Friday, October 28, 2011

Death Whispers by Tamara Rose Blodgett

Almost fifteen-year-old Caleb Hart is a Cadaver-Manipulator in the year 2025.
When teens receive a government-sanctioned pharmaceutical cocktail during school, paranormal abilities begin manifesting... making the teens more powerful than the adults.
After Caleb discovers he has the rare, Affinity for the Dead, he must do whatever it takes to hide it from a super-secret government agency whose goal is exploitation.
Caleb seeks refuge in his new girlfriend, Jade, until he realizes that she needs as much protection from her family, as he does from the government.
Suddenly, Caleb finds that hiding his ability while protecting Jade and his friends is a full time job; can he escape the government, protect Jade and lose the bullies that are making him miserable?



My review:
4.5 stars

In Death Whispers by Tamara Rose Blodgett the human genome project has been finished and some amazing things were discovered.  Human beings have the ability to harness paranormal powers!  With this discovery the government becomes much more involved in everyone's lives as certain injections to help trigger these powers become mandatory.  There are various types of power, but the rarest of all is affinity for the dead (AFTD).  Caleb is a normal eighth grade boy, hanging out with his friends trying to find the courage to talk to the girl he likes.  That all changes in biology one day when the frogs they are dissecting begin speaking to him and he passes out.  Still wanting to be normal he tries to hide his powers, but the specialized testing to determine the gifted kids will soon out him to the world.  


The story of this book was fantastic.  The thought that because his power is so rare and powerful that the government was going to snatch him away from his life and make him a virtual slave to their will provided a lot of motivation for Caleb's family to try to find a way to hide his talent.  Even the fact that Caleb could be taken away from everything he knows however doesn't change that fact that Caleb is an eighth grade kid who just discovered he has some amazing abilities.  He gets himself and some of his friends into trouble in a way that is totally believable for a kid to do.  


The only real issue I had was the story being told through Caleb's eyes.  He was well written and the dialogue pretty realistic for a kid his age, but there were times it got a little old.  The system of powers and the sorting of them was ingenious.  It is relatively simple so you don't need three glossaries to cross reference everything and understand, but it is a very complete system.  This is a series that I will follow to find out how Caleb harnesses his powers and to learn more about the other abilities as well.  Very well done especially for a first time author.


Links:
Smashwords author page
Author blog
Death Whispers print
Death Whispers Kindle
Death Speaks print
Death Speaks Kindle
The Pearl Savage print
The Pearl Savage Kindle

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Heartstone Chronicles: Windchaser by Micheal Fraser review

The Allarei Heartstone has sustained the world of Lor for two thousand years. But now, as natural disasters ravage the lands and Hellsprings manifest with alarming frequency to spew murderous daemons into the Mortal Realm, one thing is becoming clear…

The Heartstone is dying.

And with it, the world will die, too.

As an ancient evil stirs in the bowels of Hell, hope is borne from the Heavens in the form of an angelic saviour whose very touch will heal the Heartstone. However, if she is to reach her destination before the world is swept away by the terrifying might of an army of Daemon-Gods, she will have to rely on a man whose soul teeters upon a blade’s edge between darkness and light.

And in doing so, she may be placing the world in even greater peril, for he is the Windchaser, Darkmalian – dispassionate, violent and unpredictable, his very soul may be the key to the destruction of the mortal races…

Windchaser is the stunning first volume of The Heartstone Chronicles, introducing the myriad races of Lor as they prepare to undergo a testing: a terrible, all-consuming conflict is coming to the Mortal Realms, and only a handful of reluctant heroes will stand fast to decide the fate of Heaven & Hell – and all that lies between…



The Heartstone Chronicles: Windchaser by Michael Fraser takes place in a large and complex world. The Windchasers are a group of specially trained elite combat specialists who chase down demons that are let into the world through temporary rifts. One of these men, Darkmalian, is a darkling. He does his job with ruthless efficiency regardless of the consequences. It is suspected that he is a renegade and does not follow the laws working more his own benefit than for the good of the realm. However when an ancient prophecy that can save or doom the world begins to come true Darkmalian is the one that will decide what happens.


In any book where a world that is filled with complex religions, political ideologies, intense characters, and a lot of geographical regions there is a struggle to provide the proper information without slowing the story down. In some places of Windchaser I think the story did get bogged down a bit by the amount of information given. The information was important to truly understanding the world and motivations of some of the characters, but there was a lot of it at times.


