Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Paranormal Reading Challenge: Alone by Marissa Farrar Giveaway


 What level would you be on in the challenge if this book was added to your list?

The wonderful people at VampLit Publishing have approached me to host a giveaway on their behalf. I will be giving away an e-book of Alone by Marissa Farrar, an up and coming author who has recently broken into the world of Paranormal Romance.

"Alone by Marissa Farrar is a wonderful vampire novel, although not a traditional romance it spans across genres. Serenity is a heroine that will appeal to readers who are looking for a protagonist with true grit.  On the surface Sebastian is a typical vampire from paranormal romance, but as the story developes each character shows their strength and weakness and the resolution of the novel calls for both to fight against their respective pasts."
 I have one copy up for grabs of this awesome book. You can read a sample of it here.

All you have to do it comment on this post.

Extra entries:
Don't forget to leave links for each entry.

Contest is of course INTERNATIONAL. Contest ends 16th April 2010
Good Luck!

    Tuesday, March 30, 2010

    Teaser Tuesday: 30/3/2010

    Currently Reading: Taken By Storm by Angela Morrison
    i sneak out of the Dive Festiva's dining salon,where the captain tels everyone to be calm and my waitress cries. i race to the cabin, grab my camera and strobe. Then i'm out in the storm.
    Teaser Tuesday is the brainchild of Should Be Reading

    Monday, March 29, 2010

    BWB Discussion Questions: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

    1. What did you think of the feud between Puck and Ash? How do you think that might play out in the next two books?

    The feud was very interesting, I love the duels and how Puck fights dirty whereas Ash is very noble, if only he would fight dirty he might have a chance at winning. The way the duel came about was a little weak in my opinion, because of a girl? Come on, with the way Puck is it would be believable if he set their Ice Castle on fire. It will definitely play a part in the next two books, provided Puck makes a recovery, which is inevitable.

    2.  Favorite scene or line from the book? Could you relate to any of the characters?

    I can't relate to them per se, but my favourite character would have to be Grimalkin, who was actually a boy despite the myths. I love all of his lines. I loved Puck in it too, he was hilarious as he is in all the books he crops up in. My favourite scene was actually in the park with the tree people. I don't know but for a second there I could almost smell the trees and the grass. It was a very vivid scene and although it wasn't long, I loved it.

    3. With whom did you identify with the most? And Why?

    Probably a mixture of Grimalkin with his disdain for stupid people, Ash because of his nobility and Puck because of his sense of humor. Puck the most I think because i love him as a character and because he got the best of both worlds...except for when he was a crow.

    4. Did you find the concept behind the Iron King-  being  a technology fueled modern day faerie-  original or unbelievable?

    I found the essence of The Iron King to be unoriginal, but the introduction of the Iron Fey to be quite unique even though we don't really see much of them in the story itself. If they play more of a part in the next books, which I'm sure they will, it will get very interesting indeed.

    5. Kagawa used a lot of mythical faeries in The Iron King, such as King Oberon, Queen Mab and Puck. Which fae from myth would you have liked to have seen added into the pages of The Iron King besides the ones she used?

    I'm actually really over the use of King Oberon and Puck. I like them in A Midsummer Night's Dream and although its fun for them to crop up, it's been done before. Just exploring the fey in general, water nymphs and fire nymphs, they don't have to be famous they just have to be fey and I'm happy.

    Book Review: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

    Review: The Iron King
    Series: Iron Fey – Book 1
    Author: Julie Kagawa
    No. of Pages: 363
    Release Date: 1st February 2010


    Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan’s life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school...or at home.

    When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she’s known is about to change.

    But she could never have guessed the truth – that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she’ll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil no faery creature dare face...and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

    My Thoughts:

    The Iron King doesn’t live up to the surrounding hype in my opinion.

    It’s all been done before, daughter of Oberon, the close friend Puck, the trek through faeryland and a changeling somewhere in the midst of it all. The Iron King has its high points and there was a good plot driving the story, but I couldn’t help but get the feeling of déjà vu.

    Meghan’s brother is taken by someone from faeryland and replaced with a changeling. Meghan who has never fit into the society around her finds out that her best friend, Robbie Goodfell, is actually the Puck of legend. She asks him to help her get her brother back. And so, the adventure ensues.

