Wednesday, June 29, 2016

CAN'T WAIT TO READ: Moonshot by Alessandra Torre

Release date: July 4th 2016
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:

Baseball isn’t supposed to be a game of life and death…

The summer that Chase Stern entered my life, I was seventeen. The daughter of a legend, the Yankees were my family, their stadium my home, their dugout my workplace. My focus was on the game. Chase... he started out as a distraction. A distraction with sex appeal poured into every inch of his six foot frame. A distraction who played like a god and partied like a devil. 

I tried to stay away. I couldn’t. 

Then, the team started losing.

Women started dying.

And everything in my world broke apart.

About the Author
Alessandra TorreA New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author, Alessandra Torre has written eleven novels, five of which have become #1 Erotic Bestsellers.

Her first book, Blindfolded Innocence, was a breakout hit, rising to the top of the ebook charts on Amazon where it attracted the interest of major publishing houses and garnered Torre her first print deal with Harlequin HQN. Less than twelve months later, Torre signed a second print deal, this time with Redhook (Hachette) for the Deanna Madden series, an erotic suspense series.

From her home on the Emerald Coast in Florida, she devotes several hours each day to various writing projects and interacting with her fans on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Happily married and with one son, she loves watching SEC football games, horseback riding, reading and watching movies.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Guest Post: Author Morgan Dark on the origin of 'Zero'

30361636Release date: June 28th 2016
Publisher: Rubiños
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:
A baffling robber.
A mystery hidden for years.
And an elite boarding school where no one is who they say they are.

Kyle Bradford is the envy of Drayton College, but everything takes a turn when a dangerous shadow, hidden in the darkness, starts to stalk him. From then on, his life falls apart. Unjustly accused of being the main suspect behind the robberies terrifying high society, he is forced to prove his innocence. And to do so, he has to find the real culprit: 
Zero, an infallible criminal who keeps his identity hidden under a silver mask. What Kyle does not know is that his enemy is keeping a secret. A secret he would sacrifice everything for.

A dizzying, heart-stopping thriller you won’t be able to put down.


One of the most curious anecdotes I have about Zero has to do with the origin of the book. 

About a year ago, I was finishing another book, also YA, that had nothing to do with the Zero saga. An international publishing house had offered me a contract to publish it, and I was just putting the final touches on the manuscript.

One day, however, returning home from a trip, I opened the front door to find that thieves had broken into my apartment in New York. The house was a mess. Most of my valuables were gone, including my favorite ring that my parents gave me when I turned 18. 

I had to stay with a friend while the police went through the house and took stock of everything that had been taken. It was a hectic time… When it was all over, I started thinking, wondering who the thief might have been… 

I forgot about the book I’d been working on and started writing another one which had a mysterious masked thief as the main character. Not even my editor knew about it. When I finished the manuscript, I sent it off to him. He called me a few hours later to say he’d loved it and that he was set on getting it published at all cost.

And that’s how Zero was born.

The strange thing is that when the book had already gone to press, I got an anonymous black envelope quite similar to the one in Chapter 6 in the book. In it was the ring the thieves took from my house months earlier… in perfect condition. I still have no idea who broke into my apartment…

The young adult bestseller ZERO will go on sale in an exclusive ebook edition translated to English that will be available in more than 30 countries simultaneously.

Morgan DarkAbout the Author
Morgan Dark is one of the most original teenage literature writers. Always enveloped in suspense, as of yet no one knows her true identity. She began writing ZERO after a hooded man robbed her in her New York apartment. Included amongst the stolen items was her favorite ring. After ZERO became one of the most awaited teenage books in 2015, her ring showed up in her house again… in black envelope with no sender. 

Visit Morgan at

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

CAN'T WAIT TO READ: The Graces by Laure Eve

Series: The Graces #1
Release date: September 1st 2016
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:
In The Graces, the first rule of witchcraft states that if you want something badly enough, you can get it . . . no matter who has to pay.

Everyone loves the Graces. Fenrin, Thalia, and Summer Grace are captivating, wealthy, and glamorous. They’ve managed to cast a spell over not just their high school but also their entire town—and they’re rumored to have powerful connections all over the world. If you’re not in love with one of them, you want to be them. Especially River: the loner, new girl at school. She’s different from her peers, who both revere and fear the Grace family. She wants to be a Grace more than anything. And what the Graces don’t know is that River’s presence in town is no accident.

This fabulously addictive fantasy combines sophisticated and haunting prose with a gut-punching twist that readers will be dying to discuss. Perfect for fans of We Were Liars as well as nostalgic classics like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the 1996 movie The Craft, The Graces marks the beginning of a new wave of teen witches.

Laure Eve
About the Author
A French-British hybrid who grew up in Cornwall, a place saturated with myth and fantasy. Being a child of two cultures taught her everything she needed to know about trying to fit in at the same time as trying to stand out. 

