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Monday, January 28, 2013

Chronicles of Myriad: Quest for the Oracle by James Nicholas Adams [Review]



Chronicles of Myriad: Quest for the Oracle by James Nicholas Adams
★★★★☆

Eight years after watching his best friend Kristine disappear, Jason embarks on a journey to find her. While exploring the Keash caves he frequented as a child, he falls and hits his head, rendered unconscious. He awakens to find himself chained up in a cage on a world unlike anything he has ever known and only an arm's length away from Kristine.The reunion is short lived as a sudden dragon attack on their captors causes them to once again become separated. Shortly after, he meets the Prophet Tanas who takes him to meet Jerech, an Elvish king and Jason's birth father. Here, he learns Kristine is in the hands of a nameless tyrant and embarks on a quest to free her. Along the way he discovers there is far more to the reason he is here than he thought, and he has a destiny beyond anything he ever imagined. (Goodreads)



Jason’s best friend Kristine disappeared when they were children. People tried to convince him that she had not been real, just an imaginary friend... but he knew she was real. Eight years later, he left his home behind to find Kristine and ended up on a journey he never expected to be on. He discovered a world very different from his own, where magic is real and dragons roam. He soon found out his destiny was a lot greater than finding his childhood best friend.

I really enjoyed The Quest for the Oracle. The story was well developed and kept me interested until the end.  I liked seeing how Jason developed as a character while he learned about himself. The fantasy and action scenes were done nicely, giving me the excitement I like in this type of book.

I’m impressed by this first-time author’s book and his writing. I thought the story was well-written, and I enjoyed his writing style. I can tell he put a lot of time, care, and effort into this book.

I look forward to reading more of the author's work - especially the next book in the series. I hope I don’t have to wait too long to find out what happens next in this world with the awesome characters that I got to know.

I received this book from the author for review.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Teaser Tuesday (14)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!


Easy by Tammara Webber

Rescued by a stranger.
Haunted by a secret
Sometimes, love isn’t easy…


He watched her, but never knew her. Until thanks to a chance encounter, he became her savior…

The attraction between them was undeniable. Yet the past he’d worked so hard to overcome, and the future she’d put so much faith in, threatened to tear them apart.

Only together could they fight the pain and guilt, face the truth—and find the unexpected power of love. (Goodreads)

*TEASER* "So I don't want you to feel pressured. Or overpowered. But I do, absolutely, want to kiss you right now. Badly.”

-Easy by Tammara Webber

ummm YES PLEASE! I have actually finished this book but couldn't resist sharing a teaser! This book was so good I couldn't put it down and was up until 4am reading it! A review will come in the future but for now I will say that I highly recommend it! I hope you all enjoy this teaser!

BUY NOW! (You won't regret it)


Monday, January 21, 2013

Gateway to Reality by Becca Campbell [Cover Reveal]

Welcome! Today I get to be a part of the Gateway to Reality by Becca J. Campbell Cover reveal! I loved her first book, Foreign Identity and am excited to read this new book when it comes out. The summary definitely has me interested. I hope you all like the cover, I know I do. 

Welcome back Becca, I'm happy to have you on my blog again.


Gateway to Reality by Becca  Campbell

Talented artists shouldn't be waiting tables, scraping by, and living mediocre lives. But that’s exactly what art school graduate Wes Teague is doing.

Then he wakes from a bizarre dream, haunted by the sense that his life isn't real. A harrowing truth presents itself--the real world lies in his dreams, not when he's wide awake.

The dream world he enters each night is rich and vibrant. Chicago appears the same on the surface, but chaos runs rampant as gravity, physics, and other laws of nature become fluid, changing unexpectedly. There, Wes's parents, brother, and sister are strangers. His girlfriend Emily doesn’t recognize him. Suddenly Wes longs to return, to unlearn the truth about his dual reality.

Wes would sacrifice almost anything to get back to blissful ignorance in a false world.

But now he has feelings for the real Emily.

About Becca:

An avid lover of stories that tiptoe the line between fantasy and reality (even when they plunge off one side or the other), Becca J. Campbell looks for new angles on bridging the gap between the two. She holds a special place in her heart for any story that involves superpowers or time travel. Her passion is defying the limits of her own creativity.

