Thursday, April 25, 2013

Written in the Stars by Jennifer Martinez - Blog Tour

Synopsis:

"You've got to kiss a few frogs before you find your Prince."

Believers of fate, destiny, whatever, say that there are many paths to your one final destination. No matter what choices you make you will always end up right where you are supposed to be. Well I guess I took the road less traveled because God knows I’m broken, bruised, and damaged. 
This is my story. It’s about all the wrong turns that led to the right destination. We were written in the stars from the very beginning and neither of us knew it. Love is something you can’t fight and can’t hide from no matter how bad you want to.This is my cosmic turn of love.




Excerpt:

Once we were safely in the privacy of what I would later find out was his room, we picked right back up where we left off. Our hands explored every inch of our sticky bodies while our tongues entwined tasting every bit of each other’s mouths. The salty taste of his skin was a far cry from the sweet pungent scent of the room. His fingers slowly made their way to my rib cage leaving trails of heat like scars on my skin. His grip tightened around my chest as he effortlessly lifted me off the ground. When my legs wrapped around his hips I heard a growl escape his throat only forcing me to hold on tighter. Our lips never parted as he lowered us onto his black and blood red sheets. I snaked my hands under his shirt, exploring his stomach and slowly taking his shirt off. I had never really gotten a good look at all his tattoos and I wanted to see every inch of his body. He placed his legs on either side of my hips and sat up slowly taking his shirt off as I kissed and licked all of his exposed skin. Tattoos weren't the only thing covering his body. His stomach and sides were riddled with old scars. I made it a point to kiss each and every one as I let my mouth do the exploring. I glanced up just as his head tilted back euphorically and took the opportunity to remove my own shirt. We were opposites in every way. He was covered in a past that left its mark and tattoos that expressed all his emotions while I was a blank canvas still learning what it meant to think for myself. For the briefest second I saw the hope in Kevin's eyes and then he was pressing his entire, hard body on top of mine. His teeth found a sweet spot on my neck right as my hands found their way to his ass. Every nip made me squeeze him a little harder and I was shocked to find out that I was actually enjoying the pain. 

I had enough of the teasing and decided it was time to lose our pants. I pushed him up just enough to unbutton his black jeans. His eyes lit up like a bonfire as he relinquished his position on top of me and rolled over onto his back. I trailed a path down his stomach with a mix of kisses, licks and nips. The farther down I moved the louder his moans and growls became. When my mouth finally caught up with my hands I used my teeth to slowly unzip the skinny jeans that were guarding my prize. The zipper finally stopped and my fingers wrapped around his waistband leaving little red trails where my nails scratched his porcelain skin. Every inch closer to the floor his pants got the tighter his grip on my hair became. By the time they were in their rightful place on the floor I could feel the throbbing sting on my entire scalp.
My eyes surveyed every inch of his naked body as my mouth watered for a taste of the solid, hard cock standing at attention like a flag on July fourth. I gave him one last kiss on the mouth before licking my lips and heading south to my prize. My tongue lightly grazed the head of his magnificent member, causing it to twitch before I moved onto his shaft. Once my tongue was done exploring I opened my mouth to take him all in. His heat in my mouth was intoxicating. The more I sucked the more excited I became. His moans of pleasure and constant hair pulling continued to spur me on. The harder he pulled and the louder he moaned the harder I sucked. I had one hand wrapped around the base of his cock while my mouth sucked, licked and glided across him. He finally lost control and pulled me off of him and onto my back. 

About Author Jennifer Martinez

One day while slaving away at her monotonous day job, Jennifer Martinez found her true calling. Like a firefly in the night, the pages called to her. Once she caught the bug there was no stopping it. Her fingers flew furiously across the keyboard winding tales of love, mystery and anger. She snapped out of her reverie to find herself still behind the desk but at least she knew who she was… Author Jennifer Martinez.

I like to think of myself as a beautiful conundrum. When I am not writing, I can be found surrounded by my amazing family and 4 dogs or volunteering at a local animal rescue. I love who I am and don’t mind at all when I get strange looks from people. I am a tattoo covered, child and animal lover who looks forward to destroying peoples preconceived notions of what “someone like me” would be interested in. You only live life once… you may as well make it interesting.

I love to get lost in a good book and hope that everyone will get lost in mine.

Stalk Jennifer Here


Written in the Stars will be available for purchase on April 30, 2012 on Amazon!

♥ My review of Written in the Star within the next few days! ♥


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Losing Me, Finding You by C.M. Stunich - Review

Synopsis:

Theme Song: “Burn it to the Ground” by Nickelback

Twenty-one year old Amy Cross's idea of a hot Saturday night is curling up with her favorite book boyfriend and secretly sneaking a bottle of her mother's wine. That is, until she meets Austin Sparks, the biker boy with a past that burns like fire and a gaze she can't look away from. Without knowing what she's doing or why she's doing it, Amy ends up on the road with Austin traveling from one city to another while learning things she's only ever read about in romance novels.

At first it seems like Austin is Amy's fantasy come true, but as their journey progresses, she starts to sense that Austin is running away from something. Amy knows that she'll do whatever it takes to help him find himself. What she doesn't expect is that she'll lose herself in the process and how good it will feel to be free.

This book is New Adult/Romance Erotica and intended for mature readers.  18+ only please!

My Review

Miss Caitlin, you have outdone yourself with this little nugget of awesome.  I think I read this book in about 5 hours.  Once I started I couldn't put it down.  No, I mean that.  If I went to the bathroom, so did my Kindle. While I cooked dinner, my Kindle was in the kitchen with me.  I could not tear myself away from Amy and Austin.

Oh, Austin.  Austin is something else.  First, the book cover is him, which I'm sure anyone could have guessed, but I mean that literally.  Down to those little tattoos just above his crotch.  And Little Miss Preacher's Daughter, I mean Amy, she's a fire cracker!  And seriously... so naughty!  I don't know how C.M. Stunich does it, but she seems to top herself with each book.  Now, I'm not saying that this book is better than all of her other books.  I cannot do that because all of her books are not the same genre.  I still say that the Never Say Never series are probably my favorite emotional books, with The Duet in a VERY close second.  But when it comes to naughty, Austin can give me riding lessons any day.  I'm just sayin'!

