Sunday, August 31, 2014

Blog Tour: Outshine

Welcome to my stop on the Outshine blog tour! My review will be posted down below the book details, so make sure to read through everything!

Outshine 
by Nola Decker
YA Science Fiction


Book Synopsis:
When agoraphobic Gabe and his outgoing nemesis Jessa go on a moonlit road trip to locate Gabe's missing brother, the two teens discover they are both hiding unnatural abilities:  Gabe is a living lie detector and Jessa is a kick-ass powerhouse pretending to be a delicate diva.

Gabe's sole reason for searching for Watts, his overbearing younger brother, is to clear his own name: he's been framed for Watts' alleged murder.  Jessa is after Watts because she is, well, after him.

They find him with Deacon, the twisted eugenicist responsible for their unusual powers. He encourages them to stay and join his "Family" where they'll be able to live openly as the genetically-modified freaks that they are. When Jessa and Gabe uncover the truth about Deacon's past--and what he wants for the future--they band together to stop him. Watts, however, might have other plans . . .

Author Bio:
Nola Decker is the only writer in Seattle who doesn't drink coffee. She makes up for her happy and healthy childhood by writing stories in which terrible things happen to young people. She loves salted caramel anything and Fridays.

Twitter handle: @nola_decker
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nola.decker
Website: www.noladecker.com
Goodreads author page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8178025.Nola_Decker
Amazon page link: http://amzn.com/B00JND06LI

By the way, I think that is my favorite Author Bio ever. Like I might have to steal from it if I get published. Okay, no, I won't go that far, though it is excellent.

My Thoughts:
Wow. That is the first word that comes to mind when I think of Outshine. It has the popular girl, the loser-like boy, and the popular guy. It has some romance. It has the sci-fi. It has the action. It has the mystery. It has everything. Except flat-out gruesome murder. But that's probably a good thing.
     This is by far one of my favorite books. You know how I know? Because I was provided with a copy to review and I went on Amazon and bought a paperback for myself. It's that good. But what's all my hype about?
     Each character has a secret behind their exterior. Not like a normal I-stole-my-mom's-car secret. An I-have-secret-powers secret. Which makes them awesome. They also have very unique voices. I very much appreciated the use of duo storytelling, with the chapters alternating between Jessa and Gabe. It helped develop the voices and make each character have a very strong personality.
     I also loved the originality of Outshine. I couldn't really find anything that I'd seen before, which was astounding. From the plot to the world, everything was new and unique to the story.
     Nola Decker has a fabulous voice. It is strong and blends with the her novel, making a lovely story that not many people can accomplish. Her style is also very developed. And I have an inkling that she is quite determined. Only because this book seemed to be checked meticulously for mistakes. I think I found one typo in the entire book. If I even found one.
     The world is half real, half made-up and new. But I wasn't at all worried about what was going on. I knew through all the details and visualizing. I also liked how much detail was thrown into describing Gabe's hometown. I've never been there, so it really is great knowing what I can see and where I can see it.
     I was devastated that the book ended, especially when I saw Nola's note in the back, promising a very upsetting story for what happens to the characters. I'm very pleased and excited, though, that she also told me to expect a sequel next Spring. Which means I know what book I'll be looking forward to for seven months!

Rating: 5 stars. Honestly, with all my gushing love above, did you think I'd give it anything less? If I did, I'd be lying. And I wouldn't want to cause Gabe any more pain than I probably do...

Thank you so much Sage Adderley for inviting me on this tour! It was amazing! Stunning. You know me so well when it comes to book tours I'd love to join!

And thank you to the amazingly talented Nola Decker for writing Outshine. I'm not sure how I survived before I read this book. I'm not sure how I'll survive until the spring.
~Ashley

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Character Debate: Harry Potter

This is such a late post in the day, but I had classes before. Now, a few announcements:]
-I'm definitely going to slow down with all the blog tours. From here on out, I'm trying to only do reviews and tours for books I'm extremely interested in. This is only for the reason that it is very difficult for me to keep creating posts, no matter how short they are, during time that I should be studying or doing homework. Also, I feel that it is boring you, my amazing and fantabulous readers. So that is going to slow down a bit.
-Going off of the above bullet, I'm finishing up a few tours in September and I have a BUNCH of reviews coming your way. I cannot wait for those. The closest one is Monday, August 31, and it is my review of Outshine by Nola Decker.

-This post is titled 'Character Debate'. I figured that I love the idea of a weekly meme, and as I'm completely obsessed with HP, why not do that? I know I've done the Moment of the Week before, but I was thinking the other day and realized I wanted to share my thoughts on certain literary characters. And I realized I have many thoughts on many characters. So I'll start doing my own weekly meme here at TWaMF. Starting this week is an extremely well-known character, the one and only Harry Potter.

Character Debate: Harry Potter
First off? Definitely things I love. In no particular order, with no particular explanation unless I feel like I need to put one.
1) His loyalty. Did he ever truly give up on his friends?
2) His bravery. Walking into the Forbidden Forest, anyone?
3) His innocence.
4) His ability to purely love. This is a boy who grew up without love, yet he was able to love deeper than most others. Even when he continued to lose his loved ones. He just kept on loving.
5) His stupidity. When I say stupidity, I mean it in the most affectionate way. Because he didn't recognize Snape's handwriting in the Potions book. Which, I guess I can give him that; maybe Snape's handwriting changed a bit. But the broomstick coming into the hall? And him not knowing what it was? Oh, Harry, how we love you.
6) His natural goodness. I'm not sure if anyone can deny that Harry has an inborn sense of the right thing, and he is almost always trying to do it.
7) His naivety. I think it's really excellent how Harry continues to forgive people. It always made me love him even more.
8) His sarcasm. If you haven't read the books, you have no idea what you are missing in this specific subject. This boy has so much sass that is extremely undermined in the movies.
9) His independence. I think this could be a turn-off for many, but I love how Harry doesn't want to work with others, especially when trying to fight Voldie, because he doesn't want them in danger. Which leads into the next.
10) His protectiveness. He'd never let any harm come to those he cares for if he can prevent it.

