Thursday, 31 May 2012

A Guest Post On Mermaids by Author Anne Greenwood Brown + Giveaway of Lies Beneath(int)

First I would like to thank author Anne Greenwood Brown for this lovely post on mermaid mythology, also she has offered one signed copy her upcoming novel Lies Beneath. The Giveaway is open internationally.


Thank you to Soumi for the opportunity to do a guest post about mermaids in conjunction with the release of LIES BENEATH, the first book in the Lies Beneath series. LIES BENEATH is told from the point of view of Calder White, a merman and the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids on Lake Superior--the biggest of the Great Lakes in North America.
One of the reasons I was interested in writing about mermaids was because the mermaid is known to almost all cultures across the globe. I wondered how so many people, over so many centuries, could imagine the same creature. I couldn’t help but consider the fact that mermaids were real.
Because the general public’s knowledge of mermaids is often limited to Disney’s The Little Mermaid, some readers are taken by surprise by Calder and his sisters’ predatory and often murderous ways. So I thought it was important to note that The Little Mermaid is a huge exception to the rule. Historically, and globally, mermaids are not sweet. They’re spicy!

Mermaids are probably best associated with the North Sea and the area between the British Isles, Denmark, and France. Mermaid is a French/ English combination meaning maid of the sea, or a creature who has a woman’s head, arms, and torso, but the tail of a fish. In Scotland she is called “Ceasg” or “maid of the wave,” and in Ireland she is known as “Merrow.” Their reputation is that of a beautiful lure who pulls sailors to their deaths, although the Ceasg was known to grant wishes. The celtic and Anglo-Saxon legends reveal that mermaids were not immortal, and they were known to be found in not only the ocean but freshwater rivers and lakes.
But the North Sea doesn’t have a monopoly on mermaids, and LIES BENEATH gives a nod to other mermaid legends, as well. For example, The novel’s concept of rejuvenation--or turning a human into a mermaid in the seconds after death--comes from the Ancient Greek legend that Alexander the Great’s sister turned into a mermaid after she died.
Also, Calder’s evolutionary path of leaving his predatory, animal nature behind and becoming more human is a reflection of the Milesian philosopher Anaximander, who thought that people had evolved from a water creature.

Calder and his sisters’ human transformations come from the Arabian story of “Djullanar the Sea-girl,” who did not have a fish tail, and could walk on land, but could also breathe under water and interbreed with human men to perpetuate her race.
Calder and his sisters’ ability to sense emotion comes from the Chinese merfolk, whose bodies were said to smell like “happiness,” although I flipped the notion of merfolk being happy on its tail (sorry about the pun) and made them miserable creatures who self-medicate with human happiness.
In the Caribbean she’s known as “Aycayia” and she’s attributed to the hibiscus flower (which I acknowledge in Chapter One). She is the symbol of Warsaw, Poland where she’s known as “Syrenka.” In Cambodia and Thailand she’s “Suvannamaccha.” In Africa she’s “Mami Wata.” In Russia she’s “Rusalkas,” and in the Philippines she’s “Sirena” or “Siyokoy.”
Coincidence that we all know the mermaid? Think she’s just the product of ancient foolishness?
In the late 1800s and then again in1967, dozens of people on a ferry boat off the coast of Vancouver, British Columbia collectively reported seeing a mermaid swimming alongside the boat. And as recent as 2009, there were so many reported mermaid sightings in Israel that the Israeli government offered a $1 million dollar award to anyone who could offer proof.
You decide. And in the meantime, I hope you all enjoy LIES BENEATH!


Author Bio : I am a Minnesota author, writing about mermaid assassins on Lake Superior. My debut YA series begins with LIES BENEATH, coming June 12, 2012 from Random House/Delacorte.

The sequel (currently titled Deep Betrayal) is anticipated for March 2013.

Besides writing and reading YA literature, I love all things Irish, romantic movies, beef stroganoff, and Nutella.

If I'm listening to music it's Violent Femmes, The Coronas (awesome band out of Dublin), and Great Big Sea (out of Newfoundland)


Enter In The Giveaway : Win a signed copy of Lies Beneath by Author Anne Greenwood, Open Internationally

Giveaway Ended : 25th June' 2012
Winner : Lisseth Torres (entry #225)
Winner Announcement : On 26th June, on Announcement section. Winner will be notified withing 48 hours after the giveaway ends

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Winner of Last Giveaway : Congratulations to Mandy Biddinger Sickle (Entry #4895) for winning a signed ARC of The Glimpse at International Giveaway of Pages From My Thoughts.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

After the Snow by S.D. Crockett

From Goodreads : I'm gonna sit here in my place on the hill behind the house. Waiting. And watching. Ain't nothing moving down there.

The valley look pretty bare in the snow. Just the house grey and lonely down by the river all frozen. I got to think what I'm gonna do now that everyone gone.

But I got my dog head on.

The dog gonna tell me what to do. The dog gonna help me.

The house look proper empty – don't it dog?

You just sit quiet in these rocks Willo.

Set in the haunting and barren landscape of a new ice age, After The Snow is the story of fifteen-year-old Willo, a "straggler" kid who loses his family in the opening pages. Completely alone, he is immediately flung into an icy journey of survival, adventure, friendship and self-discovery – with only the dog spirit inside his head to guide him. Meanwhile, across Britain, outlawed followers of survivalist John Blovyn are planning an escape to the fabled Islands talked of in a revolutionary book..



