Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Look Back Wednesday - Carnelians by Catherine Asaro


LOOK BACK WEDNESDAY IS A FEATURE HERE ON THE BLOG.  THERE ARE SO MANY REALLY GOOD BOOKS I HAVE REVIEWED ON GOODREADS I DECEIDED TO HIGHLIGHT SOME FROM THE PAST.  RIGHT NOW I AM FEATURING BOOKS POSTED ON MY GOODREADS SCIENCE FICTION ROMANCE SHELF.  EACH REVIEW IS A DIRECT POST FROM MY GOODREADS REVIEW.

Carnelians (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #14)Carnelians by Catherine Asaro
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love this series and Carnelians brings together many of the elements from previous books. Carnelians is a combination of Space Opera and Science Fiction Romance. I would not try this on as a stand-alone. It would be best if read in order. Just be warned that it is the 14th book in the series. I got it as an ebook from Baen.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

When a Marquis Chooses a Bride by Ella Quinn - Book Bast and Giveaway



When a Marquis Chooses a Bride
by Ella Quinn

GENRE: Historical Romance

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BLURB:
When a Marquis Chooses a Bride (The Worthingtons, #2)

Thanks to their large extended family and unconventional courtship, the Worthingtons have seen their share of scandal and excitement. But nothing has prepared them for this...
The Dowager Lady Worthington isn’t quite sure what to make of country-girl Dorothea Stern. As the granddaughter of the Duke of Bristol, Dotty is schooled in the ways and means of the nobility. But her sharp wit and outspoken nature has everyone in a tizzy. Especially their cousin, Dominic, the Marquis of Merton.

Prematurely stuffy, Dom was raised by his cheerless uncle to be wary of a host of things, including innovation, waltzing, and most perilous of all: true love. Still, there’s something about Dotty, beyond her beauty, that Dom cannot resist. But the odds are against him if he intends to win her as his bride. Will he choose loyalty to his family—or risk everything for the one woman he believes is his perfect match…

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EXCERPT

Dominic, Marquis of Merton, settled into his apartment at the Pulteney Hotel. His pride still stung at having been ejected from his cousin, Matt Worthington’s, town house. Blowing a cloud was the latest thing. Not that Dom would attempt to smoke in White’s, that was not allowed, but he outranked Worthington and should have been treated as an honored guest, not summarily told to leave. Still, it was probably convenient that Dom did not actually enjoy smoking, as he was sure the Pulteney would not allow it either.

He should have gone on his Grand Tour instead of taking a bolt to Town. But his mother had received a letter informing her of his cousin’s plans to wed, and he decided starting his own nursery would be the most responsible course. After all, the succession would not look after itself, and he had a duty to his family and dependents. Perhaps he would travel after he married.

Not that Dom truly wished to leave England. He liked an ordered life and travel was sure to disrupt the structure with which he was comfortable. He did not wish to visit France at all. Any land where the inhabitants would murder their betters held little interest for him. It all came back to the proper order of things. Life was much better when everyone followed the rules and knew their places.

He reconsidered opening up Merton House for the Season, but there was really no point when his mother was not here as well. Without her to act as his hostess, he would not be able to plan any entertainments other than for his friends. The hotel would  suit for the short time he planned to spend in Town. It should not take him that long to find a wife. He was a marquis. Even without his considerable fortune, he would have been a desirable parti.


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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Bestselling author Ella Quinn’s studies and other jobs have always been on the serious side. Reading historical romances, especially Regencies, were her escape. Eventually her love of historical novels led her to start writing them. She has just finished her first series, The Marriage Game, and her new series, The Worthingtons, began in April 2016.

She is married to her wonderful husband of over thirty years. They have a son and two beautiful granddaughters, and a dog. After living in the South Pacific, Central America, North Africa, England and Europe, she and her husband decided to make their dreams come true and are now living on a sailboat cruising the Caribbean and North America. Europe is next!
    

