Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Heart of the Dragon Realm by Karalynn Lee

Title: Heart of the Dragon Realm

Author: Karalynn Lee

Series: Standalone

Genre: Fantasy, Fairytale, Romance, Adventure Teen/Young Adult

Length: 139 pages

Publisher: Carina Press

Date of Publication: 29th of October 2012




Synopsis

Princess Kimri is used to betrayal. Her brother sold her to a king in exchange for swords to defend his lands. King Tathan's reputation is as fierce as that of his mountain kingdom—where dragons are said to guard the castle walls—but the realms are unstable enough without angering the mountain-king, so Kimri reluctantly agrees to the union.

When she arrives in Helsmont, the king promises her a year of courtship before marrying—or parting ways. Before long, Kimri thinks she may find comfort, and perhaps eventually love, with the stoic king.


But the realms are more unsettled than Kimri realizes, and she soon finds herself caught in the middle of a war between the kingdoms. Can she count on her betrothed to take her side? Or will his loyalty to his kingdom come before his loyalty to her?

Review

Most of the books and novels published recently plunge readers into dystopian/ fantasy worlds, some of which with paranormal creatures. These authors narrate impossible love stories, incredible adventures and life/ world threatening situations. Only to then leave us with a mild sense of relief as the inevitable is delayed until the sequel is published.

Now I am an avid reader and love these torturously wonderful stories, but sometimes I need a little break; and truthfully sometimes I fear that good-old fashioned fairytales with a sweet "and they lived happily ever after" ending, that only fairytales can get away with, are slowly disappearing. In all honesty I have a soft spot for these and when I stumbled across Heart of the Dragon Realm I jumped at the chance to read it.
And it did not disappoint!

Heart of the Dragon Realm is the fantasy fairytale of Princess Kimri whose hand in marriage is  bought by the mysterious and secluded Mountain King: Tathan.
Having never met she sets out to make the most of her situation without losing her free rebel spirit, whilst Tathan attempts to get to know his bride-to-be instead of scaring her into a marriage that has been bought without her consent.

This is a fairytale with story twists that are as classic and as old as time, and a little predictable, but ever so enjoyable and sweet, that no girl could ever get enough.
Karalynn Lee has produced a very refreshing change from the more recent novel trends, in a simple style of writing that evokes the way in which stories were told once upon a time. I predict that I will be returning to the secluded cold mountains of Helsmont soon enough for a dash more of magic and happily ever after.

If you liked this: and wish to remain distracted a while longer from the more recent book styles, then I suggest taking a look at The Treachery of Beautiful Things by R.F.Long and Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. If on the other hand you would like to take a step back towards the more current style but yet not go quite all the way back then perhaps it's worth inspecting Beastly by Alex Flinn, As You Wish by Jackson Pierce, Fateful series (completed) by Cheri Schmidt and The Assassin's Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke.

It should be noted that this book contains a scene with some very mild adult content. I feel I should mention this out of respect for readers of all ages, however in all fairness and truthfulness it is barely a couple of sentences and very very mild.

A big thanks to Carina Press and netgalleys for providing me with a copy of this book to read and review

Sunday, 25 November 2012

6 Month Bloganniversary Giveaway!!!


Hi everyone!

Please forgive my recent slight absence from blogging and book reviewing but things have been a little hectic at work, so despite continuing reeading (I could never give that up no matter how much sleep it cost me) I have not been able to write as much. 
But do not fret! Things are beginning to smooth out and more reviews will follow but in the mean time I have some great news!
I am organising a mega giveaway to celebrate my 6 month blog anniversary!!!

I'm betting you'd like to know what's up for grabs right? Well I don't know you tell me! I bet you're now going "huh?!" Well everyone has been so lovely and supportive that I've decided to let you guys choose! I've made a selection of books ranging from those that I have read a while ago and loved, to more recent releases, to books that I am excitedly waiting for and that I bet you are too!
Have a look!

Some amazing discoveries I've made this year



     


Recent releases!


 



Anxiously anticipated books we're all desperately awaiting the release of!

  

So what do you think? Not bad right?!
Oh but there's more! "More" you say? Yup more! As the competition will be running for over 3 weeks I will be updating the selection adding more possible books to be won so keep checking!!!

This giveaway is INT and will run from the 25th of November until the 21st of December.
Once over a winner will be selected through rafflecopter and contacted. If no response is received within a week of being contacted a new winner will be selected through rafflecopter.

Best of luck everyone and may the luckiest book worm win!!!

