Midu Reads

 

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[Extra] Follow Friday with book bloggers: nominate bloggers!

Reblogged from BookLikes:

 

Do you know what Follow Friday with Book Bloggers is? It's a weekly Friday interview with a book blogger picked from the BookLikes community but we also wish to open it up for all the book bloggers out there. We appreciate all the hard work the book bloggers are doing for the book industry and we wish to spread the word and give the book bloggers the proper recognition and appreciation! And it's so much fun to know a little bit more about the fellow bloggers friends too!

 

If you know a book blogger/reviewer who would love to be featured among book bloggers community in our Follow Friday session (and we mean not only pick me, pick me! personalities but also the shy but intriguing ones), nominate them for the Follow Friday With Book Bloggers interview in the comment section below. You can nominate from the BookLikes community as well as from all around the web (we will, though, focus on the BookLikes community first). We'll be also more than happy to feature newbies and newcomers, and raising up bloggers (e.g. mentioned in the BL group Shout-out for Newbies and "Underfollowed" (but Active) Blogs).

 

Each blogger can nominate up to 3 book blogger friends, please insert the blog's URL address and one sentence praise per blog (optional). Please check if the blogger haven't already been mentioned in the comments before nominating, we do want to keep the comments lucid, clear and without unnecessary repetitions.

 

Looking forward to your picks!

 

Have you missed the previous Follow Friday interviews? Here are the catch up links and sneak peeks into the four blog talks we've already published on BookLikes Blog.

 

Happy reading and nominating!

 

 

#1 Follow Friday with book bloggers:

Jennifer's Books

Follow Jennifer's Books: http://stellarraven.booklikes.com/

 

On your BookLikes blog you’re regularly sharing weekly art post, can you tell the story behind the concept?

 

I love classic art, and I love reading, and I thought that a Weekly Art Post would be a great way to combine the two. I try to choose paintings (and a few vintage photographs) that feature the subject of the piece reading or ones that at least feature a book in some way. I'm in my second year doing this, and it's been great fun choosing which pictures to feature.

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#2 Follow Friday with book bloggers:

Punya Reviews…

Follow Punya Reviews… : http://punya.booklikes.com

 

Did blogging have an impact on your reading life?

 

Yes, it had. When I started doing blog tours, it did take up quite a bit of my time. Alongside my work hours, I was juggling regularly. My reviews are generally long, and writing those reviews took time too. I had to figure out how to balance it all. How many tours I can do a month so I can read and review the books I want to. Yet, through book blogging, I have discovered new authors and their books. So yes, blogging has had quite an impact on my reading life.

 

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#3 Follow Friday with book bloggers:

Tigus

Follow Tigus on BookLikes: http://tigus.booklikes.com/

 

Three title for a dessert island?

 

I'm not going to stew over this painful question for very long, because it can become very frustrating to make choices. I'll pick The Count of Monte Christo, amongst books that I have not read yet, because it's long, and I have faith that I will enjoy it. Then, I'll change gears, and pick two books I have already read: I'll take my favorite book of all time (so far): The Anubis Gates, by Tim Powers. And I'll bring my favorite Wodehouse's Quick Service.

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#4 Follow Friday with book bloggers:

Nicole Reads

Follow Nicole Reads: http://lapetite.booklikes.com

 

A paper book or an e-book?

 

This is a tough question because there is nothing that can compare to the thrill of holding a paper book in your hands and feeling that comforting weight on your hands, but I am going to say that I prefer e-books. As someone who travels a lot, there is nothing like the comfort of having a wide variety of books readily available in one place. Plus, I don’t have to pay extra for overweight luggage!

 

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See you next Friday!

Blog Tour: Erinland by Kathryn Berryman With Excerpt and Giveaway

Reblogged from SnoopyDoo's Book Reviews :

Today’s stop is for Kathryn Berryman’s Erinland. We will have info about the book and author, and a great excerpt from the book, plus a great giveaway. Make sure to check everything out and enter the giveaway.

Happy Reading :) 


 

 

Two troubled young adults find themselves key players in a deadly game that spans the 21st century and the Viking Age.

Amy, finding it difficult to ‘fit in’, becomes increasingly obsessed with the virtual reality game Erinland. The VR characters and the mist of Erin begin to invade Amy’s dreams and her waking moments. She finds herself drawn into Erinland in 9th century Ireland. Amy becomes part of this mystical world as she joins in the struggle to defeat the Viking raiders.   Richard has a complicated home life and feels he doesn’t belong anywhere. A series of events finds him desperate and living on the streets, where he finds himself dragged into 9th century Norway by a Viking warrior. Richard finds acceptance with the Vikings and joins them on a colonisation raid to Ireland.

 

