Huntsmen by: Michelle Osgood | Book Review (+Author Interview & Giveaway)

Huntsmen
By: Michelle Osgood
Rating: 4 stars
Genre: F/F Romance, Supernatural, Drama, LGBTQ+, Fantasy
Release Date: April 13, 2017
Publisher: Interlude Press

Interlude | Amazon | B&N | Apple | Kobo | Smashwords | Book Depository | Indiebound

Synopsis:

Months after saving Jamie and Deanna from crywolf, Kiara and her brother Cole have moved into the city. While clubbing one night, Kiara is stunned to see her ex, Taryn, onstage. But before she can react, Jamie notices a distinctive tattoo in the crowd: an axe rumored to be the mark of the Huntsmen, a group of werewolf-tracking humans. The girls need to leave immediately—and since Taryn is also a werewolf, they need to take her with them.

The Huntsmen are more than a myth, and they’re scouring the city for lone wolves just like Taryn. Until the General North American Assembly of Werewolves lends a plan of action, Kiara’s small pack is on lockdown in a friend’s apartment, where she and Taryn must face the differences that drove them apart. Furthermore, the longer the group waits, the more it seems the Huntsmen haven’t been acting entirely on their own.

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The Big Thing by: Phyllis Korkki Book Review

The Big Thing
By: Phyllis Korkki
Genre: Self-Motivation, Non-Fiction, Self-Help, Creativity
Rating: 3.5 stars
Publisher: HarperCollins
Release Date: August 9, 2016

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Synopsis:

A New York Times business journalist explains why it’s important for people to pursue big creative projects, and identifies both the obstacles and the productive habits that emerge on the path to completion—including her own experience writing this book.

Whether it’s the Great American Novel or a groundbreaking new app, many people want to create a Big Thing, but finding the motivation to get started, let alone complete the work, can be daunting. In The Big Thing, New York Times business writer and editor Phyllis Korkki combines real-life stories, science, and insights from her own experience to illuminate the factors that drive people to complete big creative projects—and the obstacles that threaten to derail success.

In the course of creating her own Big Thing—this book—Korkki explores the individual and collaborative projects of others: from memoirs, art installations, and musical works to theater productions, small businesses, and charities. She identifies the main aspects of a Big Thing, including meaningful goals, focus and effort, the difficulties posed by the demands of everyday life, and the high risk of failure and disappointment. Korkki also breaks down components of the creative process and the characteristics that define it, and offers her thoughts on avoiding procrastination, staying motivated, scheduling a routine, and overcoming self-doubt and the restrictions of a day job. Filled with inspiring stories, practical advice, and a refreshing dose of honesty, The Big Thing doesn’t minimize the negative side of such pursuits—including the fact that big projects are hard to complete and raise difficult questions about one’s self-worth.

Inspiring, wise, humorous, and good-natured, The Big Thing is a meditation on the importance of self-expression and purpose.

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Under Ground (Under Ground #1) Book Review by Alice Rachel (+ Giveaway)

May 20th Blog Tour Date

 

Under Ground (Under Ground, #1)
By: Alice Rachel
Publication date: October 30th 2015
Genres: Dystopia, Romance, Young Adult
Rating: 3.8 stars
Synopsis:

Love is a taboo, a mere fantasy— foreign, unreachable, and dangerous.

Raised in a society where women have no rights, seventeen-year-old Thia Clay holds little hope for a bright future. When her parents sell her into marriage to elite member William Fox, Thia slowly gives in to despair. William is nothing but a cruel, selfish young man with no other interest than to serve his own.

Born illegally and forced to hide from the authorities his entire life, nineteen-year-old Chi Richards is an active member of the Underground—a rebellious group seeking to overthrow the government.

Chi only has one goal—to rescue his parents from the work camp they were forced into.

Meeting Thia was never part of the plan, and neither was falling in love with her.

If caught in their forbidden relationship, Thia and Chi could face a death sentence, and when devastating secrets surface from Chi’s past, Thia has to rely on her instincts to make a choice that could save her or destroy her forever.