Becca's journey into writing began as many of her other creative endeavors do - by daring herself to try something new. The question "what if I wrote a novel?" and some hastily scribbled notes on a church handout were the inspirations that jump-started her first book. Since then, she has written three additional novels and several shorter works.

As the wife of a musician and mother of three young boys, Becca's life is never dull. Whether it is writing, painting or knitting, she enjoys making stuff that wasn't there before. You can find her blog, Inspiration for Creation, at http://www.beccajcampbell.com.

Find Becca:

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Rennefarre by Malve Von Hassell Blog Tour [Spotlight & Giveaway]


Welcome to the Rennefarre by Malve Von Hassell blog tour, which is put on by Tribute Books. I'm hosting todays stop, which is packed full of awesomeness of course. The author wrote up a guest post for my stop along with a Q&A.  After you find out all about the author and her book you can enter for a chance to win an e-book copy of Rennefarre! I hope you all enjoy the post and giveaway!

Here is a big warm welcome to Malve Von Hassell and her book Rennefarre.

Rennefarre by Malve Von Hassell


Imagine riding on the back of a blue heron across time and space. Imagine befriending crows, being kidnapped by magpies, and being given a lift on the back of a kindly stag. Imagine experiencing life as an outcast from human society, encountering spirits and mythical creatures from the world of legends, experiencing the plague in Dresden, and being chased through Berlin by Frederick the Great.

Dott is a twelve-year old girl. She lives in the countryside east of Berlin in an unspecified time between the two world wars. When Dott sneaks out to see the bonfire at the edge of her village on the evening of the midsummer night festival, she has no idea what will happen next. In the dark of night, the magical Rennefarre flower falls into her shoe. It not only makes her invisible, but also allows her to see things no one else could see. No longer able to stay with her parents and her young brother and sister, she begins her search to find a way out of her predicament.

Her quest to return home to her family winds its way through the cities and countryside of 20th century Germany—and beyond. As she befriends the local animals, they help her on her way with gifts of food, shelter, and—through the help of a kind spirit—a magical cup which allows her to become small and ride on the backs of the birds.

Flying across the country on the backs of crows and herons, Dott finds herself seeing the country not only as it is, but also as it used to be. She lives through moments in history others can only read about—meeting historical kings and fanciful spirits along the way. But, even with all of the excitement of her travels, she always has one goal in mind: returning home to her family.

Part coming-of-age story, part fantasy, and part social-cultural portrait of Eastern Germany in the early part of the 20th century, the book covers real ground. That is, one could follow Dott's travels on a map of the area. Seamlessly blending elements of fantasy and history, the book contains a fascinating array of details of day-to-day life in rural and urban areas in eastern Germany. Dott’s adventures are interwoven with folklore and myths as well as vivid accounts of different eras and the diverse cultural and ethnic strains that have formed the basis for a rich and complex history of Germany and Eastern Europe. Written on the eve of World War II, the book offers a sobering perspective on the human potential for causing devastation. At the same time it is filled with hope. In one scene, Dott gets a glimpse of the future — an utterly destroyed cityscape; it inspires her to look to her own responsibilities and actions in life.

Guest Post:

When rereading Rennefarre as an adult, I began to appreciate the amount of research Tamara Ramsay must have engaged in. Alongside an emotionally compelling story of a girl’s attempt to return home to her family, the book offers a wealth of factual detail, vivid descriptions of geography, plant, and animal life, a rich fabric of history and historical figures, and a colorful tapestry of legends and myths, doubly attractive for being rooted in concrete places and events.

For instance, the legendary Frau Harke, protector of nature and animals, appears today in the name of a mountain in Lower Saxony, and she is still celebrated in some local traditions. I searched for information about the plants that Tamara Ramsay mentions and discovered that these plants are not imaginary, but rather real plants that have potent properties and feature in homeopathic and folk remedies. Hence, the Springwurzel, given by the giant spirit Rübezahl to Dott as a remedy for her little sister, is the caper spurge. The caper spurge (euphorbia lathyris) has been used as an anti-inflammatory agent and to treat a variety of medical conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis.