That being said there were some very good characters including Darkmalian. While it is hard to empathize with him because of the things that he does we are given enough information to understand a bit of why he is the way he is. The training that windchasers go through is intense and Darkmalian's made most others seem like a walk in a park. There are also scenes of epic warfare of the good and not so good allied against seemingly overwhelming odds. The story has some familiarity to it, with a prophecy that can save the world coming to a head. This familiarity is minimized by the unique circumstances in the world and some of the beasts and technology truly shine. I seriously loved the idea of the windcannons.


I recommend giving this book a shot and sticking with it through a rough beginning as it comes into it's own in the second half for sure. For .99 you have nothing to lose and a very impressive world to immerse yourself in.


Copy provided for review.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Preview of what's to come

Hello everyone,

I just wanted to let everyone know that in December I will be hosting a Winter Holiday Book Giveaway Extravaganza.  I already have almost 200 prizes (print and ebook) that will be given out.  The authors that are donating the the books are also going to be stopping by to do guest blogs to give more info about their books.  I would appreciate anyone else willing to participate or even just help me spread the word to get as many people trying to win as possible.  Keep an eye out for more updates.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Regulated for Murder by Suzanne Adair review

For ten years, an execution hid murder. Then Michael Stoddard came to town.

Bearing a dispatch from his commander in coastal Wilmington, North Carolina, redcoat Lieutenant Michael Stoddard arrives in Hillsborough in February 1781 in civilian garb. He expects to hand a letter to a courier working for Lord Cornwallis, then ride back to Wilmington the next day. Instead, Michael is greeted by the courier's freshly murdered corpse, a chilling trail of clues leading back to an execution ten years earlier, and a sheriff with a fondness for framing innocents—and plans to deliver Michael up to his nemesis, a psychopathic British officer.



My review:
4 stars


Regulated for Murder by Suzanne Adair is a detective story set in the time of the Revolutionary War.  Lt. Michael Stoddard is a British military investigator pursuing a shady land agent when he is pulled from the case and sent to deliver a message to Lord Cornwallis.  Upon arriving in Hillsborough to meet his contact Stoddard discovers him brutally murdered.  Originally a suspect he is cleared of the crime, but Schmidt the local sheriff forces him to help with the murder with threats of imprisonment and death.


I am not a person who reads a lot of books like this, but there were still several things that stuck out as unexpected.  The first is the fact that the story is told from the perspective of a British officer.  Pretty much everything else I have read taking place in this time period follows the side of the Americans.  The second was the use of actual researched historical figures, regiments, and locations to bring the story to life.  Having historically accurate people and locations made the story very easy to envision as actual occurrences rather than just words on the page.


Stoddard is a hard nosed soldier who must hide who he is or be outed and killed as a spy.  That is extremely hard for him to do as he runs into a woman from his home town and suspects that Schmidt already has him pegged for what he truly is.  He is totally believable as there are times where he just wants to run away to get away from the situation he is in.  His romantic interest in Kate also adds depth to his character.  It is also well done as I really am not a fan of romance stories, but the crime stays in the forefront of the plot the entire time with the potential romance staying in the background very nicely.


The story wraps up with a satisfactory ending, but there is more introduced to help continue the series along as well.  I personally am looking forward to checking out another story involving Lt. Stoddard and would enjoy seeing more of his assistant Nick Spry as well.


Review copy provided by author.


Check out her Amazon author page for more info on the other books she has written.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

First Chosen by M. Todd Gallowglas review

Today's review is a part of the Blog Tour de Troops. If you are interested in finding out more getting some free books check out the tour's homepage for more info.

4 stars


First Chosen by M. Todd Gallowglas follows the birth and life of Julianna Taraen. At birth she is imbued with the faith of the Saent of Grandfather Shadow as a hidden gift that will come into play at a point later in her life. Because of this unwanted gift her life is visited by tragedy on a regular basis as the Goddess of Lies Yrgaeshkil seeks to manipulate Julianna into using the gift at a time and in a way that will be to her own benefit. The plot is woven very skillfully and I can't really say anything else for fear of spoiling anything for the reader.

The book starts out a little confusing as there are a lot of unique races and gods to learn about, but as the story unfolds everything is cleared up very nicely. The magical system is very well done with the power of faith being the basis for the magic that people can use. The story also has a couple of clues to what may be coming in the rest of the series. The character Maxian introduced at the end of the story really made me eager to see what would be coming in the next book. I have a theory about who he is and I am very curious to see if I am right.

