ALL FALL DOWN by Ally Carter

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ALL FALL DOWN by Ally CarterAll Fall Down by Ally Carter
Series: Embassy Row #1
Published by Scholastic Press Genres: Contemporary, Mystery & Detective, Young Adult
Source: Reviewer Purchase
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ReviewedbyMiranda

A new series of global proportions -- from master of intrigue, NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Ally Carter.

Grace Blakely is absolutely certain of three things:

1. She is not crazy.
2. Her mother was murdered.
3. Someday she is going to find the killer and make him pay.

As certain as Grace is about these facts, nobody else believes her -- so there's no one she can completely trust. Not her grandfather, a powerful ambassador. Not her new friends, who all live on Embassy Row. Not Alexei, the Russian boy next door, who is keeping his eye on Grace for reasons she neither likes nor understands.

Everybody wants Grace to put on a pretty dress and a pretty smile, blocking out all her unpretty thoughts. But they can't control Grace -- no more than Grace can control what she knows or what she needs to do. Her past has come back to hunt her . . . and if she doesn't stop it, Grace isn't the only one who will get hurt. Because on Embassy Row, the countries of the world stand like dominoes, and one wrong move can make them all fall down.

Ally Carter’s first Embassy Row novel All Fall Down is rife with political intrigue, snarky teenagers, a murder mystery and a possible romance that may unite or ruin nations.  Phew, that is a lot to pack into one novel but Ms. Carter does it well.  Grace Blakely is a smart-mouth army brat who has been around the world but now she’s back with the grandfather she hasn’t seen in three years.  Her grandfather is the United States Ambassador to the foreign nation of Adria.  As soon as she arrives in Adria, Grace is bombarded with memories of her deceased mother.  Everyone is convinced her mother died in a fire but Grace believes she was murdered and is determined to find the killer.

I really enjoyed Grace. She made me laugh and I felt empathy for her.  Of course, I could not get enough of her and the Russian Ambassador’s son Alexei.  There are some serious sparks between them! I liked most of the secondary characters especially the friends Grace met quickly upon arriving in Adria. At times I felt the memories were too much. The mystery as to the murder of Grace’s mother ended surprisingly, which doesn’t happen often.  I was a bit disappointed with the ending but I still would like to read book two in the series.

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Giveaway from TROLL Author Ashley C. Harris

Troll_BlitzBadge

Seductive teens & trolls meet #Gameofthrones!

 

Get ready for a rollicking action and adventure story set in a magical world where a creature emerges from thousands of miles underground, seeking revenge, treasure, and a key that once belonged to an old enemy. Fans of the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis and The Vampire Diaries  by L. J. Smith will be enchanted by this new YA novel selected by Kindle Scout readers for publication

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Synopsis:  At the age of sixteen, Abby is undergoing major household changes. Her mom is getting ready to remarry and her new step-brother is driving her insane. She is just trying to keep herself busy with school and her part-time job when a most deliciously handsome stranger moves to her little seaside town and won’t leave her alone.

New arrival Wilhelm is unlike any other student at Abby’s school. His emerald eyes and tattooed body don’t truly reveal what he really is: a creature emerged from thousands of miles underground, seeking revenge, treasure, and a key that once belonged to an old enemy – a key Abby wears suspended from a chain around her neck. Why she has it is a mystery that Wilhelm will need to solve, and fast, in order to defeat a powerful mortal adversary.

As an attraction between Abby and Wilhelm develops, more creatures like Wilhelm are drawn from beneath the ground to Abby’s town; wreaking havoc as they offer Abby’s classmates the fulfillment of their deepest desires. Will Abby and her new family survive as a game of magical warfare is unleashed? Her ability to reverse Wilhelm’s bargain depends on it.

 

Available at Amazon.

 

Excerpt from Troll:

 

Seconds went by and he found nothing, except a distraction. It wasn’t the human’s heartbeat drumming steadily on the second floor that he found unnerving, most likely it was the fact that she was reading a rhyme aloud – that wasn’t a human thing as much as it was a trolls’: “A kiss was made,” he heard her voice whisper, trying to ignore it. “A rose was dropped.” He looked up when she said the word rose. “A heart was snapped in half. The love of your life has left you in a world that’s dark and black.”

He moved toward the sound. Perhaps she was really one of his kind in disguise, here to spy on him.

“Thunder sounds, the sky turns gray, there is nothing recognizable at all. The love of your life has left you in a world that’s sad and small.” The words made him think about Helena, his Helena, kissing Klaus, while he had her fully under his control. It was sickened him and pissed him off.

He crept down the bookcase where a girl was reading from a book out loud, unaware of his presence. She was definitely not a troll, he concluded when he got a good look at her, growing bored. “But then the sun comes out. A rainbow appears. An angel has come to tell you, your hope is stronger than fear.”

“Are you sure that’s what an angel would say?” he asked.

Her blue, puppy-like eyes shot up, her body nearly jumping out of its skin from being startled. “Where did you come from?” she squeaked as she looked around, her heartbeat doubling.