Photobucket


Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Two Pound Tuesdays




Welcome to Two Pound Tuesdays a blog feature shared by Kerrie at Read and Repeat and myself! 

We're here to bring you twice a month a delectable bargain price selection of 6 Young Adult and Adult novels ranging from fiction, fantasy, paranormal, contemporary, romance and dystopian genres! Making you aware of amazing books for a great deal that just has to be shouted out because it would be a crime not to acknowledge it! Well at least we feel that way, but then again we are slightly book obsessed!

Photobucket

This Tuesday's deals include:


£1.53 for more information go here

this is a self published title

"Renee Evans has a knack for trouble. After walking in on her best friend and boyfriend in bed together, twenty-five year-old Renee flees sunny Los Angeles and her dream job as a music journalist and returns to her hometown of Boston – only to meet Dylan Cavallari, the mysterious, aspiring musician who lives in her apartment building. Dylan’s piercing gaze and womanizing demeanor make him exactly the type of guy that Renee should steer clear of – which is most likely the reason she falls for him. But when Renee’s troublesome ex comes back and threatens to drive her and Dylan apart, Renee is forced to face her past and save her relationship with Dylan before it's too late.

Sound Bites dramatizes what happens when Renee finds herself caught between a painful past and an uncertain future. Happiness turns out to be within her grasp, but it all depends on whether she can trust herself enough to make the right decisions. Sound Bites is a novel about love, friendship, betrayal, forgiveness, and the power of music to help you find your way"



£0.77 for more information go here

this is a self published title

"Seven years have passed, and as far as Kym is concerned, Ethan is happily dating her best friend Michelle. They haven’t seen each other ever since the night Ethan asked her the question that haunted her dreams as she left Northridge. Now, fate decides to bring them together, bringing back bitter sweet memories as they visit the places that witnessed their evolution from childhood friends, to awkward teens dealing with love, peer pressure and growing up. As the day draws to an end, the question remains, had Ethan already moved on or is he still waiting for Kym’s real answer to his question?"



£0.99 for more information go here

" "Darcy's as hot as he is talented..."

Fast music, powerful beats, and wild reputations-on and off stage-have made virtuoso guitarist Fitzwilliam Darcy's band into rock's newest bad boys. But they've lost their latest opening act, and their red-hot summer tour is on the fast track to disaster. Now Darcy and bandmates Charles Bingley and Richard Fitzwilliam are about to meet their match...

"But she's about to rock his world..."

Enter Elizabeth Bennet, fiercely independent star of girl-band Long Borne Suffering. Elizabeth, her sister Jane, and friend Charlotte Lucas have talent to spare and jump at the opening band slot. Elizabeth is sure she's seen the worst the music industry has to offer. But as the days and nights heat up, it becomes clear that everyone is in for a summer to remember"


For more Two Pound Tuesdays unmissable deals check out Kerrie's selection



These are the prices found at the time of posting this feature. They may change subject to amazon, so if you'd like to see some more don't miss out on the next Two Pound Tuesday
We'd love to hear your thoughts of this new feature, any particular genres you are looking for and would like us to look at next time. So please drop us a line in a comment!






Photobucket

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Onyx

Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Series: Lux (Book 2)

Genre: paranormal, fiction, romance

Length: 416 pages

Publisher: Entagled Teen Publishing

Date of Publication: 14th of August 2012





*** WARNING THIS POST MAY CONTAIN UNINTENTIONAL SPOILERS***

Synopsis


Being connected to Daemon Black sucks…


Thanks to his alien mojo, Daemon’s determined to prove what he feels for me is more than a product of our bizarro connection. So I’ve sworn him off, even though he’s running more hot than cold these days. But we’ve got bigger problems.

Something worse than the Arum has come to town…

The Department of Defense are here. If they ever find out what Daemon can do and that we're linked, I’m a goner. So is he. And there's this new boy in school who’s got a secret of his own. He knows what’s happened to me and he can help, but to do so, I have to lie to Daemon and stay away from him. Like that's possible. Against all common sense, I'm falling for Daemon. Hard.

But then everything changes…

I’ve seen someone who shouldn’t be alive. And I have to tell Daemon, even though I know he’s never going to stop searching until he gets the truth. What happened to his brother? Who betrayed him? And what does the DOD want from them—from me?

No one is who they seem. And not everyone will survive the lies…


Review

After having read Obsidian, a great debut to the Lux series, I simply couldn't wait to get my hands on the sequel! It has been on pre-order as soon as it was available to do so and ironically due out the day after my birthday! And therefore a slightly belated present from me to me.