I could honestly list things for hours, because Harry is one of my favorite literary characters of all time. But I figure I should limit the things I like and go into the things I don't like.

1) His forgiving capabilities. I know that this is mentioned above as one of my favorite things, but I also dislike this bit. I hate how easily Harry forgives some characters, especially those who don't deserve it. That right there is probably my fatal flaw. But I always thought that Harry forgave Snape WAY too easily. And this is my opinion, which I do have a right to, so please don't totally bash this. 

I don't like Snape. Reasons will come another day, but that's all you need to know for right now. I was horrified with how fast Harry forgot all the troubles Snape caused him and others. He just realized that Snape was sort of good and was obsessed with Lily. And then BOOM, he liked the guy. He named his child after him. Which I do understand for Harry, though I disagree with it. I mean, the man is extremely dramatic at time
s, and his children are the perfect example. While I do like the significance of the names, I hate Snape being a part of the Potter family. I dislike how Harry had to include him. Which all goes back to how much I hate Harry's easy forgiveness.

As I said before, Harry is one of my favorite characters ever. But I'll be the first to admit that even the most amazing people (and characters) have flaws. Each week I'll have characters from so many different books and I'll include things I like and things I don't. Hopefully. I might just have things I dislike if it's one of those characters...

Feel free to leave your opinion on Harry down below. Or tell me what you think about this new endeavor of mine. Or stop by and say hello.
~Ashley

Monday, August 25, 2014

Blog Tour: The Devil's Jukebox

The Devil's Jukebox


Marcel Feldmar
Genre: Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Pop Fiction
Publisher: Peabo Productions (Self-Published)
Date of Publication: July 8th, 2014


Book Description:

A group of friends are reunited after twenty years to learn that their destinies are entangled with the immortal Muses and a mysterious lost jukebox.

From Vancouver to a New Orleans cemetery, roaming through Los Angeles to Las Vegas; it’s a supernatural road trip laced with rock ‘n’ roll.

Available at Amazon iTunes BN Smashwords

The Devil’s Jukebox - An Excerpt:

It could have ended differently. But it ends like this.

Or, more accurately, this is how the ending begins.

It begins in the summer. It begins in Los Angeles.

Jonathan feels like something not good is waiting to happen. He doesn’t always feel like this, just on birthdays, holidays, and most of the days between. This is a day that holds something bad. He’s been avoiding talking to Fortuna recently, since he feels like he’s been working on these kinds of jobs long enough to be able to find the right answers on his own. But this isn’t an ordinary case. This time he’s going to need help.

He wishes that he could tell Phillip what has really been going on with Pandora, but he can’t. Not yet, perhaps not ever. Phillip has helped a lot, moving in and out of his life like an older brother, no, like a good friend. Ever since Sebastian died. Jonathan looks at his drink. He’s going to need more alcohol too.

Phillip wants him to find Pandora, but that’s something he doesn’t think he can do alone. That’s why he’s convinced himself that he should talk to Fortuna. He still isn’t sure who Fortuna is or how she knows what she knows. Kalinda introduced them one night in San Francisco, but he never learned where, exactly, she came from. He is grateful that she doesn’t mind sharing her knowledge with him. He had entertained thoughts that Fortuna might be involved with black magic, but he knows he’s wrong.

She is beyond good and evil.

Jonathan taps his fingers on the bar. He’s hanging out at Swampland, while the DJ tears up the vinyl, spinning through a mix of early ‘70s punk rock obscurities and British Invasion hits. He turns to look but the DJ booth is shrouded in shadows and dim red light. He thinks about saying thanks for the songs but decides he doesn’t need another excuse to stay. “Right, let’s just get it done.”

It took him a while to find Fortuna. She’s someone that even the dead don’t like to talk about, and the dead love to talk. It took a few visits to Hollywood Forever, a boom box, and an old Shriekback cassette. He felt like a gothic Lloyd Dobler, but he finally got his answer. The Tropicana Motel on Santa Monica Boulevard, Room 29. Now that he knows where she is, the trick is to work up the nerve to go there. Jonathan knows he shouldn’t go. He doesn’t always listen to the word “shouldn’t.” He shouldn’t be infatuated with a woman named Pandora who is the next best thing to a vampire, and not a good one. He probably shouldn’t be trying to track her down either. He knows Fortuna might be able to tell him where she is; he kind of hopes that she can’t.

Clearing away spirits is like tearing down the dusty latticework of old cobwebs accumulating in a musty attic. That he can handle, though it gets a little dirty at times. Vampires, though, they’re solid. Blood-sucking evil solid, and he isn’t looking forwards to dealing with any of them. Not that Pandora is a real vampire, but she’s close enough. He’s been running from her and searching for her at the same time, and it’s getting old.

“Damn you, Phillip,” he grumbles as he leaves Swampland, wishing reality was like it used to be. As far as he knows, Phillip’s the same as Pandora but, at least so far, not evil. Phillip did help Jonathan get settled in Los Angeles.

Jonathan can clean out a haunted dive bar in about twenty-four hours, he can exorcise a possessed drum kit in the time it takes to listen to the extended mix of “Fascination Street”, he can purify a stage from spectral remains before a band returns for an encore. He just doesn’t know if he can take out Pandora. He walks fast down the sidewalk, passing all of the faceless people, and then—

A dark-haired woman moves past him with a sidewalking glare. She struts hard in high black boots. She’s stalking the streets like a storm on the concrete, heels over heartbeat, and Jonathan’s breath catches in a suddenly broken rhythm.

She’s a whiplash girl twisting necks, and he feels the stirrings of a fever. He doesn’t even care about the weather; he just knows it’s better when it’s hot.

This heat holds, and slides out from between her steps. He watches her tight black dress, the fabric painting eyes and stirring blood. Slick lick lips, thigh-high and higher. She hits him with a flash of red, a slip of a smile, like some reptile out for a spin.

