Thursday, March 31, 2011

Give away Winners: Turned by Morgan Rice

This book give away is now closed.

Congratulations to:
I will be sending you guys confirmation email in a while. Thank you to Morgan Rice for the e-book giveaways!! If you didn't win please check out other contests here in Bookingly Yours.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Guest Author and Give away: Richard Godwin


The idea for ‘Apostle Rising’ came to me from a combination of considering the fallibility of forensic psychology and the idea of a case that has such an impact on a police officer’s life that it alters him.
My novel is about the re-enactment of some killings twenty eight years after DCI Frank Castle failed to solve the case known as The Woodland Killings. The failure to catch the serial killer almost broke him and the press savaged him.

Now twenty eight years later he is faced with a copycat killer who is crucifying politicians and leaving coded messages at the crime scene.

I was interested to explore how effective forensic psychology is at getting inside the head of an extreme psychopath and also to explore what exposure to horrific crimes does to a seasoned detective.

One of the key characters in ‘Apostle Rising’ is Tom Spinner, an offender profiler brought in to help solve the case. He is brilliant and makes good headway but finds it hard to get a reading on the killer who keeps changing direction.

It is as if the killer has inside information.

One of the things I explore and dramatise in the novel is the effect that coming into contact with extreme evil has on police detectives.

The psychopathic killer crosses over into their lives.

Castle’s partner DI Jacki Stone is harrowed by what she sees at the crime scenes and her marriage suffers as a result.

The killer is playing games with the police.

The man Castle thought was responsible for the Woodland Killings, Karl Black, is now running a Christian cult and also begins to play with the police.

Meanwhile the mutilated bodies of prostitutes start to turn up in Richmond Park and Castle and Stone realise they are looking for two killers.

The action takes place in London and in a swathe of green belt land on the outskirts.
Although it is set in the UK ‘Apostle Rising’ is easily accessible to a US audience. My style is often considered American in many ways and everything a US audience expects from a crime novel is here. It is cop procedural and structured in a readable way with short sections that allow the reader to dip in and out of it.

I researched forensics and crime scene investigations for ‘Apostle Rising’. I also researched offender profiling, and there are sections of psychological analysis in the novel which are highly popular. I researched history, since there are references to Tudor history in the novel. I also researched medieval cults.

I wrote ‘Apostle Rising’ for anyone who likes a good crime novel and a good guessing game. My style has been called Gothic by reviewers and I also write horror, so ‘Apostle Rising’ is a crime novel that crosses over into horror in parts.

Stephen King is a major influence and a recent review has compared my novel to his writing.
Another influence is James Lee Burke.

I think the style in which I wrote ‘Apostle Rising’ is one of its key strengths as is the characterisation.

Castle and Stone are unforgettable characters who will stay in your mind afterwards.
There is also a unique twist which I will guarantee you will not see coming.

‘Apostle Rising’ has already received some good reviews as well as coverage on CNN, read here.

You can hear the interview I did for The Authors Show here
 Bookgasm magazine says

‘it does an amazing job of sucking in the reader right away and never letting up. For a debut crime novel, it makes a great introduction to Godwin’s style and talent for prose. Be on the lookout for hopefully many more.’

It is receiving extremely positive feedback and sold 280 copies pre-order. I hope anyone who buys it enjoys it. 


Be a follower and leave a comment to enter for your chance to win 1 of 3 books. The contest is open for US residents only - sorry. The contest will end on 13 April.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Book Review: The Patriot Paradox by William Esmont

Title: The Patriot Paradox
Author: William Esmont
Paperback: 250 pages
Publisher: Cross Country Publishing (December 19, 2010)


★ ★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts:

To start with, the plot is remarkably good! Ex-CIA analyst Kurt Vetter has just lost his family - his wife and daughter over a road accident. He hasn't recovered yet from this loss, he receives another bad news. His brother, whom he loves so much, Mike Vetter was killed in a carjacking gone wrong. Well, that was the official cause of death though just before the funeral, a package was delivered to him containing a classified information - the package was from his dead brother (sent the day he was killed/murdered). According to the package, his brother found something at work he should not see, something he should have never touched and Kurt believes that this is the  reason why Mike was killed.