One of my favorite aspects of this book is Amy's inner turmoil.  On the outside she is prim and proper, going through the motions without even having to think about them; it's how she was brought up, she can't help it.  In her head she is constantly correcting herself.  It's not bum, Amy, it's ass.  ASS.  You're an adult and can say ass.  Now, that isn't a direct quote, but you get the idea.

It was so much fun watching her grow into her own person and not the person she was molded into by her parents.  And there was nothing more entertaining than when her and Austin were alone and she would bust out some moves she learned from the countless hours she spent reading trashy romance novels behind her parents backs.  Loved every minute of it and I want more!  As of right now, Losing Me, Finding You is a stand alone novel.  However, if you know C.M., then you know that could change at any time.  There is plenty of closure at the end of the story, but that doesn't mean the story is over!

Excerpt (Austin's POV!! - 18+ Please!)

Amy pushes through the doors in the back like she knows exactly where she's going, leading us into a room with four pool tables and not much else. Once she's inside, she spins to face me, her beautiful hair sticking to her lips as it flows around her face.

“How do I join?” she asks and it takes me a long, hot second to figure out what it is that she wants. I'm having a hard time thinking past the surges of excitement that are coursing through my body, begging me to grab the girl and throw her over the green felt, fuck her until these strange feelings inside of me are gone.

“I don't know what you mean, babe?” I ask as Amy steps close, too close, and her heat envelopes me, teasing me with the soft scent of flowers and sex. This girl is ready whether she knows it or not.

“Your gang – group – whatever. The people with the triple M's on the back of their jackets.” Ah. The girl wants to join my motorcycle club. I pause for a moment and rub my chin, trying to figure out what to say. She's not the first chick to ask, but she is the first to seem so serious about it, to look at me with eyes burning with fire and a voice quavering with need, like if I don't answer her, she'll shrivel up and die.

“Believe me, Amy, when I tell you that you don't want to be a part of this.”

“No,” she tells me, glancing up sharply. “I need to be.” And then she's stepping forward and running her hands up my chest, leaning forward on her toes so that the lace trim on the neckline of her top skims the fabric of my shirt, close but not close e-fucking-nough.

“Help me,” she whispers, voice dropping so low that the last word barely reaches my ears. Or maybe my pulse is pumping too loud in my Goddamn head to hear anything at all; I realize that the buzz and the clink of glasses from the bar has gone silent. Whoever this girl is, I don't care. All I know is that I need her, now, right here, fucking fast and friggin' furious. But then I remind myself that she's a virgin and a small town lady who doesn't know shit about shit, and I just can't do that to her, not unless she asks.


About C.M. Stunich

C.M. Stunich was raised under a cover of fog in the area known simply as Eureka, CA. A mysterious place, this strange, arboreal land nursed Caitlin's (yes, that's her name!) desire to write strange fiction novels about wicked monsters, magical trains, and Nemean Lions (Google it!). She currently enjoys drag queens, having too many cats, and tribal bellydance.

Always a fan of the indie scene and 'sticking it to the man,' Ms. Stunich decided to take the road less traveled and forgo the traditional publishing route. You can be assured though that she received several rejections as to ensure her proper place in the world of writers before taking up a friend's offer to start a publishing company. Sarian Royal was born, and Ms. Stunich's books slowly transformed from mere baking chocolate to full blown tortes with hand sculpted fondant flowers.

C.M. is a writer obsessed with delivering the very best and scours her mind on a regular basis to select the most unusual stories for the outside world.

Stalk C.M.

Buy Losing Me, Finding You on Amazon, today, for only $3.99!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Branded by Abi Ketner and Melissa Kalicicki Cover Reveal


Blurb

Twenty years ago the Commander came into power and murdered all who opposed him. In his warped mind, the seven deadly sins were the downfall of society. He created the Hole where sinners are branded according to their sins and might survive a few years. At best. 
Now LUST wraps around my neck like blue fingers strangling me. I’ve been accused of a crime I didn’t commit and now the Hole is my new home. 

Darkness. Death. Violence. Pain. 

Now every day is a fight for survival. But I won’t die. I won’t let them win.
The Hole can’t keep me. The Hole can’t break me. 
I am more than my brand. I’m a fighter. 
My name is Lexi Hamilton, and this is my story.


Chapter One Reveal!

