Saturday, January 29, 2011

Review and Q&A: Rebellion: The Outer Territory by Stacey Wallace Benefiel

Rebellion: The Outer Territory
by Stacey Wallace Benefiel
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Formats avail: ebook,
Publication Date: January 5, 2011
Word Count: approx. 16,500 (Novelette)
ePub Length: 38pgs
Kindle Locations: 1035
Source: ebook provided by author

Day of Sacrifice, #2


Description from Amazon:
Cara needs something to live for.  Abel just needs to keep her alive.
As members of the newly formed rebellion against the Gods, Cara and Abel have their parts to play: she is a skilled healer and he is the Guardian put in charge of her protection. Or is it the other way around?

* * * * * 

My Thoughts:
The second book in the DoS series opens just before the ending of the first book, Day of Sacrifice: The Prophecy.  When the first book ended with a cliffhanger, I had questions that needed answers.  Where the heck did they all come from?  How did they know to do that?  Where did they go?  And also, what happens to Julian?  Well, the book continues with the storyline so we do get to see what happens immediately after the cliffhanger ending in the first book and questions get answered. This installment revolves around Cara (mother of Aiden) and Abel, another Guardian. Flora and Julian from the first book still play a part in this book so I did get a sense of their continuing story, but I was hoping their relationship would get more attention. 

The rebellion against the Gods continues. A small group of Guardians and Sacrifices have banded together to fight the Gods, fulfill the prophecy, and stop the Sacrifices.  They have regrouped at Julian's homestead in the Outer Territory. Abel has been assigned to protect Cara whose son was recently sacrificed to the Gods. She is a strong witch who can control the air and also a healer. I didn’t really get a feel for Abel’s back story. I wanted to know more about him.

Their feelings for each other grow as the story progresses, but I don't feel there was any resolution to that relationship by the end of the book so I will be interested to see if it will continue in some way as a part of the future stories. This world is not just made up of witches and angels -- there is also a vampire and a werewolf in this one but the vampire is the more prominent secondary character. I wonder if we will see him in the future as there seemed to be a hint of a relationship.

The books so far are short at around 16K words, which is novelette size (somewhere between a short story and a novella), so there isn't a lot of room to really delve into the characters and flesh them out. I would have liked more character development, but at the same time I didn't really feel cheated. The author does a good job of presenting characters the reader can care about given the short amount of space to work within each book.

If you have seen my other reviews for Stacey's books then you know I already enjoy her writing style.  It is tight and engaging without a lot of superfluous scenes that don't add anything to the story. There was one brief scene though that seemed to defy the laws of gravity. I read this scene several times and it still doesn't make sense to me. This is the scene where Abel scoops Cara up in his “arms" then a moments later (while still holding her) he moves Cara's hand from his chest to around his neck. Um, did he grow a third arm?  If he let go of Cara to do this, wouldn't her legs drop to the floor?  I haz confusion...or I’m missing something.

The books in this series are short but I think of them more like a TV series where the story continues with each episode and you have to stay tuned to the same bat-time and same bat-channel to find out what happens next. Speaking of which, the next book in this series is titled Dormant: Forever United and is expected to be out sometime around March or April 2011.

If you liked the first book in this series then I think you will enjoy this book. Due to the continuing nature of the story in this series and because the short length doesn’t allow for much of any back story, I recommend reading them in order or you will probably be at a loss as to what is going on. 

After finishing this book I had some "kurious kitteh kwestions" for Stacey so keep reading below to find out a little more about the Day of Sacrifice series.

Rating:  4 - I Really Liked It

Typos found: 3


* * * * *

This book is currently available as an ebook.  You can find Stacey Wallace Benefiel on the web at:

Website: http://staceywb.webs.com/
Blog: http://staceywallacebenefiel.wordpress.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/people/Author-Stacey-Wallace-Benefiel/100001994043396
Twitter: http://twitter.com/Stacey_WB
Goodreads: Stacey's Author Page


Get the book! 


Find it on Goodreads HERE

Other books by Stacey:



Day of Sacrifice Stories

Day of Sacrifice: The Prophecy  (Book 1)
**IPBR Reviewed**





Zellie Wells Series (YA)
Glimpse (Book 1)
**IPBR Reviewed!**






Glimmer (Book 2)
Upcoming Review!





Q&A with Stacey Wallace Benefiel

IPBR: What inspired the idea for the Day of Sacrifice series?
Stacey: DoS is my experiment. I wanted to write something that I could sell at the $1 price point and I wanted to work on my short story and action writing. Also, even though Glimpse is PNR, I made up all the powers. I wanted to see if I could write within the PNR/UF genre in a more authentic way.

So, I asked myself, "What's an interesting conflict?" How about a party girl who has to stay a virgin or her whole family loses their powers? Add in a hot angel because I like hot angels and there ya go!

