Category Archives: Book Reviews

The Girl Who Could See

Hey everyone! I love meeting new authors and so today I’m excited to introduce you to a new author and her book. First, here is the cover:

The Girl who could see

Isn’t it gorgeous? I fell in love the first time I saw it. But a book is more than its cover. Here is Kara to tell you more about her debut novella, The Girl Who Could See.

All her life Fern has been told she is blind to reality—but, what if she is the only one who can truly see?

Fern Johnson is crazy. At least, that’s what the doctors have claimed since her childhood. Now nineteen, and one step away from a psych ward, Fern struggles to survive in bustling Los Angeles. Desperate to appear normal, she represses the young man flickering at the edge of her awareness—a blond warrior only she can see.

Tristan was Fern’s childhood imaginary hero, saving her from monsters under her bed and outside her walls. As she grew up and his secret world continued to bleed into hers, however, it only caused catastrophe. But, when the city is rocked by the unexplainable, Fern is forced to consider the possibility that this young man is not a hallucination after all—and that the creature who decimated his world may be coming for hers.

***

Intriguing, yes? I agree! I haven’t read The Girl Who Could See yet, but it is near the top of my TBR list :). If you’re interested in acquiring your own copy, here is where you can find it:

BUY LINK:

https://www.amazon.com/Girl-Who-Could-See

GOODREADS LINK:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34094813-the-girl-who-could-see

 

And here is more about the author, Kara Swanson:

Kara SwansonAs the daughter of missionaries, Kara Swanson spent sixteen years of her young life in the jungles of Papua New Guinea. Able to relate with characters dropped suddenly into a unique new world, she quickly fell in love with the speculative genre. At seven- teen, she released a fantasy novel, Pearl of Merlydia. Her short story is included in Kathy Ide’s 21 Days of Joy: Stories that Celebrate Mom. She has published many articles, including one in the Encounter magazine, and she received the Mount Hermon Most Promising Teen Writer award in 2015.

Here is where you can find Kara online:

Find Kara online at www.karaswanson.com

Facebook: Kara Swanson, Author

Twitter: @kara_author

Instagram: @karaswanson_author

Lost At Sea Scavenger Hunt Stop #17

Welcome to the Lost At Sea Scavenger Hunt where we are helping the Kinsman people find a new home. If you’ve just found us, be sure to start the adventure at Stop #1, which is Jill Williamson’s blog. 
 
Collect all the clue words in order so you can enter to win the Kindle. If you want to enter to win the second Kindle, you’ll have to take a quiz at the end, so take your time and read each post carefully. The main prizes in the hunt are open to international entries. Individual author contests, however, might have different rules, so please read the parameters on each site. You have until Sunday night, February 19, at midnight, Pacific time to finish.
If you need help, or get lost along the way, click here for assistance.
 thumbnail_17-morgan-lostatseamapgraphic-1

Wilek felt good about the land in Adar-iyr, but Onika, his prophetess, had a long talk with Ela, the prophet of Parne from R. J. Larson’s novel Prophet. When the two women parted ways, Onika informed Wilek that the kinsman people could not stay in Adar-iyr, but she promised that they were close to their new home. They must trust the One God, Arman, to lead the way. So they followed the coast north until they reached the bustling metropolis of Stop #17, Word City, from Morgan Busse’s novel Tainted.

Welcome to my world! I’m a writer by day and a mother by night. I’m the author of the Follower of the Word series and the new steampunk series, The Soul Chronicles. My debut novel, Daughter of Light, was a Christy and Carol Award finalist. During my spare time I enjoy playing games, taking long walks, and dreaming about my next novel. Feel free to browse my blog while you’re here 🙂
 
Here’s a closer look at my novel Tainted. 
 
Tainted_Hi_ResKat Bloodmayne is one of the first women chosen to attend the Tower Academy of Sciences. But she carries a secret: she can twist the natural laws of science. She has no idea where this ability came from, only that every time she loses control and unleashes this power, it kills a part of her soul. If she doesn’t find a cure soon, her soul will die and she will become something else entirely.
 
After a devastating personal loss, Stephen Grey leaves the World City Police Force to become a bounty hunter. He believes in justice and will stop at nothing to ensure criminals are caught and locked up. However, when Kat Bloodmayne shows up in his office seeking his help, his world is turned upside down.
 
Together they search World City and beyond for a doctor who can cure Kat. But what they discover on the way goes beyond science and into the dark sphere of magic.