Buy Links:








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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE


Ella will be awarding a Signed ARC of When A Marquis Chooses a Bride (US ONLY) to 5 randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Short and Sweet Book Review #42 - Illusion Town by Jayne Castle, Maker Lab by the Smithsonian, Anything for You by Kristan Higgins

Illusion Town (Ghost Hunters, #13)Illusion Town by Jayne Castle
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Once again I got to visit Harmony - that great planet that got cut off from Earth when the curtain went down. This time it features Hannah West and Elias Coppersmith, another member of the family that I first met on Earth in a book that helped start this series that crosses time and space. Illusion Town is like Las Vegas with alien ruins thrown in for good measure. It starts like most in the series with a Marriage of Connivence and of course ends with a HEA Hannah and Elias. This is a very interesting story line that held my attention from start to finish. I loved both Hannah and Elias. Both are just a little bit off from others but that makes the perfect for each other. Of course there is a dust bunny that often steals the show.

 Maker Lab: Make Your Own Science ExperimentsMaker Lab: Make Your Own Science Experiments by DK Publishing
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is fun for all. The projects use common things found around the house and are easy to do. Great for parents and teachers. Easy to understand instructions that go step by step. Price is also a plus. I had a great time making several of the projects. I think anyone would enjoy using the book even through it is listed as ages 8 - 12.


Anything for You (Blue Heron, #5)Anything for You by Kristan Higgins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Anything for You (Blue Heron #5) by Kristan Higgins – A new Blue Heron book that features Connor O’Rourke and Jessica Dunn with visits from all the other favorites in the series. This is a story that is very long in the making. It tells the history of both from the time they were 12 and now they are both in their 30’s. It does not look good for the two of them as Jessica always holds back but in the end they have a great HEA. A nice addition to the series.  I read this when it first came out and just finished listening to it on CD's from the library.  It was as much fun the second time as the first.


Saturday, August 27, 2016

Stacking the Shelves - August 27, 2016

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books I added to my shelves this week. They may it be physical or virtual. I include books I buy in a physical store or online, books I borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!  Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga at Tynga's Reviews.  Follow the link to see what others have on their shelves. 

I still have to lay off of reading so I was back at the library looking for Books on CD.   They put the new items on the shelf on Thursday so that was the day I went.  I scored some that look interesting.



From the Library:

Traces of Guilt by Dee Henderson
All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
Sea Rose Lane by Irene Hannon

Short and Sweet Audio Book Book Reviews #41 - Written in Red by Anne Bishop, Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop, Death of a Nurse by M.C.Beaton

Written in Red (The Others, #1)Written in Red by Anne Bishop
My review from the first time listening and a little more from the second time.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Once again I picked up an author I had never read in an audio book and once again I am hooked. Written in Red by Anne Bishop drew me in and would not let me go. I just listened the second time and I think I loved it even more than before.

The world building caught me first the characters kept me glued to the book. This is a world where the geography is like ours but the Others and the cassandre sangue (who are a form of human) are very different. Only the humans like us remain the same and they are not the dominant species.

Some of the Others are shape sifters, some are elementals and some are something no one even the rest of the Others ever want to meet. To the Others humans are just meat. Meg Corbyn is human but also cassandre sangue or blood prophet. She does not smell like prey as other humans do.

That sets up part of the conflict in Written in Red. Meg Corbyn is at the heart of the conflict. Meg has escaped a life she hated and the Others take her in. Human law does not apply in the Courtyard where she now lives. She is a very refreshing character. She was raised in isolation and has a very different reaction to the Others. She has an innocence that helps her win over the ones she is in contact with. Simon Wolfguard is the Other who gives Meg the job in the Courtyard. The fact that Meg does not smell like prey keeps him conflicted. The interaction between the two can sometimes be very dangerous and sometimes be very amusing.

The book can be a little dark but there were things that lightened it up I loved the names of the stores in the Courtyard and they did add a light touch. Howling Good Reads, A Little Bite, and Run and Thump - a bookstore, a coffee shop and a gym all owned by the Others.

Writing in a way that brings all of the elements of a book together into a cohesive whole takes a lot of talent. Anne Bishop has that kind of talent.

If I had been reading Written in Red it would have been a book I could not put down. Since I was listening I ended up listening to it in my house instead of my car because I had to know what was going to happen next.