IPBR: How many installments are planned for this series and will they all be about the same size?
Stacey:  There will be 7 installments, or episodes, as I like to think of them. The final story will be back to Flora and Julian's POV. They will all be long short stories/short novellas. I guess that's called a novelette? Who knew? Everyone but me probably. :)

IPBR: Is there a particular scene or a line from Rebellion that is a favorite of yours?
Stacey:  I like writing the banter. When Cara makes the joke about Julian not being an angel anymore and Abel cringes- I love that stuff. Anything involving the kitchen table or the sitting room couch.

IPBR: If you were a witch in this world, what power would you want to have and why?
Stacey:  I would like to be a healer like Cara. Good with potion making. I like science, studied to be a medical transcriptionist and I went to culinary school. The chemistry of cooking/potion making appeals to me.

IPBR: When can readers expect to see the next book in the DoS series and can you tell us a little of what the story will be about?
Stacey:  The next story is called Dormant:Forever United. It's the story of what happens to Fauna and Clark after they were injected with the potion that put them in a coma-like state. Bartholomew is involved.
I'd like to have it out by the end of March. I plan on releasing it on its own and also releasing the first three stories together. They're meant to be read in sequence.

IPBR: Do you have any other projects in the works that you can share with us?
Stacey:  I'm currently working on the final Zellie Wells book, Glow. I hope to have it out in June. I've also got a story in a PNR anthology that H.P. Mallory and Amanda Hocking are putting together.

Lightning round just for fun...
Vampires or Werewolves? Vampires!
Chocolate or Vanilla? Chocolate!
Plotter or Pantser? Pantser, but I don't love that word. It sounds like I pants people on the playground.
Comedy or Drama? Comedy!
Ebooks or Print Books? E-books!
Cats or Dogs? Dogs! Although I have both. My cats pee on everything.


 Thanks Stacey!  

Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Finds: Sweet Indie Deals - Jan 28, 2011

Friday Finds is a way to share super sweet deals for indie paranormal ebooks.  All Friday finds are priced from Free ~ $3.00 and represent an awesome deal for the word count.

Books listed in Friday Finds have not been reviewed unless noted below with a link to the review.  It's up to the reader to determine if the ebook is a good fit for their reading tastes.  Follow the links for more details and to download a free sample (if it's not already free) to see if you might like it. It's a great way to "test drive" a book.

Prices valid at the time of this post but they can change at any time, so get 'em while the gettin' is good! 


===============
 
 
 Rider
by Laura Hill 
 
Word Count:  approx. 74,485 (Novel)

You Set the Price! Smashwords
 
For years the bar at Devil’s Gulch attracted an unsavory crowd, it was no place for a girl even a tough grifter like Kat. But tonight her luck was about to change. When a mysterious Rider appears Kat is thrust into a life of fame, fortune and murder. Now Rider is back to collect his due and Kat must enter a world seething with magic where nothing is what it seems and evil lurks at every turn.
 
 = = = = =
 
 
  The Darkling Wind
by Jamie Sedgwick

Word Count: approx. 32,750 (Novella)

FREE! at Smashwords

Ben thought his grandfather's bedtime stories were make-believe, but now the evil darklings have invaded his town. When a mysterious package arrives containing his grandfather's old journal, Ben knows he has the key to stop them. Unfortunately, the journal is encrypted. With the help of his Best friend Sara, Ben must unlock the journal's secrets and stop the darklings, but he's running out of time.
 
 = = = = =

 
 Death Has a Name
by Jerry Hanel
 
Word Count: approx. 57,880 (Short Novel)
 
$0.99 B&N Nook

Together with Detective Phil Dawson, Brodie Wade -- a psychic detective -- must summon all of his will to go head-to-head with a spiritual force known as The Truth to solve the latest string of gruesome murders. It appears that Dominick Fredrickton -- the Midnight Killer -- has returned from the grave. Can they stop Death before he is unleashed from eternal bonds?

= = = = =


 Have Broom, Will Travel
by James Conder

Word Count: approx. 40,581 (Short Novel)

$0.99 B&N Nook
 
When Susan Crone Takes up the post of village witch, she gets a bit more than she bargained for. She ends up with a klutzy apprentice, and goes up against Damian, the man-witch. Soon Susan finds herself on a journey to stop Damian's power-mad father from destroying all the magic in the world. 
 
  = = = = =

 
 My Superhero Sister 
by Toni LoTempio

Word Count: approx. 61,020 (Novel)
 
$1.99 B&N Nook

Holly Hamilton has always been perturbed by the way her older sister, Ellen, seems to get everything. It's especially tough living in the shadow of your sister's cape when she's a super heroine named Suprema! 

 
 
 

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Cover Love #10: Spiderwork by LK Rigel

I can't believe I haven't done a cover love post for this book yet.  I think I've run into more people who have commented on how great this cover is than I have fingers to count them on.  It really is fantastic. 