The Monster Inside of Us

A long time ago on a forum I followed someone asked if necromancy could ever be used for good. The moment I read that, I saw this young woman who had been hurt by her father’s excursions into necromancy. As the story grew, it changed from a fantasy to steampunk . The young woman’s father became a scientist and through his unscrupulous experiments, he corrupted his daughter’s soul. (To read more about what steampunk is, click here)

Tainted is the story of Kat, a young woman who is curious, smart, and secretly believes she is a monster deep inside. That idea is reinforced when—in fits of emotion—she starts fires or throws furniture around with her mind. She is desperately afraid she is going to hurt someone some day or even worse, kill someone. She sees herself as a bad person because of that and so she hides who she is while secretly looking for a cure.

I believe many of us can relate to Kat and have wondered at one point if we are monsters ourselves. There is something wrong—even broken—inside of us, and if people found out, they would hate us or be afraid of us. And because of that, we try everything we can to either hide the “monster” or find our own cure.

If you resonate with Kat’s story, then check Tainted out. And be watching for Awakened, Book 2 of The Soul Chronicles, coming soon!

CLUE! Write down this clue: praise
The next stop on our map is Stop #18, the sailing ship Meredith, on Serena Chase’s blog.
 
Before you move on, I am giving away a signed copy of Tainted to one lucky winner. To enter, head on over to my rafflecopter giveaway and check any option or all of them to enter (giveaway will run from 2/17-2/20). Thanks for visiting my blog. Enjoy the rest of the scavenger hunt!

Rafflecopter giveaway

You can order Tainted on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, CBD or at your local bookstore

Cover Reveal: Ending Fear

Hi Everyone! I’m excited to share the cover for Ending Fear, a YA dystopian novel by Deanna Fugett.

Summary: Fourteen-year-old Fear learns she was a parachute baby, dumped over the edge of the Gliding Lands as an infant. Running from her abusive Downer family, Fear discovers a new family. One who knows how to love. But then her new little sister is kidnapped and sold to a harem. Fear must go against her namesake and journey to the dreaded Gliding Lands before the little girl’s innocence is ripped from her forever. Can she save Happy in time?

And now for the cover!

Teenage girl portrait

Isn’t it beautiful! I can’t wait to read more 🙂

And now more about Deanna Fugett, author of Ending Fear:

Deanna Fugett

Deanna Fugett’s heart belongs to writing. Author of edgy YA Dystopian fiction with an underlying message of hope, this stay-at-home mom of four focuses on writing as much as humanly possible. She was published at the young age of six in a local newspaper and is excited to be published again. It only took twenty-six years. She enjoys the thrill of writing fiction that deals with intense topics and prays it will impact people for the better.

Be watching for your chance to order a copy of Ending Fear!

The Sunken Realm

The Sunken RealmThe Sunken Realm by Serena Chase continues where The Seahorse Legacy left off. For a quick recap, these two books are the second half to the Eyes of E’veria series and the story centers around Cazien (pirate, scoundrel, and heir to the Seahorse Legacy) and Eirelle (ex-knight). To read my reviews on the previous book in this series, click here: Eyes of E’veria

The Seahorse Legacy left off on a major cliffhanger. Cazien, in order to preserve the Seahorse Legacy, a legacy that gives him power over the sea and the ability to protect mankind, is threatened when a prophecy surfaces that states that he must marry the Oracle’s Daughter (Eirelle) or risk losing everything. Being a pirate and stubborn, he refuses to let a prophecy dictate his life. Unfortunately, his choice leads to Eirelle being captured and beaten almost to death before he realizes he needs to fulfill the words of his ancestors. So Cazien finds Eirelle and marries her.

Unfortunately for Eirelle, she never knew about the prophecy and in a medicinal and pain induced haze, she agrees to marry Cazien, only to wake up later and not remember the event.

This is where The Sunken Realm begins.

I’ve waited over a year to find out what happens next in this series and Serena does not disappoint. The love between pirate and ex-knight grows as they learn what it means to cherish each other and appreciate one another’s strength. Together, they are better than when apart. And together they must search for the hundreds of children who have been kidnapped along the seacoast before the children are used and disposed of.

Pirates, awesome arena fight scenes, intrigue, and true love. What more could you ask for? 🙂

I highly recommend this entire fantasy series to pre-teens and up. Here is a link where you can purchase the series: http://www.amazon.com

Enjoy!

Author Spotlight: Kristen Joy Wilks

Hey everyone! Today I am spotlighting a new author on the scene. I met Kristen a few years ago after we discovered mutual acquaintances. Kristen writes contemporary romance, a departure from the usual fantasy and science fiction fanfare found on my blog 🙂 However, as an animal lover, her debut novel sounds like a nice read. And she is giving away an ebook copy of her book, Copenhagen Cozenage, so stay tuned to find out how you can enter!

