Saturday, 31 May 2014

Book Blog Walkers: Weekly Check-in May 30 2014

This challenge is organized by Felicia over at the Geeky Blogger's Book Blog.

Saturday 1 hour bike
Sunday - 6 km bike and 40 min walk
Monday - 5 km bike and 30 min walk
Tuesday - 5 km bike and 50 min walk
Wednesday - 10 km bike and 1 hour zumba
Thursday - 30 min walk
Friday 5 km bike and 30 min walk

I usually post on another blog (I tried to photo blog, FAIL) so I can just try this here instead. This is a great challenge by Felicia. Do join in. It does give me that extra kick in the butt when I have to show off my week.

From one of my walks



Friday, 30 May 2014

Review and Giveaway: Miss Darcy Decides Blog Tour

While visiting a young woman—who was not so fortunate as Miss Georgiana Darcy in escaping the persuasions of a rogue—Georgiana meets Sir Camden Sutton, whose reputation causes Georgiana to wonder as to his motives. Her wondering soon turns to a different feeling when Sir Camden comes to stay at Pemberley, showing himself to be a very different man than was rumored. While Sir Camden struggles with his past and his commitment to his future, as well as the ill intentions of haughty Caroline Bingley, Miss Darcy must decide whether to listen to others, or the words written on her heart.

My thoughts:
This was a short and sweet novella. Georgiana has a nice head on her shoulders. Yes she did something not so good once, but she will not be fooled again. She can also look past what people are saying and believe her own heart and head instead. 

The novella is about Sir Camden who comes to Pemberley. He has a really bad reputation, Wickham bad. So Darcy does not trust him, Gergiana sees that there is more to the truth and gets to know Sir Camden. Who yes once was a scoundrel, but he wants to change. He was a good man and I admired his change of heart. I also liked that Georgiana knew what she wanted.

There is no drama just the two of them getting closer, and getting over that bump in the road about his reputation.

Conclusion:
A nice novella that I read in a sitting. I also really really want to read the previous novella about Kitty finding love.


Length: 77 pages
Heat level: sweet
Published January 22nd 2014
http://www.reinamwilliams.com
Love at Pemberley #2





Please join Reina M. Williams on her Love at Pemberley Series Book Blast from May 12-June 13.

01_Most Truly About Most Truly

Publication Date: December 15, 2013 A
 Colonel James Fitzwilliam is home. The war has left him weary, battle-scarred—and a free man of fortune ready to find a wife. He travels to Pemberley, his second home. There he meets Kitty Bennet. Her unexpected charms soon have him questioning his familial duty and his expectations. A fight looms on the horizon when his aunt—Lady Catherine de Bourgh—and his parents arrive with their own plans for his future. Kitty Bennet has found happiness. At Pemberley, she has improved herself and formed true friendships with her sister Lizzy and Georgiana Darcy. Kitty is captivated by the gentlemanly Colonel Fitzwilliam. But she will not be silly over a redcoat again, and she will not risk her happiness—or his family’s displeasure—for his attentions. Colonel Fitzwilliam, Darcy, Lizzy, and Georgiana have their say, and Kitty learns a new lesson—love will find you at Pemberley.

About Miss Darcy Decides

Miss Darcy Decides
Publication Date: January 21, 2014 
Miss Darcy Decides is a light, sweet Pride and Prejudice novella, book two in the Love at Pemberley series. While visiting a young woman—who was not so fortunate as Miss Georgiana Darcy in escaping the persuasions of a rogue—Georgiana meets Sir Camden Sutton, whose reputation causes Georgiana to wonder as to his motives. Her wondering soon turns to a different feeling when Sir Camden comes to stay at Pemberley, showing himself to be a very different man than was rumored. While Sir Camden struggles with his past and his commitment to his future, as well as the ill intentions of haughty Caroline Bingley, Miss Darcy must decide whether to listen to others, or the words written on her heart.

About Miss Bennet Blooms

03_Miss Bennet BloomsPublication Date: 4/25/14 
Miss Mary Bennet is the last unmarried Bennet sister. She believes she will live out her days as a maiden aunt, seeking quiet in the libraries and parlors of her father's and brother-in-laws' homes. On a visit to Pemberley, the estate of Fitzwilliam Darcy, her sister Lizzy's husband, Mary begins to feel more is possible than her planned life of solitude. Among new friends and with new confidence, Mary opens to new feelings when she meets Mr. Nathaniel Bingley. Nathaniel Bingley, at the insistence of his cousin Charles Bingley, finds himself at Pemberley. After Nathaniel's years in the West Indies studying its intense flora, he is ready to seclude himself to compile his work into a book. But Nathaniel could not say no to Charles, who was one of Nathaniel's few kind relatives after the deaths of his beloved parents. Soon, Nathaniel also finds it difficult to say no to his own feelings about the lovely Miss Mary Bennet. Can Mary and Nathaniel look beyond their plans and accept the grace of love at Pemberley?

Buy the Novellas

Amazon Barnes & Noble Kobo Books

Reina M. Williams About the Author

Reina M. Williams loves period dramas, sweet reads, fairy tales, cooking and baking. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her two boys, who hope to someday take a research trip to England with their mom. For more information please visit Reina M. Williams's website. You can also connect with her on Twitter, Goodreads, and Pinterest.

