Friday, September 28, 2012

Release Cover Reveal

I'm super excited to be taking part in the Release cover reveal. Exiled by M.R. Merrick was one of the first books I found through blogosphere hype and it was awesome! So I'm very excited to bring you the cover of the third book in the Protector series!

After uniting the shifters and calling in reinforcements, Chase has to face his toughest challenge yet: learning to control his emotions. But as tensions rise and his powers grow, controlling his emotions becomes the least of his problems.

Terrorized by a multi-shifter who is hell-bent on turning him, Chase questions just how far he’s willing to go to stop his father.  Meanwhile, Tiki’s virtuous nature has placed him in the middle of Vincent’s past, leaving Chase to oppose a senate of vampires and defend a demon he hates.

Trying to balance his friends, his enemies, and his inner demons, Chase is left searching for answers about the Mark, his destiny, and where he can find the next soul piece. Stopping Riley is his top priority, but as more obstacles arise, he finds himself doubting all the decisions he’s made - especially regarding Rayna.
One thing is for certain: Chase has finally realized that he doesn’t know anything. The light doesn’t always quell the darkness, the monsters don’t always stay in the shadows, and the past doesn’t always stay in the past - sometimes, the demons inside are the hardest to fight.


It's so creepy; I really like it! I like how all three book covers seem to follow a theme. What do you think? Leave your comments below!

M.R. Merrick | Goodreads | Exiled (Protector #1) | Shift (Protector #2)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Review: Shadowfell


Title: Shadowfell
Author: Juliet Marillier
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: September 11, 2012


Sixteen-year-old Neryn is alone in the land of Alban, where the oppressive king has ordered anyone with magical strengths captured and brought before him. Eager to hide her own canny skill--a uniquely powerful ability to communicate with the fairy-like Good Folk--Neryn sets out for the legendary Shadowfell, a home and training ground for a secret rebel group determined to overthrow the evil King Keldec.

During her dangerous journey, she receives aid from the Good Folk, who tell her she must pass a series of tests in order to recognize her full potential. She also finds help from a handsome young man, Flint, who rescues her from certain death--but whose motives in doing so remain unclear. Neryn struggles to trust her only allies. They both hint that she alone may be the key to Alban's release from Keldec's rule. Homeless, unsure of who to trust, and trapped in an empire determined to crush her, Neryn must make it to Shadowfell not only to save herself, but to save Alban.

My Thoughts:

I have to say, this is one of the most depressing books I've even read.The first 2/3 of the book is so painfully depressing that a few times I considered not picking it up again. Not only that, but the depressing parts were also the parts that were slow for me, plot-wise. The final 1/3 of the book was more enjoyable, but it still wasn't enough to save this book for me.

Neryn was a tolerable heroine. She's not really into kicking butt like many heroines, but she has a quiet determination that still left me impressed. She's had a very tough life (see the previous paragraph where I state how extremely depressing this book is) and is mainly interested in survival. She sees many things that are wrong with her homeland under Keldec's rule and, after a bit of prodding, takes it upon herself to change them or die trying (which she nearly does). Besides one poorly thought out decision, I didn't have any issues with Neryn and even appreciated her determination. I liked the character of Flint. So flawed, yet every bit as determined as Neryn.

I think the world building was also quite well done, besides being overwhelmingly depressing. I thought that Marillier did an excellent job creating the world of Alban, although I wish she's included a few more glimmers of hope along the way. The writing was also well done and was what kept me going through the slow and depressing parts of the book.

Overall, I wanted to like this book because it had some good aspects to it. However, I read books for enjoyment and Shadowfell was far to depressing to be truly enjoyable.

On the Cover:

The cover is nice, although the model is much prettier (and cleaner!) than I envisioned Neryn.

Rating: 2.5 Hearts

Source: eARC received from publisher via Netgalley

Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon | Kindle | The Book Depository

Find the Author: Goodreads | Website | Facebook

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Review: A Temptation of Angels

Title: A Temptation of Angels
Author: Michelle Zink
Publisher: Dial Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: March 20, 2012


 Even angels make mistakes in this page-turning epic romance

When her parents are murdered before her eyes, sixteen-year-old Helen Cartwright finds herself launched into an underground London where a mysterious organization called the Dictata controls the balance of good and evil. Helen learns that she is one of three remaining angelic descendants charged with protecting the world's past, present, and future. Unbeknownst to her, she has been trained her whole life to accept this responsibility. Now, as she finds herself torn between the angelic brothers protecting her and the devastatingly handsome childhood friend who wants to destroy her, she must prepare to be brave, to be hunted, and above all to be strong, because temptation will be hard to resist, even for an angel.

