Blog Tour/Review: Rook by JC Andrijeski

Title: Rook (Brodge & Sword: Awakenings #1)
Author: J.C. Andrijeski
Publication date: April 22nd 2017
Genres: Adult, Post-Apocalyptic, Romance, Science Fiction

From USA TODAY bestselling author, a psychic warfare alternative history set in a gritty version of Earth. Contains strong romantic elements – a book in the Bridge & Sword World. Apocalyptic. Psychic Romance.

“You are the Bridge…”

Allie Taylor lives in a world populated by seers, a second race discovered on Earth at the beginning of the 20th Century. Psychic, hyper-sexual and enslaved by governments, corporations and wealthy humans, seers are an exotic fascination to Allie, but one she knows she’ll likely never encounter, given how rich you have to be to get near one.

Then a strange man shows up at her work –– then another –– and pretty soon Allie finds herself on the run from the law, labeled a terrorist and in the middle of a race war she didn’t even know existed. Yanked out of her life by the mysterious and uncommunicative Revik, Allie discovers her blood may not be as “human” as she always thought, and the world of seers might not be quite as distant as she always imagined.

When Revik tells her she’s the Bridge, a mystical being meant to usher in the evolution of humanity––or possibly its extinction––Allie must choose between the race that raised her and the one where she might truly belong.

Goodreads / Amazon

My Thoughts

I received this book from Xpresso Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect with this story. It definitely sounded intriguing from the summary, though as I’ve been trying to push myself out of my typical reading wheelhouse, this fell into the category of something I’d maybe reach for. Science Fiction has always intrigued me.

Allie is an interesting character. With the struggling artist vibe and a bit of mystery, we’re thrown into her life right away. Her best friend, Cass, and her brother, Jon, are introduced right away and we’re sort of thrust in without too much description. The dialogue provides enough back story to get an idea of what the world is like from the beginning so we can jump into the action pretty quickly.

While I enjoyed this story, I wanted to know more. Being put right in the story meant we didn’t have as much to go on in terms of backstory. At times, the dialogue felt forced, as well. 

Overall, this was definitely an interesting story with some great direction. It’s great for someone who enjoys the post-apocalyptic, science fiction style. I don’t think I would read more in this series, but that shouldn’t keep another reader who is intrigued from reading. There’s a lot of thought-provoking plot in this story, and the characters are diverse and dynamic.

The Final Countdown

Characterization – 3/5 Stars
Dialogue– 3/5 Stars
Plot – 4/5 Stars
Visual Imagery – 3/5 Stars
Structure/Pacing/Editing – 2.5/5
Ending – 3/5 Stars

Total: 3/5 Stars

 

Author Bio:

JC Andrijeski is a USA TODAY bestselling author who writes paranormal mysteries and apocalyptic fiction, often with a sexy, romantic and metaphysical bent. JC has a background in journalism, history and politics, and loves martial arts, yoga, meditation, hiking, swimming, horseback riding, painting… and of course reading and writing. She grew up in the Bay Area of California, but travels extensively and has lived abroad in Europe, Australia and Asia, and from coast to coast in the continental United States. She currently lives and writes full-time in Bangkok, Thailand.

To learn more about JC and her writing, please visit jcandrijeski.com.

If you want an email when JC’s next book is released, as well as special giveaways, offers to read books early and other prizes, join her newsletter, THE REBEL ARMY, at: http://hyperurl.co/JCA-Newsletter

JOIN NOW and you’ll get a FREE BOOK!

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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Blog Tour/Review: The Longing and the Lack by C.M. Spivey

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Title: The Longing and the Lack (The Unliving #1)
Author: C.M. Spivey
Publication date: September 19th 2017
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal

“Gothic curses, deadly love affairs, and vengeful
ghosts combine to make this paranormal mystery a compelling page-turner.” — Tina Connolly, Nebula-nominated author of Ironskin

Lucinda Hightower is no stranger to death.

Since she was a child, Lucinda has been haunted by rabid dogs, suicidal crows, and the ghost of a woman in white. All are omens signaling someone’s imminent demise—except Lucinda’s friends and family are still breathing.

The omens follow her to Ireland and the quiet university in her father’s hometown, increasing in strength and frequency once she meets Damien Reed. A handsome third year student, Damien thrusts himself into Lucinda’s life almost immediately and caresses away the unsavory reputation that shadows him.