Murder of Crows (The Others, #2)Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This time I listened instead of reading and found more to like.  The first book set the stage and Murder of Crows takes the world building beyond Lakeside and the Courtyard.  I love how Bishop expands the world while telling a very compelling story.

I said that I could not put Written in Red down. Before I had even finished I checked to see if Murder of Crows was on the shelf at my library. It was. I checked it out and started it as soon as Written in Red was finished. I started reading around noon and finished at 2 a.m. Once again I could not put it down.

Meg, Simon and the rest of the characters are back and trouble is still on the horizon. The two drugs that were mentioned in Written in Red are at the heart of Murder of Crows. That drug is connected to the cassandra sangue and is a threat to both humans and the Others. Meg is the important link in finding and stopping the production of the drug.

Meg grew in book one and in Murder of Crows she matures and changes even more. Her relationship with Simon is not without problems. They both have problems understanding each other and have to work to keep their friendship on track. Some of the side characters become more important in Murder of Crows. The human police that work with the Courtyard play a big role in stopping the drugs.

Anne Bishop has written another tense, slightly dark book with just the right traces of humor. My only problem – I have to wait until March of 2015 for the next book.

This would not do well as a stand alone. It picks up where book one leaves off and while there is back story you still need to start with Written in Red.



Death of a Nurse (Hamish Macbeth, #31)Death of a Nurse by M.C. Beaton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have listed to several other books in the Hamish Macbeth Myster series and never liked the narrator. This time there was a new voice. Graeme Malcolm does a much better job of the different characters in the story. Death of a Nurse again has Hamish seeing a pretty woman and then finding her dead. There are more than one murder in the book and it spans more than one month before everything is solved. A good addition to the series. Each book is a quick light read. You can start the series in any order and since there are now 31 book that makes it much easier to enjoy meeting Hamish.


Friday, August 26, 2016

Sonar the Surge by B Truly - Goddess Fish Excerpt Tour and Giveaway


Sonar the Surge
by B. Truly

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GENRE:  New Adult Sci fi Romance

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BLURB:



Eclipsed by darkness, the Romelands must face the ultimate quest. If they are forced toward the umbra peak, they will be completely obscured.

Symone struggles with her most challenging battles … the conflict within herself. Losing loved ones steals part of her soul. Despair has created a gaping hole where her heart should be. Symone doesn’t even recognize herself. She has to determine if this is the person she’s turned into, or if it is who she has always been.

Nile is an attractive aristocrat whose charm and arrogance drives Symone insane. Beyond Symone’s control, Nile is spun into her life. But she’s not sure if she can have a relationship with him or where that could lead her. Embracing love could make her whole again, but it may also destroy her. Symone must travel through the opaque light in order to find where her destiny lies.

Symone’s family, Shiray and Syira, continue to fight in the feuds of their galaxy. Together they have to find the balance between compassion and sacrifice. Kadanans are being held captive, and they hold the fate of their world in their hands. They have only begun to understand the consequences of the devastating realities of war.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend, is the philosophy the Romelands now abide by. With chaos and turmoil at every corner, they may forget what is worth fighting for. The surge for power has erupted. Only the strongest race will be left standing.

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Excerpt:

Chapter 17

* * * Symone * * *

These Polars must birth hundreds a day to have this many troops. Mayhem continued as we dove into action.

A woman screamed. To my right, I saw a male in combat with two female comrades. I inched closer, then nearly dropped my gun, shell shocked. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t breathe. It was him! The man who killed Amere and my father. One woman was on the terrain. He kicked her in the stomach. Fury radiated to my core. I surged warped to them. By this time, he’d fired his laser, killing the woman. Her eyes were open … empty. The Polar gasped when he saw me. His brown eyes widened. They held the evil that he was.

“Surprise, mother…”

Now, it was just me and him. I don’t think Nile even knew I’d left his side. He had his own army to deal with. Killer swiftly whisked the gun out of my hand with his kinesis. I kicked his laser from him, then I shoved my fist into his lung. He retaliated, sending punches. I thrust my elbow into the side of his neck, followed by a blow to the nose. Delivering several jabs to my ribcage, he made me whimper, but I sucked up the pain. I charged him head-first, ramming my head into his chest. He caught me by my waist and slung me to the terrain. Bending next to me with his blade in hand, he plunged the knife toward my throat. I caught his wrist, struggling against him. Determined to end my life, Killer pushed harder. Straining to keep the blade from slashing my neck, I prayed for strength. My adrenaline built with the rage of what he’d taken from me. I brought my knee up, shoving it into his gut, then sprung up. He flipped swiftly to his feet, prepared to attack. I swiped his legs from under him. I had to get Kill
er on the snow. I couldn’t beat him in hand-to-hand combat.

