30 Aug 2012

Book Review - The Selection by Kiera Cass

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in the palace and compete for the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself- and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

Published:  24th April 2012
Source:  Netgalley Review
Links:  Goodreads  /  Amazon.co.uk  /  Amazon.com    

My Review       7 out of 10

So, first off I have to make a mention about the cover before talking about the book.  What an absolutely gorgeous cover...  I read this book as an ebook but the cover was still amazing looking at it through my tablet.  I have to admit that my favourite colour of all time is Turquoise so the colour in this completely caught my eye, not to mention the pretty pretty cover....  

Now to the story, I liked the fact that there is a lot of description to this book.  As this is a futuristic type story, the more description is definitely better.  When reading books in a different time, I like to immerse myself in the world as well as the story.  The main character, America (Mer for short) is the main character who we see at the beginning as a singer.  Everybody has their different 'class' in society and being a singer, I believe, is about middle class.  

For me, the story really started when America is chosen to take part in The Selection, leaving a boy that she thought she loved behind.  America makes friends with one of the other 'Selected' and there is also a couple of romances in there too...  

I am very interested to follow this series as I would love to learn more about the King and Queen as in this story the King is portrayed to be a very strong character and the Queen seems to be a very 'normal' character.  I am also very keen to carry on with this series to find out what actually happens next.  I had got to the end of reading this book and was a bit puzzled by where it finished, which I thought was quite unusual.....

A very enjoyable book and an easy read...  

Best wishes

Debs :-)
Continue reading Book Review - The Selection by Kiera Cass

28 Aug 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Velveteen by Daniel Marks

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly memo that is hosted by Breaking the Spine Blog.


Expected Release Date:   9th October 2012
(Release date obtained from Goodreads)

Goodreads link is here.

Velveteen Monroe is dead. At 16, she was kidnapped and murdered by a madman named Bonesaw. But that’s not the problem.

The problem is she landed in purgatory. And while it’s not a fiery inferno, it’s certainly no heaven. It’s gray, ashen, and crumbling more and more by the day, and everyone has a job to do. Which doesn’t leave Velveteen much time to do anything about what’s really on her mind.


Velveteen aches to deliver the bloody punishment her killer deserves. And she’s figured out just how to do it. She’ll haunt him for the rest of his days.

It’ll be brutal... and awesome.

But crossing the divide between the living and the dead has devastating consequences. Velveteen’s obsessive haunting cracks the foundations of purgatory and jeopardizes her very soul. A risk she’s willing to take—except fate has just given her reason to stick around: an unreasonably hot and completely off-limits coworker.

Velveteen can’t help herself when it comes to breaking rules... or getting revenge. And she just might be angry enough to take everyone down with her
Continue reading Waiting on Wednesday: Velveteen by Daniel Marks

27 Aug 2012

Book Review - The Reef by Nora Roberts

Marine archeologist Tate Beaumont has a passion for treasure-hunting. Over the years, she and her father have uncovered many fabulous riches, but one treasure has always eluded them: Angelique’s Curse—a jeweled amulet heavy with history, dark with legend, and tainted with blood. In order to find this precious artifact, the Beaumonts reluctantly form a partnership with salvagers Buck and Matthew Lassiter.

Having to share this dream is more than Tate can bear, but she has little choice. As the Beaumonts and Lassiters pool their resources to locate Angelique’s Curse, the Caribbean waters darken with shadowy deceptions and hidden threats. Their partnership is placed in jeopardy when Matthew refuses to share information—including the truth behind his father’s mysterious death several years earlier. For now, Tate and Matthew continue their uneasy alliance—until danger and desire begin to rise to the surface…

Publication Date:  1998
Publisher:  Piatkus
Source:  Bought
Links:  Goodreads  /  Amazon.co.uk   /  Amazon.com 

My Review     10 out of 10

If you would like to see the video review, please see the end of this post. 

I have to confess that this is the first book I have read written by Nora Roberts and I was very surprised.  I had this preconceived (wrongly) notion that all Nora Roberts books were quite steamy and had lots of 'sexy times' in them.  That may be true with some of her books but this is definitely not one of those stories.  