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Dragon Scale Lute (Legends of Tivara, Princess of Cathay #1) By: J.C. Kang Book Review (+Giveaway)

April 11th Blog Tour Date

Dragon Scale Lute Book Tour hosted by: CBB Book Promotions, so be sure to check out the rest of the tour stops 🙂  Also, For a limited time The Dragon Scale Lute is on sale for only .99 cents for Kindle!

Dragon Scale Lute (Legends of Tivara, Princess of Cathay #1)

By: J.C. Kang

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Magic, Epic Fantasy

Release date: March 2, 2016

Format: eBook

Rating: 3.95/4 stars

Goodreads | Amazon

Synopsis:

Kaiya’s voice could charm a dragon.

Had she lived when the power of music could still summon typhoons and rout armies, perhaps Cathay’s imperial court would see the awkward, gangly princess as more than a singing fool. With alliances to build and ambitious lords to placate, they care more about her marriage prospects than her unique abilities.

Only the handsome Prince Hardeep, a foreign martial mystic, recognizes her potential. Convinced Kaiya will rediscover the legendary but perilous art of invoking magic through music, he suggests her voice, not her marriage, might better serve the realm.

When members of the emperor’s elite spy clan– Kaiya’s childhood friend and his half-elf sidekick (or maybe he’s her sidekick?)– discover mere discontent boiling over into full-scale rebellion, Kaiya must choose. Obediently wedding the depraved ringleader means giving up her music. Confronting him with the growing power of her voice could kill her.

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The Urban Boys: Discovery of the Five Senses Book Review + Giveaway

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Happy, Saturday, guys! It’s finally here: The Urban Boys: Discovery of the Five Senses Book Tour hosted by MMSAI. So, be sure to follow the full Book Tour Schedule 🙂

 

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THE URBAN BOYS
Author: K.N. Smith
Pages: 292
Release Date: September 29th, 2015
Publisher: Two Petals Publishing

Genre: Middle School, Paranormal, Diverse, Action, Friendship

Rating: 4 Stars

Amazon | B&N | Goodreads | Apple

Synopsis:

The Urban Boys: Discovery of the Five Senses is an action-adventure story about five teen boys who are mysteriously exposed to a foreign energy source that gives them extremely heightened senses. Sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell become hypersensitive gifts that forever change the world. The story chronicles their effortless interrelations and later exposes the testing of their deep bonds. It introduces the reader to an array of supporting characters who alter the boys’ lives forever. The Urban Boys offers young and mature readers central themes of loyalty, responsibility, honesty, fear, and triumph, which become artfully integrated with cinematic-level action and high drama. The story twists, turns, and grinds through elements of paranormal and action-adventure in a diverse, exciting, edge-of-your-seat narrative!

Overview: The story’s small town of Danville Heights, a carefully crafted universe, contrasts with the dark, gloomy town of Sandry Lake, where evil abounds. Upon the boys’ mysterious incident with the energy source, they’re instinctively called to Sandry Lake to root out evil. Their senses guide them each time. However, secrecy about their mission, furious battles with evil thugs, extreme fatigue, and stress and pressure soon overwhelm the boys, but they must find a way to embrace their fate. A lurking, Dark Stranger seems to know their plight, and a strikingly beautiful, fearless girl lends way to heightened confusion. Shocking details about these two characters, and the evil antagonist, the dreaded Druth, twist and grind the story even further.

Despite tension and fierce battles, will the boys hold it together long enough to fulfill their destiny?

Intriguing, intelligent, and full of action, The Urban Boys: Discovery of the Five Senses offers a memorable, emotion-packed, thrilling ride for young and mature readers alike!

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Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul

Underneath Everything Book Review + Giveaway

Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul

Underneath Everything Book Tour Banner hosted by FFBC. So, be sure to follow the full Book Tour Schedule 🙂

Underneath Everything cover

Underneath Everything
by Marcy Beller Paul
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Release Date: October 27th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, LGBTQ+, Realistic Fiction
Rate: 4 Stars
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes

Synopsis:

Mattie shouldn’t be at the bonfire. She should be finding new maps for her collection, hanging out with Kris, and steering clear of almost everyone else, especially Jolene. After all, Mattie and Kris dropped off the social scene the summer after sophomore year for a reason.

But now Mattie is a senior, and she’s sick of missing things. So here she is.