His brother instructed him to get in touch with Amanda Carter for she knows how to deal with this problem. Together they set out to uncover the truth behind the murder of Kurt's brother. 

I loved the plot of the story. This book is one of those books you just couldn't put down and I read the whole story in just 4-5 hours. This is action-packed with interesting plot and the characters are well-developed. I'm looking forward to reading the next installment! If you are into good political-espionage thriller, buy this book and satisfaction is guaranteed.

About the book:

Racing to stay ahead of a government that has forsaken them, ex-CIA analyst Kurt Vetter and mysterious foreign agent Aanda Carter race across Europe in a quest to  unearth the truth behind the murder of Kurt's brother.

As they dig deeper, they discover a conspiracy that threatens the very foundation of world stability, launched by a secret cabal intent upon reshaping the world to meet their goals.

The clock is ticking and Kurt and Amanda must find a way to halt the plot before millions die.

About the author:

William Esmont lives in Tucson, AZ with his wife and their three dogs. When not writing, he enjoys traveling, reading, and riding his bicycle. He is currently working on the sequel to The Patriot Paradox as well as the first in a new series of post-apocalyptic horror novels.

You can reach him at

Note: I received a review copy of this book free from the author, William Esmont. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Best Divorce

The following was posted by a friend in Facebook. I love the story. . . . I just want to share this with you guys ;-)


She spent the first day sadly packing her belongings into boxes, crates and suitcases.

On the second day, she had the movers come and collect her things.

On the third day, she sat down on the floor in the diningroom by candlelight, put on some soft background music, and feasted on a pound of shrimp, a jar of caviar, and a bottle of Chardonnay.

When she had finished, she went into each and every room and deposited a few half-eaten shrimp and caviar into the hollow of the curtain rods. She replaced the end caps on the curtain rods and cleaned up the kitchen.Then she moved out.

When the husband returned with his new girlfriend, all was bliss for the first few days. Then slowly, the house began to smell.

They tried everything from cleaning, mopping, and airing the place out. Vents were checked for dead rodents and carpets were steam cleaned.Air fresheners were hung everywhere. Exterminators were brought in to set off poison gas, during which they had to move out for a few days. They even paid tore place the expensive wool carpeting. Nothing worked.

People stopped coming over to visit. Repairmen refused to work in the house. The maid quit. Finally, they could not take the stench any longer and decided to move.

A month later, even though they had cut their price in half,they could not find a buyer for their stinky house. Word got out and eventually the local realtors refused to return their calls. Finally, they had to borrow a huge sum of money from the bank to purchase a new place.

The ex-wife called the man and asked how things were going.He told her they were selling the house but did not tell the real reasons why.She listened politely and said that she missed her old home terribly and would be willing to reduce her divorce settlement in exchange for getting the house back. Knowing his ex-wife had no idea about the smell, he agreed on a price that was about 1/10th of what the house had been worth, but only if she were to sign the papers that very day. She agreed, and within the hour his lawyers delivered the paperwork for her to sign.

A week later the man and his girlfriend stood smiling as they watched the moving company pack everything to take to their new home,including the curtain rods.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Book Review: Mojo by Kris Sedersten

Title: Mojo
Author: Kris Sedersten
Paperback: 268 pages
Publisher: BookSurge Publishing (December 21, 2009)


★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts:

Mojo is a mystery-horror book. I started reading this book around eleven in the evening Friday and when I was halfway thru I realized that it was already three in the morning, Saturday and I was alone in the living room! I couldn't put down the book because it was sooo good. I finished reading this book just before sunrise and wow, I enjoyed it a lot!

I loved the plot and the suspense, definitely a "wow" for me. The story was amazing and I liked how the author wove the story. I'm still thinking of the story a few days later.

As for the characters, oh well, I liked the secondary characters - Jesse and Cee better than the main character Scottie Brown and his girl friend, Aimee. Those times I stopped reading were mainly because I was irritated with Scottie's attitude and poor dialogue. I did enjoy Jesse's and Cee's adventure with the ghosts. I loved it when they were together and wished they were the main characters instead. 