If you missed it the first time around, check out the Sneak Peek right here on IPBR.



Spiderwork by LK Rigel
(In Flagrante Apocalypto, #2)

Her fate was to hold the world together. His destiny was to tear it apart.
As a child, Durga was chosen by the goddess to save the world from sterility and extinction. Now her eighteenth birthday approaches, and Durga must take her place among the chalices -- women made fertile by the goddess to ensure more souls for the universe. Durga's mission does not include love ... but Khai, the scion of Luxor, is unlike any man she's ever met.

Char Meadowlark once played a role in the goddess's plans. Now her lover, Jake Ardri, heads an emerging city-state whose enemies covet everything Jake has built. As Jake navigates the uneasy waters of political intrigue, his very existence is threatened. To save him, Char must share him with a chalice ... one trained to take him to the heights of sexual ecstasy.

In flagrante apocalypto: When the veil drops between life and oblivion, only love can save them from the abyss.
Find it on Goodreads HERE 
 
Want to know when LK has a new release?
Sign up for her newsletter HERE
 
Buy the Book!


  = = = = =

Hop on over to Goodreads and show your love...cover love that is!  Click the link below to add and vote for all your indie paranormal cover art favorites.  (Anyone can view but Goodreads membership needed to vote... no worries, it's free!).

Vote on your favorite Indie Book Cover Art

~ ~

While you are there, check out these other lists for voting on your favorite PNR/UF indie books.  A great way to recommend your favorites indie books to other readers and find some new awesome books for yourself. Both links are on the left sidebar too.  

Indie Books - Paranormal Fiction
Vote for and Recommend your favorite PNR/UF Indie Books

~ ~

A New List! 
What's coming in 2011 for indie paranormal fiction? Add your most anticipated original releases in 2011 and vote on your faves! 



Got some cover lovin' going on?  Share a link to it in the comments and tell us why you love it :)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Review: Balefire and Moonstone by Cynthia Gael

Balefire and Moonstone
by Cynthia Gael

Genre:  YA Paranormal Romace
Formats avail:  ebook, paperback
Publisher: Gypsy Shadow Publishing
Publication Date: September 15, 2010
Word Count: approx.  66,740 (Novel)
ePub pages:  145 pgs
Print Length: 224 pgs
Source:  ebook provided by publisher

Balefire Chronicles, Book 1


DESCRIPTON from Goodreads:
For Tommy Hopkins, rich and well-traveled, the idea of witches is ridiculous. When he turns nineteen, Tommy will be the new Witchfinder General, a line that stretches back to the original, Matthew Hopkins. The Witchfinder General directs WFG Ltd., the richest company on the face of the earth, providing clean, non-polluting power—though few know the power they sell is drained from witches. Then Tommy meets and falls in love with Anya Blanchett, poor, friendless…and a fire witch of an ancient line. Now Tommy must learn to believe so he can save the girl he loves—or is he destined to turn against her?

 * * * * *

MY REVIEW:
The son of a Witchfinder and a Chosen One (a true witch) battle a centuries old family curse that is destined to bind them together and then tear them apart. The curse can only be broken “when the love shared overcomes all boundaries.” Are Tommy and Anya the ones who can finally break the curse?

Balefire and Moonstone was an enjoyable enough read, but I didn't have strong feelings either way. The story is told with an alternating perspective that jumps between the first person POV of Tommy and Anya. The perspective switches with each chapter and the character's name is at the beginning of the chapter so it is easy to keep track of which character is talking. I enjoy the dual POV, especially when the author uses a style like this that makes it clear which head you are in.

I liked Tommy and Anya, but maybe Tommy a little more.  He showed himself as a stand-up guy from the beginning when he stepped in to save Anya from the school bullies. He wants to do the right thing but soon learns he is in deep doo doo, a real stinker of a situation that creates a conflict that he doesn't know how to resolve. He is determined to make it right and never seems to waiver in his feelings for Anya.

After the bully incident, Anya goes home and does a binding spell on Tommy after knowing him for only about, let's see, um...maybe 10 minutes. This didn't make any sense to me. I know they are destined to be together, but yeesh... at that point in the story their feelings for each other were not really explored much at all. She does try to retract the spell later but the Great Mother, the Goddess who speaks to Anya, won't allow it because their destinies run deeper than the spell.

One aspect of the dialogue did bother me and that is how Anya uses the endearment "hun" or "love" a lot with Tommy even though she barely knows him. It made me think of the stereotypical gum-smacking, beehive-wearing, pencil-behind-the-ear waitress sayng, "can I get ya anything, hun?"  Though Anya is from the south and they have a destined bond, it just made her dialogue sound forced and unnatural to me.