Book Blast Schedule

May 12: Kincavel Korner May 13: Hardcover Feedback May 15: Peeking Between the Pages May 16: A Bookish Girl & The Lit Bitch May 20: CelticLady's Reviews May 21: Historical Tapestry & To Read, Or Not to Read May 22: Book Nerd, & Historical Fiction Obsession May 24: Passages to the Past May 26: Mari Reads May 27: Long Ago Love May 28: Kinx's Book Nook May 30: Flashlight Commentary June 1: Literary Chanteuse June 2: History From a Woman's Perspective June 4: She is Too Fond of Books June 5: So Many Books, So Little Time June 7: A Bookish Affair & Griperang's Bookmarks June 8: The True Book Addict June 9: West Metro Mommy June 11: Book Lovers Paradise, Historical Fiction Connection, and The Tower of Babel June 13: Carole's Ramblings & The Mad Reviewer

Giveaway

To win one of the following prizes please complete the Rafflecopter giveaway form below. Giveaway is open internationally.
  • 2 eBook Sets of Love at Pemberley Trilogy
  • 2 Audio Books of Most Truly
Giveaway ends at 11:59pm on June 13th. You must be 18 or older to enter. Winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter on June 14th and notified via email. Winner have 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen. a Rafflecopter giveaway





Virtual Book Tour Schedule

Monday, May 12 Spotlight & Giveaway at Passages to the Past Tuesday, May 13 Review at Gobs and Gobs of Books Wednesday, May 14 Excerpt at Bibliophilia, Please Thursday, May 15 Review at Our Wolves Den Friday, May 16 Audio Review of Most Truly at Just One More Chapter Tuesday, May 20 Review at I'd Rather Be Reading Saturday, May 24 Review at Buried Under Books Friday, May 30 Review at Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell Tuesday, June 3 Review at She is Too Fond of Books Thursday, June 5 Audio Review of Most Truly at To Read, or Not to Read Saturday, June 7 Review at The Calico Critic Monday, June 9 Audio Review of Most Truly at Flashlight Commentary Wednesday, June 11 Review at Tower of Babel Friday, June 13 Review at Literary Chanteuse Review at Diary of an Eccentric Excerpt at Historical Fiction Connection

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Thursday, 29 May 2014

Fifth grave past the light - Darynda Jones

Charley Davidson may not look like your everyday, run-of-the-mill grim reaper, but she has vowed to reap grimness wherever she goes despite this unfortunate fact. Sadly, she gets sidetracked when the sexy, sultry son of Satan, Reyes Farrow, moves in next door. As he is the main suspect in her arson case, she has vowed to stay away from him until she can find out the truth.

However, when dead women start appearing in her apartment—lost, confused and terrified beyond reason—Charley has no choice but to ask for Reyes' help, especially when it becomes apparent that her own sister, Gemma, is the serial killer's next target. With his ability to observe incorporeally, surely he can find out who's responsible. And even if he can't, he is the one man alive who could protect Gemma no matter who or what came at her. But he wants something in return: Charley. All of her—body and soul. And to keep her sister safe, it is a price she might be willing to pay...

My thoughts:
Fun times :D 

Right, a review. It's so hard to review when it's book 5. How many times can I say that Reyes is Sin that is Meant to BE! Sin sin sin, oh Charley sin some more.

The book is great with a mystery as always. A bunch of dead women in her flat, she needs to find a serial killer. A few other things on the side, all in all building it up for quite the finale. And then the end, eeeeeeeee!

The tone is fun, the passion is smoking. Reyes is sex on a stick.

But so ok the book was awesome. But like with all awesome things I do worry. What if it stop being awesome? I have loved many series but there comes a time when fun is just old. I hope that does not happen here. I hope for an end soon then so the awesome continues and never dwindles. 

Conclusion:
Recommended. 

Cover
eh, but I like it better than the US one

Mass Market Paperback, 339 pages
Published July 9th 2013 by Piatkus
Charley Davidson #5
Urban fantasy romance
Own


Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Carole Reviews: The Lost Duchess - Jenny Barden

Author: Jenny Barden
Title: The Lost Duchess
Genre: Historical Fiction 
Pages: 448
First Published: November 7th, 2013
Where I Got It: My shelf (Given to me by the author/publisher for my honest and unbiased opinion)


"Once a lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth, her only hope of surviving the scandal that threatens to engulf her is to escape England for a fresh start in the new America where nobody has ever heard of the Duchess of Somerset.


Emme joins Kit Doonan's rag-tag band of idealists, desperados and misfits bound for Virginia. But such a voyage will be far from easy and Emme finds her attraction to the mysterious Doonan inconvenient to say the least.

As for Kit, the handsome mariner has spent years imprisoned by the Spanish, and living as an outlaw with a band of escaped slaves; he has his own inner demons to confront, and his own dark secrets to keep...

Ever since Sir Walter Raleigh's settlement in Virginia was abandoned in 1587 its fate has remained a mystery; 'The Lost Duchess' explores what might have happened to the ill-starred 'Lost Colony' of Roanoke."


Like earlier stated, I was given this book by the author/publisher for my honest and unbiased opinion.

First of all....I LOVE the cover. It's so pretty. :) The summary sounded good, but when I seen the cover it really was the cherry on the top. Also, I couldn't help but want to read Jenny Barden's "theory" on what happened to the Lost Colony of Roanoke. Another great mystery of history that no one will ever, ever know the truth on. Honestly...this theory is close to what I think happened. I won't discuss details, but it's a good one.

Poor Emme....luckily Queen Elizabeth allowed her to go on this adventure. She truly needed it, because she really had some bad luck happen to her. Honestly, I think Queen Elizabeth knew sort of what happened to her, because she hints at it near the end that she knows. Love Queen Elizabeth she hates idiot men and she makes them pay with their pride and will humiliate them to knock them down a peg or two. 