    The start was a bit slow, but once we get out of the summer court The Iron King does get quite intriguing. The detail put into the book was very vivid and although a bit much at times, created a colourful image in my mind that I quite enjoyed exploring through the eyes of Meghan.

    Meghan is a strong character, she is focused and wilful. And smart. That was the high point of The Iron King, Meghan wasn’t stumbling around waiting for people to save her, she actually figured things out for herself, and while making a few mistakes they weren’t the cringe worthy disasters I have grown so used to when it comes to YA adventure stories. She worked out exactly how to bargain with the fey, where to go and after being taught, tapping into her power source.

    Meghan was also believable. At one point towards the end, she is tempted by an offer, and to be honest I probably would have had a tougher time saying no to what was on the table. Yes she was tempted, she’s half human. She didn’t take it, but she was tempted. She also wasn’t all over Ash, the love interest, she was able to stay focused on the task at hand, and although some tantalising flirting was explored, Meghan didn’t lose sight of what she was there to do.

    Grimalkin, the cat, I loved him, so smart, so funny, so witty, so Cheshire. Every time he spoke I got the Cheshire cat in my head. I don’t know if Kagawa did it intentionally, but if she didn’t...

    The only other point was the swearing. We were censored for the first part of the book, when her mother was around. But as soon as Meghan entered faeryland, it’s like the gloves were off no holds barred so to speak. The language that was used was not offensive in my opinion but considering the fact that we had the line “said a word my mother would have grounded me for” in the first part to full blown S-bombs in the second and third, it was just a little unexpected.

    So The Iron King, intriguing, strong character – read it for Meghan in my opinion – a little cliché, funny and strong story. Anyone who like faeries will love it, anyone who likes smart characters who don’t need to be told what is right in front of their faces will love it, and anyone who likes Alice in Wonderland will love it as well.

    Others in this series:
    The Iron Daughter
    The Iron Queen

    Others who have reviewed this:
    Tigers All Consuming Books
    I Just Wanna Sit Here and Read!

    Available at:
    Book Depository

    I'm going on a holiday!!!

    I'm going away for four days for Easter at the end of this week, and I can't decide how many, or what, books to take.

    I'm thinking 8, just in case. Below is my current TBR Pile, split into what month I bought/received the book. Currently I'm making a concious effort to finish January lol. I definitely want to take Venom, because it's an ARC and I'm taking Just After Sunset, because I have finished part of it and would like to complete it. I will also take Blood Bound, because I want to give Patricia Briggs another go.

    What else do you think I should take?

    Currently Going:
    • Venom
    • Just After Sunset
    • Blood Bound
    • Taken by Storm
    You guys picked:
    • Beautiful Creatures 
    • Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side
    • Perfect Chemistry

    • Just After Sunset by Stephen King
    • The Host by Stephanie Meyer
    • Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs
    • Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs
    • Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
    • Enchanted. Inc by Shanna Swendson
    • Night Rising by Chris Marie Green
    • Water Song: A Retelling of the Frog Prince by Suzanne Weyn
    • Midnight Pearls: A Retelling of the Little Mermaid by Debbie Viguié
    • Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs
    • Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice
    • Darkborn by Alison Sinclair
    • Lament by Maggie Stiefvater
    • The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson
    • Need by Carrie Jones
    • Born of Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon
    • Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella
    • Claimed by Shadow by Karen Chance
    • Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning
    • Jessicas Guide to Dating on the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey
    • Lover Eternal by J.R Ward
    • Original Sin by Allison Brennan
    • Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles
    • Blood Magic by Eileen Wilks
    • Blue Bloods by Melissa De La Cruz
    • Venom by Joan Brady  
    • My big nose and other natural disasters by Sydney Salter
    • Bleed for Me by Michael Robotham 
    • The Man Within by Lora Leigh
    • Elizabeth's Wolf by Lora Leigh
    • Taken by Storm by Angela Morrison

    Thursday, March 25, 2010

    Book Review: The Accidental Werewolf by Dakota Cassidy

    Review: The Accidental Werewolf
    Series: Accidental Friends - Book 1
    Author: Dakota Cassidy
    No. of Pages: 326
    Release Date: 5th February 2008


    Marty Andrews is havin a bad week. First, she;s bitten by a mangy mutt while walking her teacup poodle. As a result, her salon-perfect blonde hair begins darkening by the day to something thats's sooo not in her colour wheel. Her moodswings have turned her into The Hormonal Hulk. Worse yet, the hair on her legs is rowing at a rate even a body slam into an entire vat of wax couldn't cure. Last, and most important, her dream job as a sales rep for Bobbie-Sue Cosmetics is going to hell in a handbasket...