She speaks English and French, and can hold a vague conversation, usually about food, in Greek.

A random selection of favourite things: Terry Pratchett quotes, characters with questionable morals, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Häagen-Dazs cookie dough ice cream, anything Trent Reznor is remotely involved in even if it only extends to 'he once touched this artist's arm', bad 90s dance music and anything a bit weird (see: Davids Lynch and Cronenberg).

Friday, June 17, 2016

Review: Summer of Supernovas by Darcy Woods

Release date: May 10th 2016
Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers
Purchase: Amazon | B&N

Synopsis via Goodreads:

Fans of Jennifer E. Smith and Jenny Han will fall in love with this heartfelt and humor-laced debut following one girl’s race to find the guy of her cosmic dreams.

When zodiac-obsessed teen Wilamena Carlisle discovers a planetary alignment that won’t repeat for a decade, she’s forced to tackle her greatest astrological fear: The Fifth House—relationships and love. 

But when Wil falls for a sensitive guitar player hailing from the wrong side of the astrology chart, she must decide whether a cosmically doomed love is worth rejecting her dead mother’s legacy and the very system she’s faithfully followed through a lifetime of unfailing belief.

*Received a physical copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I was curious after reading the blurb for Summer of Supernovas. I've never read a story about a character who was obsessed with astrology and such so I wanted to see how this would play out. It ended up being quite a delightful read with silly, sweet, as well as tearful moments. 

The story opened up on a funny note with Wilamena being confused for someone about to commit suicide. Her sweet savior, Grant, and her later developed quite an interesting connection, but due to Wilamena's insistence on finding the perfect guy with the right zodiac sign, and mistaking Grant for the sign that she was told to avoid, she ends up pushing aside her true feelings and gets involved with another. Okay, that even sounds silly to me, but as the story moves along and we get an understanding about Wilamena's promise to her deceased mother and how much they bonded over astrology, I grew to understand why she was adamant on dating Seth, whom she believed to be the right one for her. 

Countless times throughout the story I rolled my eyes at Wilamena. Because like Grant, I believe people should listen to their hearts and not their daily horoscopes. I mean, for the majority of the story she basically forced herself to like Seth and constantly ignored how she felt for Grant. Because of this the situation grew more intense. These two guys were brothers, and certain things could have been avoided had she been honest and not accept Seth's advances in the beginning based on his sign. But even though this frustrated me about her, I kept on reminding myself that this was something she truly believed in and a promise she wanted to keep. In a way, it kept her mother alive in her heart. And in all honesty, I have used astrology in the past as a way to either avoid or give certain people a chance. Yep, I'm guilty. But I was never as extreme as Wilamena, and her thoughts and behavior throughout the book might put off some people if they don't establish an understanding of her character.

In regards to the guys, Grant had me from the moment he overlooked his fear of heights to try and save Wilamena. That was very selfless of him. And more than anything I loved that he was a musician. Creative guys in books always wins me over. Seth on the other hand, I couldn't warm up to him. When he and Wilamena met for the first time, it just seemed like he was trying to win her over his brother or something. He just didn't seem very genuine. I didn't like how he was for the rest of the story either. And when he revealed the truth to Wilamena in the end, I wasn't even surprised. Seth seemed like that kind of guy. 

As for other characters, her best friend was an interesting one but I didn't really connect with her. Maybe I was just too caught up in Wilamena's world and wanting to know how long it would take for her to realize she had to be honest with herself and the guys. And I was happy that in the end, she saw the light and understood what her mother really wanted for her. Thanks to her grandmother, which by the way had some good moments as well as some sad ones. Glad things turned out the way they did. 

Summer of Supernovas is nicely written and serves up the right amount of fun and sweetness for those looking for a youthful read. And if you're as zodiac-obsessed as the main character, I hope you'll become enlightened by the end of the story the way Wilamena had. Don't rob yourself of a real connection and pure happiness because of their astrological sign. 

DarcyAbout the Author
Young adult author Darcy Woods had three big loves in grade school: Reading, writing, and pizza day. Some things never change. 

She lives in Michigan with her madly supportive husband, two tuxedo cats (who overdress for everything) and a closet full of neatly organized shoes. Once upon a time, she served in a US Army aviation unit and threw live grenades. Now she throws words.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

CAN'T WAIT TO READ: Fate of Flames by Sarah Raughley

Series: Effigies #1
Release date: November 22nd 2016
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Four girls with the power to control the elements and save the world from a terrible evil must come together in the first epic novel in a brand-new series.

When Phantoms—massive beasts made from nightmares and darkness—suddenly appeared and began terrorizing the world, four girls, the Effigies, each gained a unique power to control one of the classical elements: earth, air, fire, and water. Since then, four girls across the world have continually fought against the Phantoms, fulfilling their cosmic duty. And when one Effigy dies, another girl gains her power as a replacement.