This book is filled with vivid characters engaging in some fantastic fight sequences. If you are a fan of fantasy with a bit of a darker side this book will suck you in and leave you wanting more.




A Feral Darkness by Doranna Durgin review



As a child, dog-loving Brenna Fallon naĆ­vely invokes an ancient Celtic deity to save her beloved hound--and inadvertently anchors the new-found power at a spring on her family's farm.

She doesn't know she's also left an opening for a far more malevolent force.

Years later, thanks to the actions of several angry young men, Brenna discovers the terrible potential of that gateway. With a devastating plague unfolding abruptly around her, she must depend on her wits, a stranger she doesn't trust, and a mysterious stray dog who becomes more than just a faithful companion as she struggles to drive back the threat of a modern Black Death.

Welded by a desperate sacrifice, woman, man, and dog face the feral darkness together.



My review:
4.5 stars

A Feral Darkness by Doranna Durgin tell the story of Brenna, an overworked pet groomer, whose reality is about to change drastically. When Brenna was a young girl she had a dog who was on his last leg. She did not want her dog to die so she researched ways to help. She found out about an old god that was said to favor canines and made an offering of her most precious possession, her hair. That dog had a good long life after that offering and was buried by the "shrine" that she had made her sacrifice at earlier in life. Years later some people come and defile that sacred spot. Not necessarily out of malice for the site, just drunken idiocy. That defamation brings the attention of a darker force to the site.


Today Brenna lives on her family's farm land renting out fields for others to grow crops on and working at a large pet store chain as a groomer. She always kept her dog's grave and the shrine area clear out of love for her childhood companion. Rumors of a pack of wild dogs in the area begin to circulate and it becomes dangerous for Brenna to out at night. One day she finds a very frightened corgi on her front porch. The dog's tag says his name is Druid and Brenna immediately begins to fall for him. Druid's strange behavior leads her to talk to Gil Masera, a dog trainer who recently began classes at her store. These two characters take Brenna on a journey to figure out what really happened all those years ago with her offering to save her dog and what force of darkness was brought about by the defilement of the sacred shrine.


This book was a pretty fantastic read. The level of suspense was kept pretty high throughout and even though I had suspicions of what was going on I was never really sure. Brenna is a wonderfully written character who really evolves as a person as she learns about her inner strength. I have to say that I am a sucker for dogs and having them be a core point to the story did not hurt my opinion of the book at all. That being said Druid was a wonderful dog that developed his own personality through the story. I have never had a corgi, but I have always wanted one and this book did nothing to change that. A Feral Darkness could fit into multiple genres very well and be a great example of all of them.


Review copy provided by author.


Links:
Smashwords
Author website
Hidden Steel FREE
Amazon author page

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Midnight Men and Other Stories by Lee Moan review


Men in black calling at your door on the stroke of midnight . . .

Three pieces of human flesh with the power to kill . . .

A devoted wife who just won't die . . .

A bag of bones that should never EVER be touched . . .

A vial of blood which promises a night of passion for a disfigured woman . . .

A sheriff who carries an unearthly burden . . .

These are just some of the tales in this gripping collection, taking the reader from supernatural suburban terror to the far future where the fate of mankind rests in the hands of an innocent.



My review:
4 stars

Midnight Men and Other Stories by Lee Moan is a collection of supernatural short stories.  The shorts cover a fairly wide variety of topic including: aliens, voodoo, replicants, the Devil's bones, gypsy magic, precognition, and more.


In a lot of the stories Lee uses more mind games with suspense and surprise rather than just blood and gore to get a reaction out of the reader.  I am not overly familiar with the supernatural/horror genre, but I did enjoy most of these stories.  I think they give a pretty good taste of what Lee is capable of and that is enough to make me take a look at his other books in the future.


Review copy provided by the author.


Links:
Smashwords
Forever FREE
Symbiosis FREE
The Hotel Galileo
The Vanished Race Kindle
The Vanished Race Print

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Hunted by Lindsay Buroker review

Self-taught tinkerer Kali McAlister is determined to build an airship and escape the frigid Yukon forever. Unfortunately, she’s the heir to the secrets of flash gold, an alchemical energy source that tends to make her a popular target for bandits, gangsters, and pirates. Not to mention a mysterious new nemesis with an arsenal of deadly machines superior to Kali's own inventions..