My Rating: 4 of 5 stars


My Thoughts : After days of continuous snowfalls, when Willo returns home everyone was missing, his father, his step mother, the entire village was gone. Cold and alone, Willo heads to the city to find his father. Soon he rescues a dying girl named Mary. Willo must save her; also he has to go to the city to solve this tangled mystery.

A Savage World

Set in a post apocalyptic ice age, After the Snow is a story of survival where civilization has fallen, humanity has deteriorated into savagery and barbarism, but still there is small beam hope. This post global warming era is somehow our mirror to the not very distant future. The streets are in chaos, people are trying to rob each other for food, and warm coats are luxury in endless winter. Undertaken by a ruthless government, author S.D. Crockett took us to a disordered society that runs on anarchism where everything is disoriented.

A Wild Boy

The story was told from Willo’s point of view, his unusual way of telling the story felt disconnected first, but eventually his dialect melted with progress of story and made things more believable for readers. Willo is a strong character with a little wildness in him; he is wise and courageous enough to choose his own path. I was immediately impressed by him.
When his family was dragged away by government, he went in search for them with strange voice of a dog inside his head, giving him instructions for what to do. I loved how his character evolved and he has grown into this responsible young man who finally finds his own voice to make decision in the end. Also in his way he saved Mary, a thirteen years old girl who has lost her family just like him. Soon they developed a friendship based on sympathy, dependency and fondness. Their warm company in loneliness brought a ray of new hope, a new bonding in that cold hunger ridden dystopian world where humanity can be saved.

A world that is seemingly possible where surviving is the final word. I never thought I will like After the Snow this much. A chilling adventure of self discovery, I was absolutely thrilled by this book.



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Sunday, 27 May 2012

The Repossession by Sam Hawksmoor

From Goodreads : 34 kids missing. Vanished without a trace.

Believing she is possessed, Genie Magee's mother has imprisoned her all summer encouraged by the sinister Reverend Schneider. Beautiful Rian, love of her life, sets her free, and their escape washes them up at Marshall's remote farmhouse downriver. But why are there newspaper clippings of the missing kids pinned to Marshall's bathroom wall? And should they believe his stories about the experiments at the Fortress, an underground research station nearby?

Genie meets Denis. Missing two years now, but hasn't grown an inch. Rian is haunted by Renée, who insists she's not actually dead. Soon they discover the terrible truth about Reverend Schneider and worse, Genie is next ... and Rian can't do a thing to prevent it.

The Repossession is just the beginning.


My Rating : 4 of 5 stars

My Thoughts : Genie was possessed, as they said. Locked up in her room, she waited for devil to come and claim her. 34 kids were missing without a trace, and Genie knew she is next. The devil never came and only love of her life Rian broke her free and together they escape. Soon they too shelter in an Old man’s farm and discover how those missing kids are related to a scientific research organization known as “The Fortress”.

The Repossession is a wonderful addition to young adult genres and an amazing work of author Sam Hawksmoor. When I started the book I absolutely had no idea how it was going to be, but the moment I finished the book I left open mouthed. The Repossession is a well-written absolute wonderful sci-fi mystery that once you started reading it; it will never let you go.
I finished the book a month ago, and still trying to wrap my thoughts around it and I’m still trying to think what I should write to praise this book.
This book is utterly remarkable, starting from the plot building to characterization.
He efficiently portrayed the social drama of a small town and how it was being affected by religious fanatics, also unmasked those masked culprits posing as priest and damaging the society by the name of God.

Genie and Rian, both were unbelievably strong. I was instantly felt attached to them, especially Genie. She was so clearly intelligent, brave, and calm, everything that I can’t even imagine of being at her situation. She was extraordinary with her talent of teleportation and used her power very wisely. Rian was undoubtedly believable, loving and supporting. He the very definition of ideal, still real boyfriend with qualities we all are looking for.

The story developed with fine pace without breaking or being dragged anywhere. It was a breathless read for me, an experience that I would love to have again. The book was unpredictable; each and every page was attention grabbing. The book was inspired by all those incidents of kids are going missing all over the world, some are being abducted for wicked purpose, and some are running into wrong direction. The author pointed out one possible reason behind those missing through his novel with a subtle hint for those parents who neglect their kids and pushing them further into darkness.
Big thanks to the author for representing the truth in terms of literature, and a huge achievement.




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Friday, 25 May 2012

Cover Lust and Contest: City of a Thousand Dolls by Miriam Forster

Good Reads Summary : The girl with no past, and no future, may be the only one who can save their lives.
Nisha was abandoned at the gates of the City of a Thousand Dolls when she was just a child. Now sixteen, she lives on the grounds of the isolated estate, where orphan girls apprentice as musicians, healers, courtesans, and, if the rumors are true, assassins. Nisha makes her way as Matron’s assistant, her closest companions the mysterious cats that trail her shadow. Only when she begins a forbidden flirtation with the city’s handsome young courier does she let herself imagine a life outside the walls. Until one by one, girls around her start to die.

Before she becomes the next victim, Nisha decides to uncover the secrets that surround the girls’ deaths. But by getting involved, Nisha jeopardizes not only her own future in the City of a Thousand Dolls—but her own life.

