Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Blog Tour ~ "January Black" by Wendy S. Russo

Tour Schedule
January Black Sixteen-year-old genius Matty Ducayn has never fit in on The Hill, an ordered place seriously lacking a sense of humor. After his school’s headmaster expels him for a small act of mischief, Matty’s future looks grim until King Hadrian comes to his rescue with a challenge: answer a question for a master’s diploma. More than a second chance, this means freedom. Masters can choose where they work, a rarity among Regents, and the question is simple. What was January Black? It’s a ship. Everyone knows that. Hadrian rejects that answer, though, and Matty becomes compelled by curiosity and pride to solve the puzzle. When his search for an answer turns up long-buried state secrets, Matty’s journey becomes a collision course with a deadly royal decree. He's been set up to fail, which forces him to choose. Run for his life with the challenge lost...or call the king’s bluff.  
Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Amazon Kindle

My thoughts: January Black is a puzzle for Matty.  He is given a challenge by the king to tell him about January Black.  Matty instantly goes for the logical answer, it was the ship that brought the  colonists to their planet.  But that is not the answer the king was looking for.  He wanted to know who was January Black.

This starts Matty on a quest in search of long forgotten or hidden  information.  Along the way he meats a gardener, Iris.  She helps him in his quest and becomes more than his friend.

January Black is a book that has mystery, conspiracy, romance, political wrangling, and a boy caught in the middle.

This book is intelligently written.  There is enough suspense and drama to keep you turning the pages.  Wendy Russo has crafted a book where she keeps the truth hidden until she is ready to reveal it.

There is some swearing and sexual innuendo.  I wouldn't recommend this book to YA readers younger than 16.

Praise Refreshingly intelligent and loads of fun! I lost a few hours as I read this book. It's a Young Adult novel that is refreshingly and astonishingly intelligent, and the love story is perfectly played out. ~Christine Ashworth, Amazon Review

 The mystery was intriguing - I loved how Wendy Russo weaved in all her secrets throughout the book, how she incorporated just enough to keep you reading, while never actually divulging much of anything. I was guessing for most of it and that's pretty hard to make me do. ~Julie, Clean Teen Reads

 Wendy Russo has created a masterpiece. ~Ivan Amberlake, Author  

Book Trailer

Author Wendy S. Russo Wendy S. Russo got her start writing in the sixth grade. That story involved a talisman with crystals that had to be found and assembled before bad things happened, and dialog that read like classroom roll call. Since then, she’s majored in journalism (for one semester), published poetry, taken a course on short novels, and watched most everything ever filmed by Quentin Tarantino. A Wyoming native transplanted in Baton Rouge, Wendy works for Louisiana State University as an IT analyst. She’s a wife, a mom, a Tiger, a Who Dat, and she falls asleep on her couch at 8:30 on weeknights.  

More Information:
  Blog Tour Giveaway $25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 5/8/13 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.  a Rafflecopter giveaway  

"The Debt Collector" by Susan Kaye Quinn

What's your life worth on the open market? 
A debt collector can tell you precisely.

Lirium plays the part of the grim reaper well, with his dark trenchcoat, jackboots, and the black marks on his soul that every debt collector carries. He's just in it for his cut, the ten percent of the life energy he collects before he transfers it on to the high potentials, the people who will make the world a better place with their brains, their work, and their lives. That hit of life energy, a bottle of vodka, and a visit from one of Madam Anastazja's sex workers keep him alive, stable, and mostly sane... until he collects again. But when his recovery ritual is disrupted by a sex worker who isn't what she seems, he has to choose between doing an illegal hit for a girl whose story has more holes than his soul or facing the bottle alone--a dark pit he's not sure he'll be able to climb out of again.

The first three episodes of the Debt Collector serial are collectively the length of a short novel, or 152 pages. These are the first three of nine episodes in the first season of The Debt Collector serial. This dark and gritty future-noir is about a world where your life-worth is tabulated on the open market and going into debt risks a lot more than your credit rating. Episode 4, Broken, releases 4/17/13. For more about the Debt Collector serial, seeDebtCollectorSeries.com

EPISODES 1-3 (Delirium, Agony, Ecstasy) of the Debt Collector serial. Contains mature content and themes. For young-adult-appropriate thrills, see Susan's bestselling Mindjack series.