Lovers of scary/horror stories will surely enjoy this book. If you want a great horror book that you couldn't put down, you might want to pick this up and you definitely won't be disappointed.

About the book:

When Scottie Brown, a New Orleans college student, is aggressively haunted by vivid nightmares and daytime apparitions, he begins a search for answers; unwittingly putting himself and those closest to him in a confrontation with evil. To defeat the energy that torments him, he recruits a team of paranormal investigators, friends from high school, and a psychic medium. Together, they pursue the ghosts of Scottie's ancestors in a haunted plantation deep in the Louisiana countryside. They uncover dark family secrets and the spiritual energy of a malevolent patriarch who projects an unholy prophecy that has deadly consequenes for all mankind. The power of an elusive mojo amulet becomes central to fighting Scottie's demons as the journey through the haunted mansion, filled with twists and turns, takes on a life of its own against time. Mojo is a fast-paced paranormal mystery-thriller. Edgy and fun, this book will show the reader how having faith in a power greater than ourselves will lift us through even the most unforseeable obstacles in life. - Goodreads

About the author:

Kris Sedersten is a Registered Nurse with a degree in Human and Social Service Administration. She has held credentialing in both Gerontological and Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing. She is currently employed as a Nursing Home Administrator and RN Consultant in her home town of Harvard, NE; where she lives with her husband Paul. She has a passion for the paranormal, writing fiction, and sharing her faith in innovative forums so combining the three has led to a series of books she is working on. If you've got mojo; look for upcoming new releases in 2011.

Note: I received a review copy of this book free from the author, Kris Sedersten. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

In My Mailbox

IMM (In My Mailbox) is a weekly meme hosted and created by Kristi at The Story Siren.

This is a way to share the books we received for review, bought, and also books borrowed from the library.


Ex-CIA analyst Kurt Vetter and enigmatic foreign agent Amanda Carter race across Europe in a quest to unearth the truth behind the murder of Kurt's brother. Trying desperately to stay ahead of a government that has forsaken them, they discover a conspiracy that threatens the very foundation of world stability. The clock is ticking and Kurt and Amanda must find a way to halt the plot before millions die.

Concerned that her sister Zoe has become involved with the charismatic leader of a dubious New Age spiritual group, Juliet sets off for the Cotswolds to investigate. Upon arrival she soon comes to realise how complex the people and events are which shape the life of this place, under the distinctly flawed leadership of Craig. As her investigations deepen, relationships in the community are forged and shattered, with dangerous consequences for Juliet.

The first volume of the Mercenaries series

Leaving the Institute for the Homeless, Andiriel longs for excitement. Befriended by a knight of the illustrious Sovereign Order, she enters the Order's auxiliary services and finds herself on a strange mission leading to a challenging future in a job she hardly expects.

 When the Communists took over China and the strict implementation of the one-child policy was put to practice, the Chinese were greatly affected. Some of them were forced to commit abortion, abandon their daughters (because most of them prefer sons), and flee to other countries, where they were guaranteed with safety and a normal way of life.