Contest : Finally, after a long wait the cover was revealed of upcoming Title City of Thousand Dolls by Miriam Forster. Is the is amazing?? I bet the book is going to be epic. The author is also hosting an contest on the occasion of cover reveal over her blog. You just have to follow the instructions below :

This one's a bit different. You don't have to like anything or comment on anything or follow anything. You do, however, get to be creative.

Recreate the cover.

That's it.

Any way you want, any medium you choose. Recreate the cover (or do some sort of homage to it) and either email the author a picture/video of it or post it to her Facebook wall. You have a month.

Her email : miriamforsterauthor (at) gmail (dot) com

After the contest closes, she and her panel of specially chosen, arty-type people will pick the top five entries. From those entries they will randomly select one grand prize winner, a first and second runner up and two honorable mentions.

Grand Prize:



This prize also includes a journal for writerly scribblings, and (this is my favorite part) an ARC of City of a Thousand Dolls!

First Runner Up:

ALSO gets an ARC of City of a Thousand Dolls, and a journal, along with a signed set of Alane Ferguson's Forensic Mysteries. (If you like CSI, you will LOVE these books.)


Second Runner Up:

A signed copy of the Edgar-award-winning book Icefall, by Matthew Kirby, (Such a good book!)


AND an ARC of City of a Thousand Dolls.


Honorable Mentions will both get a fifteen-dollar gift card to the online bookseller of their choice.

The contest closes at midnight, PST on June 21st. International entries are welcome. Please email me if you have any questions.

Go forth and create!

For more info visit the author's official website : http://msforster.blogspot.in/

Direct link to contest : http://msforster.blogspot.in/2012/05/cover-reveal-and-contest.html

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Of Poseidon by Anna Banks

From Goodreads : Galen, a Syrena prince, searches land for a girl he's heard can communicate with fish. It’s while Emma is on vacation at the beach that she meets Galen. Although their connection is immediate and powerful, Galen's not fully convinced that Emma's the one he's been looking for. That is, until a deadly encounter with a shark proves that Emma and her Gift may be the only thing that can save his kingdom. He needs her help--no matter what the risk.


My Rating : 3 of 5 stars



My Thoughts : Syrena Prince Galen was searching for a girl in land, who has gift of speaking with fish. When Emma bumps into Galen, he felt a connection with her but he wasn’t sure Emma is the one. The more they were getting close, the more Galen was convinced Emma is Of Poseidon who holds the key to save his kingdom. If Emma is truly Of Poseidon she has to marry Galen’s older brother Grom. Will Galen sacrifice his love to save his kingdom?

In recent days, I have been reading a lot of mermaid books, and each of them has its own quality to be better than other in many aspects. Of Poseidon was humorous, light and fun reading and I enjoyed my moment in its pages.
Based on Syrena mythology, we learned about two Syrena houses: Poseidon and Triton, their cultures and legacies, heritage and histories. Description of oceanic life was vivid and lifelike; I was completely enthralled by its beauty.
Splitting the book into first and third person narrative was kind unique in my opinion. While we read chapters from Emma’s perspective, we also experience Galen’s part of story narrated by a third person.

The Syrena prince

I have a thing for mermen; I can’t stop falling for them. Galen was one of the sexiest of their kind and I do fancy him. He is full of controlling attitude and bad ass manner which was kind of sexy in my opinion. He was concerned about well being of his kingdom as well as the fear of separation from Emma. I bet choosing between responsibilities and the girl he love was difficult for him but he never let situations get him.

The Surface Girl

While Galen was ravishing, on the other hand I found Emma average compared to him, although Emma has captivating voice of narration that is both sarcastic and determine. Asking too many questions and displaying lack of consistency was irritating, also enough reason not to enlist her as some strong female protagonist. I better call her behavior childish rather than stubborn that proves her conflicting and immature personality. What I like most about her that how she adopted her true identity and tried to adjust in her new Syrena life. That was quite impressive of her.

All Those Fishy Love

I expected more fire and sensation in romance part. Thank god it wasn’t insta-love; their mutual affection grew up with time. Galen concern in inappropriate ways leads to consequence of hurting Emma and he also received some silent treatment in return. As a Syrena royalty, Galen has habit of giving instruction to his people, but that wasn’t applicable for Emma cause she has habit of ignoring them and she did exactly what Galen told her not to. Their romantic fights were lack of proper amount of romance.
While taking about love, I don’t want to miss another couple, Galen’s bad tempered Sister Rayana and her totally sweet hubby Toraf. Rayana was practically forced into a courtship with Toraf without her knowledge, and that leads her into ignoring him. So what I like to point out is that, are Syrenas insane, or does they follow some kind of marriage tradition of middle age?
Also, Rayana got jealous to see Emma and Toraf kissing, why she was so jealous when she declared she has no intention on falling love with him? Mhan, it’s so hard to get these Syrena females.

Verdict

As I mentioned that I enjoyed the book, but according to me it’s not kind of novel you want to read twice. Of Poseidon has ingredients like good plot, action and mystery we all want to solve, but the book failed to deliver those properly. Some points I liked, some I didn’t. I wasn’t sure about reading the next one but the way Of Poseidon ended with a huge cliffhanger that I definitely don’t’ want to miss the next one.

