Friday, May 31, 2013

Freebie Friday: Fantasy - Paranormal & Urban

Freebie Friday is a meme adopted by many book blogs around the interwebs to promote e-books that are currently available for $0.00 on Amazon either permanently or for a limited time. I break down the types of "freebies" into whatever category Amazon has placed them in. This week I am taking a look at books that are free and fall under the category of "Fantasy: Paranormal & Urban". Some of these may not fit perfectly into this category but as I said... I am following the categories Amazon has placed them in. You can click on the book cover picture to take you to a synopsis of the book on Goodreads or click the title link to take you directly to Amazon where you can download the e-book for free.

Title: Jenny Pox

Author: J.L. Bryan

Series: The Paranormals #1

Eighteen-year-old Jenny Morton has a horrific secret: her touch spreads a deadly supernatural plague, the "Jenny pox". She lives by a single rule: Never touch anyone. A lifetime of avoiding any physical contact with others has made her isolated and painfully lonely in her small rural town.

Then she meets one boy she can touch. Jenny feels herself falling for Seth... but if she's going to be with him, Jenny must learn to use the deadly pox inside her to confront his ruthless and manipulative girlfriend Ashleigh, who secretly wields the most dangerous power of all.

Title: Eternal Eden

Author: Nicole Williams

Series: The Eden Trilogy #1

College sophomore Bryn Dawson is a self-proclaimed poster child of normal. However, the day William Hayward enters her life, normalcy is the last thing Bryn will be able to count on if she wants to be with him. Too mysterious and appealing to be good for a girl, Bryn feels drawn to him in a way that seems out of her control--as if fate is orchestrating it.

Despite every red flag and warning siren going off in her head telling her not to, Bryn falls hard for William, knowing he's categorically different from anyone she's ever met. She never imagined how right she was. When William takes her deeper into the rabbit hole of his world, Bryn must decide just how much she is willing to sacrifice to be with him, knowing no matter what, fate always finds a way to have the last laugh.

Spinning a new twist on star-crossed lovers, Eternal Eden will put Bryn through a gauntlet of turmoil, challenging her to find the power within herself to become the heroine in her own story.

Title: Caged in Darkness

Author: J.D. Stroube

Series: Caged #1

A witch raised in a cage of darkness...

Savannah Cross was born into a life of isolation and abuse. As a child, she witnessed her parents perform acts of malevolent evil, and now feels permanently tainted by their dark deeds.

When a coven discovers a tear streaked child, wounded on their elders lawn, they offer her a sanctuary she has never known. Savannah spends the next several years shattered, continuously looking over her shoulder, waiting for the darkness to claim her.

On her 16th birthday, Savannah's life takes a drastic turn. She is consumed by overwhelming power that forever alters her emotionally and physically.

She must choose between two loves; the one who taught her to smile or the darkly seductive stranger who tempts her toward another path.

Savannah must decide between the coven that was her haven and another one vying for her initiation. Just as Savannah begins to grasp what fate has in store for her, an evil looms over her loved ones; coming to claim an unbreakable debt.

How will she survive the greatest evil she has ever witnessed... long enough to have a choice to make?

Title: To Kill A Warlock

Author: H.P. Mallory

Series: Dulcie O'Neil #1

The murder of a dark arts warlock. A shape-shifting, ravenous creature on the loose. A devilishly handsome stranger sent to investigate. Sometimes working law enforcement for the Netherworld is a real bitch.

Dulcie O'Neil is a fairy. And not the type to frolic in gardens. She's a Regulator--a law-enforcement agent who monitors the creatures of the Netherworld to keep them from wrecking havoc in the mortal world. When a warlock is murdered and Dulcie was the last person to see him alive, she must uncover the truth before she's either deported back to the Netherworld, or she becomes the next victim.