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Chapter 1

The Beginning

The wind of the boglands howled, shrieking with the voices of tortured souls entwined with the steaming peat. ‘We must protect the chalice and the sacred writings!’ cried Niamh of the Golden Hair. The sound of her command¬ing voice reduced the sound of the wailing wind to a frustrat¬ed whisper. The woman wheeled her powerful steed around and galloped off towards the distant bog lights, leaving a flurry of mud in her wake. The sign had come. Tadhg the great warrior knew that Niamh of the Golden Hair would only appear if the sacred relics were in danger of being destroyed and absorbed into the dark culture of the barbarians. He had to go to the Abbey and protect the sacred objects from defilement. A primal howl made him spin around to see the brutish face of his aggressor. Metal clashed against metal, war cries wailed, flesh and bone hacked until Tadhg fell on the battlefield. ‘AAARGH!’ Tadhg gasped, fighting for air as he sank to the ground, choking in the mire of mud and blood. Clasping his cleft sword, his breath came in ragged gasps then finally faded. Tadhg’s face and body contorted, shimmering as he slowly grew fainter and seeped into the boglands. It had been his battlefield and now it was his final resting place. A huge Viking towered over Tadhg, howling triumphantly. The howling continued until the whole scene faded to grey. Niamh of the Golden Hair’s face popped onto the computer screen. Her serene voice came out of the speaker. ‘Erinland is at risk of disappearing. The chalice and writings have fallen victim to the barbarous Vikings. You have lost another incarnation. Be careful, small one.’ Amy grabbed the sides of the computer screen and shook it savagely. ‘Bloody hell, this virtual reality world is driving me crazy! I’ve lost another incarnation. Useless Irishmen, no wonder the Vikings invaded them. Stupid bloody Vikings, stupid Tadhg! Sacred objects? Yeah right, Niamh of the Golden Hair. What a load of horse crap! Tadhg needs a good kick up his hairy butt.’ ‘Amy Bradshaw, stop that language at once! What do you think you’re playing at? I do my best to raise you to be a lady! Why do you think I send you to that expensive private school? Not to learn language like that! You’re a disgrace. When is the last time you brushed your hair? This bedroom is a garbage dump!’ The last word came out as a hiss. Amy jumped at the sound of her mother’s voice. She thought her mother was in the kitchen washing up after dinner, totally out of earshot. Amy’s mother continued with the tirade as Amy cringed on the bed. ‘Anyway, you are supposed to be doing your homework, not surfing the net. You’re banned from the computer for a week, it is only to be used for homework. Oh, and I’ll be super¬vising you, so don’t get any ideas!’ she exclaimed. Amy had to think of something quickly. ‘But, Mum, this is homework. In History we are learning about Vikings and how they were forced to migrate and invade other lands. It’s really interesting. We have to research their culture, art, and craftsmanship and what influence it had on the places they conquered,’ cried Amy. ‘I was researching,’ she added, trying to sound as indignant as possible. Amy’s mother looked at her suspiciously. ‘Researching?’ she said a little more calmly. ‘Then why did I hear all that yelling and screaming?’ Amy thought she could sense a crack in her mother’s armour. She decided to weave a bit of truth into the lies—half-truths usually had a ring of plausibility to them. ‘Well … We have to go onto a virtual reality site to give us a hands-on view of life in Viking times. We make a village and even get to design our own Celtic jewellery! On the virtual reality site, we learn how to simulate Viking warriors sparring with each other. I was yelling at the warriors fighting!’ she said. ‘You know about this, Mum! Mr Lord gave us the website details in our history class today, and I gave you the permis¬sion note last week. Remember? Anyway, you can ring him if you don’t believe me.’ Amy uttered these last words in an almost accusing tone. Her mother’s expression softened, slightly. ‘Oh, I see. Well … I suppose if it’s for school … But you know, I might just contact that Mr Lord. This research seems to be encouraging a bit too much passion in you. Now get to bed before I change my mind, and don’t forget to clean your teeth.’ Amy snapped off the computer and stomped off to the bathroom. At least she had fooled her mother into thinking that she was concentrating on her school work, which couldn’t be further from the truth. And she could still play Erinland without her mum knowing what she was doing. I could even buy one of those VR headsets to make the game more real. I bet Mum wouldn’t even work out that I had it! I wonder … She would probably find out sooner or later but it would be worth it, Amy thought absently as she spat the slimy residue of toothpaste and saliva down the sink. She rinsed her mouth and splashed her face with cold water, staring hard at her reflection in the bathroom mirror. It wasn’t a bad face. Not too pretty, but not too ugly either. She imagined herself in ancient Erin fighting at Tadhg’s side, away from the bitchy girls at school with their bitchy texting and sniggering behind their hands. School. God, Amy hated school. School, no way! But talking to gods and minor deities? Protecting ancient manuscripts and chalices from the Raiders? She could live with that. She might even be a goddess herself! Niamh of the Golden Hair? No … Amy of the Spotty PJs! Yep, that would be fun. No bullying, no one to nag me to death, and I wouldn’t even have to clean my teeth, she silently told her smiling reflection. ‘Night, Mum,’ Amy called out. ‘Night, Amy. Lights off, straight to sleep now,’ replied her mother, almost back to her normal self. Amy was tempted to wait until the house was quiet and play online again, but contented herself with the major win over her mum. She had to admit that she was becoming a bit obsessed with the virtual reality world. At least in Erinland she had some control. In her ‘real’ life she had no control. She didn’t have any friends. Not even one. The ‘lovely private school girls’, as her mother called them, were proper cows. Her fascination for the virtual reality game was starting to worry her though. Not only was it taking up all her spare waking moments, but she was starting to dream about it too. The mists of Erin were invading her slumber. Tadhg spoke to her, whispering of the beauty of ancient Erin. His voice was like a bubbling stream, hypnotic and fresh, but it had an underlying strength that commanded respect. The words he spoke weaved a tapestry of images of the heroism of battle and the struggle to save the holy relics from the barbarians. As Amy jumped into bed and pulled the doona up to her chin, she didn’t notice the dark shadows gathering in the corner of the bedroom. She switched off the bedside lamp and closed her eyes. Her mind was still racing, an adrenalin high, mentally logging past fatal mistakes and planning future strat¬egies for her next session in Erinland. God! Why can’t I sleep? she moaned to herself. Oh well, I’ll have to say some prayers, that always puts me to sleep. She sighed deeply and started to pray, mouthing the words absent-mindedly. But her mind was still awash with thoughts of ancient Ireland, craggy mountains covered in moss and mist, and boglands, full of treacherous sinkholes and mystical beings. She found herself praying to the Holy Bogg Demon and Our Tadhg instead of the usual Christian deities. Finally, she drifted off to sleep. She was in Erinland, dreaming of the moist, green land and the heroes that fought and died for their cause. Then a curious thing happened. The shadows in the corner of her room began to gather and become a dense black mass drifting slowly towards her bed. It exuded a pungent smell. The scent was intoxicating, causing her to sink into a deeper slumber. A draught stole its way through the open window, bringing a heavy mist into her bedroom. The mist twisted with the shadows, creating an energy that was concen-trating itself above Amy’s sleeping form. She stirred slightly in her sleep, as if she sensed another presence. Sensuously, swirling tendrils of mist played around Amy’s feet, massaging her like hundreds of tiny pulsating fingers. They beckoned with a silken touch and oppressive sweetness to slide into the suffocating decay of the boglands. She felt herself being wooed by an unseen presence. Heavy blackness descended and she felt herself being sucked into the soft, moist peat. She waited, not daring to breathe. ‘Follow me,’ the fetid gurgle bubbled up from the depths of the bog, making Amy’s head swim. There were other sounds too. Guttural voices and desolate moaning swished around the room making her feel nauseous. ‘Follow me,’ intoned the voice, as old and enduring as granite, yet with enough venom to become a deadly, scorching lava. The compulsion to obey was almost overpowering. Yet fighting deep within Amy’s psyche was a strong urge to reject the evil command and to emerge out of the blackness into the clean, bright light. The fear and desolation she felt was tightening its grip. Gone was the sensuous feeling of massage; now all she could feel were icy fingers grasping at her neck and torso pulling her down into the bog. The guttural voices became louder, drowning out all other sounds, making her blind with fear. Amy violently shook her head trying to rid herself of the evil sensation but the movement increased the demon’s hold on her. A vague speck appeared in the distance, something resem¬bling a light. Amy concentrated on the light and tried to block out the voices. She continued to concentrate, trying to force away the panic that shrouded her. She repeated to herself, ‘Look at the light, the light is my salvation.’ These words became a kind of prayer as she repeated them constantly. Gradually, the tendrils of mist and the icy fingers lessened their hold. Amy chanted the words louder and with every fibre of her being. Finally the grip became a grasp, then it vanished. The voices trailed off, dissolving into an eerie wind—the catchcry of the boglands. A shrill sound, like the neigh of a horse, lingered then died away. Amy thought she heard the sound of a horse galloping in the distance. She opened her eyes. Her face and body were dripping from the exertion of her experience. She got out of bed for a drink of water and it was then she noticed something strange. A faint glow emitting from the corner of her bedroom. It was coming from her laptop. The glow started blinking in a staccato rhythm, gaining brightness. Amy stared hypnotically into the strobe. The glow grew larger and brighter. An elec-tronic surge overflowing from the monitor and onto the floor. The tide edged its way across the carpet and came to rest at Amy’s feet. It started to rise from the floor, undulating and pulling, crashing against itself like a deadly rip in the ocean. Gradually the atoms composed themselves into the recognis¬able form of an old woman. The old woman looked like those Amy had seen on park benches, the kind that carried all their belongings in a couple of shopping bags. They were usually dirty, drunk, and abusive. This woman was approximately 160 cm tall; her hair was dark brown and it seemed to be caked in mud and dead leaves. Her skin was grey and very lined. Her unblinking eyes were dark brown. She stared at Amy steadily. The woman wore a simple brown tunic. It was well worn and patched in several places. Her hands were large and her nails were ragged and putrid. These hands had seen some very hard work in their time. She had an overall earthy smell, giving the impression of an ancient relic. For one so dishevelled, the old woman seemed to radiate a strength which commanded respect from those in her presence. ‘Oh … my ... god … shit!’ yelled Amy. ‘Be still! You shall not profane the higher power in my presence! Profane with your tongue no more, lest you block your path to the highest power,’ replied the old woman. ‘Ditto what I said before. Who are you?’ hissed Amy. The old woman spoke, ‘Do not be afraid, small one. You are not in the land of the walking shadows. Your destiny weighs heavier than that. I am Heiran, Cailleach, or wise old woman. ‘I am old. I am as old as the earth, and older than mankind. I have come in many forms and returned many times through the ages. I have been ridiculed and even killed in ignorance, yet all who have known me have been made richer by my passing.’ The old woman’s clear eyes continued to stare into Amy’s. They bored into her thoughts, exposing her soul. Amy franti¬cally backed towards the bedroom door. ‘Mum!’ Amy yelled. ‘Mum, Mum, Mum!’ Amy thought she might be asleep or hallucinating. She had heard of this sort of thing happening before. Her friend at school had a psychotic episode after taking some illicit drugs. She thought she could see spiders coming out of the walls. She ended up curling herself in a ball in the corner of the classroom screaming. But Amy had never touched any kind of drugs. ‘Your mother can’t hear you,’ said the old woman. ‘Mum! Mum, please come, I need you, I am so scared!’ Amy screamed. ‘Your mother cannot hear you,’ the old woman said calmly. ‘She has not been chosen by the Niamh of the Golden Hair. She is to remain on this earthly plane.’ Amy winced at the mention of the name ‘Niamh of the Golden Hair’. An unbelievable thought occurred to her. ‘No … no,’ she whispered. Amy looked more closely at the woman. Bloody hell, this old bag is straight from the virtual reality world! Thinking quickly, she lunged towards her laptop and snapped off the ower switch. The computer sputtered, the light extinguish¬ing with a visual ‘pop!’ Amy turned, satisfied that she was once again by herself. Heiran stood peering at Amy with a quizzical expres¬sion. She wasn’t going anywhere. ‘Child, why did you still the droning creature? Killing the droning creature will not rid you of me. It is a portal to Erinland. Do not be foolish, small one! I have come to you for a purpose. I am the messenger of Niamh of the Golden Hair. She is the mystical mistress and hand¬maiden of the highest power. She has sought you out. Your strength is known to the Lady. She has witnessed your battle with the evil Bogg Demon. You have been tested and have overcome its tempting advances. You have proven your worth to the Lady. The darkness in your soul has succumbed to the clean brightness of the highest power, this time.’ Amy stood still, disbelief washing over her. She wondered how the old woman, the Cailleach as she called herself, knew about the nightmare she just had. Her skin crawled at the memory of the stinking, suppurating bog; the invisible icy fingers clutching and dragging her down into a world of darkness and evil. An involuntary shudder racked her body. The old woman continued, ‘Tadhg the great and noble war chieftain is closely acquainted with you. You and the droning creature have sent him to his death many times by the steel of the Vikings’ blade. Now he has come to his last incarnation. If he dies and the sacred relics fall victim to the barbarians a final time, our way of worship and our way of life as we know it will be drowned in a black tide of paganism. ‘The holy objects must be saved and hidden, so that future generations can realise the dedication of the faithful. Their beauty must be emulated and revered as a mere shard of the glory of the highest power—that which you call God. Even now there is another from your world who is being wooed by the Raiders. Time is running short!’ cried the old woman. ‘But it’s only a stupid virtual reality world, it’s not real. It’s not my fault!’ Amy cried. She ran across the room and reached for the door handle. Heiran raised her hand. From her stubby dirt-grained fingertips came a light so dazzling that Amy’s eyes watered trying to fight the glare. The light sparked, crackled, and twisted past her to the door handle where it fastened itself—a supernatural forcefield that no human could break. ‘Be still! You cannot run from your fate. Face your destiny, lest it follow you until the end of your incarnations, festering and growing like a great mortal wound. The highest power will buoy you and deliver you to your fate.’ The dark eyes bored through Amy, compelling her to obey the Cailleach. Amy put out a tentative hand. She brushed Heiran’s hand with her fingertips. Vibrant, glowing warmth flowed from the Cailleach, swamping Amy’s body. The force sent her body into spasms as her heartbeat quickened, blood pounding in her ears. She squeezed her eyes shut and cried out for her mother. ‘Amy? Amy, is that you? I thought I heard you calling.’ The far-off reedy voice of her mother tried to puncture the veil of energy with intermittent stabs. Amy tried to speak. When she opened her mouth, nothing came out. She could hear her mother speak again but her voice trailed off. Then the blackness came. Amy was sucked and pummelled through a tunnel of rushing air as though in the slip-stream of some giant racing force. The air was dry and electric and Amy could feel sparks fly from every shaft of hair on her body. Gradually, the wind died down and she thudded onto her back into a soft, mushy surface. Amy opened her eyes. Directly above her was the majestic form of a white stallion. Its barrel chest overshadowed her as it snorted and pawed at the ground, spraying tiny smuts of peat into Amy’s face. Steam rose from the beast’s body as he danced and wheeled, eyes rolling back and ears flattening against his head, shrieking a terrified neigh. Just below his forelock in the middle of his forehead was a protrusion that looked like a horn. Amy had heard of the fabled unicorn and its magical powers. She realised she was face to face with a legend. Well almost face to face. She dragged herself out of the mud and shook off the bog water, evading the powerful thrashing hoofs of the unicorn. ‘Greetings, small one.’ The musical voice came from atop the unicorn. Amy gazed at the dazzling brightness and saw a lovely woman astride her steed. Her face had the translu¬cent glow of a deity, and her skin was unlined and beautiful. A crown of gold was on her head. A halo of golden tresses wound around her head and trailed down her back. She was dressed in a flowing garment of mauve silk which was richly decorated with intricate gold and silver constellations. The garment fell around her and trailed to the ground. The Lady looked not much older than Amy herself, but her eyes beheld a wisdom and grace belonging to an ageless soul. The Lady sat effortlessly atop her substantial steed, con¬trolling it with a subtle movement of a leg, a gentle verbal command, or the brush of a hand. Amy could see no tack whatsoever on this ‘horse’ and stood in awe at the Lady’s obvious power and control over it. The Lady spoke, ‘They call me ‘Niamh of the Golden Hair’. My messenger, Heiran, has transported you here with the help of the ultimate power. She has performed her task well. She has other duties. She will leave us now.’ Amy turned to see that the old woman was gradually fading to grey, dissi¬pating into the atmosphere. A faint smile played on Heiran’s lips and then she was gone. ‘Please don’t leave me,’ Amy pleaded. ‘I need you to get home!’ Her eyes darted from side to side, taking in her surroundings like a trapped animal. A feeling of panic was rising from the pit of her stomach, causing her throat to constrict. She realised she was in boglands, probably in ancient Ireland … straight from the virtual reality world, in Erinland … oh shit! The large, spongy, and uneven surface of the bog looked treacherous to the uninitiated. Amy could see small bodies of water, sinkholes, between the drier hummocks. She saw tracks made from planks of wood and thin branches meandering their way across the soggy mass. Amy wondered what they were for. She wondered if she should run away. Where would she go? How could she get home? She was cold and covered in bog water and a bloody great unicorn was standing over her. ‘Shit! Shit! Shit!’ she hissed. The Lady’s voice demanded her full attention. ‘Are you willing to help regain the sacred objects from the barbar¬ians and transport them to a safe place, yet to be ordained? The war chieftain Tadhg is depending upon you. You are responsible for his last incarnation. He is a fearless warrior with unmatched integrity and the will to lead his followers to victory. It is written that one will come with strength to match that of our greatest warrior and together they will lead us to victory and cleanse Erinland of the barbarous intruders. I believe you are the one,’ said the Lady. ‘Amy of the droning creature,’ she continued, ‘behold your brother, Tadhg, who is bound to your soul.’ Slowly, the Lady spread out her arms. Gradually, a shimmering mist rose from the bog. The mist moved, darting in front of Amy’s face making her eyes smart. The mist increased in size, brightness, and form to become a tangible, living, breathing human being.The young man now standing before Amy was shorter than some boys in her class at school, but he boasted a powerful physique. He had long, thick, curly black hair which was held at bay by a piece of leather thonging tied around his forehead. His neck was thick and powerful and his muscles rippled as he shrugged his body, stretching his limbs like a beautiful butterfly emerging from a chrysalis. Tadhg was dressed for battle. Covering his body was unusual armour. It was cloth, but it was stiffened with a tar or a pitch-like substance. The armour was padded and layered to absorb the shock of the heavy weapons of his foe. Amy could see the slashes and dents in the surface as if it had been bludgeoned with some heavy instrument, wielded by someone with incred¬ible force. In his hand Tadhg held a heavy sword that looked sharp and lethal but well worn, as if it had hacked many a limb and thirstily let litres of blood from the veins of its opponents. Tadhg spoke, ‘Amy of the droning creature, I know you well. Come forward and witness your handiwork. My body is young but well used and greatly scarred. See the great wound that my enemy hath wrought. This is the wound that would claim me for the land of the walking shadows. See how it grows and festers, as our enemy’s reign over this fair land. Will you let them plunder and kill all in their path, or will you draw on your deep well of strength and aid me and my followers? ‘Answer me. The evil forces are gathering power. The Bogg Demon grows restless, there is one from your land who is being wooed by it. Hasten with your answer, little sister, time is very short.’ ‘No!’ Amy screamed, shaking her head. ‘I don’t want to be here anymore, please let me go home! I don’t believe this is happening! I really do not believe this is happening. Please, let me go!’After a long silence Tadhg continued bitterly, ‘Make no mistake, little sister, this is no dream. This is real. You are here. By your rebuff you have foresworn me to eternal damnation. My soiled soul will never know true fulfilment. I can never attain the pure white light or see my father’s face. With your turning away, I have failed the task appointed me. The sacred objects and all they stand for are lost forever,’ he gasped. A look of pain crossed Tadhg’s battle-stained face. ‘Aahh, the burning, it begins again. My wound is growing. See the gore rising, ready to burst forth from the banks of my flesh. I feel myself slipping … slipping into the land of the walking shadows. Alas, I have failed! The Bogg Demon awaits my soul for eternal torture. Farewell, Amy of the droning creature, my death be on your head. Farewell my Lady, Niamh of the Golden Hair,’ he whispered. Amy watched as Tadhg writhed in agony. The great wound gushed blood and putrefied; hundreds of tiny maggots crawled in it, feasting on his flesh. The stench stung Amy’s nostrils as she felt the bile rise in her throat. It was as if the cycle of decay had hit the fast forward button as Tadhg’s body disintegrated before her. She knew that she was witnessing something real, something she apparently had control over. She wanted desperately to stop it. ‘My Lady!’ Amy screamed. ‘Please help me!’ The Lady looked steadily at Amy. ‘Are you resolved to assume this task appointed you and help the noble war chieftain?’ she said. ‘Yes, yes, I’ll do anything, just make it stop!’ Amy cried. The Lady slowly replied, ‘It is up to you to halt the cycle, child. Listen with your heart and you will know the answer.’ Tadhg, close to death, had fallen into the mud succumb¬ing to the loss of blood and the bitterness of his failure. His life force was barely hanging on. Amy could hear a dull roar building up in the distance. It seemed to be resonating in the depths of the bog. She instinctively realised that the Bogg Demon was gathering force, ready to usurp and conquer Tadhg’s soul. She concentrated inwards, blotting out the horror that was before her. But there was no answer, only the sound of her terrified heart. Amy concentrated harder. She was close to despair when a voice inside her head said, ‘Look to the bog. A herb growing at your feet is Tadhg’s salvation. It is the herb used by the druids, it will restore the war chieftain.’ Amy fran¬tically grabbed for the plant at her feet. As she ripped the roots from the sodden peat, she noticed that the herb was bathed in a bright light giving off a brilliant, shining, living aura. A beautiful chant, more like a prayer, came drifting from the air around her: All hail thou holy herb vervain Growing on the ground On the Mount of Calvary There thou was found Thou helpeth many a grief And staunchest many a wound In the name of sweet Jesu I lift thee from the ground. Amy stood up, a bunch of the herb clutched in her right hand. Her strength and confidence seemed to return, getting stronger by the moment as she held the holy herb. ‘Game on!’ she muttered to herself, and then turned to the Lady. ‘Let’s see how far this stuff gets Tadhg in his last incarnation!’