Guest Author and Give away: J.E. Medrick

Dear Readers,
Like many children in this unfortunate situation, I was raised in a single-parent home.  My mom had to work all the time to support us, and we definitely weren't part of the elite class.  At three years old, sadly, there was no time for us to bond with my favorite activity - having stories (from books!) read to me.  Being a curious and enterprising child, I told my mom, "If you can't read to me, teach me to read!"
She was kind, and thorough, teaching me my letters at that tender age.  I remember my first book, a Dick and Jane compendium.  It was a used copy, one my mother had hoarded away for just such an occasion.  I spent those hot summer afternoons sprawled on our tattered couch, poring over the letters that formed into words, and sentences... then finally, whole stories.  The wind, smelling of asphalt and grass, mingled with the hum of the fan.  My mom's bitter calico cat slunk around, glaring at me whenever I happened to glance her way.  Our radiator, of the hot water kind, sat indifferently under the window, miraculously still hot from the sun.
There were many words I didn't know, and I finally exasperated my mother with my relentless questions.  She handed me a dictionary and said, "Look it up!  If you really don't understand, ask me then!"  An unorthodox process, to be sure, but for a kid who loved challenges - the perfect method.  (As a note, the dictionary is considerably harder to understand than Dick and Jane...)
I tore through that first book, reading and re-reading.  Then came a second Dick and Jane book, and finally a third - a new copy!  I was ecstatic to have something so precious in my hands... and I read it faster than the blink of an eye.  Then came the problem - what to read next?
I have always loved reading - I even read things I didn't care for.  I devoured the Babysitter's Club series, along with all the Goosebumps of my time.  (Thank you, R. L. Stine, I still hate ventriloquist dummies...)  To this day, I read any written word in front of my eyes - signs, labels, ingredients, nutrition facts, blogs... because I absolutely adore reading, and the written word.
In kindergarten I read at a 1st grade level and in 1st grade at a 5th grade level.  I became obsessed with a book of "kid's poetry" named A Light in the Attic.  At 4, I pulled out my Garfield letters book (ostensibly for practicing letters) and wrote my first (terrible) poem named "Jeremy Rat".  It was a bold-faced mimicry of a poem I read in A Light in the Attic and my first attempt at my own work.
I'm 26 now, and I've read, I'm sure, more than would be expected of someone my age.  I hope I've impressed that I've always loved the written word.  After a shaky start in middle school, I've finally brought myself to bear and decided to seriously pursue writing.  In February I released my first novel on Amazon, B&N and Smashwords.  It is titled "Shackled".  It was a blast to write, but honestly, it's my Adult Novel.  I wanted to write at least one before pursuing my current project - an episodic YA adventure series.  Reading is fundamental for people of all ages, and the younger we can start kids, the better.  So, why not give them something interesting to read!
YA episodic adventure, how does that work?  (I can hear you asking.)  I'm writing a series of novellas, telling about the various characters involved in the overarching "situation".  The short of it is: a man deeply in debt agrees to do the dirty work of a genetic research company and (secretly, as he works as a neonatal attendant) injects newborns with an experimental compound that dramatically alters the structure of their DNA.  The result is, how shall we say, quite Super...
I hope you'll check it out!  Season 1, Episode 1 is titled "Cheat" and is digitally available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords!  Only 99 cents!  Look for the below cover, and - as always - thanks for reading!
With fond regards,
J. E. Medrick

The author is giving away 3 e-book copies of CHEAT for international bloggers! 

All you have to do is follow me, leave a comment with your name and email or if you don't want to leave your email, just comment and send me your email here : with the subject "JE Medrick give away". This give away will end on April 11 and the winner will be announced on April 12.


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Giveaway Winners: Petchy Maligula by Stan Carter

This book give away is now closed.

Congratulations to:

I will be sending you guys confirmation email in a while. Thank you to Stan Carter for the e-book giveaways!! If you didn't win please check out other contests here in Bookingly Yours.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Give away Winners: The Knot Artist by India Wilson

This book give away is now closed.

Congratulations to:

Paperback copies



I will be sending you guys confirmation email in a while. Thank you to India Wilson for the book giveaways!! If you didn't win please check out other contests here in Bookingly Yours.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Book Give away: Turned by Morgan Rice

Book Giveaway: Turned (Book #1 in the Vampire Journals) by Morgan Rice


In TURNED (Book #1 of the Vampire Journals series), eighteen year old Caitlin Paine finds herself uprooted from her nice suburb and forced to attend a dangerous New York City high school when her Mom moves again. The one ray of light in her new surroundings is Jonah, a new classmate who takes an instant liking to her.

But before their romance can blossom, Caitlin suddenly finds herself changing. She is overcome by a superhuman strength, a sensitivity to light, a desire to feed--by feelings she does not understand. She seeks answers to what’s happening to her, and her cravings lead her to the wrong place at the wrong time. Her eyes are opened to a hidden world, right beneath her feet, thriving underground in New York City. She finds herself caught between two dangerous covens, right in the middle of a vampire war.

It is at this moment that Caitlin meets Caleb, a mysterious and powerful vampire who rescues her from the dark forces. He needs her to help lead him to the legendary lost artifact. And she needs him for answers, and for protection. Together, they will need to answer one crucial question: who was her real father?