This story takes place over three separate times which are split into parts; the first part starting in the past where we see Matthew Lassiter when he was younger with his father and a dark character called Silas Van Dyke.  His father and Silas are diving for a ship wreck when something goes wrong and Matthew's father comes back up the surface dead.  Matthew suspects that Silas was involved.  The next part of the story we see Tate Beaumont and her family who are avid divers and treasure/ship wreck adventurers.  This is where we see Matthew Lassiter again.  The last part is based in the future and what happens after the events of the present have occurred.

There are a few plots going on in this story.  You have the story of Matthew trying to find out what really happened to his father, following Matthew's relationship with his Uncle Buck (fellow treasure hunter), possible romance between Matthew and Tate and the hunt for Angelique's Curse.  

I absolutely loved this story.  For me, this story had the perfect amount of romance, suspense and action that just kept my attention throughout the whole of the book....  If you are a fan of Nicholas Sparks and stories like that, I would highly recommend this one...  Also, if any one of you have watched the movie Fool's Gold (starring Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson).

Best wishes

Continue reading Book Review - The Reef by Nora Roberts

26 Aug 2012

Book Review - Cellar Doors by Lance Lacoax

On the outskirts of Willow, in the shadow of a frostbitten hillside, a pair of oak doors stand against the February cold. Doors that hide an ancient secret. A secret as old and decayed as the earth itself. And through the hollows, the lingering echo of children’s laughter rises and falls in cryptic rhythm.

In the wake of a grisly string of deaths, a handful of souls become entangled in a paranormal tale of lost hope, serial murder, and revenge. In their search for absolution, they find the line between the natural world, and the spiritually sinister, is easily blurred and often crossed.

Publication Date:  2nd April 2012

My Review:   10 out of 10

If you would prefer to see the video review, please see the end of this post.

I absolutely loved this book.   For me, this was a very creepy book right from the beginning.   Right from the start there is this feeling that there is someone else around, maybe watching and maybe waiting.  There is a dark secret that needs to be discovered.

There are a lot of characters  in this story, especially at the beginning.  It did take me a little while to figure out what was going on in the story but that was part of the fun of the story for me  For me, this story is very fast paced and I could not help speeding through this.  I liked the fact that the chapters were short.  When a chapter is short, I find it helps keep up the pace of the book and keep the action momentum going.  

This is a great suspense/thriller story that kept me on my toes right until the end.  Definitely very creepy but loved it!

Best wishes

Debs :-)
Continue reading Book Review - Cellar Doors by Lance Lacoax

22 Aug 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly memo that is hosted by Breaking the Spine Blog.


Expected Release Date:   18th September 2012
(Release date obtained from Goodreads)

Goodreads link is here.

“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before.(less)
Continue reading Waiting on Wednesday: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

18 Aug 2012

14 Aug 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Cursed by Jennifer L Armentrout

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly memo that is hosted by Breaking the Spine Blog.


Expected Release Date:   18th September 2012
(Release date obtained from Goodreads)

Goodreads link is here.

Dying sucks--and high school senior Ember McWilliams knows firsthand. After a fatal car accident, her gifted little sister brought her back. Now anything Ember touches dies. And that, well, really blows.

Ember operates on a no-touch policy with all living things--including boys. When Hayden Cromwell shows up, quoting Oscar Wilde and claiming her curse is a gift, she thinks he’s a crazed cutie. But when he tells her he can help control it, she’s more than interested. There’s just one catch: Ember has to trust Hayden's adopted father, a man she's sure has sinister reasons for collecting children whose abilities even weird her out. However, she’s willing to do anything to hold her sister's hand again. And hell, she'd also like to be able to kiss Hayden. Who wouldn't?

But when Ember learns the accident that turned her into a freak may not've been an accident at all, she’s not sure who to trust. Someone wanted her dead, and the closer she gets to the truth, the closer she is to losing not only her heart, but her life. For real this time.