Enter Knight Vander, a sinfully attractive investigator sent from the Netherworld to work the case with Dulcie. Between battling her attraction to her self-appointed partner, keeping a sadomasochistic demon in check, and fending off the advances of a sexy and powerful vampire, Dulcie's got her hands full. As the body count increases, Dulcie finds herself battling dark magic, reconnoitering in S&M clubs and suffering the greatest of all betrayals.

Title: Blur

Author: Kristen Middleton

Series: Night Roamers #1

There ARE creatures lurking in the dead of night... Seventeen year old Nikki and her twin brother, Nathan, move to the small town of Shore Lake to start over after their mother is brutally attacked. When a missing teenager washes up on shore during their first night at the cabin and there are whispers of vampires in Shore Lake, Nikki begins to realize that there are things roaming in the darkness that are far more sinister than what they left in the big city.

Those are some of the freebies I, myself, have purchased and plan to read. What are some freebies you have found on Amazon or sister sites?

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Thursday, May 30, 2013

Review: Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

Title: Unearthly

Author: Cynthia Hand

Series: Unearthly #1

ISBN: 9780061996160

Synopsis (according to Goodreads):
In the beginning, there’s a boy standing in the trees . . . .

Clara Gardner has recently learned that she’s part angel. Having angel blood run through her veins not only makes her smarter, stronger, and faster than humans (a word, she realizes, that no longer applies to her), but it means she has a purpose, something she was put on this earth to do.

Figuring out what that is, though, isn’t easy.

Her visions of a raging forest fire and an alluring stranger lead her to a new school in a new town. When she meets Christian, who turns out to be the boy of her dreams (literally), everything seems to fall into place and out of place at the same time. Because there’s another guy, Tucker, who appeals to Clara’s less angelic side.

As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she’d have to make between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny?

Unearthly is a moving tale of love and fate, and the struggle between following the rules and following your heart.

I picked up “Unearthly” for the simple fact that Angels seemed to be an ongoing theme and I wanted to see what all the hub-bub was about. What better book series could I choose than one that toes the line between fantasy and religion. To be perfectly honest, I am not into books with a highly religious air to them that so many angel books can have. When I got into “Unearthly” it was with a resonated sigh and a thought process that was more so to the theme of “Well… I better be prepared for a healthy dose of the bible, the devil, and especially God.” This book was not what I expected at all.

Yes, God is mentioned. Yes, there are mentions of heaven, hell, God’s divine purpose, and, of course, angels. There is not however an overdose of it. It was just enough to show it was a book about angels without religion being thrust upon the readers.

I did not fall in love with Clara from the first pages of the book as some fictional characters I have read before. She seemed a little too uptight in the beginning. That how she was meant to feel, I surmise. As I read on and started watching Clara deviate slightly from her all-mighty purpose and start following her heart more and more, she started to grow on me. I watched her awkwardness that I always find so endearing in characters grow into a certainty and strength I wouldn’t have thought she would have been capable of early into the story.

When the love triangle started I groaned. I was so sick of all the “I love you! No… wait… I love you! No, I’m sorry I love…” blah blah blah. Sometimes love triangles to me are just too forced and uncomfortable. This love triangle was not as well developed as I would have thought. It was blatantly clear that Clara cared for one more than the other so her struggle wasn’t as believable as it could have been. At least not to me. Others may have found it completely believable and the stuff of dreams. I am a tough critic.

With any love triangle I have to give my siding of course. My choice is a bit bias I must confess. I am a southern girl and have grown up knowing country boys rather well. So, without a doubt when presented with a pretty boy jock or a down-to-earth country boy, it’s no surprise my heart skipped a beat when Tucker came onto the scene. He is so different from Clara that it is an interesting match. Throughout the book I didn’t know if Clara and Tucker were a good match or if I just found Tucker completely swoon-worthy for myself.