     I’m buried six feet under, and no one hears my screams. 
     The rope chafes as I loop it around my neck. I pull down on it, making sure the knot is secure. It seems sturdy enough. 
     My legs shake. My heart beats heavy in my throat. Sweat pours down my back. 
     Death and I glare at each other through my tears.
     I take one last look at the crystal chandelier, the foyer outlined with mirrors, and the flawless decorations. No photographs adorn the walls. No happy memories here. 
     I’m ready to go. On the count of three.
     I inhale, preparing myself for the finality of it all. Dropping my hands, a glimmer catches my eye. It’s my ring, the last precious gift my father gave me. I twist it around to read the inscription. Picturing his face forces me to reconsider my choice. He’d be heartbroken if he could see me now.
     A door slams in the hallway, almost causing me to lose my balance. My thoughts already muddled, I stand, waiting with the rope around my neck. Voices I don’t recognize creep through the walls. 
     Curiosity overshadows my current thoughts. It’s late at night, and this is a secure building in High Society. No one disturbs the peace here—ever. I tug on the noose and pull it back over my head. 
     Peering through the eyehole in our doorway, I see a large group of armed guards banging on my neighbors’ door. A heated conversation ensues, and my neighbors point toward my family’s home. 
     It hits me. I’ve been accused and they’re here to arrest me. 
     My father would want me to run, and in that split second, I decide to listen to his voice within me. Flinging myself forward in fear, I scramble up the marble staircase and into my brother’s old bedroom. The door is partially covered, but it exists. Pushing his dresser aside, my fingers claw at the opening. Breathing hard, I lodge myself against it. Nothing. I step back and kick it with all my strength. The wood splinters open, and my foot gets caught. I wrench it backward, scraping my calf, but adrenaline pushes me forward. The voices at the front door shout my name. 
     On hands and knees, I squeeze through the jagged opening. My brother left through this passage, and now it’s my escape too. Cobwebs entangle my face, hands, and hair. At the end, I feel for the knob, twisting it clockwise. It swings open, creaking from disuse. I sprint into the hallway and smash through the large fire escape doors at the end. A burst of cool air strikes me in the face as I jump down the ladder.
     Reaching the fifth floor, I knock on a friend’s window. The lights flicker on, and I see the curtains move, but no one answers. I bang on the window harder.
     “Let me in! Please!” I say, but the lights darken. They know I’ve been accused and refuse to help me. Fear and adrenaline rush through my veins as I keep running, knocking on more windows along the way. No one has mercy. They all know what happens to sinners. 
     Another flight of stairs passes in a blur when I hear the guards’ heavy footfalls from above. I can’t hide, but I don’t want to go without trying. 
     Help me, Daddy. I need your strength now. 
     My previous desolation evolves into a will to survive. I have to keep running, but I tremble and gasp for air. I steel my nerves and force my body to keep moving. In a matter of minutes, my legs cramp and my chest burns. I plunge to the ground, scraping my knee and elbow. A moan escapes from my chest. 
Gotta keep going. 
     “Stop!” Their voices bounce off the buildings. “Lexi Hamilton, surrender yourself,” they command. They’re gaining on me. 
     I resist the urge to glance back, running into what I assume is an alley. I’m far from our high-rise in High Society as I plunge into a poorer section of the city where the streets all look the same and the darkness prevents me from recognizing anything. I’m lost. 
My first instinct is to leap into a dumpster, but I retain enough sense to stay still. I crouch and peek around it, watching them dash by. The abhorrent smell soon leaves me vomiting until nothing remains in my stomach. Desperation overtakes me, as I know my retching was anything but silent. My last few seconds tick away before they find me. Everyone knows about their special means of tracking sinners.
I push myself to my feet and look left, right, and left again. Their batons click against their black, leather belts, and their boots stomp the cement on both sides of me. I shrink into myself. Their heavy steps mock my fear, growing closer and closer until I know I’m trapped. 
     Never did I imagine they’d come for me. Never did I imagine all those nights I heard them dragging someone else away that I’d join them.
     “You’re a sinner,” they say. “Time to leave our society.” 
     I stand defiant. I refuse to bend or break before them even as I shiver with fear. 
     “There’s no reason to make this difficult. The more you cooperate, the smoother this will be for everyone,” a guard says. 
     I cringe into the blackness along the wall. I’m innocent, but they won’t believe me or care.
     The next instant, my face slams into the pavement as one guard plants a knee in my back and another handcuffs me. A warm liquid trails into my mouth. Blood. Their fingers grip my arms like steel traps as they peel me off the cement. The tops of my shoes scrape along the ground as I’m dragged behind them until they discard me into the back of a black vehicle. The doors slam in unison with one guard stationed on each side of me, my shoulders digging into their arms. The handcuffs dig into my wrists, so I clasp them together hard behind me and press my back into the seat, unwilling to admit how much it hurts. My dignity is all I have left.
     Swallowing hard, I stare ahead to avoid their eyes. 
     Did they need so many guards to capture me?
      I’m not carrying any weapons, nor do I own any. I don’t even know self-defense. High Society frowns on activities like that. 
     The driver jerks the vehicle around and I try to keep my bearings, but it’s dark and the scenery changes too fast. Hours pass and the air grows warmer, more humid, the farther we drive. The landscape mutates from city to rolling hills. They don’t bother blindfolding me because they escort all the sinners to the same place—the Hole. Twenty-foot cement walls encase the chaos within. There’s no way out and no way in unless they transport you. They say the Hole is a prison with no rules. We learned about it last year in twelfth grade. 
     To the outside, I’m filth now. I’ll never be allowed to return to the life I knew. No one ever does.
     “All sinners go through a transformation,” one of the guards says to me. His smirk infuriates me. “I’m sure you’ve heard all kinds of stories.” I don’t respond. I don’t want to think about the things I’ve been told. 
     “You won’t last too long, though. Young girls like you get eaten alive.” He pulls a strand of my hair up to his face.
     Get your hands off me, you pig. I want to lash out, but resist. The punishment for disobeying authority is severe, and I’m not positioned to defy him.
     They’re the Guards of the Commander. They’re chosen from a young age and trained in combat. They keep the order of society by using violent methods of intimidation. No one befriends a guard. Relationships with them are forbidden inside the Hole. 