About Susan: Susan Kaye Quinn grew up in California, where she wrote snippets of stories and passed them to her friends during class. Her teachers pretended not to notice and only confiscated her stories a couple times.

Susan left writing behind to pursue a bunch of engineering degrees, but she was drawn back to writing by an irresistible urge to share her stories with her niece, her kids, and all the wonderful friends she’s met along the way.

She doesn’t have to sneak her notes anymore, which is too bad.

Susan writes from the Chicago suburbs with her three boys, two cats, and one husband. Which, it turns out, is exactly as a much as she can handle.

Giveaway Kindle + Debt Collector 1-3 ebook (US only)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 29, 2013

Blog Tour ~ "Motherhood Matters" by Connie E Sokol with a giveaway!

Motherhood Matters: Joyful Reminders of the Divinity, Reality, and Rewards of MotherhoodMotherhood Matters: Joyful Reminders of the Divinity, Reality, and Rewards of Motherhood by Connie E. Sokol
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Source: Received to Review
Genre:  LDS Inspirational

Book Description:  Motherhood is a divine calling---but it may not always feel that way. Now you can show the women in your life how much they matter to you, with this delightful and heartwarming volume of wit and wisdom about the divinity, reality, and rewards of motherhood. Fresher than flowers and sweeter than chocolate, it's a perfect gift for the women who give so much. In these hectic days where life's demands can quickly become a heavy burden, Motherhood Matters helps you find more memorable moments and take the stress out of the to-do lists. Written with clarity, concision, and wit, this short, yet indispensable handbook is better than flowers, more guilt-free than chocolate, and gives back to the woman who sacrifices so much of herself every single day.

My thoughts: Connie Sokol has done it again. She has written an inspirational book that has lifted my spirits. In the title it states, "Joyful Reminders". The book is full of experiences with motherhood and our role as mothers that help look at the joy, instead of feeling the guilt.

I love that Connie is able to encompass the role of motherhood and help me see that I'm really doing ok. The feelings of anguish, frustration, confusion, and joy are all part of the process and normal to parents everywhere.

One chapter struck a particular chord with me, it's about loving your children in spite of them. It is a hard thing, but so vital to the growth and development of a child. I have found through my own experience that nothing soothes a struggling child more than words of love.

This is a short book. It may be short, but it is packed with words to lift the struggling mother.

Author Connie Sokol Connie Sokol is a mother of seven, a national and local presenter, and a regular speaker at Education Week. She is a monthly contributor on KSL TV “Studio 5,” and regular blogger for KSL "Motherhood Matters." She is a former TV and radio host for Bonneville Communications, and columnist for Deseret News and Utah Valley Magazine. Mrs. Sokol is the author of several books including the award-nominated romance Caribbean Crossroads, the 8-week Challenge program of Faithful, Fit & Fabulous, Life is Too Short for One Hair Color Series, as well as talk CDs and podcasts. Mrs. Sokol marinates in time spent with her family and eating decadent treats.
Tour Giveaway $25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 5/15/13 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Blast ~ Alexander Drake by Elizabeth Parkinson-Bellows

Alexander Drake new coverAlexander Drake's Extraordinary Pursuit

Meet Alexander Drake, a curious young man living in a drab, oversized mansion with his secretive father. He spent his days playing alone. In the back of his mind he wondered what happened to his mother, and why his father was tight-lipped about the past; but secrets have a way of getting out. It all started with a stay at his grandmother’s cottage. Alexander found strange clues tucked away in his father’s old bedroom. With a mysterious key and several maps in his pack he set off on an innocent search for answers about his family. When he discovered a secret passageway the search took a dramatic turn. He suddenly worried about what was searching for him. Alexander was being hunted by a sorcerer from his father’s past. Answers lead to more questions and the journey of his life. Join Alexander for a thrilling adventure in Azra’s Pith, a place of beauty and magic… but beware—something evil lurks in the shadows.  



