Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Visionary (Unleashed Visionary Trilogy Book One) by N. Dunham - virtual tour and giveaway

Please welcome author N. Dunham on her tour with Bewitching Book Tours today for her Young Adult Fantasy, Visionary.

The author is lowering the price of her ebook to .99 for this awesome blog tour with Bewitching Tours.  If she gets over 1,000 ebook sales- she will giveaway the following via Rafflecopter (see bottom of post to enter):

Grand Prize winner of $100.00-Amazon gift card

Second Prize winner of $25.00- Amazon gift card

2 Third Prize winner of an autographed copy of the print version of Visionary- Unleashed with coordinating bookmarks.

Thanks for stopping by and answering some of my questions!

Why YA fiction? What draws you to it?

Young adult is a lot of fun to read and write. I enjoy many genres but young adult is my favorite. I think it’s great to get young people to start reading at a young age so that they continue reading through out their life.

Pretend your protagonist is at school and opens her locker – what will we see inside?

In Aislinn’s locker you would find the following: pink lip gloss, fruity body spray, a mirror, a feather, cd’s and books!

What’s your favorite sweet treat?

Hands down- ice cream. That is my sweet addiction!

What superpower would you love to have? Why?

I would love to be able to fly. I think it would be so cool to be able to soar the skies and visit distant places.

Hunger Games or Twilight? Why?

Tough question…..

I like both. I really love the romance and mystery in Twilight. The fantastical idea of vampires walking the earth with humans is appealing.

But, the Hunger Games has a different appeal. The love triangle (so to speak) is interesting. And the fact that the protagonist (Katniss) is strong, smart and capable of so much is awesome to see!

Can I pick both?

What reality show would you love to be on? Why?

I always wanted to try a game show like “Wheel of Fortune” or “The Price is Right” – they look like so much fun!

Favorite TV show from your childhood?

I miss the old shows. A couple that come to mind are: Full House, 90210, Saved by the Bell, Kate & Ally, Punky Brewster, Growing Pains, Who’s the Boss, and Blossom.

Sum up your book for Twitter: 140 characters or less.

Sixteen year old Aislinn accidentally unleashes her hidden ability to see things before they happen, making her a visionary. Aislinn not only has visionary capabilities but has the added bonus of having a spirit animal which can provide her with extraordinary skills and abilities. Being a visionary is dangerous. A secret agency begins to trail Aislinn and their sole mission is terminate all visionaries. Luckily she meets the striking Sebastian, a fellow visionary who shows her the ropes.

Note from host: That's a few more than 140 characters, but I'll let it slide *G* 

Favorite hot beverage. Why?

It used to be black, organic coffee but now I have to drink black, organic decaf…. The caffeine makes me restless (good for writing but not for sleeping!)

Ideal summer vacation.

I would love a vacation to Europe to see all of the historic and beautiful sights, but I would also love to take a trip to Bora Bora and simply relax in the crystal clear water and warm sun!!

You’re stranded on a desert island—which character from your book do you want with you? Why?

Probably Sebastian. He’s extremely handsome, strong, intelligent and compassionate all bundled in one. Not to mention he can get out of dangerous situations very quickly since he has the grizzly bear as his spirit animal!

Favorite pizza toppings.

Artichokes, spinach, roasted red peppers and goat cheese- ok now I’m hungry.

Create an ice cream flavor. What’s it called?

Now I’m really hungry. Ok, I would mix red velvet cake, cream cheese, and graham crackers, and chocolate sprinkles with vanilla ice cream and name it “Messy Red-Velvet Crunch”!

Note from host: Mmmmm.... I'd buy that. 

Playlist for your current book.

“Sky Fall” by Adele
“Just a Girl” by No Doubt
“Tik Tok” by Kesha
“Madness” by Muse
“Hotel California” by the Eagles
“Clocks” by Coldplay
“Wasting my Time” by The Fallout
“Don’t Stop Believin” by Journey

A big mixture of genres I know- but I picture the songs with different scenes!

Thank you for this exciting and hunger inducing interview. Please check out my website www.ndunham.com and check out your spirit animal!

Visionary Trilogy Book One

N. Dunham
 Genre: YA Fantasy Fiction
 ISBN: 9781624884542ASIN: B00AMO7O26 
Number of pages: 232
Word Count: 71,000
 Amazon  BN 

Book Description:
 Sixteen-year-old Aislinn Lee Murphy accidentally unleashes her hidden ability to see things before they happen, making her a Visionary. But little does she know that this amazing gift comes with a severe price.  She must never tell a soul or she risks putting herself and her family in great peril. 

A Visionary is someone who has been chosen to see the future and has the benefit of having spirit animals to guide and protect them, but there is a secret agency whose sole purpose is to terminate all Visionaries and Aislinn has become their next target.


About the Author:

N. Dunham is the author of the Visionary Trilogy~ A young adult fantasy series that incorporates psychic phenomena & spirit animals!

N. Dunham's interest in reading and writing didn't come until early adulthood. She enjoys works of many genres and has a passion for the arts.  ​

VISIONARY-UNLEASHED was inspired by New England's natural beauty and wildlife (especially red-tailed hawks).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Point of Departure by Dianne Kowall Kirtley

Welcome to Dianne Kirtley today, touring with her YA book, "Point of Departure".  She kindly answered my questions.

Why YA fiction? What draws you to it?

Charlotte Mailliard, the protagonist of Point of Departure is 14, a tremendously pivotal time for a young woman. For all of her fourteen years, she has been raised and educated in a privileged society. Suddenly it is all ripped away from her and she is sure life is over. Don’t most 14 year-olds think life as they know it is over with the slightest change?

Pretend your protagonist is at school and opens her locker – what will we see inside?

Well, in the 19th century, school lockers didn’t exist, but if Charlotte had opened hers, she would see her favorite book, History of Maria Antoinette, her graphite sticks for her flower sketches and some johnnycake wrapped in a clean cloth.