     Few have seen the commander. His identity stays under lock and key. His own paranoia and desire to stay pure drove him to live this way. He controls our depraved society and believes sinners make the human race unforgivable. His power is a crushing fist, rendering all beneath him helpless. So much so, even family members turn on each other when an accusation surfaces. Just an accusation. No trial, no evidence, nothing but an accusation. 
     I lose myself in thoughts of my father. 
     “Never show fear, Lexi,” my father said to me before he was taken. “They’ll use it against you.” His compassionate eyes filled with warning as he commanded me to be strong. That was many years ago, but I remember it clearly. My father. My rock. The one person in my life who provided unconditional love. 
     The vehicle stops, and I’m jerked back to reality. “Get out,” the guard orders while pulling me to my feet. The doors slide open and the two guards lift me up and out into the night. A windowless cement building looms in front of us, looking barren in the darkness. 
     The coolness of the air sends a shiver up my spine. This is really happening. I’ve been labeled a sinner. My lip starts to quiver, but I bite it before anyone sees. They shove me in line and I realize I’m not alone. Women and men stand with faces frozen white in fear. A guard grabs my finger, pricks it, and dabs my blood on a tiny microchip. 
     I follow the man in front of me into the next room where we’re lined up facing the wall. Glancing right, I see one of the men crying. 
     “Spread your legs,” one of the guards says.
     They remove my outer layers and their hands roam up and down my body. 
     What do they think I could possibly be hiding? I press my head into the wall, trying to block out what they’re doing to me. 
     “MOVE!” a guard commands. So I shuffle across the room, trying to cover up.
     One.
     Two.
     Three.
     Four.
     Five of us sit in the holding room. One by one, they pull people into the next room, forcing the rest of us to wonder what torture we’ll endure. An agonizing amount of time passes. I lean my head back and try to imagine a place far away. The door opens.
     “Lexi Hamilton.” 
     A guard escorts me out of the room, and I don’t have time to look back. As soon as the door closes, they pick me up and place me on a table. It’s cold and my skin sticks to it slightly, like wet fingers on an ice cube. Then, they exit in procession, and I lie on the table with a doctor standing over me. His hands are busy as he speaks.
     “Don’t move. This will only take a few minutes. It’s time for you to be branded.” 
     A wet cloth that smells like rubbing alcohol is used to clean my skin. Then he places a metal collar around my neck.
     Click. Click. Click. 
     The collar locks into place, and I struggle to breathe. The doctor loosens it some as I focus on the painted black words above me. 
The Seven Deadly Sins:
Lust ¾ Blue
Gluttony ¾ Orange
Greed ¾ Yellow
Sloth ¾ Light Blue
Wrath ¾ Red
Envy ¾ Green
Pride ¾ Purple
     “Memorize it. Might keep you alive longer if you know who to stay away from.” He opens my mouth, placing a bit inside. “Bite this.” 
     Within seconds, the collar heats from hot to scorching. The smell of flesh sizzling makes my head spin. I bite down so hard a tooth cracks. 
     “GRRRRRRRRR,” escapes from deep within my chest. Just when I’m about to pass out, the temperature drops, and the doctor loosens the collar. 
     He removes it and sits me up. Excruciating pain rips through me and I’m on the verge of a mental and physical breakdown. Focus. Don’t pass out. 
     Stainless steel counters and boring white walls press in on me. A guard laughs at me from an observation room above and yells, “Blue. It’s a great color for a pretty young thing like yourself.” His eyes dance with suggestion. The others meander around like it’s business as usual. 
I finally find my voice and turn to the doctor.
     “Are you going to give me clothes?” A burning pain spreads like fire from my neck to my jaw, making me wince. 
     He points to a set of folded grey scrubs on a chair. I cover myself as much as I can and scurry sideways. Grabbing my new clothes, I pull the shirt over my head and try to avoid the raw meat around my throat. I quickly knot the cord of my pants around my waist and slide my feet into the hospital-issue slippers as the doctor observes. He hands me a bag labeled with my name. 
     “Nothing is allowed through the door but what we’ve given you,” he says.
      I hide my right hand behind me, hoping no one notices. A guard scans my body and opens his hand. 
      “Give it to me,” he says. “Don’t make me rip off your finger.” He crouches down and I turn to stone. I don’t know what to do, so I beg.
      “My father gave this to me. Please, let me keep it.” I smash my eyes shut and think of the moment my father handed the golden ring to me. 
     “It was my mother’s ring,” he’d said. “She’s the strongest woman I ever knew.” With tears in his eyes, he reached for my hand. “Lexi, you’re exactly like her. She’d want you to wear this. No matter how this world changes, you can survive.” I turned the gold band over in my palm and read the engraving.
     You can overcome anything… short of death.
      “You’re going to take the one thing that matters the most to me?” I say, glaring into the guard’s emotionless eyes. “Isn’t it enough taking my life, dignity, and respect?” 
     A hard blow falls upon my back. As I fall, my hands shoot out to stop me from smashing into the wall in front of me. The guard bends down and grabs my chin with his meaty fist.
     “Look at me,” he commands. I look up and he smiles with arrogance. 
     “What the hell?” He staggers a step backward. “What’s wrong with you? What’s wrong with your eyes?” 
      “Nothing,” I respond, confused.
     “What color are they?”
     “Turquoise.” I glower at him.
     “Interesting,” he says, regaining his composure. “Now those’ll get you in trouble.” 
Reality slaps me across the face. I have my father’s eyes. They can't take them from me. I twist the ring off my finger and drop it in his hand. 
     “Take the damn ring,” I say. I walk to the door. He swipes a card and the massive door slides open to the outside. 
     “You have to wear your hair back at all times, so everyone knows what you are.” He hands me a tie, so I pull my frizzy hair away from my face and secure it into a ponytail. My neck burns and itches as my hand traces the scabs that have already begun to form. Squinting ahead into the darkness, I almost run into a guard standing on the sidewalk. 
      “Watch where you’re going,” he says, shoving me backward. His stiff figure stands tall and I cringe at the sharpness of his voice.
     “Cole, this is your new assignment, Lexi Hamilton. See to it she feels welcome in her new home.” The guard departs with a salute. 
     “Let’s move,” Cole says. 
     I take two steps and collapse, my knees giving out. The unforgiving pavement reopens the scrapes from earlier and I struggle to stand. A powerful arm snatches me up, and I see his face for the first time.

