Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - What Really Happened in Peru by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Today's Teaser comes from What Really Happened in Peru (The Bane Chronicles #1) by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan. It's a short story, but a good one. I haven't read any of the other books in the series yet, but after reading so far into the short story I am intrigued enough to plan to read more.

The Teaser comes from 75% through:

"Magnus tried to escape several times, and had to be forcibly restrained. Later Caterina and Ragnor liked to act out when he tried to take the guinea pigs with him, reportedly shouting "Freedom!" and "I am your leader now."

What's your teaser like this week?

Happy New Year!


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #21 - Notorious by Allison Brennan

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. This week I am eagerly anticipating Notorious by Allison Brennan. It's due out March 18, 2014 from Minotaur Books.

Our high school years affect all of our lives to some extent. We never quite forget what happened during those years. Some of it good, some of it not so good, and some of it can have been downright awful. 

From Goodreads.com:
"Maxine Revere has dedicated her life to investigating murders that the police have long since given up any hope of solving. A nationally renowned investigative reporter with her own TV show and a tough-as-nails reputation, Max tackles cold cases from across the country and every walk of life. But the one unsolved murder that still haunts her is a case from her own past.

When Max was a high school senior, one of her best friends was strangled and another, Kevin O’Neal, accused of the crime. To the disgrace of her wealthy family, Max stood by her friend, until she found out he lied about his alibi. Though his guilt was never proven, their relationship crumbled from the strain of too many secrets.

Now Max is home for Kevin’s funeral—after years of drug abuse, he committed suicide. She’s finally prepared to come to terms with the loss of his friendship, but she’s not prepared for Kevin’s sister to stubbornly insist that he didn’t kill himself. Or for an elderly couple to accost her at the airport, begging her to look into another murder at Max’s old high school. Max is more interested in the cold case at her alma mater than in digging around Kevin’s troubled life, but she agrees to do both. As Max uncovers dark secrets, she finds herself caught in a complicated web of lies that hit far too close to home. And it’s becoming increasingly clear that someone will do whatever it takes to make sure the truth stays buried."

What book are you waiting on this week?

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Tuesday Teaser - The Stupidest Angel by Christopher Moore

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week my Teaser is from the Kindle version of The Stupidest Angel: a Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror by Christopher Moore.

2% into the book, the opening 2 sentences:

"Christmas crept into Pine Cove like a creeping Christmas thing: dragging garland, ribbon, and sleigh bells, oozing eggnog, reeking of pine, and threatening festive doom like a cold sore under the mistletoe." 

"Pine Cove, her pseudo-Tudor architecture all tarted up for the holiday quaintage - twinkle lights in all the trees along Cypress Street, fake snow blown into the corner of every shop's windows, miniature Santas and giant candles hovering illuminated beneath every streetlight - opened to the droves of tourists from Los Angeles, San Francisco, and the Central Valley searching for a truly meaningful moment of Christmas commerce."

Those 2 sentences take up the whole page, but they are entertaining. This book is an interesting piece of Christmas reading that some people have chosen to make a traditional part of their yearly celebration. It's worth a read even if you don't do that. Like other Christopher Moore books, there is little traditional about it and a great deal of humor.

This version of The Stupidest Angel was published October 13, 2009 by Harper Collins e-books.

What kind of Teaser are you reading this week?

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - Independent Study by Joelle Charbonneau


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


This week my teaser is from Independent Study (The Testing Book 2) by Joelle Charbonneau.

From p.147: "And while I don't think the University officials intend to watch us plunge to our deaths, I doubt they will lift a finger to prevent it. There has to be another solution."

This teaser is from an advance reader copy. The book is due out January 7th, 2014 from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing. I have been provided a copy in exchange for my unbiased review - which is yet to come.

What's your teaser this week?

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #20 - Secret by Brigid Kemmerer

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. Secrets pique people's interest, though not everyone wants to admit it. This week I am featuring Secret by Brigid Kemmerer as my Waiting on Wednesday pick. Secret is due out from Kensington Teen books on January 28, 2014.