 

 

   

 

   

Kathryn is a Sydney author whose interest in history and mythology was the catalyst for her debut novel Erinland to become a reality.

An adventure in the modern and ancient world, where the central characters seek acceptance and self-belief, the ‘players’ in Erinland find themselves in very different roles from their everyday life. Choices they make could mean the difference between life and death, with the consequences of these decisions reaching into their ‘real’ lives.   Written in the Fantasy genre, Book I bridges the ages, drawing on contemporary life and 9th Century history to create an authentic experience for the reader. A visual writer, she explores the mythologies of ancient Norway and Ireland, giving a tangible view of everyday life and the impact of the Gods in these two cultures.   Kathryn is married with three beautiful daughters. Amidst busy family life, she studied at University to become a Primary school teacher. When she is not teaching, she loves to write and dabble in other creative pursuits such as painting and drawing. She and her husband hope to realise their dream and move to the country one day – soon.

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Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts and a giveaway!

 

 

 

 

Source: http://snoopydoosbookreviews.com/blog-tour-erinland-kathryn-berryman-excerpt-giveaway

Blog Tour: To Win Her Smile by Mackenzie Crowne with Giveaway

Reblogged from SnoopyDoo's Book Reviews :

 

Today’s stop is for Mackenzie Crowne’s To Win Her Smile. We will have info about the book and author, plus a great giveaway. Make sure to check everything out and enter the giveaway.

Happy Reading :) 


 

 

Sometimes love and luck collide . . .   When sultry British Baroness Piper Darrow falls on desperate times, she needs a diversion—and cash. As a talented photographer, she jumps at the chance to travel to the U.S. for a Manhattan Marauders football event. But she gets more than she bargained for when buff quarterback Wyatt Hunter’s errant pass lands…in her face. And when it results in Wyatt’s comeback of a lifetime, the superstitious athlete is convinced Piper is his good luck charm . . .

With his sights on the Super Bowl, Wyatt will do anything necessary to keep Piper close. The fact that she’s a feast for the eyes is a bonus. And as they get closer, he discovers that beneath her proper English surface is a sweet, sexy seductress. Soon the notorious playboy finds himself genuinely smitten, and surprisingly open to love—until his powerful family uncovers something about Piper that threatens to shatter his trust. Now he’ll have to decide whether to team up with his fears, or his heart.

 

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Wife, mother and really young grandmother, Mackenzie Crowne shares her home with her high school sweetheart husband, a neurotic Pomeranian, and a blind cat. She calls Arizona home because the southwest feeds her soul. Her love of the romance genre has been a lifelong affair, both as a reader and a writer. A bout with breast cancer sharpened her resolve to see her stories shared with others. Today, she’s a seven-year survivor, living the dream. Her friends call her Mac. She hopes you will too.

 

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Giveaway & Review – The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter @SlaughterKarin @partnersincr1me

Reblogged from sherrysniderfundin:
The Good Daughter - Karin Slaughter
 

 

 

MY REVIEW

NO. NO. NO. The girls…

 

Secrets do not stay buried. The past catches up with you.

 

 

Twenty eight years later and the memories of the past are brought back to Charlotte. Charlie is a pit bull. She doesn’t run from danger…she runs toward it.

WOW Karin, from ones horror to another. People can turn into rabid dogs, unable or unwilling to control themselves. The bad guys…deserve to be buried under the jail, wiped off the face of the earth.

 

OMG. This book is terrifying. My mistrust of police officers is reinforced after reading this up close look at corruption in law.

 

The Good Daughter is a wickedly evil look into the human psyche and all its ugliness…Yet…some characters goodness will shine through.

 

I was so enraged in the first seventy pages…so into the book, that even though I went on a road trip and it wasn’t convenient to take notes, I couldn’t stop reading.

 

I laughed, I cried, I hated, and I loved.

 

I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter.

 Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos  5 Stars
 
 
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Blog Tour : Sin Eater by Alesha Escobar and Samantha Lafantasie with Excerpt and Giveaway

Reblogged from SnoopyDoo's Book Reviews :

 

Today’s stop is for Alesha Escobar and Samantha Lafantasie’s Sin Eater. We will have info about the book and author, and a great excerpt from the book, plus a great giveaway. Make sure to check everything out and enter the giveaway.

Happy Reading :) 


 

 

 

 

Aria Knight has an unusual set of skills: she will hold back the hounds of Hell so you can fly toward the Pearly Gates, and she will wipe your slate clean so that you don't become karma's bitch...for a price.

A Sin Eater has to make a living in today's world somehow.   But when she's called in the dead of night to perform her rite for a recluse billionaire, she stumbles upon a murder scene, and the evidence points to her.   In an attempt to clear her name and uncover the true culprit, Aria is forced to team up with a private investigator who's possessed by three spirits, and a handsome wizard who would rather see all Sin Eaters like Aria go extinct.   Aria knows her job is never easy, but now it's become downright deadly.   SIN EATER is the first book of the Aria Knight Chronicles by USA Today bestselling author Samantha LaFantasie and Alesha Escobar, author of the bestselling Gray Tower Trilogy.