About Abi and Melissa

Abi Ketner Is a registered nurse with a passion for novels, the beaches of St. John, and her Philadelphia Phillies. A talented singer, Abi loves to go running and spend lots of time with her family. She currently resides in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with her husband, triplet daughters and two very spoiled dogs.

Melissa Kalicicki received her bachelor’s degree from Millersville University in 2003. She married, had two boys and currently lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Aside from reading and writing, her interests include running and mixed martial arts. She also remains an avid Cleveland sports fan. 

Abi and Missy met in the summer of 1999 at college orientation and have been best friends ever since. After college, they added jobs, husbands and kids to their lives, but they still found time for their friendship. Instead of hanging out on weekends, they went to dinner once a month and reviewed books. What started out as an enjoyable hobby has now become an incredible adventure.

Stalk Abi and Melissa



Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Wombstone by Jessica Roscoe Blog Tour

Blurb

Mia Blake wasn’t the first girl to be taken by the vampires. She is kidnapped and held prisoner by Caleb, the world’s oldest and most powerful vampire. Turned against her will, Mia must find a way to free herself from Caleb’s grip and get back to those she loves. But defeating the world’s most powerful vampire isn't going to be easy…

My Review

I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I joined this blog tour and agreed to do a review on the book.  I'm not even really sure how to begin.  I have to say that this may be one of my top 5 books that I've ever read.  Thankfully, when the book starts the main character, Mia, lets you know that this is no fairy tale - and it definitely is not.  This book doesn't have a happy ending, and it leaves you with quite a cliff hanger; and your jaw resting on the floor.  This isn't your typical Mature YA vampire story full of hearts and flowers and true love with a happily ever after.  This story is dark and at times made me jumpy.  This is a story about vampires the way they should be - the kinds that makes you look over your shoulder anytime you're out after dark.


The author did an amazing job making you feel what Mia feels once she is captive.  That's right, she is kidnapped and held captive.  She has no changes of clothes, she is roomed with a girl that asks daily to be killed because she just doesn't want to do it anymore.  They have a bathroom that is filthy with no faucet on the sink or tub, and are only given the faucet to put on when their kidnappers decide they want them to not stink anymore.  It is very heartbreaking reading the first half of the book.  I really don't know how to explain the emotions I felt while reading it.

I will say that she manages to escape, in a way, but I'm not going to divulge exactly how that happens.  You really just need to read the book, because the second half is what she goes through after she breaks free.  Seriously, this book is... I want to say amazing, but feel that it is wrong because of the situation in the story.  But it really is simply amazing.

Excerpt

Once upon a time, I was just a girl. My name was Mia. I lived a long way away from here. I had a mother and a best friend and a boyfriend I was pretty sure I had fallen completely in love with. I lived most of the time in my dorm room at my high school, because despite any other excuse, I didn’t like to be alone. 

I wasn’t the first girl that was taken.

Sure, I had heard all about the girls who were missing, and even though they were only ‘missing’ I knew in my heart that those girls were dead. And my heart scrunched up in agony for them, for their families, just for a moment. Until the thought was replaced by something else, something different, because I couldn't bear to think about those poor dead girls any longer.

I felt sad for them. But more than that, I felt glad that they had been strangers – not someone I knew, and certainly not me. Things like that didn’t happen to girls like me. 

They always happened to someone else, and that’s why I barely blinked as I made my way across an empty football field, through a snow–laden parking lot, to meet a fate I had arrogantly assumed was reserved for other people.

I was a stupid girl.

I paid for it.

About Jessica Roscoe

Jessica Roscoe is the author of Wombstone, a Young Adult paranormal novel. From a young age, she delighted in the written word and would often scare her poor parents with outlandish stories filled with the supernatural and macabre.

Jessica studied film and screenwriting at university before deciding that novels were her calling. The setting for Wombstone was inspired by a six-month stint in the U.S. where she worked as a lifeguard at a summer camp in Mt Freedom, New Jersey. She is currently working on the next book in the Vampireland series. Her other loves in life include good quality tea, delicious wine, reading and hanging out with her husband and baby girl.

Stalk Jessica

Buy Wombstone on Amazon!

Paint Me Beautiful by C.M. Stunich Blog Tour

Blurb:


“I'm dying to be beautiful.”

My story isn't unique. You've heard it before. I'm just a girl who doesn't eat as much as she should. See, I have goals, big ones, and nobody is going to stop me, not even a boy named Emmett. He has good intentions and he's hot as hell, but he doesn't understand what it's like to want something so bad that you'll do anything for it. I'm going to become a model, even if it kills me. Dream big or go home, that's what they always say, right?


Paint Me Beautiful, a New Adult/Contemporary Romance Novel Recommended for Ages 18 and Up.



My Review

This is another great, wonderful, amazing book by C.M. Stunich.  I cannot even imagine living every day in the mind of someone like Claire Simone.  She constantly repeats her mantra, "Skinny is beautiful. Skinny is pretty. Skinny is perfect."  She hides food in water bottles, throws food away, or throws up what she eats later, all in the name of beauty - and to hide it from her family.  She knows it's unsafe, but in her mind it is working hard to meet her goals.

I cannot wait to read the next book, due out later this month (yay!) to see what happens.  The ending of this book left me completely heart broken and in tears - you have been warned.

Even though this book is recommended for ages 18 and up, I would recommend that this book be given to anyone that you think may be suffering with an eating disorder.  Reading the book from Claire's point of view may help them to get to a place they need to be to ask for help.


Resources for those who need/want help


If you are considering suicide, please talk to someone about it!


"If you can't love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else?"
~ RuPaul Charles

Excerpt

“Emmett,” I moan as he gives into temptation and seeks my lips again. We both keep our eyes open and half-lidded, watching, looking, absorbing. Ah, Emmett Sinclair with the ardent eyes and the red-hot lips, roasting, scalding, scorching me, leaving a trail of fire in his wake. I am lost to him in that dark bedroom, buried beneath his passion and his conviction that he will save me, whatever the cost. I'm willing to die for my dreams. Well, so is he. Emmett Sinclair wants to rescue me from myself, and he'll stop at nothing to make sure that he does.

I touch his wet hair; he touches mine. We exchange wordless words with nipping lips and touch and feel and caress. Emmett sees places on me that nobody else gets to see, touches parts of me that I find putrid, and he looks happy about it, thrilled. His hard body doesn't lie as it slips in and out of me, and the expression on his face tells me that whatever it is that I see wrong in myself, he doesn't see it.

I am broken in my own eyes.

I am sick in my family's.

I am not good enough in the fashion world's.

In Emmett's, I am whole.

I kiss him again and this time, I don't let him go until I fall into pleasure; I don't even let him breathe. I keep my arm wrapped around his neck and I absorb all of the good in him, pray that it rubs off on me, that once this fast is over, once I've got this contract, that I'll be happy, relaxed, pleased to just be, to just exist.

I come in Emmett's arms and then lie quiet and panting while he finds his, just enjoying the feeling of him inside of me. When he finally collapses next to me, he pulls me against him and cradles my head under his chin. Neither of us speaks for a long, long while.