Two of his compatriots came to his aid. They had killed my fellow Kadanan. Their glowing eyes were filled with venom; they seized me. One caught me in the eye, hard with his elbow. I felt it swell immediately. I put my surge-warp into effect. They were a blur as I fought, but I couldn’t let them get their hands on me. I needed to get to my laser, which lay several meters away. In between surging, Killer caught me with a punt to the stomach. Nile jumped in. He sent one male soaring through the air. His head hit a boulder, cracking open. Killer and I continued to brawl while Nile fought another. Surge warping had drained me. I dove and rolled sideways in an attempt to retrieve my laser.

The Polar Nile was fighting head butted him. Nile delivered a powerful blow to his back, then kicked him repeatedly in the ribcage until he went to his knees. At hyper drive speed, Nile grabbed his neck and twisted it. The bones breaking made a sickening pop.

I stood up, laser in hand. Killer’s facial expression emanated disbelief. He put his hands up in a gesture of surrender. Coward!

“I will surrender,” Killer said. “If you will stand down.”

Nile hesitated, uncertain. Then he retrieved a set of handcuffs from his side pouch. Oh, Killer wouldn’t need those. I casually walked in front of him with my laser raised. He frowned. His evil brown eyes were etched in fear. How do you like someone holding a gun to your head? I smirked.

“Your moral code says that you won’t kill a man who surrenders,” Killer stated.

“Symone…” Nile questioned. I didn’t reply.

“You’re right, our code does,” I answered. His eyes held solace. He let out a long breath. His last. I pulled the trigger, executing him straight through his evil eyes.


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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

B Truly has wanted to be an author since she was fifteen years old and is grateful to have accomplished this dream. She has very vivid dreams and a wild imagination. She likes to read, watch tons of TV shows, and movies. She is addicted to romance and gets a thrill out of action and suspense. She writes New Adult, Fantasy, Sci-fi, and Paranormal-Romance.
    
In the Sonar series, B Truly said, “It was fun to explore different elements of Sci-fi romance and create various realms of powers for my characters. I want to show my readers that Sci-fi can be fun, but also traumatic. I hope you guys enjoy the Sonar Series.”

B Truly has three wonderful children and a husband who defines the person she is today. She works full-time as an Ultrasound technologist in Sugarland, Texas.

Social & Purchase links:

The book will be $0.99 during the tour









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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

The author will be awarding a $15 Amazon Gift Card, Sonar book mark, & Sonar The Surge Photo magnet to a randomly drawn winner



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Beginnings and The Friday 56 - August 26, 2016


I'm linking up with Rose City Reader for Book Beginnings and Freda's Voice for Page 56. Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Pick the closest book on your book stack and join the fun.



The Beginning:

"The doorknob slowly, soundlessly turned."

Page 56:

"Sitting there, Shiloh felt as if the sun had left the room."

From Wind River Wrangler by Lindsay McKenna. This is book I received from Amazon Vine. I have not started it yet but I loved both the beginning and page 56.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Defragmenting Daniel by Jason Werbeloff - Book Blast:and Giveaway





Defragmenting Daniel: The Organ Scrubber
by Jason Werbeloff


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GENRE: Sci-fi Thriller


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BLURB:




7 stolen organs.
1 vengeful victim.
A gruesome sci-fi thriller.
Organ scrubbing was a bloody job, but somebody had to do it. Daniel, an orphan from the Gutter, was put to work scrubbing kidneys at aged twelve. The job had its perks: a warm bed, Law and Order reruns, and an all-you-can-eat Mopane worm buffet.
Until the Orphanage stole Daniel’s parts, and sold them on the organ market.
Now Daniel has grown up, and yearns to become whole again. The cybernetic organ replacements just aren’t the same – he needs his parts back. But the new owners of his organs won’t give them up. Not without a fight.
Just how far will Daniel go to regain his missing pieces? And how much more of himself will he lose along the way?
Defragmenting Daniel is a cyberpunk crime thriller that will unnerve you. Every part of you.
“A work of great imagination. Powerful and gripping.”
“A stark and moving experience.”
ReadersFavorite.com, 5 Star Review


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EXCERPT


“You feel that, son?”