What did you want to be when you grew up? Why?

I think I always wanted to be a teacher and played at being a teacher to younger children and friends. I wanted everyone to know what I knew and also to feel the passion I felt for so many issues.

What would you write in a letter to your teen self?

Have confidence in yourself and don’t let others’ negative opinions affect you. You really are as good as anyone else.

Coal or candy in your Christmas stocking? Why?

I always got candy, or equivalent, never coal. I was the only child, and apple of my father’s eye.

What superpower would you love to have? Why?

I would love to have the superpower to make people act for good. Okay, it’s the beauty queen, “I really want world peace” answer, but I really mean it. It’s so incredible to think of the evil that exists in the world when you read things like the attack on the young woman in India, the current tension due to No. Korea, etc., etc.

Sum up your book for Twitter: 140 characters or less.

POD begins in 1841 when Charlotte Mailliard and her French family migrate to Illinois, the western frontier. There she learns the power of love, the impact of loss, and as she matures the resolve to continue living despite life’s changes and the cancer of war.

Ideal summer vacation.

My ideal vacation would be to spend every other day playing 18 holes of golf, and, of course, getting at least one hole-in-one during each round. Then we’d go out and celebrate with friends, and I, magnanimously, could afford to pay for everyone’s dinners.

Favorite class in high school. Why?

My absolute favorite class in high school was a senior level Current Affairs class taught by Miss Hampton. She was a no-nonsense lady whose class requirement was to read at least 25 pages every week from Newsweek, US News, and/or Time and synopsize our reading. I learned so much about what was occurring in the world and, hopefully, expanded my view of life beyond my own suburban high school. I believe her influence impacted my choice of studying world literature and later majoring not only in English, but also in Russian language and literature.

Thank you, Miss Hampton, wherever you are.

It is 1841, and fourteen-year-old Charlotte Mailliard should be concerned with French fashion, French tradition and her studies with her classmates, Napoleon Bonaparte’s nephews. Instead, her Papa has decided to move his family to America. Now Charlotte can only think of a strange state called Illinois and the “savages” she will encounter on her long journey. No one could forsee that the family’s trek to that frontier would bring them to a Kentucky slave auction, an experience that would forever change their lives.

Two decades earlier, another Frenchman, Henri Moreau, a street urchin of Paris, had made his way to that same Illinois, where life was a pleasant mix of his and native customs. But in 1832, that peace was destroyed by the Blackhawk War, an event that tragically impacted Henri and his family.

As the nation and the Mailliard and Moreau families mature, it is the common theme of war that causes Charlotte to realize she is but one cog in the endless cycle of love and loss, the bane of a country where another Illinois native son will not abide “a house divided.”

Leaving Survilliers, Mortefontaine, France, 1841

Charlotte sat in the huge window seat with her head buried in her knees. Mama would of course reprimand her for such an unlady-like posture, but at this point she was beyond caring about what Mama—or Papa, for that matter—would think.

She wanted to be angry at someone for this terrible upheaval in her life, and they were the two most likely candidates. She could also be equally angry at her incredibly annoying brother Amedee, at twelve, two years younger than she, and yes, even Napoleon, who at one made her life miserable with his incessant squalling.

Even the baby’s name was an irritant.

“I’m supposed to be speaking nothing but English for practice, they tell me, and yet they name the infant Napoleon,” Charlotte said outloud. “What possible sense does that make?” When one is fourteen, well, actually thirteen and a half, parents can indeed be most troublesome and unreasonable.

In a few minutes the carriage would come to begin the Mailliard family’s journey to Calais, then to Liverpool, England, where they would board the steam ship Commerce, which would take them to America, their new home. Papa said first they would stop at New Jersey to visit Uncle Louis at King Joseph’s estate at Point Breeze, then westward from there. They would be traveling for three months before they reached their final destination.

In a few minutes gone would be the life she had known: Florence, Paris, the residence of Mortefontaine, the splendor and ceremony of royal society, the coddling by Princess Charlotte, the tutors she had shared with the princes.

She also knew she would miss the teasing of those princes. Annoying and condescending as they could be, Charlotte had begun to appreciate their attention, and though she was still “the servants’ child,” all the Mailliards had been treated more like family than servants. Indeed Papa and Mama, Eloi and Amanda Mailliard, had served the Bonaparte family as confidential attendants for many years, including the difficult ones after Emperor Napoleon’s demise. She had also heard of Papa’s brother, Uncle Louis, and the dangerous journey he had undertaken to transport many of the riches of the Bonaparate family to a safe Swiss hideaway. Papa had told Charlotte that the royal family had promised that the bond between them and the Mailliards would never be forgotten.

As Charlotte looked out the beautiful large window of the chateau, she could remember so easily the many times she had anxiously anticipated the sounds of carriages that brought so many elegant ladies to the very room where she now dreaded hearing those sounds.

She remembered seeing the beautiful Princess Charlotte, for whom she was named, walking through the doors.

Mama would say in her most elegant French, “This is your godmother, Charlotte. What an honor has been given to you to be named for one of the Emperor’s nieces. And our dear Prince Napoleon Louis is your godfather.”

But Charlotte’s name was not the only benefit for the Mailliard family. She had heard Papa mention the yearly stipend that they would receive from the Bonapartes. Charlotte had also seen Mama sewing opals and rubies, more gifts from the illustrious family, into the hem of her dress. She also realized that the greatest treasure they would be carrying was perhaps the most remarkable gift, Raphael’s painting Ecce Homo, with which Papa had taken great care as he wrapped the priceless work. He had told Charlotte that he hoped these treasures would help to establish them in their new home, Illinois.

The name of that American state was so strange to her tongue, a tongue used to forming the beautiful, melodious sounds of her two native languages, French and Italian. How incredible that within a short time she must abandon those words and be speaking only the ugly sounds of English. She might as well be made to speak German!