“About five shelves over,” he answered as he looked her up and down. She was a tiny, petite thing compared to himself, with light brown hair and blushed fair skin that made her blue eyes pop. She also had four freckles on one cheek and three on the other. This human was both plain looking but also strangely captivating compared to others in the building.

“Oh, I see, and were you standing there the entire time?” she asked, her free hand going to her hip, as she tried to stand up straighter, trying to seem tall and authoritative. He could see she was irritated at being disturbed, and that was the most entertaining thing of all.

“Yes, is that a problem?” he asked with a smile.

“Yes!”

“I’m sorry … I thought you worked here. I was just looking for some help,” he lied. Did she think he wouldn’t notice the fact that she was standing next to a filing cart and wearing a library badge that read: Abigail? That, and the feelings of servitude and obligation that he could smell all over her.

“Oh, I – I do,” she said, as if this had just occurred to her. She was unable to wipe the annoyance and unease off her face, as she looked down his arm, judging him because of his numerous tattoos. Humans…so sadly sheltered. “How can I help you?”

He didn’t answer. This irritated her more.

“The college used book section is downstairs, and so is the art and tattoo section,” she suggested, trying to guess his reason for pestering her.

“Do I really look old enough to be in college to you?” he asked, half insulted because college years for humans were death years for his kind.

“Yes,” she said honestly as she took in his tall, six-foot-five frame. “You look at least twenty.”

“Nope, time to get your eye’s checked maybe?” he asked, stepping closer, letting her guess his age; this seemed like a game she didn’t want to play.

“Well you’re definitely a least eighteen,” she replied as she turned part of her body away from him, her eyes back to her books; as if being eighteen put him in a different category than her. “You’d have to be to get a tattoo, now is—”

“Or maybe I had really cool parents,” he cut her off. “And I’m seventeen. That was an enchanting poem you read by the way. Who was it by?”

He took another step closer as she took a step back, nearly colliding into a bookshelf. “Amber Paris.” She handed him the book she’d read from and appeared much more comfortable when he was looking at it and not her. He examined it with only partial interest. “She got it published when she was fifteen.” she seemed to know all about the subject.

“Well, that explains why it’s so good, then. People always come up with their best work when they’re young. I bet at twelve her poems were even better.”

Each word he spoke was like a hook, spinning magic to pull her in to him even as she wanted to get away. “Where are you from, exactly?” she asked as she noticed what he was wearing; heavy jeans instead of the more typically Floridian surfer shorts, and a thick dark green shirt that went down to his elbows, only showing off half of his tattoos. Probably weird attire for the hottest months of Florida, but as a troll he craved warmth and hated the cold. “Are you from up north?”

“No, not at all,” he said, offering no other explanation. “So, why read a poem aloud? What about you does it relates to?” he asked with a grin, it was a pretty personal question and yet she’d have to tell him. Soon his powers if he kept talking to her would be able to push Abby to do all sorts of things… for a short time anyway, until a price was paid.

He read over the beginning lines of the poem again. “A kiss was made, a rose was dropped.” The words tripped him up, making him think about Rosabel’s last feelings before she died. Feelings that held a deep meaning for him, letting him know that even though she had never been able to claim him as an inheritor, she still had cared about him more than any other treasure.

His eyes could have almost teared up just thinking about his murdered mother. Trolls could be insanely emotional – good thing for him he was better at shielding how he felt than most. He turned his face away, getting a hold of himself, as the little human rambled, her voice a comforting distraction.

“I don’t think it relates to me. I just write poetry so my teacher asked me to look over another writer’s work.”

“Because maybe you want to be like this writer, famous and well liked?” he stated to test if her interest in the author was shallow, sensing what she didn’t even know was one of her most hidden desires. Humans could be so naive about their own ambitions, but these were easily recognized by trolls. This one clearly had no idea what her body and mind were capable of yearning for.

“No,” she lied, as if insulted. “That’s crazy. I’ve never wanted that; it’s just an assignment.”

“Are you sure?” he asked, as her hidden wants started calling to him – they tasted satisfying too. Her craving for freedom, he could use that to trap her, and then trap all the humans here. He’d have some real fun after a day of anger and sorrow as he played with these fools until they broke.

Leave her alone! a small boy’s voice suddenly screamed into his ear. He turned around, startled, only to find no one behind him.

“Are you okay?” he heard Abby ask him. His face must have looked haunted. That’s when he sensed where the book that he had been searching for was.

“Yes.” Finding the book and his key were far more important than this girl or having a little fun. He looked back in Abby’s direction, now needing to get rid of her. She looked nervous and still confused by his presence, still not knowing why she was continuing to talk to him. He decided in that moment to show her the kind of mercy and kindness his mother Rosabel should have received. Besides, he really didn’t feel like killing anyone innocent so the knights couldn’t find them later.

Before she could move, he reached out and gripped her shoulder, sending heat through her body, making her look deep into his eyes. “If you ever see me or anything like me again, anyone that has markings like this…,” he lifted his sleeve so she could take in his entire arm. His tattoos on it came to life and moved hypnotically, numbing her senses and making her go into a trance. “… you probably shouldn’t trust us. You should be smart and stay away from anyone like myself that you ever come in contact with.”

