Sunday, April 29, 2012

Guest Post and Giveaway of A Ranger's Tale and Serenya's Song by Mysti Parker

I decided to do something a bit different today. I figured I would have the awesome author, Mysti Parker, tell us about the Tallenmere series she has created, and give the lucky reader's a chance to win an e-copy of the books. I've read the first book in the series, and trust me, you do not want to miss out on this series.

Hiya peeps! And a big thanks to Kayla for letting me visit today. I'm jazzed to announce the second book in my Tallenmere fantasy romance series, Serenya's Song, available now from Melange Books!

In case you’re wondering, Tallenmere is a fantasy world that is rather Tolkienesque. In the first three books, the focus is on the elves, whereas in The Lord of the Rings, our pointy-eared protagonists existed as more of a whimsical side plot. If you enjoy fantasy mixed with sensual romance, you'll enjoy this series!

Readers from every corner of the world fell in love right along with Caliphany and Galadin in A Ranger's Tale and felt the twang of Jayden Ravenwing's broken heart. Now, Jayden, the sexy wood-elf secret agent, gets another shot at love. He's met his perfect match in Serenya, a beautiful half-elf with a love of music and art that matches his own.

But, Serenya is no ordinary woman. She can interpret dreams, and she has this curious birth defect that she hides under fawn leather gloves.

Now, I pose a question to you: If you could have a supernatural ability, what would it be? Answer below in the comments, and one lucky reader will win a copy of BOTH A Ranger’s Tale (PDF or Kindle) and Serenya’s Song (PDF)!

Take a look at the blurb and an exciting excerpt to see what's in store for these two:

In the fantasy world of Tallenmere, no one ever said love was easy...

Serenya Crowe may be a half-elf commoner, but she's no ordinary woman. With the ability to interpret dreams, and a birth defect that forces her to wear gloves, she's endured gossip and the cruelty of her husband, Sebastian, The Earl of Summerwind. All she's ever wanted is to live a quiet life and raise a family. When she meets the new stranger in town, her world and her heart, are turned upside down.

Wood-elf Jayden Ravenwing is an ex-secret agent who wants nothing more than to forget matters of the heart. He left the bustle of Leogard and his failed marriage to make a fresh start in Summerwind. He never planned to fall in love again, especially with the enchanting Serenya Crowe.

When a strange portal opens on the Crowe property, Jayden is thrown into an investigation, knowing that if he fails, Serenya and everyone in the town may die.
Together, he and Serenya must overcome an ancient evil, and their own inner demons, to save Summerwind and find the love they've always dreamed of.

Excerpt from Chapter 17:

Jayden gripped the body of his harp until his knuckles turned white. “He treats you like one of his possessions. Why do you stay with him?”
A crash came from the storage room, followed by a curse from Dad. Jayden’s head whipped toward the sound. His arm reached out protectively in front of me.
 I put a hand on his elbow and gently pushed it back down. “Dad’s just dropped something. I’ll go have a look. Why don’t you stay here and play for the customers?”
 Though I didn’t look forward to cleaning up a mess, at least it had saved me from Jayden’s probing question. I’d already pushed my husband too far tonight. Telling Jayden about everything would only make matters worse. I couldn’t bear the thought of him being hurt or me being locked away.
 I passed through the curtain. One of the barmaids had beaten me in there. She shrugged, picked up the empty tray from the floor, and went back outside. Luckily, the tray had been the only casualty. Dad was leaning against the basin, head hung low, like he could fall asleep any minute.
 He jerked his head up. “I’m fine.”
 “Dad, you’re exhausted. Please, tell me about these dreams of yours. They must be horrible if you aren’t sleeping.”
 He shook his head and started filling the basin with water.
 “I just want to help.” I laid a hand on his arm. “It’ll do you good to get it off your chest.”
“All right.” He pulled out a crate from under the basin and sat on it. I squatted in front of him. “In the dream, there was this shadow over my bed. I couldn’t make out its form, except it had these eyes. These big, glowing eyes like a reptile. It choked me until I couldn’t breathe, and then it flew out the window. I don’t know why, but I jumped out after it, and I saw everyone in the town standing around, staring and pointing at me. They started laughing, and this shadowy creature—it was the oddest thing, Renny. It looked like it was wrapping itself around all of them, like a snake squeezing the life out of a rat. They were naked, except for this thing around them.” He scratched his head and winced. “And the crazy part was, I was naked too. When it started wrapping around me, I woke up. It’s been much the same every night.”
I closed my eyes and sat back on my heels. Dad’s words penetrated the window of my mind. A churning, black mass blurred everything in sight. A rush of air blew it away. I concentrated carefully as the town of Summerwind came into view. My vision carried me overhead, as if I was flying through the night sky over the center of town. I passed over our tavern, recognized Sammy’s store, the bank where Mrs. Carvo spread the juiciest gossip, the small pavilion in the center of the square where I sat for hours and listened to traveling musicians play.
No one stirred. I shivered at the atmosphere. Deathly quiet, unnaturally still. My vision brought me closer, farther down. Silhouettes of people came into view. But they were everywhere—on the ground below, on the terraces and porches. And then I realized, they were bodies. All of them. Cold, dead, dismembered bodies. In the bushes, draped over the wrought iron benches of the park, pieces of the people I’d grown up with all my life were scattered about the walkways and littered the flower beds. Speeding closer to the ground, I flew faster than the mightiest wind, directly over the carnage, so close I could have touched the tattered flesh had I been there in body. I even held my breath, afraid to smell the putrid scent of death.
And suddenly, I stopped—right on the edge of town, at a place so familiar, I knew it by scent. Lilly’s cottage. My vision turned toward her fence, where so many times we had sat by the roses and spoke as freely as two friends can. On two of the finials, like grisly ornaments, perched her head and beside it, the head of Sammy, her fiancĂ©. Maggots pulsated from their hollowed-out eye sockets, dropping on the roses below.
My eyes shot open. Head spinning, I fell to the floor, paddling my feet until my back hit the shelf behind me. A mug toppled from overhead and shattered on the tile. I tried to push myself to stand. A shard of glass cut through my glove and bit into my palm. Dad grabbed my arms. I screamed.
“Renny, what did you see?”
He knelt in front of me, pale, his eyes full of fear. I held my hand in front of me and watched the blood soak through my glove and drip onto my knees. Warm, delicious, intoxicating blood. Slowly, I drew my hand to my mouth and licked.
Dad shook me. “Renny! What happened? What is it?”
Jayden burst through the curtain. He was beside me in an instant and whipped the bar towel from Dad’s shoulder. He pulled out the shard of glass, removed my glove, and wrapped my hand in the towel.
“Serenya—are you all right?” He turned to Douglas. “What happened? You don’t look well, either.”
Dad stared at him wild-eyed for a moment. His jaw trembled. “She…she saw something. A dream I had. I don’t know what it was though.” Dad touched my cheek. I flinched. “Renny, Jay’s here. Tell him what happened. Please.”
I looked up at Jayden, pushed myself to my knees, and sobbing, melted into his arms.

Mysti Parker is a full time wife, mother of three, and a writer. Her first novel, A Ranger’s Tale was published in January, 2011 by Melange Books, and is the first in a fantasy romance series. She is also the proud writer of Unwritten, a blog voted #3 for eCollegeFinder’s Top Writing Blogs award.

Unwritten Blog
Twitter: @MystiParker
Facebook Page
Goodreads Page
A Ranger's Tale
Serenya’s Song

One lucky person will win ebook copies of A Ranger's Tale and Serenya's Song. There are just a few simple rules:

  • Answer Mysti's question that she asked above
  • Go to her Facebook page, and thank her for donating the ebooks.
  • Follow my blog via GFC, Networked blogs, or Facebook.
  • Leave a comment with the answer to the question, how you follow my blog, your Facebook name, and your email address.
  • Winners will be chosen on 5/13 at 12:01 pm EST
  • Winner will have 48 hours to reply to the email.
Good Luck and have fun!

Winner of the Rachael Wade ebooks

Giveaway Winner!

The winner of Amaranth and The Gates by Rachael Wade is... Jem Juliette Jewels Jade. Congratulations. I hope you love the series. Thank you to everyone who participated. Make sure to check out my two other giveaways I have going on. 

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Valencia: Fresh Squeezed and Uncut by Gideon Carlise

A novel-in-verse following the journey of a transvestite performer and poet from childhood to adulthood. Filled with inner conflict, Valencia reflects on his/her life through poetry trying to understand the consequences of the choices we make.

My Thoughts:
Valencia was a good short read. It was inspiring. At first, I was a little confused as to what was going on, but it was pretty easy to catch on after a while. I liked that Valencia was an original story. There aren't a lot of stories about a cross dressing man trying to find his way in life. I also liked how it was written in poetry form. It reminded me a lot of Ellen Hopkin's writing, very gritty and raw. My only complaint is I wish Valencia was a little longer. I wanted more details. I'm curious to find out what happened to the woman after she left with her son. I also want to know what kind of man the son turned out to be. I liked Valencia, and will definitely be reading more of the author's work in the future. I recommend Valencia for fans of Ellen Hopkin's work.