Secret is book #4 in Brigid Kemmerer's Elemental series. 
From Goodreads: 
"Nowhere is safe. Not even home…

Nick Merrick is stretched to the breaking point.

Keep his grades sky-high or he’ll never escape his hometown.
Keep his brother’s business going or the Merricks will be out on the street.
Keep the secret of where he’s going in the evenings from his own twin—-or he’ll lose his family.
Keep his mind off the hot, self-assured dancer who’s supposed to be his “girlfriend’s” partner.

Of course there’s also the homicidal freak Quinn has taken to hanging around, and the Elemental Guide counting the hours until he can try again to kill the Merrick brothers.

There’s a storm coming. From all sides. And then some.

Nick Merrick, can you keep it together?"

Secret is due out from Kensington Teen books on January 28, 2014.

What book are you waiting on this week?

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - Perhaps I've Said Too Much by Rodney Lacroix


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week I'm reading Perhaps I've Said Too Much - A Great Big Book of Messing With People by Rodney Lacroix published by RCG publishing. I'm reading the Kindle version. My teasers come from 7% through.

"Right here you see a potential problem, because you cannot tell a child to NOT tell someone something.
...

"If you tell a child to keep a secret, there is 99.99% probability that said secret will be on a headline in the NY Times or the top story on TMZ within an hour and a half."

Honestly this book has made me laugh out loud at times. Rodney also has a blog, Mental Poo.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - Let the Sky Fall by Shannon Messenger


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My Tuesday Teaser is from Let the Sky Fall (Sky Fall #1)  by Shannon Messenger.

"I want that to be the answer - but that doesn't explain why my skin still simmers everywhere we touched. Why even now, just remembering the way he held me, or the look in his eyes, leaves my chest strangely empty."

17% through on Pulseit

What's your Tuesday Teaser?

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #19 - Mistress of the Wind by Michelle Diener


"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. This week I am waiting on Mistress of the Wind by Michelle Diener. I love fairy tales and retellings. This book is a retelling of the fairy tale East of the Sun, West of the Moon. I am not as familiar with this fairy tale, but that just makes it more interesting to me. And the cover is gorgeous. 

From Goodreads: 
"Bjorn needs to find a very special woman . . . 

The fate of his people, and his own life, depends on it. But when he does find her, she is nothing like he imagined, and may just harbor more secrets than he does himself.

Astrid has never taken well to commands. No matter who issues them . . . 

She's clashed her whole life with her father, and now her lover, the mysterious man who comes to her bedroom in darkness and disappears to guard his mountain by day as a bear, is finding it out the hard way. And when he's taken by his enemies, no one is prepared for Astrid's response. 

It is never wise to anger the mistress of the wind . . . "

Mistress of the Wind is due to be released December 23, 2013 from Season publishing. 
What book are you waiting on this week?

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - A Grimm Legacy by Janna Jennings


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week my Teaser comes from A Grimm Legacy by Janna Jennings

"Survival had taken a priority, but now unease bubbled in his stomach, threatening to explode into full alarm.
   Pointed ears. He was in more trouble than he originally thought."

11% through Kindle version

What's your Teaser this Tuesday?

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Review: Hijack in Abstract by Larissa Reinhart

Who else but Cherry Tucker could find herself in the middle of a hijacking ring, a problem with a meth ring, and a painting scandal more or less all at the same time? And then there is Luke. Are they really done after all this time together?

Cherry is thrilled when the police call her to help out for a change instead of yell at her to keep her nose out of their business. They want her to make a composite drawing of a truck hijacking suspect. It's a pleasant challenge. But of course, Cherry just can't leave it at that.

Then Shawna has been showing pictures around town of Cherry's latest paintings that were sold. They happened to be in the Greek style with a nude model (her ex-husband). Shawna considers this immoral and feels that the majority of the town will agree with her. Just what does Shawna want from all this?

And there is the mystery of just who did buy those paintings. He wants to commission a portrait now too. Why is he so competitive with the Bear?

So much mystery, but all well done. You won't feel like you are drowning in subplots. It all follows logically, Cherry's kind of logic. It's a wonderfully adventurous book with a touch of romance and humor. I found it thoroughly enjoyable. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. I received a copy of this book for my unbiased opinion.