And with those words, he had given her a precious gift he hadn’t given any other human in a very long time. If any more trolls came along she’d stay out of their way now, wanting nothing to do with them. He watched her walk off in a beautiful daze. She’d certainly stay away from him if he changed his mind in the next few moments and decided to pursue her after all. Trolls often did change their minds about most things. He imagined her lips would have tasted pretty good, for a human anyway. Her body would have most likely felt nice …

Please leave her alone! he heard the boy scream again, the voice coming from his head. He was hearing a past memory, one that was too dangerous for him to think about. He ran his fingers along the book spines one more time. They led him right to the familiar texture he had been looking for. To the very storybook a young knight had checked out and carried in his backpack years before Wilhelm had found him.

Ashley C. Harris Summer 2015 New Author Pic

Author and film director Ashley C. Harris resides in Florida. Ashley was first recognized for her edgy writing and unique film work when she wrote and directed the teenage film “Lines”. Lines was the first feature film in the world captured using only Mac Laptops.

In 2013 she teamed up with Barclay Publicity to release the first in a new young adult novel series, “Shock Me”. Ashley then went on to author eight other titles, in multiple genres, as she also worked behind-the-scenes on a morning news show that aired on ABC. In 2014, four of Ashley’s books landed on the Amazon’s Best Selling Top-Ten-List. In 2015, she received her first publishing deal for “Troll”, a KindleScout novel winner.

When Ashley is not dreaming up new manuscripts and working on film sets, she loves spending time with her family, obsessing about biblical mysteries, and watching lots of Doctor Who. Keep an eye out for her newest releases!

Connect with Ashley at: Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads | Tumblr | Instagram

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NIGHT SKY by Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie Brockmann

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

NIGHT SKY by Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie BrockmannNight Sky by Melanie Brockmann, Suzanne Brockmann
Series: Night Sky #1
Published by Sourcebooks Fire on 10-7-2014
Genres: Paranormal, SciFi, Thrillers, Young Adult
Pages: 496
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyMiranda

They could be hunting you.
Hunted. Kidnapped. Bled. Someone is snatching girls and draining them for a secret that's in their blood. A hormone that makes them stronger, faster, smarter. A hormone that the makers of a new drug called Destiny will murder to get their hands on. These girls could be anyone. They could be anywhere.

They could be you.

When Skylar discovers she's a Greater-Than, a girl with terrifying power, her life will never be the same. The only way to stay alive is to join the fight against Destiny and become the ultimate weapon.

HOLY CRAP! In Night Sky the Brockmann Mother/Daughter team give readers a taste of excellent writing paired with genius storytelling! I am absolutely in L-O-V-E with Sky, Milo, Dana and Cal! I MUST know what happens next!!! I admit I’m obsessed with all things paranormal, scifi, urban fantasy and I get it all in Night Sky! There always comes a certain point in a book when you know you are falling in love with the characters, getting so attached you know eventually your heart will probably be smashed to smithereens and patched back together…eventually! I knew Night Sky was going to be one of my favorites within the first chapter, YES it’s that good!


First things first, the characters just plain rock! Skylar is the new girl living among Florida’s elite upper crust. She’s a little awkward and deep in the dark about her “greater-than” status. This means she has special abilities like telekinesis and can run superfast. However, she has no idea what is going on or how she is doing these things and more importantly she’s concerned she is going insane! Thankfully she has her new BFF Cal to keep her calm and laughing! Calvin “Cal” for short brings the humor to Night Sky! I adore Cal, his wheelchair and his ongoing game of “would you rather…” Then we have Motorcycle Girl, Dana, a greater-than with killer skills and awesome sarcastic wit. She is the perfect mentor for Sky. Milo is Dana’s brooding best friend. He is sweet, handsome and yes ladies he has a special connection to Sky that will almost certainly make you swoon! But you know how it goes the road is not smooth sailing for these two! Lastly, we have Skylar’s mom who is a bit annoying at times however I can’t help but like her and the adorable Sasha, who I want to give a big squeeze!


The main Arc of Night Sky revolves around Sasha. She is kidnapped in the middle of the night from her bedroom. Sky is heartbroken and determined to help find the little girl. This plot gives the reader a chance to learn so much about Sky and her friends and we get to go on a sensational journey with them. This fast-paced thriller keeps things moving through the climactic finish! NOW, I’m ready to devour my lovely ARC of the next book in the series WILD SKY! WooHoo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Night Sky is an EPIC Read!! I give it SIX huge Wonderland Hearts!

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DANGEROUS DESTINY by Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie Brockmann

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

DANGEROUS DESTINY by Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie BrockmannDangerous Destiny by Melanie Brockmann, Suzanne Brockmann
Series: Night Sky Novella
Published by Sourcebooks Fire on 8-26-2014
Genres: Paranormal, SciFi, Thrillers, Young Adult
Pages: 121
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyMiranda

In this pulse-pounding prequel to the Night Sky series by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Suzanne Brockmann and her daughter Melanie Brockmann, Skylar has her first brush with Destiny. She's about to meet a boy who will change her life—and a girl who wants to end it.