An ARC was provided to me in exchange for honest review



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Monday, 21 May 2012

Guest Post : The Inspiration Behind COLORS LIKE MEMORIES by Meradeth Houston

Thank you so much for hosting me today, and allowing me to talk a little bit about my book, and the ideas behind it . I always enjoy hearing what brought about the ideas for other author’s novels, so hopefully you all enjoy a little insight into my creative life.
Most of my ideas for books I’ve written, and especially for Colors Like Memories, have come in a flash of inspiration. Rarely have I sat down at my computer and thought to myself “Hmm, what do I want to write about?” Instead, it’s kind of like getting beamed in the head with something that makes my fingers itch to write. Maybe I’ve been lucky with this over the years . Despite these experiences where my “muse” has gifted me with a story idea, a character, or a scene, there are definitely things that have helped guide me to points where I was actually ready to write something. Mostly, the things that get my creativity really flowing can be broken into two categories: other books, and music.
Finding time to both read and write can be a real struggle. There are only so many hours in the day (and sleep is a precious commodity). But, for me, reading other people’s books helps me feel more centered in my own voice and writing. Not only that, but it’s also a great way to come up with ideas. I know what that sounds like, and I’m totally not referring to ripping off other people’s characters and worlds (even though fan-fic has its place and can be tons of fun!). What I mean is that it allows for an escape from reality that gives your creative side a chance to explore on its own. For Colors Like Memories, the main character is a Sary—a type of guardian angel of sorts (I made them up, so if you google them, well, it probably won’t help too much—check out my blurb or my book instead :). Anyhow, the root for the idea of these beings came a long time ago while reading another book (Many Waters by Madeline L’Engle, which is a totally fun read if you get the chance). One of the side characters struck me as really interesting and I remember thinking “Maybe I could write something about characters that have that trait.” About a million twists and turns later, the Sary were born!
Colors Like Memories as a novel, came to me through listening to music. I almost always have something playing on my computer or iPod, and I have massively eclectic taste so what’s playing any given day ranges from opera to rap. So, driving home one evening I was listening to Shadow of a Day by Linkin Park (yeah, I know, old song, but books take ages to be written, revised, then published). Something just clicked in my head, and suddenly my main character, Julia, was telling me her story. I still remember exactly where I pulled off I80 between Dixon and Davis to jot down notes. As I wrote and revised my book, I think I listened to that song about a thousand times. I have my playlist up on my blog, if you want to check it out . Anyhow, music is a great way to spark creativity! (Can you tell I like parentheses? I swear there aren’t this many in my novel—my editor made me take them out!)
So, books, music, and well, just living life really does give me the best story ideas. I hope you all find yourselves in a “I just HAVE to write this down!” sometime—nothing compares!
Inquiring minds want to know: what gets your muse up and moving?
A bit about the Colors Like Memories:

Julia has a secret : she killed the guy she loved. It was an accident—sort of.

Julia is a Sary, the soul of a child who died before taking her first breath. Without this 'breath of life' she and others like her must help those on the verge of suicide. It's a job Julia used to enjoy, until the accident that claimed her boyfriend’s life—an accident she knows was her fault. If living with the guilt weren't enough, she's now assigned to help a girl dealing with the loss of her mother, something Julia's not exactly the best role model for. If she can't figure out a way to help her, Julia's going to lose her position in the Sary, something she swore to her boyfriend would never happen.

Release date : May 11th 2012 from MuseItUp Publishing.

A bit about Meradeth Houston:
Meradeth’s never been a big fan of talking about herself, but if you really want to know, here are some random tidbits about her:

>She’s a Northern California girl. This generally means she talks too fast and use "like" a lot.
>She has her doctorate in molecular anthropology. Translation: she sequences dead people's DNA and is a professional lab rat.
>She’s been writing since she was 11 years old. It's her hobby, her passion, and she’s so happy to get to share her work!
>Her other passion is teaching. There's nothing more fun than getting a classroom of college kids fired up about anthropology!
>If she could have a super-power, it would totally be flying. Which is a little strange, because she’s terrified of heights.

www.MeradethHouston.com
meradethhouston.blogspot.com
https://twitter.com/#!/MeradethHouston
www.goodreads.com/book/show/13030422-colors-like-memories
http://www.facebook.com/ColorsLikeMemories



Friday, 18 May 2012

Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris

From Goodreads : 24 meets the X Files in the biggest teen blockbuster of the summer…

STOP THE COUNTDOWN. SAVE THE WORLD…

Leaving the beach, seventeen-year-old Janelle Tenner is hit head on by a pickup truck.

And killed.

Then Ben Michaels, resident stoner, is leaning over her. And even though it isn’t possible, she knows Ben somehow brought her back to life…

Meanwhile, Janelle’s father, a special agent for the FBI, starts working on a case that seems strangely connected to Ben. Digging in his files, Janelle finds a mysterious device – one that seems to be counting down to something that will happen in 23 days and 10 hours time.

That something? It might just be the end of the world. And if Janelle wants to stop it, she’s going to need to uncover Ben’s secrets – and keep from falling in love with him in the process…


My Rating : 5 of 5 stars

My Review : When seventeen years old Janelle Tenner was hit by a tuck and died, she felt she was dying. Soon she brought back to life completely unharmed and found Ben Michaels, a loner guy from her school she barely knows, leaning over her. She knows Ben had something to do with her revival but she doesn’t know how. Desperate to know truth behind her accident, Janelle sneaks in her FBI father’s study and discover investigation files on unidentified radiation victims, also a timer that is counting down towards zero. Somehow all the incidents are connected together, and Janelle has 24 hours to solve the mystery and save the world from destroying before the timer stops.