Jonathan stops, but it’s not her.

He still has time. He needs to figure out how to get away from Pandora—for good. It feels like they’ve been haunting each other for an eternity, though it’s only been a few years. He needs to know where she is and how to stop her. The only person Jonathan knows who might have answers is Fortuna. She always has answers. She always freaks him out as well.

Jonathan waits for his hands to stop shaking. He watches the sun set in the reflection of skyscrapers, pulling the half moon to rest behind a closed curtain of brilliant clouds. He connects the stars while walking between parked cars. Some quiet frenzy slips inside him, and he hides it from the outside world. He already knows what song she’s playing as he moves up the stairs. He can feel the rhythm tracing taut lines around his veins with a wire’s kiss.

I am the fly.

Jonathan walks through the cold night into Fortuna’s motel room.

About the Author:

Marcel Feldmar was born in Vancouver, moved to Boulder, ended up in Denver, went back to Vancouver, moved to Seattle, and ended up in Los Angeles. He is married with three dogs, and enjoys well made cocktails. He is also a coffee addict and an ex-drummer for too many bands to mention. He recently traded in his drumsticks for a couple of pens, and proceeded to complete his first novel. The Paranormal Pop Fiction tale entitled The Devil’s Jukebox.



If you order the paperback version of The Devil’s Jukebox through CreateSpace https://www.createspace.com/4324532  between now and August 31, you’ll get 20% off!

Just use the following discount code:      RR5RTBTN

…and the magic will happen.

Tour giveaway 
 5 signed paperbacks

~Ashley

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Book Blitz: Double Negative

Double Negative 
by C. Lee McKenzie 
Publication date: July 25th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

Synopsis:
“My life was going, going, gone, and I hadn’t been laid yet. I couldn’t go into the slammer before that happened.” Hutch McQueen.

Sixteen-year-old Hutchinson McQueen is trapped between an abusive mother and an absentee father. Shackled by poor vision and poor reading skills, he squeaks through classes with his talent for eavesdropping and memorizing what he hears. After another suspension from school and suffering through one of his mother’s violent attacks, he escapes to a friend’s house that turns out to be a meth lab. The lab is raided and Hutch lands in juvenile detention. When the court sentences him to six months in a new juvenile program, he meets a teacher with Alzheimer’s who will change his life and hers.




Purchase:

Picture Interview!
I love this idea!!

1. What were you like as a kid?

I was kind of a tomboy, in spite of all that my mom and gram did to make me girly. There were mostly boys my age on our block, so that may have been what influenced my behavior.


I was playing three flies up, tripped and fractured my kneecap. Ouch. I look happy, but that cast was an itch a minute.

2. What was your first published book?

The title was Sliding on the Edge. Like Double Negative, it was an edgy YA. That book came out in 2009 and dealt with cutting.


These are some avid fans. No, not really—two friends who were kidding around.

3. Where did you write most of Double Negative?

A lot was written in the winter and spring before I could go outside, so I worked at my desk. But I also did a lot of the story in summer, and that’s when I like to sit by my pond to write.


This is a perfect place for writing and thinking about writing, especially when I can’t cough up the story I want.

4. What’s your favorite holiday?

Halloween. I go all out for All Hallows Eve. It’s fun. It’s macabre enough to give me chills. It inspires ghostly tales, and I like to write those once in a while. I have a lot of short stories about ghosts.


Here I am getting ready to make a chocolate graveyard cake. Yummm.

AUTHOR BIO
In my other life--the one before I began writing for teens and younger readers--I was a teacher and administrator at California State University, San Jose. My field of Linguistics and Inter-cultural Communication has carried me to a lot of places in the world to explore different cultures and languages. I can say, “Where’s the toilet?” and “I’m lost!” in at least five languages and two dialects. Go ahead. Pat me on the back.

My idea of a perfect day is one or all of the following: starting a new novel, finishing writing a blockbuster novel, hiking on a misty morning trail in the Santa Cruz Mountains, saying Namaste after a great yoga practice, sipping a cappuccino topped at a bustling café, reading in front of a fire with snow outside, swimming in an ocean someplace. 

I've just set out my perfect life. Day after day after day.

Author links:
~Ashley

Friday, August 22, 2014

Blog Tour: Variants

I'm a stop on the tour for Variants, by Michelle C. Reilly, hosted by the ever-amazing Bewitching Book Tours. I was actually fortunate enough to secure a review spot, so I'll post that after the initial book description.

Variants

The Anathergians Trilogy
Book One
Michelle C. Reilly
Genre: Sci-Fi Fantasy with Romance
Available at Amazon and CreateSpace

Book Description:

Sworn to Protect the Very People Bent on Destroying Them

POWERFUL

Auden, the king of the immortal Anathergian race, came to Earth five thousand years ago when he and his people escaped from their destroyed planet. His power is immense, but is threatened because he has yet to take a Lifemate.

WITCH

With the blood of an Anathergian and a witch running through her veins, Leah is a force to be reckoned with. After leaving her foster family to learn how to master her new-found powers, Auden finds her. With him, she discovers her heritage, her strength, and her love.

VARIANTS

An Anathergian is using variant strains of his DNA to turn humans into Anathergians. This enemy’s goal: use the Variants to take over the world and take Auden’s place as king. Auden and Leah’s goal: Stop the enemies and discover what connections Leah has with them.

Excerpt from Chapter 4:

He stood inside the entrance as the doors closed behind him. His gaze was drawn to a slim calf covered in black denim hanging over the arm of a wing back chair facing the desk. A black Converse shoe bounced up and down. Then a dark head with gray eyes peeked at him from around the edge of the chair. The girl’s near-black straight hair was cut at an angle where it touched the tip of her chin on one side of her heart shaped face and ended at mid ear on the other side.

He took a step forward, ready to reach for her. It was an instinctive reaction and one he had never done before. He held himself still.

