Saturday, December 16, 2017

Debut YA Bash- Mark Maciejewski

Welcome to my stop on the 2017 Debut Author Bash presented by Ya Reads where I'm showcasing debut author Mark Maciejewski and his novel I Am Fartacus.

It’s jocks vs. nerds as a tween and his cadre of misfits go to hilarious lengths to bring down their enemies in this laugh-out-loud MAX novel.

Chub is a short, accidentally bald, middle school outcast with no chance of ever becoming one of the popular kids. With help from his personal band of like-minded misfits (not to mention tactics gleaned from the Colonel, a US military vet with toenail issues), Chub’s determined to bring down his nemesis, class hero and now potential class president, Archer, or the Arch—the very guy who betrayed Chub with the lice-killing potion that left him bald as a billiard ball. If the Arch gets to be president, Chub knows his life is officially over.

Chub’s got a lot of dirt on the Arch: embarrassing photos and underwear about to fly from the school flagpole, for starters. But then he discovers that there are some very dangerous skeletons in Archer’s closet, and more at stake than just a few middle school reputations.

With a lot of help from his friends, Chub sets off to bring down an evil empire—and inadvertently become the least likely hero that Alanmoore Middle School’s ever seen
.


Puchase:

Mark Maciejewski writes funny but smart middle-grade fiction. He lives in Seattle with his family.

Mark Maciejewski’s stories will make you snort into your latte. He’s a very funny man, but his debut, I AM FARTACUS, is much more than just cliched boy-gags; it is about friendship and turning your life around by being brave.

In his day job, Mark manages the Pacific North-West and Alaska for a steel company. As a writer he’s a member of PNWA and SCBWI and an amazing critiquing group called “The Paper Cuts”.

Visit Mark:
 

Friday, December 15, 2017

Book Shelf: Shadowblack (Spellslinger #2) by Sebastien de Castell

The second book in the page-turning SPELLSLINGER series for all teen, YA, adult and fantasy readers.

It's a few months since Kellen left his people behind. Now aged sixteen, Kellen is an outlaw, relying on his wits to keep him alive in the land of the Seven Sands. He misses home, he misses family and more than anything, he misses Nephenia, the girl he left behind.

Then he meets Seneira, a blindfolded girl who isn't blind, and who carries a secret that's all too familiar to Kellen. Kellen and Ferius resolve to help - but the stakes are far higher than they realise. A Shadowblack plague is taking hold - and Kellen can't help but suspect his own people may even be behind it.

Perfect for fans of The Dark Tower, Firefly, The Hunger Games and Guardians of the Galaxy.


More info on Goodreads....


Review:

Shadowblack is the thrilling second novel in Sebastien de Castell’s Spellslinger series and is another hilariously entertaining tale of magic, mayhem and adventure in what is a well told and fantastically paced novel!

It’s been a few months since former Jan’Tep mage Kellen walked away from his people and the life they had planned for him. Now an outlaw, Kellen and his companions, the Argosi wanderer Ferius Parfax and squirrel cat Reichis, journey through the land of Seven Sands. Surviving only thanks to his wits and occasional quick thinking, Kellen can’t help but miss his family and his old life. Yet when he meets Seneira, a blindfolded girl who isn’t actually blind, Kellen discovers shocking similarities between her ailment and his own secrets. A Shadowblack plague is effecting the people of the Seven Sands and Kellen and Ferius are determined to help them, but will the threat be too much for even them to face?

After enjoying Spellslinger so much, I was thrilled to continue on with Kellen and his story and feel that Sebastien de Castell did a brilliant job with this sequel. All the humour, excitement, wit and entertaining dialogue I loved about the first novel was evident once more. The storyline is developing even further and de Castell mixes plenty of moments of action, humour and fun into the novel. There’s so much about this series I love so far.

Kellen continues to be a solid protagonist to follow. He has a good head on his shoulders, and even as a female reader, I feel that he reads very well. I find him likable and easy to get behind as the storyline progresses. He makes me smile with his occasionally hopeless nature and I love that he’s determined to do the right thing. He’s just a genuine joy to read about.