Michelle Zink masterfully weaves historical fantasy with paranormal romance to create a gripping tale of love and betrayal.

My Thoughts:

This book was a bit disappointing for me, but I'm having trouble pinning down exactly why. I think most of my issues lie with the world building. I was so confused while reading it and I'm still confused now that I've finished it. What is a Keeper actually supposed to do? Just keep the world in order? How did they come about? I think this was mentioned briefly, but a lot of the book was spent with me trying to figure out what was going on and why. And for having angels in the title, I really didn't get an angel-y feeling. Or a temptation feeling for that matter.

 My other issue was with the characters.I never felt a real connection with Helen. I didn't dislike her, I just didn't like her either. She seemed at times to have this major drive to be useful, but I wasn't always buying it. And her connection with Raum drove me crazy. You can't fix a guy that broken! And Griffin, the love interest, was nice, but a little boring. I'm sure I'd love him if I met him in real life, but as a character, he was a bit flat for me. And the romance wasn't quite right either. It felt a bit like Helen thought "Oh, he's nice to me. I must be in love with him!" Darius and Raum had a bit more to offer as characters I felt.

The writing was well done, but the plot felt a bit slow for me. Like I read 400 pages of what could have been done in 250. I don't want to bash this book too hard though, because it wasn't terrible. It wasn't great, but it wasn't terrible. I think it just lacked the things that make me fall in love with a book.

On the Cover:

The cover is fairly eye-catching, but for me it's not that eye-catching or memorable.

Rating: 2.5 Hearts

Source: Won through a giveaway.

Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon | Kindle | The Book Depository

Find the Author: Goodreads | Webpage | Twitter

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Cover Reveal: Abandon

I'm excited to be sharing with you the cover reveal of Abandon, the third installment of the Possession series, put together by ATOMR tours.

I really love this cover. It's simple, but super eye-catching. I like the combination of nature and science and the slightly unsettling feeling it leaves.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Review: Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Title: Insurgent
Author: Veronica Roth
Release Date: May 1, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen


One choice can transform you--or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves--and herself--while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris's initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable--and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

"New York Times" bestselling author Veronica Roth's much-anticipated second book of the dystopian "Divergent" series is another intoxicating thrill ride of a story, rich with hallmark twists, heartbreaks, romance, and powerful insights about human nature.

My Thoughts:

Veronica Roth continues to wow me in this book. Starting where Divergent left off, we see things go from bad to worse in the world of Tris. Her actions at the end of Divergent set off a chain reaction, both in her world and in herself. I am so in love with the world that Veronica Roth has created! I'm sure I'm not the only one who has contemplated what faction I would choose. I'm torn between Amity and Erudite. Although both have their downside.

We get to learn more about the other factions in this installment, since Tris spends time in Amity, Erudite and Candor. You might be surprised to learn just how committed Amity is to keeping the peace! I really enjoyed learning more about the factions that didn't have a major role in Divergent.

Insurgent was a wild ride. There were a couple plot twists that really threw me. In fact, at one point I had to stop reading on the bus because I was so angry at one of the characters! And the ending was great! I can't wait for the next book!

There was a downside to the book that made me enjoy it slightly less than Divergent. Tris was a much harder character to like in this one. I'll cut her some slack because she's grieving, but she does a few things that make me want to yell at her. She lies quite a bit and I'm not always sure that it's necessary. Although perhaps it was. And then there is her at-times rocky relationship with Tobias. There are so many times I just wanted to say to them "Be nice to each other!" But that's probably why I lean toward Amity.

Overall, I loved Insurgent almost as much as Divergent. If you read and loved Divergent, you've got to read Insurgent. I promise you won't be disappointed!

Did I mention that Veronica was super nice to me when I got her autograph at the Smart Chicks Kick It tour stop in my city?

On the Cover:

I like the cover and how it follows in the theme of the Divergent cover.

Rating: 4.5 Hearts

Source: Bought from a bookseller.

Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

Find the Author: Goodreads | Twitter | Tumblr | Website

Don't Just Take My Word For It: Burning Impossibly Bright

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Pretty When She Kills Blog Tour - Interview

I'm super excited to be taking part in the Pretty When She Kills blog tour. Author Rhiannon Frater is awesome and one of my favourite authors I've discovered since starting Megan Likes Books! And today I get to share an interview with all of you!

How does Pretty When She Kills differ from Pretty When She Dies?