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Aria would die tonight. If Hessa didn’t unlock her damn door and let her in, that would certainly be the case. Aria’s back stiffened when she heard the faint but distinctive howls from the Hounds of Hell. Their shrieks always struck her as a cross between wolves wailing at the moon and jackals whining into the night. Hessa finally opened the door and stood at the threshold, sizing her up and taking a long drag from her cigarette. A tear, mingled with ruined mascara, trailed down her cheek. “Thanks for coming, Aria. This was the last thing Mom asked for, so…” “I understand. May I come in?” Aria nearly knocked her over trying to slip inside. The howling grew louder. They were down the street, and Aria’s time was running out. “Yeah.” Hessa rolled her eyes at Aria’s terse attitude, but she’d do the same if she could hear what came their way. “You should place a ward around the house.” Aria speed-walked down the hall. “Okay…” Hessa’s voice trailed off. She wished she had been called sooner. If the hellhounds made it to the dead woman before she did, then she’d have to watch them tear the old woman’s soul to shreds before dragging her off to the abyss. Aria wrinkled her nose at the smell of wet fur and garbage. A small dog somewhere in the house barked a few times. As if drawn like a magnet to metal, she guided herself to the last room, toward the deceased. A short, white-haired woman in a long-sleeved gown lay in repose on a bed. Her arms were crossed just below her chest, with her hands meeting in a clasp. Aria’s lips pressed into a thin line. She didn’t have time for this. She had told Hessa over the phone not to move or position the body. She quickly took the dead woman’s right hand and extended it, placing it to her right side. She did the same for the left hand, so that nothing sat on or near the deceased’s chest. She felt the moment Hessa cast her warding spell around the house. It felt like a stab of tension in her chest, the same type people felt when walking downstairs and missing a step. “What was her name?” Aria asked, when Hessa joined her in the back room. She needed to know this in case she needed to grab the spirit’s attention. “Lora.” “Beautiful name. Do you have the bread?” Aria grabbed a rickety stool from the left corner of the room and brought it over. She sat down next to the bed. The hellhounds circled the house, probably salivating over their prey. Aria could hear their gleeful snarls at the prospect of devouring another soul. If she weren’t careful, they would tear into her as well. It wasn’t unheard of for them to go after sin eaters. Hessa jabbed her cigarette into an ashtray on the nightstand and then unraveled a fresh-baked loaf of bread. Steam rose from the bread, and Hessa used the towel that was covering the small loaf to protect her hands as she transferred it to her mother’s chest. As a sign of respect, and also as a way to mark the beginning of the Final Rite, Aria inclined her head in a slight bow, mentally offering up an ancient prayer of blessing. She was the very last call, the end of the line for many. Probably in some ancient desert Monastery or buried in the Vatican archives, there was a dusty old manuscript with a footnote, speaking of the loophole offered by sin eaters. Most would ask for her if they couldn’t reach a priest, or as extra “insurance” after receiving Anointing of the Sick. Aria raised her right hand, palm facing forward, revealing the birthmark that identified her as a sin eater. She lowered her hand, but kept it suspended in mid-air just above the bread. She already felt the pulsating power of the S-shaped mark on her hand that begged to let the flame emerge. It happened whenever she began a sin eating ritual, and the first time her birthmark erupted into a large flame, she fell on her ass and tried to smother it with a handkerchief. Not exactly a move that would instill confidence in a client entrusting their loved one’s soul to her. The flame meant there were sins that needed to be ripped away from a penitent Lora and passed on to Aria instead. Lora’s soul would be free to throw off any shackles burdening her and find peace, and Aria would know that she helped guide someone to paradise. There were also the perks of increased longevity for Aria, youthful appearance, and extra cash. Witching families paid well for this gig. “Once I begin,” Aria said, watching the flame on her palm subside, “don’t interrupt the process.” She decided not to mention that hellhounds would make their way in within the next few minutes, seeking Lora’s soul. Aria turned her attention toward the bread resting on Lora’s chest. She reached over with her right hand and took the small loaf, biting off a large piece and chewing it. The bread was plain and slightly salty, but what really made an impression on Aria was the rush of mystical energy that filled her from head to toe. All of her physical senses were amplified in that moment. The lights in the room looked brighter, the color of Hessa’s green dress and auburn hair were more vibrant, and the scent of wet fur and garbage returned with a vengeance. And so did the howls of the hellhounds. Aria almost felt buzzed by the sensations, but she had been sin eating for a long time, so she knew when to shove them aside and get to work. She motioned toward the nightstand. “The wine, or beer, please.” Hessa blinked a few times in astonishment, probably wondering if her mother’s final request was some elaborate practical joke. With a little hesitance, she leaned over and grabbed a cup. She handed it to Aria and backed away, conveniently close enough to the door just in case she didn’t like what would happen. Aria held the cup with a steady hand just above Lora’s chest. Inclining her head in a gesture of respect once more, she brought the rim of the cup to her lips and drank. The beer traveled down her throat; it was cool and spritzy, with a surprising richness in body and a malty flavor. Now Aria’s spiritual senses were heightened. A burst of light temporarily blinded her, and when her view came back into focus, she saw Lora’s soul standing next to Hessa. Silver speckles of light adorned the elderly woman’s white hair, and her face appeared thirty years younger than that of her corpse. Aria grinned when she saw that Lora chose to wear a yellow evening gown reminiscent of the starlets of Old Hollywood. Lora made a sweeping gesture with her hand, showing off her lean frame. “If I have to go, why not in style?” “Agreed.” Aria took a final swig from the cup and placed it aside. Hessa raised an eyebrow, and her gaze went from Aria and then across from her, where from her perspective, she was talking to an invisible person. “Aria? Is it working?” “Shhh.” Aria kept her gaze on Lora. The entire room quivered as the hellhounds broke through Hessa’s protective ward, but only Aria felt it. Barking erupted in the hallway, but this wasn’t the yapping of the little dogs in the house. Hessa couldn’t hear it, but Lora and Aria did. Lora’s expression fell, and she floated across the room, through her bed and body, and stood next to Aria. “I’ll make it, won’t I? I know I’ve done some things terribly wrong in my life, but I’m a believer. Would’ve told Hessa to fetch the Padre, if my lungs hadn’t given out on me, but she knew that I also wanted her to call for one of you when it was my time to go.” Aria stood and placed her hand on Lora’s shoulder. After imbibing beer or wine in her ritual, she could see, hear, and touch souls. “Of course. I won’t let anything bad happen to you.” “Shit.” Hessa chuckled as she slipped another cigarette into her mouth and lit it with a snap of her finger. “If I’m forking over five hundred big ones for a dramatic act, I’m gonna be pissed.” A gray portal that looked like a whirlpool of storm clouds appeared right behind Hessa. Lora stepped behind Aria, grasping her shoulders with trembling hands. “Please, don’t let them get me!” Aria cleared her throat. “Hessa, you might want to step aside.” The other woman turned around, and upon seeing nothing out of the ordinary behind her, faced Aria and shrugged. “Okay, are you for real?” “Too late.” Aria raised her right hand, letting her birthmark bring forth the flame that had ignited earlier. In an instant, two hellhounds burst through the portal and passed straight through Hessa. She went rigid and let out a shriek. The cigarette fell out of her mouth and onto the floor. “Oh my God! What was that? What just happened?” Hessa frantically patted her chest and torso. When smoke began rising from the floor, she screamed again and grabbed a nearby towel which she used to smother the flames from the carpet where the cigarette fell. Aria ignored Hessa’s plea to stop the ritual. She wouldn’t, and she couldn’t. Besides the fact that she promised to help Lora, she now had to deal with two large, black, salivating hellhounds bent on dragging Lora’s soul away. Their red eyes glowed with malice as they circled Aria and Lora. They had come for souls many times, and most of those times, sin eaters like Aria had repelled them. She swore to herself that tonight would be another victory. As if reading her thoughts, the hounds unleashed deafening barks that echoed throughout the room. Hessa couldn’t hear them, but she did gag at the pungent odor that filled the bedroom. Aria wanted to vomit in response to the smell, but she quelled the unease in her stomach and swept her flaming right hand in an arc. A fiery circle enclosed itself around Aria and Lora. “This penitent is under my protection,” Aria said in a clear voice. “She will pass on to the light, and I will bear the darkness.” One of the hellhounds blew an ice-cold breeze toward the fiery circle, while the other opened its mouth and made a sucking motion. Lora squealed when an invisible force lifted her and started pulling her toward the hellhound. Aria grabbed hold of Lora. “Uh, I don’t want to rush your spiritual enlightenment, but now’s a good time to let go of those vices.” She doubted Lora wanted to be swept away because she kept the flaws that had entrenched themselves in the depths of her being. Lora gritted her teeth. The icy wind whipped her white hair in different directions. “I…don’t know if I can!” No shit. This wasn’t like giving up ice cream or chocolate for Lent. If Lora couldn’t, or rather wouldn’t, peel away the slivers of corruption that still clung to her, then the hellhounds would claim their right to her and clamp down with their hungry mouths and drag her away. “Lora, whatever’s in there trying to stick around, don’t give in to the idea that you can’t defeat it. We’re weak, yes, but you know what’s stronger?” Lora looked over at Hessa, her daughter, and her expression of fear softened. The old woman’s grey-blue eyes shined, and a sense of confidence took hold of her. She turned and met Aria’s gaze. “Love. True Love’s light.” Aria used her flaming hand to brand the “S” symbol, the same as her birthmark, onto Lora’s forehead. In that moment, they were bound together, and small black specks, the remaining sins and darkness in Lora, floated out of her and went straight into Aria. The old woman had finally let go of what held her down. The hellhounds let out disappointed howls. They backed away with indignant whines. With a few threatening snarls, they turned and jumped back into the gray portal and disappeared. Once the portal faded, Aria released Lora from her grasp. The elderly woman slowly faded, but she wore a grateful smile. She was finally moving on to her next journey--sans the hellhounds. “Thank you, my dear,” Lora said right before she completely disappeared. Aria nodded in response. Her throat was on fire and her hands felt numb. “Can I come in now?” Hessa’s voice carried from just outside the room. Aria rolled her eyes and sighed. “Yes. It’s done.” Hessa stumbled back into the room, trying to hide her shaking hands by smoothing her green dress, which had now lost its vibrancy. She placed her hand over her heart and eyed her mother’s body. “Whatever passed through me,” she said, taking in a deep breath, “it was horrible. But I felt Mom’s presence, and I just knew she was here.” “She was, and now she’s moved on. She’s fine now.” Seeing Hessa’s affection for her mother ignited a twinge of jealousy in Aria. She wished she had something like that with her mother, but the woman gave her up when she was just a baby. She had been told that her father, whoever he was, had passed away before she was born. She had always wondered if her mother, a witch named Clare, didn’t want her because she was born with the mark of the sin eater, or, if there was more to the story. Hessa shook her head, still in disbelief at what she just experienced. She reached into her ample cleavage and pulled out a wad of cash. “I felt Mom right next to me, I swear it. I guess you earned this, honey.” Ew. Sweaty boob cash. Aria pinched the roll of money and slipped it into her leather jacket pocket. “Thanks. You can call and have the body picked up now.” She nodded. “Will you do me when I die?” “Yes, good night, Hessa.” She acquired most of her clients through word of mouth or by them sitting through a sin eating ritual as a witness. Most of the world had forgotten that her kind even existed. She left the room and headed down the hallway, but paused when the other woman called out to her. “Does it hurt when you do that?” Aria turned and shook her head, her long, dark, wavy hair moving back and forth. “Does it hurt when you do your type of magic?” Hessa’s eyebrows rose together in an expression that told Aria that she understood. “But, how come there aren’t more like you?” Aria shrugged and gave a confused look, though in truth, she’d known the answer for over sixty years. Most of her kind had decided that they would rather die than go on absorbing the sins of a mankind that thought throwing innocent people into death camps was a good idea, or slaughtering innocents by the millions was acceptable. There were a few hundred sin eaters in the world, and only a handful left in the United States. She was the only one she knew of in Miracle Falls, California. “Goodnight,” she said again with a little more agitation in her voice. The Final Rite had exhausted her, and the last thing she wanted to do was recall memories of the 1940’s. As she went down the steps of the front porch and headed toward her car, she slipped her hands into her leather jacket pocket. A biting chill hung in the November air, but what caused a tremor in her fingers and her body to shudder was the effect of the ritual. It tired her out, making her feel like an athlete who had just passed her peak and was about to head downhill. She knew of only one solution to that. She shoved those thoughts aside and concentrated on what she could attain immediately. She wanted a big ass glass of wine. She needed her nice, warm bed. And then, she needed to magically be prepared in the morning to serve as nanny to a mind-reading ten year old, and her awkward older brother who probably knew more about human history and magic than most scholars in the world. Joy.
 
 
 
 
I’m a caffeine addict and chocoholic who enjoys reading and writing engaging stories, loveable (and not-so loveable) characters, and expressing my creativity daily. I write fantasy with intriguing characters, action-packed scenes, and always throw in a good dash of humor and romance.
Science Fiction and Fantasy are my favorite genres, but I also adore the classics (Shakespeare, Dante Alighieri, etc.) and I have a soft spot in my heart for Victorian poetry. You can geek out with me all-day every day over these
Some of my favorite contemporary fantasy authors are George R.R. Martin, Robert Jordan (rest in peace), J.K. Rowling, Neil Gaiman, Jim Butcher (Dresden Files made me love Urban Fantasy), and Ilona Andrews among others. I enjoy movies and shows like Sleepy Hollow, Supernatural, Arrow, The Flash, The Avengers…there are too many to name!
I want to read more comics and graphic novels, please shoot a recommendation or two my way (I LOVE the Hellblazer comics, by the way).
Please don’t be a stranger–I want you to kick up your feet, sip your coffee (or tea) and join in on my weekly rants, discussions, and updates.
 