In one of my favorite scenes in the book, Dott and her friend Klaus spend an evening in the cemetery of the church St. Anna in a town called Rosenberg.  Today, this town is called Olesno, and it is in Poland. The children, who had been conflicted about their journey, are transported into a moment in deep winter. The children watch pilgrims from all over the county travel to the church for a service. The first wave of pilgrims consists of animals, among others, horses from the mines in Silesia, bent and blind from their labors. Men, women and children dressed in their finest follow. The children watch this procession and decide to go along; and the experience helps them to resolve some of their doubts. When I researched St. Anna, I found that this church had indeed been the site of regular pilgrimages since the 15th century.

In another scene, Dott encounters the bridge builder Matteo Foccio, thought to have built the first stone bridge in Dresden in the 13th century. Matteo Foccio shows Dott a sculpture in one of the pillars of the bridge, claiming that it was his self-portrait and that he carved it himself. I was able to track this down and verify that until 1813, one of the original pillars of the Augustus Bridge featured a stone relief sculpture of a man in a sitting position and dressed in the style of the period. According to local lore, it was a portrait of the Italian architect Matteo Foccio. The bridge was dynamited in 1813 and rebuilt; the figure was lost in the process. This is one of many such instances in the book where Dott’s personal story is linked in seemingly effortless fashion with real history as well as the shifting ground in the way in which we experience and rethink history. 


Q&A:


Q: Please tell us about your current release.

A: The first English edition of Rennefarre is the culmination of a dream of mine—a perfect storm of things that I love: a wonderful original text, the challenge of translation, the thrill of research, and the joy of assembling everything into a finished product. I am excited that it is now in print and available to an English reading audience. 

Q: Can you tell us about the journey that led you to write your book?

A: I have loved Rennefarre since I was a child. I read it over and over, fascinated and charmed by the adventures of Dott, the main character—described in such a tangible and immediate fashion. I loved the voices of the animals that Dott encounters. The descriptions and scenes are so real that it is easy to imagine oneself following along in Dott’s footsteps. Dott, impulsive, stubborn, and passionate, was real and believable to me as a child. As an adult returning to this book, I decided that it was a treasure that should be made available to English readers.

Q: Can you tell us about the story behind your book cover?

A: The cover depicts a scene in the book where Dott seeks out a place to sleep for the night. When she stands in front of this building, she feels very much alone and is grateful for the company of Ardea, the young heron next to her. She ends up sleeping in the abbey, sheltered and kept warm by the heron’s wing.  The image conveys many elements of the story, the thrill of discovery, the charm of nature, a multi-layered and complex history, the importance of friendship, and the feeling of being alone.

Q: What approaches have you taken to marketing your book?

A: This is a new and exciting experience for me, and the learning curve is sharp.  It is my first venture into making use of Facebook and other social media for marketing. I look forward to discussing details of the book on blogs. I will attend an authors and illustrators event at a school in my town in March 2013.

Q: What book on the market does yours compare to? How is your book different?

A: This is not an easy question to answer. Two books, also translated, come to mind. One is Michael Ende’s Neverending Story. Like Rennefarre, this book involves the element of a quest and the search for home, but unlike Rennefarre, it is set entirely within the world of fantasy. Selma Lagerlöf’s Nils Holgersson and the Wild Geese involves a similar storyline of a child that travels with animals and seeks to return home; however, it was written for a much younger audience. The Magic Tree House series by Mary Pope Osborne has some interesting parallels. These books feature children who are magically transposed into different periods and places in the world as a result of which they are given brief glimpses into history and myths. Meanwhile, the books are addressed to a younger audience and ultimately consist of many disparate fragments or glimpses of the world of history and legends. Rennefarre, perched on the fluid fault lines between history and legend and interwoven with elements of magic and fantasy, meanwhile presents a single story of a child’s journey with an overarching central theme of human responsibility and choices.

Q: What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

A: Regrettably, I would have to admit to an unfortunate tendency to writing long convoluted sentences. Even though I have lived in this country since I was thirteen and have worked as a translator for over two decades, the German language has a way of creeping up in my writing.  There is a lovely word in German, “Schachtelsatz”, which describes a sentence consisting of boxes within boxes within boxes of meaning.  The polar opposite is the standard of short succinct sentences favored by many writers, including those trained in American schools of journalism, among others. I try to steer somewhere in the middle of these sirens of style. 