In the first book Amaliya is the center of the story and it’s primarily about her coming to terms with her new nature and how she deals with the constant threat of her creator, The Summoner.  PRETTY WHEN SHE DIES could actually be split into two parts. The first part is all about Amaliya on her own, struggling to survive, while the second part is about what happens when she arrives in Austin, Texas and encounters Cian, another vampire. The primary supporting cast enters the story at the halfway mark.
In the second book, some of the supporting cast takes a much bigger role in the story as it expands outward. The reader gets to see just how Amaliya’s presence in Austin has rippled out to affect the supernatural world. She is a rare creature: a necromancer vampire. Her mere existence has impacted a lot of lives and the very fabric of the supernatural realm. 
I really enjoyed bringing new characters into the mix and while moving Samantha into a stronger role in this sequel.

Which of your characters do you have the most in common with?

I really don’t base characters off of me, so they are their own people.  I really don’t have anything in common with them personality-wise per se. Jeff and I do share a love of books and Samantha’s Betsey Johnson purse fetish matches my own. Otherwise, nothing much really.

Describe Pretty When She Kills in 7 words.
Amaliya is not the only necromancer vampire.

Did you have to do any research for Pretty When She Kills? If so, on what and how much?

I live in Texas, so research is driving around my own city.  I had already established the rules of the world in the first book, so it was fun just moving the characters through it this time around.

If you won the lotto, what is the first thing you would buy?

A Tesla Roadster!  That car is a thing of beauty!

What three authors have most influenced your work?

Bram Stoker, Charlotte Bronte and Agatha Christie because they inspired me to find my own writing voice and embrace my imagination.

Finally, do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

Read a lot, write a lot. It’s the best advice ever given to me.  If a writer tells me they never read, I have no interest in reading their work. Reading the works of other authors is a way to learn the craft and hone your own writing voice. It’s a great way to learn what to do, and what not to do. And, of course, if you want to be a writer, you have to actually WRITE.  It’s amazing how many people tell me they want to be a published author, but actually never write.

Thanks so much to Rhiannon for taking the time to answer my questions.

Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon

Plus it's available as an ebook!

Pretty When She Dies: A Vampire Novel (Unabridged) - Rhiannon Frater

Find the Author: Blog | Goodreads | Twitter | Website | Facebook

But wait! There's more! There's also a tour-wide giveaway AND a ebook giveaway right here!
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Saturday, September 15, 2012

Dante's Girl Excerpt & Giveaway

Title: Dante’s Girl
Genre and Age Group: Young Adult
Author: Courtney Cole
Release date: July 2012
Links: Author |  Amazon | B&N
I have spent every summer since I was ten years old with my father in London.  Every summer, since I was ten years old, has been uneventful and boring. 
Until this year.

And this year, after a freak volcanic eruption strands me far from home, I have learned these things:

1.  I can make do with one outfit for three days before I buy new clothes. 

2.  If I hear the phrase, “You’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto,” even one more time, I might become a homicidal maniac.

3.  I am horribly and embarrassingly allergic to jellyfish.

4. I am in love with Dante Giliberti, who just happens to be the beautiful, sophisticated son of the Prime Minister of a Mediterranean paradise. 

5.  See number four above.  Because it brings with it a whole slew  of problems and I’ve learned something from every one of them.

Let’s start with the fact that Dante’s world is five light-years away from mine.  He goes to black-tie functions and knows the Prime Minister of England on a first name basis.  I was born and raised on a farm in Kansas and wear cut-off jeans paired with cowboy boots.  See the difference?

But hearts don’t care about differences.  Hearts want what they want.  And mine just wants to be Dante’s girl. 

My heart just might be crazy

Doesn't this one sound great!

I'm showcasing an excerpt from this one. Check it out!

There are rose bushes everywhere. And peonies, which are my favorites.  And lots of white marble statues of Greek gods.  And one of Napoleon.  Why in the world is this country so obsessed with Napoleon? 
I am just wondering if the small statue is life-sized when Dante interrupts any coherent thought process that I might have by striding across the lawns with a racquet in hand and wearing short-short tennis shorts. 
It’s like a slow-motion scene from a movie.  Dante shakes his blond bangs out of his eyes and the sun catches every glint of gold in his hair.  His legs are long, lean, tanned and muscled and HolyCowThereIsAGod.  If I were a man, I would totally be wolf-whistling right now.  But then again, if I were a man, I guess I wouldn’t be wolf-whistling at Dante. 
I’m such a weirdo.

How adorable does this sound?

Plus the author is giving away winner’s choice of (1) gifted copy (Kindle or Nook) of PRINCESS or SOUL KISSED. And if the winner is in the US or Canada, they'll also receive a signed 4x6 glossy of DANTE'S GIRL. How awesome is that!
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