Dianne Kirtley taught English, Journalism, and Creative Writing at Nazareth Academy, a college prep high school in LaGrange Park, Illinois, for twenty-five years.. During that time she also chaired the English Department and was Director of Public Relations.

The historical novel, Point of Departure, is her most researched project and was inspired by the discovery of information about one of her husband's ancestors whose family were personal attendants to the Bonabartes.

"When I first began the investigation of Charlotte Mailliard, reading her letters and visiting the places where she lived and the very cemetery where she and her family were buried, I felt her story begged to be told. After seven years of work, I hope she would be pleased with my effort."

Dianne attended Beloit College in Beloit, Wisconsin, received her B.A. from the University of Illinois, Chicago, and M.Ed. from Loyola University, Chicago.

In addition to her pursuit of writing, she has also been a member and president of the LaGrange Business and Professional Women's Organization. She is currently active in the Chicago Southwest Suburban Alumni Chapter of Delta Delta Delta sorority.

Buy Links: Virtualbookworm Bookstore: http://www.virtualbookworm.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Store_Code=bookstore&Screen=PROD&Product_Code=Point_of_Departure

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Point-Departure-Dianne-Kowal-Kirtley/dp/1621371883/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1366899502&sr=8-1&keywords=point+of+departure

Author website: http://kirtleybooks.com/

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Odd Job Squad by Karl Fields - Virtual Tour and Giveaway

Today we're visiting with author Karl Fields on his tour with Goddess Fish Promotions for the middle grade novel, "The Odd Job Squad".

One commenter from each stop will win a box of "Pinks," which are pink fortune cookies that Ander, the main character has a fondness for. One $25 Amazon gift card given to one random commenter at the end of the tour, so comment today AND follow his tour! The more you read and comment, the better your odds of winning. The rest of his tour stops are here.

Karl answered many of my prying questions -- thanks!

What’s your favorite sweet treat?

A chocolate, chocolate chip cookie fresh from the oven.

What would you write in a letter to your teen self?

Three things:
Start writing sooner,
Start saving sooner, and
Do NOT blow it with Dianne Star. She totally likes you.

What candy do you give out at Halloween?

Mine is a great house to hit up on Halloween. It varies, but you count on things like Snickers, M&M’s (peanut), Butterfingers, Skittles and Starburst.

What superpower would you love to have? Why?

I want x-ray vision so I can go to the casino and clean up playing blackjack.

What book is on your nightstand currently?

Cory Doctorow’s “Homeland”

Hunger Games or Twilight? Why?

Hunger Games all the way! Dystopian fiction just doesn’t get much better. I think it’s a series that will stand up over time. Sparkly vampires? Not really my thing, I guess.

What reality show would you love to be on? Why?

The Amazing Race. Having done some growing up abroad, I think it would be awesome to visit some of the places they send contestants. And I wouldn’t be one of those people who gets all mopey because the locals don’t speak English. Duh, you’re in another country dude.

Sum up your book for Twitter: 140 characters or less.

Four eighth graders operate an anonymous revenge club at their school, but things get ugly when one of them learns he’s not-so-anonymous.

Favorite pizza toppings.

Whatever California Pizza Kitchen puts on their Thai chicken pizza. I swear, it’ll change your life.

Create an ice cream flavor. What’s it called?

Extra dark chocolate with peanut butter and fudge ribbon

Thirteen-year-old Ander Cartwright is an expert on two subjects: fortune cookies and payback. Especially payback.

When he’s not struggling with algebra, Ander is the leader of an anonymous revenge club that operates within the walls of Marina Middle School. Got a beef with a classmate? Shoot Ander’s crew an email and, if your case if legit, they’ll deliver some retribution on your behalf.

It’s not easy to right wrongs and stay under the radar at the same time. That’s why Ander developed three simple rules designed to keep him and his friends from blowing their cover.

But when Ander spots the opportunity to settle an old score of his own, he ignores his own rules, setting off a chain of events that threatens to blow his cover, and it’ll take all the butt-kicking, detention-dodging skill he can muster to keep a lid on his secret.

Karl Fields is a writer of fiction for teens and young adults. His other interests include jazz, golf and collecting flash drives, the more unusual the better. He was an army brat and by the seventh grade, he had attended six different schools on three continents. His first book, The Odd Job Squad, is about the exploits of three eighth graders who operate an anonymous revenge club at their school. He recommends that you not attempt the stunts portrayed in this book. His second, Instant Preplay, is about a boy who discovers that his DVR records shows before they air. He recommends that you get one of those if you can.

Amazon - http://www.amazon.com/The-Odd-Job-Squad-ebook/dp/B00560R9BC
BN - http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-odd-job-squad-karl-fields/1103800835?ean=9781463537890
Kobo - http://www.kobobooks.com/ebook/The-Odd-Job-Squad/book-qHs3VJyBxEmMs0UaGNlx8g/page1.html?s=uUC_07B_Hk-5_N1qzhxLUA&r=1

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Curse of the Ice Dragon by Tara West - Review tour and giveaway

This review is done in conjunction with the author's tour with Goddess Fish Promotions. Tara will be awarding an e-book in her YA paranormal Whispers series, Visions of the Witch to a randomly drawn commenter at every stop, and a $25 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour, so leave your thoughts here and you're entered! If you want more chances to win, visit the rest of her tour stops here.

Curse of the Ice Dragon by Tara West
Fantasy YA
268 pgs
4 stars

From the bestselling paranormal author of The Whispers Series comes a new fantasy saga.

Born with mark of the Mighty Hunter, Markus has the skill and strength to feed his people, but not to confront his own tyrannical father. Shamed by his cowardice, Markus releases his frustration on the forest creatures.

The village prophet warns that Markus's reckless ways will bring down The Hunter’s Curse, and for every animal Markus kills, his loved ones will suffer the same fate. When the warnings go unheeded, the Sky Goddess unleashes her ice dragon. Now Markus must flee the dragon without killing it or his beloved brother will die.