My review:
5 stars

Hunted by Lindsay Buroker is the second book in the Flash Gold Chronicles.  This is another fantastic steampunk book by an author that has mastered the genre.  Hunted continues the story of Kali McAlister and Cedar.  Cedar is a bounty hunter who has enlisted Kali's skills with invention to help him catch his targets making her a 50/50 partner.  Kali dreams of getting enough money to build an airship that will allow her to escape the frozen tundra of the Yukon.  


Kali accepted Cedar's offer not only because it would get her the money she so desperately wanted, but because her ex boyfriend had let out a secret that had all kinds of people looking to rob/kidnap/kill her.  She possessed some of her father's alchemical masterpiece flash gold.  A magical substance used to power some of her creations it had properties making it unique and extremely valuable.  When Sebastian, her ex, shows up in her life again to try to sweet talk her into working for him a whole new set of problems appears.


One of the major reasons that I pick up every book that Lindsay writes are her characters.  They way they interact with real personality and humor makes all of her books fantastic reads.  This book reveals a bit more of the past of both Cedar and Kali as well as explores their relationship a little more in depth.  The mechanical creations used both by and against Kali in the novel show a great level of creativity and it can really keep a reader on their toes never knowing what they can expect.  If you have not read Flash Gold (or the Emperor's Edge series) go pick up the first book in the series and you will be hooked.


Links:
Smashwords
The Goblin Brothers Adventures
The Emperor's Edge
Dark Currents (Emperor's Edge 2)
Ice Cracker II (and other short stories) FREE
Flash Gold
Hunted (Flash Gold 2)
Encrypted

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Drinna by Jared Gullage review

Drinna, a young Kunjel girl, finds herself awake in a world her parents have only talked about, The Sea of Grass. It is a place inhabited by dangerous creatures, vicious enemies, and even poisonous grasses.

What’s worse is that she was preparing for a rite of passage where she learned to control the rage of her people. Without the guidance of her people, the rage could be both a strong ally, and a lethal enemy.

She has only her knowledge of this place to help her. She must learn to use her parents’ guidance, question long-held beliefs, and trust herself or she won’t survive.

As if this was not bad enough, someone is watching for her, chasing her, waiting for her to make a mistake in order to capture her or worse….


My review:
3.5 stars

Drinna by Jared Gullage is the story of a young kunjel woman who is lost in the great Sea of Grass while undergoing a very traumatic stage of development.  Drinna is the daughter of a successful merchant family who are taking her to safe place for Traika, a rite of passage to learn to control her rage.  You see all kunjels have the ability to go into a rage and become much stronger and faster than they normally are.  It seems to manifest about the same time puberty would in a human.  When the rage first begins there is no controlling it.  You must be isolated and restrained while being taught how to bring on the rages and control yourself while in them.  While on the trip to begin Traika she wakes up one day in the middle of the Sea of Grass.  This is a terribly dangerous thing as without the highway she has no idea where to go as well as having no food or water.  As if those concerns weren't enough there are also many predators that would love a kunjel snack as well as the Hial, a primitive tribal society that would kill her as well.  


The book unfolds with Drinna struggling to survive by herself for the first time in a very harsh enviroment.  The story begins to unravel how Drinna came to be alone in the middle of the Sea of Grass.  She encounters many different kinds of wildlife and eventually makes a friend, but she is constantly in danger.  As the story progresses you are treated to an in depth understanding of Drinna's mind and the struggles that she is going through figuring out her rage by herself.  There is also the cultural fear that she will be outcast for doing something dishonorable while in the grips of her rage.    


I felt the story started out a bit slow, but by the end I was fairly enmeshed in the world that Jared has created.  In the beginning one of the things I struggled with is all of the new creatures and terms that are used.  He does explain everything pretty well when it is introduced, but there is a lot of information and I got mixed up a few times early in the book.  I'll even admit that I was hesitant in the beginning as the struggle for survival by one person against the environment is not really a typical choice for me to read, but once the mysteries started to become unraveled the story really started to draw me in.  I think that as Jared writes more books set in his universe it will really start to become a vibrant creation and I look forward to seeing some other works.  


Review copy provided by author.