Best wishes

Debs :-) 
Continue reading Waiting on Wednesday: Cursed by Jennifer L Armentrout

13 Aug 2012

Author Interview: Dennis Timothy

It was Angie Timmons turn to host Christmas dinner for her adult family and friends. This wonderful assortment of characters brings their quirks to the holiday table. Each person determined to make the best of things; but, all bets are off when a freak blizzard holds them captive.

A fast-paced read filled with humor, drama, and adult themes. A reminder of why we dread the holidays. A story that begs the question, could any average family survive this much togetherness?

Goodreads Page:  click here

If you could work with any other author, who would it be and why?
I would have loved to work with Ernst Hemingway.  His prose offers a brevity and complexity that I marvel at.  He used simple language and simple sentences.  He didn’t bother with complex descriptions.  For instance, in his short story Hills Like White Elephants the only description we have of Jig, is that she took off her hat and set it on the table.  Also, anyone who says “write drunk, edit sober” is okay in my books.  I love off-beat characters.
Alex Kava also comes to mind.  We are both members of the Nebraska Writers Guild, and I had the opportunity to sit and visit with her at the 2011 Spring Writers Conference.   I found her to be both gracious and engaging.   And, she’s developed these marvelous contacts with law enforcement that allow her to bring a sense of reality, and believability, to her stories.   Also, she’s pretty and she smells nice.
My writing style has been compared to John Grisham’s; so, I don’t want to work with him.  He’s a lawyer, and I would probably have to do all of the heavy lifting.

What would be a typical working day for you?  When and where do you write?
I still work for a living – writing isn’t supporting me yet.  So, my writing time is limited to about two hours on weekday afternoons; Saturday mornings; and, Sunday afternoons.  During the day, if I get an idea that I think may prove useful down the line, I make a note of it and stuff it in a shirt pocket.  When I get home, I take the notes, reexamine them, and capture the better thoughts on a digital recorder.  Every couple of weeks, I move these notes to my laptop computer.   Currently, I’m using a text to speech recognition program, called Dragon Naturally Speaking, so the process is not as burdensome as it sounds. 
Most of my writing is done in my parlor, or at my lady friend’s computer room.  Also, if I’m on holiday, I’ll take my laptop and try to get some writing done wherever I am.  A great deal of Merry Hell was outlined at Estes Park, Colorado, at a cabin on the Big Thompson River which was a very creative environment.

What is the hardest part of the writing for you?
Finding the time to write.  I mentioned earlier that I work fulltime.  I also need to find time to write, edit, outline, promote, and do a little reading myself.  Merry Hell is actually my third novel; but, it’s the first one I’m taking to market.  I self-published it, without realizing how much work promoting it would entail.  It’s a great story, a real page-turner; but, it’s also a big world.  And, it’s sometimes difficult to get the world’s attention.
When and why did you first start writing?
I started writing short stories thirty years ago.  I compiled them into a book with the working title You Can’t Walk to Florida Naked.  They are still safely in a drawer and may see the light of day someday. 
Next, I started writing short essays and editorial pieces for a friend who owned a newspaper entitled The Patriot Whistle.  These were my first published works. 
My real interest in writing came several years ago.  One of my serious hobbies is photography.  I thought I had signed up for a photojournalism class at the local college. My thinking was, if I could improve my writing skills, I could sell some freelance photos with articles.   Actually, I had accidently signed up for a course titled How to Write a Winning Novel.  It wasn’t what I wanted, but I had paid good money for the course and stuck with it.  Steve Alcorn was the instructor.  He’s a remarkably accomplished individual as well as a superb instructor.  He taught me how to organize and write a story.   Under Steve’s tutelage, I flourished and became infected with the writing bug.  So, it was the best mistake of my life.
After the course, I wrote a historical action/adventure novel with the working title The Whiskey Scrolls.  It took three years to finish all 435 pages.   I’m hoping to bring it to market in the next two years.  I also had a short story, Found Them, published in the Summer Edition of Golden Visions Magazine.  I started the actual writing of Merry Hell in November of 2011.  So, I am getting a little faster at this business.