“Unearthly” is a story of a girl with angel-blood coursing through her veins who was taught to always follow her God given purpose that presents itself in visions. While realizing her visions of her purpose in bits and pieces she struggles with doing what is expected of her and what her heart tells her to. It really speaks to reality. Who hasn’t had to struggle with something they are supposed to do or something they feel is right for them personally? It is that connection that makes Clara’s struggle between head and heart so touching. This book gripped me from the very beginning and stuck with me. I hadn’t even reached the middle of the book before I was searching for the next installment feverishly. If you never feel the need to read a book on angels, read this series at least.

Purchase: Amazon  »  Barnes & Noble  »  Book Depository

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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Waiting On Wednesday (4)

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine. This is a once-a-week look at the book(s) I am anxiously awaiting release. 

"Unwanted" by Alivia Anders

This book is scheduled to be released July 30th, 2013. It is a stand-alone book.

She would be his freedom.
He would be her price.

In a world overrun with people and narrowing resources, the basis of life has turned to do or die. No longer does the balance of wealth and power apply. A strict split between the rich and poor has made the lines clear--the more money you have, the more power you control.

For seventeen year old Emily Beucant, life is an equal gift and curse. Having grown up pre-Unwanted society, she can remember the days it was okay to play with children from the other side of the concrete wall, back when her father was still alive, and back when the Unwanted program was used to Mark and hunt criminals, not sign away the lives of ungrateful children or spouses with high insurance collections over their heads.

But since her father's creation of the program, the government has taken control and made it into a lucrative monster. And as Emily is days away from her eighteenth birthday, and handsome inheritance, she will soon see just how badly it is to be Marked.

When her soulless aunt places Emily up to be Marked an Unwanted, she is forced to go on the run from all she has ever known. No where is safe for her, and no one will protect her, least they wish to have the same fate as her. It isn't until she forms a tense, explosive alliance with a former doctor, Ben, that it looks like the tables may turn in her favor. Together they race against those searching for her, desperate to find a way to free her from an early death. But is it too late?

No one is safe.
No one is free.

This sounds like a dystopia book that is right up my alley. I love books that have some sort of government takeover that causes the entire world to suddenly become subjected to the whims of "big brother" (not the reality show...) I am anxiously crossing my fingers and toes that I can get this when it is released. I have quite a few Alivia Anders books sitting on my TBR list that I need to get to as well. At least this book is a stand-alone (for now at least) so I won't need to tackle an entire series to get to read this book :)
What are you "Waiting On" this Wednesday?

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Armchair BEA: Introductions!

Photo credit goes to: Nina of Nina Reads

I have wandered around Bloglovin', Networked Blogs, various e-mail subscriptions and had noticed an ongoing trend of Armchair BEA posts. I guiltily admit that since I believed them to be information pertaining to The Book Expo America convention in New York that I am unable to attend, I didn't give them much thought. But then I actually took the time to read one. I found that it's for those that are unable to go to the exciting convention who still may want to get to know other bloggers. What a wonderful idea! I love getting to know my fellow bloggers! And so I start my Armchair BEA endeavor with the Introductions. 

1. Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging?

My name is Danielle. I been blogging now for maybe a month or month in a half. I have always been a bookworm, ever since I was a wee little thing. I was read to growing up and never was seen without a book in my hands. It was a precautionary thing! It never failed that when I didn't bring a book was when I was bored to tears and NEEDED it. I started reading book blog reviews as a way to increase my book list and expand my taste in books. I saw how much fun people had doing it and how well it works in promoting authors and books that I had to try throwing my hat into the ring. I am still unsure whether I am reaching enough people with my reviews and meme participations but if I convince at least one person to look into reading a book I loved, then I feel accomplished.

2. Where in the world are you blogging from? Tell a random fact or something special about your current location. Feel free to share pictures.

I am currently blogging from a small town called Ocala, Florida. It is about an hour and a half away from Orlando which is, as everyone knows, the site of many a theme park and the home of one well know mouse. It is also the place where the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is! I am an extreme Potterhead (even met my boyfriend of 3 years on a Harry Potter website) so this is the most fascinating aspect of where I live.