Although, as much as I like Kellen, if I’m honest the best part about this series for me is Reichis. He steals (pun totally intended!) the show every scene he's in and I just adore the thieving, murderous little fur ball! He constantly makes me smile and I think he and Kellen are developing a truly strong bond as the series progresses. Not that Reichis would ever admit it!

Fast paced, exciting and riveting fantasy, Shadowblack was a brilliant follow up to its predecessor, easily as good as the first novel and leaves me dying to see what Sebastien de Castell has in store for his characters and his readers next!

Rating: 
Source: Won from Allen & Unwin Teen's Facebook page (Thank you guys!)
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Format: Paperback

Release Date: October 5th 2017
Purchase: Bookworld | Booktopia | The Book Depository | Amazon
Final Thoughts: I genuinely loved this book as much as the first and can't wait until the next one is released!




 

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Book Blitz: Beauty and Beastly by Melanie Karsak- Excerpt & Giveaway

Welcome to the Book Blitz for Beauty and Beastly by Melanie Karsak thanks to Xpresso Book Tours! As someone who absolutely adores the Beauty and the Beast classic, I love the opportunity to read or feature any retelling of this wonderful story. 
Beauty and Beastly sounds really good and I hope you enjoy the excerpt I have to share today!
__________________________________
In this tale as old as time, Isabelle Hawking must tinker a solution to a heartbreaking mystery. 

When Isabelle Hawking and her papa set out from London on a sea voyage, Isabelle is thrilled. Visiting foreign courts, learning from master tinkers, and studying mechanicals is her dream. And it doesn't hurt that the trip also offers Isabelle an escape from her overbearing and unwanted suitor, Gerard LeBoeuf.

But Isabelle never arrives. Swept up in a tempest, her ship is lost.

 Isabelle survives the storm only to be shipwrecked on a seemingly-deserted island. The magical place, dotted with standing stones, faerie mounds, and a crumbling castle, hints of an ancient past. Isabelle may be an unwilling guest, but her arrival marks a new beginning for the beastly residents of this forgotten land.

See how NY Times bestselling author Melanie Karsak puts a steampunk spin on the classic Beauty and the Beast fairy tale.

Add on Goodreads or purchase on Amazon


From Beauty and Beastly.....

My hands shook nervously as I slid on the yellow ball gown. It was quite silly, really, feeling so nervous. What was there to be worried about? I had done something to help the mechanicals, and they found a way to thank me the best they knew how.

Adjusting the dress, I sat down and looked into the vanity mirror. I smoothed my hair back once more. I’d styled it as Elyse Murray often wore her hair. Then I adjusted the small bumblebee hairpin in my hair—its cousin gifted to the fairies. I dabbed some perfume on my neck. By now, the Scottish lord who Papa and I had traveled to meet was already married. I’d missed that wedding. The ball gown was going to go to waste. At the very least, I would enjoy dressing up for just one night.

I adjusted the off-the-shoulder sleeves of my dress then pulled on my long, yellow gloves. Even my pair of heeled silk dancing slippers had survived in the box. I was suddenly very grateful for them. It would not due to wear traveling boots under a ball gown.

I took a deep breath, steadied my nerve, then rose and headed to the stairwell.

To my surprise, all of the candelabras in the main foyer had been lit, even the massive chandelier that hung overhead. The hall, which had seemed so dim before, was bathed in orange light. Everything felt so cheery and alive.

At the bottom of the stairs, Mister Flint, Missus Silver, Bronwyn, Missus Smith, the cook, and Mister Steele, another of the servants, stood waiting. All of them were dressed in their finest. It pleased me to see Missus Silver with her arm wrapped around Bronwyn’s waist.

And alongside them was Rhys who was dressed in a handsome suit. He wore a dark blue doublet trimmed with gold embroidery, a white silk collar, breeches and leggings, and boots. His metallic face glimmered as if it had been polished.

My stomach rocked with butterflies the size of ravens.

Isabelle, you’re being ridiculous. He’s just a machine. 

You cannot possibly be falling in love with an automaton. 

When I reached the bottom of the stairs, the ladies curtseyed, the men bowed.

Rhys offered his arm.

I linked my arm with his, and we moved down the hallway opposite that which led to the library. At the end of this hall was a set of double doors.