Links
 
 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts and a giveaway!

 

 

Source: http://snoopydoosbookreviews.com/blog-tour-sin-eater-alesha-escobar-samantha-lafantasie-excerpt-giveaway

Giveaway & Review – Dark Harvest by Chris Patchell @chris_patchell @partnersincr1me

Reblogged from sherrysniderfundin:
Dark Harvest (A Holt Foundation Story) (Volume 2) - Chris Patchell, Mark Cooper, Monica Haynes

Dark Harvest

by Chris Patchell

 

 

 

Dark Harvest by Chris Patchell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MY REVIEW

 

Dark Harvest is an appropriate title for this bone chilling thriller. Think about it…

 

As soon as I opened the book, I felt sad for Becky and what’s about to happen to her. I’m not sure exactly what it will be, but I know it won’t be good. And I was right. It was worse than bad.

 

Marissa and Seth hooked up after rescuing Brooke, her daughter from a kidnapper in Book I, Into The Dark. It is not necessary to read Into The Dark first, but if this is your first foray into Chris Patchell’s work, why not?

 

Brooke and Marissa’s story picks up from Book I, but I will leave that for you to discover for yourself.

 

Seth & Brooke are flawed, damaged, carrying sad terrible baggage, doing the best they can as they struggle to bring their lives into some kind of balance. You don’t know what you would do in their situation until you walk a mile in their shoes, so don’t judge them too harshly.

 

Seth and Marissa work at the Holt Foundation, helping victims of crime when the police seem to be unable or unwilling to follow it through to the end.

 

Now, they are teaming up to investigate the disappearance of a very pregnant Becky. Of course, they’ll look at her boyfriend first. He’s got problems and secrets and I aim to learn them too.

 

We have a narcissistic self serving doctor…bury him under the jail.

 

Tory, is so damaged, desperate. I don’t know how to feel about her sometimes. Why do women fall into these love traps?

 

Human trafficking is terrible all by itself, but this goes to another extreme. And harvesting, I can see that escalating in a horrific manner as those with selfish agendas so easily cast others aside for their own agenda.

 

I love these dark and horrible suspense novels that have my emotions raging and running the gamut. Frustration, anger, sadness, empathy…The more I read, the more I can’t wait until the villains are discovered and whatever happens to them can never be enough.

 

On page 214 and…

 

I don’t want to go on, yet I can hardly wait. A race to the finish because nothing is going to stop me from knowing how this will end. I know good, bad, and horrible, terrifying things are coming. How it will play out, I don’t know and it’s the journey, as much as the end, that keeps me going. I am amazed how Chris Patchell, and all the other authors who write such fabulous novels, are able to weave a story together, adding this mystery, that horror, culminating in a tale that grab me from beginning to end.

 

Political and ethical questions come to mind, but that’s the great thing about fiction. It gets you thinking, questioning, pushing the envelope, because all things are possible.

 

I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of Dark Harvest by Chris Patchell.

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos 4 Stars

 

Read more and enter the giveaway here.

 

  • You can see my Giveaways HERE.
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Giveaway – The Resistance Series by Tracy Lawson @TracySLawson @SDSXXTours

Reblogged from sherrysniderfundin:
Spark: Careen's Prequel to the Resistance Series - Tracy Lawson
 
 
Spark
Careen’s Prequel to the Resistance Series
.
MY ONE SENTENCE REVIEW
 
This is a wonderful and enticing introduction to Careen, who is running from her past to start her life anew, and The Resistance Series that reeks of government conspiracy and danger…and I am hooked.
.

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos 3 Stars

 

Stop by for a freebie and a giveaway.

 

  • You can see my Giveaways HERE.
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  • animated smilies photo: animated animated.gifIf you like what you see, why don’t you follow me?
  • Leave your link in the comments and I will drop by to see what’s shakin’.
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Source: http://www.fundinmental.com/giveaway-the-resistance-series-by-tracy-lawson-tracyslawson-sdsxxtours
— feeling hungry

20 Desserts Inspired by Your Favorite Children’s Books [Infographic], and how to find more Kid Lit

Reblogged from BookLikes:
— feeling hungry

WARNING! A mouth-watering post.

 

Reading goes well with sweets. Do you wonder what kind of snack fits the book the most? The following graphics from Shari's Berries is an excellent guide for book AND dessert pairing. You know what it means? Books and chocolate = heaven!

 

And what's you favorite reading time snack?

 

Scroll down to find 6 children's books from BookLikes bloggers bookshelves.

kids book and dessert pairingInfographic via www.berries.com

 

6 Kid lit picks from your bookshelves

 

If you're wondering what Children books book bloggers are reading, go to the Book Catalog page (menu -> Book Catalog: http://booklikes.com/catalog), select the Children category of the left and scroll down for Recently read section:

 

 

Gracefully Grayson - Ami Polonsky Gracefully Grayson - Ami Polonsky  


Grayson Sender has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever: "he" is a girl on the inside, stuck in the wrong gender's body. The weight of this secret is crushing, but sharing it would mean facing ridicule, scorn, rejection, or worse. Despite the risks, Grayson's true self itches to break free. Will new strength from an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher's wisdom be enough to help Grayson step into the spotlight she was born to inhabit?

 

The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly - Kim Chi-Young,Sun-mi Hwang,Nomoco The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly - Kim Chi-Young,Sun-mi Hwang,Nomoco  

This is the story of a hen named Sprout. No longer content to lay eggs on command only to have them carted off to the market, she glimpses her future every morning through the barn doors, where the other animals roam free, and comes up with a plan to escape into the wild—and to hatch an egg of her own. An anthem for individuality and motherhood, The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly has captivated millions of readers in Korea, where it is a contemporary classic.

 

A Dragon's Guide to the Care and Feeding of Humans - Joanne Ryder,Laurence Yep A Dragon's Guide to the Care and Feeding of Humans - Joanne Ryder,Laurence Yep  

Crusty dragon Miss Drake has a new pet human, precocious Winnie. Oddly enough, Winnie seems to think Miss Drake is her pet—a ridiculous notion! Unknown to most of its inhabitants, the City by the Bay is home to many mysterious and fantastic creatures, hidden beneath the parks, among the clouds, and even in plain sight. And Winnie wants to draw every new creature she encounters: the good, the bad, and the ugly. But Winnie’s sketchbook is not what it seems.

 

 

I Am Pusheen the Cat - Claire Belton I Am Pusheen the Cat - Claire Belton  

This collection of oh-so-cute kitty comics—an online cult phenomenon, now for the first time in an adorable gift book—Pusheen combines the online reach of The Oatmeal’s How to Tell if Your Cat Is Plotting to Kill You with the super-sweet appeal of Hello Kitty. I Am Pusheen the Cat features some of the most popular comics from the website, including Reasons I Love Fall, Career Options for Your Cat, and Christmas To Do List, as well as a healthy serving (at least 25 percent) of never-before-seen material that is sure to delight Pusheen’s many dedicated fans.

 

A Whole New Ballgame - Phil Bildner A Whole New Ballgame - Phil Bildner  

Rip and Red are best friends whose fifth-grade year is nothing like what they expected. They have a crazy new tattooed teacher named Mr. Acevedo, who doesn't believe in tests or homework and who likes off-the-wall projects, the more "off" the better. And guess who's also their new basketball coach? Mr. Acevedo! Easy-going Rip is knocked completely out of his comfort zone. And for Red, who has autism and really needs things to be exactly a certain way, the changes are even more of a struggle. But together these two make a great duo who know how to help each other--and find ways to make a difference--in the classroom and on the court.

 

Beagle in a Backpack - Ben M. Baglio Beagle in a Backpack - Ben M. Baglio  

Mandy and James are distracted from Halloween planning when local girl Amber Hutton runs away from home with a stolen beagle puppy. Clues left around a sheep farm lead the kids to believe that Amber is hiding out on the moors.  But even if the girl and dog are found, will they all be able to make it safely back over the moors that are riddled with jagged holes and underground caves.

Source: http://www.berries.com/blog/kids-books-and-desserts
SPOILER ALERT!

Books&Chai Series: 6 Reasons I Fell in Love with Raptor Red by Robert T. Bakker

Raptor Red - Robert T. Bakker

 

Introduction to the Book

My friends already know how crazy I am when it comes to fiction based on dinosaurs. I have been known to wax poetic about such books.

In this book, however, Bakker takes facts about dinosaur life and weaves them into a story. So, it is like reading fictionalized non-fiction!

 

Introduction to the Chai

Now that you have had your book intro, let me proceed by introducing you to another series of blog posts: Books&Chai. Whenever I post with this tag, you will find a book from a genre that goes beautifully with the featured flavor of chai (tea).

Black tea, which is the flavor featured in this post, is known to improve concentration and focus. Since I was reading a book about a very intelligent species, the Utahraptor, I decided black tea would be a smart choice!

 

 

Reasons for all that Book-Luvin’

Now, we move on to the six reasons that made for an awesome read:

 

The Humor

If you have been following this blog, you must know now that for me, humor is an important part in a book. In any book! The more unlikely it seems that the author might be able to create humorous situations (say, like in a book from a bloodthirsty monster’s POV), the more I appreciate it!

 

I found the two examples from Raptor Red funny as heck!

 

 

 

The Sciency Bits

You can’t have a good fact-based book without some science in it. For me, catching glimpses of the science while being embroiled in Red’s latest adventure was a lot of fun!

This particular quote is from a scene when a male raptor comes face to face with a field of red flowers. What’s more, they smell like rotten meat, which the raptor considers food. This kinda blows up its sensory perception temporarily. Faced with such an evocative color, it doesn’t know whether it is supposed to court the blooms, fear them, or eat them!

 

 

This quote is from a scene where Red sees a turtle for the first time. The whole scene was written well enough to have me go Awww and Lol in turns.

 

 

The Dino-Facts

I am aware that I could have included these in the sciency bits mentioned above. But, no! These facts were juicy enough to merit their own category. Snippets of how life used to be for different kinds of dinos gave the book an authenticity.

 

This quote explains how after speciation (birth of a new species from an old one) Utahraptor society had adopted a matriarchal structure.

 

 

This one is about how two completely different species banded together for survival. One of them had longer necks that enabled them to check for predators over a wider area. The other one contributed by their sheer numbers.

 

 

The Poetic Language

I am a sucker for when a scientists takes a theory or fact and describes it with beautiful language.

 

 

The Squicky Bits

Another favorite. There was a bit about how dangerous assassin bugs could be to the raptors. I looked them up and science (and class Insecta) did not disappoint!

 

Absurd Creature of the Week: The Ferocious Bug That Sucks Prey Dry and Wears Their Corpses

 

 

…wears their corpses. I mean corpses! Duuuuuuuuuuuuuude!

 

A Mixture of it All

The example below is an unholy combo of all the reasons that I have mentioned above. Watch them in action:

 

 

Lastly,

 

 

What do you think about the book? Do you like the new tag that this review is sporting?