I cannot begin to describe and explain how amazing this sequel was, but I will do my best to reign in the gush and actually give you some coherent sentences.

As Onyx begins little time has passed since we left Daemon and Kat, and their steamy hot and ice cold relationship that could almost be described as bipolar. And let me assure you not much has changed there although their "slip ups" from feigning lack of interest in one another are getting more and more frequent. One moment the coldness between them could freeze our melting polar caps and solve our global warming problems, and the next they are putting the hole in the ozone to shame as the flames of a love and passion so strong transcend space and melt all in their path.

I fell in love with Kat in Obsidian but now she not only a character I enjoy reading about, she is also the girl a lot of us would like to be. Or at least that I would like to be. Personally I feel she hit the jackpot when it comes to literary fiction. The girl is petite and sweet but with a strong attitude that takes no nonsense from anyone (especially if you come from another planet and think yourself god's alien gift to Earth), she's a passionate reader and book blogger reviewer and she also ends up leading a life the ones from the characters in her books. Could it get any better? No, you say? Oh but it can, and Jennifer L. Armentrout saw to it.

Daemon is his usual annoyingly frustratingly drop dead gorgeous alien self in all the possible glory that he can muster. With an ego that threatens to crowd any room, he continues to take charge and control of everything, with not a shadow of doubt that all will do as he commands. But behind this macho bravado facade hides something more. Something we got the barest of glimpses in Obsidian but now finally get a taste of as Kat repeatedly knocks him off his high horse and sticks a pin or two in that over inflated ego he carries around.

As Onyx proceeds and events unfold that take Kat, and her watchful egotistically gorgeous self appointed alien bodyguard, by surprise; something bigger than either of them is set into motion. Something bigger than aliens and humans alike.

Although written from Kat's point of view she is not the sole main character. Unlike other paranormal, fiction romances where the girl plays the main role and the boy is a strong character by her side. Daemon is just as pivotal and key to the Lux series as Kat.
Jennifer L. Armentrout has very cleverly written these great books so that although Kat appears to be at the core of the story in actual fact we subtly get lots of small snippets of information and details about Daemon that slowly piece him together, making us realise just how complicated he really is behind the charade he puts on for everyone.
I truly felt that this sequel was more subterfugily directed at Daemon to allow us to learn more about him through Kat.
And through both of them we slowly begin to vaguely understand the enormity of what is occurring as Jennifer L. Armentrout gradually begins to reveal the key clues as to where she may lead us next.

In this fantastic sequel Jennifer L. Armentrout has stepped up a gear improving on what was already a great start. Joking one moment, serious the next, followed by flushes of hot and cold she plunged Kat and Daemon in a variety of situations; demonstrating how she took a good start to the Lux series and took it to a new level. And whilst doing all that she managed to touch on several themes through different situations generating an internal debate in her characters and me as to what it means to be human, what is inhuman and who should and shouldn't be allowed to determine that?

I will unabashedly admit that this is one of my most favourite series. The characters are lovely, funny, sarcastic and sweet, and with them this great author has created a perfect balance of mystery, fiction, paranormal and romance that will just make you keep coming back for more. I read this book in an afternoon and read it again as soon as I finished it.
I truly praise Jennifer L. Armentrout for her creation. 
I pain-stakingly and anxiously await the sequel that is already on pre-order.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Two Pound Tuesdays




Welcome to Two Pound Tuesdays a blog feature shared by Kerrie at Read and Repeat and myself! 

We're here to bring you twice a month a delectable bargain price selection of 6 Young Adult and Adult novels ranging from fiction, fantasy, paranormal, contemporary, romance and dystopian genres! Making you aware of amazing books for a great deal that just has to be shouted out because it would be a crime not to acknowledge it! Well at least we feel that way, but then again we are slightly book obsessed!

Photobucket

This Tuesday's deals include:


£1.09 for more information go here

"Fella and Grebe have grown up on an island, believing that the world beyond its shores is toxic and that the islanders are the lucky survivors of a cataclysmic disaster. And then Fella, an orphan, discovers a diary, hidden fifteen years ago by his mother - a woman who seemingly came from the Outside, from a world not run by the Officiate. This revelation seems incredible, but it gives the two friends hope that they can escape the brutality of their lives. Yet when, after a gripping chase, they manage to get off the island, what they discover is a shock. Not only is the Outside alien and frightening, it forces them to understand the appalling truth about where they have come from, and why they were there. An up-to-the-minute thriller about what makes us who we are"

The Outside sounds intriguing as much as it does terrifying! But with me curiosity wins and hopefully soon I shall know all!!