How did you come up with the idea for the book ‘Merry Hell’?
The story of Merry Hell concerns a strong female character, Angie Timmons.  Angie is hosting Christmas Dinner for her adult family and friends.  She is also planning to enter an important cookie contest the next day.  Everything is perfectly planned, until a freak blizzard hits.  The storm traps everyone in her home, and her oldest daughter goes missing.  It’s a family drama with a lot of humor – sometimes a bit over the top; but, certainly believable.  Everyone has family or friends with quirks, and it’s glorious fun when they’re trapped together.
I live in an area that is largely agrarian.  The area is populated with strong women who are very self-reliant.  I also live in an area where the winters can be very difficult.  Heavy snows and strong winds are the norm from December to March.  I have always found it fascinating that families will make plans for Christmas in this area, then agonize over whether the weather will actually let them happen.  The saying here is “People make plans, and God and Nature laugh”.  That’s the basis for the story.  While the characters are made up from my imagination, they incorporate elements of everyone I have met along the way.

Are you a big reader?  If so, what are you reading now?
Since I do my own editing, it seems that over the last two years, I’ve mostly read my stories.  However, I am a big reader, when I have the time.  I have just finished Steig Larsson’s works.  I’m currently reading The Elephant to Hollywood by Michael Caine.  A friend gave me Charles Frazier’s Thirteen Moons, so that’s next on the list.

Do you have any advice for other aspiring writers?
My first piece of advice would be to organize.  Learn the proper steps in constructing a novel.  These stories are essentially a three act play.  Learn to outline your plot points.  That way you don’t wander off course.  It drives me crazy when I read a comment like “I’ve been writing this story for three years, and I’m not sure where it’s going or how it ends”.  Also, if you learn to outline, and  you happen to get stuck in a scene, you can just move on to the next scene until you can resolve the issue.  You can write backwards or forwards.  Personally, I won’t even start an outline until I have the first scene and the last scene firmly in my mind.
Also, when you are first writing your story, just write.   If the creative juices are flowing, then is not the time to agonize over just the right word choice, or to worry about typos.   Those will be fixed in the editing process.  Your mission is to get your story to the “Crummy First Draft” stage.
I would also commend the current version of Dragon Naturally Speaking.  This is a speech to text program.  You talk into a headset, and the words appear by magic on your computer screen.  It’s not perfect, but it’s pretty close; and, I can talk faster than I type.  Again, just getting to the “Crummy First Draft” stage.  I wrote my last novel (110 pages) in three weeks with this program.  
Finally, join a support group; you’re going to need it.  I’m a member of the Nebraska Writer’s Guild.  These groups aren’t going to help you sell books. But, they are useful for tips and techniques.  They are also useful for those times when you just need to tell someone what a rough business this can be.  Odds are, whatever the problem, you haven’t invented something new.  Someone probably has faced it before and may have an answer.   And, if you have invented a new problem, then you have something interesting to share with the group.  Also, most of these organizations have an annual conference.   If you can make it there, and square off into groups, someone is bound to have beer money.

Continue reading Author Interview: Dennis Timothy

10 Aug 2012

9 Aug 2012

Author Interview: Matt Larkin, Author of Children of Sun and Moon

The Lunar King bargained his daughter away in marriage to end generations of war between the two dynasties of the Skyfall Isles. The King sends his niece Chandi along as handmaid to his daughter. Chandi has two tasks: watch over her cousin, and spy on the Solars. Still seething over the death of her lover during the war, Chandi accepts the task he gives her. The Solars cost her everything she cares about, and now she wants nothing more than proof of their treachery so she can go home.

She knows little of spying, but the blood of the Moon God running through her veins gives her powers mortals can’t match, powers that let her slip into places she’s not supposed to be. Of course, the more she uses her powers, the faster she becomes a lunatic.

When she discovers a Solar soldier, Naresh, watching her, she decides to return the favor and stick close to him. But as he shows her the wonders of the domed underwater city, she begins to realize the Solars are not what she thought. Soon, she’ll have to choose between loyalty to her people and her own heart.