***This is one of the intimate scenes in the book, and the others are pretty similar.  They are not too graphic, but I would recommend reading the book yourself before deciding if you want your daughter to read it.***


About the Author

C.M. Stunich was raised under a cover of fog in the area known simply as Eureka, CA. A mysterious place, this strange, arboreal land nursed Caitlin's (yes, that's her name!) desire to write strange fiction novels about wicked monsters, magical trains, and Nemean Lions (Google it!). She currently enjoys drag queens, having too many cats, and tribal bellydance.

Always a fan of the indie scene and 'sticking it to the man,' Ms. Stunich decided to take the road less traveled and forgo the traditional publishing route. You can be assured though that she received several rejections as to ensure her proper place in the world of writers before taking up a friend's offer to start a publishing company. Sarian Royal was born, and Ms. Stunich's books slowly transformed from mere baking chocolate to full blown tortes with hand sculpted fondant flowers.

C.M. is a writer obsessed with delivering the very best and scours her mind on a regular basis to select the most unusual stories for the outside world.

Ms. Stunich can be reached via e-mail or by post and loves to hear from her readers. Ms. Stunich also wrote this biography and has no idea why she decided to refer to herself in the third person.

Happy reading and carpe diem!

Stalk C.M.


Buy Paint Me Beautiful on Amazon!



Sunday, April 14, 2013

Interview with Brae Wyckoff, author of The Orb of Truth

Blurb


In the hundreds of years since the Holy City disappeared, darkness has fallen over the land. Human kingdoms have seized control of the realm, scattering the other races into hiding.

Bridazak, a skilled thief, and his friends a dwarf and a fellow ordakian, have dared to remain within the human communities and live relatively quiet lives, until they discover a mysterious, magical artifact. The three friends are thrust into an adventure that will challenge their faith, their purpose, and their destiny as they chase a forgotten and lost prophecy across the realm of Ruauck-El, where they hope to discover the origins of the strange item and their place in its history.

An ancient, unknown enemy threatens the completion of their journey at every turn. Bridazak is about to face the biggest adventure of his life, one that may change the known realm, and answer the questions he has carried all his life. Will they unlock the truth?

My Review

While fantasy isn't usually my preferred genre, I have to admit that I'm really glad I got the opportunity to read this book!  It was really enjoyable and most times I had a hard time putting it down when it was time to re-enter the real world again.  I have only read a few books in this genre and I would say that this one is probably the top of that list.

While some things confused me (I'm chalking it up to not having a good base knowledge of the sci-fi/fantasy world - I don't think watching the Labyrinth numerous times throughout my life counts), it was still easy for me to follow the story and mostly understand what was going on.  I enjoyed learning about the different characters and the descriptions of the land were wonderful.

I would recommend this book to anyone, even if it isn't their cup of tea - after all, it wasn't my cup of tea either, and I quite liked it!

Interview with Brae

Beckstar Reviews:  How many books, as of right now, will there be in this series?

Brae Wyckoff:  All I can say is that I have many planned. It won’t be just three or four. Once I get a gauge from the fans on which characters they want to read about more then I will gravitate the stories toward them. 

BR:  What were you doing when you got the idea to write this story?

BW: I grew up playing Dungeons and Dragons and my first character was Bridazak. That is where it all began and when I first met this Ordakian (Halfling). Bridazak and I have been stuck at the hip ever since and it has been a long journey of over twenty years getting our story written. 
It was a little over two years ago that I lost my job suddenly. I worked in corporate America in management and that was the turning point to go full-time writing. I have not looked back.

BR:  What do you do when you experience “writer’s block?”  What gets the creativity flowing?

BW:  For me, I tap into music. There is something about the lyrics and the rhythm that I flow with when writing. Even now, Adele is playing in the background as I go through this interview.
In the last twenty years I could only finish half the story of The Orb of Truth which was quite frustrating. The month leading up to my sudden lay-off, I had a divine encounter. I asked God to help me finish The Orb and I felt a strong impression that “It was TIME”. I felt that I heard Him say it will happen in 2011. January 10th, 2011, I lost my job. God didn’t tell me about that part…LOL. We wrote the book in six-months.

BR: I have to say that I am a huge Adele fan and can completely understand how she can be inspiration, along with many different artists.  What is your favorite movie and why?

BW:  Star Wars: Empire Strikes Back (original) is my favorite movie. My nickname is Jedibrae. I have been an avid Star Wars fan since I was six years old when my dad took me to see SW in the theater. It was the second movie that took it home for me. The emotional turmoil for the heroes struggling against the massive Empire and the epic conclusion of Han Solo frozen in carbonite and Luke finding out that Darth Vader was his dad. WOW…I was nine at the time and this impacted me greatly.
Some people ask me,“Why don’t you write Sci-Fi then?” My answer to this is, I will, eventually.

BR:  Have you ever been to a Turkish prison?

BW: In Turkey, there is a place called, Khaliim, which when translated says, “The Walking Dead”. To answer your question, no, I have not been to this place because it doesn't exist. I just made it up.

BR:  What is your favorite Jelly Bean flavor?

BW:  Pina Colada 

BR:  Yum!  I'm a huge fan of that flavor as well.  Although, I prefer Strawberry Daiquiri or Buttered Popcorn.  If you woke up as an animal tomorrow, what would you be and why?

BW:  I overlook the valley in Vista, CA and in the distance I can see the Camp Pendleton Mountains. Hawks soar overhead and perch some twenty feet away from my house overlooking the area in search of their next meal.
I have envisioned myself being that soaring hawk or eagle. I want to soar over the land and feel the freedom of flying.

BR:  That has always been one of my dreams.  In fact, I frequently dream about flying over many different places.  It would be exhilarating!  If you could switch lives with one person, dead or alive, for one day, who would it be?  Why?

BW:  The Apostle John. I mean this guy walked with Jesus and then saw the Kingdom of God and tried to write what he saw in the book of Revelation. I want to take a peek inside that mind.