3. Have you previously participated in Armchair BEA? What brought you back for another year? If you have not participated, what drew you to the event?

I have never participated in Armchair BEA. As I said previously, I was amazed at the sheer volume of how many blogger friends of mine were participating and I decided to follow the crowd. :)

4. What are you currently reading, or what is your favorite book you have read so far in 2013?

I am currently reading Beautiful Darkness, the sequel to Beautiful Creatures and the second book in the Caster Chronicles by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl.

5. What is your favorite part of the book blogging community?

Since I started blogging, I have started talking to quite a few amazing bloggers on here. People that open my eyes to new books I would love, people who are friendly and honest no matter what, and people who inspire me to better my site day by day so that it can be even half as beautiful and intriguing as theirs. There are two girls who I have grown to love receiving comments from and replying to their blog posts. Christy from Christy's Love Of Books and Kimba from Caffinated Book Reviewer. Book bloggers are some of the nicest people you will ever meet and I thank every single one of you for opening your hearts to a newbie like me. 

I hope to keep up with ABEA and those involved in it. Happy Reading, Y'all!

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Events and Happenings: Fierce Reads Tour

I know a lot of people have seen me comment on random blog posts about how I am going to be seeing Leigh Bardugo June 13th in Tampa, FL and how excited I was to get a copy of Shadow and Bone signed. Well... I was surfing the net and wanted to check in on Leigh's actual webpage and saw that she was a part of the Fierce Reads Tour, a MacMillian concoction of the hottest YA books and the authors that write them. I wondered if she was going to be coming back to Florida during that time so I would have been able to acquire Siege and Storm by that time for her to sign also. Little did I know that the signing in Tampa IS the Fierce Reads Tour. That means that the lovely ladies Anna Banks, Jessica Brody, Emmy Laybourne, and Gennifer Albin will also be there. I immediately squeed, did a happy dance, ran around in circles, fell down, got back up, and continued fangirling all over the house.

This tour is to promote some new releases by most of the ladies in accompaniment. 

Unremembered by Jessica Brody
This is the first in the Unremembered series and was released March 5th, 2013.

Of Triton by Anna Banks
This is the sequel to Of Poseidon and was released May 28th, 2013.

Monument 14: Sky on Fire by Emmy Laybourne
This is the sequel to Monument 14 and was released May 28th, 2013.

Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
This is the sequel to Shadow and Bone and will be released June 4th, 2013.

Of course since I will be attending the signing I had to have at least the first book in each of the series to have signed. I hopped on Amazon and Bookcloseouts and purchased Unremembered, Of Poseidon, Crewel, Shadow and Bone, Monument 14 and a bookmark with a wolf on it because... well, just because. 

I am looking forward to the signing and if anyone else is attending or, if you are a personal friend, would like to attend please leave me comments so maybe my poor boyfriend won't be forced to entertain me in the lines to sign my books. I am not 100% sure how these Fierce Reads Tours go so if you have attended any or plan to attend it in another part of the country, please, fill me in, give me the gossip, what's the haps, and all that!

Happy Reading to all!

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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday (4)

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and features different book related themes each week. This week the theme is:

Top Ten Freebie Zombie Novels

When I read that this week would be a Freebie week, I was having a hard time choosing what I wanted to do. First I thought "Top Ten Fairytale Retellings" because I love Fairytale retellings. Then I thought a more generalized choice would do well such as "Top Ten Books Acquired This Month" but that would be almost impossible for me. I have gotten so many amazing books over this month. So... I fell back on something I have always had a fondness for. Brain-eating, cannibalistic, zombies. 

Pet Sematary by Stephen King

Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry

The Rising by Brian Keene

Monster Island by David Wellington

World War Z by Max Brooks

Dearly Departed by Lia Habel

28 Days Later by Alex Garland

Cell by Stephen King

Married with Zombies by Jesse Petersen

Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick

What are some favorite books of yours... zombies or otherwise? Share with me in the comments. Happy Reading, Ladybug Gents and Ladies!