Links:
The Dust Finders
Smashwords

Monday, October 10, 2011

Free Book Monday

For today's Free Book Monday celebration I have two things to point out.  The first is a birthday/blog anniversary giveaway over at Patricia Lynne's blog.  She has a whole lot of prizes and you can gain up to three entries by following her guidelines.  Stop by say hi and wish her a happy birthday.

The second bonus on Free Book Monday is Smite me, Oh Dark One.  This is a novella by Steve Thomas that I thought was a great read.  It is quick, but a lot of fun.  There is a lot of humor involved and it is a very unique standpoint coming from a god of "darkness".



Acerbus hates his job. While he is content to watch and study the mortal races, the other gods constantly look for reasons to destroy their newly-created world. When they finally find an excuse, they command Acerbus to become the Smiter, destroyer of all creation.

Armed with nothing but spite and goblins, Acerbus decides that there is only one way to ensure his own failure and save the world: by becoming an Evil Overlord.









Amazon Smashwords

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Interview with Stuart Aken author of Ten Tales for Tomorrow and more

Today I have an interview with Stuart Aken author of several books and short story collections. Click on any of the covers through the interview to be taken to the Amazon page for more info.  If you are an author I recommend checking out his blog for some great info.


When did you decide to become a writer?


Good question, Scott. I’m not sure I ever decided; it was more that writing
became a compulsion I could no longer ignore. I started writing illustrated
articles for the photographic press when I was 19 and working as a professional photographer. Fiction began really with a drama contest held by the major TV/radio listing magazine here in UK, the Radio Times. My radio play, Hitch Hiker, won 3rd place (Willy Russell of Educating Rita and Blood Brothers fame came 1st) and was broadcast in the 1970s. Since then, with long periods of enforced absence from the writing scene, I’ve written lots of short stories and several novels. My romantic thriller, Breaking Faith, was published at the very
end of 2008 and I published the anthology of speculative fiction, Ten Tales for
Tomorrow, in January this year.


If you are not a full time writer what do you do to pay the bills?


A lengthy period of illness forced me to reduce my full time employment to part time about 8 years ago. I still suffer from periods of ME/CFS if I overdo things, but I work part time for a local government department involved in advising and collecting a tax on business.


What was your route to Indie authoring?


In 2008, the UK Arts Council sponsored website YouWriteOn decided to get
involved in publishing and offered a print on demand and distribution service for
a very good price (£49.00). I jumped at the chance, as I’d tried my novels with
several agents and publishers and, although I’d had some encouragement, they
felt the book would not be a mass market product. I retained the digital rights
to that paperback, Breaking Faith, (available through most book retailers) and
published the novel in 2010 as an ebook through Smashwords. Later, I also
placed it on Amazon’s Kindle.


Any tips for your fellow Indie authors?


I know it’s traditional for us to encourage each other here, but can I make a
plea first? Unless you’re already published in another field or have a degree
in English language, engage a professional editor. So many badly turned-out
indie books give the whole field a bad reputation and spoil the chances of good
authors. Beyond that, I’d say persevere, write a good strong tale or a well-
constructed non-fiction work with something new to say. Ensure the text is the
best you can produce before you publish. Otherwise, the advice is the same as it
is for authors travelling the traditional publishing route; be prepared for rejection
and develop the hide of a rhino. But, most of all, enjoy the journey.


What served as your inspiration for Ten Tales for Tomorrow?


I’ve been writing short fiction for a good many years and have had several stories published in small magazines and others as prize-winners in writing contests. It seemed a natural progression to publish an anthology of the genre I’m currently concentrating on.


What other work do you have available?


My novel, as already mentioned. And another anthology of gentle love stories;
Ten Love Tales. I also edited, designed and contributed to an anthology of
short stories by my writing group (all published authors). A Sackful of Shorts is
available as an ebook through Smashwords and on Amazon.


What sites is your work available on?


My own website, http://www.stuartaken.co.uk/ and my blog http://
stuartaken.blogspot.com/ both contain samples of my writing. I once placed some
work on a peer review site but quickly discovered that the feedback was often
illiterate and the rankings were dependent on some very false support for other
works on a quid pro quo basis, which bore no relation to the quality of the work
involved, so I withdrew. I generally get all the support and useful criticism I need
from my wife and the writing group to which I belong, so I tend not to get involved
in the many online groups. There are undoubtedly some good ones, but they are
not the sort of thing that excites me.


Are you currently working on anything new and if so when can we expect to see
it?