BR:  I have to admit that my husband has asked me this question before, and I answered very similar to you.  I don't really care which person I am for that one day, I just want to go back and see some kind of proof of it all.  I grew up in a Christian home, and while I don't believe 100% of what is said in the Bible, I still have hope that someone as amazing as that did exist.  It would definitely restore a lot of my faith in humanity. You know what I mean?  

Now, your final mission, should you choose to accept it – you are terminally ill and have only three months to live.  Where would you spend your final days?

BW: Of course, with my family. I would be surrounded by intense prayer warriors. I see the miraculous happening daily around the world so being terminally ill is not something where I would live in fear.  Two reasons.
1. People are being healed through prayer daily (Stage 4 cancer, death, terminally ill diseases) and it is doctor verified. (I report on these miracles on Facebook. It is called The Greater News)
2. We are ALL terminally ill in life. Each day we move closer to our final breath in this world, but those who know their final destination do not live in fear but instead look forward to our next adventure. 

When you read my books, you will experience my faith woven throughout but in a way that will not overstep or make you feel uncomfortable. I write to entertain and you will get a great ride when reading The Orb of Truth. My second of the series will be coming out later this year, called The Dragon God, and it will be even better than the first. 

Come join the adventure and fall in love with the many characters. You won’t be disappointed.


About Brae Wyckoff

Brae Wyckoff was born and raised in San Diego, CA and is working toward a Psychology degree. He has been married to his beautiful wife, Jill, for 20 years, and they have three children; Tommy, Michelle, and Brittany. He has a beautiful grandson named Avery.
Brae has been an avid gamer since 1985. His passion for mysterious realms and the supernatural inspired him to write The Orb of Truth, the first in a series of fantasy action adventures. Brae describes The Orb of Truth as a cross between the Lord of the Rings and the Wizard of OZ where you will be swept away into a magical land of Dwarves, Elves, and Halflings.

Stalk Brae

Buy The Orb of Truth on Amazon!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Silenced: The Overtaking by Raebeth McGee-Buda - Cover Reveal



Blurb - To be revealed on April 27th!

Stalk Raebeth McGee-Buda to find out more about the second installment in the Silenced series!



Check out my review of Silenced, book one in the series!


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Exit Strategy by L. F. Falconer Book Tour

Blurb


It's Less Than 3000 Miles To Hell.

Jonas Dumar has a problem. Having little faith that his lawyer can get him acquitted of the murder charge he faces in Massachusetts, Jonas takes to the sea under an assumed identity to seek asylum with a past college chum who now lives in the Shetland Islands. 

Hoping to ease the loneliness of the voyage, at a quick stop in Newfoundland, he takes on board, Gabe and Izzy, a young couple trying to work their way back to Spain. Only when he's back out on the open sea does Jonas begin to suspect his passengers are not what they appear to be. But then again, neither is Jonas Dumar. So begins a nightmarish voyage across the North Atlantic. 

After a failed attempt to abandon Gabe and Izzy in Greenland, Jonas awakes one morning to find himself sailing alone with nothing but a haunting dream and a resurrected childhood friend. Gabe and Izzy have vanished without a trace. But then they come back. 

Delving into the mind of a man in possession of too many secrets, Exit Strategy is a wild excursion into a realm of the fantastic, as Jonas Dumar comes to realize that some secrets are better left unknown. A man really can learn more about himself than he ever wants to know.

My Review

I wasn't sure how much I was going to like this book.  When I started reading it seemed to drag on a little bit, until I realized it was just how the main character thought. It was sort of easy to guess early on what the big plot twist was going to be, which is fine because I do that with most books.  However, there was a bit more to it in the end, which did surprise me.

The only real problem I had with the book was the paranormal aspect of it.  I just didn't see the need for it.  I mean, **SPOILER ALERT** the guy was a nut case with multiple identities, two of which he didn't even know about.  So why add that little "twist" at the end of the story.  It kind of made it a bit too much for the conclusion.  The story could have ended exactly like it did without that small aspect of it.  Very few things would have needed to be changed, if any at all.  I mean, Jonas was crazy, and could have seen any of those things thinking they were real.

One of my favorite things about this book what Jonas' thought process.  Leana really did an amazing job creating the inner workings of someone who is mentally ill.  I loved the random "if a train leaves boston..." bits, and his random commentary on his own thoughts actually had me laughing quite a few times throughout the whole book.

I did enjoy reading the book, and I did enjoy the twist at the end with the forth identity (sans the paranormal aspect).   I would recommend this book to anyone that likes a good mystery.

Excerpt

Like a silent nightrider in Toyota blue, the Camry floats south down the black ribbon of road, aiding and abetting the fugitive within.  I pop in an Aerosmith CD to help keep me awake.  Traffic is light and I up my speed a little.  Sam is curled up on the front seat beside me, content to sleep now after his initial thrill of going for a ride dissipated.  Sam is the only dog I’ve ever owned.  I was never allowed to have one as a boy.  My mother didn’t like them.  “They’re filthy, destructive, dangerous creatures.”  (Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.)  She did allow me to have a goldfish once, though.

He had a small black spot right below his mouth, so I’d named the goldfish Blackbeard, scourge of the high seas, and I’d watch him drift round and round and round in his little round bowl with nowhere to go.  When he’d get feeling really adventurous, he’d dart through the ceramic arch anchored into the gravel at the bottom.  I’d paid close attention to the directions given me by Mr. Nojima at the pet shop.  “Feed him only once a day, just a shake or two, or he might die from overeating.  Clean the fishbowl thoroughly once every week.” And I would carefully give him just a shake or two of food every morning, and I’d diligently bring a fresh bowl of water to room temperature once a week so I could deposit Blackbeard into it and scour the fishbowl clean.  Then I’d refill the fishbowl and allow the water to return to room temperature before Blackbeard could return to his sea kingdom.  “You don’t want to shock the fish with a sudden change in temperature.  It might kill it.”  So careful I was to provide my pet the proper care. 