Anya is a bit conflicted about her witch heritage and has to work through her feelings. She has not come into her full powers until a certain event occurs that triggers them. Around this point in the book I felt there was an inconsistency in the story that is hard to explain without spoilers so I'll leave it out of the review here, but if you want more info than see my review at Goodreads where the review can be hidden.

The romance was sweet and I was a somewhat intrigued by the story, just not a lot intrigued. I would like to have seen the bond between Anya and Tommy fleshed out a little more. The writing felt okay to me and though I like the story, I think the pacing just didn't keep me interested enough to make it a page-turner. This story has an unresolved ending and seems to be just the beginning of the story arc that continues in the next book, Balefire and Lodestone.

Rating: 3 (I Liked It)

Typos found: 12

 * * * * *

This book is available in both paperback and ebook versions.  Cynthia Gael is the collaboration of writers K.G. McAbee and Cynthia D. Witherspoon.  You can find Cynthia Gael on the web at:

Website: http://cynthiagael.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Blog: http://cynthiagael.blogspot.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cynthia-Gael/213403522900



Get the book!
Amazon, B&N, Smashwords

Find it on Goodreads HERE!

Other books by Cynthia Gael:

Balefire and Lodestone
Balefire Chronicles, Book 2









Blog Tour, Guest Post & Author Contest: Jon F. Merz - Traditional Or Indie? How About Both?

Jon F. Merz, author of the Lawson Vampire series, is joining us today to promote his new release, The Kensei, published this week by St. Martin's Press.  Okay, so I know what you are saying...Hey, that's a traditionally published book!  Well yeah, but Jon is also self-published and has agreed to give us a little insight into his experience being both a traditionally published and self-published author.  He also has a cool contest too so check out the details at the end of this post.  Without further ado...here's Jon!

= = = = =

Jon says.... There's been a ton of talk lately about the demise of traditional publishing.  Ebooks are the future and writers no longer need New York agents and editors.  The gatekeepers have lost all the power.  Writers are back in charge.  With platforms like Amazon, they can immediately reach out to a waiting audience that will no doubt shower them with riches.

Well, maybe.

Let me state from the start that New York has its problems.  I know this.  And I'll also gladly tell you that I've been mistreated in the past by the corporate machine that is publishing - my series was dropped back in 2003 due to personal problems between the editor and me and poor sales and a lack of publicity.  So I'm not any sort of cheerleader for the traditional model.  My belief has always been if I can cut out the middlemen and get my work into the hands of those that matter - the readers, then all is good.

I turned to indie publishing when my novel Parallax couldn't find a home in New York.  Despite editors loving it, the sales people couldn't figure out how to sell an espionage thriller with psychic suspense elements, so they rejected it.  It was frustrating - the book was great and I wanted it to have a home.  But New York said no.  So I put it out on the Kindle platform and enjoyed thousands of sales.  Customer reviews supported my assertion that the book was a great read.  I was happy with the results.

But I didn't stop pursuing traditional publishing deals.  And here's why: I wasn't seeing enough evidence to convince me that turning my back on New York was a sound move.  While I know that others sell thousands of dollars worth of ebooks each month, I don't.  That's the simple truth.  For me, the business model isn't yet at the point where I can look and state that I can make X number of dollars each year pursuing indie publishing.  But if I keep my hand in traditional publishing, I can definitely tell you what I'll make.  And that security, such as it is, is the main reason I haven't abandoned New York just yet.

Now, that said, if someone can tell me the formula for selling gobs and gobs of ebooks, and I put it to the test and suddenly see my sales exponentially increasing and staying at that rate, then I'll certainly reconsider.  At that point I'd be thrilled to be proven wrong, let me tell you.

But for right now, I'm happy to straddle both realms.  I have an array of stuff for sale that I do independently via Amazon and Smashwords.  I also have traditional publishing deals.  My most recent novel, THE KENSEI, just came out this past week from St. Martin's Press.  I write installments in the bestselling Rogue Angel series from Harlequin/Gold Eagle.  And my agent is shopping around a YA series.

Meanwhile, I carefully monitor the indie publishing trends.  As time permits, I want to experiment and see if I can get my own sales numbers to the point where I am more closely aligned with what others are making.  But for all the cheering that a lot of blogs and forums espouse, the reality of my situation is not ready to go 100% indie.  That may be due to factors I can control - such as cover design and descriptions - or it may simply be that this indie thing works for some people and not for others.

Until such time as I can determine that I can rely on the indie model, I'll continue to pursue traditional deals.  And I'm happy to be playing in both arenas right now.  Publishing is most definitely changing and I get front row seats to both extremes.  If New York ends up going the way of the dinosaur, then I won't be a complete newbie in the indie world.  And if New York figures out how to play in this new world of publishing, then I set there as well.  Yep, I'm hedging my bets.  It's my career, after all.