I’m about half way through book 2 of an epic fantasy series. Book 1 is written and
stands at around 208,000 words. But I’m going to complete the second volume
before I consider publication. It seems to me that many fantasy writers embark on
a series only to run out of steam before they reach the conclusion. I don’t want
my eventual readers to worry that the same might happen with my work (it won’t)
and by having the first 2 books already written before anything is published, I
hope to demonstrate my dedication to the project. I’m thoroughly enjoying the
writing process and producing between 1,000 and 2,000 words a day. I expect to
have the story written as first draft by late summer/early autumn. Then I’ll begin
the lengthy and thorough editing process. So, I expect it’ll be early next year
before I’m ready to take the first steps toward publication.


Are there any authors that you really look up to?


Probably too many to do justice to here. But I must acknowledge William
Horwood, Richard Adams, William Golding, Jane Austen, Graham Greene, Ray
Bradbury, Charlotte Bronte, Stephen King, Dean Koontz and Anne McCaffrey,
amongst many others.


What do you see the biggest challenge in being an Indie author as?


Marketing and getting your name known as an author are without doubt the most difficult challenges. There’s no big publisher behind you to kick-start the process, but there are many, often unscrupulous, marketing organisations out there ready to take hard earned cash from the unwary. I’ve never used such organisations and rely on my networking, my blog and my website to do the donkey work.  Opportunities like those you provide, Scott, are few and far between and much appreciated. In fact, because I know how hard it is, I also offer author interviews on my own blog.


Have you ever been published in any magazines or any national publication?


Apart from the play on the UK’s major radio broadcaster, the BBC, I’ve had non-
fiction published in Amateur Photographer, Practical Photography, Photography
Magazine and The British Journal of Photography. My fiction has appeared
in Delivered, Scribble, Words and Writers’ Forum (the major British writing
magazine), where I’ve won prizes and been published in 3 of their monthly
contests.


Do you have a homepage/blog/twitter/facebook etc... that fans can follow your
progress or contact you at?


My blog is http://stuartaken.blogspot.com/
My website is http://www.stuartaken.co.uk/
You can Tweet with me: http://twitter.com/@stuartaken
I invite readers and writers as friends on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/
stuart.k.allison
And I recommend anyone with an interest in reading to join me on Goodreads:
http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4234877.Stuart_Aken
Another good place to meet like-minded folk is LinkedIn: http://
www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=78124450&trk=tab_pro
Smashwords author page


What is your favorite book/series?


A tough one: I’m reading new stuff all the time and finding some really good
reading matter. But, I was definitely impressed by William Horwood’s The Stonor
Eagles and Richard Adams’ Maia struck a chord with me. More recently, I read
and reviewed Robert Jordan’s latest book in the Wheel of Time series, The
Gathering Storm and thoroughly enjoyed that, even though I haven’t read the
whole series.


Are there any specific sites that you visit for advice or inspiration?


Advice; I find most of that, as a writer, from a combination of reading novels and
various writing magazines and from my writing group members. But I visit quite a
lot of sites in pursuit of links for readers and writers who visit my website (I have
over 300 links on there of interest to visitors) and often pick up useful information
along the way. I’m a member of Goodreads, where there are many groups
offering opinions on a great range of reading matter, as well as reviews of many
books.
Inspiration; I find this in the world in general: everything from a break in the
clouds on a stormy day to a single line of poetry can act as inspiration for me.
My ideas flow from two great driving themes in my work. Injustice in all its forms
inspires me to promote fairness and my strong belief that organised religion (of
every sort) is basically a bad thing for mankind, leads me to advance the cause of
agnosticism.


Thanks for this opportunity to blow my own horn and pepper your readers with
opinions, Scott. I hope to find new friends and readers as a result. And, should
anyone decide to read anything I’ve written, I’d really appreciate a review on the
various sites that sell my work. Reviews are probably the single most important
influence on whether people buy a book.


I'd like to thank Stuart for taking the time to share his opinions with us and wish him the best with his literary career.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Red Tash Trick or Treat Bash

Just a quick note to let everyone know that a new blogger buddy of mine is currently running a pretty impressive giveaway.  If you enter you even have a chance to win a Kindle!  Stop by and check out her blog for more details and check out her book on This Brilliant Darkness on Amazon.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

New Blood by Paul Dorset review

A single kiss can get a girl killed. But what if he's the most irresistible man you've ever met? What would you do? 