Poor Kit....he got screwed too. He didn't have an easy life and his first wife died horribly. :( Luckily, his son lived and he met Emme. The love they find is not an easy one to obtain though, which makes sense. They are from different social standings and they have a lot of past issues they need to work out. Also, it doesn't help that they are in the middle of an adventure to a new land, so they don't have a lot of time to work on their relationship. Food, shelter, and the constant threat of death takes priority over love. I'm glad that the author made their love story a realistic one. It's not all rainbows and butterflies all the time. 

The only thing I didn't really like was the ending. It was too open-ended. :/ Perhaps I'm just being picky. I just prefer having a nice lid-tight ending. One could really blame me growing up on the 'Dear America' books that had an epilogue that gave lid-tighter endings to all the main characters. IDK. However, as a writer, I LOVE leaving open-ended endings to my stories. I'm evil like that. Hehehehe. The ending in THIS story though, does end well, but it is a little cliff-hanger-y. Perhaps she did this on purpose, so if she wants to continue the story of Emme and Kit, she can. *shrugs* We shall see (I would definitely be all over a sequel for this novel). 

In the end, this was really, really good. I enjoyed every moment of the book! Even the bad events kept me hooked. The ending left me hoping their is a sequel, because I was left with some open-endedness. Besides for that, I liked it a lot! I would recommend this to those that like Historical Fiction or looking for a good adventure book. Out of five stars, I shall stamp this with 5 stars. ^.^

Favorite Character(s): Emme, Kit, Rob (cute kid), Queen Elizabeth, and Lacy
Not-so Favorite Character(s): Captain Fernando (ass, I hated his face.) 





Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Author Interview and giveaway: Theresa Romain

Today I interview Theresa Romain.
Welcome!

1. Welcome to my blog. Could you tell us about yourself?
Theresa: Hi, Blodeuedd—thank you for hosting me today! 

A little about me: I’m a coffee and book addict, and I never met a dessert I thought was too sweet. I met my husband when we were both history students in grad school, and I knew he was the one for me when I saw how many bookshelves he had. (Also, he’s a very nice guy.) We now have a young daughter who loves to be silly and who thinks my books have beautiful covers. She has zero interest in the stories because she thinks ”falling in love is disgusting.” Fine by me, since I wouldn’t want her to read my books until she was at least 18. 

2. Also tell us about your new book, To charm a naughty countess.
Theresa: It’s a Pygmalion story that takes place during the ”Year Without a Summer,” a real-life natural disaster in 1816. When the endless cold causes the reclusive Duke of Wyverne hero to lose his crops and his fortune, he has to venture to London for the first time in eleven years to win a wealthy bride. Unfortunately, London society thinks he’s mad—all except for the widowed Lady Stratton, his partner in a long-ago scandal. She sits at the head of society and has no desire to give up her power and independence, but she’s never been able to shake her fascination with the blunt and brilliant duke. She offers to guide him through society, but she can’t let herself fall for him unless he’ll marry for love—the one thing that’s impossible.

3. A virgin hero? How did you decide to go for this?
Theresa: I had never written a virgin hero before, and I thought he would be a good match for the heroine, who has had some lovers. Michael and Caroline are a gender-flipped version of a classic pair: the rakish hero and the virgin bluestocking heroine.

4. Tell us 3 things about Caroline?
Theresa: In her younger years, she was almost destroyed by scandal and had to make a hasty marriage of convenience. She knows the power of rumor and the fleeting nature of friendship. Now that she’s a widow of independent means, she has shoved her way back into society with charm and good manners. 

She has a ballroom full of friendly acquaintances, but few true friends. To keep her place at the head of society, she can’t be her true self; she has to be better. Always cheerful, entertaining, and clever. There’s no vacation for a naughty countess.

If you want to win Caroline over, don’t bother with flowers. Every caller brings flowers, so they don’t stand out anymore. Instead, catch her eye as Michael does: by offering to repair one of her chairs. She can’t resist someone who wants to help her instead of using her for her popularity or fortune.

5. And 3 things about Michael?
Theresa: He’s fascinated by everything new, especially mechanical gadgets. Just a few things I researched in relation to his interests: early trains, magic lanterns, types of lamps, and the history of gaslight.

He suffers from social anxiety, so he avoids London and its crowds—until he has no choice but to find a wealthy bride. As a way to cope with his anxiety, he becomes what we’d today call a workaholic, devoting himself wholeheartedly to running his dukedom well.

If you want to win Michael over, tell him, ”I’ll take care of it.” And then follow through. He’s not used to trusting anyone, but it’s pretty exhausting feeling he has to carry the world alone. 

6. Last, what are you working on now?
Theresa: Right now I’m working on the page proofs for my next holiday romance, Season for Desire (out in October). I’ll soon be revising the third Matchmaker book, Secrets of a Scandalous Heiress, which follows Caroline and Michael’s story and will be out in January 2015. And on top of that, I’m working on a new project and hope to share details soon. It’s good to be busy!

Giveaway
 1 copy To charm a naughty countess

1. US and Canada only
2. Ends June 1st
3. To enter, ask Theresa a question or tell me what you think about the hero.

PS. Please, if you enter either leave an email or be SURE to check that if I click your profile then I can find your email. Use a twitter handle, anything really so I can get in touch


TO CHARM A NAUGHTY COUNTESS BY THERESA ROMAIN – IN STORES MAY 2014

Can a reclusive duke…
Brilliant but rumored mad, Michael Layward, the impoverished Duke of Wyverne, has no success courting heiresses until widowed Lady Stratton takes up his cause—after first refusing his suit.