It’s not until the ghost sinks her nails into Damien that he reveals his secret: the
death omens are for him.

They’re the manifestations of a curse that claims the life of the eldest Reed son
every generation. Damien’s time is nearly up. If Lucinda is to save him, she must solve the mystery of her family curse, and lay a spirit’s rage to rest.

A dark romance for fans of Diane Setterfield and the TV show Supernatural,
The Longing and the Lack is a Gothic story for the modern age.

My Thoughts

Spivey does an excellent job pulling the reader in with the first few pages. I found myself on the edge of my seat for the majority of this book, excited to get to the next page and see what was coming. Her use of dialogue and imagery to push the plot made me feel like I was across the pond experiencing this story. I think part of the reason I enjoyed the dialogue so much is because I typically throw in a little flare into my conversations – fun language, proper wording, some tongue-in-cheek statements.

Let’s talk about that cover for a minute – wow! If I hadn’t already been pulled in by the plot, the cover would have grabbed me for sure!

Lucinda is a fun and strong character from the get-go, and you can tell something is a bit off about her. Going with her on her journey to find out her history and sort out the world of Damien and what that is to her. I was gripped from the start and enjoyed the folklore of this tale. I enjoyed the twisty adventure of this novel, antsy about what was coming next, but not quite sure I wanted to truly know. Looking forward to reading more from Spivey.

The Final Countdown

Characterization – 4/5 Stars
Dialogue– 4/5 Stars
Plot – 4/5 Stars
Visual Imagery – 4/5 Stars
Structure/Pacing/Editing – 4/5
Ending – 4/5 Stars

Total: 4/5 Stars

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo

cmspivey2017BWbigAuthor Bio:

C.M. Spivey is a speculative fiction writer, author of high fantasy FROM UNDER THE MOUNTAIN and the paranormal series, “The Unliving”. His enduring love of fantasy started young. Now, he explores the rules and ramifications of magic in his own
works—and as a trans, panromantic asexual, he’s committed to queering his favorite genres. In his spare time, he plans his next tattoo (there will always be a next tattoo) and watches too much Netflix. Anything left over is devoted to his tireless quest to make America read more. He lives in Portland, Oregon, with his darling husband Matt and adorable dog Jay.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

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Review: ReWired by S.R. Johannes

Title: ReWired 
Author: S.R. Johannes
Publication Date: August 27th 2017
Genres: Thriller, Young Adult

YA cyber thriller, ReWIRED, by Shelli Johannes-Wells (writing as S.R. Johannes), which offers a fresh and exciting new take on the genre, and could be described as Ally Carter’s HEIST SOCIETY meets THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO for teens.

Sixteen-year-old Ada Lovelace is never more alive and sure of herself than when she’s hacking into a “secure” network as her alter ego, the Dark Angel. In the real world, Ada is broken, reeling from her best friend Simone’s recent suicide. But online, the reclusive daughter of Senator Lovelace (champion of the new Online Privacy Bill) is a daring white hat hacker and the only female member of the Orwellians, an elite group responsible for a string of high-profile hacks against major corporations, with a mission to protect the little guy. Ada is swiftly proving she’s a force to be reckoned with, when a fellow Orwellian betrays her to the FBI. To protect her father’s career, Ada is sent to ReBoot, a technology rehab facility for teens…the same rehab Simone attended right before killing herself.

It’s bad enough that the ReBoot facility is creepy in an Overlook-Hotel-meets-Winchester-Mansion way, but when Ada realizes Simone’s suicide is just one in an increasingly suspicious string of “accidental” deaths and “suicides” occurring just after kids leave ReBoot, Ada knows she can’t leave without figuring out what really happened to her best friend. The massive cyber conspiracy she uncovers will threaten everything she cares about–her dad’s career, her new relationship with a wry, handsome, reformed hacker who gets under her skin, and most of all–the version of herself Ada likes best–the Dark Angel.

With a deliciously twisty plot, the topical bite of Cory Doctorow’s LITTLE BROTHER, ReWIRED delves into technology addiction, internet privacy, and corporate/government collection of data, as it vividly illuminates the universally human questions about ethics, privacy, and self-definition that both underpin these socio-political issues and dovetail with classic coming-of-age themes. Ultimately, ReWIRED is about the daily choices we all make about who we want to be, how much of ourselves we choose to share with others, and the terrifying risks and exhilarating rewards of being ourselves, online and off.