A Story of Both Science to Art

Unraveling was an immensely entertaining, and nerve-wrecking suspense flowed well with this action-packed si-fi thriller. As a follower of both science and literature, I was completely surprised to see how beautifully the author blended one into another. From concept of quantum mechanics and genetic engineering to wave function collapse theory and alternate universe. I was stunned by the amount of research author did to write this novel and how brilliantly she explained those scientific theories in terms literature.

Although the story is little influenced by both X-files and Veronica Mars, but it has originality that kept me constantly flipping through pages. The book contains mysteries at large quantity that unraveled one by one with proper and satisfying explanations. One thing I like about this book is whenever I was about to discover something, the whole thing turned out into something else, I wasn’t prepared for, all those turnarounds left me open mouthed.

Countdown to Characters and Romance

Elizabeth Norries delivers a gripping storyline using Janelle as the strong voice of narration, which made the whole plot believable and her art of describing incidents made the whole “end of world” process much more realistic. Janelle is an independent and realistic girl who knows her responsibility well. If I were in Jenelle’s place, I would have done same dare devil attempts to discover the truth and save the world as well as those person I care for. She is one of those very uncommon characters I could easily relate myself to.

Ben was absolutely amazing by both his down to earth appearance and sweet caring nature. The secret he kept hidden was absolute explosive that can either harm you or save you. I loved Ben, he seemed very believable and real to me, also different from other YA male protagonist. Ben is deadly combination of charm with brain and it is rare to find an intellectual YA hero, aren’t they??

The romance was slow burning and definitely not conventional, it was rather bold and modern. They don’t believe in romantic quote from Dickens, they prefer being honest with lines like “I fucking love you”. I was drawn into emotion by this gradually developed romance.

There is another person in this story who touched my heart, Alex, the best friend. Although there is no triangle and I really appreciate that the author didn’t include so called best friend-boy friend drama. Alex reminded me of my best friend; always supportive and caring, just like the guy next door.

That Timer

The story was broken into sections corresponding to timer countdown as chapter headers and it was a brilliant idea of making the readers feel the same fear as Janelle, at least my heart raced faster than usual as the story progressed and time was slipping from Janelle’s hand.

Twisty and gripping, Unraveling is kind of novel that has something for everyone. With flawless writing and brilliant story line, Unraveling will not disappoint you.

An ARC was provided by the publishers in exchange for a honest review



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Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Blog Tour : Enchanted by Alethea Kontis

From Goodreads : It isn't easy being the rather overlooked and unhappy youngest sibling to sisters named for the other six days of the week. Sunday’s only comfort is writing stories, although what she writes has a terrible tendency to come true.

When Sunday meets an enchanted frog who asks about her stories, the two become friends. Soon that friendship deepens into something magical. One night Sunday kisses her frog goodbye and leaves, not realizing that her love has transformed him back into Rumbold, the crown prince of Arilland—and a man Sunday’s family despises.

The prince returns to his castle, intent on making Sunday fall in love with him as the man he is, not the frog he was. But Sunday is not so easy to woo. How can she feel such a strange, strong attraction for this prince she barely knows? And what twisted secrets lie hidden in his past - and hers?

My Rating : 4 of 5 stars

My Thoughts : The child who was born on Sabbath Day, is blithe and bonny and good and gay

Seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, Sunday Woodcutter is doomed to a happy life. One day she met an enchanted frog Grumble , befriends with him and soon they fall in love . One night kiss of her true love transformed Grumble back into Rumbold, crowned prince of Arilland. Now the prince is desperate to win Sunday’s love for the person he is now, not the frog she fell in love with.

Enchanted is wonderful makeover on “once upon a time” waving together all our favorite fairytales that we left behind our childhood days. An absolute beautiful and enchanting friary tale with grate combination of author's own creativity with my favorite tales of The Princess and the frog , Rumpelstiltskin, Jack and the Beanstalk, Sleeping Beauty with a little touch of Cinderella

Reading the book felt like living a magical dream. I was completely bewitched by this enthralling fantasy that transitions well from light humorous moments to moments of dark magic. I was amazed to see how richly imaginative this fantasy world is, as well as its characters.

The Princess, The Frog and Their True Love Kiss

Words have power, be they names or stories, and no one knows this better than Sunday Woodcutter, seventh daughter of a seventh daughter.

Sunday Woodcutter is delicate like a flower, strong as marble, as well as passionate and empathetic. As seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, she is gifted with some extraordinary gift of writing and everything she writes come true. With her own view of life, she is also very expressive in poetic way. Destined for greater cause, she bears her own desire to find the love she has been looking for. Loving and caring, Sunday is absolutely adorable.

I was charmed by Rumbold ; dreamy and determine, he is a fairytale prince who is not so perfect . When he got the chance to start over life again, he was fragile, also unable to speak, incapable of recalling his memories as human and skills he acquired as a prince. But love conquers all; desperate to prove himself worthy for the girl he loves, he overcame everything stand in his way to win back Sunday. He is one of those few characters with potentials of their own.