Win London’s most powerful countess?
Caroline Graves, the popular Countess of Stratton, sits alone at the pinnacle of London society and has vowed never to remarry. When Michael—her counterpart in an old scandal—returns to town after a long absence, she finds herself as enthralled with him as ever. As she guides the anxiety-ridden duke through the trials of London society, Caroline realizes that she’s lost her heart. But if she gives herself to the only man she’s ever loved, she’ll lose the hard won independence she prizes above all.

Praise for To Charm a Naughty Countess:
“Utterly charming plot and sprightly dialogue... The intelligence of the writing, coupled with well-drawn and appealing characters, pulls readers into a love story that is not just enchanting, but joyous.” —RT Book Reviews, 4 ½ Stars

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 
Historical romance author Theresa Romain pursued an impractical education that allowed her to read everything she could get her hands on. She then worked for universities and libraries, where she got to read even more. Eventually she started writing, too. She lives with her family in the Midwest. 

For more information, please visit http://theresaromain.com/, like her on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/AuthorTheresaRomain, and follow her on Twitter, @TheresaRomain.

To Purchase To Charm a Naughty Countess:




Monday, 26 May 2014

Dead Man's Hand Anthology

HOW THE WEST WAS WEIRD!   

From a kill-or-be-killed gunfight with a vampire to an encounter in a steampunk bordello, the weird western is a dark, gritty tale where the protagonist might be playing poker with a sorcerous deck of cards, or facing an alien on the streets of a dusty frontier town.

Here are twenty-three original tales—stories of the Old West infused with elements of the fantastic—produced specifically for this volume by many of today’s finest writers. Included are Orson Scott Card’s first “Alvin Maker” story in a decade, and an original adventure by Fred Van Lente, writer of Cowboys & Aliens.

My thoughts:
I am going to make this short, because they stories are just that, some very short, and if I say too much, then I have said it all.

Introduction—John Joseph Adams
Now I know what weird western is...

The Red-Headed Dead—Joe R. Lansdale
Short story about a priest. Ok but really short.

The Old Slow Man and His Gold Gun From Space—Ben H. Winters
Weird, short and had a nice twist to it.

Hellfire on the High Frontier—David Farland
Maybe they work cos they are short, interesting. Anyway, I liked the stuff at the end. very cool. Something happens there ;)

The Hell-Bound Stagecoach—Mike Resnick
A nice weird one. I liked it.

Stingers and Strangers—Seanan McGuire
InCryptic tale. You can follow along even if you have read nothing from that "world".

Bookkeeper, Narrator, Gunslinger—Charles Yu
I did feel a bit confused with this one.

Holy Jingle—Alan Dean Foster
A bit so and so.

The Man With No Heart—Beth Revis
I wondered where this one was going and at the end I totally wanted a book about him. Cool.

Wrecking Party—Alastair Reynolds
Scary future for all of us, nice sense of doom

Hell from the East—Hugh Howey
I read it 30 min ago and have forgotten it already *checks* Right, sun dance. Ok the concept was interesting of what is to come

Second Hand—Rajan Khanna
Same with this one *check* Right, cards. Needed more explaining

Alvin and the Apple Tree—Orson Scott Card
I have not read the Alvin books so..who is Alvin? Anyway freaky town! Do not go there!

Madam Damnable’s Sewing Circle—Elizabeth Bear
Not that much happened, I know they are short but still

Strong Medicine—Tad Williams
Now this was one weird place. Very nice.

Red Dreams—Jonathan Maberry
Freaky end, I do like freaky endings.

Bamboolzed—Kelley Armstrong
A good story 

Sundown—Tobias S. Buckell
I could have needed some more explanations here, it should have been longer

La Madre Del Oro—Jeffrey Ford
Ohhh, the end, I need more, what was that?! Awesome, creepy.

What I Assume You Shall Assume—Ken Liu
Eh, I mean ok, but I would rather have read this set in China and not as a backstory

The Devil’s Jack—Laura Anne Gilman
Interesting fellow this Jack.

The Golden Age—Walter Jon Williams
Ha, this one was weird too, but hey that is why they are weird westerns. Got to love that

Neversleeps—Fred Van Lente
Hey they mentioned Tesla, that is always good, cos booo Edison, Tesla rules! Could have been even more interesting fully fleshed out.

Dead Man’s Hand—Christie Yant
I did not get this one. Was it even a story?

Conclusion:
And like always, some were good, some were ok, some I still remember, some I forgot. It's an anthology after all and every story will not be to my taste, they never are. But what they all had in common was that even if I was not a fan, they were still interesting. So, weird cool stories set in a west you have not seen before.

Paperback, 464 pages
Published May 30th 2014 by Titan Books (first published March 4th 2014)
Weird western
For review


Sunday, 25 May 2014

DNF Reviews

Trouble, treachery, and magic just won't stop plaguing Cat Barahal. The Master of the Wild Hunt has stolen her husband Andevai. The ruler of the Taino kingdom blames her for his mother's murder. The infamous General Camjiata insists she join his army to help defeat the cold mages who rule Europa. An enraged fire mage wants to kill her. And Cat, her cousin Bee, and her half-brother Rory, aren't even back in Europa yet, where revolution is burning up the streets.

Revolutions to plot. Enemies to crush. Handsome men to rescue. Cat and Bee have their work cut out for them.