Goodreads / Amazon

My Thoughts

 

 

This is apparently a time when I’m delving into all kinds of books that haven’t been in my repertoire before. This tech-themed thriller was definitely out of my wheelhouse, but I’m not complaining! This book kept me on the edge of my seat and I found I couldn’t get to the next page fast enough. This YA-appropriate book was the perfect byte of intriguing and informative while not being so overly techy that I lost interest. As a self-proclaimed nerd, I was impressed by the level of detail and realism portrayed throughout this book regarding the hacking world. 

Ada is a fun character with understandable issues, as explained early on in the book. She was well-developed and kept me interested in her story.

It’s amazing how much technology has truly taken over our lives. The thought of being cut off from my phone, computer, and any other form of tech connection is a bit overwhelming for me, as I’m sure it is for quite a few people. 

The twists and turns in this book were deviously delicious. I look forward to reading others by this author!

*~*

The Final Countdown

Characterization – 4.5/5 Stars
Dialogue– 4/5 Stars
Plot – 5/5 Stars
Visual Imagery – 4/5 Stars
Structure/Pacing/Editing – 5/5
Ending – 4/5 Stars

Total: 4.4/5 Stars

S.R. Johannes is the award-winning author of the Amazon bestselling Nature of Grace thriller series (Untraceable, Uncontrollable, and Unstoppable). She is a winner of the IndieReader Discovery Award in YA, an IPPY a Silver Medalist for YA Fiction, a Finalist in The Kindle Book Review’s Best Young Adult Fiction, and a Finalist in US Book News Best YA Book.

Since leaving Corporate America, she has followed her passion for writing and conservation by working with The Dolphin Project, the Atlanta Zoo, other animal rescue organizations, and by weaving conservation themes into her books.

Currently, she lives in Atlanta, GA with hEnglish-accented husband and the huge imaginations of their prince and princess, which she hopes- someday- will change the world.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

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Review: Trap and Tour by Megan Carney

Title: Trap and Trace
By: Megan Carney
Publication date: July 18th 2017
Genres: Adult, Adventure, Thriller

A sabotaged CIA operation makes Navy Trent a captive. But surviving the kidnapping is just the beginning of her ordeal. The CIA will kill her if she doesn’t stay quiet. The saboteurs will kill her if she does. Navy is forced into a high-tech, high-stakes game of cat-and-mouse where only her wits – and a little bit of luck – can keep her alive.

Goodreads / Amazon

My Thoughts

Welcome to my stop on the tour! I received an ARC of Trap and Trace in exchange for an honest review.

When I first signed up for this tour, I was intrigued because this is out of my typical genre to read, and I sure wasn’t disappointed. I devoured this book from e-cover to e-cover. Carney does a great job of making each character their own, ensuring their personalities don’t overlap and giving you something to remember about each on.

I was particularly drawn to Navy, our main character. She could have easily become a damsel in distress, but instead was represented as a strong female character. I love that she stepped out of the norm of what stereotypical literature paints females to be.

Through the many twists and turns of this novel, I was on the edge of my seat. I ate this book up in such a short period of time, my head was spinning after I finished it. I felt like I was in the story with them due to Carney’s descriptions – filled with just enough for me to see what she wanted, but then just enough left out to let my mind wander and feel the anxiety and roller coaster this novel creates.

This was my first Megan Carney book, but definitely won’t be my last!

*~*

The Final Countdown

Characterization – 4.5/5 Stars
Dialogue– 4/5 Stars
Plot – 4/5 Stars
Visual Imagery – 4.5/5 Stars
Structure/Pacing/Editing – 5/5
Ending – 4/5 Stars

Total: 4.3/5 Stars

Author Bio:

Megan Carney is an author, geek and amateur photographer living in the Twin Cities. She has ten years of experience in the field of computer security. Her previous short story publications include: ‘Flighty Youth’ in the Raritan, ‘Modern Mayhem’ in the Wayfarer, ‘Swing By Close’ in the Wayfarer, ‘Directions’ in the Bell Tower. ‘Swing By Close’ and ‘Directions’ both won first prize in the fiction sections of that issue. The Christian Science Monitor dubbed her self-published photography book, ‘Signs of My Cities’ as having “youthful zest.”

Her non-literary creations include: a robot to clean the bathroom tub, Zim and Gir costumes, No-Dig tomato stakes, StickFriend the bear bag hanger, and a burning coal costume so she could be Katniss for a night.