General drake new coverThe Return of General Drake

When Alexander arrived in Verhonia, something went terribly wrong. A dark spell delivered from the mountains of Acadia sent him on a dangerous journey in the middle of the night. As he marched into the mountains, the great city of Verhonia was ambushed and burned to the ground by Roman's army of vicious giant murks. With the safety of the realm in jeopardy, General John William Drake was asked to come back to Azra's Pith. He swore he would never return. But after discovering his son was under a spell and in the grips of a dark sorcerer, he had no choice. Things take a wild turn in the mountains, with runaways, a hungry wolf and a mysterious, young empyrean wizard thrown into the adventure. A tight race against time and evil is in full swing. With faith and a little magic, they just might come out on top.  


  alexander tour

Tour Schedule


lizzieAuthor Elizabeth Parkinson-Bellows

Being the frizzy-haired tomboy with buck teeth gave me a slight case of shyness as a kid. A colorful imagination meant escape and adventure at the drop of a hat. Over the years I learned that the insecurities I carried around were a waste of time. I still prefer a football game to a manicure any day of the week. That indispensable imagination has found its way into my writing providing a sense of joy and a true purpose.  

Website * Twitter * Facebook


Book Blast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 5/15/13   a Rafflecopter giveaway

It's a Cover Reveal for "Hopes Reign" by Selina Fenech

Hope's Reign
Selina Fenech
YA Fantasy
Book Two in Memory's Wake Trilogy
Date Published: May 10, 2013


Everything is slipping away from Memory. The bond of friendship between her, Eloryn, Roen, and Will, that was formed while running for their lives is tearing. In a world that doesn’t feel like home, with a mind filled with nothing but questions, Memory struggles to be true to herself… whoever that is. When her past self starts haunting her, she knows her sanity could be the next thing she will lose.

Selina Fenech

Born in 1981 to Australian and Maltese parents, Selina lives in Australia with her husband, an unnamed cat. During her life Selina has found ancient Roman treasure, survived cancer, had knights joust at her wedding, been mugged for doughnuts, made a living as a visual artist, and shared her imaginary worlds in paintings and now in her novels.

Contact Links

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Blog Tour ~ "Daynight" by Megan Thomason (giveaway/review of "Clean Slate Complex":

On Tour with Prism Book Tours...

It's time to leave Earth and cross over to the other side... it's not as far away as you think!!

Guest Post: Kira, Ethan & Blake Character Backgrounds

daynight is told from three points of view. I didn’t set out with the goal of having a major love triangle. One of my biggest pet peeves is lopsided love triangles—the kind where one of the guys seems forced into the equation. So I definitely didn’t want one of those. Here I needed all three characters to fully tell the story. Kira’s entering the world of the SCI blind—she wants to escape bad memories at home and get a full ride college scholarship in the deal. Ethan’s been groomed his whole life to be an SCI ruler. And Blake grew up in unfathomable circumstances in Exile and wants revenge. Each perspective adds important pieces to the puzzle and as the characters collide there’s a few fireworks.

Developing characters

Importance of backstories: Every person has a million experiences that make them who they are. Characters need this, too—from the main characters to the most minor.

Physical characteristics: It’s important to be able to picture the characters—not only hair color, body type and eye color, but mannerisms as well.

Flaws: I love flawed characters and think every character needs flaws to be believable. Let’s face it, no one is perfect. So it’s tough to swallow when characters are presented as perfect characters. I intentionally gave Kira, Blake and Ethan major flaws. They’ve got to struggle with the rest of us. They need room to grow throughout the series. They need to make terrible mistakes and learn from them.

Voice: Each character needs a unique voice, particularly when writing in first person. It definitely challenged me to write from three different character’s first person POV. I had to write them separately and be in the head of one person at a time to make it work.