His insides sang to the tune of another like him. Oh, yes, she is most definitely of Anathergian blood.

With reddened cheeks, she twisted away.

Marla reached her desk. Glancing from Auden to Leah, she gestured toward the girl. “Auden, please meet Leah.”

The girl gave a halfhearted wave at him from beyond the chair. Auden raised an eyebrow at Marla. The woman’s brow creased and she shook her head, her curls bobbing against her cheeks. “Leah, have manners, if you please.”

“I waved hello, didn’t I?” said a sulky voice from the seat.

Marla’s mouth went tight, and then she motioned for Auden to come forward. He approached the side of the desk to get a better view of the girl.

She was slight, but not too thin. Her long, shapely legs, emphasized by the tight jeans, seemed to go on for days. Her short-sleeved fitted black t-shirt had a drawing of a face with Xs for eyes. His gaze stopped at her pert breasts that stood from the shirt for a moment. When he realized where his stare had strayed, he brought his perusal higher. A pale, sateen neck gave way to a stubborn jaw line. Parted wine lips made his throat parched. Her straight nose was almost too big for her face, but it went well with her angled chin. A gunmetal glare shot sparks at him and she bounced her leg to an agitated tune. It was apparent she was not happy about her current situation. He could commiserate, but it didn’t mean he would give into her rancor.

#

Leah scrutinized the man who, according to Marla, had come to bring her to his people for training. He was someone Marla trusted and the training would help her grow. As if. Leah already had people to train her. Here, at Sanctuary. She didn’t need his people. And what could his people teach her she hadn’t already excelled at?

She tilted her head back and glared at him, giving him her best As if I care look. But, jeez, was he huge! Holy crap, he could probably take down a bull without using a horse or rope. His eyes were as dark as the deepest depths of the ocean and churned with as much life as those seas. She idly wondered what treasures were hidden there. When Leah studied his face, she thought of exotic Egyptian pharaohs. He wore a black, long-sleeved buttoned shirt made of a soft material that kissed his muscles like a lover. His jeans molded to his muscular thighs and extended over black boots.

His gaze gave her a once over so thorough she had to subdue the urge to squirm. Instead, she notched her chin higher. When he continued to scrutinize her, she said, “You can stop staring.”

Marla’s intake of breath sent a small pang of guilt through Leah’s chest, and she sent the woman a quick apologetic look. Glancing back at Auden, she noticed a slight lift at one corner of his mouth. She covered her own twitching smile and instead showed a sudden interest in the wood beams lining the ceiling.

“What have you told her?” His baritone timbre made Leah think of swimming in a serene lake with cool water surrounding her. It calmed her.

“I told her we have known each other for quite some time and I trust the training she will receive with you will be beyond reproach,” answered Marla.

Irritated, Leah let out a small harrumph. “I’m sitting right here. Please don’t talk about me as if I’m not right in front of you.”

“Oh,” he regarded her up and down, “do you wish to join the conversation?”

That’s it! After the morning she had, she wasn’t going to let this guy push her around. She stood, taking fast steps toward him. “Do I wish to join the conversation? You”—she pointed at him—“bet I do! Why am I going with you? What type of training can you give me”—she pointed a thumb at herself—“that I can’t learn here?” She gestured with her hands indicating the school. “What makes your people”—she poked her finger into his chest and became even more annoyed because he didn’t even flinch—“so much better than the people I have here?” She indicated the school again.

“Leah, this is unacceptable behavior,” interjected Marla, her voice high with angry disappointment.

Auden, who hadn’t moved a muscle during Leah’s tirade, spoke to Marla. “It’s fine, Marla. I can handle this.”

“Handle? Handle? Seriously?” Leah sputtered. “Do you think you’re just going to ʻhandle’ me?” She made quotation marks with her fingers.

“Right, then, I’ll leave you to it,” Marla said to Auden and headed toward the double doors.

Review:
This will probably not be a long review, but, trust me, it's better that way. The only way I can get a really lengthy review in is if the book had a bunch of problems, which Variants most definitely did not.
    First thing's first: This book was really good. I actually had only four days to read it and between classes and everything in my life, which proved interesting. But the plot held my attention and kept me coming back to it, even when I had other things that should've probably been done this week. Oops. 
   The relationships explored are actually quite fascinating. Reilly goes through the brother-sister relationship, and even throws in a little while of tension between the two, which I loved, because let's face it: after your only family who really loves you practically abandons you, are you going to be running into her arms or are you going to be mad? Thank you Michelle for keeping it real.
    The romance was very cute, though different. I liked how it began and how it seemingly ended. 
   Which leads me into the ending. Wow. I need to read the next because this cliff-hanger was worse than The Mark of Athena's. Okay, maybe not that far. (Worse in a good way, by the way.) I need to know what the serum was and what happens to Leah and Auden and everyone. It's just a need now. I have to know.
    Variants honestly reminded me a bit of Divergent, in a great way. The only thing I can complain about is the emphasis on romance, but that is definitely a personal preference. Although I don't love an abundance of romance, this was well-written and very good, even the romance scenes. 
    Overall, I loved the book. I'm so glad I got to review it and read it. I enjoyed every bit of it, and I'm sure people around me enjoyed seeing my facial expressions as I read it. Michelle Reilly, keep me in mind when the release date comes out for #2.

Rating: 4.5 stars: I had to take 0.5 off for my personal preference about the romance, mainly for the sex scenes. They were a bit too explicit for my taste. Otherwise, fabulous job. I look forward to the remaining books!


I must say I like this cover more because it shows the dark side of the Anathergians. And their Designations!! Ahhh, I love it!!

About the Author:

Michelle C. Reilly is a single mom of two wonderful boys. She spent ten years in the U.S. Navy as a Hospital Corpsman Preventive Medicine Technician, which meant she was actually attached to or stationed with the U.S. Marine Corps. She has a Masters in Science in Public Health, but she is generally an IT geek and a geek of many other things as well. She currently resides in Las Vegas, NV, with her two cats, Meowdy and Moose, and her dog, Katie aka “The Old Lady.”