BookLikes How-to: Housekeeping! or, Using the Mass Post Editor

Reblogged from BookLikes:

 

-- A guest post by Jenn from Murder by Death

 

If you’re a BookLikes veteran or new to BookLikes but with a huge import of data, you might, like me, look back at all of that history and think “I really need to clean some of those posts up” or “shoot, I wish I’d been using ‘x’ tag on all of those posts”, but then you imagine actually doing it, shudder to yourself, and find that sorting out your sock drawer suddenly sounds exciting.

 

OR, like I’ve been doing lately, you’ve gone to tag a post, see the mile long list of previously used tags and think to yourself “WHY do I have all those tags?  Was I drunk when I thought ‘tthhpphhhttt’ would make a good tag?” or you notice that you’ve collected multiple versions of the same tag and wish you could just clean that mess up.

 

Well, you can. Only tags that are actively used show up in that previously used menu - deleting those unwanted tags from all your posts makes them disappear from the list too.  And you can do that easily using the Mass Post Editor - it takes the ‘tedious’ out of blog housekeeping and puts it back in the sock drawer where it belongs.

 

To get to the Mass Post Editor, use your Dashboard pull down menu to get to your dashboard blog page (not your fancy public blog) - (http://booklikes.com/blog).  You can also go direct by using the following address (assuming you’re currently logged into BookLikes): http://booklikes.com/post/mass-editor/

 

 

 

On your blog page, look for the Mass edit posts and tags link on the right side of your page:

 

 

The Post Mass Editor page is pretty easy to use, but here's an overview of what you’ll see (if this is old news for you, scroll down for more information on cleaning up your tag list):

 

A: sort by: allows you to specify whether you want to sort your results by Publish Date or by Rating, ascending or descending.

 

B: The number of results you’d like to appear on a single page (max is 100).

 

C: status: allows you to narrow down your results to show only posts that are scheduled to be published in the future, currently published posts, or draft posts.  Leave this menu at —select— to show all three.

 

D: type:  allows you to narrow down which type of posts you want to display: Text, Photo, URL, Video, Quote, and Review.  Leaving this at —select— will return all types.

 

Please note that the fields A-D are live update options. Your search results will update instantly after you make a selection from any of these four fields. Selections made using date from (E) and with tags (F) will require you to click Show (K).

 

E: If you know that the posts you want to work with were done within a certain time frame, you can use the date from and date to fields.

This is especially helpful if you’re trying to find posts from a specific game or challenge (and you remember the dates).

 

F: with tags: This will narrow down your post results to only the posts that currently have the tags you select here.  You can select as many as you need to further narrow down your results, or leave it at —select tag— to display all.

 

The selections above, A-F are designed not only to make it easier to find what you’re looking for, but also to minimise the load on the BookLikes servers; the more specific your criteria, the easier it is for the databases to return your results as quickly and efficiently as possible. 

 

G:  select all / unselect all:  Once you’re ready to work with your posts, you can either use the individual check-boxes on the left of each post entry to select them, or choose select all to choose all of the posts in the list.  Likewise, unselect all will clear all the checkboxes.

 

H:  x delete posts:  Maybe blogging right after the cocktail hour wasn’t such a good idea, or maybe you just have posts that have expired content and you want to get rid of them. You can select those posts here and hit delete posts. Just be careful - you can’t undo delete posts. Once they’re gone - they’re gone.

 

I:  x remove tags:  remove tags from selected posts.

 

J:  + add tags:  add tags to selected posts.

 

K:  Show:  use this button to apply specific time frames or tags to your results.

 

L:  Type and Title:  Click on either the type or title of a specific post to go to that post.

 

M:  This is a shortcut for the tag menu (F):  clicking on the tags here will put them in the with tags section - just remember to hit Show to update the results.

 

N:  Edit:  Takes you directly to the edit post page so you can edit the post.

 

 

As I said at the start, it’s pretty self-explanatory, but I want to show you how you can use the mass post editor to clean up any superfluous tags you might have acquired over the years.

 

Using myself as the guinea pig, I’ve found that I have two tags:  audiobook and audiobooks.  I don’t need to have both so I want to edit all of my posts so they only use audiobooks, thereby deleting audiobook from my tag list.

 

I’ve searched for all published posts that use audiobook (the tag I ultimately want to get rid of):

 

 

I’ve used select all to check all (three) posts currently using audiobook, and then I clicked on + add tags:

 

Note that you can use this menu to create new tags and apply them to posts too.

 

I’ve selected the audiobooks tag I want to add and clicked Add tags.

 

Next, I’ve hit select all again (the checkboxes clear each time so you don’t accidentally change posts you didn’t mean to change).

 

This time, I’ve clicked x remove tags:

 

 

 

This looks a bit different; x remove tags only shows you the tags that are currently applied to the posts you’ve selected.  So, I’ve checked audiobook and clicked Remove tags.

 

Done!

 

Now, it’s important if you’re trying to replace one tag with another that you add the new tag before you remove the old one because clicking Remove tags automatically updates your results list.  What does this mean?  Well, if I had removed the audiobook tag first, my result list after removing it would look like this:

 

 

 

As you can see - I no longer have any posts in my list to add my new tag to, because I no longer have any that are tagged with audiobook

 

So, add first, remove last.

 

Once you’ve done this, and assuming you’ve applied it to all your posts, you’ll find that old tag is history.  (To check, make a change anywhere in your search criteria - hit show if you need to - and force BL to search again.  This will refresh your tag list.)  Yay!  Only about 100 more to go!

 

 

If you’ve been thinking your blog needed a bit of housekeeping, check out the Post mass editor.  Even if you already run a tight ship, don’t forget it can be a valuable resource for finding posts that aren’t tied to books on your shelves. So if someone comes up to you someday asking you for that youtube link to that cat video… you know, that one - with the cat doing that cute thing?… you’ll have a place to start.  ;-)

 

Happy BookLiking!

 

Art by Akgulian, Nishan

Blog Tour: Riggs by Crimson Syn with Excerpt and Giveaway

Reblogged from SnoopyDoo's Book Reviews :

 

Today’s stop is for Crimson Syn’s Riggs. We will have info about the book and author, and a great excerpt from the book, plus a great giveaway. Make sure to check everything out and enter the giveaway.

Happy Reading :)

 


 

 

Riggs

Book Three

 

 

I’m a sick, perverted fuck. I want to defile the only innocent thing that exists in this god forsaken place. Luna is as pure as they come, eighteen, untouched, and beautiful. But I can’t have her. It’s not right. A woman like Luna deserves someone better than me. But the hunger I have for her seeks control, And I don’t know if I’ll be able to hold back much longer.   Jason Riggs is as hot as they come. He’s everything I yearn for in this empty life of mine. Hiding away in Ravenous is my only hope for a future, and I want Riggs to be a part of it. But he’s hiding something, something wicked and dirty. I won’t stop until I find out his secrets. And when I do, he’ll be all mine.

 

 

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PROLOGUE

 