Naming: Everything in daynight is symbolic, names being no exception. Here the main characters’ names are all a combination of “light” and “dark” meanings.

Application: Kira
Overall goal: a girl who could be thrown into a tough situation and withstand it. She needed to be someone who could hide her emotions or the SCI wouldn’t put up with her for long.
Physical characteristics: Strawberry-blonde hair, light-green & gold eyes, 5’ 6”, fit
Flaws: Naive, loyal to a fault, buries her emotions
Strengths: Excellent poker face, logical, great at solving puzzles, optimistic
Voice: Touch of sarcasm, well-educated
Family/background: Lives in San Diego, California. Well off parents who travel a lot (leaving the kids behind). One brother a year younger (Jared). Cheerleader. Best friend: Briella. Boyfriend (of a year): Tristan.

Application: Ethan
Overall goal: I wanted Ethan to hate everything his parents stand for, but smart enough to know that if he stands up to them he’s a dead man. He’s damaged from a lifetime of emotional abuse from his parents. He doesn’t want to give into their plan for him, but then they dangle this really appealing girl in front of him. He takes the bait, but they don’t let him have her. He’s in this whole wait and see mode that makes him a little nuts. 
Physical characteristics: 6’ 1”, sapphire-blue eyes and dark curly eyelashes, disheveled dark brown hair (on the long side/slight wave), five o’clock shadow, muscular
Flaws: Inferiority complex due to having a heart defect, has a tough time standing up to his parents, more thought than action
Strengths: Sweet, romantic
Voice: Tentative, funny
Family/background: Grew up in a sterile hospital room. Parents more involved in SCI leadership than his life. Best friend: Jax Christo. Lives with his Uncle Henry on Earth while attending law school.

Application: Blake
Overall goal: Blake’s been groomed to hate the SCI and want to take them out. So I needed him to be rough around the edges and single minded. I wanted him to feel completely out of place when thrown into a situation where he’s got to depend on this girl to get through his mission. He’s at war with himself about whether to get close to her or work around her.
Physical characteristics: Slim runner’s build, dark straight hair with platinum highlights, emerald green eyes
Flaws: Impulsive, bitter, doesn’t trust, willing to do his daddy’s bidding, a bit socially inept, single-minded
Strengths: Tough, fights for what he believes in
Voice: Flippant, judgmental, calculating
Family/background: Grew up in Exile on Thera. Watched his mother slowly die after giving birth to his sister. Trained from an early age to infiltrate the SCI and help defeat them. Has intentionally been a loner the last couple years of high school.

My kids are very funny. When I asked what they thought Ethan and Blake’s strengths and weaknesses were, one daughter said: “Easy. Both their strengths: attractive to main character, able to hold their own in love triangle. Flaws: Blake—kinda an idiot sometimes. Shouldn’t listen to his pappy so much. Ethan—kinda an idiot sometimes. Shouldn’t listen to his pappy so much.” Completely made my day. Too true. Too true.

 My review of  "daynight".

Megan Thomason
Megan Thomason lives in paradise aka San Diego, CA with her husband and five children. A former software manager, Megan vastly prefers writing twisted tales to business, product, and marketing plans. When she isn't typing away on her laptop, she's reading books on her phone—over 600 in the last year—or attending to the needs of her family. Megan’s fluent in sarcasm, could potentially benefit from a 12-step program for road rage, struggles with a Hot Tamales addiction, loves world travel & fast cars and hates paperwork & being an insomniac. Daynight is Megan's first published novel, but fourth written one.

Find & Follow:

by Megan Thomason
Paperback, 324 pages
Published November 26th 2012 by Creatspace

Meet The Second Chance Institute (SCI): Earth’s benevolent non-profit by day, Thera’s totalitarian regime by night. Their motto: Because Everyone Deserves a Second Chance™. Reality: the SCI subjects Second Chancers to strict controls and politically motivated science experiments like Cleaving—forced lifetime union between two people who have sex. Punishment for disobeying SCI edicts? Immediate Exile or death.