At the end of the day, we're all content creators.  And our end user is consuming that content in different ways.  As long as I can deliver it on whatever platform they want, I'm happy and so are they.  Would I like to make more money at it?  Absolutely.  And when I find a new formula that works for me, I'll do just that. 

For now, I'm both an indie and a traditional.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
As a writer, Jon has published over a dozen novels including four Lawson Vampire adventures (2002-2003) with Kensington's Pinnacle Books, the Jake Thunder mystery/thriller DANGER-CLOSE (2004) with Five Star Mystery/Thorndike Press, and eight installments in the internationally bestselling adventure series Rogue Angel (2006-present) with Harlequin's Gold Eagle line. His latest thriller PARALLAX debuted in March 2009 as an exclusive ebook.  His short fiction story "Prisoner 392" (appeared alongside Stephen King in FROM THE BORDERLANDS, 2004, Warner Books) earned him an Honorable Mention in 2004's Year's Best Fantasy & Horror edited by Ellen Datlow. Jon has also co-authored two non-fiction books: LEARNING LATER, LIVING GREATER with Nancy Merz Nordstrom (2006, Sentient Publications) and THE COMPLETE IDIOT'S GUIDE TO ULTIMATE FIGHTING with Rich "Ace" Franklin (2007, Alpha Books/Penguin/Putnam). Jon's next Lawson vampire novel, THE KENSEI, debuts in January 2011 from St. Martin's Press

Find Jon on the web:
Website: http://jonfmerz.net/
Blog: http://jonfmerz.net/blog/
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/jonfmerz
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jonfmerzfans

Find Jon's indie titles:
Smashwords / Amazon / B&N
 

= = = = =


The Kensei (Lawson the Fixer, #5)
by Jon F. Merz

Release Date: January 18, 2011
Saint Martin's Press

Meet Lawson. A cynical, wise-cracking vampire charged with protecting the Balance between vampires and humans, he is part cop, part spy, and part commando -- James Bond with fangs. Lawson mixes shrewd cunning with unmatched lethality to get his job done. He tries his best to dismantle conspiracies, dispatch bad guys, and live long enough to get home. InThe Kensei, a battle-weary Lawson heads to Japan for a little rest and some advanced ninja training. But he no sooner steps off the plane than lands in the midst of a Yakuza turf war orchestrated by a shadowy figure known as the Kensei. With the help of Talya, a former KGB-assassin, Lawson must put a stop to the Kensei’s organ trafficking networks, prevent the creation of an army of vampire-human hybrids, and save his own skin in the process.  Buy it at Amazon or B&N.


= = = = =

The Kensei Contest Details:

Send Jon proof-of-purchase (or a copy of your receipt if you bought online) that you’ve bought a copy of THE KENSEI and you’ll be entered for a chance to win the sword used by actor Brandon Stumpf in the official book trailer for THE KENSEI. Brandon will be starring in the TV series based on the novels, THE FIXER.  If you win, not only will you get the sword, but a certificate of authenticity, and you can even have it autographed by Brandon and Jon. Each copy of the book counts as one entry, so if you buy three copies of THE KENSEI to give as gifts to friends and family, then you have three chances to win the sword. And yes, ebook sales count as entries, too... One winner will be drawn on May 28th, 2011
You can send your entries to: thekenseicontest@gmail.com


= = = = = 


Thanks for joining us today Jon!



Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday Finds: Sweet Indie Deals - Jan 21, 2011

Friday Finds is a way to share super sweet deals for indie paranormal ebooks.  All Friday finds are priced from Free ~ $3.00 and represent an awesome deal for the word count.

Books listed in Friday Finds have not been reviewed unless noted below with a link to the review.  It's up to the reader to determine if the ebook is a good fit for their reading tastes.  Follow the links for more details and to download a free sample (if it's not already free) to see if you might like it. It's a great way to "test drive" a book.

Prices valid at the time of this post but they can change at any time, so get 'em while the gettin' is good! 


===============

Bob Moore: No Hero
by Tom Andry
Word Count: approx. 39,543
(Novella/Short Novel)

FREE! at Smashwords
Super powered humans started appearing 30 years ago. Now, they are everywhere. Bob Moore, Private Eye, dares to investigate those who could incinerate him with a thought. When he is called to help a super from his past, however, he'll be pushed to his limit. When supers and the police think there is no crime, can he get to the truth? Will he want to for the man that destroyed his marriage? 

 ==========


Immortalis: Carpe Noctem
by Katie Salidas

Word Count: approx. 83,436
(Novel)


Bleeding to death after brutal mugging , twenty-five year old Alyssa, is rescued by an unlikely hero. The cold and aloof vampire, Lysander. By saving Alyssa, he unwittingly thrust her into a dark world filled with blood lust and thousand-year old vendettas. Now, she must find the strength to accept her terrifying new reality or die by the hands of Lysander's enemies.