But Caitlin finds herself caught between two men as something else arises between them: a forbidden love. A love between the races that will risk both of their lives, and will force them to decide whether to risk it all for each other..

Be a follower and leave a message to enter for your chance to win 1 of 3 ebooks. The contest is open internationally. The contest will end on 29 March.

Thank you to Morgan Rice for offering this book giveaway.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Book Review: Before The Storm by Marian Perera

Before The Storm
by Marian Perera

Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Samhain Publishing (February 1, 2011)


★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts:

Before the Storm tells the story of Alexis Khayne, a mare/sex slave owned by Lord Stephen Garnath, the ruthless ruler of Radiath. When Lord Robert Demeresna, baron of Dawnever, visited Radiath, Lord Garnath gives Alex to him as a gift. Alex could not believe it. She is scared, so scared of Lord Robert. She heard everything about this baron and they call him the Bloody Baron for being cruel, brutal, sadistic ruler of Dawnever. They say that his lands are filled with scarecrows made from crucified men.

As for the baron, he could not believe it either. He wants nothing from the ruler of Radiath and suspects that Alex might be a spy or an assassin. He planned to leave her but if she's an assassin, she'll still follow them and ambush them on the way back to their land. So after his consultation with his sorcerer, Mayerd, they agreed that they have to bring Alex with them because to refuse Lord Garnath's gift might mean war.

When they got back to his land, Robert found out that Lord Garnath is plotting a war against him. He doesn't want war so he acts like there's nothng to worry about. He showed Alex his true self - that he is a fair and just ruler of Dawnever, not the cruel - Bloody Baron they say. Since he thinks Alex is a spy, he brings Alex with him wherever he goes and eventually he felt an unwanted attraction to Alex. The story goes from there. What would you do if you fall in love with someone who might be sent to kill you?

The heroine is a mare. She is a whore/sex slave to Lord Garnath's kingdom. She bedded a lot of men, a typical day (or night) for her is getting laid by whoever Lord Garnath chooses. I like her character. She's strong even though she's been abused most of her life. I'm glad the author  did not make her a whiny girl. And as for Robert, the "Bloody Baron" title was just made to make him look fierce to the enemies but he's really not into war and has a soft heart to everything.

The book contains a lot of action and twist. I enjoyed it a lot. I love the plot and this is a great start to a series. It has a little romance but I appreciate it since I really hate a book with a cheesy lines/love story (though I read cheesy stories depends on my mood). I love the cover of this book! I can picture the characters perfectly by looking at this cover.

The only thing I didn't like here was the sorcery thing. Both Lord Garnath and Robert own a sorcerer. The Inward and Outward way -  their way of fighting each other.  I couldn't understand a thing! Well mostly, I had to skim to the parts where Ohallox (Garnath's sorcerer) and Mayerd (Robert's) are battling each other's minds.

Other than  the sorcery thing, I found the book entertaining. This is recommended for fans of fantasy-romance books.  It was a great read and I look forward to reading the next books.

About the book:

Whore…gift…and unexpected ally.  

In Dagran society, Alex is the lowest of the low—a “mare”, an object to be used by the nobility. When her owner, Stephen Garnath, gifts her to his greatest rival, she begins plotting her path to freedom. Nothing and no one will ever control her again. Not her degrading past, and certainly not her growing attraction to a man reputed to be an even crueler master than Garnath.  

Robert Demeresna is instantly suspicious of such a generous gift. Yet she comes to him armed with only her sharp mind—a potent weapon he can use to defend his people from the enemy. And underneath, an unbreakable spirit that besieges the walls of his heart.   Slowly, Robert chips away at Alex’s defenses, striking sparks that make her begin to believe even a lowly whore like her could be worthy of him. Until Garnath springs a trap so cleverly hidden, war is unleashed before either of them sees it coming. A new kind of war fought with steam engines, explosives—and magic with a killing edge…  

Warning: Contains violence, steam engines, steamier sex and multiple explosions of the unstable chemical variety. - Goodreads

About the author:

I was born in Sri Lanka, grew up in the United Arab Emirates, studied in the United States and live in Canada—for the time being. I'm also at the end of my first year in college. Medical laboratory technology (except for the venipuncture - ow ow needles) is almost as fascinating as fantasy. 