Please join me in welcoming Kristen Joy Wilks!

Kristen Joy WilksKristen Joy Wilks lives in the beautiful woods of the Cascade mountains with her camp director husband, three fierce sons, and a large and slobbery Newfoundland dog. She spent her misguided youth falling in love with Commander Spock via Star Trek reruns, being suspended upside down over a homemade pit filled with gardener snakes, and stampeding herds of elk while on horseback. Now most of her adventures consist of preventing her hubby from filling another wall of their dining room with board games, thwarting her 3 boys’ efforts to sneak their pet chickens onto their bunk beds whenever she turns her back to fold laundry, and trying not to trip over the throng of random teenagers that swarm her house to play all those board games. She can be found tucked under a tattered quilt in an overstuffed chair at 4:00am writing a wide variety of implausible tales or at www.kristenjoywilks.com.

l.php

Morgan Ravn arrives in Denmark seeking clues about her mysterious heritage. What she finds is a flirtatious stranger who regales her with a story about a jewel thief from 1958 and then abandons her with a large unruly dog.

Can Morgan locate the irresponsible pet owner before his monstrous canine drags her through every puddle in Copenhagen and sheds all over her last dress? And why are strangers dogging her every step, snapping photos? Is the shutter happy behavior a bizarre Danish custom or something more sinister?

Here is where you can find Copenhagen Cozenage online: http://www.amazon.com/Copenhagen-Cozenage-Passport


***

So who would like to win an ebook copy of this book? Just leave a comment below with your email address and I will randomly draw a winner Wednesday, September 30th! Want to be even more creative? Leave your own funny dog story in the comments below. Enjoy!

New Cover Reveal for The Seahorse Legacy

I am really excited to share the new cover for The Seahorse Legacy! This is one of my favorite books and I am eagerly anticipating the final book, The Sunken Realms, coming this summer 🙂 If you want to read my review of The Seahorse Legacy, click here: The Seahorse Legacy. And don’t forget to continue on with this post to enter for a chance to win some fantabulous prizes including an amazon giftcard!

***

a Pirate, bound by a centuries-old oath 

As Keeper of the Seahorse Legacy, Cazien de Pollis is a King among pirates, divinely appointed to dispense justice on the seas. Bound by the sacred oath of a long-dead ancestor, he must fulfill a contract to wed the green-eyed Oracle’s Daughter named therein—or risk losing everything he and his people hold dear. But at nineteen, with the identity of his betrothed only recently revealed, Cazien resents the contract—and the urgency within him to see it satisfied.

a Knight, determined to prove her calling

Erielle de Gladiel returned from the quest for the Remedy, changed. Not only are her formerly-blue eyes now a brilliant shade of green, but she must don gloves to hide inky evidence that her prophetically-bestowed title, the Oracle’s Daughter, demands more from her than the task already completed. Erielle’s dearest-held dream is realized when she is knighted by her King, but unbeknownst to her, that very honor jeopardizes the prophesied purpose to which she and Cazien have been called.

a Legacy, demanding surrender

Just as Cazien summons the courage to collect his bride, dark rumors and darker deeds crawl up the coasts, calling its guardians, the Seahorse Pirates, into action—and Cazien away from Erielle. But even though the Oracle’s Daughter knows nothing of the contract to which she has been consigned, Cazien’s enemies have somehow learned of his interest in Erielle. And if they reach her before his ancestor’s weighty oath is executed, the Seahorse Legacy will be forfeited . . . and darkness will be given reign.

The third book in this series-within-a series, The Seahorse Legacy begins an epic re-imagining of several fairy tales, combined–including an unexpected twist on The Twelve Dancing Princesses. This romantic adventure will conclude in Eyes of E’veria, Book 4: The Sunken Realm, coming late Summer 2015.

And now for the cover!

The Seahorse Legacy

And for the prize: The prize package includes:

1. custom skin for reading device (or phone) featuring the new book cover

2. temporary tattoos “Official Pirate Crew — The Seahorse Legacy”

3. $10 Amazon giftcard

Click here to enter: Rafflecopter giveaway

Serena ChaseSERENA CHASE lives in Iowa with her husband, two teen daughters, and a big white dog named Albus. A frequent contributor to USA Today‘s Happy Ever After blog, Serena is an avid reader of young adult fiction and inspirational romance and has become a respected influencer within those communities. When not engaged in her varied roles within the publishing industry, Serena can be found coaching her local high school’s Color Guard, watching action movies, and dreaming about someday living in a cottage by the sea. Connect with Serena Chase on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter (@Serena_Chase) and visit www.serenachase.com to subscribe to her newsletter and gain access to exclusive, subscriber-only content.