    The only high point is Keegan Flaherty, the drool-worthy man who shows up at her door. Of course, he's clearly insane. Keegan claims that he accidentally bit Marty, and since he's a werewolf, she is now, too. Read meat cravings aside, Marty refuses to believe a word until a kidnapping makes her realize there's more at stake that her highlights. And she must put her out-of-control life in the hands of the man who makes her blood run wild in more ways than one...

    My Thoughts:

    This book is an absolute scream!

    I had so many laugh out loud moments that I had to control myself from loud outbursts when I was reading this at work.

    Marty at the start isn't a very likeable character. She's a work-aholic, who only seems to care about make-up and her little poodle. But as the story progresses we see her deeper side, and her funny side which make her as loveable as Muffin, the poodle with small dog syndrome. I love Marty's development, from self-obsessed Betty-Sue zombie to caring, nurturing and considerate pack member. I also loved that through this transformation she didn't lose her edge.

    Keegan is absolutely delicious. He's all man with a soft side that only comes out when Marty strikes him at his most vulnerable times. He's a hard man who's hard to read and even harder to connect to, but in this case it only adds to his sexiness.

    The Accidental Werewolf is a predictable novel, but the way it got to the finish we knew was coming was extremely entertaining. The fights with Keegans ex, the sit downs with his family, who were so welcoming to something so new to them, and to her poodle.

    The plot may not be the strongest, but it didn't stop The Accidental Werewolf from being a completely enthralling tale. I think what also help it along was the language. The style of writing that Cassidy uses was very modern. She uses slang, true accenting of words and the characters talk like real people. It's as if you are literally watching a bunch of chicks on the street having a conversation.

    Cassidy didn't confine herself to literary tems or language, and she pulled it off very well. I think this is what made The Accidental Werewolf so enjoyable, because it was on my level, and in my language. It is what made me devour so quickly and eagerly await the next book in this series.

    Warning: This book does contain some explicit language and sexual material.

    Others in this series:
    Accidentally Dead
    The Accidental Human
    Accidentally Demonic
    Accidentally Catty

    Available at:
    Book Depository

    Wednesday, March 24, 2010

    New Winner for the 49 Followers Contest!

     Ok so I had one no-reply from the emails I sent out :(

    So I drew another winner!!!

    The new winner is:
    #466 Natasha

    Missy Jane Contest!


    Okie Dokie, As you may have noticed I have recently done my first author interview! My lovely author being Ms Missy Jane. In honour of this I will be giving away some copies of her book and some lovely signed swag that she so generously sent to me.

    So whats up for grabs?

    3 Lucky winners will take home a copy of Missy Jane's They Call Me Death Plus some book marks and other signed swag from both They Call Me Death AND Resignation!

    Resignation is available in e-book format so it's a little hard for me to give that away however you may purchase directly from the publisher here for $3.50. It is an adult book, so over 18s can read that one.

    All you have to do is fill out the form and bob's your uncle!

    Oh and extra entries! You know you love them:

    +5 for commenting on Missy Jane's interview
    +5 for commenting on the They Call Me Death review
    +4 for advertising this anywhere (except twitter)
    +3 for following Missy Jane on twitter
    +3 for following me on twitter
    +2 for tweeting this

    You MUST be a follower to enter.

    Also, for the comments to be counted...they need to be REAL comments not just "Great interview" or "Great review"


    PS: Contest is, of course, INTERNATIONAL! And runs until 7th April

    Tuesday, March 23, 2010

    Book Review: They Call Me Death by Missy Jane

    Review: They Call Me Death
    Series: Shape Shifter - Book 1
    Author: Missy Jane
    No. of Pages: 208
    Release Date: 1st December 2009
    Humans are no longer at the top of the food chain…

    My name is Alexia Williams. In my world, North America is divided between north and south—but not the way it’s taught in the history books.