Book 1 in the Skyfall Series
Goodreads:  Click Here 
Buy it here:  Amazon.co.uk  /  Amazon.com

If you could work with any other author, who would it be and why?
It’s a hard choice. I guess Brent Weeks. I really admire his sense of pacing and the
surprises he crafts into his novels. Both of his series rank among my all-time favorites.

What would be a typical working day for you? When and where do you write?
Given the chance, I usually start writing in the morning around 7:00 or 8:00 and write
until dinner time. Of course, many times, I have to make do with what time I can find.
That means sometimes editing after dinner or writing a few thousand works in the late

What is the hardest part of the writing for you?
Of the actual writing? I guess I feel compelled to reconcile a lot of different, sometimes
contradictory ideas. A good novel, especially in fantasy, it doesn’t just come from one
idea, but from many working in conjunction. But the practical realities of publishing are
probably harder than the writing itself.

When and why did you first start writing?
As a kid. I always felt the compulsion to tell stories to entertain my friends. Didn’t take
too long before I wanted to record those stories.

How did you come up with the idea for the book ‘Children of Sun and Moon’?
I was studying Hindu mythology and got caught up in the stories of the different
dynasties of the Kshatriya. I began developing a setting where these dynasties would
fall into a terrible war, and eventually I decided an archipelago was the perfect setting.
My interest in Indonesian mythology made that a natural fit. But really, Children of Sun
and Moon is a love story about two people from different cultures. They have everything
against them, but love refuses to be pushed to the side.

Are you a big reader? If so, what are you reading now?
Yes. Currently I’m reading and critiquing the WIPs for several other fantasy writers. But
normally, yeah, I read a lot of epic and a lot of urban fantasy.

Do you have any advice for other aspiring writers?
Write a lot. The first novel you write isn’t going to live up to your expectations. Read
some good books on the craft, learn the common mistakes, edit those mistakes out of
your work. And keep writing.

Continue reading Author Interview: Matt Larkin, Author of Children of Sun and Moon

8 Aug 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Inbetween by Tara Fuller

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly memo that is hosted by Breaking the Spine Blog.


Expected Release Date:  28th August 2012
(Release date obtained from Goodreads)

Goodreads link is here.

Since the car crash that took her father’s life two years ago, Emma’s life has been a freaky—and unending—lesson in caution. Surviving “accidents” has taken priority over being a normal seventeen-year-old, so Emma spends her days taking pictures of life instead of living it. Falling in love with a boy was never part of the plan. Falling for a reaper who makes her chest ache and her head spin? Not an option.

It’s not easy being dead, especially for a reaper in love with a girl fate has put on his list not once, but twice. Finn’s fellow reapers give him hell about spending time with Emma, but Finn couldn’t let her die before, and he’s not about to let her die now. He will protect the girl he loves from the evil he accidentally unleashed, even if it means sacrificing the only thing he has left...his soul.

Best wishes

Debs :-)
Continue reading Waiting on Wednesday: Inbetween by Tara Fuller

6 Aug 2012

Author Interview: Ellie James, Author of the Midnight Dragonfly Series

 Author Website -  http://www.elliejames.net/

1. If you could work with any other author, who would it be and why?

First off, let me thank you for inviting me onto your blog. I love all that your passion for books and all that you’re doing to share that love!  So wish I could be there in person to answer these questions with you!

Okay, what other writer would I want to work with?  Well, he’s not a novelist, per se, but he is a story creator, and his work does routinely rock my world: JJ Abrams, the mastermind behind Alias, Lost and Fringe. I absolutely love the way that man’s mind works, his fascination with mystery and possibility, with the unexplained and the bizarre, with history and prophecy and human interactions. I’d love to brain-meld with him for a day—or get him to hire me to work on one of his shows!!!

2. What would be a typical working day for you? When and where do you write?

I love writing. I love creating. I love exploring story-worlds. My mind is always spinning, whether I’m at the computer or not. Typically I’m at my desk 4-5 hours per day, 5 days per week, with “mind work” happening the rest of the time. I’m constantly grabbing my phone and recording voice messages or jotting random notes. I’m not sure why, but my absolute best thoughts come to me at times when it’s hardest to jot them down: in the shower, while driving, and while running.