I know her.
Know her from inside the dreams. Inside those terrible, murderous, bloody dreams. I've heard her-screaming, her voice mixing in an awful chorus with all those other girls. Little girls.
Please, God.
That's what one of the little girls keeps saying, in the dream that is not just a dream. Please, God.
But I know better. There's no escaping this fate. This is destiny.
I must kill Skylar.


Skylar Reid is the new girl at school. Her mom just moved them to Florida—aka The Land of the Living Dead where the average age of her new neighbors was seventy-five—to start over. Skylar is not a fan of the change or her total lack of friends. Until she meets Calvin, a funny, sarcastic boy who doesn't let being in a wheelchair stop him from verbally shredding their preppy classmates. Skylar's just about to decide her new school's not a total loss when an odd girl wearing an oversized trench coat in the murderous Southern heat declares, "You're one of us." And then tries to kill her.

Don't miss out on YA's most thrilling new series.

Dangerous Destiny is a prequel to the Brockmann’s first book in their young adult series, Night SkyDangerous Destiny takes us into the life of Skylar Reid.  Skylar and her mother have just moved to Coconut Key, Florida.  Sky is not happy about the move one bit but it’s obvious this tough cookie can roll with the punches.  This turns out to be a good thing since her first few days of school end in gun fire.

 

Dangerous Destiny is so exciting your heart will pound out of your chest!  I love when I become so absorbed in a book that I forget the page numbers as I plunge from one to the next so fast!  The only bad thing is the book is over way too soon! I swear I screamed “Nooooooooo” when I found myself shockingly on the final page of Dangerous Destiny!  I immediately let my fingers take me to Amazon and ordered the first book in the series, Night Sky!

 

Dangerous Destiny is almost perfect! I give it Four Wonderland Hearts!

 

Dangerous Destiny is FREE on Amazon at the time of posting!

 

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Wonderland Spotlight! SIREN’S FURY by Mary Weber

 

Sirens_live

 

“I thrust my hand toward the sky as my voice begs the Elemental inside me to waken and rise. But it’s no use. The curse I’ve spent my entire life abhorring—the thing I trained so hard to control—no longer exists.”

 

Nym risked her life to save Faelen, her homeland, from a losing war, only to discover that the shapeshifter Draewulf has stolen everything she holds dear. But when the repulsive monster robs Nym of her storm-summoning abilities as well, the beautiful Elemental realizes her war is only just beginning.

 

Now powerless to control the elements that once emboldened her, Nym stows away on an airship traveling to the metallic kingdom of Bron. She must stop Draewulf. But the horrors he’s brought to life and the secrets of Bron are more than Nym bargained for. Then the disturbing Lord Myles tempts her with new powers that could destroy the monster, and Nym must decide whether she can compromise in the name of good even if it costs her very soul.

 

As she navigates the stark industrial cityscape of Bron, Nym is faced with an impossible choice: change the future with one slice of a blade . . . or sacrifice the entire kingdom for the one thing her heart just can’t let go.

 

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EXCERPT

Reprinted with permission from Thomas Nelson; Copyright © 2015 by Mary Weber

 

Chapter 2

 

I glare at the closed door, simultaneously holding my throat while cursing that illegitimate bolcrane offspring to come back.

I can’t stop shaking. Exhale. Inhale. His scent is everywhere, piercing my nostrils, digging down my throat until I’m gagging on smoke and pulling myself up to scramble around the broken glass and ice. No no no no no! I lunge for the charred window and push my face out into the night air. The noise below is deafening—as if my erratic weather bursts only encouraged the people’s frenzy.

I concentrate on breathing. Another inhale to clear my burning throat.

My body sways heavily and shakes harder, and for a second I swear my veins seize up.

I frown at my arms. What did he do to me?

“Focus on the atmosphere, Nym,” I can almost hear Eogan whisper. “It’s yours to control.”

I shut my eyes and lean in, yearning to feel him against achy skin and chest cavity where, until a few minutes ago, my world existed. “I can’t focus,” I whisper. I don’t want to focus.

“Nym.”

No! I can’t do this without you.

But the moment slows anyway.

“Focus on the atmosphere.”

I grit my teeth and open my eyes.

Fine.

I shove my hand toward the sky.

Not even a breath of wind stirs as the golden candle bulbs rise into the now-perfect, starry heavens.

I try again. And again—this time with both hands. Then with my voice, begging the Elemental inside to waken and rise.

But it’s no use.

The curse I’ve spent my entire life abhorring—the thing I trained so hard to control with Eogan. No. Longer. Exists.

Just as Eogan no longer exists.

“Are you jesting?” A scream rushes my lungs and explodes from my lips, but it’s hollow and heartless, with no thunder to back it up. Like the voice of a powerless child, it drowns into the party noise below. “This isn’t how it’s supposed to be!”

I turn back to my room, pick up the largest glass shards with my good hand, and hurl them at the walls, the fireplace, the door. How this happened I don’t know—I scarcely looked away from Eogan as he fought Draewulf at the Keep. Only a matter of moments. And afterward—when he was talking to his generals . . .