==========


The Heart Moon
by Tori Minard

Word Count: approx. 83,556
(Novel)


Roan Tanais spends his time with the Unseelie Court Gang, a vicious bunch he loathes. He must steal back the Tanais Shield & the last thing he needs is prickly human Laine Hamilton,no matter how delectable she is. When Laine encounters a gorgeous bad boy in a park, she has no idea he's a fairy until her attraction draws her onto Unseelie turf & she's captured. For one moon, she's Roan's hostage. 


==========


 
Night and Chaos (The Deva Chronicles, #1)
by Naomi Clark

Word Count: approx. 45,630
(Short Novel)


Ryan McCarthy fled Applied Paranormal Theory and Tactics, her father, and her lover six years ago, desperate to build life away from the weird science and supernatural experiments of her childhood. But everything she hoped to escape comes back with a vengeance when she’s kidnapped. 

 ==========

 Risen
by Krystal Lawrence

Published by Telemachus Press
Word Count: approx. 98,686
(Novel)
$2.99 Smashwords
$2.99 B&N Nook

The boy was unremarkable. No reason anyone would have thought twice about him. Not unless they looked closer. Then one might see something was different. Something was wrong. Detective Kurt Dale wants out of a torrid affair. There’s a killer on the loose and he has become the prime suspect. A two-hundred year old vampire has risen and a centuries old unconscionable evil is about to be revenged.

==========



Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Book Trailer Tuesday: The Other Side of Life by Jess C. Scott

The Other Side of Life
(Cyberpunk Elven Trilogy, #1)
by Jess C Scott

Word Count: approx. 66,000 (Novel)
(Urban Fantasy/Cyberpunk/YA with adult crossover appeal / Novel)

Smashwords / Amazon Kindle / B&N Nook
 

DESCRIPTION: 
Anya and Leticia are partners-in-crime who steal for a living. Their world turns upside down after a chance encounter with fellow rogue, Ithilnin--the enigmatic leader of an Elven band of thieves.

A scuffle to prove who's "the better thief" transforms into more than Anya and Ithilnin ever bargained for. They retrieve the missing piece of an ancient poem, before getting caught in the secret dealings of a megacorporation. What they uncover threatens to alter the very essence of not just human life, but the other side as well.

Elven intrigue, cyberpunk action, and a deadly dose of danger come together in The Other Side of Life [Book #1 in the (Cyberpunk) Elven Trilogy]

 




Find it on Goodreads HERE


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jess’s literary work has appeared in a diverse range of publications, such as Word Riot, ITCH Magazine, and The Battered Suitcase. She was a research assistant intern for the memoir, My Lie (written by award-winning journalist Meredith Maran, Jossey-Bass/Wiley, September 2010). Her novella, The Devilin Fey, hit #1 in Amazon’s “Hot New Releases in Bargain Books” in July 2010.

Find Jess C. Scott on line:
 
 

Friday, January 14, 2011

Friday Finds: Sweet Indie Deals - Jan 14, 2011

Friday Finds is a way to share super sweet deals for indie paranormal ebooks.  All Friday finds are priced from Free ~ $3.00 and represent an awesome deal for the word count.

Books listed in Friday Finds have not been reviewed unless noted below with a link to the review.  It's up to the reader to determine if the ebook is a good fit for their reading tastes.  Follow the links for more details and to download a free sample (if it's not already free) to see if you might like it. It's a great way to "test drive" a book.

Prices valid at the time of this post but they can change at any time, so get 'em while the gettin' is good!  Any coupon codes in this post are available publicly on line.


===============



Cursed
by Ronnell D. Porter
(Children's Fiction)

Word Count: approx. 31,084
(Novella)


Cursed is a magical adventure like no other and shows that growing up isn’t about giving up what makes us all a kid but simply becoming better at it. Fans of mischief and magic will thoroughly enjoy Anya and Malcifer as they struggle against one another to accomplish their own ends.


===============


Eden 
by Gregory Hoffman

Word Count: approx. approx. 73,704
(Novel)

$0.99 B&N Nook

Thomas Atwell was just your average high school junior until Eden moved in next door. She was beautiful, smart, sweet and super strong?! It's a boy-meets-vampire story with a twist as Thomas and his friends try to rescue Eden from the clutches of a group of humans that are trying to drink her blood. 