Hijack in Abstract by Larissa Reinhart was released by Henery Press November 5, 2013.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Cover Reveal: Circle of Influence by Annette Dashofy

Circle of Influence by Annette Dashofy is the first book in the Zoe Chambers Mystery series set to debut March 2014. 

From the Publisher, Henery Press
Zoe Chambers, paramedic and deputy coroner in rural Pennsylvania’s tight-knit Vance Township, has been privy to a number of local secrets over the years, some of them her own. But secrets become explosive when a dead body is found in the Township Board President’s abandoned car. As a January blizzard rages, Zoe and Police Chief Pete Adams launch a desperate search for the killer, even if it means uncovering secrets that could not only destroy Zoe and Pete, but also those closest to them.

Visit us on the Henery Press website to find out more. And as always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Annette.  We’d love to hear from you. 

This title seems a little heavier than some of the other mysteries put out by Henery Press, but still sounds intriguing. I look forward to it's release. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - Once Upon a Time: New Fairy Tales edited by Paula Guran

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Should Be Reading. 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

From: Once Upon a Time: New Fairy Tales edited by Paula Guran
Kindle version 12% through 
From "The Spinning Wheel's Tale" by Jane Yolen

"The story begins with spinning, spinning the wheel, spinning the curse, spinning the lies that lie at the heart of a mouth, a castle, a hedge. 
     And of course, it all begins with a witch."



Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #18 - Broken Sigil by William Meikle

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. This week I am waiting on Broken Sigil by Willliam Meikle. This is a novella length piece, coming in at about 55 pages long. It's a paranormal piece and once again sounds like one of my favorite types, a ghost story. In this case, perhaps it's more accurately a haunted  house story.


From Netgalley:
There are houses like this all over the world. Most people only know of them from whispered stories over campfires; tall tales told to scare the unwary. But some...those who suffer...know better. They are drawn to these places to ease their pain.
If you have the will, the fortitude, you can peer into another life, where the dead are not gone.
 Broken Sigil is due out January 14, 2014 as part of Darkfuse's novella series. 
What book are you waiting on this week?

Teaser Tuesday (tardy): Hijack in Abstract by Larissa Reinhart

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Should Be Reading. 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

From: Hijack in Abstract by Larissa Reinhart

Kindle version 10% through
Cherry talking to Luke about who might have bought her paintings.
"He's an art collector and appreciator of talent such as mine."
"...I'd think he'd just find you a pain in the ass."

What's your teaser this week?

Friday, November 8, 2013

Review: Rude Bitches Make Me Tired by Celia Rivenbark

"If you really believe you have all the answers,which I do, why not share with the class?" says Celia Rivenbark in Rude Bitches Make Me Tired: Slightly Profane and Entirely Logical Answers to Modern Etiquette Dilemmas. She freely admits that this is not your Momma's etiquette book, although there is still a need for that sort of thing.

No, this etiquette book covers things such as playdates, how to really split the bill at the restaurant, how to give and receive compliments, and how to behave when arrested. As for the latter, "it's important to show you were 'raised right.'"

Yes, there is profanity in the book, but none of it is used solely for shock value. It rather is a natural outgrowth of the material being discussed. Long as you know up front that it's coming, you have no reason to complain about it.

The answers to the questions posed really are for the most part logical and common sense. Of course not all of us are gifted with common sense. But it's the expression of the answers that really sets the book apart. It is full of humor even when describing people at their worst. This  book would make a good gift for someone whose behavior you were subtly trying to correct. Or a great gift for someone whose funny bone you wanted to tickle.

I gave this book 3 out of 5 stars because I enjoyed it, but not as much as some of her other work.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #17 - A Breath of Frost by Alyxandra Harvey

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. This week I am waiting on A Breath of Frost by Alyxandra Harvey. It is the first book in a new series, The Lovegrove Legacy. I really enjoy stories about witches. I have ever since I went to Salem, MA. when I was small. When I grew up, I realized that most if not all of those accused of witchcraft in the Salem trials were not witches at all, simply odd or a victim of politics. A Breath of Frost promises witches of the more fictional type with dangers of the more paranormal kinds.