Litches.

His skin had looked sallow. Bruised. Bloody. With that incision behind his neck.

My stomach turns. The thought of Draewulf slicing him open while I stood feet away—of Eogan dying, his essence being absorbed by the monster wearing him like a shell of flesh . . . I fling a thick glass spike into the door. Then another, and another.

The last one thuds so hard it creates a crack across the overlay just as a knock sounds on the other side.

“Miss?” a man’s clipped voice calls through.

I pause.

“I’ve been asked to summon you to the banquet.”

What? I look around. Now? An awareness of what I’m supposed to be doing sinks in, as does the roomful of dissipating smoke and broken glass and the blood covering my palms that are somehow sliced like ribbons.

Oh kracken. I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to do this. I bend over as my head spins, bringing bile up my throat. “Why didn’t you just kill me too?” I yell at Draewulf.

“Miss?”

“To hulls with your blasted banquet,” I snap loud enough for the man to hear. But I go ahead and dab my hands on my dress and step over to the washbasin to dunk them in case he barges in.

The cold water burns like litches. It scalds and sears the smoke from my head—enough to register the fact that not only am I supposed to be at the banquet, but Draewulf left me functioning enough to attend it. I steady my trembling arms. Bite my lip. Whatever he’s planning, he kept me alive to watch.

“Miss.” The man’s voice comes again with a more insistent knock. “Please. We need to hurry.”

Narrowing my eyes, I shove my blasted feelings so deep that the numb rises and spreads over them in a thin, fragile layer. Just go see what he’s got planned.

I grab the drying cloth and stride to the door. I yank it open find one of the captain’s guards. Tannin, if I recall, with his brown eyes, brown skin, and hair that sticks up like a thatched roof.

His expression is full of admiration as he tips his head politely. “The celebration—” He stalls, and I watch the discreet slide of his eyes down my white waist-length Elemental hair to my blood-smeared dress. He makes a shocked noise in the back of his throat.

“I’ll be a few minutes.” I shut the door and, turning back to the water-basin table, pull one of my knives from its sheath. Shakily, I use it to shred the drying cloth into strips and tie the material around my bleeding palms, pressing them hard until the oozing subsides, then walk to the wardrobe King Sedric had someone fill with the lavish-type dresses we both despise. Not because they’re not gorgeous—they are—but because they’re a disgusting waste of money when the peasant population has spent the last forty years starving.

I pull out a sleeveless black gown with no layers or buttons, which makes it easy to slip into despite my sliced palms and my left hand’s fingers that are permanently curled inward almost to a fist. The fingers that never healed right after Brea, owner fourteen, took a mallet to them when my lightning strike took her husband’s sight because he couldn’t keep his anger to himself.

Once on, the dress shimmers and flows around my frame. A look in the mirror while I carefully drag a brush down my hair shows the dress does more than flow and cling. The color sets off the black trellis of owner- and memorial-tattooed markings circling my bare arms. It darkens them, making them look eerie. Uncomfortable.

Huh. Good.

I pick up my sheath of knives and strap the blades to my calf, then tug my dress over them. I firm my jaw. Hold it together, Nym. At least until you figure out what the kracken to do.

Except everything within me whispers that I already know what I need to do.

“Miss?” The man taps on the door again.

I lift my chin and straighten my unsteady shoulders. And harden my blue eyes before forcing the falsest grin I’ve ever smiled and walking over to open the blood-smeared, glass-impaled door.

Tannin’s still standing there. He doesn’t offer an arm. The veneration in his gaze is shadowed by a flash of fear. He’s afraid to touch me.

I almost give a caustic laugh. Up until twenty minutes ago he should’ve been terrified.

Now? “I’m as impotent as you are,” I nearly tell him.

“Glad you could join us.” His expression edges back toward that ridiculous awe that the guards and knights and so many in Faelen are newly inclined to place on me. I frown. He looks about to say something further but seems to think better of it and waits until I shut the door before falling in beside me. “King Sedric sent me to persuade you.”

I nod stiffly.

“He’s requested to see you,” he prods. “And I must say what an impression your style will make this evening.” His eyes dip to my wrapped palms. “Very . . . stunning.”

My attempt at politeness falters. I can’t do it. I clench my teeth and let my glare smolder down the corridor in front of us, and after a moment he, smartly, seals his mouth like a tomb.

One minute. Two minutes. Three minutes eke by until we reach the Great Hall. Before he leads me in, Tannin turns to face me. His cheeks are blushing like berries and suddenly he’s fumbling a crisp, folded kerchief from beneath his guard doublet and holding it out to me. “Miss, I was wondering if you’d mind giving a token, a kiss perhaps, for me to take home.”

I stare at him.

He smiles as if he’s serious.

Is he insane? Up until a week ago my kiss would’ve been considered a curse. “I’m not a lady for knights to request tokens from,” I mutter, and go to push past him.

“It’s for my daughter.”

I stall.

“Please.”

I peer at him. Loosen my jaw. “How old is she?”

“Eight. And she’s real proud of what you’ve done for us—for Faelen.”