Markus's flight takes him to the lands of the mysterious Ice People. There, the beautiful maiden Ura helps Markus learn the compassion and courage he needs to face the wrath of the Goddess, but the final confrontation will not be without price, as Markus must choose between the life of his brother and the fate of the girl he loves.

My Review:

I love YA Fantasy so I was very excited when Goddess Fish Promotions offered me the chance to read Curse of the Ice Dragon. And, I was not disappointed.

Markus, the main character of the book, was born with the mark of the Mighty Hunter--and is the pride of his father; a stark contrast to his older brother, Alec, who was born weak and infirm. However, Alec has a gentleness to balance the darkness that their father nurishes in Marcus.

However, Markus' life is also cursed...and the novel tells of his journey to save his brother and spare him from death.

This is a novel that sweeps you in and makes you keep the pages turning--Markus is a hard character to like in the beginning of the book. He not only is a "Mighty Hunter"...he takes pleasure in the killing for the sake of killing. It's only when his actions are shown to have a direct reaction on his own family and his brother is threatened that he realizes something has to be done.

The world building in this book is masterfully done and, just when you think you know what's going to happen, Ms. West throws a twist in the plot.

The growth in Markus' character is also well done and believable. I'm glad this is the first book of a series---I'm looking forward to reading more.  Appropriate for tweens and teens!

Now enjoy an excerpt:

He gasped as the old man’s eyes shot open. Deep within his sunken orbs, Markus thought he saw red. Dafuar’s incantations grew louder, until Markus could finally discern the lyrics of a poem.

“One fell shot from the bow

And many will know Madhea’s curse has descended

Omens will fall to family

And all the cruel hunter has befriended

For each life he claims

His kin suffers the same death by similar strand

For she will allow neither beast nor fowl

To be hunted by his hand

To the hunter who reaps his fill of kill

And nary none from need

Beware her beast who wakens to feast

On avarice and greed

Eyes that glow like burning coals

In the embers of demon’s fury

Breath so cold, Lydra freezes the souls

Of any at her mercy

Sad is the tale that is known so well

The hunter who slaughtered with pleasure

His heartless crime was recompensed

For discarding the forest’s treasure”

Once again the healer closed his eyes, and when they reopened he shook his head and blinked several times, acting as if he’d woken from a dream.

Markus remained standing, his feet like granite stones planted firmly on the ground. Fear had sent ice through his limbs and weighted his body to the spot. Had Dafuar really had some kind of vision? If the man’s intentions were to spook him, he’d clearly succeeded.

With clenched fists, he spoke through gritted teeth. “Your parables are not amusing.”

A former Texas high school teacher, I enjoyed coaching the writing team and even the hectic deadlines that came with running the school publications. After taking a break to raise my baby girl, I now work from home as a novelist and a part-time graphic designer. In my spare time, I love to read, exercise and spend time with my family and friends.

I would love to hear from my readers!

Blog: tarawestauthor.wordpress.com

Email: tara@tarawest.com

Facebook: tarawestauthor

Twitter: tarawestauthor

Website: tarawest.com

Friday, April 19, 2013

Anomaly by JC Emery - Virtual Book Tour

Please welcome author JC Emery on her tour with Bewitching Book Tours today for her New Adult Urban Fantasy, Anomaly. Thanks for stopping by and answering some of my questions!

Why write in your genre? What draws you to it?

There’s something so unique about that place where you think you know the world as it is but you’re too cocky and young to know that you’re wrong. You can’t see around corners and everything that happens is a life-or-death, end-of-the-world, def-con-five crisis. Once you grow out of that there’s no getting it back. I like to play with YA and NA because it brings me to the youth I didn’t have but always wanted—one filled with adventure and romance and even a little danger. It’s the safe and sane way of reliving my adolescence.

What books were your favorite as a youth and why?

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Franweiler. I loved the idea of striking out on my own and being independent, living in a museum, and turning life into one big adventure. I liked the Babysitter’s Club as well, but by the time I was 9 or so I wanted something a little edgier (I was that kid.)

What would you write in a letter to your teen self?

I would (try) to tell her that even though she doesn’t see it right now, that’s she’s amazing. I’d tell her to let go of the chip on her shoulder because people really do like her. I’d tell her to hug her family more, fight less. I’d tell her to pay attention to her little sister as she grows because one day she’ll be a teenager and no longer think she’s so invincible. I’d tell her that even though the choices she’s going to make have pitfalls, that where she’s going to be at 30 is amazing and that I wouldn’t change a thing and she should enjoy the next fifteen years. They go by so fast. I hope that would at least get through her thick skull and resonate some with her.

What book is on your nightstand currently?

Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy #1) by Richelle Mead, City of Fallen Angels (Mortal Instruments #4) by Cassandra Clare, Own the Wind (a Chaos novel) by Kristen Ashley

Hunger Games or Twilight? Why?

The Hunger Games. I like Twilight, don’t get me wrong. But Katniss’s story is about so much more than figuring out how to be with a boy forever. She literally fights for what she wants and needs. I like that she’s a bit rougher around the edges and her devotion to her sister is beautiful. I can’t even tell you how many times I cried during the trilogy because of the bond Katniss feels for Prim.

What reality show would you love to be on? Why?

Does Double Dare count even if it’s no longer on the air? Actually, as much as I love Myrtle Manner I’d be scared of turning into one of those internet memes I see all over the place. No reality television for me! I say way too much dumb stuff to be caught like that.

Ideal summer vacation.

I’d spend the entire summer road-tripping around the U.S. I’d make it a very relaxed affair. But then again, I have to admit that spending a summer along the Pacific Coast and writing my little heart out to the sounds of the ocean every day sounds pretty awesome, too.

What four literary characters would you most like to have over for dinner?

