Thursday, July 19, 2012

Follow Friday

And this week's questions is: Christmas in July! Someone gives you a gift card for two books (whatever that costs). What two books would you buy?

Well, this one is sort of hard because there are, like, ten or more books that I'm dying to get my hands on. But I've managed. :)

Insignia by S.J. Kincaid

Insignia (Insignia, #1)


Dark Star by Bethany Frenette
Dark Star

This is what i really can't wait to read. I'm what you would call a cover lover and so I get really excited about them. And since both covers are AWESOME, I love them both. :D 
Anyways, Insignia reminds me of Captain Amercia and Dark Star is really about 'superhearoes' so I totally have to read them. Two of my favorite things. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

Natural Born Angel (Immortal City #2) by Scott Speer

Natural Born Angel (Immortal City, #2)
Maddy explores her Angel heritage—and struggles to get her wings—as the Angels and the humans head for a showdown.

Life turned upside down for Maddy Montgomery when she found out she was half-Angel and was catapulted into the scene of flashbulbs, paparazzi, and fervent adulation that comes with 
being in the celebrity Angel world.

And now Maddy must face the most difficult choice of her life. She’s been offered the chance to become a Guardian. This means dangerous and high-stakes training, with no guarantee that she can succeed. But more than that, it would mean leaving her mortal life behind—forever— and allying with the Angels at a time when their relationship with humans is heading for war...

I recently read Immortal City (You can read my review here) and I loved it! So I really can't wait to find out what's in store for Maddy and Jacks. 
What can't you wait to get your hands on? Leave a link!
I'd also appreacite followers, I'll follow back.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna, #1)

Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna #1) by Kendare Blake

Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story...

Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead. 

So did his father before him, until his gruesome murder by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. Together they follow legends and local lore, trying to keep up with the murderous dead—keeping pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

When they arrive in a new town in search of a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas doesn’t expect anything outside of the ordinary: move, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he’s never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, but now stained red and dripping blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.

And she, for whatever reason, spares his life.

My Review:

The first thing that came to mind as I began reading this book was Supernatural (If you haven't watched the show then go, it's the best thing ever.) Cas was like the younger version of the Winchester brothers. He's dedicated his whole (short teenage) life to hunting ghosts and can be quite cocky sometimes. So when he hears about Anna Dressed in Blood, he's all over it thinking he can deal with that ghost like he's done before with little trouble. Boy, was he wrong. 
Oh, and did I mention how much I love his name? No, well, I love it. I mean, c'mon, it's Theseus Cassio Lowood. Sexy. :) 
One of the things that I liked about Anna is the fact that it's narrated from a boy's POV. There aren't many of those out there. Moving on to the story line. With quite a few books out there about ghosts and doomed romance and all, this one was pretty unique. It was easy to fall in love with each and everyone of the characters, even Anna. Her story was so tragic and heart-wrenching, readers will sympathize with her right away.
Oh, yes. Anna. It completely blew me away. Just thinking about what happened to her, it makes me want to do something about it! I had to put the book down for a few seconds before I could finish the story. It was that shocking. The writing was descriptive enough to make you feel what Cas was feeling and to bring characters to life so instead of telling you, the writing showed you every sordid detail. It sure as heck left my emotions all over the place when I was done with it and looking forward to a sequel. 
It will grab readers with bloody hands and won't let go until the last page. So, if you like ghost stories and Stephen King, this is the book for you. Hauntingly good!

Rating: 5.0


Still Waters by Emma Carlson Berne

Still Waters

Still Waters

Hannah can't wait to sneak off for a romantic weekend with her boyfriend, Colin. He's leaving for college soon, and Hannah wants their trip to the lake house to be one they'll never forget.
But once Hannah and Colin get there, things start to seem a They can't find the town on any map. The house they are staying in looks as if someone's been living there, even though it's been deserted for years. And Colin doesn't seem quite himself. As he grows more unstable, Hannah worries about Colin's dark side, and her own safety.
Nothing is as perfect as it seems, and what lies beneath may haunt her forever.
My Review: 
Still Waters is unlike any other book I have read. It kept me wondering what was going on until the end. I honestly couldn’t understand why Colin was acting differently in the Pine House. I thought that he was probably possessed by an old ghost from the house, or that maybe he had multiple personalities. At the end of the book, it turned out that what had gone on at the Pine House was very different. The last chapters were very intense and they kept my attention all the way to the end. I would have never guessed the ending. It would have been better if we were given more information on Jack, though. I felt like I needed a little bit more on him at the end. However, overall I really liked the book. Hannah and Colin’s relationship felt so real. I really enjoyed reading it. It was as if I could feel everything Hannah was feeling. There were very good descriptions overall. 