A moment longer and I hold out my hand for the cloth and place it against my lips in what is the most awkward thing I’ve ever done in my life. “Tell her it’s the innocent who died in battle who deserve her respect, not the warriors who lived,” I say, returning it to him. “Especially not one who was only there because of accidental powers.”

He blushes even darker. “Yes, miss. Thank you, miss.”

I go to stride past him but catch the look as he drops his gaze. I hesitate. “Tell her it’s people like her father she should respect,” I say softer. “The ones who serve because they have faith in justice.”

He peers up and his eyes widen, then sparkle, and I try not to feel ill while turning to enter the shiny balcony.

The space is already filled with heavily perfumed people, most of whom are looking down upon the enormous lower room that’s stuffed to the walls with prominent individuals fawning over food-heavy tables and a minicarnival.

I shake off the embarrassing cloth-kissing and dart my gaze about for Eogan-turned-Draewulf as acrobats, panther-monkeys, and even a baby oliphant prance around on the stage below. Behind them, giant arched windows and mural-painted walls up against the open doors and outside patios, giving the room a depth that brings the frescoed firefly trees and Hythra Crescent Mountains to life.

I search the corners for Eogan, but only find vedic harpies swinging from cages, humming their songs about the sea. Their music is enough to trigger a bizarre homesickness for my previous owner Adora’s home and her parties with Eogan and Colin. I purse my lips. Who’d have thought I’d miss anything about that woman?

Turning my eyes, I tune them out even as my stiff shoulders threaten to buckle. Blasted hulls, Eogan, why couldn’t you have let me shield you?

Find him and do what you have to, Nym.

“This way, miss.” Tannin beckons me to the crowd in the center of the loft where he proceeds to weave me around their warm bodies. The elegant people fall away from us with eager glances and murmurs. Some are already too full of wine to walk decently, but apparently not enough to prevent them from noticing my sea-blue eyes and everything else about me that shouts Elemental.

“They say she took down Bron’s airships with a single lightning strike,” someone excitedly whispers.

“Two,” another says. “The first took out the archers.”

“No, no, she used her breath. Inhaled the wind and blew them back to Bron.”

I raise a brow and can’t help the smirk at that one. It fades as soon as my chest tightens with the rawness of not having Colin beside me. He would’ve laughed and never let me hear the end of it. My breath? I straighten. Keep walking.

“Either way, do you think it wise having her at the High Court? Look at those bandages on her hands. Are we certain she’s safe?”

“No, but it doesn’t matter. Rumor is she’ll be invited to leave for Bron with King Eogan soon.”

“Figures,” a man’s voice titters too loudly. “Anyone can tell she’s vying to be that man’s queen. Can you imagine? A week ago she was a slave. As if she’d know the first thing about court life. Now, if it was that visiting Cashlin princess, Rasha . . .”

I keep my head up and don’t give them the luxury of knowing that my ears are, in fact, clearly working even if the man’s insults are more comforting than any of the praise. I look around. Where is Princess Rasha? Less than an hour ago she was in my room playing with knives and hinting encouragements about Eogan. How did she not see this coming with Draewulf?

Tannin stops and I almost trip over him onto King Sedric, who’s speaking with men I recognize as part of the High Council. In their shiny green doublets and pointy-heeled shoes, they remind me of the garish Adora. Especially beside His Royal Highness who’s as boyish-looking and underdressed as ever. I curtsy as protocol dictates and nod at his guards nearby. They visibly relax and my hard eyes soften a bit at this man-boy who’s two years older than me—nineteen—but seems twenty more, and who fought without flinching at Eogan’s and my side.

He stops speaking and turns a kind smile. “Nym.”

“Your Highness.”

“I’m pleased you could make it down this evening.”

“I’m honored to be invited.” My throat tightens. Tell him about Eogan.

His merry gaze falls on my clothbound palms and narrows with apparent concern. “I hope you know this celebration is as much in praise to you as it is the treaty.”

“Thank you, Your Majesty, but the gratitude is rightly placed on your shoulders.” My eyes flick behind him, beyond the guards, in search of Eogan. You have to tell him, Nym. I clench my fingers and feel the pain from the cuts shoot up my arms.

Tell him you’re all in danger.

I open my mouth again.

But my tongue thickens and heat clogs my throat. I don’t know how to do it. I can’t make the words come out from my lips that will sentence Eogan’s body to death by the hands of someone who hardly knows him. Even if Sedric is my king. “You have my respect and gratitude,” I whisper instead. “Especially regarding your mercy toward my Elemental race.”

King Sedric grins and glances at the councilmen who are sloshing the drinks they’ve raised in our direction. He leans politely toward me. “I’d relish the chance to speak with you about your heritage as well as the plight of the Faelen citizens, if I may have the honor of a dance later this evening?”

I nod before retreating so he can return to his conversation.

“Good luck, miss,” Tannin says, and, with a grateful wink and a half bow, leaves me alone in a sea of people I barely know who’re full of blatant gawks and wearing giant, poofed hats that look exactly like the black-and-red Bron airships. Complete with larva-shaped balloons.