Q: Open your book to a random page and tell us what’s happening.

A: Page 45: In this scene, Dott tries to fulfill a quest with which she had been entrusted. She wants to free an owl that had been captured by humans in order to serve as a decoy. Dott sits in front of the cage where the owl is being held and waits for daylight. Two other animals, the owl’s mate and a squirrel, are watching and waiting to see how Dott will manage to free the owl. The owl looks sick and apathetic. Dott is appalled by the suffering of this bird in captivity and feels ashamed as a human being.

Q: Do you plan any subsequent books?

A: I have completed a manuscript of historical fiction for young adults entitled Falconello. It is set in the 13th century and involves the journey of a young man from the north of Germany to Italy.  I am now working on another historical fiction work set in Jerusalem in the 12th century.

Q:Tell us what you’re reading at the moment and what you think of it. 

A:Aside from rereading Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice whenever I am in the need of balance, I always have a stack of books that I check out of my local library. The latest gem has been a book by Helen Dunmore, The Siege, about the siege of the city of Leningrad in World War II. It is a book hard to forget; the relentless cold and the gnawing hunger seep into your bones as you read it, and at the same time, Dunmore captures something exquisite and beautiful about the human spirit. 


About Malve Von Hassell:

Malve von Hassell is a freelance writer, researcher, and translator. She holds a Ph. D. in anthropology from the New School for Social Research. Working as an independent scholar, she published several books and journal articles, in particular, The Struggle for Eden: Community Gardens in New York City (Bergin & Garvey 2002) and Homesteading in New York City 1978-1993: The Divided Heart of Loisaida (Bergin & Garvey 1996). She has also edited her grandfather Ulrich von Hassell's memoirs written in prison in 1944, Der Kreis schließt sich - Aufzeichnungen aus der Haft 1944 (Propylaen Verlag 1994). She has taught at Queens College, Baruch College, Pace University, and Suffolk County Community College, while continuing her work as a translator and writer. She has published a children’s picture book, Letters from the Tooth Fairy (Mill City Press, 2012), and completed a manuscript for a historical fiction book set in the 13th century for young adults, Falconello. She is working on a historical fiction novel set in Jerusalem in the time of the crusades.


Find Malve Von Hassell:

GIVEAWAY:
Use the rafflecopter form below to enter to win an e-book (PDF) copy of Rennefarre  by Malve Von Hassell.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Timeless by Michelle Madow Review



Timeless by Michelle Madow
★★★☆☆

IT'S A RACE AGAINST TIME.

In Remembrance, Lizzie and Drew changed the course of fate so they could be together.

In Vengeance, Chelsea set fate back on its original, deadly path.

Now, strange things keep happening to Lizzie. Things that are omens of darkness to come. A curse has doomed her to die an early death, just as she did in her past life. To make things worse, even if she can figure out who cast the curse, it's irreversible. There's only one option left for her to save herself. It's crazier than anything she's heard yet, and to do it, she'll need Drew and Chelsea's help.

Because to make things right, they must go back to when it all began … (Goodreads)


Lizzie and Drew were finally together, fate had been changed, and they had a second chance at love. They were ready for their happily ever after, but no such luck.  An evil curse was following Lizzie, which would change her newfound fate back to what happened in her past life… her dead. Lizzie knew that she was meant to be with Drew, but the universe didn’t seem to want that... or her ex-best-friend Chelsea. Lizzie, Drew, and Chelsea would have to team up in a race against time to fix the curse and stop Lizzie’s eminent death.

I was highly anticipating this book after reading Remembrance and Vengeance, and this was a nice conclusion to the series.  I didn’t find this one as enchanting as the first book, but I still enjoyed it and am glad we got to see what happened with Lizzie, Drew, and Chelsea. The book picked up more for me around the halfway mark.

This was an enchanting series, and I really enjoyed the interaction between the characters. It was a lovely young adult romance, and you can see the inspiration from Taylor Swift in it.

The author did a nice job tying up loose ends in the series, and I think readers can be content with how it ends. The author’s writing style reads smoothly, and I look forward to seeing what she writes next.


I would recommend this series to young adult readers that enjoy a fun, clean romance. It is also a great read for Taylor Swift fans.

I received Timeless from the author for review.