Holden Caulfield (from Catcher in the Rye), Napoleon (the Pig from Animal Farm), Peeta Mellark (from The Hunger Games)… I love Katniss but I can’t imagine she and Napoleon could broker a peace treaty long enough to sit at the same table, and finally I think I’d have to go for Tack (from Motorcycle Man by Kristen Ashley). But it’d have to be Tack BEFORE he got with Tara because then he’d have no interest in flirting with me and that just won’t do.

You’ve just won a million dollars and you’re not allowed to save any of it. What do you spend it on?

This is an easy question! I’d get the tattoos I’ve been wanting and my dream auto collection: Jeep Wrangler CJ-7, Chevy Tahoe, Dodge Charger, Harley Sportster. I’d also buy a house in Northern California (north of Sonoma) or somewhere in the Pacific Northwest and I’d make sure it had a pool. I’d buy up a bunch of stuff I’d need (can I buy gift cards for stuff like gas?) and stockpile tons of food stuff. After I had everything I needed (and apparently every vehicle I can dream of) I’d buy my mom a house and give a bunch to my sister to pay for her college.

The Birthright Series Book One
JC Emery

Genre: New Adult Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Left Break Press
Date of Publication: 4/19/2013

Number of pages: 310
Word Count: 81,000

Cover Artist: Gonet Design

Book Description:

How far would you go to save your sister?

Life as a college senior is stressful enough. Between mid-terms, stupid boys, and a rare blood condition, Eliza Landry is just trying to figure out what normal is—whatever that means—when she discovers that vampires aren’t just a thing of legend.

In a matter of moments, her life changes forever when she and her older sister Kate suffer a vampire attack which leaves Eliza with two puncture wounds on her neck and an allergy to sunlight. But she’s still human, or at least she thinks she is. It doesn’t really matter—her main concern is that her sister is missing.

Sorrow turns to obsession, leading Eliza to piece together the puzzle of that terrifying night. Even stumbling upon a millennia-old vampire assassin named Luke Conrad who either wants to kiss her or kill her (she can't decide) cannot deter her.

When bodies start piling up and one of them is supposedly Kate, Eliza and Luke set out to discover who is behind the attacks. Soon, Eliza is drawn into the dark and dangerous world of the undead, with no guarantee she’ll make it out alive, and no doubt that she won’t like what she finds.

About the Author:
As a child, JC was fascinated by things that went bump in the night. As they say, some things never change. Now, as an adult, she divides her time between the sexy law men, mythical creatures, and kick-ass heroines that live inside her head and pursuing her bachelor's degree in English. As it is for most writers, finding balance is a challenge. JC is a San Francisco Bay Area native, but has also called both Texas and Louisiana home. These days she rocks her flip flops year round in Northern California and can't imagine a climate more beautiful.
With the support and encouragement of her parents and sister, JC set out to figure out what she wanted to do when she grew up. Most days, the jury is still out; however the thing that stuck with her no matter what she pursued was her love of the written word.

JC writes adult, new adult, and young adult fiction. She dabbles in many different genres including science fiction, horror, chick lit, and murder mysteries, yet she is most enthralled by supernatural stories-- and everything has at least a splash of romance.


Thursday, April 11, 2013

Return by Charity Santiago - Review and giveaway

This review is done in conjunction with the author's tour with Goddess Fish Promotions. Charity will be awarding one $10 Amazon gift card for a random commenter and a grand prize of the winner's choice of any mini gift basket from GourmetGiftBaskets.com (a $24.99 value), so leave your thoughts here and you're entered! If you want more chances to win, visit the rest of her tour stops here.

Return by Charity Santiago
Fantasy YA
263 pgs
4 Stars

For the last three years, eighteen-year-old Ashlyn Li has been running from her destiny. A free-spirited ninja, Ashlyn would rather loot an abandoned city or challenge a fiend to battle than assume leadership of Toryn, her father's kingdom. However, when a series of attacks reunites Ashlyn with the friends who helped her save the sun three years ago, she discovers that her kingdom is at war and her father has presumed her dead.

Suddenly Ashlyn is faced with not only fulfilling her birthright, but also making sense of her feelings towards two very different men- Drake Lockhart, the enigmatic vampire who captured her heart three years ago, and Vargo, the charismatic assassin who was once Ashlyn's sworn enemy.

Will Ashlyn ascend the pagoda and become Lady of Toryn?

My Review: Ashlyn Li is the main character in this book and she seriously kicks butt! She's a princess gone wild--she would rather do her fighting than come back and help rule the kingdom. After all, her having to take over the kingdom is still a ways away. Unfortunately, her kingdom is at war--and her father thinks she's dead. Clearly, it's time to do some damage control.

My only problem with the book is that it drops you right in the middle of the action and it might take you a while to figure out exactly what's going on. There's a lot of history (would love to read the story that happened BEFORE this one--when Ashlyn's sister, Drake, Skye, and the others first got together). It didn't take too long to come up to speed, however.

I loved the characters--and, to my dismay, I really like both Drake AND Skye--so I'm looking forward to the next book in the series to see how this particular triangle is going to play out. Recommended for 16+.

Now enjoy an excerpt:

Ashlyn frowned, trying hard to focus. "I only asked you to start thinking of yourself as a man, Drake, instead of a monster. That's hardly the same thing."

"I'm asking you to think of yourself as a leader," he said. "You've spent so long running from responsibility that you think yourself incapable of fulfilling your birthright."

"We haven't seen each other in three years. You don't know what I'm capable of- I don't even know what I'm capable of."

He grabbed her hand, abruptly, and brought it up to his chest. Through the cloth of his shirt, his skin was warm to the touch, and Ashlyn let him press her hand against the solidness of his shoulder, confused as to what he was doing.

"This," he said, his voice low, "is where I was struck by Devlyn's sword."

After a moment, he slid her hand lower, until it was resting directly above his heart. Ashlyn paused, entranced by the lack of a pulse beneath her fingers, the scent of him filling her senses and enveloping her like the rain against the roof.