Mister Flint opened the doors to reveal a massive ballroom.


New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Melanie Karsak is the author of The Airship Racing Chronicles, The Harvesting Series, The Burnt Earth Series, The Celtic Blood Series and Steampunk Fairy Tales. A steampunk connoisseur, zombie whisperer, and heir to the iron throne, the author currently lives in Florida with her husband and two children. She is an Instructor of English at Eastern Florida State College.


Visit Melanie:

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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #206

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking The Spine where you can spotlight an upcoming release that you're eagerly anticipating.

This week I'm waiting on.....
 
Graevale by Lynette Noni 
Releases on: February 1st 2018

“Light or dark, only one can win. This world cannot survive in shades of grey.”

Now that Aven Dalmarta sits upon the throne of Meya, Alex must race against the clock to save the rest of Medora from the Rebel Prince’s wrath.

Haunted by an unspeakable vision of the future, Alex and her friends set out to warn the mortal races. But making allies out of ancient enemies proves difficult.

With her nights spent deep in the Library under the guidance of a mysterious new mentor, Alex is desperate to strengthen her gift and keep all those she loves safe. Because in a world where nothing is certain, she is sure of only one thing:

Aven is coming.


Thoughts:
 Graevale is the fourth installment in The Medoran Chronicles by Lynette Noni and I CANNOT WAIT for it's release! The Medoran Chronicles is quite easily one of my favourite series ever written by and Aussie author and I absolutely adore it. It's fantastic. I'm dying to be with Alex and Jordan and Bear and the rest of the gang again. 

Have you heard of this series before? 
What are YOU waiting on this week?

 

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Book Shelf: Shadow Rise (Shadow Fall #2) by Audrey Grey

Terrorist. Rebel. Traitor.

One rash decision during the Shadow Trials led to unspeakable horrors that left innocents dead, friends injured and hunted by the Empire, and Maia Graystone imprisoned in the Tower at the Archduchess’s mercy.

Unsure if Riser Thornbrook survived, Maia must find a way to battle the Empire from within its own walls and escape so she can fulfill the promise to her father and stop the asteroid. But when she breaks free and joins Nicolai's Rebel army, she discovers she’s been branded a traitor. With war between the Rebels and the Empire looming, old alliances shifting, and suspicion hanging over her head, she must fight in the Rebel Blood Courts—and win command—to regain their trust.

Only problem is, first she has defeat the reigning champion, someone she knows all too well. Will Maia’s emotions lead to her defeat, or will she rise up and claim her victory?
 


More info on Goodreads.....


Review:

Shadow Rise is the sequel to Audrey Grey’s debut novel Shadow Fall and is a superb follow up to its predecessor that is filled with action, danger and thrilling moments of excitement and romance.

Maia Greystone made one rash decision that left her a prisoner of the Empire and dozens of innocent people dead. At the mercy of a cruel overlord, Maia’s only hope is escaping her prison and joining the Rebel forces determined to overthrow the Emperor. Yet when she eventually reaches the Rebels, Maia finds herself labelled a traitor. The two people she cares for more than anything in the world either do not remember her or want nothing to do with her and those around her ostracize her for her believed loyalty to the Empire. The Rebels plan to wage war against the Emperor, but with Maia sure there is another way, will she have the courage to fight for the Blood Throne to take control of the Rebels? Or will Nicolai and his army bring the world to its knees in its thirst for revenge?

Having adored the first book so very much, I was once again entranced with Shadow Rise. I very much enjoy this perilous dystopian world author Audrey Grey has created and can’t help but get lost in it. After loving the first book so, I was stoked to jump back in and have appreciated seeing new elements introduced and explored in this sequel, including the Fienian Rebels.

From the very beginning, I have found myself adoring the strong willed and tenacious heroine featured in this series and the complex world she inhabits that is full of danger; both in the form of the political and monarchical uprising that is going on and the looming threat of the asteroid that is on a collision course with Earth and is getting closer every day. Audrey Grey seems to have taken all my favourite elements of dystopian/apocalyptic novels and woven them together to give us Shadow Fall—and by golly is it brilliant! Personally, I just love it.