Monday, May 27, 2013

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (4)

"It's Monday! What are you reading?" is a meme hosted by Sheila @ Book Journey. I always love this meme. It's fun to get to tell y'all what I am currently reading (and the subsequent reviews to be watching for, of course) and then offer up some suggestions of what I should read next. Although most of the time I tend to just pick up whatever book is closest since I never get any suggestions *hint, hint!* Here is what I am currently reading and what I am contemplating reading next:

Currently Reading

Boundless by Cynthia Hand
I have read and will post reviews eventually for the first two books in the trilogy.
This is the third and final installment in the Unearthly Trilogy.

Weekly Book Options

Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
This is the 2nd book in the Caster Chronicles.
I reviewed Beautiful Darkness here.

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
This is the 1st book in the Hex Hall series.

Lover Mine by J.R. Ward
This is the 8th book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series.
I love this series but have written no reviews of these books. At first it was because I didn't know if I wanted to review adult books or not and now it's simply because I am 8 books in and couldn't imagine trying to go back and remember 8 books worth of material to review. I DO recommend them and all of the books in the series are definitely 5 Ladybug ratings.

Have a book or book series suggestion for me? Something you think I should read and review or just simply read for enjoyment purposes? Leave a comment below with the title and author and I will definitely look into it. :) Happy reading to all!

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Sunday, May 26, 2013

Ladybug Loot/Book Haul (3)

This is my third Ladybug Loot/Book Haul and it will not be a vlog due to the sheer volume of books I have once again. I was referred by a friend to a facebook yard sale post and found 45 paranormal romance books for $15. Considering just one book was about that price in a normal store, I couldn't say no. At least that is how I rationalized it... These are used book, yes, but I am a strong believer that not all books you own must be brand new. The more well worn a book, the better it probably is. It would have to be if so many people had picked it up and read it, right? 

(I know they are hard to see. I will provide links to them down below as I always do. Don't fret my pets!)

E-Books Won Through Giveaways

Deer in Headlights by Staci Hart (won from Katrina @ Kindred Dreamheart) - Goodreads / Amazon
Forever Fae by L.P. Dover - Goodreads / Amazon
Photo Traveler by Arthur J. Gonzalez (won from Giselle @ Xpresso Book Tours) - Goodreads / Amazon
Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker (won from Valerie @ Stuck In Books) - Goodreads / Amazon


Ghost Town by Rachel Caine - Goodreads / Amazon
Volume 1: Morganville Vampires by Rachel Caine - Goodreads / Amazon
Volume 2: Morganville Vampires by Rachel Caine - Goodreads / Amazon
Carpe Corpus by Rachel Caine - Goodreads / Amazon
Fade Out by Rachel Caine - Goodreads / Amazon
Kiss of Death by Rachel Caine - Goodreads / Amazon
Lord of Misrule by Rachel Caine - Goodreads / Amazon
The Vampire Diaries: The Fury & Dark Reunion by L.J. Smith - Goodreads / Amazon
River Marked by Patricia Briggs - Goodreads / Amazon
Radiance by Alyson Noel - Goodreads / Amazon
Heart of Darkness by Various Authors - Goodreads / Amazon
The Vampire's Bride by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
The Darkest Pleasure by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
The Darkest Night by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
The Darkest Lie by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
The Darkest Passion by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
The Darkest Surrender by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
The Darkest Whisper by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
The Darkest Secret by Gena Showalter - Goodreads / Amazon
When Pleasure Rules by J.K. Beck - Goodreads / Amazon
When Passion Lies by J.K. Beck - Goodreads / Amazon
When Wicked Craves by J.K. Beck - Goodreads / Amazon
Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead - Goodreads / Amazon
Jacob by Jacquelyn Frank - Goodreads / Amazon
Gideon by Jacquelyn Frank - Goodreads / Amazon
First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones - Goodreads / Amazon
Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning - Goodreads / Amazon
Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night by Kresley Cole - Goodreads / Amazon
Kiss of a Demon King by Kresley Cole - Goodreads / Amazon
Dawnkeepers by Jessica Andersen - Goodreads / Amazon
Skykeepers by Jessica Andersen - Goodreads / Amazon
Bound to Shadows by Keri Arthur - Goodreads / Amazon
Moon Sworn by Keri Arthur - Goodreads / Amazon
Deadly Desire by Keri Arthur - Goodreads / Amazon
Vampires Are Forever by Lynsay Sands - Goodreads / Amazon
Bite Me If You Can by Lynsay Sands - Goodreads / Amazon
Vampire, Interrupted by Lynsay Sands - Goodreads / Amazon
The Valcourt Heiress by Catherine Coulter - Goodreads / Amazon