Here is what Goodreads has to say about it:
"In 1814, three cousins-Gretchen, Emma, and Penelope-discover their unknown family lineage of witchcraft. Beyond the familiar manicured gardens and ballrooms of Regency London, a dangerous, alluring new underworld visible only to those with power is now open to the cousins. 
But unbeknownst to them, by claiming their power, the three cousins have inadvertently opened the gates to the Underworld. 
Now the dead, ghouls, hellhounds-and the most terrifying of all: the spirits of dark witches known as the Greymalkin Sisters-are hunting and killing young debutante witches for their powers. 
And, somehow, Emma is connected to the murders...because she keeps finding the bodies. 
Can the cousins unravel the clues and mystery behind their heritage and power before their gifts are stripped away ...or even worse, another witch is killed?"

A Breath of Frost is due out January 7, 2014 from Walker Children's. The author has book trailers on her website at  http://alyxandraharvey.com/lovegrove/

What Book are You Waiting on this Wednesday?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of 
Should Be Reading. 
Rules:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
From: Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things that Happened by Allie Brosh

From p, 77 about getting their Helper dog
"The shelter worker said, 'This one hates everything and she doesn't know anything, and I hope you aren't planning on taking her outside ever because she is more like a bear than a dog, really, and unfortunately she can climb a seven-foot-tall fence like the fucking Spider man.'
"And we were like, 'Sure, why not,'"

What's your teaser?

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Review: Three to Get Lei'd by Jill Marie Landis

Aloha! This book has a perfect blend of mystery, romance, humor, and an introduction to the culture of the North Shore of Kauai. If a book could be described as ono, then this one would be. It is a delicious cozy mystery.

The book starts with a reality crew having invaded the Tiki Goddess bar. Em Johnson is at wit's end. Then, one of the crew is killed in the kitchen with Chef Kimo's best sashimi knife and the fun begins. Enter Roland Sharpe, fire dancing detective, who begs the Hula Maidens to stay out of the investigations this time. But, there is fat chance of that since Kimo is married to one of them.

Two more murders, one pinned on Kiki, Kimo's wife. The Hula Maidens stick together, which means that between Em's amateur sleuthing and the Hula Maidens' activities, they are driving Roland round the bend.

Can the Hula Maidens solve the mysteries before Kiki and Kimo end up in jail or there is a 4th murder?

Three to Get Lei'd (A Tiki Goddess Mystery #3) by Jill Marie Landis was released  by Bell Bridge Books May 24, 2013. You can read more about the Tiki Goddess Mysteries at The Tiki Goddess.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #16: Snowblind by Christopher Golden

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event,  hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine, where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. This week I can't wait to get my hands on Snowblind by Christopher Golden. I just love a good ghost story. This one promises to be more than good. Probably will be "don't turn the lights off" good for a minimum and definitely "don't wander around in that blizzard" good. Snowblind is due out from St. Martin's Press January 21, 2014.

Stephen King: "It will bring a blizzard to your bones (and your heart) even in the middle of July.  Throw away all those old 'it was a dark and stormy night' novels; this one is the real deal."

From Goodreads: "In Christopher Golden’s first horror novel in more than a decade--a work reminiscent of early Stephen King--Snowblind updates the ghost story for the modern age.

The small New England town of Coventry had weathered a thousand blizzards...but never one like this. Icy figures danced in the wind and gazed through children's windows with soul-chilling eyes. People wandered into the whiteout and were never seen again. Families were torn apart, and the town would never be the same.

Now, as a new storm approaches twelve years later, the folks of Coventry are haunted by the memories of that dreadful blizzard and those who were lost in the snow. Photographer Jake Schapiro mourns his little brother, Isaac, even as---tonight---another little boy is missing. Mechanic and part-time thief Doug Manning's life has been forever scarred by the mysterious death of his wife, Cherie, and now he’s starting over with another woman and more ambitious crimes. Police detective Joe Keenan has never been the same since that night, when he failed to save the life of a young boy . . . and the boy’s father vanished in the storm only feet away. And all the way on the other side of the country, Miri Ristani receives a phone call . . . from a man who died twelve years ago.