There’s so many fantastic characters in this series, including a lot of new ones in the form of Rebel members we meet in Shadow Rise. Maia finds herself some true friends in Teagan and Lash who often made me smile throughout the story and who were honestly likable and fun. Riser continues to be my guy (I’ll always be Team Riser) and Maia is still the incredibly strong willed and likable character we met in the first book.

There’s plenty of action, sizzling chemistry and danger fuelled moments within Shadow Rise. Alliances form and war is imminent with Audrey Grey ending Shadow Rise is excellent fashion. Highly entertaining and so addictive, I can’t wait to get my hands on the next book as soon as it’s released!

Rating:
Source: Sent for review by publisher via Netgalley (Thank you guys!)
Publisher: Blaze Publishing
Format: Kindle ebook via Netgalley
Release Date: November 14th 2017
Purchase: Bookworld | Booktopia | The Book Depository | Amazon
Final Thoughts: I'm absolutely adoring this series and thought Shadow Rise was a great follow up--can't wait for more!


Monday, December 11, 2017

Free Ebooks

Hello fellow book lovers and happy Monday! I hope you enjoy these Amazon freebies I've got to share with you.

 

Did you manage to find something new to fill your Kindle with?

Friday, December 8, 2017

Book Shelf: Wild Invitation (Psy-Changeling 0.5, 4.5, 9.5, 10.5) by Nalini Singh

In Beat of Temptation , innocent Tamsyn has always had a place in her heart for Nathan, a blooded DarkRiver sentinel. But is she ready for the fierce demands of the mating bond?

In Stroke of Enticement , a wary young teacher, skeptical about love, arouses the man—and the animal—in an aggressive leopard changeling who must prove his affections are true.

Plus 2 NEVER BEFORE PUBLISHED NOVELLAS

In Declaration of Courtship , Grace, a shy submissive wolf, finds herself pursued by the last man she ever would have imagined: a SnowDancer lieutenant said to be “mad, bad, and dangerous to know.”

In Texture of Intimacy , SnowDancer healer Lara discovers the searing joys—and unexpected challenges—of being mated to quiet, powerful Walker, a man used to keeping his silence.


More info on Goodreads.....


Review: 

Wild Invitation is a novel made up of four different novella’s set in Nalini Singh’s exhilarating Psy-Changeling series and details four highly enjoyable stories of romance and sensuality!

I’ll be first to admit that the reason behind my purchase of Wild Invitation was that I was dying to read the prequel story featuring Tammy and Nate, two beloved DarkRiver members who have been steady features throughout the series. Nalini Singh writes a wonderful novella featuring them, but I also loved the other three that make up Wild Invitation, including one that features Lara and Walker, two characters we’ve previously followed and saw mate in Kiss of Snow. 

DarkRiver solider Zach and his human mate Annie were completely new characters for me and I loved them. Honestly, Zach and Annie were just two cute for words and even though their story was a short one, I found their romance to be well told and believable. Again, I would have loved a full length novel to follow them extensively as they were such great characters who had fabulous chemistry.

Wolves Cooper and Grace featured in the third novella and made for a very interesting read. Though I’ve followed couples who were at different positions in the SnowDancer hierarchy fall in love, none have been to the extent of Cooper and Grace. They really were on opposite ends of the spectrum with Cooper highly dominant and Grace extremely submissive. Grace was a shy but comfortable individual and it was the wolf within her that was so submissive to Coop. I liked seeing Grace reconcile both parts of herself the the steady relationship she developed with Cooper.

Lara and Walker’s story began in Kiss of Snow when we saw their budding romance intertwine with Hawke and Sienna’s tale. Picking up right where Kiss of Snow left off, this novella sees Lara and Walker continue to navigate their new mating and begin to build a life together, though with a few speed bumps here and there.

A great collection of stories that true Psy-Changeling fans won’t want to miss, Wild Invitation is worth a read for those like myself who can’t get enough Nalini Singh!


Rating:
Source: I bought
Publisher:
Berkley Sensation 
Format: Paperback
Release Date: March 5th 2013
Purchase: Bookworld | Booktopia | The Book Depository | Amazon
Final Thoughts: Well worth a read if you're a die hard fan of this series!