Blog Tour: Review and Giveaway – Beneath the Scars by Melanie Moreland

Beneath the Scars
By: Melanie Moreland
Publication Date: October 14, 2014
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Format of Book: E-Book
Steam: Lots of it.

*I received free ARCs of Beneath the Scars from Xpresso Booktours in exchange of an honest review.

Synopsis

The sound of the ocean, the crash of the waves as they kick up against the sand and rocks—these are the only sounds Megan Greene wants to hear. She wants to leave the rest of the world behind, and find some peace.

The offer of a private house on the beach, set in a small town in Maine, is perfect. Time to think—to be by herself. It’s all she wants. It’s the escape she needs.

Until she stumbles across the painting that seems to echo her own chaotic mindset.

Until she meets the unfriendly artist behind the stormy painting and discovers his secrets.

All Zachary Adams wants is to be left alone. His canvases, and the unending scope of the ocean and sand, are his life. They direct him—fill his hours. Bring him focus.

Until she enters his life.

She dredges up memories of the past—the haunting images he has hidden for years; the fears he has never shared.

A story he keeps buried below the surface.

Can she make him see what he is missing? Can he trust her enough to believe?

Together they embark on a journey where their pasts collide and threaten to tear them apart.

Will their fragile bond hold or wash away with the ebbing tide?

Welcome to my stop on the Beneath the Scars Blog Tour! Below is my review AND a pretty awesome giveaway! Click on the image at the bottom of the screen for the rafflecopter! I have also included my Facebook page for this blog – go follow me there. 🙂
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The Final Countdown
Characterization
– 3.5/5 Stars
I appreciated Megan‘s character; she was working through things, but continued to strive for interaction. She is compassionate, understanding, and (at times) a bit too forgiving. I applaud her persistence, but if anyone ever treated me the way Zachary treats her… well, heck no! Zachary is hiding from his demons, a story that’s interesting from the get-go. I found the characters in this story to be well developed, but I’d loved to have seen more of Megan’s backstory. We get a little bit, but more would have been even better.

I also liked that each of the smaller characters played an integral role in the story – they may not be around as often, but they are each important. And the dogs… Elliot‘s breed was captured perfectly!

Dialogue – 3.5/5 Stars
I really liked the dialogue in this story. It was very in depth and true to each of the characters. Of course, a lot of it was angsty, but that drove the story quite a bit more than simple, emotionless words would have been fruitless.

Plot – 3.5/5 Stars
The idea of this story reminded me of a certain Disney movie. I’d hate to say it here for fear of giving any small plot details away, but from very early on as I was taking notes while reading I have “reminds me of [movie]”.

The plot was done well, but there were a lot if time jumps that woul have been nice with more detailed story – some of the jumps were perfectly placed, though. I also wish there wasn’t so much of an emphasis on the steamy content – I appreciated that it wasn’t sordid detailed, but wanted even more story to drive the plot.

Regardless, the plot of this story was done well and developed. I like that Boston was a part of this, as well. We don’t really make our way into many newer books anymore. 🙂

Visual Imagery – 3.5/5 Stars
I loved how vivid the paintings in this story were; I felt I could see them, especially Tempest. There are wonderful little moments of description, such as the little specks of color in someone’s eyes or the defining physical characteristics of different characters, that were a well done plot device. I always appreciate being able to read a story and see it.

Ending 3/5 Stars
Without giving anything away, the ending was done well. A great close to this stand alone novel.

Total: 17/25 Stars

Goodreads: Follow This Link
Purchase:
–Amazon: Follow This Link
*~*
AUTHOR BIO
Melanie Moreland lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her husband and fur children. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them.

Known as the quiet one with the big laugh, Melanie works for the sporting teams of a local university. Her (box) office job, while demanding, is rewarding as she cheers on her team to victory.

While seriously addicted to coffee, and somewhat challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties and socialize, and also enjoys travelling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip.

Melanie delights in writing a good romance story with some bumps along the way, but is a true believer in happily ever after. When her head isn’t buried in a book, it is bent over a keyboard, furiously typing away as her characters dictate their creative storylines, to her even more inspired tales, for all to enjoy.

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Author links:
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Giveaway:
Tour-wide giveaway
  • 4 ebooks of Beneath the Scars (INTL)
  • 2 signed Paperbacks of Beneath the Scars (US/Canada only) with book marks
  • 1 package of Into the Storm/Beneath the Scars Paperbacks with bookmarks – both signed (US/Canada only)

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Blog Tour: Book Review – Violet Storm by Anna Soliveres

Violet Storm
By: Anna Soliveres
Publication Date: March 28, 2014
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Format of Book: E-Book

*I received free ARCs of Violet Storm from Xpresso Booktours in exchange of an honest review.