I give Valencia: 4/5.

Want to know more about the author?

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review and was in no way compensated for this review.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Book Review and Giveaway: An Oath of the Blood (Island Shifters #1) by Valerie Zambito

On the island of Massa, heroes are born not made. The idyllic lives of four young shifters living in the exiled land of Pyraan are shattered when a tour of legion duty gives witness to a brutal enemy invasion. Born with magical prowess none has seen in over three hundred years, the friends become pivotal in a race against time to save a people they hardly know, but are sworn to protect.

The journey exacts a terrible price from Beck, Kiernan, Rogan and Airron as they battle demons, both real and personal, to save the island. But, whatever the chances, the shifters will fight.

The blood oath will have it no other way.

My Thoughts:
Island Shifters: An Oath of the Blood was the first shifter book I had read. From the synopsis and the main character's ages, it seemed like it was going to be a young adult book, but it wasn't. Since I'm not used to reading adult books, it started off a little slow, and it took me a while to read. I'm glad I stuck it out and finished it because it was definitely worth it. Once I got into the story, it sucked me into the pages and I didn't want to leave. The plot, although a little confusing at first because I knew nothing about shifters, was well written. The characters were also well developed. My favorite character was Bajan. I liked how loyal he was, not only to Kiernan, but to the rest of the group of Savitars as well. I also thought it was cool how Kiernan and Bajan communicated telepathically. The final battle was heartbreaking. I cried when one of the characters died. I must admit, I wish the final battle would have been a little longer. An Oath of the Blood was a great book that I definitely suggest checking out. I can't wait to read the rest of the series. I recommend this book for fans of shifter, paranormal, or fantasy novels.

I give An Oath of the Blood: 4/5.

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review, and was in no way compensated for this review.


I will be giving away two copies of An Oath of the Blood, courtesy of the author. Interested in winning? If you have any questions about the giveaway, feel free to email me:


  • Like Island Shifters page on Facebook:
  • Follow my blog via GFC
  • Leave a comment on this post with your email address, Facebook name, and GFC name.
  • The winners will be picked on 5/27 at midnight EST
  • Winners will have 48 hours to respond before I pick another winner.
Good Luck and Have fun!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Gates by Rachael Wade: Music Blog Tour, Review, and Giveaway!

The Gates On Tour!
Book 2 of The Resistance Trilogy, a paranormal fantasy romance series. Available 4/25 from Amazon, and Barnes and Noble

Getting There is Half the Battle...

Armed with more unsettling knowledge about Gavin Devereaux and her circle of friends, Camille Hart is faced with new adversities and lethal propositions when she returns to the Amaranth exile to carry out Gavin’s risky crusade.

Realizing her journey through the bayou was only the beginning of her struggle to stay with Gavin, she finds that leaving her Louisiana home is the least of her worries. New evils await her on the other side, and as she and her friends press on with their mission, they are confronted with the reality that everything doesn't always go according to plan.

As secrets unfold and alliances are formed and broken, only the strongest will survive and the power of love will be tested when a war between witches, humans, and vampires erupts into an all-out power struggle and all is on the verge of being lost.

· Song: Lacrymosa
· Artist: Evanescence
· Tour Date: 4/22/12
· Venue: Samira’s Throne Room
· Scene Snapshot: Samira reminds Gavin and Camille who is in charge, setting revelations into motion that have the power to alter the resistance’s mission and much, much more.
· Anthem: I can't change who I am.
Not this time, I won't lie to keep you near me.
And in this short life, there's no time to waste on giving up.
My love wasn't enough.

Video link:

Be sure to read book one before you read The Gates. Enter the world of Amaranth by picking up a copy at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Smashwords. Visit on Wednesday, April 25th for The Gates launch party!

My Review:
The Gates was an incredible sequel to to Amaranth. The book was one of my favorites of 2012 so far this year. The Gates returns with all of the characters from the first book, and a few new characters. Out of the new characters, I liked Cecile the best. She is very kind and helpful. I couldn't stand Scarlet. I think that she is more evil than Samira in the way she manipulate and deceives people. The characters have matured a lot from Amaranth to The Gates. There was a lot of plot twists and turns in this book. Some of the plot twists made me mad. Other plot twists made me laugh and cry. I think the author's writing has also matured a lot from book one to book two, which is saying something because book one is absolutely amazing. The Gates left a lot of questions unanswered. I am dying to read book three, The Tragedy of Knowledge, and get the answers to what I want to know. I recommend The Gates to everyone that has read Amaranth. If you haven't read Amaranth, you should pick up both books and read them . Trust me, you won't regret it.