And there’s Jolene: Beautiful. Captivating. Just like the stories she wove. Mattie would know; she used to star in them. She and Jolene were best friends. Mattie has the scar on her palm to prove it, and Jolene has everything else, including Hudson.

But when Mattie runs into Hudson and gets a glimpse of what could have been, she decides to take it all back: the boyfriend, the friends, the life she was supposed to live. Problem is, Mattie can’t figure out where Jolene ends and she begins.

Because there’s something Mattie hasn’t told anyone—she walked away from Jolene over a year ago, but she never really left.

Poignant and provocative, Marcy Beller Paul’s debut novel tells the story of an intoxicating—and toxic—relationship that blurs the boundary between reality and fantasy, love and loyalty, friendship and obsession.

Whether it was the lyrical or rhythmic way in which Marcy Beller Paul coursed Mattie’s unique story, I am sincerely grateful and in awe, that Underneath Everything was my first official Blog Tour book.

Mattie, the main character is quiet, calculative and extremely self aware with the people in her life. Even with her closest, tethering companion, Kris—whom she isn’t suppose to hold anything from—but she does.

And it is the small bread crumbs of the past that Mattie gives the reader as she not only recalls, but relives, over and over again, that kept me drawn to this story. Getting further and further into this story and realizing how cinched and interwoven Mattie was to Jolene, I started to realize just how addictive, yet toxic their relationship was.

The reader will watch as Mattie comes to grips with facing her past, the present and the future while she tries to get her barring over true friendship, love and the makings of her reality vs. the one around her as a result of her longing to be inimitable rather, “something new.”

The events that transpire between the main characters, Mattie, Jolene, Kris and Belle do push the dark boundaries in the book, but I felt that they were areas that needed to be explored to illustrate the serious, intense and dangerous realm that Kris and Mattie were so adamant about leaving behind*.

Likewise, Mattie and Jolene’s relationship borders a level of intimacy that goes beyond “friends,” which I think speaks to Mattie’s inner compass trying to tell her something she may not be aware of yet.

The poetic, literary narrative in which the story is told will make the reader fall that much more in love with the book’s main theme: knowing yourself/truly knowing who you are. (More or less) When you read Underneath Everything, you not only gain a better understanding of how and why Mattie still thinks, sees, hears and pines after a person who she knows, deep down in her gut is wrong for her, but also why she can’t seem to stop herself.

I have never been in such an intense, or toxic relationship as the one Jolene and Mattie have, but after reading this book I feel like I’ve lived through one. I really enjoyed the way Marcy not only exposed the reader to such a multifarious, condensed and rich topic, but also the way she exposes Mattie all the way down to her core. Thus, that in the end, Mattie is the one to save herself, see herself and love herself.

I recommend Underneath Everything for anyone who has been in a relationship or a friendship that was so gripping or suffocating that you thought there would never be a light at the end of the tunnel. A tether to someone with a pull so strong you feel you might never be able to cut that cord. A feeling of being so lost or so disconnected from who you are, on an unlit path, that you worry if you’ll ever find your way again.

Underneath Everything will take you on a string of emotions from start to finish, but it is one heck of a ride. 🙂

**(Side note: I have seen friends push the limits to be seen, to be remembered, to be popular or the center of attention over the years in school, so I didn’t feel all that all of the situations or actions that took place in this book were impossible to fathom.)

There were so many amazing lines and quotes from this book and I really wish I could share them all, alas I cannot. Therefore, I strongly encourage you to give this book a read. ❤ Be sure to enter the Book Giveaway below and follow the rest of the blog tour ^__^.

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Follow the Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul Blog Tour and don’t miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.
Marcy Beller Paul is a young adult author, former editor, and full-time mom who still has all the notes she passed in seventh grade (and knows how to fold them).

She graduated from Harvard University and lives in New Jersey with her husband and two children. Underneath Everything will be published by Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins, in Fall 2015. It is her first novel.

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Up Next On The Tour:

October 26th:

Collector of book boyfriends – Review
Ruth Reads – Review
nerdychampagne – Review + Playlist

October 27th:

Spiced Latte Reads – Review
A Perfection Called Books – Interview
One Night Book Stand – Guest Post

Direct Book Giveaway Link