    After losing my family to the shifters, I joined the Combined Human States Army. Now I find myself on the front lines, defending the wall between my species and theirs. My mission is simple: keep the animals on their side by whatever means necessary—and I’m good at it. I don’t talk to them. I don’t sympathize with them. I sure as hell don’t admire them…until one saves my life.

    Andor isn’t like any shifter I’ve ever met. He’s a three-hundred-year-old golden eagle asking for help finding missing shifters who may be in my lands. I just have to decide between helping the animals or ignoring signs that my fellow humans aren’t what I thought they were.

    But how can I help a species I hate and fear? Even if Andor makes me feel alive again?

    In the land of the shifters…they call me Death.

    My Thoughts:

    They Call Me Death is a fabulous debut book.

    We look through the eyes of Alexia Williams at a world overrun by shifters. After watching her husband and son killed by shifters she has become one of the top fighters for the human defence force. Defending the wall daily and killing any shifters that cause trouble. Alexia is portrayed as a strong woman, but really she has put a lid on all of her emotions. She doesn't feel and doesn't care about the various life-threatening situations she puts herself through.

    Then, along comes Andor, the shape-shifting Golden Eagle. Andor is smart, sexy and strong. He protects Alexia after puting her life in danger by contacting her. Andor changes everything. Alexia starts to feel again, but is confused because she's dealing with a creature that is the reason her family is dead.

    Watching Alexia struggle with her emotions about Andor and trying to keep him from reading the thoughts about her true feelings from her mind is quite entertaining.

    The development of the characters was very well done, giving each character a unique voice. The build-up of the relationships was evenly paced and very believable. Although there were feelings from the start Alexia stuck with her gut about Shifters and wouldn't give into her emotions, the romance had time to mature and become something special, not just a quick jump in the sack.

    I encourage anyone who likes shape-shifters to read it because it is a new take on the genre, the detail put into Andor shifting into an eagle and the feelings attached to his animal side are incredible. When Alexia touched the feathers, I almost felt like I did too.

    The only bad thing about this book are the time jumps, they are unexpected and oddly done. We can jump hours or days from one sentence to the next which involved a bit of re-reading on my part to understand what was going on. Other than that, for a debut author the style was if a little simple, very well done.

    They Call Me Death is fast-paced and once we get more into the story, completely unputdownable. Things move along quickly without skipping important details which keep us enthralled from start to finish.

    Warning: This book does contain explicit language and sexual material aswell as a mild beastiality reference.

    Author Interview: Missy Jane

    I would like to thank Missy Jane, author of They Call Me Death and Resignation for taking time out of her schedule to talk to me about writing and about her new series that has stemmed from They Call Me Death.

    Ms. Missy Jane is the alter ego of a Texas mother of four who has been married to the same wonderful man for thirteen years. About five years ago Missy finished reading a book by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory, titled The Outstretched Shadow, and thought “Now, what if…” and a monster was created. Missy now spends most of her time lost in worlds of her own making alternately loving and hating such creatures as vampires, shape-shifters and gargoyles (to name a few). When not writing, she spends her time reading, taking photos of her four beautiful daughters and training her husband to believe she’s always right. 

    SW: You say (on your website) you got into writing about five years ago, did you start writing paranormal right away or did it take some time?
    MJ: I actually began by writing a straight fantasy novel that is more YA than adult themed. I'd read the Mercedes Lackey/James Mallory book and felt inspired by their characters and world. My fantasy novel isn't exactly the same, but it's definitely different from my paranormal romance. I didn't start on They Call Me Death until a year or so later.

    SW: When did weres and shifters come into play?
    MJ: When I first began reading romance I started with paranormal. A good friend of mine handed me Angel Knight and Laurel K Hamilton and I was hooked! Anita Blake was a big inspiration for Alexia Williams, though I tried to make her nicer to men ;-)

    SW: I love the whole idea of a future when the world is overrun by shifters. What led to the idea of America being at war with them?
    MJ: It's kind of strange the way I become inspired to write. They Call Me Death was born when an image of a woman standing atop a concrete wall with a machine gun in her hands popped into my head. I mulled over it for a few days and the story slowly took shape. I honestly didn't know what would happen next until I was writing it.