I give The Gates: 5/5.

The Giveaway:
One lucky winner will both Amaranth and The Gates in ebook form. There are a few rules though.

  • Follow my blog via GFC
  • Leave a comment with your GFC name and email address 
  • Winners will be picked at midnight on 4/29 EST
The next sop on the tour is Addicted to Novels. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Give Death a Chance by Alan Goldsher

It’s 2009, and Zombie John, Zombie Paul, Zombie George, and Ninja Ringo are poised to show the United States the true meaning of Beatlemania. During their first American tour since 1966, they throw down with supergenius supervillian Justin Timberlake, get abused by scantily-clad chanteuse Madonna, do some dreadful things to wannabe Zombies Noel and Liam Gallagher, possibly behead Eminem, and take on Lady Gaga’s “Little Monsters”, all in the name of climbing to the Toppermost of the Poppermost. In the hilarious, gory sequel to the critically acclaimed mashup, Paul is Undead: The British Zombie Invasion, author Alan Goldsher is the road manager and appointed scribe for the Poppermost Over America Tour, insanely crisscrossing America in a foul-smelling van packed with three short-tempered, power-mad English Zombies and one frustrated Ninja drummer. Throughout the mayhem of the brains-fueled tour, Goldsher finds out what it really means to Meet the Beatles, and answers the oft-asked question on the lips of every Fab Four fan, “What does Liverpudlian Zombie breath smell like from two inches away?”

My Thoughts:
Give Death a Chance is a short book about The Beatles being zombies and a ninja. I thought the book left many things to be desired. When reading the synopsis, I thought it was going to be interesting and funny. It had a couple of funny points, such as when The Beatles face off against Lady Gaga. For the most part, it was horribly written.It gets confusing at times because most of the language used is British slang. In fact, about sixty percent of the book is very vulgar British slang, along with quite a few f words and c words thrown into the mix.  The plot doesn't make much sense either. The zombie Beatles want to take over America by doing stupid things, such as traveling places and not playing shows, or eating fans and interrogating famous artists. At first, they reject the Scribe's common sense idea, which they have to eventually do at the end of the book anyways, and it's almost too easy. There's not an epic ending battle or anything like that. The person just gives them what they want. I almost want the time back that it took me to read this book, which was about an hour. I would not recommend this book to anyone.

I give Give Death a Chance: 1/5.

Want to know more about the author?

I received this egalley from the publisher via Netgalley and was in no way compensated for this review.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Winner of Bewitching ARC


The winner of the giveaway for the ARC of Bewitching is.... Tetewa! Congrats! Make sure to check your email and reply to me within 48 hours. Thank you to everyone who participated in the giveaway. Don't forget to come back for The Gates blog tour when I giveaway an ebook copy of Amaranth and The Gates to one lucky follower on the 22!


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

BaSatai: Outside In by Suzan Battah

Seventeen year old, Armani Radnelaq a full blooded BaSatai is plagued by a curse in her blood. A curse created from hate and designed to break the divide between two parallel worlds of Earth and H-trae when Armani's blood is spilled in attack and she dies. 

S'teuqoubs have been travelling back and forth across the divide for centuries without trouble. The BaSatai and Guardians monitoring activity and enforcing rules to ensure peace and harmony but if the divide splits and opens, a much greater number of supernatural S’teuqoubs will filter into earth destroying equilibrium which the BaSatai and Guardians will be unable to control. Humanity and the BaSatai will suffer and perish. The parallel divide must remain secure at all costs. 

Armani has remained hidden on earth with her adopted father Elijah since her birth. She has been raised in the human way and fights her natural instinct to evolve into a BaSatai. The BaSatai in her requires her to evolve and shift, use her powers and strength. Yet Armani is freaked out by the need to shift. She smokes, has a bad attitude, must deal with aggressive bullies and control her natural BaSatai instinct. Her Guardian with BaSatai Warriors are coming for her. She refuses to accept her fate and doesn't believe any BaSatai should die to protect her. 

The blood curse maturing in her veins makes her a target for her enemies. Her Guardian Karhl and an elite BasSatai Warrior Rafael are the first to arrive and prepare her for her crossing over. Her attraction to Rafael complicates her purpose to stay on earth even more. They both insist she fall into line and follow their lead but she is not ready to leave earth just yet...