Make sure to visit her website www.michellecreilly.com for more information about her and her upcoming books.

Feel free to visit, ask her questions, and hang out with her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/michellecorareilly

And if you’re a tweet-a-holic (or even if you’re not), follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MichelleCReilly

Website: www.michellecreilly.com

FB: https://www.facebook.com/michellecorareilly

Twitter: @MichelleCReilly

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/michellecreilly

Tour giveaway

- 3 swag bags (includes bookmark, post-it, magnet, and temporary tattoo)
- 1 signed paperback book
- 3 kindle books
- 1 amazon gift card $10
- 2 bracelets
- 2 sticky rhinestone packs


~Ashley

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Blog Tour: Wrath of the Highlander

I got the chance to host the lovely Sky Purington for a guest post, so here she is!
Wrath of the Highlander
The MacLomain Series
Next Generation
Book 3
Sky Purington

Genre: Time Travel Fantasy Romance
Date of Publication: July 9, 2014

Book Description:

Bookstore owner and ghostwriter, Cadence wants nothing more than to be part of the unending draw between her Broun heritage and the medieval MacLomain clan. When an unexpected Claddagh ring appears on her finger, the distant past soon becomes her future. Though sure she was brought back in time for another man, the laird’s cousin soon draws her eye, then her every thought.

Recently widowed by a traitorous wife, Malcolm MacLomain has no use for love. Merciless, he swears revenge on his enemies and embarks for war. When courageous and persevering, Cadence becomes part of his endeavor his broken heart starts to mend. Caught in an unexpected journey of forgiveness and discovery, two worlds collide and heal despite the, Wrath of the Highlander.

Available Now- Mark of the Highlander (Book 1), Vow of the Highlander (Book 2) and Wrath of the Highlander (Book 3). Coming Soon- Faith of the Highlander (Book 4) and the final in the series, Plight of the Highlander (Book 5).

Available at Amazon BN Kobo

I got the chance to host the lovely Sky Purington for a guest post, so here she is!


Thanks so much for joining me on my Wrath of the Highlander book tour. Born of the couples from the original series, the Scotsmen in the next generation have their work cut out for them. Unlike the first two MacLomain Series, this new one is five books long and covers an ongoing saga that takes place in under a year.

There are not one but two enemies who are determined to possess the MacLomain’s best kept secret, Torra. Though a beautiful woman she’s also part dragon. In true nemesis fashion, one of the bad guys is an evil warlock and the other a warrior chieftain who defected from his clan.

Having come to know book three’s hero Malcolm MacLomain fairly well in the first two books, I thoroughly enjoyed crawling inside his mind in Wrath of the Highlander. So I thought it might be fun to share a few unknown things about one of my all-time favorite heroes…

1. Given to him by a Celtic god, his newest traveling companion is a black Dire wolf.

2. Though one woman is implied as his true love, he ends up with another.

3. Typically brooding, he finally smiles.

4. He has the ability to manipulate not only water, but weather.

5. 6’6, black hair, well-muscled, any hot-blooded woman would LOVE to see where his dragon-induced magical tattoo is located. ;-)



Excerpt

“Have you found your mystery man yet, lass?” he said, so low she would feel the rumble of his inquisition through the thin material of her silky, smooth dress.

Her lips trembled, eyes wide, but she gave no answer.

Oh, but to close his lips over hers.

“No,” Cadence finally murmured, her eyes still locked on his. “But I will find him.”

When she licked her lips, his eyes drifted down. Wide and full, they were created for pure sin. He could only imagine them running down his body. Damnation, he needed her closer.

Though he wouldn’t kiss her, he’d sure as hell dance with her.

Ignoring her assurance that she was meant for another man, Malcolm pulled her into the dancing crowd. It didn’t matter if the music was merry. He wasn’t in the mood for speed. Besides, he was viciously aroused. She’d feel his need while she tried to keep focus on the man she so eagerly sought.

“Goddess above, what are you doing to me,” she whispered, voice strangled.

Arms wrapped around her lower back, he brought his mouth against her ear. “‘Twill be no goddess giving you answers, only me.” He tightened his hold. “Do you feel me then, lass?”

“How could I not?” she gasped. Hands clamped on his upper arms, she turned her face into his chest and mumbled, “You show ill respect to a man you have not met.”

“I dinnae respect a man until he earns it.” Malcolm closed his eyes and breathed in the sweet scent of her hair.

As each individual note trilled from the bagpipe, she melted against him more thoroughly than the icy snowflakes speckling his heated skin. Fire and drink might warm the crowd but where they stood his breath hit the air in foggy puffs. Always a fan of the cold, but an even bigger fan of a bonnie wee lass against him, he cupped one hand around the back of her neck.

Her heart thundered against his.

Her body shuddered.

“Easy, lass,” he whispered. “I willnae take what you’re unwilling to give.”

“Yet you hold me prisoner,” she murmured.

“Nay, we but dance.”

“If only.”

Her words were so soft he barely heard them.

Jaw grinding, he held her securely while pressing tighter against her.

“No,” she whispered. Then she pulled back, her voice stronger as her eyes met his. “No.”


“Aye, lass.” But he loosened his hold and gave her one more word before he let her go. “Soon.”


About the Author:

Sky Purington is the best-selling author of eleven novels and several novellas. A New Englander born and bred, Sky was raised hearing stories of folklore, myth and legend. When combined with a love for nature, romance and time-travel, elements from the stories of her youth found release in her books.


Purington loves to hear from readers and can be contacted at Sky@SkyPurington.com

Interested in keeping up with Sky's latest news and releases? Visit Sky's website, http://www.skypurington.com to download her free App on iTunes and Android or sign up for her quarterly newsletter.

Love social networking? Find Sky on Facebook and Twitter.