“No siw,” Daniel mouthed. His tongue was numb. Had been numb since they’d replaced it with the generic a year ago, but it felt more swollen than usual. Clumsy against his palate.


“That’s good. Try to relax.” The surgeon’s voice was deep and quick. Like a scythe. “Music, nurse.”


With Daniel’s head turned the way it was, he looked directly into the surgeon’s crotch. He tried to turn away, but his head had been immobilized.


A beat Daniel remembered from somewhere rolled through the operating theatre. The bass vibrated along the legs of the steel table, up, into the brace that pierced his skull, down, through its metallic fingers, and into his brain. It tickled.


The surgeon shifted. A nurse’s masked face replaced the crotch. “Don’t move.” Only her eyes showed above the mask. The doctors and nurses all looked the same with their masks on. How do they tell one another apart?


A grainy woman’s voice hissed through the beat.


We had you cleaned


We had you eat


The high-pitched whine of a bone saw echoed in Daniel’s skull. “We’ll have you open in no time,” said the surgeon.


Daniel felt pressure against his temple, above his right ear. The whine of the blade morphed to a lower, choppy grind.


We had you bathed


We had your feet


Yes, he remembered the song now. It was all the rage in the cafeteria on Friday nights, when they cleared the chairs to make room for an ad hoc dance floor.


“How the kids?”


“Good, thanks doctor. Jordan’s starting school next week.”


“Already?”


Daniel tried to swallow, but lying on his back with his head fixed at this angle, most of the saliva dribbled onto the operating table.


We ate your lungs


We heart your beat


The bone saw slowed to a toothy stop.


There was a hollow metal twang, as something red dropped into a metal bowl on the edge of Daniel’s vision.


“You doing okay there, boy?”


“Yeth, ma’am.”


The surgeon bent down. Peered into Daniel’s eyes.


“We’re in. Won’t be too much longer now.”



AUTHOR Bio and Links:




Human. Male. From an obscure planet in the Milky Way Galaxy. Sci-fi novelist with a PhD in philosophy. Likes chocolates, Labradors, and zombies (not necessarily in that order). Werbeloff spends his days constructing thought experiments, while trying to muster enough guilt to go to the gym.


He's written two novels, Hedon and The Solace Pill, and the short story anthology, Obsidian Worlds. His books will make your brain hurt. And you'll come back for more.


Subscribe to his newsletter to receive a free novel, and a lifetime of free and discounted stories: http://smarturl.it/werbeloff


**Amazon Author Page – http://smarturl.it/AuthWerbeloff  - download all of Werbeloff's fiction from Amazon.


**Newsletter – http://smarturl.it/werbeloff - subscribe to get 'The Solace Pill' free, as well as VIP access to Werbeloff's latest fiction.


**Soud Cloud –  http://soundcloud.com/jason-werbeloff/ - listen to stories from Obsidian Worlds narrated by the inimitable Marc Ryan Rees.


**Goodreads –  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7340789 - read and submit reviews of Werbeloff’s fiction.


**Facebook  http://www.facebook.com/solaceseries  and Twitter  https://twitter.com/JasonWerbeloff – follow Werbeloff for release date information on upcoming shorts and novels.


**Website -  http://www.jasonwerbeloff.com/ -  read about the author, and the philosophy behind his fiction.


Purchase link for Defragmenting Daniel: The Organ Scrubber - The book will be free on Amazon for 4 days, August 24 – 27 2016.




The Organ Scrubber is the first fragment of the Defragmenting Daniel trilogy:
Fragment 1 – The Organ Scrubber
Fragment 2 – The Face in a Jar
Fragment 3 – The Boy Without a Heart


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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE


Jason will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.


 a Rafflecopter giveaway