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Voyagers
by K.L. Nappier

Word Count: approx. 72,809
(Novel)

$0.99 B&N Nook

There are no unlikelier sleuths than Greta Roscoe & the Reverend Aaron Shane. Not because Greta is the most elegant courtesan of St. Louis’s Rag Time high society & Aaron the city’s most priggish minister.It’s because they’re dead & an angel has tasked them with solving their own murders.“
  
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Spooks and Magic (Alana Weatherbee)
by Jack Sorenson

Word Count: approx. 59,818
(Short Novel)

FREE! at Smashwords w/code RB99T
(regular price $1.99)
LIMITED TIME! Valid thru Feb 14, 2011 

Additional Smashwords coupon codes for Jack Sorenson:
Jack's School of Shines: YT24V
Alana Weatherbee: TY59Z

$1.99 B&N Nook

Student Alana Weatherbee is suspected of murdering her werewolf boyfriend, Logan, while under the influence of the evil Book of Spells. Alana finds herself caught in a 3-way battle between Headmaster Barns, demon wizard Cafzf and the Book of Spells. She wants to keep the book and its power, however she knows she needs to let it go before it consumes her. But will the Book of Spells let her go?
 

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Demonspawn
by Glenn Bullion
 Word Count: approx. 102,404
(Novel)

$2.99 B&N Nook

Alex Teague tried to live a normal life. He was a normal high school senior . . . until he talked to his first ghost, exorcised his first demon, and cleansed his first haunted house. If only it ended there. Now a young man in his twenties, Alex makes a horrifying discovery. He is part demon. And the supernatural world won’t leave him alone.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Cover Love #9: Heroes 'Til Curfew by Susan Bischoff

Okay, I know my last cover love post was Susan's book, Hush Money, and I know this book isn't out yet, but the cover is and I absolutely lurve it!  Just couldn't stand it anymore and had to give it some cover love :)  

Heroes 'Til Curfew by Susan Bischoff
(Talent Chronicles, #2)
How do you impress a girl who can toss dumpsters around with her brain, when all your invisibility Talent makes you great at is hiding? As Dylan ponders this, Joss finds herself mired deep in "he likes me, he likes me not" territory. While our super couple dances awkwardly around their feelings, NIAC's mysterious undercover agent is sending away more Talents than ever. It's the perfect climate of fear for Marco to draw these scared kids to his cause as he plots both his revenge, and a crime wave that sweeps over the town of Fairview, threatening Joss's family business and the safety of all Talents, good and bad. Joss and Dylan have to decide if they're going to stand up or step aside. Is it worth risking their freedom? Or each other?

Find it on Goodreads HERE
Stayed tuned for this book to be released sometime this year.
Join Susan's newsletter to stay in the know...

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Hop on over to Goodreads and show your love...cover love that is!  Click the link below to add and vote for all your indie paranormal cover art favorites.  (Anyone can view but Goodreads membership needed to vote... no worries, it's free!).

Vote on your favorite Indie Book Cover Art

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While you are there, check out these other lists for voting on your favorite PNR/UF indie books.  A great way to recommend your favorites indie books to other readers and find some new awesome books for yourself. Both links are on the left sidebar too.  

Indie Books - Paranormal Fiction
Vote for and Recommend your favorite PNR/UF Indie Books

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A New List! 
What's coming in 2011 for indie paranormal fiction? Add and Vote for your most anticipated original releases! 



Got some cover lovin' going on?  Share a link to it in the comments and tell us why you love it :)

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Review: The Second Half of Life by Sionna Cailey

The Second Half of Life
by Sionna Cailey

Genre:  Paranormal Chick-Lit
Formats avail:  ebook
Publication Date: September 18, 2010
Word Count: approx. 63,710 (Novel)
ePub pages: 145
Kindle Locations: 3790
Source:  ebook provided by author 



DESCRIPTION from Goodreads:
Tequila, magic and rock and roll set the stage for midlife rebellion when the Committee for the Disaffected decides that the ancient art of witchcraft is the only way to rev up their boring small-town lives. Aidan, Kathy and Diana soon discover they’re not the only witches in town, and the local coven holds the secret to a cursed stone, inhabited by a demon that will grant your heart’s desire. This demon is a sultry succubus that wants to know what’s in it for her, and she doesn’t give you what you wish for; she gives you what she thinks you deserve.

Aidan desires the attentions of a handsome young musician, only to discover that he was already in love – with his bandmate. Kathy longs for financial security, but when fortune strikes, it reveals her husband’s true nature. Longing to be a respected author, Diana becomes an overnight success – but it’s her kinky erotica that everyone wants, and her humiliated husband decides to put his foot down.

Magical wishes always come with a high price tag – and they’re just not sure they can afford it.


MY REVIEW:
Three dissatisfied woman use witchcraft to grant their deepest desires and change their lives. Each woman has a wish she wants fulfilled revolving around love, wealth, or fame. They discover they can get their wishes granted by conjuring a demon, but they also soon discover that nothing is free -- there is always a price to pay.

As I was reading this book, it occurred to me that the "big picture" progression of this story could be summed up by a few common sayings:

- The beginning: The grass is always greener on the other side
- The middle: Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it
- The ending: You can't always get what you want ...you get what you need.