Website: www.skypurington.com

Blog: www.skypurington.blogspot.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/skypurington

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sky-Purington/260484263999780


Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/skypurington



GIVEAWAY

was awesome enough to also provide the tour with a giveaway (yay!) so you can win one (1) $25 Amazon or Barnes&Noble gift card (winner's choice).


~Ashley

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Book Blitz: Shades of Chaos

Book Blitz! I'm excited to host a stop on the Shades of Chaos blitz tour, run by Xpresso Book Tours! Be sure to read to the bottom to find the super secret giveaway!
Shades of Chaos 


Authors: Alexia Purdy, Cameron Jace, Chrystalla Thoma, Katie Salidas, Megan Duncan, Nadège Richards 
Publication date: June 11th 2014 
Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult

Synopsis:
Dare yourself to enter into post-apocalyptic future with this gritty collection of first-in-a-series books by six bestselling authors! Discover unique worlds packed with non-stop action, adventure, and suspense set against a gritty, futuristic backdrop.

NOTE: Together, these books have over 320 5-star reviews on Amazon!
Over 1400 pages of stories, with *exclusive* content from Alexia Purdy, Katie Salidas, and Chrystalla Thoma!
Best for ages 16 and up~

I AM Alive: I am not my heart rate. I am not my skills. I am not how I look like. My name is Decca Tenderstone. I live in a future America where teenagers are ranked on a scale from 1 to 10 on graduation day. There has never been a 10. Those below the rank of 5 are considered Monsters, a liability to society. The system says I am a Monster. I will not let them kill me. I will survive.

Initiation: Being a Vampire is a crime punishable by eternal servitude in the arena as a Gladiator of the Iron Gate. Mira, a newly turned vampire, must prove she has what it takes to survive in the human’s world. It’s kill or be killed. Immortality is not guaranteed.

Dissension: In the aftermath of the great cataclysm, vampires are enslaved by humans and used for blood sport as gladiators in the arena. Mira is undefeated, uncompromising, and unbreakable, but when an escape attempt leads her into the path of the city’s Regent, her destiny is changed forever.

Finding Hope: After the death of the one person he called mother, Elei leaves the Trashlands of Ost for the city – looking for other people and for answers. But he soon finds out that people are complicated and answers hard to come by…

Rex Rising: In a world where parasites create new human races, Elei leads a peaceful life as aircar driver — until a mysterious attack on his boss sends him fleeing with a bullet in his side and the fleet at his heels.

Resonant: As the first days of the end of humanity tumble across the City of Las Vegas, turning everyone into vampire-like creatures, April Tate will find out what it really means to survive.

Reign of Blood: April Tate is a seventeen-year-old ferocious vampire killer who lives in the remains of Las Vegas one year after a viral epidemic has left the world decimated. After her family is abducted, her world tilts when she discovers they’re not truly alone.

Released: After a demon apocalypse kills everyone they know, 17-year old Abby Phillips, her brother and her friend Max flee their home to travel through the wastelands of America, chasing a radio transmissions of a resistance offering shelter. But soon enough Abby and her companions discover what awaits them is much worse they could have ever imagined.

Burning Bridges: In a world divided between Hunters and Warriors, where prisoners are forced to fight in the arena until death, young Princess Echo must fight to find out who she really is and to put a world that has been swallowed by lies back together again.




Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22558121-shades-of-chaos?ac=1

Purchase links:
The book is on sale at $0.99 for a limited time!

http://www.amazon.com/Shades-Chaos-Cameron-Jace-ebook/dp/B00KXIIZ5Q
Fido: http://www.fidopublishing.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=34&zenid=ff4a2fc544434781a9e431a29a8103aa
Apple: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/shades-of-chaos/id886686306?mt=11&uo=4&at=11l5ab
Google: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Cameron_Jace_Shades_of_Chaos?id=v2HFAwAAQBAJ
B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/shades-of-chaos-cameron-jace/1119709426?ean=2940149302543&itm=1&usri=2940149302543
Bookstrand: http://www.bookstrand.com/shades-of-chaos
OmniLit (Are): https://www.omnilit.com/product-shadesofchaos-1547381-234.html
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/447167

Giveaway!
TWaMF is participating in an individual giveaway in which I can give away one e-copy of  the full set of Shades of Chaos! All you have to do is comment below and you can win!

As always, thanks for reading, lovelies!
~Ashley

Monday, August 18, 2014

Blog Tour: Wings of the Butterfly

Okay, here begins my review of an amazing book. Right here, right now. Or maybe here. Okay, fine. Here.

Wings of the Butterfly
By S.M. Pace (aka Brilliant Author)
YA Fantasy
Date Published: August 15, 2014

Synopsis: Three nations teeter on the brink of war, and caught in the middle, a brother and sister find themselves surrounded by dangers they never imagined. 


Adopted by the Yurha, Toby still struggles to properly fit in.  Hunting in the forest, he stumbles across a jeweled cuff that attaches to his wrist and won’t come off.  Afraid at first, he is soon thrilled to discover the cuff carries powerful magic.  But as he tries to control it, he realizes the cuff is still linked to its original owner - an owner who will go to cruel lengths to get his magic back.


Miles away, Toby’s twin sister Ora struggles with life in a strange city.  She and family have fled Yois for Nietza, where Ora will not be arrested for possessing magic.  However, Nietza is not the magical paradise Ora had imagined.  Despite her new friends, she can’t feel safe in a country where women are little more than pawns.


Secrets, brutal murders and war edging ever closer drive both siblings from their safe places.  Failure to stop those who pursue them will mean a fate worse than death.

S. M. Pace

S. M. Pace lives with her husband in the wilds of Virginia, along with a pond full of fish, a turtle and too many squirrels.  When she's not writing, she's wrangling a dozen pre-schoolers, learning a new recipe or reading.
Website: http://spacewomen/home/
Twitter: @StephMPace
Blog: smpace.com
S. M. Pace's Fantasy World Post - Sign up to Fantasy World Post and get worldbuilding snippets, short fiction and behind the scenes peeks at my current WIP.  All free, just for signing up.