Six months ago… “SO, WHAT DO YOU THINK?” “She’s got a nice curve to her.” “How long do you think before I have to pick her up?” “Give me about a week with her and I’ll have her all primed up so you can ride her away into the sunset, bro.” “Make sure you take good care of her.” “Dude it’s a paint job, not rocket science. Pick her up in a week.” I walked out of Knox’s repair shop feeling hesitant and even a little strange having to walk home. But Knox had promised me a paint job and who better to do it than one of the brothers. I was feeling absolutely exhausted and completely out of it. I had just finished a job and my body was finally feeling it. I’m in the business of stalking people. Not the type of stalking your perverted little mind is thinking about, although that kind could definitely be a lot of fun. No. I do surveillance installments for a special array of clients. I had built a pretty good reputation of keeping to myself and keeping my mouth shut. Word spreads pretty quickly around the more affluent members of society, and every now and then I’d get a call with pretty high payouts. A good side job to have as a Hell’s Lovers, it gave us access to a lot of information with a lot of profitable benefits. In this particular case, the lady wanted surveillance done on her cheating husband. I had placed a few cameras in the house, but I needed to set up visual and audio in his office at work. Getting in without being noticed was the hardest part, especially when I had to infiltrate the security system first. Did I mention I also handled a few hacking jobs on the side. Nights like this were few and far between, but like I said, this job alone would pay my rent for at least a year. The way I saw it, it had to be done, and it felt great to add another zero to the amount in my savings account. The streets were dead silent and I was deep in thought as I crossed the street and headed to my apartment. A shrill scream coming from one of the warehouse alleys stopped me dead in my tracks. I froze and waited, but I didn’t hear anything else. Out of the corner of my eye, about a block away, I saw a young girl run out into the street only to be dragged back into the shadows. This part of the street had more than a few broken street lamps, and my body tensed as I tried to adjust my eyes to the darkness. At the same time, I was assessing my surroundings, but the back streets were always pretty much empty at this time of night. I slowly made my way up the block, keeping myself on alert in case someone jumped out at me. I was ex-Navy Seal, sneaking up on someone was my expertise. Well, that and being able to use anything in my reach as a weapon, now that was a honed trait. As I rounded the corner, her piercing scream shot me into action and my survival instincts kicked in. As I came up to the dark alley anger coursed through my veins. The man was a big guy, taller than me, and that’s pretty big considering I’m six two. The girl looked so tiny and fragile pressed up into the concrete wall. Her jeans were at her ankles and he was struggling to pull his own pants down as he dug his hands in between her legs. “Open up, you fucking whore! Don’t you dare fight me! It’s fucking time I get paid for all the shit I’ve given you!” I scowled in disgust at him and went right into action, stealthily coming up behind them. Her big blue innocent eyes focused on me, unshed tears making them glisten. In that moment, I felt the dire need to save her and take her far away from there. She was a fighter and immediately began struggling harder as I approached. But the mother fucker didn’t like that, and he reached back and punched her in the gut taking her breath away. Feeling as if all the demons were carrying me over to them, I grabbed the collar of his shirt and held him in a vice grip. Catching him off guard, I put all my strength into my fist and punched him twice on the side, right up against the liver. He grunted and staggered back. Her knees gave way and she dropped to the ground. I stepped in to grab her before she collapsed to the floor. Taking her in my arms, I leaned her gently back against the wall. Her eyes met mine for a brief moment. “Give me a second, baby girl. I’ll be right back. I then turned back to the piece of shit behind me. In his hurry to get at her, one hand was struggling to keep his pants pulled up while the other held a blade. “She’s fucking mine!” he yelled out. I growled in anger and lunged at him. He swung his arm around, but I caught him by the wrist and squeezed. His eyes widened and his mouth opened in horror at the sound of his bone cracking. He screamed as his fingers released the knife. I hit him with a clear upper cut that sent him sprawling onto the pavement a few feet away from me. I had to be careful or I’d kill him. My training taught me how to kill, but it also taught me control. I straddled his large form and grabbed him up by the collar. I punched with precision, twice in the nose, a feeling of satisfaction running through me as I heard the crack. He groaned and grabbed his face. I fisted his shirt and forced him to look at me. “I see you around here again and I’ll fucking end you.” I shoved him back and the coward crumpled back on the pavement and scurried into a corner. I went back to the fainted beauty. Dark raven locks flowed around her face and I pushed them back and lingered on her soft features. She looked young and fragile. My eyes took in her long lashes that touched high rosy cheekbones. Her red lips were slightly parted and her breathing was soft and steady. I looked down and her shirt had been torn open exposing two round pillows that were encased in what looked like the softest lace, a little worn from use. The urge to lean my head there was sudden, and unexpected. I swallowed hard and scrunched my eyes shut. Looking up to the sky, I let my hands guide me as they trailed down her naked thighs and knees until I found the waistband of her panties. Not looking at her was even worse. As my hands drifted over her, I could feel her soft warmth even more intensely. Hastily, I lifted her, dragging her jeans up over her hips and waist. Her tiny body leaned against mine and the soft scent of lavender filled the air around her. I breathed her in as I cradled her in my arms and walked the five blocks to my apartment. As soon as I entered the dark space, I slammed the door shut and made my way into the bedroom. I laid her on my bed and took a good long look at the delicate beauty. She was so young, so innocent. For some reason, my body became alive with arousal, but I kept myself under control. She was pulling at my body with some sort of invisible magnet and I was in complete shock at myself. My mind filled with thoughts of how sweet her cunt would taste on my lips, and how long and sleek her hair was, perfect to twist around my fist, giving me control over her small body as I drove my cock snugly inside of her. I turned and left her lying there. I walked out and took the elevator up to Grayson’s loft. I needed a place to crash, and the club’s VP had plenty of rooms to spare. To be honest, I didn’t trust myself to be near her, didn’t trust myself to be alone with her. Images of her face and body kept drifting in and out of my thoughts and my dreams all night. I woke up early the next morning and went down to see her. I needed to know that she was real. She looked so damn beautiful as she opened the door. She must have rummaged through my clothes and was wearing an old Nirvana t-shirt I had tucked in a drawer. Her perky breasts pushed at the fabric letting me know she had nothing on underneath. My eyes travelled down to her long sultry legs and I just stood there, imagining them wrapped around me. She shifted and my eyes met hers, her eyes shined brightly back at me and when she smiled my heart slammed into my throat. “Hi,” she whispered. “Hi, yourself.” I watched her carefully as she stepped back and let me in. She looked so tiny in my apartment and all I wanted to do was cradle her on my lap and murmur sweet nothings into her ear. My cock jumped and I quickly rounded the kitchen counter, trying to put as much space as I could between us. I cleared my throat. “Did you sleep well?” She folded her hands in front of her, shyly playing with the hem of the shirt. She looked so virginal in that one moment and I could feel my blood flowing hotly down to my groin. I stifled a groan. “Um...yes.” Her answer was a soft whisper. “Did you eat?” “You...don’t have any food.” “Fuck.” I grimaced and rummaged through the cabinets to find something. I sighed when I came up empty handed. “I’ll get you something.” She nodded and I looked down, not sure what else to say. After a few seconds she broke the silence. “Thank you...for last night. My foster father can be a bit brutal.” “You’re foster father?” my astonishment showed in my face . She nodded and when she spoke it was the softest of whispers, I had to strain to hear her. “We had an argument last night. I…I told him I was running away and he chased me out into the street. I never thought he’d go that far.” I listened carefully to her confession and a million questions arose, but I went with the most important of them all. “Has he ever touched you before?” “No. He’s said stuff to me, but never laid his hands on me.” “Fucker!” I looked her up and down. She looked thin and frail. “Do you have a place to stay?” She bit her bottom lip and once again my cock stirred. “Not really.” “Then you’re staying here.” “But...” I shook my head. “You need a place to stay and this place is as good as any.” “I don’t want to intrude...” I took the three short strides up to her. Taking her chin in my hand, I lifted it slightly, having her look up at me. “What’s your name, baby girl?” She hesitated for a moment before answering. “Luna.” I waited for a last name, but she stayed quiet and I accepted that. If she didn’t want me knowing her name, I wasn’t going to force her. “Luna, I’m Jason Riggs. Most people call me Riggs.” She smiled sweetly and my heart melted. “Hi, Riggs.” “Hi, baby girl.” I stared at those pretty blue eyes for a good long minute and then stepped away from her. “You can stay here as long as you’d like. No worries about me. I can stay at a friend’s.” “You won’t stay here with me?” I turned to her and gave her a wolfish grin. “Baby girl, I’m gonna’ be real honest with you. I’m a grown man, and if I stay here with you, watching you wear my shirts like you do, I won’t hesitate to take you in my arms until your moaning my name. You understand me?” Her cheeks tinted a rosy pink and she looked down to the floor. I stood up and grabbed a bag from my room, stuffing it with jeans, shirts and the necessary stuff. I didn’t need much, I never did. When I came out I noticed she was still wearing my shirt and was perched on one of the kitchen stools. I stood in the hall entrance, leisurely taking my time gazing over her legs, I wanted to keep the mental picture in my mind for as long as possible. When my eyes travelled up to her lips, I noticed them slightly part and she gasped softly as her eyes lingered on me. I shook my head as I headed towards the entrance. I opened the door and turned to look at her one last time. “Don’t worry about food. I’ll take care of it. If you need anything, anything at all, I left my number on the nightstand for you with an extra set of keys.” Without letting her respond, I slammed the door behind me and trudged up to Grayson’s apartment. If I stayed with her, there was no telling what I’d do to her. I wasn’t about to leave her completely alone, and at least if I was upstairs I would be close by if she needed me. There was something about Luna that captured me, for the life of me I just didn’t know why.

 


Grayson

Book Two

 

 

She’s a wildcat in bed and she’s driving me insane! Ever since that first night I can’t get enough of Rahyne Andrews. Her kisses, her body, her moans, drive me crazy. I can’t seem to say no to her. My only problem is, that she doesn’t seem to be interested in more than my body. And I’m not about to have my control taken away from me. She either bends to my will, or I’m walking. Grayson Carter is everything I ever dreamed of and more. He’s built like a rock and knows how to satisfy my every need. But the last thing I want is to have another failed relationship. Especially, when it involves a member of the Hell’s Lovers. I’m the one in control, I’m always in control… So why is it that Grayson Carter is the only man who has ever made me beg for more.

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Buy Link

 

 

 

Wolf

Book One

 

 

 

 

Scarlett Chase is every man’s wet dream. As soon as I laid eyes on her, I knew she’d be mine. That is, until I found out she was untouchable. One kiss, one forbidden touch, will have me out on the streets and stripped of who I am. Yet I want her. I need her. And I’m done following all these damn rules.

Wolf Stone is my obsession. Ever since he pulled over on that empty road, I’ve been tormented by the man. His possessive words and heated looks have me tightly wound. One touch, and he lights me on fire. But I want more. I not only want him in my bed, I want to keep him for myself. But he won’t budge, and now it’s up to me to entice his sleeping wolf.

 

 

 

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Buy Links

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My name is Crimson Syn, not really, but what fun is it to use my real name. Instead I’ll use my inner goddess’ name, it’s much more fun that way. I grew up in New York City where I had a wonderful education, loving parents and awesome friends. What more could a girl ask for? I started writing at the age of sixteen. The first romance I read was Stephanie Laurens’ Devil’s Bride. Since then I have been influenced by dozens of flourishing romance authors and even more dashing and daring rogues. I must say it, but Fifty Shades was not my first erotic romance, nor did it influence me to start writing them. If you’ve never read Mary Balogh, Elizabeth Hoyt, Lisa Kleypas, Bertrice Small or A.N. Roquelaure’s Sleeping Beauty trilogy, then you’re missing out. Those were my sweet introductions to erotic romance, and boy were they hot.

So here I am, after reading so many wonderful stories, I have too many sinful tales of my own not to share. I like my alphas rough and possessive, and I have no shame in saying it or writing it. I had delightfully wicked teachers growing up, their books took me to new worlds and brought me new loves. So, I want to do the same for you. I want to indulge my readers in those steamy reads that will send them into the arms of dangerous alphas and deliciously sexy rogues, without leaving the confines of their nice warm bed. If I am able to entice your inner goddesses, then I have done my job and I am satisfied. 

 

Links

 

Newsletter *** Facebook *** Twitter *** Instagram *** Tumblr *** Amazon *** Goodreads

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!

Source: http://snoopydoosbookreviews.com/blog-tour-riggs-crimson-syn-excerpt-giveaway
SPOILER ALERT!

A Review of the Feminist Fantasy book, A Plague of Angels, by Sheri Tepper in 6 Quotes

A Plague of Angels - Sheri S. Tepper

 

My second Tepper read was succulently good! I wanted to savor the book, so I took my time with it. I am sharing my favorite parts of the book here like I do in most reviews. However, this time, I have chosen 6 quotes that sum up how I felt about the book.

 

Quote # 1

Sometimes, it was the way the author described an emotion, such as the horror that a character felt when the Witch took her mask off.

 

 

Quote # 2

Other times, it was how a character expressed a philosophical thought about gangers simplifying language to such an extreme that they started looking down at poetry and literature. The quote below reminded me of the restrictions being placed on characters in the novel 1984.

 

If you take out the different words that describe completely different things that are also the same, what are you left with? For instance, I think love when I read the word, red. I don’t think that when I come across scarlet because I associate it with scandal. Then there is crimson, which reminds me of blood.  

 

 

Quotes # 3 & 4

Then there were times when a character stated the truth in the simplest manner. The line is easy to miss with so much else that is going on. Yet, if you stop and think about it, there is depth in those words. Two particular examples that made me shudder are mentioned below:

 

 

 

Quote # 5

As were the times when a character who is still young and inexperienced said something profound. I went back and read this quote multiple times because it resonated with me. If you find it touching your heart too, you might want to check out my review of The Handmaid’s Tale.

 

 

Quote # 6

Finally, there were some parts that sparked something in me. While reading them, I thought I could base my next story on these lines. I find that the books that end up on my favorites’ shelf have that in common. I think that each line in those books could be hiding a story in itself.

 

 

I would very much love to read the second book in the series even though it would be lacking one of my favorite characters from this one. Care to join me for a buddy read?

 

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Sweet T and the Turtle Team by Cat Michaels Giveaway & Review @CatMichaelsBook @beachboundbooks

Reblogged from sherrysniderfundin:
Sweet T and the Turtle Team (Sweet T Tales) - Cat Michaels

0_TurtleTeamCover

Title: Sweet T and the Turtle Team
Author: Cat Michaels
Illustrator: Irene A. Jahns
Publication Date: July 2017
Publisher: 2101 Ink
Number of Pages: 72
Recommended Ages: 6 to 11
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MY REVIEW
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There is so much about Sweet T and the Turtle Team and island living that is familiar to me. Those pesky Palmetto bugs really do stand up and hiss at you, even though we must be a super giant to them. The beach life and stories of the rescue of marine and bird critters is a common occurrence, boiled peanut stands are on the roadside, but I have yet to share in the experience of turtles being born.
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I am so happy to be able to experience it with these wonderful characters as they make new friends and have wonderful adventures that just proves to me that life at the beach is paradise.
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Oh, forgot to mention, I loved the bunny getting lost…and found…all the time.
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The story and illustrations will entertain and delight the young ones over and over again.
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I voluntarily reviewed a copy of Sweet T and the Turtle Team by Cat Michaels.

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos  5 Stars

 

Read more and enter the giveaway here.

 

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Source: http://www.fundinmental.com/sweet-t-and-the-turtle-team-by-cat-michaels-giveaway-review-catmichaelsbook-beachboundbooks

The Status of Project Frankenstein & Other Updates

 

Reading Goal

 

I have completed the goal that I set for myself this year on Goodreads. Really happy that I’m getting some reading done even with life being as crazy as it is.