Most of the time I work from my office space in the upstairs of our house, with a lovely east facing window to my left and a door to the rest of the house to my right. Initially, I had my workspace situated so that my back was to the door, but I HATED that. I just never felt comfortable, kinda like I never feel comfortable in a restaurant if I’m not sitting with my back to a wall. (I think maybe in a former life I was a warrior who met a grim fate through a sneak-attack from behind!)
Anyway, I have to have my back to the wall—and I really, really prefer a neat and tidy workspace: for me, clutter in my office= clutter in my mind.  However, with young kids, I’m constantly tripping over stuffed animals and race cars!!!
Here’s what the floor of my office looked like as I approached the deadline for FRAGILE DARKNESS (book 3 in the Midnight Dragonfly series)!! Sometimes it really helps to sit down and spread everything out!

When planning my workspace, I consulted Feng Shui for paint color and ended up with a blue-green that is supposed to stimulate creativity. I also have an entire wall dedicated to inspirational sayings, such as Shoot for the Moon. Even if you miss you’ll land among the stars and Don’t believe everything you think!, as well as a display of my books. 

3. What is the hardest part of the art of writing for you?

That’s a great question. I love playing around in story worlds so much I think the hardest part is letting go. I could fiddle with my stories forever, letting my characters turn left instead of right and exploring what happens next. There are so many possibilities, it’s tough to choose one and run with it. With every book I’ve written, there’s something I’d love to change, all the way from adjusting an existing scene to scrapping it altogether and replacing it with something completely different. In fact, just last night I woke up around 3:30 in the morning with a killer idea for my book which coming out later this year (Fragile Darkness)…but it’s far too late for changes!

4. When and why did you first start writing?

When I think back to what inspired me to start writing, I can’t isolate any specific event or point in time that serves as a trigger. A librarian’s daughter, I’ve been writing stories as long as I can remember. I think I wrote my first fan-fic before I was five!  I would fall in love with characters and not want their stories to end, so I’d keep them going. It wasn’t just fan fic, though. I had my own creations, such as Monster Falls In Love and Jacquie and the Swamp. In middle school and high school I was always writing poems (and even songs!) for my friends, usually about something romantic, and something dangerous! Growing up in Louisiana, my stories always took on a mystical feel, featuring ghosts and danger and all sorts of things that couldn’t be explained, and always, always a healthy dose of star-crossed lovers. When it was time for college, my mother and I were discussing majors, and I asked what I could major in that would involve writing. She said journalism, so journalism it was. Of course, writing obituaries for my news-ed class wasn’t quite what I had in mind, but everyone has to start somewhere, you know?

5. How did you come up with the idea for the book ‘Shattered Dreams?’

It was one of those bizarre, unplanned things. A few years ago I wasn’t getting much sleep and woke up one early one morning from one of the most incredibly detailed, vivid dreams I’d ever had. I’d more than just seen a group of teen sneak into an old abandoned mansion—I’d been with them.  I’d gazed into the darkness, and smelled the decay. I’d felt the fear, and the crazy blast of excitement at the prospect of a game of truth or dare.  My heart was still racing when I woke up. The images lingered. I kept thinking about what I’d seen, and from the questions came: What happened next? What if one of the teens was a psychic? What if she saw something…something bad? What if she had a premonition? What if what she saw actually happened?  What if no one believed her, or at least, no one but the last guy she should let herself begin to fall for

As I answered those questions, the Midnight Dragonfly books were born!

6. Are you a big reader? If so, what are you reading now?

Yes! I read everything! I read magazines and catalogs, medicine bottles and instruction labels…anything I can get my hands on at a given moment. I always have a few books going at one time, generally one fiction and several non-fiction. (I’m totally in love with books like The Power of Now.)  Presently I am sooo lucky to be reading an advance copy of a book coming out this fall, The Trouble With Fate , by a super talented new author, Leigh Evans. (Mark your calendar for this fall. You’re going to want this one, as well as Ashes of Twilight by Kassy Tayler!)