As old ghosts trickle back, this new storm will prove to be even more terrifying than the last."

So, what book are you waiting on this week?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #15: Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating. This week the title I am most eagerly waiting on is Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem and Other Things That Happened by Allie Brosh. Expected release date is October 29, 2013 from Touchstone.

From Goodreads: "In a four-color, illustrated collection of stories and essays, Allie Brosh’s debut Hyperbole and a Half chronicles the many “learning experiences” Brosh has endured as a result of her own character flaws, and the horrible experiences that other people have had to endure because she was such a terrible child. Possibly the worst child. For example, one time she ate an entire cake just to spite her mother.

Brosh’s website receives millions of unique visitors a month and hundreds of thousands of visitors a day. This amalgamation of new material and reader favorites from Brosh's blog includes stories about her rambunctious childhood; the highs and mostly lows of owning a smart, neurotic dog and a mentally challenged one; and moving, honest, and darkly comic essays tackling her struggles with depression and anxiety, among other anecdotes from Brosh's life. Artful, poignant, and uproarious, Brosh’s self-reflections have already captured the hearts of countless readers and her book is one that fans and newcomers alike will treasure."

I love her sense of humor and her stories. I am so looking forward to getting my hands on a copy of this book. So, what book are you waiting on this week?

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Review: The Impersonator by Mary Miley

The Impersonator by Mary Miley is a 2012 Minotaur Books/ Mystery Writers of America First Novel competition winner. It was released September 17, 2013 by Minotaur Books. There is a two chapter sample available on the author's website.

Leah is working hard in vaudeville when she encounters Uncle Oliver. Oliver thinks she is the spitting image of his missing niece Jessie. When he finds out that she isn't his niece, the greedy little wheels turn in his mind and he proposes a con - pose as his niece and sign the papers to become the heir to the Carr fortune and split it with him.

At first Leah turns him down flat. Then she is fired from her act in vaudeville and has second thoughts. Leah becomes Jessie, the greatest role of her career. There's only one problem. Someone knows the truth about what happened to Jessie. Leah won't be able to fool him. Leah sets out to find out what happened to Jessie while she is staying with the family in Dexter where Jessie was last seen.

The characters are well written. Everything seems appropriate for the time - bobbed hair, the Charleston, Prohibition, speakeasies, bootlegging. The details about vaudeville are interesting - the different acts, what life was like for the actors, and especially the inclusion of Jack Benny as one of her co-workers. I liked too that she managed to work in a definition showing the difference between burlesque and vaudeville.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #14 - Murder and Moonshine by Carol Miller

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week the book I am waiting on is Murder and Moonshine by Carol Miller. It's due out December 17, 2013 from Minotaur Books.

From Goodreads.com:
"All small towns have secrets—and plenty of them—as every small town waitress knows. Daisy is no different. A young, recently-separated waitress at H&P's Diner in sleepy southwestern Virginia, she hears more than her fair share of neighborhood gossip while serving plates of hash and peach cobbler. But when a reclusive old man, Dickerson, shows up at the diner one day, only to drop dead a few minutes later, Daisy quickly learns that some secrets are more dangerous to keep than others—especially when there’s money and moonshine involved.

Daisy finds herself caught between whiskey and guns; a handsome ATF agent and a moonshine-brewing sweet talker; and a painful past and a dangerous present. Not sure any longer who she can trust, Daisy must turn sleuth while also protecting her sick mother and keeping a handle on Aunt Emily, her goading, trigger-happy landlord. There's trouble brewing in her small town, and before it passes, many secrets will come to light.

Carol Miller makes a memorable and charming debut in Murder and Moonshine, the first of an intriguing new series."

It sounds interesting to me. I wonder just what will come out in the course of the book. And I hope she will find someone she can trust before the end.