My thoughts on what I managed to finish:
I tried my best, I really did. I read 100 boring pages that were just plainly confusing. Then I tried to read more, then I tried to skim but I could not even skim! I could not be bothered to read almost 800 pages of this boring boring BORING book.

Such a disappointment, I LOVED book 1. Book 2 was not up to standard and this one I could not even finish. It reminded me of her fantasy book I tried to read and could not.

I had to check my review of book 2 and there I mentioned I was confused, but that it got better at the end. Still all I remember from that one is that I did not like it. I guess that last part swayed me.

Disappointing.

Paperback, 597 pages
Published June 25th 2013 by Orbit (first published January 1st 2013)
Spiritwalker #3

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night. 

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands. 

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead. 

My thoughts on what I managed to finish:
I caaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan't! I tried listening to it and I have no idea what I listened to it, fell asleep or drifted off in my mind at once.

Fail!

Audio CD, Unabridged Retail Edition, 14 pages
Published September 13th 2011 by Random House Audio

Emma Monroe is a Siren, cursed by the gods and bound to earth to atone for an ancient failure. She’s had many names and many lives, but only one mission: redemption. Now that she works missing persons cases for the FBI, it could be just a rescue away. Unless her new partner leads her astray.

Special Agent Zack Armstrong just transferred into the San Diego Field Office. He’s a werewolf, doing his best to beat back the demons from his dark and dangerous past. As a former Black Ops sniper, he’s taken enough lives. Now he’s doing penance by saving them. 

Emma and Zack’s very first case draws them deep into the realm of the paranormal, and forces them to use their own supernatural abilities. But that leaves each of them vulnerable, and there are lines partners should not cross. As secrets are revealed and more women go missing, one thing becomes clear: as they race to save the victims, Emma and Zack risk losing themselves.

What I read:
Honestly I think it was the 1st person POV that made me DNF it, I was just all meh, bleh bleh skim skim, ok DNF. it's a library book, I do not have the time.

Mass Market Paperback, 288 pages
Published October 1st 2013 by Roc
Fallen Siren #1
UF

When a small crew of scoundrels, would-be heroes, deviants, and ruffians discover a map that they believe will lead them to a fabled sword buried in the barrow of a long-dead wizard, they think they've struck it rich. But their hopes are dashed when the map turns out to be cursed and then is destroyed in a magical ritual. The loss of the map leaves them dreaming of what might have been, until they rediscover the map in a most unusual and unexpected place.

Stjepan Black-Heart, suspected murderer and renegade royal cartographer; Erim, a young woman masquerading as a man; Gilgwyr, brothel owner extraordinaire; Leigh, an exiled magus under an ignominious cloud; Godewyn Red-Hand, mercenary and troublemaker; Arduin Orwain, scion of a noble family brought low by scandal; and Arduin's sister Annwyn, the beautiful cause of that scandal: together they form a cross-section of the Middle Kingdoms of the Known World, brought together by accident and dark design, on a quest that will either get them all in the history books, or get them all killed.

From what I read:
I just can't go on. Why torment myself with a book that I will not like more than ok anyway...

Reasons for DNFing it:
I read 200 pages, from those pages all I remember is...someone died. They thought about F**'ing, they f***ed, a LOT of erect peens, honestly I was swimming in erect peens. I read romance but here were more. Incest. Perversions and MORE erect peens. I guess it was meant to be all dark and gritty and yes it was but all I can think of is that damn, so many erect peens. I want a story.

Paperback, 613 pages
Published March 4th 2014 by Pyr
Fantasy

The sun is setting on humanity. The night now belongs to voracious demons that arise as the sun sets, preying upon a dwindling population forced to cower behind ancient and half-forgotten symbols of power. These wards alone can keep the demons at bay, but legends tell of a Deliverer: a general-some would say prophet-who once bound all mankind into a single force that defeated the demons. Those times, if they ever existed, are long past. The demons are back, and the return of the Deliverer is just another myth . . . or is it?

From what I read:
I have tried to read it twice, and twice I have given up. I must just realize it wont happen. I really liked book 1, but here I just get nowhere. I hate the POV that it begins with and that is like the first 200 pages! So I will never make it past that.

Hardcover, 579 pages
Published April 13th 2010 by Del Rey (first published January 1st 2010)
Demon Cycle #2,
Fantasy


Saturday, 24 May 2014

Becoming Elizabeth Darcy - Mary Lydon Simonsen

In 2011, American Elizabeth Hannigan, suffering from the flu, falls into a coma and wakes up in the bed and body of Elizabeth Bennet Darcy. Beth soon realizes that the only way back to her life in the 21st Century is through the Master of Pemberley, Jane Austen's Fitzwilliam Darcy. But first she must uncover the dark secret that brought her to Pemberley in 1826 in the first place.

Becoming Elizabeth Darcy is a story of love, loyalty, and loss, where a modern woman is called upon to resolve the problems of Jane Austen's most beloved couple.

My thoughts:
This was kind of time-travel and yet not. You have to read and see. The lines are blurry in a way and I never truly knew what was going on.

Beth is really really sick, and as the ambulance takes her away she wakes up in a strange bed. She is suddenly Mrs Darcy, but how did it happen? And where is the real Elizabeth?

Yes it had me wondering, would Beth go home, would she stay? Was she dead, was Lizzy dead? But I can't tell you those things. Instead I can say Beth is there cos Lizzy and Darcy were having problems. A dead child, miscarriages. Sad really, but also it rang true, if that had happened of course they could have drifted apart even though they still loved each other.