7. Do you have any advice for other aspiring writers?

Yes! Believe in yourself and never give up. Each of us has stories to tell, and only you can tell them. The writing life can be incredibly hard. You spend tons of time alone, creating, and then you toss your creation out to the rest of the world, to see what they think. Some will love it, some won’t. That can take a toll of your confidence and your dream. But I have a plaque across from my desk that reads, “You’ll miss 100% of the shots you don’t take,” and I essentially live by those words. You have to believe in yourself and follow your dreams. It’s the only way they can come true.

Deb, thank you so much for sharing my books in your café!

About Ellie James
Most people who know Ellie think she’s your nice, ordinary wife and mom of two young kids. They see someone who does all that normal stuff, like grocery shopping, walking the dogs, going to baseball games, and somehow always forgetting to get the house cleaned and laundry done.
 What they don't know is that more often than not, this LSU J-School alum is somewhere far, far away, in an extraordinary world, deeply embroiled in solving a riddle or puzzle or crime, testing the limits of possibility, exploring the unexplained, and holding her breath while two people fall in love.
Regardless of which world Ellie’s in, she loves rain and wind and thunder and lightning; the first warm kiss of spring and the first cool whisper of fall; family, friends, and animals; dreams and happy endings; Lost and Fringe; Arcade Fire and Dave Matthews, and last but not least…warm gooey chocolate chip cookies.

About the Midnight Dragonfly Series
The firstborn daughter, of the firstborn daughter, of the firstborn daughter, sixteen year old psychic Trinity Monsour has a connection to the Other Side. She knows secrets and truths she shouldn’t, feels emotions that do not belong to her, and see events that have yet to happen. They come to her as glimpses, shadowy, disjointed snapshots that flicker through her dreams. Some terrify: a girl screaming, a knife lifting, a body in the grass. But others--the dark, tortured eyes and the shattering kiss, the promise of forever--whisper to her soul.
They come without warning. They come without detail.
But they always mean the same thing: The clock is ticking, and only Trinity can stop it.
Find out how in Shattered Dreams, available from QuercusKids!

Continue reading Author Interview: Ellie James, Author of the Midnight Dragonfly Series

4 Aug 2012

Guest Post - Unidentified Woman by Hillel F. Damron


Author Website - click here

Unidentified Woman—a literary mystery novel about rape, revenge, and redemption—follows a young Mexican girl, Maria Sanchez, who is kidnapped on her way to school one morning. She is enslaved and repeatedly, brutally raped by paying costumers, mostly Americans. But she survives and grows up to become an independent young woman living in Los Angeles. She tracks down all those men who wronged her, exerting a deadly, unusual punishment.
On her footsteps, following the police failure to capture her, is Gideon Gold: a reluctant, amateur private investigator, and a former commander of an elite Israeli paratroops unit and a Mossad secret agent. His frantic pursuit of the her takes unexpected twists and turns, culminating in a dramatic, compelling game of cat-and-mouse that will change both of their lives forever.

About the Author: Hillel F. Damron was born in Israel to parents who survived the Holocaust. He was an officer at an elite paratroops unit and was wounded in battle. He studied films at the London Film School and became a film director of TV documentaries, a feature film, and numerous video shorts. He is the award-winning author of a Sci-fi novel, short stories and film reviews. His novel Very Narrow Bridge, a first in the series of Gideon Gold’s Investigation, was published last year.

This year in February he was awarded Moment Magazine’s prize for winning its memoir contest with his entry: The Sweet Life.  And in the summer, August 15th, his second novel in the series of Gideon Gold’s Investigation will be published throughout the E-reader Universe. Be the first to read an excerpt, and have an initial clue on the road to solving the mystery: who is she, the Unidentified Woman, and what’s her story?
Here how it begins:

Capirato, Mexico. October 12, 1976

“If life is a garden,
Women are the flowers.
Men are the gardeners,
Who pick up the prettiest ones.”