"This," Drake said. "This is where I would have been struck, if you had not deflected the blow."

She met his gaze, breathing so hard that she felt light-headed. His eyes bored into hers, piercing her straight to her soul.

"I know what you are capable of, Ashlyn," he said. "I know better than anyone."

In February 2011, Charity Santiago's 7-month old son was admitted to the hospital with severe respiratory issues. While Charity stayed at his bedside, she kept them both entertained by downloading several books on her new Kindle and reading them out loud. It was during this time that Charity learned about Kindle's self-publishing program, and realized that she had an opportunity to share her writings with the world.

Charity is a native of southeastern Arizona, and a writer since childhood. She wrote her first manuscript, Guinea Pig Code!, at age nine. When she’s not writing books, Charity spends her time wrangling children, watching Sylvester Stallone movies and pursuing a degree in Education.


Blog: http://charitysantiago.blogspot.com
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/cinephilemama
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/charitysantiago
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4733058.Charity_Santiago

Book can be purchased at:


Monday, April 8, 2013

The Lumina Saga by Stephanie Amox - Virtual Tour

Please welcome author Stephanie Amox on her tour with Bewitching Book Tours today for her paranormal YA series, The Lumina Saga.

Thanks for stopping by and answering some of my questions!

Why YA fiction? What draws you to it?

I have always been a big fan of YA. The conflicts and struggles are felt across the board at this age. While adult conflicts vary widely by where you live, what you do for a living, married, not married, etc. At the middle school, high school and even college level, you are frequently dealing with the same issues: cliques, teachers/professors, relationship struggles – you are still trying to figure out who you are and how you fit into the world.

What’s your favorite sweet treat?

This is really a tricky one. I am a serious chocolate freak. Milk chocolate, dark chocolate – I love them all. I think one of my all-time favorite candies is Kit Kat. However, it’s really hard to beat a good mint chocolate chip ice cream.

What would you write in a letter to your teen self?

Oh wow. I actually think about this a lot. What if I could go back, knowing what I know now – what would I change? The first thing I would have to tell my teen self is DO NOT let other people define you. Don’t allow someone else to tell you who YOU are. If you are afraid to be yourself because people might not accept you – then you are hanging out with the wrong people. You should NEVER change who you are to please someone else – especially a guy. The things that sometimes seem so devastating in high school will NOT matter at all once you graduate. You will talk to the people you care about and can wipe all the others from your memory. There’s a quote from Eleanor Roosevelt that I absolutely love “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” I would make sure she had that quote on her bathroom mirror and in her locker at school.

What superpower would you love to have? Why?

This is actually a really funny question as my husband and I have discussed this before. He’s a big fan of invulnerability, while I think invisibility and the ability to walk through walls could be epic. Then again, flying would be really cool and cut down on the costs of my vacations significantly.

Hunger Games or Twilight? Why?

Honestly I liked both books, but for completely different reasons. Hunger Games had a MUCH stronger heroine and I’m big on that. I always taught my own daughter that you don’t have to have a boyfriend to be happy – and if you DO have one, make sure you still spend plenty of time with your friends. Co-dependency is not high on my list. Girls should be able to stand on their own two feet. Twilight was appealing because of the supernatural aspect. It had a creative twist on vampires and had them able to walk in the sun and they had a conscience – the ability to choose how/what they fed on.

Ideal summer vacation.

This one is really hard. I have two favorite places to vacation – Disney World in Orlando and Maui. The Grand Wailea, as described in the books is real and absolutely every bit as magical in real life. If there is truly a Heaven on Earth – The Grand Wailea is the closest I’ve ever seen. The scenery can’t be beat and the hotel grounds are lush and amazing. I’ve never been so relaxed in my entire life. Now on the other hand, I never grew up. I love to go to Disney World, and so do my kids. My husband is great about accommodating us and tagging along. I ride absolutely everything and have a great time – EVERY time. The chocolate covered pineapple wedges in the new Fantasyland are NOT to be missed. I’m just as likely as my kids to jump in a picture with the characters. One of my favorite pictures on my desk is of me and my daughter with Phineus and Ferb.

Playlist for your current book.

Each of the books has a playlist based on either what I was listening to when I wrote it or a song that reminds me of a particular piece of the story. You’ll see that my music tastes are all over the boards. Here are a couple of the playlists:

For Painfully Ordinary:

Bless the Broken Road – Rascal Flatts
Bodies – Drowning Pool
Pray - Disturbed
Breaking the Habit – Linkin Park
Kissing in the Rain – Toby Keith
Chicken Fried – Zac Brown
Her Eyes – Pat Monahan
You Found Me – The Fray
Given Up – Linkin Park
Hero – Chad Kroeger
You know I’m No Good – Amy Winehouse
I Run to You – Lady Antebellum
So Far Away – Stained
At Last – Etta James
Marry Me – Train

For New Beginnings:

Tell Me I’m a Wreck – Every Avenue
Freak Like Me – Halestorm
Too Close – Alex Clare
A Warrior’s Call – Volbeat
Just the Way You Are – Bruno Mars
Don’t you Wanna Stay – Jason Aldean
Come Back to Me – David Cook
Ring of Fire – Social Distortion
I Can’t Wait – Runner Runner
Break In – Halestorm
Chicken Fried – Zach Brown Band
You Found Me – The Fray
Home – Phillip Phillips
A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes – Ilene Woods
Once Upon A Dream – Bill Shirley
So Far Away – Staind
Numb – Linkin Park
Given Up – Linkin Park
Nothing Else Matters – Metallica
At Last – Etta James

Painfully Ordinary
The Lumina Saga Book One
Stephanie Amox

Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: CENA

Date of Publication: Jan 2013          
ISBN: 148194780X

Number of pages: 225
Word Count: 86,175

Cover Artist: Photography by Nikki Nichols Photography

BN   Amazon   Smashwords  

Book Description:

Two teenager's lives become not so ordinary...