I swallow and head to the balcony’s ledge and glare over it. Colin and Eogan should be here with me, mocking the ridiculousness of the outfits, of the luxury, listening while I scream that Draewulf is not dead.

Instead I swear I hear their ghosts whispering that he’s going to wipe out this entire room and take Faelen. Just like he tried to at the Keep.

I grit my teeth and lean over the gilt railing to peer down below to look for him.

The lights flicker oddly, urging me to hurry my scan of the faces. Where is he?

Nervous chuckles break out as the candle lights blink again. I straighten and look up just as the glow flickers a third time and the crowd’s laughter ceases.

“What’s going on?” someone whispers. “Who’s putting out the lights?”

LIINE

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STORM SIREN

Book 1

 

BLURB:

 

“There are few things more exciting to discover than a debut novel packed with powerful storytelling and beautiful language. STORM SIREN is one of those rarities. I’ll read anything Mary Weber writes. More, please!” -Jay Asher, New York Times bestselling author of THIRTEEN REASONS WHY

 

“Storm Siren is a riveting tale from start to finish. Between the simmering romance, the rich and inventive fantasy world, and one seriously jaw-dropping finale, readers will clamor for the next book–and I’ll be at the front of the line!” –MARISSA MEYER, New York Times bestselling author of the Lunar Chronicles

 

“I raise my chin as the buyers stare. Yes. Look. You don’t want me. Because, eventually, accidentally, I will destroy you.”

In a world at war, a slave girl’s lethal curse could become one kingdom’s weapon of salvation. If the curse – and the girl – can be controlled.

As a slave in the war-weary kingdom of Faelen, seventeen-year-old Nym isn’t merely devoid of rights, her Elemental kind are only born male and always killed at birth – meaning, she shouldn’t even exist.

Standing on the auction block beneath smoke-drenched mountains, Nym faces her fifteenth sell. But when her hood is removed and her storm-summoning killing curse revealed, Nym is snatched up by a court advisor and given a choice: be trained as the weapon Faelen needs to win the war, or be killed.

Choosing the former, Nym is unleashed into a world of politics, bizarre parties, and rumors of an evil more sinister than she’s being prepared to fight . . . not to mention the handsome trainer whose dark secrets lie behind a mysterious ability to calm every lightning strike she summons.

But what if she doesn’t want to be the weapon they’ve all been waiting for?

Set in a beautifully eclectic world of suspicion, super abilities, and monsters, Storm Siren is a story of power. And whoever controls that power will win.

 

GOODREADS:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18806259-storm-siren?ac=1

 

BUY LINKS:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1B14dnw

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1H6PZUa

LIINE

 

About the Author:

 

Mary Weber is a ridiculously uncoordinated girl plotting to take over make-believe worlds through books, handstands, and imaginary throwing knives. In her spare time, she feeds unicorns, sings 80’s hairband songs to her three muggle children, and ogles her husband who looks strikingly like Wolverine. They live in California, which is perfect for stalking L.A. bands, Joss Whedon, and the ocean. Her debut YA fantasy novel, STORM SIREN, is available now in bookstores and online, and SIREN’S FURY (book 2 in the trilogy) will be out June, 2015 from TN HarperCollins.

 

Website:

http://www.maryweber.com/

Twitter:

http://www.twitter.com/mchristineweber

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/marychristineweber

GoodReads:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7391763.Mary_Weber

Instagram:

http://instagram.com/maryweberauthor

 

Spotlight on RUN by Gillian Zane!
NOLA Zombie #1

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Zombies are on the loose in New Orleans and of all the End of the World scenarios, Alexis Winter wasn’t prepared for this one. But, an apocalypse is an apocalypse and she should have this covered. She has been “prepping” for the last three years. The problem is location and timing. She’s stuck downtown and she has to get to her house on the outskirts of the city so she can get her supplies and bug-in (for the “non-preppers” this means hole up and stay safe).

Agreeing to work on a Saturday is now coming back to bite her on the ass big time. Hopefully, it won’t be a literal bite by the walking dead.

Luck favors the prepared, and as luck would have it, it comes in the form of the ridiculously hot Blake Miller. Former military man, current mercenary, Blake Miller, the man with the plan, his goal: steal a boat and trek up the Mississippi until they find safety. Alexis thinks this is a great plan and she decides to team up with Blake. The two team up in unexpected ways as they find they can’t keep their hands off of each other even when the world is falling down around them.

Can Alexis and Blake survive the end of the world, and if they do make it through the night, find a place that is safe and secure? Can their newfound attraction lead them down the road to love or heartbreak?

Zombies, sex, romance and carnage…you can’t get any better than this.

*Review Coming Soon

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SMASHWORDS I AMAZON US I AMAZON UK

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COMING SOON!!

FIGHT (ZOLA ZOMBIE SERIES, BOOK 2)

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Gillian Zane has been writing fiction stories since she was first able to put pen to paper. She has published a few non-fiction books in her field of study, which is Art, but finally, after all, these years her first fiction novella is being released. Gillian is obsessed with anything that gives her a thrill and feels adding romance to any storyline is a good thing. She was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana and couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. She lives with her husband, too many animals in a little house that has way too many books.