My Thoughts:
BaSatai: Outside In was a very good book. The beginning was a little confusing until the author gave more information about the BaSatai culture. I wish the author would have given a little more information in the prologue about the blood curse, because I was a little confused as to what was going on. I loved all of the characters, except for Valko and Evander. They both seemed arrogant, cocky, and prickish. I think Rafael is my new book boyfriend. I loved his attitude and his sexiness. Also, I loved how he loved Armani so much, he was willing to put his life on the line for her. Armani was a very strong female character. I liked how she always did what she felt was right, regardless of what the people around her thought about her decision. I also liked how she didn't take any crap from anyone. A big plot twist after the final battle with the S'teuqoub made me a little mad. I definitely didn't see it coming. I can't wait for book two to be released to find out how the plot twist works out. Also, I want to learn if Armani finds her niece. I recommend this book to anyone looking for something good to read.

I give BaSatai: 4/5.

Want to know more about the author?

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review, and was in no way compensated for this review.

Friday, April 6, 2012

The Gospel According to Twilight by Elaine Heath

The Twilight saga has become one of the most successful fiction series ever written, with more than one hundred million copies in print and several blockbuster films. Despite the tremendous commercial success Twilight has generated, few readers have analyzed its theological teachings or the messages Stephenie Meyer might be sending to women and teenage girls. This book offers both a feminist critique of Twilight and a theological review of the stories' ideas about salvation, heaven and hell, power, reconciliation, resurrection, and organized religion.
Elaine Heath writes in an accessible voice, calling attention to both the "good news" of Twilight's theology and the "bad news" of its gender stereotypes and depictions of violence against women.
The book includes questions for youth and adult groups or for classroom discussions.

My Thoughts:
The Gospel According to Twilight was an okay book. It wasn't horrible, but it wasn't wonderful either. Some of the author's statements I disagree with, such as comparing Bella to Jesus. I can kind of see the author's point of view, but I still don't agree with her. I think I would have liked the book better if I was a Twilight fan. I've read all of the Twilight series, but I just didn't really like the series. Several times throughout The Gospel According to Twilight, the author contradicts one of the points she makes in an earlier statement. I recommend this book for Twilight fans wanting a christian reference guide.

I give The Gospel According to Twilight: 2/5.

Want to know where to buy this book?
Barnes and Noble:
Christian Book:

I received this egalley from the publisher via netgalley in exchange for an honest review, and was in no way compensated for this review.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Retribution by Kelsey Miller

Not all Vampires drink blood... 

More cunning and intuitive than the other wolves in his Family, Faolan has never had a problem killing their Vampire enemies. Yet even he is unprepared for the two Changelings—newly turned Vampires—who attack him one day during his patrol. The Changelings make no move to kill Faolan, and puzzled by their strange behavior, he flees. Before the wolves can determine the cause, Faolan is attacked again. 

Faolan barely has time to parry the Vampire’s blows before he is ripped from his wolf form. Cowering as a human, Faolan waits for death, yet the Vampire inexplicably spares his life—but her action comes with a price. 

The Vampire claims she does not drink blood. Instead, she has vowed to kill her nemesis, Hunter, an elusive vampyre with special abilities responsible for a tragedy the Vampire refuses to disclose. She compels Faolan into joining her on a week-long journey to acquire information from Hunter’s retired executioner. Faolan’s father forces him into going, and after the Vampire saves his life, Faolan realizes that the two of them will be partners for much longer than seven days. 

Faolan and the Vampire are bound together by a force older than any of them can imagine, and only they can hope to defeat Hunter. However, the Vampire has not been entirely truthful. What is she keeping from Faolan? And will he be able to learn her secret before both of them are killed?

My Thoughts:
Retribution was quite different from the usual werewolf and vampire young adult novels. It had an original plot unlike anything else  currently written. I liked how Faolan, the werewolf, and Emma, the vampire, teamed up even though they were natural enemies. I really liked all the characters, even the villains. Every character was well written and had fun and interesting personality quirks that made the reader like them, even when the reader was supposed to hate them. The ending of the book took me by surprise. It wasn't the usual happy ending that you find with most other young adult books. The book left off on a cliffhanger, so I'm really hoping that the author writes a sequel. I would recommend Retribution to paranormal fans looking for a break from the same old story and plot line.

I give Retribution: 4/5.

Want to know more about the author?

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review, and was in no way compensated for this review.