The end was a great ending but at the same time I had wished for something else too. But, trust me, everyone was happy, this book has a HEA after all.

Conclusion:
I wish I could go and be Mrs Darcy for a day ;)

Cover
ok

Kindle Edition, 326 pages
Published (first published December 1st 2011)
Historical romance / Jane Austen variation
Own


Friday, 23 May 2014

Even white trash zombies get the blues - Diana Rowland

Angel Crawford is finally starting to get used to life as a brain-eating zombie, but her problems are far from over. Her felony record is coming back to haunt her, more zombie hunters are popping up, and she’s beginning to wonder if her hunky cop-boyfriend is involved with the zombie mafia. Yeah, that’s right--the zombie mafia.

Throw in a secret lab and a lot of conspiracy, and Angel’s going to need all of her brainpower--and maybe a brain smoothie as well--in order to get through it without falling apart.

My thoughts:
Honestly zombies...I mean she has no future, if she does not get brains she rots. Still it is a darn amusing story.

The zombie hunter is gone so our dear zombie named Angel is moving on with her undead life. Picking up dead bodies, drinking brain smoothies, smooching with her equally dead boyfriend. Pure bliss.

If it wasn't for her boyfriend's zombie mafia ties, weird shit going on and her probation officer being on her case. Angel does not have it easy at all.

Zombies, I mean I have to say it again. The book is about zombies. How can this series possible end well? Oh well I guess if there is a good supply she will just go on and drink brains for eternity. 

Conclusion:
It's a fun and weird series and I look forward to book 3

Cover
cool

Mass Market Paperback, 1st Edition, 312 pages
Published July 3rd 2012 by DAW (first published July 1st 2012)
White Trash Zombie #2
Urban fantasy
own


Thursday, 22 May 2014

A Dangerous Madness - Michelle Diener

The Duke of Wittaker has been living a lie. He’s been spying on the dissolute, discontented noblemen of the ton, pretending to share their views. Now he’s ready to step out of the shadows and start living a real life...but when the prime minister of England is assassinated, he's asked to go back to being the rake-hell duke everyone believes he still is to find out more.

Miss Phoebe Hillier has been living a lie, too. All her life she's played by society's rules, hiding her fierce intelligence and love of life behind a docile and decorous mask. All it's gotten her is jilted by her betrothed, a man she thought a fool, though a harmless one. But when she discovers her former fiancé was involved in the plot against the prime minister, and that he's been murdered, she realizes he wasn't so harmless after all. And now the killers have set their sights on her...

The only man who can help her is the Duke of Wittaker--a man she knows she shouldn't trust. And she soon realizes he's hiding behind a mask as careful as her own. As the clock ticks down to the assassin's trial, the pair scramble to uncover the real conspiracy behind the prime minister's death. 

My thoughts:
Now what did I call this series again..romantic historical suspense? It's a historical fiction novel, with romance, spies and suspense. What's there not to like? :)

The PM has been murdered! Wittaker is on the trail to find out the truth and caught up in all this is Phoebe. I actually did not know the English Pm back then had indeed been killed but the conspiracy here is all the author's, and it worked very well. Perhaps it was the truth after all. 

I met Wittaker in book 2, but you do not have to read book 1 or 2 to follow along. It works perfectly as a stand alone. Still do read book 1 and 2 as they were awesome. Anyway, he is quite the character and hiding his true self, I liked him.

Phoebe wants to live a bit more, so yes of course I like her too. As the case pushes them together sparks starts to fly. All why the danger comes closer and closes.

Conclusion:
A case to be solved. Romance to be had and suspense as the conspirators are not happy. Come along for the ride.

Cover
nice

Paperback, 326 pages
Published May 19th 2014 (first published May 18th 2014)
Regency London #3
Historical romantic fiction
For review


Wednesday, 21 May 2014

The Sacred River - Wendy Wallace

Harriet Heron's life is almost over before it has even begun. At just twenty-three years of age, she is an invalid, over-protected and reclusive. Before it is too late, she must escape the fog of Victorian London for a place where she can breathe. Together with her devoted mother, Louisa, her god-fearing aunt, Yael, and a book of her own spells inspired by the Egyptian Book of the Dead, Harriet travels to a land where the air is tinged with rose and gold and for the first time begins to experience what it is to live. But a chance meeting on the voyage to Alexandria results in a dangerous friendship as Louisa's long-buried past returns, in the form of someone determined to destroy her by preying upon her daughter. As Harriet journeys towards a destiny no one could have foreseen, her aunt Yael is caught up in an Egypt on the brink of revolt and her mother must confront the spectres of her own youth.  

My thoughts:
It's the story about 3 women on a journey of a lifetime.

First there is Harriet who is slowly fading away in London. The air is killing her. She is fascinated with ancient Egypt and gets her doctor to say that the fresh warm air would be best for her (and it is, but Egypt is sure very far away.) She in her loneliness is actually something of a scholar. But at the same time she is very naive in her quest for freedom and to live.

Louisa is her mother and her secret from the past comes back to haunt them. I wished she had just told the truth, but ok the truth is hard but still. It could have saved them some trouble.

Yael is the aunt who is a devout Christian and see the plight of Egypt and wants to do something. And I did like what she did, she was no crusader, she was a humanitarian.

They are all running from something in a away and the each find something more. Well, almost.

Conclusion:
A good story, an interesting location too.