But now, with technologies in place to protect the world’s major cities from Phantom attacks, the Effigies have stopped defending humanity and, instead, have become international celebrities, with their heroic feats ranked, televised, and talked about in online fandoms.

Until the day that New York City’s protection against the Phantoms fails, a man seems to be able to control them by sheer force of will, and Maia, a high school student, unexpectedly becomes the Fire Effigy.

Now Maia has been thrown into battle with three girls who want nothing to do with one another. But with the first human villain that the girls have ever faced, and an army of Phantoms preparing for attack, there isn’t much time for the Effigies to learn how to work together.

Can the girls take control of their destinies before the world is destroyed forever?

Sarah Raughley
About the Author
Sarah Raughley grew up in Southern Ontario writing stories about freakish little girls with powers because she secretly wanted to be one. She is a huge fangirl of anything from manga to SF/F TV to Japanese Role Playing Games, but she will swear up and down that she was inspired by ~Jane Austin~ at book signings. On top of being a YA Writer, she is currently completing a PhD in English, because the sight of blood makes her queasy (which crossed Medical School off the list).

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Review: Missed Connections by Tamara Mataya

Series: Summer Love #1
Release date: June 7th 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Missed Connection: I saw you standing there, and I was struck by your eyes. Gorgeous, but not as gorgeous as your smile.

Thanks to her job at a crazy New Age spa, what should have been a sizzling NYC summer is being hijacked by demanding hippie bosses. To unwind, Sarah spends her nights cruising Missed Connections, dreaming of finding an uber-romantic entry all about her. Of course, the moment she finds that Missed Connection, real life comes crashing down around her in a night of unbridled passion with someone completely different: totally off-limits Jack.

Best. Hookup. Ever.

Gorgeous and wealthy, hot as sin, Jack can give Sarah everything she needs-except an emotional connection. That she gets from her Missed Connection, the romantic stranger who never fails to make her swoon. But there's only so much of Sarah to go around. Torn between the bad boy she can't keep and the sensitive stranger who bares his soul online, her heart and body are soon in two very different relationships...or are they?

*Published approved request via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Initially, I was a little iffy about the story and how it was going, but Missed Connections turned out to be an entertaining read for me. Sarah's character may not rub some people the right way, but I like that she was imperfect and messy.
I got her desire to be with someone who was willing to commit and had a stable life. And I got why she was hesitant to start anything substantial with Jack because of his lifestyle, or what she deemed his life to be about: clubbing and a lot of girls. She also believed he couldn't open up to her and she wanted more than just physical. So her reasons for not wanting to establish anything serious with Jack was understandable. 

Like many people, Sarah went online in hopes of finding someone she could connect with. I've never even glimpsed the Missed Connections section of Craigslist so I was curious as to how it worked. It seemed pretty interesting though. The fact that someone saw you and immediately felt intrigued, but didn't get the chance to talk to you or were afraid to try in that moment. So they posted about it online, using descriptions, in hopes that you'd see it. Sarah kept checking the posts, hoping that someone may have seen her and wanted to connect. She continued to do so until one day it happens and she begins talking to this guy. At first, Sarah has no idea who it is, but then she thought about someone she met at work and believed it to be him. 

Speaking of work. Aside from the issue with her lovelife and wanting to connect on a deeper level with someone, Sarah was dealing with a lot of nonsense at her new job. First of all, not many people would put up with such crap and would probably quit in their first week. But not Sarah, she needed the money to pay for her expenses while seeking another job. And I understood why she'd stay with those weirdos, no matter how cult-like they seemed. Desperation will make you stay in jobs that make you unhappy, but you don't really have a choice but to stay with it. I found Sarah to be rather strong for staying with New Age Spa for as long as she did. I mean, she even considered trying to understand their ways and being more open-minded about things. But that retreat was the last straw and I knew she just couldn't stay with them any longer. It became too much. 

Thankfully, she had Jack to call on, and I wish that she would've realized that from the beginning that he was always there for her, in spite of what she thought. Sure Jack had trouble opening up to people, but he was trying, and Sarah never really gave him the chance to do that until later on. He was still wrong for doing what he did, but in the end, I understood his intentions and still liked him anyway. The guy was just too hot. 

Like I said, Missed Connections was an entertaining read with some hot moments here and there. You'll either laugh along to the madness or cringe and turn away at how much Sarah put up with the hippies. Whatever the case, it was a quick and interesting story with crazy characters and I liked it all. 

Tamara MatayaAbout the Author
Tamara Mataya is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, a librarian, and a musician with synesthesia. Armed with a name tag and a thin veneer of credibility, she takes great delight in recommending books and shushing people. She puts the 'she' in TWSS and the B in LGBTQIA+. She’s the co-creator of Pitchmas, a bi-annual pitch contest for writers, and as a freelance editor, has worked with NYT Bestselling authors.

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