In a world where big corporations are controlled by a secret society, Beau is on track to have everything he ever wanted and more. And there is only one woman that stands in his way - As long as she can resist falling in love with the man of her dreams.

In this contemporary tale of power, greed, ambition, death and love, what would you be prepared to sacrifice to have it all?
My review:
4 stars

The Beginning of New Blood by Paul Dorset actually had me a little scared.  It started out leaving me worried that it was going to be another example of the teen aged paranormal romance that is saturating the market right now.  Having read a few of Paul's other books I continued to read and what was revealed was not at all what I expected.  Now there are the elements of paranormal romance in the book.  Lucy is a young woman who seems to really want to find a good guy to go out with.  Beau has a gift that makes normal romance impossible for him.  

The story begins with a glimpse at the paranormal elements in the world.  Beau has some pretty crazy powers that help him to advance his career, but leave a trail of corpses in his wake.  He is a member of a secret society known as the Anons that seem to be the driving force behind much of what happens in the world.  He dreams of having real power and is willing to do whatever it takes to get it.  

Lucy is a normal girl from England who is now living in Melrose WA (near Seattle).  She shares her apartment with Sabrina who works at the same company as Beau.  Lately Lucy has been getting horrendous migraines, which render her unable to get out of bed.  She has never had them before and has no idea what could be causing them.  

The characters are well developed and there are a lot of little bits of information laid out that begin to form an image of what to expect.  There are no solid answers on anything however.  After the rocky start I had with the book it really got me interested in what was going on.  I have a suspicion as to what is causing Lucy's headaches, but I have no idea why it does so.  I am also extremely interested in finding out more about the Anons.  Several higher ranking members of the group are introduced and a bit of a taste of their world is given, I need to see more though.  As Beau begins to climb up his corporate ladder it seems that he is being sent to see things that the Anons want him to see and there are some references to a very disturbing research site located in California.  All of these things have really driven my interest in reading the next book in the series.  

I personally really did not like Beau.  I think Paul did a great job developing him as I can see people that I have worked with that remind me of him (hopefully without the abilities he has) and make me hate him for it.  Lucy was pretty agreeable to me except in one instance she seemed a bit out of character which left me a little stumped.   I won't go into details as pretty much anything I say will giveaway some fairly decent plot points.  Sabrina is a good support character for Lucy and I wonder is she has a secret crush on her roommate.  

Summary:
New Blood is a paranormal conspiracy novel that has a wide range of appeal.  There is enough romance to bring in fans of that genre, but the story is not overshadowed by sappy teenage love scenes.  The relationships between the characters bring the story to life in a believable and entertaining way that everyone can enjoy.

The book should be hitting shelves in a couple of weeks (I was lucky enough to get an ARC) and if you are interested you can check out Paul's blog for a chance to win a copy!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Cadman's Gambit giveaway 3 FREE print copies and 3 FREE ecopies!!

Today's giveaway is brought to you by D.P. Prior author and editor of a ton of books, including The Ant-Man of Malfen (The Chronicles of the Nameless Dwarf) .




Today's giveaway is for the first book in his latest series Cadman's Gambit (Shader)


Dr Ernst Cadman has led a quiet life, but that’s how he’s wanted it all these hundreds of years. With a secret like his, anonymity and caution are the best friends a man can have. Nothing could tempt him from the safety of his parasitic existence at the heart of the city of Sarum—at least nothing this side of the Abyss.

Cadman stakes everything on obtaining the artefact that once destroyed an entire civilization, but in so doing he draws the gaze of a sinister presence from beyond the stars.

Meanwhile, Deacon Shader, veteran of the war against the undead armies of the Liche Lord, has one last fight in him. This time it’s just a tournament, with the prize a sword steeped in myth. Win or lose, Shader intends to defy his Templum master and retire to the Abbey of Pardes.

When a horror from the past wrecks Shader’s monastic dream and leads him to plague torn Sarum, he finds an ancient power unleashed that imperils more than he could possibly imagine—a power now in the hands of Dr Cadman.

Gods tremble, and worlds will fall unless Shader can conquer his personal demons and accept the fate he’s been prepared for since birth.



Print copies open to US residents only.  To enter leave a comment on this post with a valid email address.  Drawing will be held Oct 17th all winner will be notified within 1 week.


And lastly here is a special sneak peek at the cover and blurb for the second book in the series The Best Laid Plans.