Caitlin and Leah are content with the slow and steady pace in their small Texan town. They have the typical challenges of any American high school - evil girl cliques and oppressive ex-boyfriends. They see themselves as painfully ordinary...but that soon changes. The arrival of two newcomers at school sets Caitlin and Leah on an explosive path of magic, betrayal, secrets and forbidden love. The discovery of Caitlin's true identity causes tremendous upheaval in her painfully ordinary life. Caitlin must learn to embrace her birthright and trust in her friends or she risks endangering them all.

Family Secrets
The Lumina Saga Book Two
Stephanie Amox

Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: CENA

Date of Publication: Jan 2013          
ISBN: 1481956841

Number of pages: 232
Word Count: 65,120

Book Description:

Wailea, Maui would be a paradise by just about anyone’s standards. Caitlin and Leah are no different. They are living like rock stars with Talon and Jace in one of the poshest hotels on the island. Just when they think things can’t possibly get any better—everything falls apart. Their short lived paradise is ripped out from under them. Once again, they are on the run.

A mysterious man appears and attempts to drive a wedge between Caitlin and Talon. He whisks her away to an ancient world where she is treated like a princess yet held completely against her will. She is shown events, consequences and affairs she never dreamed possible. Will the secrets of her family destroy her happiness, or will she rely on her instincts to find a way back to the life she found with Talon?

New Beginnings
The Lumina Saga Book ThreeStephanie Amox

Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: CENA

Date of Publication: Jan 2013          
Number of pages: 312
Word Count: 83,740

Amazon   BN

Book Description:

What happens when the extraordinary fades into ordinary?

Caitlin awakens to find herself back in the normal life she shares with her best friend, Leah, in their small Texas town. Caitlin has no memory of the fantastic events of the last several months save a mystery man who haunts the shadows of her dreams. Constantly taken aback by strange occurrences: the sudden attention of the two most popular guys in school; Caitlin’s toe-to-toe showdown with Tami; and the constant coincidental run-ins with two mysterious strangers, keeps Caitlin’s nerves raw and on edge. Will she solve the mystery behind the strange events, or will the dreams be all that remains?

About the Author:
Stephanie Amox attended the University of Texas at Arlington, where she met her husband. Her life did an about-face in January 2009 and the future of her career looked bleak. Her husband encouraged her to follow her dream and finally write the story which had been buzzing around in her head for a number of years, thus The Lumina Saga was born.

These days she spends her time in Flower Mound, Texas with her husband, two children and a couple of crazy Jack Russell Terriers. When she's not writing she enjoys spending time watching her son play hockey or visiting her daughter at Oklahoma State University.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Saving Casey by Liza O'Connor - Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway

Today we're talking to Liza O'Connor on her tour with Goddess Fish Promotions for the YA novel, "Saving Casey".

Saving Casey will be reduced from $5.99 to $2.99 for the duration of the tour (March 5th-April 5th) at Amazon, B&N, DP/Bono, ARe, Coffee Time Romance, BookStrand and Smashwords.

Liza will be awarding a $25 Amazon GC to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour, so comment for your chance to win!.

Thanks to Liza for choosing to answer some fun questions!

Pretend your protagonist is at school and opens her locker – what will we see inside?

Since the school doesn’t allow locks on the lockers, Cass is never sure what she’s going to find inside.

The school bully, Bradford, has warned everyone to stay away from Cass, or they’ll suffer the same torments she receives, so there’s no chance of anyone leaving something nice in her locker.

She notices the tape she placed on her door has been broken. She opens the locker with caution. Seeing nothing amiss, she worries someone may have marked out all those pesky words in her new school books just like her old ones had incurred. And she’ll be blamed for it. Having facial tats pretty well ensures no one will believe her when she insists someone else is doing all this crap she’s getting blamed for.

She opens the top book, prepared for the worse and sighs in relief. Words remain!

What’s this? Someone has written on the first page:

You are in danger. You need to leave!

She ripped the page out and threw it in the trash. There is no way she’s leaving. Bradford isn’t just her problem; he’s everyone’s problem, and she’s declaring war.

What superpower would you love to have?

I would like the power to push back time and do stuff again…and again if necessary. I’ll have Ground Hog days until I get it right.

Fix all those times I opened my mouth and said stuff that got me into trouble and cost me friends or future promotions at work.

And for all those people I thought were my friends, and then I discovered they were only using me while trashing me to others…I’d go back and make better friends with other nicer people I didn’t even notice the first time around.

And yes, I could go back and make money on stocks that go sky high the next day, but the SEC will be all over me for insider trading, so I’ll only do that if I’m desperate.

Sum up your book for Twitter: 140 characters or less.

#SavingCasey: 80 yr old Cass inexplicably wakes up in the body of a 17 yr old troubled teen whose enemies are now hers.

What four literary characters would you most like to have over for dinner?

Honestly, I’d like to have my own characters over, but I’ll play fair and invite four known characters: Sherlock Holmes, Author Dent from Douglas Adams’ Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, Rachel from Rebecca Royce’s Warrior series, and Elizabeth Bennett from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

I won’t bother cooking dinner, because I’m pretty sure this disparate group of characters will leave before appetizers are served. First of all, only one of the four has any sense of decorum. That would be Miss Elizabeth Bennet.

Unfortunately, Sherlock Holmes tells her she’s the least interesting person he has ever met.

Elizabeth declares Sherlock Holmes the rudest, most arrogant man of her acquaintance: “From the very beginning…from the first moment, I may almost say…of my acquaintance with you, your manner, impressing me with the fullest belief of you arrogance, your conceit, and your selfish disdain of the feeling of others."

Rachel, feeling the need to protect such a gentle woman, pulls out her werewolf sword and forces Sherlock to leave.