    SW: Would you fight the shifters, or side with them?
    MJ: Lol! That's a great question and you're the first one to ever ask me. It probably depends on the day. Right now I'm in a shifter frame of mind because I'm fleshing out Emily's story. I'm in her head and her motivation for doing things makes sense to me. However, if I choose to write from a human's POV next I might change my mind. There really is no bad guy in my world. Just different POVs and motivations.

    SW: If you could be a shifter what would you be?
    MJ: Hmm, I'm really partial to cats. I haven't written them yet because lots of authors have done werecats and werewolves. I decided to start with birds since I'd never read them before. In researching the Golden Eagles I learned a lot and think they're just amazing. So from one extreme to another, I might like to be a bird. But I'm afraid of heights ;-)

    SW: How many books do you think there might be in the Shape Shifters series?
    MJ: After Emily I already have Kotori's and Sandulf's stories on the back burner. I've gotten at least three chapters done on each with a definite focus of where they're headed. My ideal goal would be to do three humans and three shifters. Since I don't want to give any spoilers I won't tell you where I'm at on that right now.

    SW: How long did it take you to write They Call Me Death?
    MJ: Total probably about a year and a half. I'd nearly completed it when I took it with me to the Romantic Times writer's convention and was lucky enough to have it critiqued by Judi McCoy. She was very helpful and her encouraging words prompted me to finish it within two months and submit it to Samhain.  

    SW: Where did the names of your characters come from? Do they have any special meaning?
    MJ: I'm very picky with names, especially for the shifters. I like for my characters' names to have meaning and tell a little something about them, so I use the 20,000 names website to research the meaning of each name. For the shifters I usually go to the animals page and look for the appropriate species. I tried to make sure they also made sense for their heritage and era they were born into.

    SW: Any other comments?
    MJ: I just hope you and your readers enjoy my book and I can't thank all of you enough for reading! I know with rising prices how hard it can be on deciding which ones to buy when the author is new. I sincerely appreciate you taking a chance on me. Be sure to visit my website where I have links to free short stories both contemporary and in my world of shifters.Also, since I decided Sandulf is much more interesting than I am, I created a blog just for him. Go to to read his thoughts and rules. Feel free to post questions and he will answer ;-)
    Thanks again!
    -Missy Jane

    Thank you once again Missy Jane for taking the time to reply to me.

    You can also find her at: 

    I will be posting my review of They Call Me Death tonight. Check back to see the giveaway I will be holding later in the week of Missy Janes two fantastic books AND some signed swag!

    Trade With Me

    I am Aussie, and although I would prefer to trade with other Aussies I am willing to trade international for the right book. The list will constantly be changing and as I read I will be adding to it.

    Books that I want are on the right hand side under Books I'm hoping to get soon. That list is also constantly changing, as I buy the books myself. But I am open to other suggestions.

    All books are paperback copies unless otherwise specified.

    Current Trade List:

    Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
    The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger
    Last Chance Saloon by Marian Keyes
    Lucy Talk by Fiona Walker  (Hardcover)
    The Printer's Devil by Paul Bajoria
    Hush: An Irish Princess' Tale by Donna Jo Napoli
    My Love Lies Bleeding (AKA Hearts at Stake) by Alyxandra Harvey
    Nightlight: A Parody by The Harvard Lampoon
    Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

    If you are interested please email me at

    Have you also done a review?

    Have you reviewed the same book as me? If so I wanna know so I can add your review to the bottom of mine! I love reading others reviews and especially when I'm not very nice to some of the book I read, I know some one out there must have been.

    So, all you need to do is fill out the following form with the link to your review and I can add them to my reviews!

    Monday, March 22, 2010

    Book Review: My Invented Life by Lauren Bjorkman

    Review: My Invented Life
    Author: Lauren Bjorkman
    No. Of Pages: 229
    Release Date: 29th September 2009

    I recieved this book through International Blog Tours

    With Roz and Eva everything becomes a contest—who can snag the best role in the school play, have the cutest boyfriend, pull off the craziest prank. Still, they’re as close as sisters can be. Until Eva deletes Roz from her life like so much junk e-mail for no reason that Roz understands. Now Eva hangs out with the annoyingly petite cheerleaders, and Roz fantasizes about slipping bovine growth hormone into their Gatorade.