Rating: 4.0


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Immortal City by Scott Speer

Immortal City (Immortal City, #1)
Immortal City (Immortal City #1)
Published April 3rd 2012 by Razorbill
Jackson Godspeed is the hottest young Angel in a city filled with them.

He's days away from becoming a full Guardian, and people around the world are already competing for the chance to be watched over by him. Everyone's obsessed with the Angels and the lucky people they protect - everyone except for Madison Montgomery.

Maddy's the one girl in Angel City who doesn't breathlessly follow the Angels on TV and gossip blogs. When she meets Jackson, she doesn't recognize him. But Jackson is instantly captivated by her, and against all odds the two fall in love.

Maddy is swiftly caught up in Jackson's scene, a world of glamour, paparazzi - and murder. A serial killer is on the loose, leaving dead Angels' wings for the police to find on the Walk of Fame. Even the Guardians are powerless to protect themselves in the face of this threat & and this time it's up to Maddy to save Jackson.
My Review:
I was quite skeptical about reading this book because while I looking for a new take on Angels, making them superstars in Los Angeles sounded a tad... ridiculous. But, as it happened before, the cover drew me in. Yes, a bit shallow and all. But I wasn't wrong. It was good. I mean, there's a freaking hot guy on the cover with a tattoo peeking from his sleeve. C'mon! 
However, Immortal City had its own spin to the Angels vs Demons showdown that had me asking for something different. These angels aren't cloud-hopping warriors but rather almost normal people with seemingly altruistic motives to remain on earth. What they actually do is charge people to save them. Yes, charge them! There is no more miraculous, free save from death. God forbid, lol. The angels are bad, bad, bad. Think of Supernatural fans at a convention and multiply that by a hundred or so and you know what it's like to be an angel. They are super stars.  
Even though it was some sort of love triangle, another cliche nowadays, it wasn't the center of the story and it didn't take much space from the main couple, Maddy and Jacks. Yeah, there were the same insecurities: she's more beautiful, she's from your world and she's an angel kind of stuff. Normal stuff. 
But what I loved about the book was the fact that angels weren't glorified or anything. Yes, they were seen as otherworldly for their immortality and angelness, but they were quite human, too. 
Take Jacks for example, since he was a kid he aspired to be a guardian and he will do anything to become just that. He just wants to save people, be as great as everyone else expects him to be. But at the end of the day he's just another teenager, albeit an angel one, and so he's not any less prone to falling in love at the most inopportune of times. His life took an unexpected turn for when he met Maddy, a girl who doesn't swoon at the sight of him and isn't really an Angel fan. 
Maddy is your average girl next door who is realistic about things and doesn't expect much. She only wants to get good grades at school so she can have a chance to go to college. Maddy is smart, funny and, even though she doesn't think so, beautiful. Oh, and most importantly, she doesn't treat Jacks like he's all high and mighty. She knows better than to be bedazzled with the sparkly world that Jacks comes from. Or at least she thinks so.
The thing is that their love and passion was instant. And soon, they find themselves running for their lives and in the middle of an angelic war in which Maddy could be the key to. 
Anyway, back to the point and why I loved it so much.
It started off a bit slow but then picked up and kept my eyes glued to my Nook because I just had to finish reading it. For some reason, Jacks reminded of Jace Wayland from the Mortal Instruments series. The whole blond and god-like thing sort of really made me (metaphorically, of course) drool all over Jacks. Although, I did find that particular character flat at times. 
As for Maddy, she ran hot 'n' cold all the time. I was able to identify with her, but I found her a bit annoying. She was strong and brave, though. And she did feel real to me. So I do love her. :) The romance between her and Jacks felt real and almost tangible. The tension and passion projected and so I give the author an A+ in that department. It held my attention and all, but what I loved the most was the fact that even though I pretty much guessed who the killer is, they always give this big, meaningful speech that sounds creepy and it makes you scratch you head and go like, 'what?' but I kept second guessing myself. I was right, of course, but I did end up blaming someone else at the end just to have my first guess thrown back on my face. 
Ohh, and before I forget. Did I mention how awesome the demons were? No, uh, well. They were pretty cool. No, sexy, devil may care kind of demon that I absolutely adore, but rather the ugly horned thing that came straight from hell. Oh, yeah, it was awesome. I also give that an A+. 
The grand finale that Scott Speer wrote was explosive and tantalizing. A true epic ending. So I now sit on my chair anxiously waiting for the sequel. I just can't get enough of Jacks now, and no, I would so not be one of those screaming girls. (HA! Yeah, right. I'd so be one.) 