“It’s me!” he wanted to scream. He wanted to laugh, to cry, to scoop her up in his feeble arm and take her back to the Wood, back to their well, back to where they had fallen in love. Where she given him one thing he had never known he was missing and had made him whole. Wher he had been born again. Where he had chosen life, for her. All for her.

One of the most romantic lines I have ever heard, so touching and heart rending. Romantic elements are not overdone and I find myself smiling at those sweet romantic moments. Both Sunday and Rumblod are descendent of such family that has no history of good relationship in past. Their love made me complete with joy as well as empty with sadness. Few moments I was absolutely worried, especially at royal ball when Sunday met Rumbold as prince with no sign of reorganization in her eyes. I love the way he slowly made his place in her heart. He never tried to bind her; he won her with love and patience.

Beautifully written, the lines are lyrical and the world building is phenomenal. It was an wonderful experience for me. An amazing story with grate flow, recommended for all young adult fantasy lover.

Read interview of author Althea Kontis and explore more about Enchanted, click Here




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Friday, 11 May 2012

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

From Goodreads : I have two weeks. You'll shoot me at the end no matter what I do.

That's what you do to enemy agents. It's what we do to enemy agents. But I look at all the dark and twisted roads ahead and cooperation is the easy way out. Possibly the only way out for a girl caught red-handed doing dirty work like mine — and I will do anything, anything, to avoid SS-Hauptsturmführer von Linden interrogating me again.

He has said that I can have as much paper as I need. All I have to do is cough up everything I can remember about the British War Effort. And I'm going to. But the story of how I came to be here starts with my friend Maddie. She is the pilot who flew me into France — an Allied Invasion of Two.

We are a sensational team.


My Rating : 4 of 5 stars

My Thoughts : The author has accomplished something that few YA writers today are able to: she has successfully blended the timeless horrific memories of Second World War into a brilliant tale of true friendship.

On a mission in France, when their plane crashed young pilot Verity was captured by Gestapo while her co pilot and best friend Maddy was assumed to be dead. Both physically and mentally tortured, Verity was living the worst nightmare of an enemy agent any other wouldn’t dare to dream. Weeks after weeks, tortured and broken Verity finally agrees to write down her confessions on a paper and told story of her friendship with Maddy.

The book was written in dairy format and the whole situations with World War II as a back drop reminded me of Dairy of a young girl. I’m whole heartedly impressed how the author brought up the situations of Nazi camp and each terrible moment Verity lived.

The story was told from Verity’s perspective but often switched into third person narration centering her friendship with Maddy. I absolutely loved how the author portrayed her characters; both Verity and Maddy seem to leap off the pages. While serving in Women’s Auxiliary Air Force, Verity and Maddy became best friends and soon their friendship turned into sisterly bond. As a splendid actress and expert in German and French, Verity was perfect agent for any mission while Maddy was an excellent pilot and navigator. Both were strong, confident and determine young women. I enjoyed the moments they shared together, both their fears and joys.

Under extreme pressure in prison, Verity was forced to write down her testimony and her writing served as evidence of facts that we are given in this novel. Mourning with grief of Maddy death, Verity felt she is somehow betraying her loyalty and friendship also struggled with remorse. With her situations became worst so as my heart beat.

My only objection was there was bit too much talk of technical stuffs and coding techniques related to aircraft that was out of my reach. But considering that a minor, the book was a classic and downright heart wrenching.


An ARC was provided to me in exchange for honest review


View all my reviews


Thursday, 10 May 2012

Cover Lust : The Iron Legends and The Lost Prince

Needless to say how much we love The Iron Fey series of Julie Kagawa, all the adventures and quests, the timeless never ending love story. The trio is back again, our very own Ash, Megan and Puck. We will again experience their adventures in The Iron Legends; collection of Iron Fey novellas. Winter's Passage, Summer's Crossings and a brand new novella called Iron's Prophecy.


Author Julie Kagawa also revealed cover of The Lost Prince on her blog on the same day. The Lost Prince is all about grown up Ethan Chase and his journey to never never, no wonder why this spin off is named Call of The Forgotten. See Ethan is not a toddler any more, he has grown into this sexy young man. Hopefully we will also be seeing Ash, Megan and Puck in this book.


So, which one has better cover???? Don't forget to post your opinion cause they are valuable to me.

Monday, 7 May 2012

Until Next Time Twitter Party


Goodreads Summary : How does a girl choose between the one who steals her heart and the one who owns her soul?

Matt and Emily were created for a specific job. Raised and trained as the ultimate angel/warrior team, they are sent down to save, defend, judge and forgive, depending on the 'life' they've been assigned. What they don't realize is that the power of human emotions, such as love, anger, passion and fear can take over even the best of souls, causing them to make mistakes and follow paths that lead to confusion and heartache.

When the reason for their training is finally revealed, the angel/warrior team find themselves thrust into a world they know nothing about. Matt takes over the life of Daniel, a young man with a great deal of baggage. Emily becomes Liz, a girl living in a remote village who relies on nothing more than her own strength to survive. A violent storm erupts one night, and framed in the window of Liz's establishment is a frightening face. Let in by the soul of a Good Samaritan, the two visitors bring with them a past full of secrets that could literally change an angel's path and a warrior's plans.

From murder to redemption, this angel/warrior team must find a way to keep the faith they have in each other in a world that's ripping them apart.