I sing this song while jumping rope with Adela, my best friend, before going off to school. I’m only twelve, but Mami keeps telling me I should grow up and stop jumping rope. Do things girls my age are supposed to be doing, like help her in the kitchen and learn how to sew. I hate it when she says that. I keep holding tight to the rope that connects me to my childhood, afraid of losing it, afraid of growing up. It’s as if somehow, don’t know how, I know what lies ahead.
The dirt road to school, that’s what lies ahead, where Adela and I run hand in hand. We skip between the small stones, still singing that silly song a boy at school taught us yesterday, about the flowers and the gardeners. And laughing about it, too, questioning who is the prettiest one: her or me? And this boy, Angelo his name, is he in love with me or with her?
We come off the bend to the only half paved road in our poor little village, happy to bounce on solid ground. Just then a black car suddenly stops near us making noise and raising dust. Never before in my life have I seen such a beautiful, shiny car. I can see myself reflected in it, like in a twisted mirror.
But only for a second. Because the back window rolls down immediately and a man pokes out his head, asking me for my name. “Maria,” I say. (I hate my name, it’s so… so ordinario.) He asks me to come over and show him the way to our school. I don’t know why I didn’t run away at that moment. Maybe it’s because Mami always told me to obey men. Especially older men.
He opens the door when I get closer and grabs me by the hand and pulls me inside. He is strong and he places me in the back between his legs, pushing my head down. I left my schoolbag on the dirt road behind. But why, I will need it soon? No matter, Adela will bring it to school. Of course she would. That’s where we are going, isn’t it? It’s only a game.
The car takes off screaming. I want to scream, too, but I can’t. His stinky hand is on my mouth. It hurts so much so I bite it. He curses bad words and hits me on the back of my head. Now I really scream. He is strangling me. I can’t breathe. His firm thighs clap my hips. I can’t move. I can’t shout. I close my eyes.
When I close my eyes, I’m afraid the world that was promised me—going to school with Adela, meeting Angelo and our other friends there, studying history which I like the most, our daytrip next week to the Mayan ruins, graduation, going to trade school, falling in love, marrying and having children—may be gone and lost forever. And together with the cloud of dust I imagine the speeding car is raising behind as it leaves our village, an evil cloud is falling over me. Covering me with eternal darkness and sadness. 

Author’s website: http://hillelbridge.com/
Add the book on Goodreads: Goodreads Link
Continue reading Guest Post - Unidentified Woman by Hillel F. Damron

Stormy Weather Series by Selena Blake


After centuries of solitude, the stars are finally aligned just right for the handsome Deveraux men of Louisiana to meet their matches this Hurricane Season. Anthology includes the first five "Stormy Weather" Stories.

Goodreads :  Check it out here...
Amazon UK  /  Amazon US 
Published:   20th January 2012
Author Website:  click here.

Book 1 (The Cajun's Captive)   After centuries of solitude the stars are finally aligned just right. The handsome Deveraux brothers of Louisiana are going to meet their match this Hurricane Season.

Sebastian Deveraux is the Alpha of his pack and like all the Deveraux men, he's sexy as pure sin. He's waited for decades for just the right woman. For his mate. And ten years ago he'd been sure he'd found her in Amanda St. James. But she'd run from him.

Now she's back. He'll do anything to keep her. Even if it means chaining her to his bed.

Book 2
Bitten in the Bayou

Goodreads Link here

Book 3
Bound and Determined

Goodreads Link here

Book 4
Mated to a Cajun Werewolf

Goodreads Link here 

Book 5
Stranded with a Cajun Werewolf

Goodreads Link here

I have to confess that Erotic stories are not usually my type of reading but this year I thought I would expand my reading limits and I am really glad I did.  This is not a normal erotic story, its more of a paranormal erotic story.  This is a great mix of romance and wolves.   I have to admit that I particularly enjoyed following the character of Sebastian....

This series has a great amount of hot and steamyness with a lot of great romantic build up and for all those of you who enjoy a heavily erotic paranromal story,  I would recommend you give this a try.

8 out of 10

Best wishes

Debs :-)
Continue reading Stormy Weather Series by Selena Blake