My Thoughts: (This section makes me feel quite important)
    Ooh, I'm honestly so scared that I won't do this book justice, so I'll just come right out and say it. I loved this book. And when I say loved, I mean absolutely adored. I actually had to go and read Shadow of the Wolf, the first in the series, and I was hooked. Honestly. You can ask anyone who came into contact with me this past week: I've been recommending the series. Even to my teachers. Like they care.
    The imagery is so phenomenal. I could see everything Pace was telling me. Every leaf on the tree. My mind was drawing a map of the entire land. The imagination used was great. This is definitely original. And Pace also has such a talent for story telling. It's incredible what she does with this fantasy series. Incredible to the point of some of the bigger-name fantasy series. It's that good.
    The characters continue to be awesome. I could definitely be frustrated with them for small things, but then I'd realize that I couldn't remain angry. At all. I love them too much. They have depth and voices. I know who is who no matter what is happening.
    The plot was very well paced. Nothing happened too fast, and the climax was lovely. Pace is great at action scenes, suspense scenes, etc.
    I only had one problem with Wings, which actually carried over from the first book. The lack of background. Don't get me wrong, there is a lot of background information that is included. But just a tiny bit is missing. The biggest of that tiny bit is the background of the land. I have absolutely no idea of much about the land at all; I just know there are nations. And each nation seems to have a ruler. It's quite odd, though, because even though I don't know much history, I wasn't confused. My mind simply couldn't answer questions it asked, but I still adored these two books.
    Also, a few questions are left answered. My biggest one is who are the murderers?
    That ending was fantastic. I need to find out when the third book will be released so I can keep reading. Mrs. Pace, if you are reading this, please keep me in mind when you find that bit of information out.
 
    Overall, this book had me hooked. I'm so so so grateful for Reading Addiction Book Tours for sending me my copy and inviting me to the tour. I'm in a new fandom because of it. And I need to go on Amazon and get myself a paperback copy. Because wow, I loved this. And I can't even stop saying that.

Rating: 5 stars. This isn't a question for me. This book deserves it, along with a million more readers. I'll get on that.
~Ashley

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Blog Tour Stop: Prey of Desire AUG 17

Hello and welcome to this stop of the Prey of Desire blog tour! Have you been having fun so far? *crosses fingers*
Prey of Desire
By JC Gatlin
Genre: Mystery-Suspense, New Adult
Published: February 2014
Synopsis:
They said the disappearance of two high school students over 25 years ago was mystery that couldn't be solved.
No one ever said it shouldn't be. Following the abrupt end of a relationship, college student Kimberly Bradford finds comfort in the friendship with her over-the-top neighbor, Mallory. And, Mallory encourages her to get back out there. She would of course if it weren't for the thrilling little love notes and gifts she's been receiving. Kim thinks they're from her ex-fiancee, not realizing he's been murdered. Worse, whoever is sending her all the extra attention is not only in her inner-circle, but has a connection to that unsolved murder some 25 years ago. That connection puts her life in danger, and exposes secrets better left buried around her closest friends and family.
Author Info:
JC Gatlin lives in Tampa, Florida. In addition to regular fishing trips, he wrote a monthly column for New Tampa Style Magazine, then began penning several mystery/suspense stories. He also maintains a blog about the art of spinning a nail-biting, edge-of-your-seat mystery yarn.
Coming from a large family with five brothers, JC grew up in Grapevine -- a small Texas town just outside of Dallas. He moved to Tampa in 1999, and most of his stories feature the rich landscapes of Texas and Florida as backdrop.
Websites:
http://jcgatlin.com/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/JC-Gatlin/e/B00ENPSDU2/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJcGatlin

My Thoughts:
   First thing first: Does that cover model look like Jessica Khoury or what? Jessica, did you pose for this?
Now, on to the review.
   I downloaded this book from my email and decided to start the first chapter before bed. Mind you, I had no one with me and the house was dark. So I started, having thought this was a cutesy little scandal-type book (I had just read a synopsis for that). And at the end of the first chapter, someone gets stabbed. WHAT?! Yeah. I almost had a heart attack. And then I still had to get some sleep.
   I actually ended up reading this for two nights and then the rest in a day. It was that good. Phenomenal, really. The characters were definitely realistic and I enjoyed the mystery behind the notes. And let me tell you, JC Gatlin did the best job of keeping the reader in the dark. I loved that. I knew as much as Kim knew the entire time. Nothing less, of course, and not too much more. Sometimes the narrator hinted at things, but they weren't too big (except for one time. The exception proves the rule.).
   The plot. Wow. This book was EXTREMELY well-plotted. Everything flowed perfectly and had a reason for being present. Kim goes to places not because it's simply part of her routine, but because they affect the entire story.
   Pacing was well and the characters were beautiful. The setting worked really well with the story and each character was important in some way. Which I don't want to describe anything in detail because this is a SPOILER-FREE zone.
   I was very excited about this book and I wasn't disappointed. From the start to the end, I was enticed. And on that subject, the ending? You can't put the book down during that part. It's impossible. I had to know what happened and the scene was perfectly paced out, a really difficult task I've found for fight scenes. The ending had somewhat of a cliffhanger, but more to the point of you can assume what happened but you aren't sure.

Oh, and Mr. Gatlin? If you are reading this (so flattered), may I inquire what happened to Michael and Grampa? Michael especially. You can't leave me hanging like that! (Haha, everyone else! You have to read the book to find out who I'm talking about!;)  )

My Rating: 5 stars

I think I'm seriously lucking out with review books; I haven't given any under a four-star yet. They're just that good! And a HUGE thanks to Sage's Blog Tours for letting me review, and for providing a free review copy. I promise this is an honest review.
~Ashley

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Cover Reveal: Helia's Shadow

Woah I get to help reveal a new cover and these events are the most exciting for me! Yay, I'm ecstatic!

And here she is!