Guest Post by Fantasy Author Gillian Bronte Adams

I am excited to have Gillian Bronte Adams as a guest this week on my blog. She is a fellow fantasy writer and friend (and has the most gorgeous red hair!). She is here to share a snippet from her latest novel, Out of Darkness Rising, and one of the ideas behind her story, what if you never saw the sun? So without further ado, here is Gillian!

Out of Darkness Rising

The Sun Yet Rises

A little over a week ago, I could have sworn the dark of Mordor was descending upon us. I happened to glance out the window at work and watch the world turn from gray to black in a matter of seconds. Less than a minute later, it was pouring.

Had I not feared looking like too much of a dork, I might have given into the temptation to announce in a properly woeful voice that “Doom is upon us.” As it was, I merely whispered it to myself and cast baleful glances out the window.

For almost two weeks, a rainstorm had been camped out over my little town, and life was dim, gray, damp, and dreary. I would wake up tired, head in to work tired, slog through the mud at the barn tired, and try to plan my day around the weather only to be outsmarted at every turn. By the time I made it back home—tired—I was weary and dispirited.

Had the Lady of the Green Kirtle been present, I would have been all to ready to nod along and slip into a dull listlessness as I denied the very existence of the sun. Had Faramir appeared, full of dauntless hope that this darkness would not endure, I might have laughed—but it would have been a cheerless laugh, for the clouds and the gloom and the damp seemed here to stay.

More than anything, I wanted to see the sun.

For the villagers in my novella Out of Darkness Rising, it has been nearly a thousand years since anyone caught more than a glimpse of the sun through the heavy murk surrounding the Island. Bright sunlight, blue skies, and clear, crisp mornings are but a thing of legend, no less mythical than tales of a forgotten King. It was a key element of the story, but I wrote it in there without truly giving it much thought beyond the simple logistics.

It wasn’t until I experienced a taste of it (albeit a small one) that it truly struck home.

Can you imagine never seeing the sun?

Never stepping out into a brightness so cheerful it warms your spirit. Never feeling its heat bathing your skin. Never squinting before a light so true your eyes cannot take it in.

Light and darkness are not uncommon themes in Christian fantasy (or general market fantasy, for that matter) because they are not uncommon themes in Scripture. There are countless verses that reference light and darkness, but two of my favorites became theme verses for Out of Darkness Rising.

“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.” Isaiah 9:2 (NIV)

“God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, who no one has seen or can see. To Him be honor and might forever. Amen.” I Timothy 6:15b-16 (NIV)

Those verses seeped into my thinking as I was writing Out of Darkness Rising and came back to mind while I was bemoaning my measly two weeks of storm clouds. Then one afternoon, while I was curled up in my desk chair working on a project (i.e. staring pensively off into the distance) my brain registered what my eyes had already seen.

Sunlight.

And not peeking-through-the-clouds, soon-to-be-smothered sunlight either. It was honest-to-goodness, blazing glory of the sun! In no time at all, I abandoned my desk chair and my project and took to the trails to bask in the daylight.

Perhaps I am spoiled living where I do, where rainy days are not infrequent but sunny days are rarely far behind. Perhaps I should not be complaining. But the dreary, gray days seemed to sap the energy from my limbs and my mind, like I was stumbling through a thick fog for days on end. With the reappearance of the sun, I felt more alive than I had in the previous two weeks.

It was truly glorious thing!

And I couldn’t help being reminded of this scene from Out of Darkness Rising, when Marya catches her first glimpse of the sun.

“At his command, the dark mist covering the Loch fled, scattering before a warm breeze. Blue sky shone clear overhead, and for the first time in centuries, the villagers were able to behold the light of the sun. Light. Marya reveled in the wondrous sight, her unaccustomed eyes watering at the intensity. She took a deep breath and then another, filling her lungs with new, clean air.”

How about you? Can you imagine never seeing the sun?

Gillian Bronte Adams

Author Bio:

GILLIAN BRONTE ADAMS is a sword-wielding, horse-riding, coffee-loving speculative fiction author from the great state of Texas. During the day, she manages the equestrian program at a youth camp. But at night, she kicks off her boots and spurs, pulls out her trusty laptop, and transforms into a novelist. She is the author of Orphan’s Song, book one of the Songkeeper Chronicles, and Out of Darkness Rising. Visit Gillian online at her blog, Twitter, or Facebook page.