£0.77 for more information go here

"She wanted her life to change... he wanted his to stay the same.

Best friends share everything with each other. Or do they? Seventeen-year-old Ashlyn Frances Lanski is tired of her boring, single life. Spending time with her best friend Tatiana, dreaming about kissing Tatiana's twin brother Fin, and swimming competitively are her only sanctuary. The girls plan to leave their drab lakeside town far behind for college. But when Tatchi fails to return home after a family emergency, and no one knows where the family has gone, Ash chooses to do something drastic to find them.

Ashlyn is about to discover what she'd thought to be true her whole life, wasn't, and the truth, too fantastical to imagine. Secrets lurk beneath the deep blue waters of Lake Tahoe, secrets that will change Ashlyn's life forever"

Everblue has a safe location on my kindle for when I need to splash into the sea and need an adventure with fins ;)


£1.19 for more information go here

"Elizabeth has a new job at an unusual library— a lending library of objects, not books. In a secret room in the basement lies the Grimm Collection. That's where the librarians lock away powerful items straight out of the Brothers Grimm fairy tales: seven-league boots, a table that produces a feast at the blink of an eye, Snow White's stepmother's sinister mirror that talks in riddles.

When the magical objects start to disappear, Elizabeth embarks on a dangerous quest to catch the thief before she can be accused of the crime—or captured by the thief.

Polly Shulman has created a contemporary fantasy with a fascinating setting and premise, starring an ordinary girl whose after-school job is far from ordinary— and leads to a world of excitement, romance and magical intrigue"

It just so happens that I already own a paperback copy of this copy and am rather curious to start it! 


For more Two Pound Tuesdays unmissable deals check out Kerrie's selection




These are the prices found at the time of posting this feature. They may change subject to amazon, so if you'd like to see some more don't miss out on the next Two Pound Tuesday
We'd love to hear your thoughts of this new feature, any particular genres you are looking for and would like us to look at next time. So please drop us a line in a comment!






Photobucket

Monday, 5 November 2012

Greta and the Goblin King Blog Tour



Welcome to Greta and the Goblin King blog tour 

hosted by

Shane at Itchingforbooks

 and organised by

Entagled Publishing

Synopsis

"While trying to save her brother from a witch’s fire four years ago, Greta was thrown in herself, falling through a portal to Mylena, a dangerous world where humans are the enemy and every ogre, ghoul, and goblin has a dark side that comes out with the eclipse.

To survive, Greta has hidden her humanity and taken the job of bounty hunter—and she’s good at what she does. So good, she’s caught the attention of Mylena’s young goblin king, the darkly enticing Isaac, who invades her dreams and undermines her will to escape.

But Greta’s not the only one looking to get out of Mylena. An ancient evil knows she’s the key to opening the portal, and with the next eclipse mere days away, every bloodthirsty creature in the realm is after her—including Isaac. If Greta fails, she and the lost boys of Mylena will die. If she succeeds, no world will be safe from what follows her back..."

After being gripped by the stories of Greta and Isaac and being sucked into Mylena I got the wonderful opportunity to interview author Chloe Jacobs and ask her some questions!!!

Check out the

Interview


- The more I read about Mylena the more I fell in love with this fantasy world torn apart by evil, power and injustice. In a present world so different from that of Greta and the Goblin King how were Mylena and her characters born?

When I started writing the book, the world developed slowly. Whenever Greta traveled to a new place, I knew the reader would want to know what it looked like, so I had to decide if she’d been there before, and if so, what happened to her. I also had to imagine what kind of events would have shaped the setting. (Did a volcano erupt and carve out the landscape? Did a rockslide create a great big cliff? How had the never-ending winter changed the vegetation?) Before I knew it, not only had I created an entire world, but I had given it a rich history as well.

- From reading the acknowledgements at the end of Greta and the Goblin King, a great deal of passion and love for this story, and for those who supported you whilst you were writing it shone through. What did you feel whilst the words of this gripping novel tumbled onto paper? Do you think any particular moment you experienced leaked onto paper and created a new scene that wasn’t initially there before?

I loved this book right from the beginning, and I continue to be captivated by Mylena and the characters as I continued to write. There were a lot of times when I took the plot in a different direction that I originally planned on because the story seemed to have a life of its own.

- When I first read the synopsis of this great book I was rather intrigued at your choice of magical creature. Most paranormal fantasies use vampires, werewolves, fairies and elfs but never goblins as main characters; and I thought the change was refreshing and very interesting. How and why did you come to choose them?