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Tour Host OUAA

DANI’S JUNE TBR

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Hey guys this is kind of late but I just wanted to tell you guys what I plan on reading in the month of June!

Kissing in America by Margo Rabb

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Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood

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Powerless by Tera Lynn Childs and Tracy Deebs. I’m super excited about this one!

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The Stars Never Rise by Rachel Vincent

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Death Wish by Megan Tayte

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Resonance by Erica O’Rourke. I seriously need to read this!!!

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I also have a few novellas I want to read this month.

 

Harmonic by Erica O’Rourke

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Stolen by Erin Bowman

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A Dawn Most Wicked by Susan Dennard

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I honestly feel like June is going to be a good reading month, I hope I can get to all of these books!

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Giveaway! RUSH by Gina Gordon

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Reading in Wonderland Welcomes Author Gina Gordon and her latest release, RUSH!

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In this edgy, sizzling romance for fans of Monica Murphy and Abbi Glines, a bad boy shows a straitlaced law student how to slow down and savor the good things.

 

Everly Parker is about to graduate from law school, always busy, and can’t stop rushing through life. Her late grandmother left her a bucket list of meaningful, can’t-miss experiences, but she hasn’t completed a single one. Then searing-hot Max Levin bursts into her world. As a casting director for a porn production company, Max is loaded, cocky, and all wrong for Everly. Still, she’s tempted enough to cross the first item off her list: Go out with someone you’d never give the time of day.

 

Inheriting a porn empire isn’t every guy’s dream (well, actually, it probably is), but Max isn’t complaining. It’s just that until he meets Everly, he has no idea what he’s been missing. As the pressure mounts to take over the family business, Max can’t help wondering what would happen if he chose Everly instead. So far, his life has been a wild ride, but only Everly promises the greatest rush of all: love.

 

Buy Links:  Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo | Publisher

[Read more…]

SPOTLIGHT on UNFORGIVEN by Lori Adams

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Otherworldly desire and paranormal action reach new heights in the final installment of The Soulkeepers. As Sophia St. James moves Heaven and Hell to claim her destiny, questions are answered, secrets are revealed—and immortal love is tested.

After finally becoming a powerful Spirit Walker, Sophia St. James is shocked to discover that her conjured identical twin, Ka—along with her soul—have been dragged down to Hell by the relentless Demon Knight Dante. Sophia tries to hide the crisis, but there is little hope of keeping any secrets from her red-hot Guardian Angel. Growing suspicious, Michael has been making plans of his own that will bind him and Sophia together forever.

But Sophia is plagued with evil visions through Ka’s experiences in Hell. She is terrified that Dante will discover he has taken the wrong Sophia. Desperate to return to her original state before she withers away and dies, she risks everything to go where Michael can’t follow. To bring back Ka and save her own soul, Sophia must now enter the gates of Hell.

Purchase: AMAZON

LIINE

Lori_Adams_Author

I am originally from Oklahoma and wrote my first book—at eight-years-old—about scary sharks. I clipped terrifying pictures from National Geographic Magazines and glued them in my notebook for illustrations.

I graduated from Sharon Mutual High School and attended Oklahoma State University before moving to Southern California. For a short time, I studied English Literature and Shakespeare at the University of California, Irvine.

I write Young Adult and Middle Grade fiction. My first Young Adult trilogy is THE SOULKEEPERS: FORBIDDEN, AWAKEN, and UNFORGIVEN available through Penguin Random House or wherever eBooks are sold.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

DEAL! THE BREATHING SERIES
by Rebecca Donovan

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USA Today Bestselling Novel

“No one tried to get involved with me, and I kept to myself. This was the place where everything was supposed to be safe and easy. How could Evan Mathews unravel my constant universe in just one day?”

In the affluent town of Weslyn, Connecticut, where most people worry about what to be seen in and who to be seen with, Emma Thomas would rather not be seen at all. She’s more concerned with feigning perfection—pulling down her sleeves to conceal the bruises, not wanting anyone to know how far from perfect her life truly is. Without expecting it, she finds love. It challenges her to recognize her own worth―at the risk of revealing the terrible secret she’s desperate to hide.

One girl’s story of life-changing love, unspeakable cruelty, and her precarious grasp of hope: Reason to Breathe is the first installment of the acclaimed Breathing Series.

Purchase @ Amazon for $1.99

* Price at the time of posting

LIINE

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“I’ve spent most of my life trying to make it to a future that still hasn’t happened, or avoid a past that won’t let me go. I don’t remember when I’ve ever just stopped to live in the present, to hold on to the seconds I’m in.”

Emma Thomas’s struggle with an abusive home life came to a heart-pounding conclusion in the final chapters of Reason to Breathe, the first installment of The Breathing Series— Rebecca Donovan’s bestselling romantic-thriller (USA Today). Now her secret life has been exposed, and her tormentor can’t hurt her anymore. Yet some are still haunted by that night. The bruises may have faded, but scars and fears, remain. How will she reclaim her life when she’s barely breathing?

Purchase @ Amazon for $1.99

*Price at the time of posting