Synopsis

Several hundred years into the future, The Cleansing, known to some as the End of Days, forced the government to create Arks to shelter its people. When Earth became habitable again, new territories rose up from the ashes: Agria, the City of Light, and the Outer Boundaries. For a while, they lived in peace.

A brilliant surgeon known for his invention of Modi’s—the only cure for the deadly disease, vaincre—has gone rogue with his experiments, and the Monarchy is desperate to shut him down. That’s where Aeva Storm comes in, a champion athlete with an ego to match. Aeva is the surgeon’s secret weapon against the Monarchy. And they’ll never know what hit them. After reconstructing her body to become a Modi unlike any he’s ever created, Aeva is forced into a fight against all odds. She’ll have to break loyalties, hurt family, and turn her back on newly awakened love. Thousands of lives hang in the balance in a battle that will set forth a new era.

Join Aeva on her quest to see whether she’s got what it takes to go up against the most powerful humans ever created.

Welcome to my stop on the Violet Storm Blog Tour! Below is my review AND a giveaway! Click on the image at the bottom of the screen for the rafflecopter! I have also included my Facebook page for this blog – go follow me there. 🙂
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The Final Countdown
Characterization
– 4/5 Stars
I absolutely love to read a book with a strong female character. I’ve never been one for those wimpy characters who let the world walk all over them.  Aeva Storm is amazing. She is everything I would hope to be in her situation and she lives up to every expectation I had of her. In this dystopian world, she doesn’t have much going for her after her last Fila game, but she picks herself up and pushes along. She’s curious and questions things. When faced with some very difficult decisions, I can understand each path she could tread. She meets some rather intriguing characters along the way; I wouldn’t mind meeting Karth, or Ruven, or even…. I’ll stop here. Just get to know these wonderfully intricate characters for yourself and you’ll see what I mean.

Dialogue  –  3.5/5 Stars
The best thing about the dialogue was its realism. Despite taking place in some dystopian future, there were no silly enhancements in language. Everything made sense, I didn’t have to make out some strange dialect, these factors kept me in the story. I like Aeva’s banter with the male characters that she comes across. She fits in with one of the guys, probably in part due to her role in Fila.

Plot  –  4/5 Stars
I love the dystopian genre and this had all the best parts – who, why, what, and crazies. Struggles for power. The norm. What this one had that others I’ve read haven’t? A really great idea. I love Soliveres’ ideas and how wonderfully strung together they are. She did a great job planning this plot from beginning to end (at least the end, for now.)

Visual Imagery  –  3/5 Stars
Color is a wonderful theme in Violet Storm. Just the title alone gives you a pretty great visual. I loved the emphasis on eye color. Some of my favorite visuals took place on the Fila fields. I would have loved to have even more description, though it didn’t detract from the story at all!

Ending  3.5/5 Stars
Well, I will say it definitely sets you up for the next book. I wish that it was out already so I didn’t have to wait. Slight cliffhanger, but not enough to make you really angry that you have to wait for the next story. I appreciate a teasing ending, of course. 🙂

Total: 18/25 Stars

Final Thoughts

Science Fiction has never been one of those genres that I gravitate toward, but this one pulled me in from the start. I loved trying to figure it out, find motive, and try to figure out who could be trusted in this story. I really can’t wait until the next one comes out. It’ll be fantastic, I’m sure.

So… when does the next one come out? 😉

Goodreads: Follow This Link
Purchase:
–Amazon: Follow This Link
 *~*
AUTHOR BIO
Anna Soliveres has always been a storyteller but it wasn’t until her early twenties when she began writing novel length works. The result was an enthusiasm to get better at the craft until her work could be shared with the world. Releasing in March 2014, VIOLET STORM is her debut novel. Anna is currently working on another young adult sci-fi series, titled SNOW DOLLS, set to release in late 2014. To learn more, please visit her at www.annasoliveres.com.
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Author links:

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Blog Tour: Excerpt – Stupid Girl by Cindy Miles

Stupid Girl
By: Cindy Miles
Publication Date: May 13, 2014
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Synopsis

Only fools fall in love…

After her senior year of high school leaves behind nothing but heartache, Olivia Beaumont is sure of this: She’s no stupid girl. She sets out for Winston College, promising herself that she will remain focused on her first and only love – astronomy. But all it takes is cocky sophomore Brax Jenkins and an accidental collision with a football, to throw her entire year off course.