Cover
Nice

Paperback, 416 pages
Published April 24th 2014 by Simon & Schuster Ltd (first published July 4th 2013)
Historical fiction
For review


Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Righteous Fury - Marcus Heitz

The elves, dwarves and humans all know the älfar to be dark, relentless warriors. This is their time.

In Dson Faïmon, the realm of the älfar, the warriors are planning a military campaign. Caphalor and Sinthoras are looking to enlist a powerful demon to strengthen their army - but the two älfar have very different goals. While Caphalor is determined to defend the borders of their empire and no more, the ambitious Sinthoras is intent on invasion: and he has the kingdoms of dwarves, elves and men firmly in his sights.

My thoughts:
The line between good and bad has never been harder to see. Are the Älfar good? Not really. But are they bad? Not really, they are just being Älfar.

The Älfar are immortal, they love the arts, beauty, fighting. They see themselves as perfect, and all humans, trolls, elves and other beings are just insects under their feet. Slaves that are not worthy to look upon. So yes in this they weren't good beings. But it was their culture and mindset.

I liked the Älfar. They are cruel and beautiful, quite fascinating (of course I would never want to meet one.)

The main characters are Caphalor, who is the voice of reason, and is Sinthoras who wants to go take over other countries. The good and bad guy. But things are like I said not that simple. They like all things change.

There is also a POV of a slavegirl and I must say the thing of nothing being black and white are sure everywhere. You'll see.

There is adventure, fighting, death, one truly gruesome act and a people going to war.

Conclusion:
I enjoyed this book and I want more about the Älfar. Because at the end, stuff is going down ;).

Cover
If they are so beautiful then this guy needs to be more so

Mass Market Paperback, UK Paperback, 512 pages
Published May 1st 2014 by Jo Fletcher Books (first published April 24th 2009)
Die Legenden der Albae #1/The legend of the Älfar
Fantasy
For review


Monday, 19 May 2014

Author Interview and giveaway: Gina Concle

Today's interview is with Gina Concle. There is 2 giveaways here.

Welcome!

1. Welcome to my blog. Could you tell us about yourself?
Gina: Hi, thanks for inviting me to be part of your blog. I love where you live (from your pictures on twitter).

I write Viking and Georgian romance because I love those eras of history  - specifically the end of the Viking Age and the middle Georgian period. I’m a wife and mom (of two teen boys) and some time organic gardener.

2. Also tell us about your new book, Meet the Earl at midnight.
Gina: Meet the Earl at Midnight gives a Georgian spin on Beauty and the Beast only this ”beast,” Edward thinks life is fine as is. He needs a wife and Lydia needs help – a midnight bargain is struck. Distracting chemistry and troubling secrets soon change their course.

I wrote the book to take a break from the Vikings and Edward kept showing up in my head. Before long I knee deep into Edward and Lydia’s story and having a lot of fun with it.

3. As most go for regency, what made you write Georgian romance?
Gina: I see Georgian England as gritty with a veneer of refinement. The mid-1700s were pivotal with inventions and the Canal craze. The Bow Street runners were founded in 1749, and there were changes with the colonies and the middle class. 

You could say Georgian England is to the Regency period what America’s Wild West was to the Gilded Age.  In all of the Midnight Meetings series there’s only one (maybe a second) ballroom scene, and they’re not dazzling. There’s more cocky Bow Street runners, pretty mid-town coffee shop girls, middle class Royal Exchange traders, and flirtatious mantua makers than dukes and earls in this series.

4. Tell us 3 things about Lydia?
Gina: Passionate self-taught artist, favors bold colors, likes Scotch now and then

5. And 3 things about Edward?
Gina: Brilliant, lives a world of science and books, driven crazy with Lydia getting him out of his head and into his body with sex

6. Last, what are you working on now?
Gina: I’m working on dual series – Midnight Meetings (Georgian romance) and the Norse series (Viking romance). The Lady Meets Her Match, book 2 in the Midnight Meetings series, releases April, 2015. Book 2 tells the tale of Cyrus, a self-made man dubbed England’s King of Commerce. Cyrus meets a mysterious woman named Claire at a masked ball and sparks fly. She flees at midnight, leaving behind a common brown shoe. He hunts for her, but what happens when his Cinderella doesn’t want her shoe back?

At the same time I’m deep into Norse Fire, book 2 in my Norse series out December, 2014. This story features Brand a rough-souled, lone wolf warrior who must work with a feisty slave to save the kingdom. Then book 3, Norse Wolf, tells the story of Addis, a bad boy Viking who finds himself at the mercy of a tender-hearted healer, Gisla (out March, 2015).

Thanks!

And now to the Giveaway. First mine.
1 copy of The Earl at Midnight

1. Open to the US and Canada
2. Ends May 24th
3. Just tell me in the comments if you enter for this one :)

And then to Gina's

a Rafflecopter giveaway


MEET THE EARL AT MIDNIGHT BY GINA CONKLE – IN STORES MAY 2014

The Phantom of London. Enigma Earl. The Greenwich Recluse.
Half of his face, shadowed by gold and brown whiskers, showed male perfection, but the other half, a bizarre pattern of scar lines and puckered flesh. Truly, staring at his face was akin to seeing a painting of two men, split down the middle. Lydia recoiled as much from the hot anger flashing in his eyes as from astonishment.