If you'd like to contact me, my address is mdperera at hotmail dot com and I love hearing from readers or other writers.

read more HERE.

Note: I received a review copy of this e-book free from the author, Marian Perera. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Read first chapter HERE

Monday, March 7, 2011

Give away Winners: The Shifters of 2040 by Ami Blackwelder

This book give away is now closed.

Congratulations to:

I will be sending you guys confirmation email in a while. Thank you to Ami Blackwelder for this giveaway!! If you didn't win please check out other contests here in Bookingly Yours.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Guest Author and Give away: Stan Carter

Hi Stan! Welcome to Bookingly Yours! Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Stan Carter, author of Petchy Maligula

The name of my fictional hero, Petchy Maligula, was derived from a character in another science-fiction novel that I never finished. The plot of that earlier book concerned an alternate version of ancient Rome, ruled by an empress named Agravina Maligula.

She was tough on her male slaves, subjecting them to the "Kiss of a Thousand Tongues" and other inventive punishments, and she had a slender, sexy, ditzy teenage daughter named Petulanta (Petchy) who spent most of her time cavorting with the slaves her mother cast aside. The empress wanted her daughter to become a general in the army, but Petchy didn't take her military training seriously; she used her helmet as a purse, and her broadsword as a razor to shave her legs. (In real life, Romans didn't have razors, and in order to remove unwanted hair they had to pluck it out, or have it done for them at the public baths (ouch!), so in a way Petchy was ahead of her time.)

I eventually abandoned my Roman novel, but I liked the name Petchy Maligula so I recycled it and used it for my private eye. The modern-day Petchy is not slender, or sexy (and definitely not ditzy). In fact, I made her heavy and homely. Why? Because I'm heavy and homely, and I figured there were enough thin and pretty heroes and heroines in novels, so why not create someone a bit different than the rest, someone I could identify with?
I swiped the name Faladan Pala from another of my abandoned novels, and used it for the hunky archaeologist character that Petchy is looking for. He was inspired by Josh Bernstein, a real-life archaeologist who hosted a show called "Digging for the Truth" a few years ago on The History Channel. In my novel, Faladan's show is called "I Dig the Past," and it's on "The Historical Network." Ironically, one person who reviewed my book mistakenly used the real name -- The History Channel -- in her review, but that turned out to be a good thing, because now there's a link to her review on Simon & Schuster's Website. I'm not sure how that happened, but I know The History Channel has released some books, and they're published by Simon & Schuster, so maybe some search engine detected the words "History Channel" in the review and assumed my book was somehow related to the others.
But however it happened, it's really cool to be associated with a big-time New York publisher, even by accident. Although I must admit this is probably as close to Simon & Schuster as I'll ever get.

The thing I envy most about big-time publishers is the ease with which their authors get publicity. It doesn't work that way down in the trenches. I must have emailed at least thirty book-blogs asking for reviews of Petchy, and only a handful replied at all. Most of those who did reply said no, and a few said yes but never followed through, but four people actually did read the book and posted reviews, including Jenai, and I'm very grateful.

Getting turned down or ignored by bloggers can be almost as demoralizing as getting rejected by publishers. Not long ago I went to the Manic Readers site and requested reviews from their members, and it was very depressing to sit back and watch as every other author got their book snapped up immediately, while poor Petchy just sat there ... and sat there ... unwanted, like a wallflower at the prom.

But no writer is universally beloved. Not even Stephanie Meyer or J.K. Rowling or Steven King. And at least I have a publisher and four reasonably good reviews, which is more than some struggling writers can say.

So I guess I'll conclude this post by saying thanks to Jenai for letting me be a guest on her blog. And I invite all her followers to visit my own blog, where I've posted some weird-but-true stuff about my writing career, as well as the four reviews I've received for my novel. You can find my blog at And I hope some of you will participate in Jenai's "Petchy Maligula" giveaway, too.
See ya.

--Stanley Bruce Carter


The author is giving away two e-book copies of PETCHY MALIGULA for international bloggers! 