What book are you waiting on this week?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Review: Day One by Nate Kenyon

Day One by Nate Kenyon is a sci/fi techno-thriller released from Thomas Dunne Books on October 1, 2013. Most of the action takes place in New York City with a smattering of action outside the city.
A generous sample of the book including the prologue and 2 chapters can be read on the author's website at http://natekenyon.com/day-one-excerpt/.

John Hawke is a former hacker turned hacker journalist. He has been investigating James Weller, the former CEO of a company named Eclipse, who has broken off and started his own company called Conn.ect. Weller has promised Hawke an interview. The day seems to start mostly normal, but once Hawke arrives at Conn.ect, things seem to go haywire. Anything with a computer chip in it begins to malfunction. And John gets a panicked call from his wife that things are in danger at home as well.

John and a small group find themselves trying to survive in a NYC where the bridges and tunnels have been bombed and find their ways back to their loved ones.. And John and some of the other members of the group have been declared enemies. There is a genius behind this, but to let you know who it is, would be too much of a spoiler at this point.

I liked the book, but I didn't love it. It's very slow in the beginning. Once the action starts, it really picks up and doesn't slow down again until right toward the end. I also had a little bit of an issue with how technical it got at times. For some people this will be fine, but for me it was a little much. I did enjoy the action part of the book a lot. I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #13: The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week the book I am eagerly anticipating is The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes.

From Goodreads:
"Seventeen-year-old Cassie is a natural at reading people. Piecing together the tiniest details, she can tell you who you are and what you want. But it’s not a skill that she’s ever taken seriously. That is, until the FBI come knocking: they’ve begun a classified program that uses exceptional teenagers to crack infamous cold cases, and they need Cassie.

What Cassie doesn’t realize is that there’s more at risk than a few unsolved homicides— especially when she’s sent to live with a group of teens whose gifts are as unusual as her own.

Sarcastic, privileged Michael has a knack for reading emotions, which he uses to get inside Cassie’s head—and under her skin. Brooding Dean shares Cassie’s gift for profiling, but keeps her at arm’s length.

Soon, it becomes clear that no one in the Naturals program is what they seem. And when a new killer strikes, danger looms closer than Cassie could ever have imagined. Caught in a lethal game of cat and mouse with a killer, the Naturals are going to have to use all of their gifts just to survive. "

I've heard that it's like a combination of Criminal Minds and CSI, but I can't vouch for that until I read it myself. It does sound very interesting at any rate. It's due out November 5, 2013 through Disney-Hyperion Books.

What book are you waiting on this week?


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Review: Halloween: Magic, Mystery, and the Macabre edited by Paula Guran

Halloween: Magic, Mystery, and the Macabre edited by Paula Guran is an anthology of 18 tales ranging from the simply magical to the horrifying about my favorite holiday. There is an excellent selection of writers. Some of the authors included are Caitlin R. Kiernan, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Steve Rasnic Tem and Melanie Tem.

I really liked all of the stories, but I still had a few favorites. My favorite magical tale was "For the Removal of Unwanted Guests" by A.C. Wise. When a witch moves in unbidden, what would you do?

As for a mysterious story, perhaps you could call, "Long Way Home" by Jonathan Maberry a mystery. A soldier returns home after war on Halloween, but the town is not quite the same.

And for the macabre, Maria V. Snyder's tale, "The Halloween Men," takes place in a city where you must wear a mask every day of the year except Halloween. For an excerpt of this tale you can check out the author's page.

This book is perfect for the Halloween season. I would recommend it in particular for fans of dark fantasy because most of the tales do seem to have a darkness to them. All of the stories are well written.

I give this anthology 4 out of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday - Top Ten Book Turn-Offs

Top Ten things I encounter while I am reading and it totally turns me off. Top Ten Tuesday is  hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.