HE’S A MYSTERIOUS RECLUSE… 
Lord Greenwich is notoriously elusive. His tendency to hide his face in public and refusal to appear in London Society have even earned him some choice monikers, including “the Phantom of London.” Is he disfigured? Mad? Hiding something? With a reputation like that, no woman wants to get near the dark earl. And no one is more surprised than Miss Lydia Montgomery when she is betrothed to the earl in order to save her family from penury. But if Lydia wants a chance at happiness, she’ll have to set aside her fear of Lord Greenwich and discover the man hiding behind the beastly reputation…

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 
GINA CONKLE, a history nerd to the core, loves castles and museums. Her motto: “the older and moldier, the better.” When not enjoying relics, she lives in the present, dabbling in organic gardening. Gina married her favorite alpha male, Brian. The two live with their boys in San Diego, CA. Learn more at www.ginaconkle.com, on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GinaConkleWriter, and on Twitter, @ginaconkle.

To Purchase Meet the Earl at Midnight:



Sunday, 18 May 2014

Desperately seeking shapeshifter - Jessica Sims

Sarah Ward, the werewolf sister of Bathsheba from Beauty Dates the Beast, and co-owner of their paranormal online dating agency, Midnight Liaisons, is voluntarily traded to a wolf clan in exchange for a kidnapped female were-cougar. Fearful of what might happen to her while with the wolf clan, she and Ramsey, a were-bear who’s part of the were-cougar alliance, pretend to be engaged so he can stay with her for protection. The last thing either of them expect is for their pretend engagement to lead to a very real love affair….

My thoughts:
Wow this book really made me loathe werewolves, they are so off my list as hotties! They were mean, abusive, sexists, rapist assholes. In the corner with you wolves!

But ok there were 2 good wolves, one outsider and one known. Still the rest arghhhh. Poor Sarah. She was turned against her will, her ex beat her and held her down. So now she is scared of wolves. And who would not be when they are such asses!

Ramsey, awww, the big bad bear, who really is just a big kind cutie. He was so sweet with her and just wanted to protect her against those idiots.

Conclusion:
The book was so light and easy and I just breezed through it in an evening. Sweet, with some danger and just right.

cover
ok

Mass Market Paperback, 353 pages
Published October 30th 2012 by Pocket
Midnight Liaisons #2
Paranormal romance
Borrowed


Saturday, 17 May 2014

Insurgent - Veronica Roth

One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris's initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

My thoughts:
Omg blah blah blah. Right so book 1 was ok-good, with world building that sucked. I never meant to continue but I needed an audio book and beggers can't be choosers.

Tris was a whiny B..child. She whined whined whined, honestly the whole book was about her whining. Yes I understand it was traumatic that Will died, BUT, hello your parents died too, cut the self-pity and think about them too. And it was not that the trauma of Will was the big thing either, no that was Tobias. How on earth these are in love I do not know. This was not a dystopian novel, this was a novel about a girl whining and thinking about her boyfriend.

Right so she whined and that is all that happened. I might have snoozed through a big part of the audio, nice falling asleep story.

Ha, I am still sure I am gonna read book 3 cos I need an audio book and sadly I guess I will go for that one. How I wish my library had some awesome audio books.

Conclusion:
Not really recommended 

Cover
Boring too

Performed by Emma Galvin
Audiobook, 12 hour ish
Published May 1st 2012 by HarperCollins
Divergent, #2
Dystopia / YA


Friday, 16 May 2014

Author Post and giveaway: Henriette Gyland

Today's guest is Henriette Gyland. Welcome!

THE MYTH OF THE HIGHWAYMAN

In fiction and in popular culture the highwayman is perceived as a romantic and glamorous figure. Mention the word “highwayman”, and everyone sees before them a cavalier-like person on a handsome horse, bursting forth from the thicket on a moonlit night and uttering the immortal command “stand and deliver!” 
He will be wearing the customary uniform of the highway robber: the cape, the tricorne hat, and the mask, and he will most likely be a gentleman by birth because he rides a horse, and horses are expensive. Only the most desperate of circumstances would have forced him to break the law. Perhaps he is a victim of an injustice perpetrated against his noble family, or a widower with five children to feed and clothe. He will rob his victims in a humorous and genteel manner, flirting with the ladies and not humiliating his male victims too much.

The reality was, of course, a lot less glamorous because these men were often violent bandits and sometimes murderers and rapists as well.

So why does the romance persist? Why did people write songs and ballads about highwaymen? Why do they feature in books and films as dashing heroes? No one wrote songs about common footpads and pickpocket – what we would call muggers today. Burglars, embezzlers and pimps are also beneath our contempt yet the highwayman remains elevated to an almost mythical status.

I think the explanation lies in our admiration for their daring, and their devil-may-care attitude. A lot could go wrong when holding up a carriage, and therefore it took courage. The horses could bolt if startled, potentially leading to injury to the robbers as well as the victims in the process. The coachman and his co-driver would likely be armed (and some passengers too), especially if the journey involved traversing a desolate area such as Hounslow Heath where The Highwayman’s Daughter is set. 18th century pistols only contained one shot, so the highwayman had to carry more than one as there would be no time to reload if he had to fire his pistol. 

There was also the chance of pursuit if other (armed) riders came upon the coach while the robbery was in progress, or it could even be a patrol of redcoats. And finally, there was the risk of disclosure or betrayal when the robber had to dispose of those stolen goods, which were not in ready coin.

You may ask why I have chosen to perpetuate the myth of the romantic highwayman in my book. The answer is that I did that precisely because it makes for a dashing hero and a gutsy heroine! What could be more appropriate in a work of romantic fiction?

Thanks!

And now to the Giveaway

1 copy of The highwayman's daughter

1. Open to all
2. Ends May 24th
3. Just enter


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