All you have to do is follow me, leave a comment with your name and email or if you don't want to leave your email, just comment and send me your email here : with the subject "Stan Carter give away". This give away will end on March 17 and the winner will be announced on March 18.


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Happy Friday!!

Hi guys! Time for the weekly BLOG HOP!
Visit Parajunkee's view and Crazy For Books for the linky . . . .

Question of the week:

Question of the week:
 Who's your favorite all-time book villain?

Definitely : Sauron, the Nazgul/Ring wraiths and gollum!! All of  them are creepy-looking creatures. . . . 
my preciooouuuussss. . . . 

Happy Friday!

Book Review: Midsummer Magic by Catherine Coulter

Title: Midsummer Magic
Author: Catherine Coulter
Paperback: 416 pages
Publisher: Signet (July 1, 2003)


★ ★

My thoughts:

This is my first book by Catherine Coulter. I wanted to love or even like it because my best friend loved this book. It is actually one of her all-time favorite books. However, for me, the whole book was rather boring. I really had a tremendously difficult time in getting into this book. It was hard to like it when you hate the main characters.

Frances does not want to marry Hawk (arranged marriage) she disguises herself as an ugly woman so Hawk would choose one of her beautiful sisters. Hawk wants to have an unattractive wife so he could leave her anytime he wants to. For him, Frances is just perfect as his wife so he chooses her because she's unattractive. Hawk soon discovers that his wife is a very beautiful woman, it was supposed to be a funny read but I found myself doing an actual eye rolling numerous times. This would have been an OK book if not for the following problems:

Hawk is a cold-hearted husband so imagine my disappointment with how he talks to his wife and to all other characters in the story. He's so insensitive and most of the time, he humiliates his wife and continously rapes her. I know marital rapes happen during that time.  I have no problem with that, considering I loved Whitney My Love by Judith McNaught which also has a rape scene but in this book, I didn't like it.

Hawk never showed  any good in him. Sweet? Caring? And even remorse for the things he did to his wife. Nothing to like in him. Frances on the other hand, her character was likeable - well only when she hates Hawk. But when she began to fall for her husband, I immediately hated her. How could she fall for that kind of man. Stupid girl.

writing style
I have said this a number of times in this blog that I usually have a wall up when it comes to stories with different point of views. The writing must have the perfect time in starting and ending a POV. In this book, the author used a lot of different POVs which made it harder for me to connect to the characters. Again, I couldn't count the number of times I had to go back to the earlier pages to make sure I was reading it right. There was one part of the book that I thought it was Hawk that is talking and then when I get to the end of the paragraph - oh no, not him. It was another man talking.

Overall, it wasn't an easy book to read, you may be disappointed if you expect too much reading this. 

I'm giving this book 2-star but here are some of the positive reviews for this book. Read here

About the book:

Philip Hawksbury, the Earl of Rothermere, obeying his father's dying wish, hies himself to Scotland to offer for one of the daughters of Alexander Kilbracken, the Earl of Ruthven. Frances Kilbracken, informed of the earl's arrival and his mission, disguises herself as a bespectacled dowd so she won't be the one selected by the young earl. But choose her he does, and for all the wrong reasons. The newly married couple return to England, together but now at all happy. Philip dumps Frances at Desborough Hall, his ancestral estate, and heads back to his old life in London. Ah, but Desborough has a stud farm and racing stable, and Frances is magic with horses. When the earl returns to his home, driven by guilt, he discovers the woman he married has grossly deceived him. What follows is a battle of the sexes that will have you chuckling, maybe even howling with laughter.. - Goodreads

About the author:

Catherine Coulter is the author of fifty novels, forty two of which have been New York Times bestsellers. She earned her reputation writing historical romances, but in recent years turned her hand to penning—with great success—contemporary suspense novels. Catherine grew up on a horse ranch in Texas. She graduated from the University of Texas and received her masters in early 19th century European History at Boston College. Prior to becoming a full-time writer, she worked on Wall Street as a speechwriter for a company president. Catherine lives in Marin County, California with her physician husband Anton Pogany.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Waiting for: Succubus Revealed by Richelle Mead

Hi guys! Yes! Richelle Mead mentioned last week in her FB account that book cover of the last Succubus book will be released this week and yay! Here it is:

"Sin is her specialty and business is booming"
And the synopsis:

Georgina Kincaid has had an eternity to figure out the opposite sex, but sometimes they still surprise her. Take Seth Mortensen. The man has risked his soul to become Georgina's boyfriend. Still, with Lucifer for a boss, Georgina can't just hang up her killer heels and settle down to domestic bliss. In fact, she's being forced to transfer Las Vegas.