Three weeks after I brought him home, I woke up to find Blackbeard floating belly up in his bowl.  I poked at him, trying to nudge him to wakefulness, but the terrible truth I had to face was that Blackbeard was dead.  “I knew you’d just kill it,” my mother said before she flushed him down the toilet while I said a silent prayer for my beloved pet on his way to eternal rest in the sewers.  “He’s not getting a dog,” she told my dad the following week.  “He’s not responsible enough.  He couldn’t even take care of a lousy goldfish.”

For years I lived with the guilt of knowing I had killed my pet out of irresponsible neglect.  My mother never let me believe otherwise.  My father was too oblivious to care.

About L.F. Falconer


Nevada native, L.F. Falconer, has possessed a love of writing since she learned to read in first grade.  Over the past 40 years, she's been published sporadically in various Northern Nevada newspapers and college publications.  Having tramped about the western United States with her first husband, she is now remarried and lives back in the neighborhood she grew up in, employed at NAS Fallon, home of the US Navy's Topgun School, doing her small part in training fighter pilots.



Learn more about Leana at these links -

Buy Exit Strategy on Amazon and Outskirts Press

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Wicked Cravings by Suzanne Wright Blog Tour

Blurb

Despite having been besotted with Dante Garcea since she was a child, wolf shifter Jaime Farrow figures that it’s time to move past the crush. If he wanted her, he wouldn’t have ignored her flirtatious behavior, right? Hiding her intense attraction to him isn’t easy – especially now that they're part of the same pack again – but with bigger issues to worry about and with the submissive wolf act to maintain, Jaime is resolute on moving forward. Now if only the workaholic control-freak would let her…

As the pack Beta, Dante doesn't have the space or time in his life for a relationship. As such, he ignores his intense hunger for the willful – and sometimes crazy – Jaime. Yet when her flirtations abruptly end, Dante finds that he doesn’t like losing her attention. He finds something else too – Jaime's hiding something. Determined to uncover her secret, he sets out to break through her defenses, even though being around her intensifies his cravings for her. What he finds is a problem that Jaime is convinced not even a powerful Beta can solve.


About Suzanne Wright

I don't remember a time when I wasn't writing something, whether it was stories, poems, or even songs - though I can't carry a tune. I only have one rule when I'm writing a book which is that it has to have a happy ending. Other than that, pretty much anything goes. I write stories that I would enjoy reading and then I just hope that others will enjoy them too.

I was born and raised in England where I live with my husband (a person who doesn't judge me for hearing voices in my head - how often do you come across people like that?), my two demanding children, and my eight year old American Bulldog who still thinks he's a puppy.


Stalk Suzanne Here -


Buy Wicked Cravings on Amazon or Barnes & Noble April 16, 2013!



On to the Giveaway!







Losing Me, Finding You by C.M. Stunich Cover Reveal

How sexy is that?!

Synopsis:

Theme Song: “Burn it to the Ground” by Nickelback

Twenty-one year old Amy Cross's idea of a hot Saturday night is curling up with her favorite book boyfriend and secretly sneaking a bottle of her mother's wine. That is, until she meets Austin Sparks, the biker boy with a past that burns like fire and a gaze she can't look away from. Without knowing what she's doing or why she's doing it, Amy ends up on the road with Austin traveling from one city to another while learning things she's only ever read about in romance novels.

At first it seems like Austin is Amy's fantasy come true, but as their journey progresses, she starts to sense that Austin is running away from something. Amy knows that she'll do whatever it takes to help him find himself. What she doesn't expect is that she'll lose herself in the process and how good it will feel to be free.

***

C.M. Stunich was raised under a cover of fog in the area known simply as Eureka, CA. A mysterious place, this strange, arboreal land nursed Caitlin's (yes, that's her name!) desire to write strange fiction novels about wicked monsters, magical trains, and Nemean Lions (Google it!). She currently enjoys drag queens, having too many cats, and tribal bellydance.

Always a fan of the indie scene and 'sticking it to the man,' Ms. Stunich decided to take the road less traveled and forgo the traditional publishing route. You can be assured though that she received several rejections as to ensure her proper place in the world of writers before taking up a friend's offer to start a publishing company. Sarian Royal was born, and Ms. Stunich's books slowly transformed from mere baking chocolate to full blown tortes with hand sculpted fondant flowers.

C.M. is a writer obsessed with delivering the very best and scours her mind on a regular basis to select the most unusual stories for the outside world.

Stalk Caitlin

Join the Facebook Party!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Fade to Silver by Catherine Converse

Blurb:

Adie is forced into new territory when her dream overlaps with a complete stranger in a different part of the country, while Dannika escapes from Research, not accepting the new assets in her brain that will change the way she works forever. Despite their separation, their lives merge once again to solve a major corporate conspiracy case, where one man has already lost his life, and Adie has set interference in motion on the next victim in line. But the corporation holds something that is so special, they aren’t the only ones that are willing to kill for it.

With two young men battling for her affection, Adie struggles to keep focus on the case. Once again, Adie and Dannika become the targets, as they become identified as obstacles for those who are after the corporation’s unique discovery. Until it becomes clear that only one person has the power to stop the chain reaction that has begun. And only one question will reveal that person. Who holds the key?


My Review

I have to say, I think I enjoyed this installment to the In Between Series even better than the first book.  There were a lot of questions from book one answered - but that doesn't mean that even more questions arose in this book.  Plus, it pretty much starts right where we left off.

There is a wonderful surprise at the end of The In Between where a potential love interest of Adie's ends up working with the same government agency with her.  Not that we didn't see it coming - there were plenty of clues hinting to it in the book.  But I have to admit, this was one "love triangle" that didn't irritate me.  It was hard at times to decide who I wanted Adie to end up with.  I am happy with the result of that... for now.

I loved that we got to see a lot more of Dannika in this book.  It was wonderful to see how she acted before working for the agency (I'm not going to explain this bit because it will really give away too much of the plot), and find it very intriguing how she ended up getting her memory back.  I'm very curious to see how the issues with Dannika plays out in the series.

For information about the Author, please check out my review of The In Between.
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