So, I may have to put myself on a book buying ban since I can't seem to have a SMALL haul to save my life. I will try to do so next week, promise! 

What did you get this week in books?

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Review: Tiger's Quest by Colleen Houck

Author: Colleen Houck

Series: The Tiger Saga #2

ISBN: 9781402784040

Synopsis (according to Goodreads):
Back in Oregon, Kelsey tries to pick up the pieces of her life and push aside her feelings for Ren. But danger lurks around the corner, forcing her to return to India where she embarks on a second quest—this time with Ren’s dark, bad-boy brother Kishan, who has also fallen prey to the Tiger’s Curse. Fraught with danger, spellbinding dreams, and choices of the heart. TIGER’S QUEST brings the trio one step closer to breaking the spell that binds them.

As seen in my review of the first book Tiger’s Curse, I was not fan of this series or the characters within it. I found Kelsey to be incredibly annoying and her constant damsel in distress routine to be tiresome. The only thing that kept me powering through the book was Ren and his brother, Kishan. If they had been as irritating as Kelsey, I would have had to write the entire series off as a loss and never find out what happened to the Tiger princes.

What a loss that would have been. I came into “Tiger’s Quest” with a teeth grit and a “just do it and get it over with” attitude. That quickly changed as I became engrossed in the story. I started to find Kelsey less and less of a burden and found Kishan, who was the main male protagonist in this volume of the series, to be utterly swoon-worthy. I found myself flipping back to the cover of the book to make sure I was really reading the second installment of the series.

Colleen Houck totally changed how I felt about Kelsey. She made her start learning to fight and gave her cool new powers thanks to the goddess, Durga. She seamlessly turned Kelsey from a bumbling idiot in need of saving all the time, into the type of kick ass female lead I am accustomed to. Granted, she still blubbers about her love for Ren and the complication of growing feelings for Kishan, but I was able to overlook that since she didn’t seem like such an infant anymore. She was even able to save the boys a time or two instead of depending on them to do the saving all the time.

Kelsey wasn’t the only one that changed. In the first book, Kishan was a secondary character with nothing going for him except good looks and a smug attitude. The second book delved deeper into Kishan since Ren was taken out of the equation fairly early in the book. I loved getting to see a new side of Kishan. Yes, he was still smug and yes, he still had that air of a bad-boy, but there was more emotion then that beneath the surface. Kishan, as he put it, is a “man of action”. He wants Kelsey and he is going to pursue her whether she wants him to or not. I like possessive, can-do attitudes in men, so of course, I fell head-over-heels for Kishan even if Kelsey tried to deny she did the same.

Between Kelsey’s growth and the deeper look into Kishan. This book completely made up for the rocky start of the first book. I found myself immediately searching for the third book in the series so I could find out what happened next. That wasn’t the case after the first book by any stretch of the imagination. I have a feeling the love triangle is going to become more and more interesting as time goes by, let’s just hope Kelsey doesn’t sob too profusely or slip into mental breakdown after mental breakdown. Her depression depresses me. Colleen please don’t torment me with “whiny little girl” Kelsey again, please?

Purchase: Amazon  »  Barnes & Noble  »  Book Depository

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