  1. Animal Cruelty - not only do I stop reading, but the book goes into the trash or is deleted.
  2. Cruelty to children/child abuse - if it's suddenly added in, chances are it's a plot contrivance to pull at your heart strings for some reason and totally unnecessary to the plot. I'd rather not read it.
  3. Super gory descriptions - Some things are better left to the imagination and are more effective that way.
  4. Deus ex Machina - When an author solves a plot point by saying or having something miraculous occur, it's a real turn off. 
  5. A controlling love interest - Like in Shades of Gray, it just doesn't seem fun or healthy to me.
  6. Too many changes of Point of View - especially if it's all within the same chapter. It just gets too confusing.
  7. Pages of description that don't further the plot or the action.- I ran into that in a classic when I was trying to read Roughing It by Mark Twain when I was younger.
  8. Politics - Suddenly there are tons of politics and perhaps on top of that the book is getting preachy about what sort of politics the author or main character or both subscribe to, it's too much.
  9. Too preachy in a religious sort of way - Suddenly, their god is the is the only god and their way is the only right way, but in more words.
  10. Book in a series that doesn't wrap up the plot to that particular plot, but marks it as to be continued in the next book. - Series books are fine. I read series. But, the book should wrap up the plot and give you some idea as to what to expect. When they leave the plot unresolved, it's a huge turn off. If they're going to do that with every book, it's just not really an enjoyable prospect. Yes, I want to know what happened, but it's not necessarily worth the frustration.
So, what makes you stop reading a book?

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Review: Summer's End by Lisa Morton

Lisa Morton is the main character in her own novella Summer's End blurring the lines between fact and fiction. She is called in to examine a 1500 year old druidic manuscript by Dr. Wilson Armitage and Dr. Conor o' Cuinn. It appears to be selections of history, recipes for herbal concoctions for healing and the like, and spells. 

Lisa is very skeptical especially about the spells until Dr. Armitage is found torn apart. The police report says by wild animals, but she suspects it was by the mischievous and malicious sidh that o' Cuinn summoned using the book. 

The novella continues with more spell casting, poultice making, and wand seeking adventures. In the end it comes down to one thing. Will o' Cuinn and Lisa be willing and able to perform sacrifices on Halloween, one of them human, to restore balance to the world?

The book has an interesting premise and presentation putting the author as the main character. There is maybe a little more tell than show in places perhaps because of the shorter format. The bit about the sidh was so well written, I was reluctant to look outside after dark for a few days. I did feel that that the ending was a little bit of a let down, but I can't go into details here because it would involve spoilers. It just seemed a little anticlimactic. Good, but anticlimactic. Overall I liked the book and found that it stayed with me after I finished reading it.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in order to provide my unbiased opinion.


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #12 - Unhinged by A.G. Howard

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event hosted by Jill over on Breaking the Spine to spotlight new releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

From Goodreads:
"Alyssa Gardner has been down the rabbit hole and faced the bandersnatch. She saved the life of Jeb, the guy she loves, and escaped the machinations of the disturbingly seductive Morpheus and the vindictive Queen Red. Now all she has to do is graduate high school and make it through prom so she can attend the prestigious art school in London she's always dreamed of.

That would be easier without her mother, freshly released from an asylum, acting overly protective and suspicious. And it would be much simpler if the mysterious Morpheus didn’t show up for school one day to tempt her with another dangerous quest in the dark, challenging Wonderland—where she (partly) belongs.

As prom and graduation creep closer, Alyssa juggles Morpheus’s unsettling presence in her real world with trying to tell Jeb the truth about a past he’s forgotten. Glimpses of Wonderland start to bleed through her art and into her world in very disturbing ways, and Morpheus warns that Queen Red won’t be far behind.

If Alyssa stays in the human realm, she could endanger Jeb, her parents, and everyone she loves. But if she steps through the rabbit hole again, she'll face a deadly battle that could cost more than just her head."

I know it might be a little early to post this one as it doesn't come out until January 7, 2014, but I  just finished reading the chapter sampler that was available from Netgalley and the publisher and it was awesome.  It started out in mid action. Already there was tension. And from there the tension just continued to build. By the end of the sampler, I just wanted the rest of the book. I loved the interplay between Alyssa and Morpheus. I haven't yet read book one. This is my first exposure to these characters and this Wonderland. I want to know more. I'm waiting to read  Splintered from my library and happy to see it getting checked out.

So what are you waiting on this week?