I don't think there was anything really new about this story. It is an old concept wrapped in a new package. This story has more of a chick-lit feel to it, like Sex in the City meets witchcraft 101. The three friends regularly meet at their favorite watering hole, Texas Bob's, to eat, drink, and commiserate...and in this case devise their witchy plans to make their wishes reality. The one point I can't seem to get past is why three smart, modern women would think that a demon would make a fair deal? That they would get their wishes and their cake too, and then the demon would slink back to where it came from and everything would be happy ever after.  It just seemed like a TSTL decision that didn't suit the characters.

I did actually enjoy the author's narrative and there were several instances where I appreciated a certain turn of phrase or a description (which says a lot coming from a dialogue-lovin' gal).  The pacing was a bit slow for me at the beginning but it did pick up as the story progressed and by the end I can say I enjoyed it. I also liked the ending. I wouldn't call it an HEA exactly but then this really isn't a romance. Each character gets closure to her story in a way that I felt was quite satisfactory. The book didn’t end with a bang or a whimper but a contented nod of the head.

My main issue with this book is not the writing style, not the dialogue, not the voice, not the plot....no, it is those darn typos. This book officially has the highest number so far at a whopping 53 by my count. I expect a few typos in any book I read, even traditionally published books; they just go with the territory. However, I do expect them to be limited in a published book regardless of whether it is a self-pub or traditional pub. Needless to say, this many typos became distracting. And yes, they can be fixed (and hopefully they will be for future readers), but this is the copy I got for review and was the latest version available at the time I read it, so I have to base my experience on that.

This story is a retelling of a well-used theme that was enjoyable enough but would have been better with some more careful proofreading. It was still a decent read and I would recommend this book to readers who like stories that revolve around relationships, friendships, motivations, and lessons learned, but who also like a dash of the paranormal thrown in that supports the story rather than being the main focus.

Rating: 3

Typos found: 53


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 Sionna does not have a website or blog at this time but you can contact her at SionnaCailey@hotmail.com.  

This book is only available in ebook format:

Get the Book!

Find it on Goodreads HERE


Friday, January 7, 2011

Friday Finds: Sweet Indie Deals - Jan 7, 2011

Friday Finds is a way to share super sweet deals for indie paranormal ebooks.  All Friday finds are priced from Free ~ $3.00 and represent an awesome deal for the word count.

Books listed in Friday Finds have not been reviewed unless noted below with a link to the review.  It's up to the reader to determine if the ebook is a good fit for their reading tastes.  Follow the links for more details and to download a free sample (if it's not already free) to see if you might like it. It's a great way to "test drive" a book.

Prices valid at the time of this post but they can change at any time, so get 'em while the gettin' is good!



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 Rebellion (Day of Sacrifice, #2)
by Stacey Wallace Benefiel

Word Count: approx. 16,500
(Long Short Story/Novella)

$1.00 B&N Nook


Cara needs something to live for. Abel just needs to keep her alive. As members of the newly formed rebellion against the Gods, Cara and Abel have their parts to play: she is a skilled healer and he is the Guardian put in charge of her protection. Or is it the other way around?


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 Devil's Eye (Mirus, #2)
by Kait Nolan

Word Count: approx. 22,136
(Novella)

$0.99 B&N Nook

Trouble. That’s what wolf-shifter Mick thinks when a beautiful woman appears in his New Orleans bar with a hurricane at her back. His first impression is confirmed when Sophie starts asking questions about his missing waitress, Liza. Mick will do anything to rescue a member of the pack he’s made for himself, including forming an unlikely alliance with a woman with a badge.


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Inner Demons (Peachville High Demons, #2)
by Sarra Cannon

Word count: approx. 49,963 
(Short Novel)

$0.99 B&N Nook


Becoming a Demons cheerleader was the last thing Harper Madison expected when she moved to the small town of Peachville. Now that she's an official member of the squad, her training can begin. The training opens up a new world for Harper. It's a world of beauty and magic, but also a world of impossible expectations. A world where every secret hides an even darker secret.


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 The Pocket Watch (The Trinity Saga, #1)
by Ronnell D. Porter

Word Count: approx. 147,014
(Novel Plus)

$0.99 B&N Nook

In order to learn the mystery behind her mother’s hidden past, Imogen must help the House of Bekker, an organization of beings called Wraiths, discover the identity of the wicked and powerful man who calls himself Ignius. But as an average human girl facing off against terrifying obstacles including a dragon made of pure hellfire, her bravery wavers but her will is stronger.


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The Devil's Angel (Devrynne Kaine, #1) 
by Samantha Anderson 

Word Count: approx. 94,210
(Novel)

$1.99 Smashwords

Being blackmailed is part of everyday life for Devrynne Kaine, Satan's chosen queen. But she now finds herself in a crisis she can't get out of. Being accused of killing her sire without permission of the Order that she belongs to, she stands to lose everything she's ever worked for. Now in a race against time, can she find a way out of the trouble she’s in without giving up her humanity?