The City of Sin is a dream gig for a succubus, but Georgina's allies are suspicious. Why are the powers-that-be so eager to get her away from Seattle—-and from Seth? Georgina is one of Hell's most valuable assets, but if there's any way out of the succubus business she plans to take it--no matter how much roadkill she leaves behind. She just hopes the casualties won’t include the one man she’s risking everything for...

I'm SOOO excited for the final book. I hope she'd be with Seth. Please - Georgie needs to be with Seth! And also, I wanna know what's with the contract. I miss the whole gang! Awww another end of a great series. According to Richelle's blog, the excerpt will be posted later this summer. The release date of the final book is August 30. I can't wait! If you guys haven't started the series, pick up the first book, Succubus Blues and you'll love it just like me!

Want to read more about the book? Read HERE

Guest Blogger Book Review: Leadership and Self-Deception

Book Review: Leadership and Self-Deception

Author: The Arbinger Institute

This review was written by Edward Stern who also writes on taking online accounting classes and earning a bachelor degree online for technical schools

The esteemed Arbinger Institute has done it again with Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting Out of the Box. A book for anyone in a leadership position but particularly those heading up an office or corporate team, the book seeks to make readers better leaders through doing what is truly the right thing -- and not making excuses, or deceiving oneself, when what is right is not done.

The messages and morals of the book are told through a story. Tom, a straight-edged, by-the-book company guy who does good work, has just been hired as an executive at the fictional Zagrum Corporation. During his leadership training from two senior executives, Tom is shown how he is in the box without even being aware of it, how to get out of the box, and subsequently how to be a better leader, employee, and person. The box is limiting, and only by knowing how the box encapsules his being and how to get himself out of it can he grow and stop deceiving himself.

Basically, "the box" confines because of the limited view of the person confined. This person has an inflated self-importance, often due to their status as a leader, and is not personally accountable. The person in the box makes excuses when tasks aren't carried out completely, when promises are broken, or when team members are left out to dry. These excuses make the person believe they have done the right thing, it's not their fault, or there was nothing they could have done to change how things turned out. People in the box avoid responsibility and accountability, and lie to themselves that they are doing right when they know, deep down, that they could be doing a lot better.

Rather than just purely about leadership, the book demands introspection and a rejuvenation of the self to get out of the box and to stay out of it. Doing so makes for a better person, which is necessary for one to lead other people and have them follow suit. The book takes a unique approach by identifying one source of where lack-luster leadership stems from and what it is, and how to identify it in other people and oneself.

The book also takes a unique approach by veering into fiction and teaching lessons through a narrative. Leadership and Self-Deception takes an approach equal parts show and tell. Tom is a relatable character, and it is very easy to see parts of oneself (especially less than glowing ones) in him. It makes the introspection happen a little bit easier, and it makes for a more spirited read than other dry self-help books that just tell you what to do in a dense non-fiction style. Like a really long fable or a philosophical discourse from the great Greek minds, the messages come out the reader regularly but do so through a story and through characters, one we can all identify with and, by the end of the book, strive to be.

Still, it's this style that also keeps it one star away from a perfect score. The dialogue, and the writing in general, is very simple and can be unintentionally funny in how watered-down and elementary it sometimes is. Great literature this is not. Also, anybody expecting a neat conclusion will have to wait -- the senior executives tell Tom there are three steps to getting out of the box and staying out of it, and as the book abruptly ends, he's only completed the first step. Smart move by the authors to create demand for a sequel or two, but maddening for the reader.

That said, there's a lot of good stuff in Leadership and Self-Deception and it deserves several readings to grasp its full message. It strives to help the reader become a better leader through first being a better person, and that is noble in and of itself.
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