    Roz has a suspicion about Eva. In turn, Eva taunts Roz with a dare, which leads to an act of total insanity. Drama geeks clamour for attention, Shakespearean insults fly, and Roz steals the show in Lauren Bjorkman’s hilarious debut novel.

    My Thoughts:

    This is a very good debut book.

    My Invented Life tells the story of Roz and her fantasies during a period of time at high school. Roz is a wannabe actress and imaginary extraordinaire.

    Roz is a very funny character and extremely likeable. She is completely outrageous in her notions, actions and accusations. She is also a very confused person and one that is very easy to relate to. At times you want to shake her for the things she says even though for some odd reason she turns out to be right in some things. A couple of these revelations left me thinking “What?!” there wasn’t even a sign that that could be possible.

    It all starts with the assumption that her big sister is a lesbian, to try and make it easier for her to “come out” she decides to pretend to be a lesbian, to pave the way as it were. The consequences of her decision ensue.

    My Invented Life is fast-paced and realistic. Everyone in the story is a real character, easily high-school friends and Roz isn’t overly well-spoken or even really sane, and slipping into her fantasies while confusing at first become extremely funny.

    Roz’s voice is unique, we go through the confusion of labels and teenage sexuality and how not everyone fits in with a certain group. I loved the dashboard analogy about how someone doesn’t have to be fully gay or fully straight or even smack bang in the middle, because everyone is different.

    This book is thought-provoking as well as being laugh out loud funny and is not something that is easily put down-able. The relationships between the characters are well fleshed out and believable, not everyone has to have a life-time best friend and it is normal to drift from group to group yet still be part of a bigger picture.

    My Invented Life was written to be taken two ways, either a funny romp through high-school involving odd people and normal high-school problems. Or as a journey through the confusions we face when plunging into that gray area that is sexuality.
    All in all I found it extremely funny, insightful and although at times confusing a thoroughly enjoyable and quick read.

    Others who have reviewed this:
    Trillian Books

    Available at:
    Book Depository

    49 Followers Contest - WINNERS!!!!!

    You didn't think i was going to make you wait that long did you?

    Well all is done and dusted with the comp, I knuckled down and checked all the entries. Yes there were some deletions, because people straight out lied to the point where their entry was completely useless, or they entered 17 times (yes, someone did that, no it wasn't a glitch). But after all is said and through here are the results from the 49 Followers Competition.

    Entrants: 299
    Entries: 3502
    Followers at start: 49
    Followers at end: 353
    Total Winners: 8
    Total Books Won: 14
    Final Book List: 57

    #175 Beleth 
    #1730 Aina Yasmin
    #1087 Erica
    #1855 ChinLin Pan
    #2603 Dottie Taylor
    #1906 Diana Dang
    #2243 Bernaditta
    #1779 Josette

    The 49 Followers contest was originally to thank my 49 followers for following me, but none of the orignal followers actually one a prize :(
    So, I have decided to give away an extra prize to the old followers. YEAY!!!!
    The winner of this prize is:
    #7 Stacy Stewart

    All winners were drawn by All winners have 48 hours from the time i send out the emails. Books are still subject to availability.

    49 Followers Contest has Finished!

    Ok, I have already had a few emails asking about the winners.

    I will post them by Friday, I promise.

    There are over 300 participants that I need to check, which I have been doing since the start of the competition but have not yet finished.

    So no I haven't posted the winners yet. Yes they will be done by next week.

    Friday, March 19, 2010

    Want to join a conference?

    This is a quick post to let you know that the Online Book Bloggers Conference starts tomorrow. We have been in pre-conference discussions on the Ning all week and it has been really informative.

    I have already decided to make some changes in the way I do things, and the official conference hasn't even begun yet.

    The amount of work Terry has put into this is absolutely amazing, there are publishers authors and bloggers all in the one place, so we can get everything out there and have questions answered without having to look too hard.