I'd like to invite you to the blog tour wrap-up Twitter party for Until Next Time: The Angel Chronicles, Book 1.

It is taking place this coming Tuesday, May 8th at 8 p.m. EST on Twitter - http://www.twitter.com

The hashtag is #UntilNextTime - and can be easily followed using the Twitter app found at http://www.tweetchat.com

Author Amy Lignor (@HelloWritersAmy) will answer your questions for 90 minutes.

We're also giving away a vast assortment of prizes including:

1) $50 cash prize to the person who has a receipt confirming an ebook purchase of Until Next Time and tweets at least once during the Twitter Party.

2) The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern hardcover

3) Archon by Sabrina Benulis hardcover

4) Spectral by Shannon Duffy ebook

5) Knee Deep by Jolene Perry ebook

You can buy your copy at :

Kindle - $2.99
Nook - $4.95
iBookstore - $4.99
Google - $3.79
Smashwords - $4.99
PDF - $4.95

Insurgent by Veronica Roth

From Goodreads :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.

New York Times bestselling author Veronica Roth's much-anticipated second book of the dystopian Divergent series is another intoxicating thrill ride of a story, rich with hallmark twists, heartbreaks, romance, and powerful insights about human nature

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

My Thoughts : “Cruelty does not make a person honest, the same way bravery does not make a person kind.”

Divergent was the only one dystopian that was successful to spread the equal amount of madness among the readers same as The Hunger Games trilogy, and now author Veronica Roth is back with its sequel Insurgent with another bang. No wonder why Insurgent has been titled with the crown of most anticipated book of 2012.

Abnegation has fallen, Dauntless is divided in half, and traitors are with Erudite. Erudite is seeking for control over all fractions and fractionless rebels are demanding their position is society. Insurgent picks up exactly where Divergent dropped off, Tris , Four, Celeb, Marcus and Peter made it out alive from Dauntless headquarter and took the refuge in Amity along with few other Abnegation but for how long?

“Insurgent,” he says. “Noun. A person who acts in opposition to the established authority, who is not necessarily regarded as a belligerent.”

Insurgent is a fantastic, beyond compelling story that's part twisty, and another part action packed with some burning romances. Thoroughly engaging and exciting, Insurgent was fast-paced, complex, and riveting than Divergent and continued with series of unexpected events that we never thought would happened and navigations were far beyond our imagination.

In Divergent we only meet Dauntless, Abnegation and Erudite but we explore more information and infrastructure of Amity and Condor in this book, also witnessed uprising of fractionless seeking for the fall of Erudite.
This book has some greater amount of action which was vivid and detailed, and I had no problem in visualizing them, even after finishing the book, certain moments are still floating in my head.

“No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens.”

We saw some new alliance formed, and few of them are completely surprising. The society that believed you can only have one quality has shattered and we discover more about the existence of having more divergence among the fractions which was shocking. I was wholly entrenched in this reimagined Chicago well drawn with dystopian background.

There was such refreshing change among the characters and they evolved perfectly with the situation. Some of them were naïve and empathetic, others were cunning and manipulative, and desperation was common characteristic among each of them.

I have a message for the Divergent.
I am Divergent.
This is not a negotiation.
No, it is not.
It is a warning.


We understand why Tris has a bit of a split personality; she is selfless, brave and intelligent. she has a habit of doing the absolute opposite of what the people trying tell her to do to protect her, but I think ultimately that is the important part of her personality and it makes her strongest divergent of all. Her strongest power is her free will and she acts on it; clearly no simulation can control her. We saw her struggling with the pain and guilt of killing Will.

“Grief is not as heavy as guilt, but it takes more away from you.”

Tobias has always been one of the most crush worth and intriguing YA hero who will always reside in my heart. More shades of his character unraveled based on his past and I’m pleased with depth of his character. Riddled with raw emotions, and flooded with love and protectiveness for Tris, Tobias was deliciously tormenting and charming in equal measure. I loved the way Roth coated his character with different layer of love and angst, frustration and regret.

“He kisses me again, more insistent this time, his hands squeezing my waist. His breaths, his body, my body, we are so close there is no difference.”

I loved the burning romance and intensity between Tris and Four. Although Tris was a less expressive with Tobias and that leads their relationship into an emotional turmoil. Tension continues to build around them and finally they melds in each other’s arm. Their unconditional love will make your heart ached and you will feel the same pain and joy as Tris.

The plot builds with subtle hints to the future, leading to more than one explosive climax that keeps things moving at a rapid pace. There is a definite cliffhanger in the end and I can bet the plot with take a remarkable turn in next installment. Well written and gorgeous, Insurgent showcases a perfect balance of character chemistry and action with twisty plot, another amazing success of Veronica Roth.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Exclusive Interview with Alethea Kontis, Author of Enchanted

Me : What was your idea behind creating such wonderful fairytale retelling?

Alethea : The idea for ENCHANTED began as a contest challenge in my writers group (Codex Writers). Our stories had to be inspired by at least one of four "seeds": "Fundevogel," "The Princess and the Pea," the Irish legend of Cú Chulainn, and the nursery rhyme "There Was an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe." I couldn't choose between them, so I chose them all...as well as all every other fairy tale and nursery rhyme that was suggested. I liked the idea that every fairy tale we know (and some we don't) originated from only one family (The Woodcutters) a very long time ago.