A quick-tempered Southie who escaped the inner city streets of Boston to pitch for Winston, Brax is known to play way more fields than just the baseball diamond. So, when his name is drawn to take part in his fraternity’s hazing dare, Brax eagerly accepts the mission to take Olivia’s virginity. But he doesn’t plan on falling hard for the sweet and sassy Texas girl who sees right through his bad-boy persona.

As Olivia and Brax battle their feelings for each other, echoes of the past year begin to surface. A boy who once turned Olivia’s whole world upside down reappears, and “harmless” pranks wreak havoc. Pretty soon the aspiring astronomer is on the verge of revealing her most difficult, heartbreaking secret. All the while, Brax must wrestle with the irrevocable dare, and Olivia struggles against all logic as she does the one thing only a stupid girl would do: fall in love.

Welcome to my stop on the Stupid Girl Blog Tour! Below is an excerpt from the book AND a giveaway! Click on the image at the bottom of the screen for the rafflecopter! I have also included my Facebook page for this blog – go follow me there. 🙂

Excerpt

Brax: Wake your ass up, Sunshine.

I grinned as I stared at his text. What a charmer.

Me: I’ve been up, Boston. I had celestial homework on the rooftop. What’s up?

Brax: I’m running late. Celestial you say? Sounds sexy. Meet u in class?

Me: Of course. Everything sounds sexy to you, weirdo. Last one there’s a rotten egg.

Brax: A dare? You’re on. But it’ll be worth more than eggs, sweetheart.

Me: We’ll see.

Brax: L8R beautiful.

Me: You’re crazy.

Brax: I know.

I set my phone down and glanced over at Tessa, still curled up in a ball on her side, buried in the covers. She’d come in late last night, long after Brax and I had said goodbye. “Tess? Are you okay?”

She turned her head and one eye cracked open as she peered through a mossy mass of tangled hair. She groaned. “I don’t feel so good, chica. I’m going to skip class.”

I stared and shook my head. “For shame. Can I get you anything?”

Tessa pulled the covers completely over her head. “Yeah. A hammer. Then you can bonk me on the head with it.”

I laughed lightly and continued getting ready for class. Steven had agreed to take my shift so I could go to Brax’s baseball game Saturday, and I’d taken his shift for tonight. Excitement coursed through me at watching Brax pitch. I could barely wait.

Pulling on a pair of jeans, a cami top and a three-quarter sleeved snap up shirt to wear over it, I hurriedly dressed, pulled on my All-Stars and grabbed my pack and bag. One final glance at Tessa’s huddled form beneath the covers, and I headed out. I hit the stairwell and jogged down to the first floor, but the second I entered the common room, I noticed quite a healthy amount of heads had turned my way. A little self-conscious, I wondered why they were all looking at me. Making my way to the front door, I stepped outside and noticed more students in the parking lot. As I walked, heads turned. What was going on?

“Hey, Olivia.” A hand reached for my arm, and I turned to find a girl named Becca from my astronomy class. In her expression I immediately saw pity. “Do you know who did it? Pretty lame.”

“Did what?”

She pointed. “Isn’t that your truck over there?”

I followed her gaze and pointed finger to where my truck was parked. Several people stood around it, holding their cell phones up. My feet started moving before my brain kicked in, and I started pushing my way through the gathered students toward it. With my heart in my throat, I finally got close enough to see what the fuss was all about. White letters slashed across the hood, fender. Pushing ahead of the people who stood gawking and taking pics, I could do nothing but stare, horrified at the vulgar words scrawled against the blue paint.

Gutter Fuck.

Embarrassment washed through my body, and anger, shock, almost paralyzed me. A few voices filtrated through my brain as I continued to stare. Oh shit, man, that’s harsh, and Oh. My. God. I didn’t look up. Didn’t look at anyone. I just turned, pushed through the crowd and headed back to the dorm to find something to wash it all off. Eyes followed me, of course, all the way back through the common room, and I eased up stairs and into mine and Tessa’s dorm. She lay sleeping, just as I’d left her. Quietly, I grabbed a few older towels I’d brought with me specifically for washing the truck, and just as I was slipping back out the door Tessa stirred.

“Something wrong?” she asked feebly.

“No, go back to sleep,” I said. “

 

Goodreads: Follow This Link
*
Purchase:
–Amazon: Follow This Link
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AUTHOR BIO
National bestselling author Cindy Miles writes edgy romance, ranging from contemporary love stories to sexy paranormals. A native of southern coastal Georgia, she loves reading (naturally), baking swoon-worthy desserts, traveling abroad, yoga, and classic rock. The cover for her upcoming New Adult romance, STUPID GIRL, was featured on USA Today’s Happily Ever After blog. In the novel, a volatile mix of bad boys, sassy smart girls, dark secrets, and red-hot romance add up to one wild ride through college.
Author links:

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