Now, I dare you to deny the fact that that dude looks just like freaking Jace Wayland. 

Rating: 4.5


Interview with Lisa Rogers

Monty reviewed Angelina's Secret by Lisa Rogers and after talking to her she agreed to answer a few questions. Monty's review is here.

Genesis, thank you so much for inviting me to your blog. I need all the help I can get in getting the word out about my books, so again thank you.
When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

Even as a child, I had dreams of being a writer, but between raising kids and taking care of a husband (which BTW is harder than raising kids) I just never found the time. When my youngest child started his senior year of high school, I decided it was now or never, so I sat down and wrote and wrote and wrote. Now, five years and almost three books later, I’m still writing and wondering why I didn’t do this sooner.
Are your characters based on someone you know or do they just pop into your head?
A little of both. Some of my characters just pop into my head and I have no idea where they came from. Other characters are loosely based on someone I know and sometimes they are the product of two or three people rolled into one.
How do you get into the ‘writing zone’? Is there a schedule you have, like: 9:00-4:00 Writing?
For me, it’s easier to really get into the “writing zone” if I write first thing in the morning before the days realities have time to muddle my brain.  
What’s your favorite book and author?
To be honest this answer changes on a regular basis. I can’t say that just one author or book stands out in my mind. Like most things, it would depend on my mood. One of the perks of being a Spencer Hill author is we get to read each others books. (How cool is that?) So if I’m in the mood for a good YA novel I usually read whichever book is the next on my TBR list. However, if I’m in the mood for an adult murder/mystery or courtroom drama I’d probably read William Bernhardt, or John Grisham. If I’m feeling particularly brave and am in the mood for a thriller/mystery I’ll lock my doors, put a knife under my pillow, make my husband hold my hand and crack open the latest Lisa Gardner novel.
Favorite character from a book?
Again, it’s hard to choose just one, but one of my favorite characters would have to be Ben Kincaid. He is a lovable hard working, soft hearted, downtrodden lawyer who is featured in many of William Bernhardt’s award winning novels.
Since you have had many encounters with ghosts, can you tell us which one was the scariest?
After living in a haunted house for twenty-eight years, I would be lying if I said I had never been scared. With that said, I will also say this fear has always come from within me and isn’t the product of something “bad” the ghosts have done.
My thoughts on ghosts are pretty unusual and instead of trying to explain them in a limited space, I’d like to invite all of you to go read an article I wrote for the Llewellyn journal. It can be found here
Was Angelina’s secret the original title? Or did it change?
Angelina’s Secret was the original title
Where did the idea for Angelina’s Secret come from?
My husband and I went out to dinner to celebrate me signing my nonfiction book, On Haunted Ground, with an agent. Since this book dealt with the paranormal, we began toying with the idea of what it would be like for someone to discover that they had the ability to see ghosts and Angelina’s story came to life right there in the restaurant. 
Will there be a sequel? And can you tell us a little about what you’re working on now? (A Teaser?)
Oooohhh I sure hope so! Currently I do not have a contract for a sequel, but I have talked to my publisher about my ideas for a second book and hopefully that will work out. The tentative title is Angelina’s Promise. In this book Angelina and friends, some seen and some unseen, try to help a ghost restore his reputation.
Any advice for aspiring writers?
Continue to always hone your craft and never, never give up.
Any books you plan on reading this summer, or that you’re reading?
As I said earlier as an author for Spencer Hill I have been given many awesome books and I’m ashamed to say that due to my own writing endeavors I’m dreadfully far behind in my readings. I have just started reading Elemental by Emily White and I must say it is AWESOME! When I finish it, I’ll be reading Betrayed by Ednah Walters.

Thanks Again,
Lisa Rogers

And I thank you for taking the time to answer these questions and I wish you the best luck, Mrs. Rogers. 

Also, last but not least, here are some links that y'all might find useful. Thanks for stopping by. 

Spencer Hill has a free download of Angelina’s Friend, which is a short prequel to Angelina’s Secret. It can be found here
Angelina’s Secret fan page on facebook