Meet Kira Donovan. Fiercely loyal, overly optimistic, and ensnared by the promise of a full-ride college scholarship, Kira signs the SCI Recruit contract to escape memories of a tragedy that left her boyfriend and friends dead.

Meet Blake Sundry. Bitter about being raised in Exile and his mother’s death, Blake’s been trained to infiltrate and destroy the SCI. Current barrier to success? His Recruit partner—Miss Goody Two Shoes Kira Donovan.

Meet Ethan Darcton. Born with a defective heart and resulting inferiority complex, Ethan’s forced to do his SCI elite family’s bidding. Cleave-worthy Kira Donovan catches his eye, but the presiding powers give defect-free Blake Sundry first dibs.

Introducing...  the new Novella:  FREE for the Tour!
On Smashwords!

clean slate complex
by Megan Thomason

Meet The Second Chance Institute (SCI): Worldwide non-profit and do-gooder organization. Their motto: Because Everyone Deserves a Second Chance at Life(TM). Reality: hidden behind every kind act is a dark agenda designed to gain control and force societal and moral extremes. Currently, the SCI’s pushing Project Liberate, a program to woo the poor and downtrodden into their Clean Slate Complexes—where “everything is provided” from jobs to food, shelter, clothing, and education. Unfortunately, as with all things that sound too good to be true, there’s a catch…

Meet Alexa Knight. Feisty, tough and currently homeless in Los Angeles, Alexa agrees to help the SCI in return for medical care for her sick mother. When she starts to suspect there’s more to the SCI than meets the eye will she believe Adam—the boy who saved her life and the SCI’s biggest champion, or Joshua—the attractive enigma who sings about conspiracy theories and pretends to be someone he’s not?

Full of action, humor, romance, twists and turns, clean slate complex is a companion story to the highly-praised dystopian novel, daynight. It can be enjoyed before or after readingdaynight.

My REVIEW of Clean Slate Complex

Clean Slate Complex (Daynight, #0.5)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a parallel story to the daynight story. This book takes a whole new and different look at the SCI and more sinister plots are revealed.

Megan Thomason is wonderful at creating a compelling story that leaves you wondering what could possibly happen next. I read "daynight" and thought I had a handle on the SCI and their role in society, but that was on Thera.

This book concentrates on what the SCI are doing on Earth. Their web is vast and intricate. They come across as a benign entity but their reach is far and corrupt.

Another great work form Megan Thomason.

daynight Second Chances Giveaway:

Choose what you enter to win wisely. Your stay on Thera may be extended indefinitely.

Highlighting a different giveaway every daynight of the Tour... International Winners will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Certificate and US Winners may choose $25 GC in lieu of Prize Package.

US only. International winners will receive $25 Amazon gift certificate. US winners can opt to receive $25 Amazon gift certificate in lieu of any prize package.Open only to those who can legally enter. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced on Rafflecopter and Grand Finale posts as well as emailed and the winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Burgandy Ice @ Colorimetry and Prism Book Tours and sponsored by Megan Thomason. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Become an SCI Recruit
The Second Chance Institute (daynight's Dystopia)
April   22 - Launch!
                - My Seryniti - Review
                - Little Library Muse
           23 - Tressa's Wishful Endings
                - Buckeye Girl Reads - Teaser
                - Marked by Books Review
                - Red Headed Bookworm
Welcome to Thera!
Building Thera
           24 - Coffee Books and Me
                  Stressed Rach
                  Snuggling on the Sofa - Review
           25 - Christy's Cozy Corner - Teaser
                - All Fantasy Words - Review
Kira * Blake * Ethan
Character Backgrounds & Posters
           26 - Susie Q-Pons and Giveaways - Review
                - My Passion for Books - Review; Ethan
                - Paranormal opinion - Blake
                - The Cozy Reading Corner - Kira
                - Book, Books, the Magical Fruit - Teaser
                - Bookaroo-Ju - Teaser
           27 - Bookworm Lisa - The Characters
                - Getting Your Read On - Review
daynight's Controversy of "Cleaving"
           28 - Fantastical World of Wonders - Review
                - Pause Time
                - A Backwards Story
                - Beck Valley Books
           29 - I Am a Reader, Not a Writer - Teaser
                - Books Mystify - Review
                - Mel's Shelves - Review
Vacation on Earth!
           30 - The Broke Book Bank - Review
                - Letters to the Cosmos - Review
                - Arriane Cruz 
                - Candace's Book Blog
May      1 - Life of a YA Girl - Review
                - Fuonlyknew - Teaser
                - Jack's Junk Drawer - Review
Risking Exile
Dystopian Survival 101
             2 - A Tiffyfit's Reading Corner - Review
                - Lovin' Los Libros - Review
                - Paulette's Papers
                - Becky's Barmy Book Blog 
             3 - Backing Books - Teaser
                - Book Snob - Review
             4 - Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
                - Living a Goddess Life - Review; Recipe
Clean Slate Complex
             5 - Mortality Bites
                - The Book Eater
                - Deco My Heart - Review
             6 - Passion and Life - Teaser
                - The Reading Diaries - Review
             7 - Grand Finale Blast!!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Book Blog Tour : The Lola Diaries Drama Jerk by Lulubelle Love with a giveaway!