Isaac told me he was a goblin the evening after I wrote his first scene with Greta. I was still trying to get to know him, and he was adamant that he wasn’t going to be like any other guy in any other book. When I complained that nobody was going to think a goblin is sexy, he just smiled in that way that always makes me melt and said, “I wouldn’t worry about that.” – I guess he was right!

- I have to confess that I have got a veeeery soft spot for arrogant and pretentious bad-boys, or in this case bad-goblins, with a very hidden soft centre. And Isaac was just that. Giving someone like him the additional gift of invasion and control over the dreams of others was quite brilliant and certainly added fuel to his ego. His meetings, stolen from time and through unconsciousness, with Greta hold some of my favourite moments. Out of all the dream encounters between him and Greta which is your favourite and will there be more?

I really love all the dream encounters between Greta and Isaac, especially because those are moments when both of them let down their guard a little bit. I like that when Isaac visits Greta’s dreams, he isn’t so serious, as if he feels safe with her and can let her see the real him. I also like that Greta always knows when Isaac is there, and even though she doesn’t want to admit it, she’s excited to see him.

- Dreams were just as important, and occasionally even more, as the time spent awake. I am going to haphazard a guess that there is a deeper and ulterior motive to this decision. Why dreams and not face to face conversation? Was this to give the characters a little more sense of liberty and speak more freely?

In a way, yes. But the dreams were also a metaphor for the choice Greta will be forced to make…stay in Mylena, or go back home.

- When you were creating all these different characters with varying personalities, who did you find the hardest to formulate into words to pin down on paper?

Isaac was definitely the hardest to write, because it was tricky to get beyond his strong, capable exterior to the softer, more vulnerable side of him. He was really, seriously, absolutely opposed to letting me show people that side. It took a while to break him down.

-  The feeling of being lost and uncertainty of belonging somewhere, if anywhere at all, was present in all the characters; very strongly in some and more subtly in others. I felt this theme was stressed with detail and wondered whether, aside for the more obvious reasons of world displacement, if there was something more to it? And will our characters ever feel like they’ve found home and belong?

The underlying sense of loss, longing, hope, and home are definitely themes that run through the book for many of the characters, not only Greta. And yes, you’ll see more of that as the series develops.

- Truthfully I think anyone who reads Greta and the Goblin King would be curious to spend at least a few days there. The question is in the shoes of what magical creature would that be? Personally I think I’d like to try those of a Goblin like Siona. What about you? What would you do in Mylena?

If I went to Mylena (and assuming no one was going to try to gut me like a fish) I would really want to find out more about the reclusive, powerful Faerie race! I want to know their secrets, their history, their agenda, and everything else about them!

- If you could be granted a wish, for the same price as Greta, what would it be?

I think I’d give pretty much anything if Isaac came to visit my dreams, even for just one night, LOL

- And when you were in our present, and somewhat boring by comparison, world and creating Mylena and all the characters within, how did you spend your non-writing days?

I don’t really have non-writing days. Not entirely. I try to write at least a little bit every day. Although I do like to watch tv and movies, and I also like to work with stained glass. During the holidays, I make tree ornaments in stained glass (they’re pretty with the lights shining through them).

- It is clear that you have a passion for fantasy worlds and magical characters, but does this reflect in your own personal reading choices or do you prefer something more contemporary?

I love to read fantasy, but I also read pretty much everything else. As long as a book is compelling, with characters I can’t help but care about, then I’m in.

- I have thoroughly enjoyed trudging through the bitter numbing snow with Greta and Isaac, and I simply cannot wait to immerse myself again in the chilling weather with these characters that made me laugh, smile and worry. Greta and her Goblin King have a lot of unfinished business in Mylena. Have you already commenced tackling it with them? Or are you taking a very much deserved and overdue break?

I had a few other projects on my plate to work on the last little while, but I’m very glad to say that I am now immersed in Mylena’s world once more and I hope to have book 2 ready for my editor as soon as possible!

I just wanted to say a big thanks for answering all my questions and being so patient :) I really very much enjoyed this book! It had a feel of old tales that I heard as a child and yet it also had a new feel to it, almost like a new take. Once I started it I could not put it down. Thank you for the wonderful story.

I’m beyond excited that you liked the book, and thank you so much for having me as a visitor here today! I had a great time, and your questions were so awesome!

Now don't miss your chance to win a copy of this great story!!!


A big thanks to Chloe Jacobs for joining us and to Shane at itchingforbooks and Entangled for hosting and organising this lovely blog tour and for providing me with a copy to read and thoroughly enjoy!