Waiting on Wednesday (39)

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


Everafter (Kissed by an Angel #6) by Elizabeth Chandler

The sweeping saga of Ivy and Tristan comes to a breathtaking conclusion in this final book of the all-new arc in the New York Times bestselling Kissed by an Angel series.

It seems the odds are forever against Ivy and her fallen angel. Tristan is still trapped in the body of an accused murderer, and as the two star-crossed lovers try to clear his name, they must battle the dark forces that would keep them apart and destroy them both. The danger is especially great for Tristan since, as a fallen angel, death would mean losing his soul. It’s up to Ivy to save the one she loves and, hopefully, find a way for the two of the them to be together…for all eternity. (Goodreads)

I can't wait for this to come out, although I am very sad that it will be the last book. I really love this series and it will be hard to say goodbye to all of the characters I love. The ones I hate, not so much.

What are you waiting for?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (38)

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


Apollyon (Covenant #4) by Jennifer Armentrout

Fate isn’t something to mess with… and now, neither is Alex.

Alex has always feared two things: losing herself in the Awakening and being placed on the Elixir. But love has always been stronger than Fate, and Aiden St. Delphi is willing to make war on the gods—and Alex herself—to bring her back.

The gods have killed thousands and could destroy entire cities in their quest to stop Seth from taking Alex’s power and becoming the all-powerful God Killer. But breaking Alex’s connection to Seth isn’t the only problem. There are a few pesky little loopholes in the whole “an Apollyon can’t be killed” theory, and the only person who might know how to stop the destruction has been dead for centuries.

Finding their way past the barriers that guard the Underworld, searching for one soul among countless millions, and then somehow returning will be hard enough. Alex might be able to keep Seth from becoming the God Killer… or she might become the God Killer herself. (Goodreads)

I absolutely love Jennifer Armentrout and Can't wait to read this book. I fell in love with the story and the characters and she always leaves me craving more like a bad addiction. The cover for this book is gorgeous like all of the others. If you haven't read her books or this series you HAVE to check them out.

What are you waiting for?

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Teaser Tuesday (13)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!


Dark Inside by Jeyn Roberts

Since the beginning of mankind, civilizations have fallen: the Romans, the Greeks, the Aztecs...and now us. Huge earthquakes rock the world. Cities are destroyed. But something even more awful is happening: An ancient evil has been unleashed, and it's turning everyday people into hunters, killers, and crazies. This is the world Mason, Aries, Clementine, and Michael are living in--or rather, trying to survive. Each is fleeing unspeakable horror, from murderous chaos to brutal natural disasters, and each is traveling the same road in a world gone mad. Amid the throes of the apocalypse and clinging to love and meaning wherever it can be found, these four teens are on a journey into the heart of darkness--and to find each other and a place of safety. (Goodreads)

*TEASER* Daniel Smiled. "It means that I'd still go out of my way to rescue you, but you'd probably smack me across the head and try to slay the dragon yourself.”

-Dark Inside by Jeyn Roberts

I hope you enjoy the teaser :) I finished this book and it was fabtastic. I really enjoyed this quote and wanted to share it. I received this book from my best blogging friend Michele from A Belle's Tales for christmas :) Thank you Michele!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Teaser Tuesday (12)


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!

Scent of Magic  (Healer #2) by Maria V. Snyder

Hunted, Killed—Survived?

As the last Healer in the Fifteen Realms, Avry of Kazan is in a unique position: in the minds of her friends and foes alike, she no longer exists. Despite her need to prevent the megalomanical King Tohon from winning control of the Realms, Avry is also determined to find her sister and repair their estrangement. And she must do it alone, as Kerrick, her partner and sole confident, returns to Alga to summon his country into battle.

Though she should be in hiding, Avry will do whatever she can to support Tohon’s opponents. Including infiltrating a holy army, evading magic sniffers, teaching forest skills to soldiers and figuring out how to stop Tohon’s most horrible creations yet; an army of the walking dead—human and animal alike and nearly impossible to defeat.

War is coming and Avry is alone. Unless she figures out how to do the impossible ... again. (goodreads)

*TEASER* "I found him lost in the woods." I tsked. "poor thing should know the forest is dangerous at night."

Scent of Magic by Maria V. Snyder

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