Having never met a young female warrior from a future dystopia, Elizabeth finds a bit Rachel frightening, and thus recalls her sister Lydia has eloped with a scoundrel and she needs to return home to calm her mother.

Finding all this too weird, Author Dent jumps in my bathtub and throws a towel over his head.

Rachel glares at me and shifts into her battle stance. “Why did you bring us here? Clearly, not for dinner, since you didn’t even cook one.”

“You can’t attack me just because I hate to cook. Besides, I’m human and I happen to know you fight like a girl when your opponent is human.”

Rachel gives me a final glare and leaves.

I shake my head and return to writing, muttering that other people’s characters behave worse than mine.

You’re stranded on a desert island—which character from your book do you want with you?

Yeah! I love to hang with my characters. Since I can only have one, I’m inviting Vic Hamiliton. Despite dressing like a young Englishman, Vic is actually a woman. She’s funny, although she doesn’t actually realize that and she gets in sooooo much trouble. In fact, her partner calls her a trouble magnet. Together, we’ll turn our desert island into a rain forest. (I noticed you said desert vs. deserted).

You’ve just won a million dollars and you’re not allowed to save any of it. What do you spend it on? 

Oh no! I am NOT winning a million dollars, and you can’t make me. Unearned money is unlucky. I don’t want a million bad lucks on me. Nope, give it to someone else. I’ve written a story about the curse of lotteries. (not yet published) My character has a terrible time after she wins a huge lottery. She eventually gives a criminal the money in exchange for her life. And just like that people stop trying to kill her and life turns good again. I intend to earn my money, which means I really need everyone to buy Saving Casey. :-)

Besides the $25 Amazon Gift Card being given to one commenter over the tour, for this blog a commenter can win the opportunity to have a picture of themselves marred with tattoos just like Saving Casey’s. Just leave your email address in your comment.

Eighty-year-old Cass wakes up in the body of a troubled seventeen-year-old girl named Casey, which all believe has survived a suicide attempt. Cass intends to turn the girl’s life around, only it’s harder than she expects. All Casey’s troubles have now become Cass’s and someone wants her dead.

Now enjoy an excerpt:

Cass sees herself in the mirror

Upon settling down on the toilet, Cass noticed the floor to ceiling mirror facing her and screamed at the sight of the creature within it. Short black hair spouted about its head, black circles surrounded both eyes and fell like triangular knives down the cheeks. Black lips, stretched in horror as if in a nightmare. Pulling up her pants, she moved closer to the mirror.

She was a ghoul, an honest to God ghoul!

The door crashed open and her father stared at her, fear and panic clear in his eyes.

She touched her face. “Please tell me these aren’t permanent.”

His panic remained a second longer as her words filtered into his brain and then he pulled her into his arms. “Don’t worry, we will get them removed—if you want to…”

“If? Oh, I definitely want them removed,” she said.

How can I turn around my life if I look like the walking dead from a low-grade monster movie?

I live in Denville, NJ with my dog, Jess. We hike in fabulous woods every day, rain or shine, sleet or snow. Having an adventurous nature, I learned to fly small cessnas in NJ, hang-glide in New Zealand, kayak in Pennsylvania, ski in New York, scuba dive with great white sharks in Australia, dig up dinosaur bones in Montana, sky dive in Indiana, and raft a class four river in Tasmania. I’m an avid gardener, amateur photographer, and dabbler in watercolors and graphic arts. Yet through my entire life, my first love has and always will be writing novels. I love to create interesting characters, set them loose, and scribe what happens.


Bonobookstore: http://bonobookstore.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3_54&products_id=79

Amazon Link to Saving Casey: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00A7KRSOO

Barnes&Noble Link to SC: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/saving-casey-liza-oconnor/1113795362?ean=2940015849295

Video links:

Saving Casey Trailer: http://youtu.be/WxcaMP0Dgzc

Abridged My Crappy New Life series: http://youtu.be/p6QzYsxJ7jQ

Liza links:

Blog and Website: http://www.LizaOConnor.com

Facebook Profile: http://www.facebook.com/liza.oconnor.90

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Liza0Connor

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Win a Kindle Fire or $199 Amazon GC!!

Kindle Fire HD 7" Giveaway

The winner will have the option of receiving a 7" Kindle Fire HD (US Only)

  Or $199 Amazon.com Gift Card (International)

  Or $199 in Paypal Cash (International)

Sponsoring Bloggers & Authors
  1. I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
  2. Author Jennifer Laurens
  3. Author Lena Sledge
  4. Kelly's Lucky You
  5. Author Lori Verni-Fogarsi
  6. Phantasmic Reads
  7. Author Rebecca Talley
  8. Author Ednah Walter
  9. Author Heather Bixler
  10. Girls With Books
  11. My Life With Books
  12. Author Rae Z. Ryans
  13. All Fantasy Worlds
  14. Author Michael Young
  15. Book Angel Booktopia
  16. Lori's Reading Corner
  17. Books R Us
  18. Books 4 Tomorrow
  19. Author T. Lynne Tolles
  20. Good Choice Reading
  21. Curling Up With A Good Book
  22. Auggie-Talk
  23. A Bookish Escape
  24. Paranormal Book Club
  25. Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf
  26. Amethyst Daydreams
  27. Pink Fluffy Hearts
  28. Love. Without You
  29. Books, Books, the Magical Fruit
  30. Author Lisa Voison
  31. Tasty Book Tours
  32. Fae Books
  33. Author Cindy C. Bennett
  34. Author Emma Michaels
  35. Author Lia Fairchild
  36. Fade Into Fantasy
  37. Pieces of Whimsy
  38. Author Rachael Renee Anderson
  39. Feed Your Reader
  40. Lovely Reads

Giveaway Details
1 winner will receive their choice of a Kindle Fire 7" HD (US Only), $199 Amazon Gift Card or $199 in Paypal Cash (International). Ends 4/30/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the participating authors & bloggers. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. Prize value $199 US.

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