 

 

Project Frankenstein

 

 

I have finished 11 out of the 14 books that I originally included in the post. My opinion about Frankenstein & Philosophy has yet to change!


    1. Parent Material: Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
    2. Others’ Take: The Mammoth Book of Frankenstein by Stephen Jones
    3. Historical Retakes: Anno Frankenstein by Jonathan Green
    4. Genre Spins: Steampunk: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein by Zdenko Basic
    5. Young Adult Forays: Dr. Frankenstein’s Daughters by Suzanne Weyn
    6. Sci-Fi Pastiche: Prodigal Son by Dean Koontz
    7. Philosophical Entree: Frankenstein and Philosophy by Nicholas Michaud
    8. Series Picker-Uppers: The Second Birth of Frankenstein by Will Hill
    9. PrequelsThis Dark Endeavor by Kenneth Oppel
    10. Precipitating Conditions: The Lady and Her Monsters by Roseanne Montillo
    11. Character Spotlight: My Frankenstein by Michael J. Lee
    12. Technological Difficulties: Frankenstein’s Cat by Emily Anthes
    13. Changed Perspectives: Frankenstein’s Monster by Susan Heyboer O’Keefe
    14. Graphic Detail: Monster Of Frankenstein by Dick Briefer, David Jacobs, Alicia Jo Rabins Edwards

 

Book Bingo

Besides this, I am also playing Book Bingo with my workmates. At the moment, I’m reading a book for the Female Protagonist shelf. My love for dinosaurs is no secret and this book is packed with facts and speculations equally, which makes it juicier. More on this in my review!

 

To see how I fared in the previous round, click here!

 

 

I am also a part of buddy reads going on here for Jane Yellowrock seriesMidnight Texas series, and sciency books on The Flat Book Society!

Book Booty, August 2017

 

So, a visit to Kitabain brought me these beauties. Let’s look at them all:

 

I am slowly collecting my way through the Discworld novels. Sadly, I still have a ways to go. Anyway, planning to get back to this series as soon as I find the second book.

 

 

This hardcover edition is beautiful and contains many of the short stories written by Poe. The cover shows an orangutan from a murder mystery. A good addition to my collection, won’t you say so?

 

 

 

Part of the Ender’s Quintet and the very book that I needed to read next in this series. Can’t wait to get started.

 

Read my review of the Speaker for the Dead book here.

 

 

 

 

 

The unassuming cover opens into a most amazing book. You will find Victor Frankenstein’s experiments that led to the creation of his monster spawn. The book has illustrations, photographs, and log entries that give it an authenticity.

 

For my ongoing love affair with all things Frankenstein, you might wanna check out Project Frankenstein.

 

I think this is a good haul. How about you?

#3 Follow Friday with book bloggers: Tigus

Reblogged from BookLikes:

Say Hello to Tigus in #FFWithBookBloggers session!

 

Follow Tigus on BookLikes: http://tigus.booklikes.com/

 

Tell us how did your book love begin?

 

I was about eight years old, and I remember reading Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, outside and tucked into corners of the schoolyard, while other kids ran around and played. Just before that, I had had a Grade 2 teacher, Mrs. Rainsborough who would read Judy Blume and Beverly Cleary to the class, and that's probably the earliest I remember loving stories and figuring out that there was a lot more where that came from. Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing - Judy Blume  

 

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (Translated by F. P. Walter and Illustrated by Milo Winter) - Jules Verne,Milo Winter,F. P. WalterThe Mouse and the Motorcycle - Beverly Cleary,Louis Darling,Tracy Dockray

 

I was into comic books around then, chiefly Spider-Man at first; Amazing Spider-Man #s 147, 149-50 (the culmination of the Jackal storyline) was a great lure...and since it functioned as a pretty cool Murder Mystery, that fit in well with my first Hardy Boys book, a good one, The Disappearing Floor. As I was growing out of that series for young readers, I jumped to one of two Agatha Christie books lying around the house--And Then There Were None --and that really hooked me on Mystery novels.

 

The Disappearing Floor - Franklin W. Dixon And Then There Were None - Agatha Christie

 

Science Fiction movies and TV shows were a big deal in the late 1970s, and my earliest SF reading commitments were Jack Williamson, and the Perry Rhodan English translations.

 

Death Waits in Semispace - Kurt Mahr Action: Division 3 - Kurt Mahr

 

Your BookLikes Shelf is packed with different genres: mysteries, biographies, sci-fi and fantasy, graphic novels, horrors. What makes you pick the book in a given genre?

 

I have these lists of recommended reading, mainly "100 Best" Lists, in book form, many of them out of date now, which became a bit of a publishing trend, let's say from about 1985-1990. Of course, the internet provides this sort of thing now--and my old lists have become a way to select books that have aged somewhat as the years go by and I acquire the titles.

 

Recently, there was this British mag, Crime Scene Magazine, that has kind of got me sweeping up just about everything they positively review; sadly, I think the mag is cancelled as of issue 7, so it the issues will serve as a finite list that I can actually finish up with someday!

 

All of this List reliance, though, probably takes a back seat to simply going to a big bookstore and browsing around for an hour or so; if I've been buying too many "List" choices, I make the trip about picking books out of the blue, based mainly on a back-cover synopsis, and certainly if I already know and love the writer's work.

 

What made you start writing about books/book blogging?

 

Well I don't actually write that many reviews, or do lengthy blogs, do I? I give updates each day, with some kind of quick reaction to what I just read, which at least keeps me around as an active, reliably present member. I like making my own Lists at BookLikes; that's fun!

 

Anyway, as for how all that started, it was after really committing to the internet around 1998 (I was kind of a holdout), and then discovering some forums and chatrooms and meeting people. Now it's kind of second nature, and my chief aim, as I get older, is to pick a few BookLikes friends who make their own updates that keep me interested in what they're reading...and not fight with anyone or insult anyone's taste.

 

via

 

Your profile picture on BookLikes blog - why Walter Matthau?

 

Is there any other reasonable choice? Actually, that particular image is sort of a classic one, even amongst his various mugshots, because it ends the film The Taking Of Pelham One-Two-Three (original version), and he's overdoing the hangdog look as he gives a gaze of shame to a villain who has just slipped up and given himself away. This was one of the first fairly violent movies I remember watching to the end on late-night TV as a kid...although I discovered later that it had been drastically edited, and was much more violent and cussword-ridden than I could have guessed. Displaced from the film, that Matthau face does reflect my inherent cynicism, though I try to keep even a cynical sense of humor, so I don't have to go the whole nine yards and just put up an Eeyore picture.

 

Did blogging have an impact on your reading life?

 

I would say not much, in any concrete sense. Getting feedback from friends will alert me to a book that looks interesting, now and then. My little bitty blogs don't affect much of anything, but give me a bit of pleasure. I would say that when I really love a book, it becomes a mission to spread the word a bit, and it's neat to see it up on someone's Planning To Read postings shortly after that (That was ME! I did that! They may not ever read it, but...I did that!).

 

When you write a book review - do you have a scheduled plan what to include or is it a spontaneous reaction to what you’ve just read?

 

If I'm writing a review, I've probably been inspired to not be lazy and get it done because three or four points about the book have crystallized in my mind. If I've walked home from the coffee shop, or for any other reason not had access to a computer right after finishing a fabulous book (I do not own a cellphone), that's actually a good thing, because I'll fill time analyzing the book in my head, sorting ideas and thoughts, and getting to a point where this light goes on and won't go off: "I think we've got a review here...so write it before you forget everything!" Still, I confess I don't write many reviews. I do love commenting on books as I go through them, though!

 

What are your three favorite book covers?

 

I love the cover on my old copy of Orbitsville, a novel by Bob Shaw; the cover art is by Tim White. I love the "stars as the ground' reversal, and just the way the trees and buildings are rendered--softly--with no sharp edges and an air of peace and gentleness, which is what Orbitsville is all about when you read the book. I would give anything to live in Orbitsville, and Tim White's version is especially appealing.

 

Meanwhile, the Agatha Christie novel I rudely passed on when I was a kid at home--in favor of And Then There Were None (which oddly did not have the better cover) was a Fontana (I think) paperback edition with this nifty skull/candy-apple image as the main attraction; I love the stark effectiveness of it: evil melds with childhood innocence; terror merging with fondly-remembered fun and games. I especially like how the image actually seems to be really wet, gooey, ooze dripping down--the eyes having almost a tactile response, maybe even a smell unwittingly imagined. I remember now...I think I wanted to save what looked like the better Christie choice for later; that was the thinking.

 

Lastly, I'll mention a Baen paperback edition of a Retief collection by Keith Laumer... Retief of the CDT. So arrogant and cocky is Retief--but then he does look like he's earned a bit of a swelled head, given the state of the giant beastie lying behind him.

 

Retief of the CDT - Keith Laumer

 

Which books are you most excited recommending to your followers?

 

I'm not sure how to answer this. If the point is not for me to just list my all-time favorites, then I would say as an alternative to that kind of excitement, it's most fun when someone reads something I loved not long after I read it, so that if conversation breaks out--even healthy disagreement on just how good the book is (or not)--I never have go to "Well, I read it a long time ago...".

 

What’s your reading spot? We’d love to see the photos :)

 

Well you're not gonna get photos, because I avoid cellphones, and what you would see is your standard coffee shop, with perhaps a focus on a favored table near the window and far from talkers and people who make strange noises. Go to a Starbucks and figure out which table the bookworm would sit at, and take a picture of it, because that's where I'd be. It would be a boring, underwhelming picture, but it's heaven for me with a book and a beverage.

 

via Tigus blog Shelf

 

A paper book or an e-book?

 

Just paper books, so far. Maybe e-books sometime up in the future.

 

Three title for a dessert island?

 

I'm not going to stew over this painful question for very long, because it can become very frustrating to make choices. I'll pick The Count of Monte Christo, amongst books that I have not read yet, because it's long, and I have faith that I will enjoy it. Then, I'll change gears, and pick two books I have already read: I'll take my favorite book of all time (so far): The Anubis Gates, by Tim Powers. And I'll bring my favorite Wodehouse's Quick Service.

 

The Count of Monte Christo - Alexandre DumasThe Anubis Gates (Ace Science Fiction) - Tim PowersQuick Service - P.G. Wodehouse

 

A book that changed your life?

 

Why Men Are The Way They Are, by Warren Farrell. 

 

Favorite quote?

 

Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall.

William Shakespeare, Measure For Measure

 

If you could meet one author, who would it be?

 

PG. Wodehouse, no contest. I did get to meet Robert Silverberg, briefly, at TorCon 3 in 2003, and he signed my copy of Up the Line. That was cool!

 

Shelfie time! Please share your home library photos :)

 

That's just not going to happen, but can we compromise with a photo taken of me today at work, with a cellphone (not mine)?

 

 

Missed previous Follow Friday talks? Use ffwithbookbloggers tag or click the catch up links:

 

 

See you next Friday!

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Midu’s quotes


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Midu's bookshelf: read

Kingdom Come
3 of 5 stars
tagged: graphic-novel, read-in-2015, and 1997
A Mere Formality
4 of 5 stars
tagged: missing-shelf, read-in-2015, shorts, singles, and 2008
Chickenfeed
3 of 5 stars
tagged: premissing, uk-author, 2006, read-in-2015, serial-killers-and-other...
Dark Blood
1 of 5 stars
tagged: missing-shelf, 2014, abuse, read-in-2015, series, and middlers

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