The Lola Diaries Drama JerkThe Lola Diaries Drama Jerk by Lulubelle Love
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Source: Received to Review
Genre: Middle Grade Fiction

My thoughts:  This book is told from two points of view, Lola and Hannah. Both girls have a strong personality and are facing personal crisis.  The girls have issues between them and a positive model is given for conflict resolution.

I think that this story is great for kids to read. Sometime it helps to read about a situation and learn empathy through fiction when dealing with emotional turmoil.  Lola's parents are divorced and she is a tomboy.  Hannah's parents are getting divorced and she is afraid that her situation will end up to be like Lola's.  It is also a big problem that they both have a crush on the same boy.

This may sound silly, but I liked the fact that one of the girls was still wetting the bed at age 11.  I honestly think that more children suffer from this affliction than we realize.  Having a book with a main character struggle with the issue is a positive thing for kids.

Today we welcome Lulubelle Love and her newest work: "The Lola Diaries: Drama Jerk"

If you have kids, you can't miss this book.

The Lola Diaries: Drama Jerk 
by Lulubelle Love.

Quick Facts
Release Date: February 28,2013.

Genre: Middle Grade Fiction.

Formats Available for Purchase: Paperback and ebook.

 Book Synopsis

Let’s face it turning eleven can be difficult especially when you still wear diapers to bed.  This is a secret that Lola Swanson wants to keep under wraps. But secrets always have a way of coming out especially when Hannah Thompson ( A.K.A . Captain Evil) is involved.
And then there’s the little problem that Lola and Hannah are both in love with the same boy.

The Author
Liz Steele (Pen Name Lulubelle Love) grew up in Holden, MA. She graduated from Worcester State College with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and from Assumption College with a Master of Arts in Education. After working as a special education teacher for several years, she decided to follow her passion for writing and publishing books.
Find more about her at: www.lulubellelove.com


Participate for a chance to win one of the 20 Paperback Copies of "Drama Jerk" available.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the Tour:

Tour Schedule 

April 17: Black Lion Tours Blog: Tour Kick-Off
April 18: 
Bunny's Reviews Blog: Promo Stop.
April 19: 
Laurie's Non Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews: Interview.
            Cheryl's Book Nook: Review.
April 20: 
I know that Book: Guest Post.
April 21: 
Melissa's Midnight Musings: Guest Post.
April 22: Kimberly Lewis: Guest Post.
April 23: 
My Devotional Thoughts: Review.
April 24: Pure Jonel Book Reviews: Review and Interview
               Ohana Day Academy: Review. 
April 26: Bookworm Lisa: Review.
April 27: Makayla's Book Reviews: Guest Post
April 28: A Novel Idea Live: Live Interview.
April 29: A Novel Idea Live: Promo.
May 1 : Black Lion Tours Blog: Wrap- Up.