    It's $20 to join...not much if you ask me, It has already given me some priceless tips, so come join...and add me because I don't have any Ning friends :(

    PS Terry doesn't know I'm posting this...I got the idea from Becky the Bookette

    Wednesday, March 17, 2010

    Book Review: Stargazer by Claudia Gray

    Review: Stargazer
    Series: Evernight – Book 2
    Author: Claudia Gray
    No. Of Pages: 332
    Release Date: 1st April 2009

    I kissed Lucas again, more slowly this time. We held each other tighter, and I started to wonder how much closer we could get – and then I remembered what it had felt like when I drank his blood.

    Evernight Academy: an exclusive boarding school for the most beautiful, dangerous students of all – vampires, Bianca, born to two vampires, has always been told her destiny is to become one of them.

    But Bianca fell in love with Lucas – a vampire hunter sworn to destroy her kind. They were torn apart when his true identity was revealed, forcing him to flee the school.

    Although they may be separated, Bianca and Lucas will not give each other up. She will risk anything for the chance to see him again, even if it means coming face-to-face with the vampire hunters of Black Cross – or deceiving the powerful vampires of Evernight. Bianca’s secrets will force her to live a life of lies.

    Yet Bianca isn’t the only one keeping secrets. When Evernight is attacked by an evil force that seems to target her, she discovers the truth she thought she knew is only the beginning...

    My Thoughts:

    Once again this will only be short because I read this September last year, but I wanted it to be reviewed in lead up to the Hourglass review.

    Stargazer was a stronger book than Evernight, still a little silly but definitely a more grounded story.

    Bianca once again blunders on in her own little way – can we tell I don’t really like her? – But this book moves more from vampires in to the world of teen angst, and more importantly, teen stupidity.

    Bianca is constantly making stupid decisions, defying her parents and sneaking around behind everyone’s back to see the person they are trying to protect her from. Lucas...the vampire hunter.

    I was actually cheering for Balthazar during this and every time she turned him down, my heart broke a little for him.

    I did however love the wraiths appearance in this book though. I love when a being we don’t usually see crops up in a book, like a wraith. Icy, evil, powerful.

    Although Bianca is annoying, Stargazer still held my attention for the entire book and I am intrigued to see what happens in the next instalment of this series.

    Others in this series:

    Monday, March 15, 2010

    Discussion Questions: First Drop of Crimson by Jeaniene Frost

    Denise and Spades chemistry sparks more than a firecracker on the 4th of July. Did you like the chemistry between them and did you feel the development of the relationship work? 

    I loved the cheimstry! Denise had that vulnerable quality about her that made her think that Spade was such a worldy man who would never want anything to do with her. But she still didn't all out fight the attraction to him. The relationship built up very nicely, it wasn't rushed and it was also believable. The companionship that we see between the two was refreshing, and it was a huge tease as the feeling developed. Especially when Spade was in the shower...

    Have you read the Cat & Bones series? Denise is such a different (wimpier) character than Cat... did that make a difference to you?

    I will make no secret of the fact that Cat and Bones are my favourite pair. But to compare Cat and Denise in regards to wimpiness is not something that really can be done in my eyes. Cat has strength yes, she can beat up anything you throw at her, but she also has a weakness for gin. Denise is very strong minded though and I never saw her as a wimpy person in the first four books anyway. I will say that it felt weird when Cat showed up in FDOC and I wasn't reading from her point of just felt wrong, but I reckon Denise is strong in her own way and being able to beat someone up has nothing to do with that.

    LIGHTNING ROUND. Identify your top three favorite PNR series.  "There are too many!" is not an answer. Neither is more than three.  Name the top three. Ready.....go!
    1. Night Huntress Series (duh!)
    2. The Accidental Friends Series
    3. Black Dagger Brotherhood (granted I have only read one, but it was really really good.)
    They all seem like really boring choices now that I think about it...oh well, I like them. (I wanted to pick Vampire Academy, but I don't think it counts)

    Sizzle or Fizzle? Sizzle ma nizzle fo' rizzle.

    Book Review: First Drop of Crimson by Jeaniene Frost

    Review: First Drop of Crimson
    Series: Night Huntress World – Book 1
    Author: Jeaniene Frost
    No. Of Pages: 371
    Release Date: 9th February 2010

    The night is not safe for mortals. Denise MacGregor knows all too well what lurks in the shadows—her best friend is half-vampire Cat Crawfield—and she has already lost more than the average human could bear. But her family's past is wrapped in secrets and shrouded in darkness—and a demon shape shifter has marked Denise as prey. Now her survival depends on an immortal who lusts for a taste of her.

