Twitter.

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Book Review: Unmaking Marchant by Ella James

Unmaking Marchant (Love Inc #3) by Ella James
Genre: Adult Fiction (Contemporary Romance) 18+
Expected Release Date: February 12, 2014
Publisher: Barkley's Books

Marchant Radcliffe, owner of the exclusive Love Inc. brothel outside Vegas, is no stranger to darkness. He lost his sister in childhood and his parents in college. Since his best friend helped him finance the Love Inc. ranch almost ten years ago, Marchant has drowned himself in business—and he’s thrived, despite the heavy secret that has plagued him since his parents’ deaths.

Then, after ten years of good fortune, Marchant’s skeletons start to peek out of the closet, tossing him down a trail of ruin that begins with arson and could end with murder. Because he’s kept his struggles private, he has no one to pull him back from the brink.

Except for Suri Dalton.

After a breakup with her longtime fiancĂ©, Suri, the daughter of one of Silicon Valley’s tech tycoons, has nowhere to go except her BFF’s new penthouse in Las Vegas. The last thing Suri is looking for is a man, but after drowning her woes in wine on the flight over, she stumbles into a torrid make out session with a beautiful stranger—who just so happens to be Marchant Radcliffe, a playboy and a literal pimp.

Despite an immediate attraction, Suri writes Marchant off as exactly the sort of guy she should avoid. Until Love Inc. goes up in flames, Marchant winds up at the bottom of a swimming pool, and Suri is the only one around to pull him out.

What happens when what you see isn’t what you get? What do you do when destiny is too alluring to resist and too dangerous to survive?

Unmaking Marchant is the third book in the Love Inc series by Ella James. I would recommend reading the previous two books in this series before reading this one. You don't have to read this series in order, but I think it all ties together better, and we're also kept up to date on the characters who were the focus of the last two books. We are given both Suri and Marchant's perspectives. This was really beneficial, because it gave you a good look at where they were mentally and emotionally. Who knew Marchant had so much baggage? Poor guy. He takes responsibility for everything, even things out of his control. He has some definite layers, and he's not what he seems. I'm so glad we're finally getting Suri's story too. She's got more hidden under the surface as well... not the the extent of Marchant by any means, but she has many insecurities she's fighting to overcome. I liked her. There's quite a bit of mystery behind this story line. Just when you think it's safe.. Bam! I knew it couldn't be that easy, but I wasn't expecting a cliffhanger!!! What!? I need to know what happens!

Unmaking Marchant by Ella James was kindly provided to me by the author for review. The opinions are my own.

Check out my reviews of the previous two books in this series!

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 Amazon Top 100; two were listed among Amazon's Top 100 Young Adult Ebooks of 2012.

To learn more about Ella James and her books, check out Ella James' blog and visit her on GoodreadsFacebook and Twitter.