Helia’s Shadow Part One by K.C. Neal 
(The Starlight Age Series #1) 
Publication date: Fall, 2014
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

Synopsis:
Nineteen years ago, aliens arrived on a dying Earth with advanced technology and the promise of ensuring human survival in exchange for a place to settle. They were hailed as the saviors of humans and Earth.

Today, 16-year-old Helia wants two things in life: to step out of her over-protective mother’s shadow and become an engineer, and to stop hiding her romance with alien boy Kalo. But the world definitely isn’t ready for a human-alien romance. And worse, the human-alien partnership is crumbling. Humans are being arrested without explanation. Some of them are never seen again.

When the alien leader imprisons her mother on a false charge, Helia discovers the aliens never intended to help humans at all. Now, she must join forces with alien rebels and convince the young rebel leader that humans aren’t expendable. If she succeeds, humans have a chance at survival and she has a chance at love. If she fails, the dwindling human race dies out in slavery.

--

Watch for the Helia’s Shadow ARC on NetGalley in September! If you’re not on NG, sign up for K.C. Neal’s newsletter for a chance at a limited number of ARCs for non-NG reviewers (and giveaways, sneak peeks, and other goodies!).


Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22741276-helia-s-shadow-part-one



AUTHOR BIO
K.C. Neal works in publishing and writes YA books. She likes to surf and hang out on sandy beaches, where drinks are served adorned with tiny umbrellas. When she's not taking tropical vacations, she paddleboards, reads, writes, gardens, watches too many things on Netflix, and tells her dog, Oscar, how adorable he is.


Author links:
http://kcneal.blogspot.ca/
https://www.facebook.com/KCNealFanPage
https://twitter.com/KCNealTweets
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5163997.K_C_Neal

LOOK AT THAT COVER! I didn't even notice a face at first but obviously now I do and I think it looks marvelous!

Thank you Xpresso Book Tours for hosting. This has been so much fun (even though it took ten minutes...)
~Ashley

Friday, August 15, 2014

Book Blitz: Dream Boy

I honestly feel a bit bad for this particular blitz because I'm honestly dying to read the book, yet I'm so limited on time right now with classes. So I cannot give this all my gushing love, which is awful, but I can definitely say that this is a gorgeous cover and the book is promising. I hope to find a copy as soon as possible!


Dream Boy
Release Date: 07/01/14
Sourcebooks Fire

Summary from Goodreads:
Annabelle Manning feels like she’s doing time at her high school in Chilton, Virginia. She has her friends at her lunchtime table of nobodies. What she doesn’t have are possibilities. Or a date for Homecoming. Things get more interesting at night, when she spends time with the boy of her dreams. But the blue-eyed boy with the fairytale smile is just that—a dream. Until the Friday afternoon he walks into her chemistry class.

One of friends suspects he’s an alien. Another is pretty sure it’s all one big case of deja vu. While Annabelle doesn’t know what to think, she’s willing to believe that the charming Martin Zirkle may just be her dream come true. But as Annabelle discovers the truth behind dreams—where they come from and what they mean—she is forced to face a dark reality she had not expected. More than just Martin has arrived in Chilton. As Annabelle learns, if dreams can come true, so can nightmares.


Available from:
Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Kobo Books * The Book Depository

Excerpt:
I’ve always been a dreamer. Daydreams. Night dreams. Dreams of grandeur and dreams of escape. If I were an onion and you peeled back the papery outside, you’d find layer after layer of eye-watering dreams. And in the center, where there’s that little curlicue of onion heart? There’d be a puff of smoke from the dreams that burned away.
It was all just brain waves, I thought—disconnected, like the notebook that my friend Talon keeps. She draws a line down the middle of the page; on the right she writes everything she remembers about a dream, and on the left she puts notes about the stuff that’s happening in real
life, things that might trigger her subconscious. Reality on one side, dreams on the other—a clear line between the two.
But it turns out there are no clear lines, just a jumble of what is and what might be. And all of it is real.
~ Keep reading! You can check out the first three chapters here: https://marycrockettbooks.files.wordpress.com/2014/07/dreamboy_excerpt_proof.pdf

Advanced Praise:
“Dream Boy explores the mysterious world of dreams, where we access our deepest desires…the authors expertly weave fantasy and the real world in a perfect blend.”
-- Erica Orloff, author of In Dreams

"Eerie, twisty, fast and funny, Dream Boy will forever change the way you see your dreams--and your nightmares. An exciting, imaginative look at what might happen when people from the corners of your mind suddenly show up in your real life."
-- Lois Metzger, author of A Trick of the Light

Reviews:
“The perfect book to add to your summer reading list. An awesome balance of love, humor and action, this new read may just be your dream come true!” – GirlsLife

"Hits the chick-lit and romance buttons, adding suspense and an intriguing idea as well for nicely rounded entertainment." -- Kirkus Review

"An original, twisty paranormal romance." -- Booklist

“Five stars... Perfect writing, perfect characters … perfect plot.” -- Paperback Wonderland

“Dream Boy skillfully and creatively tackles the common theme of good and bad dreams coming alive.... The writing is tight and well-paced, and nicely balances action with Annabelle’s character development as she tries to unravel the mysteries of... her dreams. Her teenage voice is spot on: unsure of herself, but spirited, with a sarcasm that masquerades as confidence. The plot twists and moves in unexpected yet fascinating directions." -- The Roanoke Times

About the Authors
Mary Crockett likes turtles, licorice, and the Yankees. Madelyn Rosenberg likes cats, avocados, and the Red Sox. Luckily they both like the weirdness of dreams (and each other) enough to write novels together. The friendship has survived three moves, six kids and countless manuscript revisions. Madelyn lives just outside of Washington, D.C. Mary remains in the mountains near their hometowns in southwestern Virginia.

Where to find Mary:  Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook 
Where to find Madelyn:  Website | Goodreads Twitter | Facebook

GIVEAWAY:

Blitz Organized by:
~Ashley