    He is Spade, a powerful, mysterious vampire who has walked the earth for centuries and is now duty-bound to protect this endangered, alluring human—even if it means destroying his own kind. Denise may arouse his deepest hungers, but Spade knows he must fight his urge to have her as they face the nightmare together . . .
    Because once the first crimson drop falls, they will both be lost.

    My Thoughts:

    Mrs. Frost, you have done it again.

    I knocked this book over in a day; it was of the same quality as the Cat and Bones books.

    I always loved Spade, ever since his first appearance in Halfway to the Grave he has been a character that I have wanted to see more of. Spade was a Baron before he was turned so he still has those gentlemanly qualities that we wish would crop up in everyday life. Even something as small as him helping people out of the car would make me sigh.

    Denise is a strong woman; she was never one of those characters that made an impact for me though, just a person in the background. In FDOC though she absolutely shined, I know that is the point, but still the character that was portrayed was not what I was expecting at all. Denise was strong minded, strong willed and stubborn. This to me is a beautiful combination.

    The banter between the two had some laugh out loud moments, which was also something I wasn’t expecting. Denise was a character I think that so far I am most like in how she talks, and also with the constant worry of the cost to other people. The moments when she was trying to calculate in her head whether her entire house would cover the expense to Spade on their journey was very funny.

    As for the storyline, it was another huge surprise. Usually I can tell what’s going to happen during most of the novels I pick up. FDOC was a complete rollercoaster ride for the entire book. Everything was exciting, new and completely unexpected. After reading the Cat and Bones books you think to yourself “yes, this will probably continue on with their war and their story” but it is completely different. I love that Frost has incorporated such a closeness between the characters yet such a separation because they can go for two years without seeing each other and still be best friends.

    The demon storyline was very interesting as I have only covered demons recently in one other book. I love the vampires, but for a vampire series with a focus on a demon, just because they feel like it, is refreshing.
    Cat and Bones showed up late in this novel. It was almost wrong in a way not to be reading from Cats point of view when she showed up, just because I love her so much. But that awkwardness (and my stupidity) only lasted about two sentences before I was grinning because I got to hear Bone’s voice in my head again.

    The romance in FDOC was different to Cat and Bones story, because Spade and Denise had both suffered a loss. I was so grateful to Frost for how she addressed the issue and didn’t wipe out the previous feelings with undeniable love and mind controlling lust. The characters accepted the past for what it was and also came to terms with the fact that they weren’t replacing their loved ones or forgetting them but that the new love was love as well and it is possible to love again. It is inspiring, especially for me.

    I think that, if I had to choose, the only thing that I don't like about this book is the cover. Even when I first saw it months ago, that is not how I see Spade or Denise in my head. It looks trashier than what this book is. FDOC is tender and very caring, but that cover portrays Spade as dirty and Denise as easy, which neither of them were, in any way.

    Overall First Drop of Crimson is of the same calibre, and fits perfectly into the Night Huntress world. The romance was beautiful, the characters were a scream and the storyline was unique. I have to undoubtedly play favourites and say that I still love Cat and Bones more (probably because they have four books), but that Spade and Denise’s story is not one to be missed. FDOC would definitely work as a standalone novel if one hasn’t previously read the Night Huntress series.

    Content Warning: First Drop of Crimson does contain sexually explicit material and some swearing.

    Others in this series:
    Eternal Kiss of Darkness

    Others who reviewed this:

    Available at:
    Book Depository

    Friday, March 12, 2010

    Friday 56 12/3/2010

    Closest book: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
    P56, 5th sentence:

    "My fault, I suppose"

    Well considering it was a guy that said that....yes it is your fault. lol

    * Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
    * Turn to page 56.
    * Find the fifth sentence.
    * Post that sentence (plus one or two others if you like) along with these instructions on your blog or (if you do not have your own blog) in the comments section of Storytime with Tonya and Friends.
    *Post a link along with your post back to Storytime with Tonya and Friends.
    * Don’t dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.


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