Me : How much you enjoyed writing this brilliant fairytale retelling? Would you like to share few of your moments while writing Enchanted?

Alethea : I had the most fun writing the scenes with Sunday and Trix and Sunday and her father. These scenes were most often when I had stories told within the Enchanted story, which made them special. It was also nice to have the bonding moments between Sunday and Trix and her father -- my father is a storyteller, and I am very close to him. Those scenes between Sunday and Papa often made me miss my father so much I had to pick up the phone and call him.

Me : As you have included many folktales and fairytales in enchanted, which one was your personal favorite when you were a kid and why?

Alethea : I had two favorite fairy tales as a child: "The Goose Girl" and "Snow White and Rose Red." I loved Conrad and the clever king in "The Goose Girl" and the karmic justice dispensed to the evil maid (she was asked what she would do to a traitor to the crown...and then the king made that her fate). I loved the Bear Prince in "Snow White and Rose Red." I also enjoyed the sister dynamic in that one--so often two sisters are Good and Evil. Snow White and Rose Red worked together in a far more healthy relationship.

Me : What is the most especial about Sunday that makes her unique from her sisters?

Alethea : Sunday is the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter. She is the youngest child in an extraordinary family, so she's very hard on herself. She likes pretty things, and wishes she could afford to be selfish. She's a writer, and therefore an introvert. She loves her family, but sometimes she just feels overwhelmed. As the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, she has a magical gift where the things she writes come true. As it turns out, she's actually much more powerful than that...she just doesn't know it yet.

Me : What was the reason behind naming the seven sisters after seven days in a week?

Alethea : There is a Mother Goose rhyme about the days of the week:
Monday's Child is fair of face
Tuesday's Child is full of grace
Wednesday's Child is full of woe
Thursday's Child has far to go
Friday's Child is loving and giving
Saturday's Child works hard for a living
But the child born on the Sabbath Day
Is blithe and bonny and good and gay

As a girl whose name means "truth" (Alethea = truth in Greek), I understand how sometimes names can also be curses. What if a woman named her daughters after the days of the week simply because she had so many children...but by doing so she cursed them to have the attributes of the Mother Goose poem? That's what happened to the Woodcutter family.

Me : Is there any other title you are currently working on? Would you like to share few words?


Alethea : Also out this month is The Wonderland Alphabet: Alice's Adventures Through the ABCs and What She Found There. It's a gorgeous picture book collaboration I did with Eisner Award winning artist Janet K. Lee -- Janet and I have been friends for a very long time, and have worked together on a bunch of little projects...it's so wonderful that we finally get to have one published. I'm so excited to do book signings with her! The Wonderland Alphabet is an oversized alphabet board book with poems based on Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Me : Would you like to give any message to fairytale loves who are eagerly waiting for Enchanted to release?

Alethea : I would encourage all fairy tale lovers to look beyond the Disney movies and the other films and television shows out there. Get your hands on a BOOK: the unexpurgated Grimms Fairy Tales, or Hans Christian Andersen, or Charles Perrault. See how many colors of the Andrew Lang Fairy Books you have on your shelf. There are so many wonderful stories out there that don't deserve to be forgotten just because Walt Disney hasn't forced them into his Happily Ever After Land. I'll meet you in the Enchanted Wood. See you there!

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

International Giveaway : The Glimpse by Claire Merle

This Giveaway is closed now and winner have been chosen. Visit announcement page to view winner's name.

Hello Friends, Here is your chance of winning a signed paperback ARC of The Glimpse by Claire Merle. I would like to thank author Claire Merle for offering an signed copy of her Upcoming dystopian novel The Glimpse, which is scheduled to be release on June 7th, 2012.

The Giveaway is opened internationally to any country. You just have to enter via Rafflecopter widget below the post. This Giveaway is Internationally Open, Good Luck :)

Giveaway Closed : Internationally to any country
Date of Enter : 01/05/2012 to 25/05/2012
Winner Announcement : 26/05/2012 on Announcement section. Winner will be notified withing 48 hours by email
Winner Chosen : Mandy Biddinger Sickle (Entry #4895)



Book Blurb : Once you've seen into the future, can you change your destiny?

In a near future, society is segregated according to whether people are genetically disposed to mental illness. 17-year-old Ana has been living the privileged life of a Pure due to an error in her DNA test. When the authorities find out, she faces banishment from her safe Community, a fate only thwarted by the fact that she has already been promised to Pure-boy Jasper Taurell.

Jasper is from a rich and influential family and despite Ana’s condition, wants to be with her. The authorities grant Ana a tentative reprieve. If she is joined to Jasper before her 18th birthday, she may stay in the Community until her illness manifests. But if Jasper changes his mind, she will be cast out among the Crazies. As Ana’s joining ceremony and her birthday loom closer, she dares to hope she will be saved from the horror of the City and live a ‘normal’ life. But then Jasper disappears.

Led to believe Jasper has been taken by a strange sect the authorities will not intefere with, Ana sneaks out of her well-guarded Community to find him herself. Her search takes her through the underbelly of society and into the pits of the human soul. And as she delves deeper into the mystery of Jasper's abduction she uncovers some devastating truths that destroy everything she has grown up to believe, but she also learns to love as she has never loved before.