 

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Blog Tour: Legacy Strain by Taylor Brooke

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Legacy Strain (The Isolation Series Book #3)
By: Taylor Brooke
Published By: Limitless Publishing
Publication date: June 6, 2017
Genres: Post-Apocalyptic, Science Fiction, Young Adult

Brooklyn Harper’s friends have betrayed her, her heart is broken, and all of humanity is at risk.

After Kirin’s unannounced arrival in Louisiana, Brooklyn finds herself scrambling for a way out of an impossible situation. Kirin is creating the deadly Genesis Cull, and Brooklyn doesn’t know who to turn to for help.

With no other options, she’s forced to trust her nemesis, Juneau Malloy. His support allows the group of Special Omen Operatives to gear up, form a plan of action, and train for the day when they come face-to-face with their worst fear—going to war with their friends.

There is a divide in the once inseparable group of Omens, and their only hope is to put the pieces back together.

Julian Yu Matsumoto agonizes over the difference between right and wrong, love and sacrifice, genocide and revolution. While he struggles with his feelings for Kirin, his moral compass is spinning round and round, his heart is being pulled in different directions, and Julian is desperate to answer questions he never thought he would have to ask.

Is Kirin’s Genesis Cull a revolution or genocide?

Could there be another way to save themselves and humanity as they know it?

Will Julian pay the ultimate price for loving a monster?

Their only hope for redemption is—the Legacy Strain.

Goodreads / Amazon / B&N

My Thoughts

Welcome to my stop on the tour! I received an ARC of Legacy Strain in exchange for an honest review.

I’ve read every book in this series, so I was very excited to hop on board the Legacy Strain blog tour train. Jumping into this book felt like visiting with familiar faces. Taylor Brooke does a great job jumping into the story and pulling the reader right in. I felt I was there in the middle of the action. I wasn’t just being told a story, I became a part of it.

Everyone has something – Brooklyn is dealing with her ghosts and choices, Gabriel has a severe lack of compassion and runs on impulse, Julien has his need to find the good and also trust the bad, Kirin has something evolving that he doesn’t quite grasp . . . the list just goes on and on for each character. There’s a lot going on in Legacy Strain, but that’s not a bad thing. I was kept on my toes and couldn’t predict what was happening next.

There’s a sense of need throughout this book – a need to understand, to evolve, to persevere, to fix, to lead, to protect, and to live.

Just like the first two books, Legacy Strain kept me at the edge of my seat through the entire read, and I dreaded finding my way to the last page.

You can read other reviews for this book at Xpresso Book Tours!

*~*

The Final Countdown

Characterization – 4.5/5 Stars
Dialogue– 4/5 Stars
Plot – 4.5/5 Stars
Visual Imagery – 4/5 Stars
Structure/Pacing/Editing – 5/5
Ending – 4/5 Stars

Total: 4.3/5 Stars

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Author Bio:

Taylor Brooke is the author of the sci-fi adventure trilogy The Isolation Series. She started out as a freelance makeup artist, and quickly discovered her love of elves, zombies, mermaids, kaiju, and monsters of all kinds. After receiving eight professional certifications in special effects makeup, working on countless projects, and fleshing out a multitude of fantastical creatures, she turned her imagination back to her one true love — books. Taylor has had a knack for writing since she was a little girl, and received recognition for her skills throughout grade school and junior college. When she’s not nestled in a blanket typing away on her laptop, she can be found haunting the local bookstore with a cup of steaming hot tea in her hands, scanning the shelves for new reads, or hiking one of the many mountains that surround her home in Oregon.

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I’m baaaack!

After a slightly unplanned hiatus where I spent the majority of my time editing for Michele G. Miller and Mindy Hayes AND attaining couple new clients, I was also working a more-than full time job, spending time with my family, and dealig with the lemons life brings.

I will post a more exciting update soon! But expect a stream of reviews, some marketing fun, author interviews, and some other intriguing changes. This blog will be evolving.

Get ready for the evolution!

Writing Prompt #1

I’m going to create and share my own writing prompts on here at least once a week. Hopefully this will help those like me with writer’s block or help with some more creativity. Sometimes five minute free writing can lead to some shiny new ideas.

Free write for five minutes, then share some/all of your piece and your thoughts in the comments below. And GO!!